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Rebel videos show first U.S.-made rockets in Syria

By Peter Apps LONDON (Reuters) - Online videos show Syrian rebels using what appear to be U.S. anti-tank rockets, weapons experts say, the first significant American-built armaments in the country's civil war. They would signal a further internationalization of the conflict, with new rockets suspected from Russia and drones from Iran also spotted in the forces of President Bashar al-Assad.

Kuwait minister accused by US of jihad links 'to stay'

Kuwait's Islamic affairs minister, accused by a senior US official of promoting jihad in Syria, was reported Monday as saying he will stay on after his resignation was rejected. Al-Qabas daily cited Nayef al-Ajmi as saying he will remain in the post after a request from the "political leadership" following a meeting on Sunday. The term "political leadership" generally refers to the ruler of the oil-rich Gulf state. "I will obey the orders of the political leadership and will continue along the same path I have started," Ajmi, who is also justice minister, said.

Cameroon forces search region where priests, nun kidnapped

Cameroon's security forces Sunday were sweeping the remote northern region where two Italian priests and a Canadian nun were kidnapped by suspected Boko Haram gunmen, a local government official said. "We are everywhere. We have been on the ground since the abduction," local governor Awa Fonka Augustine told AFP without elaborating. The attack occurred overnight Friday in the small parish of Tchere, in the far north of Cameroon across the border from an area of northeastern Nigeria that serves as a base for the Islamist Boko Haram group.

Two priests, nun seized in latest Cameroon kidnapping

Suspected Boko Haram gunmen have seized two Italian priests and a Canadian nun in northern Cameroon in the latest kidnapping of Westerners in the remote, insurgency-wracked corner of west Africa. The attack occurred overnight Friday in the small parish of Tchere, in the far north of Cameroon across the border from an area of northeastern Nigeria that serves as a base for the Islamist Boko Haram group. A group of armed men pulled up at the parish shortly before midnight, according to Henri Djonyang, the region's head cleric, which was confirmed by police.

Priests, nun seized in latest Cameroon kidnapping

Suspected Boko Haram gunmen seized two Italian priests and a Canadian nun in northern Cameroon overnight Saturday, in the latest kidnapping of Westerners in the remote, insurgency-wracked corner of west Africa. The attack occurred overnight in the small parish of Tchere, which lies about 40 miles (60 kilometres) from the corner of northern Nigeria that serves as a base for the Islamist Boko Haram group. A group of armed men pulled up at the parish shortly before midnight, according to Henri Djonyang, the region's head vicar, information that was confirmed by police.

Two Italian priests kidnapped in Cameroon

Two Italian priests and a Canadian nun have been kidnapped by gunmen in northern Cameroon, Italy's foreign ministry and media reports said on Saturday. The attack occurred overnight in the north of the west African country, which borders violence-wracked Nigeria, according to Italy's Ansa news agency. The Italian foreign ministry said that two priests from Italy's northern Vicenza region had been seized, but gave no other details.

Kuwait minister under US fire on Syria jihad quits

A Kuwaiti minister, accused by a senior US official of promoting jihad in Syria, has resigned just days after receiving the backing of fellow cabinet members, a report said Friday. Justice and Islamic Affairs Minister Nayef al-Ajmi, who strongly denies the US accusations, said he had asked to be relieved of his duties for health reasons, Al-Rai newspaper reported. The US Treasury under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, David Cohen, charged earlier this year that Ajmi "has a history of promoting jihad in Syria."

Jordan king, Israeli opposition leader discuss peace

Jordan's King Abdullah II held talks on Monday with Israeli opposition leader Isaac Herzog on the Middle East peace process, a palace statement said. "The king and the head of the Labour Party and member of the Knesset Isaac Herzog discussed efforts to achieve peace between Israel and the Palestinians under the sponsorship of the United States," the palace said without elaborating. Herzog's visit to Jordan came as the United States is struggling to find a formula that would enable Israel and the Palestinians to continue faltering peace talks beyond an April 29 deadline.

Obama seeks to allay Saudi fears on Iran, Syria

US President Barack Obama sought Friday to allay Riyadh's criticism of his policies on Syria and Iran, telling the Saudi king their two countries remain in lockstep on strategic interests. He also assured King Abdullah that the US "won't accept a bad deal" with Iran, as global powers negotiate a treaty reining in Tehran's controversial nuclear programme. Obama arrived from Italy to meet for some two hours with the monarch of the oil-rich kingdom on a royal estate outside Riyadh on the last leg of a six-day tour.

Arab summit opens with calls to arm Syria rebels

Syria's opposition called for "sophisticated" arms at an Arab summit in Kuwait Tuesday while Saudi Arabia stressed the need for a change in military balance to "end the impasse". UN peace envoy Lakhdar Brahimi, however, insisted on the need for a "political solution" to the three-year conflict, urging an "end to the supply of arms to all parties". Opposition Syrian National Coalition chief Ahmed Jarba repeated calls on the international community to supply rebels with "sophisticated weapons" as the two-day summit opened.
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