World Bulletin / News Desk
Iraqi troops fired shots in the air to disperse Sunni Muslims rallying against Shi'ite Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki on Monday in another day of protests threatening to upset the fragile cross-sectarian government.
Thousands of protesters have taken to the streets in Sunni strongholds across Iraq for more than two weeks.
In the northern city of Mosul, Iraqi troops fired shots over hundreds of protesters trying to gather in a public square, and in the Sunni heartland province of Anbar, at least 5,000 more people took to the streets peacefully.
"Security forces opened fire and used batons to disperse demonstrators," said Atheel al-Nujaifi, governor of Nineveh province, which includes Mosul, 390 km (240 miles) north of the capital Baghdad.
He said one demonstrator had been hit by a security forces vehicle and others had been wounded. Ghanim al-Abid, a protest organizer in Mosul, told Reuters, that at least four people had been wounded by security forces.
Demonstrators have blocked a major highway leading through the remote Anbar desert to Syria's border since late December when Maliki's forces arrested bodyguards protecting Finance Minister Rafaie al-Esawi, a leading Sunni figure.
The bodyguard arrests touched off protests by tens of thousands of Sunnis who feel sidelined by Maliki.
The protests are increasing pressure on Maliki over Iraq's power-sharing deal amoung Shi'ite, Sunni and Kurdish blocs.
Sunni demands range from fixing failing public services to amending anti-terror laws they say are abused to target their community. Maliki has made some concessions such as releasing some detainees, but protests continue daily.
Under current Swiss laws, an applicant has to be on Swiss territory to lodge an asylum request.
Iraqi security forces backed by Shiite militia defeat Daesh in al-Dour town.
Floods – said to be the worst in 90 years – affected Madagascar, Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe
The streets of Mogadishu saw heavy deployments of security personnel, who set up checkpoints in order to search cars and check passengers' IDs
Several Israelis were killed or wounded amid a rise in Palestinian attacks on Israelis as tension in the region mounts.
An Iraqi antiquities official confirmed the news, saying the destruction began after noon prayers on Thursday and that trucks that may have been used to haul away artefacts had also been spotted at the site.
Mogherini told a foreign policy conference in the Latvian capital that she was committed to bringing the Iranian nuclear talks to a positive end.
The postponement of the local elections is the second time they have been pushed back.
Navalny strikes defiant tone after murder of ally Nemtsov with plans to go to Nemtsov's grave later on Friday
The source said that the three injured - a woman and her daughter who hail from the slain girl's family as well as a young man - have undergone shrapnel removal surgeries
Kurdish and Iraqi sources say the extremist group also vandalised a historical site in the ancient Assyrian city of Nimrud.
Kenya is home to 3 out of the world's 5 living northern white rhinos
The country's import bill hit $2.8 billion in 2014 against $1.3 billion in export earnings