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19 Jan 2018 description

Ukraine's top health official says eight people have died of complications from measles amid a recent outbreak in the country, which the World Health Organization (WHO) has ranked last in terms of measles-vaccination coverage in Europe.

Acting Health Minister Ulyana Suprun told lawmakers on January 19 that a child who had not been vaccinated against measles died the previous day.

18 Jan 2018 description

Pakistani authorities say gunmen shot and killed a mother and her daughter who were taking part in an antipolio campaign in the southwestern city of Quetta.

Police official Naseebullah Khan said that Sakina Bibi, 50, and her 20-year-old daughter, Alizah, were giving immunization drops to children on January 18 when two gunmen riding on a motorcycle shot them.

No one has so far claimed responsibility for the attack, but militants in Pakistan have regularly targeted polio workers and their guards.

16 Jan 2018 description

The conflict in eastern Ukraine has increased the spread of HIV throughout the country as people have been uprooted by the violence, a new study finds.

Areas such as Donetsk and Luhansk, two large cities in the east deeply affected by the violence that erupted in 2014, were the main exporters of the HIV virus to other parts of the country such as Kyiv and Odesa, the report published on January 15 in the U.S. journal PNAS found.

Ukraine has among the highest HIV rates in Europe, with an estimated 220,000 infected in a country of about 45 million.

22 Dec 2017 description

An earthquake of magnitude 5.2 rocked Iran's southeastern province of Kerman on December 21 and at least 23 people were injured, state TV said, only a day after two people were killed by a similar tremor near Tehran.

Rescue teams were dispatched to the town of Kuhbanan, the epicenter of the latest quake, officials said. No deaths were reported.

"Electricity has been cut off in the town.... Some houses were damaged," a local official told state TV.

21 Dec 2017 description

Iranian officials say a woman died and nearly 100 people suffered minor injuries after an earthquake struck near Tehran late on December 20, sparking panic in the capital and neighboring areas.

Authorities said on December 21 that the woman died in the town of Malard, close to the epicenter of the 5.2-magnitude earthquake, about 40 kilometers southwest of Tehran.

Morteza Salimi, head of the Iranian Red Crescent's Relief and Rescue Organization, said 97 people were injured, including "50 in Alborz, 34 in the capital, and 12 in Saveh."

15 Dec 2017 description

At least five hundred refugees and migrants are living in Serbia in improvised accommodations or under the open sky while winter weather conditions are getting harsher each day, Doctors Without Borders said on December 14.

More than 100 of the migrants live in the forest on the outskirts of the town of Sombor in northern Serbia alone, according to the charitable doctors group based in France.

12 Nov 2017 description

November 12, 2017 20:28 GMT

At least six people have been killed and many injured in the western Iranian town of Qasr-e Shirin from an earthquake that struck near the Iran-Iraq border, Iranian state television reports.

At least four dead were also reported in Iraq's Kurdistan region.

The earthquake with a magnitude of 7.3 struck northern Iraq on November 12, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

It initially said the quake was of a magnitude 7.2, before revising it to 7.3.

05 Nov 2017 description

At least six people were killed and a dozen wounded when two bombings hit the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk.

Both bombings targeted a building used by a Shi'ite militia in the center of Kirkuk on November 5.

The first attacker blew up an explosives-laden vehicle near the building, while a second detonated his explosive belt at the site.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

The attack is the first since Iraqi government forces backed by Shi'ite militias seized control of Kirkuk from Kurdish Peshmerga forces last week.

05 Nov 2017 description

The U.S. military and Afghan authorities are investigating reports of civilian casualties caused by deadly air strikes in northern Afghanistan.

The U.S. military said it had launched a probe into what it described as a combined U.S.-Afghan operation in the northern province of Kunduz on November 3 and was assessing the facts surrounding the incident.

The Afghan Defense Ministry said it had tasked security commanders to probe reports of civilian casualties in the Chardara district in Kunduz, where the government said it had inflicted heavy losses on Taliban militants.

31 Oct 2017 description

A suicide attack claimed by the Islamic State (IS ) group in the diplomatic district of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul, has caused multiple casualties.

The Afghan Health Ministry said at least three people killed and 15 were wounded in the October 31 blast in the Wazir Akbar Khan district, known as the "Green Zone," where many embassies and the head offices of major international organizations are located.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the explosion.

23 Oct 2017 description

Syrian activists say Islamic State (IS) militants have killed 116 people while the extremist group was in control of the central Syrian town of Al-Qaryatayn.

"IS has over a period of 20 days executed at least 116 civilians in reprisal killings, accusing them of collaboration with regime forces," Rami Abdel Rahman, the head of the Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said on October 23.

Syrian government forces recaptured Al-Qaryatayn in Homs Province on October 20, three weeks after the IS group seized control of it.

18 Oct 2017 description

Negotiators from Afghanistan, China, Pakistan and the United States met in Oman on October 16 to try to find ways of reviving peace talks with the Afghan Taliban.

It was not clear whether any Taliban militants had joined the talks, which have so far failed to restart a peace process that collapsed in 2015.

Taliban sources have said they would stay away from the discussions in Muscat, casting doubt on prospects for reviving the long-stalled negotiations.

18 Oct 2017 description

Afghan officials say two separate suicide and gun attacks on government forces have left at least 71 people dead.

The Taliban claimed responsibility for the October 17 assault on a police compound in the southeastern city of Gardez, capital of Paktia Province bordering Pakistan, in which at least 41 people were killed, including the provincial police chief, and more than 150 others wounded.

Thirty people, including police officers and civilians, were also reported killed and 10 others wounded in an attack blamed on the Taliban in the neighboring province of Ghazni.

09 Oct 2017 description

Gunmen ambushed a vehicle carrying minority Shi'ite Muslims in Pakistan's southwestern city of Quetta on October 9, killing four of them and a passer-by, police say.

Two other passers-by were also wounded in the attack in Quetta, the capital of Balochistan province, according to local police chief, Hidayat Ullah.

There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but Sunni extremists regularly target Shi'ites and have staged previous such attacks in Balochistan and elsewhere in Pakistan.

05 Oct 2017 description

Pakistani officials say a suicide bombing at a Shi'ite shrine in the country's southwest has killed at least 12 people and wounded dozens.

The attack took place on October 5 in the Jhal Magsi district, which is located about 300 kilometers east of Quetta, the capital of Balochistan Province.

Scores of people had gathered at the Dargah Fatehpur shrine when the explosion hit.

Anwarul Haq Kakar, the spokesman for the provincial governor, said the dead and wounded were being taken to nearby hospitals.

02 Oct 2017 description

A U.K.-based Syrian human rights watchdog says 3,055 civilians and fighters were killed in the country’s civil war during September, the highest monthly total this year.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights on October 1 said 955 of the deaths were civilians, including 207 children and 148 women.

Syria is embroiled in a six-year civil war that has killed more than 330,000 people and forced an estimated 5 million more to flee across borders to become refugees.

02 Oct 2017 description

Iraqi Kurdish leaders have formed a political council to handle issues related to their recent independence referendum, which was held despite vehement opposition from national authorities in Baghdad.

Kurdish news outlet Rudaw on October 1 said the decision was made at a meeting in Irbil led by Masud Barzani, the president of the autonomous region in northern Iraq.

17 Sep 2017 description

At least four civilians have been killed and 14 others wounded in an explosion in the eastern Afghan province of Khost, local officials say.

Provincial police chief Faizullah Khairat said the blast occurred at around midday on September 17 at a marketplace in the provinceial capital, Khost.

Khairat said the blast was caused by a "remote-controlled bomb."

A number of those injured were said to be in critical condition, according to Mubarez Zadran, a spokesman for the provincial governor.

13 Sep 2017 description

KABUL -- At least three people were killed when a suicide bomber blew himself up while attempting to enter a cricket stadium in the Afghan capital, Kabul, officials say.

Police said the September 13 blast also injured at least seven people near the Kabul International Cricket Stadium, where hundreds of fans were watching a tournament involving both Afghan and foreign players.

No group specifically claimed responsibility for the bombing, the latest in a series of terrorist attacks in the capital.

13 Sep 2017 description

Romania's coast guard has rescued more than 150 migrants from a troubled ship on the Black Sea in an operation highlighting an emerging route for migrants trying to reach Western Europe.

Coast guard deputy commander Cristian Cicu says the rusty ship was towed to the Black Sea port of Constanta, about 250 kilometers east of Bucharest, shortly before dawn on September 13.

An initial count showed 153 people on board the ship, including 53 children.