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Refugees brave snow, sub-zero temperatures in Greek camps

RITSONA, Greece (Reuters) - Refugees stranded in Greece suffered sub-zero temperatures and heavy snowfall on Tuesday at camps not designed for winter weather and the government promised those on one island temporary warm accommodations aboard a navy ship.


Iraqi forces advance in Mosul but civilian toll mounts

ERBIL, Iraq/BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi forces pushed Islamic State fighters back further in Mosul on Tuesday in a renewed effort to seize the northern city and deal a decisive blow to the militant group, though progress was slow in some districts, the army said.


New U.N. chief urges Security Council to act more to prevent war

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - New United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged the Security Council on Tuesday to take more action to prevent conflicts instead of just responding to them as he pledged to build the world body's mediation capacity.


U.S. senators seek Russia sanctions over hacking, Ukraine, Syria

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Senior U.S. Republican and Democratic senators will introduce legislation on Tuesday seeking to impose a wide range of sanctions on Russia over its cyber activities and actions in Syria and Ukraine.


Syrian Kurdish groups say not invited to peace talks

PARIS (Reuters) - The Syrian Kurdish YPG militia and its political arm the PYD will not be invited to planned peace talks in Kazakhstan, a PYD official said on Tuesday, an outcome that would leave a key player in the conflict off the negotiating table.


Iraq forces advance in Mosul but civilian toll mounts - spokesman, U.N

BAGHDAD/ERBIL, Iraq (Reuters) - Iraqi forces fought their way into more districts of Mosul but advances in the city's southeast were being slowed by Islamic State's use of civilians for cover, military officials said on Tuesday.


Two Turkish soldiers reported lost in Syria have died - Anadolu

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Two Turkish soldiers who went missing in late November while they were deployed in northern Syria have died and their bodies have been brought back to Turkey, state-run Anadolu news agency said on Tuesday.


Lebanon's Aoun visits Riyadh to mend fences with Saudi Arabia

BEIRUT/RIYADH (Reuters) - Lebanese President Michel Aoun, an ally of Iran-backed Shi'ite group Hezbollah, flew to Saudi Arabia on Monday on his first visit abroad since his October election hoping to ease tensions rooted in the rivalry between Riyadh and Tehran.


Saudi-Iran crisis, economic woes strain Oman's neutrality

MUSCAT (Reuters) - Caught between two vast neighbours locked in a regional struggle, Oman has long been to the Middle East what neutral Switzerland is to global diplomacy. But now its policy of being "friends to all and enemy to none" is under heavy strain.


Unclear whether truck attack in Israel inspired by Islamic State

JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel's government has been quick to suggest a Palestinian who rammed a truck into a group of Israeli soldiers at the weekend was inspired by Islamic State, raising questions over how it came to that conclusion.