Obama, Castro head toward historic encounter

US President Barack Obama and Cuba’s Raul Castro will break bread with other leaders from around the Americas at a historic summit Friday, a potent symbol of their efforts to end decades of animosity. As the gathering in Panama approached, a White House official revealed that Obama and Castro had spoken by telephone Wednesday — just the second phone call between a US and Cuban leader in more than 50

Iran's Khamenei breaks silence in nuclear deal, says details are key

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Thursday demanded that all sanctions on Iran be lifted at the same time as any final agreement with world powers on curbing Tehran’s nuclear program is concluded. Khamenei, the Islamic Republic’s most powerful figure and who has the last say on all state matters, was making his first comments on the interim deal reached between Iran and the powers last week in the

Iran's leader says Saudi air strikes causing genocide

By Mohammed Mukhashaf ADEN (Reuters) – Iran’s leader on Thursday condemned the military intervention by its main regional rival Saudi Arabia in Yemen as genocide, sharply escalating Tehran’s rhetoric against the two-week-old campaign of air strikes. Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Saudi Arabia would not emerge victorious from the war in Yemen, where Iran-allied Houthi fighters who control the capital Sanaa have been trying to seize the southern city of Aden

Ukraine sets sights on joining NATO

Ukraine, locked in conflict with Russian-backed separatists in its east, on Thursday drew up a new security doctrine denouncing Russia’s “aggression” and setting its sights on joining the U.S.-led NATO military alliance. Oleksander Turchynov, head of the national security council, told a session of the body that Ukraine saw Russian aggression as a “long-standing factor” and viewed NATO membership as “the only reliable external guarantee” of its sovereignty and territorial

North Korea fires missiles into sea as U.S. defense chief visits region

By David Brunnstrom OSAN, South Korea (Reuters) – North Korea has fired two surface-to-air missiles off its west coast, South Korea said on Thursday, with the latest in a string of short-range firings by the North coming shortly before the U.S. defense secretary arrived in the region. The two short-range missiles were fired on Tuesday, South Korea’s defense ministry said, and followed the launch on Friday of four short-range missiles

Man shoots judge, lawyer, co-defendant in Milan courthouse

By Manuela D’Alessandro MILAN (Reuters) – A man on trial for bankruptcy shot dead a judge, a lawyer and a co-defendant in the Palace of Justice in central Milan on Thursday, emergency services said. Police arrested the man, whom they named as Claudio Giardiello, in Vimercate, a town north of Italy’s financial center, Interior Minister Angelino Alfano tweeted. Emergency services said a fourth person was found dead in the court

Belgian prince attacks 'Stasi' royal family for sabotaging career

Prince Laurent, brother to Belgium’s King Philippe, attacked the royal family and their entourage Thursday, saying they were like the Stasi secret police and had sabotaged his career for years. “My family has never supported me,” Laurent told RTBF public television, complaining bitterly that he had been hard done by despite the rich external trappings of royalty. “It started with my uncle King Baudouin. “Today, I have the impression it