The Iraqi military said on Thursday that special forces were closing in on “Islamic State” (IS) terrorists in the city of Mosul. State television reported that government soldiers had stormed the airport and a military complex in the western half of the city. “Our forces started a major operation early this morning to storm the airport of Mosul and the Ghazlani base to dislodge Daesh (IS) terrorists. We can confirm that the Mosul airport militarily has fallen and it’s a matter of short time to fully control it,” said Sabah al-Numan, a spokesman for the counter-terrorism service. But according to Brigadier General Yahya Rasool, Iraqi forces had been able to enter the base and hoped to take it soon.
The prosecution ordered on Wednesday the referral of a Keif Café worker to the Criminal Court on charges of killing a young man named Mahmoud Bayoumi in early February. The prosecution also ordered to the referral of two of the café managers to the Misdemeanor Court, as they are accused of detaining the customers and collecting money from them illegally. Bayoumi died as a result of a puncture wound in the lung, after staff members from Keif Café assaulted him when a dispute erupted over the minimum charge. Eyewitnesses said the restaurant waiters and manager were threatening customers following the end of a football match between Egypt and Cameroon. While the restaurant itself was closed and police cars parked outside it, the governorate shut down several unlicensed cafés in Heliopolis in response to the incident.
Turkey's military has changed its regulations to allow female officers to wear headscarves while on duty, defense officials said Wednesday, removing a ban on Islamic-style head coverings at an establishment that once was considered a bastion of secularism. With the change, women officers or military students in uniforms who wish to cover their hair in line with Islamic tradition will be able to wear headscarves under their hats, berets or caps, an official said. The headscarves would be plain, without patterns and would match the officers' uniforms, said the official. For years, Turkey's powerful military had acted as the guardians of the country's secular system. In July, renegade officers within the military used tanks, fighter jets and helicopters in an attempt to overthrow the government.
Oil prices rose on Thursday after US data showed a surprise decline in inventories, suggesting that a global glut may be ending after moves by OPEC to cut production. Benchmark Brent crude oil was up 70 cents a barrel at $56.54 by 10.25 GMT, recovering from a drop of 82 cents on Wednesday. [API/S]US gasoline and distillate fuel stocks also fell, the American Petroleum Institute (API) said. Tamas Varga, analyst at London brokerage PVM Oil Associates, said oil prices could rally further if the U.S. government's Energy Information Administration (EIA) also reports a fall in inventories when its data is published at 11 am EST (16.00 GMT) on Thursday. "If, however, the figures disappoint those who have gone long overnight and this morning will likely run for the exit."
Individuals will be able to obtain foreign currency from banks without restrictions by the end of 2017, Aswat Masriya reported a senior official at the Central Bank of Egypt (CBE) as saying on condition of anonymity. The maximum limit of foreign currency individuals can receive varied from one bank to another. Soon individuals will be able to buy foreign currency from banks more freely, the CBE official said. He pointed out that only the bank's clients are able to obtain foreign currency as individuals, so the bank can investigate their request for foreign currency prior to approval, the official mentioned. Individual clients can also obtain foreign currency if they need to buy medicine from abroad or to pay educational fees in hard currency.
Astronomers have found at least seven Earth-sized planets orbiting the same star 40 light-years away, according to a study published Wednesday in the journal Nature. If TRAPPIST-1 sounds familiar, that's because these researchers announced the discovery of three initial planets orbiting the same star in May. The TRAPPIST-1 star system with Planet Earth drawn in. Although 40 light-years away doesn't sound too far, it would take us millions of years to reach this star system. This star system will probably outlive us because this type of star evolves so slowly.
Germany posted a record budget surplus last year helped by rising tax revenues and employment and low debt costs, creating conditions for solid economic growth in 2017 underpinned by higher state and household spending. Under Germany's budget law, the federal government's surplus of €7.7 billion will go into a fund for refugee-related expenditure. As well as supporting economic growth, the arrival of more than a million migrants - most fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East - in Germany last year has polarized the country's political landscape ahead of federal elections due in September. "Consumption will probably remain an important driver of economic growth," the ministry said, pointing to job creation, pay hikes, low interest rates and moderate, albeit rising energy prices. In January, revenues of the federal government and the 16 regional states rose 4.0 percent on the year, the finance ministry said.
US-backed Iraqi security forces closing in on the Islamic State-held western half of Mosul launched a major offensive on the city's airport and fought their way into a nearby military base on Thursday. Police officers told Reuters that the police and Rapid Response forces had taken control of large parts of the airport. "We are attacking Daesh (Islamic State) from multiple fronts to distract them and prevent them from regrouping. After ousting the militant group from eastern Mosul last month, Iraqi forces have sought to capture the airport to use it as a launchpad for an onslaught into the west of the city. US special forces in armored vehicles on Thursday positioned near Mosul airport looked on as Iraqi troops advanced and a helicopter strafed suspected Islamic State positions.
Cortisol is a hormone produced in the adrenal glands that is released into the bloodstream in times of stress. "It also plays a huge role in metabolism, body composition and the accumulation of body fat." Cortisol is usually tested via blood, urine or saliva, but that captures only a snapshot in time. "Cortisol levels fluctuate throughout the day depending on time of day, what you eat, sudden stressful situations, even illness," Jackson said. "That why blood, urine and saliva tests are not good measures for long-term stress."
The Iraqi Oil Marketing Company SOMO has signed a contract for oil exports with the Egyptian government, al-Ahram quoted Iraqi ambassador to Cairo Habib Mohamed Hady al-Sadr as saying on Thursday. Egypt, Iraq and Jordan are preparing for a major strategic joint energy project, he added. The three countries will extend oil and natural gas pipelines from Basra oil fields through Aqaba port in Jordan to Egypt. Saudi Aramco informed Egypt that it would halt the delivery of refined oil shipments to Egypt in October 2016 without giving clear reasons. Saudi King Salman agreed during his visit to Egypt in April 2016 to provide Egypt with 700,000 tonnes of refined oil products per month for five years, according to Reuters.
Accordingly, I approached the city’s architecture as a human body then I used the units as materials,” said Adam Yousry, specialised designer at The Design Studio. After a few semesters, The Design Studio is finally celebrating a new generation of specialised students who now serve as teachers for newer batches. Furthermore, as of recently, the design studio’s teaching staff also includes a graduate of the school itself. “I am the first graduate from The Design Studio; I have finished six semesters in three years. Meanwhile, I am currently teaching the new batch,” said Amira Ayad, specialised designer at The Design Studio.
Muslim Americans have helped raise more than US$91,000 to repair vandalized headstones at a Jewish cemetery in St. Louis, Missouri, according to an online fundraising page, amid attacks and threats against Jewish institutions. "I must tell you the people of Missouri are inspiring the nation by your love and care of this place, for the Jewish community in Missouri and I want to thank you for that inspiration," Pence said. About 170 headstones were toppled or damaged at the century-old Chesed Shel Emeth Society cemetery over the weekend, according to cemetery staff. Some Jewish groups described the vandalism and threats as the latest evidence that anti-Semitic groups have been emboldened by the election of Donald Trump as US president. Jewish community centers across the United States have reported a surge in bomb threats, all of which have so far proved to be hoaxes.
The Ministry of Supply and Internal Trade (Supply Ministry) contracted Wednesday on the import of 90 tons of oil, Aswat Masriya quoted Supply Minister Ali Meselhy as saying on Thursday. Meselhy added in a statement to MENA that the oil reserves at the ministry's stores cover 5 months. Sixty-thousand tons of the oil is Sunflower oil, while 30,000 tons is Soybean oil, the minister said. The Supply Ministry announced at the beginning of February that it would raise the price of subsidized oil from LE10 to LE12 per liter. The minister attributed the increase in oil prices in part to the flotation of the Egyptian pound -- which occured in November 2016 as part of the government-led reforms to jump-start the Egyptian economy; and in part to the increase in oil prices on the international stock exchanges, explaing that Egypt imports 97 percent of its oil needs.
Sessions of the joint committee on dialogue between Al-Azhar and the Vatican on combating extremism and violence have started on Wednesday at Al-Azhar headquarters with figures from Al-Azhar and Vatican in attendance. In his speech at the opening of the session, Abbas Shouman, Deputy to the Grand Sheikh of Al-Azhar, said that committing so many crimes of violence and extremism in the name of religions is unacceptable and painful; adding that this was used by media channels to distort the image of Islam specifically. Shouman said this has given extremists an added opportunity to attract sypathizers against Muslims. Cardinal Jean-Louis Tauran, head of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue, said Islam is the closest religion to Christianity. Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm
A British journalist with the BBC faces up to five years in a Thai jail after a lawyer brought a criminal defamation case against him over an investigation into fraud on a popular tourist island. Pratuan filed a defamation case alleging the reports caused him to be "defamed, insulted or hated", according to a copy of the complaint seen by AFP. 'Legal blood sport'Rance and Head face one charge of criminal defamation, which carries up to two years in jail. Head faces an additional charge under Thailand's Computer Crimes Act, which has a five year maximum jail penalty. Andrew Drummond, a British journalist who spent years writing about Thailand's criminal underworld, left the country the same year after a slew of defamation cases and threats were made against him by people he exposed.