At least 23 Egyptian soldiers were killed when two suicide car bombs tore through checkpoints in North Sinai province Friday, security sources said, in one of the bloodiest assaults on security forces in years.
Islamic State militants are waging an insurgency in the rugged, thinly populated Sinai Peninsula. They have killed hundreds of soldiers and police since 2013, when the military ousted Islamist President Mohamed Morsi after mass protests against his rule.
The two cars blew up as they passed through two checkpoints outside a military compound just south of Rafah, on the border with the Gaza Strip, the sources said. No group claimed responsibility for the attacks.
Security sources also said another 26 soldiers were wounded in Friday’s attacks. The military put the casualties lower, saying the attacks had killed and wounded 26 soldiers without giving a breakdown of the figure.
The Taliban fired a rocket at a civilian vehicle, killing four students in the northern province of Faryab and wounding a fifth, an Afghan official said.
Abdul Karim Yourish, spokesman for the provincial police chief, said the attack occurred in the remote Khwaja Sabz Posh area Thursday night.
Yourish said that police had warned the students not to travel in the volatile area, where security forces are fighting the Taliban, but that the students ignored the warning.
He blamed the attack on the Taliban, although the insurgent group had not claimed responsibility for the assault.
— Associated Press
Former prime minister Matteo Renzi, head of the ruling Democratic Party, said Friday that Italy has no moral duty to take in migrants, sharply toughening his stance over surging numbers of asylum seekers.
Critics accused Renzi of adopting the language of rightist opponents less than a year before national elections, ahead of which the growing migration crisis is likely to dominate campaigning.
“We need to free ourselves from a sense of guilt. We do not have the moral duty to welcome into Italy people who are worse off than ourselves,” Renzi wrote in a new book, excerpts of which were released on the Democratic Party website ahead of publication.
— Associated Press
10,000 to be evacuated in Poland as bomb neutralized: Authorities in eastern Poland ordered the evacuation of 10,000 people and temporary closure of the road to Belarus on Sunday to allow for the removal and disarming of a massive World War II bomb. The 1,102-pound German ST-500 bomb was found late Thursday during roadwork in Bialystok, 117 miles northeast of Warsaw. Bialystok authorities said Friday that about 10,000 people live within the bomb’s range of about 0.8 miles. They will be evacuated in buses early Sunday to allow sappers to remove the bomb and take it to a test range to be neutralized.
Ex-Gitmo inmate gets apology, millions from Canada: A former Guantanamo Bay prisoner who pleaded guilty to killing a U.S. soldier in Afghanistan received an apology and a multimillion-dollar payment from the Canadian government after a court ruling said his rights had been abused. An official familiar with the deal had said previously that payment was for $8 million. Another official confirmed that the money had been given to Omar Khadr. Both spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the deal publicly. The government also released a statement apologizing to Khadr. The Canadian-born Khadr was 15 when he was captured by U.S. troops after a firefight at a suspected al-Qaeda compound in Afghanistan that resulted in the death of Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Speer, a Special Forces medic.
More than 120 nations adopt treaty against nuclear weapons: More than 120 countries approved the first-ever treaty to ban nuclear weapons Friday at a U.N. meeting boycotted by all nuclear-armed nations. Elayne Whyte Gómez, president of the U.N. conference that has been negotiating the legally binding treaty, announced the results of the “historic” vote: 122 nations in favor, the Netherlands opposed and Singapore abstaining.
— From news services