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Wednesday, Jan 18th

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Massive road accident kills 25 people in Thailand

25 dead in road accident in ThailandA minivan and a pick-up truck both packed with passengers have collided in eastern Thailand, killing 25 people.

Police said the minivan driver lost control after making a U-turn and ploughed into oncoming traffic in the eastern province of Chonburi on Monday. Both vehicles burst into flames.

"The victims were killed by fire or the impact," police Lieutenant-Colonel Wiroj Jamjamras at Ban Bueng provincial police station told AFP news agency, adding two toddlers were among the dead.

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Fire rips through Jakarta ferry, 23 dead

Inonesia ferry fireAt least 23 people have been killed and 17 others wounded when a ferry caught fire near the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, an official said.  Rescue officials said a further 17 people were still unaccounted for.

The boat caught on fire on Sunday about 1.6km out of port on its way to Tidung Island, a popular holiday destination in the Thousand Islands district, north of Jakarta.

"The report [from the boat] said there were about 100 people on board but we are not sure," Sutopo Purwo Nugroho, the country's national disaster management agency spokesman, said.

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Istanbul nightclub 'Santa attack' kills at least 35

Istanbull attackAt least 35 people were killed in a "terror" attack in Istanbul Sunday when at least one gunman reportedly dressed as Santa stormed an elite nightclub where party-goers were celebrating New Year, the latest carnage to rock Turkey after a bloody 2016.

At least one gunman shot dead a policeman and a civilian at the entrance to the Reina nightclub, one of the city's most exclusive party spots, and then went on a shooting rampage inside, Istanbul governor Vasip Sahin said.

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28 killed in Baghdad double suicide bombing

28 killed in Baghdad double bombings- A double suicide bombing on a busy market area in central Baghdad killed at least 28 people on Saturday morning.

The two consecutive blasts took place in the busy neighborhood of al-Sinak and injured more than 50 people, the BBC reported.

The first explosion took place near a car parts shop and after a crowd gathered to help the victims a second attack targeted the same area, police told Kurdistan24.

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Brazilian police officer, wife detained as suspects in Greek ambassador's death

Greek ambassdor to Brazil detainedThe wife of a slain Greek ambassador was detained along with two other men as part of an investigation into her husband's murder.

Brazilian authorities have detained the wife of 59-year-old Greek ambassador Kyriakos Amiridis along with a police officer and a man believed to be the officer's cousin under the belief they are suspects in his presumed murder, the Guardian reported.

Police found a body they determined to be Amiridis inside a burnt-out car underneath an overpass in the city of Nova Iguacu, near Rio de Janeiro, on Thursday after his wife reported he had been missing since Dec. 26.

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Syria's cease-fire holding despite minor violations

Syria cease fireA nationwide Syrian cease-fire brokered by Russia and Turkey that went into effect at midnight held Friday despite minor violations, marking a potential breakthrough in a conflict that has disregarded high-level peace initiatives for over five years.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported clashes early Friday between troops and rebels in the central province of Hama and near the capital, Damascus. It said that later in the day a man was killed by sniper fire in eastern suburbs of Damascus, becoming the first fatality since the truce went into effect. The group also reported an aerial attack on the rebel-held Barada Valley near Damascus.

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Russia: Putin decides against expelling US staff

Putin decides against retaliationRussia will not expel anyone in response to US sanctions against the country and the expulsion of 35 Russian diplomats from the US, the Kremlin is quoting President Vladimir Putin as saying in the statement.

Sergey Lavrov, Russia's foreign minister, had earlier said he had proposed to Putin that Russia expel 35 US diplomats and ban US diplomatic staff from using two facilities in Moscow in retaliation for expulsions and sanctions imposed by the US.

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