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Islamic State: Key Iraqi town near US training base falls to jihadists

Al Baghdadi fallsIslamic State (IS) has captured an Iraqi town about 8km (5 miles) from an air base housing hundreds of US troops, the Pentagon says.

US officials downplayed the fall of al-Baghdadi, which is within striking distance of the Ain al-Asad air base.  Ain al-Asad was itself attacked by IS on Friday though the militants were repelled, officials say.

Until its fall, al-Baghdadi was one of the few towns in the western Anbar province still held by the Iraqi army.

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U.S. moving to resupply Jordan's military with munitions: officials

Jordan weaponsThe United States is readying plans to resupply Jordan with munitions in the coming weeks, possibly including precision-guided arms, expediting support for the kingdom as it expands its role in airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS), officials say.

The State Department and Pentagon declined comment on any future moves to assist Jordan with requests for weapons. But several U.S. officials, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that planning was well underway to help replenish Jordan's supplies of ordnance.

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Reports: Shots fired at Copenhagen cafe free speech event

shots fired copenhagen cafeDanish media say several shots have been fired at a cafe in Copenhagen where a meeting about freedom of speech was being held, organized by Swedish artist Lars Vilks, who has faced numerous threats for caricaturing the Prophet Muhammad in 2007.

The TV2 channel said Saturday there were some 30 bullet holes in the window of the Krudttoenden cafe and said at least two people were taken away on stretchers, including a uniformed police officer.

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Iran's Ayatollah Khamenei sent Obama secret letter, WP reports

Ayotolla KhameneiIran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has responded to overtures from U.S. President Barack Obama amid nuclear talks by sending him a secret letter, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.

Citing an Iranian diplomat, the paper said the Iranian cleric had written to Obama in recent weeks in response to a presidential letter sent in October.

Obama's letter suggested the possibility of U.S.-Iranian cooperation in fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) if a nuclear deal was secured, the paper said, quoting the diplomat.

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Another Argentine prosecutor says will pursue case against president

Cristina Fernández de KirchnerThe investigation into accusations that Argentina's President Cristina Fernandez tried to cover up Iran's alleged involvement in a 1994 bombing will go forward despite the death last month of the prosecutor on the case, authorities said on Friday.

Alberto Nisman was found dead in mysterious circumstances on Jan. 18, a day before he was due to face questions in Congress over his 289-page complaint against the president and her foreign minister, Hector Timerman.

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At least 19 killed in attack on Shi'ite mosque in Pakistan

mosque blast in PakistanAt least 19 people were killed on Friday in the Pakistani city of Peshawar in a gun and bomb attack on a Shi'ite mosque, the latest sectarian violence to hit the South Asian nation.

Radical Sunni Islamist groups often target mosques frequented by minority Shi'ites, whom they see as infidels.

Police said armed men broke into the mosque, where people were attending Friday prayers, and opened fire, following which three explosions were heard inside the building.

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Mexico condemns deadly police shooting in Washington state

Mexico condepmns US police shootingOfficers killed a man accused of hurling rocks in the fourth fatal police shooting since last summer, a death that is shaking this agricultural city of 68,000 in southeastern Washington and drawing criticism from as far away as Mexico.

The killing Tuesday of orchard worker Antonio Zambrano-Montes sparked protests after witnesses said he was running away when he was shot in a busy intersection in Pasco, a city about 215 miles southeast of Seattle.

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