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In this photo released by Combined Maritime Forces, a boarding team from a British royal navy vessel, the HMS Montrose, transits towards a stateless dhow, a traditional cargo ship that plies the Persian Gulf and surrounding waters, in the northern Arabian Sea, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020. The British royal navy seized 450 kilograms 450 kilograms (990 pounds) of methamphetamine from the dhow in the largest-ever bust by a joint maritime operation in the region. (Combined Maritime Forces via AP)

UK warship seizes 450 kilograms of meth in Arabian Sea

Oct. 21, 2020 6:37 AM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — A British royal navy vessel seized 450 kilograms (990 pounds) of methamphetamine in the northern Arabian Sea in the largest-ever bust by a joint maritime operation in the region, officials said Wednesday. The HMS Montrose seized the drugs hidden aboard a stateless dhow, a...

This undated photo released by Emirates News Agency, WAM, shows Ibrahim al-Abed, the founder of the state-run news agency.  Ibrahim al-Abed, a pioneering media figure as the oil-rich nation grew into a regional power, has died. He was 78.  (WAM via AP)

Founder of UAE state-run WAM news agency dies at 78

Oct. 21, 2020 1:00 AM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Ibrahim al-Abed, the founder of the United Arab Emirates' state-run WAM news agency and a pioneering media figure as the oil-rich nation grew into a regional power, died Tuesday. He was 78. Al-Abed long served as the head of the country's National Media Council, a...

Toby Gregory's yard that is adorned with 1,006 white crosses to represent Oklahoma deaths due to COVID-19, Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, in Tulsa, Okla. Gregory was able to keep up with the state death toll until last week, and then it became too many. He says he doesn't have the room or supplies to keep up with the current death toll, but will do about 50 more crosses. (Mike Simons/Tulsa World via AP)

The Latest: Ireland sets new virus restrictions for 6 weeks

Oct. 19, 2020 8:12 PM EDT

LONDON — Ireland’s government is putting the country at its highest level of coronavirus restrictions for six weeks in a bid to combat a rise in infections. Premier Micheal Martin said Monday the measures take effect at midnight Wednesday and run until Dec. 1. People are being asked to stay at home,...

FILE - In this Nov.13, 2018 file photo, Jihad Azour, the IMF's director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department reacts during his press conference in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The coronavirus pandemic is hitting countries in the Middle East in wildly different ways, but nearly all are in the throes of an economic recession this year and all but two, Lebanon and Oman are expected to see some level of economic growth next year, according to the latest report published by the International Monetary Fund on Monday, Oct. 19, 2020. (AP Photo/Kamran Jebreili, File)

IMF: Nearly all Mideast economies hit by pandemic recession

Oct. 19, 2020 8:04 AM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The coronavirus pandemic has pushed nearly all Mideast nations into the throes of an economic recession this year, yet some rebound is expected as all but two — Lebanon and Oman — are anticipated to see some level of economic growth next year, according to a...

U. S. Army, Arizona National Guard Pvt. Ronald Aguilar, right, takes the temperature of a man at a drive-thru COVID-19 saliva test on the main campus at Arizona Western College, Saturday, Oct. 17, 2020, in Yuma, Ariz. The testing, organized by the Yuma County Public Health Services District, lasted from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and saw 671 tests administered, according to Yuma County spokesperson Kevin Tunnell. The purpose of the testing, according to Yuma County, was to capitalize on the recent development of a saliva test for COVID-19 by Arizona State University's Biodesign Institute. (Randy Hoeft/The Yuma Sun via AP)

The Latest: Melbourne eases restrictions after cases drop

Oct. 17, 2020 11:54 PM EDT

MELBOURNE, Australia — Australia’s second-largest city, Melbourne, has loosened lockdown restrictions as new and active COVID-19 continue to decline. From midnight Sunday, Melbourne residents will no longer face limits on the time they can spend away from their homes for education or recreation....

In this Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020, photo provided by the Iranian Health Ministry, medics tend to a COVID-19 patient at the Shohadaye Tajrish Hospital in Tehran, Iran. Iran is confronting a new surge of infections that is filling hospitals and cemeteries alike. (Akbar Badrkhani/Iranian Health Ministry via AP)

Iran announces its virus death toll passes 30,000

Oct. 17, 2020 10:47 AM EDT

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran announced Saturday that its death toll from the coronavirus has passed the milestone of 30,000, in what has been the Mideast region's worst outbreak. Health Ministry spokeswoman Sima Sadat Lari announced that the total death toll from the outbreak had reached at least 30,123. She...

FILE - In this April 2, 2020, photo taken through a tinted car window, a technician takes a nasal swab for a new coronavirus detection test at a drive-thru testing facility in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. U.S. diplomats and security officials privately warned the state of Nevada not to use Chinese-made coronavirus test kits donated by the United Arab Emirates over concerns about patient privacy, test accuracy and Chinese government involvement, documents obtained by The Associated Press show. (AP Photo/Jon Gambrell, File)

US warned Nevada not to use Chinese COVID tests from UAE

Oct. 15, 2020 2:11 AM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — U.S. diplomats and security officials privately warned the state of Nevada not to use Chinese-made coronavirus test kits donated by the United Arab Emirates over concerns about patient privacy, test accuracy and Chinese government involvement, documents obtained by The...

A man wearing a face mask walks past an outdoor photography exhibition of healthcare workers in Melbourne, Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020. The photo essay created by photographer Phoebe Powell is to acknowledge the people working in the Parkville Biomedical Precinct which is home to some of the world's leading medical researchers, clinicians and academics keeping Victoria state safe during the coronavirus pandemic. (James Ross/AAP Image via AP)

The Latest: Australia prioritizes air service to 3 countries

Oct. 14, 2020 11:30 PM EDT

CANBERRA, Australia — Australia’s prime minister said on Thursday his government was giving priority to reopening air services to Japan, Singapore and South Korea. Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he had discussed reopening air routes with the leaders of all three countries. He described Japan and...

A medical staff takes a swab from a woman as residents line up for the COVID-19 test near the residential area in Qingdao in east China's Shandong province on Monday, Oct. 12, 2020. Authorities in the eastern Chinese port city of Qingdao said Tuesday that they have completed coronavirus tests on more than 3 million people following the country's first reported local outbreak of the virus in nearly two months. (Chinatopix ia AP)

The Latest: China carries out 4.2 million tests in Qingdao

Oct. 13, 2020 9:42 PM EDT

BEIJING — China says it has carried out more than 4.2 million tests in the northern port city of Qingdao, with no new cases of coronavirus found among the almost 2 million sets of results received. The city has reported a total of 12 cases, six with symptoms and six without, since the new outbreak was...

Saudi Arabia presides over G-20 interfaith forum

Oct. 13, 2020 12:24 PM EDT

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Saudi Arabia is presiding over a virtual global interfaith forum that began on Tuesday, with participation from Muslim clerics, Jewish rabbis, Christian priests and others religious figures. The kingdom is hosting the online event as part of its presidency this year of...