Aid to rogue charities to be cut off: UK
LONDON • Britain will cut off aid funding for any organisation that does not comply with a new review into charity work overseas, Aid Minister Penny Mordaunt said yesterday, describing reports of sexual exploitation in the sector as "utterly despicable".
Her comments came after Oxfam, one of Britain's biggest charities, last Friday condemned the behaviour of some former staff members in Haiti after a report said aid workers had paid for sex while on a mission to help those affected by a 2010 earthquake.
Jail no more: Riyadh's Ritz-Carlton reopens
RIYADH • Riyadh's Ritz-Carlton Hotel reopened yesterday, more than three months after it was converted into a gilded prison for members of Saudi Arabia's business and political elite detained in an anti-corruption purge.
The luxury hotel's gates had been shuttered and the premises patrolled by royal guard units while dozens of princes, former ministers and business tycoons were interrogated inside.
Iranians mark 1979 Islamic Revolution
ANKARA • Hundreds of thousands of Iranians rallied yesterday to mark the anniversary of Iran's 1979 Islamic Revolution, denouncing the United States and Israel as oppressors.
President Hassan Rouhani, addressing crowds in Teheran, yesterday called for a "year of unity" after recent protests in the country.
He said that the US and Israel had wanted to create tension in the region but their policies had failed, thanks to Iranian help.
Iran backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the country's civil war, Shi'ite militias in Iraq, Houthi rebels in Yemen and Lebanon's Hizbollah.
The US sees Iran as a rising threat to regional stability in the Middle East, while Israel has warned about the increased Iranian involvement along its borders with Syria and Lebanon.