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Deadly London apartment blaze began in Hotpoint fridge freezer, police say.

LONDON - A fire that killed at least 79 people at a London apartment block started in a fridge freezer, and the outside cladding engulfed by the blaze has since been shown to fail all safety tests, London police said on Friday.

- Reuters - US

Hackers help speeding drivers dodge fines.

Australian police cancelled hundreds of speeding fines after noting their systems were infected.

- BBC - UK

Russia Fires Cruise Missiles at Islamic State Weapons in Syria.

Russian armed forces launched a cruise-missile attack on Islamic State targets in Syria's Hama province, the defense ministry said.

- Wall Street Journal - US

IS blows up Mosul mosque, latest heritage site destroyed.

BAGHDAD " The Islamic State group's destruction of a 12th century mosque and its iconic leaning minaret in the Iraqi city of Mosul is only the latest in a long list of priceless archaeological and other cultural sites that the...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Long-term US mortgage rates slip this week.

WASHINGTON " Long-term U.S. mortgage rates dropped slightly this week.Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the benchmark 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.90 percent, down from 3.91 percent last week. The rate stood at 3.56...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Turkey rebuffs Gulf Arab states' ultimatum to shut Qatar base.

Turkey on Friday rejected a key demand by several Arab states involved in a major dispute with Qatar, saying Ankara has no plans to shut down its military base in the small Gulf country. The demand t...

- The Hindu - IN

Emirati princesses convicted in Belgium for human trafficking.

BRUSSELS - Eight Emirati princesses were convicted of human trafficking by a Belgian court on Friday and were given suspended jail terms and fines in a case stemming from their treatment of servants at a Brussels luxury hotel nearly 10 years ago, their lawyer said.

- Reuters - US

Investigators obtain data recorder in US warship collision.

TOKYO " Japanese authorities said Thursday they have obtained a data recording device from a container ship to help determine why it collided with a U.S. destroyer, killing seven American sailors.Japanese transport safety officials...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

472 civilians dead in month of US-led Syria strikes: Monitor.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the period between May 23 and June 23 saw the highest civilian death toll in coalition raids for a single month since they began on Sept 23, 2014. Observatory head Abdel Rahman said 222 civilians, including 84 children, were killed in the largely Islamic State group-held province ...

- Times Of India - IN

Prosecutor: Champs-Elysees attacker pledged allegiance to IS.

PARIS " A French prosecutor says a man who was killed when he drove a car packed with arms and explosives into a police convoy had pledged allegiance to the leader of the Islamic State group.Paris Prosecutor Francois Molins...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

News24.com | PICS: Durban woman lands her car inside a house.

A woman who allegedly failed to stop at a T-junction has crashed her car through a boundary wall and smashed through the roof of a house.

- News24.com - ZA

Magnitude 6.8 earthquake recorded off Guatemalan coast

GUATEMALA CITY " A magnitude 6.8 earthquake hit off Guatemala's Pacific coast on Thursday, shaking much of the country and neighboring El Salvador. There were no immediate reports of damage.The Geological Survey said the 6:31...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Enrile insists on inhibition of Sandiganbayan chief from plunder case

Former Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile is insisting that Sandiganbayan Presiding Justice Amparo Cabotaje-Tang inhibit herself from handling his plunder case in relation to the pork barrel scam.

- GMA News - PH

North Korea Calls U.S. Furor Over Warmbier a 'Smear Campaign'

North Korea lashed out at the U.S. over criticisms of the treatment of Otto Warmbier, who died after his return home in a coma, in a sharply worded statement that is likely to further inflame tensions between Washington and Pyongyang.

- Wall Street Journal - US

Turkey dismisses demand to close Qatar military base

Defence minister says Ankara has no plans to review ties with Qatar, after Arab states issue demands to end Gulf crisis.

- Al Jazeera - QA

Ex-U.S. Government Worker Charged With Spying for China

Kevin Mallory was arrested on espionage charges after he allegedly gave classified defense information to a suspected Chinese government agent.

- Wall Street Journal - US

Lionel Messi 'could swap tax fraud jail sentence for fine'

Prosecutors reportedly suggested the Barcelona star pay 255,000 euros instead of serving prison time.

- BBC - UK

Deadly Grenfell Tower blaze because of faulty fridge

UK police may consider manslaughter charges after finding tower cladding failed safety tests in blaze that killed 79.

- Al Jazeera - QA

Turkey says Israel paid compensation to families of 2010 flotilla raid victims - media

ANKARA - Israel has paid total compensation of $20 million to the families of the victims of an Israeli raid on a Turkish aid flotilla that killed 10 people in 2010, Turkish media quoted Turkey's Finance Minister Naci Agbal as saying on Friday.

- Reuters - US

Traveller24.com | #KnysnaRises: SA shares their most memorable moments

Knysna and the Garden Route is on a mission to rise against the devastation that the scenic region was recently faced with, and South Africans are in full support.

- News24.com - ZA

Arab states demand Qatar closes Jazeera, cuts back ties to Iran

DUBAI - Four Arab states boycotting Qatar over alleged support for terrorism have sent Doha a list of 13 demands including closing Al Jazeera television and reducing ties to their regional adversary Iran, an official of one of the four countries said.

- Reuters - US

Senate GOP health bill: Cut Medicaid, end no-coverage fines

WASHINGTON " Senate Republicans would cut Medicaid, end penalties for people not buying insurance and erase a raft of tax increases as part of their long-awaited plan to scuttle President Barack Obama's health care law, congressional...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Schulz, SPD sink as Merkel, CDU continue to dominate polls

The Social Democrats are entering their convention weekend 14 points behind their main rivals, German Chancellor Angela Merkel's Christian Democrats. In Dortmund on Sunday, SPD members will finalize the party's platform.

- Deutsche Welle - DE

Grenfell Tower cladding 'failed all safety tests', say police

The Grenfell Tower fire started in a faulty fridge and insulation and tiles on the block have failed safety tests, Metropolitan Police Detective Superintendent Fiona McCormack has said. McCormack says officers have seized documents...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Duterte accepts Aussie help in campaign vs. ISIS-Maute in Marawi

President Duterte has accepted the technical assistance offered by the Australian government in the ongoing campaign against the ISIS-linked Maute Group in Marawi City, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana said Friday.

- GMA News - PH

Manslaughter charges considered as UK police reveal Grenfell Tower fire was started by fridge

UK police are considering manslaughter charges over the Grenfell Tower tragedy, after confirming the insulating cladding recently installed on the London building had quickly burst into flames in a fire safety test.

- Stuff - NZ

Diplomatic Row Between Qatar And Neighbors Escalates

Qatar is facing renewed isolation from its neighbors in the Middle East. A group of countries led by Saudi Arabia and Kuwait want Qatar to shut down Al-Jazeera and cut diplomatic ties to Iran.

- NPR - US

Saudi-led Arab states submit demands to Qatar, including shuttering of Al Jazeera

An official from the United Arab Emirates condemned the leak of the demands, calling it an attempt to undermine serious mediation.'  

- Washington Post - US

P10M halaga ng shabu, nadiskubre sa bahay ng dating alkalde ng Marawi

Aabot sa P10 milyong halaga ng shabu ang nadiskubre ng mga pulis sa bahay ng isang dating alkalde ng Marawi City, at nagsisilbi umanong financier ng ISIS-inspired extremist group na Maute.

- GMA News - PH

Trump company's partners in India are no strangers to legal entanglements

Welcome to Gurgaon, India, Mr. President. It's a mess.

- Washington Post - US

Banksy’s identity might have been revealed after 20 years

The identity of the world’s most famous street artist might have been revealed after more than 20 years of remaining anonymous. And the big reveal might have been made by accident. Veuer's Susana Victoria Perez has more.         

- USA TODAY - US

Arab states issue list of demands to end Qatar crisis

Saudi Arabia and other Arab nations ask Qatar to close Al Jazeera and scale down ties with Iran within 10 days.

- Al Jazeera - QA

A call to 'fear-guard' countries in a pandemic

Three years after the Ebola epidemic, and two years since the Zika outbreak, experts are more active than ever in pulling together lessons in hopes of not repeating past mistakes during another health crisis. A Senate panel in Washington plans a hearing soon on pandemic protection.' In May, the Department of Health and ...

- Yahoo! News - US

Week in pictures: From Yoga Day to CAR crisis

A photo round-up of some of last week's key events, including Yoga Day, Portugal forest fires and air raids in Yemen.

- Al Jazeera - QA

North Korea calls Otto Warmbier's death a 'mystery,' casts itself as 'biggest victim'

Pyongyang tried to shift blame onto others but defended its decision to imprison the American student.

- Washington Post - US

Loose Definition of Terrorism Upends a Syrian Asylum Seeker’s Life

Radwan Ziadeh, a dissident who faced persecution in Syria, has been denied asylum because of a measure that targets even groups the United States supports.

- New York Times - US

North Korea denies torturing US detainee Otto Warmbier

North Korea has denied it cruelly treated or tortured an American student who was detained for more than year. Otto Warmbier died days after being released in a coma. The article published by the official Korean Central News Agency was Pyongyang's first reaction to the death of Otto Warmbier.

- Times Of India - IN

India Shoots for the Moon, Chasing Influence Closer to Home

India is going up against China in a new Asian space race, trying to tighten its control of regional skies and alliances by leveraging its ability to send satellites into orbit inexpensively.

- Wall Street Journal - US

Venezuelans Risk Their Lives in Sea Trips to Feed Families

As the country's economy crumbles, desperate residents are undertaking risky sea passages to barter for goods in Trinidad, and the outcomes are sometimes tragic.

- Wall Street Journal - US

'Green Helmets' give aid to Venezuela protesters

Anti-government protests in Venezuela have been growing more violent, making the work of medical students, the so-called 'Green Helments' and their movement of volunteer paramedics more dangerous, with one member recently killed.         

- USA TODAY - US

France to stop granting oil exploration licenses

The French government says it is going to stop granting new licenses for oil and gas exploration in France and its overseas territories, in a bid to fulfill one of President Emmanuel Macron's campaign pledges.

- Deutsche Welle - DE

News24.com | It was Zuma v Maimane, but the don escaped again

It had the potential to be one of the most explosive question sessions President Zuma has faced to date, but the 'teflon don' proved yet again he will not be beaten before his time, writes Paul Herman.

- News24.com - ZA

Police office targeted in deadly Quetta suicide blast

Suicide attack near provincial police chief's office kills at least 12 people and wounds 14 others.

- Al Jazeera - QA

Spokesman: Bill Cosby plans series of town halls to educate youth on misbehavior

Bill Cosby will organize a series of town hall meetings to help educate young people about problems their misbehavior could create and other issues, a spokesman for Cosby said. Cosby is eager to get back to work following a deadlocked jury and mistrial in his sexual assault case, spokesman Andrew...

- Baltimoresun.com - US

Al-Nahyan trial: UAE princesses guilty of servant abuse

They receive suspended jail terms and fines for abuses in a hotel in Brussels in 2008.

- BBC - UK

If Baghdadi death confirmed, next IS leader likely to be Saddam-era officer

BAGHDAD - If Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is confirmed dead, he is likely to be succeeded by one of his top two lieutenants, both of whom were army officers under late Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

- Reuters - US

Inflation-Linked Data Looms for Dollar Traders

Inflation-Linked Data Looms for Dollar Traders...

- MENAFN - JO

France probes reported death from whipped cream explosion

PARIS " French authorities are investigating the death of a fitness blogger reportedly hit by an exploding whipped cream canister that was withdrawn from the market in 2013, officials and the company that makes the product said...

- The New Zealand Herald - NZ

Merkel says May's Brexit proposals 'not the breakthrough'

BRUSSELS - German Chancellor Angela Merkel said at the end of an EU summit in Brussels on Friday that proposals from British Prime Minister Theresa May on preserving the rights of EU citizens after Brexit were "not the breakthrough".

- Reuters - US

Chinese Authorities Crack Down on Streaming to Create a 'Cleaner Cyberspace'

The government wants to "create a cleaner cyberspace"

- TIME Magazine - US