Media Roundup

United States

As Much of the World Frowns, U.S. Supports Israel

By Helene Cooper and Somini Sengupta | The New York Times

The failures of the Arab Spring to spread democracy have left many in the United States more inclined to side with Israel, which has lost backing elsewhere, analysts say.

Officials: U.S. Knew 3 Days Before Mosul Fell That Islamic State Was Moving Forces

By Hannah Allam | McClatchy Newspapers

The Obama administration knew an attack was in the works three days in advance of the Islamic State’s offensive in northern Iraq, but U.S. efforts to mount a response were hampered by the Iraqi government’s insistence that it could handle the threat, two top U.S. architects of Iraq policy said Wednesday.

Latin America

Colombian Army Kills ELN Rebels in Arauca Province

BBC

The Colombian armed forces say they have killed eight rebels from the left-wing National Liberation Army (ELN) in the east of the country. The air force and federal police took part in the operation, which targeted rebel bases in Arauca province.

Africa

Touaregs Seek Secular and Democratic Multi-Ethnic State

By Karlos Zurutuza | Inter Press Service

The government of Mali and Touareg rebels representing Azawad, a territory in northern Mali which declared unilateral independence in 2012 after a Touareg rebellion drove out the Malian army, resumed peace talks in Algiers last week, intended to end decades of conflict.

CAR Armed Groups Sign Ceasefire Agreement

Agence France-Presse

Rival armed factions in the Central African Republic agreed to a tentative ceasefire on Wednesday at a peace conference held in neighbouring Congo.

Nigeria and Neighbours Form New Force to Fight Boko Haram

BBC

Nigeria and three other states have pledged to speed up the creation of a 2,800-strong regional force to tackle militant Islamist group Boko Haram. Defence ministers of Nigeria, Cameroon, Chad and Niger said they would each contribute 700 troops to the force.

Air Algerie Flight Reported Missing With 116 on Board

By Christopher Bjork, Robert Wall and Stacy Meichtry | The Wall Street Journal (Subscription Required)

Air Algérie lost contact with Flight 5017 after takeoff from Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, as the jetliner headed to Algiers with 116 people on board, Algeria's state news agency and the plane's operator said Thursday.

Europe

Tragedy Fails to Quiet Ukraine

By Anton Troianovski, Lukas I. Alpert and Carol E. Lee | The Wall Street Journal (Subscription Required)

Two Ukrainian fighter jets were shot down Wednesday over separatist-held territory not far from the site of the Malaysia Airlines crash as international outrage over the tragedy has done little to slow fighting in Ukraine.

Two Ukrainian Fighter Jets Downed by Missiles Near Russian Border

By Steven Zeitchik | Los Angeles Times

Two Ukrainian fighter jets were shot down in contested airspace near the Russian border Wednesday as tension between the two countries increased a week after a missile struck a passenger jet, killing all 298 people onboard.

At a Spanish Border, a Coordinated Scramble

By Carlotta Gall | The New York Times

African migrants said they camped out for months to study the border guards' patterns as they prepared to scale the fences and enter Europe.

As Airliner Dead Are Honored, Germany Chides Russia for Inaction

By Matthew Schofield | McClatchy Newspapers

As about 1,000 relatives of the dead from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 gathered Wednesday to meet the first bodies returned to the Netherlands, European anger at Russia’s involvement in the months-long conflict in eastern Ukraine appeared to grow and the pro-Russian separatists in the region reportedly shot down two more military jets.

Middle East

Iraq’s Kurds Want U.S. Help to Hold Off Islamic State Extremists

By Loveday Morris | The Washington Post

Each day, Kurdish security forces­ in northern Iraq skirmish with fearsomely armed Islamic State militants along their new, nearly 650-mile border. The Kurds have held their own so far. But without fresh arms supplies or financial assistance their fight is unsustainable, a senior Kurdish official said.

New Government in Iraq Is an ‘ongoing process,’ Obama Administration Says

By Karen DeYoung | The Washington Post

The ongoing effort to form a new government in Iraq “now has traction,” the Obama administration told Congress Wednesday, with the appointment of a new parliamentary speaker and an emerging consensus to install a federalist system that will give local communities more power and an equitable share of national resources.

Missed Deadline on Iran Nuclear Talks Sparks a Blame Game

By Ramin Mostaghim | Los Angeles Times

Though Iranian officials insist that the failure of negotiators to produce a deal by the original July 20 deadline isn't a serious setback, it means that talks will drag on until November, and that any easing of the sanctions that have been damaging Iran's economy are further off than many Iranians had hoped.

Civilians as Shields? Gaza War Intensifies Debate

By Anne Barnard and Jodi Rudoren | The New York Times

Israel said it takes precautions to avoid killing civilians, but has also accepted as inevitable that there will be large numbers of civilian casualties when its adversaries embed forces throughout Gaza.

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