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South Africa's genocide case against Israel sets up legal battle at UN's top court

South Africa has launched a case at the United Nations' top court alleging that Israel's military campaign in Gaza amounts to genocide.

The filing and Israel's decision to defend itself at the International Court of Justice set up a high-stakes showdown before a panel of judges in the Great Hall of Justice.

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Hamas deputy chief Saleh Arouri had been on Israel's hit list for years

Saleh Arouri, the deputy political head of Hamas and a founder of the group's military wing, had been in Israel's sights for years before he was killed in a drone strike in a southern suburb of Beirut on Tuesday.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had threatened to kill him even before Hamas carried out its deadly surprise attack on Israel on Oct. 7, sparking the ongoing brutal war in Gaza.

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As Gaza war grinds on, border tensions soar between Israel and Hezbollah

Israeli officials are stepping up threats against Hezbollah, warning that Israel is running out of patience as the two sides continue to trade fire along Israel's volatile northern border.

Benny Gantz, a member of Israel's War Cabinet, said Wednesday that if the international community and the Lebanese government don't restrain Hezbollah, Israel will. Israel's army chief, Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi, said the military is in a state of high readiness and has approved plans in case it decides to open a second front in the north.

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War dampens Christmas spirit in southern Lebanon

In the Lebanese border village of Qlayaa, the priest urged his parish to keep the Christmas spirit alive despite clashes between Hezbollah and Israel forcing many to flee.

Nestled among lush, green fields and flowing olive groves, Qlayaa has echoed to the sound of bombing on an almost daily basis since October 7.

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Ukraine's a step closer to joining the EU. Here's what it means, and why it matters

Ukraine got a green light Thursday to start sped-up talks on joining the European Union. That's a big boost for war-ravaged Ukraine and a loud message to Vladimir Putin — but it could be years before the country actually becomes a member of the EU.

Here's a look at what Thursday's decision means, and why joining the EU is especially important, and especially hard, for Ukraine.

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How the US keeps funding Ukraine's military — even as it says it's out of money

The White House has been increasingly pressuring Congress to pass stalled legislation to support Ukraine's war against Russia, saying that funding has run out.

On Tuesday, however, President Joe Biden touted a new military aid package worth $200 million for Ukraine.

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A year of war: 2023 sees worst-ever wars in Gaza, Ukraine

A boy, his face coated in fresh blood, screams as rescuers try to pull him out of the rubble of a destroyed building following an Israeli airstrike in Gaza. A bruised, elderly Israeli hostage is taken away by Hamas in a golf cart as a man clutching a machine gun sits behind her, smiling. A 10-year-old girl cries next to the body of her brother as he is buried near Kyiv, Ukraine.

This year as in years past, The Associated Press was there up close to document the world's conflicts and their toll on civilians.

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At COP28, Sultan al-Jaber got what the UAE wanted

As the United Nations COP28 climate summit ended Wednesday, Sultan al-Jaber walked out with what the United Arab Emirates wanted all along — the prestige of hosting negotiations that got the world to agree to transition away from fossil fuels while still being able to pump ever-more oil.

That left some wanting much more from the two weeks of talks, even as many praised its historic accord. But it no longer will matter to the state oil company chief executive and renewable energy advocate who embodies many of the traits that have propelled this young nation into the global spotlight.

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'Gate of Tears': Iran-aligned Houthis a growing threat in the Red Sea

The spike in attacks claimed by Iran-backed Houthi rebels in the Red Sea is dangerously increasing tensions in a bottleneck for international maritime trade and fuelling fears of an uncontrolled regional spillover of Yemen's longstanding conflict.

Since the start of the war between Israel and Hamas militants in Gaza, Yemen's Houthi rebels have threatened to attack any ship heading to Israeli ports and stepped up their raids.

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US credibility is on the line in Ukraine funding debate

One of President Joe Biden's favorite stories is about his first international summit after taking office, when he declared that "America is back" in the wake of Donald Trump's erratic and isolationist leadership.

"For how long?" responded one of the other leaders in the room.

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