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ISIS abducts more than 400 in east Syria

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BEIRUT — The Islamic State bunch abducted over 400 civilians including women and kids in the wake of capturing new territory in an assault on Syria’s eastern city of Deir Ezzor.

The British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Isis killed at least 135 people in the multi-front attack that began on Saturday.

“After their attack on Deir Ezzor (yesterday), ISIS abducted at least 400 civilians from the Al-Baghaliyeh neighbourhood it captured and adjacent areas in the northwest of the city,” the Observatory said.

“Those abducted, all of whom are Sunnis, include women, children and family members of pro-regime fighters,” Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman said, adding they were transported to other areas under ISIS control.

The attack on the neighbourhood was carried out with suicide bombers blowing themselves up at positions manned by government forces.

The monitor said at least 42 Isis fighters had been killed in the attack and that fighting was ongoing, with regime forces backed by Russian airstrikes trying to recapture lost ground. It added that regime forces were bringing additional troops and military equipment from elsewhere in the city to the battlefront.

Agencies

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Maldives opposition legislator Ibrahim Mohamed Solih wins presidency

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MALE — Maldives opposition legislator Ibrahim Mohamed Solih has beaten incumbent Abdulla Yameen according to provisional results, the country’s Elections Commission says.

Results released by the Elections Commission showed Mr Solih securing 133,808 votes (58.3 percent) compared to the 95,526 for incumbent Abdulla Yameen. The voter turnout was over 88 per cent out of the 262,000-strong electorate.

The Maldives government has acknowledged the opposition’s victory after the vote on Sunday, a surprise defeat for President Abdulla Yameen who was widely expected to win.

There were no other candidates.

Mr Solih had the backing of a united opposition trying to oust Mr Yameen, but struggled for visibility with the electorate, with local media fearful of falling afoul of heavy-handed decrees and reporting restrictions.

“I call on Yameen to respect the will of the people and bring about a peaceful, smooth transfer of power,” Solih said on television, shortly after interim results from the country’s election commission.

“We have won this election with a comfortable majority,” Solih said.

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