Tuesday, October 18, 2011


* Gilad Shalit freed in Israeli-Palestinian prisoner swap Cheering crowds have greeted Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit as he arrived back in his northern hometown of Mitzpe Hila after five years in captivity in Gaza.

* Libya: US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Tripoli US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is in Libya on an unannounced visit aimed at showing support for the Libyan people and building ties.

* Kenya troops 'advance into Somalia near Afmadow' Kenyan troops with aerial support are continuing their advance into Somalia towards a town held by al-Shabab 120km (75 miles) from the border.

* Last U.S. Marine training unit leaves Iraq The United States, failing to obtain agreement for an extension, has proceeded with plans to withdraw its military from Iraq.

* Markets plunge as Germany dampens EU summit expectations Stocks and the euro plunged on Monday (17 October) after German officials dampened expectations for a comprehensive solution to the sovereign debt crisis at an upcoming EU summit.

* Putin lays out case for Kremlin return Prime Minister Vladimir Putin laid out his case for a return to Russia's top office in a televised interview on Monday, casting himself as the best guarantor of a bright future in a country haunted by upheaval in the recent past.

* US Army to fly 'kamikaze' drones A miniature "kamikaze" drone designed to quietly hover in the sky before dive-bombing and slamming into a human target will soon be part of the US Army's arsenal.

* Fierce rhetoric, strategic disconnect from West among the red flags in newly Islamist Turkey The Turkish Government of Prime Minister Re├žep Tayyip Erdogan has demonstrated that it becomes more politically and verbally aggressive.

* Abbas hails prisoner release as victory for Palestinians Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday hailed the release of 477 prisoners as part of the deal to release Gilad Schalit.

* What makes Israel unique If everything goes as planned on Tuesday morning, Gilad Schalit will return home and Israel will once again prove that it is different from the rest of the countries that surround it in the Middle East.