Middle East - Latest News

Middle East

Palestine's Hamas group agrees to talks with rival Fatah, to hold elections

The two groups fought a war in 2007 which led to Hamas taking over Gaza.

Pilgrims at Mecca in Saudi Arabia.

Pilgrims return to Mecca as hajj winds down

More than 2.3 million people visited Saudi Arabia for the five-day ritual.

Iran's education department has sparked outrage after banning 'ugly' teachers.

Iran bans 'ugly' teachers

The ban includes those with acne, fewer than 20 teeth, and women with facial hair.

30 people were killed in an air strike that hit a hotel in Yemen.

30 dead as air strike hits hotel in Yemen

The attack was a part of the country's on going civil war.

Pauline Hanson donning a burqa in Parliament.

Pauline Hanson's burqa stunt 'could help IS' - Iraq ambassador

The controversial Australian Senator donned a burqa to protest against the Islamic garment.

A wounded child waits for treatment after an air strike on a de-conflict zone.

Fatal air strikes on civilians threaten peace truce

Russia claims reports of air strikes and civilian deaths are "an absolute lie"

An Iraqi solider kisses a woman as victory is celebrated in Mosul, Iraq.

Victory declared over Islamic State in Mosul

The Iraqi Prime Minister has visited the city to congratulate troops.

Bill English sent Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a letter and spoke over the phone.

Bill English shows 'lack of moral strength' on Israel - Greens

Israel's ambassador to NZ will be returning after a six-month spat.

Qatar's Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al-Thani attends a news conference in Doha, Qatar, May 25, 2017. REUTERS/Naseem Zeitoon - RTX37K40

Middle East ties fracture with withdrawals from Qatar

It wasn't immediately clear how that would affect Qatar Airways.

Middle East

Wonder Woman banned in Lebanon over star's nationality

Because Gal Gadot was born in Israel, her new superhero movie won't be played in Lebanese cinemas.

The contingent will take an RNZAF Hercules.

NZ Defence Force personnel heading to Middle East

A contingent of 30 personnel are being deployed until mid-June.

Mark Mitchell

'Defeat ISIS' meeting first trip for new Defence Minister

Mark Mitchell says it's an opportunity to show NZ's support for the coalition remains firm.

The son of a senior Hamas militant sits on the shoulders of Hamas Gaza Chief Yehya Al-Sinwar during a memorial service (Retuers)

Palestinian group Hamas to drop calls for Israel's destruction

They will still reject Israel's right to exist.

Middle East

France says it has proof Assad used chemical weapons

Intelligence services will reveal the information in the coming days.

Middle East

Opinion: US airstrikes help IS

Islamic State terrorists will be shooting their AKs in the air in celebration at Trump's strikes, writes Ryan Bridge.

Heathrow Airport guard

UK follows US banning gadgets on Middle East flights

"We think these steps are necessary to allow passengers to travel safely," a spokesman says.

Civilians flee Mosul (Reuters)

Thousands flee as battle against IS enters Mosul

The fighting has reached densely populated areas of the city.

Middle East

Syria: Deliberate bombing of water source a war crime

Water was cut off for 5.5 million people in Damascus.

The Pro Hijab marks the first time Nike has made a product to meet the specific needs of Muslim athletes (File)

Nike brings out 'Pro Hijab' for Muslim women

It's the first time the American company has made clothing designed for Muslim athletes.

President Donald Trump with Defence Secretary Jim Mattis

Mattis: The US is 'not in Iraq to seize anybody's oil'

On a visit to Iraq, the Defence Secretary is distancing himself from Mr Trump's remarks.