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Wires

  • KABUL, Jan 21- Gunmen in army uniforms who stormed Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel on Saturday and battled Afghan Special Forces for 13 hours overnight caused heavy casualties among hotel guests and staff, with the total number of dead and wounded still not known. Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danesh said at least five people- four Afghans and one...

  • WASHINGTON, Jan 21- U.S. Senate Republicans oppose changing the chamber's rules so that legislation to fund the government and end the current shutdown could pass with a simple majority, a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Sunday. The spokesman was responding to a question about President Donald Trump's comment on Twitter that if...

  • President Donald Trump says if the government shutdown drags on, Republicans should consider changing the rules in the Senate to make it easier to pass legislation without votes from Democrats. Dick Durbin of Illinois says that would mean the end of the Senate as the Founding Fathers envisioned it. White House budget director Mick Mulvaney is defending...

  • By Rania El Gamal and Maha El Dahan. MUSCAT, Jan 21- Global oil producers are in agreement that they should continue cooperating on production after their deal on supply cuts expires at the end of this year, Saudi Arabia's energy minister Khalid al-Falih said on Sunday. It was the first time Saudi Arabia, the world's top oil exporter, had publicly stated OPEC and non-...

  • *Qatar National Bank pulls down Doha. *Egypt's Orascom Development rises on share split plan. DUBAI, Jan 21- Most Middle Eastern stock markets fell on Sunday with Saudi Arabia pulling further away from a major resistance level, although a surge by fuel distributor ADNOC Distribution buoyed Abu Dhabi.

  • PARIS, Jan 21- French luxury goods conglomerate LVMH said on Sunday it has appointed former Yves Saint Laurent star designer Hedi Slimane as artistic director of its Celine label. His predecessor Phoebe Philo left the high-end ready-to-wear brand in January after turning Celine into one of fashion's most sought-after labels over the past 10 years.

  • LONDON, Jan 21- Most developing nations have been absolved of the "original sin" that blocked them using their own currencies to raise money abroad, but their companies' sins have still not been forgiven, as the huge debt they have racked up in "hard" currency attests. Original sin, which is how economists Barry Eichengreen and Ricardo Hausmann described the dilemma...

  • HONG KONG, Jan 21- Chinese sportswear retailer Pou Sheng International Ltd has received a proposal from Pou Chen Corp to be taken private that values it at around $11 billion, it said in a stock exchange filing on Sunday. Pou Chen Corp has offered Pou Sheng International a cancellation price of HK $2.03 per share, which represents a premium of around 31.82 percent...

  • KABUL, Jan 21- Gunmen dressed in army uniforms who stormed Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel battled Afghan Special Forces for 13 hours in an overnight siege that caused heavy casualties among hotel guests, officials and witnesses said on Sunday. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which saw more than 150 guests flee as parts of the building...

  • DUBAI, United Arab Emirates— Iran's supreme leader has ordered the Revolutionary Guard to loosen its hold on the economy, the country's defense minister says, raising the possibility that the paramilitary organization might privatize some of its vast holdings. Amir Hatami appear to be a trial balloon to test the reaction of the idea, long pushed by Iran's...

  • MOSCOW, Jan 21- The next Joint OPEC-Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee will be held in April in Saudi Arabia, Russian RIA news agency reported on Sunday, citing an OPEC statement. It also said that compliance with the global oil production cut deal by OPEC and non- OPEC nations was at 129 percent in December and averaged 107 percent over the whole of last...

  • MOSCOW, Jan 21- The next Joint OPEC-Non-OPEC Ministerial Monitoring Committee will be held in April in Saudi Arabia, Russian RIA news agency reported on Sunday, citing an OPEC statement. It also said that compliance with the global oil production cut deal by OPEC and non- OPEC nations was at 129 percent in December and averaged 107 percent over the whole of last...

  • RIYADH, Jan 21- Saudi Arabia plans to build nine desalination plants for more than 2 billion riyals on the Red Sea coast, its environment minister said on Sunday. The project, which the minister said was ordered by King Salman in a royal decree, will help government-owned Saudi Saline Water Conversion Corp raise production efficiency and cut operating and...

  • CAIRO, Jan 21- Egypt is looking to offer shares in eight to 10 state companies on the stock exchange over the next 18 months, Finance Minister Amr El-Garhy told Reuters on Sunday, as part of a drive to attract foreign investors. Egypt's stock market has taken off since the country floated its pound currency in November 2016, with the Egyptian blue-chip index gaining...

  • KABUL, Jan 21- Gunmen dressed in army uniforms who stormed Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel battled Afghan Special Forces for 13 hours in an overnight siege that left at least five people dead, officials and witnesses said on Sunday. The Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, which saw more than 150 guests flee, with some shimmying down tied-together...

  • DUBAI, Jan 21- Gulf stock markets mostly edged down on Sunday with Saudi Arabia pulling further away from a major resistance level, although a surge by fuel distributor ADNOC Distribution buoyed Abu Dhabi. Dairy company Almarai dropped 1.9 percent after reporting fourth-quarter net profit of 513 million riyals, down from 536 million riyals a year ago and below...

  • DAVOS, Switzerland, Jan 21- European leaders will be out in force at the World Economic Forum in Davos this week to defend multilateralism before U.S. Politicians, business chiefs, bankers and celebrities will meet in the Swiss Alps under the banner "Creating a Shared Future in a Fractured World" for the four-day gathering against an unsettling global backdrop.

  • *Oman says favors new deal, may discuss in November. MUSCAT, Jan 21- Saudi Arabia's energy minister urged global oil producing nations on Sunday to extend their cooperation beyond 2018, but said this might mean a new form of deal rather than continuing the same supply cuts that have boosted prices in recent months. It was the first time that Saudi Arabia had...

  • CAIRO, Jan 21- Egypt's Finance Minister Amr El Garhy said on Sunday the country had paid $200 million in arrears owed to foreign oil companies in January, and would pay another $550 million in February and March. Egypt owed foreign oil companies $2.4 billion at the end of June 2017, the petroleum ministry said this week. Cairo has pledged to eliminate arrears by the...

  • CAIRO, Jan 21- Egypt's Finance Minister Amr El Garhy said on Sunday the country had paid $200 million in arrears owed to foreign oil companies in January, and would pay another $550 million in February and March. Egypt owed foreign oil companies $2.4 billion at the end of June 2017, the petroleum ministry said this week. Cairo has pledged to eliminate arrears by the...