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Palestinians clash with Israeli forces during a raid in Nablus in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, February 22, 2023.

REUTERS/Raneen Sawafta

Hard Numbers: Deadly raid in Nablus, EU asylum applications soar, North Koreans go hungry, old phone = nouveau riche

11: At least 11 people died and scores were injured on Wednesday after Israeli security forces conducted a rare daytime raid in the West Bank city of Nablus. Israel was targeting members of a Palestinian militant group known as the Lion’s Den, which Israel blames for a string of shootings against troops and Israeli settlements amid recent rising tensions in the region. On Thursday, Palestinian militants retaliated by firing rockets at southern Israel, and the Israeli military launched air strikes in the Gaza Strip in response.

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A woman reacts while embracing another person, near rubble following an earthquake in Hatay, Turkey.

REUTERS/Umit Bektas

Tragedy upon tragedy in war-torn Syria

Days after a devastating 7.8-magnitude earthquake hit southern Turkey and northern Syria, the window for rescuing victims buried in the rubble is closing. Rescue efforts – and survival prospects – are being further challenged by freezing weather conditions.

The death toll has now surpassed 11,000 – and that number will certainly rise. Thousands remain missing, and nearly 400,000 have been moved to government shelters or hotels. Some 4 million Syrians in northern Syria alone were already displaced and relying on humanitarian support.

Tragically, this crisis compounds existing regional calamities, particularly for war-torn Syria, that make recovery efforts extremely difficult.

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Coronavirus Politics Daily: China's corona cases spike, Nicaragua's pres vanishes, Syrian refugees flee again

China's COVID-19 cases jump again: Two worrisome stories have emerged from China in recent days. First, Chinese health officials, now working hard to prevent a second wave of COVID-19, reported the highest daily number of new coronavirus cases on Monday since March 6, with 108 new infections registered. State media blame this latest jump in cases, at least in part, on border crossings from Russia. Second, the central government has reportedly issued new rules that restrict the publication of academic research on the origins of COVID-19, which most experts say began in China's Hubei province. This appears to be part of an official effort to blunt criticism of the government's initial response to evidence of outbreak.

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