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Young Nicaraguans lead protests against President Ortega

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Music show: Opera singer Lawrence Brownlee, Snow Patrol & Natalie Prass

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TALKING EUROPE

EU Commissioner Johannes Hahn: 'Either we import stability, or we export instability'

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TALKING EUROPE

From Italy to Cyprus via Hungary: A look back at key events in Europe

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BUSINESS DAILY

US-China trade war is 'on hold'

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#TECH 24

Is GDPR a good thing for EU tech companies?

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'The internet is like water, we need to help children understand how to swim'

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THE OBSERVERS

Horse massacres in Iran, fake news turning deadly in India, and Ivory Coast's drought

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THE OBSERVERS

Iran's violent bird poaching, a Yemeni youth orchestra beneath the bombs, and more

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Egypt opens Gaza border for month of Ramadan: president

© AFP/File | The Rafah crossing is Gaza's only gateway to the outside world not controlled by Israel, but Egypt has largely sealed it in recent years, citing security threats

CAIRO (AFP) - 

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has made a rare decision to open the Rafah crossing with Gaza for a month, allowing Palestinians to cross during the holy period of Ramadan.

The decision to keep the crossing open was taken "to alleviate the suffering" of residents in the Palestinian enclave, Sisi said on Facebook late Thursday.

The Rafah crossing is Gaza's only gateway to the outside world not controlled by Israel, but Egypt has largely sealed it in recent years, citing security threats.

It is usually open a few dozen days a year and such an extended period is rare.

Sisi's announcement comes after some 60 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire on the Gaza border earlier this week, with the victims described by Egypt's foreign ministry as "martyrs".

A total of 114 Gazans have been killed in border protests and clashes since March 30, in the run-up to the controversial opening Monday of the US embassy in Jerusalem.

Egypt has relations with both Israel and Gaza rulers Hamas, giving Cairo an instrumental role in easing tensions between the two sides and alleviating the pressure on the enclave's two million residents.

Hamas leader Ismail Haniya paid a brief visit on Sunday to Egypt, where he met with the director of the country's intelligence services Abbas Kamel.

© 2018 AFP