News Iranian Teacher Ali Mohammadian with 8-year-old Mahan Rahimi, in a photo taken before Mahan's classmates followed their teacher and also shaved their hair.

Ali Mohammadian noticed his pupil was being bullied, and shaved his head to show his support

Iraq gets ready for the Yanks to go home

American forces will soon start to withdraw, leaving a power vacuum that Sunnis, Shias and Kurds hope to fill

The battle for Iraq's oil

Major oil companies and their state-owned counterparts are all jostling for a slice of the world's third-largest reserves. Sarah Arnott reports

Collapse in Iraqi oil price shatters hope of recovery

Government relents and allows foreign-owned companies a majority stake in projects to boost production

Kurdish MP's speech cut off by state TV

Turkish state television cut off live broadcasting when the head of the largest pro-Kurdish political party began addressing his parliamentary deputies in the Kurdish language.

Iraq faces a new war as tensions rise in north

Violence between Iraqi Kurds and Arabs is threatening an all out conflict that could complicate US plans to withdraw troops

Succesful first week for Turkey's Kurdish-language television channel

Launched on January 1st, Turkish television station TRT6 is the first state-run channel to be broadcast to the country 24 hours a day in Kurdish.

The man who heals deadly Kurdish feuds

Ibrahim Tekin's problems began when a friend lent him his wife's three gold bracelets to shore up his failing restaurant business. Two days later, the wife's family told him to hand them back: the bracelets were part of a dowry. Mr Tekin could not. He had pawned them. In the ensuing brawl, he stabbed one of his assailants in the heart.

Female bombers kill scores of Iraqi pilgrims

Four female bombers have detonated explosives in the middle of crowds in Baghdad and Kirkuk, killing at least 57 people and wounding 300 in a double attack apparently geared towards stoking increased sectarian and ethnic divisions.

What happened next? Kurdish girl wins asylum

A 14-year-old Kurdish refugee has won her claim for asylum in the UK after the Government agreed to end attempts to deport her family to Turkey.

How picture phones have fuelled frenzy of honour killing in Iraq

A dark pool of dried blood and a fallen red scarf mark the place where Ronak, who had fled to a woman's shelter in the Kurdish city of Sulaymaniyah when she was accused of adultery by her husband, was shot three times by a man hiding on the roof of a nearby building.

Barbaric 'honour killings' become the weapon to subjugate women in Iraq

Murder of a girl who became infatuated with a British soldier highlights a disturbing new trend

Blast kills village guard in Turkey

A blast in southeastern Turkey has killed one government-paid village guard and injured three others, according to Turkey's military.

Saddam's cruellest killer, Chemical Ali, to be executed

The way has been cleared for the hanging of Ali Hassan al-Majid, the infamous "Chemical Ali", considered by many Iraqis to be the most bloodthirsty and cruel of Saddam Hussein's senior lieutenants. His execution will take place "in a matter of days", said an official in Baghdad.

Pilgrims killed as al-Qa'ida resume Iraq attacks

A suicide bomber detonated an explosive belt in a tent filled with Shia pilgrims walking to one of their holiest shrines south of Baghdad, killing at least 40 of them and wounding 60.

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