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Baghdad and Washington are now looking to move against the Islamic State in Mosul, Iraq's second largest city.
Ending on a bleak note this year, low oil prices are likely to continue well into 2016.
Market-economy status for China would ensure the EU uses Chinese data for trade probes affecting the second largest economy in the world.
That Washington accused Beijing's new counterterrorism law of infringing on freedom of speech, without referring to its own actions, is solid evidence of its double standard, writes Shen.
The Philippines has a dispute with China over territorial claims in parts of the South China Sea.
Year on year, it contracted by four per cent in November.
The Russian Foreign Minister urged the US to abandon preconditions in creating a single front to fight against Islamic State.
Boko Haram continues to target mosques and marketplaces to kill as many as it can.
Despite slowing growth, China is on the move consolidating its position as a global economic power.
Officials dismissed concerns over technology firms having "backdoors" installed or losing intellectual property rights as unfounded.