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Some Blame Weather Modification for Dubai Downpour

But experts say record rainfall in UAE was more likely spurred by climate change, not cloud seeding

(Newser) - Dubai's rare epic rainfall this week sparked headlines, jaw-dropping videos , and now, questions on weather modification. The United Arab Emirates' largest city received nearly 6 inches of rain over a 24-hour period Monday into Tuesday—for context, Dubai International Airport usually sees less than 4 inches over an entire...

New Temperature Record in Oman? No Sweat

Actually, lots of sweat, with a 108.7-degree 24-hour 'low' in Quriyat

(Newser) - A dangerous heat wave is expected to envelop much of the US over the next few days, but residents in Quriyat, Oman, probably won't have much sympathy. That's because it's so hot there that a new world record was set Tuesday: Per Weather Underground , the city registered...

Authorities See No Foul Play in DJ's Death

Avicii, 28, was a pioneer in electronic dance music

(Newser) - The family of Avicii has arrived in Oman to claim the DJ's body amid a search for answers in his as yet unexplained death . On Sunday, authorities in the Gulf state revealed that foul play has been ruled out in the case. Avicii, born Tim Bergling, was found dead...

Gross Find Will Make 3 Fishermen Very Rich
Gross Find Will Make
3 Fishermen Very Rich

Gross Find Will Make 3 Fishermen Very Rich

They roped in a huge chunk of whale vomit in Oman

(Newser) - Three fisherman in Oman have found 176 pounds of precious ambergris—a substance that is essentially whale vomit but highly prized by the perfume industry. Seeker reports that the ambergris could be worth as much as $2.8 million. "I’ll wait to see how this sale will go...

Stunning Shipwreck Found Off the Coast of Oman
 Stunning Shipwreck 
 Found Off the 
 Coast of Oman 

in case you missed it

Stunning Shipwreck Found Off the Coast of Oman

It's thought to be the Esmeralda, which sailed with Vasco da Gama

(Newser) - Just a few years after Christopher Columbus famously reached the Americas instead of India, Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama established the actual India Route when he sailed around the southernmost tip of Africa and into the Indian Ocean in 1498. Now archaeologists say they think they've found the Esmeralda,...

Secret US-Iran Talks Paved Way for Nuke Deal

Oman helped broker meetings after hikers' release

(Newser) - The landmark nuclear deal with Iran isn't as sudden a breakthrough as it might seem. Before the Geneva talks, a team of American diplomats hand-picked by President Obama held at least five secret meetings with their Iranian counterparts starting in March, the AP finds. The American delegations were led...

US Jets Shoo Away Iran Plane Chasing Drone

Pentagon says craft was in international airspace

(Newser) - US and Iranian fighter pilots have had another close encounter. The Pentagon says an Iranian jet began following an unmanned surveillance drone in international airspace earlier this week, reports the Wall Street Journal . It didn't break off pursuit until two US jets approached within two miles of the Iranian...

US Arms Sales Hog 75% of Global Market

Washington's overseas sales tripled last year

(Newser) - America's weapon sales abroad last year skyrocketed to $66.3 billion, triple the 2010 figure of $21.4 billion, according to a nonpartisan report. US sales accounted for more than three-quarters of the $85.3 billion market and marked a record high for sales in a year, blowing away...

Hikers Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer Leave Iran for Good
 Hikers Leave Iran for Good 

Hikers Leave Iran for Good

Destination: Oman, where they will be met by their families

(Newser) - Josh Fattal and Shane Bauer are officially no longer on Iranian soil. The American hikers have departed on a flight from Tehran to Oman, a Swiss diplomat tells CNN . Their destination is the Omani capital of Muscat, where they will be met by their families, along with fellow hiker/Bauer'...

Omani Protesters Burn Buildings, Block Port

Unofficial death toll rises to 6

(Newser) - The unofficial death toll in Oman rose to six over the weekend, as hundreds of demonstrators in Sohar blocked roads leading to a port and a refinery, reports Reuters . A supermarket was looted and burned, two government buildings were also set on fire, and protesters raided a police station to...

Two Dead as Protests Spread to Oman

Sultan Qaboos bin Said has ruled for 4 decades

(Newser) - Two people have died as protests hit their second day in normally quiet Oman, reports Reuters, noting that police fired rubber bullets and tear gas into crowds. There were unsubstantiated reports that police used live ammunition. "Police and anti-riot units moved against this subversive group to protect citizens and...

Send Books, Not Guns to Afghanistan
Send Books, Not Guns
to Afghanistan
Nicholas Kristof

Send Books, Not Guns to Afghanistan

Oman proves the value of education

(Newser) - Forty years ago, Oman was a hidebound society, similar to neighboring Yemen. There was no modern technology, no paved roads, and most of the people were illiterate. It had just three schools, all boys-only affairs. But today, Yemen is a haven for terrorists, but Oman isn’t. Why? Because in...

Stranded Maid Dies of Stress After 5 Nights in Airport

Authorities pass the blame in death of woman who lost passport

(Newser) - An Indian maid died of what doctors say was a stress-induced heart attack after being forced to spend five nights sleeping in a transit area at Oman's Muscat airport. The 40-year-old lost her passport on a connecting flight between Oman and Qatar, and she was sent back to Oman instead...

Oman to Seek Hikers' Release
 Oman to Seek Hikers' Release 

Oman to Seek Hikers' Release

Iran paper: Diplomats may return home with Bauer, Fattal

(Newser) - Oman is sending a delegation to Iran today with the goal of securing the release of the remaining two US hikers still imprisoned. Citing a hardline Iranian newspaper report, the AP says hopes are high that the Omanis might return home with Shane Bauer and Josh Fattal—especially given their...

Jihadist's Bust May Mark Major Intel Coup

Al-Qaeda leaders warned that boss was nabbed with names, numbers

(Newser) - Counterterrorism experts believe an al-Qaeda field commander captured last month is providing a major intelligence breakthrough. Abdullah Saleh al-Eidan's bust in Oman was swiftly followed by warnings on jihadi websites that he had the names and phone numbers of 300 "brothers" in his possession, urging militants to change their...

Meteorite Hunter Gets His Due
Meteorite Hunter Gets His Due

Meteorite Hunter Gets His Due

He finds fame, maybe fortune, by digging through dust

(Newser) - He’s not exactly Indiana Jones, but Steve Arnold does have fame, wild adventures, and an 18-foot-wide metal detector. Arnold, a meteorite hunter, has combed the deserts of Chile, the tundras of Siberia, and the streets of Chicago looking for the extraterrestrial lumps of metal, the LA Times reports. His...

Cyclone Menaces Gulf Region, Oil Prices

Thousands flee Oman; storm may slow tankers

(Newser) - A cyclone that may be the most powerful storm ever to hit the Arabian Peninsula is heading toward the oil-rich Persian Gulf region, forcing thousands to evacuate and prompting fears of a spike in oil prices. Oman's coastal towns will take the brunt of Cyclone Gonu, which is producing winds...

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