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Franco Origlia/Getty Images(ROME) -- Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said Sunday he will resign after a referendum defeat.

Italians voted on a proposal that would attempt to streamline Italy's lawmaking process by reducing the powers of the Senate. Renzi had said the reforms would have cut the country's bureaucracy, but many saw the vote as a referendum on the prime minister's centrist government.

Renzi said he would offer his resignation on Monday at a cabinet meeting.

"Good luck to us all," he said according to BBC.

The Italian prime minister's resignation mirrors the exit of David Cameron, the former prime minister of United Kingdom, who stepped down when British voters decided in a referendum to leave the European Union. Cameron had heavily campaigned to remain in the EU.

The result of Italy's referendum also comes amid the rise of anti-establishment sentiment in the world. Donald Trump was elected president of the U.S. nearly a month ago and France's anti-immigration and anti-European Union National Front Party leader Marine Le Pen is gaining support in her country.

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iStock/Thinkstock(VIENNA) -- Austria has elected a former Green Party leader to be its new president.

Alexander Van der Bellen defeated far-right Freedom Party candidate Norbert Hofer, who conceded within minutes of the first results being reported on Sunday, BBC News reports.

Van der Bellen said his victory was a vote for "freedom, equality and solidarity," and re-affirmed his country's desire not to close itself off from the rest of Europe.

He said Austria had sent a "signal of hope and change" to "all the capitals of the European Union".

French President Francois Hollande said Austria had chosen "Europe and openness," and European Council President Donald Tusk offered his "wholehearted congratulations." Meanwhile, Marine Le Pen of France's conservative Front National said the Freedom Party would be victorious in upcoming legislative elections.

The post of president is ceremonial in Austria, but the vote was widely viewed as an indication of how well populist candidates would fare in European elections following this year's Brexit vote and the election of Donald Trump in the United States.

Sunday's vote was the country's second attempt to conduct the presidential runoff this year. An earlier vote in May was invalidated after vote irregularities.

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iStock/Thinkstock(HAVANA) -- With the death of Fidel Castro, the father of the Cuban revolution, many questions hang over the future of Cuba. President Raul Castro, Fidel's 85-year-old brother, has been leading the country since 2008 when Fidel stepped down. With the assistance of the Vatican and Canada, Raul Castro and President Obama announced negotiations toward thawing relations between the U.S. and Cuba in 2014.

But with only a year left in Raul Castro's presidency, what happens next for the island only 90 miles from the U.S.?

Immediately


Not much is expected to change immediately for Cuba.

"Raul has been a reformist, pushing pragmatically for slow but steady change -- 'without haste, but without pause,' as he likes to say," Peter Kornbluh, a senior analyst at the National Security Archive and expert on Cuba, told ABC News. "There are others in the Communist Party politburo who oppose the range of his efforts to privatize and modernize the economy."

President-elect Donald Trump looms over whatever the future will look like. Whether he shuts down the island to business again, or allows more openings can play into the hands of Cuba's reformists or hardliners.

"If Trump pursues an arrogant imperial and threatening policy toward Cuba, the leadership will gravitate toward hardline security officials who will focus on national security," Kornbluh explains.

John Kavulich, president of the U.S. Cuba Trade and Economic Council, a private, not-for-profit, membership-based corporation, said it is "delusional thinking" that everything will immediately change with the death of Fidel Castro.

"The next months will be focused upon confirming for the 11.3 million citizens of Cuba that the 'Revolution' was not because of one man or only endured with that one man," he said. "It is the fabric that wraps the country and there will be no holes in that fabric."

Possible Election

The real change is expected come February 24, 2018 -- the day a Castro will no longer be running Cuba.

Raul Castro announced in 2013 that it would be his last five-year term as president. Come February 2018, it will be the first time since the revolution that a Castro will not be in power.

"President-elect Trump is focusing upon the requirements of the Libertad Act of 1996, which created conditions for the resumption of full commercial, economic and political relations with Cuba," Kavulich said. "President-elect Trump is sharing that he desires a 'better deal.' He may get one -- on 24 February 2018 when President Raul Castro retires and he will be the first United States president in 59 years to welcome a 'post-Castro Cuba' and preside during a 'post-Castro Cuba.' A provision of the Libertad Act requires that neither Fidel Castro nor Raul Castro be in government.”

The Libertad Act is also known as Helms-Burton Act, which states the embargo can be removed when Cuba holds "free and fair" elections and a Castro is not in power.

The expected successor is current vice-president Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, 56, appointed by Raul Castro in 2013. He is the highest ranking Cuban politician born after the revolution. Díaz-Canel is an engineer by training and according to Americas Quarterly has spoken for an open press and more Internet access.

"Today, news from all sides —- good or bad, manipulated and true -— gets to people. They know [what's going on]," Díaz-Canel told a higher education conference, according to Americas Quarterly. "And what is worse, then? Silence?"

He would become the first civilian leader of Cuba since the revolution, but how he will come to power is still a question.

"Leadership has never been put to the people in Cuba. I'd be very surprised if that were to change," Ted Piccone, a senior fellow in the Project on International Order and Strategy and Latin America Initiative in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings Institute told ABC News. "We'd certainly not see elections as anything we would recognize. There would be a formal appointment coming out of the national assembly."

The Cuban government has taken steps toward more open elections, such as allowing two independents to run in the last election, and promises to decentralize the government and has an electoral law reform pending, Piccone said.

"Key question is his legitimacy and his platform. We've had the Castro regime had the revolution to empower them all these years," he said. "When the Castros are gone that generation is gone. What is their legitimacy? He'd have to deliver of economic quality of life reforms. That’s what they are going to be judged on by the Cuban people because they weren’t fighting in the mountains for the revolution ... he was born after the revolution.”

Future

What the future will hold for Cuba is dependent on whether Trump allows the relaxation and easing of relations to continue, according to Piccone.

"Whether or not you like the Castros or not, the Cubans are very proud, nationalist people and they will survive," Piccone said. "Trump is taking a completely backward approach. He’d just provoke them and hardliners in Cuba to repress people rather than open up."

It will also depend on whether Raul Castro will fully remove himself from power.

While he will step down as president, the question remains if he will exit entirely from government.

"They've talked about separating the roles of party leader and government leader so would have Raul in theory, as head of the party and Diaz-Canal as head of government for the more day to day activities of running the government," Piccone explained. "With Fidel gone and Raul in the background I think you have much more burden on the new generation to move ahead with reforms because the current status quo program is not going to lead them to economic growth.

"If they position Diaz-Canal as the face of the Cuban government to the world and the people and if Raul has been playing the role Fidel has the past eight years (a monthly column or photo opp with a visiting dignitary), if Raul steps back as far as Fidel has stepped back then I would say it's the end of the Castro era."

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State of Indiana(NEW YORK) --  President-elect Trump's phone call with the president of Taiwan was "nothing more than taking a courtesy call," according to Vice President-elect Mike Pence.

"Its' a little mystifying to me that President Obama can reach out to a murdering dictator in Cuba in the last year and be hailed as a hero for doing it and President-elect Donald Trump takes a courtesy call from the democratically-elected leader of Taiwan, and it’s become something of a controversy," Pence told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos on This Week on Sunday morning.

When asked whether the Trump administration would continue the "one China" foreign policy of the U.S. since 1979, Pence said, "We'll deal with policy after January 20."

Trump's phone conversation Friday with Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen broke nearly four decades of sensitive U.S. policy toward China.

Although Taiwan has held that it is an independent nation since it split from the Chinese mainland in a 1949 civil war, the U.S. established diplomatic relations with Beijing in 1979, and has since not recognized Taiwan as its own country but rather as a part of China.

Since 1979, no phone calls between a U.S. president-elect and a Taiwanese leader have been publicly reported, according to Center for Strategic and International Studies China expert Bonnie Glaser.

Pence told Stephanopoulos that Taiwan's leader called Trump. "They reached out to offer congratulations as leaders around the world have," he said. "He took the call, accepted her congratulations and good wishes."

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Jessica Kourkounis/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- The Trump Organization said Saturday that the company has no plans to expand in Taiwan and that “rumors” to the contrary are false.

After President-elect Trump spoke Friday with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen -- breaking nearly four decades of sensitive U.S. policy toward China -- media reports surfaced saying that the Trump Organization is considering investing in Taiwan.

The Taiwanese and Chinese media reports said that a representative of the Trump Organization visited a city in Taiwan in September and expressed interest in the company's investing in a large-scale urban development project there.

The mayor of the city of Taoyuan reportedly said that the Trump Organization is considering building hotels and resorts in the city but that, as the large development project there is under review, the interest expressed by the Trump Organization representative during the visit was merely speculative.

But the Trump Organization's vice president of marketing, Amanda Miller, told ABC News in a statement, "There are no plans for expansion into Taiwan, nor are any of our executives planning a visit. The rumors of a planned development there are simply false."

Miller also responded to a recently surfaced Facebook post by Anne-Marie Donoghue, who is global director of transient sales and Asia at Trump Hotels. She posted a picture on her Facebook on Oct. 15 from Taipei and in the comments described her visit there as a "work trip."

Miller said Donoghue's visit had nothing to do with any planned development by Trump Organization in Taiwan.

"In terms of Anne Marie, she is not part of our development team which is overseen by our hotel company CEO," Miller said. "There have been no authorized visits to Taiwan on behalf of our brand for the purposes of development nor are there any active conversations."

The Trump transition team has not yet responded to requests by ABC News for comment on this issue.

The issue presents another thread in a story that has gained momentum as Trump assembles his administration, whether the interests of his global business could intertwine or affect his actions as president.

Trump said earlier this week he will be holding a major news conference with his children on Dec. 15 to lay out how he plans a "total" separation from his business while he is president.

In a Nov. 22 interview with The New York Times, Trump noted that the president is exempt from a conflict-of-interest statute that applies to other government officials. However, he also tweeted that it would be "visually" important to show the American people he can govern without any conflicts.

Trump's call with on Friday sent shock waves through at least part of the U.S. diplomatic establishment and led China to lodge a formal diplomatic protest with the U.S.

Taiwan has held that it is an independent nation since it split from the Chinese mainland in a 1949 civil war. But the U.S. has maintained a "one China" policy since establishing diplomatic relations with Beijing in 1979, meaning that it has not recognized Taiwan as its own country and rather as a part of China.

Since then, no phone calls between a U.S. president-elect and a Taiwanese leader have been publicly reported, according to Center for Strategic and International Studies China expert Bonnie Glaser.

The U.S. does have a "robust unofficial relationship" with Taiwan and commits to defending it in the event of a Chinese attack, according to the U.S. Department of State's website.

According to a press release from the Trump transition team about the phone call, Taiwan's president offered her congratulations to the president-elect, and he offered the same to her for her election victory this year. They discussed the "close economic, political, and security ties between Taiwan and the United States," the Trump transition team said.

The Taiwanese president's office said in a statement that the telephone call lasted 10 minutes and that Tsai and Trump were joined by Taiwan's National Security Council secretary general Joseph Wu Chao-hsieh, foreign minister David Li Ta-wei, acting secretary general Liu Jianxi and spokesman Huang Yan.

"During the conversation, President Tsai and President Trump also exchanged views and ideas on the future governance, especially the promotion of domestic economic development and the long-term strengthening of national defense, so as to enable the people to enjoy a secure and better life," the statement from Tsai's office read.

Meanwhile, Trump appeared to seek to dismiss concerns about the call in a series of tweets on Friday night, saying that he was on the receiving end of the call and noted that the U.S. has recently approved major arms sales to Taiwan.

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iStock/Thinkstock(REYKJAVIK, Iceland) -- Iceland's Pirate Party has been asked to try to form a government after the country's two largest parties failed to do so, according to BBC News.

In October's elections, the anti-establishment Pirate Party surged to 10 seats in the small European island's 63-seat parliament. That is fewer than both the Independence Party and the Left-Greens, but those parties were unable to form a coalition with a majority of seats in parliament.

As a result, President Gudni Johannesson asked the Pirates to lead new coalition talks.

Pirates head Birgitta Jonsdottir said she was "optimistic that we will find a way to work together".

BBC News says the Pirate Party, founded in 2012, ran on a platform promoting increased political accountability, free health care and closing tax loopholes. Opponents say investors may hesistate to invest in Iceland's economy if an inexperienced political party is at the helm.

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iStock/Thinkstock(ALEPPO, Syria) -- Half of the rebel-held areas in east Aleppo have been re-taken by Syrian government troops, a military spokesperson tells BBC News. Gen. Samir Sulaiman said he hoped all of Aleppo would be under government control within the next few weeks.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a humanitarian monitoring group in the region, said the district of Tariq al-Bab was seized by government troops after being under rebel control for four years.

The group said dozens of soldiers on both sides of the conflict were left injured or killed in the fighting, and at least 300 civilians have been killed in rebel-held districts since the government intensified its push to retake the city in November.

Stephen O'Brien, humanitarian affairs chief at the United Nations, said food was running extremely low in rebel-held areas under government siege, and UN officials on the ground told BBC News they were preparing for a wave of civilians fleeing the violence.

On Thursday, Russia (an ally of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad) said it was ready to discuss opening corridors into the city for humanitarian access. Approximately 250,000 people remain trapped in parts of the city that are under government siege, according to BBC News.

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Dan Kitwood/Getty Images(ROME) -- Stephen Hawking has been released from a hospital in Rome after a two-day stay.

Gemelli Hospital tells ABC News that the English theoretical physicist was discharged on Saturday after feeling unwell on Thursday evening.

Hawking was speaking at a Vatican conference on the origins of the universe. He suffers from a rare form of ALS, better known as Lou Gehrig's Disease.

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JOE RAEDLE/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- President-elect Donald Trump spoke with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen by phone on Friday, according to the Trump transition team, breaking with decades of delicate U.S. policy on China.

Friday night, Trump issued two tweets defending the move, which may cause tensions with China.

 

The President of Taiwan CALLED ME today to wish me congratulations on winning the Presidency. Thank you!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 3, 2016

 

 

Interesting how the U.S. sells Taiwan billions of dollars of military equipment but I should not accept a congratulatory call.

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 3, 2016

 

Since 1979, a phone call between a U.S. president-elect and a Taiwanese leader has never been publicly reported, according to Center for Strategic and International Studies China expert Bonnie Glaser.

During the conversation, the Taiwanese president offered her congratulations and Trump offered the same to her for her election victory this year, according to a Trump team press release. They discussed the "close economic, political, and security ties between Taiwan and the United States," the Trump transition team said.

That the conversation took place at all is "highly unusual" and "significant," said Dr. Claude Rakisits, of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service, an expert in U.S.-South Asian affairs.

"The fact that Trump actually spoke with Taiwan [president] would irritate the communist leaders in China, in Beijing, because they would wonder, 'Is this an indication of the sort of relationship that one could expect between the U.S. and China during his presidency?'"

Taiwan's status has been a sensitive topic in the United States' relationship with China. The U.S. has maintained a "one China" policy since establishing diplomatic relations with Beijing in 1979, meaning that it has not recognized Taiwan as its own country, but rather as a part of China.

But the U.S. does maintain a "robust unofficial relationship" with Taiwan and commits to defending it in the event of a Chinese attack.

Since it split from the Chinese mainland in a 1949 civil war, Taiwan has maintained that it is an independent nation, despite China's and the United States' denial of this claim, and has seen a growing body of support among Taiwanese youth.

A spokesperson for the National Security Council said there is "no change to our longstanding policy on cross-Strait issues. We remain firmly committed to our 'one China' policy based on the three Joint Communiques and the Taiwan Relations Act."

"I've lived with this policy area my entire adult life and I've lived with the arguments around this for more than 25 years. To me, I am thrilled that this call took place," a former Republican White House national security official told ABC News. "It will upset an apple cart that has needed upsetting for a long time."

"No one should be telling the U.S. president who he can and cannot talk to," the official said. "Especially if a very powerful competitor in the world is saying there's a risk of conflict over this territory, it's even more important for our leader to have communication with that leader."

In the past, Trump has voiced support for a weapons deal with Taiwan, advocating a tough stance against China.

 

Why is @BarackObama delaying the sale of F-16 aircraft to Taiwan? Wrong message to send to China. #TimeToGetTough

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 18, 2011

 

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iStock/Thinkstock(BANJUL, Gambia) -- Gambia's authoritarian president of 22 years is stepping down after a shock election defeat.

In a concession speech on state TV Friday, Gambian President Yahya Jammeh accepted his loss to property developer Adama Barrow and said he would "help him work towards the transition," according to BBC.

Human rights groups have criticized Jammeh for restricting freedom of the press, his calls for anti-gay violence, and for claiming he could cure HIV/AIDS and infertility.

Hundreds of Barrow's supporters took to the streets in Gambia, that has a population of about 2 million, to celebrate the election results, BBC reports.

The president-elect promised voters he would revive Gambia's struggling economy and would impose a presidential term limit, according to BBC.

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RAUL ARBOLEDA/AFP/Getty Images(MEDELLIN, Colombia) -- As Colombian plane crash survivor Erwin Tumiri heads home to Bolivia, dramatic new video from local police shows the moments after he was pulled from the wreckage.

Clad in a yellow police jacket, Tumiri – one of just six people who survived the plane crash that killed 71 in Medellin on Monday – sobbed in Spanish for "my crew."

“Calm down, don’t worry, we are here to help you, and your friends also,” a first responder replies in Spanish.

A clearly stunned Tumiri tells the responder his spine and arms hurt, then cries out two names.

“Don't scream technician, calm down,” the responder says. “Don't wear yourself down, technician, don't wear yourself down.”

Shortly after the crash, Tumiri, a flight engineer, reportedly told media outlets that he survived by curling up in the fetal position with a bag between his knees as the jet careened toward the mountainside.

“I put the bags in between my legs to form the fetal position that is recommended in accidents,” he told Fox Sports Argentina in Spanish. “During the situation, many stood up from their seats, and they started to shout.”

He and one other crew member, flight attendant Ximena Suárez, survived, as did four passengers on board: a journalist and three members of the Chapecoense soccer team. The team’s goalie has already had one leg amputated; the other survivors remain hospitalized.

The charter plane, which apparently suffered an electrical failure, ran out of fuel before it slammed into the side of a mountain not far from the airport, authorities said.

A government official confirms to ABC News that the jet was supposed to refuel en route to Medellin. The pilot chose not to, the official said.

The flight’s operator, LAMIA, has had its permits and certifications suspended, the Bolivia Civil Aviation Authority told ABC News.

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Yui Mok - WPA Pool/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Adult coloring books are a hot craze that has grownups hiding crayons from their kids, and now we're learning the duchess of Cambridge is yet another convert to the trend.

Prince William revealed the secret pastime of his wife, Kate, to illustrator and author Johanna Basford at an investiture at Buckingham Palace this week. William said Kate likes to color in Secret Garden, Basford's first coloring book that has sold more than one million copies.

“I’m working on a new book just now and it’s set in a castle, funnily enough, so I will definitely try to remember everything,” Basford told reporters after the ceremony. “I’m sure little snippets of today will feature in the book.”

William awarded Basford the Order of the British Empire for services to art and entrepreneurship.

“I think people are just craving a digital detox,” Basford said of the appeal of adult coloring, or “color therapy” as it is sometimes called.

Kate, 34, received her degree in art history with honors from St. Andrews, where she and William met and fell in love. She is a big supporter of the arts and has made arts education and art therapy for struggling children one of the cornerstones of her charitable work.

Kate is also patron of the National Portrait Gallery.

The duchess met last week with a group of children at London's Natural History Museum. Kate joined the children as they decorated "dinosaur" eggs.

She revealed that Prince George, her 3-year-old son with William, is obsessed with dinosaurs, particularly the Tyrannosaurus rex because “it's the noisiest and the scariest.”

William on Wednesday also revealed another of Prince George’s fascinations -- planes and trains. William was visiting Derby, where he tried his hand at conducting a train.

William later remarked how Prince George would "love it" and would be excited about seeing his father drive a train.

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iStock/Thinkstock(KALISZ, Poland) -- A pedestrian in the central Polish city of Kalisz can credit a lamp pole with saving her life.

Surveillance cameras captured the tense moment when a woman narrowly escaped catastrophe. She was walking along a sidewalk next to a building situated at a busy intersection in Kalisz, Poland.

At the same time, a white car was attempting to make a left turn adjacent to the building. Suddenly, a black sedan enters the frame and hits the white car, causing the sedan to careen toward the building, with the pedestrian in its path.

The sedan instead crashes into a lamp post on the sidewalk, just inches away from the woman, bringing the out-of-control vehicle to a stop and saving the pedestrian’s life.

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Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Melania Trump has hired the well-respected law firm Pirc Musar & Partnerji in her native Slovenia to warn people against profiting off her name and image.

Honey jars "from Melania's home garden," pancakes with golden dust and a special breakfast with strawberries -- these are just a few of the many products that Slovenian entrepreneurs have been offering for sale since her husband, Donald Trump, became president-elect of the United States.

“We just want to draw public attention to the fact that the names Trump or Melania Trump are protected as a trademark,” Natasa Pirc Musar, director of the law firm, told ABC News. “We issued a press release and sent it to all Slovenian media. Now we count on people’s prudence to stop the practice.”

She added that Melania Trump does not want to sue anyone.

“Of course, my client does not want any legal proceedings, no lawsuits. That’s out of the question,” said Pirc Musar. “We are closely monitoring the situation and I am in contact with my client on a weekly basis.”

In the tiny factory town of Sevnica, where the future first lady, then known as Melanija Knavs, grew up, a cottage industry hawking Melania Trump-associated products from quintessential Slovenian honey to pastries has sprung up.

Bruno Lojze Vedmar, a local Sevnica entrepreneur and a pizzeria owner, was the first to produce a breakfast dessert made of yogurt, strawberries, mascarpone, cream, cookie base and silver or gold sugar pearls — and he called it Melanija, with a "j."

“It is a best-seller at my place, and since I don’t use a picture of Melania, I am not worried about copyright infringement,” he told ABC News.

Franc Krasovec, a Slovenian pancake master who has created a Melania Trump-themed pancake, says he's not worried about copyright infringement either. “I don’t really know what copyright infringement is so I shall not worry about it," he told ABC News.

He said that he has had 20 different kinds of pancakes on the menu for decades and that people from all over Europe have come to taste them. "Only now that the White House is so close to Sevnica, I invented a 21st pancake with the finest ingredients: wild blueberries picked around the cottage, the finest bourbon vanilla filling and ice cream with edible gold dust to spice it up,” he said.

Pirc Musar said that it's items using her client's photo or last name that concern her. “[It's] not a problem. No photo or last name is attached to it,” said Pirc Musar of Vedmar's breakfast dessert. “We personally tasted it and it’s very good." She said that she doesn’t mind that a giant Christmas tree in the Slovenian capital of Ljubljana is called Melania either.

Pirc Musar pointed instead to a billboard advertisement erected in Sevnica featuring the future first lady without her consent. “A huge billboard in Sevnica with Melania’s picture, erected by a private web company for commercial purposes, is problematic," as are "honey jars from 'Melania’s home garden' with Melania’s image and Slovenian and American flags," she said. "That is Slovenian copyright infringement.”

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Purestock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) --  The U.S.-led coalition fighting ISIS says 54 more civilians were inadvertently killed in airstrikes in Iraq and Syria that took place between March 31 and October 22. Since they began in August of 2014, the coalition has reported 173 civilians killed by coalition airstrikes and another 37 injured.

"We regret the unintentional loss of civilian lives resulting from Coalition efforts to defeat ISIL in Iraq and Syria and express our deepest sympathies to the families and others affected by these strikes," said a statement released Thursday by Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR).

The coalition investigates reports of civilian casualties to determine if they are credible and periodically releases updates about its investigations.

As of November 17, U.S. and coalition aircraft have conducted a total of 16,291 airstrikes against ISIS in Iraq and Syria, with 12,633 conducted by American aircraft.

The coalition statement said their team "investigates all reports of possible civilian casualties using traditional investigative methods, such as interviewing witnesses and examining the site, the Coalition interviews pilots, reviews strike video when available, and analyzes information provided by government agencies, non-governmental organizations, partner forces and traditional and social media."

"In addition, we consider new information when it becomes available in order to promote a thorough and continuous review process," they continued.

In this recent investigation, 276 allegations of civilian casualties were investigated; they found 83 of them to be credible.

They described 7 incidents between March 31 and October 22 that resulted in 54 civilian fatalities, two of which resulted in 39 of the 54 civilian deaths detailed in the coalition's statement.

Airstrikes on July 18, 2016, near the northern city of Manbij, Syria, killed nearly 100 ISIS fighters, destroyed 13 fighting positions and 10 vehicles, according to the report. But the coalition's investigation determined that up to 24 civilians "interspersed with combatants were inadvertently killed in a known ISIL staging area where no civilians had been seen in the 24 hours prior to the attack."

According to the statement, the ISIS fighters were preparing for a large counterattack against Syrian rebel forces who were fighting to retake the ISIS-held city.

"Unknown to Coalition planners, civilians were moving around within the military staging area, even as other civilians in the nearby village had departed over the previous days," the Centcom statement said.

Another 15 civilians were killed in an airstrike on July 28, 2016 near Arghanndorh, Syria that targeted a moving ISIS vehicle. "15 civilians were inadvertently killed when the munition struck the vehicle after it slowed in a populated area after the munition was released," said the statement.

Investigations determined that twelve alleged reports of civilian casualties between September, 2015 and October, 2016 were not found to be credible. Three additional allegations remain under investigation.

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