Top news: Top U.S. military officials acknowledged that they no longer expect to reach a negotiated settlement with the Taliban, one of the cornerstones of the U.S. exit strategy in Afghanistan. American commanders have long said they would not fight their way out of the war, but the failure to begin meaningful talks with the Taliban has necessitated an adjustment of American priorities, according to the New York Times. American officials now say they aim only to lay the groundwork for future peace talks among Afghans once coalition forces leave in 2014.
The revelation comes on the heels of the 38th "insider attack" by Afghan forces on their NATO counterparts this year, bringing the number of so-called "green-on-blue" deaths during the same period to 52 and the total number of U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan to 2,000 since 2001.
Syrian crisis: Fighting broke out in the Old City in Aleppo as rebels launched a fresh campaign to take control of the city. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, at least 100 people were killed countrywide on Monday. Meanwhile, Syria's foreign minister, speaking at the U.N. General Assembly, accused the United States, France, Turkey, Qatar, and Saudi Arabia of supporting "terrorism" by backing rebel fighters.
- The Iranian rial plunged to an all-time-low against the U.S dollar on Monday.
- Doctors in Egypt began a partial strike on Monday to protest inadequate funding for public hospitals.
- Yemen's defence ministry denied that the solders reportedly being held by Syrian rebels were sent to aid President Bashar al-Assad.
- The leader of the militant Islamist group Boko Haram denied his organization is in talks with the Nigerian government.
- Somali and African Union troops entered the Somali port city of Kismayo.
- The leader of the Mend militant group, responsible for numerous attacks in the Niger Delta, went on trial in South Africa on Monday.
- A North Korean minister criticized the United States' "hostile" policy toward his country, saying the peninsula was a "spark" away from nuclear war.
- A boat collision off Lamma Island in Hong Kong left at least 36 people dead.
- The Japanese prime minister reshuffled his cabinet for the third time this year.
- Both the governing party and the opposition claimed victory in Georgia's parliamentary elections.
- The Greek government proposed $10 billion worth of savings and spending cuts in its 2013 draft budget.
- Eurozone unemployment reached a new high of 18.2 million in August, according to the EU statistics agency.
- Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos announced he will undergo surgery for prostate cancer on Wednesday.
- Mexican leftists freed 80 prisoners in Chiapas after losing a local election.
- The FARC, Colombia's largest rebel group, postponed negotiations with the government for one week.