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News from Middle East



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Our mission is to get news and informative comments about all that happens in the hot countries of Middle East, above all facts that no other media reports to people.
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The New York Times agrees to be gagged by Israel (Ali Abunimah) - 21-apr-2014

April 18, 2014 - Margaret Sullivan, The New York Times’ public editor, has written a thoughtful and important piece criticizing the way the newspaper complied with an Israeli-imposed gag order on the case of Majd Kayyal. But it leaves some important questions unanswered about the Times’ apparent eagerness to let Israeli censors set its news agenda. Kayyal, a 23-year old journalist and activist and a Palestinian citizen of Israel, was detained incommunicado for five days by Israel’s Shin Bet secret police without access to a lawyer, following a return from a professional trip to Lebanon...

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Solidarity, concessions and complicity (Ramona Wadi) - 21-apr-2014

April 18, 2014-In the International Year of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, the United Nations deems it pertinent to issue a reminder to Palestine with regard to the rapacious imperial benevolence. On April 14, the UN website published a news brief stating that Secretary General Ban Ki-moon had spoken to Mahmoud Abbas and Benjamin Netanyahu in an effort to salvage the temporarily stalled negotiations.According to spokesperson Stephanie Dujarric, "The purpose of the calls was to discuss the ongoing efforts to extend the negotiations towards a final peace agreement between Israel and Palestine." Dujarric added that Ban "expressed his hope that both leaders will seize the current opening created by US efforts to find a way forward to achieve the two-state solution."...

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Suspected Jewish extremists torch mosque in northern Israel (Ma'an News) - 21-apr-2014

April 18, 2014 -- Suspected Jewish extremists set fire to a mosque and sprayed racist graffiti in the town of Umm al-Fahm on Friday, an Israeli police spokesman said. Mickey Rosenfeld told Ma'an that there was "damage to the front door of the mosque and graffiti found on nearby walls." Israeli police and border police arrived at the scene and are investigating the incident, he said, adding that the attack had "price tag" motives. Graffiti on the walls in the town read "Arabs out", according to Israeli media.In early April, Jewish extremists slashed the tires of over 40 cars and sprayed racist graffiti in the predominantly Christian town of Jish in northern Israel...

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Thousands march across West Bank, Gaza to mark Prisoners Day (Ma'an News) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 -- At least ten Palestinians were detained by Israeli forces on Thursday as thousands participated in protests across the West Bank and the Gaza Strip to commemorate the annual Palestinian Prisoners Day. Large demonstrations took place in Hebron, Gaza City, Jenin, Nablus, and Ramallah to mark the day of solidarity with the more than 5,000 Palestinian prisoners currently being held in Israeli prisons. The demonstrations took place amid a major row with Israel over its failure to release a batch of prisoners held for more than twenty years as previously agreed upon as a part of ongoing peace negotiations...

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Syria News - April 17, 2014 (Warning: Graphic Videos) (Local Coordinating Committees of Syria) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - By the end Thursday the Coordination Comiittees were able to document 88 martyrs in Syria including 7 women, 9 children and 4 martyrs under torture: 39 martyrs were reported in Aleppo; 30 in Damascus and its Suburbs; 11 in Deir Ezzor; 3 in Idlib; 3 in Daraa; 1 in Homs and 1 martyr in Raqqa...

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Human rights abuses by the American forces in Iraq (Stewart Sloan) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 The United Nations and the United States of America are calling for an investigation into human rights abuses by the Sri Lankan government and LTTE. Sadly, one of the regular responses by the Sri Lankan government to the call for accountability is the fact that the UN has never hauled up the US for the now, well documented accusations, of human rights abuses in Iraq, including the horrific torture of literally thousands of detainees. I am not suggesting for one minute that two wrongs make a right or that Sri Lanka should not be held accountable. However, the call by the Sri Lankan government that people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones is a valid one....

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Cut off from the world, Gazans consumed by poverty (By Noah Browning and Nidal al-Mughrabi) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014- (Reuters) - Life has never seemed so grim for the Mustafas, a family of seven cramped into a shabby two-room hovel in Gaza's Jabalya refugee camp. Seven years into an Israeli blockade and ten months into a crippling Egyptian one, Gaza's economic growth has evaporated and unemployment soared to almost 40 percent by the end of 2013. Opposition to the Hamas militant group which runs the Gaza Strip has led its neighbors to quarantine the enclave, shutting residents out of the struggling Mideast peace process and leaving them with plenty of parties to blame. Living on U.N. handouts of rice, flour, canned meat and sunflower oil, with limited access to proper health care or clean water, families like the Mustafas - seemingly permanent refugees from ancestral lands now part of Israel - have no money, no jobs and no hope...

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Night raid alternative fails to end violence against Palestinian children (Defence for Children International Palestine) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014- Recent attempts by Israeli military and intelligence officers to "summon" Palestinian children for questioning fail to address ill-treatment once they are in Israeli military custody. The Israeli army declared in February that a new pilot program relying on written summonses would be implemented as an alternative to night arrests. In the same month, DCI-Palestine documented six cases involving children summoned for questioning who reported ill-treatment and torture once in Israeli military detention...

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Guantánamo judge to CIA: Disclose ‘black site’ details to USS Cole defense lawyers (By Carol Rosenberg) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - -- The military judge in the USS Cole bombing case has ordered the CIA to give defense lawyers details — names, dates and places — of its secret overseas detention and interrogation of the man accused of planning the bombing, two people who have read the still-secret order said Thursday. Army Col. James L. Pohl issued the five-page order Monday. It was sealed as document 120C on the war court website Thursday morning and, according to those who have read it, orders the agency to provide a chronology of the overseas odyssey of Abd al Rahim al Nashiri, 49, from his capture in Dubai in 2002 to his arrival at Guantánamo four years later...



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Nouri Al-Maliki's Iraq: War Crimes, violence, child marriage (The Common Ills) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014- NINA reports, "A source at the Fallujah General Hospital told the reporter of the National Iraqi News Agency / NINA / five people, including a woman, were killed and 11 others wounded, including two children, in the renewed shelling and mortar to most of Fallujah today." Qatar News Agency covers the killing of civilians here. This is a War Crime. Nouri's committing War Crimes with weapons the US government provides him with...We've been covering the issue of a proposed bill which would lower the marriage age for Iraqi girls to as young as eight, would strip mothers of their custodial rights, would allow for marital rape and many other things. ...

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How America’s Wars Came Home With the Troops
Up Close, Personal, and Bloody
(By Ann Jones) - 21-apr-2014

April 17, 2014- After an argument about a leave denied, Specialist Ivan Lopez pulled out a .45-caliber Smith & Wesson handgun and began a shooting spree at Fort Hood, America’s biggest stateside base, that left three soldiers dead and 16 wounded. When he did so, he also pulled America’s fading wars out of the closet. This time, a Fort Hood mass killing, the second in four and a half years, was committed by a man who was neither a religious nor a political "extremist." He seems to have been merely one of America’s injured and troubled veterans who now number in the hundreds of thousands...

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An area of land and an olive tree planted in Asira, in memory of Vittorio Arrigoni (International Solidarity Movement) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - On the 16th of April, the children of the Retaj Centre for Women and Children in Asira planted an olive tree on a piece of land which has been named after Vittorio Arrigoni. This symbolic act was made to remember the Italian volunteer killed on the 15th of April 2011. Asira is located south of Nablus, and is a village that is frequently attacked by settlers from nearby illegal settlements. The children of the Retaj Center for Women and Children took part in an emotive memorial for Vittorio, gathered in the small center, joined by volunteers from ISM and other organisations. The song "Bella Ciao" is an Italian resistance song that Vittorio taught the children of Gaza before he died, and the children of Asira sang it together. The assembly also watched a short movie entitled, "Un fiore per la liberta" by Samantha Comizzoli...

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Condemning ‘The Aggression We Ourselves Will Not Practice’ (John Glaser) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - Whenever the U.S. gets outraged by the actions of another state, be prepared for elaborate displays of self-deception and hypocrisy. This has surely been on display in the case of the latest outrage in Russia’s annexation of Crimea and meddling in Ukraine. At the Cato Institute’s blog yesterday, Ted Galen Carpenter reiterated a point I’ve made here repeatedly, that Washington’s supposedly principled denunciations of Russia’s actions are wildly inconsistent with the strong defense of comparable actions taken by the U.S....

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Israeli military courts: Masquerading as justice? (Brad Parker) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - Israel's chief military prosecutor for the West Bank, Lieutenant Colonel Maurice Hirsch, declared in February that a new pilot programme would soon be implemented to provide an alternative to arresting Palestinian children from their homes at night. The pilot programme will rely on written summonses demanding Palestinian children appear for questioning at Israeli interrogation centres in the occupied West Bank. A summons process, if implemented throughout the occupied West Bank, could potentially reduce the number of Palestinian child detainees that experience violence during their arrest, transfer and interrogation. While this could lead to practical improvements to the Israeli military detention system, recent evidence suggests that it may do little to stem violence and abuse of Palestinian child detainees by Israeli forces...

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A tree-hugging "peace" film detached from Palestine’s reality (Maureen Clare Murphy) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - A Palestinian and Jewish Israeli businessman start a solar panel business together — bravely confronting the bullies of the Israel boycott movement, who are the major force holding back the Middle East peace process — even when it tests their most intimate relationships. The young men’s unprecedented project, with the help of Facebook, gives birth to a grassroots movement that witnesses mass protests in Ramallah and Tel Aviv, putting pressure on the Palestinian and Israeli leadership to finally sign a peace agreement....This is the preposterous plot of the European Union and UK-funded propaganda film Under the Same Sun, produced by normalization outfit Search for Common Ground, and Tel Aviv-based Lama Films. It is directed by Palestinian filmmaker Sameh Zoabi (Man Without a Cell Phone)...

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Palestinian Prisoner’s Day 2014 (Addameer) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 – On the occasion of Palestinian Prisoners Day Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association salutes the continued struggle of the over 5,000 Palestinian political prisoners currently being held in Israeli prisons. Every year Israel arrests thousands of Palestinians in an attempt to suppress any resistance to its continued occupation and colonization, the result being the imprisonment of approximately 800,000 Palestinians since 1967.
Since the beginning of 2013 12 Palestinians have been killed during arrest operations by Israeli Occupying Forces, while another three have died as a result of medical neglect and another of torture. As of 1 March 2014 there were 5,224 Palestinian political prisoners being held in Israeli prisons. These include 183 administrative detainees; 210 children; 21 female prisoners; and 11 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. The situation of the prisoners continues to deteriorate as they face a wide range of violations against them...

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Photos of Victims of US Drone Wars in Pakistan and Yemen (World Can't Wait) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 Click the images to download 11" x 17" versions of the images below to hold at protests, and help bring to life the human stories behind the statistics. There are not many photos of the drone victims available for a number of reasons. Most of these drone attacks take place in remote locations. People living in these areas often don't have many photos of loved ones they can readily share after they have been killed. Maybe worst of all, journalists and rescuers are often deterred from visiting recent drone attack sites by the possibility of a second "double tap" drone strike. Thanks to those journalists, activists and family members, we make these available as enlarged PDFs. Images may be pixelated but are still recognizable at a distance...

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Why is Israel opposed to Palestine joining international treaties? (Samira Shackle) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - Last week, the United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announced that he had accepted the application of Palestinians to join 13 international UN conventions. Significantly, these include the Geneva Conventions, which govern the rules of war and military occupation. Ban informed all 193 UN member states that the application, by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, was made "in due and proper order" and that it would be processed within a month. Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian ambassador to the UN, said that Palestine was ready with more applications to join UN agencies, conventions, and treaties, depending on Israel's actions....


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Why does the mass media ignore mass murder in Syria? (Clay Claiborne) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014-I recall when the mantra of the media was "if it bleeds, it leads." That certainly isn't the case with regards to Syria. If more than a hundred people and a dozen children met with a violent end almost anywhere else in the world, it would make the morning news cycle. It happens every day in Syria without so much as a notice. It can't be for lack of visuals. We all know TV news is a sucker for graphic video. A good video will even make a story where otherwise there wouldn't be one. The Syrian conflict has produced some of the most graphic and tense, or in the case of Syrian refugee children, compelling and heart-rending, videos the world has ever seen, available for free from YouTube, and with today's HD consumer grade cameras, not bad quality. Yet very little of this video ever makes it into the evening news. The true picture of this conflict and the human suffering it is causing is being hidden from us. When the media was trying to rally people to fight Saddam Hussein, they made a big deal out of a false story that had Iraq troops throwing babies out of incubators in Kuwait, now we have Assad's planes bombing play grounds, schools, breadlines and hospitals, and mums the word. Why are they covering up Assad's crimes when they should be reporting them?....

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What will Gaza’s Ark face from the Israeli navy as it challenges the blockade? (Charlie Andreasson) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - The heavy bang is heard clearly, and I have to resist the impulse to climb over the breakwater to try to get a view of the attack in the haze. And a new round of bangs is heard. It can’t be far off the port of Gaza. Instead, I look up at the sky, squinting, and there it is, the drone that been circling around all morning. And I return to my work to completing Gaza 's Ark. Shall I write about this, I wonder to myself? That thought pops up every time I hear machine-gun fire, or even heavier bombardments, from the sea. We expect some influential people to sail with us to break Israel’s naval blockade, and I do not want to scare them off...

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Guantanamo's sinister re-branding of force-feeding (By Harkirit Boparai) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 -The PR team at Guantanamo Bay have been engaging in a campaign of smoke and mirrors of late to try and cover up the abuse that still remains at Guantanamo Bay. Meanwhile, detainees such as our client Emad Hassan are still suffering the same abuse, at the hands of the same authorities, that they have been for the past 12 years.Rather than use a widely-recognised term that describes the peaceful protest being made by the detainees, the authorities at Guantanamo have decided to come up with (what they hope is) a sterile and innocuous-sounding term: "long term non-religious fast". This change in terminology was revealed through a Freedom of Information request for a document entitled: "Medical management of detainees with weight loss"...

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PHOTOS: Palestinian prisoners, supporters struggle for freedom (By Activestills) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - To mark International Palestinian Prisoners’ Day, which has been commemorated annually by Palestinians worldwide since 1974, Activestills brings you a look into the lives of Palestinian prisoners and their supporters struggling to obtain freedom.According to Addameer, a Palestinian prisoner support organization, there are currently 5,224 Palestinian men and women held in Israeli prisons. These include 183 administrative detainees; 210 children; 21 female prisoners; and 11 members of the Palestinian Legislative Council. Since the occupation of the West Bank, East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip began in 1967, more than 700,000 Palestinians have been imprisoned by Israel. To this day, dozens of Palestinians are taken away from their homes, workplaces, schools, and from different checkpoints on a weekly basis. Some are detained for days, some for weeks, and some imprisoned for unlimited periods of time...

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Palestinian youth say the talks with Israel are futile (Allison Deger) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 - Last summer when negotiations resumed between Israeli and Palestinian leaders, hundreds of Palestinian youth took to the streets of Ramallah to protest the Palestinian Authority decrying the talks. In fact August 2013 saw a string of protests from the city center to the Muqataa, the seat of the Palestinian government. And each protest ended the same: the youth were beaten and arrested, undercover agents moved through the crowds, and some dissidents were even taken into police custody from hospital beds.Today, the April 29th deadline to produce a U.S. engineered framework looms and talks teeter toward collapse. Israeli and Palestinian officials have skirted their limited commitments. Israel is refusing, or delaying, releasing the last round of Palestinian prisoners while the Palestinian Authority (PA) signed 15 letters of accession to United Nations treaties....

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PLO: 800,000 Palestinians detained since 1967 occupation (Ma'an News) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 -- Israeli military forces have detained over 800,000 Palestinians since the 1967 occupation of the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem, the PLO said Thursday."For Palestinians, having loved ones in prison is not the exception: it is something which has affected every Palestinian family," PLO negotiator Saeb Erekat said in a statement marking Prisoners Day."In the context of prolonged occupation, Israel -- a foreign military power -- has unlawfully imposed itself on the land of another people and has oppressed millions, in many varying ways. The plight of the prisoners reflects the plight of the Palestinian people as a whole."...


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Nablus farmer detained after being attacked by settlers (Ma'an News) - 20-apr-2014

April 17, 2014 -- Israeli forces detained a Palestinian farmer in Nablus on Wednesday on suspicion of attempting to stab a settler after a group assaulted him and cut down his olive trees. Palestinian security officials told Ma'an that settlers from Maale Levona assaulted Khalid Samih Daraghmah and his son while they were tending their trees south of Nablus near al-Lubban ash-Sharqiyah. Jalal Daraghmah, 19, was brutally beaten during the attack.The farmers filed a complaint at the Palestinian liaison department, who referred it to the Israeli office.After reporting the assault, Israeli forces arrested Samih Daraghmah after claiming he had tried to stab one of the settlers....

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