Showing posts with label MIDDLE EAST. Show all posts
Showing posts with label MIDDLE EAST. Show all posts

12/22/2017

Ahed Tamimi

West Bank -- The curly haired Palestinian teenager is seen walking up to two Israeli soldiers standing near the entrance of her house, and she can be heard telling them to leave. She then pushes and kicks both soldiers who casually fend off the blows.
Then she slaps one soldier hard in the face.

Now, the 16-year-old girl from the village of Nebi Saleh is being celebrated by Palestinians as a hero and symbol of a new generation after confronting the two soldiers in a melee caught on a video that has been widely watched.




In Israel, the soldiers' decision not to react to the seeming provocation by Ahed Tamimi has stirred a debate about deterrence and drawn allegations that the army was humiliated.
Three days after the Friday confrontation, amid an uproar in Israel, Tamimi was arrested from her home in a pre-dawn raid and now faces charges of attacking soldiers.
She was led in leg shackles to an Israeli military courtroom where a judge reserved a decision on whether to keep her without bail. He ordered her held for five more days, a decision that was appealed by her defense lawyer.
"Stay strong, stay strong," her father Bassem, a veteran activist, shouted from the spectators' section.

The sharply conflicting Palestinian and Israeli interpretations of the widely viewed video clip highlight the deep rift between the two societies, at a time of heightened tension over the status of contested Jerusalem, the centerpiece of the long-running conflict.
Earlier this month, President Donald Trump recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital, setting off widespread protests by Palestinians who seek the city's Israeli-annexed eastern sector as a capital.
Mr. Trump has said his statement did not define the boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem, but his move was seen by Palestinians as a sign of pro-Israel bias. In response, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has said the U.S. can no longer be a Mideast mediator.







Nebi Saleh is a village of about 600 people, most of them members of Tamimi's extended family. For eight years, villagers along with Israeli and foreign activists have protested weekly against Israeli policies in the West Bank.
The Israeli military said Friday's protest turned violent, with about 200 Palestinians throwing stones at soldiers. Several people entered a local house, with the consent of the owners, and continued to throw stones, the army said.
Soldiers entered the house, removed the stone-throwers and stayed at the entrance to prevent others from entering, it said. At that point, several Palestinians emerged from the house and began to "violently provoke the soldiers," the army said.
Bassem Tamimi said that minutes earlier, soldiers had fired a rubber bullet from close range at 15-year-old Mohammed Tamimi, a cousin of Ahed and a frequent guest in the Tamimi home. Rubber-coated bullets are commonly used to disperse crowds. While considered nonlethal, they nonetheless can be dangerous.
The teen remained in intensive care Wednesday after surgeons removed the bullet that had entered from his mouth and lodged in his brain, said officials at Ramallah's Istishari Hospital. The patient was alert after extensive surgery and would likely recover, they said.



Bassem Tamimi said his daughter was upset about the shooting when she approached the soldiers. The army confirmed using rubber bullets to disperse what it called a violent demonstration but said it had no information on the boy who was shot.
The video shows Ahed Tamimi and a young woman walking toward the two soldiers. Tamimi tells the soldiers to leave. She pushes and kicks them, and then slaps one of them.
The young woman films the scene on her mobile phone. An older woman joins, at one point stepping between Ahed and the soldiers, but then also tries to push back the soldiers who don't respond.
In an interview Wednesday, Bassem Tamimi praised his daughter as courageous, scoffing at criticism that she was an attention-seeking provocateur.
"We hope that this generation will be stronger than us, and can take the flag from us with more power ... and more serious resistance to end the occupation," said Tamimi, 50, who spent more than four years in nine different stints in Israeli jails for anti-occupation protests.
On social media, Palestinians celebrated Ahed as a hero in widely distributed cartoons. In one, she is shown in a Joan of Arc-like pose, raising a Palestinian flag, framed by her easily recognizable mane of blonde curls.
Ahed has made headlines in the past, including in 2015 when she bit the hand of a masked Israeli soldier who was holding her now 14-year-old brother Mohammed in a chokehold during an attempted arrest. A video of the incident that was widely watched, earning her an invitation to meet with the Turkish president.




Israel Breaking The Silence
Palestinian women and girls scuffle with an Israeli soldier trying to arrest a boy during a protest near the West Bank village of Nebi Saleh, in an Aug, 28, 2015 file photo.
AP
In Israel, the military said the company commander involved in Friday's incident "acted in a professional and restrained manner."
Others were sharply critical of the soldiers.
"When I watched that, I felt humiliated, I felt crushed," said Miri Regev, an Israeli Cabinet minister and former military spokeswoman. She called the incident "damaging to the honor of the military and the state of Israel."
Palestinians and international rights groups have longed alleged that Israeli troops frequently use excessive force against Palestinians.
Ben Caspit, a journalist for the Maariv daily, praised the soldiers for not reacting, but called for retaliation against the Tamimi family.


"In the case of the girls, we should exact a price at some other opportunity, in the dark, without witnesses and cameras," he wrote.
Others said the soldiers were placed in a difficult situation since a video showing them hitting or arresting a teen-age girl could potentially have invited more international criticism.
The detention of Tamimi also highlighted the issue of arrests of Palestinian minors.
Defense for Children International-Palestine, a local group, said 331 Palestinians under the age of 18 were held in military detention as of May, according to the most recent statistics released by Israeli authorities. It said that in 2016, an average of 375 minors were in detention each month.
The Israeli military was unable to provide data on the number of minors it is holding.
It said, however, that "unfortunately, in recent years, many minors, sometimes very young, have been involved in violent incidents, incitement and even terrorism. In such cases, there is no choice but to take steps, including arrest, interrogation and prosecution." It said the military does everything possible to "ensure that the rights of the minors are respected."



11/04/2017

WE NEED TALK

 WE NEED TALK

When Egypt's World Youth Forum #WeNeedToTalk backfires #WTF



Many Egyptians on social media have adopted the slogan of an upcoming state-sponsored youth conference to air grievances about the way the country is run.
The World Youth Forum conference will be held in Sharm el-Sheikh from 4 November. Its promotional hashtag #WeNeedToTalk is intended to engage young people, attract world leaders and send a message of peace.
The Forum launched a video on social media on 21 October to promote the issue which has been viewed more than seven million times
International-sharm
Banner image from We Need To Talk video from World Youth ForumImage copyrightWORLD YOUTH FORUM
Image captionThe World Youth Forum video has been viewed more than seven million times
However, activists on Twitter and Facebook have used #WeNeedToTalk to contrast Egypt's aim of freedom expression for youth with what they believe to be an ongoing crackdown on Egyptians' rights and freedom.
At time of writing, the hashtag has been used 72,000 times.
Many of those criticising the government circulated pictures of security forces chasing or assaulting protesters. Others posted pictures of activists or detainees believed to have been detained by the police.









8/30/2017

Buthaina Eyes turned to the icon calls to end the war in Yemen

Buthaina Eyes  turned to the icon calls to end the war in Yemen 




A shocking photo showing a young girl covered in bruises and with a badly swollen face after she lost most of her family in a Saudi-led air strike on Yemen has triggered a furious anti-war backlash.
Buthaina Muhammad Mansour, who is believed to be between four and five years old, does not know that her parents, five siblings, and uncle were killed when their home was flattened in an air strike in Yemen's capital Sanaa on 25 August.
SANAA (Reuters) - Her bruised eyes still swollen shut, Buthaina Muhammad Mansour, believed to be four or five, doesn't yet know that her parents, five siblings and uncle were killed when an air strike flattened their home in Yemen's capital.


Despite concussion and skull fractures, doctors think Buthaina will pull through -- her family's sole survivor of the Aug 25 attack on an apartment building that residents blame on a Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen since 2015.
The alliance said in a statement it would investigate the air strike, which killed at least 12 civilians.
Yemen's long war involving competing Yemeni factions and regional power struggles has killed at least 10,000 people. Millions more have been forced to leave their homes and face disease and hunger.
Aid agencies have called for a speedy resolution to the conflict, warning that the impoverished country is now victim to the world's greatest man-made humanitarian disaster.
Lying disoriented in her hospital bed on Saturday, Buthaina called out for her uncle, Mounir, who was among those killed in the attack.
Another uncle, Saleh Muhammad Saad, told Reuters Mounir had rushed to the family's house when Buthaina's father called him at 2 a.m. to say war planes were bombing their neighborhood in Sanaa's Faj Attan district. He never returned.
By the time Saleh got to the house, it was a ruin of broken concrete blocks and wooden planks. Hearing survivors groaning from beneath the rubble, he battled to free them.
"I could hear the shouts of one of their neighbors from under the rubble, and tried to remove the rubble from on top of (Buthaina's father) and his wife, but I couldn't. They died," he said.
"We lifted the rubble and saw first her brother Ammar, who was three, and her four sisters, all of them dead. I paused a little and just screamed out from the pain. But I pulled myself together, got back there and then heard Buthaina calling."
He said her survival had given him some solace as he mourned the rest of the family.
"Her sister Raghad always used to come up and hug me and kiss me when I visited. I used to say to her, 'Come on, that's enough.' And she would say 'Oh no it isn't!' and just keep hugging and kissing."
(Writing by Noah Browning; Editing by Helen Popper)
Copyright 2017 Thomson Reuters.



 UPDATE:
BBC


One-eyed unity with injured Yemeni girl


People in Yemen are sharing photos on social media of themselves with one eye closed in solidarity with a young girl injured and orphaned in an air strike.
Bouthaina al-Rimi's home in the Attan neighbourhood of Sanaa, the capital of Yemen, was bombed and destroyed on 25 August. The blast killed her parents and six siblings.

By sharing photos of themselves closing an eye, people in Yemen are hoping to raise awareness of the crisis. Half a million children under five are suffering severe acute malnutrition, and the cholera outbreak is the largest in the world, infecting over 500,00 people.

The Arabic hashtag #Bouthaina_The_Eye_Of_Humanity and #I_SPEAK_FOR_BUTHINA have both been used more than 3,000 times since Wednesday.

Buthaina Muhammad Mansour being rescued from the site of a Saudi-led air strike on Sanaa which killed eight of her family members.

Wiam Adil Maktari's post on Facebook

Some Twitter uses called for an end to the war.

"For Bouthaina and all of Yemen's children, we say YES to the end of war,"





















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7/01/2017

Saudi Arabia paid Egypt $25bn for tiran and sanafir Red Sea islands

Saudi Arabia paid Egypt $25bn for  tiran and sanafir Red Sea islands 

An Israeli report claimed that Saudi Arabia has paid Egypt $25 billion to give up the Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir.

The Jewish Policy Centre claimed that Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi has received the money in the form of aid over the past few years.
“Sisi ratified the treaty after Egypt’s legislative and constitutional committee held three closed meetings earlier this month. The secretiveness of the meetings drew criticism from other unnamed parliamentarians, arguing that the committee was colluding against the will of Egyptians. The whole parliament approved the agreement on June 14,” the report said.
The report accuses Al-Sisi of “selling” Egypt to Saudi Arabia, which supported Cairo with aid totalling over $25 billion in the recent years.
An Egyptian lawmaker who voted against the agreement said “the people did not elect us so that we give up their land,”
Meanwhile, former presidential candidate, Khalid Ali has filed a lawsuit before the Administrative Court to halt the implementation of the agreement.

6/22/2017

In Yemen’s secret prisons, UAE tortures and US interrogates

In Yemen’s secret prisons, UAE tortures and US interrogates

Hundreds of men swept up in the hunt for al-Qaida militants have disappeared into a secret network of prisons in southern Yemen where abuse is routine and torture extreme — including the “grill,” in which the victim is tied to a spit like a roast and spun in a circle of fire, an Associated Press investigation has found.
Senior American defense officials acknowledged Wednesday that U.S. forces have been involved in interrogations of detainees in Yemen but denied any participation in or knowledge of human rights abuses. Interrogating detainees who have been abused could violate international law, which prohibits complicity in torture.