Middle East


Defying Gov’t Ban, Egyptians Protest Mubarak

The wave of protests sweeping the Middle East in the aftermath of the Tunisian uprising continues today in the two key U.S. allies of Egypt and Yemen. Thousands of Egyptians have taken to the streets in defiance of the government’s efforts to clamp down on the biggest demonstrations against President Hosni Mubarak in three decades. »


Iran Expects Acceptable Balance in Talks on Nuclear Issue

Iran continued on Saturday nuclear talks with six world powers in Turkey and said it hoped to have an acceptable result, but it refused to discuss uranium enrichment and called for cooperation from the West. Iranian sources said the talks show a positive development, while on the first day the agenda agreed in December to discuss only global issues was respected. »


Self-Immolations Continue in Egypt

The protests that led to Ben Ali’s overthrow gained momentum after unemployed university graduate Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire. He died earlier this month. Copycat self-immolations have followed in at least 4 other North African states. In Egypt, 52-year-old lawyer Mohamed Farouk Hassan became the latest Egyptian protester to set himself on fire following two others. »


Foreign envoys to tour Iran uranium plant

Foreign diplomats will tour a plant where Iran is enriching uranium in defiance of UN sanctions, after Tehran declared it will push ahead with the controversial work "very strongly." The Islamic republic open two of its atomic sites to the diplomats in a rare move to garner support for its contentious atomic drive ahead of key talks with six world powers in Istanbul next week. »


Jewish Guardians of the City

* The Guardians of the City are Orthodox Jews - they wear those distinctive black hats, beards and curling side locks - who (like me) participated in the Tehran conference on Gaza, March, 2009. These Jews want an end to the present Israeli state - the stance of Iran as so widely disseminated in the media. They oppose the Zionists as they are non-believers.* »


Former CIA Boss: Iran Attack “Inexorable”

Former CIA director Michael Hayden said Sunday the chances the US will attack Iran are increasing. Hayden made the comment in an interview on CNN. Candy Crowley: "If it should, is there any alternative to taking out their facilities?" Michael Hayden: "It seems inexorable, doesn’t it? We engage, they continue to move forward." »


Israeli FM: No Palestinian State by 2012

In Israel and the Palestinian Occupied Territories, Israel’s Foreign Minister has dismissed the prospect of Palestinian statehood within the next two years, by 2012. Avigdor Lieberman made the comment to reporters in Jerusalem. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu is due in Washington next week for talks with President Obama. »


Palestine – A Wall Far Too Far

Over sixty years have passed with Palestinians under occupation by the Israel government and the situation is continuously getting worse for the Palestinians. Far from giving up, local people gang together and insist on demonstrating for their rights. With international pressure an acceptable situation has to finally result, anything else is unthinkable. »


Israel’s Blood Diamonds

When a hitherto ‘straight’ well-known individual breaks into a protest fast, it certainly raises eyebrows and draws attention to the particular issue. This is the case with the Diamond Industry, a certain Mr Rappaport, and a campaign to include Israel among the nations branded as part of the Conflict Diamonds debacle. »


Not Getting Lost in the Mix

Gypsies have been universally discriminated against because, as nomadics, they were seen as strangers everywhere and that attitude is only slowly changing. Valery Novoselsky tells his story and how, despite that Israel is very keen on building up its resident population in general, for him it was the same story played out yet again. »


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