Tag Archives: Middle East

ISRAEL: Netanyahu’s Chief Rival Declares Victory

Haaretz reports: With 98 percent of the vote counted in Israel’s election, Kahol Lavan grew by one seat to 33, widening its edge over Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud Party. Kingmaker Avigdor Lieberman’s Yisrael Beiteinu party lost a seat, leaving it with eight in the incoming Knesset. The results give the center-left a slight advantage of 57 seats, compared to …

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UK Says No Military Action Over Seized Oil Tanker

Politico reports: U.K. Foreign Minister Jeremy Hunt warned there would be “serious consequences” after Iran seized a British-flagged oil tanker in the Gulf. “We are absolutely clear that if this situation is not resolved quickly there will be serious consequences,” he told the BBC Friday evening. “We are not looking at military options. We are looking at a diplomatic way …

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Iran Claims To Have Seized British Oil Tanker [VIDEO]

The BBC reports: A British-flagged oil tanker has been seized in the Gulf by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard, Iran media say. The owners of the Stena Impero, which was bound for Saudi Arabia, say they have been unable to contact the vessel and it is “heading north towards Iran”. The company says there are 23 personnel on board and it …

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Airlines Reroute Flights Amid US-Iran War Tensions

The Associated Press reports: Major airlines from around the world on Friday began rerouting their flights to avoid areas around the Strait of Hormuz following Iran’s shooting down of a U.S. military surveillance drone there, as America warned commercial airliners could be mistakenly attacked. The Federal Aviation Administration warned of a “potential for miscalculation or misidentification” in the region after …

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EGYPT: Ousted President Collapses And Dies In Court

The New York Times reports: Mohamed Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically elected president, died in an Egyptian courtroom on Monday, Egyptian state television reported. Mr. Morsi, 67, won Egypt’s first free presidential election in 2012. The military dissolved Parliament later that year and ousted Mr. Morsi in 2013. He was on trial on espionage charges when he fainted and died, Egyptian …

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LEBANON: Government Blocks Access To Grindr

The Independent reports: The gay dating app Grindr has been blocked for most users in Lebanon, sparking concern over a widening crackdown on the LGBT+ community in the country. The social networking app, which connects users based on their location, went offline for users of the state-owned internet service provider over the weekend and has been unusable since. The local …

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White House Orders More Troops To Middle East

Bloomberg reports: President Donald Trump has ordered the deployment of about 1,500 additional U.S. troops to the Middle East amid rising tensions with Iran, according to two people familiar with the matter. The purpose of the deployment is to enhance the protection of forces already in the region that are dedicated to missile defense, freedom of navigation in Persian Gulf …

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Pompeo Makes Surprise Iraq Visit Amid Iran Tensions

The Associated Press reports: U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a lightning visit to Baghdad on Tuesday to show U.S. support for the Iraqi government as Washington steps up warnings to Iran against any action against American interests in the Middle East. The unannounced trip began and ended after nightfall and under heavy security. Pompeo’s visit came as the …

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Saudi Arabia Beheads 37, Crucifies One As A Warning

The Washington Post reports: Saudi Arabia said Tuesday it had executed 37 people convicted of terrorism-related offenses, bringing the number of executions there in the first four months of the year to 105, according to the Saudi interior ministry and Reprieve, a human rights group that tracks the use of the death penalty in the kingdom. It was the largest …

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ISRAEL: Netanyahu Likely Headed For Record 5th Term

The Jerusalem Post reports: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Blue and White leader Benny Gantz both declared that they won Tuesday’s election after inconclusive exit polls were broadcast on the three Israeli networks. Netanyahu claimed victory, because his Right-Center bloc won handily over Gantz’s Center-Left bloc in polls broadcast on Channel 13 and KAN, 66 to 54 and 64 to …

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ISRAEL: Netanyahu Claims Low Turnout For His Party

The Jerusalem Post reports: Warning of the rise of the Left, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu cancelled a planned campaign event in Ashdod on Tuesday and returned to Jerusalem, where he said he was going to work to “save the Right” and ensure that a right-wing government comes to power following the elections. “I received a dramatic update that there is …

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Benjamin Netanyahu: “Israel Belongs To Jews Alone”

Haaretz reports: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said on Sunday the State of Israel belongs to the Jewish people alone, this in response to a comment by Israeli actress Rotem Sela, who wrote on social media that Israel is a country of all its citizens. Sela was commenting on an interview Culture Minister Miri Regev was giving on Channel 12’s “Meet …

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EGYPT: TV Host Imprisoned For Interviewing Gay Man

Agence France-Presse reports: An Egyptian court on Sunday sentenced a television host to one year in prison for interviewing a gay man last year, a judicial source said. Mohamed al-Gheiti, who has expressed his stance against homosexuality on several occasions, was accused of promoting homosexuality and contempt of religion. The misdemeanors court in Giza also fined him 3,000 Egyptian pounds …

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“Defeated” ISIS Kills Four US Soldiers In Syria [VIDEO]

NBC News reports: U.S. service members were among those killed by an explosion in Syria on Wednesday, a spokesperson for the coalition fighting the Islamic State group said. Earlier, a senior Kurdish security official told NBC News that members of the U.S.-led coalition were caught up in a blast at a market in the northern city of Manbij. The official …

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Trump Threatens To “Devastate Turkey Economically”

Politico reports: President Donald Trump on Sunday vowed to “devastate Turkey economically” should the Turkish military attack U.S.-allied Kurdish fighters — a rare direct threat by Trump to a NATO ally as his administration grapples with the execution of its plan to withdraw American soldiers from Syria. The planned U.S. troop drawdown has provoked international uncertainty amid conflicting statements from …

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Pentagon: Troops Have Begun Withdrawing From Syria

The New York Times reports: The United States has started withdrawing its troops from Syria, an American military spokesman said on Friday, further muddling the Trump administration’s plans for disengagement from one of the Middle East’s most complex battlefields. As recently as Sunday, President Trump’s national security adviser, John R. Bolton, had said that the pullout was conditional on circumstances …

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Lindsey Graham To Beg Trump To Reconsider On Syria: If The US Leaves The Kurds “Will Get Slaughtered”

CNN reports: Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Sunday that withdrawing US troops from Syria could directly result in the deaths of Kurdish people there and that he plans to make a case to President Donald Trump today to reconsider his plans. “There are three things important for this country. Number one, make sure that ISIS never comes back in …

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Trump Makes Surprise Visit To Troops In Iraq

The New York Post reports: President Trump used the cover of the partial government shutdown to slip off to visit US troops in Iraq. Trump and first lady Melania Trump met with military personnel on Wednesday at Al Asad Air Base in Iraq, according to photos from Reuters. His whereabouts sparked speculation about what Trump was up to because he …

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Russia Hails US Plan To Withdraw Troops From Syria

From the Russia state agency TASS: The US decision to pull its troops from Syria creates good prospects for a political solution in that Arab country, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman Maria Zakharova said on Channel One on Wednesday. “A milestone story which might evolve from this decision is a real prospect for a political solution,” she said adding that the …

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Pentagon Plans “Full And Rapid” Withdrawal From Syria

The Wall Street Journal reports: In an abrupt reversal, the U.S. military is preparing to withdraw its forces from northeastern Syria, people familiar with the matter said Wednesday, a move that throws the American strategy in the Middle East into turmoil. U.S. officials began informing partners in northeastern Syria of their plans to begin immediately pulling American forces out of …

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