At least 109 people have been documented as killed and up to 400 more are likely to have died in an almost week-long offensive by forces loyal to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad on a rebellious Damascus suburb, opposition activists said.
If the accounts are confirmed, the killings in the mainly Sunni Muslim suburb of Jdeidet al-Fadel would amount to one of bloodiest episodes of the two-year-old
Fatah and Hamas reaffirmed their partnership with Egypt in negotiating a Palestinian reconciliation, and denied asking Turkey to mediate in this issue, government representatives said on Monday.
The state-run newspaper Al-Ahram had quoted anonymous sources as saying that Palestinian President Mohmoud Abbas was visiting Turkey to ask Ankara to mediate the reconciliation talks, out of suspicion
The Doctors Syndicate released a statement Monday urging President Mohamed Morsy and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to exert every effort to secure the release of Egyptian prisoners in Israeli jails, claiming some of them had already been detained for 20 years, while others were being tortured.
The syndicate’s freedom committee drafted a letter demanding that Israel release the Egyptians
A Qatari court has sentenced a Muslim barber from an unknown Asian country to 40 lashes over consuming alcohol in the Gulf state, a local daily reported on Monday.
The man was arrested following a complaint by another who accused him of harassing his domestic worker by throwing at her a piece of paper on which he scribbled his phone number, Al-Sharq daily reported.
Police found him drunk when
Human Rights Watch called Monday on both the Syrian regime and rebel forces to end "indiscriminate cross-border attacks" on areas in Lebanon, warning they violate international law.
Fire from the conflict in neighbouring Syria has regularly spilled over into Lebanon, killing two people in the most recent incident on 14 April.
Both rebel forces and regime troops have reportedly been involved in
Palestinian-Syrians refugees displaced from Syria began a sit-in on Tuesday in front of the Palestinian Embassy in Cairo, demanding equal treatment with other Syrian refugees and registration with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, (UNHCR).
Bashar al-Assad forces have attacked Palestinian refugee camps in Syria in the course of the conflict, including the Yarmouk camp.
Protesters said if
A spokesman of the Israeli army in Arabic received biting feedback from Egyptian internet users on Monday when he publicised photographs of a holiday he took in the country several years ago.Avichay Adraee shared photos of his visit 13 years ago to Cairo and Alexandria on his Facebook page, commenting on his enjoyable time in Egypt.Numerous endless comments in response condemned the visit of a
ReutersIran and the United Nations nuclear watchdog will have further talks over Tehran's disputed nuclear programme on 21 May in Vienna, Iranian media said on Monday.There was no immediate confirmation from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), leaving unclear whether a firm date for the next meeting had already been agreed.The IAEA-Iran talks are separate from, but have a bearing on,
AFPIsraeli and Turkish officials on Monday began talks on compensation over a deadly Israeli raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship, a crucial step towards restoring the once-solid ties between the two countries.This first meeting is part of what Turkish officials said would be a several-step diplomatic process that will seek an agreement on the amount to be paid out to "meet the needs of the victims'
Qatari emir starts an official visit to the United States on Monday.Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani will hold talks with the US President Barack Obama and senior US officials on bilateral relations between the two countries and regional and international issues, Qatar official news agency (QNA) has reported.
Israel suggested on Monday it would be patient before taking any military action against Irans nuclear programme, saying during a visit by U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel there was still time for other options.
With Irans presidential election approaching in June there has been a pause in hawkish rhetoric by Israel, which has long hinted at possible air strikes to deny its arch-foe
AFPIran wants Syria's embattled President Bashar al-Assad to stay on and contest the presidential election scheduled for next year, a visiting senior Iranian envoy said on Monday."We think the best scenario is for Mr Assad to remain president of the republic until the summer of 2014," said Aladin Borujerdi, head of parliament's national security and foreign affairs commission."After that, free
AFPKuwait's appeals court on Monday granted opposition leader Musallem al-Barrak bail as it began examining his five-year jail term for insulting the emir, a lawyer said.Former MP Barrak appeared in court, although he had refused to turn himself in to police over the past week during which he insisted on seeing the original arrest warrant."Judge Anwar al-Anzi has decided to freeze the application
AFPDefence Minister Moshe Yaalon on Monday implicitly confirmed Israel was behind a January strike on a weapons convoy in Syria, saying Israel had "acted" to stop advanced weaponry reaching militants.Speaking at a news conference with US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel, Yaalon said Israel would not allow "sophisticated weapons" to fall into the hands of "Hezbollah or other rogue elements.""When
APThe Syrian opposition called on Hezbollah to withdraw its fighters from the country immediately, as activists said regime troops supported by pro-government gunmen linked to the Lebanese Shiite militant group battled rebels Sunday for control of a string of villages near the Lebanon-Syria border.The Syrian National Coalition — the main Western-backed opposition group — warned that
AFPTurkey confirmed on Monday that eight of its nationals were abducted by Taliban insurgents in Afghanistan after their helicopter made an emergency landing and said it was holding "intensive talks" with Kabul."The Turkish embassy is holding intensive talks with Afghan authorities to find out their whereabouts," a foreign ministry diplomat told AFP. He said there was no information about their
AFPSaudi authorities on Monday beheaded a citizen convicted of murder, the interior ministry said, bringing to 35 the number of executions in the kingdom so far this year.Mohammad ben Ali al-Alawi was convicted of knifing a fellow citizen to death during a fight, the ministry said in a statement carried by the official SPA news agency, without giving further details.His beheading brings to 35 the
AFPPentagon chief Chuck Hagel will meet his Israeli counterpart Monday in Tel Aviv for talks expected to focus on Syria's protracted civil war and Iran's disputed nuclear programme.Hagel has said US military intervention in Syria would be a last resort and the discussions in Israel come as Syrian rebels suffered setbacks on the battlefield along with fresh turmoil within its leadership.Syrian
Egypt proposed Saturday to conduct negotiations between the Syrian regime and opposition in Damascus — a change in Egypt’s stance toward Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s rule.
The proposal was submitted during a ministerial meeting for the main countries supporting the Syrian opposition.
According to the proposal the Egyptian Interior Ministry posted on Facebook,
Authorities referred former coordinator of Egypt-Libya relations Ahmed Qadhaf al-Dam to criminal court Sunday on charges of attempting to kill police officers, resisting arrest, and possessing unlicensed weapons and wireless devices.
Qadhaf al-Dam, who has been detained for four days pending investigation, denied all charges.
Qadhaf al-Dam is one of several high-profile Libyan figures residing
Syria's National Coalition head Ahmed Moaz al-Khatib has refiled his resignation and an interim leader is being sought, a fellow member and a source close to the main opposition group said Sunday.
Khatib insists on resigning, almost a month after first announcing he was stepping down and two weeks before NC leadership elections are scheduled to take place. "I can confirm that Ahmed Moaz
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Sunday a $10 billion arms deal under discussion with Washingtons Arab and Israeli allies sent a "very clear signal" to Tehran the military option remains on the table over its nuclear program.
"The bottom line is that Iran is a threat, a real threat," said Hagel, who arrived in Israel on Sunday on his first visit to Israel as defense secretary.
Saudi Arabias King Abdullah
has removed veteran deputy defence minister Prince Khaled bin
Sultan from his post, state media reported on Saturday, the
latest move in a reshuffle among princes holding government jobs
in the U.S.-allied kingdom.Switches of important posts between princes are closely
watched because they indicate possible changes in the line of
succession in the monarchy, the
U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck
Hagel hopes to finalise a major arms deal with Saudi Arabia and
the United Arab Emirates during a visit to the Middle East this
week, and also discuss fresh military supplies to Israel, an
Israeli official said on Friday.
The accord is worth $10 billion and will help the three
countries counter any threat from Iran, the New York Times
reported.Hagel arrives in
The Egyptian President Mohamed Morsy proposed an initiative that he said could resolve the crisis in Syria during an interview with the official Russian news source, Itar-Tass.
Morsy’s office posted part of the interview on YouTube Thursday evening.
The president had earlier proposed the formation of a quartet including Egypt, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Iran to step in to negotiate an end
The Israeli army says it received warning from Egypt ahead of the Wednesday rocket attacks on Eilat, Israeli newspaper Yedioth Ahronoth reported.
The warnings prompted the Israeli army to set up an Iron Dome defense system unit in Eilat, according to the daily paper. The newspaper added that high-level Israeli security officials contacted their Egyptian counterparts in the wake of the
US Secretary of State John Kerry again warned Wednesday that time was slipping away to reach a Middle East peace deal, but for the first time said there may only be a year or two left.
Appearing before US lawmakers for the first time since becoming America's top diplomat in February, Kerry said his three trips to the region already were proof of his commitment to try to find a way to resume
ReutersA Libyan passenger plane with some 150 passengers on board was shot at as it prepared to land at Tripoli airport on Wednesday evening but sustained no major damage, airline sources said.The Buraq Air Boeing 737 was a few miles (kms) from the capital's airport when the incident occurred early in the evening.It was not immediately clear whether it was accidental fire or an attack.
AFPA suspected US drone strike in western Yemen has killed five Al-Qaeda militants, including a local chief, a security official and witnesses said on Thursday.The raid that took place late Wednesday in Dhamar province, killed Hamid Radman al-Manea, known as al-Radmi, and four of his guards, the official said in a statement carried by Saba state news agency.They were targeted as they headed to