Category: Headlines

Netanyahu Government: West Bank Settlements Top Priority

Benjamin Netanyahu’s incoming hardline government put West Bank settlement expansion at the top of its list of priorities on Wednesday, vowing to legalize dozens of illegally built outposts and annex the occupied territory as part of its coalition deal with its ultranational allies.   The coalition agreements, released a day before the government is to be sworn into office, also included language endorsing discrimination against LGBTQ people on religious grounds, as well as generous stipends for ultra-Orthodox men who prefer to study instead of work.   The package laid the groundwork for what is expected to be a stormy beginning

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With Mass Arrests, Now is ‘Worst Time’ to Be Journalist in Iran

Three months into Iran’s crackdown on coverage of widespread protests, media analysts remain troubled by the dozens of journalist arrests and reports of abuse in detention centers.   “Right now is probably the worst time to ever be a journalist in Iran,” said Sherif Mansour, Middle East and North Africa program coordinator for the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).   Data released by CPJ in December showed Iran as the top jailer of journalists globally, with 62 reporters — 24 of whom are women — currently in prison.   More than 20 other journalists have been arrested since September, but

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Two Suspected Kidnappers Killed By Police In Southern Nigeria

LAGOS– Nigerian police killed two suspected kidnappers, in the latest crackdown on criminals, in the southern state of Delta, a police spokesperson said, yesterday.   The suspects were killed on Sunday, as they tried to escape custody, in the city of Warri, said Bright Edafe, the police spokesman in Delta, at a press conference.   A police patrol team arrested the suspects on Saturday in Warri, after three live cartridges were found in a tricycle used by the suspects, Edafe said, adding that, interrogation found they were part of a five-person kidnapping gang in the area.   On Sunday, the

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Kidnapped French Australian Veterinarian Released in Chad

A conservationist and veterinarian with dual French and Australian citizenship who was kidnapped last week in Chad has been released. Chad President Mahamat Idriss Deby announced Jerome Hugonnot’s release Sunday in a post on Twitter without providing any further details. Hugonnot who manages an oryx park on behalf of the Sahara Conservation Fund, or the SCF, was kidnapped Friday by unknown assailants. SCF has been working for years to re-introduce into the environment a species of desert antelope known as the scimitar-horned oryx. The reason for Hugonnot’s kidnapping or whether a ransom was paid for his release was not immediately

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Western Leaders Denounce Moscow’s Boycott of UN Grain Deal

The European Union called on Russia to reverse its decision to pull out of the U.N.-led grain initiative and to allow the grain shipments to leave Ukraine’s Black Sea ports. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell tweeted on Sunday: “Russia’s decision to suspend participation in the Black Sea deal puts at risk the main export route of much needed grain and fertilizers to address the global food crisis caused by its war against Ukraine. The EU urges Russia to revert its decision.” “Russia must go back to agreement to allow maritime corridor for food to reach the world. The EU

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Burkina Faso Ambush Kills 13 Soldiers: Security Sources

Suspected jihadists have ambushed and killed 13 soldiers in Burkina Faso’s eastern province, security sources told AFP on Sunday, in the latest violence to shake the insurgency-torn west African nation. Four members of the defense forces were also wounded in Saturday’s attack along the road linking Fada N’Gourma with Natiaboani, one of the sources said. “Reinforcements have been deployed to secure the zone and carry out a search,” a second source added, confirming the casualty toll. The unit that came under fire had been sent to relieve a detachment from Natiaboani. The ambush comes after the powerful Support Group for

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