NHS paediatrician racially profiled, humiliated at Cambridge event

A young doctor and father of two has condemned how he was racially profiled and humiliated when he turned up to attend a lecture by Israeli Ambassador Tzipi Hotovely at the University of Cambridge last Wednesday. Dr Zeshan Qureshi, a Cambridge Union member of good standing, said he had acquired a ticket to attend the event through official processes. He recalled: “After going past the CCTV camera and through the scanner, an unfamiliar security individual, not directly employed by the union, told me that I needed to come with him.” The doctor was then taken aside and interrogated. “I was asked if I was a member of any Palestinian organisations and whether I was planning to cause trouble at the […]

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UK government welcomes genocidal apartheid upholders 

When hundreds of students at the University of Cambridge gathered on Tuesday to protest the Israeli ambassador to Britain Tzipi Hotovely's speech at the Cambridge Union, cutting it short and causing her to flee the grounds, it became clear that her track record would not be forgotten any time soon. Hotovely, who served as a settlement minister under Israel's former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, was hosted despite the disagreement of students prior to the event. Students wrote in an open letter that the ambassador: “Is a proud supporter of Israeli settler colonialism, and an open advocate of a 'Greater Israel'.” Hotovely is no stranger to controversy, having asserted during her previous position as deputy foreign minister that the entire West […]

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Sisi and Macron discuss developments in Libya

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi and French counterpart Emmanuel Macron on Friday discussed recent developments and the concerted efforts to achieve security and stability in Libya. This came during their meeting in Brest, France, as part of the Egyptian president's participation in the One Ocean summit relating to environmental issues, according to a statement by the Egyptian presidency. This took place a day after the Tobruk-based Council of Deputies appointed former Libyan Minister of the Interior Fathi Bashagha as head of government to serve as PM instead of Abdul Hamid Dbeibeh. During the meeting, the two sides discussed “developments on a number of regional issues of common interest, in particular, the developments in Libya,” according to the same statement. The […]

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Palestine charity sends aid convoy to Syria refugees

Palestinian charity KindHearts has sent 80 truckloads of humanitarian aid to Syrian refugees in the north of the war-torn country, Anadolu Agency reported on Friday. Deputy Governor of Gaziantep Bulent Uygur confirmed that he is following up closely on the ordeal of the “oppressed” Syrians, whether in Turkey or the “safe refugee camps” in the north of Syria. “Palestine is the bleeding wound of every Muslim,” Uygur expressed, “but the Palestinian brothers insisted on putting their wounds aside and helping the brothers in Syria. It is an important step.” READ: Assad regime tortured over 653 Palestinian refugees to death since 2011, report reveals Meanwhile, Director of KindHearts Raed Badr said that Turkey played a big role in arranging the aid […]

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Iran President says Tehran 'never has hope' in Vienna nuclear talks

Hard-line Iranian President, Ebrahim Raisi, said on Friday Tehran “never” pins hope on ongoing talks in Vienna aimed at reviving the country's 2015 nuclear agreement with world powers, Reuters reports. Iran and the United States resumed indirect talks in the Austrian capital on Tuesday after a 10-day break, but envoys gave little away as to whether they were closer to resolving various thorny issues. “We put our hopes on the east, west, north, south of our country and never have any hope in Vienna and New York,” Raisi said in a televised speech commemorating the 43rd anniversary of Iran's Islamic Revolution. Raisi, whose election last June led to a five-month hiatus in the talks, said Iran would rely on its […]

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Dakar rally car blast caused by improvised explosive device – source

An explosion under a support vehicle at the Dakar rally in Saudi Arabia that injured French race driver, Philippe Boutron, on 30 December was caused by an improvised explosive device, a French source familiar with the investigation said on Friday and Reuters reports. Confirming a report by RTL radio, the source told Reuters that investigators had found traces of explosives on Boutron's wrecked vehicle in Saudi Arabia. French anti-terrorism prosecutors opened a preliminary investigation into the explosion in January. French Foreign Minister, Jean-Yves Le Drian, has said that there were suspicions of a terrorist attack, but Saudi Arabia's Foreign Ministry said, on 8 January, that an initial investigation into the blast had not raised any criminal suspicions. A second explosion […]

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Turkey demands 11 years behind bars for senior journalist

A Turkish prosecutor's office demanded 11 years in jail for a prominent journalist on charges of insulting President Tayyip Erdogan and two ministers in his cabinet, Turkish news agencies reported on Friday and Reuters reports. Last month, a court ordered Sedef Kabas, a 52-year-old television journalist who mainly covers Turkish politics, to be jailed pending trial on a charge of insulting Erdogan, which carries a jail sentence of between one and four years. The prosecutor also asked Kabas to be charged with insulting Interior Minister, Suleyman Soylu and Transportation Minister, Adil Karaismailoglu, for a combined jail term of 11 years. Kabas was jailed, pending trial, over a proverb she cited during a political discussion on opposition TV, Channel Tele 1, […]

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Turkey threatens to block international news outlets in media crackdown

Turkey's media and telecom regulator gave three international news agencies 72 hours to secure an operating licence on Wednesday. The Radio and Television Supreme Council (RTUK) announced that German public broadcaster – Deutsche Welle, US broadcaster – Voice of America and France-based network – Euronews, would have their content blocked unless they obtain a licence. The decision reportedly marks the first time RTUK has used its powers to regulate online news platforms. It comes after the Turkish parliament revised its media regulations in 2019, giving RTUK authority to monitor any online news websites. Journalist, opposition lawmaker and RTUK board member, Illhan Tasci, voted against the decision, saying it was a further step to silence reporting. 1- RTÜK ilk kez uluslararası […]

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Key to Return: A provocative look at the lives of Palestinians living under occupation 

“Take your boots off my son now!” roars Taslima. A pin-drop silence instantly falls over the auditorium. “Don't point your guns in their faces. They've done nothing wrong!” she pleads with the Israeli soldier. “Don't shout, Taslima. It won't help,” Ahmed begs. “My old mother is in a wheelchair, sick with arthritis, so I'll shout! We were here well before '67, yet why all these legal cases to throw us out?” The silent wait that follows was agony for the audience as the traumatic scenario is felt before it is understood. Blurring the lines between theatre and documentary, Key to Return, which was staged at London's P21 Gallery, guides the audience through a series of painful accounts that occur in […]

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Somali graduates of Turkish scholarship program give back to their country

Since Turkiye and Somalia established their special relationship in 2011, thousands of Somalis have benefited from Turkiye's scholarship program, realising their dream of obtaining a degree, Anadolu News Agency reports. More than 10 years later, large numbers of Somali students enrol in the program every year, with Somalia becoming one of the top countries in Africa for sending students to Turkiye for higher education. A large number of them return to their country to serve their people. They include Somalia's Defence Minister, Abdulkadir Mohamed Nur, who was educated in Turkiye after becoming a diplomat and served as Justice Minister before assuming his current position. But not all Somali students want to go to Turkiye to get a university education. Anisa […]

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With near consensus over Israeli apartheid, will UK Labour move to the right side of history?

The near unanimous consensus amongst leading human rights groups over Israel's practice of apartheid has thrust the UK Labour Party into an awkward and somewhat bewildering dilemma. The cognitive dissonance which for decades has enabled Labour, along with every major political party, group and institution, to maintain support for Israel while claiming to oppose racism and stand for equality, human rights and international law, is no longer a sustainable position. With its 280 page report, Amnesty International joined Human Rights Watch, B'Tselem, Yesh Din and many others to declare Israel an apartheid state. In concluding that the occupation state has imposed a “cruel system of domination” and is committing “crimes against humanity”, Amnesty not only exposed the brutal reality of […]

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Domestic worker takes Lebanon employer to court for slavery

A migrant domestic worker has taken her former employer to court in Lebanon alleging slavery and slave trading. The lawsuit, which was brought to court by the London-based non-profit group, Legal Action Worldwide (LAW), marks the first criminal case of its kind in the Middle East. Ethiopian Meseret Hailu Deneke, 37, says that she was exploited and treated like a slave by her employer, May Saadeh, 49, alongside the recruitment agency that brought her to Lebanon. Deneke alleges that she was forced to work without pay for seven years and during that time was beaten and prohibited from communicating with the outside world. Her family say that after years of no communication, they sought the help of Ethiopian lawyers and activists, who […]

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Morocco in talks with Ukraine to buy mine-resistant military vehicles

Morocco is in talks with Ukraine on the procurement of a squadron of mine-resistant ambush-protected (MRAP) Varta vehicles from Ukrainian Armor, Tactical Report has said. Another website which focuses on the defence industries, Army Recognition, reported that a Moroccan army delegation visited Ukrainian Armor, a manufacturer of personal protection equipment, in December 2020. “During this visit, the Ukrainian company has conducted live demonstration to demonstrate combat capabilities of MRAP Varta and SAV Novator armoured vehicles, 60 mm, 82 mm, and 12 mm mortar and ammunition,” the website added. Ukrainian Amor said MRAP Varta vehicles are fully equipped vehicles that transport soldiers in combat situations and can additionally be “equipped as a Command-Post Vehicle or evacuation of troops.” According to the company, the vehicle's compartments are […]

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Prince William visits UAE as Britain seeks to deepen ties

Prince William, second in line to the British throne, on Thursday, visited the United Arab Emirates at a time when the former British protectorate has faced an unprecedented, though mostly foiled, string of missile and drone attacks, Reuters reports. Kensington Palace said it is the Duke of Cambridge's first official visit to the UAE. Six of its emirates ceased being British protectorates 50 years ago and formed a federation. The seventh joined in 1972. The visit, at the request of Britain's Foreign Office, comes as it seeks to deepen trade relations with wealthy Gulf Arab states as part of its post-Brexit strategy. The Prince said on Twitter he was looking forward to using the trip to discuss achieving a more […]

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Britain has abandoned citizens in Syria through 'systemic failure,' MPs say

Members of Parliament have accused the British government of abandoning its citizens in Syria, as the UK remains one of the few countries that refuse to repatriate its nationals from detention camps in the country. In a new report released by the all-Party Parliamentary Group on Trafficked Britons in Syria, a consortium of British MPs and peers, it was stressed that many women and children who fled to territories held by the terror group, Daesh, were “groomed, coerced or deceived into travelling to Syria”. The report called on the government to repatriate them and not to leave them stranded in the Kurdish-run camps of northeast Syria, where they have been detained since the military defeat of Daesh in 2019. The […]

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Azerbaijan has biggest role to repair Turkey-Israel relations, report says

Azerbaijan has the biggest role to repair Turkey-Israel relations, as Baku becomes a common friend or a common denominator between Turkey and Israel, according to Al Zaytouna Centre's report in Lebanon. According to the report, Lebanon-based think tank, Al Zaytouna Centre, says the support of Israel and Turkey for Azerbaijan against Armenia, and their participation in arming it, especially with drones, shows how three countries can be on the same ground. The report says that the two sides agree to support Azerbaijan in confronting Iran. On the sidelines of the dispute, tension and threats that prevailed between Tehran and Baku, Turkey clearly sided with Baku, which annoyed Tehran. “The exacerbation of tension between Iran and Azerbaijan could remove some obstacles […]

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Macron's colonial nostalgia: anti-Muslim Islamic project

In yet another Islamophobic measure, the French regime is set to establish a new body to manage the largest Muslim population in the European Union: The Forum of Islam in France. This Forum will consist of people selected by Paris, not to represent the Muslim community but to help Macron shape Islam in France's own image. Secular France funding Christian schools in Muslim countries Macron and his ministers assert that the Forum will prevent extremism, curb the influence of foreign powers in affairs of religious minorities in France and ensure Muslims abide by the country's claims of secularism in public life. It is difficult to take these justifications seriously when, at the same time, the French regime is to double […]

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ICJP petitions Home Secretary to revoke Smotrich entry clearance into UK

The international Centre of Justice for Palestinians (ICJP) has written to the British Home Secretary Priti Patel about the reported presence of an Israeli hate preacher, Bezalel Smotrich, in the UK. Writing on behalf of the organisation, Crispin Blunt MP said he was made aware of the presence of the Member of the Israeli Knesset in the UK. The letter said: “In the event that he intends to enter, or has entered the UK, we ask you to directly prevent his entry, or revoke his entry clearance on the basis that his presence is non-conducive to the public good.” The ICJP letter was accompanied by an eleven page document containing some of Smotrich's most inflammatory, hate-filled and bigoted views. The […]

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Turkiye calls on Greece to demilitarise Eastern Aegean islands

Citing Turkiye's letters to the UN on Eastern Aegean islands classified as demilitarised under long-standing international treaties, the nation's Foreign Minister on Thursday said Ankara is closely monitoring the situation, Anadolu News Agency reports. Saying that the islands were placed under Greek sovereignty as part of the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne and the 1947 Paris Peace Treaties on the condition of demilitarisation, Mevlut Cavusoglu said in a televised interview that Greece has been violating this condition for decades, since the 1960s. Last July, Turkiye's UN Ambassador, Feridun Siniroglu, wrote a letter to UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, decrying Greece's “continuous flagrant violations” in the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas, adding that Greece has run afoul of its “solemn treaty obligations” in those […]

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Turkey to unveil new economic plan amid currency crisis

Treasury and Finance Minister, Nureddin Nebati, on Saturday, will announce new economic measures amid currency crisis, Anadolu News Agency reports. According to the report, this new economic package aims at countering price rises and getting households to bring gold holdings into the financial system. Top company executives, the heads of banks and business group representatives are set to attend the event on Saturday. On the other hand, Nebati, this week, pitched Turkey's new economic policy in London. In 2021, the jumps in inflation and losses in the value of the Turkish currency, the lira, have led opposition parties and the public to attack the government's economic policy. READ: Turkey's economic problems can be resolved with justice: Opposition leader Meanwhile, last December, […]

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