Report: Israeli regime sells $400mn of drones annually
The Ynet daily website recently reported that more than 49 countries are the customers of the Tel Aviv regime’s aerospace industry.
Israeli industry insiders, according to the report, believe that the drones may replace the regime’s warplanes and pilots within the coming years.
“Eighty percent of the drones manufactured in Israel are exported,” the report stated.
Israel has increased its investment on unmanned aerial vehicles industry since 1982, when the regime used remote-controlled aircraft during its war on Lebanon.
On May 11, the Israeli regime shot down one of its Shoval-type drones over the Mediterranean Sea due to a ‘technical malfunction.’
Tel Aviv said the malfunction was because of loss of communications and control with the ground. However, some media reports said the Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah had taken control of the $10-million aircraft before it was shot.
Armed groups attacked military posts in Libya’s second city Benghazi with bombs and a rocket-propelled grenade, an army commander said on Saturday.
Nearly two years after the uprising that ended Muammar Qaddafi’s 42-year rule, the government still exerts little control over the armed brigades that helped overthrow him.
Oil-producer Libya is largely split into fiefdoms of such brigades that are competing for influence.
No one was hurt in the four overnight attacks on three Benghazi army posts, said the military commander, Hamed Belkhair. Homemade bombs were thrown in three of the attacks and a rocket-propelled grenade was fired in the fourth, he said.
The army had sent extra forces to the eastern city after acar laden with explosives blew up near a hospital there on Monday, killing three people. Attacks on police stations have become a frequent occurrence in recent weeks.
“The national army is being subjected to these attacks because they are doing a great job of cleaning the city of criminals’ shelters,” said Belkhair.
The Israeli government says it is taking steps to approve four new settler outposts in the Occupied West Bank, in a decision condemned by Palestinian officials.
The announcement was made on Thursday, just days before the US Secretary of State John Kerry is due to meet the Israeli and Palestinian leaders in attempt to revive peace talks.
Israel has been sending mixed signals on its policy as Kerry pursues efforts to revive negotiations that the Palestinians quit in 2010 in anger over Israeli settlement building on occupied land they seek for a state.
The announcement that the settlements would be authorised was made in response to a Supreme Court petition by the Israeli anti-settlement group Peace Now.
“The intention to legalise outposts as new settlements is no less than a slap in the face of Secretary Kerry’s new process and is blatant reassurance to settler interests,” Peace Now said in a statement.
Nabil Abu Rdainah, a spokesman of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, condemned the move.
“Israel continues to put obstacles and to sabotage US efforts to resume negotiation,” he said. “Our position is clear and that is all settlement is illegal and must be stopped.”
Israeli forces have opened fire on Palestinian farmers working to the east of Khan Younis in the south of the Gaza Strip. The incident took place on Thursday morning.
Witnesses said that farmers fled from their land due to the severity of the attack by Israeli soldiers stationed at the Kisuffim border crossing. The firing was accompanied by the repositioning of Israeli tanks and other heavily-armoured vehicles in the area. No casualties have been reported.
Farmers are reaping their wheat from the fields adjacent to the border with Israel. They should be able to tend to the crops following the truce agreement reached between Israel and the Hamas-led Palestinian government in Gaza which brought to an end the Israeli offensive against civilians last November. Israel has maintained a unilaterally-declared 300 metre “buffer zone” inside Palestinian territory.
Two days ago, Israeli occupation forces kidnapped two Palestinian workers, one of them a minor, in the Middle Area of the Gaza Strip. Early this month, they shot a Palestinian in northern Gaza, causing him “moderate” injuries.
Repeated Israeli breaches of the truce have led the Palestinian government in Gaza to ask the Egyptians, who brokered the deal, to tell Israel to refrain from its aggressive acts.
Two bombs near a mosque north of Baghdad killed 38 people and wounded 55 on Friday, police and a doctor said.
One bomb exploded as worshippers were departing the Saria mosque in the city of Baquba while a second detonated after people gathered at the scene of the first blast, the sources said.
The bombings are the latest in a series of attacks that have targeted both Sunni and Shia places of worship in past weeks.
On Thursday, a suicide bomber killed 12 people at the entrance of al-Zahraa Husseiniyah in the city of Kirkuk, where relatives of victims from violence the day before were receiving condolences.
Car bombs also hit three areas of Baghdad on Thursday, killing 10 people, while 21 people died in a series of bombings in the capital the day before.
Gunmen also shot dead the brother of an MP in Baghdad on Thursday.
Photo: MSF is providing humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees in Domeez camp through general health and mental health care and immunization. Iraq 2013 © Pierre-Yves Bernard/MSF
Overcrowding and poor living conditions in Iraq’s Domeez camp have led to a recent deterioration in the health of Syrian refugees. Stéphane Reynier, emergency coordinator for MSF, describes the current situation in the camp:
The health system in Syria has collapsed, and the war has left a section of the population with no access to health care. For the past two years, because of the conflict, children have not received their routine vaccinations.
Prominent Bahraini human rights defender Nabeel Rajab has been removed from his cell to an unknown location, losing all contact with his family and lawyer, the Bahrain Center for Human Rights reported Wednesday.
In an appeal sent out by the human rights group, Rajab had reportedly witnessed prisoners at the central Jaw prison being tortured.
Rajab’s wife had received a phonecall from Rajab testifying on what he had witnessed in the prison. Shortly after, Rajab’s wife was told that her husband had been removed from his prison cell.
His lawyer, family and fellow activists have not been in contact with him since.
[…] On Wednesday, six Bahraini tweeters were sentenced to one year in jail each for insulting the King and “misusing the right of free expression.”
Torture in Bahraini prisons is very commonly used to force prisoners to sign confessions. In February of last year, leading political prisoners began refusing food after reporting systematic abuses in Bahrain’s jails, including beatings, torture and the use of tear gas.
Nabeel Rajab, who founded the Bahrain Center for Human Rights in 2002, has been in custody since June 6 on charges of “public insults against plaintiffs,” the prosecution said in a statement at the time of his rearrest in June 2012.
The avid Twitter user has been charged with insulting the security forces, posting comments on Twitter deemed insulting to a government body and organizing peaceful protests.
His activism has given him the largest Twitter following in Bahrain, and the fourth largest in the Arab world.
The Iraqi government has hurled the country to the brink of a new civil war. In under a month, Baghdad launched a vicious assault on a Sunni protest camp, resulting in 44 deaths; executed 21 alleged Sunni terrorists in one day, and suspended the licenses of 10 satellite channels, 9 of them deemed pro-Sunni.
The government has failed to address any of the major grievances of the Sunni — and even some Shia — communities. Those include ongoing exclusion from the political process, with regular delays in elections; no real reforms in the punitive, wildly overbroad “De-Baathification” and antiterrorism laws; increasingly centralized power in the hands of the prime minister; and brutal policing, with mass arrests, unfair trials and endemic torture in Iraqi prisons. But since early 2012, Sunnis have challenged the status quo with persistent, overwhelmingly peaceful protests, despite violent incursions by the state authorities.
Syria’s Refugees Are Trapped Between Hells
I first met war photographer Giles Duley a month ago, to talk about his work both before and after he became a triple amputee in Afghanistan. Giles’s most recent trip since we spoke was to Jordan, where he documented the arrival of Syrian refugees after a long journey across the border. Here’s his account of new arrivals to the Zaatari Camp. – Jamie Collins
The nights become so bitterly cold that I’ve taken shelter in a portakabin staffed by UNHCR doctors. We sit, sipping tea, fighting our tiredness, waiting. It’s nearly 1 AM and there’s still no sign of any refugees arriving. Restless, I go outside to join my colleagues, who are sharing a cigarette in the starless night. Suddenly we are silent. In the distance we can hear buses and then out of that cold dark night they start to arrive. The first to appear is a young girl, maybe five years old, dressed in a cream coat walking with a purpose beyond her years, followed by two young mothers clasping their children, wrapped tightly in blankets to protect them from the cold. They make their way into the large military-style reception tent where they will be processed, fed, given medical attention, and finally allocated their own plot within Zaatari Camp.
I watch as more and more arrive—tens, hundreds and, by dawn, nearly 2,000. There’s man wearing a suit, holding his kid’s hand; an elderly couple struggling to carry their meagre possessions; a pregnant woman in tears; a young man carried across the rough ground in his wheelchair. Each face seems haunted and etched with exhaustion, uncertainty, and fear. The scenes are reminiscent of so many earlier wars, faded black and white images of civilians uprooted and forced to flee with only what they carry. But this is not some terrible past, this is happening now and the war grows more violent and brutal each day.
The numbers are almost beyond comprehension. More than 70,000 people killed, over four million displaced, and more than one million refugees registered by the UNHCR. In Jordan alone, there are 340,000 refugees, many in the tented Zaatari. This number is expected to rise to over one million by the end of the year.Continue + more pictures