Monday, 20th October 2014

ISRAEL – UN experts questioned Israeli officials on Monday over alleged rights abuses ranging from the demolition of Palestinian houses and the expansion of Jewish settlements to limited Palestinian access to water and their farmland. Israel’s delegation defended its record before the UN Human Rights Committee, which examined respect for civil and political rights in Israel, the Gaza Strip and the West Bank. (Reuters)

EGYPT – Egypt has no plans to provide the United States with direct military assistance in its war against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria even though American aerial bombardment may not be enough to defeat the group, the country’s prime minister said. But Ibrahim Mahlab left open the possibility of military action if Cairo’s Gulf Arab allies are threatened by the al-Qaeda offshoot. (Reuters)

TURKEY – Turkey is facilitating the passage of Kurdish “peshmerga” fighters to the besieged Syrian border town of Kobani, Turkey’s Minister of Foreign Affairs Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said. (BBC)

Tuesday, 21st October 2014

IRAN – The Supreme Leader of Iran Ali Khamenei blamed Western powers on Tuesday for the rise of Islamic State insurgents in Iraq and Syria and said they had no business tampering with the region’s geopolitics. (Reuters)

ISIS – The campaign of Islamic State militants against Iraq’s Yazidi minority may be attempted genocide, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonović said. (The Daily Star)

ALBANIA – A consequence of serious incidents reported during the soccer match between Serbia and Albania and the political crisis they generated in relations between Belgrade and Tirana led to the cancelation of an historic meeting scheduled on October 22 between government leaders from the two countries – the first in 68 years. (ANSAmed)

 

Wednesday, 22nd October 2014

TURKEY – The President of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Wednesday it was wrong of the United States to air drop military supplies to Kurdish fighters defending the Syrian border town of Kobani, as some weapons were seized by Islamic State militants besieging it. (Reuters)

TUNISIA – The European Union has confirmed its support to Tunisia signing a memorandum of understanding which will provide Tunisia with 200 million in aid in 2014. “The European Union is backing Tunisia in three ways: support for economic reforms and the fight against unemployment, support for the democratic transition, an aid towards regional development”, said EU Ambassador to Tunisia Laura Baeza, while signing the agreement Tuesday in Tunis. (ANSAmed)

PALESTINE – The President of the State of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas has issued a decree harshening penalties for those selling or renting land “to an enemy State or one of its citizens”, according to Palestinian press reports on Tuesday, which stressed that it referred to Israel. (ANSAmed)

 

Thursday, 23rd October 2014

IRAN – Iran will be widely seen to be responsible if a comprehensive deal to curb its nuclear program in exchange for sanctions relief is not reached, the top US negotiator said. (Reuters)

PALESTINE – The London-based pan-Arab daily “Asharq Al-Awsat” reported on Thursday that the Palestinian National Authority had agreed to delay by two months its plan to seek a UN Security Council resolution calling for an Israeli withdrawal to the pre-1967 lines within three years. The draft resolution seeks to achieve a “two-state solution”. (ANSAmed)

 

Friday, 24th October 2014

EUROPEAN UNION – The economics and finance ministers of the EU member states will convene an emergency meeting following the disclosure of a demand for some countries, including UK, to contribute billions more to the EU budget, David Cameron’s spokesman has said. The Prime Minister believes the demand for £1.7bn from UK is “unacceptable” and has secured a gathering of treasury ministers to discuss the recalculation of contributions, which has hit the UK, Italy and the Netherlands with additional bills, while France and Germany are to receive a rebate. (The Guardian)

ALGERIA – The President of Algeria Abdelaziz Bouteflika has signed a decree to curb the presence of Algeria’s military intelligence service in public institutions, government sources said, to downgrade his rivals and ensure a smooth transition when he steps down. (Reuters)