Brahimi-brokered Eid al-Adha ceasefire quickly broken
New TV reported over the week that UN-Arab League Envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi had been working with the Syrian government on a ceasefire for the Eid al-Adha holiday. Syrian President Bashar al-Assad announced a conditional truce on behalf of the Syrian regime, but armed opposition groups such as Ansar al-Sharia rejected the conditions and made their own demands. Sure enough, the ceasefire was broken on Friday, the first day of Eid.
Afghanistan: Dozens killed in Eid suicide blast
BBC Arabic reported on Friday that in the most violent attack in Afghanistan in months, 41 people were killed and at least another 50 were injured when a man blew himself up inside a mosque in the city of Maimana, the capital of the Faryab region in northern Afghanistan, during the early morning prayers for Eid al-Adha. The suicide bomber was reportedly wearing a police uniform. Many of the victims were government soldiers, and prominent local authorities were inside the mosque at the time of the explosion.
Sudan blames Israel for bombing of arms factory in Khartoum
Press TV reported on Wednesday that Sudan has blamed Israel for an air raid on an ammunition factory in Khartoum that killed two people. Sudanese Culture and Information Minister Ahmed Bilal Osman announced that evidence pointing to Israel was found among the remnants of the explosives, adding that Sudan reserved the right to retaliate. Hamas also accused Israel of orchestrating the bombing. However, Al Jazeera reported on Thursday that Israel denied the claims, and Israeli defense official Amos Gilad described Sudan as a "dangerous terrorist state."
More violence erupts against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar
Press TV reports that at least 112 Rohingya have been killed in Rakhine State, and homes of Rohingya Muslims have been torched all across Myanmar in a new round of sectarian violence perpetrated mainly by Buddhist extremists. The violence had died down after a spate of killings in August that drove a number of Rohingya to flee the country, but they are again forced to leave their homes in light of the new wave of attacks.
Image: A member of the Free Syrian Army talks on the radio during an operation in Haram town, Idlib Governorate, October 26, 2012. REUTERS/Asmaa Waguih
Syria: On the first day of the Eid ul-Fitr holiday marking the end of Ramadan, seven people have been killed in the security forces' relentless crackdown on protestors. Six were reportedly killed in Daraa during a massive demonstration at al-Omari Mosque, and one was killed in Homs. Protests also broke out in a number of provinces after Eid prayers, including Damascus, Rif Dimashq, Homs, Hama, Latakia, Idlib, and Aleppo.
Yemen: According to the official Yemeni news agency, President Ali Abdullah Saleh has vowed to honor the Gulf Cooperation Council initiative, and says he is ready to hold immediate elections for a new president. A source close to Saleh said that the president has reached a deal with the opposition which stipulates that elections will be held within three months, as Saleh transfers power to his deputy, Abed-Rabbu Mansur Hadi. This political breakthrough, however, has failed to bring joy to Yemenis on the first day of Eid ul-Fitr. Many Yemenis are concerned with the deteriorating security situation in the country and are living amid harsh conditions.
Libya: Head of Libya's Transitional National Council Mustafa Abdel Jalil has set Saturday as the final deadline for forces loyal to fugitive Libyan ruler Muammar Gaddafi to lay down arms. Jalil said that negotiations were underway to arrange the peaceful surrender of the areas still held by pro-Gaddafi forces. Such areas include Gaddafi's hometown of Sirte, the district of Bani Walid southeast of Tripoli, and the southern areas of Libya.
Bahrain: A spokesman for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has warned that the situation in Bahrain remains "tense and unpredictable" as the Manama regime continues its brutal crackdown on peaceful demonstrations. About 124 cases in Bahrain have so far received verdicts, including two death sentences; sixteen of the cases were acquitted completely, while seven others were partially acquitted, according to the UN rights official.
(Al Jazeera English: 1532 PT, May 16, 2011) There is a serious and growing rift in Iran between Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the president, and Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the supreme leader. Ahmadinejad has reportedly asked the Khamenei if he can resign. Al Jazeera's Dorsa Jabbari reports from Tehran.
(Al Jazeera English: 1356 PT, May 4, 2011) Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has ended an apparent boycott of his official duties by chairing his second cabinet meeting this week. While a rift with the Intelligence Minister seems to have ended, another confrontation appears to be developing.
The president's actions are now the cause of much debate. While Ahmadinejad has made no comments about his 10 day absence from his job, it has given his critics reason to question his ability to govern. Al Jazeera's Dorsa Jabbari reports from the Iranian capital of Tehran.
(Euronews: 0751 PST, April 6, 2011) The Freedom Group in Libya has released a video showing Libyan air force Brigadier General Ali Atallah al-Obeidi who has apparently defected to them. In the tape he says he quit because Gaddafi gave orders to kill civilians and as he did not want the blood of his own people on his hands.
It is claimed the former general walked for 15 days from Tripoli to the besieged city of Misurata. It is the only major town in Western Libya where the revolt has not been crushed amid accusations from the rebels that NATO have been too slow with air support for them.
(Euronews: 2330 PST, April 3, 2011) Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi has sent a trusted adviser to Athens as speculation grows that he is trying to find a way out of his stand-off with the international community. The diplomatic mission comes amid signs that those close to Gaddafi are becoming nervous about the long-term consequences of his defiance.
Libya's deputy Foreign Minister Abdelati Obeidi flew to Greece carrying a personal message from Gaddafi to Greek premier George Papandreou. It is thought the Libyan leader is seeking a way to stop the fighting.
(Al Jazeera English: 0645 PST, April 4, 2011) Muammar Gaddafi, the Libyan leader, has always publicly insisted that he will not leave Libya, despite the crisis in the country, and that he will fight "to the death" against his opponents. In private, however, it appears that he may be open to a negotiated exit. Al Jazeera's Alan Fisher reports on the Libyan leader's potential options.
(Mosaic Video Alert: March 28, 2011) NBN reports on a new crime committed by Muammar Gaddafi and his regime: the rape of Iman al-Obeidi. The victim is a "lawyer who embodies the model Libyan woman, but bothered the regime for being a free woman.” Iman was detained and raped by 15 of Gaddafi's mercenaries. The regime first accused al-Obeidi of being drunk and mentally ill, then offered to bribe the rape victim in exchange for her silence, a request that was rejected. Benghazi residents held a solidarity rally with Iman and online activists rallied behind her with a Facebook page entitled "We are all Iman al-Obeidi."
(Channel 4 News: 1359 PST, March 26, 2011) As a Libyan woman makes a desperate, dramatic plea for help in a Tripoli hotel, Channel 4 News Foreign Affairs Correspondent Jonathan Miller witnesses how Gaddafi's forces deal with dissent.