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[Transcript]  Mosaic News - 11/26/12: World News from the Middle East [VIDEO]

Russia slams support for Syrian opposition as power of jihadist groups grows

New TV, Lebanon
Presenter, Female #1
The Russian prime minister said France's support for the opposition Syrian National Coalition is completely unacceptable, while the Washington Post indicates that the gunfire of the civil war will slowly spread across Syria's borders to Israel, Turkey, and Iran.

Reporter, Female #2
Before traveling to France and meeting with French President Francois Hollande, Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev indicated that it is up to the Syrian people to decide the fate of President Bashar al-Assad and his regime, adding that it is preferable for the opposition forces to gain power through legal means, and not weapons delivered by other nations.

Guest, Male #1 (Dmitry Medvedev, Russian Prime Minister)
France's support for the opposition Syrian Coalition is completely unacceptable under international law. No country, no nation, no government should take action aimed at the violent change of a political regime in any other country.

Reporter, Female #2
In a separate development, Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan confirmed that his country will not hesitate to take necessary measures to protect its security. He stressed that the deployment of Patriot air defense missiles on the Turkish territories must not be misinterpreted.

Reporter, Female #2
American newspaper The Washington Post indicated that the gunfire of the civil war will slowly spread across the Syrian borders to Israel, Turkey, Iran, and other neighboring countries as the power of al-Qaeda affiliated extremist jihadist groups is growing in the region.

Reporter, Female #2
As for Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zouabi, he said the confrontation in Syria has reached its most complicated, difficult and violent stage. He accused the opposition Syrian National Coalition of establishing a strategic alliance with the al-Qaeda organization.

Reporter, Female #2
On the ground, along the northern border, opposition fighters captured a strategic dam on the Euphrates River that connects the countryside of Aleppo to al-Raqqah in northern Syria, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Reporter, Female #2
That same source said the fighters of the rebelling brigades took control of the Tishreen Dam and nearby buildings in the countryside of Aleppo. The dam supplies several areas with electricity. Close to this region in the countryside of Idlib, heavy clashes continue. The Syrian army is trying to storm the city of Maarat al-Numaan from its southern entrance after carrying out failed attempts in the past few days. Meanwhile, heavy shelling is also ongoing in the countryside of Damascus in the area of al-Basateen, located between Kafr Susa and the city of Daraya. They are accompanied by violent and ongoing clashes in the region.

Reporter, Female #2
In another development, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights revealed to the al-Hayyat newspaper that the health of the head of foreign affairs at the opposition National Coordination Body for Democratic Change, Dr. Abdul Aziz al-Kheir, has deteriorated. The opposition leader is being detained in the Air Force Intelligence base at the Mezzeh Airport in Damascus. This comes over two months after his disappearance that had led a number of families to complain in al-Qardaha, the birthplace of al-Assad.

Standoff between Baghdad and Kurdistan Region intensifies

Press TV, Iran
The crisis continues between Iraq's central government and the country's semi-autonomous Kurdistan Region over a disputed territory in the country's north, bordering the Diyala and Sulaymaniyah provinces. The Kurdish military has dispatched Peshmerga reinforcements to the area, where the central government has already stationed its troops. Both sides have a long-running feud over a number of other issues, mainly oil production.

Top polluter hosts 'critical' climate change summit

BBC Arabic, UK
Presenter, Male #1
In the Qatari capital Doha, the work of the 18th session of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change began, with participation from nearly 190 countries. This conference aims to achieve progress in the stalled negotiations to reduce greenhouse gases, and to seek a new agreement that would replace the Kyoto Protocol. It will also discuss the most important and controversial issues between rich and poor countries, poverty issues, and weather-related disasters.

Reporter, Female #1
Nearly 200 countries are meeting in the Qatari capital Doha, where the work of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change has begun. The conference will look into the need to curb the excessive increase of gas pollution and to save the climate. The goal of the negotiations is to reach a new agreement that would replace the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, which will expire next year. It is a binding approach to curb the emissions that are released by developed countries.

Guest, Male #2 (Martin Kaiser, Greenpeace)
I think the biggest fear is that the United States will not change its policies towards the United Nations' climate-related talks. During President Barack Obama's first term, none of his promises were fulfilled. Now, he must take bold steps toward climate change and international responsibility.

Reporter, Female #1
One of the most important controversial issues that will be raised during the conference is the right of rich countries to use "hot air" carbon permits, in which rich countries buy poor countries' share of gas emissions, and intend to keep using them for a period of time that can be renewed. However, there are countries who oppose continuing to work with these permits. The current situation does not look optimistic. There are fears that old disputes between rich and poor countries will pose an obstacle in achieving any significant progress with the talks. If they fail to reach a new agreement that would unite the rich and poor in combating the increase of Earth's temperature starting from the year 2020, they will abandon working with the Kyoto Protocol.

Guest, Male #3 (Peter Henriksen, Norwegian Forum for Environment and Development)
I would like to see developed countries give money to restore some confidence in the negotiations. This is what we need. We also need to listen to the vows by European Union countries and developed countries to lower their emissions by 40 percent by the year 2020.

Reporter, Female #1
The 18th session of the United Nations conference will continue until December 7th in Qatar, which has one of the highest per-capita carbon emissions rates in the world. The conference will also look into poverty issues, as well as weather-related disasters, which kill thousands every year and subject millions to displacement. It will also look into helping developing countries, financially and technologically, in order to reduce the exacerbation of climate change and its consequences on the environment and humans. Maha Sokkar, BBC.

Egypt's Morsi to meet judges over new powers

Dubai TV, UAE
Presenter, Male #1
On the Egyptian street, confrontations between supporters and opponents of Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi's decrees have spread to various squares. The first report of death was announced during the night clashes that erupted in Damanhour, the capital of the Beheira Governorate, north of Cairo. Sticks, stones, and Molotov cocktails were used during the clashes.

Presenter, Male #1
This comes after hundreds of Muslim Brotherhood members held a rally in support of the Egyptian president's decrees in front of the group's headquarters. Across the street, a rival rally was held by opponents of the presidential decrees. The Muslim Brotherhood said that a 15-year-old boy was killed, and nearly 35 others from both sides were injured.

Presenter, Male #1
In central Cairo's Tahrir Square, opponents of the Egyptian presidential decrees continued to stage sit-ins for the fourth consecutive day in protest against the constitutional declaration. Cautious calm returned to the square and nearby streets following a day of continuous clashes between demonstrators and security forces. The number of protest tents has notably increased. The strikers closed all the square's entrances.

Presenter, Male #1
The crisis between the presidency and the judiciary in Egypt may witness a breakthrough. The minister of justice announced that an agreement has been reached during the meeting that was held today between President Mohamed Morsi and members of the Supreme Judicial Council at the Presidential Palace. According to the agreement, Morsi will issue an explanatory memo on the nature of the temporary measures listed in his constitutional decree. The memo must explain that such measures will not lead to a seizure or consolidation of power by the president, and that they will be transferred to a democratically-elected parliament.

Reporter, Male #2
After a heated debate following the announcement of the constitutional declaration, the presidency of the republic confirmed that the presidential decrees are temporary, and called on all political blocs to engage in dialogue. In a bid to assure its opponents, the presidency stressed the importance of the constitutional declaration, reiterating that it's the only way to hold accountable anyone involved in acts of corruption, or criminal acts during the former regime and the transitional period. However, such reassurances didn't seem to be working.

Guest, Male #3
This political problem is spiraling out of control. There are no other solutions but to offer concessions by repealing this constitutional declaration, which could spark a civil war that no one wants for our country.

Reporter, Male #2
For its part, the Supreme Judicial Council stressed that the decrees listed in the constitutional declaration should apply only to sovereign matters. According to news reports, business was as usual in some Egyptian courts and the Judges' Club, which called for a strike. The Egyptian street was divided among supporters and opponents of the president's decrees that enjoy a temporary immunity from judicial challenges.

Reporter, Male #2
While some praised the presidential decrees as revolutionary, others slammed them as dictatorial. Hundreds of demonstrators are continuing to stage sit-ins in Tahrir Square demanding a repeal of such decrees. In addition, pro-and anti-president marches are continuing to mobilize across the country. What added insult to injury is the violent clashes that erupted near Tahrir Square between security forces and demonstrators marking the first anniversary of the bloody incidents of Mohammed Mahmoud Street. A state of political stalemate is being witnessed in Egypt in the wake of the controversial constitutional declaration, which reignited some of the buried differences among the political rivals, according to observers. While some of these differences are being attributed to the constitutional declaration, others are deeply rooted in the groups' differing ideologies.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak quits politics

IBA, Israel
Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak announced this morning that he is quitting politics. This, as the Likud party is holding a second day of voting for the makeup of its Knesset list following a computer foul-up yesterday. Barak said that he was retiring to spend more time with his family, saying that he fulfilled his work in politics, which was "never" his passion, and added that new people should be allowed to take leadership positions in Israel. He will remain in his position as defense minister until a new government is formed following the Knesset election on January 22nd. Barak leaves behind the Independence party, which he founded after quitting the Labor party in January 2011.

Israel: Likud voting for Knesset list marred by hackers

IBA, Israel
The Likud party suffered computer malfunctions that prevented people from voting yesterday for the Likud Knesset list. The decision to hold a second day of voting was held late last night; the party opened some 50-60 polling stations in the morning. The computer company said that hackers were to blame.

Tunisians rally against violence in society

Al Jazeera, Qatar
Presenter, Female #1
In Tunisia, the "Stop the Violence" coalition that includes civil associations, organized a protest in the capital to demand combating violence, death threats, and takfir that they say has spread in Tunisia and remains a threat to the democratic transition. Protestors accused the association for the protection of the revolution of carrying out violent acts, and called for its dissolution.

Reporter, Male #1
Protestors replaced the slogans that are usually heard in similar protests with music to express their rejection of violence in Tunisia. Their goal is to defend freedoms, to prevent takfir and attacks on innovators, in addition to combating what they called the "advocates of violence and killing." They are referring to the association for the protection of the revolution, which was formed after the Tunisian revolution last year. They called for its dissolution after accusing it of practicing intellectual and material violence, and preventing legal political parties from gathering by claiming the association has relations with the former regime.

Guest, Male #2
We demand to live in peace, and peacefully. We demand to practice our democratic rights. We demand to carry out our right to have a different opinion. Our demand is that no demonstration is prevented, whether it is political or intellectual, or that no one is attacked for having a different opinion.

Reporter, Male #1
The protestors' statements were denied by officials at the association for the protection of the revolution, who said its concern is to preserve the revolution and to combat its enemies, especially from the affiliates of the former regime, and the dissolved Rally for Constitutional Democracy party through peaceful and legal means. Its leadership confirmed its rejection of all kinds of violence.

Guest, Female #2
We are a civil organization that is governed by the law, and its methods are peaceful. We are against violence. We have a central and main goal, which is to combat the return of the Rally for Constitutional Democracy party and its control and presence in the political arena, and this is something that everyone agrees to.

Reporter, Male #1
So each party is blaming the other. However, images of the acts violence that was witnessed in the city of Tatouine in the southern part of the country still linger in the minds of the Tunisians, who hope that they will not be repeated. But the intensifying political dispute between the parties and the spread of different kinds of protests may be predicting strife if every party fails to bear its responsibilities. Hafez Laibah, Al Jazeera, Tunisia.

National Center for Human Rights releases report on recent fuel riots in Jordan

Jordan TV, Jordan
Jordan's National Center for Human Rights said that Jordan's pro-reform protest movement has generally been peaceful. But in recent rallies, demands for regime reform have grown louder. The Center issued a report that monitored public grassroots opposition to the government's decision to lift subsidies on oil derivatives, and the police, security forces and judiciaries dealt with the rallies. It added that the peaceful protests were marred by arson attacks on public and private property, including the burning of banks and government headquarters in several governorates, and more than 250 protestors have been arrested, including 19 teenagers.

Qatari filmmakers premiere shorts at 2012 Doha Tribeca Film Festival

Al Jazeera, Qatar
Presenter, Male #1
The Doha Tribeca Film Festival is displaying Arab shorts from the countries of the revolutions, notably from Tunisia and Egypt. These films try to document the periods that immediately preceded the eruption of the revolutions. Once again, this year, the festival focused on movies produced in Qatar.

Reporter, Female #1
The totalitarian regimes that were brought down by the people in the countries of the Arab revolutions are examined through a cinematic angle at the Tribeca Film Festival in Doha. These films attempt to document the periods that preceded the people's breaking of the barrier of fear.

Guest, Female #2 (Maggie Morgan, Producer of 'Asham')
It's very difficult because we are telling a story, as you said, that hasn't ended yet. The same things we suffered from before the revolution are still present. They are issues related to human, women, and children's rights and freedoms. All of these are needs we are still fighting for.

Reporter, Female #1
The full picture of the revolutions is not yet clear. However, young producers wanted to attempt to safeguard the collective memory of historic phases in their countries. It is also probably an essential phase in their path as filmmakers.

Reporter, Female #1
The Arab shorts participating this year were predominantly in tune with the sociopolitical context, especially in the countries of the Arab revolutions. But the festival also featured films considered to be experimental.

Reporter, Female #1
These people are on the team of one of the movies entirely produced in Qatar, and participating in the Doha Film Festival. They say they started working on movies in workshops, and ended far beyond.

Guest, Male #2 (Ahmed al-Baker, Producer of 'The Prison')
The idea we had was to set up acting workshops. From there we would train young actors who would work on our movies. And, thank God, many Qatari youths accepted the idea from the very first workshop we organized. We started with 15 people, and ended the film with 50 people. They are all local Qataris.

Guest, Male #3 (Mohammed al-Ibrahim, Producer of 'The Prison')
In the last five years, we noticed a development and change in terms of the public's reception of such films, and that encouraged us to continue our work.

Reporter, Female #1
Dozens of Arab shorts and movies are competing at the Doha Film Festival. This year, the festival attempted to highlight young talent from many Arab countries, while focusing on supporting local efforts to further develop film production here, according to the Tribeca organizers. Salam Khoder, Al Jazeera, Doha.

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