Thousands of people went out to the streets of Hebron, Bethlehem and other cities in the West Bank to protest against the deaths of two Palestinians in confrontation with Israeli forces and of a third Palestinian who succumbed to cancer in prison. In Gaza, militants launched a rocket which landed in the south of Israel, however it did not cause any victims. Tension is now raised, as this is the first time has flared up since the Israeli bombing of the Gaza Strip in November of last year.
Five children from the ages of two to ten died through asphyxiation in their father’s house, who was gravely injured in Saint-Quentin in the north of France. During the night the father woke up to the fire and jumped out of the window to alert emergency servies after having tried in vain to get his children out of the house that was enveloped in smoke. Fifty firefighters were mobilized to extinguish the fire. However, the access to the residence was already very difficult.
A helicopter accident ended up in the death on Saturday of five soldiers during patrol duties in Kruger Park, who were on the lookout for rhino poachers. The cause of the fall of the helicopter is still being investigated, according to news agency Reuters. The five soldiers were performing “Operation Rhino”, in which the government is trying to stop the death of rhinos due to the value of their horns.
Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff arrived on Tuesday in Durban, South Africa, where she is set to participate in the BRICS Meeting (bloc formed by Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa). Dilma had a meeting on Tuesday with the president Jacob Zuma and is going to a dinner at the opening of the meetings. Other participants are Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, as well as Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Cheap and effective, male condoms are currently used by close to 750 million people across the world. The product was created more than four hundred years ago, but has changed very little in the last fifty years. Because of that, the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation is offering 100 thousand dollars to creative minds that develop a “condom for the future”. The foundation has in its eye the principal properties of a contraceptive: efficiency as a method of blocking pregnancy and also the prevention of the transmission of sexual diseases.
The decision of the prime minister of Israel was announced after a direct intervention by president Obama. Turkish-Israeli relations were unsettled since the deaths of Turkish activists of the Freedom Flotilla in May of 2010. Netenyahu called the Turkish prime-minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, and apologized for what happened in 2010. In the conversation, he said that the “tragic events” were not intentional, but rather “operational errors”, and promised compensation to the families of the victims.
The president of the United States, Barack Obama, appealed directly this Thursday to the Israeli people so that they provide a home for the state-less Palestinians and recognize that the settlement efforts in occupied territory undermines peace efforts. In a speech in Jerusalem for students of the Israeli university, Obama made the appeal at the same time as recognizing the security fears in the Jewish state in a destabilized region.
The government and the Syrian rebels accused each other on Tuesday of having carried out chemical attacks in the region of Aleppo. If confirmed as actually hapenning, this would be the first time chemical weapons have been used in the conflict between the two sides. It is believed that the government of Bashar Assad, who has faced a rebellion for the last two years that is seeking to remove him, possesses an arsenal of chemical weapons, something which Damascus neither confirms nor denies.
A series of attacks left at least fifty dead this Tuesday in Bagdahd and surrounding areas, in a reminder of sorts that the current Iraq still has very little resemblance to the model of democracy and security in the Middle East that George W. Bush promised exactly ten years ago, when American troops invaded the country. One decade in and the war has cost 122 thousand lives and 1.7 trillion dollars for the US government.
Two days after his first visit to Israel from when he assumed the presidency in the United States in 2008, Barack Obama asked the Iranian government that they take “immediate and signifiant” measures to resolve the tensions provoked by her nuclear program. As he has done every year, the president sent a message on the holiday of Nowruz, the celebration of the new year in the country.