Posts by tag: israel

Archives March 21, 2012 posted by

Somali pirates free British hostage

Somali pirates freed British hostage Judith Tebbutt on Wednesday, saying a ransom had been paid, more than six months after gunmen killed her husband and snatched her from a luxury beach resort in neighbouring Kenya.

Tebbutt’s kidnapping and the subsequent abductions of other foreigners prompted Kenya to send hundreds of troops into Somalia in October to try to crush the al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab militants that Nairobi blamed for the attacks.

“After efforts today, we have succeeded in the release of the British woman,” Omar Mohammed Diirey, a regional official, told Reuters from Adado in central Somalia.

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Archives March 20, 2012 posted by

Syrian cartoonist paid price for getting personal

The moment Syrian cartoonist Ali Farzat chose to depict President Bashar al-Assad and his “inner circle” in his drawings, he knew he was courting trouble.

The 60-year-old, famous across the Arab world and beyond for bitingly satirical works ridiculing corruption, nepotism and narrow-mindedness, had always avoided identifying individuals in his art.

That was until a few months before the uprising against Assad began last year, at which point Farzat felt the president had gone too far in stifling freedom of expression and crushing dissent. That’s when it got personal.

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Archives March 17, 2012 posted by

Archbishop calls on clergy to stop crossing north

THE CHURCH leadership has called on all clergy and members of the public to stop crossing north until the ban on Karpasia Bishop Christoforos is lifted. 

During an ad hoc meeting yesterday, the Holy Synod discussed the refusal of the breakaway regime to allow Christoforos to cross to the north. 

“The Holy Synod decided unanimously that none of its members will travel to the occupied areas until the occupying forces end this unacceptable measure, and calls on the clergy and people to do the same,” said Bishop of Tamasos Isaiah after the meeting.  

Christoforos tried twice on Monday to cross to the north to visit the Church of Ayios Mamas on the invite of Morphou Bishop Neophytos but on both counts was rejected. 

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Archives March 15, 2012 posted by

Pro-Assad rallies mark anniversary of Syria revolt

Huge crowds took to the streets of Syria’s cities on Thursday in an orchestrated show of support for President Bashar al-Assad on the first anniversary of a bloody revolt against his rule that shows no sign of ending.

Turkey hinted it might consider supporting a “buffer zone” inside Syria to cope with a flow of refugees across its border that has increased sharply following a recent government offensive against rebels in the nearby Idlib region.

Opposition activists said pro-Assad forces shot at crowds in various locations when they tried to protest against the regime, but residents reported that demonstrators did gather in the smart Shaalan district of Damascus to voice their anger.

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Archives March 13, 2012 posted by

Turkey to start drilling off Cyprus this month

TURKEY will begin drilling for oil or gas off northern Cyprus towards the end of March, having carried out seismic studies, the head of state energy company TPAO said yesterday.

Any gas discovery in this area could raise the stakes in the negotiations over reunification of the island, and possibly increase tensions in the eastern Mediterranean.

EU-member Cyprus, started exploring for gas south of the island in September 2011, angering Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side.

In reaction they signed a pact paving the way for exploration, and dispatched Turkey’s only seismic research vessel, owned by TPAO, to those waters under naval escort to search for potential reserves.

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Archives March 12, 2012 posted by

Afghan civilian deaths spark calls for US exit

The massacre of 16 villagers by a U.S. soldier has triggered angry calls for an immediate American exit from Afghanistan as Washington tries to negotiate a long-term presence to keep the country from sliding into chaos again.

Just days before Sunday’s attack, Kabul and Washington had made significant progress in negotiations on a Strategic Partnership Agreement that would allow American advisers and special forces to stay in Afghanistan after foreign combat troops leave at the end of 2014.

But securing a full deal may be far more difficult now after the shooting spree in villages in the southern province of Kandahar, the Taliban heartland, which killed mostly women and children.

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Archives March 3, 2012 posted by

Minister: strike damage is huge


GOVERNMENT and parliament were engaged in talks yesterday with a view to regulating strikes in essential services, as fresh industrial action by air traffic controllers (ATCs) over a pay dispute, inconvenienced thousands of passengers and hurt the island financially and politically.

Communications Minister Efthimios Flourentzos said consultations were taking place between the government and political parties, expressing hope that the problem would be resolved.

Twenty flights were disrupted yesterday, as striking ATCs shut down the Republic’s two airports for hours, on the first day of scheduled industrial action.

“Certainly the damage is huge,” the minister told reporters.

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Archives February 21, 2012 posted by

Archbishop pledges to go it alone and fix Apostolos Andreas

THE ARCHBISHOPRIC will restore the Apostolos Andreas Monastery in occupied Karpas whether the authorities in the north let them or not, Archbishop Chrysostomos II said yesterday.

He said that the keystone to the monastery’s main arch had shifted, endangering the main part of the structure.

“No one knows when exactly the room will collapse to be immediately followed by the collapse of the half-dome,” the prelate told a news conference.

He said that he would ask the authorities in the north, via the United Nations, to allow them to carry out restoration works.

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Archives February 19, 2012 posted by

Lunchtime recession beater

RESTAURANTS and take-away places are traditionally among the first to feel the pinch of recession, yet for one family run restaurant tucked away off Ledra Street in Nicosia, business is literally booming.

The lunchtime establishment, Evroulla’s, consists of little more than a tiny kitchen and a dozen wooden tables and chairs scattered in a long, narrow, covered alleyway. 

The chirpy 51-year-old Evroulla Ioannou busies herself over a hot stove and countless pans in a kitchen that’s no bigger than the average-sized bedroom. Her husband, Takis, has his hands full with the packed grill as the entrance to the steamy and smoke-filled kitchen is clogged by a constant stream of customers arriving for their bags of take-away. 

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Archives February 18, 2012 posted by

Chelsea held by second-tier Birmingham in FA CUP fifth round

 Daniel Sturridge headed in the equaliser as Chelsea drew 1-1 with Birmingham City on Saturday to force a replay of their FA Cup fifth-round encounter after a performance that did nothing to alleviate the pressure on manager Andre Villas-Boas.

The well-organised Championship (second division) visitors had taken a 20th-minute lead through Danny Murphy before their top-flight opponents pulled one back with Sturridge’s goal midway through the second half.

Chelsea had squandered an earlier chance to level straight after Murphy’s opener when Juan Mata’s penalty was well saved by diving Birmingham keeper Colin Doyle and home fans expressed their unhappiness by chanting ex-manager Jose Mourinho’s name.

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