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Fall in oil price pushes Abu Dhabi to sell bonds valued at $10bn

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

The government of Abu Dhabi announced on Tuesday that it has sold bonds worth $10 billion in what was the second such move in the UAE since oil prices started to fall in 2014. According to a statement by the Department of Finance of the oil-rich emirate, the bonds were offered in three groups for a period of 10 to 30 years. The interest rates attached to the bonds range from 2.5 per cent to 4 per cent. The sale attracted investors regionally and globally, with more than 500 applications received, valued in excess of $30 billion. Abu Dhabi is the capital of the United Arab Emirates and the richest of the seven emirates. Last May, it raised $5 billion […]

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Sudanese call for Arab-Turkish-Iranian security treaty

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

The president of Sudan’s National Ummah Party, Sadiq Al-Mehdi, has called for the conclusion of an Arab-Turkish-Iranian security treaty, under the auspices of Saudi Arabia and Egypt, in order to coexist and respect national sovereignty, Anadolu has reported. “Based on the concept of tripartite coexistence,” explained Al-Mehdi, “everyone commits to supporting the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people, and puts an end to the illusionary discussions about normalisation with Israel.” Such illusions, he added, are what have encouraged the Israeli right-wing to believe that it can maintain its aggressive policies and still enjoy the acceptance of the Arabs. “Everyone must commit that any relationship with Israel passes through the necessity of returning Arab and Palestinian rights back where they belong.” […]

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Danish pension fund excludes four companies for role in Israeli occupation

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

A major Danish pension fund has excluded four companies for their ties to Israeli settlements in, and the extraction of natural resources from, the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt). Sampension, a DKK290 billion ($43.5 billion) Danish labour market pension fund, made the announcement in a press release last week, stating that two Israeli banks, Hapoalim and Leumi, as well as Heidelberg Cement and Israeli telecommunications company Bezeq, are now excluded. All four companies have been excluded for violating Sampension’s new guidelines for investments in occupied territories, and specifically, “due to the financing of settlements, and the extraction of natural resources and establishment of infrastructure for telecommunication on occupied territory”. The press release also stated that the Danish pension fund is in […]

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Netanyahu defends record on settlement expansion from hard-right critics

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

The Israeli Prime Minister’s Office has defended the government’s record on settlement expansion, in response to criticism from settler leaders and hard-right politicians, including ministers. It was reported earlier this week that Israeli authorities will shortly advance almost 4,000 settlement housing units in the occupied West Bank, but a closer examination of the details has revealed that the number of units that will be approved for immediate construction is closer to 600. According to Haaretz, the figure includes 300 homes in Beit El, as well as 86 units in Kochav Yaakov for settlers removed from Migron outpost. 146 new homes are slated to be built in Nokdim, where Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman lives, along with 30 in Hebron and nine […]

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Qatar calls for immediate halt to Jewish settler raids on Al-Aqsa Mosque

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

Qatar’s Foreign Ministry called on Tuesday for the international community to put an immediate stop to the repeated raids by Israeli Jewish settlers on Al-Aqsa Mosque, QNA has reported. A spokesperson for the ministry condemned the daily raids in the occupied holy city of Jerusalem, describing them as acts of “provocation” against millions of Muslims worldwide. The statement followed raids on the Noble Sanctuary of Al-Aqsa by hundreds of extremist settlers on Sunday and Monday to mark the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. As usual in such incidents, the settlers were protected by a large Israeli police presence. At the same time, an Israeli spokesperson said that the Israeli army secured the “visit” of 22,500 Israeli Jewish settlers to Ibrahimi Mosque […]

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Turkey’s Erdogan blames US envoy for diplomatic crisis

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

President Tayyip Erdogan blamed the US ambassador to Turkey on Tuesday for a diplomatic crisis between the two countries and said Ankara no longer considered him Washington’s envoy. In a blunt and personal attack on outgoing Ambassador John Bass, Erdogan suggested Bass acted unilaterally in suspending visa services in Turkey after the arrest of a US consulate worker, and said “agents” had infiltrated US missions. The US State Department defended Bass, saying he had the “full backing” of the US government and his actions were coordinated with the State Department, White House and National Security Council. “Our ambassadors tend not to do things unilaterally,” State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told a briefing. “We have a very close coordination and cooperation […]

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Israeli arrested in Egypt after bullets found in his bag

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

Egyptian police arrested today an Israeli tourist crossing into Egypt’s Sinai Peninsula after finding bullets in one of his bags, Israel’s Yedioth Ahronoth reported. The Israeli man was identified as Nir Itach, 24, fro, the central city of the Israeli city of Rehovot. The Israeli news agency quoted Nir’s brother, Almog, as saying that the bullets were left by mistake in his bag from the army. “Nir took with him a bag from his military service that has not been used in a very long time,” Almog said, adding that his brother “did not check the bag very well and is currently under arrest.” “He probably had some bullets left over from basic training. He had not touched this bag for […]

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Major oil pipeline between Iraq and Turkey to bypass Kurdish region

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

Iraq and Turkey have intensified their efforts to isolate independent seeking Kurds by bypassing the region while re-opening a disused oil pipeline between the two countries. The central government in Iraq wants to restore one of its oldest pipelines that run from Kirkuk in the Kurdish region of Iraq to Mediterranean port of Ceyhan in Southern Turkey. The pipeline was damaged in areas occupied by Daesh until Iraqi forces regained control of the region late last year. Iraq’s oil minister, Abdul Karim Luaibi Bahedh announced in a statement today, repairs to the pipeline, which was once a key artery of Iraq’s oil export. State-owned oil companies will begin a “comprehensive and urgent repair and rehabilitation of the crude oil pipeline […]

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White House: Trump to announce broad Iran strategy later this week

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

President Donald Trump will make an announcement later this week on an “overall Iran strategy,” including whether to decertify the international deal curbing Tehran’s nuclear program, the White House said on Tuesday. Read More: A former Iranian diplomat on what Trump needs to know about Iran “He’ll make that later this week,” White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders told reporters when asked about the certification decision and the administration’s broader strategy on Iran. “The president has reached a decision on an overall Iran strategy and wants to make sure that we have a broad policy to deal with … all of the problems of Iran being a bad actor.”

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Eight Israeli soldiers commit suicide in nearly three months

October 11, 2017 Middle East Monitor 0

The number of suicide cases among the Israeli army soldiers is “constantly” mounting, Hebrew reports have revealed. Israel’s 0404 reported today that an Israeli soldier at the Hatzor military base, located at the southern area of the Palestinian occupied territories, committed suicide last night, as she fired a bullet at her head. The incident is one of series of suicide cases that have been monitored during the past two and a half months, during which seven soldiers committed suicide. Read More: Palestinian child narrates horrifying experience of 10-hour detention by Israeli forces The Israeli police are currently investigating into the cases, the Israeli website noted. The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson recently said that the last three years have witnessed […]

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