Israel Aircraft Attack Hamas Targets After Rocket Fired From Gaza

Posted by Media Shah Alam | Selasa, 28 Februari 2017 | Posted in

GAZA, Palestinian Territories: Israeli aircraft carried out a series of strikes in Gaza on Monday, wounding two people, health officials and witnesses said, after a rocket fired from the Palestinian territory struck southern Israel.
Witnesses said the aircraft attacked four security positions belonging to Hamas, the Islamist movement that runs the Gaza Strip, and that the two people hurt were passers-by.
The Israeli military said that earlier a rocket fired from the enclave landed in an open area in southern Israel, causing no casualties. It had no immediate comment on the air strikes.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the Palestinian rocket fire. Israel has said that Hamas bears overall responsibility for what happens in the territory.
The group has observed a de-facto cease-fire with Israel since a 2014 war but small armed cells of Jihadist Salafis have continued to occasionally launch rockets at Israel. When those attacks occur, Hamas usually orders its fighters to vacate potential targets for Israeli retaliation. (Reporting by Nidal Al-Mughrabi-Arab News

Libyan ‘Hell’ Driving New Migrant Surge

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ROME: Nightmarish conditions in Libya are helping to drive a surge in the numbers of migrants attempting to reach Italy in the depths of winter, humanitarian officials and asylum seekers say.
European efforts to close the route are also thought to lie behind a 30 to 40 percent increase in the number of mainly African migrants who have landed at Italian ports in the first two months of this year, compared to the same period in 2015 and 2016.
More than 2,700 people have been rescued in recent days, including a newborn delivered on a Norwegian police vessel.
The latest arrivals will lift the total for January and February above 12,000.
The number of deaths has also spiked: survivor testimonies point to 350 so far this year, compared to around 100 in the same period of last year, according to the UN.
The dangers of winter crossings were underlined in February 2015 when four rubber dinghies packed with migrants were caught in a storm that was to claim some 330 lives, including many who who froze to death and 20 who perished in the course of a what rescuers described as a hellish salvage operation.
“The increase in arrivals is probably due to living conditions in Libya becoming ever more dangerous,” said Flavio Di Giacomo, spokesman for the International Organization for Migration (IOM), one of the agencies that helps migrants on their arrival in Italy.
Sairon Kamara, one of the people rescued last week, described the brutality of the traffickers who organize the migrants’ journeys.
“The people would beat us every day and hang us (upside down) with rope,” Kamara told an AFP reporter on board the Golfo Azzurro, a rescue boat operated by Spanish charity Proactiva Open Arms.
“It was not easy, every day people are dying. Every day, people die.”
Another Guinean, Bari Mamadu, described how the smugglers would force migrants to call their families to ask for more money.
“When you dial the number, they hit you so your parents will hear you screaming ... there are five people hitting you with thick piping, hitting, hitting until you faint.”
Griselle, from Guinea-Bissau, said he had seen 15 people die from the blows, or as a result of being deprived of food and water.
“Libya is hell,” he said. “They treat us like goods that can be bought and sold.”
Last week, the corpses of 13 Africans were found suffocated in a container they had been locked in for four days prior to a planned departure.
Not all those leaving Libya had come to the North African state with the firm intention of trying to travel on to Europe.
A group of 75 Bangladeshis rescued last week said they had worked in the country for four years before deciding it had become too unsafe to stay amid ongoing violence between warring factions.
At the same time, the traffickers are using European moves to block their trade as an enticement to persuade would-be migrants to book their passage as soon as possible.
Earlier this month, Italy and Libya signed an EU-backed memorandum of understanding under which Italy’s coast guard will help train and equip its Libyan equivalent to make it more effective in stopping boats.
“The traffickers say it will be the Libyans doing the rescue operations in a couple of months and bringing everyone back to Libya,” said the IOM’s Di Giacamo.
“That’s the last thing most of the migrants want so they think they have to hurry up and leave.”-Arab News

Iraq Forces Reach Key Mosul Bridge

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SOUTH OF MOSUL: Iraqi forces battling Daesh in west Mosul reached the city’s southernmost bridge Monday, a key step in efforts to defeat the terrorists in their stronghold, a spokesman said.
The move, a little more than a week into a major push on Mosul’s west bank, could allow Iraqi forces to extend a floating bridge between the city’s two halves and pile pressure on the radicals.
“The Rapid Response force and the federal police have liberated Jawsaq neighborhood and now control the western end of the fourth bridge,” Brig. Gen. Yahya Rasool told AFP.
The spokesman for the Joint Operations Command was referring to the southernmost of five bridges — all of which are damaged and unusable — across the Tigris River that divides the northern Iraqi city.
“That means the bridge is under control on both sides,” said Rasool.
Government forces retook the east bank from Daesh a month ago, completing a key phase in an offensive on Mosul that began on Oct. 17 and has involved tens of thousands of fighters.
Engineering units will be expected to deploy a so-called “ribbon bridge” across the Tigris that will allow the connection of the western side’s active front lines to the already retaken east bank.
Rasool said that the Interior Ministry’s Rapid Response force had now fully retaken two neighborhoods on the west bank, while forces from the elite Counter-Terrorism Service have retaken another further west.
“The street fighting is intense, these are populated neighborhoods,” Rasool said. “But our forces are fighting deep in the west, the enemy is broken.”
Iraq forces were also retaking desert territory southwest of the city in order to further cut off Mosul from Daesh-held territory in Syria.
“In general, all the troops are moving forward as planned and doing so rapidly,” Staff Lt. Gen. Abdelamir Yarallah told AFP from Talul Al-Atshana, the highest point in the Nineveh province, of which Mosul is the capital.
The UN food agency said accounts by recently displaced people it was helping were very alarming.
“We are hearing from some families that food has drastically risen in price and is unaffordable. In extreme cases, people cannot access food at all,” the World Food Program’s Iraq chief Sally Haydock said.-Arab News

Pegawai Kementerian Korea Utara Rancang Pembunuhan Jong-nam

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SEOUL: Pasukan risikan Korea Selatan percaya suspek yang dikehendaki kerana membunuh abang tiri pemimpin Korea Utara, Kim Jong-nam terdiri daripada beberapa pegawai di kementerian luar dan keselamatan negara itu.
Jong-nam maut selepas disembur cecair beracun dipercayai Agen VX oleh dua wanita semasa berada di balai berlepas Lapangan Terbang Antarabangsa Kuala Lumpur (klia2) pada 13 Februari lalu.
Agen VX diklasifikasikan Pertubuhan Bangsa-Bangsa Bersatu sebagai pemusnah besar-besaran.
Korea Selatan amat sensitif terhadap perkembangan terbaharu kes pembunuhan Jong-nam yang dipercayai melibatkan negara jirannya, Korea Utara.
Korea Utara pula tidak mengaku mayat mangsa sebagai Jong-nam.
Namun Korea Selatan percaya Jong-nam yang mengkritik secara terbuka dasar kepimpinan keluarganya dibunuh oleh ejen perisik Korea Utara.
"Antara lapan suspek dalam kes ini empat merupakan kakitangan di kementerian keselamatan negara itu manakala dua lagi dari kementerian luar," kata Lee Cheol-woo, salah seorang Ahli Parlimen yang mendengar taklimat daripada pasukan risikan Korea Selatan kepada pemberita.


Liverpool Perkukuh Kedudukan Dalam 'Gua'

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DUA gol Jamie Vardy membantu Leicester City memperoleh kemenangan 3-1 ke atas Liverpool dalam perlawanan Liga Perdana Inggeris, awal pagi Selasa.
Bertempat di Stadium King Power di Leicester, England, Vardy menjaringkan gol pada minit ke-28 dan 60'.
Aksi cemerlang Vardy pada minit ke-28 itu juga sekali gus menyaksikan gol sulung buat Leicester pada tahun ini.
Susulan gol Vardy, Leicester dilihat semakin bersemangat dan hasilnya, Danny Drinkwater menambah jaringan pada minit ke-39.
Pada minit ke-67, pemain Liverpool, Philippe Coutinho cuba untuk memperkecilkan kedudukan dengan menjaringkan gol.
Bagaimanapun, sehingga ke akhir permainan, tiada tambahan jaringan yang berjaya diraih Liverpool.
Kekalahan itu menyaksikan skuad Juergen Klopp kali keempat tewas di tangan pasukan antara yang 'tercorot' dalam kedudukan liga.
Terdahulu, Liverpool ditundukkan oleh Hull City, Swansea dan Bournemouth.
Liverpool kini berada pada kedudukan kelima liga, di belakang Arsenal, Manchester City, Totthenham dan Chelsea.-mStar


Saudi Arabia, Malaysia Take ‘Quantum Leap’ With New Agreements

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RIYADH: Saudi Arabia and Malaysia have signed four major agreements in Kuala Lumpur on Monday that will go a long way in cementing ties between the two countries.
King Salman and Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, who held talks on a range of bilateral, regional and international issues, also witnessed the signing of the accords.
“During the summit talks, the two leaders reviewed bilateral relations and ways of enhancing them in various fields to serve the interests of the two countries and their peoples,” said a report published by the state-owned Saudi Press Agency (SPA) here Monday.
King Salman wrote: “I seize the opportunity of my visit to the palace of the prime minister of Malaysia to express my pride in what Malaysia has achieved in terms of progress as well as in terms of the development of relations between our two countries in all areas.
“I am looking forward that my visit to Malaysia results in a quantum leap in the course of relations between the two countries,” said the king.
The Kingdom also announced more scholarships for Malaysian students.
“The Saudi government will increase the number of scholarships for Malaysian students to study in the Kingdom next year,” said Zayed Al-Harithi, head of the cultural section at the Saudi Embassy in Kuala Lumpur. He said there are more than 100 Malaysian students studying in Saudi Arabia.
He said the decision to increase the scholarships was due to 300 applications received last year. “There were only 100 scholarships available for Malaysian students last year to study at Imam Mohammed bin Saud Islamic University in Riyadh,” said Al-Harithi, adding that the Kingdom has many universities in which Malaysian students can attend.
Referring to the four agreements, whose signing was witnessed by King Salman, the SPA report said: “The first memorandum of understanding (MoU) inked Monday is related to cooperation in (the) trade and investment field, which was signed by Minister of State Ibrahim Al-Assaf and Malaysian Minister of Commerce and Industry Mustapa Mohamed.”
The second one includes cooperation in the field of labor and human resources. A joint working committee between Malaysia and Saudi Arabia will be formed to review the skills required by both countries, said Malaysian Human Resources Minister Richard R. Jaem. The third MoU will go a long way in boosting cooperation in scientific and education sectors.
The fourth MoU concerns cooperation between the SPA and the National News Agency of Malaysia. After signing the MoUs, Razak hosted a luncheon banquet in honor of King Salman.
On the sidelines
of the visit, several ministerial meetings took place. Dr. Adel Al-Toraifi met Malaysian Minister of Education Mahdzir Khalid at the ministry’s
headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.
During the meeting, they discussed cultural affairs and Malaysia’s participation as a guest of honor in the Riyadh International Book Fair scheduled for March 7.
Al-Toraifi stressed the importance of cooperation in the field of education and culture. In another ministerial meeting, Al-Toraifi discussed different aspects of cooperation in the media sector with Malaysian Minister of Multimedia and Communications Saleh Keruak.-Arab News

Saudi Aramco To Sign Key Pact With Petronas

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JEDDAH: Saudi state oil giant Aramco and Malaysia’s national oil company Petronas are to sign an investment deal Tuesday.
Announcing it, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak said Monday: “This is a significant investment and more details will be announced tomorrow (Tuesday).”
He said Aramco’s investment is a “strong vote of confidence” in Malaysia’s economy and that bilateral relations are at an “all-time high.”
Speaking to Arab News, an industry source said the agreement will strengthen Saudi Aramco’s competitive position in the Asia Pacific region where demand for growth is the highest in the world.
“This deal further underlines Saudi Aramco’s ongoing integrated downstream global strategy,” he added.-Arab News

King Salman Awarded Honorary Doctorate By Top Malaysian University

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KUALA LUMPUR: In recognition of his efforts to promote peace, solidarity and understanding among Islamic nations and the world at large, King Salman was conferred an honorary doctorate by the University of Malaya (UM) in Kuala Lumpur on Monday.
The degree was presented to the king at the UM by the sultan of Perak state, Nazrin Moizzuddin Shah, who is also UM chancellor.
In his acceptance speech, King Salman said: “The institutions of higher learning in Muslim countries must take on the challenge to produce more work that can contribute to the development of the Muslim world.”
He added that the Muslim world is facing “various challenges” in education and technical fields, besides political and economic constraints.
The UM is a top research university in Malaysia with more than 20,000 students and 2,000 academic staff. Its curriculum covers the full spectrum of learning, including arts, sciences and humanities.
King Salman is visiting Malaysia as part of his Asian tour, which will also take him to Indonesia, Brunei, China, Japan, the Maldives and Jordan.-Arab News

King’s Asia Tour To Expand Trade Ties: Business Leaders

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RIYADH: Private sector and business leaders have expressed optimism over the visit of King Salman to Malaysia and other Asian countries.
The king’s visit is an opportunity to encourage joint action between the Kingdom and the visited Asian countries, and remove obstacles that may obstruct exchange of goods, investments, and technology transfer to the Kingdom, local media said.
Subhi Mohammed Al-Hashim, deputy chairman of the Saudi-Japanese Business Council, said the business community in the Kingdom will reap the fruits of global visits led by King Salman.
Mohammed bin Abdulaziz Al-Ajlan, deputy chairman of the Saudi-Chinese Business Council, underscored the importance of the king’s visit to these Asian countries.
The visit comes at a delicate time and is expected to have a positive impact on bilateral relations between the Kingdom and these countries at economic, political, military and cultural levels, he said.
The king’s visit to China is expected to witness the signing of a series of agreements between the two countries in trade, industrial and military fields, he said.
The volume of the Kingdom’s exports to China and Japan ranged between 56-65 percent of the Kingdom’s total exports last year, he said.
Additionally, Indonesia and Malaysia are considered key partners to the Kingdom on issues related to the Islamic world, he said.
Abdulaziz bin Saad Al-Kiraidis, an investor, said the king’s visit to China is important in light of tremendous growth in the volume of trade between the two countries, from $100 million in 1990 to $75 billion in 2016. China remains the greatest trade partner to the Kingdom in light of its huge oil imports from the Kingdom, he said.
Mohammed Mustafa bin Mohammed Siddiq, former member of the Saudi-Malaysian Business Council, said the King’s Asian tour, notably the Malaysian visit, would serve the joint efforts of the private sector in the two countries. Meetings between businessmen will create more partnerships, thanks to the common understanding between the two leaderships in Saudi Arabia and Malaysia, he said.
Ahmed Al-Rajihi, chairman of the board of the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the king’s current visit to Malaysia will open new avenues for economic cooperation between the two countries in line with Vision 2030.
Fahad Al-Sulami, a member of the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said the king’s Asian tour is the best means to remove any obstacles and create stimuli to increase the volume of trade exchange and expand the Kingdom’s exports.-Arab News

Cabinet Underscores Importance Of King’s Asia Tour

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RIYADH: The Saudi Cabinet has underscored the importance of King Salman’s current tour of Asian countries.
Chaired by Vice Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Prince Mohammed bin Naif at Yamamah Palace on Monday, the Cabinet noted the Kingdom’s strong ties with these countries based on mutual respect and its keenness to develop them.
The Cabinet expressed appreciation for the respect enjoyed by the Kingdom at all levels in light of its efforts to realize global security and stability, its moderate and tolerant approach, and its efforts against terrorism and extremism.
The Cabinet was briefed on the outcome of a visit by Foreign Minister Adel Al-Jubeir to Iraq, and reaffirmed ties between the two sisterly countries.
The Cabinet explored regional and international developments, and in this context welcomed the resumption of Syrian talks in Geneva under UN auspices.
The Cabinet expressed hope that the talks would lead to a political solution to the crisis based on the Geneva Declaration and UN Security Council resolution 2254, in a manner that ends the suffering of the Syrian people and realizes their aspirations.
Locally, the Cabinet appreciated the recent convening of the international conference on integrity, held in Riyadh under the patronage of King Salman.
The Cabinet also lauded the opening of the electronic security center by Prince Mohammed, and the keenness of the government to preserve the security and safety of the people and the national economy.
The Cabinet approved a cooperation agreement in fighting crime between the governments of Saudi Arabia and Kyrgyzstan, signed in Jeddah.
The Cabinet authorized the deputy crown prince, second deputy premier and defense minister, or whomever he authorizes, to discuss with Russia a draft agreement on the protection of classified information.
The Cabinet approved a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for cooperation in judiciary and legal affairs between the Saudi and Afghan governments.
The Cabinet authorized the education minister, or whomever he authorizes, to sign a draft program between the Saudi Ministry of Education and the Qatari Higher Council of Education.
The Cabinet authorized Al-Jubeir, or whomever he authorizes, to discuss with the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) a draft agreement between the government and the WIPO.
The Cabinet authorized the minister of labor and social development, or whomever he authorizes, to discuss with Japan a draft MoU on social development between the Saudi Ministry of Labor and the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA).
The Cabinet approved a scientific cooperation agreement between the governments of Saudi Arabia and Belarus.
The Cabinet authorized King Saud University (KSU) to discuss an MoU for academic cooperation between KSU and Shanghai University in China.
The Cabinet authorized the minister of culture and information, or whomever he authorizes, to discuss with Indonesia and Malaysia a program to exchange news between the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) and Indonesian and Malaysian news agencies, separately.-Arab News

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