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Posts Tagged Middle East

Erdogan calls on Muslim countries to unite and confront Israel by Faisal Edroos, Al -Jazeera

Erdogan calls on Muslim countries to unite and confront Israel

Turkish president tells OIC leaders that Israel must be held accountable for the killing of Palestinians in Gaza Strip.

by Faisal Edroos
 Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has called on Muslim leaders to unite and confront Israel, days after scores of Palestinians were killed by Israeli snipers as they marked 70 years of Israeli occupation.

Speaking at an extraordinary summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) on Friday, Erdogan said Israel should be held accountable over the killings which drew widespread international condemnation and triggered a wave of protests from Asia, through the Middle East, to North Africa.

“To take action for Palestinians massacred by Israeli bandits is to show the whole world that humanity is not dead,” Erdogan told the group of Muslim leaders gathered in Turkey’s largest city, Istanbul.

The Turkish president described Israel’s killing of Palestinians as “thuggery, atrocity and state terror,” and said the US’ recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital would inevitably haunt it.

‘US part of the problem

On Monday, just as the US went ahead with the controversial relocation of its embassy to Jerusalem, 62 Palestinians, including five children, were killed and more than 2,700 wounded as the Israeli army fired live ammunition and tear gas at protesters who had assembled hundreds of metres from a 1949 armistice line between Gaza and Israel.

The protesters in the besieged enclave had gathered to commemorate Nakba Day – an event in 1948 when Zionist paramilitaries ethnically cleansed Palestinian cities and towns. About 750,000 people were forcibly expelled from historical Palestine.

WATCH: Turkey plays a major role in US Jerusalem move

The Istanbul summit was attended by several heads of state, but Saudi Arabia, the host of the 57-member OIC, sent only a senior foreign ministry official. Egypt, Bahrain and the UAE also deployed lower level ministers.

Speaking at the conference, Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani said the Palestinian cause had “become a symbol for oppressed peoples everywhere” and condemned Israel for “brutal massacre” of peaceful demonstrators.

“Who among us does not know the declared siege forced on Gaza Strip and collective punishment against its population?” the emir said.

“The Gaza Strip has been transformed into a large concentration camp for millions of people who are deprived of their most basic rights to travel, education, work and medical treatment.

“When their sons take arms they are called terrorists, and when they stage peaceful demonstrations they are called extremists, and are shot dead with live ammunition.”

For his part, Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah said the US had become “part of the problem and not the solution” and called the relocation of the embassy “an act of aggression against the Islamic nation, against Muslims and Christians”.

Jordanian King Abdullah II urged for the adoption of urgent measures to back “the resistance of Palestinians”, while Iranian President Hasan Rouhani called for economic and political measures against the US and Israel.

Late on Friday, the OIC issued a final communique calling on the United Nations to form an international investigation into the killings in Gaza; the creation of an international protection force for Palestinians, and for the OIC to place economic restrictions on any countries, companies or individuals who recognise Israel’s annexation of Jerusalem.

Thousands protest in solidarity with Palestine

Earlier in the day, Erdogan told a raucous crowd of more than 10,000 people in Istanbul’s Yenikapi fairground that the Muslim world had to unite and “pull themselves back together”.

“Muslims are way too busy fighting and disagreeing with themselves, and shy away when confronted by their enemies,” he told the audience.

“Since 1947, Israel has been free to do what it likes in this region. They do whatever they feel like. But this reality can be undone … if we unite.” 

Earlier this week, Turkey recalled its envoys to Israel and the US following the killings of the Palestinians and the relocation of Washington’s embassy from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv.

Tolgar Memis, a German-Turk, said he came to the rally to support Erdogan’s recent remarks and policies against Israel.

“What we’ve seen over the last few years, all the injustice, and what happened earlier this week – it’s simply unacceptable.

“Erdogan has made great strides in defending the Palestinians, something he is obligated to do, and hopefully other leaders will follow his cue.”

SOURCE: AL JAZEERA NEWS

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“Confronting Assad’s regime in Syria: Role of United States and Russia” By   Sherry Sharyl

“Confronting Assad’s regime in Syria: Role of United States and Russia”

 

By

Sherry Sharyl

 

 

 

 

Middle East has always remained the center of the world politics since World War II, end of
which created the UNO and in 1948 the State of Israel. After the birth of Israel, Middle East
became the battle zone where israel’s hegemony was to be promoted in order to bring major

militarily armed states of Middle East to a position where major powers of the world could
indoctrinate their own political and economic agendas in the region. Before that, this region
was famous for its natural resources and oil reserves and its Mediterranean trade route. Above
all, Israel and Palestine conflict, then the Israel’s traditional wars with its neighboring states
had become the persistent tension in the Middle East.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Recent developments in the region during previous years have depicted a different picture of
conflicts in the oil rich region. Since 2011, the civil war in Syria in order to confront Assad’s
regime has badly affected the security situation in the Middle East. Before the civil war,
Syrian people complained about the bad governance, raised unemployment, illiteracy,
corruption, poverty, lack of political freedom, under the Assad’s presidency. Then the Arab
spring in Tunisia, in 2011 has further added fuel to the fire, the syrian pro-democratic
demonstrator erupted the city of Deraa demanding the President’s Assad’s resignation. The
Assad’s government acted aggressively and crush the protestors by the use of deadly force.
Unfortunately, this anti-government protest spreads nationwide, thus resulting in never
ending civil war in Syria. This civil war has made easier for the world and regional powers
i.e, Russia, United States, Iran, Saudia Arabia and Turkey to interfere into the political
impasse in Syria by acting in support of (Russia and Iran) or by taking harsh steps (USA and
Saudi Arabia) against Assad’s regime not for the conflict resolution but for their own
interests. The logistical, financial and political support and interference of the external
powers for and against the Assad’s regime, has further fueled the sectarian conflicts,
terrorism, Rebellion movements and extremism. Thus, the civil war in Syria than turned into
proxy battleground because of the involvement of the world and regional powers.
Now the Assad’s regime has become the victim of the world’s major powers, thus it has
initiated a new cold war which is unlikely to get a promising end. The Syrian proxy war has
again results in the formation of two blocks along with their allied states, i.e, Russia( China,
Iran and Afghanistan) US ( Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Turkey and Israel).

 

 

 

 

 

Syria is strategically and economically important to both US and Russia in the Middle East.
Russia along with China has increased its political, economic and military support to the
Assad’s regime. The primary goal of Russia is to protect and support the Assad’s regime
against the international intervention, Russia wants to counter the United States influence in
the Middle East and Russia has the vast economic interests in Syria. Syria is one of the
largest importers of military equipments, about 4 billlion dollars of arms contracts have been
signed between Syria and Russia. Besides military equipments, Russian oil and gas
companies has been invested in Syria. Soiuzneftegaz and Tatneft have been extracting oil and
gas in Syria since 2003, Stroitransgaz has built extensive natural gas pipeline and processing
plants. Currently it is constructing a second plant near the city of Rakka which will process,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

approximatly 1.3 billion cubic meters of gas. Russian companies are also constructing nuclear
power plant for the production of energy. Manufacturing companies of Russia i.e, Uralmash
which provides drilling equipment to the pertroleum company of Syria, Tupolev and
Aviastar-SP has provided passenger airplanes to the Syrian Air lines. Beside economic
interest, strategic interests of Russia in this region are of great importance. For this, the only
Tartus naval base of Russia in Syria is left, but it’s not a true military base because it is not
hosted permanently by the Russian army, its only purpose is to repair and resupply the ships to
the Mediterranean. Therefore, Russian government and the Russian exporters fear that the
regime change in Syria will lead to the loss of contracts and as well as economy and will
weaken the Russian influence in Syria, as well as in the Middle East.
The United States interest in Syria is quite different; it’s strategic rather than economic. The
main interest of United States is to counter the terrorism and the mushroom growth of
terrorist organizations within Syria and in the Middle East. US main aim is to counter ISIS
(Islamic State in Iraq and Syria). US with the help of its Kurdish Allies is countering ISIS.
Al-Qaeda have been sending its militants to the Syria to support the Assad’s regime.
Strategically, the civil war in Syria will have enormous impacts for the region and for the US.
Syrian alliance with Iran can brought major changes in the policies of Saudi Arabia and
Israel. Iran proliferate arms and other goods to fuel the militant organizations in Syria i.e,
Hamas in Gaza strip and Hezbollah in Lebanon and its allies. Beside this, Tehran keeps on
supporting Assad regime politically and militarily. The Russian influence in Syria goes all the
way back to cold war. Most importantly, US wants to protect its bosom friend Israel from
Iran’s and terrorist threats. Therefore, Iran, terrorism and Russia are the brutal and intractable
enemies of the US in the Middle East.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Therefore, the responsibility of war crime and crime against humanity must be held
accountable in Syria. The brutal chemical attacks, casualties of the innocent civilians,
violation of International humanitarian law by ISIS and other terrorist organizations, must be
punished. The use of Chemical weapons, by Assad against rebels and other civilians, must be
punished for their brutal act. By these unhumantarian acts, it has been concluded that Assad’s
regime in Syria is a threat to Syrian citizens as well as development in Syria. Both the cold
war rivals and their allied states should try to settle conflicts in Syria and help

 

Reference for Graphics & Maps

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