Amal Alamuddin refuses UN offer to investigate possible war crimes in Gaza | World | The Guardian

“I am horrified by the situation in the occupied Gaza Strip, particularly the civilian casualties that have been caused, and strongly believe that there should be an independent investigation and accountability for crimes that have been committed,” said the statement.

“I was contacted by the UN about this for the first time this morning. I am honoured to have received the offer, but given existing commitments – including eight ongoing cases – unfortunately could not accept this role. I wish my colleagues who will serve on the commission courage and strength in their endeavours.”

via Amal Alamuddin refuses UN offer to investigate possible war crimes in Gaza | World | The Guardian.

Egyptian Aak 2014- Week 32 ( August 4 -10)


Suez Canal

( Info-graphic of Suez Canal Project, via Al-Arabiya)

Main Headlines




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Kosavo deja vu! Liberman calls for economic boycott of Israel’s Arabs – Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East

The tension and violence of the last two months have managed, once again, to unravel the delicate fabric linking Arabs and Jews in Israeli society. The sights and sounds in the streets of Israel’s cities and towns were not like those of the riots during the second intifada, but in many ways the rift today is suggestive of what happened 14 years ago.

via Liberman calls for economic boycott of Israel’s Arabs – Al-Monitor: the Pulse of the Middle East.

Maine Codfish Numbers Hit All-Time Low – global warming anyone?

National Marine Fisheries Service scientists say the amount of cod spawning in the Gulf of Maine is estimated to be 3 to 4 percent of its target level. That number declined from 13 to 18 percent three years ago.

Low levels of reproduction in the fishery are holding repopulation back, scientists say. They are investigating what might be driving down the numbers of cod but believe temperature change — which they have also linked to a declining Northern shrimp stock and northern migration of herring — may be one factor.

The Gulf of Maine, along with Georges Bank, is one of two key areas where East Coast fishermen search for cod, a vital commercial fish in New England that appears in supermarkets and roadside fish-and-chip shops.

An updated assessment of the Gulf of Maine cod shows the fish spawning at levels lower than seen in data stretching back to the 1930s, scientists say. Records of cod catches dating back to the 19th century indicate the population has never dipped this low before, said Russ Brown, deputy science and research director at the Northeast Fisheries Science Center.

via Maine Codfish Numbers Hit All-Time Low.

Is Sri Lanka sinking in to an abyss of racism and apartheid? | Groundviews

Since Independence, the majority political class and their affiliates by their myopic political visions, parochialism and self interest have taken the country down the abyss leading towards a failed state. Failing law and order, rising unemployment, rising rate of school drop outs due to poverty, 8% of the population yet under poverty line, rising tide of state loss making institutions, social and environmental problems impeding progress, failing institutions, rampant corruption, murder, rape and suicide rates, alcoholism, prostitution and communities disintegrating on racial and religious lines hitherto nonexistent whilst the government failing to give the basic necessities of life to its citizens but militarizing society even in the absence of war are remarkable. This with a divided opposition yet to come up with a pragmatic solution acceptable to all is pushing the country down the precipice. Today, the bankrupt political class having exhausted all the democratic options of coming to power by show of achievements and civilized means of meritocracy is thus setting the grounds for an apartheid state for a particular class of people to rule and squander the wealth of the nation in the name of race and religion.

via Is Sri Lanka sinking in to an abyss of racism and apartheid? | Groundviews.

Why are Haitians still eating mud cakes? — New Internationalist

In a junkyard at sundown, rusted trucks rest among the bushes and a fire crackles in a clearing. A man in his early twenties approaches, closely watched by a few others, who seem in awe of him. He pulls a handgun from his waistband and tries his best to carry the swagger of a hardened militia leader.

‘We’re ready to give them a lesson,’ he says. ‘And once we do, it’s going to be a lesson to remember.’

These young men, some still in their teens, form one of the many street gangs in Cité Soleil, the most hellish corner of Port-au-Prince, Haiti’s capital. The ‘lesson’, they say, awaits the government of President Michel Martelly and Prime Minister Laurent Lamothe, which stands accused in these parts of overseeing what has been a disastrous recovery from the 2010 earthquake.

‘They never want to sit down and talk to us,’ he continues, ‘so it’s only right that we’re armed and ready to do everything that has to be done.’

via Why are Haitians still eating mud cakes? — New Internationalist.