IOF evacuates ten Palestinian families in al-Ras al-Ahmar

al-ras

The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) stormed al-Ras al-Ahmar area in the northern Jordan Valley on Tuesday and evacuated Palestinian families, said human rights sources.

They added that ten families were evacuated from their homes by the Israeli army to carry out military training in the area.

The Israeli soldiers confiscated two tractors and took them to a nearby military camp.

Human rights sources affirmed that regular violations were committed by the IOF against the residents of al-Ras aAl-Ahmar during the past month, including demolitions and evictions in addition to the confiscation of nearly 10 tractors to put pressure on the Palestinian residents to leave the area.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Now In Bangladesh, Rohingya Muslims Describe Rape, Murder In Myanmar

Muslims in an overwhelmingly Buddhist nation, the Rohingya have long faced persecution in Myanmar, where most are denied citizenship.

Mohsena Begum, a Rohingya who escaped to Bangladesh from Myanmar, holds her child and sits at the entrance of a room of an unregistered refugee camp in Teknaf, near Cox's Bazar, a southern coastal district about, 296 kilometers (183 miles) south of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Dec. 2, 2016. (AP Photo/A.M. Ahad)

Mohsena Begum, a Rohingya who escaped to Bangladesh from Myanmar, holds her child and sits at the entrance of a room of an unregistered refugee camp in Teknaf, near Cox’s Bazar, a southern coastal district about, 296 kilometers (183 miles) south of Dhaka, Bangladesh. Dec. 2, 2016

COX’S BAZAR, Bangladesh  — The Myanmar soldiers came in the morning, the young mother says. They set fire to the concrete-and-thatch homes, forcing the villagers to cluster together. When some of her neighbors tried to escape into the fields, they were shot. After that, she says, most people stopped running away.

“They drove us out of our houses, men and women in separate lines, ordering us to keep our hands folded on the back of our heads,” says 20-year-old Mohsena Begum, her voice choking as she described what happened to the little village of Caira Fara, which had long been home to hundreds of members of Myanmar’s minority Rohingya community. She said that when about 50 people had been gathered together, the soldiers, along with a group of local men, pulled four village leaders from the crowd and slit their throats.

Muslims in an overwhelmingly Buddhist nation, the Rohingya have long faced persecution in Myanmar, where most are denied citizenship. The latest outbreak of violence was triggered by October attacks on guard posts near the Bangladesh border that killed nine police officers. While the attackers’ identities and motives are unclear, the government launched a massive counter-insurgency sweep through Rohingya areas in western Rakhine state. Most Rohingya live in Rakhine, which borders Bangladesh.

The government, which has implied the attacks were carried out by Rohingya sympathizers, has acknowledged using helicopter gunships in support of ground troops in the sweep. While survivors and human rights groups have tracked waves of anti-Rohingya violence in recent weeks, the Myanmar government insists that stories like Begum’s are exaggerations.

Myanmar’s leader, the Nobel Peace laureate Aung San Suu Kyi, has accused the international community of stoking unrest.

A portrait of Myanmar's Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi with her mouth covered with a sandal displayed on a mobile phone screen is shown by a protester during a demonstration in front of the Myanmar Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 25, 2016 against the murder, displacement and persecution of Muslim Rohingya in Myanmar. (AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit)

A portrait of Myanmar’s Foreign Minister Aung San Suu Kyi with her mouth covered with a sandal displayed on a mobile phone screen is shown by a protester during a demonstration in front of the Myanmar Embassy in Bangkok, Thailand, Friday, Nov. 25, 2016 against the murder, displacement and persecution of Muslim Rohingya in Myanmar

“It doesn’t help if everybody is just concentrating on the negative side of the situation, in spite of the fact that there were attacks on police outposts,” she said in a recent interview on Singapore’s Channel News Asia.

Suu Kyi, whose party took power in March after decades of military-backed rule, has been accused of not acting strongly enough to curb the violence against the more than 1 million Rohingya believed to be in the country. Although many have lived in Rakhine for generations, they are widely seen as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.

“It helps if people recognize the difficulty and are more focused on resolving these difficulties rather than exaggerating them, so that everything seems worse than it really is,” she said in the interview.

But Begum says she has no need to exaggerate what happened in Caira Fara.

She said that after the four leaders were killed, violence churned through the village in chaotic scenes of horror. Begum’s husband, a poor, illiterate farm laborer, was beaten and then murdered by having his throat slit, along with an unknown number of other villagers, she said. Their bodies were eventually driven away in a truck.

She said attackers knocked her young son knocked from her grasp, then raped her.

Finally, when the soldiers weren’t paying attention, she grabbed her son and ran into the nearby hills. After hiding for two days, her brother gave her enough money — about $38 — to pay smugglers to get her and her son into Bangladesh.

When Bangladeshi border guards stopped them, she began to weep.

“I told them I have no one to protect me there,” she says, and told them: “‘Look at my baby! He will die if I go back there.’” After that, they let her pass.

Much of Rakhine has been closed to outsiders, including journalists, since the violence began. However, former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan, leader of a commission formed to investigate the situation in Rakhine state, was allowed to visit in recent days. He is expected to hold a press conference Tuesday in Yangon, Myanmar’s biggest city.

Along the banks of the Naf River, which marks the border between Bangladesh and Myanmar, it’s not difficult to find people who can talk about what is happening.

Some 15,000 Rohingya have arrived in Bangladesh over past month, often brought in by smugglers, according to police and intelligence officials, speaking on condition of anonymity because the government refuses to release numbers publicly. They have joined up to 500,000 undocumented Rohingya who have been living in Bangladesh after arriving from Myanmar in waves since the 1970s. Some 33,000 registered Rohingya refugees live the Cox’s Bazar district. Bangladesh does not welcome Rohingya — its maritime patrols sometimes turn back refugee boats full of them — but it is seen as a haven compared to Myanmar.

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Version 4.6.1 Permalink saved Close media panel Insert Media Create Gallery Create Audio Playlist Create Video Playlist Featured Image Insert from URL Soundcloud is Gold Insert Media Upload FilesMedia Library Filter by typeFilter by dateSearch Media Aung San      ATTACHMENT DETAILS   AP_16340457349800.jpg December 5, 2016 279 KB 1600 × 1001 Edit Image Delete Permanently URL http://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/AP_16340457349800.jpg Title Bangladesh Fleeing Rohingya Caption In this Dec. 4, 2016 photo, Osman Gani, a Rohingya man from Myanmar, shows a video clip that he shot on his mobile phone as he describes the recent violence standing on the bank of the Naf River, near a camp for Rohingya people who illegally crossed the Myanmar-Bangladesh border in Teknaf, near Cox's Bazar, a southern coastal district about, 296 kilometers (183 miles) south of Dhaka, Bangladesh. The thin, fast-talking Arabic teacher, fled into nearby fields after his village was attacked on Nov. 11. As he fled north, he used his mobile phone to film destruction in other Rohingya villages he passed through. “They came and killed mercilessly. They burned our homes,” says Gani, standing near the Naf River over the weekend. “No one was there to save us.” (AP Photo/A.M. Ahad) Alt Text Description ATTACHMENT DISPLAY SETTINGS  Alignment Link To  http://www.mintpressnews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/AP_16340457349800.jpg Size 1 selected Clear   Insert into post Choose Files

In this Dec. 4, 2016 photo, Osman Gani, a Rohingya man from Myanmar, shows a video clip that he shot on his mobile phone as he describes the recent violence standing on the bank of the Naf River, near a camp for Rohingya people who illegally crossed the Myanmar-Bangladesh border in Teknaf, near Cox’s Bazar, a southern coastal district about, 296 kilometers (183 miles) south of Dhaka, Bangladesh. The thin, fast-talking Arabic teacher, fled into nearby fields after his village was attacked on Nov. 11. As he fled north, he used his mobile phone to film destruction in other Rohingya villages he passed through. “They came and killed mercilessly. They burned our homes,” says Gani, standing near the Naf River over the weekend. “No one was there to save us”

The U.N. says up 30,000 Rohingya Muslims have abandoned their homes amid the recent violence. Satellite images analyzed by the rights group Human Rights Watch show 1,250 structures destroyed in November in Rohingya villages.

Osman Gani, a thin, fast-talking Arabic teacher, fled after his village, Gouzo Bil, was attacked Nov. 11.

“They came and killed mercilessly. They burned our homes,” says Gani, standing near the Naf River over the weekend. “No one was there to save us.”

He hid with his family for about a week near the village. But when searches intensified, and with soldiers targeting men, he was forced to leave Myanmar without his family.

“I had no other choice but to leave them behind. I came to the bank of the river and started swimming,” he says. His family was able to join him in Bangladesh a few days later.

As he fled north, he used his mobile phone to film destruction in other Rohingya villages he passed through. In some, the blackened remains of what appear to be children can be seen amid the wreckage of homes. Gani’s voice can be heard in some of the videos but The Associated Press could not confirm their authenticity.

“I have shot videos!” he says, holding out his mobile phone to a reporter. “Don’t you see the charred bodies?”

While he was initially in hiding after the attack, Osmani said he also managed to slip back into his village and film what remained of his home.

As he walks through the village, a child can be heard talking to him.

“Where are you coming from?” the boy asks.

Gani doesn’t answer, instead asking, “Where’s my cow?”

Then he pans through the ashes and broken concrete. “This is my land, my home,” he says. “This is Puitta’s. This is Uncle Yunus.”

(Source / 06.12.2016)

IOF soldiers arrest two Palestinian schoolchildren in Nablus

pal-kids-jeruzalem

The Israeli occupation forces (IOF) arrested on Tuesday two Palestinian children from al-Sawiyeh\ Lubban school in Nablus to the north of the West Bank.

Director of public relations in the Directorate of Education south of Nablus, Anwar Dawabsheh, said that an Israeli patrol arrested Aref Tabl and Ibraheem Deek, both 11 years old, from the sixth grade, and took them to an unknown destination.

The Israeli forces claimed that the two students were throwing stones in the main street between Nablus and Ramallah although eyewitnesses denied seeing any stone throwing in the area.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Barghouthi calls on PA to reconsider its duties

marwan-al-barghouthi

Fatah movement leader, Marwan al-Barghouthi, called on the Palestinian Authority (PA) to reconsider its duties which are supposed to be directed toward the establishment of an independent Palestinian state.

In a statement reported by his lawyer, Barghouthi, who is held captive in Israeli jails, said that he will not deviate from his original political path and will continue his work toward achieving national unity and liberation.

He also expressed his satisfaction for winning the highest votes in the elections held by the Central Committee of Fatah movement, which concluded its seventh conference in Ramallah last Sunday.

Barghouthi said that electing him as a member in the Central Committee of Fatah movement shows Fatah members’ support for him.

Barghouthi, who is serving five life sentences in the Israeli jails after being detained in 2002, called on the PA to consolidate its relations with the Arab countries and the friendly western countries.

The Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, described Barghouthi as “a terrorist leader who encouraged terrorist operations,” and considered his election as an incitement to hatred against Israel.

Barghouthi’s wife, Fadwa al-Barghouti, said that her husband represents “a model of the revolutionary thought,” pointing out that “Marwan al-Barghouti will be wherever the Palestinian people want him to be.”

Last Sunday, Fatah movement concluded its seventh conference since it was founded in 1965, which lasted for 6 days. The conference basically aimed to reunite the movement and put an end to its internal disputes.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Trump son-in-law’s family gave money to illegal West Bank settlements

Kushner family foundation has given tens of thousand of dollars to Israeli organisations that represent West Bank settlements

Kushner, who is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, is from an Orthodox Jewish family

The parents of Donald Trump’s son-in-law have given tens of thousands of dollars to groups in illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank, according to a Haaretz report on Monday.

Tax forms from 2010-2014 on Jared Kushner’s parents show that their fund – the Charles and Seryl Kushner Foundation – gave $20,000 to the group American Friends in Beit El Yeshive, an organisation that supports programmes in the arch-conservative settlement of Beit El.

Jared Kushner sits on the board of his parents’ foundation.

Haaretz reported in 2009 that Beit El was built on private Palestinian land without approval. In a Peace Now report, 96.85 percent of Beit El’s land is Palestinian property.

The president of the American Friends in Beit El Yeshive is David Friedman, who advised Trump on foreign policy towards Israel and Palestine. Friedman also works as Trump’s real estate lawyer.

Friedman said in October that settlements are not illegal.

US President-elect Donald Trump said in late November that he would “love” to clinch a deal to end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians despite the checkered history of successive administrations’ attempts to broker a Middle East peace agreement.

“I would love to be the one who made peace with Israel and the Palestinians, that would be such a great achievement,” Trump said in an interview with The New York Times.

A New York Times reporter tweeted that Trump also suggested that his son-in-law Jared Kushner could help broker the deal.

Kushner, who is married to Trump’s daughter Ivanka, is from an Orthodox Jewish family. The businessman and investor was a close adviser to Trump during the election campaign.

After Trump’s 8 November win, Kushner reportedly asked for access to the daily White House security briefings given to his father-in-law.

US State Department policy has long held that Israeli settlements halt peace processes between the Palestinians and Israelis, but Trump’s advisers have dismissed that stance.

The Kushner foundation also donated money to the Etzion Foundation, a group that gives funds to projects in the Gush Etzion settlement. The non-profit organisation also gave $5,000 to Etzion in 2012 and $10,000 in 2013.

It also donated $5,000 to Ohr Torah Stone, an umbrella programme of education projects in Efrat settlement. The founder of Ohr Torah Stone is Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, who congratulated Trump on his victory.

“Trump speaks very differently about Israel and our prime minister and supports the need to transfer the US embassy here to Jerusalem, so I have a lot of hope,” Riskin said.

The Kushners have made numerous other contributions to Israeli projects, including groups that support Israel’s military.

According to the Haaretz report, the family foundation also gave money to several Jewish organisations within the US, including $30,000 to groups run by the ultra-orthodox Chabad.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Israeli legislators advance bill to legalise settlements

The new bill would see  dozens of illegal Israeli outposts in the occupied West Bank retroactively legalized. (AFP/File)

The new bill would see dozens of illegal Israeli outposts in the occupied West Bank retroactively legalized

The so-called ‘formalization’ bill passed a preliminary reading in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset, Monday evening, a law that both its supporters and opponents say would pave the way to annexing the occupied West Bank. Leading up to the vote, a clause demanding that the symbolic Amona outpost be retroactively legalized was removed from the bill.

The bill — passing with 60 voting in favor and 49 against — would see thousands of dunams of privately-owned Palestinian land seized and dozens of illegal Israeli outposts in the occupied West Bank retroactively legalized.

Israeli ministers and lawmakers have promoted the bill in hopes it will prevent the evacuation of the Amona outpost, slated for demolition by Dec. 25, while others in the government — including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — have warned the bill would attract widespread international condemnation, and Israel’s attorney general has said that the law, if passed, would be indefensible in court.

However, the Knesset’s Ministerial Committee for Legislation passed a version of the bill that would not be applicable to Amona.

Earlier on Monday, Netanyahu reached a compromise with champion of the bill, Education Minister and leader of the Jewish Home party Naftali Bennett to remove the clause that would have retroactively legalized the outpost, following outrage from members of the opposition who highlighted that the Israeli Supreme Court has already ruled multiple times to demolish Amona.

The revised version allows the state of Israel to give settlers “usage rights” to privately-owned Palestinian land, but not ownership rights, while Palestinians who can prove ownership of land would receive “compensation,” according to Israeli daily Haaretz. The bill only applies to settlements established with government assistance.

“This is a historic day in the Knesset, which went from establishing a Palestinian state to Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria,” Israeli media quoted Bennet as saying, using the Israeli government’s term for the occupied West Bank. “Have no doubt: The settlement bill is leading the way to annexation.”

Attorney General Avichai Mandelblit reacted immediately to the passage of the bill, reiterating that despite the exclusion of Clause 7, the proposed law still contravenes Israeli and international law.

Mandelblit expressed his support last week for a solution for Amona’s residents that would see them temporarily relocated to a nearby “abandoned” plot of land under the Absentee Ownership Law, with Israeli newspaper Haaretz reporting the move came only after intense pressure from the Israeli prime minister.

However, four claims were filed on Monday by Palestinians asserting ownership to the land in question, leaving just two plots directly at the proposed site where no ownership claims have been made, according to Haaretz.

Despite Mandelblit’s objections, the current version of the bill is “expected to sail through the Knesset,” in its next reading, expected to be held as early as Tuesday, according to Israeli online newspaper Times of Israel.

On Sunday, US Secretary of State John Kerry harshly criticized Israel over the bill, and called Bennett’s recent statements following the election of US President-Elect Donald Trump “profoundly disturbing,” after the minister said the election spelled the end of the two-state solution and that the “era of the Palestinian state is over.”

Kerry said Israel’s right-wing government and ministers did not want and were not working towards a two-state solution, which the United States and other foreign peace brokers have been regarding for decades as the ideal solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The latest report from Israeli human rights group B’Tselem said, referring to the bill, that the “Dispossession of Palestinians was never a matter contingent on this legislation, It has been integral to the settlement enterprise from its very inception and is one of the most consistent trends in Israeli policy over the decades.”

Rights group Peace Now called the proposed law “grand law robbery” on Tuesday, arguing that its passage “will not only lead to a moral deterioration by approving the theft of private lands, but will also be a devastating blow to the two-state solution as it will allow the establishment and expansion of new settlements, far from the Green Line.”

Human rights groups and international leaders have strongly condemned Israel’s settlement construction, claiming it is a strategic maneuver to prevent the establishment of a contiguous, independent Palestinian state by changing the facts on the ground.

While members of the international community have rested the solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict on the discontinuation of illegal Israeli settlements and the establishment of a two-state solution, Israeli leaders have instead shifted further to the right as many Knesset members have called for an escalation of settlement building in the occupied West Bank, and with some having advocated for its complete annexation.

A number of Palestinian activists have criticized the two-state solution as unsustainable and unlikely to bring durable peace, proposing instead a binational state with equal rights for Israelis and Palestinians.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Saudi airstrikes rain down on Yemen

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a campaign against Yemen since March 2015. (AFP/File)

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a campaign against Yemen since March 2015

Saudi warplanes have carried out a series of new aerial attacks against areas across Yemen.

On Tuesday morning, Saudi fighter jets launched nearly two dozen airstrikes against Baqim, Kitaf wa al-Boqe’e, Majz, al-Dhaher, Monabbih, and Thu’ban districts in the northwestern Yemeni province of Sa’ada. There were, however, no immediate reports on possible casualties and the extent of the damage caused, Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported.

Saudi artillery units also pounded several areas in the Monabbih and Shada’a districts of the same Yemeni province, but no reports of fatalities were available.

Additionally, Saudi military aircraft bombarded various areas in the Nihm district of the capital province of Sana’a.

A military camp was hit in the al-Khawkhah district of the coastal western province of Hudaydah. A number of areas were targeted in the Bayt al-Faqih district as well.

Meanwhile, militants suspected of affiliation to the al-Qaeda network have reportedly attacked a crude oil pipeline in the southern province of Shabwah.

A local source, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the pipeline was carrying oil to the industrial port town of Balhaf.

The al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) has taken advantage of the chaos and the breakdown of security in Yemen caused by the Saudi war to tighten its grip on the southern and southeastern parts of the impoverished crisis-stricken country.

Separately, UN Special Envoy for Yemen Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed has failed to convince Kuwaiti authorities to host a fresh round of UN-brokered peace talks between representatives from Yemen’s warring sides.

The senior UN official met and discussed the latest regional developments with Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah and First Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sabah al-Khalid al-Sabah during his 5-day-long stay in Kuwait City.

Kuwaiti authorities have said they would no more host the talks between the parties to the Yemeni conflict and would only host a potential ceremony to sign a peace agreement.

Saudi Arabia has been engaged in a campaign against Yemen since March 2015 in an attempt to bring back the former Yemeni government to power.

The impoverished Arab country is grappling with the scarcity of food supplies and an outbreak of diseases amid the Saudi Arabian war.

The UN International Children’s Fund (UNICEF) says 7.4 million Yemeni children are in dire need of medical help, and 370,000 run the risk of acute malnutrition.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

IPS steps up pressure on hunger striker al-Hamour

al-hamour

Palestinian prisoner Ammar al-Hamour has been subjected to pressure from the Israeli Prison Service (IPS) so as to force him to suspend his hunger strike, a rights group reported Tuesday.

Lawyer Khaled Muhajneh, from the Palestinian Prisoners Society (PPS), said al-Hamour has been enduring daily harassment by the IPS in order to force him to end his hunger strike, which he started 16 days ago to protest his administrative detention, without charge or trial.

Recently, al-Hamour was transferred from the Negev jail to an isolated cell in the Ashkelon lock-up.

The lawyer quoted the hunger striker as voicing his firm rebuff to succumb to pressure by IPS, vowing to continue his strike until the Israeli occupation authorities end his administrative detention.

Al-Hamour has lost 13 kilograms of his overall weight and suffers from stomachaches and insomnia.

He is currently held in a two-square-meter cell and has been stripped of all his personal belongings. A small toilet can also be seen inside the cell.

A native of Jaba’ town, in Jenin, prisoner al-Hamour was arrested in February 16, 2016 and sentenced twice to six-month administrative prison-terms.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Hamas documents Israeli, PA violations against Palestinians in November

The Hamas Information Office has released a monthly report documenting Israeli and Palestinian Authority (PA) violations against Palestinians during November 2016.

According to the report, the Israeli occupation forces “IOF” had over the last month killed 5 Palestinians, including 4 in the West Bank, while it had over the same period detained 375 Palestinians, including 54 minors, 28 freed ex-prisoners and 11 women.

Among the detainees were 15 Hamas cadres who had just been released from PA prisons after various periods of interrogation and detention over political grounds.

Israeli forces had also knocked down a mosque and 29 Palestinian residential buildings as well as 30 agricultural and industrial facilities.

In addition, Israeli Occupation Authorities had in November sanctioned the construction of 3742 housing units in illegal settlements erected on occupied Palestinian lands in Jerusalem and the West Bank.

The report further documented 70 cases of arbitrary arrests by PA security forces which targeted pro-resistance activists, including 68 Hamas cadres and 2 members of Islamic Jihad Movement.

PA forces have also summoned 37 others for interrogation over political backgrounds.

(Source / 06.12.2016)

Ghadbian: Russia’s Veto Latest Attempt to Shield Bashar al-Assad

Representative of the Syrian Coalition in the United Nations Najib Ghadbian condemned Russia’s vetoing of a draft UN Security Council resolution calling for the imposition of a 7-day cease-fire in Aleppo so that humanitarian aid could reach the city’s besieged eastern neighborhoods.

Ghadhbian on Monday said that Russia’s use of its veto power in the UN Security Council was not surprising as Moscow has aided and abetted the Assad regime in its war crimes across Syria over the past 5 years. The veto Russia used on Monday was just a new attempt to shield Bashar al-Assad from justice and to enable it to carry on with its genocidal onslaught on Aleppo, he added.

The UN Security Council on Monday failed to pass the draft resolution drafted by New Zealand, Spain and Egypt.

Ghadhbian criticized the failure of the UN Security Council to save lives in Syria, stressing that it is now up to the Member States to stop the massacres being committed by the Assad regime through the imposition of a no-bombing zone as well as the launch of airdrops of aid to Aleppo.

Aleppo and its countryside have been subjected to ferocious onslaught by the Assad regime and Russian forces since November 15. Over 900 people, mostly women and children, have so far been killed and thousands more injured in the ongoing bombing campaign on the city and its countryside.

The relentless aerial bombardment forced all schools and hospitals in eastern Aleppo to close down and destroyed two civil defense centers.

Human Rights Watch also condemned the veto. “Countries on and off the Security Council should immediately work to convene an emergency Special Session of the General Assembly to explore, among other things, ways to hold perpetrators of serious crimes in Syria to account,” Louis Charbonneau, UN director at Human Rights Watch said in a statement on Monday.

“Russia seems to not want any interference with its & Iran’s joint military ops with Syria military in Aleppo, despite cost to civilians,” Charbonneau added.

This is the sixth time Russia uses its veto power in the UN Security Council on Syria since 2011, and the fifth for China.

(Source: Syrian Coalition’s Media Office + Agencies / 06.12.2016)