Faces have names. We hear about them but do not get the entire picture.
Get to know these influential people in Fanack’s ‘Faces’ section.
Below is a list of the most recently added profiles, move to the sidebar to navigate to the respective countries.
in 2017, IS’ ambitions and objectives seem to have changed. It now appears that the Islamic State is honing its efforts to inspire followers, and focusing on more careful planning and coordination in its attacks. Its increase in complex mass-casualty attacks in Iraq and Syria therefore became a routine to terrorise the populations and seek control.
With the introduction of satellite television technology in the late 1980s, Omanis became exposed to a greater choice of media outlets and satellite channels soon became significantly more popular than the state-owned Omani broadcasts. Oman’s media environment became even more diverse in 1997, when the government allowed the sale of foreign newspapers and magazines that had previously been considered critical of Oman or the sultan.
With settlement activity growing, the international community started fearing the eventual collapse of the peace process between the Palestinian and Israelis and the failure of the two state-solution. Hence, the UN’s resolution 2334 stated that the measures utilised by Israel which aimed “at changing the demographic composition and status of Palestinian territories occupied by Israel, including construction and expansion of settlements, transfer of Israeli settlers, confiscation of land, demolition of homes and displacement of Palestinian civilians are in violation of international humanitarian law.”
Impunity for police abuses, even accusations of torture levelled at domestic security forces, is widespread. A stunning lack of accountability has been the legacy of the mass Gezi Park protests in 2013, with justice still lacking for the killing of a 14-year-old protestor and the severe assault of Hakan Yaman by Istanbul police officers.
On Thursday, December 29, Russian president Vladimir Putin announced that an agreement had been reached that would put an end to the fighting between the Syrian regime forces and the ceasefire deal came into force at midnight (10pm GMT). However, the details of the Turko-Russian agreement are still vague and secretive.
Today, Russia has a presence in almost all of the Soviet Union’s former zones of influence, namely Syria, Egypt, Iraq, Yemen, Libya and Algeria. Furthermore, it is getting closer to the other non-Arab hegemon apart from Iran; Turkey. The Middle East therefore represented the best forum for a show of force by Russian President Vladimir Putin. Ironically, it is the Arab Spring – which Russian media outlets criticize continuously – that has allowed Putin to achieve his goal.
Mohamed Eljarh, a non-resident fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Rafik Hariri Centre for the Middle East, told Fanack that their defeat in Sirte is “a significant loss for IS, because they are all about territory”. “They lost their territorial control of Libya, but it doesn’t mean it’s the end of their activities”, he added.
Lebanon has been one of the destinations of Palestinian refugees since 1948 and it hosts today 12 sites and 449,957 registered refugees. According to UNRWA reports, half of the Palestinian refugee population in Lebanon is 25 years of age and younger, rendering the population majorly youthful. Additionally, around 62% of the refugee population are inhabitants of camps, while the remaining 38% are either dispersed around the country or reside in gatherings in the vicinity of these camps, yet they are not part of the official settlements and do not receive the same services registered refugees do.
As the war in Syria continues and with no end to Kurdish unrest in sight, Turkey’s reputation as a haven of stability and security looks weaker than ever. While Ambassador Karlov’s assassination has captured international attention, to rid itself of the terrorist threat, Turkey has far greater problems to solve.
Egypt’s post-2011 media experience both under elected Islamist President Mohamed Morsi (2012-2013) and even more so after army commander general Abdel Fattah al-Sisi took power in 2013, has been characterized by harsh restrictions upon freedom of expression and a return to a culture of enforced obedience in the print and television industries.
In contrast with previous Fatah congresses, which were characterized by intense disagreements among members over the political programme and liberation strategy, no attention was given at the seventh congress to the topic of political, economic and social programmes or even the national strategy. Rather, it focused on filling key positions in the Central Committee and Revolutionary Council.
For more than twenty years, the general budget of the Palestinian National Authority (PNA) has been largely dependent on foreign funding by donor countries, so much that the PNA considers foreign funding to be an essential part of its general budget. In the last two years, however, a decline has been observed in the international political support for the Palestinian issue. Besides, the international financial support has also started to drop little by little, to the extent that the Palestinian prime minister Rami Hamdallah announced in November 2016 that the PNA is facing financial deficit because donor countries have not fulfilled their financial pledges.
The investigative report which involved interviewing dozens of UN staff (current and former employees), concluded that Bashar al-Assad is the sole bearer of a veto power over the allocation and delivery of humanitarian aid to war-affected areas. Thus, probably unwillingly, the UN aid program enabled the regime to utilise sieges as a weapon of war.
How to call the Arab people living in Israel? Should we call them ‘Israeli Arabs’ or ‘Palestinians’? This question is not as innocent as it seems at first glance. The term of choice generally reflects one’s position in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And both sides accuse the users of the other term of ‘having an agenda’.
In what seemed to be the final push to gain control of Aleppo, regime forces and their allies intensified their attacks on 15 November 2016, launching a fierce aerial bombardment and missile strikes from the Russian aircraft carrier stationed off the coast. This was followed by a major ground assault. Backed by Russian warplanes, pro-regime forces advanced rapidly into territory that had been in rebel hands since 2012.
“I want to be liberal. To be free. Freedom is something you choose, from the inside. I don’t wear a headscarf and I have a boyfriend. My life would be perfectly normal somewhere else. But not in Palestine.” Meet Nadia Harhash, a Palestinian writer based in East Jerusalem. Her blog, called “Living in the Shoes of a Woman”, receives widespread attention in her home country, not least because of her coverage of Palestinian politics.