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.
Since the fall of Mosul in July 2017, the capture of Raqqa has become ‘priority number one’ for the US military, although top generals have refused to put a timeline on the campaign. It took Iraqi forces more than eight months to free Mosul. More worryingly, however, in April 2017 a senior counterterrorism official in the Trump administration admitted that the White House has no long-term plan once Raqqa is freed.
Under President Hassan Rouhani, cultural freedoms have continued to expand. Legal Persian pop music is now widespread and pop concerts are regularly held in various cities around the country. However, securing a permit for hip-hop concerts remains difficult. Although the state has taken some steps to release the pressure on rap music, normalization of hip-hop continues to be a challenge.
The survival of IS’ media outlets will determine the capacity of the group to rebound from its losses in Iraq and Syria, rally its supporters and inspire continued allegiance. IS’ Amaq news agency remains active online, helping to spawn the lone wolf attacks that have plagued IS’ enemies from Australia to Brazil. These ardent followers represent a potent new global threat, one as difficult to calculate as it is to counter.
The United Nations (UN) estimates that in the short term, rebuilding will cost at least $1 billion. Lisa Grande, the United Nations Development Programme’s resident representative in Iraq, said it will take about $470 million to restore basic infrastructure including the power, water and sewer systems and to rehabilitate hospitals, schools and houses in the neighbourhoods with the most severe damage in western Mosul. At least another $237 million is needed for the more lightly damaged districts in western Mosul and a further $370 for rebuilding in eastern Mosul.
On 15 July 1840, Great Britain, Austria, Prussia and Russia signed the London Convention. This granted Muhammad Ali and his descendants permanent control over Egypt if he withdrew his forces from all occupied areas in Syria, Adan, the holy cities in Hijaz and the island of Crete. However, Muhammad Ali refused to comply with the demands of the convention and found himself facing the European powers on his own in a short but brutal military campaign that left him soundly defeated.
He has been outspoken about the wave of fascism and religious radicalism around the world. He accused US President Donald Trump of breaking taboos by suggesting bringing back torture, and warned world powers against undermining civil liberties in the fight against terrorism. He criticized Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte’s support for extrajudicial killings, and British Prime Minister Theresa May’s threat to change human right laws if they got in the way of the war on terror.
The Western Wall\al-Buraq is the holiest place that Jews can pray. “When Jews say ‘next year in Jerusalem’, they have the Kotel in mind. Indeed, some worship it because it was a part of the Second Temple, while others, like me, tend to regard it as an important magnet for Jewish identity,” explained Uri Dromi, director of the Jerusalem Press Club.
Today, the Iranian education system presents both opportunities and challenges. It is clear that the system, and in particular higher education, is facing challenges both externally and internally. Internally, hardline factions of the regime see higher education as an ideological tool; externally, sanctions imposed by the West. Despite these challenges, Iran’s education system seems to be dynamic especially in scientific and engineering subjects.
Mohammed VI’s role has several religious, social, political/diplomatic, economic and psychological aspects. The king is known for advancing efforts to help the poor, which has greatly enhanced his popularity.However, he is facing important challenges, particularly the status of Western Sahara, widespread poverty, social inequalities, Youth unemployment and corruption.
A thaw between Israel and Saudi Arabia relations would thus mark a major shift in the Arab-Israeli conflict. Thus, Saudi Arabia has developed clandestine business deals with Israeli companies in recent years, especially in security and intelligence. Israeli media reports have also claimed that the Israel Defense Forces has offered Saudi Arabia Iron Dome military technology to defend Saudi territory from Yemeni rockets.
The loss of Islamic State’s jihadists to their territorial bases does not signal the end of the group, but their warped ideology has not been vanquished. The group will continue to propagate its hateful ideas online. Its fighters will probably continue to wage an insurgent campaign. And they may now be additionally motivated to take the fight to the “enemy”, meaning a possible future rise in attacks on European soil.’
Noha Aboueldahab, told the Washington Post that the channel’s current vulnerability stems from the fact that authoritarian regimes in the region continue to see it as a threat because of its use as a platform for opposition leaders and activists. Regardless of Doha’s policies, al-Jazeera remains a media leader, providing news coverage to millions of people in the Gulf and beyond.
Khalid Alkhudair has pushed for additional legislation that will make it easier for women to enter the workforce, such as mandatory maternity leave and onsite nurseries for firms that employ 50 women or more. However, barriers to women’s employment remain, including the continuing ban on women driving.
Rap and hip-hop in general, is a mirror of society. Rappers talk about injustice, social and political issues, corruption. However, they don’t consider themselves as political rappers, they speak about what’s happening to them, to their country and to the region, with recurring themes like Palestine, religion, secularism and corruption.
Lamis K. Andoni, a Jordanian journalist of Palestinian descent who knew Hamarneh from their school days and met with both victims’ families following the shooting, told Fanack that the families felt that “there will be no justice for their sons”. She added that the events involving al-Aqsa and the shootings in Amman had further undermined public opinion of the king, who is the guardian of the mosque and therefore considered by Jordanians to be personally responsible for it.
Most observers agree that the tiny kingdom is building up its army to continue to offset the influence of Iran while acting as a bulwark against Islamist and jihadist insurgents. But Ibish suggests that the UAE’s more weaponized approach to politics is part of a wider ambition to determine its own fate in a region that has become increasingly destabilized since the Arab Spring.
Chahed’s war on corruption is ongoing and he has made him popular among Tunisians. Once considered weak and ineffective, he is now seen by many as paving the way for the next big electoral meeting, the presidential election of 2019. If he is able to improve the country’s economy and maintain national security, he will be well placed to succeed.
A United Nations report stated that ‘torture in Lebanon is a pervasive practice that is routinely used by the armed forces and law enforcement agencies’. In October 2016, the parliament even adopted a new law establishing a National Human Rights Institute that will include a committee to investigate the use of torture. However, the recent deaths of the four Syrian detainees in army custody have raised fresh concerns about the army’s tactics and public criticism of it.