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September 25, 2016 / 22 Elul, 5776

Posts Tagged ‘United Arab Emirates’

Bahrain, UAE, Sudan Join Saudi Arabia, Sever Ties with Shi’ite Iran

Tuesday, January 5th, 2016

Several Gulf Arab nations and at least one African country have downgraded their ties with Shi’ite Iran after Saudi Arabia cut its ties with the Islamic Republic, with the possibility that more may follow.

The move came after a Tehran mob stormed and torched the Saudi Arabian embassy and consulate buildings. In response, Saudi Arabia suspended all air traffic between the two countries. A letter was also immediately sent to the United Nations Security Council, accusing Iran of failing to protect the Saudi embassy.

Iran’s foreign ministry spokesperson Jaberi Ansari denied the charges, saying no Saudi diplomats were harmed in the incident; he added that none were even present during the attack.

He neatly sidestepped the fact that the building was torched and that all the interior furnishings were completely smashed by the mob that stormed the building. Instead, Ansari claimed Saudi Arabia was “looking for some excuses to pursue its own unwise policies to further tension in the region.”

But Iranian security personnel did nothing to stop the destruction of the embassy until after the embassy offices were completely smashed; at which point, authorities called for “calm.”

The destruction of the diplomatic properties came in response to Saudi Arabia’s execution of a prominent Shi’ite cleric on Saturday. Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr was one of a total of 47 who were executed on charges of terrorism.

Nimr was known as a vocal activist who opposed the Saudi regime, and who led a vigorous Shi’ite Muslim minority movement in Sunni Muslim-led Saudi Arabia. Iran threatened at the time of the execution that Saudi Arabia would “pay dearly” for Nimr’s death.

By Sunday, Saudi Arabia had cut its ties with Iran and expelled the ambassador, giving him 48 hours to leave the kingdom.

The United Arab Emirates and the island nation of Bahrain – Sunni-ruled monarchies – also both notified Iranian diplomats they had 48 hours to leave the kingdom.

The UAE recalled its ambassador from Tehran and announced it would reduce the number of diplomats stationed in Iran, according to the WAM state news agency. The government said in a statement, the UAE “has taken this exceptional step in light of Iran’s ongoing interference in internal [Gulf Cooperation Council] and Arab affairs that has recently reached unprecedented levels.”

Iran was was also accused by Bahraini officials of “increasing, flagrant and dangerous meddling” in the affairs of Gulf states – again, not the first time Iran has been accused of such activity. A similar charge was leveled against the Islamic Republic during the Arab Spring revolutions, when Tehran was accused of stirring uprisings among Shi’ite populations within the Sunni-led kingdoms and emirates. Bahrain also severed its ties with Iran.

Likewise, the majority Sunni Muslim nation of Sudan also expressed its disapproval of the Iranian attack on the Saudi embassy, calling the mob action “barbaric”. As with Bahrain and the UAE, Sudan also severed its diplomatic ties with Iran, expelling the Iranian ambassador and the entire Iranian diplomatic mission from the country. Sudan also recalled its own ambassador from Tehran.

Russia and China have now both released statements calling for “restraint” on the parts of Iran and Saudi Arabia. Both have expressed concern about escalation of tensions in the region, and have asked both parties to work together to “safeguard the region’s peace and stability.”

Hana Levi Julian

Abbas Wants UNESCO to Declare Western Wall Part of Al Aqsa

Friday, October 16th, 2015

The Palestinian Authority is laying the groundwork for UNESCO to declare that the Western Wall is part of the Al Aqsa compound on the Temple Mount, according to a report by the Hebrew daily Yediot Acharonot.

Ramallah is a member of UNESCO but not of its executive committee, and the Palestinian Authority has circulated a draft resolution to be presented to UNESCO by six Arab states on the committee – Algeria, Egypt, Kuwait, Morocco, Tunisia and the UAE.

A copy of the draft resolution obtained by the newspaper includes these clauses:

1. The Western Wall is part of “Plaza Buraq,” the Arabic name for the Western Wall.

2. The international community should condemn Israel for allowing citizens to bear arms during the recent violence;

3. The IDF and Israel should be condemned for suppression in the “capital of occupied Palestine.”

4. Israel should be condemned for excavations at the Temple Mount.

5. Israel should be condemned for “prohibiting freedom of worship at the Al Aqsa mosque and breaking the status quo.”

6. Israel should be condemned for allowing “Jewish extremists to attack Al-Aqsa,”

7. Israel should be condemned for planning to build a cable car to the Western Wall.

8. The Patriarchs’ Cave and Rachel’s Tomb should be declared as part of “Palestine.”

9. Israeli “settlers and extremists” should be condemned for violence.

That is a lot of condemnation, as well as lies.

Israel’s Ambassador to UNESCO, Simcha HaCohen, said that the draft resolution “pours fuel on the fire of incitement to terror.”

Te Palestinian Authority began a campaign more than five years to claim that Jews have no connection with the Western Wall. Laughable at first, the propaganda has escalated and spread.

Last year, PA Minister of Religious Affairs Mahmoud al-Habash told Israleli television:

Every piece of land Israel occupied in 1967 belongs to the Palestinian state. The Buraq Wall, too, will be under Palestinian sovereignty.

 

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Fearful of Neighbor Iran, Gulf States Looking to Buy Israel’s Iron Dome

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

(JNi.media) Bahrain and some of its partners in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) are currently negotiating to purchase Israel’s Iron Dome anti-missile system to defend against “a growing arsenal of Iranian missiles,” Sky News reported.

Developed by Rafael Advanced Defense Systems and Israel Aircraft Industries, the Iron Dome system intercepts and destroys short-range rockets and artillery shells fired from distances of 2.5 to 43 miles, after analyzing whether their trajectory would take them to a populated area. First deployed in late March 2011, by late October 2014, the Iron Dome systems had intercepted more than 1,200 rockets shot from the Gaza Strip at Israeli towns and villages.

Sky News speculated that a deal that would include the entire GCC: Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Qatar and Kuwait, could be worth hundreds, of billions of dollars.

Sky News cited Bahrain’s foreign minister Khalid bin Mohammed al Khalifa, who said on the visit to London: “The Israelis have their small Iron Dome. We’ll have a much bigger one in the GCC.” He also said: “Iran has been trying to undermine and topple government in our region for years.”

A senior Gulf government source told Sky News: “If Netanyahu were not making less of a mess of things and was more like Anwar Sadat (who signed a peace deal for Egypt with Israel) then we would be happy to buy the missiles straight from Israel.” However, to save the GCC the embarrassment of purchasing a lifeline from the Zionist entity, the US has offered its services in brokering the deal, Sky News reported.

JNi.Media

Burka-Clad Terrorist Kills American Teacher in Abu Dhabi Mall [video]

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014

A terrorist clad in a burqa from head to toe, totally hiding any identification, stabbed to death an American teacher in the rest room of an Aby Dhabi mall Tuesday,

The murder weapon was a sharp tool.

The 37-year-old woman teacher’s name has not yet been released for publication. Her 11-year-old twins are under police custody until the victim’s ex-husband arrives from abroad.

The murderer, disguised as a religious Muslim, or perhaps it is the other way around, was caught on a security film calmly entering a mall elevator and later leaving the building amid commotion following the attack

“The Abu Dhabi Police will spare no effort in order to unveil this heinous crime and bring the culprit to justice,” said Col. Rashid Borshid, head of the criminal investigation department.

The murder illustrates that not even the United Arab Emirates, a close ally of the United States considered one of the tamest countries in the Middle East, is free of terrorists.

Tzvi Ben-Gedalyahu

Treasury’s Cohen to Turkey, UAE to Talk Iran Sanctions

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Treasury Undersecretary David Cohen, the top Obama administration official monitoring Iran sanctions compliance, will visit Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.

The Treasury Department announcement Monday casts this week’s visit in the context of making sure nations still comply with the main sanctions even as a number of sanctions have been removed while talks, known as the Joint Plan of Action, or JPOA, are underway between Iran and the major world powers aimed at keeping Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

“Undersecretary Cohen will discuss the limited and temporary sanctions relief provided under the JPOA and continued enforcement of existing international economic sanctions against Iran,” the Treasury statement said.

Cohen and other Obama administration officials in recent weeks have pushed back against claims that the talks will relieve pressure on Iran and have noted sanctions enforcement.

A number of reports have said that several nations, particularly Russia and Turkey, are exploring enhanced business ties with Iran in the wake of the talks.

JTA

UAE Condemning Iranian Occupation of its Territories

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

While the United Arab Emirates has welcomed the refreshing stance of Iran’s president Hassan Rouhani, it has called upon the international community to urge Iran to respond to repeated calls for a just settlement of the islands dispute between the two countries, either through direct, serious negotiations or by referral to the International Court of Justice.

In 1971, after the British finally left the Middle East, Iranian forces occupied the islands of Abu Musa, Greater Tunb, and Lesser Tunb, located at the mouth of the Persian Gulf between Iran and the UAE. Iran continues to occupy the islands, which the UAE has been contesting to no avail.

Shaikh Abdullah Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Foreign Minister, speaking before the meeting of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly, denounced the Iranian occupation.

“…My Government expresses, once again, its regret regarding the continued Iranian occupation of our three islands: Abu Mousa, and Greater and Lesser Tunbs, and demands the restoration of the UAE’s full sovereignty over these islands,” Al Nahyan said.

“We emphasize that all actions and measures taken by the Iranian occupation authorities are null and void, and are contrary to international law and to all norms and common human values,” he continued. “Therefore, we call upon the international community to urge Iran to respond to the repeated peaceful, sincere calls of the United Arab Emirates for a just settlement of this issue, either through direct, serious negotiations or by referral to the International Court of Justice to settle this dispute in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter and the provisions of international law.”

Noting the change in tone in iran’s political leadership, the foreign minister declared: “Proceeding from the firm principals of our regional and international relations, we welcome the declared approach of Hassan Rouhani, President of Iran, and we affirm that our country will sincerely build on such approach in the interest of promoting security, stability and prosperity in the region.”

Now, why can’t the Palestinians be this polite?

Yori Yanover

Hagel Coming to Israel Bearing Lots of (Sort of) Gifts

Sunday, April 21st, 2013

Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel is starting a weeklong visit to the Middle East, concluding a year of secret negotiations over a $10 billion arms deal involving Israel, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The deal includes American made missiles, warplanes and troop transports, to help each country in facing threats from Iran.

The NY Times quoted a senior administration official who said the goal of the new deal is “not just to boost Israel’s capabilities, but also to boost the capabilities of our Persian Gulf partners so they, too, would be able to address the Iranian threat — and also provide a greater network of coordinated assets around the region to handle a range of contingencies.”

When Chuck Hagel leaves the region, he will also, supposedly, answer the puzzling riddle of how can Israel afford to spend even more billions of dollars, when her entire $3 billion in U.S. military aid is already spoken for. In everybody’s mind, there can be only one answer: Israel will ask the U.S. to pay the U.S. whatever it takes, so Israel can get the new, really shiny stuff.

Highest on Israel’s shopping list for things it couldn’t possibly pay for out of its own shrinking budget: new missiles designed to take out the enemy’s air-defense radar, and then, also, advanced radar for Israeli warplanes, and don’t forget new refueling tanker planes. In short, it’s all the stuff you need if you’re going out to bomb the nuclear facilities of an unnamed country a thousand miles away.

In addition Israel will also buy the V-22 Osprey troop transport aircraft, which combines the functionality of a conventional helicopter with the long-range, high-speed cruise performance of a turboprop aircraft.

If you ask me, Israel needs these units like it needs a hole in the head. Besides the fact that they’ve had a terrible reputation, rife with corruption (a Marine Lieutenant Colonel was kicked off the service after it was discovered he fixed reports to favor the new aircraft), Israel is not facing the troop transport issues the U.S. military does around the globe. It’s a whole lot cheaper to fly the troops across the border in any direction on good, old fashioned choppers, than to utilize and maintain these unwieldy behemoths. But since the entire U.S. military aid to Israel program is, essentially, intended to support jobs creation on Long Island and in Washington State, what do I care.

They accused former President GW Bush of being an irresponsible spendthrift when he invested trillions of dollars of money we didn’t have in invading and destroying the only enemy of Iranian expansionism in the region – Saddam Hussein. But, as it turns out, the president was smarter than we thought. By making Iran the undeniable bully of the Middle east, utilizing Shiite power in Iraq to bolster its own, now U.S. military industrial companies are able to cash in on the new market and sell everybody in the region those state-of-the-art American mega weapons. USA! USA!

“This year the United States provided $3.1 billion in foreign military financing to Israel, the highest the United States has ever provided,” a Pentagon official said. In addition, the United States provides about $300 million in missile defense to Israel, he noted.

Elsewhere in the region, in 2010 Saudi Arabia agreed to purchase 84 F-15 tactical fighters in a deal worth $29.4 billion, the official said, and the first F-15s have rolled off the line in St. Louis and are undergoing flight testing at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio.

During Hagel’s trip, the UAE is expected to move forward with the purchase of 25 F-16 Block 60 Desert Falcon fighters manufactured by Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth, Texas. The expected value of the sale is $425 billion, the official said.

The United Arab Emirates wants to buy 26 F-16 warplanes, at $5 billion, and they also need those precision missiles that can be launched from those same jets at distant ground targets. Saudi Arabia is also in for them advanced missile.

The deal with Israel was in discussion over the past year between former defense secretary Leon E. Panetta and former defense minister Ehud Barak. The Times reports the two had 18 additional telephone discussions on the arms deal. After being sworn in as the new defense secretary, Hagel’s first face-to-face discussion with any foreign counterpart was with Barak, to get the deal done. When Hagel starts will move to finalize the arms deal with Barak’s successor, Moshe Yaalon.

Yori Yanover

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/hagel-coming-to-israel-bearing-lots-of-sort-of-gifts/2013/04/21/

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