It was a chaotic Sunday in the narrow streets of the Old City as clashes broke out between marchers and Palestinians, Israeli police and Palestinians. CNN’s team on the ground witnessed several violent encounters in which marchers attacked Palestinians and journalists – including CNN employees – with tear gas and threw sticks and bottles at reporters who had gathered to follow the march. Police were seen battling an elderly Palestinian who had settled in between journalists and marchers to wave the Palestinian flag.
While some Israeli politicians condemned the actions of the participants, commentators noted that the march was occupied by far-right extremists and Jewish settlers, and was largely avoided by secular Israelis and ultra-Orthodox Jews.
Israel considers Jerusalem to be its “undivided capital”, both east and west. Most of the international community sees the eastern region as occupied. East Jerusalem has a sizable Palestinian population who want this part of the city to be the capital of a future state.
“If he has not yet understood why the flag parade has become a spectacle of bullying and violence, this video from the Nablus Gate may sharpen him,” he wrote, referring to one of the Old City’s gates. “My flag is not a weapon.”
Yedioth Ahronoth Columnist Nahum Barnea wrote that it was taken over by settlers and devout Zionists, who turned the day into a day of “Arab hatred, not Jerusalem love.”
Palestinians say 14-year-old boy shot dead by Israeli forces
Zaid Saeed Ghuneim was shot dead by Israeli forces in the West Bank town of Bethlehem late Friday, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health. He was hospitalized with gunshot wounds to his neck and back, but doctors were unable to save him, the ministry said. The Israeli military told CNN that several soldiers in Bethlehem’s Al-Khader district were conducting “routine security operations” in the area, where “suspects risked their lives” by throwing stones and Molotov cocktails at soldiers. While chasing the attackers, the soldiers returned real fire and injured one of the suspects, according to the military.
- Background: Zaid’s family said he had just finished dinner and was on his way to his grandparents’ house when he was shot. His brother Yazan told CNN that his Zaid was hiding in a garage when Israeli soldiers cornered him. An eyewitness showed CNN a video he shot right after the incident. The footage shows blood pooling on the floor of a parking lot and smearing a vehicle. He said he saw Zaid enter the garage and heard him beg for his life.
- Why is it important: This was the second death of a child in less than a week by Israeli forces after a series of raids in the West Bank. While covering one of these raids, Palestinian-American journalist Shireen Abu Akleh was shot dead in what the Attorney General of Palestine described as a targeted attack by Israeli soldiers.
Court sentences ex-presidential candidate of Egypt to 15 years in prison
An Egyptian court has sentenced former presidential candidate Abdel Moneim Aboul Fotouh and prominent members of the banned Muslim Brotherhood to long prison terms on charges including planning to overthrow the state on Sunday. According to the court decision, Aboul Fotouh was sentenced to 15 years in prison, subject to appeal.
- Background: Aboul Fotouh left the Muslim Brotherhood in 2011 after disagreements over the role of religion in politics and launched an independent candidacy for president in 2012, founding the more centrist Strong Egypt party. The interior ministry later accused him of meeting with Muslim Brotherhood leaders to stir up turmoil, which he denied. He was arrested in February 2018 after giving interviews critical of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, a month before Sisi’s reelection.
- Why is it important: Human rights groups say thousands of politicians, activists and journalists have been detained in Egypt after unfair trials or without legal basis. Aboul Fotouh is in his early 70s and according to his family suffers from various medical conditions.
Erdogan said that he will not allow countries that support terrorism to join NATO.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said talks with Finland and Sweden on NATO accession were not “at the expected level” and Ankara could not say yes to countries that “support terrorism”, state television TRT Haber reported on Sunday.
- Background: Turkey objected to Sweden and Finland’s proposals on the grounds that the countries harbored people linked to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militant group and persons it describes as terrorists, and that they stopped arms exports to Ankara in 2019. condemned terrorism and welcomed the possibility of coordination with Ankara.
- Why is it important: Erdogan’s recent comments show continued opposition to Sweden and Finland joining the Western defense alliance. Turkey’s objection is to delay an agreement that would allow for historic expansion following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
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Saudi Arabia: #Boycotting_Cafes
Saudi Arabia has designated 2022 as the ‘Year of Saudi coffee’, but some Saudi Twitter users are now calling for a boycott of coffee shops. What went wrong?
The social aspect of drinking coffee in Saudi Arabia is highly valued, with the decency determining how the coffee is drunk and from which hand it is poured. Coffee is a sensitive topic in the country and any threat to the culture surrounding it is taken seriously.
Saudis on social media say they see it as exaggerated prices for the drink, as the culture shifts from traditional Arabic coffee to Western-style cafes where a cup costs as little as 30 riyals ($8). Many users said the expensive glasses were “mostly iced” and tasted like instant coffee.
The rise of such stores introduced drinks such as the “Spanish latte” (known as cafe con leche), macchiato, and others. Twitter users pointed out that cheaper coffee options exist, but people are looking for the “best” drinks.
The average price of coffee beans in Saudi Arabia also rose from 28.6 riyals in 2011 to 38.9 in 2020, according to Statista.
The government plans to localize production to capitalize on the global coffee craze. This month, the kingdom’s sovereign wealth fund launched the $320 million Saudi Coffee Company, which aims to play a role in “developing sustainable coffee production in the southern Jazan region, home to the world-renowned Coffea Arabica.”
by Mohammed Abdelbary