Saudi royal air force kills Yemenis again


This video from the USA says about itself:

100+ Yemeni Civilians Killed At Wedding By Saudi Airstrike

29 September 2015

The death toll from an air strike on a wedding party in Yemen has jumped to 131, medics said on Tuesday, in one of the deadliest attacks on civilians in Yemen’s war that drew strong condemnation from the U.N. secretary-general.

As the United States air force kills Syrian civilians, apparently their Saudi allies and colleagues think they should not be idle.

From albawaba news:

Saudi airstrike kills 21 civilians in Yemen

Published July 19th, 2016 – 15:00 GMT

Nearly two dozen civilians have lost their lives and several others sustained injuries in a string of Saudi aerial attacks against several areas across conflict-stricken Yemen.

At least one civilian was killed and another injured on Tuesday, when Saudi warplanes struck two oil tankers parked at a crossing in the al-Salif district of the western Yemeni province of Hudaydah, al-Masirah television network reported. …

The developments came only a day after 20 people were killed and 16 others injured in a Saudi airstrike against the Jabal al-Naar mountainous area in Mukha district.

Yemen has been under airstrikes by Saudi Arabia since March 26, 2015.

Egyptian court annuls dictator Sisi giving away islands to Saudi Arabia


This video says about itself:

Protests in Cairo over Egypt-Saudi Tiran and Sanafir island deal

16 April 2016

Thousands in the Egyptian capital Cairo have protested President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi decision to hand over two islands to Saudi Arabia.

Sisi’s government last week announced the uninhabited islands of Tiran and Sanafir will be demarcated as being in Saudi waters.

From the BBC:

Egypt court quashes Red Sea islands’ transfer to Saudis

25 minutes ago

An Egyptian judge has quashed a government decision to hand … two Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia.

Egypt’s President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi announced the return of Tiran and Sanafir islands in April, during a visit by Saudi Arabia‘s King Salman.

More than 150 people were jailed in connection with protests over the deal

Tuesday’s verdict is not final and could be overturned by a higher court.

Tiran and Sanafir are uninhabited islands, situated at the mouth of the Gulf of Aqaba, a strategically important part of the Red Sea that is bordered by Israel, Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia.

President Sisi‘s decision in April to cede control of them sparked widespread unrest and criticism. King Salman had announced a multi-billion dollar aid package to Egypt from Saudi Arabia on his visit, leading some to accuse Mr Sisi of “selling” the islands.

On Tuesday, Egypt’s State Council, an administrative court which oversees lawsuits filed against the government, quashed Mr Sisi’s decision by issuing a verdict annulling a maritime borders agreement.

Cheers in court: By Sally Nabil, BBC News

The maritime border agreement signed earlier this year between Egypt and Saudi Arabia took many Egyptians by surprise.

Since then, protesters have taken to the streets calling the arrangement unconstitutional, and accusing the government of giving away Egyptian territories in return for aid packages and investments worth billions of dollars from Saudi Arabia, a strong backer of President Sisi.

Some of these protesters were arrested and charged with disrupting public order. A few are still behind bars.

The lawsuit was filed by a number of prominent human rights lawyers, headed by a former presidential candidate, Khaled Ali.

When the verdict was issued, many cheered inside the courtroom, chanting “the islands are Egyptian”. But the legal battle has not come to an end yet, because the decision can be appealed.

The verdict stated that the two islands would “remain under Egyptian sovereignty”.

If it is approved by the country’s High Administrative Court it will become legally binding.

Mr Sisi has cracked down on all dissent since leading the military’s overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi in 2013.

Since then, more than 1,000 people have been killed and 40,000 are believed to have been jailed …

Jailed Saudi rights lawyer ‘on hunger strike’


This video says about itself:

4 August 2014

A campaign to defend the Saudi human rights activist Waleed Abulkhair

From AFP news agency:

9 June 2016 – 20H25

Jailed Saudi rights lawyer ‘on hunger strike’

DUBAI – Imprisoned Saudi human rights lawyer and activist Waleed Abulkhair has begun a hunger strike in protest at ill-treatment by the authorities, a rights watchdog said on Thursday.

An appeals court in February last year upheld a 15-year jail term against Abulkhair on a series of charges including “inciting public opinion”.

“The prison administration has not allowed him to take medical tests, prevented him from ordering appropriate foods that suit his health condition, and continues to prevent him from special visits or reading books or daily newspapers,” the Gulf Centre for Human Rights said.

Abulkhair started his hunger strike on Tuesday at his prison in the Red Sea city of Jeddah, said the rights group which has offices in Beirut and Copenhagen.

It condemned prison administrators for “targeting” Abulkhair and called for his immediate release.

Abulkhair last year won the Ludovic Trarieux International Human Rights Prize, awarded by European bar associations to lawyers who defend human rights and fight intolerance and racism.

South African anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela was the first recipient of the prize.

Abulkhair defended Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, who was arrested in 2012 and convicted of insulting Islam.

Badawi is serving 10 years in jail and has received 50 lashes of a 1,000-lash sentence that caused international outrage.

The two activists were nominated for last year’s Nobel Peace Prize by a Norwegian member of parliament.

‘Saudi Arabian blackmail of United Nations on child killing in Yemen’


This video says about itself:

UN blacklists Saudi-led coalition for ‘killing & maiming’ children in Yemen

3 June 2016

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon slammed the Saudi-led coalition for ‘killing and maiming’ children in Yemen, adding it to an annual blacklist of countries and armed groups that have violated children’s rights in conflict.

Read more here.

That was a few days ago. And now…

Translated from Dutch NOS TV:

Saudi Arabia blackmailed UN chief about blacklist”

Today, 05:35

UN chief Ban Ki-moon has been blackmailed by allies of Saudi Arabia, diplomats have told Reuters. Ban is said to have been pressured to remove the international coalition led by Saudi Arabia from the list of violators of children’s rights.

The United Nations put the coalition last week on a blacklist, because the countries are said to have killed children in airstrikes in Yemen. The measure was reversed yesterday. This led to much criticism from human rights organizations; who spoke, inter alia, of “political manipulation”.

The UN said that the coalition was removed from the list because there was still an investigation about violations in Yemen. But concerned diplomats told Reuters that Ban Ki-moon has been put under pressure by ministers of Arab countries. “There was blackmail,” said a source who wishes to remain anonymous.

Saudi Arabia is said to have threatened to stop financial support to UN projects and to withdraw aid to the Palestinian territories. …

According to a UN report, the coalition, supported by the United States, is responsible for more than five hundred children killed in Yemen. The countries are said to regularly bomb schools and hospitals.

The UN will not say whether the coalition led by Saudi Arabia will again be put on the list as the investigation of the violations is completed. “We will look at the results and then decide whether we will adjust the list again,” said a spokesperson.

“It appears that political power and diplomatic clout have been allowed to trump the UN’s duty to expose those responsible for the killing and maiming of more than 1,000 of Yemen’s children.”- Sajjad Mohammad Sajid, Oxfam Director in Yemen, Jun 7, 2016. See here.

Why is the United States still backing Saudi Arabia in Yemen? Here.

Saudi monarchy kills Yemeni children, United Nations say


This video is about children in Yemen, injured or killed by the Saudi royal air force.

From Reuters:

U.N. Adds Saudi Coalition To Blacklist For Killing Children In Yemen

The coalition was responsible for 60 percent of child deaths and injuries last year, killing 510 and wounding 667.

06/03/2016 02:43 am ET

MICHELLE NICHOLS

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon slammed the Saudi Arabia-led coalition fighting in Yemen for killing and maiming children by adding it to an annual blacklist of states and armed groups that violate children’s rights during conflict.

The coalition was responsible for 60 percent of child deaths and injuries last year, killing 510 and wounding 667, according to Ban’s report released on Thursday, which also said the coalition carried out half the attacks on schools and hospitals.

Also appearing again on the list is al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula.

The Saudi Arabia mission to the United Nations was not immediately available to comment on the report.

The U.N. report blacklists groups that “engage in the recruitment and use of children, sexual violence against children, the killing and maiming of children, attacks on schools and/or hospitals and attacks or threats of attacks against protected personnel, and the abduction of children.”

The report cited a deadly U.S. air strike on a hospital run by medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres in Kunduz, Afghanistan, although it said the attack was carried out by “international forces” and did not blacklist the United States. …

Government forces in Afghanistan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, Myanmar, South Sudan, Sudan, and Syria were named on the blacklist.

Ban urged the 193 U.N. member states to ensure engagement in hostilities and responses to threats to peace and security comply with international law.

“It is unacceptable that the failure to do so has resulted in numerous violations of children’s rights,” Ban said.

Saudi Arabian anti-cat witchhunt


This video from the USA says about itself:

Saudi Arabia Bans Cat Pictures For Being Too ‘Western’

26 May 2016

A prominent Saudi cleric has declared photographs with cats, and other animals, forbidden unless completely necessary due to an upsurge in Saudis “who want to be like Westerners.”

On a televised broadcast, Sheikh Saleh Bin Fawzan Al-Fazwan, a member of the Saudi Council of Senior Scholars, was told about “a new trend of taking pictures with cats has been spreading among people who want to be like Westerners.”

Read more here.

I beg your pardon. Cats ‘Western’!? Domestic cats originated in ancient Egypt, now a mainly Arab and Islamic country. Cats have a favourable reputation in Islamic religious tradition.

From Wikipedia:

The domestic cat is a revered animal in Islam. Admired for its cleanliness as well as for being loved by the Islamic prophet Muhammad, the cat is considered “the quintessential pet” by Muslims. … According to many hadiths, Muhammad prohibited the persecution and killing of cats.

However, as the Saudi royal family destroys ancient Islamic historical buildings to replace them with their own palaces, they seem to hate all Islamic traditions which do not suit them.