Investigation: U.S. and European investors profit from Yemen bombing

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The retirement money of American and European state employees is partially invested in a company that has made parts for bombs dropped on Yemen

Journalists from reported.ly analyzed documents, some of them from Wikileaks, that traced the complicated trail of shipment of US-designed bomb parts across the world to their final destination as part of the Yemeni conflict

The bomb parts were designed in the U.S., built by a German company at a factory in Italy, then made their way through a port in Saudi Arabia on to Dubai

The investigation sheds light on the surprising source of the funding that supports a bombing campaign that has cost thousands of civilian lives Read more…

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Latest WikiLeaks release chronicles Saudi Arabia’s lavish spending, political intrigue

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ISTANBUL — At the Saudi Embassy in Tehran, diplomats talked about airing the grievances of disenchanted local youth using Facebook and Twitter. At the embassy in Khartoum, they reported anxiously on Iran’s military aid to Sudan.

Meanwhile, the Saudi mission in Geneva got stuck dealing with a multi-million dollar limo bill racked up by a Saudi princess and her entourage.

The incidents are mentioned in diplomatic documents published Friday by WikiLeaks, only the first batch of what the transparency group says will be a much larger release. But they’ve already provided an unusual level of insight into day-to-day Saudi diplomacy — giving a snapshot of the lavish spending habits of senior royals and the political intrigue percolating across the Middle East. Read more…

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Latest WikiLeaks release chronicles Saudi Arabia’s lavish spending, political intrigue

Saudi

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ISTANBUL — At the Saudi Embassy in Tehran, diplomats talked about airing the grievances of disenchanted local youth using Facebook and Twitter. At the embassy in Khartoum, they reported anxiously on Iran’s military aid to Sudan.

Meanwhile, the Saudi mission in Geneva got stuck dealing with a multi-million dollar limo bill racked up by a Saudi princess and her entourage.

The incidents are mentioned in diplomatic documents published Friday by WikiLeaks, only the first batch of what the transparency group says will be a much larger release. But they’ve already provided an unusual level of insight into day-to-day Saudi diplomacy — giving a snapshot of the lavish spending habits of senior royals and the political intrigue percolating across the Middle East. Read more…

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Saudi-led airstrikes in Yemen kill at least 5, damage UNESCO site

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Saudi-led airstrikes left at least five people dead in the Old City of Yemen’s capital Sanaa, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, on Friday morning. Others are believed to be buried under the rubble in the ancient city, a popular tourist attraction and residential area.

The early morning airstrikes destroyed at least three houses, and also damaged and destabilized surrounding houses that are cemented to each other

Images and video from Sanaa show civilians desperately digging through the rubble of residential buildings to search for survivors. Read more…

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Backlash after Saudi court upholds brutal 10 year sentence against blogger

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A Saudi court has upheld a harsh sentence against a blogger for insulting Islam, drawing international condemnation and sparking a campaign on Twitter to draw attention to the case

Raif Badawi was initially sentenced to seven years in prison and 600 lashes for allegedly breaking Saudi Arabia’s technology laws and insulting Islamic religious figures on his blog. The punishment was latter increased to 10 years in prison and 1,000 lashes

The ruling against Badawi, a 31-year-old father of three imprisoned since 2012, is final and can’t be overturned without a royal pardon. Badawi’s wife Ensaf is “shocked and disappointed,” Ali Rizvi, a family friend, told Mashable on Monday. “She’s not doing well.” Read more…

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MERS fears grow in South Korea after 35 confirmed cases

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Cases of MERS, or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, are growing in South Korea, causing mounting concern in the country over the deadly virus.

In the world’s largest outbreak outside of Saudi Arabia, South Korea has seen 35 cases and two deaths. Since the disease first emerged in Saudi Arabia in 2012, there have been more than 1,100 cases. But while it’s cause for concern, MERS is not sweeping the country in the way some South Koreans think.

Sales of surgical masks are surging, and national airlines have increased their sanitizing standards. Meanwhile, hundreds of schools have closed, and 1,600 people are quarantined. Read more…

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Yemen’s capital bombarded by new round of airstrikes amid growing crisis

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A new wave of airstrikes pounded Yemen’s capital city of Sanaa on Monday as the Middle East’s poorest country continues to struggle amid a growing crisis

The blasts sent plumes of smoke into the sky, which reporters and others in the area captured in photos and on video

#Sanaa on Fire as many airstrikes by #OpDecisiveStorm hitting many places in the city#yemen pic.twitter.com/kVh1GuwHy2

— * Ahmed Sayaghi * (@AhmedSayaghi) April 6, 2015

Airstrikes led by Saudi Arabia, which is allied with the Yemeni government, have ravaged parts of Yemen for nearly two weeks. The air assault began recently, after Yemeni rebels known as Houthis took over Sanaa Read more…

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Yemen’s president calls on rebels to surrender and turn themselves in

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Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi demanded on Saturday that Houthi rebels in his country surrender.

At an Arab League meeting in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, Hadi called on rebels to give up territory they took in recent offensives, and demanded that their leaders turn themselves over to government forces. The president added that Saudi Arabia-led airstrikes against Houthi rebels will continue until they cease fighting

“Operation Decisive Storm will continue until all the goals are achieved, and the Yemeni people start enjoying security and stability,” he said, according to Al Jazeera Read more…

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The breathtaking beauty of Yemen, a war-torn land

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Yemen, the poorest country in the Middle East, came even closer to an all-out-war this week in a particularly complex conflict

There are lots of complicated Yemeni rivalries at the heart of this conflict. But, essentially, local rebels, known as Houthis, are fighting the president who recently fled to neighboring Saudi Arabia. And there are now fears that this local conflict could turn into more region-wide sectarian hostilities

On Wednesday, Saudi Arabia began bombing rebel positions in support of Yemen’s embattled president. Iran, a Shiite-dominated country and a chief rival of Sunni-dominated Saudi Arabia, reportedly supports the rebels Read more…

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Yemen’s president flees abroad as country teeters on brink of collapse

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Yemeni President Abdu Rabbu Mansour Hadi escaped to the capital of Saudi Arabia on Thursday after fleeing the southern Yemeni city of Aden ahead of an advance by rebels trying to take over the country, Saudi state TV reported

Yemen was thrown into even greater turmoil Thursday morning after Saudi Arabian fighter jets blasted Yemeni rebels in an attempt to stop the rebel advance. Saudi intervention threatens to widen the internal Yemeni conflict into a regional battle that could potentially see involvement from nations such as Iran, Egypt and even the United States. For now, however, the conflict predominantly remains an internal fight between two local groups.
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