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AP, Al Jazeera condemn Israel’s bombing of their offices in Gaza : worldnews From “World News”



This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 79%. (I’m a bot)The Associated Press and Al Jazeera on Saturday condemned the Israeli airstrike that destroyed a high-rise building in Gaza that housed their and other media offices.Al Jazeera: “Al Jazeera condemns in the strongest terms the bombing and destruction of its offices by the Israeli military in Gaza and views this as a clear act to stop journalists from conducting their sacred duty to inform the world and report events on the ground,” the outlet said in a statement.”The destruction of Al Jazeera offices and that of other media organizations in al-Jalaa tower in Gaza is a blatant violation of human rights and is internationally considered a war crime,” said Mostefa Souag, acting director general of Al Jazeera Media Network.Extended Summary | FAQ | Feedback | Top keywords: Gaza#1 media#2 Jazeera#3 Israeli#4 building#5







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Racist attacks revive demand for Asian American Studies From “Yahoo News – Latest News & Headlines”



As Dartmouth College sophomore Nicholas Sugiarto flipped through the course catalog last semester, two words caught his eye: “Asian American.”The 19-year-old Chinese Indonesian American didn’t know Asian American-focused classes were even an option at the Hanover, New Hampshire, campus. The biomedical-engineering major ended up enrolling in “Gender and Sexuality in Asian American Literature” and now wishes he could minor in Asian American Studies.“I never realized how long and storied the history of Asians in America has been,” Sugiarto said. “You also hear about stories that just never made the news or never made it into the standard AP U.S. history textbooks.”That feeling of being seen resonates now more than ever for Asian American and Pacific Islander students and faculty at college campuses around the country. For all the “Stop AAPI Hate” hashtagging, accounts keep emerging of new incidents of Asian Americans being coronavirus scapegoats or made to feel like foreigners in their own country.Ongoing anti-Asian attacks along with the March massage business shootings in Georgia that left six Asian women dead have provoked national conversations about visibility.The debate has renewed an appetite at some colleges for Asian American Studies programs. As student diversity grows, so does the desire for representation in the syllabus. But qualified professors of color say such programs won’t last if they aren’t being offered permanent decision-making power.Inspired by his literature class, Sugiarto added his signature to the nearly 1,000 on a petition calling on Dartmouth to establish an Asian American Studies major, a challenge that’s been brought to the Ivy League school on and off for four decades.Sugiarto and his classmates hope this time will be different given recent events.Eng-Beng Lim, the Dartmouth professor who taught Sugiarto’s class, said the petition gained momentum after the massage business killings, and even fueled discussions with administrators.Story continuesThose talks recently stalled, though Lim still described it as a “promising and critical impasse.”“When U.S. universities refuse to support Asian American Studies that are framed in a way that we have framed it, it’s really a missed opportunity to think about how we might have a more nuanced understanding of American racism beyond binary terms of Black and white,” Lim said.Pawan Dhingra, a professor at Amherst College and the incoming president of the Association for Asian American Studies, said he is aware of a few other East Coast schools either considering Asian American Studies or renewing their commitment to it.“A lot of ethnic studies programs grew out of student demand during key inflection points in American history,” Dhingra said. “This is an inflection point. The push for ethnic studies — in this case Asian American Studies — fits the tradition of how these programs come to be. It’s rarely the brainchild of administrators or faculty.”The concept of ethnic studies is believed to have started in California, where it became state law in August that California State University students take one ethnic studies course to graduate.In 1968, students of color at San Francisco State University, which was named San Francisco State College at the time, joined Black classmates demanding a curriculum that wasn’t just Euro-centric. What followed was five months of protests — the longest student strike in U.S. history — and hundreds of arrests.In March 1969, after intense negotiations, the university officially launched a College of Ethnic Studies. Other schools also devised similar programs.Alumni who were on strike 53 years ago see parallels with today’s “Stop Asian Hate” rallies, said Mai-Nhung Le, chair of San Francisco State University’s Asian American Studies program. Young Asian Americans are again demanding classes relevant to them — not just history but everything from popular culture to environmental justice.But while the backdrop in the ’60s was the Vietnam War, today it’s “two concurrent pandemics”: COVID-19 and structural racism, Le said.Establishing an Asian American Studies department is one thing — nurturing it is another. Ethnic studies programs are on shaky ground if schools don’t recruit instructors who can plan courses and mentor students.Of more than 428,000 faculty who were tenured or on tenure-track at degree-granting institutions nationwide in 2019, 70% were white, 11% were Asian or Pacific Islander, 5% were Black, and 5% were Latino. Native Americans and Alaska Natives comprised just 0.4%, according to data gathered by the National Center for Education Statistics.A furor erupted at Dartmouth in 2016 when Aimee Bahng, an assistant English professor, was denied tenure. She had unanimous support from a departmental committee but not with higher-ranking campus officials. The rejection came as students were making another push for Asian American Studies. Bahng had even started planning potential classes.She recalls receiving hundreds of sympathetic messages from female academics in the U.S. and abroad.“I had an electronic folder of just women or women of color who had been denied tenure,” said Bahng, who now teaches at Pomona College. “It was amazing but also depressing. … I always know when it’s tenure-denial season because I still get a handful of emails.”Dartmouth freshman Anais Zhang, 18, never gave Asian American Studies much thought until she was assigned to write about it for the school newspaper after the Atlanta-area massage business shootings. In her research, Zhang learned of all the attempts to start a program that ultimately went nowhere. It left her frustrated.“I talked to a lot of my friends about the article and my shock at how we really don’t have an institutionalized program and just my reaction learning about how previous students had put so much effort in petitioning the college and hiring professors … only to have this support trickle away and have all this progress undone in the subsequent years,” Zhang said.A lot of times fledgling ethnic studies programs decline because junior professors who aren’t full time or permanent have to carry them, according to Dhingra.“It’s just creating extra labor for faculty that burns people out and it isn’t able to grow because it wasn’t created with enough infrastructure in the first place,” Dhingra said.At the University of Arizona in Tucson, an Asian Pacific American Studies minor launched last month. While it is an “example of the way the university is combating anti-Asian hate and ignorance,” it was a culmination of efforts that started several years before the pandemic, said Brett Esaki, an assistant professor who helped come up with the coursework.“The short- and long-term goals are definitely about stability,” said Esaki, who is not tenured. “We can’t just hope for another disaster to get people to say, ‘You’re important.’” ___Tang reported from Phoenix and is a member of The Associated Press’ Race and Ethnicity team. Follow her on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ttangAP







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Is a third Intifada on the way? From “Al Jazeera – Breaking News, World News and Video from Al Jazeera”



Some now see the beginnings of a new Palestinian uprising against Israeli occupation.







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Pokémon card sales at major US retailer halted over security fears From “BBC News – World”



A major US chain acts after a customer pulled a gun in a fight over the collectible trading cards.







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Palestine President Mahmud Abbas, Joe Biden Speak After Israeli Air Strike On Gaza Building From “NDTV News – World-news”



President Mahmud Abbas spoke with Joe Biden for the first time since US president took officeRamallah, Palestinian Territories: President Mahmud Abbas spoke Saturday with Joe Biden for the first time since the US president took office, the Ramallah presidency said, as violence between Israel and the Palestinians flared.Abbas’s spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina told AFP the conversation was “important”, without elaborating on the details of the exchange.(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)







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Iran’s ex-President Ahmadinejad among political heavyweights vying for presidency ahead of upcoming elections — RT World News From “RT World News”



A string of prominent Iranian politicians have entered the presidential race in a bid to replace Hassan Rouhani. The list includes former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as well as the chief justice and an ex-parliament speaker.

Iran is heading for presidential elections scheduled for June 18 that will determine a successor to the incumbent President Hassan Rouhani. The president is considered a moderate politician who led Iran into the 2015 nuclear deal. He cannot seek re-election since he is barred from running for a third consecutive term.Yet, there is no shortage of those willing to take his place. One of them is the former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, a hardliner who saw Iran’s relations with the West souring over the Islamic Republic’s nuclear program. As a result, the country was slapped with several rounds of UN sanctions. However, the former president still has sway in some parts of the country.

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Surrounded by a crowd of his supporters, Ahmadinejad arrived at the Iranian Interior Ministry to register for the race on Wednesday. The ex-president, who has since sought to present himself as a more “centrist” politician, was already barred from running back in 2017.He criticized elections in Iran as an “empty drum” and said that another disqualification, which is not unlikely, would only prove him right. “If I’m disqualified, I won’t support the elections and I won’t vote,” he said.Ahmadinejad, however, is not considered to be a likely frontrunner in the race that is about to start. The last registration day saw two Iranian political heavyweights – the ultraconservative Chief Justice Ebrahim Raisi and moderately conservative former parliament speaker Ali Larijani – submitting their candidacies as well.Raisi, a man also bearing the title of Hojjat al-Islam – second in the Shiite cleric hierarchy only after that of Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei – already ran for presidency in 2017 but lost to Rouhani.Now, he runs on a platform promising a “change” to Iran’s “executive management” and a “relentless fight against poverty and corruption, humiliation and discrimination.” As the chief justice, Raisi launched a massive anti-corruption campaign. Yet, he is reportedly considered a “hardline” judge among the reformists.

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‘Significant disagreements remain’ on Iran nuclear deal, says French foreign ministry as Vienna stalemate continues

He said that he is running as an “independent” and does not consider himself as a rival to any “political groups.” Still, he has already received backing from Iran’s conservative and ultra-conservative political camps. Raisi also previously criticized the 2015 nuclear deal struck by Rouhani and slammed the incumbent president’s “weak efforts” in negotiating the agreement.Raisi’s potential major rival – Ali Larijani – is not seeking to run for president for the first time either. He already fought for the post back in 2005 but lost to Ahmadinejad. Later, he served as the secretary-general of the Supreme National Security Council of Iran and was the parliament’s speaker until 2020.A moderate conservative, Larijani, is reportedly being sought out as a potential ally by both conservatives and reformists. He also serves as an adviser to Ayatollah Ali Khamenei. The politician is also one of the supporters of the 2015 nuclear deal.The former parliament speaker apparently plans to focus his campaign on economic issues. He explained his decision to join the race by the fact that other candidates “cannot solve the country’s main economic problem.”He also took a veiled jab at Raisi and some other candidates by saying that “the economy is neither a garrison nor a court that would be managed with shouts and orders.” Larijani then warned that Iran’s way out of the economic crisis would be neither quick nor easy. Those who are “promising paradise in this complicated state” are speaking falsely, he said.The upcoming presidential elections are bound to influence the fate of the 2015 deal, which is still hanging in limbo after the US’ unilateral withdrawal under then-President Donald Trump back in 2018. Iran and the world powers are currently engaged in talks in Vienna in an attempt to revive the deal.

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Leaking of foreign minister’s private conversation was intended to spark ‘division’ in Iran, President Rouhani says

Larijani is one of the few who expressed his support for the negotiations aimed at saving the agreement that has been repeatedly criticized in Iran by Rouhani’s opponents, including some of the presidential candidates.“I hope the negotiations produce results [as] it can provide a breathing space for the country’s economy,” Larijani said.All candidates are yet to be vetted by the Iranian Guardian Council – a 12-member body consisting of six Islamic law experts and six jurists – before they can actually run for office. The council is expected to publish the list of approved candidates by May 27, after which the election campaign will start.Think your friends would be interested? Share this story!







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$100 million New Jersey deli company fires CEO Paul Morina From “International: Top News And Analysis”



Paulsboro coach Paul Morina cheers on George Worthy as he takes on Bergen Catholic s Wade Unger in the 152-pound bout during a wrestling match at The Palestra in Philadelphia,Joe Warner | USATodayThe shareholders of the mystery $100 million New Jersey deli company Hometown International fired CEO Paul Morina — a high school principal and renowned wrestling coach — after weeks of questions about the firm and his role there, a financial filing revealed late Friday.Hometown International’s majority shareholders also voted to remove the company’s only other executive, vice president and secretary Christine Lindenmuth, who works with Morina as an administrator at nearby Paulsboro High School. The deli, located just across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, is Hometown’s only operating business asset.Their ousters came a week after a previously unreported resignation of the president of a shell company, E-Waste, which has multiple connections to Hometown International.Securities and Exchange Commission filings show that the shareholders that voted to remove Morina and Lindenmuth almost certainly included all or some members of two different groups of investment entities, one based in Hong Kong, the other based in Macao, a special administrative region in China.The moves at Hometown International and E-Waste appear — like other recent ones by each of the money-losing companies — to be an attempt to eliminate controversial issues that could harm their joint goal of merging with other firms in a transaction that would exploit their status as publicly traded companies on U.S. markets. Such a transaction would financially benefit existing shareholders.A person familiar with the situation confirmed to CNBC later Saturday that the moves to replace the executives are part of ongoing housecleaning effort at both companies. This person declined to be named.Morina, 62, held a slew of other titles at Hometown International before he was removed. According to financial filings, he owns 1.5 million common shares of the deli owner, making him, on paper at least, worth more than $18 million.Morina was replaced as chief executive officer by Peter Coker Jr., who is Hometown International’s chairman.Coker Jr., who is based in Hong Kong, is aligned with the investment entities there that have major stakes in the deli owner.Coker Jr.’s father, North Carolina businessman Peter Coker Sr., himself is a major investor in the company.The related shell company E-Waste replaced its own president, John Rollo, 66, after similar questions were raised by CNBC about him, that company and its similarly preposterous sky-high market capitalization despite a total lack of ongoing business.Rollo, a Grammy-winning recording engineer, until recently was working as patient transporter at a New Jersey hospital.Rollo, also a New Jersey resident, was replaced as E-Waste’s president by 31-year-old Elliot Mermel, a California resident who is getting paid $8,000 per month in that role.Mermel’s colorful business background includes founding a company that raised crickets as human food, and a partnership in a cannabis-related business with Paul Pierce, the former Boston Celtics superstar basketball player.Pierce, who won an NBA title with the Celtics, last month was fired as an analyst by ESPN for a racy Instagram Live poss that showed him in a room with exotic dancers.On Saturday, the Boston Globe reported that Pierce will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame as part of its 2021 class.Mermel also founded a biotech company and an artificial intelligence company, and was a business development consultant to a fertilizer company, according to a financial filing.Mermel, a Colby University graduate, has another company, Benzions LLC, that had been collecting $4,000 each month since December under a consulting agreement with E-Waste.That agreement was terminated as part of his taking over management of E-Waste, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing on Thursday.Boston Celtics forward Paul Pierce waves to the crowd after reaching No. 2 on the all-time Celtics scoring list, surpassing Larry Bird, during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Charlotte Bobcats in Boston on Tuesday, Feb. 7, 2012. (AP Photo/Elise Amendola)Elise AmendolaSEC filings show that Benzions in March signed another consulting agreement with a second shell company, Med Spa Vacations, connected to Peter Coker Sr., which likewise pays Mermel’s firm $4,000 per month.The current president of Med Spa Vacations is former E-Waste president Rollo, who took that job in February, according to filings.The changes in executive leadership at both Hometown International and E-Waste were disclosed in 8-K filings with the SEC.The deli owner’s filing gave no reason why shareholders who control 6 million shares of common stock — which represents about 77% of the company’s voting power — voted out Morina and the 46-year-old Lindenmuth. At least 5.5 million of Hometown International’s common shares are controlled by the Hong Kong and Macao investors.Both Morina and Lindenmuth remain principals in the deli itself, according to the SEC filing.Morina also is involved in an entity that leases the deli space to Hometown International.E-Waste’s filing said that Rollo resigned as president on May 7, a day after CNBC reported on the opaque nature of the Macao group of investors.CNBC did not immediately receive replies to requests for comment from Morina, Lindenmuth, Rollo, Mermel and Hometown International’s lawyer.A spokesman for Maso Capital and its founder Manoj Jain — who controls the investments for the Hong Kong entities invested in Hometown International — declined to comment.Your Hometown Deli in Paulsboro, N.J.Google EarthHometown International first drew widespread attention last month when hedge fund manager David Einhorn, in a letter to clients, pointed out the company’s market capitalization, which had topped $100 million despite owning only a single small Italian deli.That eatery had sales of less than $37,000 in sales for the past two years combined and was closed for nearly half of 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.Einhorn noted the incongruity of Morina being Hometown International’s CEO while working his day jobs as high school principal and wrestling coach.Hometown Deli in Paulsboro, N.J.CNBCMorina’s team at Paulsboro high school is a perennial contender for state titles, and he is among the most successful coaches in New Jersey wrestling history.But he has no apparent history of operating either a publicly traded company or food service business before the Hometown Deli opened in his own hometown.However, Morina, whose brother is a New Jersey county sheriff, wrestled in the 1970s at Paulsboro High School with a man named James Patten, who works at Coker Sr.’s firm Tryon Capital.Patten was barred by FINRA, the broker-dealer regulator, from acting as a stockbroker or associating with broker-dealers, according to the regulator’s database.Before that sanction, Patten was the subject of repeated disciplinary actions by FINRA, which included not complying with an arbitration award of more than $753,000 for violating securities laws, unauthorized trading and churning a client’s account.Since Einhorn’s letter, CNBC has reported other eyebrow-raising details about Hometown International and revealed its connections to E-Waste.The stocks of both companies, which trade on the low-tier Pink over-the-counter market, in the past year have risen to stunning levels as ties have been formed between them.Those stock price increases have raised the the question was why some investors would pay so much to buy what is relatively speaking handfuls of shares in either thinly traded company, given their lack of meaningful revenue in the deli owner’s case, or, in E-Waste’s case, a lack of any revenue at all.Even if both companies achieve their goal of engaging in reverse mergers or similar transactions with private firms looking to become publicly traded, current investors will not receive payments that reflect — in any way — the trading price of the stocks.On Friday, just 205 shares of Hometown International were traded, closing at $12.40 per share. Given the company’s nearly 8 million shares of common stock outstanding, that gives it a market capitalization of $96.68 million.E-Waste closed Friday at $9 per share, after no shares traded hands. With 12.5 million shares outstanding, E-Waste has a market cap of $112.5 million.In recent weeks, both the deli owner and E-Waste disavowed their stock prices, saying in extraordinary SEC filings that there was no financial justification for their market capitalizations.The moves followed the demotion of Hometown International from a more prestigious OTCQB over-the-counter market platform for what OTC Markets Group called “irregularities” in their public disclosures, and OTC Markets telling CNBC that it would be eyeing E-Waste as well.A trio of Hong Kong investment entities led by Maso Capital, which last year became some of the largest investors in Hometown International’s biggest investors, are understood to be involved in likewise positioning E-Waste as a reverse merger candidate.The Hong Kong investors include entities that are investment arms of Duke and Vanderbilt universities.E-Waste’s biggest single investor, Macao-based Global Equity Limited, is also the largest investor in the deli owner, and in Med Spa Vacations, another shell company linked to Coker Sr..The office building on Avenida Da Praia Grande in Macao, China, the address for multiple entities listed as investors in Hometown International, the owner of a single New Jersey deli.Catarina Domingues | CNBCRollo remains the president of Med Spa Vacations, a shell company with no business operations whose office address is that of a business operated by Coker Sr.Hometown International loaned Med Spa Vacations $150,000 in February, records show.That loan came after E-Waste was loaned an identical amount by Hometown International in November, according to an SEC filing.Records show that Coker Sr. loaned E-Waste $255,000 last September, most of which was used to pay the prior owners of E-Waste before they sold their shares to Global Equity Lmiited.CNBC’s articles have detailed how Coker Sr., a former college basketball star who has refused to comment when contacted by a reporter, has been sued for allegedly hiding assets from a creditor to whom he owed nearly $900,000 and for business-related fraud. He denied wrongdoing in those cases.He also has been arrested for soliciting a prostitute, according to a Raleigh, North Carolina, police report, and for exposing himself to and trying to proposition three underage girls, according to a 1992 newspaper article.Peter Lee Coker mugshot from the Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of Identification (CCBI).Source: Raleigh/Wake City-County Bureau of IdentificationA firm controlled by Coker Sr., Tryon Capital, had until recently been collecting $15,000 a month from Hometown International under a consulting agreement. E-Waste was paying Tryon Capital $2,500 per month for its own consulting agreement.Those agreements were terminated last month after CNBC articles described those deals and Coker’s tangled legal history.SEC filings show that Med Spa Vacations is paying Tryon Capital $2,500 per month for its own consulting agreement.Coker Sr.’s partner in Tryon Capital, Peter Reichard, in 2011 was convicted in a North Carolina court of his role in a scheme that facilitated the illegal contributions of thousands of dollars to the successful 2008 campaign for governor by Bev Perdue, a Democrat.The scheme involved the use of bogus consulting contracts with Tryon Capital. Coker Sr. was not charged in that case.Peter Reichard, a top Perdue aide, takes the oath before his apearance in Wake County Court, Wednesday, December 14, 2011 in Raleigh, N.C.John Rottet | The News & Observer | APReichard is also a managing member, with Coker Sr., of an entity called Europa Capital Investments, which owns 90,400 common shares of Hometown International, and has warrants for another 1.9 million shares.Reichard is the son of Ram Dass, the late spiritual and LSD guru who gained renown in the 1960s and 1970s.CNBC earlier this week detailed how Coker Sr. and Reichard in 2010 created eight shell companies that were later sold off to other owners.Most of those shell companies, after they were sold, ended up having their registrations revoked by the SEC for failing to keep current in their disclosure filings, records show.One of the companies ended up being owned by a real estate tax lawyer in New York named Allan Schwartz, who did work for former President Donald Trump decades ago in connection with Trump’s real estate holdings. Schwartz told CNBC he knew nothing about Reichard and Coker Sr., or the deli owner.Hometown Deli, Paulsboro, N.J.Mike Calia | CNBCRecords show that a securities lawyer named Gregg Jaclin was involved in the creation of those shell companies. Jaclin also was involved three years later in the creation of Hometown International.Jaclin was disbarred as an attorney last year after pleading guilty to federal criminal charges related to his creation of shell companies to sell to individuals “who used those shell companies as publicly traded vehicles for market manipulation schemes,” court records show.None of the shells in that scheme were one of the ones created by Coker Sr. and Reichard, or to Hometown International.







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Bleak futures fuel widespread protests by young Colombians From “World”




Thousands of young people and college students have been at the forefront of Colombia’s antigovernment protests for more than two weeks, armed with improvised shields made from garbage cans and umbrellas







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Israeli airstrike on Gaza claims eight young cousins | Israel From “World news | The Guardian”



Intense Israeli airstrikes on Gaza on Saturday killed eight young cousins who had gathered to celebrate Eid with their mothers, and destroyed the high-rise tower that housed the Associated Press, the leading news agency of its greatest ally.Mohammed Haddidi’s wife and five sons were inside the house when it was bombed, and only five-month-old Omar was pulled from the rubble alive. Rescuers searched for survivors through piles of shattered concrete dotted with toys, a Monopoly boardgame and holiday food prepared for a meal that was never enjoyed.“My wife had gone to visit her brother, and because the children were enjoying playing with their cousins, they asked to spend the night and she agreed,” he told the Observer. Those childhood games would doom almost all of them.The airstrike that killed Haddidi’s family came just a few hours before the daytime demolition of al Jalaa tower, which housed media offices including Al Jazeera, AP and AFP. AP described the missile strikes, which were broadcast live on TV as “the latest step by the military to silence reporting from the territory”, and warned that “the world will know less about what is happening in Gaza” because of it.Saturday, the sixth day of fighting between Israel and Hamas militants, was also Nakba (Catastrophe) Day. This commemorates the estimated 700,000 people who were expelled or fled their homes in what is now Israel during the 1948 war surrounding its creation.Over a week, the conflict has escalated into the most intense exchanges of fire since the 2014 Gaza war, exacerbated by unrest in the occupied West Bank, all amid fears that the situation could spiral further into a new Palestinian intifada, or uprising.Serious communal violence inside Israel, such as nightly street attacks carried out by far-right Jewish gangs and Arab youths, have inflamed the situation. On Saturday, a 12-year-old Arab boy was in hospital on a ventilator and with facial burns after a Molotov cocktail that was thrown into his home.Diplomatic efforts to broker a ceasefire in Gaza made slow progress, even after US envoy Hady Amr flew into Israel and the UN Security Council finally confirmed a meeting about the crisis for Sunday.Palestinians look at destruction caused by Israeli air strikes that killed ten members of the Abu Hatab Hadidi family in Gaza City. Photograph: Khalil Hamra/APIsrael turned down an Egyptian proposal for a one-year truce that Hamas rulers had accepted, an Egyptian official told the AP on Friday. Defence minister Benny Gantz has previously said the bombing will continue until Israel achieves “total, long term quiet.”As officials tried to broker talks, people died from missile and rocket strikes on both sides of the frontier, although casualties were more than ten times higher in the tiny, crowded Gaza strip, where there are few air-raid shelters and residents have nowhere to run to escape Israeli bombardment.In Gaza at least 139 people have been killed, including 39 children and 22 women, health authorities say. In Israel, ten people have been killed including a five-year old boy and a soldier.In a story published only hours before AP staff watched their office reduced to a smoking pile of rubble, correspondent Fares Akram had written that the tower was “the only place in Gaza City I feel somewhat safe”.“The Israeli military has the coordinates of the high-rise, so it’s less likely a bomb will bring it crashing down,” he wrote. “When the thundering bombs, buzzing drones and pounding artillery refresh the pain and trigger the old fear, I seek refuge in work.”AP CEO Gary Pruitt said he was “shocked and horrified that the Israeli military would target and destroy the building housing AP’s bureau and other news organisations in Gaza.” Pruitt says AP is seeking information from the Israeli government.Al Jazeera vowed to “pursue every available route to hold the Israeli government responsible for its actions”. Director General Mostefa Souag described the attack as a war crime that aimed “to silence the media and to hide the untold carnage and suffering of the people of Gaza”.Media organisations and others in the building were given only an hour’s warning to get people and equipment out of the tower before the strike.President Joe Biden’s spokeswoman, Jen Psaki, said the US had told Israeli authorities “that ensuring the safety and security of journalists and independent media is a paramount responsibility,” but did not condemn the attack.Israeli’s military, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), said the high rise tower contained “military assets belonging to the intelligence offices of the Hamas terror organisation”. It added later that the building housed a Hamas “Research and Development unit”.It also said it had attacked “a number of Hamas terror organisation senior officials, in an apartment” in the al Shati refugee camp.The only building hit overnight by airstrikes in that camp was a three-storey complex with a family home over a grocer and hairdresser, owned by Haddidi’s brother-in-law.Haddidi heard the bomb land without knowing its target, then he got the call saying his family had been hit. He raced to the ruins of his brother’-in-law’s home but there were no survivors there so he went on to the hospital.“I was happy that Omar was still alive, but at the same time, I asked what future awaits this infant,” he said. “He has a broken leg, and an eye injury.” One of his cousins, a girl, is in intensive care.The other eight children and their mothers, have all been buried already. Neighbours and the ministry of health said no adult men were among the dead or the injured.Neighbours said there was no warning of the attack, the deadliest single strike of this conflict.Hamas said it fired rockets at southern Israel in response; it has poured over 2,000 across the frontier since Monday according to the Israeli military and although most have been stopped by the “Iron Dome” missile defence system, some have landed, killing people and damaging property.The Israeli military’s conduct had already caused tensions with international media, even before the Gaza offices were bombed.There were reports that a military spokesman had lied to the English-language press as part of an elaborate ruse to lure Hamas militants into a trap, by making them think a ground operation was under way.The allegations caused anger and fear in regional newsrooms. “It’s a very dangerous place for the I.D.F. to be, to be suspected of misleading the international press, especially when we’re on the verge of an escalation with Hamas,” Amos Harel, a military analyst for Haaretz, the Israeli newspaper, told the New York Times.“It’s risky for journalists, too,” he added. “The Israeli Army may be forgetting that foreign journalists are on both sides of the fence, and it could be dangerous for them if they’re suspected of being used for Israeli psychological operations.”







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Former Italian PM Berlusconi slips out of hospital unseen From “World News Headlines, Latest International News, World Breaking News – Times of India”



MILAN: Former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi has left Milan’s San Raffaele hospital after a five-day stay, a spokesman for his Forza Italia (Go Italy!) party said on Saturday. Berlusconi, 84, exited via a side entrance and was not seen by photographers and cameramen waiting outside the main doors. Speculation has mounted in recent days that Berlusconi’s health is deteriorating badly. His doctors have not released a detailed update on his condition for weeks, however, his party denied on Friday that he was in a critical condition. “This is not the moment for obituaries,” one party source said. The billionaire businessman has checked into hospital on a number of occasions after coming down with coronavirus last September. He told reporters at the time he had survived “the most dangerous challenge” of his life, but sources later said he continued to suffer ill effects from the deadly virus. He was hospitalised in March and twice in April. He also went to hospital in January due to a heart problem. Political ally Matteo Salvini told reporters on Friday that Berlusconi was “not very well”, but predicted he would swiftly bounce back.







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