Activists said that dozens of people, especially children, were rushed to hospital after inhaling gas
Protesters run for cover as Kuwait riot police use stun grenades and tear gas to disperse thousands of demonstrators in Kuwait City on October 31. Kuwaiti opposition groups are to hold an emergency meeting Thursday following violent clashes that continued throughout the night between riot police and protesters, a former MP and activists said. © Yasser al-Zayyat - AFP
Activists said that dozens of people, especially children, were rushed to hospital after inhaling gas
Your Middle East
Last updated: November 2, 2012

This week's news brief: 2 November

Despite the Eid ceasefire, an estimated 221 people have been killed since the truce was due to take effect. The failed truce was followed by the heaviest air raids since warplanes were deployed. In addition, 30 died as Syrian rebels clashed with Kurds. Washington has expressed frustration over the divisions within the Syrian opposition and Western countries expressed fear over the rebels’ tolerance towards extremists.

Turkish artillery struck back after Syrian shelling hit Turkish territory. Nine people were killed as Turkish forces and Kurdish rebels clashed. In addition, Turkey has ruled out dialogue with the Syrian regime.

Bahrain has banned all protests after clashes between Shiite-led demonstrators and security forces, a decision that raised concerns in the US. The UN also warned that a protest ban could worsen tensions. In addition, a Bahraini prince was due to visit the Gaza strip to open two UNRWA schools.

An Al-Qaeda leader has called on Egyptians to restart their revolution to press for Islamic law and called on Muslims to kidnap Westerners. In addition, a top Egyptian Islamist faces trial after being accused of defaming a television presenter. On Monday, three candidates were chosen ahead of Egypt’s Copts’ vote for a new Pope.

Iran’s Panahi and Sotoudeh has won this year’s Sakharov Prize. EU cancelled a planned trip to Iran after a row over activists and Iran has declared that they have Israel drone data. The US military chief and the Israeli President have declared that Iran sanctions have shown results and Iran averted a showdown over its nuclear programme. The US has monitored Iranian warships’ visit to Sudan. Iran and Argentina ended their first talks on 1994 attack.

Iraqi Eid attacks killed 27 people across the country, which made Iraq tighten security. The country has been threatened by new Al-Qaeda tactics.

Yemeni drone strikes killed three Al-Qaeda suspects while a gas pipeline in the country was blown up by saboteurs. 

The UAE has denounced EU human rights criticism.

A Tunisian anti-Islamist blogger has been fined for indecency during Ramadan. An Islamist was killed in a clash with Tunisian police, resulting in beefed up security in Tunis. Demonstrations continued with security officers protesting against violence. The Tunisian president extended the state of emergency through January.

The Saudi king urged the UN to take action against religious insults after the low-budget film produced in the US. Saudis are due to build a major Islamic centre in Afghanistan. A fire at a wedding in the kingdom killed 25 people. In addition, Human Rights Watch called for the release of Saudi-American after Koran Twitter comments.

A Qatari poet faces secret trial for “insulting” the emir.

An Israeli airstrike killed a Gaza militant just hours after four rockets fired from Gaza into southern Israel without harming anyone, whereby several rockets from Gaza militants were fired into Israel. The Israeli army arrested five Palestinians in the West Bank and an Israeli court cleared a policeman of killing Palestinian boy. In addition, Palestinians declared they are ready for a UN statehood bid in November but denied they had put conditions into new peace talks.

Israel’s Netanyahu and Lieberman agreed to join forces for a general election in the new year, which polarised the political scene. Israel marked 17 years since Rabin was murdered and people gathered under the banner “Remember the murder: fighting for democracy.”

Morocco arrested a nine-member “terrorist cell” that authorities said planned to set up a training camp from which to launch attacks.

The Libyan army in Bani Walid is said to have “no control” and armed groups prevented families from returning home. In addition, the country’s new premier presented his cabinet, whereby protesters stormed the session. The assembly was besieged by fighters angry of the new premier’s line-up. Despite the turmoil, the national assembly approved the new cabinet.

In Lebanon a campaign for the “right to know” on disappeared and missing people was launched by a Lebanese rights group.

Kuwait has arrested an opposition chief over remarks about the Emir. Concerns from ratings agency Fitch have been raised regarding the Kuwaiti unrest, with demonstrators marching on the central prison where a leading opposition figure was detained and who later was released on bail.

In Jordan four Belgians were killed in a coach crash and 61 Syrians were detained by the Jordanian police.

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