The Obama Administration on Sunday did what Israelis have long feared.
Israel have pleaded with the US to avoid White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to link the resolution of the Iran nuclear crisis to the creation of a Palestinian state.
Emanuel: Israel must give in
Emanuel said that with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu scheduled to meet with US President Barack Obama later this month, Israel now faces a moment of truth:
– Israel can either acquiesce to international demands and in return have its most serious threats dealt with, or maintain the status quo and have those threats persist.
Netanyahu: – Learn from Gaza
The Israeli PN Benjamin Netanyahu insists that the world must take into account the example of the Gaza Strip. This area was fully surrendered to the Palestinians. But after the surrender, Gaza became the first territory officially ruled by a recognized terrorist organization and a launching pad for regular attacks on Israel.
WASHINGTON: Iran, Saudi Arabia and Turkey is on an annual list of countries that names the worst violators of religious freedom. The list is expanded to include two new countries – Iraq and Nigeria – announced a U.S. government body on Friday.
This year, the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF) recommended to the Obama administration a total of 13 countries that it should designate as “countries of particular concern” (CPCs).
Included in this year’s report, which covers the period from May 2008 through April, are: Burma, North Korea, Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, China, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Vietnam.
On the commission’s Watch List, meanwhile, are Afghanistan, Belarus, Cuba, Egypt, Indonesia, Laos, Russia, Somalia, Tajikistan, Turkey, and Venezuela.
Iraq was added in December because of the ongoing, severe abuses against minorities and the government’s tolerance of the violence, particularly against Iraq’s “smallest and most vulnerable” religious minorities, including Chaldo Assyrians and other Christian groups.
The commission highlighted the dangerous situation in Pakistan, where Taliban extremists are strengthening and expanding its grip. The Taliban’s growth in strength coupled with continuous persecution of religious minorities caused the commission to renew its call for the State Department to designate Pakistan as a CPC. “We are releasing this report at a critical time,” said Felice D. Gaer, chair of USCIRF, at the opening of the press conference on Friday.
«With Taliban associated extremists advancing to within 60 miles of Pakistani capital Islamabad, the relevance of our work is crystal clear. In fact, a key focus of the commission during this reporting period is the threat that religious extremists poses to freedom of thought, conscience, religion and belief worldwide, and to global and regional security» she said.
Prodromou noted how women and girls in Taliban-controlled areas are denied equal rights and education.