CANADA MUSLIM CHARITY AIMS TO BUILD VILLAGE IN SYRIA

A Canadian Muslim charity wants to provide a haven for displaced Syrians by building a village for them in the war-torn country. Hope Village Project would see 500 homes, a hospital, mosque and school built at an estimate cost of CAN$2,250,00 (US$1.7 million) through money raised by Human Concern International (HCI). The ambitious project would be constructed in the Al-Bab or Afrin region to provide permanent shelter for the displaced Syrians. According to the charity, when the settlement is completed, it will house 3,500 people who will live in homes that consist of two rooms, a kitchen, bathroom and living room, with clean water and electricity. But the village will provide much more than shelter for the poverty-stricken Syrians. “$1,850,000 will go towards building 500 homes and $1,250,000 to build a Mosque, School, Multiple Parks, Soccer Field, and Marketplace,” HCI said. “The Village will provide displaced Syrian families with a renewed sense of stability, dignity, and a new place to call home.” According to the project, schools can welcome 1,000 students each.

SAIED’S COUP TOOK TUNISIA BACKWARDS: ENNAHDA

The moves taken by Tunisian President Kais Saied since 25 July 2021 have taken the country backwards, the Ennahda movement said on November 17. “Whoever is still not convinced, whether of good intention or otherwise, that the 25 July move is a coup will be sure of that in the upcoming weeks,” said Ali Laarayedh, Ennahda’s deputy. “What has been achieved and confirmed since that date is only Saied’s obsession with power and his desire to oust all his rivals and opponents.” He noted that “Tunisia’s image has become distorted in international forums, while the human rights situation and political trials have intensified since the coup.” “There is a double targeting of the Ennahda movement, its leaders and its president out of revenge … because of its firm position on the coup since it occurred,” Laarayedh added.

LIBYA AT RISK OF PARTITION 1 YEAR INTO ELECTIONS: UN

The UN on November 15 warned that Libya is at risk of partitioning since elections, which were scheduled for 24 December, were postponed last year. Abdoulaye Bathily, the UN Envoy for Libya, said some institutional players are actively hindering progress toward elections. “The genuine political will of these actors needs to be tested against reality, as we approach 24 December, the first anniversary of the postponement of elections and the 7th anniversary of the signing of the Libyan Political Agreement,” Bathily said as he shared Libyans’ concerns about delays to the long-awaited elections in a briefing to the Security Council. “Further prolonging the interim period will make the country even more vulnerable to political, economic and security instability and could put the country at risk of partition.” He urged Libyan leaders to work with resolve toward holding elections as soon as possible. Bathily also encouraged the 15-member Council to send an unequivocal message to obstructionists that their actions will not remain without consequences.

TÜRKIYE REJECTS US CONDOLENCES OVER ISTANBUL BOMBING

Turkiye on November 14 rejected the United States’ message of condolences over the deadly Istanbul attack that killed six people and wounded 81 others. “We have received the message but we do not accept it and reject the US embassy’s condolences. We are not hostile towards anyone,” said Turkish Interior Minister Suleiman Soylu. “We know who supports terrorism in northern Syria, and we know the message they wanted to deliver to Turkiye through this attack,” Soylu added in press statements, in reference to Washington’s support of Kurdish militants in northern Syria which Ankara blamed for the attack. Soylu announced the arrest of the person who left the bomb that caused the explosion on Istanbul’s Istiklal Street. “Our assessment is that the order for the deadly terror attack came from Ayn Al-Arab [Kobane] in northern Syria, where the PKK/YPG has its Syrian headquarters,” said Soylu.

AT LEAST 21 PEOPLE KILLED, SEVERAL INJURED IN BUILDING FIRE IN GAZA

At least 21 people were killed and several injured when a fire erupted Thursday at a building where residents were attending a party in the Gaza Strip in the Jabalia refugee camp. Reports said the dead included women and children who were discovered in the building where the fire started. The number injured was not disclosed. Civil defence teams were credited with containing the fire and preventing it from spreading to adjacent structures. The fire was sparked by gasoline stored in the building, according to preliminary findings, but an investigation is ongoing. The Palestinian Health Ministry announced that Health Minister Mai al-Kaila ordered the injured to be moved to West Bank hospitals, if necessary. A statement by Palestinian Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh said President Mahmoud Abbas declared a period of national mourning Friday. Jabalia is one of eight refugee camps in the area, which is home to 2.3 million people and is one of the world’s most densely populated locations.

342, INCLUDING 69 WOMEN, CHILDREN, KILLED IN IRAN PROTESTS

At least 342 people, including 43 children and 26 women, have been killed by security forces during ongoing nationwide protests in Iran, according to a human rights organisation. Iran has been gripped by mass unrest since mid-September over the death of Mahsa Amini, a 22-year-old woman who died in custody after being arrested by the country’s morality police. Her family believes she was beaten in police custody, allegations that Iranian authorities have denied. In a report on November 16, Norway-based Iran Human Rights (IHRNGO) said it has documented deaths of protesters in 23 of Iran’s 31 provinces in the past two months. “Of the 43 children, nine were girls and three were Afghan nationals. The 43 children were all under 18 years of age, but have not all been verified through document evidence,” the group said. The highest fatality count of 123 was reported in the Sistan and Baluchestan province, followed by 39 in Tehran, 33 in Mazandaran, 32 in Kurdistan, and 23 in Gilan.

FIRST EVER ISRAEL-QATAR FLIGHT LANDS IN DOHA FOR WORLD CUP

The first ever direct flight between Israel and Qatar landed in the capital, Doha, on November 20, with Israel hailing it as a breakthrough for relations between the two countries. According to tracker FlightRadar24, the flight from Tel Aviv to Doha touched down on Sunday afternoon in advance of the World Cup opening ceremony. Though Israel and Qatar at present have no official diplomatic ties, the flight has been praised by Israel and the United States as an example of warming relations. At least 10,000 Israelis are expected at the month-long tournament in Qatar, most of them coming through third countries. Those boarding the Cyprus-based TUS Airways plane at Ben Gurion Airport, near Tel Aviv, had originally been told they would have a brief stopover in Cyprus. However, they got a non-stop three-hour connection instead, thanks to a deal announced by Fifa last week which it described as allowing Palestinians as well as Israelis to fly direct, with TUS Airways confirmed as the approved carrier.

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