Region

Turkey and the Levant

Stories under this heading cover Turkey as well as the Levant – a large area in the Eastern Mediterranean region of Western Asia, consisting of Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine.

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Fears Lebanon is sliding back to civil war after street violence in Beirut on Thursday

Fears Lebanon is sliding back to civil war after street violence in Beirut on Thursday

Lebanon has a history of decades of sectarian strife between Christians and Muslims, and groups within them. Foreign interference since the 1950's has made Lebanon a battle field for Middle East states and groups to fight proxy wars. The latest incidents raise concerns of a further deterioration of what is already for many Lebanese people a very dire situation.

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Lebanon's military chief says army will collapse without urgent aid

Lebanon's military chief says army will collapse without urgent aid

The commander of the Lebanese armed forces, General Joseph Aoun, appealed to the international community on Thursday (17 June) to support the army, warning that its “collapse” will fuel chaos and insecurity. His statement was addressed to representatives of various states at a French-sponsored conference to support the army. 
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Ceasefire could be agreed soon between Hamas and Israel

Ceasefire could be agreed soon between Hamas and Israel

A high-ranking member of Palestine's Hamas said on Wednesday (19 May) that he believes a ceasefire may be reached between Israel and Palestinian resistance groups in Gaza within one to two days. The ceasefire would only involve the Gaza frontline and will not include clashes in the West bank and other fronts. 
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EU in passionate appeal to end violence in the Middle East and address the root causes of the conflict

EU in passionate appeal to end violence in the Middle East and address the root causes of the conflict

"The EU’s priority and message in this context remains clear: violence must end now. There is an urgent need to address the root causes of the conflict and to find a political pathway, which allows for a return to meaningful negotiations towards a two-state solution based on the internationally agreed parameters.  Both Israelis and Palestinians alike have the right to live in safety and security, freedom and democracy. These constant cycles of violence must be brought to an end."
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Israel destroys Gaza tower block housing international media, as conflict rages on

Israel destroys Gaza tower block housing international media, as conflict rages on

The Israeli military have bombed and destroyed a tower block in Gaza which housed international media organisations such as Associated Press and Al Jazeera. This was the latest development in the dramatic escalation of conflict across the Holy Land which has already left hundreds dead and injured Palestinians and Israelis.
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Violence across the Holy Land leaves dozens dead, and many more injured

Violence across the Holy Land leaves dozens dead, and many more injured

Violence swept across the Holy Land on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning (11-12 May) leaving dozens of dead people and many more injured in the Palestinian territories and in Israel. Reuters news agency reports that hostilities between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas movement  based in Gaza, escalated on Wednesday, with at least 35 killed in Gaza and five in Israel in the most intensive aerial exchanges for years.