News

The Gaza Strip’s healthcare system is failing amid an ongoing electricity crisis that has seen the territory’s two million people forced to cope with just a few hours of power a day amid sweltering summer temperatures. In June, Israel began sharply reducing the electricity supply to Gaza – a step human rights groups said was illegal, since Israel, as the occupying power, is responsible for the welfare of the civilian population. This came after the Palestinian Authority drastically reduced...

For the first time in 50 years, Friday prayers were not observed at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem after Israel closed the compound following a gun attack that killed two Israeli policemen. Palestinian Muslims gathered outside the Old City walls prayed on mats that they laid on the streets and protested the Israeli decision. The crowd later dispersed peacefully. Meanwhile, Israeli police detained Jerusalem's top Muslim cleric Sheikh Mohammad Hussein near the mosque. The Mufti was taken into...

An Israel Defence Forces (IDF) medic who was sentenced to 18 months in prison for killing a Palestinian assailant has been released to house arrest. In March 2016, 20-year-old Elor Azaria shot Abdel Fattah al-Sharif in the head when he was wounded and immobilised on the ground, in the occupied West Bank city of Hebron. He was found guilty of manslaughter by a Tel Aviv military court in January 2017.

His sentence is being considered by a military court of appeals, and will be decided...

At least 547 children in Germany's world-famous Regensburger Domspatzen boy's choir have been confirmed as victims of sexual and physical abuse, a final report on one of the biggest catholic abuse scandals in the German history showed on Tuesday. There was for decades a "system of fear" with beatings and sexual abuse, according to the report, released after a two-year inquiry that spanned cases between 1945 and the early 1990s.

Seven years after the first cases became public, the...

Artists and activists continue to push back against Radiohead, two days before the band goes ahead with a gig in Tel Aviv. On Monday, Oscar-nominated filmmaker Mike Leigh condemned Radiohead’s intransigence toward Palestinians. “As the lights go out in Gaza and Palestinian cancer patients die because they are denied travel permits by Israel, while a Palestinian poet in Israel lives under house arrest for a poem she wrote on Facebook, while a young circus performer from the West Bank...

A police department has launched an investigation after an officer was filmed repeatedly beating a homeless woman with a baton as he arrested her. The footage shows Katie McCrary screaming as she is struck 12 times within 30 seconds by the officer, who yells "put your hands behind your back" and threatens to shoot her. Police had been called to reports of a woman begging for money from customers at a petrol station in Decatur, a city in the US state of Georgia. The clip, filmed by an...

The deeply unpopular Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas is helping Israeli occupation authorities inflict horrendous suffering on people in the blockaded Gaza Strip, as part of a cruel and cynical political game. It is a campaign that in recent weeks has led to the deaths of more than a dozen Palestinians denied medical treatment outside Gaza – the most recent, a little girl called Yara Ismail Bakhit. Israel and Abbas are doing this with the complicity of a so-called international...

Survivors of the 1941 pogrom of the Romanian city of Iasi will for the first time be eligible to receive a pension from the German government, the Claims Conference said on Thursday. The decision follows negotiations between the Holocaust restitution group and the German government and will also apply to survivors of the so-called "death trains" and those who had lived in the open ghettos of the city following the massacre.

The pogrom against the Jews of Iasi began on June 28, 1941,...

Angelica (not her real name) is a 30-year-old caregiver from the Philippines – and if she wants to keep her job, she’s not allowed to conduct a romantic relationship. When her 9-month-old son was 2 months old, Angelica was forced to leave him with her family in the Philippines. She hasn’t seen him since.

For a foreign caregiver in Israel, relationships and family life aren’t possible. Most of these workers are from Asia and Eastern Europe; they come to save money to support their...

After 28 years of failure, Italy has finally made torture a crime. But there’s little to celebrate. The compromise text, finally approved on July 5 by the Chamber of Deputies after four years of tough negotiations, falls short of the bar set by European and international bodies of which Italy is a member and fails to meet international law standards. The flaws rest with how the law defines the scope of the crime and the statute of limitations.

Diverging from the definition provided by...

Israeli authorities have approved plans for the construction of 800 new housing units for Jews in illegal housing settlements across occupied East Jerusalem. The scheme includes plans to build 560 new units in Ma'ale Adumim, 140 in Ramot and about 100 in Har Homa and Pisgat Zeev settlements. The decision taken by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defence Minister Avigdor Lieberman on Sunday will further raise tensions with Palestinians, who say that settlement expansion is a...

UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee condemned Israel’s occupation activity in East Jerusalem. The Jordanian-sponsored resolution called Israel the “occupying power” and said that the UN “regrets the failure of the Israeli occupying authorities to cease the persistent excavations, tunnelling, works, projects and other illegal practices in East Jerusalem, particularly in and around the Old City of Jerusalem, which are illegal under international law,” the Times of Israel reported, citing the...

The European Court of Human Rights ruled Tuesday a hospital can discontinue life support to a baby suffering from a rare genetic disease. His life support will be switched off Friday, his parents said. Born in August, Charlie Gard has a rare genetic disorder known as mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome. Caused by a genetic mutation, it leads to weakened muscles and organ dysfunction, among other symptoms, with a poor prognosis for most patients. Charlie is on life support and has been in...

Cardinal George Pell, a senior adviser to Pope Francis and the Vatican treasurer, is taking leave from the Vatican to fight historical sexual assault charges in his home country of Australia. The case is the latest black mark against the Catholic Church, which has been reeling from sexual abuse scandals across several countries that date back decades. It could also have ramifications for Pope Francis, who counts Pell among his closest aides.

Australian police have not released a...

The Trump administration on Wednesday set new criteria that require a "close" family or business relation in the U.S. for visa applicants from six Muslim-majority countries, according to The Associated Press. The action comes after the Supreme Court decided Monday to allow part of a travel ban on refugees and immigrants from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen for at least 90 days, and suspends the U.S. refugee admittance program. The court will hear the full case during its fall...