Reuters blog archive
A recent report on Syria’s growing refugee crisis showed the extent to which fears of sexual violence are driving women out of the warn-torn country.
But the trail of gender-based violence and abuse also follows women out of Syria to camps, where they are also vulnerable, even under the watch of aid organizations.
from Photographers' Blog:
By Maria Semerdjian
Joziane Shedid - that was her name.
After a difficult search, we had managed to identify the blood-soaked young woman in a picture taken by Reuters photographer Hasan Shaaban in the wake of a powerful bomb explosion in Beirut.
We found it difficult to identity the girl because at first we didn’t realize she was the older sister of Jennifer Shedid, another bomb victim Hasan photographed that fateful day, who was even more severely injured and almost lost her life.
from The Human Impact:
Medical assistance is at risk for thousands of Syrians fleeing into Lebanon who are living in overcrowded conditions, suffering psychological distress and unable to afford medical care, according to a new survey from charity Medecins Sans Frontieres(MSF).
At least 60,000 Syrian refugees have fled to Lebanon to escape fighting in their country since conflict broke out almost 18 months ago, according to UNHCR, the U.N. refugee agency.
from Global Investing:
Serving wine instead of beer at its annual rooftop soiree? Is this some kind of subliminal message specialist broker Auerbach Grayson is trying to send, ie: that emerging markets are mature and here’s the vino to prove it?
Or, is the message not in a bottle but in a case? Don’t limit your exposure to emerging markets but increase it for growth. Only a slight problem here in that emerging market stocks are underperforming developed markets so far this year. They underperformed in 2011 as well.
Syria can set fire to Lebanon at the wave of a hand. Hezbollah can be ordered into battle with Israel at the command of a call from Tehran. Lebanon’s sectarian politics are a plaything of outsiders whose every whim determines the fate of the country. These are among the conventional wisdoms that have long held the fate of Lebanon hostage -- assumptions as widely held within the country as outside it. But a closer look suggests that it is high time these preconceived notions are challenged -- not because they lack a basis in reality, but because they are rooted as much in what the country’s enemies, from Damascus to Tehran, wish to be the dominant narrative as what the far more complex conditions on the ground merit.
Today, as Syria’s civil war gains speed and severity, and the crisis of Iran’s nuclear program escalates by the day, Beirut is holding its breath -- too fearful and too scarred by a war-torn history to imagine anything but the worst-case scenario. And yet, the reality as acknowledged by a growing number of Lebanese observers is more complex. If Assad really could create the distraction he needs from renewed conflict in Lebanon with such ease, would he not already have done so? If Hezbollah is nothing but an arm of Iran’s forward defense, would it not have been the first agent called into action, as opposed to Tehran’s other alleged responses -- from the plot to assassinate the Saudi envoy to Washington to the recent attacks on Israeli diplomats in Delhi, Bangkok and Tbilisi? As Tom Fletcher, the British ambassador to Lebanon, pointed out to me on a recent visit to Beirut, just as Sinn Fein and Hamas discovered in their time, Hezbollah’s role in the current government means that it is having to make compromises and shift from the comfortable politics of opposition.
Middle East Christians are struggling to keep hope alive with Arab Spring democracy movements promising more political freedom but threatening religious strife that could decimate their dwindling ranks. Scenes of Egyptian Muslims and Christians protesting side by side in Cairo's Tahrir Square five months ago marked the high point of the euphoric phase when a new era seemed possible for religious minorities chafing under Islamic majority rule.
A Bahraini police crackdown on pro-democracy protesters, two days after Saudi Arabia sent in 1,000 troops to bolster its longtime Gulf Arab ally, will heighten Sunni-Shi'ite tensions in Bahrain and beyond. At least five people were killed and hundreds wounded when police cleared demonstrators from Manama's Pearl Square on Wednesday in an attempt to halt weeks of popular unrest.
Christian emigration from the Middle East is impoverishing Arab culture and Muslims have a duty to encourage the presence of Christian minorities, a Lebanese government adviser has told a Vatican summit. (Photo: Muhammad Al-Sammak (R) at the synod for the Middle East bishops, October 14, 2010/Osservatore Romano)
Mohammad Sammak, a Sunni Muslim who is secretary general of Lebanon's Christian-Muslim Committee for Dialogue, told a synod of bishops on Thursday the declining number of Christians in the region was a concern for all Muslims.
After a panicky mass flight from his Christian village, Sami Abi Daher watched from across the valley as Syrian-backed Druze fighters burned and looted it. That was back in 1983 when battles forced tens of thousands of Christians from their homes in the Aley and Shouf hills near Beirut in a bloody postscript to Israel's 1982 invasion. (Photo: Supporters of Christian Lebanese Forces commemorate the Lebanese Resistance Martyrs in Jouniyeh, north of Beirut, September 25, 2010./ Mohamed Azakir)
Abi Daher, a former Christian militiaman, has never returned to live in his village, Rishmaya, instead working and bringing up his three children in a Christian district of Beirut.