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Jun 30, 2013

Israel holds Gaza Palestinian who vanished in Egypt

GAZA (Reuters) – A Palestinian from the Gaza Strip who vanished while visiting Egypt this month is under arrest in Israel for alleged security offences, his family and his Israeli lawyer said on Sunday.

They said they did not know how Wael Abu Rida, 35, ended up in the Jewish state. The possibility he was seized from Egyptian Sinai territory could embarrass the Islamist-rooted government in Cairo at a time of major domestic unrest.

Jun 26, 2013

As Gaza heads for water crisis, desalination seen key

GAZA, June 26 (Reuters) – A tiny wedge of land jammed
between Israel, Egypt and the Mediterranean sea, the Gaza Strip
is heading inexorably into a water crisis that the United
Nations says could make the Palestinian enclave unliveable in
just a few years.

With 90-95 percent of the territory’s only aquifer
contaminated by sewage, chemicals and seawater, neighbourhood
desalination facilities and their public taps are a lifesaver
for some of Gaza’s 1.6 million residents.

Jun 25, 2013

Gaza Palestinians give hero’s welcome to their ‘Arab Idol’

GAZA (Reuters) – Tens of thousands of joyous fans turned out on Tuesday to welcome “Arab Idol” Mohammed Assaf on his return to the Gaza Strip and the song contest winner appealed for harmony among divided Palestinians.

The fresh-faced 22-year-old from humble roots in a Gaza refugee camp has endeared millions of voting television viewers with his Palestinian patriotic anthems and folk songs.

Jun 24, 2013

Egypt steps up Gaza tunnel crackdown, dismaying Palestinians

GAZA (Reuters) – Egypt has intensified a crackdown on smuggling tunnels between its volatile Sinai desert and the Gaza Strip, causing a steep hike in petrol and cement prices in the Palestinian territory.

Palestinians involved in the tunnel business say that the campaign, which began in March and has included flooding of underground passages, was ramped up in the past two weeks before a wave of opposition-led protests in Egypt expected to start on June 30.

Jun 20, 2013

Palestinians step up campaign for Gaza “Arab Idol” star

GAZA (Reuters) – Palestinian fans and big business are rallying behind a 22-year-old singer from the Gaza Strip in a final push to vote him the next “Arab Idol” in a TV talent contest choosing a winner in Beirut on Saturday.

Mohammed Assaf is the first Palestinian to qualify for “Arab Idol”, the Middle East’s version of “American Idol”, in which contestants perform for judges and voting viewers.

Jun 19, 2013

Hamas says its Iran ties worsen over Syrian civil war

GAZA (Reuters) – Hamas said on Wednesday its relations with financial backer Iran have suffered as a result of the Islamist group’s support of rebels battling Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, a long-time Iranian ally.

Hamas was also once an Assad ally but last year endorsed the revolt against him in a shift that deprived the Syrian leader of an important Sunni Muslim supporter in the Arab world.

May 13, 2013

Palestinians unite behind Gaza Strip “Arab Idol” star

GAZA, May 13 (Reuters) – The fractious factions in the Gaza
Strip and across the Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories
have found one voice to unite behind – a 22-year-old youth
singing songs about a lost homeland on the Middle East’s version
of ‘American Idol’.

Gaza native Mohammed Assaf has become the first Palestinian
to qualify for ‘Arab Idol’, a TV talent show staged in Beirut,
in which singers perform for judges and voting viewers.

May 8, 2013

Influential Muslim cleric visits Hamas-ruled Gaza

GAZA (Reuters) – Leading Muslim cleric Sheikh Youssef al-Qaradawi paid a high-profile visit to Gaza on Thursday, giving a boost to the Islamist group Hamas that runs the enclave, but also laying bare Palestinian rivalries.

Qaradawi, chairman of the International Federation of Muslim Clerics, is based in Qatar and has been a vociferous supporter of the revolutions that have shaken the Arab world in the last two years, bringing new governments to Tunisia, Egypt and Libya.

May 8, 2013

Feature: Hamas looks to root out Israel’s spy networks

GAZA (Reuters) – The alleged spy buried his face in his hands inside a Gaza jail as he admitted passing intelligence to Israel during its battles with armed Palestinian groups.

“My handlers in Israel called me and told me that collaborators in Gaza don’t know one another and that each worked alone, so hide and stay as you are,” the man told visiting reporters, under the watchful eye of a plainclothed Hamas security officer.

May 8, 2013

Hamas looks to root out Israel’s spy networks

GAZA (Reuters) – The alleged spy buried his face in his hands inside a Gaza jail as he admitted passing intelligence to Israel during its battles with armed Palestinian groups.

“My handlers in Israel called me and told me that collaborators in Gaza don’t know one another and that each worked alone, so hide and stay as you are,” the man told visiting reporters, under the watchful eye of a plainclothed Hamas security officer.

    • About Nidal

      "I have been Reuters senior correspondent in Gaza since 1996 working alongside a team of photographers and video journalists covering one of the world's perennial 'hot spots'."
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