Saudi Arabia confirmed 20 new cases of the deadly Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) virus on Saturday and Sunday, meaning that 49 new cases have been registered in the span of only six days. Further cases were announced in the United Arab Emirates.
The Muslim Brotherhood urged the UK not to be swayed by “non-democratic” and hostile forces in the Middle East backing the military government in Cairo following Downing Street’s decision to launch a probe into the group over possible extremist links.
Despite mounting concern over human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia, the subject was not introduced in a meeting between US President Barack Obama and Saudi King Abdullah on Friday, according to a US official.
Alanoud AlFayez, a former wife of Saudi ruler King Abdullah who fled to London after their divorce has asked Barack Obama, who is in Riyadh, to help release her daughters. The four women claim they are being kept under house arrest.
A UN report hammers the United States’ human rights record, denouncing vast surveillance, ongoing unaccountability for torture, deadly drone strikes, one of the world’s highest death penalty counts, and mass incarceration, among other black marks.
Western policy towards Syria is rather like Western policy toward Crimea and Ukraine at the moment – it’s floundering around, talking big but really not having the will to act, political analyst Chris Bambery told RT.
The White House has canceled plans for a meeting later this month between President Barack Obama and Persian Gulf monarchs in Saudi Arabia based on tensions among US allies in the region, sources told The Wall Street Journal.
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant militants detained and “abused” Palestinians at the Yarmouk refugee camp near Damascus, a group allied with the Syrian government said. The militants returned to Yarmouk days after Al-Nusra re-entered despite a truce.
Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain have announced withdrawal of respective ambassadors to Qatar over its failure to implement an agreement between Gulf monarchies not to interfere in each other’s internal affairs.
The Russian foreign ministry has expressed “deep concern” at reports from anonymous sources that Saudi Arabia is planning to supply Syrian rebels with anti-tank and anti-aircraft missile launchers to “turn the tide” in the three-year conflict.