The Guardian - Middle East
'The fact we exist is huge': Iran's women plotting course to world stage
Twelve years ago Kat Khosrowyar arrived in Iran on holiday. Now she's driving a revolution in women's football there. To say things have changed for women's football in Iran since Katayoun Khosrowyar first arrived in the country more than 12 years ago would be as understated as the coach of the newly established under-19 side herself.
Jun 20 7:00AM Guardian-MiddleEast

Banu Cennetoglu: 'As long as I have resources, I will make The List more visible
From stickers on ATMs to full-blown countrywide campaigns, this artist has spent 16 years of her life making the world wake up to Europe's migrant crisisDownload a PDF of the List here. The artist Banu Cennetoglu can remember precisely the moment she was overwhelmed by the List, a catalogue, made by volunteers, of those who had died in their attempt to make a new life in Europe. It was 2002.
Jun 20 5:00AM Guardian-MiddleEast

EU rebuked for 36bn refugee pushback gambit
Bloc hikes funds for Africa by 20% but reports highlight rights breaches and lack of accountability The European Union is to increase its spending in Africa by more than 20% over the next seven years to a minimum of 36bn (31bn) in an attempt to reduce the number of migrants and refugees crossing the Mediterranean. But a succession of reports funded by the EU or written by leading MEPs say European efforts to stem the flow is characterised by misdirected finances, lack of accountability and repeated breaches of basic human rights, including an inability to undermine the business model of human trafficking, an industry worth as much as 35bn a year. Continue reading.
Jun 20 5:00AM Guardian-MiddleEast

US quits UN human rights council - 'a cesspool of political bias
Nikki Haley says council is 'protector of human rights abusers' that targets Israel in particular and ignores atrocities elsewhere The US is withdrawing from the United Nations human rights council, the Trump administration announced on Tuesday, calling it a cesspool of political bias that targets Israel in particular while ignoring atrocities in other countries. Related: Trump campaign manager calls on president to fire Jeff Sessions Continue reading..
Jun 19 10:39PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Saudi-backed Yemeni forces capture Hodeidah airport
Military advance comes after UN envoy fails to broker ceasefire with Houthi rebels Saudi-backed Yemeni government forces have captured the airport at Hodeidah and have started preparations for the more complex task of capturing the city and its port nine miles (15km) to the north. The port is critical to the supply of aid to the rest of the famine-struck country. Confirmation that the airport on the southern outskirts of the city had been seized after three days of fighting came from both TV pictures and eyewitness accounts.
Jun 19 2:46PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Antisemitism is well-defined already | Letters
The IHRA definition has government backing and is fast becoming the standard non-legal guide as to what constitutes antisemitism, writes Dave Rich. The academics and others who suggest a new definition of antisemitism (Letters, 16 June) ignore the existence of a perfectly good definition of antisemitism, adopted by the 31-member-state International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) in May 2016. This definition has since been adopted or endorsed by the UK, Scottish and Welsh governments, over 120 local authorities, several governments overseas and by the European parliament.
Jun 18 4:49PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Israel indicts former cabinet minister on Iran spying charges
Gonen Segev allegedly met Iranian 'operators' in hotels and apartments around world Israel has arrested and indicted a former government minister on charges of spying for Iran, the country's internal security services have said. Gonen Segev, who worked as energy and infrastructure minister in the 1990s, was recruited and acted as an agent on behalf of Iranian intelligence, police and the Israel Security Agency, better known as the Shin Bet, said in a statement on Monday. Continue reading.
Jun 18 4:12PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Yemen crisis: Saudi coalition demands Houthis' unconditional withdrawal
UN's hopes of negotiating ceasefire and handover of vital port of Hodeidah appear dashed The UN's hopes of negotiating a ceasefire with Houthi rebels in the vital port of Hodeidah in Yemen appear to have been dashed after the Saudi-led coalition backing the Yemeni government said it would only accept the rebels' unconditional withdrawal from the area. The UN special envoy for Yemen, Martin Griffiths, has been in the country seeking a deal whereby the port, currently under Houthi control, is handed over to the UN and its relief agencies. The port is the distribution point for up to 80% of the food, water and commercial fuel vital to the lives of more than 8 million Yemenis in severe need.
Jun 18 3:32PM Guardian-MiddleEast

The Guardian view on Yemen: our complicity lies bare | Editorial
Even if the UK warned against attacking the vital port of Hodeidah, we bear responsibility for the horrors of this war. The fig leaves covered little to start with, and withered long ago. Now the excuses for our role in Yemen's misery have fallen away entirely.
Jun 17 5:47PM Guardian-MiddleEast

UN in advanced talks to take over besieged Yemen port
Saudi-led forces have threatened military force to take Hodeidah port from rebels Talks are at an advanced stage for the United Nations to take over the administration of the vital port of Hodeidah under siege from a Saudi-led coalition, the UN humanitarian coordinator Lise Grande said on Sunday. The Red Sea port is the main distribution point for commercial and humanitarian supplies into Yemen. Related: Yemen attack: hundreds killed as rebels' grip on Hodeidah airport loosens Continue reading.
Jun 17 12:56PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Opec: Saudis keen to pump more oil but cartel's other members not sold
At the meeting Vienna, Opec members will debate whether to lift the 18-month-old production cap to stabilize prices As the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec) prepares to meet on June 22, its members are looking at a very different world than just a few years ago. The massive oil supply glut - and rock bottom prices - is gone. The global economy is stronger, fossil-fuel energy demand is at a record high, and the nuclear deal that allowed Iran, an Opec member, to start selling oil again is in tatters.
Jun 17 11:00AM Guardian-MiddleEast

The Saudi Arabian women driving forward
Next Sunday, women in Saudi Arabia will at last be allowed to drive, potentially transforming millions of lives. But the change has been overshadowed by the arrest of many of the activists who campaigned for decades against the ban Enaam Alaswad has only risked getting behind the wheel of a car in Saudi Arabia once, sparked by the frustration of watching her driver try and fail, repeatedly, to squeeze into a tight parking space on the baking, dusty streets of her seaside hometown, Jeddah. I couldn't bear it, I asked him to get out, and parked it myself.
Jun 17 8:00AM Guardian-MiddleEast

The Observer view on migrants dying because Europe is pandering to populism | Observer editorial
The plight of rescue ship Aquarius highlights the horrific consequences of failed migration policies The plight of Aquarius, the rescue ship carrying 629 migrants, stands as a potent reminder of the dire failings of European migration policy. No matter that the ship carried seven pregnant women and more than a hundred unaccompanied children rescued at sea as they tried to make the desperate, dangerous crossing from Libya to Italy. First Italy, then Malta, refused the ship entry to their ports.
Jun 17 4:59AM Guardian-MiddleEast

A win against England would put Arab spring in Tunisia's step
National side to play in the World Cup for first time since jasmine revolution Taher Lwati sat outside a toyshop on one of the quiet avenues that crisscross central Tunis, soaking up the warm evening air and ruminating on the chances of an unlikely footballing victory. The national team comes above all else. I've been following the sport for years and, really, I just want to see Tunisia get through to the next round before I die, said Lwati, 63.
Jun 16 9:19PM Guardian-MiddleEast

US expected to quit UN human rights panel over perceived anti-Israel bias
Sources say attempts at reform have failed to satisfy US, which claims the council is stacked with opponents of Israel Talks over how to reform the United Nations human rights council have failed to meet US demands, activists and diplomats said, suggesting the Trump administration will quit the panel, whose session opens on Monday. Related: The two-state solution is dead. Palestine needs a new UN mandate | Mark Seddon Continue reading.
Jun 16 6:15PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Yemen attack: hundreds killed as rebels' grip on Hodeidah airport loosens
Airport push marks third day of campaign to drive out rebels from vital Red Sea port as death toll rises Saudi-led coalition and Yemeni fighters backing the country's government have taken control of the airport of a crucial rebel-held port, according to Yemen's military media office. The death toll climbed to at least 280 by the fourth day of the campaign on Saturday aimed at driving out the Iranian-backed Shiite rebels, known as Houthis, from the Red Sea port of Hodeidah. It is the entry point for food and aid supplies in a country teetering on the brink of famine.
Jun 16 4:25AM Guardian-MiddleEast

Australia rules out moving its Israel embassy to Jerusalem
Julie Bishop will not follow US lead, despite pressure from her party to do so Australia will not be following Donald Trump's lead and moving its embassy to Jerusalem, Julie Bishop has said, despite strong support from the party's base. The Liberal party's youth arm had called on the government to relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Israel's legislative capital, and to suspend all aid to Palestine until it terminates its 'Martyr's fund. Related: The US-Israeli relationship faces a storm on the horizon | Michael H Fuchs Related: Death, division and denial as US embassy opens in Jerusalem Continue reading.
Jun 16 3:30AM Guardian-MiddleEast

We must define antisemitism to fight it effectively | Letters
A group of prominent academics and other figures call for clarity about what constitutes antisemitism. There are disturbing signs round the world that age-old prejudices against Jews are reviving once more. We need to be clear in recognising them, and resolute in dealing with them.
Jun 15 3:52PM Guardian-MiddleEast

Bullets and bandages: the artist healing the wounds of Beirut
Mari Meen Halsy's work, on show in London, responds to the city's scarred buildings The old buildings of Beirut still carry holes left by bullets and shells during 15 years of civil war in Lebanon, and many of its people have matching psychological wounds. A Norwegian artist, exhibiting in the UK for the first time, is attempting to heal both through her work. The project, installed by Mari Meen Halsy at the William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow, north-east London, recreates the wall of a shattered building known as the Yellow House.
Jun 15 1:59PM Guardian-MiddleEast

What is the current state of the migration crisis in Europe?
Three years since the peak of the crisis, here is how things stand as tensions rise again Three years after Europe's biggest influx of migrants and refugees since the second world war, tensions between EU member states over how to handle irregular immigration from outside the bloc - mainly from the Middle East and Africa - are rising again. Continue reading..
Jun 15 1:34PM Guardian-MiddleEast