- Timbuktu surrounded by rebels with Mali's junta government in crisis
- Palestinians clash with Israeli soldiers on 'Land Day'
- Call by Salafist cleric in Tunisia to kill Jews raises firestorm
Timbuktu surrounded by rebels with Mali's junta government in crisis
From Kalamazoo to Timbuktu is a long way down the track, but not for Tuareg rebels who have surrounded Timbuktu and are close to capturing it and taking control of the entire Azawad region (northern Mali). The Tuareg's Mouvement National de Libération de l'Azawad (MNLA) has been gaining strength because of the return of thousands of seasoned fighters from the Libyan war, where they had served as the core of Muammar Gaddafi's supporters.
Amadou Haya Sanogo, who led a group of Mali army deserters to a coup last week, is begging the neighboring countries to help stop the Tuareg rebellion. But the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which includes Ivory Coast, Benin, Burkina Faso, Niger and Liberia, is refusing to help until Sanogo steps down, and democratically elected President Amadou Toumani Touré is returned to power. Even worse, Ecowas is threatening to close all borders with the landlocked Mali, which will make it impossible to import food or gasoline. Al-Jazeera
Palestinians clash with Israeli soldiers on 'Land Day'
One man died and dozens more were injured Friday as Israeli forces and Palestinian demonstrators clashed in Gaza and the West Bank during protests to mark Land Day. Palestinians hold Land Day rallies every year to commemorate the deaths of six demonstrators in 1976. The rallies have become an annual expression of what Palestinians say are discriminatory Israeli policies. CNN
Call by Salafist cleric in Tunisia to kill Jews raises firestorm
Roger Bismuth, President of Tunisia's Jewish Community, announced that he is taking legal action against a Salafist preacher who led a demonstration shouting, "young people rise up, let's wage a war against the Jews," to a crowd chanting "God is great." Bismuth was supported by the leader of Tunisia's Islamist political party Ennahda, who said, "Tunisia defends the rights of all citizens. We will fight for the rights of all our minorities, including the Jewish minority." The Ministry of Religious Affairs has also condemned "all calls to fight Jews," and deemed the incident on Avenue Habib Bouguiba to be an "isolated act." Tunisia Live