'Good morning' Facebook post leads to arrest of Palestinian

An illustration picture shows the log-on screen for the website Facebook on an Ipad, in Bordeaux, Southwestern France on January 30, 2013. (File photo by Reuters)
Updated 22 October 2017
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'Good morning' Facebook post leads to arrest of Palestinian

JERUSALEM: Israeli police have mistakenly arrested then released a Palestinian who posted “good morning” in Arabic on Facebook after software mistranslated it as “attack them,” police and a media report said Sunday.
Police only confirmed that a Palestinian had been mistakenly arrested then released following suspicions of incitement, but a report in Haaretz newspaper provided further details.
According to the report, which police would neither confirm nor deny, the Palestinian man posted a picture of himself leaning against a bulldozer at the Israeli settlement of Beitar Ilit, where he works, in the occupied West Bank.
Along with the picture, an Arabic phrase meaning “good morning” was also posted. Facebook’s translation software interpreted the post to mean “attack them” in Hebrew and “hurt them” in English, Haaretz reported.
It was unclear how such a translation error could have been made as there are no apparent similarities between the Arabic expression used for “good morning” and the phrases in Hebrew or English.
Police were notified and the man was arrested last week, the report said. He was released after a few hours when police realized the mistake, it said.
Police spokeswoman Luba Samri told AFP “a few days ago, a Palestinian was detained for questioning on suspicion of incitement through his Facebook page.”
She said he was “immediately released” after the suspicions turned out to be false.
Haaretz reported that the Facebook post has since been deleted.


Russia says kills 88,000 Syria rebels

Updated 20 October 2018
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Russia says kills 88,000 Syria rebels

  • Russia launched strikes in support of President Bashar Assad’s regime in September 2015
  • Russian air forces have carried out more than 40,000 bombing missions, hitting about 120,000 targets

MOSCOW: Russia’s defense minister said Saturday that almost 88,000 rebels had been killed in Syria in the three years since Moscow’s intervention to back government forces.
“Over the course of the operation, a total of more than 87,500 rebels have been eliminated, 1,411 settlements have been liberated and more than 95 percent of Syria’s territory,” Shoigu was quoted as saying at a forum in Singapore in a ministry statement.
“Most of the rebels have been liquidated,” Shoigu said.
Britain-based war monitor the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says close to 365,000 people have been killed during the seven-year civil war.
Russia launched strikes in support of President Bashar Assad’s regime in September 2015.
Russian air forces have carried out more than 40,000 bombing missions, hitting about 120,000 targets of “terrorist” infrastructure, Shoigu said.
The defense minister said that “Syrian armed forces currently control territory where more than 90 percent of the population lives.”