Palestinian teenager in critical condition after trying to stab Israeli soldiers

In this Sept. 27, 2017 file photo, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu speaks during a ceremony marking 50 years since Israel captured the West Bank and other territories in the 1967 Mideast war, in Gush Etzion settlement in the West Bank. Gush Etzion junction, next to a major Israeli settlement in the southern West Bank, has been the site of a series of violence lately. (AP Photo/Tsafrir Abayov, File)
Updated 17 November 2017
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Palestinian teenager in critical condition after trying to stab Israeli soldiers

JERUSALEM: A Palestinian rammed his car into two Israeli civilians in the occupied West Bank on Friday before trying to stab soldiers and being shot, the Israeli army said.
An army statement alleged that the attacker drove his car into the two Israelis near the Gush Etzion junction in the southern West Bank, leaving them both injured.
“The assailant proceeded by exiting the vehicle, armed with a knife, and attempted to stab (Israeli) soldiers,” it added, saying he was shot and “severely injured” before harming anyone.
The Palestinian assailiant and one of the wounded were evacuated to the Hadassah hospital in Jerusalem.
A spokeswoman for the hospital said the Palestinian was 17 and in critical condition.
Since a wave of violence broke out in October 2015, at least 308 Palestinians or Arab Israelis as well as 51 Israelis and seven foreigners have been killed, according to an AFP count.
Gush Etzion junction, next to a major Israeli settlement in the southern West Bank, has been the site of multiple attacks during that time.
Violence has subsided significantly in recent months.


Abadi faces US wrath at U-turn on Iran sanctions

An intended visit to Tehran was canceled and Abadi’s office denied that the visit had even been planned. (REUTERS)
Updated 15 August 2018
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Abadi faces US wrath at U-turn on Iran sanctions

  • Iran has maintained close ties to Iraq's government since the 2003 U.S.-led invasion toppled Saddam Hussein, Tehran's archenemy
  • The administration says the renewed sanctions are meant to pressure Tehran to halt its alleged support for international terrorism

BAGHDAD: Failure by Iraq to comply fully with tough new US economic sanctions against Iran would be insane, analysts told Arab News on Tuesday.
Iraqi Prime Minister Haider Abadi risked incurring US wrath after contradicting himself in the space of a few hours over whether his country would comply.
Amid diplomatic maneuvers, as he negotiates for a second term in office after divisive and contested elections, Abadi offended both Tehran and Washington with conflicting statements on the US sanctions, which were reimposed last week.
First, the prime minister said that while Iraq disapproved of the new sanctions, it would reluctantly comply. “We don’t support the sanctions because they are a strategic error, but we will comply with them,” he said.
“Our economic situation is also difficult and we sympathize with Iran. But. at the same time, I will not make grand slogans that destroy my people and my country just to make certain people happy.”
His position provoked anger in Iran. An intended visit to Tehran on Tuesday to discuss the issue was canceled, and Abadi’s office denied that the visit had even been planned.
There was also criticism inside Iraq, especially from groups close to Tehran, such as the Asaib Ahl Al-Haq and Badr paramilitary movements.
Within hours, however, Abadi had reversed his position. “I did not say we abide by the sanctions, I said we abide by not using dollars in transactions. We have no other choice,” Abadi told a news conference in Baghdad.
Asked if Baghdad would stop imports of commodities, appliances and equipment by government companies from Iran, he said the matter was still being reviewed. “We honestly have not made any decision regarding this issue until now,” he said.
Michael Knights, the Lafer Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, told Arab News: “Iraq can’t afford to be cut off from the dollar-based global financial system, so it makes sense to avoid sanctioned Iranian financial entities. Iraq should also protect its dollar reserves.
“These are the only sane options for a country that desperately needs international investment.”
Iraq is the second-largest purchaser of Iranian non-oil exports, and bought about $6 billion worth of goods in 2017. It also buys Iranian-generated electricity to deal with chronic power cuts that have been a key factor sparking mass protests in recent weeks.
On Tuesday, the British renewable energy investor Quercus became the latest major company to pull out of Iran as a result of the new sanctions.
It halted construction of $570 million solar power plant in Iran, which would have been the sixth-largest in the world.