Turkey thanks Qatar for supporting Syria invasion

Turkey's invasion of northern Syria has been widely condemned both by Arab countries and in the West. (AFP/File photo)
Updated 03 November 2019

Turkey thanks Qatar for supporting Syria invasion

  • Doha acted in defiance of the Arab League last month when it voiced support for the Turkish operation
  • Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu personally thanked Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim for supporting the invasion

LONDON: Turkey on Sunday thanked Qatar for supporting a widely-condemned invasion of northern Syria.

Doha acted in defiance of the Arab League last month when it voiced support for the Turkish operation against Kurdish forces in north-east Syria.

Other Arab countries, including Saudi Arabia, condemned Turkey’s “aggression” as a threat to regional peace and security and a violation of Syria’s sovereignty.

The operation, which came after Donald Trump withdrew US troops from the region, was also denounced by European countries and aid groups.

Qatar however defended Turkey, saying Operation Peace Spring was in response to an “imminent threat” from Kurdish groups. One of the few other voices of support came from the hardline Palestinian militant group Hamas.

On Sunday, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu personally thanked Qatar’s Emir Sheikh Tamim for supporting the operation during a meeting in Doha. In a tweet he described Qatar as a “brotherly” nation and conveyed the greetings of Recep Tayyip Erdogan.”

Turkey and Qatar have grown closer since Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain launched a boycott of Qatar over its links to extremist groups and cooperation with Iran. Ankara boosted its military presence in Qatar and as Doha promised support for Turkey’s economy.

The Turkish operation was launched on Oct. 9 to push back from its border Kurdish fighters, who it considers terrorists for their links to decades of insurgency inside Turkey.

A truce deal signed last week between Ankara and Moscow demanded Kurdish fighters withdraw from the border, handing the Turks a 120 kilometer-long stretch of Syrian territory.

The deal includes joint Russian-Turkish patrols along other parts of the frontier that started on Friday.

 


Egypt arrests alleged serial sexual predator

Updated 04 July 2020

Egypt arrests alleged serial sexual predator

  • Allegations have been widely circulating on social media detailing horrific sexual abuse and related blackmail suffered by women at the hands of the same man
  • Trending hashtags carrying the alleged abuser’s name widely circulated on Twitter and Facebook, urging government action

CAIRO: Egyptian authorities on Saturday arrested a man who allegedly sexually abused dozens of girls and women, in a case that has sparked outrage online, a security source said.
Allegations have been widely circulating on social media since Wednesday detailing horrific sexual abuse and related blackmail suffered by women at the hands of the same man.
One allegation claimed that he attempted to abuse a 14-year-old girl.
“The person accused of harassing the girls has been arrested and will be facing the prosecution following the allegations carried on social media,” the security source said.
“Those affected should submit formal reports of the harm they endured,” the source added.
The source did not identify the suspect.
According to the social media reports, the first of which was published on an Instagram account, the abuse had been going on since at least 2018.
Trending hashtags carrying the alleged abuser’s name widely circulated on Twitter and Facebook, urging government action.
Egypt’s National Council for Women (NCW) lodged an official complaint with the public prosecutor to investigate the allegations on Saturday.
“The NCW has followed the social media account on Instagram, which was launched by girls and women complaining that a man raped some of them and sexually assaulted and harassed others,” it said on Facebook.
It also said that several victims, who reached out to the council, recounted that the man “blackmailed and threatened to defame them using photos and clips documenting his heinous crimes.”
The council urged the women to submit official complaints to the prosecutor.
Some online reports suggested the perpetrator was a university student.
The American University in Cairo acknowledged the suspect had studied there but said he left the university in 2018.
He “is not a current student at the American University in Cairo,” a statement said.
Sexual harassment is highly prevalent in Egypt.
United Nations surveys have found that most Egyptian women have been subject to harassment, ranging from catcalling to pinching and groping.
Egyptian authorities have criminalized sexual harassment since 2014, but many women complain that the problem remains rampant.