Gaza soda bottler opens West Bank site to deal with siege

The economy in Gaza has been struggling and the decision to export soda to the West Bank could mean that the economy struggles more. Here is a take on the situation from Al-Monitor. Adnan Abu Amer May 21, 2019 A Palestinian worker monitors 7-Up production at the Yazji Group soft drink factory in Gaza City, Gaza, Aug. 3, 2005. As many Gaza Strip-bas...
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NZ$5 trillion investor group supports Christchurch Call

Since the Mosque killings in Christchurch, New Zealand, in March there's been an outpouring of emotion and of money. This is what has been pledged so far. New Zealand and global investors representing more than NZD$5 trillion have added their support to the Christchurch Call, which sets out voluntary commitments for governments, companies and wider...
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Netanyahu's separation policy feeds Hamas violence

What will happen with the peace process between Israel and Palestine is anybody's guess. It seems like the two-state solution is dead. Will the Palestinian Authority (PA) survive? Who will take over the West Bank? These are only some of the questions that will have to be answered in coming weeks. Here's what one author, who writes for Al Monitor, t...
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Abbas needs to dismantle the PA

Even though I have lived in the Middle East for some years, and have visited both Israel and Palestine, I was in the dark about why the Palestinian Authority (PA) came into existence and what could happen next. This article from Yossin Beilin for Al Monitor gives some of the answers. Yossi Beilin May 6, 2019 Article Summary Instead of playing into ...
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Ramadan: private sector working hours

A lot of people I know celebrate Ramadan and, as a non-Muslim, I always have to check what the timings are. This year it starts on 6 May for one month. It is a time to celebrate, eat good food, and spend time with family and friends. At Khaleej Times we always broke fast with dates- the best ever. I understand this is normal. After living in the UA...
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Refugee Forum seeks answers to how best to integrate

Refugees all over the world face an uphill struggle integrating into society. A Refugee Forum I attended last Wednesday in Christchurch, New Zealand, that's April 24, was organized by the Canterbury Refugee Resettlement and Resource Centre (CRRRC) and had the theme: "Unleashing the full potential of refugees". Here is what happened and a photo of t...
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Six Rules for Persuasive Storytelling

We are often told the effectiveness of storytelling. While we can all be storytellers, learning to tell stories well is the trick. I read this article with interest from the Nielsen Norman Group and wanted to share it with you. And if you are wondering what UX stands for, like me, it is the following: User experience (UX) is an approach to product ...
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Beware the false narrative linking Christchurch to Sri Lanka bombings

I was in Christchurch yesterday, at a refugee forum at which many Muslims were present, some of whom had lost loved ones in the Christchurch bombings. It was an horrific act and it's easy to link it to the Sri Lanka bombings – which is what a Sri Lankan junior minister has said. This article by Paul Buchanan, the Director of 36th Parallel Assessmen...
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Royal Jordanian Net Operating Profit Soars

Airports are on my mind; I'm working part-time at Queenstown airport, which is in the lower part of the South Island in New Zealand. Check-in, weighing bags and finding missing bags is my job. Like some have said, the best way to lose money is to invest in an airline. There are enormous costs involved; there is not only the cost of the aircraft but...
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What ouster of Sudan's Bashir means for Mideast leaders

The Middle East geographically might be made up of a few countries- namely the Levant, Iraq, Iran and the Gulf Co-operation Countries- but the influence is much greater, particularly in Africa and South East Asia. Sudan is one of those countries. What will the ouster of Omar Al-Bashir, after 30 years mean for the Middle East? Below is how Al Monito...
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In the Mayhem After Bashir's Ouster, Sudan May Find an Unlikely Ally in Iran

One of the main stories of the week has been the resignation of President Omar al-Bashir, the dictator who ruled over Sudan for 30 years. Sudan is an Arab country and has been drawn into the Yemeni war by working with Saudi Arabia and the UAE. What will happen if Sudan changes to democratic rule? Or is the country better under military rule? These ...
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NZ Super Fund seeks to capitalise on growing demand for data with USD 115m investment

The NZ Super Fund is a NZD41 billion global investment fund established by the NZ government to help pre-fund universal pensions. It is now increasing its investment in data, with the aim of maintaining its 10 per cent return on investment. The investment is being made alongside CIM, a community focused real estate and infrastructure owner. The det...
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Woman on honeymoon seeks divorce from 'cheap' husband in UAE

There are many uncertainties going on in the world, one of those being the general elections just held in Israel. Benjamin Netanayhu, leader of the right-wing Likud Party, will be forming a right-wing government with the other right-wing parties. It will be the fifth time he will be prime minister. What does this mean for the peace process? On a li...
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Who will win the Israeli elections?

Anyone who is following Middle East politics will know that Israel is holding its general election on 9 April.  Anyone who is following Middle East politics will know that Israel is holding its general election on 9 April. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is standing against several candidates the main one contender being Benny Gentz. While s...
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The Christchurch mosques attack

The past fortnight has been dominated by the shootings and murders in Christchurch, New Zealand, and the rise of White Supremacism and analysis of that. At a personal level, the theme of death continued, having had to organize and attend a funeral last week. This is what The Spin Off writes about the Christchurch murders and how Facebook has dealt ...
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Two-state Solution: Will it cost US Jews their relationship with Israel?

Now that President Trump has more or less declared that a two-state solution between Israel and Palestine is unworkable will this impact the US's relationship with Israel? This is what Haaretz newspaper says about the issue. Two-state Solution: U.S. Jews Won't Budge. Will It Cost Them Their Relationship With Israel? Supporting two states was not al...
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Russia weighs in on Trump’s Golan Heights decision

President Trump's decision to recognize Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights has had repercussions all over the world, probably none more so than Russia and President Putin. No doubt, it will destabilize the Middle East. Here is an analysis from Al Monitor's, The Pulse. Russia weighs in on Trump's Golan Heights decision Maxim A. Suchkov March...
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Unprecedented: Trump Gave Israel the Golan as a Gift and Asked for Nothing in Return

President Trump has unilaterally granted the Golan Heights to Israel, after capturing it from Syria in the six-day war in 1967. Under this premise, Israel is not having to grant something to the USA in return, which differs from other situations over the years. To give a full view of what this means, below is an account from Haaratz newspaper, an e...
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The world reacts to Jacinda Ardern

New Zealand is still reeling from the mosque attacks in Christchurch and the rest of the world is reacting to the response of the New Zealand prime minister, Jacinda Ardern, to the attacks. The response was considered empathetic and measured. As a consequence, the Arab world, largely, has responded with much affection to New Zealand and the attacks...
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Turkey's President uses New Zealand video

Last week's tragic events in Christchurch, New Zealand, have had repercussions around the world- from the way New Zealand, and the prime minister in particular, has responded, to the rapid change in gun laws. Then there are the politicians who are using the tragedy for their own ends, such as Turkey's President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan. By Mark Lowen,...
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