Palestinians warn Israel over W. Bank annexation plans

GAZA CITY, Palestine,  Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip have warned of grave consequences over Israeli plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank. “Any decision by the [Israeli] occupation to annex the West Bank will cause heavy damage,” Ashraf Zayed, a member of Hamas group, told a rally in Gaza City on Tuesday. “Such …

Palestinians warn Israel over W. Bank annexation plans

GAZA CITY, Palestine,  Palestinian groups in the Gaza Strip have warned of grave consequences over Israeli plans to annex parts of the occupied West Bank.

“Any decision by the [Israeli] occupation to annex the West Bank will cause heavy damage,” Ashraf Zayed, a member of Hamas group, told a rally in Gaza City on Tuesday.

“Such a move will not go unanswered and will cause uncontrolled reactions,” he said, describing the Israeli annexation plans as a “conspiracy”.

Zayed warned that any annexation of the West Bank by Israel “will aggravate the suffering of the Palestinian people”, going on to call for rallying efforts to close the Palestinian ranks to protect their rights.

Israel is expected to carry out the annexation on July 1, as agreed between Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and head of Blue and White party Benny Gantz.

Palestinian officials have threatened to abolish bilateral agreements with Israel if it goes ahead with the annexation plans, which will undermine the two-state solution.

US President Donald Trump’s so-called “deal of the century” plan was announced Jan. 28. It refers to Jerusalem as “Israel’s undivided capital” and recognizes Israeli sovereignty over large parts of the West Bank.

The plan states the establishment of a Palestinian state in the form of an archipelago connected by bridges and tunnels.

Palestinian officials say that under the US plan, Israel will annex 30-40% of the West Bank, including all of East Jerusalem.

The plan has drawn widespread criticism from the Arab world and was rejected by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, which urged “all member states not to engage with this plan or to cooperate with the US administration in implementing it in any form.”

Source : Voice of South Asia More   

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Balkan countries move towards normalcy after COVID-19

BELGRADE, Serbia A growing number of countries in Central and Southeast Europe are lifting coronavirus lockdown measures amid a steady decline in the number of new infections. Slovak Prime Minister Igor Matovic announced the coronavirus’s spread in the country has been brought under control as a result of the measures, so the state will continue …

Balkan countries move towards normalcy after COVID-19

BELGRADE, Serbia

A growing number of countries in Central and Southeast Europe are lifting coronavirus lockdown measures amid a steady decline in the number of new infections.

Slovak Prime Minister Igor Matovic announced the coronavirus’s spread in the country has been brought under control as a result of the measures, so the state will continue to gradually lift the measures.

It is expected that movie theaters, swimming pools, kindergartens, and primary schools to be opened throughout the country from 20 May.

Slovakia so far has registered 1,465 cases and 27 deaths.

Meanwhile, the Foreign Ministry said Slovakia’s joint borders with the Czech Republic and Austria are expected to open in the summer and the opening of the Slovakia-Hungary border has also been discussed.

Czech Republic

Also, the Czech Republic takes the second step of the normalization process in daily life.

The terraces and gardens of cafes and restaurants, hairdressers, museums, sports halls were opened as well as cinemas and theaters.

Also, visa and residence procedures for foreigners started again in the foreign representatives of the Czech Republic in 20 countries.

Croatia

Croatia moved to the third phase in loosening the measures. Accordingly, cafes, restaurants, shopping malls, and kindergartens started operating.

Serbia

Serbia on Monday opened kindergartens, but it was stated that children of families that are working will be admitted in the first step and a health report will be issued to them.

The country last week lifted the state of emergency and curfew. It also allows restaurants and coffee shops as well as shopping centers to be opened.

Serbia daily registers around 80 new cases of coronavirus.

Bulgaria

Bulgaria announced it will lift the state of emergency on May 13, and that if the cases rise and do not fall below 100 for three consecutive days, strict measures will be brought again.

Albania

Albania allowed shops, hairdressers, dental clinics, and shopping centers to be opened. The country announced that the removal of measures in the country will take place on 18 May.

Montenegro

Montenegro opened mosques in the country for worship on Monday. To maintain social distancing, a limited number of congregations will be accepted, and it is obligatory to wear a mask.

Latest figures

In Slovakia, the tally of cases stood at 1,465 with 27 deaths, while in Czech Republic at 8,177 with 283 deaths.

Serbia so far registered 10,176 cases with 218 deaths, and Montenegro 324 infections with nine fatalities.

In Bosnia and Herzegovina 2,141 cases were recorded with 113 deaths, whereas in Bulgaria cases neared 2,004 with 93 fatalities.

Albania has recorded 872 infections with a death toll of 31, and in Kosovo the cases reached 884 with 28 fatalities.

After originating in China last December, COVID-19 has spread to at least 187 countries and regions. Europe and the US are currently the worst-hit regions.

The pandemic has killed over 286,600 worldwide, with total infections more than 4.19 million, while recoveries exceeded 1.46 million, according to figures compiled by the US’ Johns Hopkins University.

Source : Voice of South Asia More   

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