Ammon News, Editor's Choice

Jordan slams Israeli plan to build new settlements in occupied Palestinian territories

[5/24/2018 5:01:44 PM]

AMMONNEWS - Jordan Thursday censured the Israeli government's plan to construct 2,500 new settlement units across occupied Palestinian territories. "Israel's settlement activities are illegal, categorically rejected and jeopardize the peace option and once more throw out a challenge to the international community by breaching international conventions", said State Minister for Media Affairs Mohammad Momani. The minister, who is also the Government Spokesman, said the global community considers settlements unlawful, and this was made clear in the UN Security Council resolution No. 2334. He affirmed that unilateral Israeli measures aimed at altering the facts in occupied Palestinian land and bypassing the outcomes of final negotiations systematically undermine peace prospects and threaten stability and security in the Middle East.

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Jordan calls for international probe into Israel massacre in Gaza

[5/24/2018 4:59:36 PM]

AMMONNEWS - An immediate international investigation into the Israeli massacre in the Gaza Strip is “a necessity so as to provide the Palestinian people there rights to justice”, the Kingdom’s foreign minister said yesterday. Speaking during a meeting with the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Nickolay Mladenov in the Jordanian capital Amman, Ayman Safadi said the international community should protect civilians and impose international law. On 14 May the Israeli occupation army killed 65 Palestinians and injured thousands in Gaza during peaceful protests against the transfer of the US Embassy to Israel from Tel Aviv to occupied Jerusalem. Safadi warned against the political deadlock and the lack of effective international action to end the Israeli occupation and to meet the right of the Palestinian people to freedom and an independent state, with Jerusalem as its capital, along the 1967 lines. “The two officials highlighted the need for concerted international efforts to push the peace process forward, achieve the two-state solution and take practical measures to end the suffering of the Palestinians in Gaza and ensure the delivery of aid to the coastal enclave,” Jordan’s Petra News Agency reported. Israel’s stifling blockade on the Gaza Strip has meant that the majority of Palestinians in the enclave live in poverty and rely on aid for their survival. Gaza has the world’s highest unemployment rate which stands at nearly 44 per cent. *MEM

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Arab League cancels MoU with Guatemala

[5/23/2018 11:17:32 AM]

AMMONNEWS - The Arab League Secretariat General canceled the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in 2013 with Guatemala's Ministry of Foreign Affairs as a result of its position on Jerusalem. The decision is in line with the directives of the Secretary-General of the Arab League, Ahmed Aboul Gheit, and within the framework of activating the decision issued on 17 May during the extraordinary session of the Arab League Council at the level of foreign ministers. It came after Guatemala transferred its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in a clear violation of the international consensus on the legal and historical status of the occupied city of Jerusalem. Arab League Spokesman, Ambassador Mahmoud Afifi, stressed the League's call to all countries not to transfer their embassies to occupied Jerusalem and to abide by international legitimacy resolutions on the Palestinian issue, including those related to the status of Jerusalem.

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Israeli Security Cabinet convening in underground bunker

[5/22/2018 5:30:27 PM]

AMMONNEWS - Israel’s Security Cabinet, a forum of senior ministers headed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, has begun holding its weekly meetings in a secure underground bunker in Jerusalem, Israeli media said on Tuesday. The facility, known as the “National Management Centre”, was first used by the Security Cabinet in 2011 to rehearse a national crisis scenario. It was carved out beneath the government complex in Jerusalem and includes living quarters as well as command facilities. Reports of the move come amid a rise in tensions with Iran. Israel this month accused Iran of firing rockets from Syria into the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights. Israel struck back with its heaviest air strikes in Syria since the start of the Syrian civil war in 2011. Meetings of the Council, hitherto mostly at the prime minister’s office in Jerusalem, are already generally held out of the public eye. “Cabinet ministers have told us that one of the main reasons for the move is Netanyahu’s wish to try even harder to prevent leaks and because of fears of spying attempts by hostile foreign parties,” Israel’s Channel 10 said. The group of 11 ministers has already held a small number of meetings at the facility, and three planned weekly sessions, the next of which is scheduled for Wednesday, will be held in the bunker, a media source said. Israeli officials declined to comment on the reports. *Reuters

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MP Al-Saud, FM discuss latest developments in Palestine

[5/22/2018 7:45:18 AM]

AMMONNEWS - Head of the Lower House of Parliament's Palestine Committee MP Yahia Al-Saud met Monday discussed with Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi the latest developments in the Palestinian issue and the Kingdom's endeavors to meet the Palestinians' legitimate right and establish their sovereign state. Al-Saud said his meeting with the minister touched on Jordan's efforts to ensure sustained international support to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in order to continue delivering its vital services to refugees. The lawmaker, moreover, underscored Jordan's firm stance, which calls for supporting the Palestinian people and pointed out His Majesty King Abdullah relentless efforts to protect Islamic and Christian holy places in Jerusalem.

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Climate Engineering: The Solution to Climate Change?

[5/19/2018 9:58:24 AM]

AMMONNEWS - With the perpetual rise of carbon concentration in the atmosphere and the inertia of the world’s governments to convert to clean energy, scientists have been proposing unconventional solutions to suppress climate change. One of which is climate engineering. As ambitious as it may seem, climate engineering (or geoengineering) attempts to manipulate the entire earth’s climate in a way to decelerate or stop the advent of climate change. In theory, by regulating the amount of sunlight we get (known as “Solar Radiation Management”), and the amount of heat-trapping gas particles in the air (referred to as “Carbon Capture and Storage”), we can possibly control our climate. It’s all about controlling energy! It may sound far-fetched and complex, or even high tech. True, but in principle it is simple: we mimic what happens in nature. In 1991, when a volcano erupted in Pinatubo, Philippines, a colossal amount of sulfur dioxide was released to the atmosphere amounting to 20 million tons. Dispersed gas particles reflected sunlight back into the outer space, an event which had an effect overspreading the whole earth. It made global temperature averages fall 0.5 c over the span of three years. Similarly, if we mimic that by artificially spraying sulfur dioxide in the upper atmosphere, we could possibly achieve similar or even better results of cooling. In a Rutgers University study, researchers found that if we manage to spray 5 million tons of sulfur dioxide a year evenly (a quarter of the amount of Pinatubo), we would cool our planet by 1 c, thus restoring temperature averages to pre-industrial levels cancelling climate change. We could mimic trees too and construct an artificial lung for our planet. In the future, we may be able to build huge carbon capturing facilities to reduce its concentration in the atmosphere, hence, reducing the energy trapped by it. In the world we live in today, fear arises from the insufficiency and tardiness of climate action worldwide. While the Paris agreement has set a goal to stop climate change at well below 2 c, many governments are doing little to meet it. In fact, some countries are still actively increasing their carbon footprint and undermining climate talks. Moreover, future projections suggest that even in the most optimistic scenario, where all parties adhere to the agreement, zeroing our emissions will not be enough to achieve the “well below 2 c” goal. We will need more, something to cool the planet, we will need climate engineering. So far, climate engineering practices do not go beyond small-scale laboratory tests, therefore it is still unknown on how we could apply it on a global scale. On top of that, it is costly to say the least, with some arguing that it is not sustainable. But science never disappoints; this year Bill Gates succeeded not just in stripping CO2 from the air, but also converting it into clean fuel that can be sold. This gives us hope of solving the cost dilemma and overcoming other limitations in implementation and sustainability. All in all, in the foreseeable future, it does not seem we will be able to depend on climate engineering as a standalone solution for climate change as its science is still in its infancy. Nonetheless, it could become feasible as a supplementary solution to guarantee achieving Paris expectations and saving our planet.

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Jordan, Egypt call for international protection of Palestinians

[5/19/2018 9:47:55 AM]

AMMONNEWS - Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates Affairs Ayman Safadi and his Egyptian counterpart Sameh Shukri said that the protection of the Palestinian people and the attainment of their legitimate right to an independent state along the lines of June 4, 1967, with East Jerusalem as its capital, should be on top of the international agenda as the only avenue for peace and to prevent an escalation of the conflict. In a meeting held on the sidelines of an extraordinary Islamic summit in Istanbul yesterday, the ministers reviewed Arab and Islamic moves with the international community to counter the repercussions of the US decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital and move its embassy to the city, launch an investigation into the massacre by Israeli occupation forces against civilians in Gaza and break the stalemate in the peace process. Safadi and Shukri also stressed the importance of achieving Palestinian reconciliation in the higher interests of the Palestinian people. Safadi said Jordan highly recognised and fully supported Egyptian efforts in this context. The two ministers affirmed the depth of the bilateral relations and the institutional cooperation and coordination between the two brotherly countries.

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