Press Review 22nd -29th August

Defending the Human Right Defenders  23/08/2014 Muftah

Human Rights Watch’s (HRW) new report on Egypt’s “Rab’a Massacre” and the mass killing of protestors in July and August of 2013 has earned the organization a tsunami of criticism in the Egyptian media. Among the accusations lobbied at the group, critics cite funding from the Gulf, failure to report the presence of armed protestors, downplaying the sit-ins’ sectarianism, and a pro-Muslim Brotherhood bias.

Qatar aims to prove its role against radical Islam 25/08/2014 Your Middle East

Qatar, which mediated the release of a US hostage held by Al-Qaeda in Syria, seeks to prove its role in confronting the Islamist radicals it has been accused of supporting, experts say. Since the rise of Qatar in the regional and international political arena in the late 1990s, the energy-rich US ally has been regularly accused of supporting or financing insurgent movements, directly or indirectly, particularly in Syria.

The real threat from the Islamic State is to Muslims, not the west 26/08/2014 Al Jazeera English

The rise of the Islamic State group is probably the worst event in recent Muslim history since 9/11. In a very short time the Islamic State has become the most compelling and attractive organisation for Muslim fighters around the world, more so than al-Qaeda ever was. The Islamic State is a direct descendant of al-Qaeda, but there is one key difference: Its leaders believe fighting « apostates » is more important than fighting non-Muslims for now. Their caliphate, say its fighters, will never be truly powerful unless apostates and « fake » Muslims are first weeded out – and their definition of « apostate » expands to include anyone who stands against them.

Syria, Nostalgia for the peaceful demonstrations 26/08/2014 Courrier International

While the brute force is still prevailing in Syria, there was great surprise due to recent week’s images of new peaceful protests held in the surrounding of Damascus, Hama and Idlib. These remind the scenes of the beginning of the revolution [2011-2012] .The militarization of the Syrian opposition and the emergence of Islamist movements led to disastrous results for the country and its cohesion. Syrians seem to miss the time when they were demanding freedom and democracy through peaceful demonstrations.

Libya: Was it necessary to overthrow Gaddafi? 26/08/2014 Jeune Afrique

2014 Libya offers the spectacle of an inextricable chaos. The country plunged into a civil war that is far distant from a viable resolution. The breakdown of the Libyan state and the spread of terrorism in the region reignite the debate on whether the NATO intervention against the former « Guide » of the Libyan.

Cease-fire in Gaza between Israel and Hamas: who won? – 27/08/2014 France24

The cease-fire agreement between Hamas and Israel is apparently a showcase for the Islamist movement, which won the easing of the blockade. But while Hamas is claiming a political victory, Israel can greet a strategic success.

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© REUTERS / Mohammed Salem. A Palestinian father with his son after an Israeli raid that destroyed a building, on August 26th.