Middle East News – July 28th

A group of dedicated Star Wars fans have restored the ranch from Episode IV: A New Hope in a remote Tunisian desert

– President Obama has signed into law a bill that will sent $70 million to Israel in the next year to build a state of the art missile defense system – The signing was timed to overshadow Mitt Romney’s visit to Jerusalem – Al-Jazeera

– A group of hardcore Star Wars fans have restored the Tunisian ranch that was used for the Tatooine scenes in the original trilogy – CNN

– Syrian rebel and government forces are preparing for a climactic battle in the city of Aleppo in what could be the decisive battle of the civil war – BBC

– Libyan rebels who fought against Gaddafi’s regime have moved to Syria to help the rebels there in their fight against the Assad regime – CNN

– Saudi Arabian security forces opened fire on Shi’ite protesters in the western part of the country yesterday – Al-Jazeera – In the western Qatif region government forces have arrested a number of protesters who were on a short list of trouble makers the government wished to arrest – CNN

– Dubai’s police chief has warned Gulf states that there may be a vast conspiracy to overthrow the existing governments in that region, though he did not cite his source – Al-Bawaba

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Middle East News – July 9th

Oman’s sultan, Qaboos bin Said, is finally feeling the repercussions of last year’s Arab Spring has protests begin in his usually quiet gulf nation over rising unemployment

– Former Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert was charged with two breaches of trust but acquitted on two charges of corruption and bribery in a mixed verdict that leaves his political future uncertain – CNN

– A government support report has stated that it wants Israel to create dozens of unsanctioned and illegal outposts on Palestinian land – Al-Jazeera

– The upheaval of the Arab Spring may finally be reaching the typically conservative and reclusive Omani sultanate where hundreds of protestors have taken to the streets in reaction to rising youth employment and broken government promises – BBC

– Egypt’s Morsi has ordered the dissolved parliament to reconvene in reaction to a court’s ruling denying him the right to do so – Al-Jazeera

– The U.S. State department has issued a statement urging Iraq to release a pastor detained for over a thousand days because he left Islam in his youth – CNN

– Dubai has announced the building of a massive and environmentally friendly Green Mosque to be ready sometime in late 2013 – Al-Jazeera

– A leading Bahraini protestor has been given a three month jail sentence for sending out a tweet critical of the reigning prime minister – Al-Jazeera

– The liberal Alliance of National Forces is predicted to win the recent Libyan election, with 75% of the votes having already been counted – Al-Bawaba