27 Aug 2018 - NPWJ News Digest on Middle East and North Africa Democracy

Articles

Tehran will help rebuild Syria, says Iran defence minister
Al Jazeera, 27 Aug 2018

Iran's top defence official has met Syria's President Bashar al-Assad and the country's defence minister in Damascus, pledging to contribute to the war-torn country's reconstruction. Tehran has provided steady political, financial and military backing to Assad during the civil war which is in its eighth year. On Sunday, Iranian Defence Minister Amir Hatami met his Syrian counterpart Ali Abdullah Ayyoub as well as Assad and said it was agreed with Syria that Iran would have "presence, participation and assistance" in reconstruction "and no third party will be influential in this issue".

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Assad’s Syria recorded its own atrocities. The world can’t ignore them
The Guardian, 27 Aug 2018

Imagine your son or daughter was arrested. And you heard nothing about them for years. Until one day, thousands of photographs of dead bodies were published – corpses of people who had died in custody. You start looking through them one by one, sick to your stomach wondering if the next photograph you click on is of your loved one. But as you go through them, you realise many of the corpses are so severely emaciated, mutilated, some with their eyes missing, that you’d find it hard to recognise even yourself in that state. Hundreds, if not thousands, of Syrian families have done just that – looked through the so-called Caesar photographs – images of over 6,700 people (originally reported as 11,000) who apparently died in Syrian regime custody.

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Libya: Deadly clashes erupt in Tripoli
Al Jazeera, 27 Aug 2018

Heavy clashes between armed groups have erupted in Libya's capital, Tripoli, since Sunday evening, officials said. Two people were reportedly killed while several others were wounded in the clashes on Monday, as the health ministry declared a state of emergency in the capital, according to local media. It remains unclear with whom the armed groups are affiliated.

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Saudi-led Coalition must be punished for war crimes in Yemen, insists Human Rights Watch
Middle East Monitor, 25 Aug 2018

The Saudi-led Coalition in Yemen has committed war crimes and must be punished, a new report by Human Rights Watch insists. Investigations conducted by the Coalition forces on alleged war crimes lacks credibility, says HRW, and fails to provide redress for civilian victims. The 90-page report was issued on Friday.

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