' Military Court Acquit's Abu Qatada on Terrorism Charges '

#AceWorldNews – AMMAN – September 24 – A Jordanian military court on Wednesday acquitted radical Muslim preacher Abu Qatada on terrorism charges for his role in plotting attacks against Americans and Israelis.

040276 britain abu qatada

040276 britain abu qatada

The ruling, handed down by civilian judges presiding over the hearings, capped a lengthy legal odyssey for the cleric known for his fiery pro-al-Qaida speeches but who in recent months emerged as a harsh critic of the Islamic State militant group.

The court ruled there was insufficient evidence against Abu Qatada and his defence lawyer, Husein Mubaidin, said he expects his client to be released within hours.

Abu Qatada, described as a onetime lieutenant to Osama bin Laden, was charged with involvement in plans to target Israeli and American tourists and Western diplomats in Jordan in 2000 – the so-called “millennium plot.”

#ANS2014

#al-qaida, #americans, #amman, #islamic-state, #israelis, #jordanian, #military, #muslim, #preacher

JORDAN: ' Abu Qatada Says Beheading US Journalists Contradicts Islamic Teaching '

#AceWorldNews – JORDAN (Amman) – September 07 – The Muslim cleric Abu Qatada has criticized the Islamic State (formerly known as ISIS) jihadists for the beheading of two US journalists, saying that the killings contradict Islamic teaching.

Abu Qatada is awaiting the verdict of an Amman court in Jordan for his role in an alleged terrorist plan to blow up American, Israeli and other Western tourists during the 2000-millennium celebrations.

He allegedly told reporters waiting outside the court that journalists are “messengers of truth” and that killing them is against religious teachings, according to the BBC.

Abu Qatari - 7422884_sne69yzo 

He was speaking to the media from the dock of a court in Amman, Jordan, during a hearing in a terrorism trial.

The case against Abu Qatada, who was deported from the UK last year after a long legal battle with the government, was adjourned until 24 September.

He is on trial in Jordan over his alleged involvement in a thwarted plot aimed at the millennium celebrations in the country in 2000.

#ANS2014

#abu-qatada, #amman, #bbc, #islamic-state, #jordan, #osama-bin-laden, #ulama, #united-kingdom, #united-states

#Syria Urgently Requires a Robust Development Response to Complement Ongoing Humanitarian and Refugee Efforts in the Region #Peace

Coat of arms of Syria -- the "Hawk of Qur...

Coat of arms of Syria — the “Hawk of Qureish” with shield of vertical tricolor of the national flag, holding a scroll with the words الجمهورية العربية السورية (Al-Jumhuriyah al-`Arabiyah as-Suriyah “The Syrian Arab Republic”). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The crisis in Syria urgently requires a robust development response to complement ongoing humanitarian and refugee efforts in the region, senior United Nations officials today said at the start of a meeting in Jordan.

“A comprehensive development response to complement our humanitarian efforts in Syria and its neighbours is overdue. We are determined to change that,” <” http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/pressreleases/2013/11/02/the-united-nations-a-scaled-up-development-response-to-the-syria-crisis-is-critical-now/“>said Sima Bahous, Chair of the Regional UN Development Group, which is hosting the meeting, and Director of the Regional Bureau for Arab States at the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

The meeting of the Regional UN Development Group, is expected to close with a plan focused on development in Syria and its immediate sub-regional context and how to put that response to action, according to a UNDP news release.

Regional directors and representatives of more than 20 UN agencies, including UNDP, are in the Jordanian‘s capital of Amman to discuss means to harmonize UN responses to the conflict which has killed more than 100,000 people and forced millions to flee their homes within Syria and into neighbouring countries.

Almost 97 per cent of Syria’s refugees are hosted in the immediate surrounding region, with around one million in Lebanon, followed by Jordan, Iraq and Turkey.

“The spillover of the crisis into its four neighboring countries is impacting economic and human development outcomes in those countries at the national and local levels,” UNDP said in a news release.

Key sectors including investment, tourism, trade and local production are affected at varying levels of intensity, according to the UN agency. The crisis also is raising concerns over possibilities of triggering tensions between refugees and local populations in those countries.

Syria

Syria (Photo credit: Yishac – Isaac Alvarez i Brugada)

Recent impact assessments in the two countries most affected by the crisis – Lebanon and Jordan – raise concerns that the crisis may be seriously compounding the deterioration of their economies, which were already under stress, with direct impact on incomes and poverty levels especially among the most vulnerable populations.

A joint World Bank-UN assessment in Lebanon estimates that over the period of 2012- 2014, the Syrian conflict may cut real GDP growth by 2.9 percentage points annually, leading to a cumulative loss in wages, profits, taxes and investment of up to $7.5 billion.

The number of Lebanese who are living in extreme poverty could rise from 1 million to 1.17 million and the unemployment rate could double to above 20 percent.

According to UNDP, official assessments in Jordan indicate that the Government has incurred over $251 million during 2012 to provide and maintain services and basic needs of Syrian refuges and estimate that additional costs needed to continue hosting them may reach $1.68 billion, excluding the additional costs for the camps.

This burden has stifled efforts to recover economic growth in the Jordan from 8.15 per cent in 2005 to 2.3 per cent in 2010. According to the cited figures, the national unemployment rate rose to 13.1 per cent from 12.7 per cent.

 

#amman, #iraq, #jordan, #lebanon, #syria, #turkey, #undp, #united-nations, #united-nations-development-programme

UN: Today has Agreed to Launch a Concerted Effort to the #Syrian Economic Crisis #Peace

Save #Syrias ChildrenSenior United Nations development officials have agreed to complement ongoing humanitarian efforts in Syria and its neighbours with support for increased demands on basic services and to help the countries recover from economic downturns.

“While we continue to provide essential humanitarian support, we must as well attend to development needs in a manner that is complementary, simultaneous and urgent,” <“http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/presscenter/pressreleases/2013/11/03/building-resilience-to-save-the-future-un-agencies-to-scale-up-their-development-response-to-the-syria-crisis.html“>stressed Sima Bahous, Chair of the Regional UN Development Group, which is hosting the two-day meeting.

UNDP “We must safeguard present gains in development and arrest potential roll-back, and at the same time, strengthen recovery and nurture innate capacities for development planning and delivery, so that people –supported by their local institutions— can cope with the ongoing crisis and build back their lives, better,” added Ms. Bahous, who is also the Director of the Regional Bureau for Arab States at the UN Development Programme (UNDP).

Regional directors and representatives of more than 20 UN agencies, including UNDP, have met in the Jordanian capital of Amman since Saturday to discuss means to harmonize UN responses to the conflict which has killed more than 100,000 people and forced millions to flee their homes within Syria and into neighbouring countries.

Almost 97 per cent of Syria’s refugees are hosted in the immediate surrounding region, with around one million in Lebanon, followed by Jordan, Iraq and Turkey.

“The spillover of the crisis into its four neighbouring countries is impacting economic and human development outcomes in those countries at the national and local levels,” UNDP has said.

Key sectors including investment, tourism, trade and local production are affected at varying levels of intensity, according to the UN agency. The crisis also is raising concerns over possibilities of triggering tensions between refugees and local populations in those countries.

The outcome response plan has three main aspects. The first, to support governmental efforts at national and sub-national levels to ensure the provision of quality housing and related services, such as water, sanitation, energy and waste removal, and to rehabilitate and reconstruct the social economic infrastructure.

The agencies will also strengthen technical and managerial capacities of municipal governments. That includes, according to UNDP, promoting peaceful coexistence within conflict-affected communities.

Turning to livelihood opportunities and sustainable employment, the plan will focus on improving access to markets and financial services, stimulating productive investments, and formulating pro-poor policies to promote private sector engagement.
The Regional UN Development Group also agreed to support development inside Syria, by addressing root causes of the conflict and restoring basic services, where possible, in areas of relative peace, and provide support to livelihood activities.

The UN agencies also explored means to optimize partnerships and funding mechanisms between national and local authorities and among donors, international cooperation agencies and the Organization in order to support the proposed resilience-based development response.

“Today, we have made an excellent start on a long journey,” said Gustavo Gonzalez, Sub-regional Coordinator of the Development Response, and “As of today, we are rolling our sleeves up” he said.

#amman, #jordan, #lebanon, #local-government, #regional-un-development-group, #syria, #syria-news, #turkey, #un-agencies, #un-development-programme, #undp, #united-nations, #united-nations-development-programme