Palestinians channel protests through dawn prayers

first_imgBefore sunrise, thousands of Palestinians streamed towards the mosque in Nablus’s Victory Square, swelling the usual crowds of morning worshippers to launch a new front in their protests against Israel and the United States.The scene has been repeated elsewhere in the West Bank, where people have begun turning out for early prayers in unprecedented numbers, forsaking the usual protest sites where they risk arrest and channeling their anger into a mass expressions of faith.”This is the most peaceful way to get the message out,” said restaurant owner Saif Abu Baker, as the Nablus crowds spilled out of the mosque into surrounding alleyways and courtyards. Political slogans including “For the sake of God, we have risen up” echoed through Nablus’s Old City after the calls from the muezzin and the murmured recitations of the faithful.“I would hope that it is a new form of channeling the way the message is being sent out there,” said Abu Baker. “Because we have tried protesting and it did not work because we don’t have enough power. It’s the safer way for everyone.”Much of the crowd’s message at Friday’s fajr (dawn) prayers – the day when most people turn out – was a rejection of the perceived pro-Israel bias of US President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan.There have only been small regular street rallies since that plan was launched last week. Few have responded to calls by President Mahmoud Abbas’s Palestinian Authority for ‘Days of Rage’. Instead many have begun heeding calls on Facebook and other social media sites to attend what is becoming known as the ‘Great Fajr Campaign’ – described as a show of solidarity against Trump and what they see as Israeli threats to Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem and Hebron. Those two cities have also seen larger turnouts in the past few weeks.The first calls for a surge in attendance were from Fatah, Abbas’s nationalist political faction that dominates the Palestine Liberation Organization.Numbers grew after the campaign gained support from the Islamist group Hamas, which holds sway in mosques, especially in cities where it has a sizeable following.Knights of the dawnHamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum, in Gaza, told Reuters the campaign was a bid to alert Palestinians to the Trump plan, and to Israel’s plans to annex its West Bank settlements.In Nablus – where crowds surged to several thousand on Friday, from around 2,000 the week before – worshippers insisted there was no single group behind the drive, describing it as a grassroots movement still finding its feet.But the streets echoed with chants popular at Hamas rallies, including: “A nation with the leadership of Muhammad will not be defeated”.The event appeared to be organized – extra prayer carpets were rolled out, food and water were available in abundance and the gathering was supervised by stewards wearing fluorescent jackets proclaiming them ‘Knights of the Dawn,’ and bearing the stenciled image of the nearby al-Nasr (Victory) mosque.The crowds have been much smaller than the numbers that attended the Great March of Return protests at the Gaza border fence when that campaign started nearly two years ago.In those Gaza demonstrations, 215 Palestinians were killed and several thousand injured in confrontations with Israeli troops. One Israeli soldier was killed by a Palestinian sniper.In Nablus the crowds at dawn prayers have been peaceful, with little sign of any heightened security.Hani Al-Masri, a Palestinian political analyst, said the campaign reflected Hamas’s cautious approach to operating in the West Bank, where, unlike Gaza, it faces Israeli troops and Palestinian Authority forces intent on stopping Hamas from inflaming the streets and seizing control.”Hamas’s organization in the West Bank is not in good shape because of crackdowns by the Palestinian Authority and by Israel,” he said.“Fajr prayers is the most that Hamas can do.”Asked whether Israel was aware of the enlarged dawn prayer meetings, an Israeli military spokesman and the Shin Bet domestic intelligence agency had no immediate comment.Topics :last_img read more

New regulation allows businesspeople, officials to travel despite ‘mudik’ ban

first_imgA circular letter issued by the COVID-19 task force on Wednesday allows businesspeople and state officials that are involved in health and essential services to travel despite the government’s restriction on all passenger travel.The exemption is given to state officials, private sector workers and state-owned enterprises (SOEs) employees that provide health services, basic necessities, security and defense and vital economic functions.Repatriated Indonesian nationals, individuals who need emergency medical care and family members of a deceased individual are also exempted from the ban, the document shows. State officials are required to obtain a permit from their superior with at least the rank of Echelon II, while businesspeople are required to sign a statement letter to notify local officials. Prior to their departure, all traveling individuals must provide a negative result of a COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test or rapid test, or health documents from a hospital or clinic as well as a return ticket.Read also: Jokowi mulls option to move Idul Fitri collective leave to JulyCertain individuals are exempted from the travel restriction to streamline the distribution of test equipment, personal protective equipment (PPE) and staple foods and to expedite the COVID-19 testing process, the task force chief, Doni Monardo, said.“I’d like to reassert that mudik is still banned,” he said during a televised statement on Wednesday. “We issued this regulation based on the fact that there are logistical hindrances in sending COVID-19 test results, as well as reports on the lack of transportation for medical personnel.” The government is currently restricting all kinds of passenger travel through Transportation Ministerial Regulation No. 25/2020 in an attempt to ban the Idul Fitri mudik (exodus) as it scrambles to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the country.All inbound and outbound travel from COVID-19 red zones, areas that are implementing large scale social restrictions (PSBB) and agglomeration areas, such as Greater Jakarta and Greater Bandung in West Java, is prohibited from April 24 to May 31, the regulation stipulates.The ministerial regulation indeed sets out several exceptions, including the transportation of supplies, medicines and medical equipment, as well as fire trucks, ambulances and hearses. Operational vehicles for specific missions, such as repatriation flights and for transporting high-ranking officials, COVID-19 task force officials, government officials, the Indonesian Army and the National Police are also allowed to travel. Read also: Explainer: What’s allowed and what’s not in Indonesia’s ‘mudik’ banHowever, exemptions for businesspeople or others with “essential urgencies” are not stipulated in the regulation.Earlier on Wednesday, Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi said the ministry could allow all public transportation to recommence operations by Thursday to accommodate individuals who were exempted from the mudik ban.“It is possible to allow all types of transportation to get back to operations with one condition: they must comply with the health protocol,” he told lawmakers.Topics :last_img read more

China’s Sinopharm says coronavirus vaccine could be ready by year-end: State media

first_imgA coronavirus vaccine candidate developed by China National Pharmaceutical Group (Sinopharm) could be ready for public use by the end of this year, state media reported on Wednesday, ahead of a previous expectation it may become available in 2021.Sinopharm Chairman Liu Jingzhen told state broadcaster CCTV the company expects to finish late-stage human testing within about three months.Sinopharm’s unit China National Biotec Group (CNBG), which is responsible for two coronavirus vaccine projects, said in June the shot may not be ready until at least 2021 as a lack of new infections in China made it difficult to find people to test it on. But China has since found alternative trial sites abroad, overcoming some of the obstacles it faces in the global race to produce a vaccine to fight a pandemic that has killed over 600,000 people globally.Sinopharm’s experimental shot has entered a Phase III trial involving around 15,000 participants and two vaccine strains in the United Arab Emirates.Another potential vaccine, developed by Chinese firm Sinovac Biotech using a similar technology, has also been given to participants in a Phase III trial in Brazil.A vaccine candidate developed by CanSino Biologics Inc and China’s military research unit, which appears to be safe and induced immune responses in most subjects in a closely-watched mid-stage study, is also looking for opportunities to run a Phase III trial outside China.  Topics :last_img read more

Thirty students to graduate from Kids Fishing Clinic today

first_imgPhoto credit: probillfish.comA total of thirty children ages nineteen to fourteen from the village of St. Joseph will receive certificates and prizes of completion tomorrow, as the second Kids Fishing Clinic comes to an end today.The organisers say the goal of the program was to teach children fishing ethics, angling skills, marine biology and environmental stewardship. They were also exposed to practical fishing skills, marine safety and capacity building. The program was undertaken in collaboration with the Fisheries Division and Friends of the Environmental Club of St. Joseph a newly formed club engaged in diverse environmental activities in that community. Funders who supported the program included Anchorage Hotel, Reneta Siegenthler, the Government of Dominica and JICA.The initial cost of the program is three thousand dollars (EC$3000.00).A Friend of the Environment is coordinated by Royette Cooke of St. Joseph.Minister for Environment, Natural Resources, Physical Planning and Fisheries, Dr. Kenneth Darroux is expected to attend the ceremony carded for the conference room of the Roseau Fisheries Complex from 2:30 pm.Prizes will also be awarded to some students by a representative of Digicel.Dominica Vibes News Share Tweet LocalNews Thirty students to graduate from Kids Fishing Clinic today by: – August 19, 2011 12 Views   no discussionscenter_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more

Wildcats And NC Trojans Battle It Out In Girls Soccer

first_imgFCHS and New Castle battled up to the final minutes of the Varsity match that lead to a direct kick goal by NC with 1:43 minutes left to play in the second half with The Lady Trojans winning 3-2.Both keepers tallied up 10 saves for the night and NC outshot FCHS 13 to 8. This was balanced with 5 Corner kicks taken by FCHS verses only 1 from NC. Goals scored by FCHS were Gabby Mitchum in the first hald and Hannah Surber in the second with a sweet left cross to the corner.FCHS JV posted their first win with NC with a score of 4:1 dominating offensively with 23 shots on frame verses 3 by NC. The strong defensive stance dominate the game.Courtesy of Wildcats Coach John Litchholt.last_img read more

Paris police bar fan gatherings to welcome PSG players

first_img Loading… Paris police banned “parades and gatherings linked” to the Champions League on Monday, urging fans not to gather at the Parc des Princes to greet Paris Saint-Germain players upon their return later in the day. The ban will be in force “from 14.30 (1230 GMT) on Monday until 06.00 on Tuesday” and “everywhere in the capital,” the police said in a statement. Police commissioner Didier Lallement said the decision followed the events in the city as PSG lost the final to Bayern Munich. These, he said, brought “unacceptable damage and violence which has nothing to do with football and seriously marred the evening.” The police also prohibited the opening of “bars, pubs and restaurants as well as the consumption of alcoholic beverages on the public highway in the area” of the Parc des Princes from 16:30 Monday until 06:00 Tuesday.Advertisement The PSG squad landed at Charles de Gaulle airport on Monday and went directly to the ground by bus.center_img Read Also: Ronaldinho set to be granted freedom from house arrest The club planned a social event for the players and their families to conclude the 2019-20 season. The leading fan group, the Collectif Ultras Paris, which had planned a rally at 17.00 at the Parc des Princes to support the players issued a statement denouncing “the relentlessness of this prefecture against us.” FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 last_img read more

England to meet Ireland in decider

first_img Press Association England and Ireland will meet on Wednesday with a place in the semi-finals of the European Hockey Championships at stake. England’s 2-1 loss to Holland – Barry Middleton’s goal was not enough – means that they and the Irish are now vying to join the Oranje in the last four. Ireland were 4-2 winners over Poland, but because of England’s better difference, a draw will be enough to take them through. center_img Conor Harte, Shane O’Donoghue, Eugene Magee and Michael Watt all scored for Ireland, much to the delight of coach Andrew Meredith. “You could certainly see that yesterday’s excellent performance against the Dutch came with a cost and with only a 16-hour turnaround I am very happy to get the result,” he told his federation’s official website. “We had phases where we had the opportunity to finish the game off, but full credit to the Polish on pushing us the whole game.” last_img read more

Boys lacrosse Lakers claim top spot in state Class D rankings

first_img Tags: boys lacrosseJ-EskaneatelesWest Genesee To be sure, the Skaneateles boys lacrosse team would prefer sitting atop the state Class D rankings in June, when a first-ever state championship was in its secure possession.For now, though, the Lakers would have to settle for holding that top state ranking and the top seed for the Section III playoffs, which was significant enough.Skaneateles closed its regular season against LaFayette Tuesday, a celebration that included, among other things, the revealing of a state championship banner for the 2018-19 Skaneateles boys ice hockey team. It was also Ron Doctor’s last regular-season home game before his coaching retirement against a long-time rival, and the Lakers marked the occasion by defeating the Lancers 14-7.LaFayette started out well, but its early 2-1 lead vanished when Skaneateles dominated the middle two quarters, outscoring the Lancers 6-1 in each of those frames.Nick Wamp scored four times, adding a pair of assists. Pat Hackler had three goals and two assists, with Evan Brunelle also scoring three times. John Danforth got two goals as Brendan Powers earned a goal and two assists. Grayson Brunelle had the other goal.center_img West Genesee would enter the sectional Class A playoffs on a good note following Tuesday’s game at Liverpool, where a big third quarter made the difference in a 13-9 victory over the Warriors.An early 3-1 lead vanished when Liverpool zoomed out in front, 5-4, by halftime, but the Wildcats answered by outscoring them 7-3 in the third period, enough to secure a regular-season sweep.Anthony Dattellas broke out with a season-best six goals, helped by Brad Cunnigham, who netted three goals and three assists. Max Rosa and Alex Rosa both scored twice as Ryan Sheehan, Jimmy Bergan and Vince Calabria earned assists. Luke Staudt stopped 13 of the 22 shots he faced.Jordan-Elbridge honored its seniors prior to Tuesday’s game against Tully, but the Eagles were unable to produce a victory as it fell to the Black Knights 17-10.Most of the game was played on even terms, but that was only after Tully raced out to an 8-2 edge by the end of the first quarter, led by Will Hardy (five goals), Tyler Edinger and Ian Byrne (four goals each).Fighting to the end, J-E saw Wade Brunelle score five times, adding an assist. Griffin LaFleur and Jeremiah Sparks had two goals apiece, with Luke Pinckney adding a goal. Deacon Hill managed two assists and Steve Tripp made 14 saves.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story last_img read more

The Anderson family has been the one constant through Monster Jam’s growth

first_imgAdam Anderson used to hate it when his father, Dennis, pushed one of his toy cars out of line growing up. Playing in a makeshift arena, Adam carried monster trucks through the air.Last December, nearly 30 years later, Adam’s young sons put on a show in the family’s North Carolina home. Adam used an iPad for a jumbotron and a Bluetooth-compatible microphone to play music. Still, that didn’t mean Adam could move the trucks. He had to pay attention, Dale and Luke pleaded. They were trying to teach him.They performed tricks and instructed their dad to it himself, just with his truck: Grave Digger. The 12,000-pound wrecking ball that acts as his desk. In a way, his children were embracing Monster Jam’s new era.“There was not even a thought in the world that a 12,000-pound truck could do a backflip,” Anderson said.Now, backflips are routine. And Grave Digger is synonymous with Adam and the entire Anderson clan. Dennis started driving in the 1980s as Monster Jam catapulted into the mainstream and his family soon followed. Adam first drove in 2005 at 18 years old. His sister, Krysten, began three years ago as the first woman driver of Grave Digger.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textDennis is helping his youngest son, Westin, break into the business. His other son, Ryan, is currently second on the Stadium Series I scoreboard driving Son-uva Digger. And as Krysten finds her way, Adam has used his fatherhood to appreciate his own upbringing. When they compete Saturday in the Carrier Dome, it’ll be the next step in the sport’s evolution. One that’s been defined by Andersons.“People are less interested in the destruction, the damage and the chaos,” Krysten said. “They’re more interested in the skill set and the skill level in what we can do.”Anna Henderson | Digital Design EditorIt started with Dennis taking his kids off-roading during their summers in North Carolina. But eventually, Dennis always had to get back on the road as a one-man driver and crew, Adam said. He hauled merchandise up and down interstates and connected with fans.His first “mud truck” was built with spare parts. Dennis cobbled together scraps and assembled what would soon be the family’s truck. Other drivers, noticing the trash on the track, laughed at Dennis. His retort served as inspiration — “I’ll take this old junk and dig you a grave with it!”“(They) were the engineers,” Adam said. “(Dennis) would build it, break it, fix it and make it better.”After upgrading to his first monster truck, known for its red highlights, Dennis gained a cult following. He rivaled Bob Chandler, the well-known driver of Bigfoot, and further popularized the sport. Some battles were even televised on ESPN.But Dennis’ successes often left Adam and his siblings without their dad for months. As a child, Adam often woke up hearing Grave Digger’s engine charge toward the next show. When he accompanied Dennis to shows, Adam was jealous of the attention his dad received as his popularity rose.In the last five years, as Adam’s work schedule has significantly lightened, he’s understood Dennis’ work schedule, and why he wasn’t always around. Grave Digger provided for the family and soon grew into a family business. Adam joined as a crew member for different teams before getting in a car for the first time in 2005. Two years later, he replaced Dennis for Grave Digger’s 25th anniversary after Dennis suffered a shoulder injury.For his current routine, Adam typically flies out to shows on Thursday after dropping his sons off at school. Throughout the week, drivers and crew members transport each truck from venue to venue. Adam sometimes sees families in the stands and misses home.“It is great to be able to come home and have a life,” Adam said. “You can have a life outside of (Monster Jam).”Courtesy of Monster Jam CommunicationsKrysten, on the other hand, graduated high school in 2015 and a year later she was in Paxton, Illinois for Monster Jam University, a training school. She loved graphic design and the art brandished on each truck, but then she received a phone call from Monster Jam executives. They wanted her to be the face of the new Grave Digger. She had never driven before but she considered her pioneer father and all-star brother.“I literally said, ‘Yes,’ out of nowhere,” Krysten remembered. “I felt there was no way I could turn down an opportunity like that. …Three years later, I’m still doing it.”Since her start, the sport has become more innovative and challenging. Gone are the “iron giants.” Instead of car-jumps, steam-rollers and head-to-head races, now there are two-wheel skill competitions, freestyle trick circuits and backflips. Drivers challenge each other, displaying new skills like balancing a truck on its nose for 30 seconds. Dennis, who retired in 2017 after injuries from a failed backflip in Tampa Bay, joked to Krysten that he “got out easy.”Krysten’s schedule is different than Adam’s. As a part of the Triple Threat Series, she performs more often than Adam. The extra reps can be an advantage at bigger events. Her dedication has paid off. She’s climbed the standings in each of her three seasons while Adam has remained near the top.Two years ago, Krysten traveled to Helsinki, Finland, for her first event overseas. Even though she was replacing a veteran driver, some fans recognized Krysten. They asked her about her journey, her family and her love for Monster Jam. A first-hand look at the effect of her family’s legacy.“My dad built Grave Digger out of junkyard parts in his backyard and these people know who he is and know who I am,” Krysten said. “Monster Jam has taken my dad’s creation all over the United States and all over the world.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 3, 2019 at 11:33 pm Contact Nick: | @nick_a_alvarezlast_img read more

Syracuse tops Lindenwood with 6 goal 2nd period

first_img Published on February 15, 2020 at 9:08 pm Contact Gaurav: Facebook Twitter Google+ Whatever Paul Flanagan said in the Orange locker room during the first intermission worked.“We just had a little chat,” Flanagan said. “A little chat just between us.”After a first period where Syracuse doubled Lindenwood’s shots but scored only one goal the Orange came roaring out of the gate. Lauren Bellefontaine scored on a rebound just 22 seconds into the second period. Not even one minute passed when Kelli Rowswell’s shot snuck past Lindenwood goalie Annika Asplundh. Syracuse (12-16-2, 10-4-2 College Hockey America) scored six goals in the second period in an 8-0 win over Lindenwood (5-21-3, 3-13). The goals came in bunches — three goals in five minutes to start the period then two goals in 90 seconds against Lindenwood’s new goalie, Julia Maguire.“I think we all just knew that the first period wasn’t our best performance and we wanted to pick it up for the second period and just get a bigger lead,” Mae Batherson said.While the Orange’s one goal first period allowed Lindenwood to stay in the game, the second period ended any hope in just a few minutes. After a Kristen Siermachesky slap shot made it 4-0, the Lions took three penalties in a 90 second span. SU continued to dump pucks in and had it’s defenders close in on attackers to keep pucks in the zone.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“You notice our D kept a lot of pucks in on the walls when they were trying to get out so they just got tired,” Flanagan said. “So that’s part of the mentality. Don’t let them change, you’ll score goals.”Bellefontaine started and ended a stretch of five goals in 11 minutes. Her second goal came off another turnover by Lindenwood. The Lions were trying to clear the puck out of the zone but before it could cross center ice and out of the neutral zone, Jessica DiGirolamo batted it down out of the air and dished a pass to a streaking Madison Beishuizen. Beishuizen was then alone on a two-on-one with Bellefontaine and then passed the puck to Bellefontaine who roofed a shot off the crossbar and in.“He (Flanagan) said he was nervous for us because we were doing really bad in the neutral zone and our defensive zone. So we needed to pick it up a lot and get the offensive chances that we needed,” Bellefontaine said. “So I think we really capitalized on that. And he motivated us to do that.”Mae Batherson added a goal in the final minute of the second period when she weaved through three defenders to backhand it into the net. In all, Syracuse had six goals in the second period. Lindenwood had six shots in the same frame.In a game in which SU could have let the Lions stay in it, Syracuse took control.“I think once the kids got clicking you can tell Lindenwood was thinking about the flight home,” Flanagan said. “I mean it’s human nature.” Commentslast_img read more