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04
DEC

Turkish Incursion Raises New Fears Among Syrian Minorities

The U.S. pullout from Syria and Turkey’s offensive into the country has shaken the already unstable region, and minority religious groups in the region are particularly worried about a possible resurgence of the Islamic State group. For VOA, Stella Grigoryan recently spoke with members of an Armenian community in a Kurdish-majority city about their security concerns in a story narrated by Anna Rice.
03
DEC

Turkish Incursion Raises New Fears Among Syrian Minorities

The U.S. pullout from Syria and Turkey's offensive into Syria has shaken the already unstable region, and minority religious groups in the region are particularly worried about a possible resurgence of Islamic State. For VOA, Stella Grigoryan recently spoke with members of an Armenian community in the Kurdish-majority city about their security concerns in a story narrated by Anna Rice.
03
DEC

As Lebanon Crisis Continues, Syrian Refugees' Fears Grow

In Lebanon, some politicians and the press foment anger against Syrian refugees, blaming them for widespread unemployment and lack of resources.  And after a month and a half of daily protests, a deepening financial crisis and increased insecurity, aid for refugees is dwindling and deportations are on the rise.  But as VOA’s Heather Murdock reports from the Bekkaa Valley, many families say no matter how bad it gets here, they cannot go home to Syria.
29
NOV

Does New Turkish Unrest Mean New Refugee Wave?

The conflict in Syria created a global humanitarian crisis, with millions displaced and millions more fleeing to other countries. Turkish military operations that began in early October may be creating a new wave of displacement. Where are these Syrians going? VOA's Turkish service filed this report, narrated by Ege Sacikara. 
26
NOV

Middle East Protests: Why Now and to What End?

Clashes broke out early Monday in Beirut, as supporters of Hezbollah ambushed an ongoing anti-government protest. In Iraq, officials say an anti-government protester was been killed Tuesday by security forces and 21 others wounded amid ongoing clashes with security forces in Baghdad.  Analysts say mass protests such as these and elsewhere have persisted longer and with more intensity than at any time in recent history. VOA’s Heather Murdock has this report from Beirut
25
NOV

Israel Set to Deport Human Rights Watch Researcher

Israel is set to become the first democratic country to expel a Human Rights Watch representative. Omar Shakir, the Israel and Palestine director for Human Rights Watch, must leave Israel on Monday after the country's top court last week rejected the group's request to re-examine a government decision to deport him. Shakir has been accused of promoting the Palestinian-led Israel boycott movement, which he denies. He said Sunday he will remain in his position and continue documenting violations in Israel and the Palestinian territories from abroad. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.
22
NOV

Reactions Mixed on Netanyahu's Corruption Charges

People in Israel have expressed mixed reactions to the news that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been indicted on corruption charges. His supporters believe the charges are fabricated, and his opponents are calling for his resignation. Netanyahu is vowing to fight back, but it is not clear how long he can hold on to power after the indictment. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.
21
NOV

Tehran Blames Foreign Influence in Deadly Protests Over Gas Price Hike

Gas price protests in Iran have left more than 100 people dead since last week, as Iranian leaders used force to quash unrest. Iran's economy is in desperate straits made worse by intense U.S. sanctions. Analysts say the crackdown shows Iran's religious leaders are more afraid of popular unrest than at any other time in recent years. But they say a regime change is unlikely. VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports.
 
19
NOV

Iranians Struggle Without the Internet

Iranians have not had internet access for days. It is a government shutdown prompted by violent protests over rising gas prices. Observers say that in a country where shutdowns and blockages have happened in the past, this one appears to be the most widespread. Michelle Quinn takes a look at how the Iranian government has been able to turn off internet access.
19
NOV

A Look at Iranian Protests Nationwide

The Iranian government's reaction to protests against a gas price hike has been turning increasingly deadly. Security forces have reportedly opened fire at protesters in various cities across the country. Here is a look at the recent developments that triggered the nationwide protests in Iran. 
19
NOV

Eight-Year-Old Yemeni Singer Enchants Arab World

It is a dangerous time to be a child in Yemen. Besides facing war, widespread malnutrition and abject poverty, more than 25 percent of children are not in school.But 8-year-old singer Amr Muqbel, known as "The Water Seller," is different.He attends school in the morning. In the afternoons he used to sell water bottles to help support his family, who only last year were each living on less than $1 a day. Now, he makes extra money singing for weddings, fans and several major Arabic news channels.“I’m proud he has become a singer,” said Ahmed Muqbel, Amr’s 70-year-old father, with tears in his eyes. One of their relatives is a soldier, the elder Muqbel added, and Amr used to sing war songs.Now  he sings about love and peace in a country where other children face being forced to join military groups. Teachers haven’t been paid in over two years, and as the war drags on the danger for children outside of the school system deepens, according to aid organizations."Children out of school face increased risks of all forms of exploitation, including being forced to join the fighting, child labor, and early marriage," said Sara Nyanti, UNICEF’s representative in Yemen, in a statement.Growing fameAmr first became well-known this year when a local hiker recorded him serenading a group with the tune “You are my love. Where have you been all my life?” and posted it on Facebook, where it received 20,000 likes, loves and sad faces.Since then, he has become a darling of the Arab media, appearing on BBC Arabic, Al Jazeera Arabic and RT Arabic.Despite his growing popularity, Amr’s family remains poor. He, his mother and his four siblings still struggle to survive in a small house held together with mud bricks. But as Amr gains the attention of music professionals, the family hopes his voice will help lift them further out of poverty."I didn't even know Amr was singing for the drivers," said Amr’s mother, Muneerah, near her Sanaa home. "He sells water so he can earn money to pay for his private school fees. I used to reprimand Amr for singing while he did his homework.”Sobhi Mohammed, a renowned Syrian Kurdish composer based in Lebanon, has expressed interest in mentoring Amr, inviting him via an online video to visit Lebanon. Mohammed has mentored other young talents, like Nomer El Beik and Amir Amuri from Syria.“I was like Amr ...

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