Al-Monitor (75)

Gaziantep's beloved dumplings grace every table for Eid

In Gaziantep, all citizens rich or poor get busy making the same traditional ground rice and mincemeat dumplings of yuvarlama, a dish now registered with the patent office.

Islamic parties intimidate, fear atheists in Iraq

Islamic parties in Iraq have intensified their rhetoric against atheists, with one prominent cleric calling for them to be confronted with an "iron fist."

Israel's police chief sidelining democratic values

The Israel Police under the leadership of Chief Roni Alsheich seems to be losing its guiding principles, instead protecting police officers from citizens rather than protecting the citizens and the values of democracy.

Gazans denounce claims Hamas is training extremists in Libya

Accusations by the spokesman of the forces of retired Maj. Gen. Khalifa Hifter that Hamas has provided technical support to some armed groups in Libya are rebutted and mocked by Palestinians amid a lack of evidence of Hamas' involvement in the North African country.

Gaza residents abandoned by Hamas, Abbas and Israel

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu share the shameful responsibility of leaving innocent Gaza residents practically without electricity.

The reason Tehran is against referendum on Iraqi Kurdistan

Iranian leaders and media have expressed strong opposition to the September referendum on the independence of Iraqi Kurdistan.

Jordan in an uneasy place over Gulf spat

Despite bitter past relations with Qatar, Jordanian officials avoided taking sides in the latest Gulf spat.

Kurds reaching critical juncture in US partnership

The United States and Kurds currently share a partnership of convenience in Syria, but Kurds are looking ahead warily to the role they might be asked to play as US policy evolves.

Turkey's elite get lenient treatment in post-coup probes

The apparent leniency accorded to figures linked to the ruling Justice and Development Party in Turkey's post-coup investigations points to double standards.

New generation of Iranian hostels attract younger tourists

As Iran's tourism industry grows, a new generation of hostels catering to younger travelers is springing up around the country.

Enterprising young Egyptians seize Ramadan business opportunities

The festive atmosphere and nightly feasts of Ramadan represent a unique commercial window for young Egyptian entrepreneurs.

Gulf-Qatar crisis leaves its mark on sports

Amid the ongoing diplomatic crisis between Qatar and a number of major Arab nations, the Qatari sports channel beIN has been banned in several countries.

Palestinian press groups blast ban on websites linked to Abbas rivals

The Palestinian Authority blocked 12 websites affiliated with the Hamas movement and with dismissed Fatah leader Mohammed Dahlan, raising questions about the government's respect for press freedoms.

Ankara sends reinforcements into northern Syria

Turkish troops have entered northern Syria, sparking fears of a coalition-undermining attack on Syrian Kurdish forces.

Ahmadinejad faces pressure after failed presidential bid

Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad turns to crowdfunding to pay for a new office for his bodyguards after a property seizure by the authorities.

Iranian press decries 'soft coup' in Saudi Arabia

Reactions in the Iranian media to Mohammed bin Salman's appointment as crown prince of Saudi Arabia suggest concern about escalating tensions.

Kushner bolsters Trump Middle East peace push

By dispatching his son-in-law, the president has made it clear to both sides that he's serious about wanting a deal. But will that be enough?

Qatar's charity funding in Gaza dries up as Gulf crisis continues

Palestinians in the Gaza Strip worry about how the Gulf decision to cut ties with Qatar will affect the critical Qatar-funded relief and development projects in Gaza.

Syria's women could be key to the future

Idlib province is witnessing a rise in activities aimed at empowering women who have suffered in the ongoing war in the country.

Abbas spokesman joins top Fatah committee

Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat insisted on a quota system for Christians, and the Palestinian leadership has gone out of its way to ensure that this community is represented at all levels of Palestinian society and on the political scene.

Erdogan tones down rhetoric in light of Qatar's fate

Turkey fears it could be next in line to be ostracized in the region due to guilt by association with Qatar and the Muslim Brotherhood.

Iranian missiles worry Israel

From Israel's viewpoint, the missiles that Iran launched June 18 failed to hit their target, but demonstrated the missile construction and launching capacities developed by Iran.

Hamas hedging its bets in region

Hamas appears to have adopted a new regional policy of avoiding taking sides and nurturing good relations with anyone willing to accept the group.

The geopolitics behind race for eastern Syria

Fast-paced developments between the various players of the Syrian war — including the shooting down of a Syrian army jet by a US warplane over the weekend — raise questions about the geopolitical importance of the northeastern region.

Ultra-Orthodox fashionistas combine modesty with chic

Ultra-Orthodox fashion bloggers are no longer a curiosity but a real phenomenon that sweeps women across the sector.

Europeans press terror-finance watchdog to extend Iran sanctions reprieve

European countries are pushing a key financial watchdog to suspend sanctions against Iran for a second year to shore up the Iranian economy and the nuclear deal.

Private solar power systems catch on in Gaza

The National Economy Ministry in Gaza has lifted taxes and fees on alternative energy equipment to encourage residents to buy it to get through the ongoing electricity crisis.

Ankara voices cautious support as Turkish troops arrive in Doha

A top foreign policy adviser to the Turkish president has publicly defended Qatar in the same breath as the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, while mixed signals from the US administration appear to have caught everyone off guard.

The long-term cost of Saudi succession shake-up

The king of Saudi Arabia has replaced his successor with his favorite son Mohammed bin Salman in a move that was not entirely unexpected, but perhaps poorly timed for Saudi stability.

Power failure can't stop World Music Day in Egypt

The French-sponsored Fete de la Musique fuses traditional, electronic and other genres of music, drawing large audiences in the Middle East.

Turkey's opposition head leads march for justice

Turkey's main opposition leader is heading a march from Ankara to Istanbul in his most powerful protest so far against the government's toughening crackdown on dissent.

Popular anger at islands transfer highlights Egypt's polarized society

Cairo erupts in protests over the proposed handover of two Egyptian Red Sea islands to Saudi Arabia as protesters question the Egyptian government's intentions behind the deal.

Iranian hard-liners use Tehran attacks to snipe at Rouhani

Though Iranian hard-liners have quickly seized the June 7 terrorist attacks in Tehran as an opportunity to rally forces, it is unclear whether their security-focused discourse will gain steam.

Turkey reverses course as mediation efforts flop in Gulf

Turkey's immediate support of Qatar has exposed its lack of leverage with Saudi Arabia and other Gulf states and left it scrambling for a way out of an intractable situation.

Israel sees Abbas' silence on police attack as sign of surrender

For Israel, the silence of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas following the attack on an Israeli border police officer is part of an attempt to appease hard-liners within Fatah.

Iranian Reformists lash out over Tillerson's hints at regime change

Iranian Reformists notably join hands in response to the Trump administration's signals that it is reverting to a policy of regime change toward the Islamic Republic.

Qatar-GCC crisis unsettles Sudan

The government in Khartoum is caught in the middle of the bitter dispute between Qatar and the Gulf Cooperation Council.

Turkey aims to cripple, not contain, PKK

Turkish security forces are taking a much more aggressive approach against the Kurdistan Workers Party , but how will Turkey transform operational military success into a sustainable and peaceful political resolution?

Kurds no safer after US shoots down Syrian jet

Though Syrian Kurds are widely celebrating the US downing of a regime fighter jet, their ally's move has made them a bigger target than ever.

US attack on Syrian jet puts Putin under pressure

Russia's response to the US downing of a Syrian plane Sunday was more measured than some observers seem to realize, but the Kremlin's patience does have its limits.

US struggles to calm new Syria flashpoints

Even as the Trump administration says it wants to avoid clashing with Assad and his allies, experts say a lack of a clear US strategy in Syria makes confrontation more likely.

Lebanon's civil society groups gear up for 2018 elections

After Lebanon's long-awaited electoral law was ratified, civil society movements and members are getting ready to join the elections that are scheduled to be held May 2018.

Recapture of Iraq-Syria border point heralds new regional reality

The move by the Iraqi and Syrian governments to link the forces under their command along their border is a new reality on the ground.

Egyptian students draw red line with Red Sea pollution

A group of students at the American University in Cairo has launched an awareness campaign to stop pollution in the Red Sea and protect marine life.

Egypt's legislature thumbs nose at court, approves islands deal

Egypt's parliament shoved through approval of a deal to transfer Tiran and Sanafir islands to Saudi Arabia, but experts say the move violates the constitution and is likely to fuel public resentment.

Iran's missile strikes in Syria send 'message' to region

According to Iranian officials, Tehran's strikes on Islamic State fighters inside Syria carried a wider message.

IDF prepares for future of war in region

After conducting military exercises in Cyprus, the Israel Defense Forces are trying to anticipate all possibilities of warfare on Israel's borders, including a ground confrontation in Lebanon with Hezbollah.

Turkey's Altay tank project not ready to roll after all

Now that Turkey's government has rejected Otokar's bid for the Altay tank contract, other companies will participate in the tender, including BMC — a Turkish/Qatari partnership whose chairman is a close friend of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Settlers pressure Netanyahu to reject Palestinian building plan

Settler leaders rebuke Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman's already approved plan for 14,000 housing units to be built at the West Bank Palestinian Qalqilya refugee camp.

Meet Palestine's youngest female mayor

In face of harsh criticism, Yusra Mohammed Badwan recently became Palestine's youngest female mayor, in the town of Azzun in the northern West Bank.