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ARABICA - A Daily Shot Of What the Arab World is Saying/Hearing/Sharing
Kristen Gillespie

A R A B I C A ارابيكا


VANISHED
Syrian security forces are conducting arrests and house-to-house searches seeking any information related to the whereabouts of Hama's Attorney General, Adnan Bakkour, who announced his resignation last week in a video posted on YouTube. Bakkour condemned the Syrian regime and cited the slaughter of civilians in Hama as the reason for his resignation. The state media machine immediately reported that Bakkour was forced to make the statement after having been kidnapped by the supposed "armed terrorist groups' funded by shadowy external enemies behind the uprising. Activist Mohammed Homsi told Al Arabiya that Bakkour is almost certainly outside Syria given the mortal danger he now faces. Al Sharq Al Awsat paper reports that authorities suspect Bakkour is hiding in Hama.

LIFE IN JORDAN
Al Rai, Jordan's largest daily newspaper, reports that Jordan was ranked 104 out of 190 countries in terms of quality of life. The international surveylooked at prices, recreational and cultural opportunities, environment, democracy, health and infrastructure. Tunisia topped the list of Arab countries, ranking 83rd, with Lebanon at 113, Morocco at 116, Syria at 125 and Egypt at 135. France was awarded the top spot as the world's most liveable country.

DEATH IN JORDAN
Also in Jordan, an unidentified man in the northern Jordan Valley was charged with murder after his daughter, a widow for the past four years, gave birth to twins. The father "did not know about the pregnancy and was surprised by it," he testified in front of the prosecutor. As the doctor examined the daughter in the hospital, the father entered the room on the pretext of visiting her, and allegedly pulled out a gun, shot her dead and then ran off. He turned himself in to local authorities, pleading clemency because he killed her to save the family's honor from her shame of pregnancy out of wedlock.

SPOOKED
Selling Halloween-themed flip-flops has led police to issue arrest warrants for two managers of the Big Sales store in Beirut after a complaint by the Catholic church. The spooky sandals feature a nighttime scene of a bat flying over a graveyard with one of the headstones in the shape of a cross.Police are investigating "the reason such products were being sold and the country of origin the shoes came from," the official National News Agency reported. Authorities confiscated the allegedly heretical footwear as some Lebanese Christians held a sit-in in front of the store. Store owner Ali Fakih, a Muslim, told a local radio station that he was "not trying to do anything detrimental to religion," adding that the store will be closed until further notice. Photos of the offending flip-flops are here.


Sep 5, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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Geopolitics

New Probe Finds Pro-Bolsonaro Fake News Dominated Social Media Through Campaign

Ahead of Brazil's national elections Sunday, the most interacted-with posts on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Telegram and WhatsApp contradict trustworthy information about the public’s voting intentions.

Jair Bolsonaro bogus claims perform well online

Cris Faga/ZUMA
Laura Scofield and Matheus Santino

SÂO PAULO — If you only got your news from social media, you might be mistaken for thinking that Jair Bolsonaro is leading the polls for Brazil’s upcoming presidential elections, which will take place this Sunday. Such a view flies in the face of what most of the polling institutes registered with the Superior Electoral Court indicate.

An exclusive investigation by the Brazilian investigative journalism agency Agência Pública has revealed how the most interacted-with and shared posts in Brazil on social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Telegram and WhatsApp share data and polls that suggest victory is certain for the incumbent Bolsonaro, as well as propagating conspiracy theories based on false allegations that research institutes carrying out polling have been bribed by Bolsonaro’s main rival, former president Luís Inácio Lula da Silva, or by his party, the Workers’ Party.

Agência Pública’s reporters analyzed the most-shared posts containing the phrase “pesquisa eleitoral” [electoral polls] in the period between the official start of the campaigning period, on August 16, to September 6. The analysis revealed that the most interacted-with and shared posts on social media spread false information or predicted victory for Jair Bolsonaro.

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