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

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

A R A B I C A ارابيكا

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.

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.

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.

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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The Unsustainable Future Of Fish Farming — On Vivid Display In Turkish Waters

Currently, 60% of Turkey's fish currently comes from cultivation, also known as fish farming, compared to just 10% two decades ago. The short-sightedness of this shift risks eliminating fishing output from both the farms and the open seas along Turkey's 5,200 miles of coastline.

Photograph of two fishermen throwing a net into the Tigris river in Turkey.

Traditional fishermen on the Tigris river, Turkey.

Dûrzan Cîrano/Wikimeidia
İrfan Donat

ISTANBUL — Turkey's annual fish production includes 515,000 tons from cultivation and 335,000 tons came from fishing in open waters. In other words, 60% of Turkey's fish currently comes from cultivation, also known as fish farming.

It's a radical shift from just 20 years ago when some 600,000 tons, or 90% of the total output, came from fishing. Now, researchers are warning the current system dominated by fish farming is ultimately unsustainable in the country with 8,333 kilometers (5,177 miles) long.

Professor Mustafa Sarı from the Maritime Studies Faculty of Bandırma 17 Eylül University believes urgent action is needed: “Why were we getting 600,000 tons of fish from the seas in the 2000’s and only 300,000 now? Where did the other 300,000 tons of fish go?”

Professor Sarı is challenging the argument from certain sectors of the industry that cultivation is the more sustainable approach. “Now we are feeding the fish that we cultivate at the farms with the fish that we catch from nature," he explained. "The fish types that we cultivate at the farms are sea bass, sea bram, trout and salmon, which are fed with artificial feed produced at fish-feed factories. All of these fish-feeds must have a significant amount of fish flour and fish oil in them.”

That fish flour and fish oil inevitably must come from the sea. "We have to get them from natural sources. We need to catch 5.7 kilogram of fish from the seas in order to cultivate a sea bream of 1 kg," Sarı said. "Therefore, we are feeding the fish to the fish. We cannot cultivate fish at the farms if the fish in nature becomes extinct. The natural fish need to be protected. The consequences would be severe if the current policy is continued.”

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