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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


A CHILD IN SYRIA
*With more than 70,000 members, the facebook group "We are all the hero-martyr Hamza Ali al-Khatib," named for the 13-year-old boy who participated in a protest on April 29th outside Daraa. His tortured, mutilated body was returned to his family by Syrian intelligence last week. The family videotaped the condition of their son's body, which speaks for itself. Very graphic footage of al-Khatib's body is here. Al-Khatib's father, Ali, disappeared more than a week ago and has not been heard from since.

*The Syrian Revolution Facebook group, now counting 195,000 members, is calling for protests in an event billed as "the Friday of the Children of Freedom," with a picture of Hamza al-Khatib on the profile picture.

*Here is a montage of security forces beating and shooting civilians voiced over by a speech Bashar al-Assad gave to the parliament about reform. @3ayeef tweets, "a video for all those who love Bashar."

*@SyriaParliament tweets, "The dialogue that will take place in Syria between the regime and the people is actually between the criminal and the victim, the thief and the one who is robbed, the torturer and the tortured."

A BOMB IN LIBYA
*A car bomb blew up outside the Tabisti Hotel in Benghazi on Wednesday night, occupied mainly by foreign journalists and international aid workers. No casualties have yet been reported, according to CNN Arabic. The correspondent for the rebel newspaper "al-Barniq" reported that "remnants of Gaddafi's revolutionary committees" are likely behind the bombing.

A JOURNALIST IN JORDAN
*Jordanian journalist Alaa al-Fazaa was arrested after posting documents on news website khabarjo.net claiming that government officials facilitated the departure of millionaire businessman Khalid Shahin from Jordan. Shahin was a longtime business adviser and alleged business partner of King Abdullah who was convicted earlier this year in a corruption case involving the national oil refinery. He was sentenced to three years in prison. But Shahin was spotted dining at a London restaurant in April, setting off an outcry on blogs and other social media, with speculation rampant that Shahin had cut a deal not to embarrass the king in exchange for exile. Al-Fazaa's documents, if valid, those allegations. He remains in custody after bail was denied.


June 2, 2011

photo credit: illustir

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Geopolitics

The Xi-Putin Alliance Is Dead, Long Live The Xi-Putin Alliance

The façade of unity between Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin was lifted in Uzbekistan last week. But where exactly does the Chinese head of state stand on the Russian invasion of Ukraine? Beijing is still establishing its place in the world, and it remains in contradiction to the West

China's President Xi Jinping, Uzbekistan's President Shavkat Mirziyoyev and Russia's President Vladimir Putin during the 22nd Summit of the SCO

Gregor Schwung

-Analysis-

Xi Jinping is not out of practice. The Chinese President's public demeanor on his first foreign trip since January 2020 was as confident as ever. When meeting Russian President Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, he promptly removed his mask and stood inches away from the Russian president, smiling affably.

Stay up-to-date with the latest on the Russia-Ukraine war, with our exclusive international coverage.

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What looked routine to the outside world was a diplomatic tightrope walk that the Chinese leader felt compelled to perform. It was the first face-to-face meeting between the two leaders since February, when they proclaimed a "friendship without borders" at the Winter Olympics in Beijing. Shortly thereafter, Putin launched his campaign against Ukraine – and the world wondered whether Putin had used his Olympic visit to obtain Xi's approval for his invasion.

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