Turkey names 4 suspects close to MbS in Khashoggi case
Why Holocaust Education is Failing?
"Critical mindset: Refusing to provide simple ‘lessons from history’, we encourage students to explore the complexity of the past and construct meaning for themselves.
Pearce inadvertently provided some crucial insights into the systematic failure of ‘holocaust education.’
While Heidegger taught us that to educate is to teach others how to learn, indoctrination is a very different exercise. It teaches how to produce the ‘right’ answers.
The Holocaust, as taught and preached, falls into the domain of indoctrination. It is not a subject matter that is open to discussion or revision.
The Holocaust as a subject does not accommodate dilemma or confusion. It is treated like a religious text with a rigid structure that doesn’t allow deviation.
For history to be relevant it must contain a dynamic discourse with present day, historical and contextual connotations.
If the Holocaust is to be a vibrant topic that is engaging and enlightening for young enthusiastic minds, then the Holocaust must be placed into a context, such as comparing Auschwitz to Gaza. Nuremberg laws must be juxtaposed with the Israeli National Bill and the Israeli Law of Return.
For the Holocaust to win our kids’ attention they must try to address the most difficult of questions: How and why was it that just three years after the liberation of Auschwitz, the newly born Jewish State ethnically cleansed the vast majority of the indigenous Palestinians?
For the Holocaust to garner universal interest, it must carry a universal message!
The UCL team also examined what teachers hope to achieve by teaching the Holocaust. “There is a belief that if we study the Holocaust it will stop it happening again.”
The truth of the matter is that there is more than one holocaust happening at the moment: Palestine, Libya, Syria just to mention a few.
The Holocaust will become a meaningful lesson when it is finally emancipated from the primacy of Jewish suffering and when we return to empathy and compassion as a basic tenet of our culture.
Unfortunately I do not see the Holocaust Education Trust leading us in such a direction.
Noura Erakat, a human rights attorney and author of the forthcoming book “Justice for Some: Law and the Question of Palestine,” spoke with The Intercept to discuss the ethical and political implications of military legal scholarship, particularly around the justifications for Israel’s targeted killings in the occupied Palestinian territories and beyond.
How have the Israeli government and military lawyers employed international law to justify the use of targeted killings?
During the Second Intifada, Israel created an entirely new set of laws of war to govern their relationship with the Palestinians.
As Daniel Reisner, former head of the [Israel Defense Forces]’s International Law Department, himself stated in this article, Israel developed the concept of “armed conflict, short of war” to give itself the ability to legally justify its targeted killing policies in the occupied territories.
The issue is that there exists a body of international law that dealt with situations of guerrilla warfare, namely the 1977 Additional Protocols I and II, which Israel has simply refused to recognize.
The whole reason they needed to create these new legal concepts is because they were rejecting existing laws that were created during the 20th century, specifically to regulate this kind of irregular combat.
To avoid either recognizing Palestinians as a nascent sovereign nation or a people subject to apartheid within Israel, Israeli military lawyers came up with an entirely new concept of “armed conflict short of war,” a new category of legal reasoning that never existed before.
They didn’t want to call their conflict with the Palestinians a “war”, since that would recognize the inevitability of a Palestinian state and trigger a number of requirements under the laws of war.
But they also didn’t want call it an “occupation,” since then they would be subject to the laws that govern occupiers. Among other things, occupation law would mandate them to use policing powers instead of offensive military tactics like targeted killing.
So to avoid doing either, they simply created a new and unprecedented legal category that is, in effect, a new law for colonial dominance.
Israeli military lawyers are right to point out that their situation is unprecedented; there is no other occupation that has lasted over five decades. No other state has invoked the concept of “armed conflict, short of war” in any other scenario, which Israel’s military lawyers admit they made up.
Israel wants to be an occupying power in the Palestinian territories, but also claim that those territories are not occupied as a matter of law so that it can facilitate its settler-colonial territorial expansion.
That is why Israel has remained in the territories for so long — it has never intended on withdrawing from them. And now it is invoking the law of self-defense to use force to protect its colonial holdings.
But a state cannot invoke self-defense to wage war on a people [whose land] it already occupies, while insisting that those people are neither a nascent sovereign nation nor a population under its control.
Saudi Arabia admitted journalist Jamal Khashoggi was killed inside its consulate in the Turkish city of Istanbul, saying he died in brawl but made no mention of where his body is.
Preliminary results of investigations showed the dissident writer died after a fight broke out inside the building shortly after he entered, the official SPA press agency said on Saturday.
Saudi Attorney General Sheikh Saud al-Mojeb said Khashoggi died after "discussions" at the consulate devolved into an altercation.
"Discussions that took place between him and the persons who met him … at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul led to a brawl and a fist fight with the citizen, Jamal Khashoggi, which led to his death..." the attorney general said in a statement.
"The investigations are still under way and 18 Saudi nationals have been arrested." Royal court adviser Saud al-Qahtani and deputy intelligence chief Ahmed al-Asiri were fired from their positions, the statement said.
It remains unclear where Khashoggi's body is following his killing.
"I have to tell you, you know, the laws are so horrendously stacked against us, because for years and years, they've been made to protect the criminal. Totally made to protect the criminal." (ABC News, 28-7-2017)
Bashar al-Assad: "I believe that Syria [..] is exposed to a new colonization-attempt by all means and methods. There’s an attempt to invade Syria with forces coming from abroad from different nationalities, even though it’s following a new tactic.., and there’s also an attempt to occupy Syria, culturally: an intellectual invasion in 2 directions either by taking Syria into subservience and submission by major powers, specifically the West or in another direction which is submission (of Syria) to the dark and Takfiri forces." (17-4-2013)
- Q: “You were in Saudi Arabia and Turkey. How do you describe currently the importance of Saudi Arabia to the United States?”
- Pompeo: “They have been a strategic ally of ours since the early 1930s and recently have been even more important. They have assisted us in pushing back against the world’s largest state sponsor of terror, the Islamic Republic of Iran.
They’ve been a great counterterrorism partner during our administration. We have economic ties with them that are deep and important, a broad spectrum of strategic relationships between the United States and Saudi Arabia."
- Q: “If the investigator turns out, if the investigation that’s on going that the Crown Prince (Mohammed bin Salman) or the King (Salman) had deeper involvement that’s being suspect or people are saying in the media that its determined to be that. What can the United States do or what should it do in light of the fact of its strategic importance?”
- Pompeo: “Well the president has said that it’ll have to be some response in the event that the fact turn out the way that you hypothesized that they will turn out. I’m not going to get into what those responses might be. We’ll certainly consider a wide range of potential responses, but I think the important thing to do is that the facts come out.
When I traveled to Saudi Arabia, I met with the king, I met with the crown prince at great length. I met with Foreign Minister (Adel el-)Jubeir, and I made very clear to them that the United States takes this matter very seriously. That we don’t approve of extrajudicial killings. That we don’t approve of that kind of activity. That it’s not something consistent with American values, and that it is their responsibility as this incident happened in the consulate.
It’s their responsibility to get to the bottom of this, to put the facts out clearly, accurately, completely, transparently, in a way that the whole world can see.
And once we’ve identified the fact set, then they have the responsibility and the first instance to hold accountable those inside the country that may have been involved in any wrong doing.”
The Saudi administration used an "army of Twitter trolls" to silence critics and slain Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi was one of the targets, the New York Times said in a report.
In its report, titled Saudis' Image Makers: A Troll Army and a Twitter Insider, the daily claimed that the Saudi administration is conducting operations on the social media platform Twitter to silence opposing names abroad and inside Saudi Arabia.
The report is based on interviews with seven people involved in those activities or "briefed on them; activists and experts who have studied them; and American and Saudi officials, along with messages seen by The New York Times that described the inner workings of the troll farm."
It said that dictated by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman "Saudi operatives have mobilized to harass critics on Twitter", which became especially popular since the Arab Spring uprisings in 2010.
"Saud al-Qahtani, a top adviser to Crown Prince Mohammed who was fired on Saturday in the fallout from Mr. Khashoggi's killing, was the strategist behind the operation, according to United States and Saudi officials, as well as activist organizations," the report said.
Whipping the country's journalists into submission, promising to smite the enemies of his masters and peddling fake news, a Saudi royal spin doctor close to young crown prince Mohammed bin Salman appears to be reading straight from Steve Bannon's handbook.
On Friday August 18, Saud al-Qahtani aka Mr. Hashtag, a media advisor to the royal court (born in Riyadh on June 7, 1978), launched on Twitter a McCarthyist appeal to Saudis to compile a blacklist containing the names and identities of anyone showing sympathy with Qatar under the Arabic hashtag #TheBlacklist.
Qahtani vowed to "follow" every name reported via the social media site, and tweeted that anyone who "conspires" against Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, and Bahrain, all of which are imposing an unlawful blockade on Qatar, would be unable to escape "trial".
Many Saudis on Twitter then began adding the names of dissidents and activists who had expressed solidarity with Qatar.
Anwar Gargash, the UAE's state minister for foreign affairs, was one of the first to express support for the blacklist, tweeting: "Saud al-Qahtani is an important voice ... and his tweet on the 'blacklist' is extremely important."
The sinister and disturbing nature of these statements cannot be over-emphasised, especially as Qahtani himself suggests they reflect official Saudi policy.
Responding to a tweet questioning his actions, Saud al-Qahtani stated: “Do you think I make this stuff up or are these orders from my liege? To whom I am a loyal and obedient servant?"
Little known by Western media circles, Qahtani quickly gained notoriety in the Arabic twittersphere with the coup by Mohammed bin Salman against his cousin Mohammed bin Nayef.
Curiously, the royal reshuffle was engineered to coincide with the campaign against Qatar, and Qahtani was instrumental in selling MBS to the Saudi public as well as leading the smear campaign against Doha and justifying the draconian measures against its people.
He was officially appointed to the royal court in December 2015 as adviser with the rank of minister by King Salman... Before his installation in King Salman and his son's court, Qahtani had a stint as a 'journalist' in Saudi outlet Elaph, and contributed to pro-government newspaper Al-Riyadh.
The Qatar 'Blacklist' is only the most recent shenanigan by Qahtani, a man who has since his rise to prominence garnered a special reputation for crude and dishonest tactics...
With direct access to MBS, his name has reportedly become synonymous with fear among Saudi journalists as MBS's personal enforcer.
Intimidatory messages to journalists and newspaper editors mentioned on many occasions that ‘these were the orders of His Royal Highness’.
Saudi journalists and editors say in private meetings that they have been called up by Qahtani, bullying them to take down an article, toe MBS's line and/or join the anti-Qatar campaign, complete with threats and insults. They say he even dictated the soundbites and hashtags to them.
Saudi writer Turki al-Ruqi, the founder of Al-Wi’am newspaper, accused al-Qahtani of acting like an internet troll, launching social media campaigns against selected targets to terrify dissenters.
Al-Ruqi said: “The man has transgressed a lot. Many of the country’s young men have been his victims. He has provoked tension in the relations between decision makers and the country’s citizens. He has undermined the immunity that is supposed to be enjoyed by ministers and statesmen.”
Qahtani is said to have established a dedicated social media surveillance unit, producing daily reports on dissidents, and has been linked to the so-called Saudi Twitter robot army.
As if posting his vitriol under his name publicly wasn't enough, Qahtani also writes poetry under the name of Dari. Like his tweets, his poetry is obscene and vulgar, and even contains racist slurs.
Said al-Arabi is a pseudonym. The author resides in a jurisdiction where the publication of their identity may create a security or freedom of movement issue.
Jamal Khashoggi: a friend of Qaradawi and Al-Tantawi
A senior Israeli political source estimates to a Yediot Aharonot reporter that if the results of the midterm elections in the US lead to a weakening of the Republicans, the pressure on US President Donald Trump to reach a political settlement between Israel and the PA will increase.
The Israeli concern, he says, includes the possibility that Jerusalem will be included in the American political proposal. This could mean defining “East Jerusalem” as the capital of a future Palestinian state parallel to the recognition already given to “West Jerusalem” as the capital of Israel.
"Trump wants a deal and he's very serious," says the source. As far as the Americans are concerned, the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is relatively easy to solve and is ‘ripe fruit.’"
Netanyahu would not be able to agree to such a plan which includes Jerusalem, so he would likely seek to postpone publication until after the elections in Israel, so that the matter doesn’t lead to a coalition crisis with his government partners.
The Israeli goal is to leave the PA and Abbas in the position of the refuser, since Trump is expected to exert most of the pressure on the party which rejects his proposal.
According to Yediot Aharonot, the US ambassador to Israel, David Friedman, and other officials will work with the American president to prevent the publication of a plan that includes the inclusion of Jerusalem in the proposed political settlement.
The spokesperson of the General Command of the Khalifa Hafter-led Libyan National Army (LNA), Brigadier General Ahmed Mesmari, reported today that the Cairo meetings of the unification committees of the Libyan army continued under the patronage of Egypt.
He said that the meeting confirmed what had been agreed in previous meetings, namely that the LNA General Command, led by Haftar, is, what he called, “the main facade of the Libyan National Army”. Mesmari did not elaborate what this entails in practice.
Mesmari also said that the formation of the three Command Councils: the National Security Council; the Supreme Defence Council and the General Command Council, was were all agreed upon at the Cairo meeting.
He also said that the Cairo meeting had reached agreement on the organizational structure, tasks and duties assigned to each of the three councils.
Moreover, without elaborating on details, Mesmari also said that the meeting made “some proposals to address the problem of armed militias deployed in the western region”.
Finally, he refuted media claims that Egypt had attempted to impose its own initiative at the meeting, saying that “no new developments or initiatives have been discussed by the Egyptian side, such as what is rumored in the media...”.
At the time of writing there has been no confirmation of this alleged progress from other sources present at the Cairo talks. However, if what Mesmari is claiming is accurate, it would constitute major positive movement in the attempts to reunify Libya’s military institutions and doing away with its militias.
The Syrian-Iranian Businessmen Forum on Saturday kicked off in Tehran with the participation of a delegation of Syrian businessmen that comprises 50 businessmen headed by Secretary General of the Federation of Syrian Chambers of Commerce Mohammad Hamshou.
In a speech during the opening of the Forum, Hamshou underlined the necessity of upgrading economic, trade and investment relations between Syria and Iran...
Hamshou said that cooperation between Syria and Iran in different domains “foils the embargo imposed on the two states,” reiterating that the participation of Syria in the Forum clearly proves keenness on overcoming the unilateral coercive measures imposed on the peoples of the two countries and the obstacles facing the process of joint cooperation.
For his part, Masour Khansari (Chairman of Tehran Chamber of Commerce) stressed that Iran will continue to stand by Syria and to provide full support to it, saying “Iran stood by the Syrian people during the war on terrorism and it will stand by them in the reconstruction.”
Syria’s Ambassador to Iran Dr. Adnan Mahmoud said that Syria’s victory over terrorism formed a suitable basis for launching the reconstruction process.
He affirmed that the Syrian Government has given priority to the allied countries in the war against terrorism to participate in the reconstruction of the infrastructure and in the building of the productive sectors and developmental projects.
He indicated that the door is open to Iranian businessmen, private companies and public sector to actively participate in the reconstruction and to make investments in the economic, industrial and productive projects in Syria and to benefit from the potentials in a way that serves the interests of the two friendly countries...
On sidelines of the Forum, delegation of Syrian businessmen discussed with Danaiefar and Khansari mechanisms of strategic cooperation in the economic, trade and investment spheres.
Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman said Monday that he does not believe in the possibility of reaching a long-term ceasefire arrangement with Hamas...
"Nothing less than than striking Hamas with the hardest and heaviest blow will help us in Gaza.
It has not worked in the past, it does not work now, and it will not work in the future," the defense minister said referring to the Egypt-mediated indirect talks regarding an arrangement between Israeli government and Gaza’s rulers.
Speaking at the onset of the Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee meeting, Lieberman also added that Israel has exhausted all options and a military operation in the strip is the only solution the country has left.
“The State of Israel does not have the luxury of conducting wars when there is an alternative, but we have reached a point where there isn’t one. We have exhausted all options and now a decision has to be made,” he vented.
Lieberman also elaborated on the mechanism behind the organization of the weekly border riots.
"The border protests are an act of institutionalized violence initiated by Hamas. Thousands of people arrive on buses and for each bus Hamas pays thousands of shekels—3,000 for someone being killed, 500 for seriously wounded and 250 for those wounded moderately or lightly,” concluded the defense minister.
Daily Sabah (Turkey), 17-10-2018: "Since March, more than 200 Palestinians have been martyred and thousands more injured by Israeli army fire in anti-occupation protests along Gaza border.
Demonstrators demand an end to Israel's 12-year Gaza blockade and the right to return to their homes in historical Palestine from which they were driven in 1948 to make way for the new state of Israel."
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Tuesday that Palestinian terror group Hamas is a greater threat than in the past, but added that it “fully understands” the messages Israel sends to it.
“We are dealing with a theological junta that has taken control of two million people,” Netanyahu said, referring to Hamas...
“They numbered 3,000 people before the wretched, mistaken and tragic disengagement, while now they are 65,000 armed people,” he said, taking a jab at the 2005 evacuation by former premier Ariel Sharon of all Israeli settlements in Gaza, which also saw the Jewish state end its military presence in the Strip.
“They are committed to our destruction and therefore are not partners for conversation in the diplomatic sense, but they fully understand our other messages and we won’t let them continue (with their violence),” the prime minister warned.
The past weekend saw a significant decrease in the amount of violence along the Gaza security fence compared to previous weeks, both in terms of the number of people participating in border riots and the intensity of the clashes..
Israeli officials believe Hamas has changed its policies regarding the clashes and was working toward curbing violence at the rallies, which have become a near-daily occurrence, Hadashot TV news reported Friday.
Amid the relative calm, the cabinet has reportedly been briefed on an emerging UN- and Egyptian-mediated agreement for a long-term ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, that would see Qatar pay for the Gaza Strip’s fuel, as well as fund the salaries of civil servants in the enclave.
While Israel believes such an accord would likely lead the Palestinian Authority to further cut funds to Gaza, it may retaliate by deducting any cuts from tax revenues it transfers annually to the PA.
“Iran has to make a decision whether it is a nation state or a revolution. If it’s a nation state it should act like one, and be a rational actor, that countries can deal with. If it is a revolution, it will be very difficult - if not impossible - to deal with them because revolutions have no logic…” Adel al-Jubeir, 9-6-2016
What is there left to say about the terrible murder of moderate Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi and its aftermath? Only one thing, and I have said it before, but I feel it even more strongly now: In the midterm elections, vote for a Democrat...
I don’t say that because I’m particularly liberal and want to shift the whole country to the liberal agenda. I say that because I’m particularly American and I want to put the best of American values back at the center of our diplomacy and politics...
There is a basic respect for truth, science and decency in the Democratic caucus and because I know that two more years of the G.O.P. holding every lever of power and blindly following Trump’s basic disrespect for truth, science and decency will make it impossible to elevate America’s best values.
You see, I can write that it is vitally important for global stability and the protection of journalists everywhere that those who executed and ordered the murder of Khashoggi be punished. But if Democrats do not control either the House or the Senate, I fear Trump will try to avoid any meaningful U.S. censure of Riyadh or its top leaders, if they are proven culpable.
I can write that the president, by telling us that we must weigh a $110 billion Saudi arms purchase against taking a moral stand on Khashoggi’s murder, is literally telling us the price of our values — about $333.33 for every American. But if you think, as I do, that countries that sell out their core values for financial gain suffer in the long run or if you think that such a country is not the America you want us to be, and that the world needs us to be, then you need to vote for a Democrat for the House and the Senate.
I could write that one reason the Saudis probably thought they could cross a red line with their depraved murder of Khashoggi was that Trump never appointed an ambassador to Riyadh — relying instead on his and his son-in-law’s personal contacts with the Saudi ruler — and because Trump regularly denounced journalists as purveyors of fake news. Why Trump never sent an ambassador to Saudi Arabia needs to be investigated, but it won’t if Democrats do not control the House or the Senate.
In sum, words today are not enough, investigative journalism is not enough, television special reports are not enough, documentaries are not enough, endless columns and editorials calling out Trump are not enough — even an audiotape of Khashoggi being killed inside the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul may not be enough — because the truth is just not enough today — not as long as we have a president who has no shame, who is backed by party that has no spine, that controls the House, the Senate, the White House, the Supreme Court and, indirectly, a major television network that has no integrity.
So, this year: No third party, no Green Party, no throwing up our hands and saying, “They’re all bad.” All of that’s for another day.
For today, in these midterm elections, vote for a Democrat... It’s the only hope to make America America again.
"Respect for Truth, Science and Decency"
"To die. To sleep... Who would tolerate the whips and scorns of time; the tyrant’s offences against us; the contempt of proud men; the pain of rejected love; the insolence of officious authority; and the advantage that the worst people take of the best, when one could just release oneself with a naked blade?" (No Sweat Shakespeare)
Since Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (widely known as MBS) took over power after an operation in which he swept aside his dissidents and opponents, relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia have changed in a positive way.
The crown prince has repeatedly signaled that the two countries may initiate a new page in their relations as certain goals of the two on the Middle East intersect. Therefore Israel has remained silent over the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul.
“In my opinion, it’s time to eliminate Assad.” After cutting off what he described as “the snake’s tail,” then “we’ll be able to get to its head, which sits in Tehran.” Yoav Gallant, 16-5-2017
BAGHDAD - The Iraqi parliament approved 14 new cabinet ministers Thursday proposed by prime minister-designate Adel Abdel Mahdi, even as key portfolios such as defence and interior affairs remained unassigned, an official said.
A total of 220 lawmakers out of 329 elected in May to a deeply divided parliament, approved Abdel Mahdi's 14 picks, including for the ministries of foreign affairs, finances, and oil.
After elections in May, new President Barham Saleh handed Abdel Mahdi the task of forming a new government, with several coalitions jockeying for preeminence.
A veteran of Iraqi politics and an economist by training, Abdel Mahdi, 76, is regarded as sufficiently independent to be able to assemble a government despite fractures in the ruling elites.
The former oil minister has support from both Tehran and Washington, a necessary consensus in a country caught between two major allies, each the enemy of the other. The new government faces an immense task in rebuilding a country ravaged by three years of Islamic State occupation and fierce fighting. It will also have to deal with the scourges of corruption, power shortages, and decaying public services.
Flashback: A world void of any wisdom - Iraqis are hostages
Iraq's new prime minister began moving his offices out of Baghdad's highly secure Green Zone on the first day of his term Thursday, saying he wanted to bring his government closer to the people.
Adel Abdul-Mahdi held his first news conference in a rehabilitated government compound opposite Baghdad's iconic central railway station, near the city center.
"We want to consider all of Iraq a Green Zone," said Abdul-Mahdi.
The U.S. established the Green Zone in 2003 to secure its embassy and Iraqi government institutions. But the zone has become a symbol of the country's aggressive inequality and fueled the perception among Iraqis that their government is out of touch.
The new location, approximately 2 miles (3.2 kilometers) from the Green Zone, used to contain the offices of Parliament under president Saddam Hussein. Access is tightly controlled by security forces, who guard the main gate with armored vehicles.
A former oil and finance minister and an ex-vice president, the 76-year-old Abdul-Mahdi is seen as a political independent and is Iraq's first prime minister from outside the Dawa party in 12 years.
One of his first challenges will be to develop a coherent Iraqi position on tight U.S. sanctions on neighboring Iran, which will go into effect Nov. 2.
Flashback - Iraq 2003
Maintaining that Iraq had always cooperated with the weapons inspectors despite misgivings of some of them, Mr. Hammadi said all that his country wanted was for them to do their work in a professional and honest way.
The Palestine Liberation Organization's central council has announced that it is suspending its recognition of the state of Israel.
In the decision, announced after a meeting late Monday, the PLO said it will halt all its commitments to the "occupation authorities" until Israel recognises a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.
That includes security cooperations and trade agreements reached between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.
While the central council's decisions are not binding, it advises the PA on future policy decisions. PA President Mahmoud Abbas was present at the meeting.
The council has tasked Abbas and the PLO Executive Committee with following up on Monday's decisions.
The council also explicitly rebuked the Donald Trump-led peace process and his "Deal of the Century" plan to end the conflict.
"The committee lauded the efforts of the president (Abbas) ... in continuing to reject the so-called Deal of the Century and confronting it in all available means to defeat it, as well as deeming the US administration a partner of the Israeli occupation government and a part of the problem, not the solution," official Palestinian news agency Wafa reported.
The council also hit out at Hamas, which controls the Gaza strip, accusing the Islamist group of failing to live up to its commitment and the unity agreement that was signed in October of last year.
Abbas appeared to endorse Monday's decisions, saying the time has come to put into actions previous measures approved by the central council.
According to a statement published by WAFA, Abbas called on Palestinians to unite behind the PLO as the "sole legitimate representatives" of the Palestinian people.
Amid mounting pressure from Washington to end Palestinian Authority's public assistance to the families of prisoners and people killed by Israeli forces, Abbas said: "The allocations for our families and martyrs and the wounded are a red line; we cannot negotiate over their rights.
The Central Council of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) has moved to fully withdraw from the Oslo Accord on Monday, announcing that they are ending their commitment to the deal, and halting all security coordination with Israel.
The 1993 Oslo Accord was intended to increase cooperation during a brief transition period leading to Palestinian statehood.
With Israel’s far-right leadership having long insisted that the Palestinians will never have an independent state, many in the PLO have argued that security cooperation was just making the permanent Israeli occupation cheaper and giving them legal cover to do things in violation of international law in the occupied territories.
The collapse of the Oslo Accord could greatly increase the cost of the occupation for Israel, because under international law they are obliged to provide certain specific services to the Palestinians, and if the PLO is no longer voluntarily providing them with foreign donated funds, they’ll be on the hook to do it themselves.
The search for Jamal Khashoggi’s body is over.
After one month of extensive investigations, Turkey’s attorney general has finally concluded that the body was dissolved in acid and disposed of in a well. Forensic samples from a well in the Counsel’s residence and nearby sewage drains confirm this.
None of Khashoggi’s killers have been indicted or extradited to Turkey, despite persistent demands from Ankara, yet his murder is set to impact on the future of the Middle East.
Saudi Arabia will emerge substantially weaker with its image and credibility in tatters. With a leadership that is universally mistrusted and ridiculed, the Kingdom’s ability to lead regional affairs has been drastically curtailed.
Naturally, this situation paves the way for other regional powers, notably Turkey, to extend their leverage.
Initially, Khashoggi’s murder provoked a diplomatic crisis with Saudi Arabia and Turkey being the principal actors. Then, as the grisly nature of the crime unfolded the US, European Union and international media all joined in. Now that the Saudis have admitted to the murder things can never be the same again.
The murder of Khashoggi has been nothing but a national disaster and a humiliating embarrassment for Saudi Arabia.
With the support of Israel and the Trump administration, the discredited Crown Prince may just cling onto power. But there will be a price. For a start he will have to pump more oil into the market and ensure that prices do not exceed the levels fixed by Washington.
Additionally, he will have to accelerate the normalisation process with Israel and give unconditional support to the Trump ‘deal of the century’, which calls for a surrender of all Palestinian national rights. And, to add insult to injury, he would be ordered to end the war in Yemen and restore diplomatic ties with Qatar.
For all their worth these measures can never be a substitute for the criminal prosecution of those responsible for the planning and murder of Jamal Khashoggi.
Moreover, failure to conduct a credible trial in a properly constituted court will encourage the perpetrators to continue their murderous campaign against dissidents at home and abroad.
Clearly, if Saudi officials have the nerve to do what they did to Khashoggi in a foreign country, it is inconceivable what they will do inside the Kingdom where they are a law unto themselves.
Authorities in Saudi Arabia say they will seek the death penalty for five people who have been accused of carrying out the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi inside the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul.
The latest Saudi account was almost immediately dismissed as inadequate by Turkish officials, while the United States moved to sanction 17 Saudis it said were involved in the October 2 killing.
Speaking to reporters in Riyadh, Shaalan al-Shaalan, Saudi Arabia's deputy public prosecutor, said "the incident" began on September 29 when a "former" deputy chief of intelligence ordered the "leader of the mission" to "bring back the victim by means of persuasion, and if persuasion fails, to do so by force". The mission leader then put together a 15-member team to "return" the journalist from Turkey.
The team included a forensics expert "for the purpose of removing evidence from the scene" and a local collaborator tasked with securing a safe house "in case force had to be used to return the victim".
Al-Shalaan said that on the morning of October 2, the leader of the negotiating team saw that he would not be able to force Khashoggi to return, "so he decided to kill him in the moment." The 59-year-old then died from a lethal injection - the official cause of death is listed as a drug overdose - and his body was dismembered and taken out of the building, he said. The body parts were "delivered" to the local collaborator and another man put on Khashoggi's clothes and posed as the journalist exiting the consulate.
Al-Shaalan said 21 people were now in custody, with 11 indicted and referred to trial, adding that Saud al-Qahtani, a former adviser to the royal court, had been banned from travelling and remained under investigation.
The prosecution is seeking the death penalty for five officials who gave the orders and oversaw the execution of the murder.
Mevlut Cavusoglu, Turkey's foreign minister, criticised the Saudi announcement as "insufficient" and insisted the killing was "premeditated."
The US Treasury imposed sanctions on 17 Saudi officials for their role in the killing. Among those sanctioned were Saud al-Qahtani, who has been removed from his position as a top aide to MBS, as well as the Saudi Consul-General Mohammed al-Otaibi and members of the 15-member team.
Tuesday morning [20 nov], US president Donald Trump issued a statement on the Khashoggi killing heavily suggesting that no further actions would be taken beyond the 17 Saudi nationals already sanctioned by the US Treasury and that Trump took Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman at their word when they vigorously denied "any knowledge of the planning or execution of the murder of Mr. Khashoggi."
Trump also commented that the Saudi government spends "a record amount of money" on defense contracts with the US, noting that Russia and China would benefit and Americans would suffer should those contracts be cancelled.
The Washington Post, a publication for which slain journalist Jamal Khashoggi wrote, slammed US President Donald Trump's comments earlier Tuesday, saying by surrendering "to the state-ordered murder" by Saudi Arabia, "he is placing personal relationships and commercial interests above American interests."
"President Trump's response to the brutal murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi is a betrayal of long-established American values of respect for human rights and expectation of trust and honesty in our strategic relationships."
"If there is reason to doubt the findings of the CIA, President Trump should immediately make that evidence public.
Late last week, the CIA released its conclusions on the murder of Khashoggi, which happened inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2, finding that Mohammad bin Salman had directly ordered the hit. [..]
Trump told reporters at the White House that the CIA report on Khashoggi is not "definitive."
His position echoes that made by State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert on Monday that the department had not yet come to a firm conclusion on the case of Khashoggi's murder.