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U.S. envoy attend opening of ancient East Jerusalem road amid opposition

U.S. envoy attend opening of ancient East Jerusalem road amid opposition

World
June 30 (UPI) -- U.S. Ambassador David Friedman and U.S. Middle East special envoy Jason Greenblatt attended the inauguration of an archaeological site in Jerusalem on Sunday. Friedman and Greenblatt hammered through the final wall in front of Pilgrimage Road at the City of David National Park, underneath Palestinian homes in East Jerusalem in the ceremonial event that angered Palestinians and Israeli non-governmental organizations. Archeologists had spent the past eight years excavating the area that is believed to have served as a pathway for Jews traveling to Temple Mount. "The City of David brings biblical Jerusalem back to life," Friedman said. "It enables every one of us to stroll the corridors where the ancient prophets of Israel gave voice to revolutionary ideals of freedom, libe...
US envoy Brett McGurk quits over Trump Syria pullout

US envoy Brett McGurk quits over Trump Syria pullout

World
A top US official in the fight against the Islamic State group has quit over President Trump's decision to pull troops from Syria, reports say.Brett McGurk, the US special presidential envoy for the Global Coalition to Defeat IS, brought his departure forward from February.Before Mr Trump's announcement he had insisted that the US would continue working against IS in Syria.It follows the resignation of Defence Secretary Jim Mattis on Thursday.Gen Mattis had also opposed withdrawing troops from Syria as well as reducing the US presence in Afghanistan.Mr McGurk is an experienced diplomat who was appointed to his current role in 2015 under the Obama administration.In early December he told reporters: "We want to stay on the ground a...
U.N. Syria envoy warns of 'perfect storm' in Idlib

U.N. Syria envoy warns of 'perfect storm' in Idlib

World
Aug. 30 (UPI) -- U.N. Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura warned of a "perfect storm" facing the country's Idlib province Thursday. De Mistra expressed concern for the residents of Idlib as President Bashar al-Assad's government forces, which are backed by Russia, are expected to launch an offensive to clear militants from the al-Qaida and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham -- also known as the al-Nusra Front -- militant groups from the area. "While we are talking, there are some discussions taking place, and we hope that they will be fruitful but that doesn't mean that we should be not worried, on the contrary, we are worried about any hurried escalation," he said. The Russian military amassed a fleet of at least 10 warships and two submarines off Syria's northwest coast in preparation for an as...