Top five international stories of the week

June 10, 2016

Every Friday, we bring to you the top five international stories of the week, with a particular emphasis on religious liberty, justice issues and geopolitical issues that impact liberty and justice.

1. Two Palestinians carry out shooting in Tel Aviv, killing four and wounding 16. The two shooters were cousins from the West Bank town of Yatta. The attack took place in the middle of a large outdoor market and shopping center popular among locals. In response, the Israeli military has restricted Palestinian access to Jerusalem, a significant issue as Muslims are now celebrating Ramadan across the world.

2. Yemeni government releases 54 children captured during conflict against Houthis. The Saudi government facilitated the release and accused the Houthi rebels of using child soldiers in the conflict. Reuters: “It was not clear how many child prisoners are being held in all, but Yemeni political sources say that the Houthis and the government submitted in late May a list of nearly 7,000 names of prisoners they say are being held by the other side.”

3. The migrant crisis in Europe continues; this week 300 migrants are rescued from capsized boat in Mediterranean. With summer months bringing warmer temperatures, the flow of migrants from the Middle East and North Africa to Europe has been increasing. This is despite the EU’s efforts to reduce the flow of migrants through a shift in policy and a controversial deal with Turkey. BBC: “In a separate incident, ‘more than 100 bodies’ were recovered off the coast of Libya, the AP news agency said.”

4. German parliament approves resolution labelling Ottoman massacre of Armenians in 1915-16 a “genocide,” sparking tensions with Turkey. In retaliation, Turkey has withdrawn its diplomatic envoy to Germany. Yahoo: “The use of the word ‘genocide’ goes to the heart of a long-running battle for world opinion between Armenia and Turkey over the massacres committed a century ago. Armenia has led a decades-long campaign to have the bloodshed characterised as genocide, which Turkey rejects as a gross injustice. Ankara argues the killings were a collective tragedy in which equal numbers of Turks and Armenians died.”

5. German authorities arrested three Syrian men who had entered the country with a wave of migrants due to suspicion that the men were planning an ISIS attack on the city of Düsseldorf. According to the arresting authorities, the plot involved suicide bombers, firearms and explosives—reminiscent of the attacks in Paris and Brussels. Only a minute fraction of migrants coming have been arrested or killed while attempting to carry out terror plots. But this arrest draws attention to the threat that ISIS poses to Europeans while posing as migrants and the need for European governments to screen as best as possible those who they think they are providing asylum.

Have suggestions for a top five article this week or think there’s an issue we should be covering? Email me at [email protected].

*Matt Mihelic contributed to this post

Travis Wussow

Travis Wussow serves as the Vice President for Public Policy and General Counsel. Travis led the ERLC’s first international office located in the Middle East prior to joining the Washington DC office. He received a B.B.A. in Finance from The University of Texas at Austin and a J.D. from The … Read More