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THE EARLY PHOENIX – July 4, 2023

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TOP HEADLINES:

TURKIYE

  1. Turkish Intelligence Uncovers Clandestine Mossad Network in Turkiye (Mehr News). Turkiye’s National Intelligence Organization MIT has uncovered a group of 56 operatives working for Mossad, Israel’s intelligence agency spying on non-Turkish nationals in Turkiye….They operated internationally and were linked to Mossad agents based in Tel Aviv. The spies used fake websites and phone lines and received cyber training from a spy software firm in Tel Aviv. Mossad sent its spies to gather intelligence in Lebanon, Syria, and other countries. Turkiye has previously uncovered espionage networks working for Russia and thwarted an Iranian plot to assassinate Israeli citizens.
  2. Türkiye Rescues 84 Migrants Pushed Back by Greece (TRT World). The Turkish Coast Guard’s Northern Aegean Group Command conducted the rescue operation off western Canakkale province. The migrants, mainly from Afghanistan, were transferred to the Ayvacik Foreigners’ Removal Center. Human rights groups and media have highlighted illegal pushbacks and human rights violations by Greek authorities. Turkiye and global rights groups have criticized Greece’s actions for endangering the lives of vulnerable migrants.

ISRAEL & PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES

  1.  Israeli Troops and Drones Hit Jenin in a Major West Bank Operation (Reuters).  Israeli forces conducted a major operation in Jenin in the West Bank, involving hundreds of troops and drone strikes. The operation resulted in the deaths of at least eight people and left more than 50 others wounded. The clashes between Israeli troops and fighters from the Jenin Brigades, based in the refugee camp, continued throughout the day. The Israeli military described the operation as a counterterrorism effort to destroy infrastructure and disrupt militants. 
  2. Hundreds Block Haifa Port and Gather at Airport in Stepped-Up Protests (Times of Israel). Despite Israel’s military operation in the West Bank city of Jenin, protests against the government’s judicial overhaul continued as demonstrators blocked access to the Haifa port and held rallies abroad. The protests also extended to Ben Gurion Airport, where thousands aimed to disrupt access…The protests intensified as negotiations between the governing coalition and the opposition on judicial reform collapsed, leading to renewed efforts to push through the legislation.

Egypt & NORTH AFRICA

  1. Sudan’s Battles Continue as Army Calls on Civilians to Volunteer in its Ranks (Al Hadath). The battles continued in Sudan on Monday as the center of the capital, Khartoum, and the northern region of Bahri, came under artillery shelling from Omdurman, according to eyewitnesses. At the same time, the army renewed its call for civilians to volunteer in its ranks to fight the Rapid Support Forces…the Sudanese Armed Forces appealed to “the youth, and everyone who can, to share with the armed forces the honor of defending the entity and dignity of the Sudanese nation.”
  2. Libya Hands Over to Egypt 25 Children Who Tried to Immigrate to Italy (Al Arabiya). The information revealed that these children and their families paid sums of money ranging from 100 to 130 thousand pounds to Libyan and Egyptian elements in exchange for their travel to work in Italy and that they arrived in Libya 3 months ago in preparation for traveling to the Italian coasts via a boat belonging to illegal immigration gangs…Libyan authorities decided to deport the children to Egypt.

THE GULF AND YEMEN

  1. Bahrain Agrees to Invest $1.27B in the United Kingdom (Al Khaleej Online). Bahraini Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa began a visit to the United Kingdom on Monday, which witnessed the signing of a memorandum of understanding in which Manama will invest one billion pounds ($1.27 billion) in Britain…from the Bahraini private sector through the Bahrain Mumtalakat Holding Company, the Investcorp Company, the GFH Financial Group, and the Osoul Company.
  2. Kuwait Sends Message to Iran: the Durra Field is Ours and Saudi Arabia’s (Al Khaleej Online). A day after Iran threatened to start drilling and exploration operations in the “Durra” field, located in the submerged area shared between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, the Kuwaiti government announced that Kuwait and Saudi Arabia have exclusive rights in the offshore Durra gas field. The source explained that “the marine area in which the Dorra field is located in the marine areas of Kuwait, and the natural resources in it are shared between Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, and they alone have exclusive rights to the natural wealth in the field,” according to KUNA.
  3. Saudi Arabia and Russia Extend Voluntary Oil Production Cuts in August (Al Arabiya). An official source in the Saudi Ministry of Energy announced on Monday that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia would extend its voluntary cut of one million barrels per day, which began to be implemented in July, for another month, including August, with the possibility of extending it. The source confirmed that this additional voluntary reduction reinforces the precautionary efforts made by the “OPEC +” countries to support the stability and balance of oil markets, quoting the Saudi Press Agency, SPA. This comes as Russia announced a reduction in its oil exports by half a million barrels daily in August. 
  4. Dissident Houthi Leader Seeks to Establish Independent Emirate in Northern Yemen (Yemen Now). A dissident leader of the Houthi militia revealed an expanded meeting to declare the first northern Yemeni governorate an independent emirate. Nasser Al-Arjali, who used to hold the position of Undersecretary of the Ministry of Health in the unrecognized group’s government, said in a tweet on his Twitter account that he will arrange an expanded meeting for the people of Amran Governorate to form an independent emirate whose people will lead and manage its affairs. He added: It is enough to marginalize, exclude and oppress the people of Imran for decades, before and after, and the people of the province are deprived of their most basic legitimate rights. 

IRAN 

  1. Clashes Between Armed Forces and Civilians in Iran’s Khorramabad Leave 15 Injured (Iran International). Clashes between security forces and protesters in Khorramabad, Iran, resulted in at least 15 citizens being injured and three shopkeepers being arrested. The Free Union of Iranian Workers shared a video showing the clash after armed forces attempted to confiscate electrical devices from shops. Earlier in the month, tensions were high during the funeral of Mansoureh Sagvand, a former police assistant who defected following nationwide protests. Sagvand had expressed concerns about her safety and warned against potential threats from intelligence officers. 
  2. EU and UK Intend to Breach JCPOA by Refusing to Lift Missile Sanctions in October (Mehr News Agency). The UK and other European powers are expected to violate the Iran nuclear deal by refusing to lift sanctions on Iran’s use of missiles in October, according to a British source. The European Union sanctions are set to expire in October…According to the source, EU and British diplomats have claimed that Iran has sold drones to Russia for its operation in Ukraine.
  3. Iran Says Iraq Released $10B in Payments to Iran (Al Iraq News). The head of the Iraqi-Iranian Chamber of Commerce, Yahya Al-Ishaq, announced Monday that Iraq had released $10 billion and transferred this amount to the Trade Bank of Iraq for non-sanctioned purchases such as essential commodities and medicines…Speaking on Monday to a gathering of Iranian merchants and representatives of the Iranian Foreign Ministry, he referred to the trade relations between Tehran and Baghdad as a semi-golden opportunity…”We live in special circumstances in the world and the region, and our constant aim is to pursue national interests and seize commercial opportunities in Iraq.” 

SYRIA

  1.  On Second Visit to Assad, Jordanian Foreign Minister Discusses Political Solution, the Jordanian Initiative, and Captagon (Shaam). Jordanian Minister of Foreign Affairs and Expatriate Affairs, Ayman Safadi, revealed that he is visiting the Syrian capital, Damascus, on Monday to discuss with officials in the Assad regime the file of bilateral relations, Arab relations with Syria, and the Jordanian initiative. This visit is Safadi’s second to Damascus since last February and two months after the Amman meeting, which paved the way for Syria’s return to the Arab League at the Jeddah summit. Other media outlets reported that the Jordanian foreign minister’s visit to Syria was to discuss the Syria-manufactured captagon flooding the kingdom.  
  2. A Quantum Leap for the Dollar in Areas Controlled by the Assad Regime (Zaman Alwsl). The dollar’s exchange rate against the Syrian pound in the regime-controlled areas recorded a new quantum leap [to 9250 pounds to the dollar] during Monday’s opening and noon trading…The Euro exceeded the barrier of 10,000 pounds in Damascus…The dollar in regime-controlled areas significantly increased during Sunday’s trading and in the last dealings before the Eid al-Adha holiday.
  3. Russian Intelligence Accuses US of Preparing Chemical Attacks in Syria (Enab Baladi). The Russian Foreign Intelligence Service accused the United States of seeking to disrupt the normalization of Arab countries with the Syrian regime by carrying out chemical attacks in Syria…On Monday, the Russian “Sputnik” agency quoted the Russian Director of Foreign Intelligence, Sergey Naryshkin, as saying that Washington is preparing a media campaign aimed at showing that the Arab countries’ choice to resume dialogue with the head of the Syrian regime, Bashar al-Assad, is a “Strategic Mistake.”
  4. Australian Christian Delegation Visits Assad in Damascus (Syrian Observer). On Sunday, Bashar al-Assad met with a delegation of heads of Christian Churches from Australia, including bishops from the Armenian Catholic, Armenian Orthodox, and Coptic Orthodox Churches…The Australian bishops emphasized their ongoing efforts to alleviate the impact of sanctions imposed on Syria and mitigate the war’s consequences on the country’s material and social infrastructure.

IRAQ

  1. Iraqi Foreign Minister Visits London to Discuss Political, Security, and Commercial Cooperation (Elaph). On Monday, Iraqi Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein began an official visit to London to discuss with senior officials to develop political and security relations and enhance joint commercial cooperation within the Iraqi-British strategic framework document…During his two-day official visit to London, the Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Fuad Hussein will lead a senior official delegation.
  2. Saudi Arabia & the UAE Allocate $6 Billion to Support their Operational Projects in Iraq (Al Iraq News). The head of the Federation of Iraqi Chambers of Commerce, Abd al-Razzaq al-Zuhairi, announced Monday that Saudi Arabia and the UAE had allocated 6 billion dollars to support their operations in Iraq. Considering the standards of the World Bank, the countries will seek to have full automation in the process of entry and exit of goods.

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