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THE EARLY PHOENIX May 15, 2023

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May 15, 2023,

IRAN

  1. Iran & Egypt to Restore Ties, Reopen Embassies (Tasnim News) Fadahossein Maleki, a member of the Iranian Parliament’s National Security and Foreign Policy Commission, said the two countries’ embassies in Tehran and Cairo would reopen soon, adding that the Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and his Egyptian counterpart Abdel Fattah el-Sisi will hold a meeting after the reopening of embassies.
  2. Iran Frees 2 French Citizens (Tasnim News). The spokesman for the Iranian Foreign Ministry explained that Iran had released the two French nationals in response to the requests that France had submitted at various levels and following negotiations, including a Friday telephone conversation between Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian and his French counterpart Catherine Colonna.
  3. Tehran Refuses To Comment As Chinese Ports Ban Iranian Shipping (Iran International). China has handed over most main ports to private sector and foreign companies. These operators do not allow Iranian ships to dock for fear of US sanctions. Iranian shipping can dock in Chinese government-controlled ports, but their inadequate facilities and equipment increase loading and unloading time.
  4. Iran Summons Iraqi Envoy over Hostile Moves in KRG (Tasnim News). The Iraqi ambassador was called in by the Iranian Foreign Ministry on Saturday in protest at an invitation given to the members of separatist groups to take part in an official meeting in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq and at the ongoing activities of terrorist groups in that region.  

ISRAEL AND PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES

  1. Gaza Conflict by The Numbers: 1,478 Islamic Jihad Rockets, 422 IDF Attacks (Jerusalem Post). According to IDF summary, The Iron Dome missile defense system shot down around 95% of those Islamic Jihad rockets which threatened Israelis, with over 430 shootdowns. In addition, 20% of Islamic Jihad rockets landed in Gaza, killing three Gazans and wounding dozens. Another critical aspect of the IDF’s strategy was successfully keeping Hamas out of the conflict. 
  2. FM Cohen Says Israel Offered PIJ Nothing Beyond Ceasefire (Times of Israel). Foreign minister insists Jerusalem didn’t agree to concessions as part of a deal to end Gaza fighting, says that controversial Flag March will go through Muslim Quarter as planned.
  3. Slapdash Attempt to Hack Rocket Sirens May Be Cause for Serious Alarm about Iran (Times of Israel). Hackers believed to be linked to Russia and Iran made unsuccessful attempts to sabotage Israeli rocket alert applications during a bout of violence with Gazan terrorists earlier this month, according to Telegram messages seen by The Times of Israel.

SYRIA

  1. With The Participation of al-Assad’s Delegation, The Preparatory Meetings for The “Arab Summit” in Riyadh Begins (ShaamNews). The initial sessions for the upcoming Arab summit started in Saudi Arabia this Sunday, where senior experts of the Economic and Social Council will meet, with the participation of the regime delegation for the first time in 11 years, after the decision to return Syria’s seat to the Arab League.

GULF REGION

  1. Saudi Delegation Arrives in Libya to Discuss Reopening the Kingdom’s Embassy (Al Khaleej Online). In May 2014, due to security conditions, Saudi Arabia shut its embassy and consulate in Tripoli and evacuated its diplomatic mission. Over the past two years, the Government of National Accord has urged nations worldwide to reopen their embassies in Tripoli to support the UN-backed political process.
  2.  Dubai’s DP World Signs Deals with China Seaport Companies in Latest Push (Al-Monitor). Over 6,000 Chinese companies have set up operations in the United Emirates, with bilateral trade predicted to reach $200 billion in 2030, according to global business and legal services provider Intertrust Group. The company states that the UAE’s geographical location connecting Central Asia, Africa, Europe, and the Middle East is a significant investment incentive. 

TURKIYE

  1.  Voting Has Ended in the Turkish Presidential and Parliamentary Elections (Anadolu Agency). More than 64.1 million people were registered to vote, including over 1.76 million who cast their ballots abroad and 4.9 million first-time voters. In addition, 191,885 ballot boxes were set up for voters in the country.
  2.  People’s Alliance Ahead in Türkiye’s Parliamentary Elections (Daily Sabah). The alliance, which consists of the AK Party, the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), the New Welfare Party (YRF), and the Great Unity Party (BBP), received 50.66% of the votes, with 273 potential lawmakers. Meanwhile, the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) led Nation Alliance obtained 34.45% of the vote, with 167 potential lawmakers.
  3.  The Results of the Turkish Elections.. 98% of the Boxes Are Sorted, and Erdogan Addresses his Supporters from Ankara (Syria TV). Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the candidate of the People’s Alliance, fell below 50% after counting 98% of the boxes. At the same time, the vote for Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the opposition, reached 45%, which increases the possibility of the country going to a run-off in the presidential elections on the 28 of this month in the event that none of the candidates obtained 50% of the votes + one vote.

IRAQ

  1.  Oil Smuggling And Pipeline Deterioration Are the Biggest Challenges For the Sudanese Government (Mustaqila). Oil experts and deputies point to weaknesses in the oil export system in the national institutions, indicating that unifying the outlets will significantly reduce smuggling operations. 

SUDAN 

  1.  The Sudanese Foreign Ministry Accuses the RSF of Violating the Armistice and Targeting Health Facilities (Al Arabiya ). The Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the attack and forced entry of Rapid Support militia into the Jabra and Ahmed Qassem Heart and Kidney Hospitals, assaulting medical personnel, terrorizing patients, and stealing ambulances. 

YEMEN

  1.  Saudi Arabia Decides to Resolve the Military in Aden (Sa24). The Saudi-loyal “Shield of the Nation” factions confirmed, on Sunday, the start of the implementation of the deployment operation in Aden, the most prominent stronghold of the Transitional Council.

EGYPT

  1.  Closed or Proportional: Egypt’s National Dialogue Debates Parliament Electoral System (English Ahram). In its first discussion session, Egypt’s National Dialogue’s Committee on Exercising Political Rights and Parliamentary Representation witnessed Sunday a heated debate on whether to adopt the closed list or proportional list during the parliament’s electoral process.

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