Gaza reconstruction will take 20 years, says UN-backed authority
A UN backed construction authority has said rebuilding Gaza’s battered and neglected housing stock will take at least 20 years as thousands of houses were razed or suffered damage in Israel’s Protective Edge operation.
Shelter Cluster, an international organization involved in assessing post-conflict reconstruction, which is co-chaired by the UN refugee agency and the Red Cross, says that 17,000 houses were destroyed or severely damaged during the seven week war between Israel and Hamas.
An additional 5,000 homes still needed work after previous wars, while Gaza with its 1.8 million people squeezed into 5046/km2 of land has a housing deficit of 75,000 houses.
Palestinian officials have put the cost of rebuilding Gaza at $6 billion, but any reconstruction efforts will be hampered by a blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt since Hamas seized power in Gaza in 2007.
'Biggest in 30 years': Israel expropriates 400 hectares of W. Bank land
The Israeli military-run Civil Administration has announced a land appropriation of some 400 hectares in the West Bank to an almost immediate condemnation from anti-settlement activists, who say this is the biggest seizure in 30 years.
Around 400 hectares of land in the Etzion settlement area near the town of Bethlehem were declared “state land, on the instructions of the political echelon” by the Civil Administration on Sunday. Israel Radio said that announcement was made in response to the killing of three Jewish teens in June by Hamas militants in the same area.
The building of a major settlement in the area, known as Gevaot, has been on the cards since 2000 and last year the Israeli government invited tenders for the building of 1,000 houses on the site.
Peace Now, an anti-settlement group that opposes Israel’s activities in the West Bank, said the land seizure was the largest announced by Israel since the 1980s.
They say the land appropriation is meant to turn a site where 10 Jewish families are living next to a Jewish seminary into a permanent settlement.
Libyan militia occupies US embassy in Tripoli to ‘secure’ it
The Dawn of Libya, an Islamist militia group, has said that it has secured the US embassy compound in the Libyan capital Tripoli, more than a month after US staff evacuated the building.
Although windows at the compound have been smashed, most of the equipment that had been left by the Americans remained untouched, according to an AP journalist who was invited by the militants to have a look around.
A commander of the militia group said that his forces have been in control of the former embassy since last week.
It is Illegal to add fluoride to food or salt in the U.S
(NaturalNews) In 1909 the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed a law that prohibited the addition of any fluoride chemical to food. By then fluoride was well known as an industrial pollutant that harmed plants, animals, and humans. This was known long before skeletal and dental fluorosis were described in the scientific literature.
In 1945 a brewing company was discovered to be adding a small amount of fluoride to their beer. The FDA had the company prosecuted. The owner got a suspended jail sentence and a fine. The jury was instructed that fluoride was harmful and poisonous, and that it was unimportant to show how much beer had to be consumed to demonstrate harmful effects.
Aerial view of Gaza city destruction looks like aftermath of WW2
We’re just three weeks into this, and this is only the beginning of this movement. We want the president to come here. He remarked that he didn’t have a strategy for ISIS and Syria, but we need a strategy for urban America. The tragedy is this could have happened anywhere.
—Jerryl Christmas the St Louis attorney
Ukraine says Russian tanks flatten town; EU to threaten more sanctions
KIEV/BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Ukraine said on Saturday Russian tanks had flattened a small border town and pro-Russian rebels had made fresh gains in its east, as EU leaders signalled they were ready to prepare more sanctions on Moscow over the crisis.
Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, speaking ahead of an EU summit in Brussels, said he was still holding out hope for a political solution but told journalists there were now thousands of foreign troops and hundreds of foreign tanks in his country.
Russia has repeatedly dismissed accusations from Kiev and Western powers that it has sent soldiers across the border into its neighbour, or supported pro-Russian rebels fighting a five-month-old separatist war in Ukraine’s east.
But Ukraine military spokesman Andriy Lysenko told journalists in Kiev Russian tanks had entered the small Ukrainian town of Novosvitlivka on the border with Russia and fired on every house.