Toxic yellow chlorine explosion at Jordan port kills at least 13 and injures 250

A poisonous chlorine gas explosion at the port of Aqaba in Jordan is said to have killed at least 13 people and injured 250. It happened after a tank filled with 25 tonnes of chlorine being exported to Djibouti fell while being transported, officials said. Jamal Obeidat, head of Aqaba health department, told state television: “We advise citizens in Aqaba to stay indoors and close the windows. This gas is critical.” And he warned there could be more deaths linked to the leak. A video posted on state television’s Twitter page showed a storage tank falling from a winch and … Continue reading Toxic yellow chlorine explosion at Jordan port kills at least 13 and injures 250

Israel facing new elections as coalition moves to dissolve parliament

Israel is set to hold a fifth general election in under four years, after its fractured coalition government concluded it could not survive. In a major political development, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett will switch places with Alternate Prime Minister Yair Lapid under an existing deal. An election could take place in late October, commentators say. The former prime minister and current opposition leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, has vowed to return to office. Monday’s announcement comes after weeks of speculation that the coalition – the most diverse in Israel’s history – was on the brink of collapse. It risked losing an important … Continue reading Israel facing new elections as coalition moves to dissolve parliament

Saudi authorities seize rainbow toys in crackdown on homosexuality

Authorities in Saudi Arabia have been seizing rainbow-themed children’s items from shops as they claim that the colours encourage homosexuality. Commerce ministry officials have gone into shopping centres in the capital Riyadh to confiscate items such as toys, hair clips, beauty items, clothes, hats, notebooks, pencil cases, and other trinkets. A clip of a news report, tweeted by state TV channel Al-Ekhbariya, shows two officials walking around shops to inspect the goods before putting the brightly-coloured items in a pile on the floor. One official told the channel that the rainbow-coloured items “promote homosexual colours” and are “targeting the younger generation”. The ministry tweeted that … Continue reading Saudi authorities seize rainbow toys in crackdown on homosexuality

Hezbollah leader threatens to hit Israel’s offshore gas rig

The leader of Lebanon’s militant Hezbollah group threatened Thursday to strike a gas rig Israel is setting up in the Mediterranean Sea. Lebanon claims the location is in a disputed maritime area between the two countries. Israel says the location is part of its U.N.-recognized exclusive economic zone. Hezbollah’s Hassan Nasrallah, a staunch Iran ally, denounced in a televised address what he described as Israeli provocations in the maritime area. His speech followed a warning by Lebanese President Michel Aoun last Sunday who said that maritime border negotiations between the two countries have not ended, adding that any move by Israel, such as … Continue reading Hezbollah leader threatens to hit Israel’s offshore gas rig

Tragic: Train derailment in eastern Iran kills at least 17

At least 17 people have been killed and dozens more hurt after a train derailed in eastern Iran, state media report. The train, which was carrying 348 passengers, came off the line between the cities of Mashhad and Yazd about 50km (31 miles) from Tabas. Emergency services officials said the train collided with an excavator before being knocked off the track. They warned that the death toll could rise because many of the injured were in a critical condition in hospital. Tabas County Governor Ali Akbar Rahimi told state media that four of the train’s seven carriages were knocked off … Continue reading Tragic: Train derailment in eastern Iran kills at least 17

Many people feared trapped after 10-storey building collapses in Iran

Ten people have been killed and dozens more are thought to be trapped after an unfinished building collapsed in south-west Iran, the Iranian Red Crescent said. Rescue teams have pulled 35 people from the rubble of the 10-storey Metropol office block in Abadan, it added. Pictures showed that concrete floors and steel beams had fallen on to the street below, crushing several cars. Officials said the cause of the collapse was being investigated. Local prosecutor Hamid Maranipour said both the Metropol’s owner and the building contractor had been arrested. State news agency Irna reported that the building was located on … Continue reading Many people feared trapped after 10-storey building collapses in Iran

Three killed in Yemen’s capital by downed drone

The health minister in the Houthi administration that runs Sanaa said another three people were injured when the drone landed in a commercial area, the official news agency reported. Reuters footage showed wreckage of a drone near Yemen Mall shopping centre and a man lying on the street near a car. Three medics told Reuters six people had been hit by shrapnel, and that three of them had died. “Our air defences downed a Chinese-made CH4 armed spy plane belonging to the Saudi air force with a surface-to-air missile,” Houthi military spokesman Yahya Sarea said on Twitter. The incident took … Continue reading Three killed in Yemen’s capital by downed drone

Colonel in Iran Revolutionary Guard assassinated

A colonel in the powerful Iranian Revolutionary Guards has been shot dead in a rare assassination in Tehran. Two gunman on a motorbike are reported to have shot Colonel Sayad Khodai five times in a car outside his home. So far, no group has claimed responsibility for Sunday’s attack, and a manhunt is under way for the gunmen. It is the biggest security breach in Iran since 2020 when a leading nuclear scientist was killed. Images from the scene show a bloodied man slumped over in a car with his seatbelt still on. Colonel Khodai was a senior member of … Continue reading Colonel in Iran Revolutionary Guard assassinated

Eight die in Iran after drinking homemade alcohol

Eight people have died after drinking tainted homemade alcohol in the Iranian city of Bandar Abbas, local media say. Another 51 people were being treated in hospitals for alcohol poisoning, local health official Dr Fatemeh Nowruzian told a news conference. Seventeen of them were in a critical condition in intensive care, while 30 were undergoing dialysis, she added. Police said they had arrested eight people on suspicion of producing and distributing the alcohol. The manufacture, sale and consumption of alcohol is strictly forbidden in the Islamic Republic, with exceptions only for certain religious minorities. The punishment for consumption of alcohol … Continue reading Eight die in Iran after drinking homemade alcohol

US family spark panic at Israeli airport by bringing unexploded shell

A US family caused a bomb scare at Ben Gurion airport in Israel on Thursday after presenting an unexploded shell at a security check. The family picked up the artillery shell while in the Golan Heights and decided to pack it in their luggage, according to authorities. Video footage on social media showed people running from the scene in panic. The family was allowed to board their flight after being interrogated by security, who declared the all-clear. Israel captured the Golan Heights from Syria at the end of the Six-Day War in 1967 and remnants of the conflict can still … Continue reading US family spark panic at Israeli airport by bringing unexploded shell

Palestinians attack biblical figure Joseph’s tomb in West Bank

The tomb where the biblical figure Joseph is said to be buried has been vandalized by Palestinians amid spiralling tensions with Israel. The site in Nablus, in the occupied West Bank, was attacked in what Israel’s prime minister called a “frenzy of destruction”. There has been a spate of Israeli and Palestinian deaths in recent days, including deadly attacks which have caused shock across Israel. Israel has promised a strong response. The tomb was vandalized on Saturday night as Israeli forces carried out raids in the West Bank in the wake of a gun attack on a bar in Tel Aviv … Continue reading Palestinians attack biblical figure Joseph’s tomb in West Bank

Two gunmen shot dead in Israel

Two suspected gunmen have killed two people in a northern Israeli city on Sunday, Israeli security officials say. The gunmen – who police say were Arab Israeli citizens – started shooting at police on a main road in Hadera, to the north of Tel Aviv. Police said the two gunmen were then shot dead by undercover officers. Four other people were taken to hospital, and two others were treated at the site of the shooting. So far, no group has said it carried out the attack. Emergency medical responders said a man and a woman were killed in the attack. … Continue reading Two gunmen shot dead in Israel