Lebanon

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Canaanites Weren't Annihilated by Ancient Israelites After All

Researchers say they lived on to become the ancestors of today's Lebanese

(Newser) - The Bible suggests the Canaanites were wiped out by the ancient Israelites, but a new study says otherwise, claiming the people survived and went on to be the ancestors of those who today live in Lebanon, ScienceDaily reports. Per a study in the American Journal of Human Genetics , researchers from... More »

Country Bans Wonder Woman Over Israeli Star

Lebanon cites boycott of Israeli exports

(Newser) - Wonder Woman is expected to have a massive opening weekend, but not in Lebanon: The country has officially banned the superhero movie because star Gal Gadot is an Israeli who carried out mandatory military service, the New York Times reports. Lebanon is officially at war with Israel and boycotts the... More »

Le Pen Won't Wear Headscarf, Cancels Meeting With Muslim Leader

'I will not cover myself up'

(Newser) - Marine Le Pen backed out of a meeting with the religious leader of Sunni Muslims in Lebanon on Tuesday while refusing to don a headscarf, Reuters reports. According to CNN , the French far-right presidential candidate showed up to the meeting with Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Latif Derian but left without... More »

Villagers Release Vulture They Thought Was Israeli Spy

It was an honest mistake

(Newser) - A falsely accused Israeli spy has been returned home after being captured in Lebanon this week, and authorities are confident it will soon be soaring over Israel's countryside once again, Haaretz reports. Oh, it should be mentioned the suspected spy is a giant vulture, one that was released into... More »

Photo Changes Life of Syrian Refugee

Donations pour in for Abdul Halim and his family after image goes viral

(Newser) - A Syrian refugee now has money to send his children to school and help others who have fled his war-torn homeland—thanks to Twitter, a photo of him and his daughter selling pens, and the generosity of thousands of people around the world. CNN reports Norwegian activist Gissur Simonarson posted... More »

Miss Universe Selfie Causes International Uproar

Miss Lebanon claims she was photobombed by Miss Israel

(Newser) - Politics haven't been left behind at this year's Miss Universe pageant, where a selfie taken by Miss Israel is becoming an international incident. After Doron Matalon posted the photo of herself with Miss Lebanon, Miss Slovenia, and Miss Japan on Instagram , Lebanese beauty queen Saly Greige faced calls... More »

ISIS Leader's Wife Held in Lebanon

Along with Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi's son or daughter: reports

(Newser) - The wife and a son or daughter of ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi are being held in Lebanon, according to reports. Anonymous Lebanese officials tell the AP that the woman and her son have been in detention for about 10 days. They identify the woman as a Syrian citizen. Sources... More »

Rockets From 2 Directions Hit Israel

US offers to broker Gaza ceasefire

(Newser) - Hostilities only seem to be escalating as the Israeli offensive against Gaza enters a fourth day. Early this morning, a rocket from Gaza ignited a tanker at a gas station in southern Israel, injuring three people in the most serious hit on Israel so far. For the first time in... More »

Marine Accused of Faking Iraq Kidnap Resurfaces

Wassef Ali Hassoun was charged with desertion twice

(Newser) - A Marine who disappeared from a base in Fallujah a decade ago, turned up in Lebanon weeks later, and then vanished again while facing desertion charges has resurfaced—and the military presumably has a lot of questions to ask him. After Cpl. Wassef Ali Hassoun vanished from the base in... More »

This Man Spent 5 Years as Hostage, Then 'Thrived'

Joe Cicippio explains why the experience didn't ruin him

(Newser) - Joe Cicippio spent five years often chained to a radiator, a captive of Hezbollah in Lebanon. His only companions were his masked kidnappers and one or two other captives. But he's thrived since his release in 1991, and now Cicippio, 83, reveals how in an interview with NPR . “... More »

Syrian Refugees Selling Their Organs to Survive

Market is hot in Lebanon

(Newser) - This is the plight of refugees streaming out of Syria: One of the hottest markets in neighboring Lebanon is the black-market sale of their human organs, reports Vocative . Given that it is, in fact, a black market, it's hard to pin down numbers. But Lebanon's look-the-other-way attitude, its... More »

Alleged Political Assassins' Trial Starts Without Them

Hague takes up long-awaited case of Rafik Hariri's murder

(Newser) - The Hague's Special Tribunal on Lebanon today began the trial of four people accused of assassinating Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, in what the BBC is calling an "unprecedented tribunal"—in part because the accused aren't there. It's the first time the Hague has tried... More »

Cairo Gets First Snow in 100+ Years

Storm brings winter to much of Middle East

(Newser) - Cairo saw a rare and wonderful sight today: Snow. Much of the Middle East has been blanketed by the white stuff in recent days thanks to a region-wide cold snap and winter storm. According to local news reports, Cairo hasn't gotten snow in more than a century, the LA ... More »

Hezbollah, Assad Make Massive Push Into Key Town

Israel threatens more strikes as battle for Qusair rages

(Newser) - Hezbollah fighters from Lebanon have taken their most prominent role yet in the Syrian civil war, fighting alongside Bashar al-Assad's forces as the military attempts to regain control of a strategic rebel-held city near the Lebanese order. Activists say at least 23 members of the Iran-backed militant group have... More »

Israel Bombs Site in Syria

It's the second time this year

(Newser) - Two ominous developments in Syria overnight:
  • Israel airstrike: Israel bombed a site within Syria for the second time this year, reports Reuters . Official details are scarce, but the Israeli strike reportedly hit a warehouse that contained high-tech missiles, though not chemical weapons. Israeli officials feared that Bashar al-Assad was sending
... More »

Syria Fires Rockets at Lebanon

No injuries reported as empty buildings are hit

(Newser) - Syria fired three rockets into Lebanon today, as it threatened to do last week . The jet-fired rockets hit empty buildings in the border town of Arsaal, CNN reports. Syrian officials claim armed terrorists have infiltrated Syria from Lebanon, and the UN has voiced concern over the growing tension and cross-border... More »

Syria Warns It May Strike Lebanon

Assad's regime says rebels are crossing back and forth over border

(Newser) - With Syrian militants crossing back and forth across the northern Lebanon border, the Syrian foreign ministry has told Lebanon to put a stop to it or else face military strikes, reports Reuters via the Christian Science Monitor . "Syrian forces have so far exercised restraint from striking at armed gangs... More »

Israeli Fighter Jets Strike Inside Syria

Reports say Israel hit a truck convoy carrying weapons to Lebanon

(Newser) - Israeli jets have struck a target inside Syria for the first time in more than five years, reports the New York Times and Reuters . Reports are conflicting on what they hit: Syria says the jets struck a scientific research center, but sources tell Reuters they hit a convoy of trucks... More »

Rape a 'Weapon of War' in Syria

And a main reason people are fleeing the country, activist group says

(Newser) - Rape is "a significant and disturbing feature of the Syrian civil war," and a major reason refugees are fleeing the country, according to a report released today by a US-based activist group. The International Rescue Committee interviewed refugees in Lebanon and Jordan, and found that many identified rape... More »

Major Official Assassinated in Lebanon Blast

Maj. Gen. Wissam al-Hassan's death 'a big, big, big event': adviser to PM

(Newser) - At least eight people were killed in a massive car bombing in Beirut today, including renowned intelligence chief Maj. Gen. Wissam a-Hassan, a central figure in Lebanese politics. Hassan was famous for uncovering Hezbollah's role in the assassination of former prime minister Rafiq al-Hariri, father of the current Sunni... More »

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