Saudi ambassador recalled to Riyadh amid spat over Syria ceasefire vote
馬太福音 24Chinese Union Version Modern Punctuation (Traditional) (CUVMPT)
3 耶穌在橄欖山上坐著，門徒暗暗地來，說：「請告訴我們，什麼時候有這些事？你降臨和世界的末了有什麼預兆呢？」 4 耶穌回答說：「你們要謹慎，免得有人迷惑你們。 5 因為將來有好些人冒我的名來，說：『我是基督』，並且要迷惑許多人。 6 你們也要聽見打仗和打仗的風聲，總不要驚慌，因為這些事是必須有的，只是末期還沒有到。 7 民要攻打民，國要攻打國，多處必有饑荒、地震， 8 這都是災難的起頭。
Full Show – Russia Officially Announces Preparation For WW3 – 10/05/2016
RUSSIA, U.S. ON BRINK OF NUCLEAR WAR
Russia declares no-fly zone in Syria, moves missiles to Europe
OCTOBER 8, 2016
Russia has begun moving nuclear-capable missiles into Europe after America threatened to shoot down Russian planes over Syria, greatly raising the risk of all-out war.
“The World Has Reached A Dangerous Point”: Rising Threat Of Nuclear War. Gorbachev
以賽亞書 17Chinese Union Version Modern Punctuation (Traditional) (CUVMPT)預示大馬士革必被廢棄
17 論大馬士革的默示。「看哪，大馬士革已被廢棄，不再為城，必變做亂堆。 2 亞羅珥的城邑已被撇棄，必成為牧羊之處，羊在那裡躺臥，無人驚嚇。 3 以法蓮不再有保障，大馬士革不再有國權，亞蘭所剩下的必像以色列人的榮耀消滅一樣。」這是萬軍之耶和華說的。
23 論大馬士革。「哈馬和亞珥拔蒙羞，因他們聽見凶惡的信息就消化了。海上有憂愁，不得平靜。 24 大馬士革發軟，轉身逃跑。戰兢將她捉住，痛苦憂愁將她抓住如產難的婦人一樣。 25 我所喜樂、可稱讚的城，為何被撇棄了呢？ 26 她的少年人必仆倒在街上，當那日一切兵丁必默默無聲。」這是萬軍之耶和華說的。 27 「我必在大馬士革城中使火著起，燒滅便哈達的宮殿。」
以賽亞書 19Chinese Union Version Modern Punctuation (Traditional) (CUVMPT)
Isaiah 19Good News Translation (GNT)
God Will Punish Egypt
19 This is a message about Egypt.
The Lord is coming to Egypt, riding swiftly on a cloud. The Egyptian idols tremble before him, and the people of Egypt lose their courage. 2 The Lord says, “I will stir up civil war in Egypt and turn brother against brother and neighbor against neighbor. Rival cities will fight each other, and rival kings will struggle for power. 3 I am going to frustrate the plans of the Egyptians and destroy their morale. They will ask their idols to help them, and they will go and consult mediums and ask the spirits of the dead for advice. 4 I will hand the Egyptians over to a tyrant, to a cruel king who will rule them. I, the Lord Almighty, have spoken.”
看哪，耶和華乘駕快雲，臨到埃及。埃及的偶像在他面前戰兢，埃及人的心在裡面消化。 2 「我必激動埃及人攻擊埃及人，弟兄攻擊弟兄，鄰舍攻擊鄰舍，這城攻擊那城，這國攻擊那國。 3 埃及人的心神必在裡面耗盡，我必敗壞他們的謀略，他們必求問偶像和念咒的、交鬼的、行巫術的。 4 我必將埃及人交在殘忍主的手中，強暴王必轄制他們。」這是主萬軍之耶和華說的。
以賽亞書 24:13 在地上的萬民中，必像打過的橄欖樹，又像已摘的葡萄所剩無幾。賽19:1預示埃及之禍亂19 論埃及的默示。看哪，耶和華乘駕快雲，臨到埃及。信審判 信主耶穌必於世界末日，從天降臨，審判萬民；義人得永生，惡人受永刑。太8 這都是災難的起頭。24 看哪，耶和華使地空虛，變為荒涼；又翻轉大地，將居民分散。 6 地上的居民被火焚燒，剩下的人稀少。
Saudi Ambassador to Cairo Ahmed al-Qattan was recalled to Riyadh on Wednesday for meetings with Saudi officials on recent developments in Egypt-Saudi relations. The visit is scheduled to last three days, with Qattan returning to Cairo on Saturday.
Egypt and Saudi Arabia had a public spat this week over Russia’s ceasefire proposal on Syria, which was presented for a vote at the UN Security Council. Egypt gave its support to the Russian proposal, which was opposed by Saudi Arabia.
Russia and Syria are at loggerheads with Russia over the course of the war in Syria. Russia supports Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, while Saudi Arabia is part of a coaltion of Arab and Western nations trying to remove Assad from power and change the regime in Syria.
As well as putting forward its own ceasefire proposal on Saturday, Russia vetoed a draft French resolution on Syria, which demanded an end to Russian and Syrian air strikes on rebel targets in Aleppo, as well as a ban on military flights in the area.
Egypt voted in favor of the French ceasefire proposal, as well as the Russian one, but neither was passed.
On Sunday, the Saudi envoy to the UN, Abdullah al-Muallami, said that Egypt was kowtowing to Russia by backing its ceasefire proposal, describing Egypt’s decision “painful.”
The head of the Saudi lobby in the US, Salman Ansari, also criticized Egypt’s vote in favor of Russia’s draft resolution.
In a tweet, Ansari said, “Sorry Egypt. But voting for the Russian draft resolution makes me doubt you are the mother of Arabs and the world."
Ansari’s comment refers to the title “Mother of the World" which Arabs and Egyptians themselves often use to describe Egypt.
Defending Egypt’s vote for the Russian draft, Ambassador Amr Aboul Atta, Egypt’s delegate to the United Nations, explained that “Cairo supports all efforts that aim to end the tragedy of Syrian people."
Aboul Atta said that Egypt voted based on the content of the two draft resolutions, which included several common items.
“The two draft resolutions stated ceasing aggression against civilians and taking decisive action against armed and terrorist groups," according to Atta.
Saudi Arabia has not publicly stated any consequences for Egypt-Saudi relations as a result of the disagreement over Syria. However, this week, rumors spread that Saudi petroleum company Saudi Aramco may delay the delivery of petroleum products to Egypt.
TV talk shows in both countries featured discussions over the spat in the past two days.
Egypt has received various loans and promises of investment from Saudi Arabia since President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi came to power more than two years ago, and the two nations are part of a coalition of Arab nations focused on maintaining regional stability.
However, the recent vote in the United Nations appears to point to some difference of opinion on the conduct of the Syrian civil war. Saudi Arabia backs rebel fighters and firmly rejects Russian involvement in Syria, while Egypt sees Russia as an important strategic partner in the region, particularly in combatting terrorist groups such as the Islamic State.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm
Egypt Will Not Abandon Its ‘Sovereign Foreign Policy’ Amid Row With Saudi Arabia © Sputnik/ Eduard Pesov
MIDDLE EAST 18:44 13.10.2016(updated 18:45 13.10.2016)
Egypt will continue its independent foreign policy, even in a difficult economic situation and despite financial aid from oil-rich Saudi Arabia, an Egyptian political analyst said.
After Egypt recently voted for a Russian resolution on Syria in the UN Security Council, tensions have deepened between Cairo and Riyadh. Saudi Arabia actively supports the Syrian opposition and has been calling for a regime change in Syria.
“Some in Saudi Arabia believe that financial support means that Cairo does not have an independent foreign policy.
This is unacceptable. Egypt is in a difficult financial situation but it will not bargain over its sovereign policy with anybody," Hassan Nafya, political science professor at the Cairo University, told RIA Novosti. According to the expert, Egypt should protect its sovereignty in making decisions which should be based in its national interest and national security demands.
© AP PHOTO/ STRINGER Washington and Riyadh ‘Plan to Let 9,000 Terrorists Leave Mosul and Move to Syria’ “However, it seems that Saudi Arabia wants to be the only leader in the Arab world," he said.
He added that Riyadh believes that its interests and the interests of the entire Arab world are the same thing.
“We need a collective mechanism to jointly govern the Arab world. If a country wants to be the only leader in the region crises will repeat over and over," the expert said.
He noted that Egypt and Saudi Arabia have different views of the Syrian settlement.
“The Saudis have a problem with Syrian President Bashar Assad while Egypt’s concern is not Assad but the territorial integrity of Syria and creating the conditions in which the Syrian people will be able to choose the president.
The resignation of Assad cannot be imposed as a precondition for the peaceful process," the professor said.
© SPUTNIK/ MICHAEL ALAEDDIN French UN Resolution on Aleppo Unhelpful, Aimed to Oust Assad Riyadh’s reprimands towards Cairo are a clear signal that Saudi Arabia cannot be the leader of the Arab world. They reflect the instability in the Saudi foreign strategy, especially amid the conflict in Yemen, he added.
At the same time, Saudi political analyst Anwar Eshki argued that news about Cairo-Riyadh tensions is an “information bubble." According to him, Saudi Arabia does not want to “punish" Egypt, as some believe.
In fact, Riyadh wants to understand why Cairo voted for both the Russian and French resolutions on Syria.
The crisis between the two leaders of the Arab world sparked after the vote on two draft resolutions on Syria in the UN Security Council.
Egypt supported both the Russian resolution rejected by the majority of votes and the French proposal vetoed by Moscow.
© AFP 2016/ JIM BOURG / POOL
Hillary Clinton’s Leaked Emails Show US Aware of Qatar, Saudi Arabia Supporting Daesh Saudi Arabia intensely supports the Syrian opposition fighting the Syrian government.
This is why Riyadh was outraged by Cairo voting on the Russian draft resolution. Later, it was reported that Saudi state-owned oil company Aramco suspended deliveries to Egypt, thus making Cairo to look for new suppliers.
On Wednesday, Saudi Ambassador to Egypt Ahmed Kattan travelled to Riyadh to discuss the tensions.
Meanwhile, the Egyptian Foreign Ministry said that both resolutions were aimed at the same goals – cessation of violence and supplying of humanitarian aid.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Ahmed Abu Zeid stressed that Cairo supports any peaceful efforts on Syria.
Russia to Present Exact Steps to Implement Syria UNSC Resolution – Lavrov © Sputnik/ Evgeny Biyatov
POLITICS 14:21 14.10.2016(updated 14:32 14.10.2016)
According to the Russian foreign minister, Russia will present exact steps to implement UN Security Council resolutions on Syria at the Lausanne talks on Saturday. © REUTERS/ ABDALRHMAN ISMAIL Steinmeier Hopes for More Progress at Lausanne Syria Talks Compared to NY Talks YEREVAN (Armenia)
(Sputnik) — Russia will present specific steps to implement UN Security Council resolutions on Syria at Saturday’s meeting among stakeholders in Lausanne, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said.
“We will offer concrete steps needed to ensure that the Security Council resolutions are implemented, that Russian-US agreements are implemented.
Let us see how our US and regional partners react," Lavrov told reporters Friday.
However, Russia does not intend to unveil any new proposals on the crisis settlement, Lavrov added.
“We will not offer anything else.
Everything is specifically set out in the resolution," Lavrov told reporters Friday.
Moreover, Lavrov added that the renewal of cessation of hostilities in Syria depends on whether stakeholders observe the UN Security Council resolution.
“The directions are clear: an end to violence in Syria, fight against terrorism, providing humanitarian access to populations in need and the immediate start of a political process involving all Syrian groups — both the government and the entire opposition — without preconditions," Lavrov told reporters.
“Our Western partners’ steps to move closer toward implementing the existing agreements are not yet very visible," Lavrov added.
He also said that the international community’s strategy has been articulated in Russian-US agreements and the International Syria Support Group.
Egypt receives offers from Russia, Venezuela and Iran to replace Saudi oil
in Freight News 14/10/2016
Egypt has been offered refined oil products for October from foreign suppliers after Saudi’s oil giant Aramco terminated the delivery of 700,000 tonnes expected for this month, the petroleum ministry announced yesterday.
The surprise move is seen as de-escalation in relations between Saudi and Egypt after Cairo voting in favour of a Russian-drafted resolution in Syria, which Saudi Arabia strongly opposed. Saudi had supported a French draft bill, vetoed by Moscow, that demanded an end to airstrikes on opposition-held areas of Aleppo.
“The Saudi Aramco company verbally informed the General Petroleum Corporation earlier this month that it would halt its supplies for October, without offering any reasons,” ministry spokesman Hamdy Abdel Aziz said to AFP.
Abdel Aziz insisted that Aramco’s decision was unrelated to the Security Council vote and confirmed that the decision was reached before the vote.
“Aramco told us about the issue before the Security Council meeting. This is a commercial issue and not political. It is normal for some shipments to be late,” he added.
Aramco ships around 40 per cent of the refined oil products Egypt imports. The foreign suppliers that are looking to replace Saudi are Russia, Venezuela and Iran.
Source: MiddleEast Monitor
Egypt’s Sisi defends UN Syria vote amid Saudi discord
Cairo (AFP) – President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on Thursday defended Egypt’s decision to vote for a UN resolution on Syria strongly opposed by Saudi Arabia, in a rare public dispute between the allies.
Cairo voted in favour of a Russian-drafted resolution on Syria at the UN Security Council on Saturday, angering Riyadh, one of Sisi’s main backers since he toppled Islamist president Mohamed Morsi in 2013.
Two days later, Cairo announced Saudi oil giant Aramco halted petroleum shipments for October, which were part of a deal signed in April for Aramco to deliver 700,000 tonnes of products monthly to Egypt.
Riyadh’s UN envoy Abdullah al-Muallimi described as “painful" the fact that Senegal and Malaysia were “closer to the Arab consensus" on Syria than Egypt, the Arab representative at the security council.
“Some commentators thought that halting the shipment of petroleum products was a response to that issue (Egypt’s UN vote)," Sisi said in a speech aired on state television.
“I say no; take note that this deal is commercial."
Still, he did not offer an explanation as to why the deliveries were halted, and Aramco has yet to comment on its decision.
“We don’t know what the situation is with these companies," Sisi said commenting on the halted shipments, adding that “we have taken the necessary procedures and there won’t be problems in petroleum products."
“We are very, very careful about our historical relations with our brothers in the Gulf," Sisi said, “but in the context where we respect our sovereignty, together."
Sisi said there was “an attempt to sabotage Egypt’s relations and isolating it," without elaborating.
“If you want real sovereignty in decision-making, nations that are sovereign in their decisions suffer, suffer a lot," said Sisi.
“Those who want to have a free will must endure," he said.
Egypt’s Sisi: We do not support Ethiopian opposition, seek political solution in Syria
Speaking at a military lecture on Thursday, the Egyptian President tackled recent issues including relations with Ethiopia and Egypt’s UN Security Council votes on Syria.
Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi said on Thursday that Egypt has not plotted against Ethiopia or supported the Ethiopian opposition."Our choice is cooperation and peace," El-Sisi said in a speech that covered several issues during a military lecture held by the Egyptian armed forces in Cairo on Thursday.
Earlier this week, Ethiopian officials accused Egypt and Eritrea directly of supporting anti-government demonstrations by the Oromo ethnic group.
The Egyptian ministry of foreign affairs denied the allegations entirely.
“I reaffirm to our brothers in Ethiopia that we had two choices, either cooperation or confrontation, and we chose cooperation," El-Sisi said, adding that Egypt’s values do not allow supporting any party or opposition outside Egyptian territory.
Egypt and Ethiopia witnessed tensions in recent years over the construction of Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam, a project which Cairo fears will negatively affect Egypt’s Nile water share. Addis Ababa maintains that the dam project, which Ethiopia needs to generate electricity, would not harm downstream countries.
Relations improved in recent months, particularly after Egypt, Ethiopia and Sudan signed in September the final contracts for the long-awaited technical studies on the potential impact of the dam on downstream countries.
Shifting to Egypt’s policy towards Syria and the UN Security Council resolutions voted on earlier this week, the Egyptian President stated that Egyptian policy towards the conflict in Syria is independent.
“We looked to the French and Russian draft resolutions and voted on them because both draft resolutions called for a ceasefire and truce that will allow humanitarian aid to Syrian citizens," he said
Reiterating the need for a political solution in Syria, El-Sisi demanded full respect for the Syrian people, the disarming of radical groups and the rebuilding of the Syrian state.
Egypt voted on Saturday for a French-drafted Saudi-backed resolution on Syria and also for a rival Russian proposal.
The French proposal called for an end to all fighting in Aleppo, while the Russian proposal called for a cease-fire. Both proposals failed to pass in the Security Council.
“Nobody can interfere in our strong relations with our brothers in the Gulf, but we have an independent policy that is keen on Arab national security," Egypt’s president said.
The Saudi ambassador’s departure coincided with a notice from Saudi oil company ARAMCO informing the Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation, Egypt’s state oil company, in early October that it would halt the supply of refined oil products to Egypt.
“Some observers believed that the decision to suspend oil shipments from Saudi Arabia was because of the UN Security Council votes; it is untrue," El-Sisi said.
“The oil shipments used to come to Egypt according to a deal that was signed in April; we do not know the circumstances of the companies," he added.
Egypt’s oil ministry has contracted other foreign suppliers including Kuwait to provide the country with its petroleum needs for October.
“We do not have any oil problem," El-Sisi said.
“There are attempts to pressure us, but Egypt does not bow except for God," he said, but did not provide further detail on such attempts.
The World Has Reached A Dangerous Point”: Rising Threat Of Nuclear War. Gorbachev
As Russia and America creep ever closer to outright conflict, now that the diplomatic facade of the proxy war in Syria falls away with every passing day, one voice if calling for the world to stop and reassess what it is doing. Former USSR leader Mikhail Gorbachev warned on Monday that the world has reached a “dangerous point” as tensions between Russia and the United States surge over the Syria conflict; a conflict which if escalated even fractionally further, could result in all out war between the two superpowers according to General Joseph Dunford.
Gorbachev blamed the current state of affairs between Russia and US on the “collapse of mutual trust” and urged the sides to resume dialogue and push towards demilitarization and complete nuclear disarmament.
“I think the world has reached a dangerous point. I don’t want to give any concrete prescriptions but I do want to say that this needs to stop. We need to renew dialogue. Stopping it was the biggest mistake. Now we must return to the main priorities, such as nuclear disarmament, fighting terrorism and prevention of global environmental disasters. Compared to these challenges, all the rest slips into the background.” Gorbachev said in an interview with RIA Novosti.
Relations between Moscow and Washington, already at their lowest since the Cold War over the Ukraine conflict, deteriorated sharply in recent days as the United States pulled the plug on Syria talks and accused Russia of hacking attacks.
“Of course, at this moment it is difficult to talk about moving towards a nuclear-free world, we must honestly admit it. But we should not forget: as long as there are nuclear weapons there is the threat of their use. It could be an accident, a technical malfunction of someone’s evil will – a madman or a terrorist,” the former Soviet leader said. Or a perfectly sane, administration official intent on starting a new world war to benefit his or her financial backers.
In the interview, Gorbachev also reminded that in line with the nuclear non-proliferation agreement all of its signatories must hold talks on nuclear disarmament uniting the eventual full destruction of nuclear weapons.
“The nuclear-free world is not a utopia, but rather an imperative necessity. But we can achieve it only through demilitarization of politics and international relations.”
Gorbachev added that veterans of international politics, such as the “council of sages” chaired by former UN leader Kofi Annan, understood these problems and expressed hope that their voices would be heard by modern leaders. At the same time he emphasized that the main responsibility for global security lies on these modern leaders who would make the greatest mistake if they do not use the last chance to return international politics to a peaceful course.
The former Soviet leader’s interview was published on Monday to coincide with the 30th anniversary of the USSR-US summit in Reykjavik, which eventually allowed the nuclear arms race to slow down and greatly contributed to the end of the Cold War. Ironically, it comes out at a time when the nuclear arms race is back front and center.
Looking back to a more sensible time, Gorbachev reiterated that the Reykjavik summit was a major breakthrough. “First, we agreed on many issues and second, we managed to look over the horizon, see the perspective of a nuclear-free world,” he said.
“It was very appealing that in the course of our negotiations President Ronald Reagan sincerely spoke about the necessity to rid the world of the weapons of mass destruction. We shared a common position on this issue.”
Sadly, today that is no longer the case, and as we said over the weekend when we profiled the latest Russian nuclear escalation, the next move will be one by NATO and it will be proportional, as the west delivers even more nuclear weapons in close proximity to Russia in what will become a tit-for-tat “defection” from the game theoretical equilibrium, until the “accident, technical malfunction, madman or terrorist” emerges and unleashes an unthinkable scenario.