Here is a brief look at Press TV newsroom’s headlines from 18:00 GMT, July
War on Syria
Israel has attacked the Syrian army’s positions in the country’s Quneitra province. The area is near the Israeli occupied Golan Heights were government troops are advancing on militants.
Supporters of jailed Nigerian Muslim cleric Sheikh Ibrahim Zakzaky hold new protests to demand his release. The protesters marched in the capital Abuja. Sheikh Zakzaky’s health has deteriorated in custody. The cleric and his wife have been in jail since the army’s massacre of his supporters in the northern city of Zaria in 2015. Three of Zakzaky’s sons were among hundreds of people killed in the crackdown. The Nigerian government refuses to free Zakzaky while the country’s top court has ordered him to be released.
A human rights organization says clashes between protesters and government forces in Nicaragua have killed 264 people since mid-April. The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights says the violence has also wounded 1,800 people. The dead include government forces. But most of the victims are protesters. The UN chief condemned the loss of life. Antonio Guterres said he is deeply concerned about the intensifying violence. The protests began after authorities made changes to Nicaragua’s social security system. The demonstrations quickly turned into demands that President Daniel Ortega step down. Ortega has resisted calls to resign.
US-NATO budget row
A NATO summit in Brussels has been overshadowed by US President Donald Trump’s demand that other member states contribute more to the alliance financially.
UAE Yemen prisons
Amnesty international calls for an investigation into systematic human rights violations against Yemeni prisoners in UAE-run detention centers. It says the violations could amount to war crimes. The watchdog says the UAE and allies including the US have carried out enforced disappearance, widespread torture and other ill-treatment in a network of unofficial prisons across southern Yemen. Amnesty reports that out of 51 Yemenis detained between 2016 and 2018, 19 remain missing. According to the rights organization, the report reveals accounts of abuse including beatings, use of electric shocks and sexual violence among others. Amnesty urged Abu Dhabi to immediately end these measures and provide answers to the families of the detainees and the missing.
Uganda social media tax
The Ugandan government agrees to review a controversial tax law on social media following violent street protests. Prime Minister Ruhakana Rugunda told parliament that President Yoweri Museveni wants further discussion on the levy. The premier added that the concerns of the public are being taken into consideration and that an amended bill will be debated next week. The fiercely- opposed tax law on social media came into effect at the beginning of July. Users now have to pay five cents each day to get access to social networks such as WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter. The measure sparked violent street protests with police resorting to live ammunition and tear gas to disperse the demonstrators.
Yemeni snipers kill eight Saudi troops in retaliation for Riyadh’s daily attacks on the country. Six Saudi forces died in the kingdom’s Najran region. The Yemeni snipers also shot and killed two soldiers in Jizan. Meanwhile, Yemeni forces fired several missiles at military targets in the same region. Many Saudi troops have fallen victim to missile attacks and sniper fire from Yemen in recent months. The Saudi war has killed over 14,300 Yemenis since 2015.
People in Bosnia and Herzegovina have marked the 23rd anniversary of the Srebrenica massacre which is remembered as Europe’s worst tragedy since World War II. Thousands of Muslims gathered at a memorial center and cemetery in Potocari, eastern Bosnia on Wednesday. They held prayers and attended a funeral for 35 recently identified victims of the 1995 carnage. Srebrenica was a UN protected, Muslim-populated town which was besieged by Serb forces throughout the Bosnian war. The forces later overran the enclave and executed over eight thousand men and boys within a few days. Hundreds of victims of Srebrenica, buried in unmarked graves, have yet to be identified or located. Emotional scenes were witnessed as relatives of the recently identified victims bid their last farewells to their beloved ones.
Japan deadly floods
Japan is still struggling with one of its worst flooding disasters in decades that has killed nearly 200 people. Floods and landslides triggered by historic levels of torrential rains devastated central and southern parts of the country in the past week. Search and rescue operations are still underway. Downpours have now stopped but rescuers say it’s unlikely to find anyone alive. Officials say over 200-thousand households are without water. This, coupled with intense heat, raises the risk of disease outbreaks in the flooded zones.