Excerpts: Coalition:Months until Mosul battles finalized.Obama says wife
will never run for White House.SYRIA claims Israel missiles launched from
Lebanon airspace. Turkey has ‘many other alternatives’ to
EU.Erdogan:European Parliament of no value to Turkey November 30, 2016
+++SOURCE: Al Arabiya News 30 Nov.’16:”Coalition:Months until Mosul battles
finalized”, by Staff Writer
SUBJECT Coalition: Months until Mosul battles finalized
QUOTE:”Colonel John Dorian, the spokesperson of the US-led coalition said
they need weeks or months to finalize battles in Mosul.” (AFP)
FULL TEXT:Colonel John Dorian, the spokesperson of the US-led coalition said
they need weeks or months to finalize battles in Mosul.
“Operations are going as planned. Iraqi troops continue to advance and they
are heading east. They are restoring control over several neighborhoods
despite ISIS’ use of barbaric techniques such as targeting civilians. This
is a cowardly tactic but it will not prevent Iraqi forces from progressing,”
Dorian added that Iraqi troops had resumed the advance against ISIS and
destroyed many booby-trapped cars and killed hundreds of extremists.
Meanwhile, Brigadier General Shokr al-Naimi said Iraqi forces infiltrated
the defenses of ISIS in the neighborhoods of al-Sokar and al-Taameem in
north and east Mosul.
Naimi also said Iraqi troops are fighting fierce battles in both
neighborhoods, adding that it was not clear what the losses were at this
He added that counter-terrorism forces have so far gained control over half
of the area of the east front of Mosul while Iraqi troops resume advancing
in the southern axis.
+++SOURCE:Naharnet(Lebanon)30 Nov.’16:”Obama Says His Wife ‘Never’Will Run
for White House”,by Agence France Presse
SUBJECT:Obama says wife will ‘never’ run for White House
FULL TEXT:For anyone who might like to see Michelle Obama run for president
as a Democrat, it’s time to rein in that early enthusiasm. Or so says her
husband, President Barack Obama.
“Michelle will never run for office,” the president said in an interview
with Rolling Stone magazine done the day after Donald Trump’s surprise win,
and amid some social media swirl urging the first lady to consider throwing
her hat in the ring.
“She is as talented a person as I know. You can see the incredible resonance
she has with the American people. But I joke that she’s too sensible to want
to be in politics,” Obama said.
Her confidence and style struck a strong chord on the campaign trail, where
she supported Hillary Clinton. The first lady slammed Trump’s attitude
toward and treatment of women.
Obama, who will be 53 when she leaves the White House, is the first black
first lady in American history. Her husband is 55.
A Harvard-educated lawyer, she will leave the White House on January 20
enjoying sky-high ratings — approved by 79 percent of the American public,
according to a recent Gallup survey. That makes her more popular than her
husband, the first African American president of the United States.
Asked about her ambitions in the past, Michelle Obama has repeatedly said
that she would not follow in the footsteps of Hillary Clinton, who ran for
the presidency her husband Bill held from 1993-2001.
+++SOURCE:Naharnet(Lebanon)30 Nov.’16:”Syria Says Israeli missiles on
Damascus Launched from Lebanese Airspace :,by Agence France Presse
SUBJECT:Syria claimsIsrael launched 2 missilesfrom Lebanon air space
FULL TEXT:The Israeli air force fired two missiles at dawn on Wednesday[30
Nov] that hit near Damascus, which Syrian state television said were
launched from Lebanese airspace.
The airstrikes caused no casualties, the television said.
“The air force of the Israeli enemy today launched two missiles from
Lebanese air space,” it said, adding that they hit the Sabbura area west of
Israel, which is technically still at war with Syria, has sought to limit
its involvement in its neighbor’s five-year conflict.
But it has carried out sporadic sorties against Lebanon’s Hizbullah inside
Syria, which has forces fighting in support of the Damascus government.
+++SOURCE:Jordan Times 30 Nov,’16:”Erdogan says Turkey has ‘many other
alternatives to EU”,byAgence France Presse
SUBJECT:Turkey has ‘many other alternatives’ to EU
QUOTE:”Turkey formally applied to become EU member in 1987
FULL TEXT:ISTANBUL — Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on
Tuesday[29Nov] said his country has not yet given up on its ambition to join
the European Union but has “many other alternatives” if the stalled process
“We have not yet closed the European Union book right now,” Erdogan told an
international conference in Istanbul. “But nobody should forget that Turkey
always has many other alternatives.”
Last week the European parliament backed a freeze in Turkey’s membership
talks, angering Erdogan who threatened to retaliate by rupturing a migrant
deal curbing the flow of refugees to Europe.
The deal has substantially helped reduce the wave of migrants since it was
signed in March.
Erdogan said the non-binding vote at the European Parliament “upset” Turkey,
adding it did not currently have “positive” feelings on the accession talks.
If the EU path is blocked, Erdogan said, “we’ll continue our road by
evaluating one of those alternatives”, without naming them.
“I don’t find it right to say it here but we are of course continuing our
talks with those alternatives.”
Earlier this month, Erdogan again floated the idea of joining Russia and
China in the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).
The SCO is a loose security and economic bloc. Other members are Kazakhstan,
Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan.
But Turkey’s Prime Minister Binali Yildirim told a televised interview last
week that the SCO was not an alternative to Ankara’s EU accession talks.
‘Waiting at the door’ Turkey formally applied to become an EU member in 1987
and accession talks only began in 2005, even though Ankara’s aspirations to
become part of the bloc dates back to the 1960s.“There is an EU that has
kept Turkey waiting at its door for 53 years,” Erdogan said.
“I say it, you [the EU] are not the only fine Indian fabric around!” he
said, using a traditional Turkish idiom equivalent to the English “there are
many more fish in the sea”.
“You applied a similar kind of pressure on many countries in the world. What
happened? You destroyed them? With God’s help, you cannot destroy Turkey.”
Tensions in Turkish-EU relations have built up since the failed July 15 coup
attempt that aimed to oust Erdogan.
Authorities have responded to the failed putsch by arresting or dismissing
tens of thousands of people from state institutions to cleanse the “virus”
of US-based preacher Fethullah Gulen, who Ankara blames for the coup but he
denies the allegations.
Opponents have argued the purge has gone beyond coup suspects and is being
used by the government to silence dissent, with Europe urging Turkey to
comply with its rights obligations.
Luxembourg Prime Minister Xavier Bettel told AFP in an interview that “the
values on which the union is built are being trampled on a daily basis, but
I hope that Turkey will become again the partner in which I used to have
“The situation is worrying,” he said, while refusing to back a freeze in the
Visiting Brussels, Turkey’s EU Affairs Minister Omer Celik described the
European Parliament vote as the “most unjust resolution in history” and
urged solidarity instead.“If there were objective, fair negotiations… then
there is no reason why Turkey would not be a full member state today,” Celik
+++Source: Naharnet(Lebanon)23 Nov.’16:”European Parliament Vote on Turkey
Has ‘No Value’ “,by Associated Press
by SUBJECT: Erdogan:European Parliament of no value to Turkey
QUOTE:”Erdogan suggested joining the Shanghai Cooperation Council
FULL TEXT:Turkey’s president says an upcoming vote in the European
Parliament on whether to freeze membership talks with Turkey is of no
“value” to his country.
European Union legislators are scheduled to hold a non-binding vote this
week on whether Turkey’s accession talks should be suspended over the
Turkish government’s unprecedented crackdown following the failed military
coup in July.
Addressing an Organization for Islamic Cooperation Islamic Conference
meeting on Wednesday, Recep Tayyip Erdogan said: “Whatever the result is, in
our eyes this vote has no value.”
EU nations have voiced concern over Turkey’s post-coup clampdown, which has
resulted in mass purges, the arrests of journalists and politicians and the
closure of media outlets.
Erdogan suggested joining the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, which
includes Russia and China, as an alternative to the EU.
Sue Lerner – Associate, IMRA