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Sunday, Oct 26th

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Palestinian migrants drown after boat capsizes in Mediterranean

palestinians drownOver a dozen Palestinians who fled Gaza died Saturday when their boat capsized in the Mediterranean Sea off the coast of Egypt.

The Egyptian military said that the navy removed 15 bodies from the sea off the coast of al-Ajami, near Alexandria. Seventy-two other people of Palestinian, Egyptian and Syrian nationality were also fished from the water after a distress call was made from a vessel called the "Abu Othman."

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Human trafficking’s dark secrets revealed

Human traffickingThe 17-year-old sex trafficking victim thought her life was over.

Taken from another state, she was trafficked within the Clearwater city limits and rescued by law enforcement authorities. Since then, her life has changed drastically. She returned to the state she came from, where she had a support system. She became sober, started college, has an apartment and is employed.

“She has dreams and aspirations now for her future,” said Clearwater police Detective James McBride, who aided in her recovery. “Now this person, with the help of social services, has done a 360 and is living the dream.”

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Gaza struggles to rebuild under blockade

Gaza rebuildingA U.N. representative urged Israel to lift a blockade around Gaza so humanitarian aid and construction materials can reach the region.

Robert Turner, United Nations Relief and Works Agency director of operations in Gaza, visited the region Thursday and said the strip has been left destitute by Israeli shelling over the course of a two-month conflict.

"We need resources. We need funding to rebuild for both the refugees and the non-refugee families in Gaza," he told Voice of America.

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Qatar confirms detention of rights group workers

QatareQatar has confirmed it is holding two Britons who went missing while researching migrant labor issues, saying the men are being questioned for alleged illegal activity in the Gulf nation that is due to hold the 2022 World Cup.

A little-known organization, the Norway-based Global Network for Rights and Development, reported that its researcher Krishna Upadhyaya, 52, and photographer Ghimire Gundev, 36, went missing on Aug. 31 as they were preparing to leave Qatar. It suggested that Qatari security services were behind their disappearance and has called for their release.

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Islamists in Iraq driving large-scale atrocities: U.N.

Iraq atrocitiesIslamist fighters have carried out atrocities on "an unimaginable scale" in months of fighting with Iraqi forces, who have also killed detainees and shelled civilian areas, a U.N. official said on Monday.

There is "strong evidence" Islamic State and allied groups have carried out targeted killings, forced conversions, sexual abuse and torture in Iraq, U.N. Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights Flavia Pansieri said, opening an emergency debate on the conflict in Geneva.

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Israeli fire on Gaza town raises war crimes claim

Israeli war crimesThe first of August dawned as a day of promise for the Mahmoum clan and thousands of other Palestinians stuck in United Nations shelters in Rafah — thanks to a temporary cease-fire with Israel they could go home for three days.

But the expected respite quickly turned into one of the deadliest and most controversial episodes in the recent war between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. After just two hours, amid fear that Hamas had captured an Israeli soldier, the Israeli military sealed off the Rafah area and began shelling. By the end of the next day, 190 Palestinians were dead, according to a list of names compiled by two Gaza human rights groups, including 14 members of the Mahmoum family.

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US rendition survivors urge Obama to declassify torture report

Rendition survivorsAbou Elkassim Britel can’t sleep, or he sleeps too much; it varies. He backs out of commitments. The Islamic website he wants to publish from his Italian home remains unfinished.

“I would add,” he said through translation, “that I cannot think of the future.”

The doctors tell Britel that he has post-traumatic stress disorder, after a decade-long ordeal of imprisonment without charge or transfer and abuse. It began in 2002, when the United States packed him onto a contractor’s Gulfstream V in Pakistan and flew him to Morocco.

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