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Amman Accuses Israel of 'State Terrorism' in Jerusalem

Jordan on Thursday accused Israel of "state terrorism" after it closed Jerusalem's flashpoint Al-Aqsa mosque compound, the third holiest site in Islam.

Israel said its closure of the shrine, which is also holy to Jews, was temporary and aimed at calming tempers after police shot dead a Palestinian accused of trying to kill a Jewish hardliner.

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Plumbly Rules Out Naturalization of Syrian Refugees

U.N. Special Coordinator for Lebanon Derek Plumbly ruled out the naturalization of Syrian refugees, denying international pressure to keep the displaced in Lebanon.

In remarks to As Safir daily published on Thursday, Plumbly said: “The issue of the naturalization of the Syrian refugees is out of the question.”

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International Donors Vow More Robust Help for Syrian Refugees

An international conference on the Syrian refugee crisis vowed Tuesday to extend longterm financial aid to countries struggling with what the U.N. calls the world's "most dramatic humanitarian crisis," but did not commit to an overall figure.

Around 40 countries and international bodies adopted a declaration saying donors would "mobilize for years to come" increased development support to help nations like Lebanon and Jordan shoulder the impact of millions of Syrian refugees.

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Jerusalem Mayor under Fire for al-Aqsa Visit

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat visited the al-Aqsa mosque compound Tuesday, his office said, prompting criticism from the site's Muslim authorities following weeks of tension at the flashpoint shrine.

The early morning visit, which saw Barkat touring the compound with a group of police, followed weeks of intermittent clashes triggered by reports Israel was mulling a change in the status quo to allow Jewish prayer at the sprawling site inside the Old City.

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Salam Hopes for Financial Support to Meet Burden of Refugees

Prime Minister Tammam Salam hoped on Tuesday that the international community is aware of Lebanon's huge financial needs to confront the burden of refugees.

“The refugees are affecting our economy and security ... We call for more funding to confront the repercussions of the refugee crisis,” Salam said at the opening of the Berlin conference on Syrian refugees, which was attended by Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil and Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas.

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Jordanian Ex-Qaida Mentor back in Jail

Jordan on Monday arrested a former Al-Qaida mentor for propagating "terrorist" ideas, only four months after releasing him from jail for recruiting militants, a judicial source said.

Issam Barqawi, who was once mentor to Iraq's slain Al-Qaida leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, was jailed after the state prosecutor accused him of "using the Internet to propagate the ideas of the terrorist group Al-Nusra Front", the source said.

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Iraq PM Heads to Jordan for Security Talks

Iraqi Premier Haidar al-Abadi was to visit Jordan Sunday for talks on combating jihadists from the Islamic State group, continuing a diplomatic push after a trip to Iran, his office said.

IS has overrun large areas of Iraq since June and also holds significant territory in Syria, posing a threat not only to those countries but their neighbors as well.

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Israel and Jordan: 20 Years of Troubled but Vital Ties

Twenty years after Israel signed a historic peace treaty with Jordan, the pact -- deeply unpopular among Jordanians -- is a strategic partnership both sides are determined to protect, experts say.

In the two decades since the October 26, 1994 accord, the frosty relationship has survived numerous tests, mostly from the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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EU Official Says he Pressed Lebanese Politicians on Elections

A top European Union official said he informed Lebanese officials during his visit to Beirut that the presidential and parliamentary elections should be held to have a healthy democracy

Hugues Mingarelli, who is the Managing Director for North Africa, Middle East, the Arabian Peninsula, Iran and Iraq at the European External Action Service, said: “You have a democracy and there are routine elections and a multi-party system.”

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Derbas Says Lebanon and Jordan United at Berlin Conference

Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas said the stance of Lebanon and Jordan at the upcoming Berlin conference on the Syrian refugees will be united.

In remarks to An Nahar daily published Friday, Derbas said that both countries are suffering from the same repercussions of the Syrians crisis that resulted in millions of refugees.

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