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Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei waves to participants at an international summit on the Shia role in the emergence and development of Islamic sciences, in Tehran, May 12, 2018. (Photo by Khamenei.ir)

Here is a brief look at Press TV Newsroom's headlines from 09:00 GMT to 17:00 GMT, May 12, 2018.

 

Call for unity

Iran’s leader is warning of a plot by enemies to pit Muslim nations against one another. Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said the conspiracy can be foiled only through bolstering unity among Muslims. Iran’s leader said awareness among world people is growing regarding Islam and its teachings. This, he said, is promising a bright future for Muslims. Ayatollah Khamenei further spoke of the underdevelopment of some Muslim countries. The leader blamed this on the Western domination. He noted that Western countries have long bullied Muslims and rulers of some Islamic nations have been vassals of the bullying powers. Ayatollah Khamenei also said the status quo must change through scientific development in all Islamic nations.

Catalonia new president

Catalonia's parliament will vote Saturday on whether to appoint Quim Torra as regional president. This comes after deposed former leader Carles Puigdemont stepped aside from the running. Torra is an independence advocate and picked up by Puigdemont himself to continue the fight with Spain's central government to achieve independence. There are currently 70 lawmakers in the regional parliament who are pro-independence, against 65 who are not. Torra is not expected to get enough support to receive a vote of confidence. If the MPs abstain, Torra will get another opportunity in a second round, likely to take place on Monday.

Palestinian funeral

Palestinians in the Gaza strip lay to rest the body of a Palestinian man killed by Israeli forces. Jaber Abu Mustafa succumbed to his wounds after he was wounded by the Israeli troops during the Great March of Return rallies Friday. The rallies will culminate on May 15 which marks the Nakba Day, or the anniversary of Israel’s creation in Palestine in 1948. Following Israel’s installment, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians were forced from their homeland. At least 48 Palestinians have been killed and many others injured during this year’s Great March of Return protests.

Iraq elections

Iraqis are heading to the polls to cast their ballots in the country's first parliamentary elections since the defeat of the Daesh terror group. Some 9,000 polling stations have been set up across the country. This includes camps for the internally displaced. Incumbent Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi has already voted in the capital Baghdad. Former Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki was among the first to cast his ballot. Footage shows parliament speaker Salim al-Jabouri casting his vote. Another senior figure, the Incumbent President Fouad Massoud has also voted. Cleric Muqtada al-Sadr has also made his way to a polling station. Baghdad has beefed up security ahead of the key elections. Airports and borders have closed for 24 hours.

Plight of Rohingya

Media reports say the Rohingya villagers, who shared their experiences of violence in Myanmar with UN representatives, have been targeted by security agencies and forced to flee. According to British daily, the Guardian, three teenage boys and a middle-aged woman have been hiding since being hunted by Myanmar’s military intelligence units. They had spoken to a UNSC delegation visiting the northern Rahkine state on May 1. Myanmar’s authorities had warned the Rohingya community against telling the UN envoys anything adverse about the government or security forces. This is not the first time members of the persecuted community are targeted for reporting violence. In December 2016, two Rohingya women were forced to flee to Bangladesh after speaking to journalists. Four men were also imprisoned after speaking to former UN secretary general, Kofi Annan.

Pakistan-US tensions  

Pakistan has imposed restrictions on the movement of US diplomats in the country in a tit-for-tat measure against Washington. Diplomats from the two countries must now get permission days in advance to travel more than 40 kilometers from their embassies.

Diplomatic tour

The Iranian foreign minister is to embark on a whistle-stop tour for talks on the possible sustenance of the Iran nuclear deal. The trip will take Mohammad Javad Zarif to China, Russia and Belgium where the European Union headquarters are located. The top diplomat is to discuss with signatories to the deal as well as other officials the possibility of preserving the nuclear deal. Zarif’s first stop will be China. Then he leaves for Russia, and finally Brussels where he will attend a meeting with his British, German and French counterparts as well as EU Foreign Policy Chief Federica Mogherini. Zarif and Mogherini have already, in a phone conversation, stressed the need to preserve the nuclear agreement. In the phone talk, Zarif said it is necessary to guarantee Iran’s interests under the deal.


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