Macron dispatched adviser to sway Palestinians not to trash Trump’s peace plan

French President Emmanuel Macron dispatched his deputy national security adviser, Aurélien Lechevallier, to the Palestinian city of Ramallah this week to convince Palestinian leaders to give President Trump‘s peace plan for the region a chance, Axios reported on Thursday. French and Palestinian officials told the news outlet that Lechevallier met with various senior Palestinian officials, including the head of […]

True believers want peace for Jerusalem, pope tells imam

by Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service Christians, Muslims and Jews who are sincere about their faith must be committed to protecting the special character of Jerusalem and to praying and working for peace in the Holy Land, Pope Francis wrote in a letter to the grand imam of Egypt’s al-Azhar University. Only a special, internationally […]

Pence’s trip to Israel raises political and religious fears

If anybody thought a visit by America’s evangelical Vice President, Mike Pence, to Israel’s key holy sites would ease tensions at one of the lowest points in Israeli-Palestinian relations in years, perhaps they should think again. Pence, who champions the rights of Christians in the Middle East and typically fights in Israel’s corner, is set […]

Lebanese hacking campaign could be part of something much larger

There’s a string of spyware campaigns operating out of a government building in Lebanon, according to new research from Lookout Security and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. Dubbed “Dark Caracal,” the new group is linked to attacks on thousands of victims in more than 21 different countries, a range of targets so broad that researchers believe […]

Lebanon’s spying agency turns smartphone Into selfie spycam: report

Lebanon’s intelligence service may have turned the smartphones of thousands of targeted individuals into cyber-spying machines in one of the first known examples of large-scale state hacking of phones rather than computers, researchers say. Lebanon’s General Directorate of General Security (GDGS) has run more than 10 campaigns since at least 2012 aimed mainly at Android […]

Lebanese spies ‘left thousands of hacked text messages on open internet’

A major hacking operation tied to Lebanon’s main intelligence agency has been exposed after careless spies left hundreds of gigabytes of intercepted data exposed to the open internet, according to a report published Thursday. Mobile security firm Lookout, Inc. and the Electronic Frontier Foundation, a digital rights group, said the haul, which includes nearly half a […]

Sharp drop in Iraq and Syria terror deaths: study

Iraq and Syria saw a sharp drop in the number of people killed in terror attacks last year, a report published Thursday by Jane’s Terrorism and Insurgency Centre has found. Despite ongoing violence in both countries, there was a fall in the number of deaths in attacks by non-state actors such as the Islamic State […]

Tillerson: US troops will stay in Syria to prevent ISIS from regrouping

of State Rex Tillerson said Wednesday it was “crucial” for the United States to maintain an open-ended military and diplomatic presence in Syria to prevent Islamic State militants from regrouping, to thwart Iranian influence and ultimately to see the exit of President Bashar Assad. Tillerson outlined what he described as a new, more engaged Trump […]