Newspaper review: Dubai tech fair big hit; Karman’s Nobel prize lauded

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UAE newspaper review

While UAE newspapers are quite diverse with their front page stories, Dubai’s technology trade show has managed to capture prominent space.

Both Gulf News and Khaleej Times have published snaps of the Gitex Shopper which opened at the Airport Expo Dubai on Saturday. The week-long event will feature conferences, discussions and workshops on issues related to hardware, software, Internet security and cloud computing.

The National reported that the 30th edition of the show has managed to attract global brands such as IBM, Google and BlackBerry manufacturer Research in Motion with visitors expected to splash around AED12.84 billion (US$3.4bn) on electronic devices and gadgets.

REGIONAL INSTABILITY

The National’s foreign correspondent filed a report from Gaza’s Rafah border with Egypt saying Hamas is under fire for imposing a range of extra levies and rising the cost of fuel, amid mounting speculation that the Islamist movement has come under strain from drop in funding. Even tunnel operators, the economic life-savers of the already besieged territory, have been asked to register with the authorities or face closure, the scribe added.

On the other hand, Gulf News said Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh has promised to step down soon, yet again, in a televised speech to the nation. The paper quoted the deeply unpopular leader as saying that he returned to Sanaa from Saudi Arabia with an olive branch to make peace with the Yemeni people. “I have tried to get rid of power three years ago and I was forced to stay,” he claimed in his speech.

‘Key Sirte highway falls’, the Khaleej Times reported in its main headline while publishing reports coming from the battle ground that paint a bleak picture. Thousands of civilians are still trapped in Gaddafi’s hometown of Sirte as his loyalist fighters put up a stiff resistance, the paper added.

Gulf News and The National have also focused on the brazen murder of a Syrian politician that took place on Saturday in the Kurdish-dominated town of Qamishli along the Turkish border.

The National claimed the ‘Syrian murder opens dangerous chapter’ in the country’s seven-month long uprising, with fears the incident might provoke around two million Kurds in the north.

Gulf News reported at least five people were killed during the funeral prayer of Meshaal Tamo, the founder of liberal Kurdish Future Party, when security forces opened fire on more than 50,000 mourners.

EDITORIALS

Both The National and Khaleej Times have welcomed the news of Nobel Peace prize award conferred to Tawakkol Karman, a Yemeni democratic rights activist.

The National editorial lauded the Nobel Academy for recognising the 32-year-old woman’s ‘non-violent struggle for the safety of women’ while mentioning the way she defies death threats and prison for resisting President Saleh’s regime. “She has been an outspoken critic of injustices in her society – including child marriage – since 2007” the article added. The editor also took note of leading Arab women rights activists like Wafa Sultan – Syrian-born psychologist, Ayaan Hirsi Ali – Somali feminist campaigner, Esraa Abdul Fattah – Egyptian cyber-activist, and Tunisian rights activist and blogger Lina ben Mhenni and said the Nobel Peace Prize serves as an honour to all these Arab icons.

Khaleej Times has also praised the young Yemeni activist who founded the “Women Journalists without chains” group in 2005 and challenged President Saleh’s autocratic regime. The editorial said two Liberian women – incumbent President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee – also deserve credit for their contribution towards healing the post-civil war society in Liberia, which the paper mistakenly mentioned as ‘Libya’.

By Moign Khawaja ~ Editor – Arabian Gazette

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