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Israel bans Christians in Gaza from visiting Jerusalem for Christmas

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Israel has banned Christians who live in the Gaza Strip ruled by Hamas from visiting Christian holy sites and churches in the West Bank and Jerusalem to celebrate Christmas, a spokesman for the Christian community said Sunday.

Israeli media reported on Saturday that Israel bans 500 Christians in the Gaza Strip from travelling to the West Bank for Christmas and New Year holidays.

Meanwhile, the Israeli daily said the Israeli security only agreed to allow 100 Christians from the Gaza Strip to travel to Jordan only for Christmas.

The Israeli ban has left more disappointment, anger, and frustration among the Christians in Gaza, Kamel Ayyad told reporters.

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Last year, “Israel gave permission to about 500 Christians to travel to the West Bank to celebrate Christmas there,” he said.

Around 5,000 Christians, most of whom are Greek Orthodox, lived in the Gaza Strip before Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organization signed Oslo peace accords in 1994. However, their number dramatically declined because of the continuing conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

Since Hamas violently seized control of the Gaza Strip in 2007, the number of Christians in the coastal enclave has dropped to around 900 amid threats from radical Sunni groups. Those who left Gaza moved to either the West Bank or Europe, the United States, Canada, and Australia.

The decision to ban Christians from leaving Gaza is unfair, unjust, causing disappointment among the Christians and also outraging the only two Orthodox and Catholic churches in Gaza,” said Ayyad.

“Israel is carrying out such measures to force the Christians to leave their homeland Palestine and live abroad, in order to strengthen its occupation of the Palestinian territories,” he noted.

Christians in the Gaza Strip, home to two million Palestinians, used to travel every year to the West Bank city of Bethlehem and Jerusalem to join Palestinian Christians there to celebrate Christmas and the New Year.

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Israel occupied the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip in June 1967 before pulling out from Gaza in 2005. Israel imposed a tight blockade on Gaza right after Hamas routed Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ security forces and took control of the enclave in 2007.

 

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JUST IN: 268 Nigerians arrive in Abuja from China

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At least 268 Nigerians evacuated from China have arrived in Abuja, The Daily Times can confirm.

The flight that conveyed the evacuees landed at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport on Saturday afternoon.

Disclosing this in a tweet, the Chairman, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission, Abike Dabiri-Erewa, said the returnees would proceed on compulsory 14 days quarantine as stipulated by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

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Some of the nationals had faced serial racial discriminations in Guangzhou, China, from provincial officials.

They were reportedly evicted from their apartments and hotels following their alleged refusal to go for the mandatory quarantine imposed by the Guangdong Provincial authorities sequel to the outbreak of coronavirus.

Some Nigerians sent a video of a woman with two children who were staying on the streets.

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George Floyd: Wife of accused cop files for divorce

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The wife of Derek Chauvin, the white police officer charged with killing George Floyd, has now filed for divorce from him, her lawyer said Friday.

According to Dailymail .co.uk, the announcement that Kellie Chauvin, a former Mrs. Minnesota winner, is seeking a divorce from Derek Chauvin came on Monday – the same day the fired cop was charged with murder over Floyd’s death.

“This evening, I spoke with Kellie Chauvin and her family. She is devastated by Mr. Floyd’s death and her utmost sympathy lies with his family, with his loved ones and with everyone who is grieving this tragedy. She has filed for dissolution of her marriage to Derek Chauvin,” Sekula Law Offices said in a statement.

Kellie, who works as a realtor with Re/Max Results, had no child for the accused cop but had two children with her first husband, who has since died.

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Derek Chauvin, 44, was taken into custody on Friday and charged with third-degree murder and manslaughter. His bail was set for $500,000.

The arrest follows days of nationwide protests and riots demanding his arrest after he was caught on video kneeling on Floyd’s neck while arresting him for allegedly trying to use a counterfeit $20 bill at a deli.

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According to the criminal complaint against Chauvin, the Minneapolis police officer was said to have had his knee on Floyd’s neck for eight minutes and 46 seconds, with nearly three minutes of the time being after Floyd had become non-responsive.

Floyd was then taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

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The outcry has now reached his front door, as angry protesters drew in chalk on the road and sidewalk outside the couple’s $260,000 home in Oakdale: ‘A murderer lives here’.

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Kaduna Government Discharges Four-month-old COVID-19 Patient

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Kaduna State Government has disclosed that a four-month-old child, who earlier tested positive for COVID-19, has been discharged after testing negative for the virus.

Amina Mohammed Baloni, Commissioner for Health in the state, made this known in a statement on Saturday.

She said, “Out of the total number of 232 cases reported, 149 have been discharged, while seven deaths have been recorded.

“The state has tested almost 2000 samples but case numbers are likely to rise further as more tests are conducted in more places.

“COVID-19 cases have been recorded in 33 wards in nine local government areas of the state: Chikun, Giwa, Igabi, Kaduna North, Kaduna South, Makarfi, Sabon-Gari, Soba, and Zaria.

“The data shows that 80 percent of the infected persons are male.”

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