Terrorism, Geopolitics, Social Crisis: November 2015 in Numbers

41 people were killed and another 200 wounded in two suicide bombings that took place in Beirut on Nov. 12. ISIS claimed responsibility for the attacks, which targeted Burj al-Barajneh, a Shi’i neighborhood and Hezbollah stronghold.

130 people were killed when ISIS carried out a series of attacks in Paris on Nov. 13. The attacks have prompted France to increase its military operations in Syria and led to fears that similar attacks could be carried out in other Western cities.

60-70 percent of inmates in French prisons are Muslims, despite the fact that Muslims represent roughly 7 percent of the country’s population. Post-Paris, this jarring statistic has raised questions about France’s ability to integrate immigrant populations.

$3.2 billion in aid will be given to Turkey by the European Union, in exchange for Ankara agreeing to help stem the tide of refugees entering Europe. The agreement was reached on Nov. 29.

30,000 refugees will still be accepted by France over the next two years, despite the horrific Paris attacks. “Some have wanted to link the influx of refugees to Friday’s acts of terror,” French President François Hollande said in a speech to his country’s mayors. “The truth is that this link exists because the people of Syria and Iraq have fled because they are martyred by the same people who attack us today,” he added.

31 U.S. governors have sought to block President Barack Obama from placing Syrian refugees in their states. The anti-refugee sentiment is a response to the Nov. 13 ISIS attacks on Paris.

The 28 countries of the European Union ruled on Nov. 11 that all goods exported from Israeli settlements must be labeled “made in settlements” rather than “made in Israel.” The move sparked harsh reaction from Israel, although less than 1 percent of the country’s $13 billion in annual exports to the EU come from illegally occupied territories.

4 decades after its founding, Israel’s northern Islamic Movement was outlawed by the country’s right-wing government on Nov. 17. The ban prohibits the group’s activities and mandates that all of its institutions be closed. The Islamic Movement, which provides social services and works to protect the al-Aqsa mosque, is favorably viewed by a majority of Israel’s Palestinian citizens.

6 weeks community service was the sentence given to an Israeli policeman who brutally beat American teenager Tariq Abu Khdeir in Jerusalem in the summer of 2014. It is not unusual for Jewish Israelis to receive lenient sentences—if they are sentenced at all—for violent acts committed against Palestinians.

30 years after his imprisonment, convicted spy for Israel Jonathan Pollard, 61, was released from a North Carolina prison on Nov. 20. Pollard’s release was praised by Israeli officials, but most American Jews and intelligence officials were bitterly opposed to his early release.

60 minutes: the length of Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s controversial appearance at the Center for American Progress on Nov. 10. The liberal think tank, which has close ties to presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and the White House, was criticized by many on the left for its decision to host the right-wing Israeli prime minister.

88 percent of members of the American Anthropological Association attending the group’s Nov. 20 annual conference voted in favor of a resolution to boycott Israeli academic institutions. The resolution is subject to a final vote of the association’s 10,000 members in April.

30 percent of eligible voters participated in the second round of Egypt’s parliamentary elections, which were held Nov. 22 and 23. The regime-backed “For the Love of Egypt” list won all 60 seats allocated to lists, while runoff elections will be held to determine the winners of seats allocated to individuals.

36-year-old Egyptian investigative journalist and human rights advocate Hossam Bahgat was arrested by Egyptian officials in early November on charges of publishing false news. Highly respected internationally, Bahgat was released after several days, but was required to sign a document stating that he “will abide by legal and security procedures when publishing material pertaining to the Armed Forces.”

1 Russian warplane was shot down by Turkey on Nov. 24, leading to increased tensions between the two nations. Turkey claims the jet was violating its airspace, while Russia maintains the aircraft never entered Turkish airspace but was shot down over Syria.

941 civilians were killed in Iraq in November, according to Iraq Body Count.

$1.29 billion in arms sales to Saudi Arabia was approved by the State Department in mid-November. The Kingdom will receive so-called “smart bombs” that reportedly will be used in Yemen and Syria.

AET is a non-profit foundation that publishes the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs (www.wrmea.org) and maintains Middle East Books and More (middleeastbooks.com).

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