Looks like Gulf countries and Israel have something in common. Israel is seeking to close Qatar-based broadcaster Al Jazeera’s offices in the country and revoke its journalists’ media credentials, a similar ban by several Sunni Arab states such as Saudi Arabia. The Israeli Communications Minister alleged that the channel supported terrorism, and said both its Arabic and English-language channels would be taken off air. Al Jazeera has condemned the decision.

Some surprising news from the UN. Former war crimes prosecutor Carla Del Ponte has announced she is quitting a United Nations commission investigating human rights abuses in Syria because it “does absolutely nothing”. She has served on the UN Commission of Inquiry on Syria for nearly five years. The Syrian civil war has left more than 300,000 people dead and displaced millions. She added that “everyone in Syria is on the bad side” and that there was “no justice for Syria.”

Lastly, today marks the 84th anniversary of the Simele massacre, an attack by the former Iraqi kingdom which killed thousands of Assyrian people in northern Iraq. From August 7 to August 11 in 1933, the armed forces of the Kingdom of Iraq attacked 63 Assyrian villages in what is now called the provinces of Nineveh and Duhok. The campaign left around 3,000 Assyrians dead, according to a 2003 report from the International Federation for Human Rights.