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Middle East news, arts, culture, and politics. Updates on Iraq, Israel, Palestine, Iran, OPEC, and the Persian Gulf states NPR streaming audio. Subscribe to the Middle East RSS feed.



Last Build Date: Fri, 24 Mar 2017 16:31:00 -0400

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Former Egyptian President Mubarak Freed From Detention

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 16:31:00 -0400

Egypt's former President Hosni Mubarak is a free man for the first time in six years. He was freed from house arrest at a military hospital after being cleared of claims he ordered Arab Spring protesters shot.



Push To Name Muslim Brotherhood A Terrorist Group Worries U.S. Offshoots

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 16:31:00 -0400

Some Islamic institutions in the U.S. were founded by brotherhood members or sympathizers. Community leaders say ties with the Islamist movement were cut long ago; conservatives suspect otherwise.



Former Egyptian Leader Mubarak Released

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:51:00 -0400

Former Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak was freed Friday morning after six years in detention. His lawyers say he has left a military hospital where he has essentially been under house arrest.



Negin Farsad: Can Humor Fight Prejudice?

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:10:09 -0400

Comedian Negin Farsad traveled all over the U.S. to clear up misconceptions about Islam while making people laugh. She calls this form of activism "social justice comedy."



Maysoon Zayid: Should Humor Make Us Uncomfortable?

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:10:09 -0400

Maysoon Zayid teases herself for all the ways she's different: she has cerebral palsy, she's Muslim, she's Palestinian. By making us laugh at it, she gets us to think about acceptance.



Sandi Toksvig: Can Social Change Start With Laughter?

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 09:10:09 -0400

When comedian and TV host Sandi Toksvig came out as gay in the early 1990s, she used humor to recover from the onslaught of vitriol.Today, she says, humor can help bring about social change.



Mubarak Walks Free, In What Could Be The Final Twist For Egypt's Former Dictator

Fri, 24 Mar 2017 08:19:00 -0400

Hosni Mubarak, 88 and ailing, was acquitted by Egypt's top appeals court of charges that he ordered police to kill anti-government protesters in 2011.



A Poem From A Syrian Psychiatrist: 'Cloud-Cafe'

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 17:32:00 -0400

Dr. Hussam Jefee-Bahloul writes poems to capture his longing for his troubled homeland.



Who Will Listen To The Suffering Syrians?

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 17:27:00 -0400

The conflict has created chronic mental pain in a country with few mental health specialists. Dr. Hassum Jefee-Bahloul, a Syrian psychiatrist who now lives in the U.S., has a plan to help.



Big Changes And Major Dilemmas Loom In Next Phase Of ISIS War In Syria

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 17:06:00 -0400

The U.S. considers deploying hundreds more American troops to Syria in the final phase of the war against ISIS — one that could reshape borders and relationships in the Middle East.



Israeli Teenager Arrested In Connection To Bomb Threats Against Jewish Centers

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 16:41:00 -0400

An Israeli teenager has been arrested in connection with a series of bomb threats made to American Jewish community centers and other organizations. Police described the suspect as a hacker whose motives are unclear.



How Two Armenian Immigrants Made Turkish Delight An American Hit

Thu, 23 Mar 2017 11:02:00 -0400

Decades ago, an orchard in Washington state began producing "Aplets & Cotlets," a version of a confection based on childhood memories and hard work — and still beloved in the Pacific Northwest.



Tillerson: Defeating ISIS 'No. 1 Goal' for U.S., But Others Should Do More

Wed, 22 Mar 2017 17:17:00 -0400

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is hosting officials from 68 countries to discuss how best to take on ISIS. "As a coalition we are not in the business of nation-building or reconstruction," he said.



U.S.-Led Coalition Continues Fight To Retake Mosul From ISIS

Wed, 22 Mar 2017 16:38:00 -0400

ISIS's single largest stronghold was the Iraqi city of Mosul, which was where their leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, announced the creation of what he called a caliphate in 2014. NPR takes a look at the coalition effort to retake the city.



Dozens Of Civilians Killed Near Raqqa In Airstrike Activists Blame On Coalition

Wed, 22 Mar 2017 16:35:00 -0400

Monitor groups allege a strike by U.S.-led forces leveled a school near ISIS' de facto capital in Syria. The coalition says there's no indication it was responsible but it will investigate.