ISIS Is Still Attacking Mosul, 18 Months After The City Was Liberated (HBO)

Rajab Younes Rajab walks through the ruins of Mosul’s Old City, pointing at homes where his friends used to live. “I saw people dying in front of me and I couldn’t help them,” he says. During the 2017 battle to recapture the city from ISIS, the west of the city was decimated, killing thousands. Homes and businesses were also destroyed — and Rajab’s home was no different.

Rajab says he’s still haunted by what he witnessed – he has insomnia and still mourns the friends he lost in the battle. ‘I used to see my friends more than I saw my family,’ he says tearily.

For him, returning to rebuild the family home was something he initially refused to do. But his father, Younes, couldn’t keep paying for rented accommodation elsewhere. Remarkably, some eighteen months since the city was liberated, theirs is the first home in the neighborhood to be completed – but Rajab isn’t in the mood for celebrating.

‘One of the reasons is the number of tragedies I’ve seen here,’ he says. ‘Perhaps no one’s ever witnessed what I did. ‘As soon as I leave the house, I thought I was going to die. I was targeted by a sniper more than six times. He almost killed me the last time.’

Rajab shares the anger of many here in Mosul’s Old City – a growing annoyance at the slow pace of reconstruction in the city and the apparent lack of government money to help residents rebuild. His father used the family savings to complete the project. ‘Nothing has changed here, two years after the liberation. When they published Iraq’s draft 2019 budget, Mosul got one percent,’ Rajab says.

The city may have been liberated nearly 18 months ago – but ISIS is still a looming threat here. Four teenagers were killed on their way to school two weeks ago, and a car bomb outside a popular restaurant in the city a month ago, killed three. But the authorities are keen to downplay ISIS’ presence, blaming political elements for the recent violence.

For the older generation like his father, returning home has been the priority. Of the current security situation in the city, Younes says, ‘Some incidents happen here and there but the state is in control. I’m not worried at all.’

Listening to his father, Rajab shakes his head angrily. He believes if things don’t improve soon, the city’s youth could be lured back into ISIS’ grasp. ‘It’s not safe at all. I am worried about my own life. I’m worried about my family when even now, ISIS members and leaders are still here. I was surprised by the recent explosions. It means there are sleeper cells. The government should stop them and stop them from expanding again.’

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You can get 10yrs in Bahraini prison for saying ‘we want peace’ – son of trialed activist Rajab

The trial of prominent Bahraini human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been postponed for a month. According to reports he now faces additional charges over alleged insults against the Saudi government. RT crossed live by Adam Rajab, Nabeel’s son.

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Bahrain re-arrests top human rights activist Nabeel Rajab

A prominent human rights activist Nabeel Rajab has been arrested, his family members said on social media. Rajab led numerous protests during the Arab Spring and repeatedly criticized the Bahraini government on Twitter.

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Bahrain’s Grand Prix Sparks Human Rights Protests

Formula 1’s annual Bahrain Grand Prix opened April 17 to global fanfare, but demonstrators in the small Gulf kingdom off the eastern coast of Saudi Arabia have been protesting the motorsports event for weeks, accusing Formula 1’s management of ignoring longstanding human rights abuses in the country.

This year’s race comes at an awkward time for Bahrain’s ruling al Khalifa family. On April 2, Nabeel Rajab — one of the country’s most prominent human rights activists — was arrested on charges of insulting the kingdom. VICE News was with Rajab shortly before his arrest, when he accused Western governments of turning a blind eye to Bahraini government abuse.

Back in London, activists continue to rally against Britain’s conduct in Bahrain. VICE News met up with members of the Bahrain Institute for Rights and Democracy as they protested the arrival of Prince Nassar bin Hamad al Khalifa — nicknamed the “Playboy Prince” — who has been accused of being involved with the torture of political prisoners.

Watch “Six Months in Jail for a Tweet: Bahrain Update” – http://bit.ly/1Q5vY81

Watch “Bahrain: An Inconvenient Uprising” – http://bit.ly/1wz8Am4

Read “Bahrain Arrests Human Rights Champion Nabeel Rajab for ‘Harming Civil Peace’” – http://bit.ly/1OtRwrl

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Jailed for a Tweet: Interview with Nabeel Rajab

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Nabeel Rajab is a human rights activist awaiting trial in Bahrain, one of the West’s favorite dictatorships. Three years after the Arab Spring, protests there are still being violently repressed, and Rajab now faces up to three years in jail — for a tweet. VICE News spoke to him a few weeks before his latest arrest.

Read More: Bahrain’s Human Rights Activist Faces Jail Time — for a Tweet – http://bit.ly/1tJv5JZ

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