To silence dissidents, Gulf states are revoking their citizenship

You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave SINCE the small Gulf states became independent from Britain in the latter half of the 20th century, their ruling families have sought fresh methods to keep their subjects in check. They might close a newspaper, confiscate passports or lock up the most troublesome. Now, increasingly, they are stripping dissidents, and their families, of citizenship, leaving them stateless.

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Tightening the noose

HARASSED by sniper fire and slowed down by the suicide bombers of Islamic State (IS), Kurdish and Iraqi forces have taken heavy casualties as they fight their way towards Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city and the place where the jihadists first announced the creation of their “caliphate” two years ago. Villages freshly captured by the Iraqi army and Shia militias on the roads leading to Mosul show signs of the jihadists’ hasty retreat. Weapon caches are abandoned, pots of uneaten food still sit on stoves and medical clinics have been pilfered for supplies

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Islamic State’s messianic apocalypse is postponed

Waiting for the end THE fate of a small rural town in northern Syria might seem inconsequential when faced with a multinational assault on the group’s main stronghold, Mosul. But few places were more central to the image of Islamic State (IS).

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Marching on Mosul

“THE time of victory has come…today I declare the start of these victorious operations to free you from the violence and terrorism of Daesh [Islamic State].” With these words, broadcast at 2am on October 17th, Iraq’s prime minister, Haider al-Abadi, announced the start of the long-awaited offensive to liberate Mosul, the country’s second city.

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