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Israel strikes Gaza after rockets fired from Lebanon
In this issue: Israel strikes Gaza after rockets fired from Lebanon; Censorship of political opponents continues in India on Twitter; Western US receives funding for repairs in 11 states
The situation in Israel and Gaza is escalating as rockets were fired by Palestinian militants in Lebanon and Gaza, and Israeli forces responded with airstrikes on Friday. The tension follows two days of unrest in Jerusalem's Old City, which led to violent scenes at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, where Israeli police used tear gas and stun grenades. The airstrikes targeted tunnels and weapons-manufacturing sites in Gaza. Palestinian militants also fired rockets towards Israel, and Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has promised a strong response to the aggression. Hezbollah, an Iran-backed militant group, was implicated in the rocket attacks in Lebanon. The rocket fire follows heightened tensions in the area over fears of a wider conflagration, with the recent violence at Al-Aqsa resonating across the region.
On our radar
THE INTERCEPT — Elon Musk’s Twitter Widens Its Censorship of Modi’s Critics
The Indian government imposed an internet blackout across the state of Punjab and detained hundreds of people in connection with a manhunt for a local Sikh nationalist leader. Twitter has blocked over 100 prominent politicians, activists, and journalists in India and abroad at the request of the government. The Indian government has also used Twitter to throttle BBC services in the country. Critics argue that Twitter is failing to allow the platform to operate freely under conditions of government pressure, and that Musk's policy of deferring to government requests is dangerous and irresponsible, as it empowers governments to suppress speech they find inconvenient.
THE EPOCH TIMES — Western US Receives $585 Million to Bolster Water Infrastructure
The US Department of the Interior has announced that $585 million of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will be used for water infrastructure repairs across 11 western states. The funds will be used for 83 projects to increase water conveyance and storage, improve hydro power generation, provide water treatment, and conduct maintenance on aging infrastructure. According to the department, the projects will benefit every major river basin and region under the Bureau of Reclamation’s purview, and will help conserve community water supplies and revitalise water delivery systems. The infrastructure law, passed in 2021, includes $8.3 billion over five years for Bureau of Reclamation projects.
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