someone of opposite gender: Hugging someone of opposite gender forbidden in Islam:
UP imam | Bareilly News - Times of India
Charter of Values a Factor in Radicalizing Foreign Fighters: Study
Someone Of Opposite Gender Forbidden In Islam: UP Imam
Shrine Shared By Hindus, Muslims Boosts Harmony
Leaders Look to Implement Erdoğan’s Model of Progress
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GOPers ask Trump admin. to put Iran back on FATF blacklist
Launches Online Magazine, Says 2018 Will Be Tough For Security Forces
chief Dawood among four militants killed in Kashmir, cop and civilian also dead
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top terrorists on 'hit list' of security forces in Valley
to human rights norms in National Register of Citizens: UN to Sushma
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with terrorists who refuse to surrender is not muscular, but rule of law’
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William on first official royal visit to Occupied Territories and Israel
chief says upsurge in Syria violence poses ‘risks to regional security’
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among the Taliban and ISIS militants in Laghman province
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by New Age Islam News Bureau
Charter of Values a Factor In Radicalizing Foreign Fighters: Study
months after Shayma Senouci left Quebec to join Islamic State fighters (ISIS)
in Syria, she wrote a long email to her friends back home. She told them that
she felt she didn’t belong in the West and that she had an obligation to
emigrate to a Muslim country.
left because I felt imprisoned in this country, I felt dirty and deadly, an
accomplice for the killings and the humiliations of Muslims worldwide,” the
young woman wrote.
also shared that the debate surrounding the Quebec government’s proposed
Charter of Values, which sought to ban public sector employees from wearing
religious symbols such as the hijab, solidified her feelings of being
marginalized and being unwelcome in her own society.
she wasn’t the only one.
to a four-year study of foreign fighters who travelled to Syria and Iraq to
fight with various jihadist groups since Syria’s slide into civil war following
the Arab Spring in 2011, Senouci’s story is far from unique. The young woman
experienced similar identity struggles, ideological aspirations, and
susceptibility to outside influence as the 29 other foreign fighters
interviewed for the study.
study was conducted by the Institute for Strategic Dialogue and led by
Canadians Amarnath Amarasingam, a senior research fellow at the institute, and
Lorne Dawson, a professor at the University of Waterloo. The researchers
compiled data collected from open-ended interviews with 30 men and women who
travelled abroad to fight. They also conducted interviews with 43 of their
parents, siblings and friends.
the 30 interview subjects featured in the study, 11 are Canadian. Twenty-seven
of the foreign fighters were men and three were women. More than half (57 per
cent) were born to Muslim families while the other 43 per cent were converts to
researchers say their study focused on two key issues - the motivations of
thousands of foreign fighters who leave home to fight in Syria and Iraq, as
well as the difficulties their families and friends experience as a result -
seeking some insight to prevent future radicalizations.
[the families] should be seen by the police and authorities as a resource to
get through to these people because they’re still in communication with them,”
Dawson told CTVNews.ca on Friday.
to the researchers, approximately 100 men and women have travelled to Syria and
Iraq from Canada to fight with jihadist groups. Of the 11 Canadians included in
the study, approximately one-third departed from Quebec.
the study stops short of providing a clear reason for this occurrence, the
authors note that the young Quebec Muslims they interviewed expressed a “deep
sense of uneasiness” about belonging in the province.
were born and go to school there, but as visible Muslims they do not feel
included in the fabric of the province, one that is often openly hostile to
their religious identity,” the report states.
with Senouci’s story of radicalization, the report shares the case studies of
two other young men who left Quebec for Syria after they felt disillusioned
with their society at home.
of those men, Mohamed Rifaat, 20, became a religious leader among his friends
in high school. A friend of his told the researchers that he was a
“self-proclaimed imam” whose religious views became more conservative and
radical in late 2012 and 2013. It was around this time that Pauline Marois led
the Parti Quebecois, the party that introduced the Quebec Charter of Values, to
victory in the provincial election.
community led by a female will eventually become unsuccessful,” Rifaat wrote on
his Facebook page at the time, according to his friend.
Facebook posts eventually became more radicalized, even calling on the death of
Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and his supporters.
said, although it’s not the only contributing factor, the proposed Quebec
Charter of Values bill and the debate it sparked made young Muslims question
their place in society.
wasn’t prominent, but it was definitely a contributing factor. I think anyone
would be lying if they didn’t admit that the social tensions in Quebec created
by the Charter caused a certain amount of alienation to Muslim youth in Quebec
that exceeded anything else being experienced in the rest of Canada,” he said.
the study found that nearly three-quarters (73 per cent) of foreign fighters
continued to communicate with their family and friends back home. The report
notes that, while many parents initially argued with their children about the
decision to leave, they later opted to drop the arguments rather than lose
researchers point out that this ongoing communication between families and
foreign fighters could provide important opportunities to encourage them to
return home or at least move to a safer area.
the young people start to become disillusioned, the parents will have to play a
key role in cajoling them to leave and come back and surrender,” Dawson said.
stressed that the study highlights how difficult it is for parents and families
to detect the process of radicalization. He said the majority of the subjects
they interviewed were described as “good kids” who did well in school, weren’t
involved in drugs or other criminal activities, and their families weren’t
worried about them.
supports what we found and other people have found elsewhere that this
stereotype of the troubled kid who then radicalizes, probably doesn’t hold true
in most cases,” Dawson said.
study identifies several common factors that contributed to the radicalization
of their interview subjects.
experience an acute emerging adult identity struggle
have a moralistic problem-solving mindset
are conditioned by an inordinate quest for significance (to make a difference
in the world)
believe in a religious ideology and participating in a fantasy (literally) of
are susceptible to the psychological impact of intense small group dynamics and
influence of charismatic leaders
allow a fusion of their personal identity with a new group identity and cause
report suggests that authorities need to provide more emotional and
psychological support to the families of those foreign fighters who have left
in order to learn more about these cases.
parents need more help,” Dawson said. “They need to be not seen as part of the
problem, but seen as part of the victims. They need to be given more education
and help going into these situations.”
researchers said more public education for families on what they should look
out for and what they should do if they suspect someone is becoming
are likely to be the first to detect something is happening to their child, yet
the parents we interviewed, while being responsible and caring, had little
sense of what they could do in the situation,” the report states. “A
significant opportunity is being missed to detect radicalizing youth sooner.”
The district imam has pronounced as “illegal and un-Islamic” the act an
unidentified girl hugging youths outside a shopping mall in Moradabad on the
eve of Eid. A video of the girl hugging youths was widely shared on social
networking sites. The girl hugged almost 50 youths who waited in a queue for
in Muslim society, women and girls are not permitted to hug or make any
physical contact with male strangers, regardless of whether it is a festive
occasion or not.
also: In departure from Eid tradition, girl hugs men at UP mall
facing flak for her act, the girl who had uploaded the video on YouTube
apologized through social media.
cleric also criticized the youths who hugged the girl and said they too
violated Sharia laws.
imam Maualna Mufti Mohammed Ashrafi told TOI, “I have spoken with the girl and
convinced her that hugging the boys is un-Islamic and against the Shariat. She
had committed this act in innocence and the same law applies for the boys who
committed this un-Islamic Act.
is like my daughter and I have told her that under the Islamic law, you can
only hug people who are ‘mahram’ to you (category of people with whom marriage
is not permissible for example father, brother etc) and your spouse of course,”
youth who hugged the girl should also perform repentance and never repeat it,
A day before Id-ul-Fitr, an18th-century painting began trending on Twitter. A
war of words followed between liberals and Hindu hardliners. In the painting,
Krishna and Balram are shown gesturing towards the sky to a group of people.
Those on the liberal side, hailed it as a symbol of cultural tolerance and
inclusiveness interpreting that Krishna was pointing the Id moon to rozedars,
while the Hindu hardliners came up with counter narratives and called it a
debate notwithstanding, Rajasthan actually boasts of religious shrines, deities
and practices shared by Hindus and Muslims, leaving no scope for ambiguity
about communal harmony existing between the two communities for centuries.
best example of Hindu-Muslim syncretism
is Ramdevra, 12 km from Pokhran in western Rajasthan. Both Hindus and
Muslims throng the shrine in August every year.
Hindus call the deity Ramdev Baba and believe he is incarnation of
Krishna, while Muslims of the Meghwal community venerate him as Ramsa or
Ramapir blessed by Pancha-Pir after being convinced of his miraculous powers.
of the Meghwal community in border districts of Jaisalmer and Barmer came from
Pakistan and keep rozas (fast) during the holy month of Ramzan. They are
followers of Rajput saint Pir Pithora, whose shrine is in Multan. He himself
was a follower of Baha-ud-Din Zakariya.
that fails to surprise, consider this:
The temple of goddess Durga in Bhopalgarh near Jodhpur has a Muslim
priest for centuries.
Khan, the temple’s octogenarian head priest, said, “My family has been serving
as the head priest in this temple for the past 600 years. I am the 13th
generation and for the past 50 years, I am the head priest here. People from
all communities come here to offer prayers.”
the east, the shrine of Sayyed Darbar and Sankat Mochan Vir Hanuman Mandir atop
Moti Doongri in Jaipur is the epitome of Hindu-Muslim unity. Here, not even a
wall separates the two structures. It is hard to believe that these exist in
Alwar — a place synonymous with dairy farmer owner Pehlu Khan’s lynching by gau
rakshaks in April 2017. Devotees enter through the temple gate with folded
hands and as they proceed towards the dargah, they cover their heads and bend
to kiss the grave.
at both places come from a common thali and same musical instruments and sound
system are used for bhajans as well as qawwalis. The compound has flags in
saffron and green furling together, with a 30-metre Tricolour installed in
front of the hill.
can imagine that celebration of Krishna’s birth is held in a sacred place for
Muslims? A three-day Janmashtami
festival is held at the Dargah of Narhar, near Chirawa, in Jhunjhunu district.
“This festival is being held here for the past 300 to 400 years,”dargah
secretary Usman Ali Pathan claimed.
Jhunjhunu, Kayamkhani Muslims use
Rajput surnames such as Rathore. The community members consider themselves to
be descendants of Rajputs.
Mehrat, Kathat and Cheeta communities follow mixed identities and customs. They
take the pheras during weddings along with the nikaah and also follow Muslim
even in this time of communal discord there are rare yet reassuring gestures of
India's unique blend of social and communal harmony. Kota, the sangh's oldest
lab of Hindutva witnessed the incredible moment when Muslims in Kolida village
in Sikar district donated two2 bighas land from their abandoned graveyard to
construct a temple of local goddess Surjal Mata two years ago.
leaders look to implement Erdoğan’s model of progress
political parties in Pakistan have promised to introduce the policies of
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan to put the country on the path of
progress should they win the forthcoming general elections.
of major political parties like Pakistan Muslim League (Nawaz) and the
five-party religious alliance Muttehida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) are vowing at
public meetings to make the country an economic power by following in the
footsteps of Erdoğan if they win the elections slated for July 25.
PML (N) President Shehbaz Sharif, who has already been nominated as the party's
candidate for prime minister, posted a tweet with pictures of him and Erdoğan.
Siraj-ul-Haq, the vice president of MMA and chief of Jamat-e-Islami, one of the
country's two mainstream conservative parties, has promised to bring about a
"change" in the country in line with what Erdoğan has done in Turkey.
and Turkey are two great countries. Turkey has climbed the stairs of progress
just because they have a leader like Erdoğan. If Pakistanis elect leaders like
him, we can also make progress," Haq, who is also a senator, told an
election gathering at his home district Dir, which borders neighboring
who is the younger brother of the three-time premier Nawaz Sharif observed that
Turkey stands at the cusp of historic transition, which will determine its
future and solidify the gains made so far.
Erdoğan, who is a revered brother and a dear friend to me, has presided over
Turkey's transformation ever since the Justice and Development Party (AK Party)
took office in 2003," Shehbaz told Anadolu Agency.
dynamic leadership has been instrumental in the massive strides Turkey has made
over the years. Its solid progress on the path of economic development,
democratization and empowerment of the people is owed to the vision of
President Erdoğan and the single-minded focus on its translation into
reality," he maintained.
between Turkey and Pakistan, he noted, achieved unprecedented heights during
Erdoğan's term in office. "He invested his personal energy and commitment
to upgrading the bilateral ties," he added.
Erdoğan's slogan of social justice in all walks of life captures the spirit of
times and lays the foundation of the people's welfare. I believe that post-June
Turkey will be pivotal to shaping the regional and global dynamics," he
went on to say.
the Turkey's bold foreign policy, Shehbaz noted that Ankara's perpetual
solidarity and support for the oppressed – particularly the people of Kashmir,
Palestine and Rohingya – is "exemplary" to other nations.
wish President Erdoğan all the best in the June 24 elections and pray for his
success," he added.
prayer day was observed across Pakistan on Friday on the appeal of Mufti-i-Azam
(Grand Mufti) Pakistan, Maulana Rafi Usmani and other religious scholars to
express solidarity with President Erdoğan and his campaign for the presidential
during Friday sermons at Mosques in Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore, Peshawar,
Quetta and other cities particularly praised Erdoğan's pro-refugees policies.
way he [Erdoğan] has voiced [for] and practically helped the Syrian and
Rohingya refugees, is unmatchable. Not only Muslims, but the entire
pro-humanity community commend him for that," Usmani said during a Friday
sermon in Karachi.
entire world is looking to presidential elections in Turkey. Anti-Islam forces
have united against Erdoğan, and he needs our prayers at this stage," he
is a ray of hope for the oppressed people who stand alongside him. His
re-election simply means the victory of the oppressed across the world,"
court sentences hardline Muslim cleric to death for role in terror attacks
Indonesian court on Friday sentenced a hardline Muslim cleric to death for his
role in a series of terror attacks that were carried out in 2016 and 2017
killing more than a dozen people.
prosecution had sought the death penalty for Oman Rochman, who they accused of
planning a January 2016 attack -- killing four civilians and injuring more than
20 -- near a commercial centre in Jakarta, Efe news reported.
court also found Rochman guilty of inciting other attacks, including the bombing
of a bus station in Jakarta in 2017, in which three policemen and two suicide
attackers had died, and in a church on Borneo island in 2016 where a
two-year-old had died.
court said that Rochman indoctrinated people by disseminating propaganda literature
online as well as through audio sermons.
is considered one of the founders of the radical group Jamaah Ansharut Daulah
(JAD), formed in 2015 by several radical groups linked to the Islamic State
May, JAD members attacked several cities in the country leaving 30 dead and 50
who is already serving sentences for several convictions for terrorist
activities was guiding the group's activities from jail, according to the
January 2017, the US Department of State had classified JAD as a global
a Muslim-majority country, has been the victim of several terror attacks,
including one in 2002 on the tourist island of Bali, which killed 202.
190 Canadians have left their country to fight for the Islamic State and other
Islamic terrorist groups. And they might receive a warm welcome if they get
homesick. According to documents obtained by Global News in May, the
administration of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau believes these terrorists have
a “right to return” to Canada.
brief prepared for Canadian Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale reveals that
not only does the Trudeau administration believe these terrorists have a “right
to return,” but the government believes it must facilitate their re-assimilation
into Canadian society. The brief asserts that while returnees may have broken
laws by participating in international terrorism, they “may now be
disillusioned with the cause” and no longer pose a threat to society. The
document also maintains that because they may lack evidence to bring charges
against defectors, the government must “mitigate the threat through efforts
outside the justice system.”
the Orwellian-sounding “High Risk Returnee Interdepartmental Task Force.”
multidepartment bureaucratic behemoth partners with the Royal Canadian Mounted
Police in an aggressive campaign to “support” and “open up dialogue” with
returning terrorists and their families. Approximately 60 terrorists have
already returned to Canada, in addition to the 190 still fighting abroad in
places like Syria and Iraq.
was criticized for his stance on the issue when he recently compared the return
of Islamic State operatives to the settlement of Italian families in Montreal
after World War ii. It was recently revealed that his government also altered
intelligence documents that warned of the chemical weapons threat posed by
returning Islamic State members.
administration believes it is important to devote significant time, money and
political capital to coddle admittedly “high-risk” jihadists who have declared
war on Western values (including liberalism), to compare them to post-war
Italian families, to censor intelligence documents, to attract inevitable
controversy, and to subject his fellow Canadians to whatever these Islamic
extremists might choose to do to them—instead of just allowing the normal
procedure of arresting, trying and punishing deadly international terrorists to
proceed. This appears to be worth it for Trudeau to gain credibility as a progressive
who will stop at almost nothing.
would you describe 21st-century Canada? How would you describe a government so
willing to tolerate, accommodate and welcome the worst, most dangerous and most
violent of its residents? And how would you describe a population that elected
and tolerates or embraces such a government?
of heart. Canada’s current government and its people are faint of heart:
uncertain of their own purpose and cause, unwilling to stand up against evil,
unable to promote anything but extreme “tolerance.”
of heart” is how the Bible describes the moral condition of modern Canada and
other nations that descended from ancient Israel. Leviticus 26 prophesies of
the consequences Israel’s descendants will face for failing to believe, obey
and stand up for what is moral and right: God’s law. God specifically warns
that if the people indulge in rank immorality, terror will reign over them. God
also promises to break the pride of their power. The Canadian nation—having
lost its faith, its obedience, its purpose and its power—now finds itself
seeking to cajole its enemies into loving it. This method will fail and the
body count will rise, until they are fleeing even when no one pursues them
Leviticus 26 doesn’t end with these prophesied curses, which are now coming to
pass in Canada and elsewhere. God also promises that when the modern
descendants of Israel accept their punishment and turn to Him in a spirit of
humility, belief and obedience, He will respond with enormous blessings. To
learn more about Canada’s future, both immediate and long-term, read our free
book The United States and Britain in Prophecy, by Herbert W. Armstrong.
man charged with murdering eight people on a New York City bike path and
injuring many more spoke out in court Friday over a prosecutor’s objection,
invoking “Allah” and defending the Islamic State.
Saipov, 30, raised his hand to speak immediately after U.S. District Judge
Vernon S. Broderick set an Oct. 7, 2019 date for the Uzbek immigrant’s trial.
he had pleaded not guilty through his lawyer to the latest indictment in the
Oct. 31 truck attack near the World Trade Center. A prosecutor said the Justice
Department will decide by the end of the summer whether to seek the death
penalty against Saipov, who lived in Paterson, New Jersey, before the attack.
through an interpreter for about 10 minutes, Saipov said the decisions of a
U.S. court were unimportant to him. He said he cared about “Allah” and the holy
war being waged by the Islamic State.
the prompting of Assistant U.S. Attorney Amanda Houle, Broderick interrupted
Saipov to read him his rights, including that anything he said in court could
be used against him.
understand you, but I’m not worried about that at all,” Saipov said.
the Islamic State is not fighting for land, like some say, or like some say,
for oil. They have one purpose, and they’re fighting to impose Sharia (Islamic
law) on earth,” he said.
Saipov spoke more, Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Beaty interrupted him to
object that the judge was letting Saipov make the kind of statement publicly
that special restrictions placed on him in prison would otherwise prevent,
including discussing “terrorist propaganda.”
judge said he believed Saipov was nearing the end of his remarks and let him
finish before warning him that he was unlikely to let him speak out in court
again in a similar manner. Saipov, though, would be given a chance to testify
if his case proceeds to trial and, if convicted, could speak at sentencing.
thanked the judge for letting him speak but added at one point: “I don’t accept
this as my judge.”
had been seeking an April 2019 trial date. Houle said the families of the dead
and the dozens who were injured deserve a “prompt and firm trial date.”
victims here are anxious now when that trial is going to be,” she said. “The
public deserves a speedy trial, and the surviving victims deserve to know when
that trial is going to be.”
lawyers have said the government should accept a guilty plea and a sentence of
life in prison without parole to provide victims’ families and the public with
Patton, a lawyer for Saipov, said he would need extra time to make legal
challenges to the charges if death is sought. He also cited the difficulty of
gathering information for the defense case overseas and in the United States.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday attacked the Iranian regime,
describing it as “criminal” who does not respect the people’s rights.
a series of tweets, Secretary Pompeo criticized the regime financial support
for terrorist groups while the Iranian citizens are living in poverty.
one of the tweets he pointed to the human rights situation in the Islamic
Republic, saying thousands are thrown in jails during last January protests,
while more than 30 females were imprisoned for protesting against wearing the
group of senior Republican lawmakers in US Congress have asked the
administration of President Donald Trump to add Iran back on the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF)'s blacklist and reverse one of the key agreements that
paved the way for the 2015 nuclear deal between the Islamic Republic and major
Rob Portman and Representative Ed Royce wrote a letter to Treasury Secretary
Steven Mnuchin on Thursday, asking him to raise the issue during the
Paris-based anti-money laundry and terror financing organization's upcoming
session next week in the French capital.
making their case, Portman and Royce-- chair of the Senate Permanent
Subcommittee on Investigations and chair of the House Foreign Affairs
Committee, respectively-- referred to a recent congressional report that
claimed then-President Barack Obama tried "to give Iran access to the US
financial system" to facilitate the deal, known as the Joint Comprehensive
Plan of Action (JCPOA).
upcoming FATF session is particularly important following the recent release of
the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations' report exposing new
details about the previous administration's efforts to give Iran access to the
US financial system, including through consideration of a general license for
the ‘conversion of two non-USD currencies through the limited use of the USD as
an intermediate currency,'" the lawmakers wrote in the letter.
the push to save its deeply flawed nuclear deal, the Obama administration
unwisely backed a wide range of economic relief for Iran—including through the
FATF," the lawmakers further noted. "In June 2016, the administration
supported the FATF’s decision to suspend ‘counter-measures' against Iran for
one year, following Tehran's submission of an Action Plan to the FATF to
address deficiencies in its anti-money laundering/counter-terrorist financing
Trump's withdrawal from the JCPOA in May and his pledge to punish foreign
companies that do business with Iran, the FATF is continuing to lift
restrictions on Iran every six months since the implementation of the nuclear
deal in January 2016.
its plenary session in February, however, the anti-money laundering group gave
in to US pressure and decided to maintain Iran's status as a high-risk jurisdiction
for money laundering.
two lawmakers said the FATF needed to take further action against Iran because
Tehran was providing financial support for Lebanese and Palestinian resistance
movements, Hezbollah and Hamas, which are both regarded as terror groups by the
to Portman and Royce, Iran did so by designating these groups as
"legitimate popular resistance against colonial domination and foreign
time to recognize that Iran has failed to take the necessary steps—despite its
pledges two years ago—to be removed from the list of FATF’s high-risk and
non-cooperative jurisdictions," the letter read. "The United States
should now utilize its influence within the FATF to reimpose countermeasures
against Iran and protect the international financial system."
parliament has adopted new amendments proposed by the government to the
country’s Anti-Money Laundering (AML) law as part of efforts to improve
connections to the international banking and trade system.
upcoming FATF session is expected to issue a verdict on international
transactions and business relationships involving Iran.
of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said on Wednesday that
Iran would not submit to the conventions that undermine the nation’s
Leader touched on global agreements purportedly aimed at fighting terrorism and
money laundering, saying the signatories of those conventions have had no role
in creating them.
global powers prepare these conventions based on their own interests and
benefits and then their submissive and compliant allies enact them in their
countries,” Ayatollah Khamenei told a group of lawmakers in Tehran.
Launches Online Magazine, Says 2018 Will Be Tough For Security Forces
terror outfit Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), responsible for the 26/11 Mumbai attacks,
has scaled up its propaganda in the Valley by launching its online magazine and
stating that the year 2018 will be “tough for Indian army and other
occupational forces in Kashmir”.
first issue of LeT’s Kashmir-specific online magazine “Wyeth” carried an
interview of terror outfit’s spokesperson Dr Abdullah Ghaznawi and other
propaganda material like a list of attacks in 2017 where its cadres were
the magazine, the terror outfit says that it was “helping the “common man’s
struggle” in Kashmir.
a question on the LeT being a “proxy” of the Pakistan army, Ghaznawi says: “LeT
is the common man’s struggle. It represents true aspirations of J&K people
goes on to state that “proxy” is an “obsolete” term when it comes to the
Pakistan army and states that other countries with “less divine faith” and
“high military numbers” use proxies, but the Pakistani army can deal with any
issue which comes to them. He adds that Pakistan has “moral and legal”
obligation to support the “struggle” in Kashmir, which is an “unfinished”
agenda of partition.
fringe terror groups (a possible reference to group led by former Hizbul
commander Zakir Musa which has claimed affiliation with al Qaeda), he says: “We
have been distributing literature based on Quran and Hadith to show these groups
actually are misled (sic) people and helping the Indian cause.”
to LeT’s claims, an army officer deployed in the Valley says: “Dealing with
this kind of online propaganda and building a counter-narrative is necessary to
bring normalcy in the Valley” .
Chaudhary, a retired IPS officer who served as former Intelligence Bureau
special director and dealt with Kashmir issue while in service, says: “LeT has
always been tech-savvy outfit. It is trying to rope more local boys into
militancy and these prospective recruits are proficient in use of social media.
Therefore, an online magazine is best way to reach out to them in the Valley”.
The head of Islamic State Jammu and Kashmir (ISJK) along with three other
militants and a policeman and a civilian were killed in a fierce gunfight in
south Kashmir's Anantnag district of Jammu and Kashmir on Friday. Director
General of Police (DGP) S P Vaid said security forces laid siege around village
Nowshahar Khiram in Srigufwara in Anantnag district early this morning after
receiving information that a group of four militants was hiding there.
the army, police and CRPF men laid siege around the area and were conducting
house to house searches, they came under fire from militants hiding in a two-storey
house. The security personnel returned the fire, triggering an encounter.
the ensuing encounter that continued till late afternoon, four militants, house
owner Mohammad Yousuf Rather and a policeman Ashiq Hussain were killed. The
house owner's wife and three security personnel were also injured in the
gunfight and have been hospitalised.
police official said the deceased militants belonged to ISJK and were involved
in att police and security forces. The deceased militants were identified as
Dawood Ahmad Sofi of HMT Srinagar, Majid Manzoor Dar of Talangam Pulwama, Aadil
Rehman Bhat of Bijbehara, Anantnag and Mohammad Ashraf Itoo of Hatigam
police official said 33-year-old Dawood was head of the ISJK. "Dawood was
a stone pelter and joined militancy few years back. He was initially affiliated
with Tehrek-ul-Mujahideen outfit but later he and other members of the outfit
aligned with ISIS ideology and renamed the group ISJK," the official said.
said all four militants killed in today's encounter were influenced by ISIS
ideology. "They were involved in attacks on police and rifle snatching.
After every attack, they used to claim it on IS website". Sources said NSG
commandos also participated in the operation. "It was first participation
in any anti-militancy operation in the Valley".
police official said there is no organised infrastructure of ISIS in the State.
He, however, said some have been influenced by the ISIS and pan-Islamic
ideology. Besides recovery of arms and ammunition from the encounter site, some
incriminating material was also seized, the official said.
locals of the area took to roads while the encounter was going on and attempted
to march towards the encounter site. However, the security personnel resorted
to baton charge and fired pellets and bullets to disperse the mob, who pelted
stones on them. About a dozen people sustained injuries in the security forces
action. Meanwhile, clashes broke out in HMT area in outskirts of Srinagar after
news spread that a militant of the area (Dawood) was trapped in the encounter
in south Kashmir.
youth of the area fought pitched battles with police and CRPF men throughout
the day. Bodies of the militants were handed over to their family members in
the evening by police after completion of medico-legal formalities.
Delhi: Four militants reportedly affiliated to the Islamic State Jammu and
Kashmir (ISJK) and a policeman were killed on Friday during an encounter
between the terrorists and security forces in Anantnag district of Jammu and
those killed in the encounter was Dawood Sofi, resident of HMT, Srinagar. As
per the army, Sofi, an A++ category militant, was the chief of ISJK and had
joined militancy in August 2016. With one down, the list of top militants on
Army radar has come down to 20. Here are the names and the organizations they
Ashraf Khan or Ashraf Moulvi: A resident of Kokernag, Anantnag, Ashraf is an A+
category militant and had joined militancy in September 2016.
Ahmad Dar or Altaf Kachroo: Altaf, an A++ category militant, is a resident of
Haoora, Kulgam. He rose through the outfit's ranks and is the divisional
commander in South Kashmir. Altaf had joined militancy in 2006.
Abbas Sheikh: Sheikh, a resident of Kaimuh, Kulgam joined the militant
organisation in March 2015. The army lists him as an A+ category miltant.
Majeed Ganai: A resident of Such, Kulgam, Ganai joined in December 2015 and is
listed as A++ militant.
Mir: Mir is the district commander of the outfit in Pulwama. A resident of
Malangpur, Pulwama, he is an A category militant who had joined in 2014.
– ul – Islam: A resident of Sugan, Shopian, he is an A++ category militant who
joined in 2015.
Ahmad Naikoo: A resident of Tokun, Awantipur, Naikoo is the chief commander of
the outfit in Kashmir who joined in 2012. He has been listed as an A++ category
Ahmad Dar or Haroon: A resident of Dogirpur, Awantipur, he is an A category
militant who joined in October 2014.
Fayaz Lone: A resident of Tral, Awantipur, Lone joined in 2016 and falls under
Wani: He is said to be an AMU research scholar. A resident of Kupwara, he is B
category militant who joined militancy earlier this year in January.
Ashraf Sehrai: The son of Tehreek-e-Hurriyat Chairman Ashraf Sehrai, he is a
category B militant who joined in March this year.
Muslim: He is a resident of Pakistan who operates in Hajan. He is said to have
joined in January last year and is an A+ category foreign militant.
Zargam or Mohd Bhai: A resident of Pakistan who, like Abu Muslim, operates in
Hajan. A foreign terrorist in the A+ category, he joined in 2015.
Ahmad Malik: Known as Dada, he is a resident of Malikpura, Bijbiara, Anantag
and is an A category militant. He is said to have joined in December 2016 and
is the outfit’s district commander in Anantnag.
Ahmad Dar: He is the outfit’s district commander in Kulgam. A resident of
Tengpora, Kulgam. He is A+ category militant who joined in September 2016.
Naveed Jad: A resident of Pakistan, he operates in Pulwama. A foreign terrorist
in the A+ category, he is said to have joined militancy in 2012.
Ahmad Dar: A resident of Sethargun, Pulwama, Dar is an A category militant who
joined in July 2015.
Ahmad Mir: A resident of Chak Cholan, Shopian, Mir is a category A++ militant
who joined in June 2014.
Ahmad Wani: A resident of Karimabad, Pulwama, he joined in June 2017.
Ahmad Khan: A resident of Midur, Awantipur, he joined in January 2018.
DELHI: Twenty-one top terrorists are now on the "hit list" of
security forces after Islamic State of Jammu and Kashmir (ISJK) chief Dawood
Ahmed Salafi and three of his aides were gunned down + in a shootout at
Nowshera village in south Kashmir on Friday.
bodies of Dawood Ahmad Sofi (known also as Salafi and Burhan), the chief of
ISIS in J&K and involved in several terror attacks on policemen, snatching
of weapons, stone-pelting cases, and three others were retrieved from the site
encounter, considered as a major success by the security forces, was the first
combat operation after the imposition of governor's rule in J&K.
establishment sources said major operations were now underway to target 21
"most wanted terrorists" -11 from Hizbul Mujahideen, seven from
Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), two from Jaish-e-Muhammed (JeM) and one from Ansar
Ghazwat ul-Hind (AGH).
focus of intelligence-gathering and counter-insurgency operations is mainly on
these 21 terrorists, six of whom are placed in the highest category of 'A++'
based on the number of people they have killed, their control over areas, their
propaganda impact and longevity," said a source.
these 21 can be eliminated, matters will considerably cool down and throw the
terrorists' ranks into disarray... it takes time for the next set of terror
leadership to come up and establish itself. Once a terrorist is categorized as
A++, carrying a reward of Rs 12 lakh, his days are generally numbered, the
reverse count for his elimination begins," he added.
six A++ terrorists in the list comprise four from Hizb - Riyaz Ahmad Naikoo
(chief operational commander in the Kashmir Valley), Altaf Ahmad Dar (division
commander in south Kashmir), Umar Majeed Ganai (a resident of Hawoora, Kulgam)
and Zeenat-ul-Islam (Sugan, Shopian). The other two are Mustaq Ahmad Mir (Chak
Cholan, Shopian) from LeT and AGH commander Zakir Rashid Bhat (Tral).
of the LeT terrorists on the hit list are from Pakistan - Abu Muslim, Abu
Zargam and Mohammed Naveed Jad - all of them in the A+ category. While the
first two operate in the Hajan area, the third is active in Pulwama.
As Centre is set to complete counting the Indian citizens living in Assam by
June-end and list their names in the National Register of Citizens (NRC) and
exclude illegal settlers from Bangladesh, five UN special rapporteurs have
jointly have written to Union minister of external affairs Sushma Swaraj and
reminded her of India’s obligation to adhere to international human rights
norms and standards against racial discrimination.
rapporteurs on minority issues, contemporary forms of racism, promotion and
protection of the right to freedom of opinion and on freedom of religion or
belief in their letter stated, “There is no official policy outlining the
implications for those who will be excluded from the final NRC. It is reported
that they will be treated as foreigners and that their citizenship rights may
be revoked in the absence of a prior trial. They may subsequently be asked to
prove their citizenship before so-called Foreigners’ Tribunals.”
stated that NRC update has generated increased anxiety and concerns among the
Bengali Muslim minority in Assam, “who have long been discriminated against due
to their perceived status as foreigners, despite possessing the necessary
documents to prove their citizenship.”
acknowledging the fact that process of updating the NRC of 1951 is purely aimed
at listing Indian citizens, the rapporteurs stated that local authorities in
Assam are deemed to be particularly hostile towards Muslims and people of
Bengali descent. They alleged that the local authorities “may manipulate the
verification system in an attempt to exclude many genuine Indian citizens from
the updated NRC.”
said that although the Bengali origin Muslims in Assam descend from peasant
workers brought from the former Bengal and East Bengal starting in the 19th
century under colonial rule, they have long been portrayed as irregular
migrants and as a result, Bengali Muslims have historically been the target of
various human rights violations, including forced displacement, arbitrary
expulsions and killings.
however, stated later in the letter that they do not wish to prejudge the
accuracy of these allegations, but at the same time expressed serious concern
that members of the Bengali Muslim minority in Assam have experienced
discrimination in access to and enjoyment of citizenship status on the basis of
their ethnic and religious minority status.
Hizb militants join stone-pelters to attack security forces in Tral
Terrorists in the guise of stone-pelters opened fire and hurled a hand grenade
on security forces in Tral town on Friday afternoon. Nine security personnel,
including four cops, were injured in the attack.
terror outfit Hizbul Mujahideen claimed responsibility for the attack.
According to a local news agency, Hizb’s operational spokesperson Burhanuddin
said the attack was carried out on the forces “when they were on their way to
spokesman SP Manoj Panditha said terrorists lobbed a hand grenade and followed
it up by firing on security forces when they were busy with law-and-order
duties on Tral Road, resulting in injuries to the nine security personnel. He
said security forces exercised maximum restraint even after being attacked by
the terrorists in order to prevent any civilian casualties.
after pulling out of an alliance with the PDP in Jammu and Kashmir in “larger
national interest”, the BJP on Friday targeted the opposition Congress and
junked the human rights argument from certain quarters against the government’s
“muscular policy” in Kashmir.
Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad targeted the Congress over remarks of party
leaders on Kashmir, senior minister Arun Jaitley defended the government’s
policy in Kashmir, suggesting it was to “save the Human Rights of every Indian
– be it a tribal or a Kashmiri” from terrorists.
is paramount to protect India’s sovereignty and the right to life of its
citizens. At times we get caught in the idioms that we create. One such phrase
is ‘muscular policy in Kashmir’. To deal with a killer is also a law and order
issue. It can’t wait a political solution… A terrorist who refuses to surrender
and refuses a ceasefire offer has to be dealt with as anybody taking law in his
own hand. This is not ‘muscular’. It is the rule of law,” Jaitley said in an
article posted on the BJP website declaring that “our policy has to be ‘Save
the Human Rights of every Indian – be it a tribal or a Kashmiri’ from
BJP leader went on to virtually suggest that rights champions cautioning
against the muscular policy were the “over-ground face of the underground”.
“These human right organisations are an over-ground face of the underground. In
the system that they believe in, there is no place for life, liberty, equality
and free speech. In fact, there is no space for election or Parliamentary
democracy,” Jaitley said, lamenting that opposition parties like Congress, AAP
and TMC were lending support to these groups.
though the Congress Party historically and ideologically would have been
opposed to these groups, they have earned a sympathy in Rahul Gandhi’s heart.
He had no qualms about joining those who raised subversive slogans at JNU and
Hyderabad. With this initial success, the others amongst the so called federal
front have forgotten the dangers of these groups to India and Indian democracy.
The political adventurists in parties like AAP, TMC and the like only look for
a political opportunity in these groups,” Jaitley said, underlining the
violence unleashed by militants in the Kashmir valley.
the past three years the terrorists up their activities in the months of April,
May and June so that the economic lifeline of the valley suffers in the tourism
season. They terrorise courts; they kill editors; they kill innocent citizens
and they don’t allow any alternate religion to be practised. Who is threatening
the human rights of the citizens of Kashmir? It is obvious that it is the
terrorists and the Jehadis who have done it,” Jaitley wrote, slamming the human
rights champions for not speaking out against this.
also claimed that Maoists have “started coordinating with the Jehadis and
separatists notwithstanding their ideological dissimilarity”. “The only thing
common between them was violence, overthrow of the constitutional order and
secessionism i.e. the breakup of India. Recent evidence suggest that they are
trying to rope in some misguided dalit activists into their fold. This became
publically apparent after the ‘Tukde Tukde’ agitation in the Jawaharlal Nehru
University and the events which followed in Hyderabad thereafter,” Jaitley
BJP also came down heavily on senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad for his
remarks alleging that Army operations kill more civilians than terrorists in
Kashmir. Addressing mediapersons at BJP headquarters, Prasad alleged that
Azad’s observations had been endorsed by organisations like Lashkar-e-Toiba. “These
organisations and their patrons in Pakistan would be the happiest to hear such
statements of Congress leaders,” Prasad said, alleging that senior Congress
leaders have gone to the extent of seeking to compromise the courage and
respect for the Armed forces due to their pathological hatred of Prime Minister
Narendra Modi and the BJP.
Azad’s remarks “irresponsible, shameful and regrettable”, Prasad slammed him
for dubbing the Defence Minister’s and Army Chief’s visits to meet the family
of Aurangzeb a drama. “Is paying homage to an Army jawan who sacrificed his
life for the country a drama? Has Congress declined to that low a level?”
claimed that the number of terrorists killed in Jammu and Kashmir was 72 in
2012, 67 in 2013 (both in UPA rule), 110 in 2014, 108 in 2015, 150 in 2016, 217
in 2017 and 75 till May this year. “This is the story of efforts made during
UPA and NDA regimes to fight terrorism in J&K,” Prasad said.
body mulls help of fatwa to curb power theft
Agitated over unrelenting power theft across the country, a parliamentary body
has come up with a novel idea to get religious decrees (fatwas) issued against
the menace so people could stop indulging in such practices.
out of the blue proposal was mooted by a sub-committee of the Standing
Committee on Power with Senator Nauman Wazir Khattak in the chair. The
committee said it would be helpful to sensitise the people about power theft
through fatwas with a warning of consequences of the crime in the life and the
hereafter, according to the report.
their briefing, the power division officials told the Senate sub-committee
members that distribution companies, discos, were suffering line losses worth
about 17 per cent due to the electricity theft.
said the highest losses were incurred by Peshawar Electric Supply Company
(PESCO) with 37.4pc, Sukkur Electric Supply Company (SEPCO) with 36.5pc and
Hyderabad Electric Supply Company with 30.1pc.
was also briefed during the meeting that power theft and technical cost the
government Rs 56 billion between July 2017 and May 2018.
Jun 22: Former Pakistan President General (Retired) Pervez Musharraf has
resigned as the chairman of the All Pakistan Muslim League (APML).
president Dr. Mohammad Amjad said Musharraf has sent his resignation letter to
the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP).
Amjad was quoted by the Dawn, as saying that Musharraf had resigned from APML
on June 18 in the wake of the Peshawar High Court (PHC) disqualifying him from
politics for life.
who has been out of Pakistan since March 2016 and now lives in Dubai, had filed
a plea in the Pakistan Supreme Court in 2016 against the 2013 high court
to journalists via a video link in Dubai, Musharraf said, “The apex order
barring the authorities from arresting me till my appearance before the august
court has forced me to rethink my plans about my return. There will be no
benefit of my return to the country if I am arrested just after my appearance
before the court.”
entire world knows that I am not a coward, but now, I will wait for an
appropriate time to return,” he added.
Tuesday, the ECP rejected Musharraf’s nomination papers for NA-1 Chitral seat,
as the former president general failed to appear before the Pakistan Supreme
Court. The apex court thereafter withdrew Musharraf’s conditional approval to
file the nomination papers for the July 25 general elections.
Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar had directed the former military ruler
to return to Pakistan and appear before the court by afternoon on June 14, but
he failed to turn up.
APML’s Central Executive Committee has elected Dr. Amjad as the new chief of
the party, while Mehreen Malik Adam will serve as the secretary general of
APML. Musharraf will continue to be the supreme leader of the party.
founded APML in 2010. However, he was barred from contesting in the 2013
general elections due to several cases registered against him.
DELHI: Over 300 Sikh pilgrims from India have been granted visas and are
visiting Pakistan to observe the death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh in
Lahore, the Pakistan High Commission said here on Friday.
special train arranged by the Pakistan Railways carried the pilgrims from
Attari to Pakistan on June 21," it said in a statement.
visas issued by the High Commission are in addition to the ones issued to Sikh
pilgrims participating in the event from other countries, it said.
the framework of the Pakistan-India Protocol on Visits to Religious Shrines of
1974, a large number of Sikh yatrees from India visit Pakistan to observe
various religious festivals and occasions every year.
the High Commission of Pakistan in New Delhi has issued visas to over 300 Sikh
pilgrims from India to observe the death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh
at Gurdwara Dera Sahib, Lahore, from June 21-30," the High Commission said.
Ranjit Singh was a Sikh leader of a kingdom, which ruled the northwest Indian
subcontinent in the early half of the 19th century. He died in Lahore on June
memorial, designed combining Hindu, Islamic, and Sikh motifs, is located
adjacent the Lahore Fort and Badshahi Mosque, as well the Gurdwara Dera Sahib.
year pilgrims flock to his memorial to pay respect.
issuance of pilgrimage visas is in line with the government of Pakistan's
efforts for promoting visit to religious shrines and people-to-people
interactions. It also reflects the commitment of the government of Pakistan to
faithfully implement the bilateral Protocol on Visits to Religious
Shrines," the statement said.
government of Pakistan remains committed to preserving sacred religious places
and providing all possible facilitation for the visiting pilgrims of all
faiths," it added.
another batch of Sikh pilgrims from India returned from Pakistan after
observing the martyrdom day of Guru Arjun Dev Ji from June 8-17, the High
A. Khan | Kalbe Ali
Pakistan Peoples Party chairman Bilawal Bhutto-Zardari has more assets in the
United Arab Emirates than in Pakistan and has extended over Rs1.24 billion loan
to four companies from the money he inherited from his mother and former prime
minister Benazir Bhutto after her assassination.
total value of his shares in the four companies forms only a small fraction of
the amount he has lent to them.
perusal of his statement of assets submitted with his nomination papers shows
that he has lent Rs777.75 million to Tempo Global Growth and has Rs87,513
shares of the company.
huge chunk of Rs273.63 million has been provided as loan to Tempo Global Gains
— apparently a sister organisation of Tempo Global Growth. Mr Bhutto-Zardari
owns 112 shares of Tempo Global Gains.
Radiant Investment Services, where his investment in 68 shares has been
mentioned as Rs2.77 million, has been given a loan of Rs125.58 million. Another
company Royale Properties International has been given a Rs68.55 million loan.
He holds 340 shares of the company valuing Rs87,514.
also lent Rs47.67 million to Victory Enterprises, UK. He owns four company
shares worth Rs526.
he has shares in two villas in Dubai — one of which is situated in Jumairah —
but their value has not been mentioned in the statement.
to his documents, he owns seven watches, 10 sets of jewellery and ornaments,
nine sets of cufflinks, and two pet dogs gifted to him by his mother though he
has not mentioned cost or value of the items.
Bhutto-Zardari has declared in his nomination papers that he holds a resident
visa of the UAE granted to him by the Ministry of Presidential Affairs, the
paternal aunt Faryal Talpur and her spouse Mir Munawar Ali Talpur also have UAE
Iqama, as she has Rs6.50 million business ventures in Sharjah and Mr Talpur has
invested around Rs300,000 in Dubai.
the documents submitted to the Election Commission of Pakistan, Mrs Talpur declared
that her net assets were valued at Rs323.17 million including arms and
ammunition worth Rs283,000.
has a house in F-8 sector of Islamabad and two houses in Karachi. She also owns
one plot each in Gwadar, Lahore and Rawalpindi, and more than 320 acres of
agricultural land in Tando Allayar, Sanghar, Nawabshah and Mirpurkhas
Talpur paid Rs3.83 million agricultural income tax in the financial year
closing on June 30, 2017.
has investments in two rice mills, Asif Apartments, Land Mark, Zardari Group
and fuel stations with a total worth of Rs32.92 million. She has three vehicles
valued at Rs11.61 million, while her cash holding is more than Rs147.30
the same time, she has given over Rs30.69 loan against her credit including a
personal loan of Rs4.50 million obtained in Dubai.
net worth of Mr Talpur, who is a candidate himself for the national assembly
seat from Mirpurkhas, is Rs45.07 million — far less than that of his wife.
statement of assets also shows that their daughter, Ayesha Talpur, has more
cash and properties than her father. She has Rs128.28 million assets while her
younger sister, Fatima Talpur, has cash and owns land worth Rs15.63 million.
Talpur has one ancestral house in Kot Ghulam Mohammad and a plot in Lahore
besides agricultural land holdings in Mirpurkhas and Hyderabad. He holds arms
and ammunitions worth Rs1.24 million. His farm animals are valued at Rs980,000
and he has three vehicles worth Rs24.45 million.
keeps around Rs2.15 million cash in hand whereas he has Rs1.89 million in his
eight bank accounts besides prize bonds worth Rs4 million.
is no loan or financial liability on Mr Talpur as per his documents.
net assets of Dr Azra Fazal, who is wife of senior bureaucrat Dr Fazalullah
Pechuho and elder sister of PPP chairman Asif Ali Zardari, has reached Rs99.10
million with an increase of Rs9 million in one year.
documents Dr Azra submitted to the ECP show that she has no stakes outside
Pakistan nor does she receive any remittance from abroad. She stated she’s MBBS
(MCPS), chancellor of SZABIST, an agriculturalist and a politician.
Azra has significant land and residential plots in Karachi and Islamabad as
well as cash holdings. She also owns a tractor valued at Rs1.65 million.
has Rs14.77 millioncash in hand, prize bonds worth Rs8 million and Rs6.48
million in several banks including Rs4,609 in Sindh Bank.
from furniture and other articles of personal use including a generator worth
Rs2.18 million she has 40-tola gold jewellery.
Azra has invested Rs3.56 million in apparently family businesses Asif
Apartments and Land Mark. She has made Rs23.93 million capital investment in
has a house in DHA Karachi, an under-construction house in Islamabad, a plot in
Gwadar, four-acre industrial plot in Nawabshah, while she has also made
payments for two plots in DHA Karachi and one in Islamabad.
has more than 263-acre agricultural land at seven different areas of Shaheed
Benazirabad and Sanghar, giving her an income of Rs8.92 million.
paid Rs1.30 million agricultural income tax in the fiscal year 2016-17. Her
income from other sources was Rs15.70 million in the same year when she paid
Rs480,905 income tax.
Pechuho, too, has no interests in any other country. His net worth is Rs28.39
million, including four vehicles worth more than Rs90 million.
has cash in hand, bank balance and prize bonds valued at around Rs7 million.
The Islamabad High Court (IHC) on Friday directed Inter Services Intelligence
(ISI) to clear the portion of Khayaban-i-Suharwardy in front of its headquarters
in a week.
a petition against the encroachment on public land, Justice Shaukat Aziz
Siddiqui observed that “neither any resolution has been passed by the Capital
Development Authority (CDA) Board nor any formal permission accorded” to allow
the spy agency to block the main road for security purposes.
Joint Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Mohammad Younus Khan conceded that due to
security reasons the road as well as a 40 kanal greenbelt had been blocked.
spy agency closed the road a few years ago when terrorists were targeting
important security installations.
to the defence ministry official, there were enormous threats to the
headquarters of the spy agency.
a small portion of Khayaban-i-Suharwardy was closed and traffic diverted to
Kashmir Highway as a part of preventive measures.
Siddiqui remarked that there was no reason to block the public passage that too
against the master as well as sector plans.
some security measures are required to be taken, the intelligence agency may
take within its own territorial boundaries and not on the public place
belonging to citizens.”
otherwise it is in the interest of the prestigious institution to remove the
encroachment immediately, the court stated, adding the order should be executed
“in a week till June 29, 2018, and in case order is executed by the enforcement
directorate of CDA, same may infringe the reputation of the institution and
bring a bad name to the country".
March 14, the Supreme Court while taking notice of encroachments around two
hotels had directed the CDA to submit a report on its anti-encroachment drives.
roads in the capital have been blocked by a number of institutions in the name
of security. The Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) has blocked Mauve Area in
G-9/4. Residents also face difficulty using one of the pedestrian bridges on
Siddiqui also directed the CDA to ensure that other parts of the city that had
been encroached by other departments or agencies were cleared.
court also directed the CDA to ensure that all media houses operating in
residential areas moved out and stopped non-conforming use of premises failing
which action may be initiated against them in accordance with the CDA law and
regulations which include sealing and cancellation of the leases.
CDA informed the court that contrary to the regulations related to
non-conforming use, ARY, Bol and some other television channels were operating
in residential units.
court also directed the Bol TV management to shift its Islamabad bureau from
the residential unit to some commercial space.
for Bol Raja Rizwan Abbasi argued that since shifting of the TV station was a
laborious job, reasonable time may be granted to the management.
Justice Siddiqui observed: “This is well within the knowledge of administration
of Bol channel that non-conforming use is not permissible and no media house or
studio can be established in the residential area.”
order stated that the judgment passed by the court had already been upheld by
the Supreme Court but the administration of TV channels had still failed to
comply with it.
legal adviser Kashif Ali Malik informed the court that notices had been served
on the management of TV channels in 2015.
Siddiqui ordered that in case the management of TV channels would not shift
their operations from the residential areas, the “enforcement directorate of
the CDA with the aid of the Islamabad Capital Territory administration and
police shall execute the order passed by this court".
fake Facebook post screenshot doctored to pose as Dawn.com surfaced on social
media on Thursday.
fake post attempts to mislead the public and stakeholders by suggesting that
Afghanistan accepted the Durand Line as an official border. It presented an
image of Afghan National Security Adviser Hanif Atmar and Chief of Army Staff
Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa and falsely claims this was discussed in a meeting.
doctored image, which copies elements of Dawn's social media and Facebook
layout, led to the Afghan National Security Council (NSC) issuing a press
release that mistakenly assumed the post was legitimate.
order to ensure authorities and the public do not fall prey to such mischievous
machinations in future, the following points detail how it can be identified
that the Facebook post is fake.
typical Facebook post has a time stamp and a privacy icon below the publisher's
doctored image has "3 Std." written where the time stamp is located,
while Facebook's standard format is 34 mins, 2 hrs, and Friday at 7:29pm for
minutes, hours and days.
Position of the 'like' thumb icon
places the 'like' thumb icon below posts. In the fake post, the thumb icon is
floating at the top right near the menu button. It is also not correctly
aligned with the menu button.
Stylistical differences with Dawn
Facebook caption of the fake post introduces General Bajwa as "Pakistan's
Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa". A Pakistani publication does
not need to tell its readers that General Bajwa is Pakistan's army chief. Dawn,
as shown in the lede of this very story, introduces General Bajwa as
"Chief of Army Staff Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa". This may be verified in
contraction for Chief of Army Staff is COAS, and not CoAS — unlike how it's
done in the fake post.
caption also fails to capitalise the line in Durand Line which is not Dawn
fake post ends with an exclamation mark, which as policy, Dawn does not use in
hard news posts.
of the above can be verified by browsing Dawn.com stories and Facebook page
is not the first attempt to mislead the public by circulating fake news using
January to April, 2017 Dawn.com came under multiple cyber attacks where
attempts were made to hack and hijack its official social media accounts and
the accounts of its staff. The attempts failed. The statement released at the
speech and content that is blasphemous, indecent, prohibited, illegal, or
likely to arouse societal discord or disturb tranquility will not be
tolerated,” the statement said.
and malicious groups attempt to damage reputations and stir up virulent and
negative campaigns to serve their agenda... Dawn had been a target of such
online campaigns in the past, too.
KHAN: Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) President and Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl
(JUI-F) chief Fazlur Rehman will face a tough challenge in Dera Ismail Khan’s
(DI Khan) NA-38 and NA-39 constituencies against Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf’s
(PTI) young leader Ali Amin Gandapur and Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) Faisal
Khan Kundi, while former Senator Waqar Ahmed Khan is also in the run.
major contest for two National Assembly (NA) and five Peshawar Assembly seats
from DI Khan is expected during the upcoming general elections among Fazlur
Rehman, Faisal Karim Kundi, Ali Amin Gandapur and Waqar Ahmed Khan.
papers of as many as 120 candidates from various political parties and
independents have so far been accepted for NA-38 and NA-39, and five provincial
seats from the district, the provincial election commissioner informed.
in 1953, Fazl is the son of Mufti Mahmud, the man who won an election against
PPP leader Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto in 1970 from DI Khan.
used his reputation as a religious leader to get himself elected several times
to the National Assembly from DI Khan between 1988 to 2018. He remained leader
of the opposition in NA from 2004 to 2007. In 2008, Fazl lost the NA seat while
contesting on MMA ticket from NA-24 DI Khan.
leader Faisal Karim Kundi, who had served as deputy speaker of National
Assembly from 2008 to 2013, was elected to NA in 2008 general polls.
ran for the seat from NA-24 DI Khan as an independent candidate in 2013 but
Ali Amin Gandapur, who was a member of the 10th Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Assembly,
was contesting for NA seat for the first time in 2018 against strong candidates
pitched by PPP and MMA.
Waqar Ahmed Khan was mulling contesting the general elections from NA-38 and 39
DI Khan in the upcoming general elections as an independent candidate.
Christians in Pakistan have expressed serious reservations over the
‘surprising’ decision of all mainstream political parties to put members of the
Hindu community on top priority of their lists for reserved minority seats in
the national and provincial legislatures despite the Hindus “being much lesser in
number than Christians” in the country.
dismay over the ‘shocking’ development, community leaders said not a single
Christian was nominated for general elections on any national or provincial
assembly seats in Sindh, while three Hindus have been nominated for the
provincial assembly. According to a report in a local English newspaper, a
similar concern was expressed by ‘Dalit’ or Scheduled Caste Hindus for being
“ignored” by the Pakistan People’s Party (PPP) in Sindh despite the fact that
the upper caste Hindus hardly make 20 per cent of the total Hindu population.
June 11, all political parties submitted their priority lists for the reserved
seats and the lists for the National Assembly show that priority was given to
the upper caste Hindus.
Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz has nominated Dr Darshan Lal, Khel Das Kohistani
and Isphanyar Bhandra. The Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) has nominated Lal
Chand Malhi, Shunila Ruth and Dr Ramesh Kumar Venkwani, respectively.
Grand Democratic Alliance has nominated Naresh Kumar, Oam Parkash Khatri and
Rawantee Raj Kumar, respectively, while the Mustafa Kamal-led Pak Sarzameen
Party (PSP) has nominated Dr Mohan Manjani, Rakesh Kumar and Suleman.
PPP has nominated Ramesh Lal, Naveed Amir Jeeva and Imran Afaque Athwal on the
first top three positions.
Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) is expected to get one seat. Interestingly, all
top three candidates on the MMA priority list are Christians—James Iqbal,
Parvaiz Masih and Asiya Nasir, respectively.
June 19, KP Christians members of the PTI protested against their party’s
decision to nominate a Hindu on the top priority on a reserved seat despite the
fact that Christians are the only sizable minority in the province.
Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal (MMA) has also nominated Ranjeet Singh, Fareed Chand
Singh and Askar Parvaiz, respectively, for KP.
PPP’s top priority for Punjab is a Hindu despite the fact that Christians are
the main religious minority residing in the province.
is exactly the same situation that pushed the Christians in West Pakistan in
1950’s to demand the separate electorate system when Hindus, esp. the upper
caste Hindus, were getting higher representation through the joint electorate
two terms of the National Assembly harboured the same reservations.
National Assembly (2013-2018) that ended on this May 31 had six upper caste
Hindus: Dr Darshan, Dr Ramesh Kumar Vankwani, Bhagwan Das, Ramesh Lal, Sanjay
Parwani and Bhagwan Das. There were three Christians: Asiya Nasir, Tariq C
Qaiser and Khalil George, and one Parsee Asphanyar Bhandra.
second last National Assembly (2008-2013) had seven upper caste Hindus: Bhagwan
Das, Darshan Lal, Kishan Chand Parwani, Lal Chand Malhi, Mahesh Kumar, Manwer
Lal, and Ramesh Lal, one scheduled caste Khatu Mal Jeewan, and two Christians
Akram Masih Gill and Nelson Azeem.
on sixth population census, the ten National Assembly seats were divided as
four for Hindus, four for Christians, one for Parsees, Sikhs and other religious
minorities and one was reserved for Ahmedis.
former PML-N minority wing leader Nauman Tanveer from Karachi said that
advocating equality without equitable distribution of resources means nothing.
He said there were many Christians who disagree that their number was lesser
than Hindus and they even did not agree with the census results.
the Jati or upper caste Hindus have been far less in number than Christians and
scheduled castes in Pakistan.
Hyderabad Press Club president Jai Parkash Moorani said the scheduled castes
were introduced by the British and it included two Muslim castes, so they have
nothing to do with religion.
caste system should be seen as sects and not as different faiths. The Jati
Hindus and scheduled castes belong to one religion and their population should
be counted as one. In this way, Hindus are the biggest minority in the
minority members find this system with additional seats without merit. They
believe performance, ability, political acumen are not to help make into the
priority list but close contact with the party heads and financial strength of
member of Balochistan Assembly William Jan Barkat told Pakistan Today, “Though
Christians were loyal to their parties, the parties prefer the candidates who
can finance their electoral campaigns when it comes to elections.”
Christian politician Julius Salak said that in the current electoral system
only those minority members were brought to fore who had connections with the
Clement was an MP twice when there was separate electorate system in Pakistan.
He had served the PTI hoping to be on one of the top three positions but he is
on the seventh, which means he is not coming back to the assembly again. But a Hindu candidate, Dr Ramesh Kumar
Vankawani, after staying for five years in PML-N’s government, joined the PTI
in April and got the third slot.
top positions were given to financially strong Hindus,” he said.
of Minorities Pakistan Chairman Aamir Bashir, based in Multan, said his party
has boycotted the elections because the minority representation makes no sense.
“We demand that all these seats reserved for minorities be abolished because
they are not contributing anything good to the system.”
Indonesian police have suspended investigations into two cases involving
hardline Islamic group leader Rizieq Shihab, sparking speculation that
political pressure was behind the decision. Rizieq announced earlier this week
via the Internet from Saudi Arabia that he had been cleared through a letter of
investigation termination warrant, known as an SP3 letter issued by the police.
Islamic Defenders Front, known by its Indonesian acronym FPI, has long been
believed to be close to top police figures and in fact is thought to have
carried out below-the-radar enforcement activities for them, trashing
nightclubs, attacking apostate religious figures and harassing scantily clad
women. They have often been criticized as being little more than thugs. Many
believe the FPI had grown so powerful that it had gone off the reservation
until the fundamentalist cleric was caught up in a sex scandal involving a
fled for Saudi Arabia last year after a video went viral involving him with Firza
Husein, a woman who is married to someone else. The suspension of the case
against a powerful religious leader stands in marked contrast to a story in the
June 22 Asia Sentinel that described mobs descending on unmarried couples
caught cohabiting, stripping them naked, beating them and dousing them with
by his wife and five daughters, Rizieq expressed his gratitude to his
organization, his lawyers, and the Indonesian police.
the Government of the Republic of Indonesia, especially the Police of the
Republic of Indonesia, we express our appreciation, where they have delivered
an SP3 letter directly to our lawyers to be delivered directly to me in the
holy city of Mecca,” Rizieq said in a video uploaded on FPI’s Youtube account.
sex scandal got its start in late January 2017, when screenshots of
pornographic conversations and photos of the fundamentalist Muslim leader and
Firza via WhatsApp spread on the Internet, leading to public questions over the
moral standing of the firebrand cleric. The conversation was first disseminated
by unknown individuals on a site called baladacintarizieq.com, (translated as
“ballad of love rizieq”).
police investigation named the two as suspects. Rizieq ducked interrogations
several times, then fled for Mecca under the pretext of wanting to worship and
continue his education. He has not returned to Indonesia.
has argued that he has been vilified and “criminalized” for being the main
figure behind the defeat of Basuki Tjahaja “Ahok” Purnama, an ethnic Chinese
Christian, in the 2016 Jakarta gubernatorial election, in which dubious
accusations of blasphemy played a major role. Ahok is an ally of President Joko
Widodo and his party, the Indonesian Democratic Party of Struggle (PDIP).
and the FPI as well as several other Islamic organizations mobilized Muslims to
follow the series of demonstrations that brought down Ahok, widely considered
Jakarta’s most able and honest governor in recent history. The Muslims demanded
that the deposed governor be tried on charges of blasphemy against Islam. The
biggest demonstration took place on 2 December 2016 – later known as the 212
movement – followed by hundreds of thousands of Muslims in the area around the
National Monument. Ahok was ultimately sentenced to two years in prison.
addition to the sex scandal, Rizieq has repeatedly been the subject of
complaints to the police, mostly for harassing other religions and tribes. In
mid-2017, Rizieq several times proposed “reconciliation” to the government and
PDIP to stop the various cases that ensnared him, to no avail. On April 22, 11
clerics involved in the 212 movement met with Jokowi, as the president is
known, in a closed-door meeting at the Bogor Palace, requesting that what they
called “criminalization” of some religious figures including Rizieq be stopped.
of the meeting leaked to the public. The government denied the scholars’
requests because, it was said, they were not authorized to intervene in the
the sex scandal, the police killed a second complaint against Rizieq involving
an alleged insult to the state’s official foundational philosophy, pancasila,
and the country’s founding president Soekarno in a speech in front of his
supporters two years ago. But police said in May that the investigation had
been killed because of lack of evidence.
FPI and the Police
Jakarta-based Institute for Policy Analysis of Conflict (IPAC) in a report
titled “After Ahok: The Islamist Agenda in Indonesia,” said that since its
founding in August 1998 in the
tumultuous months following the collapse of Suharto’s 32-year rule, the FPI,
led by Rizieq and some 20 like-minded Jakarta Muslim clerics, originally had
close links to the security forces, with senior military and police officers in
attendance at its founding ceremony.
group quickly became part of the army-backed civilian militia known as Pam
Swakarsa (Voluntary Security Guards), formed to counter pro-reform
demonstrators in late 1998. Its early years were focused on raids on
entertainment centers in close coordination with the police, from whom it got
both logistical and financial support.
leaders have called for the restoration of a constitutional clause that would
oblige Indonesian Muslims to obey Islamic law, but it is generally more focused
on alliances with politicians and members of security forces to achieve
short-term goals and material reward,” said IPAC in the report, published on
April 6, 2018.
FPI gradually became more independent but still was on call as needed to
provide security for demonstrations, trials or police operations. Over time, as
Islamist civil society organizations grew in political confidence, the FPI
joined various local forums and fronts to mobilize demonstrators to demand
government action on everything from removing statues deemed offensive to Islam
to banning the Ahmadiyah sect, to closing “unauthorized” churches, to stopping
a Lady Gaga concert.
the 212 movement, the police saw FPI as more friend than foe, despite occasional
clashes during demonstrations, and its services were particularly valued in the
fight against terrorism,” IPAC said.
mass anti-Ahok rallies, however, changed the relationship. FPI was no longer a
mere civilian auxiliary paid to keep a crowd in order. Together with its 212
allies, it was now setting the agenda – the arrest and prosecution of Ahok –
and forcing the police to comply. That shift set the stage for the police to
move against Rizieq.
leader Habib Rizieq Shihab used the anti-Ahok campaign to catapult himself into
a position of unprecedented political prominence and seemed on the verge of
becoming an important broker for the 2019 elections. But he also alienated his
long-term allies in the police,” according to the report.
of a Political Deal
has arisen that the decision to cease the prosecution of the cases against
Rizieq is politically motivated ahead of presidential election in 2019.
Moreover, the policy was taken almost simultaneously with the termination of a
religious blasphemy case against Rachmawati Soekarnoputri, Sukarno’s daughter,
and the sister of PDIP leader Megawati Sukarno. That has sparked conjecture
that the police killed the case over Rizieq’s sex tapes in exchange for killing
Rachmawati’s blasphemy charges.
Law Expert from Trisakti University Abdul Fikar Hajar said he suspects the SP3
was issued to keep the political situation stable. Moreover, Indonesia will
hold simultaneous regional elections in 2018 and presidential elections in 2019.
case can be stopped for the sake of law, also can be done in the public
interest,” said Fikar. “Because if a case is tried, it is feared that it would
disturb the public interest.
an Islamic political expert from the Center for Political Studies (Puskapol)
University of Indonesia, Hurriyah, said it is possible that the SP3 issued is
part of a win-win solution between clerics of 212 movement with the government.
cessation of the case is not abrupt, as far earlier, there have been a series
of attempts by clerics of 212 movement to lobby the government to stop the
case, from the meetings in Bogor Palace and letters sent to the coordinating
ministers of politics, law and security (Wiranto), “said Hurriyah.
termination of the case, she said, can also be seen as the government’s efforts
to gain sympathy and political support from the conservative groups that are
the basis of Rizieq’s supporters, given the growing opinion that Jokowi’s
government policies are unfriendly to certain Islamic groups.
perception is certainly expected to be detrimental for political support for
Jokowi in the 2019 election,” she added.
Rizieq and his supporters, the decision to drop the case allows the cleric to
return to Indonesia without worrying about the legal process, as well as
conferring innocence on the cleric.
Jokowi, the acquittal can improve the image of a government that had been
regarded as hostile to Islamic groups, as well as gain sympathy from Rizieq’s
is strong possibility that this decision could reduce the critical attitude and
even hostility towards the government that has been vociferously voiced by
Rizieq,” she said.
National Police spokesman Brigadier Pol Mohammad Iqbal said there was no
intervention by police chief Tito Karnavian and the government in stopping the
Rizieq case. The order was issued after the police held “a case expose” at the
request of Rizieq’s lawyer, he said. The investigators, he said, concluded that
there was not enough evidence to continue the case because the uploader of the
scandalous content has never been named.
is all on the authority of the investigator, but the case can be reopened if
new evidence is found,” Iqbal said this week.
Jokowi also denied interfering with Rizieq’s legal process. “There is no
intervention,” said Jokowi.
in Southeast Asian countries are using the fight against hoax and fake news to
curb criticism and control official narratives, a new report by watchdog
SAFEnet has said.
definition of fake news is often tailored to advance a government’s interests, the
strategies in dealing with hoax news could undermine harmony and political
stability, particularly in multicultural societies such as Indonesia, Singapore
are hunting down “fake news” that criticizes the government or in the case of
Thailand, members of the royal family. In Myanmar, the spread of fake news has
been blamed for fueling hatred toward the Rohingya.
by Southeast Asia Freedom of Expression Network (SAFEnet) volunteers Damar
Juniarto and Alvin Nicola, the 10-page report described the situation in
Southeast Asia as “unique” as there is “a framework where existing laws already
inhibit freedom of expression”.
cites that the definition of fake news in Indonesia is “hoaxes against Joko Widodo
and the government.” Since campaigning for the 2014 presidential election
began, President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo has been battling hoax and fake news that
accuses him of being a communist, anti-Islam and a puppet of China.
police’s reasons for arrests mostly relate to anti-Jokowi comments,” Damar said
another election in 2019, Jokowi’s administration has upped the ante of its
antihoax campaign. Earlier this year, the Communications and Information
Ministry deployed artificial intelligence to curb hoax and hate speech on
social media. Members of two groups have been arrested for spreading hoax and
hate speech online, namely Saracen and the Muslim Cyber Army.
April, Malaysia under then-prime minister Najib Razak passed the Fake News Act,
which activists said targeted critics before the historic 14th general election
took place in May.
leader Mahathir Mohamad was investigated for a comment that was allegedly aimed
at Najib. Under the act, offenders could be fined up to 500,000 ringgit
(US$127,000) and face a maximum sentence of six years in prison.
which consistently ranks low on the press freedom index, is aiming at
tightening its control over the media with a new Fake News Law. The plan was
met with concern from social media giants Twitter and Facebook as well as
the Philippines, President Rodrigo Duterte threatened to shut down news site
Rappler, labeling it a “fake news outlet”.
recommended Southeast Asian governments to uphold the principle of freedom of
expression, where such freedom should be limited tothree areas: incitement of
war, disrupting national security or damaging someone’s reputation or dignity.
agree that the fight against hoax/fake news is important, but it should not
undermine the right of free expression, press freedom and information,” the
LUMPUR: Clear all hawker stalls and petty traders along Jalan Masjid India
immediately, local business associations demanded today.
a joint press conference, the Masjid India Business Association (MIBA), Muslim
Consumer Association Malaysia and Wisma Yakin Traders have urged Kuala Lumpur
City Hall to immediately resolve this 20-year-long problem, which had among
others caused loss in revenue, congestion, damage in infrastructure as well as
obstructions to business premises in the area.
chairman Datuk Ameer Ali Mydin said the hawker stalls and petty traders who set
up their stalls have affected some 400 over businesses in this area and it is
worst during the Hari Raya festive season when the Ramadhan Bazaar is set up.
should be no Ramadhan bazaar, no night markets or any stalls or structures
along the street here.
these stalls, including the Ramadhan bazaar, should be moved out of Masjid
India to a more suitable place like Jalan Raja Laut, opposite the City Hall,
where the road is wider," he said.
visibly frustrated group have said that numerous complaints have been made to
both City Hall as well as Bukit Bintang MP Fong Kui Lun on the matter.
huge covered structure built outside the mosque here has also been an
obstruction and eyesore.
have been times when petty traders block the passage into the mosque,"
Muslim Consumer Association advisor Hishamudin Ubaidulla said.
the former Barisan Nasional administration for not resolving this matter, he
said there was no consultation with the business association or traders prior
to putting up the covered structure for petty traders.
appeal to City Hall or any minister, who would be appointed, to control this
and stop this. If you cannot control this place on a daily basis, then don't
take charge of this area," Hishamudin said.
out hard on Fong, Ameer demanded that he apologises to the business traders for
the loss they faced.
deserve an apology from the MP. He messed up our Raya business," he said.
also said that this raises concerns about safety too, adding that there were
two fire incidences where the fire rescue team were unable to access the area
due to congestion.
LUMPUR — Uncontrolled fake news without boundaries in the media is a signal
that we are nearing the end of times, said Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS)
president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang.
Abdul Hadi in a statement said the dissemination of fake news was flourishing
due to the fact that technology today could be accessible, verbally or written.
to the era of Prophet Muhammad, fake news never existed, Mr Abdul Hadi said.
does not promote exposing other people’s fault even though they are really at
fault because Islam encourages the people to repent and seek forgiveness.
Islam brings the concept of those charged shall not be punished until proven by
a fair and transparent judiciary,” said Mr Abdul Hadi.
Abdul Hadi also said if one was brought to court for trial, it was his obligation
to disclose accurate information reasonably in order to execute a fair
and think wisely based on the principles of faith and taqwa (God-consciousness)
and not by following an unbelieving mind,” he said.
further urged the people not to be influenced by secular politics derived from
Islamic State group fighters return but home-grown attacks rise, Europol says
who have fought on behalf of the Islamic State group have not flooded back in
large numbers since losing strongholds in Syria and Iraq, Europe's police
agency said on Wednesday but they’ve inspired a growing number of home-grown
Navarrete, head of Europol's Counter Terrorism Centre, told a press conference
at its Hague headquarters that a big influx of returning fighters had not
main threat is coming from foreign terrorist fighters even though the numbers
... that are returning are quite low," he said, referring to outsiders who
travelled to Syria and Iraq to fight alongside militants there.
French prime minister unveils new deradicalisation programme
number of attacks in Europe, including foiled and failed plots, nearly doubled
last year to 205, and led to the deaths of 62 people, according to Europol's
2018 Terrorism Situation and Trend report released Wednesday. The figure
compared with 13 reported attacks in 2016, of which 10 were successful leading to
agency stated that the risk of more unsophisticated attacks by the so-called
Islamic State group "remains acute” adding that “the increase in the
number of jihadist terrorist attacks in 2017 ran parallel to a decrease in in
sophistication in their preparation and execution".
included the attack on London's Westminster Bridge on March 22 last year and a
similar attack on London Bridge two months later, when attackers drove vehicles
into pedestrians and stabbed bystanders with knives, killing 13 people in total
and wounding some 98 others.
jihadists who carried out such attacks in the EU in 2017 were mainly
home-grown, "meaning that they were radicalised in their country of
residence without having travelled to join a terrorist group abroad," said
added that in many cases "it becomes a form of personal retaliation
against the country that they failed to integrate with."
track of returning jihadist fighters remained the key concern of
the more than 5,000 Europeans - most from Britain, France, Germany and Belgium
- who joined the ranks of fighters in Syria and Iraq, some 1,500 have returned
and 1,000 were killed, according to the EU intelligence-sharing body. There is
only limited intelligence available about the fate of the rest.
fighters have been detained. Some travelled to Malaysia, the Philippines and
Libya. Others are thought to be laying low or in third countries like Turkey,
border controls, surveillance and prosecution in Europe have also dissuaded
some from returning, with EU nations making more than 700 arrests linked to
jihadi activity in 2017, he said.
suicide bomber who killed 22 people at an Ariana Grande concert in the English
city of Manchester in May 2017 had just returned from Libya. But most recent
attacks have been carried out by home-grown jihadists who never went to
the Islamic State was routed last year from Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria,
it urged followers to carry out attacks at home, rather than travel to its
the message of the Islamic State has changed ... to being more negative and
asking for retaliation," Navarrete said.
lone actors often use tactics that result in fewer victims, they pose a threat
that is difficult to prevent. In 2016, a man killed 86 people by driving a
truck into a crowd in the Mediterranean city of Nice, France.
have to be very, very close to a person in order to take action on the police
level to prevent this," Navarrete said. "And the closest you can be
to a person right now is not going to the front door, it is going to Facebook,
IS group is releasing far less new propaganda after years of relying upon it to
draw thousands of Europeans to join its cause, but the group's prior online
recruitment materials are being recycled or redistributed in other formats.
allies use fake evidence to blame chemical attacks on Syria govt.: Russia
says the United States and its allies have relied on fabricated evidence to
accuse the Syrian government of conducting chemical attacks against civilians.
US, Britain, France and their allies have misled international community ...
relying on fabrications to accuse Syria of violating the chemical weapons ban
with Russian assistance,” said Maj. Gen. Igor Kirillov, the chief of the Russian
military's radiation, chemical and biological protection unit, at a briefing in
the capital Moscow on Friday.
also accused the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) of
violating the Chemical Weapons Convention, saying “the remote nature of investigations as well
as the collection, analysis and use of the documents obtained without
specialists’ trips to the alleged sites of chemical weapons use is in direct
contradiction to the convention’s provisions.”
in April, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov also criticized the OPCW’s
previous investigations conducted from long distance on alleged chemical
attacks in Syria.
the course of the liberation operation in Eastern Ghouta, which began in
February, Moscow has repeatedly warned that different factions of militant
outfits in the region could stage gas attacks in a bid to frame the Syrian
suspected chemical weapons attack, however, hit the town of Douma in the
Eastern Ghouta region in the suburban area near Damascus on April 7, reportedly
killing at least 60 people and wounding more than 1,000 others.
countries swiftly blamed the incident on the Syrian government. Damascus
rejected the accusations as “chemical fabrications” made by the terrorists themselves
in a bid to halt pro-government forces’ advances.
alleged use of chemical weapons in Douma, however, triggered a missile strike
by the US, Britain and France that Russia has denounced as a violation of
in his remarks, Kirillov said the so-called civil defense group White Helmets
had doctored samples and used explosive devices to make craters that looked
like those left by bombs.
added that in the images presented by them, they worked at the site of the
alleged use of sarin without protective gear, which would have been impossible
if the nerve agent had indeed been used there.
also lambasted the OPCW for turning a blind eye to the discovery of a
militant-run lab and its stockpiles in Eastern Ghouta that contained over 40
metric tons of chlorine and other toxic chemicals.
Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova, who spoke at the same briefing,
said the chemical lab featured components made in Western Europe.
are ready to show evidence that the equipment was taken by terrorists and
militants from Western Europe," she said.
Syrian government surrendered its stockpiles of chemical weapons in 2014 to a
joint mission led by the UN and the OPCW, which oversaw the destruction of the
weaponry. However, Western governments and their allies have never stopped
pointing the finger at Damascus whenever an apparent chemical attack has taken
Prince William will embark on the first official visit to Israel and the
Occupied Palestinian Territories by a member of the British royal family on
even with more than 120 Palestinians killed in protests in Gaza during recent
weeks and controversy still surrounding the opening of the US embassy in
Jerusalem, the second-in-line to the throne is not expected to talk politics.
Doyle, director of the Council for Arab-British Understanding (CAABU), told
Arab News that the four-day tour is likely to focus on making trade deals in
preparation for Britain’s departure from the EU next year, rather than on
addressing the moribund Middle East peace process.
is a pretty naked desire to build relationships and Israel is a warm target for
an increase in trade,” he said.
visit risks “normalizing” the abusive regime under which Palestinians live, he
course Prince William has to go to both the Israeli and Palestinian sectors or
there would have been outrage. But there is a risk of his visit making it
appear more acceptable and normal to carry out abuses of international law like
the blockade of Gaza,” Doyle said.
begins his Middle Eastern tour on Sunday in Jordan, a long-time ally of
Britain. On Tuesday he will move on to Jerusalem, where he will visit Yad
Vashem, the official memorial to Holocaust victims, meet Israeli Prime Minister
Benjamin Netanyahu and later attend a football event with a mixed Arab and
Wednesday he will meet young activists, both Arab and Jewish, who are involved
in education and social programs, and also cross into the Occupied Palestinian
Territories to meet Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Ramallah before
attending an event focusing on Palestinian refugees.
is due to deliver a speech at a reception hosted by the American consul in
Jerusalem. However, protocol prevents him from making any remarks that might be
deemed partisan. Doyle told Arab News this was a pity in view of how William’s
mother, the late Princess Diana, championed justice for the oppressed.
is a pity that someone of his status, who clearly cares about his mother’s
legacy, cannot give voice to real major concerns about the treatment of the
Palestinians and the human rights abuses that are daily issues for them under
Israeli control but which will be airbrushed out,” he said.
he will see co-operative programs and Arabs and Jews playing football together,
but the reality is that the Palestinian footballers can only travel to matches
with Israeli permission.”
was a surprise choice for the visit. Many expected the task to fall to his
father, Prince Charles, who has more experience of countries which are
politically extremely sensitive. But it is thought he was chosen because his
youth chimes better with young Israelis working in hi-tech fields who he is
scheduled to meet. Among Palestinians, his presence will barely register, said
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Friday called for an immediate end to a
military escalation in southwest Syria and a return to ceasefire arrangements
agreed by Russia, the United States and Jordan.
Ambassador Nikki Haley separately urged Russia to pressure its Syrian ally to
uphold the truce.
is scheduled to hold talks Saturday in Washington with Secretary of State Mike
Bashar al-Assad has set his sights on retaking rebel-controlled parts of
the past three days, areas in eastern Daraa have been bombarded, forcing
thousands of civilians to flee, according to the British-based Syrian
Observatory for Human Rights.
said he was "gravely concerned" by the recent upsurge in fighting
from the Syrian government offensive, saying it posed "significant
risks" to regional security.
called for "an immediate end to the current military escalation" and
urged all sides to uphold the ceasefire commitments "as a matter of
Russia and the United States agreed last year to set up a de-escalation zone
for the region that includes Daraa, Quneitra and Sweida. The area borders
Jordan and the Israeli-annexed Golan Heights.
said in a statement earlier: "The Syrian regime's violations of the
ceasefire in southwest Syria need to stop."
expect Russia to do its part to respect and enforce the ceasefire it helped
establish, and to use the influence it has to stop the Syrian regime's
violations and any further destabilizing actions in the southwest and
than 11,000 people have been displaced in the upsurge of violence that has
included air strikes, artillery, barrel bombs and rocket attacks, according to
the US statement.
forces have retaken large parts of Syria from opposition fighters since Russia
intervened militarily on its side in 2015.
Chancellor Angela Merkel has called for a political solution to the hot-button
issue of Syrian refugees' return from Lebanon to their homeland, saying it can
only take place in coordination with the United Nations.
want to contribute to reaching a political solution in Syria, that will allow
refugees to return to Syria," Merkel told reporters in the Lebanese
capital of Beirut on Friday following her meeting with Lebanon's Prime Minister
confirmed with officials that returns can only happen in agreement and talks with
UN organizations," she added.
small country of Lebanon has the world's highest number of refugees per capita.
Nearly 1.5 million Syrian refugees have been living in Lebanon since 2011,
making up a quarter of the country’s population.
head of the General Security agency Major General Abbas Ibrahim said late in
May that Lebanese and Syrian officials are working together to facilitate the
return of thousands of refugees who want to return to Syria.
are contacts with the Syrian authorities about thousands of Syrians who want to
return to Syria. The stay of Syrians in Lebanon will not go on for a long time.
There is intensive work by the political authority," the Lebanese official
German chancellor said it was "understandable" that the large refugee
influx had caused tensions in Lebanon but expressed hope they could be settled.
coordination between Lebanese and Syrian authorities, around 500 refugees left
southern Lebanon earlier this year for Syria and several thousand have gone
back to their homeland from towns around the border in recent years.
UN refugee agency (UNHCR) says it is not involved in the return process and
believes that Syria is not yet safe enough for refugees to return.
Lebanese officials have been constantly calling for refugee returns with or
without a political solution to the Syrian crisis after seven years.
October, Lebanese President Michel Aoun called for a gradual return of Syrian
refugees to their country, saying Lebanon can no longer cope with the burden.
country cannot handle it anymore,” Aoun said, calling on global powers to help
start the process of return for the Syrian refugees.
her two-day visit to Beirut, Merkel is also scheduled to hold talks with the
Lebanese president. The German chancellor had met Jordan's King Abdullah II
before her travel to Lebanon.
says it is hosting more than 1.4 million Syrian refugees, only 650,000 of them
are registered as refugees by the UN.
to the UNHCR, more than 5.6 million people have fled Syria since 2011 and
another 6.6 million are currently internally displaced.
this month, the United Nations said more than 920,000 people have been
displaced inside Syria during the first four months of 2018, the highest level
since foreign-backed militancy began in the Arab country seven years ago.
Moumtzis, the UN regional humanitarian coordinator for Syria, told reporters in
the Swiss city of Geneva that SyrAdd Itemia continued to witness massive
displacements of people over the past few months.
are seeing a massive displacement inside Syria... From January to April, there
were over 920,000 newly displaced people," Moumtzis said, adding,
"This was the highest displacement in that short period of time we have
seen since the conflict started."
has been gripped by militancy caused by multiple factions and groups since
March 2011. The Syrian government says the Israeli regime and its Western and
regional allies are aiding Takfiri terrorist groups that are wreaking havoc in
the Arab country. In recent months, Takfiri militants have lost much of the
territory they once held in Syria.
Andolon Bangladesh: Who are they and what do they stand for?
coming in third place in both the Dhaka North and South elections in 2015 and
winning 10 times as many votes as the Jatiya Party in the Khulna City elections
this year, Islami Andolon Bangladesh has quietly made its mark in Bangladesh’s
politics. The Dhaka Tribune takes a closer look
pir, or spiritual leader, late Maolana Syed Muhammad Fazlul Karim, commonly
known as Charmonair Pir, established the party Islami Shasontontro Andolon on
March 13, 1987 with a view to establishing an Islamic law-based state.
name however was changed to Islami Andolon Bangladesh after the Election
Commission disagreed to allow registration under this name.
Fazlul Karim wanted to build an issue-based common platform for Islamic
movement, comprising all Islamic parties and religious-minded people of
who was a believer in the Khelafat state system, tried to establish an Islamic
country throughout his life till his death in 2006.
has been making continuous progress in local polls over the past three years.
came under the spotlight in election politics after their candidates earned the
third largest number of votes in Dhaka north and south, Narayanganj and Khulna
city polls. The most surprising part in their voting politics is that their
candidate has bagged about 10 times as many votes than the candidate of
parliamentary opposition Jatiya Party in the Khulna City Corporation election
votes for them?
IAB top leaders estimate they have around 20 million followers with a strong
base in Bagerhat, Khulna and Barisal.
of their key strengths is that the followers of Charmonair Pir from every part
of the country support their activities and vote for them to set up Islamic
Alam, president of Dhaka South city unit of Islami Andolon, said that party’s
top leaders Syed Rezaul Karim and Syed Faizul Karim are very optimistic about
getting votes from each and every follower of Charmaoair Pir.
have plans to ensure one crore votes in the upcoming 11th parliamentary
elections,” he said.
party leaders think they have a vote bank of about 30,000 from Khulna city
alone, where it showed a strong performance beating the JaPa mayor candidate.
the Khulna City Corporation election, held on May 15, 2018, IAB candidate
bagged 14,363 votes, compared to a mere 1,500 votes received by the Jatiya
2015, Islami Andolan leader Sheikh Fazle Bari Masud won 18,050 votes, the third
highest number in Dhaka North City Corporation. Meanwhile, in Dhaka South a
leader of the same organization, Abdur Rahman, also bagged the thirrd highest
vote count, reaching 14,784.
Andolon also bagged a large number of votes in Narayanganj city, with their
mayor candidate Masum Billah coming up third with 13,914 votes.
poll results clearly show that the party, out of the 10 registered
religion-based parties in Bangladesh, is in a leading position.
position as allies
all the Islamic parties, IAB, led by Syed Muhammad Rezaul Karim, has drawn the
attention of Awami League and BNP as a potential ally because of their sharp
rise in popularity among voters, as demonstrated in elections.
Khulna city election, politicians have started giving the sudden rise of Islami
Andolon more thought. Though the party is far from being a serious challenger
for the two major parties, their popularity among voters is rising, say some
Andolon leaders claimed that they will also get huge number of votes in the
upcoming Gazipur city election.
Alam told the Dhaka Tribune that the Charmonair Pir has great influence among
Gazipur voters and their candidate will get at least 50,000 votes in the
upcoming Gazipur city corporation election.
May 2016, IAB candidate Ala Uddin Alal won the Aditmari union parishad election
in Kamlabari upazila of Lalmonirhat district, the first election victory for
is their strength and what do they want?
to the Dhaka Tribune, Islami Andolon’s Ameer and Charmonair Peer Mufti Syed
Muhammad Rezaul Karim said the party wants to establish Islamic rule in
want Islamic rule in Bangladesh. We are willing to form a coalition with
parties who will accept our proposal for an Islamic country,” said Karim.
added that they have also a plan to form a coalition with like-minded parties.
Andolon has organizational activities across the country. Its founder late
Fazlul Karim was a popular and well-accepted figure. He set up organizational
units in all 64 districts. Also Islami Andolon has a committee in every upazila
of the country.
to Islami Andolon leaders, their political activities are different from those
of other Islamic parties. They are always active on the street with different
programs such as protesting Israel’s aggression against Palestine and others
issues related with Islamic ideology.
presence in the streets, on almost every Friday, was common in 2017 with two
demands - removal of all the idols in Bangladesh along with the statue of Lady
Justice that was installed before the annex building of the Supreme Court, and
the atrocities against Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar’s Rakhine State.
for next general polls
the national polls scheduled for December approaching fast, the party is
preparing to contest all 300 constituencies.
Andolon has already selected 229 candidates for the next general election and
the rest would be selected within a very short time, party sources said.
Islami Andolon leaders said their goal for now is to increase the number of
voters rather than winning a seat.
role in major events
April 16 2017, Islami Andolon demanded removal of Greek Idol from Supreme Court
premises as well as resignation of the then Chief Justice Surendra Kumar Sinha.
the 2001 national election, Islami Andolon contested as an ally of Jatiya
Party. But in 2008, the party contested by itself in 167 constituencies where
it got 1.05% of total votes.
1996, Islami Andolon and other Islamic parties formed a coalition and took part
in the election after taking Islami Okiya Jote’s ‘Minar’ symbol.
kidnap 43 Afghans including road construction workers
Taliban fighters kidnapped 43 people from a road construction camp during a
raid in southern Afghanistan that also killed four security forces, an official
said on Friday, in the latest fighting since the group's ceasefire ended.
attacked the camp in Spin Boldak district in Kandahar province overnight,
provincial governor spokesman Dawood Ahmadi told AFP.
the 43 kidnapped were technical workers, cooks and drivers. Four police were
killed and another wounded after security forces sent to rescue the workers
exchanged gunfire with the Taliban, Ahmadi added.
employee of the Afghan road construction company also confirmed that 43 people
had been kidnapped.
Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack, but told AFP that the original
target had been a police checkpoint. Police fled the checkpoint and went to the
camp where the construction workers were sleeping.
Taliban pursued the police but, unable to identify who was who, decided to
kidnap "many" people, the group said.
a separate incident in the western province of Badghis overnight, at least
eight members of a pro-government militia were killed and another six wounded
in a clash with the Taliban.
governor spokesman Naqibullah Amini said the fighting in Aab Kamari district
lasted two hours and was quelled by security forces. Badghis provincial council
head Abdul Aziz Beg put the death toll at 16 militia fighters. The Taliban
returned to the battlefield on Monday after refusing a government request to
extend their unprecedented three-day ceasefire over Eid. President Ashraf Ghani
announced last weekend that the government's eight-day ceasefire, which had
been scheduled to expire on Tuesday, would be prolonged for another 10 days.
minister AH Mahmood Ali on Friday said acts of terror and targeted killings
have only strengthened the government’s resolve to eradicate fanaticism and
religious intolerance from society.
the terrorist attack in the Holey Artisan Bakery in 2016, the government of
prime minister Sheikh has taken extensive counter and preventive measures
against terrorism and violent extremism,’ he said.
Ali was addressing the opening ceremony of the workshop on ‘Fostering peaceful
and inclusive communities in Bangladesh: The role of religious leaders and
actors’ at a hotel in the capital as chief guest.
adviser of the UN secretary general for the prevention of genocide Adama Dieng
and resident coordinator of the UN in Bangladesh Mia Seppo were also present.
Ali said the government has undertaken massive awareness programmes to
encourage the practice of tolerance, inclusiveness and cultural activism in
society involving women, youths and community leaders.
said prime minister Sheikh Hasina has particularly called the teachers and
imams to play the lead role in preventing religious extremism.
the role of women in peace building, we’re currently in the process of
developing national action plan on women, peace and security which will further
consolidate women’s role in preventing violence and building peaceful
communities,’ said the foreign minister.
said Bangladesh too has seen; briefly though, the rise of extremism in its
motivated by some anti-liberation political elements, those acts of terror and
targeted killings have only strengthened our resolve to eradicate fanaticism
and religious intolerance from our society,’ he said.
foreign minister said the people of Bangladesh typically use religious norms to
guide their day-to-day action and as such religious leaders are highly
respected and influential members of a community.
unique positions of trust and respect enable them to provide feedback on any
changes at the local level, and communicate local priorities to government
officials and development professionals,’ he said.
their role, minister Ali said, the government has long been promoting the
engagement of religious leaders and actors in preventing violence.
welcomed the Fatwa of Peace for Humanity published by the Bangladesh Jamaiatul
Ulama and endorsed by hundred thousand Islamic jurists, scholars and clerics,
which preach on the peaceful and non-violent nature of Islam.’
mentioned that the government has also taken an initiative to build 560
mosque-based Islamic cultural centres at district and sub-district levels to
promote Islamic values of peace and tolerance among the mass people.
International Criminal Court on Thursday issued a deadline for Myanmar to
submit a written response on whether the body should exercise jurisdiction over
the country’s mass deportation of Rohingya Muslims to Bangladesh, though a
government spokesman said the Southeast Asian nation has nothing to report on
at the international tribunal based in The Hague, the Netherlands, have set a
deadline on July 27 for Myanmar to respond to a prosecutor’s request made in
April that the ICC should exercise jurisdiction over the matter.
700,000 Rohingya fled their communities in western Myanmar’s Rakhine state during
a crackdown by security forces targeting the members of the stateless minority
group, whom Myanmar views as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh. The refugees
now live in squalid displacement camps in southeastern Bangladesh.
that the crime of deportation is alleged to have commenced on the territory of
Myanmar, the chamber deems it appropriate to seek observations from the
competent authorities of Myanmar on the prosecutor’s request,” the ICC's
decision issued on Thursday said.
United Nations and other parties have accused Myanmar of ethnic cleansing and
possibly genocide, though the government has denied widespread reports and
credible evidence, including multiple satellite images of burned-out villages,
that its soldiers committed atrocities against the Rohingya.
the government has defended the crackdown as a counterinsurgency against a
militant Muslim group of “terrorists” that carried out deadly attacks on border
guard stations and police outposts in northern Rakhine state in 2016 and 2017.
Htay, director general of State Counselor Aung San Suu Kyi’s office, repeated
the government’s previous assertion that the ICC cannot prosecute Myanmar
because the country is not a member of the court.
Myanmar is not an ICC member, the ICC can’t do anything to Myanmar, so we have
nothing to say about it,” he told RFA’s Myanmar Service on Friday, adding that
the prosecutor has recognized uncertainty concerning the limits of the court’s
April, Gambian lawyer and ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda asked ICC judges to
rule on whether the court could exercise jurisdiction over the “alleged
deportation” of the Rohingya from Myanmar to Bangladesh.
the time, Aung San Suu Kyi’s office expressed “serious concern” with the
prosecutor’s statement, arguing that Bensouda’s assertion of the extension of
jurisdiction was not in line with the ICC charter and other international
statutes to which Myanmar is not a party.
the prosecutor is attempting to do is to override the principle of national
sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of other states in
contrary to the principle enshrined in the U.N. Charter and recalled in the
ICC’s Charter,” said a statement the office issued on April 13.
Myanmar has agreed to take back Rohingya refugees who want to return to Rakhine
state and whose prior residency in the region can be verified, pressure from
the international community has continued to grow with the United Nations and
rights groups pushing officials to guarantee safe conditions for the returnees.
main problem is that no refugees have come back from Bangladesh though Myanmar
is ready to take them back,” Zaw Htay said. “We have asked Bangladeshi
authorities many times to send them back.”
they arrive back home, we have to do things such as clearing terrorists out of
the region and creating a good situation for them to live without any
problems,” he said, adding that Bangladesh must assist Myanmar in rooting out
members of the Muslim militant group the
Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA).
have to find them, and Bangladesh has to work with us,” he said.
clash has taken place between the Taliban and militants affiliated with the
Islamic State of Iraq and Syria Khurasan (ISIS-K) in eastern Laghman province
201st Silab Corps of the Afghan Military in the East said the incident took
place on Friday in the vicinity of Alingar district.
source further added that Taliban and ISIS Khurasan militants exchanged fire
with each other in Noorlam Sahib area, leaving at least four dead.
to the Silab Corps, the militants killed during the clash belong to ISIS
Khurasan terror group.
there are no reports available regarding the possible casualties of the ISIS
militants during the clash.
anti-government armed militant and terrorist groups including Taliban and ISIS
militants have not commented regarding the report so far.
has been among the relatively calm provinces in East of Afghanistan since the
fall of the Taliban regime in 2001.
the anti-government armed militants have been attempting to destabilize the
province during the recent years.
Mohammad Ashraf Ghani and the US Vice President Mike Pence spoke over phone
regarding the ceasefire initiative and ongoing efforts for peace and
Office of the President, ARG Palace, said the leaders of the two countries
spoke over the phone on Thursday evening to discuss the issues of mutual
to ARG Palace, the US Vice President expressed happiness regarding the
initiative by President Ghani and the Afghan government for ceasefire.
President Pence also reaffirmed the support of Washington to Afghan peace
process and hailed the Afghan government for the recent efforts aimed at
implementation of reforms.
also reaffirmed Washington’s support regarding the upcoming elections, ARG
Palace said, adding that the leaders of the two countries also emphasized on
the importance of joint efforts and fight against terrorism.
Ghani thanked the United States for its support and cooperation with
Afghanistan and said the Afghan nation is going through a critical moment where
important decisions must be taken for peace and reconciliation.
Troops not Withdrawing from Syrian Border after Alleged Israeli Attack
news circulated on withdrawal of Hashd Al-Sha’abi from their deployment regions
near the Iraqi-Syrian borders after the troops were targeted in Syria are
untrue,” the source told Al-Maalomah, as quoted by Iraq News.
source added that “the forces are deployed in the Western region of the
province. No withdrawal took place there, despite the tension that resulted
after Israeli fighter jets shelled the forces in Syria near borders with Iraq.”
is the first time any Iraqi source has stated Israel was behind the attack on
the Syrian and Iraqi troops in Southeastern Syria earlier this week. Earlier
reports blamed the US.
alleged Israeli attack resulted in the death of 22 Hashd Al-Sha’abi members and
over 30 Syrian army soldiers.
source said that the army sent a long convoy, including elite force and tens of
military vehicles to Khalkhala base in Northern Sweida.
source further said that the airbase is located at contact line with
terrorists' positions in Eastern Dara'a, including those in al-Lajah, adding
that the army is possibly planning to use the airbase as its Command Center for
military operations in Eastern Dara'a.
source went on to say that the army has been forwarding a large number of
soldiers and a large volume of military hardware to Western and Northwestern
a relevant development on Wednesday, the Syrian army troops stormed the
remaining pockets of ISIL in the Eastern Badiyeh of Sweida and managed to make
remarkable advance against terrorists in three flanks.
army men engaged in fierce clashes with ISIL in Rasm al-Hatiti flank and
captured Wadi Shatayeb Suleiman, Tal Lathawi, Souh al-Majidi, Arazi Joweis and
Wadi al-Sahal regions.
units of the army soldiers stormed ISIL in a region between al-Shaqiyeh and
Khirbet al-Ambashi and seized control over Tal Qabr Sayah, Rasm Abu Rour and
army men further advanced and drove ISIL out of Khirbet al-Ambashi.
government forces have identified and dismantled a network of Israeli spying
devices in the country’s southern province of Nabatieh.
security source, speaking on condition of anonymity, told English-language the
Daily Star newspaper that the devices were discovered on the outskirts of
Kfarchouba village, located 130 kilometers south of the capital Beirut, on
January 10, Lebanese troops uncovered an Israeli spying device near Zawtar
al-Gharbiyeh (Western Zawtar) town, which lies just north of the Litani River.
security forces busted an espionage cell in the country, whose members were
collecting sensitive information and passing it to the Israeli spy agency
Mossad, on October 31, 2017,
in an exclusive interview with Lebanon-based Arabic-language al-Mayadeen
television news network, General Director of the General Security Directorate
Major General Abbas Ibrahim stated that the cell, run by a Syrian national
identified as Paul George Khoury, was dismantled last July. Fighters from the
Lebanese Hezbollah resistance movement found an Israeli spying device on the
outskirts of Barouk village in the Chouf district of Mount Lebanon, located 52
kilometers southeast of Beirut, on August 13 last year.
Israeli military then remotely detonated the spy device to prevent the
de-codification and interpretation of its recorded data.
Hezbollah fighters could recover some parts of the exploded device, including
its transmission receiver base and batteries.
Lebanese army soldiers and Hezbollah fighters have on occasions dismantled
Israeli surveillance devices planted near the country’s border regions with the
airstrike on pro-Damascus forces — including Iraqi fighters — in eastern Syria
has spurred conflicting accusations about who was responsible for the attack.
Syrian government and Iraqi militias blamed the US-led anti-Islamic State (IS)
coalition for the June 17 strike on the town of al-Heri, a claim the Pentagon
denied. An undisclosed US official speaking to CNN blamed Israel, while Israel
still remains mum.
state news agency SANA did not give casualty figures, only reporting that
"a number of martyrs" were killed. Meanwhile, Iraq's Popular Mobilization
Units (PMU) issued a statement June 18 that said, "US planes fired two
guided missiles at a fixed [PMU] position on the border with Syria, killing 22
fighters and wounding 12."
Army Col. Sean Ryan, the spokesman for the Combined Joint Task Force fighting
IS, denied June 18 that the United States was behind the strikes on PMU sites
or on al-Heri, a strategic town on the Syrian border with Iraq. He warned
whose aircraft delivered the strikes?
al-Hashimi, a security analyst at Al-Nahrain Center for Strategic Studies in
Iraq, told Al-Monitor, “The joint Iraqi leadership isn't overly preoccupied
with who launched the airstrikes on al-Heri village, but evidence indicates
Israel is most likely the culprit.”
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu had said in a June 17 meeting with Russian
President Vladimir Putin and US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, “We will act
and we are already acting against Iran and its allies’ attempts to position
themselves near the Israeli borders and within Syria.”
believes Israel carried out the air raid “to target supply lines to Iraqi and
Iranian armed militias" that still control the road between western Anbar
in Iraq and Al-Bukamal in eastern Syria.
strike also "aimed at undermining the wings of non-Syrian factions that
espouse Iran’s ideology, to drain the infrastructure of [their] intelligence
centers, the staff and the centers of command and control," he said. “The
map of air raids confirms that Israel is taking its steps — with the knowledge
of Russia and the US — to cut the Tehran-Beirut [connection] by isolating
Baghdad and Damascus by land.”
wants to build a corridor through Iraq and Syria and on to Beirut on Lebanon's
analyst Ahmad al-Sherifi of Baghdad also said Israel most likely launched the
guided aircraft carried out the strike using advanced weapons of smart missiles
in the framework of the dispute between Israel and Iran over areas of influence
in Syria," he told Al-Monitor. "The forces that were targeted were
700 meters [765 yards] inside the Syrian territories, and they were in charge
of securing the Iraqi borders and preventing Islamic State infiltration to Wadi
Hauran [Hauran Valley]."
US government official who spoke on condition of anonymity on June 19 told
Al-Hurra channel, which is funded by the US government, "The Israeli air
force launched the raid to block the road that Iranians want to open between
Tehran and Beirut. This task proved difficult and logistically complicated, as
the Israeli jet fighters had to fly a distance of 348 miles to carry out the
strikes near Al-Bukamal.”
contacted the US Embassy in Baghdad for comment, but it refused to give any
statements, possibly to avoid clashing with the Iraqi government, whose
Ministry of Foreign Affairs condemned the incident.
al-Khazali, the leader of Asaib Ahl al-Haq, an Iraqi paramilitary unit that is
part of the PMU, condemned the incident. His group asserted that both the
United States and Israel were behind it. He threatened to take deterrent
measures, but PMU leader Karim al-Nouri told Al-Monitor, “The PMU is part of
the [Iraqi] armed forces and will not respond unless the armed forces’ chief of
staff, who is also the prime minister, gives such orders.”
Watwat, a member of the Iraqi parliament's Security Committee, told Al-Monitor
the “identity of the party that launched the raid has not officially and
conclusively been determined.” He added, “The Iraqi government is investigating
the incident at the highest levels. The Security Committee is working on an
official complaint from Iraq to the UN Security Council because the forces that
were shelled are part of the Iraqi armed forces and their security
Joint Operations Command spokesman Yehya Rasoul told Al-Monitor, “The command
regrets this raid, which only serves terrorist groups." He said a
statement released June 18 shows that the command denies any relations with
Iraqi forces in Syria. It read: “Our security forces with all their formations,
whether army, police or PMU, have not faced airstrikes or other raids. We are
not in contact with the forces that were shelled at a distance of 1.5
kilometers from the Iraqi border in Syria. We have no coordination with them.”
said, “The policy of the general command of the Iraqi armed forces supports the
international [goal] of isolating Baghdad [from] Damascus by land. The
statement of the Iraqi command refused attributing the Iraqi forces to the
Joint Iraqi Forces. It said Iraq has no knowledge of the duties of the targeted
forces that are Iraqi. This statement sets the future horizons and the way
Iraqi leaders are headed with their support for the international coalition and
its allies in blocking the road between Tehran and Beirut.”
contacted Ofir Gendelman, the Arab-media spokesperson for Netanyahu, but he
refused to give any statement about the incident. Israeli researcher on Iraqi
affairs Ronen Zeidel told Al-Monitor, "The attack targeted Iranian
balance-breaking weapons transferred into Syrian territories to hurt Israel.”
a variety of artillery shells and surface-to-surface missiles, the army
unleashed a relentless assault last night that targeted the positions of Tahrir
al-Sham Hay'at (the Levant Liberation Board or the Al-Nusra Front) in al-Lajah
army could score several direct hits against the terrorists, resulting in a
series of powerful explosions that could be heard from a long distance away.
to a military source at the government stronghold of Izra’a, the army launched
more than 30 missiles towards the terrorist-held towns of Busra Al-Sham, Busra
Al-Harir, and Al-Karak.
a relevant development on Wednesday, the Syrian army troops continued to
advance in Northern Dara'a, seizing control over several points and inflicting
major losses on the terrorists.
army men engaged in fierce clashes with the terrorists in al-Lajah flank near
the Masikeh and al-Dalafeh townships in Northeastern Dara'a, capturing several
the meantime, other units of the army stormed terrorists' positions in Basar
al-Harir settlement in Western Sweida and managed to advance against them.
army's artillery and missile units, meantime, pounded terrorists' positions in
Basar al-Harir, al-Lajah in Northeastern Dara'a and near the small town of
al-Harra and Kafr al-Shams region in Western Dara'a, inflicting major losses on
to the NDF report, the US Coalition bombed the Syrian Army’s outpost in the
village of Al-Halba 70km away from the historical city of Palmyra (Tadmur) in
Homs province, the AMN reported.
the meantime, a Syrian army commander told Sputnik News Agency that “the combat
planes of the coalition led by the United States, attacked the army positions
in Jabal Ghurab, some 150 kilometers East of Palmyra near the border with
serviceman was killed and several others wounded,” he added.
Sets up New Military Base Near Syria's Manbij
new American military base is at the entrance to the city in Medah district,”
Helil Bozi said, Sputnik reported.
Americans already have two military bases in Manbij, along the road leading to
Aleppo, and in Ein Dedat close to the Sajir River,” he added.
commander refused to provide any information about the number of US troops
deployed at the new base citing security concerns, saying only that the US
forces maintain daily patrols around Manbij.
Prime Minister-designate Saad al-Hariri said on Friday he was very close to
forming a new government and would hold more talks with the country’s main
donors have said Lebanon, which held a parliamentary election in May, needs to
build a government quickly to maintain confidence and start working on reforms
to help its ailing economy.
Minister Ali Hassan Khalil had warned earlier this week that Lebanon was not
forming its new cabinet fast enough and said he had not seen serious headway.
have come very close to the final equation...There are still some
consultations,” Hariri said after meeting President Michel Aoun. “The issue is
the size of the parcel that each political (party) wants to get.”
willing, we’re getting there,” the Western-backed Hariri said without giving a
Sunni Muslim leader has met with lawmakers over the make-up of the coalition,
with some rivalries surfacing over cabinet portfolios. The new government, like
the outgoing one, is expected to include all main parties within Lebanon’s
sectarian power-sharing system.
caretaker government has been running the country since the May vote. In the
election, Lebanon’s Iran-backed, Shi’ite Hezbollah movement and its political
allies emerged with greater sway.
Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Friday on a visit to Lebanon that conditions
in Syria are not yet right for refugees to return, an issue which has led to a
dispute between Lebanon’s foreign minister and the UN refugee agency.
United Nations has registered about a million refugees in Lebanon - nearly a
quarter of Lebanon’s population.
Lebanese government, which puts the figure at 1.5 million, says it wants them
to start going back to territory where fighting has died down. The
international view is that it would not be safe for them to return yet.
want to help find solutions in Syria so that a return of refugees can take
place ... we need more secure conditions for a return to be possible,” Merkel
said in a news conference in Beirut with Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Saad
has taken in hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees and Merkel is under
pressure at home over migration policy, which is threatening to undermine her
is playing down expectations of a major breakthrough at hastily arranged talks
between some EU leaders on Sunday on the migration dispute, which is dividing
caretaker foreign minister Gebran Bassil has this month accused the U.N.
refugee agency UNHCR and foreign countries of preventing Syrians returning
ordered a freeze on applications by UNHCR for residency permits for its staff
and threatened more measures against them.
has denied trying to stop Syrians going home, saying it supports returns when
it is safe.
meeting Merkel on Friday, Lebanese President Michel Aoun said he asked for
Germany to support calls “for the gradual return of displaced Syrians” from
Lebanon. Aoun said on Twitter that he “stressed the need to separate between
this return and a political solution for the Syrian crisis”.
is the world’s third-most indebted nation with a debt-to-GDP ratio of more than
150 percent. It climbed from around 130 percent in 2011, before war in
neighboring Syria, and the arrival of refugees, depressed growth and paralyzed
a bid to boost growth and create jobs, donors in April pledged more than $11
billion of investment for Lebanon’s crumbling infrastructure, but they want to
see the government make long-overdue reforms in return to bring down debt and
create a better investment environment.
business delegation accompanied Merkel on her visit to explore how German
business could participate in the infrastructure projects.
war monitor reported Syrian military helicopters dropped barrel bombs on
rebel-held areas of the southwest on Friday for the first time in a year, escalating
an assault that has so far included artillery but only limited use of air
Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, said Syrian
government helicopters had dropped more than 12 barrel bombs on rebel-held
territory northeast of Deraa, causing damage but no deaths.
Bashar al-Assad has sworn to recapture the area bordering Jordan and the
Israeli-occupied Golan Heights and the army began ramping up an assault there
attack has been concentrated on the towns of al-Harak and Busra al-Harir, which
would bisect a finger of rebel ground jutting northwards into land held by the
big offensive risks a wider escalation, as the United States has warned
Damascus it will respond to breaches of a “de-escalation” brokered by
Washington and Assad’s Russian allies last year to contain the war in the
region is also of strategic concern to Israel, which has struck Iran-backed
militia allied to the army.
militia, including Lebanon’s Hezbollah, have played an important role in
Assad’s seven-year war against the rebels, including since Russia entered the
conflict in 2015.
Russian ambassador to Lebanon was quoted on Friday in the pro-Hezbollah
newspaper al-Akhbar as saying the Syrian military was recovering the southwest
with help from Moscow.
say that the Syrian army now, with support from Russian forces, is recovering
its land in the south and restoring the authority of the Syrian state,” it
quoted him as saying in an interview.
has no justification to carry out any action that obstructs the fight against
terrorism,” he added.
determined to drain terrorist PKK swamp in Qandil mountains
objective to drain the PKK terror swamp in Qandil mountains in northern Iraq is
being fulfilled Ankara says, despite the dazzling election agenda, indicating
no steps will be taken from commitments in the fight against terrorism.
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said on Friday during his ruling Justice and Development
Party's (AK Party) election rally in Maltepe, İstanbul that Turkey's
"fight against terrorism will resolutely continue."
added that the Turkish military killed 35 key members of the PKK terror group
in an air operation on Qandil mountain.
threats directed by PKK terrorists from the Qandil mountains, located roughly
40 kilometers southeast of the Turkish border in Iraq's Irbil province,
prompted the operation of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) on March 10. The
Qandil mountains are used as headquarters by the PKK and its Iranian affiliate,
the Kurdistan Free Life Party (PJAK). The PKK is an internationally recognized
terrorist organization, which is listed as a terrorist group by the U.S.,
Turkey and the European Union.
government officials have underlined that Ankara will not step back until all
the terrorists are eradicated and ensure that terrorists will not be able to
use the region as a headquarters again.
in a televised interview on Friday, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said:
"We need to drain this swamp. If we want to live in peace in Turkey, we
must achieve this."
minister said that the Qandil operation has been successfully continuing and
added that all targets have been effectively eliminated. He added that
significant steps are also being taken against the terror group's high-level
said that the PKK is a threat against other neighboring countries as well,
including Iran. "As they are not attacking Iran today, it does not
necessarily mean that they will not attack later. No one can say that they are
not aiming to divide Iranian soil," he said, referring to the terror
group. He added, "Therefore, we need to constantly cooperate with
cross-border infiltrations by PKK terrorists through the Turkish border take
place in northern Iraq, in regions close to the Qandil mountains.
the launch of operations on Qandil, Turkish fighter jets have also intensified
airstrikes in the region.
warplanes killed nine PKK terrorists as part of a counterterrorism operation in
northern Iraq Thursday, the military said Friday. In a statement, the Turkish
General Staff said the warplanes targeted the terror group in the Hakurk-Kani
Rash region. Shelters, hideouts and weapon depots were also destroyed, the
Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli said earlier this month that Turkey has been
using its right to self-defense in northern Iraq and the TSK is paying utmost
attention to avoid harming civilians as it did in the Afrin Operation and
Operation Euphrates Shield. Canikli said that terrorists would not be able to
show their presence in the region again.
security forces have so far crossed almost 30 kilometers into northern Iraq.
Nearly 200 terrorists have been killed in recent airstrikes on PKK targets in
between Turkey-U.S. can be restored if Manbij deal implemented
also said, "If we continue to implement the Manbij deal successfully, we
can restore trust between the countries," referring to the recent deal
between Ankara and Washington over the withdrawal of the PKK's Syrian affiliate
from Manbij in northern Syria.
said that the main objective of the deal is to ensure the retreat of People's
Protection Units (YPG) terrorists first from Manbij and other region of Syria
also said on Friday, "Turkish armored carriers entered Manbij" and
added that the people of Manbij will soon return to their homes.
Manbij road map was announced after a meeting in Washington earlier in June
between Foreign Minister Çavuşoğlu and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo.
process will involve a 10-day preparation period that started Tuesday June 5
before YPG militants start withdrawing. The YPG will withdraw as early as July
4 Çavuşoğlu said earlier in the week, after which Turkish forces will be
deployed to pacify the region and train local forces to establish security.
foreign minister said that the road map is essential to provide stability to
Syria. He noted, "Following the YPG/PKK's retreat, there will be a vacuum
that will be temporarily filled by the soldiers of Turkey and the U.S." He
added that security measures would be taken in the region.
the TSK on Friday completed their third round of patrolling in the northern
Syrian city of Manbij as part of a deal with the U.S. to rid the area of the
YPG terror group.
to an Anadolu Agency (AA) correspondent on the ground, armored vehicles
belonging to the Turkish military carried out patrols in the area that
separates the Jarablus region, controlled by the Ankara-backed Free Syrian Army
(FSA), from Manbij.
first patrols by both Turkish and U.S. troops in the region began on June 18
and the second patrols were on June 20.
army to demolish over 50 Palestinian homes in West Bank
Israeli military has threatened to demolish more than 50 Palestinian homes in
the northern part of the West Bank as the Tel Aviv regime continues with its
land expropriation policies in the occupied territories and violation of
Palestinian media reports said that homes would be demolished by Israeli regime
forces in Beit Dajan village, which is located east of Nablus for lacking Israeli construction permits.
Abu Jaish, mayor of the village confirmed that Israeli army handed notices to
local citizens informing them that at least 51 homes would be demolished in 60
days for lacking Israeli construction permits.
homes are located in the so-called area C of the West Bank, which constitutes
about 61 percent of the territory and is under full Israeli military control.
Abu Jaish, a local resident whose family has lived in the area for generations
said, "We received a notice to demolish the house a few weeks ago,
claiming that it was located on land allocated to military activities, although
it is a private property."
added that the same fate threatens his sisters and cousins.
Israeli authorities delivered evacuation notices to over 20 Palestinian
families in the Jordan Valley area of the northern occupied West Bank late
Thursday night, in order to make way for active military drills and training.
residents of the Jordan Valley regularly face evacuations and interruption due
to Israeli military exercises on their
recent years, Israel has expanded the authority of its military to demolish
Palestinian homes in the occupied territories. The Israeli army can now execute
demolition orders in the so-called Area C of the West Bank just days after they
recent months, the Israeli regime ordered the demolition of Palestinian homes
as a punitive measure in response to a growing number of alleged attacks by
Palestinians against Israeli settlers, who constantly waged attacks against
Palestinian residents and their properties.
say Israel is relentlessly destroying Palestinians’ homes and livelihoods in
order to make way for more illegal settlements.
bodies and rights groups argue that Israel’s sustained demolitions of Palestinian
homes and structures in the occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem al-Quds are
an attempt by the Tel Aviv regime to uproot Palestinians from their native
territories, and confiscate more land for expansion of illegal settlements.
than half a million Israelis live in over 230 illegal settlements built since
the 1967 Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories of the West Bank and
East Jerusalem al-Quds.
presence and continued expansion of Israeli settlements in occupied Palestinian
lands have created a major obstacle for the efforts to establish peace in the
Children recruited as fighters by Iran-backed Houthi militias in Yemen are
beaten into submission and face psychological abuse, as well as the risk of
death, injury and disability, a former child soldier said on Friday.
who try to flee are recaptured and forced to continue fighting, he told the
Yemeni Coalition to Monitor Human Rights Violations (YCMHRV).
child’s testimony is part of a documentary about the recruitment of children in
Yemen, which was broadcast during the 38th session of the UN Human Rights
Council in Geneva, the Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported.
expert Lisa Al-Badawi highlighted efforts to rehabilitate former child soldiers
and children affected by the war in Yemen.
said children make up a third of fighters in the Houthi militias, according to
a field study by the Wethaq Foundation for Civil Orientation.
study showed that 80 percent of child soldiers in Yemen begin fighting to earn
much-needed money amid deteriorating economic conditions, while just 10 percent
join Houthi ranks for “ideological reasons.”
revealed numerous human rights violations faced by the recruits, including the
risk of death and injury, deprivation of education, and exposure to sexual and
also discussed the methods used to treat and rehabilitate these children,
emphasizing the importance of promoting awareness among parents.
presented statistics on the areas covered by the rehabilitation process, which
is carried out with support from the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief
Hamdan Al-Shehri, a Saudi political analyst and international relations
scholar, said he is not surprised by the Houthis’ large-scale recruitment of
devious design, they push children onto the frontlines so that when the
children become victims, the Houthis can cry foul and blame the legitimate
Yemeni government for killing children,” he told Arab News.
are terrorist militias, and like all terrorists, they have no qualms about
playing with the lives of children.”
is easy for the militias to brainwash children, Al-Shehri said. “Grown people
are difficult to convince, but children become easy prey,” he added.
most cases, the Houthis don’t even tell children that they’re going to the
frontlines. They lure them by saying they’ll be helping their men.”
that the Houthis have been cornered in Hodeidah, they will use children and the
civilian population as human shields, Al-Shehri said, asking: “What can we
expect from such terrorists?”
the Houthis have indicated they would be willing to hand over management of
Hodeidah port to the UN, according to sources quoted by Reuters. The port is a
principal entry point for relief supplies for Yemen.
week, UN envoy Martin Griffiths has been in the Houthi-controlled Yemeni
capital Sanaa and Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, to try to negotiate a solution.
source, quoted by Reuters, said the Houthis indicated that they would accept
overall UN management and inspections of the port.
Western diplomat said the UN would oversee income from the port and make sure
it gets to Yemen’s central bank. The understanding is that Yemeni state
employees will work alongside the UN.
on Thursday said he was “encouraged by the constructive engagement” of the
Houthis, and will be holding meetings with Yemen’s internationally backed
President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi.
earlier at the UN, Saudi Ambassador Abdallah Al-Mouallimi reiterated the
Saudi-led coalition’s demand that the Houthis quit the city of Hodeidah
Turkish military said it carried out air strikes in northern Iraq on Friday,
killing 15 Kurdish militants.
strikes were carried out on the Gara region, the military said on Twitter.
has recently stepped up strikes on Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) bases in
northern Iraq, especially its stronghold in the Qandil mountains.
has warned it might launch a ground offensive into Qandil, where high-ranking
PKK members are believed to be based.
Tayyip Erdogan, who faces tough elections on Sunday, has vowed to “drain the
terror swamp” there.
Yemeni Army announced Friday that it has captured a senior Houthi leader in
Hodeidah port city south of Yemen.
brief statement issued by al-Amalika brigade of the legitimate national army
said that its forces have “captured the Houthi leader Abu Jalal al-Riyami”.
added that he was captured during a failed infiltration by the Houthi militias
in the surroundings of Hodeidah airport, confirming that most of the
infiltrators have been killed.
another military development, local residents said Friday that the Houthi
militias continue to fire Katyusha rockets and missiles towards the village of
Manzar and in the direction of the airport’s surroundings since it was
liberated from the Houthi control.
local citizens pointed out that some rockets hit civilian neighborhoods and it
is not known yet if there are any casualties among civilians.
the Arab coalition confirmed Friday that the military operations in Sadaa is
going on very fast.
Arab Coalition’s spokesman, Turki al-Malki, speaking from Brussels in a press
conference, said that the operations in Sadaa have made progress and achieved
many gains on field.
said that the political diplomatic solution is always the best choice for the
Yemeni people, stressing that the coalition is working hard to restore
legitimacy to Yemen.
said: “We have many options in Hodeidah, among them a pre-emptive military
operation, pointing out that that the safety of the Yemeni civilians is a top
priority for the Arab coalition, and any concessions or suggestions from the
Houthis have to go through the UN special envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths.
Arab Coalition’s spokesman noted that the military operation by the coalition
is ongoing in Hodeidah and the joint forces are clearing the area of landmines, adding that the liberation of
Hodeidah would secure maritime activities in the international waters.
pointed out that the Houthis turned civilian homes in Hodeidah into military
fortifications, and they continue to turn civilians in Hodeidah into human
said that the coalition is providing all facilities for the entry of medical
and food aid to Hodeidah, stressing that the liberation of Hodeidah will
benefit all Yemenis and will stop illegal collection of money by the Houthi
are working to distribute aid to all Yemeni territories without any
discrimination,” he said, stressing that the Houthis impose restrictions on
relief work and on UN staff.
Houthi militia detains Sanaa University professors
Houthi militia detained professors at the University of Sanaa at the Naqil
Yaslah checkpoint while they were heading to Aden to receive their salaries on
to the teaching union at the university, the Houthis detained all the
professors and interrogated them for a long time, then decided to detain them
all except for one female doctor and her daughter.
least five of the university professors were thus detained.
teaching union condemned these practices, which violate the constitution and
the law and called on relevant authorities to carry out their duties to protect
the professors at the University of Sanaa so they can perform their duties
during Yemen’s current circumstances.
also called for the quick release of all those illegally detained and called on
civil society institutions and human rights organizations to stand with them to
free their colleagues.
union also called on the university’s presidency to make efforts to protect
professors and employees at the university.
union added that its statement is tantamount to a notification to the prosecutor
and demanded punishment for those who illegally detain citizens.
has warned of pulling out of the 2015 nuclear deal in the coming weeks, saying
the landmark multinational agreement is now in the "intensive care
told the conference today it is in the intensive care unit because it has lost
its balance as a result of US withdrawal from the deal,” Iran's Deputy Foreign
Minister Abbas Araqchi told Euronews on Thursday.
if Europeans and other remaining participants of the JCPOA are interested Iran
remain in the deal, they should compensate the absence of the US and the
reimposition of US sanctions," he said in Vienna where he was for talks
about the fate of the deal.
Donald Trump walked out of the deal, which was signed between Iran and the P5+1
group of nations -- the US, the UK, France, China, Russia and Germany.
pledged to re-impose all anti-Iran sanctions lifted as part of the deal and
institute "the highest level of economic” bans against the Islamic
Europeans are scrambling to protect their businesses from new American
sanctions, with Washington warning to punish all foreign companies that engage
in trade with Iran after the end of a three-month period to leave the country.
and China have reaffirmed their support for the deal, stressing that they would
continue to do business with Iran.
UK, France and Germany have, however, failed to make a decision that guarantees
the deal's future and protects their financial interests in Iran.
matters for us is the dividends of the deal. So, we don’t care how Europeans
would protect their companies but we care that their companies work with
us," Araqchi said.
urged the Europeans to guarantee that Iran's oil will be completely sold after
the sanctions and the banking channels to receive the money will remain in
care that Iran’s crude oil should be sold and the money should come back, so
there should be banking channels," he said.
they create them, it is up to the Europeans. Now that 'few weeks' are almost
over or is going to be over very soon," Araqchi added.
that the European countries didn't have much time, Araqchi said there was still
hope for a solution to salvage the JCPOA.
Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) says the so-called peace plan, which is
expected to be unveiled by the United States, is aimed at normalizing the
Israeli apartheid with the Americans serving as the spokesmen for the regime's
Secretary General Saeb Erekat told the Middle East Eye news portal on Friday
that Palestinian negotiators had yet to see an official draft of the US
initiative purported to resolve the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
US plan is not actually a deal as it is already being implemented by Washington
and its allies, he said, stressing that the Americans had become "nothing
else than spokespeople for the Israeli occupation."
there's any plan, this is being implemented on the ground: with moving the US
embassy to occupied Jerusalem [al-Quds], withdrawing support for the
[so-called] two-state solution, cutting funds to UNRWA and, eventually, trying
to normalize the Israeli apartheid in Palestine," Erekat said.
remarks come as White House special adviser Jared Kushner and US Middle East
envoy Jason Greenblatt are discussing the US plan with officials in the
occupied territories, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan and Qatar.
Sunday, Israel's Haaretz newspaper reported that the administration of US
President Donald Trump is trying to persuade the Persian Gulf Arab monarchies
to invest in Gaza economic projects in a bid to calm the situation in the
Israeli-blocked territory before Washington unveils its so-called Middle East
quoted Israeli and Arab sources as saying that Washington hoped that it could
raise between $500 million and $1 billion.
this week, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met with Jordan’s King
Abdullah II in Amman, fueling speculation about a possible backdoor agreement
over the US initiative for the Middle East.
about Jordan's role, Erekat hailed Palestine's ties with Amman as "very
strong," saying, "King Abdullah has been clear in his statements
calling for a free Palestine with its capital in East Jerusalem
chief Palestinian negotiator was also asked about whether the Palestinians
would walk away from what the Americans put on the table.
is no table to walk away from. It's not like we were negotiating and suddenly
we decided to leave," he said. "If anyone walked away, it was the
Trump emissaries whose plan has nothing to do with a just and lasting peace and
a lot to do with normalizing the Israeli apartheid regime."
further emphasized that the Palestinians' position is based on international
law and UN resolutions, saying, "We are not going to accept anything short
of that, and nobody could impose anything upon us."
also described Jerusalem al-Quds as the "eternal capital" of the
Palestinians. "There will be no Palestinian state without al-Quds as its
capital," he noted.
US-Palestine ties deteriorated last December, when Washington recognized
Jerusalem al-Quds as the “capital” of Israel and announced plans to transfer
the US embassy from Tel Aviv to the occupied city.
contentious move led President Mahmoud Abbas to formally declare that the
Palestinians would no longer accept the US as a mediator to resolve their
decades-long row with Israel because Washington was “completely biased” towards
US embassy relocation took place on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of
the Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), sparking deadly clashes in the Gaza
than 200 unarmed Palestinian protesters have been wounded by Israeli troops in
the besieged Gaza Strip along the border separating the impoverished enclave
and the occupied territories.
to a report by the Gaza Ministry of Health, 206 demonstrators, including at
least eight minors, sustained injuries as a result of inhaling tear gas fired
by Israeli soldiers in the blockaded sliver on Friday.
said that Israeli forces fired large quantities of tear gas canisters and live
bullets east of Gaza City to disperse some 7,000 protesters who were rallying
for what had been officially designated as “Friday of the Wounded”, paying
tribute to those who have been wounded since the beginning of the Great March
of Return demonstrations.
least 133 Palestinians, including 14 children, have been killed by Israeli
forces since the Return rallies began in the Gaza Strip on March 30. About
14,600 Palestinians also sustained injuries, of them 300 are currently in a
critical condition. Of those wounded, at least 3,900 have been injured by live
bullets and another 500 by rubber-coated steel bullets, while more than 6,500
suffered from excessive tear gas inhalation.
Gaza clashes reached their peak on May 14, the eve of the 70th anniversary of
Nakba Day (the Day of Catastrophe), when the Israeli regime forcibly drove more
than 760,000 Palestinians - now estimated to number nearly five million with
their descendants – out of their homes.
year’s anniversary coincided with the US embassy relocation from Tel Aviv to
occupied Jerusalem al-Quds, a highly provocative move that infuriated
Palestinians and intensified the protesting rallies.
is the Friday of the wounded, the Friday of loyalty, the Friday of return, the
Friday of steadfastness, the Friday of confrontation and resistance,” said
Mohammad, one of the many protesters who attended the rally on crutches,
adding, “We will persevere until we obtain our rights to our land - the land of
life, of freedom and of return.”
1948, the Israeli regime has denied Palestinian refugees the right to return,
despite United Nations resolutions and international law that upholds people’s
right to return to their homelands.
has launched several wars on the Palestinian coastal sliver, the last of which
began in early July 2014. The military aggression, which ended on August 26,
2014, killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians. Over 11,100 others were also wounded in
Gaza Strip has been under an Israeli siege since June 2007. The blockade has
caused a decline in the standards of living as well as unprecedented levels of
unemployment and unrelenting poverty.
army soldiers, backed by fighters from allied Popular Committees, have launched
a major operation against Saudi troops and pro-Saudi militiamen loyal to
resigned Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi in the country’s western
coastal province of Hudaydah, killing and injuring tens of them in the process.
unnamed Yemeni military source told Arabic-language al-Masirah television
network that Yemeni troopers and allied fighters launched separate attacks
against Saudi soldiers and their mercenaries north of al-Majlis and
al-Durayhimi districts on Friday, dealing stinging blows to them.
source added that at least 11 armored vehicles were destroyed during the
offensives as well.
further stated that the operations were carried out following a series of
surveillance and monitoring the movements of Saudi invaders and their agents.
development came just a day after Yemen's air defense system had shot down an
enemy spy drone in the northwestern Sa'ada province.
Yemeni sources said an Emirati reconnaissance plane was shot down near Saudi
Arabia's southwestern Jizan region, killing the crew.
added that the plane was returning to its base after carrying out an aerial
operation in Yemen's western coast.
media bureau of Yemen’s Operations Command quoted Yemeni military sources as
saying that the Emirati jet, which had two pilots, was brought down by the
Yemeni air defense system.
Yemeni Ministry of Human Rights announced in a statement on March 25 that the Saudi-led
war had left 600,000 civilians dead and injured since March 2015.
United Nations says a record 22.2 million Yemenis are in need of food aid,
including 8.4 million threatened by severe hunger.
high-ranking UN aid official recently warned against the “catastrophic” living
conditions in Yemen, stating that there was a growing risk of famine and
lives have continued unraveling. Conflict has escalated since November driving
an estimated 100,000 people from their homes,” John Ging, UN director of aid
operations, told the UN Security Council on February 27.
The commander of Yemen’s special forces brigade, General Adel Al-Mosaabi, said
that his troops took over control of the route connecting Maran and Al-Malahiz
in the south-west of Saada province – the Houthi militias’ key area of support.
said, in a statement published on the Yemeni army’s web page, that his units
advanced to the road connecting the city of Saadah with the Al-Malahiz-Harad
general declared that his forces succeeded, with air support from the Saudi-led
Arab coalition, in cutting the Houthi militias’ supply lines to Harad and
Al-Malahiz after a battle that cost the Houthis at least 12 dead and the
destruction of several of their armored vehicles.
Hodeidah, on Friday, the 'Amalika' army brigade announced that it has repelled
a Houthi counter attack on Hodeidah airport. The statement posted on the
brigade's web page said that the Iran backed Houthi militia tried to infiltrate
the Yemeni army's lines at Hodeidah airport. The attack was thwarted, and a
senior Houthi militia commander was captured.
the Saudi-led Arab coalition spokesperson said Friday that military operations
in Saada are picking up momentum.
Turki Al-Maliki was speaking at a press conference in Brussels, where he added
that the pace of military operations in Saada- the Iran backed Houthi militia’s
stronghold, is moving rapidly, stressing that military operations in Saada have
made progress and gained new territory from the Houthis.
who was in Belgium to hold talks with European officials on the situation in
Yemen and aid delivery to the war-torn country, added that the coalition’s
operations in Yemen are “aimed at pressuring the Houthi militias to accept the
political solution,” and that “the safety of people in Yemen was the
coalition’s top priority.”
Turki Al-Maliki explained at the press conference that the Saudi-led
coalition's control of Hodeidah will safeguard maritime navigation in the Bab
Al-Mandab strait in the Red sea.
political diplomatic solution is always the best option for the Yemeni people,”
he added, stating that the coalition was continuing its efforts to restore the
legitimately elected government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi in Yemen.
Yemeni national army, backed by the Saudi-led Arab coalition, launched last
week an operation to liberate Hodeidah and its strategic port from the
Iran-backed Houthi militias.
also accused the Houthis of using civilian residences as military
fortifications. They have also imposed additional taxes on business owners to
fund their war effort he said.
the Humanitarian aid front, Col Al-Maliki said that the coalition has been
using all possible ways to deliver medical and food aid to Hodeidah. “Aid is
being delivered throughout Yemen without discrimination,” he said.
the other hand, Al-Maliki said that the Houthis have arrested several human
rights groups workers. The United Nations Office for the Coordination of
Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said in a statement Friday that civilians have been
fleeing the combat zones in Hoddeidah province.
people are fleeing areas of conflict and seeking shelter in safer locations,
including in the capital Sanaa," 150 kilometres (95 miles) to the
northeast and also under Houthi control, the Humanitarian agency (OCHA) said in
Muhammadu Buhari Friday assured internally displaced persons, IDPs, that his
administration will leave no stone unturned in restoring their devastated
communities for their immediate and safe return.
President who made the promise while congratulating the 2,000 IDPs at the Kuchingoro
Camp, in the Federal Capital Territory who are getting set to return to their
communities in the Northeast, assured all Nigerians that his administration
will not forget citizens in their time of distress and will continue to work
for the betterment and security of the people. Speaking through his Senior
Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Malam Garba Shehu, who received the
IDPs at the precincts of the Aso Rock Villa on his behalf, President Buhari
also used the opportunity to thank members of the international community and
Nigerians, including Aliko Dangote, General T.Y Danjuma and other
philanthropists, for their sustained efforts towards the reconstruction and
rehabilitation of destroyed communities in the Northeast. Read more at: https://www.vanguardngr.com/2018/06/boko-haram-buhari-promises-rebuild-devastated-communities/
Maryam Nuhu, the leader of the IDPs, who were mainly women and children,
thanked the Buhari Administration for the defeat of the Boko Haram terrorists
and the ongoing reconstruction of their communities. She said, “Our towns and
villages have been cleared of these terrorists. We can now confidently return
home and pick up our lives from the points where we will meet them. Mr
President, thanks for making this possible for us to be returning home. Our sad
story took a turn for the better because of the calibre of military leaders you
on Friday said it has arrested a suspected people smuggler who organized a
doomed sea voyage in which 87 migrants were killed when their overloaded
fishing vessel sank.
boatload of illegal migrants had taken off on June 2 from Tunisia heading for
Europe when the tragedy occurred.
said there were at least 180 people on board when the fishing vessel began to
sink near Tunisia's Kekennah Islands off the southern coastal city of Sfax.
interior ministry said that at least 87 people died in the tragedy -- 66 of
them Tunisians, 20 from sub-Saharan Africa and one Libyan -- while 68 were
rescued. Search operations are still underway.
spokesman Sofiene Zaag on Friday told AFP that the mastermind of the voyage had
been arrested as he tried to flee Kerkennah in the boot of a car.
said the suspect is a 32-year-old from Kerkennah.
the shipwreck, Tunisia's interior minister Lotfi Brahem and 10 security
officials were sacked.
June 2 shipwreck was one of the deadliest in the Mediterranean since February
2, when 90 people drowned off the coast of Libya, according to the
International Organization for Migration.
IOM said that at least 112 people had died when the fishing vessel sank.
and other migrants regularly try to cross the Mediterranean to seek a better
future in Europe.
head of Libya’s National Oil Corporation (NOC) confirmed on Friday that Khalifa
Haftar’s Libyan National Army (LNA) had regained control of the key oil ports
of Ras Lanuf and Es Sider, saying he hoped operations would resume in the “next
couple of days”.
Chairman Mustafa Sanalla said Libya had been losing 450,000 barrels per day
(bpd) of production after clashes between the LNA and rival factions closed the
minor fire that broke out at a third storage tank in Ras Lanuf on Thursday had
been extinguished and the situation was good, he told reporters ahead of an
OPEC meeting in Vienna.
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