Showing posts from May 30, 2021

The release of an infamous Sicilian mafia killer dubbed 'the people slayer' sparks an outcry in Italy

Giovanni Brusca is believed to have killed over 100 people. Brusca was arrested in 1996 and sentenced to life imprisonment. However, he received a reduced sentence after agreeing to colloborate with authorities. A member of the Sicilian mafia who is believed to have murdered over 100 people has been released from prison following 25 years behind bars. Giovanni Brusca, 64, was arrested in 1996 and sentenced to life imprisonment after a life of working as the right-hand man for  mafia boss  Totò Riina. However, in 2000, Brusca was given a reduced sentence after agreeing to help prosecutors and become an informant. His release from prison has sparked an outcry in Italy, despite it being required by law. As reported by  the Guardian , Enrico Letta, the leader of the center-left Democratic party, said the decision to release Brusca "is a punch in the stomach that leaves you breathless." Meanwhile, Matteo Salvini, leader of the far-right League party, said: "After 25 years in

Begum asks for second chance after joining Daesh to be ‘part of something’

  British woman who had citizenship revoked says she was her family’s ‘black sheep’  She says she was tricked into joining Daesh and did not want to be the ‘friend left behind’ LONDON: Shamima Begum, the 21-year-old Londoner who fled the UK aged 15 to join Daesh, has said she traveled to Syria because she wanted to feel “part of something.” A new documentary “The Return: Life After ISIS” interviewed her and several other women currently detained at Al-Roj camp in northern Syria. Begum, who left the UK in 2015 with two other girls from London — Amira Abase and Kadiza Sultana — said she had been the “black sheep” of her family, and had traveled to the Middle East as she did not want to be the “friend left behind.” She added that she had been recruited online by Daesh supporters, who played on her and her friends’ guilt about what was happening to fellow Muslims in Syria. “It was the holidays when I decided to leave with my friends. I knew it was a big decision, but I just felt compelled

In Peru, polarization is represented by two undemocratic extremes – 06/05/2021 – world

  Peruvians go to the polls this Sunday (6) to make a difficult choice. On the one hand, the far-right candidate, Keiko Fujimori; on the other, the far left candidate, Pedro Castillo. Keiko is the daughter of Alberto Fujimori, a dictator responsible for the most serious human rights violations of the 1990s. Castillo, an anti-“gender ideology” activist who promises to break with the institutional order of the country. This second round is the bearer of important lessons for the politics of the region, and especially for us Brazilians. The first lesson is the victory of militant conservatism. In Peru, the social base has changed and, although Catholics are in the majority, it is evangelicals who have political influence, especially neo-Pentecostals. Keiko and Castillo share the struggle against what they call “gender ideology” and see conservative values ​​as the flagship of their political discourses. Although considered to be on the far left, Castillo is also “terribly” ultra-conservat

UN: Unprecedented Taliban violence in 2020 carries into 2021

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Taliban insurgents show no sign of reducing the level of violence in Afghanistan to facilitate peace negotiations with the government, and appear to be trying to strengthen their military position as leverage, with the “unprecedented violence" of 2020 carrying into 2021, U.N. experts said in a new report circulated Friday. The panel of experts said the Taliban are reported to be responsible for the great majority of assassinations that have become a feature of the violence in Afghanistan, targeting government officials, women, human rights defenders and journalists among others. These attacks “appear to be undertaken with the objective of weakening the capacity of the government and intimidating civil society,”it said. In the 22-page report to the U.N. Security Council, the panel said the withdrawal of U.S. and NATO forces by Sept. 11, the anniversary of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, “will challenge Afghan forces by limiting aerial operatio

Syrian Kurds hand over four relatives of IS group fighters to Netherlands

  The group consisted of a Dutch woman and her two children as well as another 12-year-old girl, “a humanitarian case,” whose mother had agreed to her repatriation following a request from the   Dutch government , top Syrian Kurdish foreign affairs official Abdel Karim Omar said. The four were handed over to a delegation led by the Netherlands’  Syria  envoy Emiel de Bont and senior foreign ministry official Dirk Jan Nieuwenhuis. De Bont said the delegation had “a clear and well-defined mandate to receive in the care of a mission, a small number of Dutch nationals up to now residing in the Roj detention facility”, following a Dutch court ruling on the individuals’ cases. “We are here then to serve the rule of law and to do what we can to assist the due legal process,” he added. Tamara Buruma, the lawyer for the woman and her two children, told AFP in the Netherlands that the case involved a woman she named only as Ilham B and her two young boys. Based on previous cases, Buruma said she

Koo 'keen' on expanding in Nigerian market following suspension of Twitter

NEW DELHI: Indian social networking company Koo announced on Saturday that it will scale operations in Nigeria, a day after the country “indefinitely” suspended Twitter.  “@kooindia is available in Nigeria. We're thinking of enabling the local languages there too. What say?" Koo co-founder Aprameya Radhakrishna wrote on Twitter. He added that the platform is keen on making inroads in the Nigerian market and that Koo will abide by the local laws of each country that it operates in. “Nigeria is similar to India in terms of language diversity. It has hundreds of regional languages. Koo has a global outlook and will definitely enable micro-blogging in countries that need it the most. We have built a scalable platform and while we are still enhancing the product, it’s already available for use in multiple countries today,” co-founder Mayank Bidawatka told TOI. Nigeria federal ministry of Information and Culture had announced that it was indefinitely suspending the operations of the

Burkina Faso govt says at least 100 civilians die in attack

Gunmen killed at least 100 people in a northern Burkina Faso village, the government said Saturday, in what was the country's deadliest attack in years. The attack took place Friday evening in Solhan village, in the Sahel's Yagha province, government spokesman Ousseni Tamboura said in a statement blaming jihadists. The local market and several homes were also burned down in the area toward the border of Niger, he said. President Roch Marc Christian Kabore called the attack "barbaric." This is the deadliest attack recorded in Burkina Faso since the West African country was overrun by jihadists linked to al-Qaida and the Islamic State about five years ago, said Heni Nsaibia, senior researcher at the Armed Conflict Location & Event Data Project. "It is clear that militant groups have shifted up gears to aggravate the situation in Burkina Faso, and moved their efforts to areas outside the immediate reach of the French-led counter-terrorism coalition fighting them

Five killed, 15 injured in knife attack in eastern China

Beijing [China], June 5 (ANI): As many as five people were killed and another 15 were wounded in a stabbing attack in China's Anhui province on Saturday. The attack took place in the afternoon in the eastern province's Anqing city, Global Times reported. At 4:29 pm (local time), an incident was reported to the public security bureau that a man at the city's commercial pedestrian street, stabbed pedestrians with a knife. Soon after the incident was reported, the police rushed to the spot and sent the injured people to the hospital for treatment. Reportedly, the police have already arrested the knifeman and are investigating the attack. All the injured are getting emergency treatment at the hospital. (ANI)   Source:

Taliban captures another district in Afghanistan

  Kabul, June 5 (IANS) Taliban militants have captured another district in Afghanistans eastern province of Nuristan, adding to recent military gains, officials said on Saturday. Provincial councillor Saidullah Nuristani told dpa news agency that government forces have abandoned Doab district after 20 days of resistance. According to Nuristani, the militants had blocked all the supply routes to the district, forcing the government forces to evacuate the district after being unable to receive any food supplies or ammunition from the central government for nearly a month. Ismail Ateekan, an MP representing the province, claimed that the government forces had left the district without fighting, after an agreement that was mediated by the local tribal elders in the area.  In return, the insurgents did not attack them during the evacuation. The district connects Panjshir and Badakhshan provinces to Nuristan, and the militants now pose a threat to the neighbouring Laghman province since they

US judge overturns California assault weapons ban

A US judge overturned California's three-decade-old ban on assault weapons Friday in a move swiftly condemned by the state's governor Gavin Newsom as gun-related homicides surge across America. In a 94-page decision, federal Judge Roger T Benitez described California's assault weapons ban, in place in 1989, as unconstitutional and defended the right of Americans to own semi-automatic rifles. Also Read |  Rinse and repeat, what the hell is wrong with us, asks California governor after yet another mass shooting "Like the Swiss Army Knife, the popular AR-15 rifle is a perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment," he wrote. "Guns and ammunition in the hands of criminals, tyrants and terrorists are dangerous; guns in the hands of lawabiding responsible citizens are better," he argued. Benitez said he would give the state 30 days to appeal the decision, which Governor Newson said posed a "direct threat to public safety"

The FBI reported nearly 4.7 million background checks for gun purchases in March, revealing a record number of firearms sales in the US

Background checks for guns hit a record in March 2021, the FBI reported.  Close to 4.7 million background checks were conducted, a 77% increase compared to March 2019.  Experts told  CNN , fear during the pandemic and social unrest is fueling a rise in gun ownership. The Federal Bureau of Investigations  reported close to 4.7 million background checks  for new gun purchases in March, the largest on record since the FBI began tracking them 20 years ago, revealing a record number of firearms sales in the US.  The figure is a 77% increase compared to March 2019. The agency conducted over a million more background checks in March 2021 compared to March 2020, which also saw a record number of gun sales.  The New York Times  previously reported in March 2020, a record number of Americans were buying guns due to the uncertainty of the pandemic.  "We attribute it mainly to the virus scare," Larry Hyatt, who owns a gun store in North Carolina and saw a record number of sales at the ti

The USA Tribune: Two Azerbaijani journalists killed in landmine explosion

  The USA Tribune newspaper has published an article headlined “Two Azerbaijani journalists killed in landmine explosion.” The article says: “A landmine explosion has killed a cameraman of Azerbaijan State Television Siraj Abishov, 1989, and an employee of AZERTAC news agency Maharram Ibrahimov (Alioglu) in Kalbajar district of Azerbaijan.” “At about 11.00 am on June 4, 2021, a Kamaz passenger car with employees of TV channels and news agencies dispatched to the de-occupied Kalbajar region for the performance of their official duties was hit by an anti-tank mine while driving in the direction of the Susuzlug village. Three people, including Siraj Abishov (cameraman of AzTV), Maharram Ibrahimov (employee of AZERTAC news agency), Arif Aliyev (deputy representative of the head of the Executive Power in the Susuzlug village) died, and four others were hospitalized with various injuries,” the article mentions. “Armenian armed forces continue to commit criminal acts against our citizens by m

FATF's regional body retains Pakistan on 'enhanced follow-up' but improves rating on 21 out of 40 parameters

  The Asia Pacific Group (APG) on Money Laundering, a regional affiliate of FATF, has retained Pakistan on "enhanced follow-up" status for sufficient outstanding requirements, while improving the country's rating on 21 of the 40 technical recommendations of the global watchdog against money laundering and terror financing. Pakistan was put on the grey list by the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) in June 2018 and the country has been struggling to come out of it. The second Follow-Up Report (FUR) on Mutual Evaluation of Pakistan released by the APG also downgraded the country on one criteria. The report said Pakistan was re-rated to compliant' status on five counts and on 15 others to largely compliant' and on yet another count to partially compliant'. Dawn newspaper reported that overall, Pakistan is now fully compliant' with seven recommendations and largely compliant' with 24 others. The country is partially compliant' with seven re

Are the Middle East's 'electronic armies' the most dangerous of all?

They're behind online hate campaigns to intimidate activists, journalists or dissidents. There is no doubt that in some cases, those campaigns have led to murder.   There are armies in the Middle East that do not have guns and whose "soldiers" work online only — but that doesn't mean they're not dangerous. The term "electronic armies" is commonly used in the Middle East for such forces. "The concept is simple," as the internet freedom advocates from Access Now explain. "A group of people assume false identities in order to participate in internet forums and social media to send — or suppress — a specific message." In Western countries, digital campaigners might spread political messaging or pressure for change, Mahmoud Ghazayel, a specialist in online disinformation based in Lebanon, told DW. "But in the Middle East, they can easily get someone killed. Unfortunately, we already have a lot of examples of this," he said. Forei

Germany to probe PKK's massacre of civilians in Syria's Manbij

  Germany on Friday asked for an investigation into the massacre of eight civilians in Syria's Manbij earlier this week. German Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Adebahr answered a question by Anadolu Agency on the matter. She said Germany is aware of news reports on the killings, but added that they do not have independent findings on the matter. Calling on the parties involved to de-escalate tensions, Adebahr said: “The Incidents should be investigated with participation of the involved parties. I think such an investigation is being thought upon.” - PKK/YPG’s massacre in Manbij During the protests against the terror group in Manbij on Monday and Tuesday, eight people were killed and 27 others wounded when YPG/PKK terrorists opened fire on them. The terrorist group seeks to recruit members from occupied areas, including Ayn al-Arab (Kobani), Qamishli, al-Malikiyah, Darbasiyah, al-Hasakah, Raqqa, Deir ez-Zor and Manbij. Turkey demands that the terrorist group exit Manbij, which w