New Age Islam
Sun Oct 25 2020, 12:37 PM

Islamic World News ( 13 March 2016, NewAgeIslam.Com)

Blasphemy Law Cannot Be Amended: Pakistan Ulema Council

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: The Russian air force pounded the military positions and gathering centers of the Takfiri terrorists in Homs province, inflicting heavy losses on them.

 

Russian Air Force Destroys Militants' Concentration Centres, Kills Dozens of Terrorists in Homs Province

Iran Targeting Terrorists that Enslave, Trade Women: Commander IRGC

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Pakistan

Blasphemy Law Cannot Be Amended: Pakistan Ulema Council

Pakistan SC To Hear 10 Appeals Against Military Court Convictions

SHC orders registration of FIR against Rangers over missing MQM worker

Heavy rains kill 50 people in Pakistan

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Arab World

Russian Air Force Destroys Militants' Concentration Centres, Kills Dozens of Terrorists in Homs Province

ISIL Pulls Forces Back From More Territories in Syria's Aleppo

Syria: Militants' Vast Withdrawal Allows Families to Return to Southwest of Aleppo

Terrorists Admit Casualties in Syria's Hama Province

Syrian Army Inflicts More Defeats on Terrorists in Hama

Terrorist Groups Violate Ceasefire in Syria Again

Al Nusrah Front raids rebel group’s headquarters in Idlib province, seizes weapons

UAE armed forces say fighter jet in Yemen missing

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Mideast

Iran Targeting Terrorists that Enslave, Trade Women: Commander IRGC

50 Turkish Detained For Alleged Ties to US-Based Islamic Scholar, Fethullah Gülen

Ankara Attack: Bombers Had Links to PKK, Turkish Officials Say

Turkish Jets Strike Kurdish Rebels After Ankara Bomb Attack

Iran Condemns Terrorist Attack in Ankara

Iran says US companies welcome to invest in petroleum sector

At least 37 killed in Ankara blast: Health minister

Iran's foreign minister defends ballistic missile test

Freed Iranian national handed over to Iranian officials on border area in Nimroz

Turkish Army Crosses Border with Syria to Create Buffer Zone

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Africa

Ivory Coast Hotel Shooting: Child 'Spared For Praying' As Another Is Shot Dead By 'Arabic Speaking' Attacker

FAO Says 27 African Countries among 34 In Need Of External Food Assistance

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India

Anti-National Slogans Are Normal in Kashmir: Farooq Abdullah

In Last 2 Yrs, Muslims Got Only 2% of 6 PSBs' Priority Sector Loans: RTI

Pak Hacker Defaces Raipur AIIMS Site, Says All Indian Government Sites On Target

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South Asia

12 ISIS Loyalists Killed, 21 Wounded In a Premature Explosion In Nangarhar

Coordinated Attack Foiled In Jalalabad City, 7 Taliban Militants Arrested

NDS seizes weapons cache of militants in Logar

Bangladesh arrests militants, seize explosives

Australia to forcibly deport Hazara asylum seeker to Afghanistan

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Southeast Asia

Thai PM Boosts Security in Muslim South after Attacks

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Europe

Merkel Calls Turkey’s Davutoğlu to Discuss Upcoming EU Summit

German voters batter Merkel over migrant policy

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North America

American Defects from Islamic State

U.N. Envoy: Syria Peace Talks 'A Moment Of Truth'

Turkish Forces Participate In Joint Exercise With Italy, U.S. At Nevada Air Base

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/blasphemy-law-cannot-be-amended--pakistan-ulema-council/d/106649

 

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Blasphemy Law Cannot Be Amended: Pakistan Ulema Council

March 14, 2016

LAHORE: Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) chairman Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi on Sunday said the blasphemy law cannot be amended.

“The legislation related to blasphemy cannot be annulled or amended. The people of Pakistan are guardians of the law,” the PUC chairman said.

“Any bid to transform Pakistan into a liberal country will be foiled,” Ashrafi said at an Ulema Convention. Representatives of various schools of thought attended the convention that the PUC had organised at Darool-Uloom Hanifia.

Religious parties fear abolition of blasphemy law

Ashrafi said the provincial government had agreed to amend the Protection of Women against Violence Bill.

“This is a good omen,” he said, adding that the legislation had been deliberated upon at the Provincial Assembly for two years but assembly members took no interest in expressing their reservations on the bill.

Ashrafi praised the government for constituting a committee consisting of clerics and scholars to address proposed ambiguities. “It would have been better had the decision been taken earlier,” he said.

PUC Vice Chairman Maulana Muhammad Ayub Safdar said that conspiracies were being hatched against Islam and the Muslim world. Muslims should unite to foil conspiracies to turn Pakistan into Iraq and Syria, he said.

Other speakers said violence against women was strictly prohibited in Islam. They said the bill was not altogether against Sharia. They said no organisation could be allowed to permit violence against women on any account. The speakers urged the government to also legislate regarding girls education and to end the dowry culture.

They stressed the need for unity among the Islamic world to annihilate challenges of terrorism, extremism and sectarian violence. They called Saudi Arabia’s efforts to form an Islamic Militarily Alliance a good omen.

I respect Pakistan’s Constitution more than Qadri’s religious sentiments: CII chairman

Participants of the convention agreed to organise training workshops and seminars for students and teachers of Madaris-i-Arabia in May and June.

The speakers said that Message of Islam Conference had already called extremist and terrorists elements Khawarij. They urged clerics to play their role to aware Muslim youths of propaganda of terrorist organisations.

Participants of the convention condemned an attack on PUC Islamabad chapter president Maulana Abdul Hameed Sabri.

It was announced that a meeting of the PUC central executive body and the next Ulema Convention would be held in Faisalabad on March 27.

Maulana Hafiz Shoaib, Maulana Ashfaq Patafi and Maulana Zahid Hussein were among the participants.

tribune.com.pk/story/1065178/ulema-convention-blasphemy-law-cant-be-amended-says-puc/

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Russian Air Force Destroys Militants' Concentration Centres, Kills Dozens of Terrorists in Homs Province

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Russian air force pounded the military positions and gathering centers of the Takfiri terrorists in Homs province, inflicting heavy losses on them.

Meantime, the Syrian army and popular forces continued their military advances in other parts of Syria, including Aleppo, Lattakia and Raqqa over past 24 hours.

Tens of terrorists were killed and dozens more were injured during the Syrian army's operations in Syria's key provinces.

Homs

The Russian Air Force continued to carry out anti-terrorism combat fights over the ISIL concentration centers near the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur) in the Central province of Homs and targeted them heavily.

The Russian fighter jets hit the ISIL combatants heavily around Sukhanah-Palmyra Road, which not only ended in the killing or wounding of several terrorists but inflicted major damage on their military hardware.

Reports said earlier that the Syrian army soldiers stormed the ISIL gathering centers in the oil-rich region of the Eastern part of Homs and inflicted major damage on the terrorists' military equipment.

The ISIL concentration centers near the oil well of 101 and in the Southern side of oil well of 105 came under the heavy attacks of the Syrian army men.

The ISIL suffered a heavy death toll and its military hardware also sustained major damage in the offensives.

In the meantime, the Syrian fighter jets targeted the ISIL strongholds in the Northern side of Quaryatayn, which ended in the killing or wounding of several terrorists.

The Syrian Army is driving the ISIL terrorists back from more territories in the Eastern battlefields of Homs province, inflicting major casualties on the militants, informed sources said.

"The ISIL pulled forces back from more positions in the Western part of the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur) after the army stormed them and imposed full control over several strategic heights in Jabal al-Tar and al-Hayyal," the sources said.

The sources further added that an intense battle is underway West of Palmyra, where the Syrian army has the upper hand.

Earlier reports said that the Syrian army and the popular forces continued to advance against the ISIL terrorists in the Eastern part of Homs province following a several-hour battle with the terrorists.

The Syrian government forces pushed the Takfiri terrorists back from their strongholds in the region near of al-Bayarat and al-Hayyal mountain in the Western part of the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur), which left scores of the terrorists dead or wounded.

The Syrian army also inflicted major losses of the terrorists' military hardware.

Aleppo

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) thwarted the ISIL terrorists' attempts to target the Kurdish fighters' positions in the Northeastern part of Aleppo province in Tishrin Dam region.

At least five ISIL suicide cars were identified and targeted by the Kurdish fighters before they could reach the SDF strongholds bordering Tishrin dam in Raqqa province.

At least 12 ISIL terrorists were also killed in the failed attacks.

Hama

The Syrian Army has sent fresh forces to some parts of the province of Hama to monitor directly the trend of the ceasefire with opposition groups, provincial sources said.

"Several cases of breaching ceasefire by the militant groups, caused the Syrian army to send more fresh forces to different parts of Hama province to strongly confront the violators of the truce," the sources said.

"The army has vowed to restore security to the crisis-hit areas in the next few hours," the sources added.

Earlier reports said that the ISIL heavy offensives on the government forces' centers in the Northwestern part of Hama were repulsed by the Syrian Ground and Air Forces.

The Syrian Army troops, backed up by the Syrian fighter jets, fended of the ISIL attempts to prevail over the government forces' defense lines in al-Mughir, Bridj, Tal al-Sakhr and Hamamiyat, which not only left tens of terrorists dead or wounded but also destroyed their military hardware in large scale.

Hasaka

The Syrian Democratic Forces engaged in heavy fighting with the ISIL terrorists in the Northeastern province of Hasaka and inflicted a heavy death toll on the militants.

The clashes erupted between the SDF and the terrorists near the small town of Merkedeh in the Northern part of Hasaka province, which claimed the lives of several terrorists and damaged their military hardware.

On Saturday, the SDF thwarted the ISIL terrorists' attempts to target the Kurdish fighters' positions in the Southwestern part of Hasaka.

The ISIL suicide-belt attackers were identified and targeted by the Kurdish fighter before they could reach to the SDF strongholds near Abdulaziz mount in Hasaka province.

Scores of Takfiri terrorists were killed and wounded in the clashes with the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) and SDF forces.

Lattakia

The Syrian Army advanced in the Northeastern part of Lattakia province and encircled a large number of terrorists in the key town of Kabani, leaving them with only one way out.

The Syrian soldiers backed by the Syrian Social Nationalist Party (SSNP), the National Defense Forces (NDF) and the Syrian Marines  imposed full control over Hill 1154 at the Southwestern perimeter of Kabani after a violent battle with al-Nusra Front, Harakat Ahrar Al-Sham and the Free Syrian Army’s “1st Coastal Brigade” and “Al-Ghaab Hawks Brigade”.

As a result of their success at Hill 1154 inside Jabal al-Akrad (Kurds Mountain), the Syrian Armed Forces were able to advance on Kabani from three different direction, leaving the extremists with only one outlet to retreat from this strategic town.

The military strategy used by the Syrian Armed Forces at Kabani is similar to that of their previous battles at Ghammam, Salma, Kinsibba, and Al-Rabi’ah, meaning they will surround the enemy combatants and leave only one road for the latter to use in order to retreat from the fight.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000414

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Iran Targeting Terrorists that Enslave, Trade Women: Commander IRGC

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force Major General Qassem Soleimani said Takfiri terrorism threatens all Muslims, and Iran has waged war on those terrorists that trade enslaved women and children.

"The fire of Takfir and Takfirism has engulfed in homes of our Sunni brothers. Those behind this are under the illusion that they can bring Shiism and the Islamic Republic to their knees. More than anywhere else, Takfiri groups have targetted the sanctity of humanity and the Sunni world," General Soleimani said, addressing a ceremony in Tehran Sunday night.

General Soleimani then asked those behind the smear campaign to question Iran's policy in its ongoing war on terror, "Is it adventurism if the Islamic Republic makes sacrifices to defend Muslims? Is it wrong for the Islamic Republic to battle a group that in just one region is buying and selling some 20,000 unfortunate enslaved young women? Is it wrong for the Islamic Republic to stand against the anti-Muslim current and stop the demolition of Mosques and Muslim holy sites?"

His remarks came after Iraqi Minister of Human Rights Mohammed Mahdi Ameen al-Bayati said the Takfiri ISIL terrorist group has sold more than 5,000 women and girls from Iraq’s Izadi Kurdish minority in their slave market.

Iran is providing Iraq and Syria with military advisory and humanitarian aid in their fight against terrorist groups.

General Soleimani has been praised by different classes of the Iranian society as well as the regional figures for his brave commandership of the IRGC's Quds Force and for his strategic thoughts and major wins in the war on terrorist groups in the region.

In relevant remarks early November, senior military officials in Baghdad said Major General Soleimani planned the liberation operations of Jurf al-Sakher from the ISIL terrorist group's occupation some three months earlier.

After the ISIL fled from the embattled town of Jurf al-Sakher late October, the Iraqi military gained a victory against the extremist group, with state television showing tanks and Humvees parading through the town and soldiers touring government buildings that had been occupied by the militants since August.

Photos soon emerged on independent Iraqi news websites revealing presence of the powerful Iranian general Soleimani, whose name has become synonymous with the victories of Iraqi ground forces, AP said in a report.

An Iraqi militia commander, who agreed only to be identified by his nickname, Abu Zeinab, said Soleimani began planning the Jurf al-Sakher operation three months ago.

Militia commanders told the AP that General Soleimani was on the front lines in Jurf al-Sakher, providing weapons training to some 7,000 troops and militia fighters, and coordinating with military commanders ahead of the operation.

Some other militia commanders, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to talk to the media, describe Soleimani as “fearless” — one pointing out that the Iranian general never wears a flak jacket, even on the front lines.

“Soleimani has taught us that death is the beginning of life, not the end of life,” one militia commander said.

en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000298

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Pakistan

Blasphemy Law Cannot Be Amended: Pakistan Ulema Council

March 14, 2016

LAHORE: Pakistan Ulema Council (PUC) chairman Hafiz Tahir Mehmood Ashrafi on Sunday said the blasphemy law cannot be amended.

“The legislation related to blasphemy cannot be annulled or amended. The people of Pakistan are guardians of the law,” the PUC chairman said.

“Any bid to transform Pakistan into a liberal country will be foiled,” Ashrafi said at an Ulema Convention. Representatives of various schools of thought attended the convention that the PUC had organised at Darool-Uloom Hanifia.

Religious parties fear abolition of blasphemy law

Ashrafi said the provincial government had agreed to amend the Protection of Women against Violence Bill.

“This is a good omen,” he said, adding that the legislation had been deliberated upon at the Provincial Assembly for two years but assembly members took no interest in expressing their reservations on the bill.

Ashrafi praised the government for constituting a committee consisting of clerics and scholars to address proposed ambiguities. “It would have been better had the decision been taken earlier,” he said.

PUC Vice Chairman Maulana Muhammad Ayub Safdar said that conspiracies were being hatched against Islam and the Muslim world. Muslims should unite to foil conspiracies to turn Pakistan into Iraq and Syria, he said.

Other speakers said violence against women was strictly prohibited in Islam. They said the bill was not altogether against Sharia. They said no organisation could be allowed to permit violence against women on any account. The speakers urged the government to also legislate regarding girls education and to end the dowry culture.

They stressed the need for unity among the Islamic world to annihilate challenges of terrorism, extremism and sectarian violence. They called Saudi Arabia’s efforts to form an Islamic Militarily Alliance a good omen.

I respect Pakistan’s Constitution more than Qadri’s religious sentiments: CII chairman

Participants of the convention agreed to organise training workshops and seminars for students and teachers of Madaris-i-Arabia in May and June.

The speakers said that Message of Islam Conference had already called extremist and terrorists elements Khawarij. They urged clerics to play their role to aware Muslim youths of propaganda of terrorist organisations.

Participants of the convention condemned an attack on PUC Islamabad chapter president Maulana Abdul Hameed Sabri.

It was announced that a meeting of the PUC central executive body and the next Ulema Convention would be held in Faisalabad on March 27.

Maulana Hafiz Shoaib, Maulana Ashfaq Patafi and Maulana Zahid Hussein were among the participants.

tribune.com.pk/story/1065178/ulema-convention-blasphemy-law-cant-be-amended-says-puc/

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Pakistan SC to hear 10 appeals against military court convictions

IANS | Mar 14, 2016

ISLAMABAD: The Supreme Court of Pakistan will commence hearing 10 appeals instituted against military court convictions of militants from Wednesday, the media reported on Monday.

The appeals will be taken up by a five-judge larger bench, headed by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Anwar Zaheer Jamali, Dawn online reported.

At the last hearing, on February 24, Jamali had ordered that all the challenges against military court decisions be clubbed, with the directive that execution of the convicts would remain suspended until the pending petitions were decided.

Two of the convicts were awarded death sentence by the military courts for their alleged involvement in the December 16, 2014, carnage at the Army Public School in Peshawar, which killed 141 people, most of them school children.

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Pakistan-SC-to-hear-10-appeals-against-military-court-convictions/articleshow/51389037.cms

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SHC orders registration of FIR against Rangers over missing MQM worker

Mar 14, 2016

KARACHI: Sindh High Court (SHC) on Monday directed the police to register a First Information Report (FIR) against unknown Rangers personnel in case related to a missing Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM) worker.

The petitioner, Nighat Waseem, maintains that her husband, Waseem, was picked up by Rangers personnel on September 1, 2015 and is missing since then as no arrest was shown.

A two member bench of the court while ordering the registration of a case against unknown Rangers personnel, adjourned the next hearing of the case until April 4.

Apart from Rangers, the court has also sought a formal reply from Sindh government.

Waseem belonged to the Peer Ilahi Bukhsh (PIB) Colony sector of MQM.

The same court also issued notices to Rangers in a petition, seeking whereabouts of another MQM worker, Kashif alias David.

Kashif's wife, Raheela had claimed in her petition, that her husband was arrested in Dubai and brought to Pakistan in 2005.

She maintained that Rangers spokesman on February 8, 2016 disclosed Kashif's arrest before the media but her husband was neither produced in court, nor has been allowed to meet the family.

The bench directed the Rangers to submit their reply on the next date of hearing which was adjourned until April 18.

MQM, which enjoys political and street power in Karachi, had been accusing Rangers and other law enforcement agencies of illegally arresting and killing party workers since the start of Karachi operation back in September 2014.

dawn.com/news/1245600/shc-orders-registration-of-fir-against-rangers-over-missing-mqm-worker

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Heavy rains kill 50 people in Pakistan

PTI | Mar 14, 2016

ISLAMABAD: Nearly 50 people have been killed and 80 others injured in Pakistan due to accidents triggered by torrential rains wreaking havoc in the country, officials said on Monday.

The downpour started in Balochistan on Thursday and expanded to other provinces where heavy rainfall has been reported throughout the weekend, killing 49 people in the country, officials said.

The seasonal downpour began in Balochistan province on Thursday and hit other parts of the country subsequently where sporadic rainfall is still going on.

According to the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA), 18 people were killed in Balochistan, 15 in tribal regions, 10 in Punjab and six in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. Another 80 people were injured and 75 houses destroyed in these rain- affected areas.

Officials said that the death toll may rise as some of these areas may not have been reached by the authorities so far. Majority of the people died after their houses collapsed.

There are also reports of heavy damage to wheat crop in south Punjab.

The rain today stopped in most of the areas but the meteorological department has predicted for another heavy rain spell which may begin by the middle of the week and continue for at least a couple of days. Flash floods in hilly areas are also expected.

Torrential rains and flooding killed over 80 people and affected nearly 300,000 people in the country during the rainy season last summer.

timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/Heavy-rains-kill-50-people-in-Pakistan/articleshow/51391999.cms

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Arab World

Russian Air Force Destroys Militants' Concentration Centres, Kills Dozens of Terrorists in Homs Province

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Russian air force pounded the military positions and gathering centers of the Takfiri terrorists in Homs province, inflicting heavy losses on them.

Meantime, the Syrian army and popular forces continued their military advances in other parts of Syria, including Aleppo, Lattakia and Raqqa over past 24 hours.

Tens of terrorists were killed and dozens more were injured during the Syrian army's operations in Syria's key provinces.

Homs

The Russian Air Force continued to carry out anti-terrorism combat fights over the ISIL concentration centers near the ancient city of Palmyra (Tadmur) in the Central province of Homs and targeted them heavily.

The Russian fighter jets hit the ISIL combatants heavily around Sukhanah-Palmyra Road, which not only ended in the killing or wounding of several terrorists but inflicted major damage on their military hardware.

Reports said earlier that the Syrian army soldiers stormed the ISIL gathering centers in the oil-rich region of the Eastern part of Homs and inflicted major damage on the terrorists' military equipment.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000414

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ISIL Pulls Forces Back From More Territories in Syria's Aleppo

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The ISIL terrorists left behind tens of dead or wounded members and fled more positions in the Northern part of Aleppo province under the heavy attack of the Syrian Army and popular forces.

The Syrian army and popular fighters pushed the Takfiri terrorists back from the villages of Qazal, which ended in the killing or wounding of dozens of the terrorists and meantime inflicted major losses on their military hardware.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000364

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Syria: Militants' Vast Withdrawal Allows Families to Return to Southwest of Aleppo

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Recent victories of the Syrian Army and its allies against the ISIL and other terrorist groups in the Southeastern part of Aleppo province have paved the way for the safe and secure return of civilians to their villages and towns.

Last week, the Syrian army and its allies liberated a total of 13 villages in the Khanasser Plains of Southeast Aleppo after a successful military campaign against the ISIL, that laied the ground for the civilians to return to their homes in the villages of Jubb Al-Ali, Khanaser, Khirbat Al-Qalay’at, Furdaah, Al-Toubah, Hayak Al-Saghirah, Hayak Al-Kabeerah, and Zebed in the Khanasser Plains after leaving this region in late 2012.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000293

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Terrorists Admit Casualties in Syria's Hama Province

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Terrorist groups in the Northern province of Hama admitted that they have lost fourteen fellow militants after the Syrian army repelled their latest attacks on army positions in the Northern parts of the province.

Terrorists of the al-Nusra group acknowledged on their social media that the group's clashes with the Syrian soldiers in the last two days have ended in the death of fourteen militants in the Northern province.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000515

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Syrian Army Inflicts More Defeats on Terrorists in Hama

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian Army continued to hit the terrorist groups in the Northern part of Hama province and forced them to retreat form their strongholds near a key village.

The Syrian army troops, in a several-hour battle, captured three checkpoints near Al-Mughayr (Northern Hama) along with the sawmills East of the village.

The government soldiers also recaptured the strategic hill of Tal al-Sakhar near al-Mughayr.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000576

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Terrorist Groups Violate Ceasefire in Syria Again

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Russian Defense Ministry said in a statement that the militant groups violated the ceasefire with the Syrian government at least 29 times in one day.

"The Syrian opposition forces breached the ceasefire agreement 18 times in Lattakia, 5 times in Damascus, 2 times in Idlib, and 4 times in Hama," the statement said.

"The recent escalation in violence is due to several offensives launched by al-Nusra Front in the Northern part of Syria, backed up by the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and other rebel groups," the statement added.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000527

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Al Nusrah Front raids rebel group’s headquarters in Idlib province, seizes weapons

March 13, 2016

The 13th Division claims that Al Nusrah attacked its fighters, including the TOW specialist pictured on the left. Source: 13th Division’s Twitter feed.

Al Nusrah Front and the 13th Division, a Syrian rebel group that has received US-made anti-tank TOW missiles, clashed in the past two days. The two sides have fought in Maarat al Numan, a town in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province, as well as in the surrounding area.

The Idlib province fell to the Jaysh al Fateh rebel coalition last year. Al Nusrah Front, an official branch of al Qaeda’s international organization, is a cofounder of the alliance. The 13th Division has long coexisted with Jaysh al Fateh and has also fought alongside the jihadists against their common enemies.

But that all changed in the past 48 hours.

Full report at: longwarjournal.org/archives/2016/03/al-nusrah-front-raids-rebel-groups-headquarters-in-idlib-province-seizes-weapons.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+LongWarJournalSiteWide+%28The+Long+War+Journal+%28Site-Wide%29%29

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UAE armed forces say fighter jet in Yemen missing

Mar 14, 2016

DUBAI: A United Arab Emirates fighter plane taking part in Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen is missing, the UAE armed forces said in a statement on state news agency WAM on Monday without giving further details.

The armed forces said in a short statement that the jet taking part in the fighting was “lost”.

Riyadh and a coalition of Arab states entered Yemen's civil war a year ago, in an attempt to restore President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi after Houthi rebels and forces loyal to former president Ali Abdullah Saleh ousted him from power.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1245587/uae-armed-forces-say-fighter-jet-in-yemen-missing

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Mideast

Iran Targeting Terrorists that Enslave, Trade Women: Commander IRGC

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) Quds Force Major General Qassem Soleimani said Takfiri terrorism threatens all Muslims, and Iran has waged war on those terrorists that trade enslaved women and children.

"The fire of Takfir and Takfirism has engulfed in homes of our Sunni brothers. Those behind this are under the illusion that they can bring Shiism and the Islamic Republic to their knees. More than anywhere else, Takfiri groups have targetted the sanctity of humanity and the Sunni world," General Soleimani said, addressing a ceremony in Tehran Sunday night.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000298

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50 Turkish Detained For Alleged Ties to US-Based Islamic Scholar, Fethullah Gülen

Mar 14, 2016

A total of 50 people, including a former university rector, have been detained in western Turkey for having links to the “Fethullahist Terrorist Organization” (FETÖ), a group accused of being formed and headed by U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gülen to undermine the state from within.

Among a total of 56 who were issued detention warrants, 50 individuals, including the former rector of Süleyman Demirel University, were detained in the western Turkish province of Isparta early March 14 within an investigation covering four provinces that was launched by the Isparta Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported on March 14.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/50-detained-for-alleged-ties-to-us-based-islamic-scholar.aspx?pageID=238&nID=96416&NewsCatID=509

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Ankara attack: bombers had links to PKK, Turkish officials say

Monday 14 March 2016

Constanze Letsch in Istanbul and agencies

A female member of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ party (PKK) and a man with links to the party were among the suspected perpetrators of a car bombing that killed 37 people in Ankara on Sunday, Turkish security officials said, as the president vowed to bring terrorism “to its knees”.

The officials told Reuters evidence had been obtained that one of the bombers was a woman who joined the militant PKK in 2013. She was born in 1992 and was from the eastern Turkish city of Kars, they said. A security official later said that a male Turkish citizen with links to the party was a second suspect. There has been no claim of responsibility.

Full report at: theguardian.com/world/2016/mar/14/turkey-ankara-attack-one-bombers-was-pkk-member-officials-say

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Turkish jets strike Kurdish rebels after Ankara bomb attack

AP | Mar 14, 2016

ANKARA: Turkey's air force hit Kurdish rebel targets in northern Iraq on Monday, hours after a suicide car bombing in the capital killed 37 people and heightened tensions with the militants.

Nine F-16s and two F-4 jets raided 18 positions of the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, in northern Iraq, including the Qandil mountains where the group's leadership is based, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported. Ammunition depots, bunkers and shelters were among the targets hit.

Police, meanwhile, carried out raids in the southern city of Adana, detaining suspected 38 suspected PKK rebels, the agency reported. Fifteen suspected Kurdish militants were also detained in Istanbul, Anadolu said.

Health minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu said three more people died overnight from wounds suffered in the Sunday night's suicide attack that targeted buses and people waiting at bus stops in the heart of Ankara. Around 125 people were wounded in the blast, with 71 people still hospitalized. Of those, 15 were in serious condition.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Turkish-jets-strike-Kurdish-rebels-after-Ankara-bombing/articleshow/51395271.cms

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Iran Condemns Terrorist Attack in Ankara

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Iranian foreign ministry condemned the Sunday terrorist blast in Ankara that killed and wounded dozens of people.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Hossein Jaberi Ansari condemned the attack and extended the Islamic Republic's condolences to the Turkish nation and government.

"The ongoing terrorist operations in different parts of the region and the world highlighted the need and the urgency of forging a united and integrated front against terrorism and extremism. It is a common threat to the world community," he added.

At least 34 people died after a car bomb exploded in Ankara, less than a month after a suicide car bomber killed dozens of military personnel and civilians in the city.

Mehmet Muezzinoglu, the health minister, said 30 of those killed had died at the scene, while the four others died in hospital. At least one or two of the dead were attackers, he said.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000376

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Iran says US companies welcome to invest in petroleum sector

AP | Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN: US companies are welcome to invest in Iran's oil and gas industry, the Iranian oil minister said on Sunday.

State-run Press TV quoted Bijan Namdar Zangeneh as saying that ``in general, we have no problem with the presence of American companies in Iran.''

He said it is the US government that is ``creating restrictions for these companies,'' without elaborating. Zangeneh also confirmed that Iran's state-run oil company has held talks with General Electric.

``Of course, my deputy conducted these negotiations and when I inquired about them, it was said that the talks were positive,'' he said.

GE said in a statement responding to questions about the talks that it is considering possibly doing business in Iran.

``In line with the easing of sanctions, we have begun looking at potential business opportunities in Iran, while fully complying with the rules laid out by the U.S. government,'' the company said.

The TV report said Zangeneh also asked Siemens executives to invest in Iran's oil and gas industry.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Iran-says-US-companies-welcome-to-invest-in-petroleum-sector/articleshow/51392449.cms

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At least 37 killed in Ankara blast: Health minister

Mar 14, 2016

At least 37 were killed while 125 wounded people were hospitalized after an explosion hit central Ankara on March 13, Health Minister Mehmet Müezzinoğlu has said in a press conference.

A bomb-laden car caused the blast, Interior Minister Efkan Ala said at the same conference after a security meeting in Ankara.

Thirty people were killed at the scene of the incident while four others died on their way to hospital, Müezzinoğlu said, adding that at least one of the 30 was one of the assailants.

On March 14, the health minister announced that three more people had also succumbed to their wounds.

Nineteen people are in critical condition, while seven were in surgery, he said.

Ala said they would have more information about the perpetrators of the attack by March 14.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/at-least-37-killed-in-ankara-blast-health-minister.aspx?pageID=238&nID=96403&NewsCatID=509

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Iran's foreign minister defends ballistic missile test

Mar 14, 2016

WELLINGTON: Iran's foreign minister has defended the nation's right to use ballistic missiles following a test last week, but offered no explanation for anti-Israeli messages reportedly written on them.

Speaking Monday in New Zealand, Mohammad Javad Zarif said Iran has always reserved the right to defend itself using conventional weapons, and that "anybody who is crazy enough to attack us, we will attack back".

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1245605/irans-foreign-minister-defends-ballistic-missile-test

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Freed Iranian national handed over to Iranian officials on border area in Nimroz

By Khaama Press - Mon Mar 14 2016

An Iranian national who was freed by the National Directorate of Security (NDS)—Afghanistan’s intelligence agency has been handed over to Iranian authorities on the Afghanistan-Iran border in southwestern Nimroz province, an official said on Monday.

Full report at: khaama.com/iranian-national-released-in-nimroz-4738

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Turkish Army Crosses Border with Syria to Create Buffer Zone

Mar 14, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- Informed sources announced that the Turkish Army troops have crossed the border line with Syria in Northeastern province of Hasaka and embarked on building a wall of separation along the border.

The Turkish officials and army men, backed by several Tanks and armored vehicles, entered the territories of the small town of Tal Halaf in the Western part of Ra'as al-Ein and launched construction operation of buffer wall at eight meters inside the Syrian territories.

Full report at: en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941224000423

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Africa

Ivory Coast hotel shooting: Child 'spared for praying' as another is shot dead by 'Arabic speaking' attacker

Will Worley | The Independent | Mar 14, 2016

Ivorian soldiers walk on the beach after heavily armed gunmen opened fire at a nearby beach resort. (AFP Photo)Ivorian soldiers walk on the beach after heavily armed gunmen opened fire at a nearby beach resort. (AFP Photo)

At least one child was among the 16 people killed in an attack at the popular Grand-Bassam resort in Ivory Coast, it has been reported.

Officials say four Europeans were among 14 civilian victims, while two soldiers died as part of an operation that saw six gunmen "neutralised".

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/rest-of-world/Ivory-Coast-hotel-shooting-Child-spared-for-praying-as-another-is-shot-dead-by-Arabic-speaking-attacker/articleshow/51389030.cms

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FAO SAYS 27 AFRICAN COUNTRIES AMONG 34 IN NEED OF EXTERNAL FOOD ASSISTANCE

2016-03-14

ROME, March 14 (NNN-FAO) -- Thirty-four countries, including 27 in Africa, are currently in need of external assistance for food as a result of drought, flooding and civil conflicts, according to a new edition of the Crop Prospects and Food Situation report of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) released here.

The figure has grown from 33 last December, after the addition of Swaziland. Drought associated with the El Nino weather phenomenon has "sharply reduced" 2016 crop production prospects in southern Africa, while expectations for the harvest in Morocco and Algeria have been lowered because of dry conditions.

Full report at: namnewsnetwork.org/v3/read.php?id=MzQxMDkw

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India

Anti-national slogans are normal in Kashmir: Farooq Abdullah

PTI | Mar 14, 2016

MEERUT: In the wake of a massive row over anti-national slogans allegedly raised in JNU, former Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Farooq Abdullah on Monday said such sloganeering cannot and will not divide the country.

"In Kashmir, raising anti-national slogans is normal. Such slogans cannot and will not divide the country," he told reporters on the sidelines of a function here.

A massive political row had erupted after anti-national slogans were allegedly raised in JNU in Delhi, leading to the arrest of its students' union president Kanhaiya Kumar in a sedition case slapped by the police.

Attacking BJP, Abdullah said the ruling dispensation has failed to fulfill its pre-poll promises.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Anti-national-slogans-are-normal-in-Kashmir-Farooq-Abdullah/articleshow/51393596.cms

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In last 2 yrs, Muslims got only 2% of 6 PSBs' priority sector loans: RTI

Mohammed Wajihuddin | TNN | Mar 14, 2016

MUMBAI: If there were any doubts about low lending by banks to Muslims - one of the reasons for the community's financial exclusion - an RTI disclosure conclusively lays them to rest.

Answers received through Right To Information applications to half-a- dozen banks by Mumbai-based activist M A Khalid show that of all priority sector loans, Muslims got a little over 2% in both 2014-15 and till September 30 in 2015-16. The revelation may strengthen the feeling within the community that it is getting further marginalised under the NDA dispensation.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/In-last-2-yrs-Muslims-got-only-2-of-6-PSBs-priority-sector-loans-RTI/articleshow/51387578.cms

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Pak hacker defaces Raipur AIIMS site, says all Indian governement sites on target

Rashmi Drolia | TNN | Mar 14, 2016

Raipur: Pakistani hackers on Saturday defaced the official website of AIIMS Raipur. While AIIMS administration wasn't aware about this till late in the evening, the site was patched till Sunday morning.

The homepage of  aiimsraipur.nic.in was hacked and displayed "Website stamped by Kashmiri Cheeta, Team: Pak Cyber Attackers. We are unbeatable. Mess with the Best, Die like the Rest."

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/tech/tech-news/Pak-hacker-defaces-Raipur-AIIMS-site-says-all-Indian-governement-sites-on-target/articleshow/51386718.cms?

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South Asia

12 ISIS loyalists killed, 21 wounded in a premature explosion in Nangarhar

By Khaama Press - Mon Mar 14 2016

At least 12 loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group were killed in a premature explosion in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said at least 21 militants of the terror group were also wounded in the explosion.

A statement by MoD said the militants were looking to transport an explosive device from Mazdaki area of Achin district to Shedil Bazar of the same district when the explosives went off prematurely.

The loyalists of the ISIS terrorist group are attemtping to continue to their insurgency activities despite the terror group suffered setbacks during the recent months as a result of the coordinated military operations.

The provincial officials in Nangarhar province announced earlier this month that the counter-terrorism operations to suppress the activities of the terror group concluded after 21 days.

Full report at: khaama.com/12-isis-loyalists-killed-21-wounded-in-a-premature-explosion-in-nangarhar-0329

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Coordinated attack foiled in Jalalabad city, 7 Taliban militants arrested

By Khaama Press - Mon Mar 14 2016

A coordinated attack plot by the Taliban militants was thwarted in Jalalabad city, the provincial capital of eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

The Afghan Intelligence – National Directorate of Security (NDS) said a group of 7 Taliban militants were arrested in connection to the attack plot.

A statement by NDS said the group was nabbed during a special militar operation conducted by the intelligence operatives.

No further details were given regarding the exact location and time where the operation was conducted and the possible target of the militants.

Full report at: khaama.com/coordinated-attack-foiled-in-jalalabad-city-7-taliban-militants-arrested-0330

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NDS seizes weapons cache of militants in Logar

By Khaama Press - Mon Mar 14

The National Directorate of Security (NDS) – Afghanistan’s intelligence agency has seized a weapons cache of militants in central Logar province.

NDS says the cache belonging to Mawlawi Abdullah was discovered during a special operation in Spais are on Sunday.

A statement released by the agency states that the depot contained 4 rockets, artillery round, 4 home-made anti-tank bombs including a bucket-bomb (bucket filled with explosives), Kalashnikov and other terrorist materials.

There is no report of any arrest in this regard.

khaama.com/nds-seizes-weapons-cache-of-militants-in-logar-4736

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Bangladesh arrests militants, seize explosives

Mar 14, 2016

DHAKA: Bangladesh's elite security force said Monday it had arrested five militants and seized a large quantity of explosives it suspects were destined for the upcoming new year celebrations.

Acting on a tip-off, the Rapid Action Battalion (RAB) arrested a district commander of the banned Jamayetul Mujahideen Bangladesh (JMB) and four others from a Dhaka apartment late Sunday, a spokesman for the force said.

"We have recovered a huge cache of plastic explosive gels and detonators. We suspect they were planning to use the explosives during the Bengali new year celebration festival next month," RAB spokesman Sazzad Hossain said.

"We also have found propaganda books and leaflets which indicated they were trying to recruit people for committing such attacks," Hossain told AFP.

Bengali new year on April 14 is Bangladesh's largest festival and has been targeted before.

Full report at: dawn.com/news/1245606/bangladesh-arrests-militants-seize-explosives

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Australia to forcibly deport Hazara asylum seeker to Afghanistan

By Khaama Press - Mon Mar 14 2016

Australia is set to forcibly deport an Afghan man after his last-minute plea to the Australian authorities was rejected to grant him asylum.

The man whose identity has not been disclosed belongs to the minority Hazara ethnic group and reportedly fled Afghanistan in 2012 amid fears of persecution from the anti-government armed militants.

The Australian authorities rejected to grant protection to the man in 2013 and his latest plea was refused as the authorities insist they did not believe he would be persecuted on return to Afghanistan.

Officials in the Refugee Review Tribunal of Australia have said “did not believe Hazaras would be persecuted for seeking asylum in the west.”

Full report at: khaama.com/australia-to-forcibly-deport-hazara-asylum-seeker-to-afghanistan-0332

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Southeast Asia

Thai PM boosts security in Muslim south after attacks

14 March 2016

NARATHIWAT, Thailand (Reuters) - Thai Prime Minister Prayuth Chan-ocha told the army on Monday to increase security in the country's Muslim-majority southern provinces following attacks at the weekend.

Seven soldiers were injured following multiple gun and bomb attacks in Narathiwat, one of three provinces near the Thailand-Malaysia border, including a gunfight in a hospital.

"The prime minister has ordered the military to increase security in populated areas," junta spokesman Major General Sansern Kaewkamnerd told reporters.

"The government can't accept actions that are above the law."

The three southernmost provinces of Buddhist-majority Thailand have been gripped by a bloody insurgency that has killed more than 6,500 people since 2004. The region was once part of a Malay sultanate until it was annexed by Thailand a century ago.

Local history and a failure by successive governments to quell the violence have fanned distrust of the Thai state in the south.

Full report at: thestar.com.my/news/world/2016/03/14/thai-pm-boosts-security-in-muslim-south-after-attacks/

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Europe

Merkel calls Turkey’s Davutoğlu to discuss upcoming EU summit

Mar 14, 2016

As her party braced for a backlash at key state polls on March 13 over her liberal refugee policy, German Chancellor Angela Merkel exchanged views with Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu on an upcoming special summit between Ankara and the EU aimed at sealing a deal to stem illegal migrant flows from Turkey to Europe.

During a telephone conversation on March 13 initiated by the German side, Merkel and Davutoğlu reviewed the results of a special summit on the migration crisis held in Brussels on March 7, sources from the Turkish Prime Minister’s office told state-run Anadolu Agency.

Full report at: hurriyetdailynews.com/merkel-calls-turkeys-davutoglu-to-discuss-upcoming-eu-summit.aspx?pageID=238&nID=96374&NewsCatID=351

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German voters batter Merkel over migrant policy

Reuters | Mar 14, 2016

BERLIN: Voters punished Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives in three German regional elections on Sunday, giving a thumbs-down to her open-door refugee policy and turning in droves to the anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD).

The result is a big setback for Merkel, who has led Europe's biggest economy for a decade, and could narrow her room for manoeuvre as she tries to convince her European Union partners to seal a deal with Turkey to stem the tide of migrants.

Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU) lost ground in all three states - Baden-Wuerttemberg and Rhineland-Palatinate in the west and Saxony-Anhalt in the east - which were together widely seen as offering a verdict on Merkel's liberal migrant policy.

Full report at: timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/German-voters-batter-Merkel-over-migrant-policy/articleshow/51388375.cms

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North America

American defects from Islamic State

March 14, 2016

A Virginia man who was fighting with the Islamic State in northern Iraq was detained by Kurdish military forces Monday while apparently trying to flee to Turkey, according to media reports.

The Kurdish news agency Rudaw, citing a local commander, said Muhammad Jamal Amin is an American citizen with a Palestinian father and Iraqi mother from Mosul.

Rudaw said Amin had mistaken the peshmerga territory for the Turkish border when he approached a checkpoint near the Iraqi town of Sinjar. Amin had entered Syria from Turkey two months ago, Rudaw said.

Full report at: usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/03/14/reports-american-defects-islamic-state/81754546/

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U.N. envoy: Syria peace talks 'a moment of truth'

Jane Onyanga-Omara and John Bacon, March 14, 2016

Syria peace talks resumed Monday, as the conflict approaches its fifth anniversary.

Staffan de Mistura, the U.N. special envoy for Syria, told reporters in Geneva that the resumption of the negotiations was a “moment of truth” and that the “only Plan B available is return to war.”

"If during these talks and in the next rounds we will see no notice of any willingness to negotiate ... we will bring the issue back to those who have influence, and that is the Russian Federation, the USA ... and to the Security Council," he said, according to Reuters.

De Mistura said the first round of talks will end around March 24, followed by a 7-10 day break. A second round will last for at least two weeks, followed by another break and then a third round.

“By then we believe we should have at least a clear roadmap. I’m not saying agreement, but a clear roadmap because that’s what Syria is expecting from all of us,” de Mistura said, according to Reuters.

He did not say if Kurdish leaders would be involved in the negotiations for the first time, the news agency reported.

Full report at: usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/03/14/un-envoy-syria-peace-talks-moment-truth/81753484/

 

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