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Islamic World News ( 16 Jan 2016, NewAgeIslam.Com)

New ISIS Video ‘Benghazi Means Firmness’ Shows Warfare in Libya

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Photo: People who have escaped from the Cappuccino restaurant exit a Burkina Faso military vehicle in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, January 16, 2016. © Str. / Reuters

 

Africa

New ISIS Video ‘Benghazi Means Firmness’ Shows Warfare in Libya

‘Jihadist African Revival Started By NATO Misadventure In Libya’

Can ISIS gain power over Libya’s oil?

Naming of Libyan unity government delayed by 48 hours

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Arab World

IS Attack On Syria's Deir Ezzor Kills 75 Regime Forces: Monitor

ISIL Kidnaps 400 Civilians In Syrian City Of Deir Al-Zor

Source Reveals Syrian Army's Secret Tactics in War on ISIL

Syrian Warplanes Target ISIL Military Vehicles, Oil Tankers in Deir Ezzur

Syrian Army, Hezbollah Capture More Lands in Damascus Province

Yemen: Popular Forces Inflict More Casualties on Saudi Mercenaries, Marines

ISIL Militants Withdrawing from Northern Part of Aleppo Province

Saudileaks 33: Riyadh Rulers Moving in Direct Opposition to Deceased King's Policies

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India

Missing Indian Youth Believed To Have Joined IS In Afghanistan

Seven Ancient Buddhist Caves Found In Mumbai

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South Asia

At Least 13 Dead, 14 Injured In Suicide Attack At Politician's Home In Afghanistan

8 Militants Blown Up By Own Explosives In Kunar Province

2nd preparatory meeting for peace talks with Taliban due in Kabul tomorrow

Drone strike leaves 17 ISIS loyalists dead in Nangarhar

Hundreds of anti-ISIS militiamen led by MP Qadir placed under ANSF control

Afghan minister warns regarding growing extremism in the country

Afghanistan strongly condemns attack on Afghan diplomat’s house in Peshawar

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Pakistan

With Pathankot JIT, A Sense Of Déjà Vu

Police Arrest Cleric For 'Inciting' Boy To Cut Off His Hand

Terror Bid Foiled: FC Personnel Defuse IED In Dera Bugti

Rangers Chief Asks Jirga To Keep An Eye On Illegal Immigrants

Peshawar Schools Closed After Terrorist Attack Rumours

Jem Activists Remanded In Police Custody

Pak PM, army chief to visit Iran, Saudi Arabia to ease tensions

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North America

US School Expels 2 For Bomb Threat From Muslim Pupil's Email

Jason Rezaian: US Reporter Free After 543 Days In Iran Jail

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Europe

600 British Militants Stopped From Going To Syria, Says UK

Refugee crisis: Human traffickers 'netted up to £4 billion last year'

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Mideast

World Powers Declare Official Annulment of Iran Sanctions

EU Says Prosecution Of Turkish Academics ’Extremely Worrying’

Israel Will Not Allow Iran To Obtain Nuclear Weapons: Netanyahu

IRGC Deputy Top Commander: US Marines Crying When Detained

16 referred to court on suspicion of links to Sultanahmet bomber

US: Crackdown on critical academics part of ’troubling trend’ in Turkey

2 children killed during clashes in Cizre, Turkey

100 workers hospitalized after chemical leak at sock factory in central Turkey

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Southeast Asia

Maldives Permits Jailed Ex-President Mohamed Nasheed To Have Surgery Abroad

Indonesia names five suspects over attack

Compiled by New Age Islam News Bureau

URL: http://newageislam.com/islamic-world-news/new-age-islam-news-bureau/new-isis-video-‘benghazi-means-firmness’-shows-warfare-in-libya/d/106020

 

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Africa

New ISIS Video ‘Benghazi Means Firmness’ Shows Warfare in Libya

January 16, 2016

In a new video purportedly released by the Islamic State, ISIS militants in “Wilayat al-Barqah,” Libya are shown taking on opposition forces. Wilayat al-Barqah is one of three Islamic State “wilayats,” or “provinces,” announced in Libya on November 13, 2014, along with Wilayat al-Tarabulus and Wilayat al-Fizan. Wilayat al-Barqah contains the city of Benghazi, the site of the September 11, 2012 attack on an American compound that left U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens and U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Officer Sean Smith dead.

In the video, the battle front between ISIS and opposition forces in Libya is shown. The Islamic State has been ramping up its interest in the African nation, which is a cause for concern due to its proximity to Europe. In fact, The New York Times reports that ISIS intends to make Sirte, a Mediterranean city in Libya, a back-up capital for the Islamic State in case Raqqa, Syria falls to the coalition.

http://heavy.com/news/2016/01/new-isis-islamic-state-news-pictures-videos-benghazi-means-firmness-full-uncensored-youtube-video/

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‘Jihadist African revival started by NATO misadventure in Libya’

16 Jan, 2016

Terrorist organizations, partially out of competition with ISIS, are regrouping, remobilizing and taking advantage of unstable polities and weaker states, Dr. Sreeram Chaulia, Dean of Jindal School of International Affairs, told RT.

Following the terrorist takeover of a luxury hotel in Burkina Faso, which resulted in the death of at least 23 people from 18 different nationalities, a jihadist revival of sorts appears to be happening in Africa.

RT: The capital of Burkino Faso witnessed a horrific terrorist attack on a luxury hotel on Friday; in November, terrorists struck in Somalia, while two months ago, Mali was targeted. Is Africa being consumed by terrorism?

Dr. Sreeram Chaulia: I think there is a global jihadist revival. We are seeing from Indonesia through Africa, there is a wide arc there. Jihadist groups are regrouping, remobilizing and taking advantage of unstable polities and weaker states. Burkina Faso is bordering Mali, where there has been an Islamist takeover and a French military intervention. And before that, there was the catastrophic NATO intervention in Libya that started off this whole process by spreading weapons and fanatics all over the region.

So there is a revival going on. There is competition between Al-Qaeda and Islamic State. And in the region, there is Boko Haram, which has pledged allegiance to ISIS…

    Has an assault started? #BurkinaAttack#BurkinaFaso Hear sporadic shots of verying degree pic.twitter.com/RIqGWEmLV6

   — Sumudu Dhanapala (@Maximuslk) January 16, 2016

RT:  Al-Qaeda has claimed both the attacks in Burkina Faso and Mali... with ISIL making so many grim headlines of late in the broader region, is this maybe some kind of headline-stealing attempt on behalf of the group?

SC: Yes, in fact Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of Al-Qaeda, who is based in Pakistan, has recently released a number of messages threatening that there is a major revival and that Al-Qaeda is coming after all the apostates and the infidels… which are Muslims as well as non-Muslims who do not adhere to extreme interpretations of Islam. Therefore, there is a problem in the sense that they want to be in the limelight and don’t want to be sidelined by ISIS. So one way of looking at it is this intra-jihadist rivalry… is not weakening them. They are attacking weak states as well as soft targets like civilians caught up in hotels rather than each other.

RT:  Jihadists from small African terror cells are reportedly switching over to Islamic State - why is ISIL more appealing to them?

CS: I think it’s because they’ve established a very big base in Libya now. After NATO destabilized Libya it became easy for ISIS to gain a foothold there. And now ISIS from Libya is branching out into the rest of Africa. So Libya is really the biggest problem created by Western military misadventure and illegal intervention and now they are facing the fruits of these terrible actions.

Dr. Sreeram Chaulia is Professor and Executive Director of the Centre for Global Governance and Policy (CGGP) at the Jindal School of International Affairs.

https://www.rt.com/op-edge/329186-jihadist-african-revival-nato-libya/

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Can ISIS gain power over Libya’s oil?

January 16, 2016

As it turns out, Syria was merely a springboard for a much larger ISIS plan — replenishing terrorist coffers by taking over oil assets in war-torn Libya.

The terror group has largely taken control of the Libyan city of Sirte and its hundreds of miles of coastline, and has ransacked two key oil terminals in an attempt to wrest control from fragile Libyan officials, ISIS is banking on taking over these oil facilities, and is now reportedly recruiting its own oil and gas engineers.

Libyan crude should be an easier target than Iraqi oil, which has remained largely out of ISIS reach. If ISIS succeeds, it will have more revenues and more power.

Reeling from warring parallel ''governments'' in a seething civil war, Libya is in no position to stop ISIS from filling the void.

Full report at: http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/markets/2016/01/16/can-isis-gain-power-over-libyas-oil/78873374/

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Naming of Libyan unity government delayed by 48 hours

January 17th, 2016

TUNIS (Reuters) - The body tasked with naming a unity government for Libya under a U.N.-backed plan to resolve the country's political crisis has delayed the planned announcement of the government's members by 48 hours.

The Presidential Council said in a statement released late on Saturday that it had made "great progress" since beginning discussions on Jan. 1 but needed two more days to complete its work.

Libya has been racked by political divisions and violence as numerous factions and militias have competed for power following the fall of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. Since the summer of 2014 the country has had two rival governments, one based in the capital Tripoli and the other in the east.

Full report at: http://news.yahoo.com/naming-libyan-unity-government-delayed-48-hours-103028162.html

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Arab World

IS attack on Syria's Deir Ezzor kills 75 regime forces: Monitor

AFP | Jan 17, 2016

BEIRUT: At least 75 Syrian soldiers and pro-regime militiamen were killed on Saturday in a multi-front attack by the Islamic State group on the eastern city of Deir Ezzor, a monitor said.

The fighting came as regime forces battled IS in the northern province of Aleppo, repelling a jihadist assault and killing at least 16 fighters from the group.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said IS had advanced into the northern tip of Deir Ezzor city, in eastern Syria, and captured the suburb of Al-Baghaliyeh.

At least 60 regime forces were killed in Al-Baghaliyeh alone, most of them execution-style, the Britain-based monitor.

The advance puts IS in control of around 60 percent of the city, with the regime holding the rest, it added.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/IS-attack-on-Syrias-Deir-Ezzor-kills-75-regime-forces-Monitor/articleshow/50609169.cms

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ISIL kidnaps 400 civilians in Syrian city of Deir al-Zor

January 17, 2016

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants kidnapped at least 400 civilians when they attacked government-held areas in the eastern Syrian city of Deir al-Zor on Saturday, a monitoring group said.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Sunday families of pro-government fighters were among those abducted.

"There is genuine fear for their lives, there is a fear that the group might execute them as it has done before in other areas," said the Observatory's head Rami Abdulrahamn.

Deir al-Zor is the main town in a province of the same name. The province links ISIL's de facto capital in the Syrian city of Raqqa with territory controlled by the militant group in neighbouring Iraq.

Full report at: http://www.todayszaman.com/anasayfa_isil-kidnaps-400-civilians-in-syrian-city-of-deir-al-zor_409817.html

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Source Reveals Syrian Army's Secret Tactics in War on ISIL

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian army has managed to drive ISIL terrorists back from their positions in recent months through new military tactics, a source disclosed on Saturday.

The Syrian army has targeted the ISIL headquarters in different parts of Deir Ezzur with various weapons, is expanding its security cordon around the military bases and has now launched a war of attrition against the terrorists, the source underlined.

Also, the Syrian ground force in Deir Ezzur has recently adopted more wise tactics to fight against the ISIL and it quickly comes out of the defensive crouch and inflicts heavy damage and toll on the terrorists by offensive tactics, he added.

The Syrian army's new tactics lead the ISIL terrorists to regions that its engineering units have already planted bombs and mines and this trick kills the terrorists, the source continued.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026000646

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Syrian Warplanes Target ISIL Military Vehicles, Oil Tankers in Deir Ezzur

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian Army announced on Saturday that the county's fighter jets have bombed a column of ISIL oil tankers and an arms cargo in the Eastern province of Deir Ezzur, killing some two dozen terrorists.

"The Syrian Air Force strikers bombed a convoy of ISIL oil tankers and meantime targeted their military vehicles carrying heavy weapons in al-Mura'yeh Farm, al-Sina'ah (Industrial) Area and Tal Kroum," the army said.

The army said the arms cargo contained various types of weapons, including 23mm machineguns and their ammunition, adding that both convoys were fully damaged and at least 22 terrorists were killed in the operation.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026001036

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Syrian Army, Hezbollah Capture More Lands in Damascus Province

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian Army, popular forces and the Lebanese Hezbollah fighters drove the ISIL back from more lands in Damascus province and regained control over several sites in the battlefields of Qalamoun mountains, the army said Saturday.

"On Friday night, the Syrian army, the National Defense Forces (NDF) and Hezbollah

surprised the ISIL terrorists in the Eastern Qalamoun with a powerful assault on the Damascus Train Tracks, the Petrol Pumping Station, the al-Thaniyah Walls, and the village of Al-Azzam, killing several militants in their large-scale attack on these sites in rural West Damascus," the army said.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026000733

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Yemen: Popular Forces Inflict More Casualties on Saudi Mercenaries, Marines

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Yemeni army and popular forces killed 4 mercenaries and 5 marines of the Saudi Arabia.

Yemen's Saba' news agency reported that the 4 Saudi mercenaries, including a UAE officer, were killed in al-Amri region of Taiz, Southwestern Yemen.

Also, five Saudi marines were killed in Najran province's al-Makhrouq military base in Southern Saudi Arabia.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026000320

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ISIL Militants Withdrawing from Northern Part of Aleppo Province

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Syrian government forces' recent advances in the Eastern and Northeastern parts of Aleppo province and the heavy bombardments carried out by the Syrian warplanes have forced the militant groups to start pulling back fighters to evade more casualties, provincial sources said Saturday.

"The ISIL militants, who have witnessed the heavy attacks of the Syrian army troops and the National Defense Forces (NDF), backed up by the country's fighter jets, and the collapse of their defense lines near the city of al-Bab and the village of Nadef, have started to withdraw from parts of the Southern battlefields of the mentioned city and village," the sources said.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026000568

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Saudileaks 33: Riyadh Rulers Moving in Direct Opposition to Deceased King's Policies

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The documents released by the Yemen Cyber Army after it hacked the Saudi Foreign Ministry in May show that the late Saudi King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz had strongly opposed formation of an Arab military coalition against Syria and informed his defense minister - who succeeded later to the throne - to avoid any such move.

The Saudi Foreign Ministry was hacked by the Yemen Cyber Army in May, and a copy of its information was sent to FNA and another one to the whistleblower website WikiLeaks.

According to one of these documents, the current monarch King Salman bin Abdulaziz was informed of King Abdullah's opposition to any such direct military intervention in Syria in a letter dated February 7, 2012.

"Re telegraph 2/2/33233 dated January 21, 2012 on the Qatari Emir's proposal during the interview with the CBS channel for sending Arab forces to Syria as well as your view that dispatch of Arab forces to Syria, even if raised and approved in the Arab League, shouldn't be endorsed (by Riyadh), I hereby express my agreement with your stated view," the letter said.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026001118

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India

Missing Indian youth believed to have joined IS in Afghanistan

By Khaama Press - Sun Jan 17 2016

An Indian youth who has gone missing from his hometown since October 30, 2015 might have joined the terrorist group of the Islamic State (IS) or Daesh in Afghanistan.

Reports suggest that Ayaz Sultan, 23, from the Malwani area in Malad, northern Mumbai, had boarded a flight for Kabul.

A study of WhatsApp messages from missing Ayaz Sultan to his friends has confirmed that he is with an Islamic State module in Afghanistan, India’s The Hindu reports citing sources.

“Sultan has been in touch with a select few of his friends via WhatsApp after reaching Kabul. All of the conversations that he has been having are about radical thought and extremist views,” a source in the Maharashtra Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) told The Hindu.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/missing-indian-man-might-have-joined-is-in-afghanistan-4497

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Seven ancient Buddhist caves found in Mumbai

Clara Lewis | TNN | Jan 17, 2016

MUMBAI: Seven caves have been discovered in the forests of the sprawling Sanjay Gandhi National Park, Borivli, on the northern fringes of the city. The caves are Buddhist 'viharas' (residences for monks) with only one of them showing the remains of a 'harmika' (the top railing of a stupa). They are believed to have been constructed before the Kanheri Caves nearby and probably served as a monsoon shelter for the monks.

While a formal approval from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) is awaited for detailed exploration and documentation of the new caves, the team that has discovered the caves date them between 1st century BCE (or BC) and 5th-6th century CE (or AD). The discovery was made by a three-member team last February under an excavation programme jointly conducted by the Centre for Archaeology, Mumbai University, and the department of ancient Indian culture, Sathaye College, Vile Parle; the head of the department, Suraj Pandit, led the team.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/mumbai/Seven-ancient-Buddhist-caves-found-in-Mumbai/articleshow/50609347.cms

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South Asia

At least 13 dead, 14 injured in suicide attack at politician's home in Afghanistan

Sun Jan 17 2016

JALALABAD: At least 13 people were killed and 14 others wounded when a suicide bomber struck the home of a prominent politician in the eastern Afghan city of Jalalabad on Sunday, authorities said.

The latest attack came during a jirga, an assembly of tribal leaders, at the home of politician Obaidullah Shinwari, who escape unscathed.

"Thirteen people were killed and 14 others injured when a suicide bomber targeted the house of Shinwari," said a statement from the governor of Nangarhar province, of which Jalalabad is the capital.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233567/at-least-13-dead-14-injured-in-suicide-attack-at-politicians-home-in-afghanistan

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8 militants blown up by own explosives in Kunar province

By Khaama Press - Sun Jan 17 2016

Taliban militants blown up by own explosivesAt least eight anti-government armed militants were blown up by own explosives in eastern Kunar province of Afghanistan.

The incident took place on Saturday in Nari district while the militants were busy assembling Improvised Explosive Device (IED) which prematurely went off.

The anti-government armed militant groups have not commented regarding the report so far.

Taliban militants and insurgents and from the other militant groups frequently use Improvised Explosive Device (IED) as the weapon of their choice to target the security force which normally lead to civilian casualties.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/8-militants-blown-up-by-own-explosives-in-kunar-province-0012

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2nd preparatory meeting for peace talks with Taliban due in Kabul tomorrow

By Khaama Press - Sun Jan 17 2016

The second preparatory quadrilateral meeting for peace talks with Taliban is due in Kabul tomorrow.

Besides Afghanistan, representatives from Pakistan, the United States and China are participating the meeting who would finalize the roadmap designed to start peace talks with the militant group that has been fighting with Afghan government for over 14 years.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs says the roadmap has been okayed by all stakeholders who are putting in efforts to end the bloody war.

It has three steps, pre-negotiations, direct talks and implementation.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/2nd-preparatory-meeting-for-peace-talks-with-taliban-due-in-kabul-tomorrow-4495

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Drone strike leaves 17 ISIS loyalists dead in Nangarhar

By Khaama Press - Sun Jan 17 2016

At least seventeen loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group were killed in airstrikes in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan.

The Ministry of Defense (MoD) said the airstrikes were carried out in Deh Bala district on Saturday afternoon.

According to MoD, the airstrikes were carried out by the coalition forces involving at least eight raids targeting the loyalists of the terror group.

Airstrikes carried out by coalition forces and Afghan Air Forces targeting the loyalists of the terror group in Nangarhar province have been rampant during the recent days.

A key commander of the terror group was killed along with ten others in a similar raid in Achin district earlier on Friday.

Nangarhar is among the relatively volatile provinces in eastern Afghanistan where anti-government armed militant groups including the fanatics loyal to the ISIS terror group are actively operating in a number of its remote districts.

The loyalists of the terror group have recently increased their insurgency activities in Afghanistan and targeted the Pakistani consulate in their latest wave of insurgency activities.

http://www.khaama.com/drone-strike-leaves-17-isis-loyalists-dead-in-nangarhar-0011

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Hundreds of anti-ISIS militiamen led by MP Qadir placed under ANSF control

By Khaama Press - Sat Jan 16 2016

Hundreds of militiamen fighting the emergent loyalists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) terrorist group in eastern Nangarhar province of Afghanistan were placed under the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) control on Saturday.

The militiamen were led by Deputy House Speaker Zahir Qadir to suppress the ISIS loyalists as they were rapidly gaining foothold in different parts of Nangarhar province.

The provincial security officials said Saturday nearly one thousand militiamen were placed under the ANSF control in a bid to re-organized them.

Deputy Provincial Intelligence – National Directorate of Security (NDS) Chief Baz Mohammad Hanifi told reporters the militiamen have agreed to jointly fight the ISIS terrorist along with the Afghan security forces and within the framework of the security institutions of the Afghan government.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/hundreds-of-anti-isis-militiamen-led-by-mp-qadir-placed-under-ansf-control-0010

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Afghan minister warns regarding growing extremism in the country

By Khaama Press - Sat Jan 16 2016

The Minister of Hajj and Religious Affairs of Afghanistan Faiz Mohammad Usmani has warned regarding growing extremism in the country, expressing concerns regarding the potential threats the country is facing as a result of the rise in extremism.

He was speaking during a gathering in capital Kabul to study the scientific religious strategic approach to fight the extremism.

Emphasizing on the need to reconsider the existing approach in fight against extremism, Usmani said a fresh and serious strategy should be adopted to launch a campaign against the growing threat.

Meanwhile, the Afghan religious clerics who attended the summit from different parts of the country, questioned the justification of the militant groups to continue armed insurgency in the country.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/afghan-minister-warns-regarding-growing-extremism-in-the-country-0009

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Afghanistan strongly condemns attack on Afghan diplomat’s house in Peshawar

By Khaama Press - Sat Jan 16 2016

The Afghan government has strongly condemned an armed attack on the residence of an Afghan diplomat in Peshawar city, the provincial capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province of Pakistan.

“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan (MoFA) strongly condemns armed attack on the residence of the First Secretary General of the Afghan Consulate in Peshawar city which was carried out around 2:30 am,” a statement by MoFA said.

The Foreign Affairs Ministry urged the Pakistani authorities to thoroughly investigate the armed attack and share the findings of the investigation with the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

Full report at: http://www.khaama.com/afghanistan-strongly-condemns-attack-on-afghan-diplomats-house-in-peshawar-0007

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Pakistan

With Pathankot JIT, a sense of déjà vu

MALIK ASAD — 17 January  2015

ISLAMABAD: As the government sets up a joint investigation team (JIT) to probe any possible Pakistani link in the recent attack on India’s Pathankot airbase, attention is also focused on the Mumbai case, which was also preceded by a similar JIT.

After the 2008 Mumbai attacks, the Indian government blamed Pakistan for the attack. The PPP government at the time had constituted a JIT to probe any possible local links. On the basis of the JIT’s investigation report, the Federal Investigation Agency (FIA) in February 2009 registered a case against Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the alleged mastermind, and six other suspects for sponsoring, planning and abetting in the attacks.

Lakhvi was arrested by FIA the same month on the basis of the confessional statement of the lone surviving attacker, Ajmal Kasab, and was detained at Adiala Jail.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233496/with-pathankot-jit-a-sense-of-deja-vu

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Police arrest cleric for 'inciting' boy to cut off his hand

IMRAN GABOL — 17 January 2015

LAHORE: Okara police on Saturday arrested the imam of a mosque on terror charges in relation to the incident involving a 15-year-old boy who had cut off his own hand believing he had committed blasphemy.

On Friday night a first information report (FIR No. 36/16) was registered against the prayer leader Shabbir Ahmed on behalf of the state under Section 7 of the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) and Section 324 of the Pakistan Penal Code (PPC).

Police officials said the cleric was arrested under the National Action Plan (NAP) for inciting violence during a speech in which he asked a controversial question.

Around five days ago, the cleric, addressing a Mehfil-i-Milad at a village mosque in Chak 3D of Hujra Shah Muqeem town in Depalpur Tehsil of Okara District, said that "those who love the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be Upon Him) always say their prayers".

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233388/police-arrest-cleric-for-inciting-boy-to-cut-off-his-hand

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Terror bid foiled: FC personnel defuse IED in Dera Bugti

SYED ALI SHAH —17 01 16

QUETTA: Security forces on Sunday foiled a major terror bid in Balochistan's Dera Bugti district, defusing an improvised explosive device (IED) weighing around 17 kilogram, officials said.

"Militants had planted the IED on a roadside in Sui tehsil of Dera Bugti. Security forces acted timely to defuse the device and avert any damage," Khan Wasey, spokesman for the Frontier Corps, said.

"Miscreants wanted to target security forces through the IED," Wasey added.

Armed men in the area have been targeting security forces and vital national installations for more than a decade.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233575/terror-bid-foiled-fc-personnel-defuse-ied-in-dera-bugti

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Rangers chief asks Jirga to keep an eye on illegal immigrants

IMTIAZ ALI — 17 01 16

 KARACHI: The director general of Pakistan Rangers, Sindh, Maj Gen Bilal Akbar, on Saturday urged a Pakhtun Jirga led by an Awami National Party senator to keep an eye on ‘illegal immigrants’ in their neighbourhoods.

He was talking to a 100-member delegation of the Senator Shahi Syed-led Jirga including traders who called on him at the Rangers headquarters.

The Jirga members expressed their reservations especially about the police role in the Pakhtun-dominated areas of Karachi, according to one of the officials who attended the meeting.

The Jirga members complained that the police were allegedly treating every Pakhtun as a suspected militant and were found involved in detaining them only to be released after taking a bribe, said the official while speaking to Dawn on condition of anonymity.

The police authorities assured them that their legitimate grievances would be addressed, said the official.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233412/rangers-chief-asks-jirga-to-keep-an-eye-on-illegal-immigrants

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Peshawar schools closed after terrorist attack rumours

January 17th, 2016

PESHAWAR: Parents spent a restless Saturday as rumours of possible terrorist attacks on schools circulated in the provincial capital’s rural and urban areas and thus, forcing most headmasters to close educational institutions much early.

The panicked parents rushed to the schools to pick their children recalling the Dec 2014 Army Public School militant attack, which killed 144 students and staff members.

Sources said the district administration had directed the headmasters of some government and private schools located in the cantonment area, Nothia and Gulberg to close their campuses for one day (Saturday) insisting there were reports of possible terrorist attack on them.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233514/peshawar-schools-closed-after-terrorist-attack-rumours

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JeM activists remanded in police custody

January 17th, 2016

SIALKOT: Anti-Terrorism Court (ATC) judge Chaudhry Imtiaz Ahmed granted on Saturday a three-day physical remand of three activists of banned Jaish-i-Muhammad (JeM) in the case of recovery of jehadi literature from them.

Counter Terrorism Department (CTD) personnel produced the suspects, whose names were not shared by police, before the court.

The CTD had arrested them from a seminary allegedly being run by the JeM in Mundeyki Goraya village.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233522/jem-activists-remanded-in-police-custody

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Pak PM, army chief to visit Iran, Saudi Arabia to ease tensions

PTI | Jan 16, 2016

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and powerful army chief General Raheel Sharif are set to embark on an important visit to Iran and Saudi Arabia on Monday to reduce tensions between the two rival Muslim nations, his office has said.

The decision was taken after behind-the-scene contacts by Pakistan with both countries to lower the temperature in the region after Saudi Arabia executed a prominent Shia cleric earlier this month following which Iranian protesters attacked the Saudi embassy in Tehran and its consulate prompting Riyadh to sever relations.

Iran then snapped all commercial ties with Saudi Arabia and stopped pilgrims from travelling to Mecca.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/middle-east/Pak-PM-army-chief-to-visit-Iran-Saudi-Arabia-to-ease-tensions/articleshow/50606760.cms?

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North America

US school expels 2 for bomb threat from Muslim pupil's email

PTI | Jan 17, 2016

WasHINGTON: Two students have been expelled from a US school after they sent a "bomb threat" to more than 600 current and former students from the email account of a Muslim pupil.

The subject line of the mail sent out by the two students of the high-performing Washington Latin Public Charter School said 'Bomb' and the email appeared to come from a Muslim student's account.

The message was in fact written by two pranksters, school officials were quoted as saying by the Washington Post.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/US-school-expels-2-for-bomb-threat-from-Muslim-pupils-email/articleshow/50614430.cms

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Jason Rezaian: US reporter free after 543 days in Iran jail

AFP | Jan 17, 2016

TEHRAN: Jason Rezaian was arrested at his Tehran home on July 22, 2014. His friends thought he would be quickly released. But it would be 543 days until the journalist tasted freedom.

As The Washington Post's Tehran correspondent, the dual American-Iranian citizen occupied a top post among the very few foreign reporters based in the Iranian capital.

Iran's nuclear talks with the United States, its foe since the Islamic revolution of 1979, should have been the biggest story of the California-born journalist's life.

But he would miss it, instead being incarcerated in Tehran's Evin prison until his release Saturday as part of a long-speculated prisoner swap that culminated with the nuclear deal being sealed.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/us/Jason-Rezaian-US-reporter-free-after-543-days-in-Iran-jail/articleshow/50609478.cms

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Europe

600 British militants stopped from going to Syria, says UK

January 17th, 2016

LONDON: Some 600 Britons have been stopped from going to Syria to try to join the militant Islamic State (IS) group and other militant groups, Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond said in comments reported on Saturday.

Meanwhile some 800 have made it through since 2012, with half of them still thought to be inside the war-torn country, he said, in comments reported in The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph newspapers.

“Approximately 800 Brits have been to Syria, of whom half are still there.

But on top of that 800, we have stopped another 600,” he said, on a visit to southern Turkey.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233465/600-british-militants-stopped-from-going-to-syria-says-uk

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Refugee crisis: Human traffickers 'netted up to £4 billion last year'

Charlotte McDonald Gibson | The Independent | Jan 17, 2016

Human smugglers made a record profit last year of between $3 billion and $6 billion (£2 billion-£4 billion) by exploiting the misery of refugees - which means governments must up their game or risk further growth of this ruthless industry, the head of Europol has told The Independent on Sunday.

The business of human smuggling is now in the "Champions League" of criminal enterprises in Europe, Rob Wainwright said, close to rivalling the trade in illicit drugs. New research by the EU's law enforcement body based on debriefings with 1,500 asylum-seekers, refugees and economic migrants showed that 90 per cent had paid a criminal gang to reach Europe.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/europe/Refugee-crisis-Human-traffickers-netted-up-to-4-billion-last-year/articleshow/50610670.cms

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Mideast

World Powers Declare Official Annulment of Iran Sanctions

Sun Jan 17 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif in Vienna on Saturday declared the start of the implementation of the July nuclear deal between Iran and the six world powers, meaning that all the sanctions against Iran are called null and void as of now.

On Saturday, Zarif, Mogherini and US Secretary of State John Kerry arrived in Vienna for planned “Implementation Day,” which ends a decade of nuclear sanctions on Iran and unlock billions of dollars of its frozen assets.

The three top diplomats were scheduled to declare the official start of the Imeplementation Day at around midday, but the announcement was delayed for over 12 hours as they were waiting for a report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Iran's full compliance with all its undertakings under the July nuclear deal.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026001554

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EU says prosecution of Turkish academics ’extremely worrying’

January 16, 2016

The European Union has stepped up its criticism of the investigation and detention of Turkish academics who signed a declaration this week that criticized government policies in the Southeast, calling on Turkey to uphold freedom of expression.

"The steps taken against the Turkish academics who signed a declaration regarding events in the Southeast of Turkey are an extremely worrying development," the EU said in a statement on Saturday.

Prosecutors have launched an investigation against more than 1,000 academics who signed the statement that criticize curfews and military operations in the predominantly Kurdish southeastern districts, soon after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan accused the signatories of "treachery." More than 20 of them were detained, and later released, on Friday.

Scores of them also face administrative investigations while some have been suspended from their university posts.

Full report at: http://www.todayszaman.com/diplomacy_eu-says-prosecution-of-turkish-academics-extremely-worrying_409796.html

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Israel will not allow Iran to obtain nuclear weapons: Netanyahu

AFP — 17 01 16

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned Iran on Sunday that Israel would not allow it to obtain nuclear weapons, after sanctions were lifted under Tehran's historic nuclear deal with global powers.

“Israel's policy has been and will remain exactly what has been followed: to not allow Iran to acquire nuclear weapons,” Netanyahu said during a cabinet meeting, according to his office.

Netanyahu strongly opposed the nuclear deal with Israel's arch-foe Iran and argued that it would not prevent Tehran from obtaining nuclear weapons.

He has also said that the lifting of sanctions will allow Iran to further back proxy militants in the region, including Israeli enemies Hezbollah.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233573/israel-will-not-allow-iran-to-obtain-nuclear-weapons-netanyahu

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IRGC Deputy Top Commander: US Marines Crying When Detained

January 17, 2016

TEHRAN (FNA)- The US marines were crying when they were captured by IRGC Navy troops in Iran's waters in the Persian Gulf, Lieutenant Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Brigadier General Hossein Salami said.

"The marines were crying when they were being captured, but they later felt better after the IRGC forces treated them with kindness," Salami said.

He also added that the US politicians supplicated for the freedom of their marines in contacts with their Iranian counterparts.

"The Americans humbly admitted our might and power, and we freed the marines after being assured that they had entered the Iranian waters unintentionally and we even returned their weapons," Salami said.

Full report at: http://en.farsnews.com/newstext.aspx?nn=13941026000970

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16 referred to court on suspicion of links to Sultanahmet bomber

January 17, 2016

Sixteen suspects have been referred to the court for having links to the suspected Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) suicide bomber who killed 10 tourists and injured 15 in an attack on İstanbul's Sultanahmet district on Tuesday.

Two of the 16 suspects who were referred to İstanbul's Çağlayan Courthouse on Sunday are reported to have undergone extensive training in bomb-making, according to the Turkish media.

Full report at: http://www.todayszaman.com/anasayfa_16-referred-to-court-on-suspicion-of-links-to-sultanahmet-bomber_409818.html

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US: Crackdown on critical academics part of ’troubling trend’ in Turkey

January 16, 2016

The United States government has expressed its unease with the latest assault by the Turkish government on critical academics who called for a halt to ongoing violence in the country's Southeast.

More than 1,000 academics who signed a declaration criticizing military operations and curfews in predominantly Kurdish districts this week face criminal investigations, and dozens of them were detained on Friday. The US administration said the investigation and detention of the academics is part of a "troubling trend" in Turkey.

"We see this action as part of a troubling trend in Turkey, whereby official bodies, law enforcement, and judicial authorities are being used to discourage legitimate political discourse," John Kirby, US State Department spokesman, said during a daily press briefing in a forceful statement.

Full report at: http://www.todayszaman.com/diplomacy_us-crackdown-on-critical-academics-part-of-troubling-trend-in-turkey_409795.html

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2 children killed during clashes in Cizre

January 16, 2016

Two children were killed after explosives hit their house during clashes between security forces and members of the terrorist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in the southeastern town of Cizre, which has been under curfew for more than a month.

Clashes are still underway between security forces and PKK terrorists in Cizre as a curfew which was imposed on Dec. 14 is also still in place. One of fiercest clashes took place in the Dağkapı neighborhood on Saturday, which claimed the lives of two civilians. Cousins Yusuf Akalın (12) and Büşra Akalaın (11), were killed after shrapnel hit them in front of their house in the neighborhood.

Full report at: http://www.todayszaman.com/latest-news_2-children-killed-during-clashes-in-cizre_409799.html

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100 workers hospitalized after chemical leak at sock factory in central Turkey

January 16, 2016

A hundred workers at a sock factory in Turkey's central province of Çankırı have been hospitalized for suspected poisoning, following a chemical leak in the factory late on Saturday.

News reports say the workers fainted after they were affected by the chemical leak at the factory, which is located in the Şabanözü district. The workers were immediately hospitalized and 15 of them are reportedly in critical condition.

http://www.todayszaman.com/latest-news_100-workers-hospitalized-after-chemical-leak-at-sock-factory-in-central-turkey_409800.html

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Southeast Asia

Maldives permits jailed ex-president Mohamed Nasheed to have surgery abroad

AP | Jan 17, 2016, 09.46 AM IST

COLOMBO: The Maldives government said on Saturday that it has given permission to an imprisoned ex-president to travel to Britain for surgery.

The foreign ministry said in a statement that the permission was given on condition that Mohamed Nasheed serves the remaining years of his sentence once he returns.

Nasheed was sentenced to 13 years in prison last March for ordering the military to detain a senior judge when he was president in 2012. The move led to weeks of public protests leading to his resignation.

Full report at: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/south-asia/Maldives-permits-jailed-ex-president-Mohamed-Nasheed-to-have-surgery-abroad/articleshow/50610413.cms

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Indonesia names five suspects over attack

January 17th, 2016

JAKARTA: Indonesian police on Saturday named the five men they suspect launched this week’s gun and bomb attack in Jakarta, which was claimed by the militant Islamic State (IS) group, and said they had arrested 12 people linked to the plot who planned to strike other cities.

Full report at: http://www.dawn.com/news/1233454/indonesia-names-five-suspects-over-attack

 

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