[Tolo News] At least seven Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF) and two non-combatants were killed in a clash with Taliban murderous Moslems in Sangeen district of southern Helmand ...an Afghan province populated mostly by Pashtuns, adjacent to Injun country in Pak Balochistan... province in the past three days, local officials said on Saturday.
Three other soldiers were maimed in the battle.
Spokesman for the Governor of Helmand, Omar Zwak, said that it has been more than a week since the festivities between the Taliban murderous Moslems and ANSF began displacing dozens of families.
"We have called the Ministry of Interior (MoI) and Defense (MoD) to send more troops to the district because if the situation continues as is we will lose control of the district," he stressed.
He added that during the crossfire the murderous Moslems have faced large numbers of casualties, but "our troops are getting tired, we need fresh troops to take control of Sangeen quickly."
Helmand Police Chief Juma Gul Hemat in resonance to Zwak said that "they are not able to take control of Sangeen with the limited amenities they have."
"We have talked to the officials at the MoI for additional support because the murderous Moslems have placed more roadside mines in the areas," Hemat explained.
Commander of the 201st Maiwand Military Corp in Helmand, Gen. Sayed Malook, said "heavy festivities still continue in Sangeen and we are not able to send equipments for the troops."
The situation in Sangeen continues to intensify as days pass. This is the second time in the past two months that the Taliban have attacked the district.
[Tolo News] The districts of northern Faryab province, particularly Ghormach and Qaisar, are under severe and active Taliban insurgency, according to Gen. Shereen Shah Kohbandi, commander of 209 Shaheen Army Corps.
The presence of 2,000 Taliban fighters and drug smugglers, insufficient arms and ammunitions for police and the interference of Pakistain have been noted as the main factors contributing to the insecurity of the districts.
"There are around 600 local Taliban fighters in Ghormach and 450 fighters in Qaisar; a total of a thousand," Gen. Kohbandi told TOLOnews. "However, a person who gets all wrapped up in himself makes a mighty small package... additional fighters join when the group launches offensives."
The Taliban fighters had blocked Qaisar-Ghormach highway for a week, but fled the area after a tense battle with the Afghan National Security Forces (ANSF). However, a person who gets all wrapped up in himself makes a mighty small package... the ANSF managed to pass the area in armored vehicles to avoid Taliban missile attacks. Moreover, many shops and bazaars along the area were closed.
It is said that almost 95 percent of Ghormach is under Taliban threat as there is a visible presence of Taliban fighters on both sides of the highway that passes through the district. Reports indicate that in some areas Taliban fighters are present within 300-400 meters of the center of the district, gravely threatening the overall security.
"Those posing threats to the security of Faryab are seeking guidelines from their Pak criminal masterminds," Gen. Kohbandi added. "They come like guests here; they create insecurity and flee back to Pakistain when they face any pressure."
Taliban's notorious war tactics after losing an area is planting it with roadside mines with the alleged help of Pak experts.
"The material used to make these mines is imported from Pakistain and those who design them are trained in Pakistain," the commander of mine clearance regiment of 209 Shaheen Army Corps, Gul Mohammad, said.
Local reports indicate that the recent insecurities have majorly impacted Ghormach, disrupting people's daily lives.
Mullah Adam Khayat, a resident of Ghormach, has lost his property as a result of the recent festivities in the area and has now resorted to selling tomatoes to make ends meet.
"The clash between Taliban and the security forces devastated my entire property and I'm now seen selling tomatoes here from morning till dawn to provide for my family."
The local police forces have been accused of failing to effectively confront the holy warriors in the area. In response, Faryab Police Chief Mohammad Nabi Elham highlighted that the lack of sufficient weaponries and military equipments are a reason for the untamed problems.
"Truth is that our police force lacks sufficient weapons to fight the holy warriors with full force."
A local police officer, Mohammad Qul, who has had first hand encounters in the fight, confirmed Elham's statements.
"How can we fight the Taliban when we don't have artillery and tanks or proper weapons and our salaries have not been paid over the last five months?" he asked.
Ghormach is considered one of the most insecure districts of Faryab.
The country continues to experience a dramatic rise in the rate of insecurities as the election process drags on.
[Ynet] A Somali police officer says heavily armed suspected Islamic bully boyz have attacked a high security prison in the Somali capital.
Capt. Mohammed Hussein said that gunnies on Sunday morning invaded the Godka Jilacow prison, which also serves as a key interrogation center for Somalia's intelligence agency.
Mohammed Hassan, a resident who lives near the prison in the neighborhood of the presidential palace, said he heard gunfire and kabooms as soldiers and bully boyz fought for the control of the notorious jail.
No group has immediately claimed the responsibility for the attack which shattered a period of calm in Mogadishu, which is stabilizing after nearly 20 years of chaotic violence.
MOGADISHU -- Al Shabaab gunmen broke their way into Mogadishuï¿½â¢s Banadir Intelligence base in volatile Mogadishu following serious blows on the frontline on Sunday, Garowe Online reports. Militants in suicide vests and military fatigues engaged in an ï¿½"hourï¿½â¢ long firefight with intelligence officers shortly after a car packed full of explosives went off at an entrance to Godka Jilicow base where terror suspects are held, officials said.
Plumes of black smoke could be seen over the scene of the pre-planned attack, with sources disclosing that five bodies of the attackers are lying on the ground. Series of explosions followed the first gun-battle and car bomb attack inside the intelligence facility.
A spokesman for Al Qaeda linked Al Shabaab group said they carried out the apparently coordinated rampage.
Al Shabaab lost strategic town of Bulo Marer, 120km south of Mogadishu in intense military campaign over the weekend.
[Libya Herald] At least ten people have been killed in Benghazi and others injured in heavy clashes between Ansar Al-Sharia and Operation Dignity on the approach to Benina Airport and during fighting in Buatni . . . Need to climb the paywall for details.
[AnNahar] Two Algerian diplomats kidnapped in Mali in April 2012 by the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) were freed on Saturday, the Algerian foreign ministry announced.
A third diplomat, consul Boualem Sayes, had died in captivity "from a chronic illness", the ministry said.
It did not say whether Mourad Guessas and Kedour Miloudi had been released by their kidnappers or had been freed in a military operation.
The ministry did say however that Algeria had not paid a ransom to secure their freedom.
The two were released "after intense and tireless efforts" by authorities in "the utmost discretion", a statement said.
"The Algerian government stresses the necessity of continuing unabated the fight against terrorism and its multiple connections -- drug trafficking and organized crime," the ministry added.
It also confirmed for the first time the execution, reported in September 2012, of vice-consul Tahar Touati, describing his death as an "odious liquidation".
Algeria's consul in Gao, in northeastern Mali, and six of his staff were taken hostage by MUJAO on April 5, 2012 while the Islamist gunnies were in control of the city.
Three jihadist groups, al-Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Ansar Dine and MUJAO, in 2012 took control of much of the desert north of Mali, including the three main towns of Kidal, Gao and Timbuktu.
[Libya Herald] Reports circulating on social media today claimed that the United States Embassy in Libya had been stormed, but it is actually the embassy's residential complex, located about a kilometre away, that has been taken over by Libya Dawn ...aka Fajr Libya, the Islamist operation launched to counter that of General Khalifa Haftar (Operation Dignity). It is made up of the Libya Shield militia (Misrata and Moslem Brotherhood), Libya Revolutionaries Operations Room (Moslem Brotherhood), and Tripoli Brigade (close to bdul Hakim Belhaj, head of Al-Watan party). Financing and moral support come from Turkey and Qatar... forces.
A video surfaced on YouTube showing a crowd of Libyan men around a swimming pool in the compound. Several of them took turns diving from a second -storey balcony into the pool.
According to Libya Dawn forces, they have "secured" the compound and are safeguarding it from looting.
Though no official statement has been released by the US State Department, US Ambassador to Libya Deborah Jones tweeted in response to inquiries on Twitter, "The YouTube appears to be a residential annex of the US mission but cannot say definitively since not there."
"To my knowledge & per recent photos the US Embassy Tripoli ...a confusing city, one end of which is located in Lebanon and the other end of which is the capital of Libya. Its chief distinction is being mentioned in the Marine Hymn... chancery & compound is now being safeguarded and has not been ransacked," the ambassador also tweeted.
The US State Department pulled its staff from Tripoli on 26 July as festivities in the city grew more intense. The embassy is located near Airport Road, which witnessed the heaviest on-going fighting in July.
Ugh, I went to an embassy reception there and spent a lot of time standing by that pool talking to this tall Libyan woman who had to be the most beautiful woman I had ever seen.
You have to wonder what is going on over there right now.
Thank you hollow man for another screwed up foreign "policy."
Posted by: Bill Clinton ||
Tall, long hair, dark eyes.... spoke with a slight cockney accent? Double lime with her G&T? Had an outspoken fear of water and late evening swims? She was a member of the militia operational cell tasked with conducting early the phases of target surveillance and vulnerabilities recce.
[Libya Herald] Yesterday's attack on Tripoli's ...a confusing city, one end of which is located in Lebanon and the other end of which is the capital of Libya. Its chief distinction is being mentioned in the Marine Hymn... Al Falah Tawerghan camp by Libya Central Shield ...an element of the larger Qaeda-linked Libya Shield Force. I think it's the one in the middle.... forces has forced all displaced persons exiled there to flee.
"The camp is empty now; the residents have fled. Some have gone to the West, some have gone to Beni Waleed and the rest are staying with relatives inside Tripoli," Tripoli's Tawergha Local Council head Abdelrahman Al-Shikshack told the Libya Herald.
"The attack was ruthless," Shikshack added. "They terrorised children and the elderly, killing one person and leaving three others seriously maimed.
According to Shikshack, by this evening, no one from the government had yet contacted anyone within the Tawerghan community to offer condolences or help.
The council has blamed the attack was blamed on Misrata-led "Libya Dawn ...aka Fajr Libya, the Islamist operation launched to counter that of General Khalifa Haftar (Operation Dignity). It is made up of the Libya Shield militia (Misrata and Moslem Brotherhood), Libya Revolutionaries Operations Room (Moslem Brotherhood), and Tripoli Brigade (close to bdul Hakim Belhaj, head of Al-Watan party). Financing and moral support come from Turkey and Qatar... ". It has condemned it as a "cowardly" act and has vowed to cooperate with the Security Directorate to "track down the perpetrators and bring them to justice".
However according to Libya Dawn, it was actually Libya Central Shield forces from Misrata that stormed the camp.
Nearly 30,000 Tawerghans--the whole community--were displaced from their homes in the town of Tawergha just outside Misrata after the 2011 Revolution. Allegedly pro-Qadaffy and involved on the old regime's bloody assault of Misrata, the townspeople were pushed out of the area by Misratan Brigade. In February 2012, it was reported by Amnesia Amnesty International that Tawergha was an empty, looted, burnt-out shell, guarded to prevent any inhabitants returning. Three years on, the Tawerghans continues to live in exile.
[AnNahar] Boko Haram ... not to be confused with Procol Harum, Harum Scarum, possibly to be confused with Helter Skelter. The Nigerian version of al-Qaeda and the Taliban rolled together and flavored with a smigeon of distinctly Subsaharan ignorance and brutality... gunnies have killed scores of residents in a Nigerian town on the border with Cameroon ...a long, narrow country that fills the space between Nigeria and Chad on the northeast, CAR to the southeast. Prior to incursions by Boko Haram nothing ever happened there... that they captured in recent raids, witnesses told AFP on Saturday.
The Lions of Islam seized Gamboru Ngala earlier this week after taking over military and police facilities in a fierce shootout which forced thousands of residents across the border into Cameroon.
The residents fled to Fotokol for fear of attack by the Islamists, despite being told they were only after security personnel and local vigilantes.
"They are now killing people like chickens," said Sidi Kyarimi, a Gamboru resident who fled to Fotokol on Friday. "They started by selective killings and later went on a killing spree."
Among those killed included the town's highest Moslemholy man and the head of its traders' union, he said.
"They threaten to kill anybody who refuses to leave the town. They say we don't belong," he added.
The Death Eaters were roaming the streets of the town carrying guns and machetes, shooting and hacking to death residents, said Yusuf Sanda, who also fled to Fotokol.
"They have been breaking into homes and shops and looting them," he said.
"Initially they said we were free to stay or leave but now they are saying all residents should leave the town because it is now an Islamic Caliphate."
Sanda said he escaped to Fotokol by wading through the shallow river on the border because it was too dangerous to walk the streets with the Death Eaters on the prowl.
Boko Haram has in recent weeks seized territory in northern Borno state near the border with Cameroon in an apparent move to carve out a state for themselves.
In a video obtained by AFP last weekend, Boko Haram leader Abubakar Shekau declared the town of Gwoza, which his men captured earlier this month, as part of an Islamic caliphate.
Boko Haram now controls at least three districts in Borno state and at least one each in Yobe and Adamawa states.
The military has maintained that Nigeria's illusory sovereignty is intact and denied reports that soldiers fled the Boko Haram assault in Gamboru Ngala into Cameroon.
Borno, Yobe and Adamawa have been under a state of emergency since May last year but despite some initial gains, the military has been unable to stem increasing violence, particularly in remote regions.
Madagali, a predominantly Christian town in the north of Adamawa state, was the latest to fall in the hands of Boko Haram after they chased out troops.
Scores of Christians were killed in the town and many Christian women were allegedly forced to convert to Islam and marry holy warriors, according to the front man for the Roman Catholic diocese of Maiduguri.
"Christian men were caught and beheaded, the women were forced to become Moslem and were taken as wives to the terrorists," Father Gideon Obasogie alleged.
"The houses of Christians that have fled are now occupied by the Haramists. Their cars are used by the terrorists. Strict Sharia law had been promulgated", he added in an emailed statement.
There was no independent confirmation of Obasogie's claims due to poor phone networks in the remote region and the mass exodus of residents.
On a different scale, but the inability of the corrupt Nigerian government seem to match that of the corrupt Chicago government in eliminating the real threats to their constituencies. Security is one of the most fundamental basis of legitimacy of any 'government'.
[AnNahar] Suspected al-Qaeda murderous Moslems killed 11 Yemeni soldiers in three separate attacks Sunday, including suicide boom-mobileings, in a second day of deadly operations against the military, army sources said.
Three soldiers were killed when a jacket wallah rammed an explosives-laden bus into an army post in the southern Shabwa province town of Maifaa, one source told Agence La Belle France-Presse.
Ten soldiers were maimed in the attack.
Almost at the same time three more soldiers were killed and five maimed in nearby Azzan village when al-Qaeda suspects opened fire with automatic weapons at another military post, another army source said.
Witnesses said festivities erupted between the gunnies and soldiers after the Azzan attack.
And on the outskirts of Azzan, another vehicle-borne suicide bomber attacked an army barracks, "killing five soldiers and wounding two," a regional government official said.
Early on Saturday a double attack, also including a suicide boom-mobileing, targeted troops in southeast Yemen, leaving four soldiers dead.
Ten al-Qaeda suspects were also killed in an exchange of fire with soldiers at the Qatan army barracks in restive Hadramawt province.
Also on Saturday, a police officer was killed outside his home by gunnies who fired from a cycle of violence, with a local official blaming al-Qaeda for the drive-by shooting.
Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, considered by Washington as the most dangerous affiliate of the jihadist network, is active across several parts of Yemen, taking advantage of a collapse of central authority during a 2011 uprising that ousted veteran president President-for-Life Ali Abdullah Saleh ... Saleh initially took power as a strongman of North Yemen in 1977, when disco was in flower, but he didn't invite Donna Summer to the inauguration and Blondie couldn't make it... .
[ARABNEWS] Riyadh's special criminal court has sentenced a Saudi preacher to five years in prison for praising and supporting terrorist groups, such as the Islamic State (IS), during an Eid sermon at a local mosque in Riyadh in August 2013.
The defendant was also slapped with a five-year travel ban. The defendant was convicted of using Friday sermons to provoke and encourage dissidence, while glorifying terrorist groups and turban ideas propagated by Al-Qaeda terrorists.
He was also convicted of financially supporting terrorism with more than SR1 million and harboring wanted terrorists. The defendant had previously received a letter from the Ministry of Islamic Affairs ordering him to stop delivering sermons at the mosque.
He was tossed in the clink ... anything you say can and will be used against you, whether you say it or not... at the end of the Eid sermon he had delivered. The preacher had called on Islamic scholars and the Moslem Ummah to support young people fighting in revolutions during the sermon.
The preacher had also prayed for the release of a Saudi woman, known as the "Lady Al-Qaeda," who was imprisoned for 15 years for ties with Al-Qaeda hard boyz in Yemen.
"The defendant had been banned from delivering sermons in mosques or public spaces," said Tawfik Al-Sudairy, undersecretary at the Ministry of Islamic Affairs.
The defendant's lawyers said they plan to appeal the ruling.
"His calls to release hard boyz from prison and for Moslems to support fighters militarily and financially defy Islamic principles," said Al-Sudairy.
The defendant had also told followers that the Egypt crisis could not be resolved through the ballot box, but rather, through providing weapons and launching attacks on legal authorities.
He had also referred to the situation in Iraq, boasting that His Supreme Immensity, Caliph of the Faithful and Galactic Overlord, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi ...formerly merely the head of ISIL and a veteran of the Bagram jailhouse. Looks like a new messiah to bajillions of Moslems, like just another dead-eyed mass murder to the rest of us... , IS leader, is a student of Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi, who was killed by an American Arclight airstrike in 2006. He said Al-Baghdadi fulfilled his promise and obligations to release "jihadists" by attacking prisons so that they can continue in their so-called line of duty.
A royal decree issued earlier this year calls for imprisoning anyone involved in fighting abroad for three to 20 years.
[ARABNEWS] Suspected Al-Qaeda forces of Evil killed five Yemeni soldiers in two separate attacks Sunday, including a suicide boom-mobileing, in the second day of deadly operations against the military, army sources said.
Three soldiers were killed in one attack when a jacket wallah rammed his vehicle against an army position in the southern Shabwa province town of Maifaa, one source told AFP.
Almost at the same time two other soldiers were killed in nearby Azzan village when Al-Qaeda suspects opened fire with automatic weapons at another military post, another army source said.
Witnesses said festivities erupted between the gunnies and soldiers after the Azzan attack.
Early Saturday a double attack, also including a suicide boom-mobileing, targeted troops in southeast Yemen, leaving four soldiers dead. Ten Al-Qaeda suspects were also killed in an exchange of fire with soldiers at the Qatan army barracks in restive Hadramawt province.
Also on Saturday a police officer was killed outside his home by gunnies who fired from a cycle of violence, with a local official blaming Al-Qaeda for the drive-by shooting.
A 22-year-old man suspected of acting as a recruiter for jihadist groups in Syria has been arrested at an airport in the south of France, the interior ministry said Sunday. The man, who is said to be of Chechen origin, was stopped at the Nice airport on Saturday and taken into custody.
He is suspected of having paid in cash for a 16-year-old girl to fly to Turkey with the intention of then crossing the border to Syria, a statement by Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve said.
So he's also a child trafficker and a rapist...
Turkish Airlines contacted the border patrol, who unconvinced by her explanation that she was planning on visiting her grandmother in Istanbul, called the security services. When investigators rang her father, he had no idea of her plans and said the family had no relatives in Turkey.
A source close to the case said the girlâ™s father had âobjected to her leaving the countryâ, while another source said the family, who live in Nice, were âtaken by complete surpriseâ by her plans.
Further investigations later led police to the suspect, who is believed to live in France and was already known to intelligence officers.
[DAWN] Chief of the outlawed Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistain (TTP) Mullah Fazlullah ...son-in-law of holy man Sufi Mohammad. Known as Mullah FM, Fazlullah had the habit of grabbing his FM mike when the mood struck him and bellowing forth sermons. Sufi suckered the Pak govt into imposing Shariah on the Swat Valley and then stepped aside whilst Fazlullah and his Talibs imposed a reign of terror on the populace like they hadn't seen before, at least not for a thousand years or so. For some reason the Pak intel services were never able to locate his transmitter, much less bomb it. After ruling the place like a conquered province for a year or so, Fazlullah's Talibs began gobbling up more territory as they pushed toward Islamabad, at which point as a matter of self-preservation the Mighty Pak Army threw them out and chased them into Afghanistan... on Sunday claimed that three Taliban prisoners were released in exchange for Vice Chancellor of Islamia College Professor Ajmal Khan.
Fazlullah, delivering a speech to his followers at the alleged reunion of the three released Taliban prisoners, claimed that "our colleagues are back with us without any legal formalities or signatures". He further said that other prisoners would also be released soon.
Pak authorities have not responded to the TTP's claims of the prisoner swap so far.
The TTP Chief said the krazed killer group was willing to use any means, resources and force including kidnappings similar to that of Professor Ajmal Khan to get more of their imprisoned members released.
Prof Ajmal Khan was recovered on Aug 28 after remaining in Taliban captivity since September 7, 2010 when he was kidnapped along with his driver at gunpoint from Professor Colony in University of Beautiful Downtown Peshawar ...capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), administrative and economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. Peshawar is situated near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, convenient to the Pak-Afghan border. Peshawar has evolved into one of Pakistan's most ethnically and linguistically diverse cities, which means lots of gunfire. . His driver was released two years later.
Speaking in an audio interview in Pashto, the krazed killer chief said that a "few thousand protesters" had proved to be a real test for the Pak government as they had taken the Parliament hostage and were not paying heed to the calls of the lower and higher judiciary and not even the army.
The head of the proscribed organization said that 'the time was ripe to rid the country of western brand of democracy,' adding that their struggle would continue as "we don't accept anything less than Shariah."
The Pak Taliban chief also warned the media against portraying the Taliban movement to be in decline. He said the krazed killer group would make its presence felt in the days to come.
[The News (Pak)] The federal capital remains tense after violence broke out on Saturday night when supporters of Pakistain Tehrik-e-Insaf ...a political party in Pakistan. PTI was founded by former Pakistani cricket captain and philanthropist Imran Khan. The party's slogan is Justice, Humanity and Self Esteem, each of which is open to widely divergent interpretations.... (PTI) chairman Imran Khan ... aka Taliban Khan, who who convinced himself that playing cricket qualified him to lead a nuclear-armed nation with severe personality problems... and Pakistain Awami Tehrik (PAT) chief Dr Tahirul Qadri ...Pak politician, and would-be dictator, founder and head of Tehreek-e-Minhajul Quran and Pakistain Awami Tehrik. He usually resides in Canada, but returns to Pakistain periodically to foam at the mouth and lead demonstrations. Depending on which way the wind's blowing, Qadri claims to be the author of Pak's blasphemy law. Other times he says it wasn't him... tried to storm PM House using crane's to remove barricades.
Clashes between police and protesters in which three people were killed and over 560 injured continued on Sunday.
The police seem to have laid about with their batons quite thoroughly...
77 of those injured were security officials deployed in the Red Zone.
[DAWN] Two young men were rubbed out and their friend was found maimed along the Malir river on Saturday, officials said.
They said that police were informed by some motorists about three young men lying unconscious along the Malir river near Memon Goth. The police and rescue workers reached the spot, where they found two of them dead.
"All three men had been shot multiple times from a very close range," said DSP Pervez Ali Shah. "The bodies and the maimed were taken to the Jinnah Postgraduate Medical Centre, where doctors said the maimed is out of danger."
Continued on Page 49
[Iran Press TV] Iraqi army troops, backed by thousands of volunteers, have entered the northern city of Amerli that has been surrounded by the ISIL cult since two months ago.
Iraq's military sources said on Sunday that troops along with Shia and Kurdish fighters started an operation at dawn and entered the town shortly after midday. This follows Arclight airstrikes against the ISIL positions in the troubled region.
Local officials have also confirmed that a two-month-long siege imposed by the ISIL bully boyz on the northern Iraqi town of Amerli has been broken.
"Security forces and militia fighters are inside Amerli now after breaking the siege and that will definitely relieve the suffering of residents," said Adel al-Bayati, mayor of Amerli.
The residents of this small Shia Turkmen community about 180 km (110 miles) north of Baghdad have been living under the ISIL siege for more than two months.
Thousands of people have been trapped in Amerli where the residents are facing a shortage of food and water.The humanitarian condition has also been described as dire by witnesses.
The ISIL bully boyz have threatened all communities, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians, Izadi Kurds and others, as they continue their advances in Iraq.
Several gruesome video footages were released, purportedly showing members of the ISIL cult brutally killing Shia Moslems in drive-by shootings in Iraq.
[AnNahar] Iraqi forces broke through to the jihadist-besieged Shiite town of Amerli Sunday, where thousands of people have been trapped for more than two months with dwindling food and water supplies.
It is the biggest offensive success for the Iraqi government since Lions of Islam led by the Sunni Islamic State (IS) jihadist group overran large areas of five provinces in June, sweeping security forces aside.
The breakthrough came as America carried out limited strikes outside north Iraq for the first time since its air campaign against Lions of Islam began more than three weeks ago, and aircraft from several countries dropped humanitarian aid to Amerli.
The mainly Shiite Turkmen residents of the town in Salaheddin province were running desperately short of food and water, and were in danger both because of their Shiite faith, which jihadists consider heresy, and their resistance to the bad boys, which has drawn harsh retribution elsewhere.
"Our forces entered Amerli and broke the siege," Iraqi security front man Lieutenant General Qassem Atta told Agence La Belle France-Presse, an account confirmed by a local official and a fighter from the town.
"It is a very important success," Atta later said on state television ... and if you can't believe state television who can you believe?
, adding that there was still fighting in the area.
The operation was launched on Saturday after days of preparations in which Iraqi security forces, Shiite snuffies and Kurdish fighters deployed for the assault and Iraqi aircraft carried out strikes against bad boys.
But the government's reliance on the thousands of Shiite snuffies involved in the operation poses serious dangers for Iraq, risking entrenching groups with a history of brutal sectarian killings.
The United States announced that it carried out three air strikes in the Amerli area, expanding its air campaign outside the far north for the first time, while Australian, British, French and U.S. aircraft dropped relief supplies for the town.
"At the request of the government of Iraq, the United States military today airdropped humanitarian aid to the town of Amerli," said Pentagon front man Rear Admiral John Kirby.
"The United States Air Force delivered this aid alongside aircraft from Australia, La Belle France and the United Kingdom, who also dropped much needed supplies."
The aid drops came alongside "coordinated air strikes against nearby (IS) turbans in order to support this humanitarian assistance operation," he added.
"The operations will be limited in their scope and duration as necessary to address this emerging humanitarian crisis and protect the civilians trapped in Amerli," Kirby said.
U.S. Central Command said the U.S. supplies dropped included around 47,775 liters (10,500 gallons) of drinking water and 7,000 pre-packaged meals.
Three U.S. air strikes destroyed five IS vehicles and a checkpoint.
Western aid for Amerli was slow in coming, however, with the burden of flying supplies and launching strikes in the area largely falling to Iraq's fledgling air forces.
"The U.S. military will continue to assess the effectiveness of these operations and work with the Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, as well as international partners including the government of Iraq, the United Nations ...the Oyster Bay money pit... , and non-government organizations to provide humanitarian assistance in Iraq as needed," Kirby said.
The U.S. military also launched air strikes Saturday on IS forces near Iraq's largest dam, north of the bad boy-held northern city of djinn-infested Mosul ... the home of a particularly ferocious and hairy djinn... , the Pentagon said.
Kurdish forces retook the dam after briefly losing it to the jihadists earlier this month, securing the source of much of the power and irrigation water for the region around Iraq's second city.
The jihadist Islamic State and its allies control swathes of both northern and western Iraq and neighboring northeastern Syria where their rule has witnessed a spate of atrocities that have shocked the world.
Washington has said that operations in Syria will be needed to defeat IS, but has thus far ruled out any cooperation with the Damascus regime against the jihadists.
It has, however, attempted to enlist the support of long-time foe Tehran, a key backer of Syrian Hereditary President-for-Life Bashir Pencilneck al-Assad Terror of Aleppo ... Writing in the New York Times ...which still proudly displays Walter Duranty's Pulitzer prize... , U.S. Secretary of State John F. I was in Vietnam, you know Kerry Former Senator-for-Life from Massachussetts, self-defined war hero, speaker of French, owner of a lucky hat, conqueror of Cambodia, and current Secretary of State... urged "a united response led by the United States and the broadest possible coalition of nations" to combat IS.
Kerry said he and Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel would confer with European counterparts on the sidelines of an upcoming NATO ...the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. Originally it was a mutual defense pact directed against an expansionist Soviet Union. In later years it evolved into a mechanism for picking the American pocket while criticizing the cut of the American pants... summit and then travel to the Middle East to build support "among the countries that are most directly threatened".
[Ynet] Thirty seven people were killed when a jacket wallah rammed an explosives-packed Humvee military vehicle into a construction site, used by the army and police, according to two coppers and a medical official.
The blast killed 22 security personnel and 15 civilians, the medical and police sources said. The nine-storey building under construction, used as a base by security personnel, was located in the centre of Ramadi in western Anbar province.
Update: An Nahar says it was thirteen killed, seventeen wounded from two car bombings. Fog of war, I guess.
Two jacket wallahs detonated explosives-rigged vehicles near positions of security forces in the city of Ramadi on Sunday, killing 13 people and wounding 17, Iraqi police and a doctor said.
One blast hit an under-construction building manned by Iraqi special forces in the city west of Baghdad, while the second struck a joint special forces-police checkpoint, the sources said.
Iraqi forces have struggled to regain control of Ramadi, the capital of Anbar province, from turbans who have held shifting areas of the city since early this year.
The blasts in Ramadi came as Iraqi security forces, Shiite militias and Kurdish fighters broke a months-long jihadist siege of the town of Amerli, the government's biggest offensive victory since the Lion of Islam drive began.
BERLIN (AP) Â-- Germany will send high-end rifles, tank-busting weapons and armored vehicles to aid Kurdish fighters battling Islamic extremists in Iraq, officials said Sunday.
Germany's defense minister said the arms would be sent in three shipments, starting in September, and would initially be enough to equip a brigade of 4,000 Peshmerga fighters.
"This is in our security interest," Ursula von der Leyen told reporters in Berlin.
Germany joins other European countries who have pledged to provide arms to the Kurds fighting the Islamic State group that has swept into northern Iraq in recent months.
The shipments will include 8,000 G36 assault rifles and the same number of G3 rifles, as well as ammunition; 200 Panzerfaust 3 bazookas and 30 long-range MILAN anti-tank systems; and five heavily armored Dingo infantry vehicles.
German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier said the arms would complement humanitarian aid that Berlin is sending to help civilians uprooted by the fighting. The decision to send weapons had been criticized by some in Germany as a return to militarism 75 years after the start of World War II
"This isn't an easy decision for us, but it's the right decision in a situation that is difficult in every way," Steinmeier said.
[AnNahar] Israel downed a drone over the occupied Golan Heights on Sunday, the army said, amid mounting tension on the U.N.-patrolled armistice line with Syria on the strategic plateau.
Air defenses "successfully intercepted an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) that breached Israel airspace above the border with Syria," an Israeli army statement said.
Israeli Defense Minister Moshe Yaalon meanwhile toured the region, as the army sent reinforcements along the armistice line and deployed armored troop carriers, an Agence La Belle France-Presse photographer said.
Yaalon warned that Israeli "tolerance" should not be tested.
"These past weeks we have proven that our tolerance is minimal when our integrity is struck, either intentionally or unintentionally," he said.
Heavy fighting ... as opposed to the more usual name-calling or slapsy... between Syrian government troops and opposition forces flowed into the buffer zone separating Syrian and Israeli-occupied territory at the weekend.
Dozens of Filipino U.N. peacekeepers escaped the hot zone overnight after rebels rammed their Golan Heights outpost with armed trucks, the Philippine military said.
[Ynet] An kaboom was heard in a bus stop at the Tapuach Junction in the Samaria region of the West Bank on Sunday morning, police said it was likely from a bomb planted in the scene.
In addition, two pipe bombs were thrown on passing vehicles at the Jit junction near Kedumim.
No one was hurt in either attack.
It must be awfully frustrating to be a scary lion of Islam terrorist facing Israel these days. Neither their hugely nefarious plans nor their merely pinprick ones are meeting with any success whatsoever after the murder/kidnap of the three haredi schoolboys. It's almost as if Allah suddenly decided he really, really disapproved of that whole "kill the Jooooooos" thingy.
[Ynet] Three coppers were lightly injured on Saturday after dozens of At-Tur neighborhood in east Jerusalem threw stones at them during an arrest of an Arab resident from the neighborhood, suspected of disorderly conduct. The copperslocked away Please don't kill me! an additional suspect who was throwing stones at them.
[AnNahar] Justice Minister Ashraf Rifi called on Sunday for an investigation to be carried out into the burning of crosses in the northern city of Tripoli ...a confusing city, one end of which is located in Lebanon and the other end of which is the capital of Libya. Its chief distinction is being mentioned in the Marine Hymn... The crosses were allegedly burned on Saturday in retaliation to the burning of an Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant ... the current version of al-Qaeda in Iraq, just as blood-thirsty and well-beloved as the original... flag in Beirut's Ashrafiyeh district also on Saturday.
Supporters of the al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front burned the crosses on the al-Tabbaneh highway, said Voice of Leb radio (93.3).
"The investigation will be carried out to safeguard the sanctity of religious, both Moslem and Christian, symbols and practices," said Rifi in a statement.
"These practices should not be violated in any way, shape, or form or under any excuse because the cross is the most important symbol in Christianity," he added.
"The violation of the cross will have negative and dangerous legal and national repercussions on national unity and coexistence," he continued.
He urged General Prosecutor Judge Samir Hammoud to task the concerned judicial authorities to uncover the perpetrators in order to "lay down the harshest punishment against them."
On Saturday, several people were seen burning ISIL flags at Ashrafiyeh's Sassine Square.
Rifi vowed on Saturday to legally pursue those who took part in the incident.
He explained that the flag has the first pillar of Islam (Ashahada) written on it, which is the testimony that there is no God except for Allah and Mohammed is the messenger of Allah.
He slammed the burning of the flag, which "is not related to ISIL and its terrorist course."
"This demeanor insults religions and could incite sedition," he noted.
On Saturday, Change and Reform bloc MP Ibrahim Kanaan, who is also a lawyer, decided to defend the youth who burnt down the ISIL flag.
Later on Sunday, the National News Agency reported that unknown assailants defaced two Tripoli churches with phrases saying that the "the Islamic State is coming"
Soldiers soon arrived at the area, worked on removing the phrases, and kicked off an investigation in the incident.
[AnNahar] The al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Nusra Front threatened on Sunday to "kill the Shiite Lebanese soldiers" it had kidnapped earlier in August should Hizbullah ...Party of God, a Leb militia inspired, founded, funded and directed by Iran. Hizbullah refers to itself as The Resistance and purports to defend Leb against Israel, with whom it has started and lost one disastrous war to date, though it did claim victory... intervene in battles in Syria's al-Qalamun region, while also issuing a warning to the Free Patriotic Movement Despite its name a Christian party allied with Hizbullah, neither free nor particularly patriotic... , reported the Turkish Anatolia news agency.
The group said in a statement that it will wage the battle to "liberate" al-Qalamun in a few days, adding: "Hizbullah's participation against us will force us to kill our Shiite prisoners."
Hizbullah has been taking part in the fighting in Syria for over year now.
The Shiite group has been waging battles alongside the country's ruling regime.
The Syrian regime forces, backed by Hizbullah, seized control of al-Qalamun in April.
Commenting on the release of five Sunni security personnel on Saturday, the al-Nusra Front said: "We released them as a goodwill gesture because we are of the same fold."
The al-Nusra Front had kidnapped a number of Lebanese soldiers and security forces from the northeastern border town of Arsal in light of festivities between Islamists and the army in the region.
The battles began on August 2 and ended five days later.
The gunnies withdrew from the town, but kidnapped the security personnel.
Five of them were released on Saturday.
Moreover, the al-Nusra Front also addressed Christians in Leb, warning that Hizbullah has "dragged them in wars that have nothing to do with them."
"We turn to reasonable Christians to extinguish the flame of war that the Free Patriotic Movement has ignited," it said.
"The FPM's recent actions has thwarted the release of your Christians sons," it said in reference to Christian security personnel among its Lebanese captives.
"You must maintain neutrality between us and the Iranian party," it added in reference to Hizbullah, which is backed by Iran and allied with the FPM.
MANILA, Philippines (AP) ï¿½-- Under cover of darkness, 40 Filipino peacekeepers made a daring escape after being surrounded and under fire for seven hours by Syrian rebels in the Golan Heights, Philippine officials said Sunday, leaving 44 Fijian troops still in the hands of the al-Qaida-linked insurgents.
"We may call it the greatest escape," Philippine military chief Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang said.
The peacekeepers became trapped after Syrian rebels entered the U.N.-patrolled buffer zone between Syria and Israel this week, seizing 44 Fijian soldiers and demanding that their Filipino colleagues surrender with their weapons. The Filipinos in two U.N. encampments refused and clashed with the rebels on Saturday. The first group of 35 peacekeepers was then successfully escorted out of a U.N. encampment in Breiqa by Irish and Filipino forces on board armored vehicles.
The remaining 40 peacekeepers were besieged at the second encampment, called Rwihana, by more than 100 gunmen who rammed the camp's gates with their trucks and fired mortar rounds. The Filipinos returned fire in self-defense, Philippine military officials said.
At one point, Syrian government forces fired artillery rounds from a distance to prevent the Filipino peacekeepers from being overwhelmed, said Col. Roberto Ancan, a Philippine military official.
France may not trust him, but thanks are due to President Assad the Younger nonetheless.
As night fell and a cease-fire took hold, the 40 Filipinos fled with their weapons, traveling across the chilly hills for nearly two hours before meeting up with other U.N. forces, who escorted them to safety early Sunday, Philippine officials said.
MOAR - via the Aypee
The Philippine military chief says a U.N. peacekeeping commander in the Golan Heights should be investigated for allegedly asking Filipino troops to surrender to Syrian rebels who attacked their camp.
Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang said Monday that 40 Filipino peacekeepers defied the U.N. commander's order after being advised by him and instead escaped to safety under cover of darkness from the Golan encampment, which was surrounded by more than 100 insurgents.
Forty-five Fijian peacekeepers who surrendered their firearms to the rebels last week are still being held by the al-Qaida-linked insurgents.
The United Nations Disengagement Observer Force, which oversees the peacekeeping mission in Golan, did not immediately reply to a request for a comment.
Posted by: Frank G ||
So now the Muslims hold the Golan Heights that the Israelis withdrew from some years ago in a peace outreach, under the conditions that the UN would keep them from being used to threaten Israel again. I don't suppose the UN will even do so much as issue a harshly worded letter against the Muslim actions though. Gaza has quickly become a side-show to Israeli security.
A multi-volume chronology and reference guide set detailing three years of the Mexican Drug War between 2010 and 2012.
Rantburg.com and borderlandbeat.com correspondent and author Chris Covert presents his first non-fiction work detailing
the drug and gang related violence in Mexico.
Chris gives us Mexican press dispatches of drug and gang war violence
over three years, presented in a multi volume set intended to chronicle the death, violence and mayhem which has
dominated Mexico for six years.