Al Jazeera continues to ‘provide a platform to bigoted and violent extremists’

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Al Jazeera’s recent interview with terrorist-designated group Hamas’ leader Ismail Haniyeh, as well as its podcast glorifying killed Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani, has stirred the ongoing debate surrounding the network’s alleged promotion of terrorism.

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Over 100 ‘Islamic State’ fighters return to Germany

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Authorities say a third of Islamic State fighters who left Germany for Syria have since returned. Germany is taking a “holistic approach” in dealing with ex-jihadi fighters, including deradicalization and reintegration.

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Cyprus to deport 17 migrants suspected of terror links

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Cyprus will deport 17 migrants who are being held on suspicion of having links to extremist groups or involved in acts of terror, the country’s interior ministry said Monday.

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20 years on, Israel’s Lebanon pullout inspires new Hezbollah recruits

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Jalal was barely three years old when Israeli troops withdrew from Lebanon two decades ago, but he speaks fondly of the Hezbollah “victory” that shaped his allegiance to the Shiite group.

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Islamic State is back and this time the west is ill-prepared to take it on

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Despite losing its caliphate and its leader, recent attacks show the militant group has begun to recover amid international disunity.

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Al Jazeera publishes article glorifying Egyptian terrorist, then takes it down

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Africa, Eurasia

Al Jazeera published an article last week titled “Hisham Ashmawy…the other side of Al-Ikhtiyar (The Choice)” where the author praised the Egyptian terrorist and sought to clear his name, but later took down the piece due to “contradictions with Al Jazeera publishing policies,” according to the news site.

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Libyan Army spokesman accuses Erdogan of supporting terrorism, disrespecting int’l law

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Africa, Eurasia

Spokesman of the Commander-in-Chief of the Libyan Armed Forces, Major General Ahmed Al-Mesmari, has stressed that the blatant Turkish military intervention in Libya and its support for Al-Wefaq government’s militias since 2014 have thwarted all attempts to reach a political solution in Libya.

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China Devours Hong Kong

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, South East Asia

Beijing just imposed a raft of new security measures that will completely undermine the independence of Hong Kong’s own legislature. The new measures will apparently be announced in a few weeks — but one can assume that they include extradition to the mainland and imprisonment.

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Iranian tankers feed fuel to Venezuela’s El Palito refinery, help it resume gasoline production

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

Iranian tankers have fed fuel to one of Venezuela’s most important refineries, enabling the strategic El Palito facility to resume gasoline production after it was forced to largely reduce its activities under pressure from draconian American sanctions.

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Russia deploys military fighter aircraft to Libya

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Africa, Eurasia

U.S. Africa Command assesses that Moscow recently deployed military fighter aircraft to Libya in order to support Russian state-sponsored private military contractors (PMCs) operating on the ground there.

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Russian Influence Grows in the Middle East and North Africa

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Bottom Line Up Front:

In both Syria and Libya, Russia has relied on a combination of mercenaries, weapons sales to proxies and clients, and an aggressive disinformation campaign to grow its influence.

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As Saudi Official Hid Abroad, His Family Became a Target at Home

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Saad Aljabri knows “where the bodies are buried.” Now Saudi authorities are arresting his relatives to force him to return to the kingdom, his son says.

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Captured Iraqi Daesh member details splits in the extremist group

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

A senior Daesh member being held in Iraq has described the group’s new leader as “not as firm” as his predecessor Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi.

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Czech Court Upholds Former Prague Muslim Leader’s Conviction

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

A Czech appeals court on Thursday upheld a lower court ruling that convicted a former Prague Muslim leader of being part of a terror group and financing terrorism, sentencing him to 10 years in prison.

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French Daesh terror suspects escape YPG-controlled jails in Syria

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Thirteen female suspected Daesh militants from France have escaped from YPG/PKK-controlled prisons in northern Syria, a Paris-based anti-terror monitor said Wednesday.

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British government to prosecute Hezbollah flag wavers at online protests

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

The British government warned it will prosecute protesters who break the law if Hezbollah flags are displayed in online demonstrations.

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20 years after withdrawal, Israel, Hezbollah brace for war

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

Twenty years after Hezbollah guerrillas pushed Israel’s last troops from southern Lebanon, both sides are gearing up for what could be another war, one that neither seems to want.

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US-led Coalition airstrikes destroy ISIS tunnels southwest of Erbil: Source

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

The US-led coalition against the Islamic State, in coordination with Kurdish Peshmerga forces, carried out airstrikes on Wednesday against the terrorist group’s fighters in the area known as Qarachukh Mountain, located outside the disputed district of Makhmour, a security source said.

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Man Pleads Guilty in US to Conspiracy to Hezbollah Drone Parts Export

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

A Lebanese man has pleaded guilty in federal court in Minnesota to conspiring to export drone parts and technology from the US to Lebanon’s Hezbollah.

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Iraqi security services arrest ISIS leader – report

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

According to the British intelligence agencies, he was appointed leader hours after al-Baghdadi’s assassination during a special operation held by US special forces.

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UK government’s new counter-terrorism bill: the key measures

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

The government has unveiled a new counter-terrorism bill. Here are some of the key measures to be introduced in the legislation:

New sentencing regime

Terrorism offenders will be sentenced under the following terms:

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Suspected Al Qaeda-linked extremist played chess on counter-terror programme

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

The problems faced by governments in the West dealing with returning foreign fighters have been revealed in the case of an alleged British extremist who snubbed de-radicalisation efforts to play chess with a government-assigned mentor.

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Lebanese MPs warn Hezbollah over US sanctions

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Political forces in Lebanon have renewed pressure on the Iranian-backed Hezbollah to reform or face the US imposition of the Caesar Act, which could prove catastrophic for the country.

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Hezbollah chief rejects US pressure to beef up role of UN peacekeepers

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

The head of the Lebanese Shiite movement Hezbollah Tuesday rejected a US request to empower a UN peacekeeping force patrolling the border with Israel.

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Daesh exploiting Syrian, Iraqi vacuums to make a comeback

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

Amid the global health crisis resulting from the coronavirus pandemic, there are disturbing signs that Daesh is re-emerging, especially in the open deserts of Syria and Iraq. Last week, newly appointed Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi announced that Iraqi forces had foiled a major operation by Daesh, while his intelligence body revealed it had arrested a key figure in the group, Abdel Nasser Qardash, who is thought to have been nominated as the successor to Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, who was killed by US Special Forces in Idlib last October.

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ISIS ‘governor of Iraq’ killed in Syria, says Baghdad

Author : Mircea Birca | Friday, May 29, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

A senior ISIS leader in Iraq was killed in an American-led coalition raid on the militant group in eastern Syria, Iraq’s intelligence agency has said.

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The Palestinian Virus of Jihad

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

While doctors, nurses and many Palestinians in the Gaza Strip are complaining about a shortage of medical supplies, the Palestinian armed groups, including PIJ and Hamas, do not appear to be facing the same problem.

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Iran’s First Tanker Reaches Venezuelan Waters

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Iran, Middle Orient

The first of five Iranian oil tankers has entered the Venezuelan territorial waters to show Iran’s determination to carry out exports of goods and oil to everywhere in the world regardless of US threats.

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China’s defense budget stays moderate and restrained: NPC spokesperson

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

China pursues defensive policies and the defense budget is moderate and restrained in regards to the total amount of the budget, per capita spending and the rate of GDP, Zhang Yesui, spokesperson for the 13th National People’s Congress (NPC) told a press conference on Thursday.

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US to Exit International Military Surveillance Treaty

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia

President Donald Trump said Thursday that he was pulling the United States out of the 18-year-old international Open Skies Treaty allowing surveillance flights over other countries because Russia has been violating it.

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Egypt challenges US in acquiring one of Russia’s most powerful weapons

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Africa, Eurasia

Russian media outlets have speculated the sanctions that the US might impose on Egypt in the event that it acquires the Sukhoi Su-35 fighter, as Washington has previously threatened.

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Syria refugees in Turkey resort to selling organs to survive

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient, Turkey

Syrian refugees residing in Turkey have been discovered to be so desperate for money that they are selling their organs on the black market in order to pay for necessities such as rent, the US-based media channel CBS has revealed.

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250,000 Saudi Airlines workers to lose their jobs

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) yesterday warned that Saudi Arabian Airlines would lose billions of dollars as a result of the slump in air travel, Arabi21 reported.

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Gulf Partners Can No Longer Afford To Stay The Course With U.S. Iran Policy

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

To help prevent a U.S.-Iran war in their neighborhood, the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council have called for diplomacy. They have reached out to Iranian officials to de-escalate. And they have provided Tehran with humanitarian assistance to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

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Kidnappings, cross-border clashes threaten increasingly fragile status quo in Syria’s south

Author : Mircea Birca | Thursday, May 28, 2020
Posted in category Eurasia, Middle Orient

The recent deployment of Syrian army Fourth Division troops to Daraa is yet another reminder of the deadly unrest ongoing in southwestern Syria. Sent to pacify Mazayreeb following an unprecedented armed attack after which several soldiers were publicly executed, Daraa’s western countryside still regularly witnesses violent unrest including assassinations, hit-and-run attacks, and drive-by shootings. Even after Mazayreeb, similar pro-government operations against pockets of former opposition-held territory are still possible.

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