Archive for May, 2018

ISIS Terror Attack Threat Increases as Month of Ramadan Approaches

(OANN) — Experts worry the month of Ramadan could hold an unusual amount of terror activity throughout the world.

While nearly two billion Muslims celebrate the holy month of Ramadan, the Islamic State’s bloody interpretation of the holiday could lead to more extremist attacks.

For the majority of Islam the month of fasting, spiritual renewal, and self-reflection is a reminder of the plight of the poor.

However, in recent years, Ramadan has also seen an increase in terror attacks.

The Quran strictly prohibits waging war during the month, but many extremists reinterpret a battle in the history of Islam as an encouragement of Jihad.

“As a Muslim we condemn these attacks — It is not a good thing, it is against humanity, said Mohammad Naser, a religious scholar in Afghanistan. “You won’t be able to find it anywhere in Islam that allows a Muslim to kill another Muslim, therefore, these attacks are prohibited and especially in the holy month of Ramadan it is completely forbidden.”

ISIS has attempted to turn the time of atonement into a call for violence and bloodshed, even calling it the holy month for Jihad.

In 2017, ISIS claimed 300 attacks across 12 countries during the holy period.

80-percent of them were in Iraq and Syria, where the extremists have lost ground and are resorting to terror attacks.

Soldiers in Afghanistan are still observing the fast, but are also upping security.

“We are fully prepared for it and will do our best to provide security with hyper vigilance, so our people can observe the fasting month in a safe environment,” said Bahlol Karwan, an Afghani soldier.

Attacks this year have already turned deadly.

In the ISIS spokesman’s first communication in 10 months, the group called for its followers to redirect attacks to apostate Arab states. He went on to say there is no difference in fighting Muslims in Palestine, Egypt, Iran and Saudia Arabia than the American crusaders as well as Russia and Europe.

While the call was for regional attacks, extremists around the world have responded in the days leading up to the holy month with attacks in France and Indonesia.

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Turkey slams French figures demanding change in Quran

(HURRIYET DAILY NEWS) — Turkey’s EU Affairs Minister Ömer Çelik slammed a French manifesto proposing the removal of some verses from the Quran, saying those 300 prominent French figures demanding the changes were as “bigoted” as members of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) who infer violence from the holy book, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

“This is the most striking example of intellectual violence and barbarism. Whoever these people are and whatever they have been doing up till now, they will be written at the beginning of the history of bigotry,” Çelik said on Twitter.

“Barbarism is intellectually and politically centered in the modern world,” he added.

Çelik drew parallel between the “barbaric and immoral” proposal and the ideology of ISIL.

“They could not tell in a better way that they are the closest ideological relatives of Daesh. But this approach, which will be the subject of political psychiatry, reveals how barbarism has risen in the midst of Europe, and how this mentality, at least as dangerous as Daesh, keeps itself behind certain concepts,” he said, using the Arabic name for ISIL.

“These are the most dangerous ones; those who conceal themselves behind an intellectual and political image. This is the mentality of those who are so-called anti-violence, but in fact they worship the bigotry and violence. These 300 French figures are the same as Daesh which infers violence from the humanity’s guide Quran,” Çelik added.

On April 21, 300 prominent French figures, including former President Nicolas Sarkozy and former Prime Minister Manuel Valls signed a manifesto published in the French daily Le Parisien and demanded some parts of the Quran, which they claimed have included violence and anti-Semitic references, be removed.

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Afghan Forces in Fierce Battle with Taliban Tuesday

(VOA) — ISLAMABAD — Afghan forces say they have pushed back the Taliban as reports said heavy fighting continued in Farah city, the capital of Afghanistan’s western Farah province.

Fierce fighting broke out in the pre-dawn hours of Tuesday after Taliban fighters attacked from the north and reached within three kilometers of the center of the province, according to Norulhaq Khaleqi, the spokesman for the Second Brigade of the Afghan National Army. Army officials said most of the fighting took place in the northern and western parts of the city.

Officials of the Afghan ministries of defense and interior claimed their security forces have stopped the Taliban’s advance in the north of Farah city. In a joint press briefing midday Tuesday, they said their forces were fighting the Taliban a few kilometers outside the city.

Taliban leaders had claimed their fighters captured a number of government offices including a local office of the Afghan Intelligence Agency (NDS) during the fighting, a claim Najib Danish, an interior ministry spokesman, denied. He said Afghan forces were receiving support from foreign forces.

Afghan government officials at Tuesday’s news conference said two Afghan security personnel were killed and four others wounded, while, 10 Taliban were killed and the same number of them wounded.

Meanwhile, eyewitnesses told VOA that Taliban are still inside Farah city and fighting continued later Tuesday in a number of back streets. They said although the reinforcements have helped the security forces, the street to street fight with the Taliban continued.

Local media reported that Taliban forces was close to taking over a prison in the city.

“#FARAH – Farid Bakhtawar, head of Farah provincial council, has said that clashes are ongoing in the city and the “enemies” are moving towards the prison compound.#Afghanistan,” a tweet from the verified account of Afghanistan’s Tolo News TV channel read.

Defense ministry officials sought to quell panic as local media reported some residents were fleeing the city. “We assure the people of Farah that all necessary operations have been implemented and Afghan air force, commando force, and contingents of Corp in western Afghanistan are in action against security threats,” defense ministry officials said in a statement.

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Dozens Killed, Wounded as Taliban Closes in on City in Western Afghanistan

(ONE AMERICAN NEWS NETWORK) — The Taliban continues its insurgency in Afghanistan with an assault on Farah City.

Afghan officials say dozens of security forces have been killed and wounded in Tuesday’s attack.

The Taliban overran several security checkpoints in the city near Afghanistan’s border with Iran.

The latest reports say the terrorist group is still two-miles away from the city center. and the battle is still underway.

The Taliban controls several nearby districts, but the U.S. and Afghan forces have been working to retake them.

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Gaza toll rises to 60 as fresh protests against Israel gather

(AFP) – Palestinians were gathering Tuesday for fresh protests along the Gaza border, a day after Israeli forces killed dozens there as the US embassy opened in Jerusalem on what was the conflict’s bloodiest day in years.

Palestinians on Tuesday marked the Nakba, or “catastrophe”, commemorating the more than 700,000 Palestinians who fled or were expelled in the 1948 war surrounding Israel’s creation.

It came a day after the United States transferred its Israel embassy from Tel Aviv to the disputed city of Jerusalem in a move that infuriated the Palestinians and was widely condemned.

Most of the 60 Gazans killed Monday were shot by Israeli snipers, Gaza’s health ministry said.

The toll included a baby who died from tear gas inhalation along with eight children under the age of 16, the ministry said.

At least 2,400 others were wounded in the bloodiest day in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict since the 2014 Gaza war.

Some funerals were held on Monday, while others were taking place Tuesday.

Hundreds of people took part in the funeral of Yazan Tubasi, 23, killed east of Gaza City.

His father Ibrahim, 50, said his son had a boy aged one year and three months.

“I am happy that my son is a martyr,” he said, though he was crying uncontrollably. “He is among dozens who died for the sake of Palestine and Jerusalem.”

Small numbers of protesters began returning to the border area on Tuesday, with larger crowds expected later.

In the West Bank, Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas declared a general strike on Tuesday after accusing Israel of “massacres”.

– Protests and clashes –

On Monday, tens of thousands had gathered near the border in protest while smaller numbers of stone-throwing Palestinians approached the fence and sought to break through, with Israeli snipers positioned on the other side.

The death toll led to strong condemnation from rights groups and concern from a range of countries.

But the United States, which blamed Hamas, blocked the adoption of a UN Security Council statement that would have called for an independent probe into the violence, diplomats said.

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Netanyahu thanks Trump for keeping promises, moving embassy to Jerusalem

(JERUSALEM POST) — Sixty-nine years after Israel declared Jerusalem as its capital, and 23 years after the US Congress passed a law mandating that Washington move its embassy there, the US formally opened its embassy in the city on Monday afternoon, in a move Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called “courageous” and “momentous.”

“What a glorious day. Remember this moment!” Netanyahu entreated the applauding crowd. “President Trump, by recognizing history, you have made history. All of us are deeply moved. All of us are deeply grateful.”

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Jewish protesters in Washington D.C. condemn US embassy move, May 14, 2018 (Reuters)

“Last December, President Trump became the first world leader to recognize Jerusalem as our capital, and today, the United States of America is opening its embassy right here in Jerusalem,” Netanyahu said. “Thank you President Trump, for having the courage to keep your promises!”

In a video address to the assembly, US President Donald Trump said the move was “a long time coming,” and that Israel, like all sovereign nations, has a right to name its own capital.

Trump mentioned that the US would still be observing the status quo in terms of contested territories such as on Temple Mount.

“The US will always be a great friend of Israel and a partner in the cause of freedom and peace,” Trump said. “We extend a hand in friendship to Israel, the Palestinians and to all of their neighbors. May there be peace. May God bless this embassy. May God bless all who serve here and may God bless the United States of America.”

Trump’s son-in-law and senior advisor, Jared Kushner, took the stage. to declare that “When President Trump makes a promise, he keeps it.”

“By moving our embassy to Jerusalem, we have shown the world once again that the US can be trusted. We stand with our friends and our allies, and above all we’ve shown that the US will do what’s right, and so we have,” Kushner said.

“The US stands with Israel because we both believe in freedom. We stand together because we both believe in human rights. We stand together because we both believe that democracy is worth defending. And the US stands with Israel because we know that it’s the right thing to do.”

Kushner received resounding applause when he mentioned President Trump’s decision last week to exit the Iran nuclear agreement, and when he gave thanks to US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley for her hard work.

Kusher also reiterated the US’s commitment to helping find a peaceful end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. “Jerusalem must remain a city that brings people of all faiths together,” he said. “As Israel turns 70, the search for lasting peace turns over a new leaf: one of realism, and of courage to stand with our allies for what is right and what is true.”

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Jewish dreams of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital go back thousands of years

(NEW YORK POST) — In the Second century AD, Jewish rebels who had stunned the Romans and liberated a portion of Judea, overstruck imperial coins with images and a message of their own, “Year One of the Redemption of Jerusalem.”

The Roman emperor Hadrian had planted the seeds for the rebellion with his ambitions to remake Jerusalem, including the planned construction of a Temple to Jupiter on the site of the old Jewish Temple.

The leader of the Jewish rebellion, Bar Kokhba, was fired by a vision of a united Israel with Jerusalem as its capital that had been the exception during the prior millennium, thanks to the depredations of the Assyrians and Babylonians, among others. But such was the power of the national idea — and his messianic zeal — that Bar Kokhba ventured all on regaining it.

And lost. Not for nearly another 2,000 years would the vision come to fruition. At a ceremony in 1982 burying bones of some of those long-ago rebels with military honors, Israeli Prime Minister Menachem Begin declared, ‘’Israel and Judea are reborn. We have redeemed Jerusalem.”

King David conquered the city in 1,000 BC and made it the capital of the kingdom of Israel. His son Solomon built the First Temple. “He who has not seen Jerusalem in her splendor has never seen a desirable city in his life,” declares the Babylonian Talmud. “He who has not seen the Temple in its full construction has never seen a glorious building in his life.”

But Jerusalem would repeatedly be captured and the Temple destroyed (first by the Babylonian King Nebuchadnezzar and then by the Roman Emperor Titus).

The story of the Jewish people is one of loss, memory and faithfulness and persistence. Psalm 137 recounting the Babylonian captivity avers, “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem, let my right hand forget her cunning. If I do not remember thee, let my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth; if I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy.”

The Jewish people never forgot. In one of the miracles of our age, after long centuries of exile punctuated by genocide at the hands of the Nazis, they re-established Israel in 1948, and then gained control of all of Jerusalem in 1967 (prior to that, when Jordan held East Jerusalem, Jews couldn’t visit the Western Wall).

The notion that the City of David isn’t the capital of Israel was an impolite fiction, honored by the United States and the West for fear of provoking Arabs hostile to the very idea of the Jewish state. Its prime minister, parliament and highest court are based there, and it’s unimaginable that Israel would ever agree to any peace deal that didn’t recognize it as the capital.

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Former ISIS Fighter: Islamic State Will Return With More Rigid Ideology

(OANN) — A former ISIS fighter issues a warning to the U.S. the ideology of the Islamic State will not go away.

Thursday, a Belgian man claiming to be one of the first foreign members of ISIS, gave an interview from a terrorist prison in Syria.

He warned of continued plots and splinter groups that will arise from the now defeated Muslim caliphate in Syria.

He said fighters were already planning to organize break away terror groups before the fall of Raqqa.

Reports show, many displaced ISIS fighters from Syria and Iraq are now moving to areas of the Philippines, where one in five residents are Muslim.

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‘Kill them all’: ISIS thugs call on fanatics to launch attacks at the World Cup in chilling new propaganda

(DAILY MAIL) — By Julian Robinson

ISIS thugs have called on their supporters to launch attacks at the World Cup in chilling new online propaganda.

The terror group’s latest poster, showing a knife set on a red back ground in front of a football stadium in Russia, comes with a French caption translated as ‘Kill them all’.

It is the latest in a series of ISIS threats made against football’s showpiece tournament, which kicks off on June 14 in Moscow.

The poster was released by a French ISIS-linked group, according to SITE Intelligence, which monitors terror activity.

In April, ISIS warned Russian President Vladimir Putin he will ‘pay the price for killing Muslims’. The poster showed a jihadist emerging from an explosion and holding an AK-47 aloft, with a packed football arena in the background.

President Putin can be seen on the left of the image with a black and orange target aiming straight at him. Across the poster is written; ‘Russia 2018. Putin you disbeliever. You will pay the price for killing Muslims.’

The threat is likely to be linked to Putin’s support for Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad in his government’s fight against ISIS – a battle also fought by U.S.-backed Kurdish forces and other rebel factions in Syria.

In March, ISIS supporters targeted Argentinian footballer Lionel Messi in a poster showing him kneeling next to a jihadist.

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