SOMALIA: ‘ Islamic Rebels Pledge Allegiance to New Leader and Threatens Enemies ‘

#AceWorldNews – SOMALIA – September 08 – Militants of the Somali Islamist group Al-Shabaab have pledged allegiance to their new leader after his predecessor was killed.

Ahmed Abdi aw-Mohamed alias Ahmed Godane is pictured in this undated handout photo

 

They said the enemies would reap the “bitter fruits” of revenge after Ahmed Godane’s killing, Reuters reported. Al-Shabaab confirmed he was killed by a US air-strike in a raid last Monday.

Sheikh Ahmed Umar Abu Ubaida will replace him to head the group, which wants to impose its strict version of Islam on Somalia.

The group also reaffirmed its allegiance to Al-Qaeda

#ANS2014

#al-shabab, #somalia

AIR ALGERIE AH5017: ' Hezbollah Leader and French Military Were On-Board at Time of Crash '

#AceWorldNews – ALGIERS – July 27 – According to latest information that either 116 or 118 people on board the Air Algerie flight AH5017 which crashed in the restive northern Mali, at least 33 French military personnel including three senior intelligence officials and a Lebanese Hezbollah leader were present, it has emerged reported IBTimes

Even as the Algerian authorities have asserted that the real cause of the crash could be established only after a thorough investigation, they have not ruled out a terror attack either.

The exact number of people present in the aircraft, a McDonnell Douglas-83, is still unclear – whether it was 116 or 118.

But the local daily Echorouk, citing sources, said there were French troops on board.

There were at least 19 Lebanese passengers and some of them were dual citizens, including an alleged senior Hezbollah figure, who was disguised as a businessman.

A team of Lebanese experts is also on its way to Mali to assist the ongoing investigation.

Meanwhile, militants from the Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MOJWA), locally known as Tawhid and Jihad in West Africa, are said to be stationed near the crash site, which is not far from their stronghold.

The al-Qaeda-inspired outfit is believed to be holding an arsenal of missiles in its possession which were smuggled from Libya.

However, experts have firmly ruled out any ground-to-air attack that brought down the plane.

But speculation over a criminal incident linked to explosives inside the Burkina Faso-Algiers flight has also surfaced.

"We rule out — and have from the start — any ground strike," French junior transport minister Frédéric Cuvillier told France Two television.

#ANS2014

#algiers, #burkina-faso, #france, #hezbollah, #mali, #somalia

‘ Somalia’s al-Shabaab Claim Responsibility for Attack on Bus Killing Seven ‘

#AceWorldNews – MOGADISHU – July 19 – Somalia‘s al Shabaab insurgents claimed responsibility on Saturday for an attack on a bus on Kenya‘s northern coast that killed seven.

Gunmen blocked the bus with their car late on Friday and sprayed it with bullets.

They also attacked two lorries carrying mangos near Witu, a town in Lamu County which borders Somalia.

“The attack was in response to Kenya’s claim that it deployed more troops in the coast and thus tightened security,” Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab, spokesman for al Shabaab’s military operations told Reuters.

#ANS2014 

 

#al-shabaab, #friday, #kenya, #lamu, #nairobi, #reuters, #somalia, #witu

` Explosions and Gunfire Heard in Somali Capital Mogadishu as Parliament Comes Under Attack ‘

#AceBreakingNews – MOGADISHU – May 24 – Explosions and gunfire have been heard in the Somali capital Mogadishu as the parliament came under attack while MPs were meeting.

The cause of the blasts was not immediately clear.

Somalia’s first parliament of its own since the collapse of government in 1992 was sworn in two years ago.

The fragile Somali government has been waging a war on insurgents of the al-Shabab Islamist movement, who were pushed out of Mogadishu in 2011.

Map
The parliament in Mogadishu – which operated as a transitional assembly from 2004 to 2012 – has been attacked several times, including in 2009 and 2010.

Last month, a Somali parliamentarian was blown up and another shot dead in separate attacks.Some 22,000 African Union troops are helping the government battle al-Shabab.

Although it has lost control of most towns and cities, al-Shabab still dominates in many rural areas.

Al-Shabab, whose name means “The Youth” in Arabic, advocates the strict Saudi-inspired Wahhabi version of Islam.

Ace World News

#ANS2014

#al-shabab, #mogadishu, #somali, #somalia

` Hundreds of Somalis Are Expelled from Kenya Following Crack-Down on Al-Qaeda-linked Shabab ‘

#AceWorldNews – SOMALIA – May 23 – Hundreds of Somalis have been expelled from Kenya, with 98 in the latest batch sent back in a major crackdown on suspected Islamists, AFP said, citing a report of the Human Rights Watch (HRW).

The crackdown has seen people held in police cells or a football stadium, the group said Friday.

This follows a spate of attacks in Kenya by suspected supporters of Somalia’s Al-Qaeda-linked Shabab rebels.

A batch sent to Somalia by air-plane on Tuesday was reportedly the fourth round sent home, taking the total expelled to 359.

#ANS2014

#al-qaeda, #al-shabab, #kenya, #somalia

` Italian Navy Rescue Two-Boats Packed with More than 500 Migrants off Coast of Sicily ‘

#AceWorldNews – ROME – May 20 – Italy’s navy on Tuesday rescued two boats packed with more than 500 migrants, including 133 minors, AFP said.

There were also 64 women in the group, according to the navy.

A navy helicopter spotted the boats south of Sicily on Monday.

The rescue, carried out on Tuesday with the help of nearby merchant vessels, was delayed by poor weather conditions.

Almost all of the new arrivals are on boats leaving northern Libya, which is becoming increasingly lawless.

Many are originally from Eritrea, Somalia and Syria.

#ANS2014

#eritrea, #italy, #libya, #rome, #sicily, #somalia, #syria

` Kenyan Police Detaining Somali’s Law Abiding Citizen’s under Terrorist Crackdown could lead to Xenophobia ‘

AceWorldNews – NAIROBI – Kenya – Somalia’s prime minister expressed concern Monday over the detention of what he says are law-abiding Somalis in Kenya, where police are conducting a security crackdown aimed at stopping terrorist attacks.

Kenyan police have arrested thousands of people, most of them ethnic Somalis, following a wave of violent attacks blamed on the Somali militant group al-Shabab.

Last week a car bomb exploded outside a Nairobi police station, killing two policemen and two occupants of the vehicle, both ethnic Somalis.

The security operation has been strongly criticized by rights groups who say authorities are profiling Somalis, detaining them without trial, extorting refugees, holding the suspects in inhumane conditions and circumventing the law to deport some back to Somalia.

Rights activists have warned the targeting of Somalis could lead to xenophobia and increase radicalisation of Muslim youths, who may feel their religion is under attack.

Ace Related News:
1. Fox News – April 28 – http://tinyurl.com/p64mmkv

#ANS2014

#aceworldnews, #kenya, #muslim, #nairobi, #somalia

` Egyptian Judge Dismisses Videos in Trial of Three Al-Jazeera Journalists on Terrorism Charges '

#AceNewServices – CAIRO – April 10 – (AP) – An Egyptian judge has dismissed videos presented by the prosecution as evidence in the trial of three Al-Jazeera journalists on terrorism charges.

The Thursday hearing saw footage, allegedly filmed by the detained journalists, which included a documentary on Somalia, a Kenyan press conference and another wildlife video.

The judge dismissed the footage on the grounds it is not related to the charges, which include providing a platform to the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood group.

The journalists, award-winning Australian correspondent Peter Greste, Canadian-Egyptian acting bureau chief Mohammed Fahmy and Egyptian Baher Mohammed, worked for the Qatar-based broadcaster’s English language channel.

Fahmy said he does not understand the reason for the trial, shouting from behind the bars of the defendants’ cage: “this is a joke!”

The trial was adjourned to April 22.

(ALJ) – The three men are charged with spreading false news and aiding the blacklisted Muslim Brotherhood of deposed Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi, who was overthrown by the army in July.

Al Jazeera strongly rejects the charges and demands for the immediate release of its staff.

Contributions from Al Jazeera – New Europe – AP

Ace Related News – March 31 – 20.44 GMT – #AceWorldNews – EGYPT – March 31 – Al Jazeera English journalists were denied bail by a court in Egypt, after spending nearly 100 days in jail since their arrest.http://wp.me/p165ui-4BP

#ANS2014

#acenewsservices, #al-jazeera, #cairo, #egyptian, #kenyan, #muslim-brotherhood, #somalia

Somaili ` Mogadishu and a Car Bomb Explodes near Hotel targeted several times aimed at Officials and Businessmen ‘

#AceWorldNews A car bomb has exploded in the centre of the Somali capital, Mogadishu, near a hotel popular with government officials and businessmen, according to police and witnesses, AFP reports.

Police confirmed that at least one person was injured in the blast.

The area close to the hotel has been targeted several times recently and in November 2013 the hotel itself was hit, leaving several people dead.

#ANS2014

#afp, #mogadishu, #somalia

`Somalia’s Presidential Palace in `Mogadishu’ hit by `Suicide Bomb Attack’ – Reports’

#AceWorldNews says the presidential palace in Somalia’s capital was hit on Friday by a major car bomb and gun attack, AFP reported, citing police.

Reuters also reported that a loud explosion was heard near the centre of the Somali capital, Mogadishu, followed by prolonged heavy bursts of gunfire.

The city has been hit by a series of suicide bomb attacks in the past few weeks, claimed by Al-Qaeda-linked militants, Al Shabaab.

#afp, #al-shabaab, #al-qaeda, #mogadishu, #reuters, #somalia

` Hundreds of Families are fleeing `Somali Capital’ following `Mortar Fire’ landing on Civilian Homes’

#AceWorldNews says hundreds of families are fleeing the Somali capital after a spike in the number of clashes between militants and pro-government troops, AP reported, citing local residents.

On Thursday, dozens of vehicles piled high with belongings headed to the outskirts of Mogadishu.

Heavy clashes have included mortar fire that has landed on civilian homes, witnesses say.

Mogadishu has seen relative stability since the ouster of Islamist rebels from Al-Shabab in 2011.

#al-shabab, #ap, #islamist, #mogadishu, #somalia

“Germany to Contribute Troops to EU Training Mission in Somali”

#AceWorldNews says `Germany to Contribute Troops to EU Training Mission in Somali Capital’

English: A Somali boy receives a polio vaccina...

English: A Somali boy receives a polio vaccination at the Tunisian hospital in Mogadishu. The hospital treats local diseases, malnutrition, and other injuries. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Germany will send troops to an EU training mission in Mogadishu, Reuters reported. The move comes less than a year after security concerns led Berlin to abandon a similar training operation, when it relocated from Uganda to the Somali capital.

The decision to pull out had been taken by the previous government, a foreign office spokesman said on Monday, adding that the situation in Somalia had since improved.

The new German government, which took office last December, has promised a more robust foreign and security policy.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

#aceworldnews, #berlin, #european-union, #germany, #mogadishu, #reuters, #somali-people, #somalia, #uganda, #wikipedia

“Hostility Increase Worldwide Towards Religious Groups”

#AceWorldNews says recent report in connection with “Violence and Discrimination Against Religious Groups” reveals that governments and rival faiths have reached new highs in all parts of the world except the Americas, “Pew Research Center” has said in a report. The share of countries with a high or very high level of social hostilities involving religion reached a six-year peak in 2012, it said. Social hostility, including attacks on minority faiths or pressure was strong in one-third of the 198 countries and territories surveyed in 2012. Religious-related terrorism and sectarian violence occurred in one-fifth of the states.
Almost 30 percent of those states imposed legal limits on worship, preaching or religious wear. Hindus, Buddhists and folk religions saw lower levels of hostility. The report said the highest social hostility concerning religion was in Pakistan, Afghanistan, India, Somalia and Israel.

#afghanistan, #buddhists, #faiths, #ghanistan, #governments, #hindus, #india, #israel, #pakistan, #pew-research-center, #somalia, #violence-and-discrimination-against-religious-groups

True Cost of Piracy and Organised Crime off the Horn of Africa

piracy is a crime

Pirates off the coast of Somalia and the Horn of Africa have made between $339 million and $413 million in ransom profits, fuelling a wide range of criminal activities on a global scale, according to a United Nations backed report released today.

http://web.worldbank.org/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/TOPICS/EXTFINANCIALSECTOR/0,,contentMDK:23491862~pagePK:210058~piPK:210062~theSitePK:282885,00.html” Pirate Trails, produced by the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the World Bank and INTERPOL, uses data and evidence from interviews with former pirates, Government officials, bankers and others involved in countering piracy, to investigate the glow of ransom money paid out to Somali pirates operating in the Indian Ocean.

“The vast amounts of money collected by pirates, and the fact that they have faced almost no constraint in moving and using their assets has allowed them not only to thrive, but also to develop their capacities on land,” said the Chief of the Implementation Support Section in the Organized Crime and Illicit Trafficking Branch at UNODC, Tofik Murshudlu.

“These criminal groups and their assets will continue to pose a threat to the stability and security of the Horn of Africa unless long-term structural solutions are implemented to impede their current freedom of movement.”

Piracy costs the global economy about $18 billion a year in increased trade costs. Because the outbreak of piracy has reduced maritime activity around the Horn of Africa, East African countries have suffered a significant decline in tourist arrivals and fishing yields since 2006.

“Unchallenged piracy is not only a menace to stability and security, but it also has the power to corrupt the regional and international economy,” said Stuart Yikona, a World Bank Senior Financial Sector Specialist and the report’s co-author.

English: Map showing the extent of Somali pira...

English: Map showing the extent of Somali pirate attacks on shipping vessels between 2005 and 2010. Français : Carte montrant l’étendue des attaques de pirates somaliens sur des navires de transport entre 2005 et 2010. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The report found that ransom money was invested in criminal activities, such as arms trafficking, funding militias, migrant smuggling and human trafficking, and was used to further finance piracy activities. Piracy profits are also laundered through the trade of ‘khat,’ a herbal stimulant, where it is not monitored and so the most vulnerable to illicit international flows of money.

The report, which focused on Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, the Seychelles, and Somalia, also analysed the investments made by a sample of 59 pirate ‘financiers’ to show the  range of sectors – including both legitimate businesses and criminal ventures – that were funded by the ransom money. It found that between 30 per cent and 75 per cent of the ransom money ends up with these financiers, while the pirate ‘foot soldiers’ aboard the ships receive just a  fraction  of  the proceeds, amounting to less than 0.1 per cent of the total.

Pirate Trails calls for coordinated international action to address the issue, and sets out how the flow of illicit money from the Indian Ocean can be disrupted.

“The international community has mobilized a naval force to deal with the pirates. A similarly managed multinational effort is needed to disrupt and halt the flow of illicit money that circulates in the wake of their activities,” said Mr. Yikona.

Among the range of measures recommended by the report are strengthening  the  capacity  of  countries in the Horn of Africa to deal with illegal cross-border cash smuggling, risk-based oversight of Money Value Transfer Service Providers, and the development of mechanisms to monitor international financial flows into the khat trade.

#aceworldnews, #horn-of-africa, #indian-ocean, #piracy, #piracy-in-somalia, #seychelles, #somalia, #united-nation, #united-nations, #world-bank

UN Expert Cites Need for Regulating Private Security Firms

The United Nations Working Group on the use of mercenaries today urged Governments to recognize the need for a legally binding international agreement to regulate the use and activities of private military and security companies (PMSCs) to complement existing regulations.

PMCS“Providing security is a fundamental human right and a fundamental responsibility of the State,” Anton Katz, who currently chairs the five-member group of independent experts, said in a <“http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=13940&LangID=E“>news release.

“But the ever-expanding activities of PMSCs continue to raise a number of challenges, and the outsourcing of security to these companies by States create risks for human rights, hence the need to regulate their activities.”

Presenting the group’s report to the General Assembly’s Third Committee, which examines human rights issues, Mr. Katz stressed that existing national legislation is not sufficient to address the challenges posed by PMSCs.

He cited inadequacies related registering and licensing, and the lack of effective and transparent mechanisms and remedies for human rights violations within existing legislation, adding that these limitations are worsened by the transnational nature of PMSCs and the difficulties in ensuring accountability for any violations that may occur.

Montreux Document He noted that there are self-regulatory initiatives such as the Montreux Document and the International Code of Conduct which have been established by a number of States and corporate actors in the past years to try to address the challenges posed by PMSCs.

“However, these initiatives are not legally binding and cannot be considered as complete solutions for the problems concerning PMSCs,” he stressed.

On mercenaries, Mr. Katz said that recent events in several parts of the world demonstrate that mercenaries remain a threat not only to security but also to human rights and the right of people’s to self-determination. “We continue to call on States to cooperate in eliminating this phenomenon,” he stated.

Over the past year, the group made two country visits, to Somalia and Honduras. It also launched a national legislation project to look into analysing good practices and possible shortcomings in States’ protection of human rights in transnational security-related activities.

It has also embarked on a study on the UN’s use of PMSCs which will be the focus of its report to the General Assembly in 2014.

Members of the Working Group are appointed by the Human Rights Council. Their positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work.

 

#acesecuritynews, #anton-katz, #honduras, #human-rights-violations, #human-rights, #katz, #mercenaries, #mercenary, #montreux-document, #national-legislation, #new-york, #somalia, #the-united-nations-working-group, #united-nations, #united-states