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WATCH: African migrants tortured, auctioned by human traffickers in Libya

Sunday, 21 January 2018

A video showing migrants being tortured by human traffickers in Libya went viral on social media following a report by CNN showing footage of migrants being sold as slaves there. The last two scenes of the video shows migrants being subjected to unprecedented torture and brutality. A migrant who was completely stripped of his clothes cries out in pain as the trafficker burns a plastic bottle and drips hot plastic on his body. The migrants body shows several scars and burns. Another stands on his ...

Iran may try to loosen Revolutionary Guard’s grip on economy

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Iran’s supreme leader has ordered the Revolutionary Guard to loosen its hold on the economy, the country’s defense minister says, raising the possibility that the paramilitary organization might privatize some of its vast holdings. The comments this weekend by Defense Minister Gen. Amir Hatami appear to be a trial balloon to test the reaction of the idea, long pushed by Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani. Protests over the country’s poor economy last month escalated into ...

Iraqi court sentences to death German woman who joined ISIS

Sunday, 21 January 2018

An Iraqi court on Sunday sentenced to death a German woman of Moroccan origin for membership of ISIS, a spokesman said. The German national was captured by Iraqi forces during the battle for Mosul last year, the spokesman said, declining to identify her. She is the first foreign woman to be sentenced to death in Iraq for joining the militant group. She can appeal the sentence, said Abdul-Sattar al-Birqdar, spokesman for Iraq's Supreme Judicial Council in Baghdad. "She confessed that she ...

Al-Qaeda’s historian Mustafa Hamed resumes digital activity in Tehran

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Al-Qaeda’s most prominent historian and Afghan-Arab, strategist Mustafa Hamed, aka Abu al-Walid al-Masri, emerged from Tehran to resume his activity in lecturing radical groups via his website Mafa. Abu al-Walid, Osama bin Laden’s and Ayman al-Zawahiri’s friend, willingly left Qatar in 2016 and went to Tehran to live there with his children. Abu al-Walid, who was Al-Jazeera’s correspondent in Kandahar between 1998 and 2001, commented on resuming Mafa’s activity and ...

Turkey says ground forces push into Syria, Kurdish YPG says attack repulsed

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Turkish ground forces pushed into northern Syria’s Afrin province on Sunday, media cited the prime minister as saying, as Ankara stepped up artillery attacks on a U.S.-backed Kurdish militia it aims to sweep from its border. NATO’s second-largest army entered northern Syria shortly after 11:00am, broadcaster HaberTurk cited Prime Minister Binali Yildirim as saying. The Syrian-Kurdish YPG militia, supported by the United States but seen as a terrorist organization by Turkey, said it ...

Syrian regime opens roads for Kurdish forces in Afrin, US 'not paying attention'

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Following the Syrian regime condemning Turkish military operations and “Operation Olive Branch” in Afrin on Saturday, the Assad regime opened up roads for the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in order to transport weapons and reinforcements, the Anadolu Agency reported. According to the news agency, the Syrian regime opened the PYD-PKK-held Sheikh Maqsoud neighborhood, and allowed the two groups to use Nubl and Al-Zahra roads connecting the ...

Ten killed in Turkish attack on Kurdish-held Syrian region

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Turkish attacks in the Afrin region of northern Syria killed ten people on Saturday, mostly civilians, a spokesman for the Kurdish militia which controls the area said.“Seven civilians were killed, including a child, as well as two female fighters and one male fighter,” said Birusk Hasakeh, spokesman for the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in Afrin, adding that the child was an eight-year-old boy.The YPG’s political branch, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), said ...

Vice President Pence says US stands ‘shoulder to shoulder’ with Egypt

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Vice President Mike Pence and Egyptian leader Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi pledged a united front against terrorism in the Mideast as Pence, the highest-level American official to visit the US ally in nearly a decade, began a trip through the region after leaving behind a government shutdown in Washington. Pence and el-Sissi held two-and-a-half hours of talks at the presidential palace in Cairo, with acknowledgements of friendship and partnership between the two countries. Through a translator, Pence ...

Syrian army, allies take Idlib air base, says Hezbollah media unit

Saturday, 20 January 2018

The Syrian army and allied forces captured Abu al-Duhur airport in Idlib province from insurgents on Saturday, a Hezbollah military media unit said. They had pushed into the military air base hours earlier, pressing their offensive in Syria’s largest rebel stronghold, said the media unit run by Lebanon’s Hezbollah, which fights along the Damascus government.

New vote on Iraq poll date ‘by Monday’ as Abadi meets Kurdistan region PM

Saturday, 20 January 2018

Iraq's parliament failed on Saturday to approve May 12 as the election date, as suggested by the government, as Sunni and Kurdish lawmakers demanded a delay to allow hundreds of thousands of war-displaced people to return home. Shi'ite politicians, including Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, insist on holding the election as planned on May 12, saying a delay would be against the constitution. Speaking after Saturday's session in Baghdad, Parliamentary Speaker Salim al-Jabouri, a Sunni, expressed ...

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