Monday, February 1, 2016

Marchix intel etos world news (March 2016)


The United States will spend $3.4 billion next year to counter "Russia's aggression" and boost the US presence in eastern European nations, Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said Tuesday......More rotational US forces in Europe, more training and exercises with our allies, more prepositioned war fighting gear, and infrastructure improvements to support it.


  1. The U.S. state Department issued a warning to compatriots about the dangers of traveling in Turkey, announced on Tuesday, March 1, RIA Novosti...

    In connection with the recent terrorist attacks and the increased threat level from international and local groups Americans must be extremely cautious when travelling around Turkey, warns the U.S. state Department. “The Department of state urges American citizens to avoid travel to Turkey,” — said in a statement about the document.

    17 February in Ankara a terrorist attack, which killed 28 people, injured 61. The explosion occurred in the administrative center of the Turkish capital, near the buildings of the General staff and Parliament. A car bomb exploded in the moment when it approached the convoy, carrying servicemen. Most of the victims and injured members of the Armed forces of Turkey. Later responsibility for the attack claimed by a radical Kurdish grouping “Falcons of freedom of Kurdistan” (SSK).

    18 February in Turkey was blown up by a military escort is responsible for the attack also took over the FCS. February 19, Erdogan announced the detention of the organizers of explosions in the capital.......

  2. The United States is under growing pressure to play a stronger role in dealing with a flow of Middle East refugees that threatens to plunge Europe into chaos...

    Senior former and serving US officials told AFP that some in Washington regard the Syrian migrant crisis as an existential threat to the European project.

    President Barack Obama, already under fire for his handling of the Syrian crisis itself, now faces calls to show more US leadership in accepting refugees.

    Syria's immediate neighbors Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon confront the starkest immediate threat, but nearby Europe may also be overwhelmed by the exodus.

    "This risks unraveling the European Union as a political construct," Ryan Crocker, a former US ambassador to Syria, Iraq and Lebanon said Monday.

    "This current refugee crisis is by far the largest crisis since the end of World War II -- literally in 70 years -- and it is getting worse."
    Millions displaced

    US and Western diplomats, speaking on condition of anonymity, echoed Crocker's bleak assessment, without suggesting any solution.

    Obama has promised America will admit 10,000 Syrians among 100,000 refugees fro around the world during the 2016 fiscal year, which ends on September 30.

    That would be a tiny proportion of millions displaced from their homes in Syria's civil war -- and even of the hundreds of thousands now reaching Europe...AFP

  3. ISIS executes eight Dutch ‘deserters’ in Syria...

    ISIS has executed eight Dutch members of its group, whom it accused of trying to desert, activists said Monday.

    “Daesh (ISIS) executed eight Dutch fighters on Friday in Maadan, Raqa province, after accusing them of attempting desertion and mutiny,” Abu Mohammad, a member of the citizen journalist group Raqqa is Being Slaughtered Silently (RBSS), said via Twitter.

    RBSS has been documenting since April 2014 ISIS’ abuses in Raqqa, the group’s de facto capital in northern Syria.

    Tension has boiled in Raqqa over the past month between 75 Dutch militants - among them fighters of Moroccan origin - and ISIS intelligence operatives from Iraq, RBSS said.

    Three other Dutch extremists were arrested by Iraqi ISIS members who accused them of wanting to flee and one of the detainees was beaten to death during the interrogation, according to RBSS......AFP.....

  4. South Korean President Park Geun-hye said Tuesday that the government will force the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) to give up its nuclear program based on firmer defense readiness and international cooperation...

    Park made the remarks during her speech to commemorate the 97th anniversary of Independence Movement Day against Japan's 1910-45 colonial rule of the Korean peninsula.

    "It became clear for existing responses to be unable to discourage North Korea (DPRK)'s nuclear development," Park said, adding that if the DPRK is left as it is, Pyongyang will conduct fifth and sixth nuclear tests which will threaten stability in Northeast Asia and peace in the world as well as survival of Korean people.

    The DPRK carried out what it claimed was its first H-bomb test, the fourth of its nuclear detonations, on Jan. 6, and went ahead with the launch of a long-range rocket, which outsiders see as a banned test of ballistic missile technology, on Feb. 7.

    Tougher new sanctions toward the DPRK are under discussion at the UN Security Council, and South Korea implemented its unilateral restrictions by closing down the Kaesong industrial zone, the once-jointly-run factory park in the DPRK's border city of Kaesong.

    Park said that pressures by Seoul and the international society on Pyongyang would continue unless the DPRK shows its intention to denuclearize.

    But, she noted that the government will not close a door to dialogue with the DPRK. It marked the first time since the DPRK's fourth nuclear test that Park mentioned dialogue with Pyongyang.

  5. Riyadh said that it had discussed with Washington the possibility of a ground incursion in Syria two weeks ago but they have not made a decision...

    Saudi Arabian Defense Minister Mohammad Bin Salman Al Saud and his counterparts from the 65-member US-led coalition addressed the issue “two weeks ago in Brussels,” the Saudi minister’s advisor Brigadier General Ahmed Asseri said on

  6. Migrants: Merkel reçue par Hollande vendredi avant le sommet UE-Turquie...

    Le président François Hollande recevra vendredi à 10H30 à l'Elysée la chancelière allemande Angela Merkel pour préparer le sommet entre l'Union européenne et la Turquie, qui se tiendra lundi à Bruxelles, a annoncé mardi l'Elysée.

    L'Union européenne doit tenter, lors de ce sommet exceptionnel, d'entreprendre une action commune avec Ankara pour endiguer la plus grave crise migratoire de son histoire.

    "Le président de la République recevra à l'Elysée la Chancelière allemande Angela Merkel le vendredi 4 mars à 10h30, en vue notamment de préparer la réunion des chefs d'Etat et de gouvernement de l'Union européenne et de la Turquie prévue le 7 mars à Bruxelles", a annoncé l'Elysée dans un communiqué.

    La réunion des chefs d'Etat des 28 avec la Turquie a été décidée le 19 février, pendant le sommet consacré aux négociations sur le maintien du Royaume-Uni dans l'

  7. The shelling of the Syrian province of Latakia, injuring journalists who were fired from the territory adjacent to the border with Turkey, said the official representative of the Ministry of defense of Russia Igor Konashenkov. It is reported RIA Novosti...

    According to Konashenkov, a total of eight were produced of shells, which fell at a distance of from 150 to 400 meters from the media. Journalists from Bulgaria, Canada and China received minor injuries.

    “Shots were fired from the Turkish border, from the area of the village, Lady in Idlib”, — said the representative of the military Department.

    As the correspondent of RIA Novosti, just under the shelling hit 33 journalists from Bulgaria, Greece, Germany, USA, China, Canada and Russia (TV channel “Zvezda” reported that under fire was his crew). The victims were promptly provided medical care. Now they are undercover Russian troops returned to the

  8. UN Security Council postpones N. Korea sanctions vote to Wednesday...

    The UN Security Council has pushed back to Wednesday a vote on imposing a new raft of sanctions on North Korea, following a request from Russia, diplomats said.

    The council had been set to vote later Tuesday, but the US mission to the United Nations said "Russia invoked a procedural 24-hour review of the resolution, so the vote will be on Wednesday."

    Russia's UN mission declined to provide reasons for the delay, but spokesman Alexei Zaytsev said "we confirm that the vote will take place tomorrow" at 10:00 am (1500 GMT)....AFP

  9. A Philippine official said Wednesday that he recently spotted five suspected Chinese coast guard and navy ships at a disputed atoll in the South China Sea and fears Beijing will take control of another area frequented by Filipino, Vietnamese and Malaysian fishermen...

    Mayor Eugenio Bito-onon Jr., who heads a Philippine-claimed region in the disputed Spratly Islands, said he saw the Chinese ships at the Jackson Atoll for two straight days last week while flying in a plane over the area.

    Bito-onon said Chinese government vessels have not been stationed at the atoll, which the Philippines calls Quirino, in the years he has been passing by the uninhabited, ring-shaped reef.

    Jackson Atoll lies several kilometres (miles) from the Philippine-claimed Mischief Reef, which China occupied in 1995 and has turned into an island containing what appears to be a runway. It lies midway between the western Philippine province of Palawan and Filipino-occupied Thitu Island in the Spratlys.

    The Department of Foreign Affairs in Manila said it was trying to verify the reported Chinese presence and a report by the Philippine Star newspaper that the Chinese ships recently prevented Filipino fishermen from approaching the area. Chinese Embassy officials were not immediately available for

    1. U.S. plans naval exercises with India and Japan in Philippine Sea...

      India, the United States and Japan will hold naval exercises in waters off the northern Philippines near the South China Sea this year, the U.S. military said on Wednesday, a move likely to further raise tensions with China.

      The announcement comes a day after the United States warned China against militarization of the South China Sea, where Beijing is locked in a territorial dispute with several countries, saying there would be consequences.

      Last year, India and the United States expanded their annual naval drills in the Bay of Bengal to include Japan after a gap of eight years, in a move seen as a response to China's growing assertiveness in the

  10. Top NATO General Philip Breedlove warned US lawmakers Tuesday that Russia is helping Syrian President Bashar al-Assad turn the refugee crisis into a "weapon" against the West...

    The supreme allied commander in Europe for the 28-member military alliance said the massive flow of migrants from war-torn Syria has had a destabilizing effect on European countries where they found refuge, and that worked to Moscow's advantage.

    "Together, Russia and the Assad regime are deliberately weaponizing migration in an attempt to overwhelm European structures and break European resolve," Breedlove told the Senate Armed Services

  11. Calling it a “fabricated” report, Ankara has denied the accuracy of a report which has suggested that NATO vessels deployed in the Aegean Sea to help stop the flow of migrants to Europe have not yet started operating in Turkish waters because they have not been given permission yet from Turkey...

    Despite requests by NATO’s German command, “the Turks refused” this weekend to allow the vessels to enter Turkish waters, Agence France-Presse (AFP) said in its report posted from Brussels, citing “a diplomatic source.”

    “We don’t feel it necessary to respond to the comments, the source of which we do not know and which are obviously fabricated and most probably aimed at creating provocation,” Turkish officials told Hürriyet Daily News on March 2. “Work is going on to have NATO activity conducted as planned,” the same officials said, speaking under the customary condition of anonymity.

    Last week, the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced that the North Atlantic Council (NAC) in Permanent Session approved on Feb. 24 the modalities of activity to be conducted by NATO naval units to support national and international efforts to cut the lines of human trafficking and illegal migration on the Aegean

  12. Jordanian security forces killed seven Islamist militants in armed clashes with Islamic State group sympathisers in the northern city of Irbid near the Syrian border, a security source said on Wednesday...

    One Jordanian police officer was also killed in the security operation against militants holed up in the city, which began on Tuesday night and ended at dawn, the source said.

    It was one of the largest sweeps against sleeper cells of sympathisers of hardline Islamist groups in recent years, according to officials.

  13. Indonesia issued a tsunami warning on Wednesday after a massive and shallow earthquake struck off the west coast of the island of Sumatra, an area hit badly by the 2004 Indian Ocean quake and tsunami...

    The warning was issued for West Sumatra, North Sumatra and Aceh after the quake of magnitude 7.9, the National Meteorolgical Agency said.

    The epicenter was 808 km (502 miles) southwest of Padang, the U.S. Geological Survey said. It was 10 km (six miles) deep.

    There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties but the shallower a quake, the more likely it is to cause damage. USGS originally put the magnitude at 8.2, and then 8.1, before lowering it to 7.9.

    Indonesia, especially Aceh, was badly hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami in

  14. N. Korea fires short-range projectiles after UN sanctions...

    The United Nations adopted the toughest sanctions to date on North Korea in response to its fourth nuclear test and rocket launch, prompting Pyongyang to respond with a show of military strength.

    The Security Council unanimously passed a resolution imposing new sanctions after seven weeks of arduous negotiations between the United States and China, Pyongyang's sole major ally.

    All eyes are now on China and Russia to see if they fully enact the sweeping measures.

    The sanctions break new ground, requiring all countries to inspect cargo destined for and coming from North Korea, in all airports and sea ports.

    They also ban or restricts exports of coal, iron and iron ore and other minerals from North Korea, and prohibit the supply of aviation fuel including rocket fuel......

  15. Syria's electricity network is down across the whole of the country for unknown reasons, state media report...

    Officials were cited as saying power had been cut in all provinces and teams were trying to determine the cause.

    In most parts of war-torn Syria, electricity is already available only two to four hours a day, if at all. However, nationwide blackouts are rare.

    Meanwhile, the UN's special envoy said a partial truce that began on Saturday was holding but remained fragile.

    Staffan de Mistura told reporters in Geneva that violence had been "greatly reduced", despite incidents in the provinces of Homs, Hama, Latakia and Damascus. "Success is not guaranteed but progress is visible," he added....BBC

  16. ‘Huge drop’ in civilian deaths after Syria truce...

    Twenty-four civilians have been killed in the first five days of a landmark truce in parts of Syria, a sharp drop for a war where dozens die daily, a monitor said Thursday.

    The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights told AFP that the number, gathered from areas where the ceasefire had come into effect, included five women and six children.

    “Compare that number to Friday, the day before the truce came into effect: 63 civilians, including 11 children, died that day alone,” said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.

    He called it a “huge drop”, adding that the daily average during the month of February was 38 civilians killed.

    More than 270,000 people -- among them more than 79,000 civilians -- have died in Syria since its conflict erupted in March 2011.

    On Saturday, a ceasefire deal brokered by the United States and Russia came into effect in areas of Syria where ISIS and al-Qaeda’s affiliate al-Nusra Front are not deployed.

    The Observatory has recorded a marked drop in fighting across those territories, and AFP correspondents have reported a sharp decline in shelling, rocket attacks and air strikes, despite mutual accusations by the government and rebel sides of intermittent

  17. Dutch PM Rutte urges Ankara to cut migrant flows towards zero...

    Turkey must ensure the number of refugees and migrants leaving its shores for Europe drops towards zero, Prime Minister Mark Rutte of the Netherlands, the current holder of the European Union's presidency, said on Thursday.

    Rutte was speaking ahead of an EU-Turkey summit on Monday when the 28-nation bloc will push for the implementation of a deal under which Ankara is due to cut the arrivals and help alleviate what turned into a major migration crisis for the EU.

    "We need to bring it back to a level from which we can see zero. It has to be really considerably lower than it is today. You have to see the zero, I cannot see the zero from where it is now," Rutte said in an interview with Reuters and two other media outlets. "You can't get an absolute zero but at least bring down the numbers to a large extent from where we are now."

  18. Former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva has been detained as part of a huge fraud inquiry into the state oil company Petrobras...

    The former president's house was raided by federal police agents and he was brought in for questioning.

    Lula, who left office in 2011, has denied allegations of corruption.

    The long-running inquiry, known as Operation Car Wash, is probing accusations of corruption and money laundering at Petrobras.

    Dozens of executives and politicians have been arrested or are under investigation on suspicion of overcharging contracts with Petrobras and using part of the money to pay for bribes and electoral campaigns.

    Police said they had evidence that Lula, 70, received illicit benefits from the kickback scheme.

    Lula's institute said in a statement the "violence" against the former president was "arbitrary, illegal and unjustifiable", as he had been co-operating with the investigations...BBC

  19. Nouvelle prolongation d'un mois de la présence des militaires dans les rues...

    Le conseil des ministres a renouvelé vendredi d'un mois le déploiement d'un millier de militaires maximum - dont 740 tout au plus en rue - afin d'assurer des missions de surveillance dans le cadre de la lutte contre le terrorisme.

    La décision a été prise après l'avis du Comité stratégique du renseignement et de la sécurité et vu le niveau général de la menace maintenu à 3 (sur une échelle de quatre). (Belga)

  20. A record 1.25 million asylum seekers arrived in the European Union in 2015, more than double the figure from the previous year, official data showed on Friday as EU leaders prepared for a crucial summit with Turkey to try to stem the flow of refugees...

    Syrians seeking asylum from the civil war were the single largest group at nearly 363,000 followed by 178,200 Afghans and 121,500 Iraqis, the Eurostat statistics agency said.

    Some 159,000 or nearly half of all the Syrian applications were made in Germany while among the Afghans, 45,600 went to Hungary and another 41,200 sought refuge in Sweden.

    Germany was the single largest recipient of asylum applications in 2015, at 441,800 or some 35 percent of the total, with Hungary taking 174,400 or 14 percent and Sweden 156,100 or 12 percent.

    Separate figures from the International Organization for Migration released this week showed that another 130,000 migrants have made it to the EU across the Mediterranean alone so far this year, on top of one million last year.

    Most cross the Aegean Sea from Turkey to Greece, or from North Africa to

  21. Only Syrians Can Decide President Assad’s Fate: UN Envoy...

    United Nations envoy Staffan de Mistura said Friday the Syrian people, not foreigners, should decide the fate of their President Bashar al-Assad.

    "Can't we leave the Syrians to actually decide on that? Why should we be saying in advance what the Syrians should say, as long as they have the freedom and the opportunity of saying so?" de Mistura told France 24 TV.

    "We say that it is supposed to be a solution Syrian-led, Syrian-owned," he added.

    De Mistura said he remained optimistic about the ceasefire that came into force last weekend, despite continued breaches.

    He said 115,000 people had now received aid.

  22. Syrian rebels seize Iraq border crossing from ISIS ...

    A border crossing with Iraq was seized by Syrian rebel fighters from ISIS militants on Friday.

    According to the Britain-based war monitor, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the al-Tanf border crossing has been controlled by ISIS since May last year.

    Prior to that, it had been under the control of Syrian government forces and had been the last border crossing with Iraq that was under their control, according to Reuters news agency,

    ISIS, which controls a swathe of territory spreading from Iraq into central Syria, still controls the Bukamal Syria-Iraq border crossing near Deir al Zour.

    The Observatory said the rebel fighters who took the crossing crossed into Syria from

  23. US presses India to join anti-China alliance...

    While visiting New Delhi this week, the head of the US Pacific Command, Admiral Harry Harris, publicly pressed India to take steps that would be tantamount to making it a “frontline state” in the US drive to strategically isolate, encircle and prepare for war against China.

    Harris called for the Indian and US navies to mount joint patrols across the Indian and Pacific Oceans and for India to join the US and its two most important Asian-Pacific military allies, Japan and Australia, in a quadrilateral “security” dialogue.

    Later the US admiral told a press conference that this year’s Malabar exercise, a trilateral naval exercise involving Indian, US and Japanese warships, will take place off the Philippines’s northeast coast, very close to the South China Sea.

    The US has long been working to integrate India into its military-strategic offensive against China. Nevertheless, Harris’s very public call for New Delhi to join the US in what is transparently an anti-China alliance is unprecedented.....

  24. Denmark to send F-16s, troops to combat IS in Iraq, Syria ...

    The Danish government on Friday announced plans to send special forces and F-16 fighter jets into Iraq and Syria to join the fight against the Islamic State (IS).

    "The government wants to intensify the fight against the terrorist organization IS... It is a serious decision to send Danish men and women on mission in the world's trouble spots," said Danish Prime Minister Lars Loekke Rasmussen in a press statement.

    "We must never give up the fight for peace and freedom," Rasmussen added.

    The proposal to intensify Denmark's military contribution to the fight against IS from the middle of 2016 has received a wide cross-party support at a meeting with Danish foreign policy committee on Friday.

    The contribution of Danish forces will consist of redeployment of seven F-16 fighter jets, a transport aircraft and some 400 Danish soldiers including pilots and support personnel. In addition, the Danish government has decided to reinforce a number of civilian efforts......

  25. The Philippines said Saturday it had impounded a North Korean vessel in response to tough new United Nations sanctions introduced in response to Pyongyang's recent nuclear and ballistic missile tests...

    The 6,830-tonne cargo ship Jin Teng will not be allowed to leave Subic port, northeast of the capital Manila, where it had been docked for three days and its crew will be deported, presidential spokesman Manolo Quezon said on state-run radio station Radyo ng Bayan.

    It was the first reported case of the sanctions -- the toughest to date, which were adopted late Wednesday by the UN Security Council -- being enforced.

    "The world is concerned over North Korea's nuclear weapons program and as a member of the UN, the Philippines has to do its part to enforce the sanctions," Quezon said.

    A team from the UN is expected to inspect the ship in the port, located near a former United States naval base, foreign affairs spokesman Charles Jose said

    The Jin Teng was inspected for the second time on Saturday, this time using electronic weapons sensors, coastguard spokesman Commander Armand Balilo told AFP, adding the 21 crewmen were "very cooperative".

    North Korea has no embassy in the Philippines. Its embassies in Thailand and Indonesia were unavailable for comment when contacted by AFP.......

  26. The European Union may need to more than double financial aid already pledged to Turkey to help it keep millions of Syrian refugees on its soil, Germany's European Union Commissioner Guenther Oettinger was quoted as saying on Saturday...

    The European Commission on Friday announced the first payouts from a 3 billion euro ($3.3 billion) fund to help Turkey pay for the needs of some 2.5 million refugees.

    "Europe should hold out the prospect of further financial support to Turkey also beyond 2017," Oettinger told German magazine Der Spiegel.

    "Taking over full costs of the services that Turkey is providing by accommodating and caring for the refugees, the bill could easily add up to six or seven billion euros per year," said Oettinger, a senior member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's center-right party Christian Democratic Union (CDU)

  27. Taliban refuses to hold peace talks with Afghan govt...

    The Taliban on Saturday refused to resume long-stalled peace talks with the Afghan government, reiterating their preconditions for holding dialogue, a statement said.

    "We want to repeat our stance once again that until the occupation of foreign troops ends, until Taliban names are removed from international blacklists and until our detainees are released, talks will yield no results," it said.

  28. Spain's acting PM to renew push for coalition with Socialists...

    Spanish acting Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy on Saturday renewed his push for a coalition between his People's Party (PP) and the Socialists after their leader Pedro Sanchez failed to win the backing of parliament to form a government.

    Sanchez lost his second investiture vote for a government including market-friendly Ciudadanos (Citizens) on Friday, most likely setting the country on course for its second election in six months.

    The PP, anti-austerity upstart Podemos and five smaller parties voted against Sanchez, scuppering his pact with Ciudadanos. A small party from the Canary Islands also voted for Sanchez.

    Spain's parties have been in negotiations to form a government since a December vote when Spaniards weary of austerity and corruption deserted the two traditional parties to vote for newcomers Podemos and Ciudadanos....REUTERS...

  29. Slovakia election: Anti-migrant PM Fico 'loses majority'...

    Slovakia's leftist-nationalist Prime Minister Robert Fico has won the general election but lost his majority in parliament, partial results suggest.

    Mr Fico will now likely need to find coalition partners to return for a third term in office.

    Gains by a number of small parties - including a far-right one - may produce a divided parliament with no clear path to forming a majority government.

    Mr Fico has vowed not to accept "one single Muslim" migrant.

    His country takes over the EU's rotating presidency in July. His hardline views on migration echo those of Polish, Czech and Hungarian leaders....BBC

    1. Ficos fremdenfeindlicher Kurs zahlt sich nicht aus ...

      Der sozialdemokratische Premier Fico hat die absolute Mehrheit im slowakischen Parlament verloren. Angesichts des Rechtsrucks wird die Regierungsbildung schwierig. Im Juli übernimmt das Land die EU-Ratspräsidentschaft.

      Die absolute Mehrheit für den slowakischen Premier Robert Fico ist weg. Sein populistischer Wahlkampf gegen Flüchtlinge hat sich für den 51-Jährigen am Ende nicht ausgezahlt. Seine sozialdemokratische Partei Smer-SD holte bei den Parlamentswahlen nur 28,3 Prozent. Das ist deutlich weniger als Demoskopen in Bratislava prognostiziert hatten. Vor vier Jahren hatte Smer-SD noch 44,4 Prozent der Stimmen

  30. U.S. builds two air bases in Kurdish-controlled north Syria: Kurdish report...

    The United States has nearly finished setting up an air base in Kurdish-controlled northern Syria and was proceeding with the construction of a second base for dual military and civilian use, a Kurdish website said on Sunday.

    The Erbil-based news website BasNews, quoting a military source in the Kurdish-backed Syria Democratic Forces (SDF), said most of the work on a runway in the oil town of Rmeilan in Hasaka was complete while a new air base southeast of Kobani, straddling the Turkish border, was being constructed.

    The source in the U.S.-backed alliance that also includes Arab armed groups told the news portal scores of U.S. experts and technicians were involved in the

  31. La Corée du Nord menace la Corée du Sud et les Etats-Unis du feu nucléaire...

    Les forces sud-coréennes et américaines ont débuté lundi les plus importantes manoeuvres conjointes jamais organisées sur la péninsule coréenne, auxquelles Pyongyang a menacé de répondre par des frappes nucléaires "à l'aveugle".

    Ces exercices annuels entre les deux alliés aggravent systématiquement les tensions entre le Nord et le Sud.

    Ils interviennent cette année dans un contexte particulièrement crispé, deux mois après le quatrième essai nucléaire de la Corée du Nord et un mois après un tir nord-coréen de fusée longue portée, deux actions condamnées par le Conseil de sécurité de l'ONU qui vient de voter une nouvelle volée de sanctions contre le régime le plus isolé au monde.

    Les manoeuvres conjointes, baptisées "Key Resolve" et "Foal Eagle", sont cette année d'une envergure jamais vue en Corée du Sud, avec 15.000 Américains, soit quatre fois plus qu'en

  32. Saudi king orders Syria food and medical aid...

    Saudi Arabia will provide food and medical aid to the most devastated regions in Syria in cooperation with the International Federation of Red Cross (IFRC) and Red Crescent Societies.

    An agreement to this effect was signed on Saturday by Dr. Abdullah Bin Abdulaziz Al-Rabeah, supervisor general of the King Salman Humanitarian Aid and Relief Centre and adviser at the Royal Court, and Elhadj Amadou Sy, Secretary General of IFRC and Red Crescent Societies.

    The agreement comes in the wake of the directives from King Salman to provide aid to the most devastated Syrian regions.

    Saudi Arabia has been supporting Syrians by providing accommodation and allowing the Syrians living in the Kingdom to bring their families and relatives to live with them unconditionally. As many as 343,150 Syrians are registered in the public education and university education in the Kingdom free of cost. In addition, free medical services are provided to Syrians in all government hospitals in the Kingdom. They are also issued permits to start

  33. Iran test-fires ballistic missiles: report...

    Iran's Revolutionary Guards conducted military tests on Tuesday, test-firing several ballistic missiles as part of an exercise, according to the ISNA news agency.

    The Reuters news agency reports that the local Iranian news service said that the test was intended "to show Iran's deterrent power and also the Islamic Republic's ability to confront any threat against the (Islamic) Revolution, the state and the sovereignty of the country."

    In January, the United States announced new sanctions linked to Iran's ballistic missile program, just a day after sanctions targeting its nuclear program were lifted.

    At the time. Adam J. Szubin, acting under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said that "Iran's ballistic missile program poses a significant threat to regional and global security, and it will continue to be subject to international sanctions."

  34. The United Nations voiced concern on Tuesday about the EU-Turkey agreement and any deal involving "the blanket return of all individuals from one country to another" without their protection under international law being spelled out adequately...

    "Legal safeguards would need to govern any mechanism under which responsibility would be transferred for assessing an asylum claim," the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said in a statement.

    Europe's commitments to resettle refugees remained "very low compared to the needs, 20,000 places within two years on a voluntary places", it said.

  35. Two people, including a young child, were killed and another two people were wounded when the southern Turkish town of Kilis came under repeated rocket fire from across the Syrian border on Tuesday, the local mayor and security sources said...

    Kilis, which is near the border, was hit by eight rockets in what was believed to be a deliberate attack from an area of Syria controlled by Islamic State militants, Mayor Hasan Kara told Reuters.

    "The first rocket landed in an empty field. Then, when people started gathering, they started firing around those areas," he

  36. U.N. secretary general Ban Ki-moon called on the Syrian government and the opposition to engage "in full faith" with the negotiations that will resume on Wednesday in Geneva...

    Ban said, at a news conference in Berlin with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, that as the war enters its sixth year, Syrians need to be given back their country.

  37. Turkish authorities have seized control of the Cihan news agency, the agency said, widening the crackdown against supporters of US-based Muslim cleric Fethullah Gulen, an influential foe of President Tayyip Erdogan...

    Cihan said on its website late on Monday an Istanbul court would appoint an administrator to run the agency on a request from a state prosecutor. The action comes days after authorities seized control of the leading Gulen-linked newspaper, Zaman.

    In Washington, State Department spokesman John Kirby told reporters on Tuesday that the action against Cihan was "just another example of an unnecessary crackdown on journalism" and urged the Turkish government to ensure full respect for due process.....

  38. US has no battlefield plans to storm ISIS ‘capital’...

    The commander of US special operations said Tuesday that while coalition forces have put ISIS under pressure there is no immediate battlefield plan to take its de facto capital.

    Briefing US lawmakers in Washington, senior generals said the US-led anti-ISIS coalition was working with local ground forces to isolate the group’s Syrian stronghold in the city of Raqqa.

    But General Joseph Votel, head of Special Operations Command, said this broad strategy does not yet amount to a plan to storm Raqqa, despite recent advances by US-backed fighters grouped under the “Syrian Democratic Forces” banner.

    “There is currently not a plan,” he said.

    Asked whether the coalition has a plan to hold the city after it falls, he added: “I would say no, there is not a plan to hold Raqqa.”.....

  39. Iran Launches Second Day of Ballistic Missile Tests ...

    Iran said it carried out two more ballistic missile tests Wednesday, a day after the United States criticized a round of tests that Iran described as a show of its "deterrent power."

    Iranian media said two Qadr H missiles were fired Wednesday at targets 1,400 kilometers away.

    The U.S. State Department said Tuesday it planned to ask the U.N. Security Council to review the situation and "press for an appropriate response."

    "We also continue to aggressively apply our unilateral tools to counter threats from Iran's missile program," spokesman John Kirby said.....

  40. Sky News dit avoir une clef USB avec les noms de 22 000 membres de l'EI ...

    La chaîne d'information Sky News a affirmé mercredi que des documents contenant les noms de 22 000 membres de l'Etat islamique (EI) lui avaient été livrés par un ex-membre du groupe jihadiste.

    Selon Sky News, une clé USB contenant les documents lui a été donnée par un ancien membre de l'EI désabusé, qui les aurait volés au chef de la police interne de l'organisation jihadiste.

    Les documents en question, qui contiennent les noms, adresses ou encore numéros de téléphone des recrues, sont des formulaires remplis par des ressortissants de 55 pays ayant rejoint l'EI, a ajouté Sky News.

    Certains documents contiendraient des informations sur des jihadistes jusqu'à présent non identifiés qui se trouvent en Europe occidentale, aux Etats-Unis, au Canada, au Maghreb et au Moyen-Orient, selon la chaîne.

    "Sky News a informé les autorités de cette prise", a indiqué la chaîne sur son

  41. Venezuela Recalls Top Diplomat From US ...

    Venezuela's president has recalled the country's top diplomat from the United States to protest a U.S. decree imposing sanctions on several top officials and calling Venezuela a security threat.

    President Nicolas Maduro made the announcement Wednesday at a ceremony organized to condemn the decree, which was made initially last year and renewed last week.

    "Enough of the arrogance," Maduro said, complaining also that the United States displayed condescension and double standards.

    The decree classifies Venezuela as an "unusual and extraordinary threat" to U.S. national security.

    The U.S. and Venezuela have not had ambassador-level diplomatic relations since 2010. Venezuela approved charge d'affaires Maximilien Arvelaiz as ambassador to Washington last year, but the U.S. Department of State has not approved

  42. Austria's interior minister says the Balkan migrant route should remain closed permanently and that the "clock will not be turned back."...

    Austria's introduction of a refugee cap last month set off a chain reaction of border restrictions that has shut down the route used by hundreds of thousands of people last year to transit from Greece to central Europe. Thousands of migrants are stranded in Greece.

    Austrian Interior Minister Johanna Mikl-Leitner told German daily Die Welt ahead of a meeting Thursday with her European Union counterparts: "My position is clear — the Balkan route will remain closed, and permanently." She added that "the closure of the Balkan route is going to plan and this clock will not be turned back."

  43. Japan is marking the fifth anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami that left more than 18,000 dead or missing...

    PM Shinzo Abe and Emperor Akihito are attending a memorial in Tokyo, and joined a moment of silence nationwide at the exact moment the quake hit.

    The magnitude-9.0 quake struck offshore, creating a vast water surge that devastated the north-east coast.

    It also triggered the world's worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl, at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

    Water inundated the plant, taking cooling systems offline which set off a series of meltdowns....BBC

  44. A French court will rule in June on late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat's widow's challenge to an earlier judgment dismissing her claim that he was poisoned to death, judicial sources said on Friday...

    Suha Arafat's lawyers, Francis Szpiner and Renaud Semerdjian, contested the decision at an appeals court in Versailles, west of Paris, on Friday, arguing that the probe into his death was hastily wound up.

    A judgment is due on June 17, a judicial source said.

    Arafat died in Percy military hospital near Paris aged 75 in November 2004 after developing stomach pains while at his headquarters in the West Bank city of Ramallah.

    His widow filed a case in 2012 at a court in Nanterre, west of Paris, saying he was

  45. Syrie: élections dans les 18 mois et reprise des pourparlers à Genève...

    Des élections présidentielle et législatives doivent être organisées en Syrie sous l'égide de l'ONU dans les 18 mois, a annoncé vendredi l'envoyé spécial Staffan de Mistura, avant la reprise lundi de pourparlers indirects à Genève entre régime et opposition.

    La relance de ces discussions, qui avaient capoté début février, est rendue possible par une "cessation des hostilités" en Syrie en vigueur depuis le 27 février et qui, à la satisfaction des Etats-Unis, est "en général" respectée.

    Le Haut comité des négociations (HCN), qui rassemble les groupes clés de l'opposition, a annoncé qu'il participerait aux négociations de Genève censées aboutir à un règlement du conflit qui a ravagé la Syrie et qui entre le 15 mars dans sa sixième anné

  46. The delegation of the Syrian Arab Republic arrived in the Swiss city Geneva on Sunday to participate in the Syrian-Syrian dialogue scheduled to start tomorrow under the auspices of the UN...

    Syria’s Permanent Representative to the UN Bashar al-Jaafari is heading the delegation.

    Earlier on Saturday Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign and Expatriates Minister Walid al-Moallem said UN Envoy for Syria Staffan de Mistura will meet with the Republic’ delegation at first, and the meeting was scheduled on Monday, according to a letter by de Mistura.

    While saying this will be “a good thing”, al-Moallem made it clear that the Republic’s delegation will not repeat the mistake that occurred in the previous round of talks that was suspended in February in that the delegation will wait no more than 24 hours for the opposition delegations to show up......

  47. US Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday described comments by his Syrian counterpart that removing President Bashar al-Assad would cross a "red line" as an attempt to disrupt the peace process...

    Speaking after talks with European allies in Paris, Kerry said Foreign Minister Walid Muallem's remarks were "clearly trying to disrupt the process... (he was) clearly trying to send a message of deterrence to others".

    "But the fact is (Assad's) strongest sponsors Russia and Iran have both adopted... an approach which dictates that there must be a political transition and that we must have a presidential election at some time," Kerry said on the eve of a new round of peace talks.

    French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault also said Muallem's comments were a "provocation".

  48. Saudi Arabia said on Sunday it would punish anyone who belongs to the Lebanese Shia Islamist group Hezbollah, sympathizes with it, supports it financially or harbors any of its members...

    An Interior Ministry statement carried by the state news agency SPA said that Saudis and expatriates would be subjected to "severe penalties" under the kingdom's regulations and anti-terrorism laws. Foreigners would be deported, it said.

    Hezbollah has close ties to Iran, Saudi Arabia's bitter rival for power in the region

  49. Syrian opposition sees US position on Syrian settlement as ambivalen...

    The United States’ position on the Syrian settlement is seen by the Saudi-backed Syrian opposition as ambivalent, Al Jazeera said on Sunday citing George Sabra, a member of the High Negotiations Committee (HNC).

    Sabra was quoted as saying that the Syrian opposition has many questions to the United States’ policy towards Syria in general. These questions, in his words, are stemming from Washington’s ambivalent relations with the opposition and its relations with the European and Gulf allies.

    He called on the United States’ side to "explain the level [boundaries] of the agreements between the United States and Russia as Washington’s position is not clear even to its allies." In its statements, the United States keeps on declaring its commitment to the Geneva-1 agreements on unity and territorial integrity of Syria, Sabra said, adding that as a matter of fact the United States was nourishing those backing separatism.

  50. Hundreds of migrants were stopped by FYROM soldiers after illegally crossing the border from Greece on Monday, an AFP reporter saw...

    Some 20 journalists who accompanied the group on their march to find an alternative route into FYROM after the country closed its borders were taken to a police station in the FYROM town of Gevgelija, the reporter saw, who was among them.

  51. Russia`s decision to begin withdrawing from Syria will help Moscow intensify efforts to reach a political settlement, the Russian ambassador to the United Nations said Monday...

    "Our diplomacy has received marching orders to intensify our efforts to achieve a political settlement in Syria," Ambassador Vitaly Churkin told reporters ahead of a UN Security Council meeting on Syria.

  52. Russia will continue air strikes in Syria despite the withdrawal of most of its forces, a senior official has said...

    Deputy Defence Minister Nikolay Pankov said it was too early to speak of defeating terrorism, after a campaign that has bolstered Syria's government.

    Russian forces started leaving Syria on Tuesday after Monday's surprise announcement by President Vladimir Putin.

  53. EU refugee deal aims to make migration 'safe'...

    Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Tuesday the aim of a 6-billion-euro ($6.66-billion) agreement with the European Union on refugees was to reduce illegal migration and make passage to Europe safe.

    Turkey did not bargain over money and does not see the issue as a financial one but a humanitarian one, Davutoglu said in a statement with European Council President Donald Tusk in Ankara. Their comments were broadcast live by TRT station.

    Turkish and EU leaders will reconvene at a summit this week to finalize the agreement to reduce migrant flows to Europe after reaching a draft deal this month. BY REUTERS

  54. Argentina's coastguard has sunk a Chinese fishing trawler that was operating illegally within its territorial waters, the coastguard said on Tuesday...

    In a high-seas chase, a coastguard vessel on Monday pursued the fishing vessel Lu Yan Yuan Yu 010 toward international waters, firing warning shots across the Chinese boat's bow as it attempted to raise the crew by radio.

    "On several occasions, the offending ship performed manoeuvres designed to force a collision with the coastguard, putting at risk not only its own crew but coastguard personnel, who were then ordered to shoot parts of the vessel," the coastguard said in a statement.

    It was not clear if the vessel sank on Monday or Tuesday.

    Officials at the Chinese Embassy in the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires, were not available for comment.

    The coastguard said it rescued four of the trawler's crew while others who abandoned ship were picked up by another Chinese vessel shadowing the pursuit.

    1. Argentina's coast guard said in a statement on Tuesday that it fired on and sank a Chinese fishing boat which was fishing in a restricted area off the South American country's coast...

      The incident happened Monday in the coastal waters of Chubut Province, with more than 30 crew members on board, said local media citing the statement.

      No casualties were reported. The captain and three crew members were rescued by Argentina's coast guard while the remaining were taken on board by another Chinese vessel.

      Argentinean authorities are in touch with the Chinese embassy concerning the matter, according to the statement.

  55. Ecuador army plane crashes with 22 aboard...

    An Ecuadoran army plane crashed in the Amazon rainforest Tuesday, killing all 22 people on board, President Rafael Correa said.

    "There are no survivors," Correa wrote on Twitter, several minutes after first posting news of the crash. "This is a tragedy."

    He said the plane was carrying 19 paratroopers, two pilots and a mechanic.

    The plane went down in the eastern province of Pastaza, near the border with Peru.

    Defense Minister Ricardo Patino said he was on his way to the scene.

    The army said the plane was carrying soldiers for a parachuting master class when it crashed.

  56. Russia's Lavrov: Turkey's shelling of Syria undermines ceasefire there...

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said on Wednesday that Turkey's shelling of Syria is undermining a cessation of hostilities there and the start of a political process.

  57. Russia's foreign minister says after talks with his Egyptian counterpart that the two countries are completing preparations for restoring direct flights, which were halted by Moscow after the downing of a Russian passenger jet...

    The Russian plane crashed in Sinai on Oct. 31, killing all 224 people on board. Moscow said it was brought down by an explosive device, and a local branch of the extremist Islamic State group has claimed responsibility for planting it.

    The crash and Russia's decision to cut the air link to Egypt has dealt a severe blow to Egypt's vital tourism sector.

    Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov hailed the Egyptian authorities for accepting Russian experts' advice on boosting airport security and said that direct flights will resume soon. He didn't mention a specific date.

  58. Two-thirds of Christians have left Syria...

    Two-thirds of Syria's Christians have left the country, an Aleppo bishop said Wednesday, blaming violence and insecurity spread by extremist groups and insisting most Christians still support the Syrian president.

    Chaldean Catholic bishop Antoine Audo said there were about 1.5 million Christians in the country before the start of the conflict in March 2011.

    "I think now there are maybe 500,000. Two-thirds have left mainly due to the insecurity," he told reporters in Geneva.

    In the embattled northern city of Aleppo, the exodus was even greater, he said, with only around 40,000 of its once 160,000-strong Christian community remaining.

    "You cannot imagine the dangers that we face every day," he said.

    Wealthy Christians have all left, while "the middle classes have become poor and the poor have become miserable".

    But he denied President Bashar al-Assad was to blame for the horrors of the Syria conflict, which has cost more than 270,000 lives in five years.

    "There is no persecution of Christians" by the government, he said....AFP

  59. Brazilian ruling coalition party abandons Rousseff government...

    The president of the Brazilian Republican Party, or PRB, Marcos Pereira, announced Wednesday that his party has decided to abandon the government of Dilma Rousseff and give up its Sports Ministry cabinet post occupied by lawmaker George Hilton.

    "We don't see a goal in the country's situation," said Pereira after releasing a controversial audiotape of a phone conversation suggesting that Rousseff tried to impede the potential arrest of her predecessor and political mentor Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who is under investigation for alleged corruption, sending him the document regarding appointing him presidential chief of staff for him to use "if needed."

    If Lula were to be appointed a government minister, he would receive privileged legal status and only be able to be tried by the Supreme Court

    Taping the phone conversation between Rousseff and Lula was authorized by Judge Sergio Moro, who is investigating the possible participation of the latter in the corruption scandal surrounding the state-run Petrobras oil company.

  60. Brazil judge releases phone taps between president and ex-president...

    The judge heading the sprawling investigation into corruption at Brazil's state oil company on Wednesday released recordings of phone taps of former President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, which he said suggested attempts were made to influence prosecutors and judges in the former leader's favour.

    In his filing, Judge Sergio Moro stressed there was no indication those attempts resulted in inappropriate actions. But the release of the tapes, coupled with President Dilma Rousseff's naming of Silva as her chief of staff in a move opponents say is designed to shield him from possible detention, were likely to further stoke sentiment against the governing Workers' Party.

    Police said about 2,000 people gathered Wednesday night outside the Planalto presidential palace in Brasilia to protest Silva's nomination earlier in the day. Protesters also took to the streets of Brazil's economic capital, Sao Paulo. These smaller demonstrations came on the heels of nationwide protests against Rousseff and her Workers' Party that brought out an estimated 3 million people

  61. Germany's embassy in Ankara and its general consulate in Istanbul were closed on Thursday on indications of a possible imminent attack, the foreign ministry said...

    The ministry said the German school in Istanbul had also been shut due to an "unconfirmed warning". On Tuesday, Germany had issued an alert to its citizens in Ankara warning of an "imminent attack".

    1. Radical Kurdish group close to PKK claims deadly Ankara attack ...

      A radical Kurdish group with ties to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) on Thursday claimed the deadly suicide car bomb attack that killed 35 people in Ankara last weekend.

      "On the evening of March 13, a suicide attack was carried out... in the streets of the capital of the fascist Turkish republic. We claim this attack," the Kurdistan Freedom Falcons (TAK) said in a statement on their website.

      The group said it was a response to security operations carried out by Turkish forces in the Kurdish-dominated southeast of the country.

      Meanwhile, German institutions in Turkey were closed Thursday for security reasons, the consulate in the country said.

      Sunday's attack came three weeks after a similar car bombing in Ankara killed 29 people, also claimed by TAK......AFP

  62. A delegation of Iraqi Kurds will visit Moscow in April to discuss Russian weapons supplies, the RIA Novosti news agency on Thursday cited the head of an Iraqi Kurd representation office in Russia as saying...

    RIA on Wednesday quoted the Russian consulate in Iraq as saying Russia has already supplied weapons to Iraqi Kurds and that the first shipment had arrived on March 14.

    It said the shipment had included five Zu-23-2 anti-aircraft cannons and 20,000 shells for the cannons.

  63. US opposes possible Kurdish federal system in Syria now...

    The United States said on March 16 that it opposed Syrian Kurds forming an autonomous region in northern Syria but could accept such an arrangement if the Syrians themselves ultimately agreed on it.

    Syrian Kurds are considering combining three autonomous areas of northern Syria into a federal arrangement, a step that could pave the way to Syria’s breakup. Such a move, potentially could alarm Turkey, fearing their moves could stoke separatism among Turkish Kurds.

    The United States has long taken the stance that it favors the unity and territorial integrity of Syria, which has been riven by a five-year civil war in which more than 250,000 people have died and millions have fled their homes.

    “We won’t recognize any kind of ... self-ruled, semi-autonomous zones in Syria,” U.S. State Department spokesman Mark Toner said at his daily briefing, referring to reports that the Syrian Kurds were considering a federal structure.

    “We have been very clear about our belief in the territorial integrity and unity of Syria and we believe that the creation of these kinds of semi-autonomous zones now ... would frankly be a threat to that,” he

    1. Syria regime, opposition reject Kurdish 'federal region'...

      Syria's government and an opposition coalition on Thursday rejected the announcement by Kurdish parties of a federal region in the country's north.

      Citing a foreign ministry official, Syria's state news agency SANA said the declaration "has no legal basis" and would "encroach on Syria's territorial unity."

      The opposition National Coalition meanwhile warned against "any attempt to form entities, regions, or administrations that usurp the will of the Syrian people."

  64. Libya's UN-backed prime minister said on Thursday that the new government will move to the capital Tripoli in the next few days...

    "We have successfully communicated with the sovereign institutions in the west and the east, including the financial institutions. I would like to assure to everyone that the Government of National Accord will be in Tripoli in a few days," the prime minister, Fayez Serraj told the Jordan-based Libya channel.

    He said there is a plan involving police and military forces in the capital, as well as the United Nations, to facilitate the new government's move to Tripoli.

    "The police and the army will be protecting the government in the capital. Other armed groups will have a role, under regulations and standards, which will be clear to everyone when we are in Tripoli," Serraj said.

    The government of national accord was named by the presidential council, which was formed under a UN-sponsored political agreement between Libya's political rivals.

    However, Serraj's government faces opposition from both rival parliaments. Tripoli's self-proclaimed government on Wednesday warned the unity government against entering the capital, claiming the move to Tripoli would be "illegal"......

  65. EU will reach deal with Turkey, says EU’s Schulz ...

    European Parliament President Martin Schulz has said the EU would reach an agreement with Turkey, as Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu is in Brussels to attend a EU-Turkey summit to find a solution to the migrant crisis that has hit the bloc.

    “Common sense will prevail; we will reach an agreement with Turkey about the return of migrants who have reached Europe,” Schulz said March 17.

    “If we can’t have an agreement with Turkey about resettlement of refugees the number are just increasing. What will happen?” Schulz said, according to state-run Anadolu Agency. “This is why I hope we can reach an agreement with Turkey – at least they’re doing something about this; they’re talking to us. Some countries won’t even talk to us.”

    All 28 EU heads of government gathered in Brussels March 17-18 to discuss how refugees and migrants entering Europe via Greece could be sent back to

  66. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said Friday that Europe needed to look at its own record on migrants before telling Turkey what to do, and said Turkey would only listen to Europe's criticism on rights when it is correct...

    In a speech broadcast live on television, Erdogan also said Europe was "dancing in a minefield" by directly or indirectly supporting terror groups and that it was dishonest and insincere in its stance towards them.

  67. South Korea Friday protested Tokyo's approval of updated high school textbooks that identify a cluster of small, Korean-controlled islets as part of Japanese territory...

    "We deeply deplore that Japan has approved high school text books that contain distorted views about history, including unjustified claims about our territory," South Korea's foreign ministry said in a statement.

    The Dokdo islets, known as Takeshima in Japan, lie roughly halfway between South Korea and Japan in the East Sea (Sea of Japan).

    "The Japanese government must understand that a correct teaching of history is a duty, not only to its future generations, but also to neighboring countries that have suffered from Japan's past aggression", the statement said, urging a revision of the textbooks.

    South Korea and Japan reached agreement at the end of last year on their dispute over wartime sex slaves that had soured relations for decades....AFP

  68. President Vladimir Putin visited Crimea on Friday as Russia marked two years since annexing the Black Sea peninsula from Ukraine in a move that dramatically damaged its ties with the West...

    The Kremlin strongman stopped over on the island of Tuzla to oversee progress on a $3-billion (2.66-billion-euro) bridge project connecting Russia to Crimea, a key link that Moscow hopes will further bind it to the isolated region.

    Putin said the bridge's construction -- which he called a "historical mission" -- should be completed by December 2018, and that the first direct link to the mainland was essential for bolstering Crimea's struggling economy.

  69. Amnesty International has accused European leaders of "double speak" over a deal to return migrants to Turkey...

    The leading human rights charity said the deal failed to hide the EU's "dogged determination to turn its back on a global refugee crisis".

    Under the plan, migrants arriving in Greece will be sent back to Turkey if they do not apply for asylum or their claim is rejected.

    In return, Turkey will receive aid and political concessions.

    Under the EU-Turkey deal, Greek authorities will still process requests for asylum individually.

    However, many migrants, including Syrians, are keen to go to Germany and other northern European Union countries and have previously refused to apply for asylum in Greece, as requested by the current procedure.

    The deal says that for every Syrian migrant sent back to Turkey, one Syrian already in Turkey will be resettled in the EU.

    John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International's Director for Europe and Central Asia, said promises by the EU to respect international and European law "appear suspiciously like sugar-coating the cyanide pill that refugee protection in Europe has just been forced to swallow".

    He added: "Guarantees to scrupulously respect international law are incompatible with the touted return to Turkey of all irregular migrants arriving on the Greek islands as of Sunday.....BBC

  70. China maintains yellow alert for smog ...

    China maintained yellow alert for smog on Saturday as the pollution having choked most regions in the north showed little sign of abating.

    On Saturday morning, PM 2.5 density in most parts of Beijing ranged between 260 and 400 micrograms per cubic meter, far above the safety standard set by the World Health Organization, according a statement on the National Meteorological Center (NMC) website.

    Other regions, including Hebei, Shandong, Henan and Shaanxi provinces, will also be shrouded by heavy smog through Saturday before a cold front gradually disperses the pollution, the NMC forecasted.....

  71. Turkey's state-run Anadolu Agency reports that ambulances are responding to an explosion on a busy pedestrian street in Istanbul...

    It was not immediately clear if there were any casualties.

    The explosion comes as Turkey is on edge following two recent suicide bomb attacks in the capital, Ankara.

  72. Turkey has summoned the Belgian ambassador to complain about a tent that was set up by supporters of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) near the site of the EU-Turkey Summit in Brussels this week, diplomatic sources said on Sunday...

    Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu telephoned his Belgian counterpart to complain as well and request that the tent be taken down, the sources said.

    The PKK, which has fought a three-decade insurgency in Turkey's largely Kurdish southeast, is considered a terrorist group by Turkey, the European Union and the United States. REUTERS

  73. Nach Anschlag in türkischer Metropole Fußball-Derby in Istanbul abgesagt ...

    Nach dem Selbstmordanschlag in Istanbul ist ein Fußball-Lokalderby abgesagt worden. Das Spiel zwischen Galatasaray und Fenerbahce wurde verschoben. Bei dem Anschlag gestern wurden fünf Menschen getötet. Der Attentäter soll IS-Anhänger gewesen sein.

    Wegen Sicherheitsbedenken ist in Istanbul ein Lokalderby der Fußballmanschaften Galatasaray und Fenerbahce kurzfristig abgesagt worden. Zunächst hatte der Türkische Fußballverband (TFF) entschieden, die Partie wegen Sicherheitsbedenken ohne Zuschauer abzuhalten. Dann aber erfolgte die Absage.

    In einer ersten Erklärung sprach das Istanbuler Gouverneursamt davon, dass die "Sorgfalt nach den Vorfällen, die in den letzten Tagen in unserer Stadt passierten", ausschlaggebend gewesen sei. Die Entscheidung für die Absage sei nach der Maßnahme des Gouverneursamts in Absprache mit den beiden Vereinen getroffen worden. Der neue Spieltermin werde in den kommenden Tagen bekanntgegeben.

    Über der Arena flog ein Polizeihubschrauber. Aufnahmen des Senders Lig TV zeigten, dass sich bereits hunderte Galatasaray-Anhänger in der "Türk Telekom Arena" befanden. Sie wurden aufgefordert, das Stadion umgehend zu verlassen. Anhänger Fenerbahces waren nicht im

  74. N. Korea fires four short-range missiles into sea, S. Korea says...

    North Korea on Monday fired four short-range rockets or missiles into the sea off its east coast, just days after test-firing two medium-range missiles in defiance of UN sanctions, South Korea's military said.

    An official with the Joint Chiefs of Staff said they were launched from near the eastern city of Hamhung just before 3:20pm (0620 GMT) and landed in the East Sea (Sea of Japan).

    He did not specify the missile type....AFP

  75. Biden Tells AIPAC Two-state Solution the 'Only Way' to Security ...

    U.S. Vice President Joe Biden has assured a pro-Israel lobbying group that Iran is not close to developing a nuclear weapon.

    Speaking Sunday in Washington at a meeting of the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee, or AIPAC, Biden said "Iran is much, much further away from obtaining a nuclear weapon than they were a year ago."

    The vice president told the activists the U.S. is "watching Iran like a hawk."

    Biden also urged Israel to negotiate a two-state solution to the Middle East region's ills. "The only way in my view to guarantee Israel's future and security of its identity as a Jewish and democratic state is with a two-state solution," he said.

    Palestinians have grown frustrated with the growth of Jewish settlements on land Palestinians want for a future state....

  76. Indonesia "feels sabotaged" in its efforts to maintain peace in the disputed South China Sea and may bring its latest maritime altercation with China to an international court, a minister said on Monday...

    Indonesia is not embroiled in rival claims with China over the South China Sea and has instead seen itself as an "honest broker" in disputes between China and the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei.

    But an incident on the weekend involving an Indonesian patrol boat, and a Chinese coastguard vessel and fishing boat in what Indonesia said was its waters has angered it and led to its questioning of its work to promote peace.

    "We feel interrupted and sabotaged in our efforts," fisheries minister Susi Pudjiastuti told reporters in Jakarta after meeting Chinese embassy officials to discuss the incident in the Natuna Sea, an area between Peninsular Malaysia and the Malaysian province of Sarawak on Borneo

  77. Russia is warning that it will start responding to cease-fire violations in Syria unilaterally starting Tuesday if the United States refuses to coordinate rules of engagement against the violators.

  78. Tunisia's government says security forces have killed two gunmen hiding in a town near the Libyan border, where a manhunt followed an unusually violent attack earlier this month...

    Three civilians and a member of the national guard were wounded by shots fired by the gunmen in Saturday's standoff outside Ben Gardane, the Interior Ministry said in a statement.

    Seven civilians, 12 security forces and 49 assailants have been killed in the area since gunmen attacked Ben Gardane on March 7, according to the government.

    The attack heightened international concerns about lawlessness in Libya, where Islamic State group extremists are expanding.

    Other fighting was reported Saturday near Tunisia's border with Algeria. Defense Ministry spokesman Belhassen Oueslati said one soldier was wounded in a shootout in the Kasserine region.

  79. Israel marks Turkey as 'unsafe' after bombing deaths...

    Israel has raised the alert level on Turkey declaring the country as "unsafe" for its citizens after three Israelis were killed and 11 others wounded in a suicide bombing in Istanbul.

    The Prime Minister's Office in a statement said it has decided to "upgrade existing travel warning and recommend that the public avoid visiting Turkey".

    Amid a spate of attacks by the Islamic State groups and Kurdish separatists, and especially Saturday's bombing, "it was decided to update the existing travel warning vis-a-vis Turkey from an ongoing potential threat to a basic concrete threat," the statement said.

    Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in his reaction said Israel was at the front line of a global war on terror, adding that those who failed to condemn terrorist attacks were in effect supporting them...AFP..

  80. "Menace extrêment élevée" en France: contrôles renforcés aux frontières et dans les transports...

    Le ministre français de l'Intérieur, Bernard Cazeneuve, a annoncé ce mardi le déploiement de 1600 policiers et gendarmes supplémentaires en France après les attentats de Bruxelles.

    Face à une menace terroriste "extrêmement élevée", il a annoncé un renforcement des contrôles aux frontières et dans les transports publics français.

    "Dès les attaques de Bruxelles connues, j'ai décidé de déployer 1600 gendarmes et policiers supplémentaires", a-t-il déclaré après une réunion à l'Elysée en présence notamment du président de la République François Hollande et du Premier ministre, Manuel Valls.

    Ces renforts seront déployés en différents points du territoire français pour les contrôles aux frontières et dans les infrastructures de transports aériens, maritimes et ferroviaires.

    Les préfets ont reçu instruction de renforcer la sécurité dans les gares, les transports en commun, les aéroports et les ports.

    En Ile-de-France, 400 policiers et gendarmes supplémentaires ont été déployés, en particulier dans les aéroports de Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle et Orly, dans le métro et dans les principales gares.

    Sur le reste du territoire français, 600 membres des forces de l'ordre, notamment, ont été déployés en plus des renforts déjà en place.

  81. Quinze morts et 55 blessés dans l'explosion à Maelbeek...

    (Belga) L'explosion survenue mardi matin dans une rame située à la station de métro Maelbeek a fait 15 morts et 55 blessés, dont 10 sont dans un état grave, indique la Stib dans un bilan provisoire.

    Une explosion s'est produite mardi vers 09h11 dans une rame de métro qui se trouvait à l'arrêt à la station Maelbeek, en direction d'Arts-Loi. "Selon un premier bilan, l'explosion a fait 15 morts et 55 blessés, dont 10 sont dans un état grave. L'évacuation de la station vient de se terminer", précise la société bruxelloise de transports

  82. Attentats à Bruxelles - Le niveau d'alerte renforcé au siège de Otan...

    Le niveau d'alerte a été renforcé mardi au siège bruxellois de l'Otan après le double attentat qui a visé dans la matinée la capitale belge et son aéroport, a annoncé le secrétaire général de l'Alliance atlantique, Jens Stoltenberg, qui a dénoncé cette "lâche attaque" contre les "valeurs de nos sociétés ouvertes".

    "Je suis profondément attristé par les attaques survenues ici à Bruxelles ce matin. Le lourd bilan humain est tragique", a-t-il déclaré dans un communiqué. M. Stoltenberg a ajouté que ses pensées allaient à ceux qui ont perdu des proches, à toutes les personnes concernées et au peuple belge. "Nous sommes tous ensemble avec notre allié belge en ce jour sombre", a-t-il souligné. Le secrétaire général de l'Otan a qualifié ces attentats d'"attaque lâche" contre nos valeurs et nos sociétés ouvertes"......RTBF avec agences

  83. Debris that might be part of a plane engine has been found on the southern coast of South Africa and will be checked to see if it belongs to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, which vanished two years ago, Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai said Tuesday...

    Liow said the debris was discovered Tuesday near Mosselbay town.

    "Based on early reports, there is a possibility of the piece originating from an inlet cowling of an aircraft engine,'' but a further examination and analysis are needed to verify whether it belongs to Flight 370, he said in a statement.

    Liow said a team will be dispatched to retrieve the debris. The Malaysia Airlines jet disappeared on March 8, 2014, with 239 people on board while flying from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing. The plane remains one of the biggest mysteries in modern aviation.

    An Australian-led underwater search in the southern Indian Ocean, where the plane is believed to have crashed, has found no trace of it so far. A piece from one of the plane's wings was found washed ashore on France's Reunion Island last July......AP.....

  84. The Belgian interior minister Jan Jambon has announced three days of national mourning following the Brussels attacks on Tuesday, Le Soir newspaper reported.

  85. The United Nations refugee agency said on March 21 that it would not operate in “detention centers” on the Greek island of Lesbos for migrants and refugees arriving from Turkey, dealing a blow to the European Union’s agreement with Ankara last week...

    The UNHCR said migrants and refugees were being held against their will at the reception facilities on Lesbos, and it would no longer transfer them there. The European Union-Turkey deal has crossed a red line in its policy, the UNHCR said.

    The deal, in effect since March 20, is aimed at putting new arrivals in Greece who seek asylum on a fast-track for processing.

    Until March 20, arrivals to Lesbos had been free to leave the Moria migrant camp and head for ferries to the mainland from where they would mostly head north via the Balkans in a bid to reach western Europe, particularly Germany.

    Now, they are supposed to be held in Moria or one of four other centers set up on the Aegean islands of Samos, Chios, Leros and Kos, pending the outcome of their asylum applications....Reuters

  86. French Prime Minister Manuel Valls and Secretary of State for Sport Thierry Braillard emphasized on Wednesday that UEFA Euro 2016 will be held in France as scheduled from June 10 to July 10, despite terrorist threats...

    Speaking to the media after Tuesday's terror attacks in Brussels, the two French politicians underlined that the European Championship will not be delayed or canceled.

    Braillard told French newspaper L'Equipe that terrorist threats have been taken into consideration from the beginning, expressing his confidence that UEFA will not cancel this event.

    Meanwhile, Valls told radio station Europe 1 that the cancellation of Euro 2016 "would be a defeat," and approved the importance of maintaining cultural and sporting events as scheduled, because this is the most effective way to respond to terrorism.

    Valls pointed out that "unprecedented mobilization" will deal with any terrorist threats.

    Noel Le Graet, president of the French Football Federation, said on Tuesday that there is no risk in holding Euro 2016.

  87. The Netherlands has temporarily closed its consulate-general in Istanbul due to a possible terror threat...

    The Dutch Foreign Ministry issued a statement Wednesday morning, saying the closure was a precautionary measure. Officials did not elaborate on the nature of the threat. The ministry urged Dutch citizens to avoid the area.

    The ministry also said that about 40 staff members were evacuated following the closure.

    The announcement follows a suicide attack Saturday in the area where the Dutch consulate and other diplomatic missions are located. At least four people were killed and dozens wounded.

    The explosion rocked Istiklal Street, the main shopping boulevard in central Istanbul which is usually full of pedestrians at the end of the week.

  88. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko Wednesday urged parliament to approve a new government next week that could end a raging political crisis and unlock crucial Western aid.

    The economically-depressed and conflict-riven country has been roiled by weeks of uncertainty over its future and a sharp drop in the popularity of both Poroshenko and Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.

  89. A ceasefire will take hold across Yemen on April 10 followed a week later by fresh peace talks, the special UN envoy said Wednesday, raising hopes for a breakthrough in a war that has brought the impoverished Arab country to its knees...

    Yemen has been gripped by violence since September 2014, when Iran-backed Huthi rebels stormed the capital Sanaa and forced the internationally recognized government to flee south to the second city of Aden.

    "The parties to the conflict have agreed to a nationwide cessation of hostilities beginning April 10 at midnight in advance of the upcoming round of the peace talks, which will take place on April 18 in Kuwait," Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed told a press conference in New York.

    More than 6,000 people have been killed in Yemen since a Saudi-led coalition -- which includes Kuwait -- began an air war in March last year to push back an offensive by the Huthi rebels, who control Sanaa......

  90. Iraq’s armed forces started an offensive against ISIS on Thursday in the region around Mosul with air cover from the US-led coalition, pushing the militants out of several villages, according to a military statement read on state TV...

    The offensive is the first phase of an operation that the Iraqi government aims to conclude this year with the capture of Mosul, the largest city in the north of the country.

    “The first phase of the Fatah (Conquest) Operation has been launched at dawn to liberate Nineveh, raising the Iraqi flag in several villages,” said the military statement.

    Mosul, home to around 2 million people before it fell to ISIS during a lightning offensive in 2014, is by far the biggest city ruled by the extremist group in either Iraq or Syria. An Iraqi offensive to recapture it, backed by air strikes and advisers from a US-led coalition, would be the biggest counterattack ever mounted against the group.

  91. Indonesia on Thursday urged Chinese ships not to enter its territorial waters, days after it protested against what it called a breach of its sovereignty by a Chinese coastguard ship...

    Indonesia is not embroiled in rival claims with China over the South China Sea and has instead seen itself as an "honest broker" in disputes between China and the Philippines, Malaysia and Brunei.

    But an incident last Saturday involving an Indonesian patrol boat, and a Chinese coastguard vessel and fishing boat in what Indonesia said was its waters has angered it and led to it questioning its work to promote peace.

    Chief security minister Luhut Pandjaitan said Indonesia would maintain good relations with China but "without sacrificing Indonesia's sovereignty".

    "We urge Chinese ships not to enter our exclusive economic zone, which can be disruptive," Pandjaitan told reporters, referring to Indonesia's maritime territory near the northern Natuna Islands, where Indonesia says the incident took

  92. L'ancien chef politique des Serbes de Bosnie Radovan Karadzic, condamné jeudi pour génocide, crimes contre l'humanité et crimes de guerre à 40 ans de détention par le Tribunal pénal international pour l'ex-Yougoslavie (TPIY), va interjeter appel, a indiqué son avocat...

    Radovan Karadzic "est déçu et étonné", a assuré Peter Robinson à des journalistes. "Il pense qu'il a été condamné sur la base de déductions et va interjeter appel du jugement".

    Radovan Karadzic a été reconnu coupable de génocide pour le massacre de près de 8.000 hommes et garçons musulmans à Srebrenica en juillet 1995, le pire massacre à avoir été commis en Europe depuis la Seconde Guerre mondiale.

    "Radovan Karadzic, la cour vous condamne à 40 années de détention", a affirmé le juge du Tribunal pénal international pour l'ex-Yougoslavie (TPIY), O-Gon Kwon, affirmant que l'accusé était le fer de lance des structures militaires, politiques et gouvernementales" des Serbes de Bosnie.

    Les juges ont néanmoins décidé qu'ils n'avaient pas de preuves suffisantes pour affirmer, hors de tout doute raisonnable, qu'un génocide avait été commis dans sept autres municipalités de Bosnie. M. Karadzic a donc été acquitté du premier des deux chefs d'accusation pour génocide.....AFP

  93. Russia lifts ban on airline’s flights to Turkey...

    Russia has opened up flights to Turkey’s southern resort of Antalya following a ban imposed in the wake of the shooting down of a Russian warplane in November, Russian media reported on March 24.

    The Russian civil aviation authority, Rosaviation, has given the go-ahead for Ural Airlines to fly to Antalya, the state-run RIA Novosti news agency said.

    Ural Airlines will fly seven times a week from Rostov-on-Don, Nizhny Novgorod and Kazan to Antalya - favorite Turkish destination for Russians.

    The Kremlin banned the sale of tour packages and charter flights to Turkey after a Russian jet was downed by a Turkish F-16 over the Turkey-Syria border for repeatedly violating Turkish airspace on Nov. 24.

  94. The UN Syria special envoy said on Thursday he was targeting a start date of April 9 for the next round of peace talks, which he expects to focus on the thorny issue of a political transition...

    "I am expecting and hoping ... that the next round of talks will not be focusing on principles again - we have had enough of that - there are many valid points there, but we have to start focusing on the political process," Staffan de Mistura said.

    He said that none of the sides had refused a document he had drawn up with common guiding principles to underpin the talks and added that he aimed to reconvene on April 9, although some parties may come as late as April 14, a day after parliamentary elections in Syria.

  95. UN atomic chief warns extremists have the means for 'nuclear terrorism'...

    The world needs to do more to prevent "nuclear terrorism", the head of the UN atomic watchdog has warned ahead of an important summit and in the wake of the Brussels terror attacks.

    "Terrorism is spreading and the possibility of using nuclear material cannot be excluded," International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Yukiya Amano told AFP in an interview late Thursday.

    "Member states need to have sustained interest in strengthening nuclear security," he said. "The countries which do not recognize the danger of nuclear terrorism is the biggest problem."

    Amano's comments came before a summit of around 50 leaders in Washington on March 31-April 1 on ensuring that nuclear material in the world's roughly 1,000 atomic facilities are secured....AFP

  96. South Korean activists have dropped tens of thousands of propaganda leaflets on a border city of North Korea to commemorate the sixth anniversary of the sinking of a South Korean ship in which 46 sailors were lost...

    Seoul blames Pyongyang for the sinking and in return suspended trade and investment ties.

    Some 50,000 leaflets floated into the city of Paju Saturday, carried by gas balloons, carrying messages condemning North Korea's tradition of absolute power centered in one family. They called on dictator Kim Jong Un to step down and stop threatening Western nations with nuclear war.

    Saturday is the anniversary of the sinking of the Cheonan warship, which Seoul blames on a torpedo from a North Korean

  97. A Taliban splinter group says it carried out a suicide attack on a park in Lahore, Pakistan, which killed more than 70 people, including children...

    Jamaat-ul-Ahrar said it had targeted Christians celebrating Easter, though police have said they are still investigating the claim.

    There were scenes of carnage as parents searched for children amid the debris.

    Pakistan's president condemned the attack, and the regional government has announced three days of mourning.

    At least 300 people were injured, with officials saying they expected the death toll to rise.

    All major hospitals in the area were put on an emergency footing after the blast, early on Sunday evening.....BBC

  98. The Saudi-led coalition fighting Shi'ite rebels in Yemen said Monday it released 109 Yemeni detainees in exchange for nine Saudis who were being held...

    A coalition statement did not give details on where or how the Saudis were detained, but said the Yemenis had been held near the Saudi

  99. Número de mortos do atentado no Paquistão sobe para 72...

    Zaeem Qadri, porta-voz do Governo da província de Punjab, da qual Lahore é capital, afirmou que entre as vítimas mortais se encontram 29 crianças.

    Outras 315 pessoas ficaram feridas na sequência do atentado no parque público Gulshan-i-Iqbal, indicou o mesmo responsável citado pela agência oficial chinesa Xinhua.

    Zaeem Qadri indicou que foram identificadas 54 vítimas, cujos corpos foram entregues aos

  100. Syria is willing to take part in an international coalition against terrorism but only if the United States will work with Damascus in a way it has not done so far, the Syrian envoy to Geneva peace talks said on Monday...

    “The (U.S.-led) international coalition did not succeed in Syria because it did not coordinate with the regime. Russia was successful because it coordinated with us,” Bashar Ja’afari said in an interview with Lebanon-based al-Mayadeen TV.

    “We are for the creation of an international coalition against terrorism, but in coordination with the Syrian government. We have no objection to working with America as long as it is done in coordination with Syria,” Ja’afari said.

  101. EgyptAir hijack: Most passengers freed at Larnaca airport...

    Most of the passengers on board a hijacked Egyptian airliner that was forced to divert to Cyprus have been freed, the airline says.
    EgyptAir said negotiations had resulted in the release of all those on board Flight MS181 apart from the crew and four foreign passengers.
    Video from Larnaca airport has shown people leaving the plane and boarding a bus.
    It was taken over after a passenger said he was wearing an explosives belt.
    Flight MS181 was carrying 81 passengers from Alexandria to Cairo.....BBC

  102. A hijacked EgyptAir flight has landed in Cyprus. All but four of the 81 passengers have been released and the crew are still being held.

    Egyptian government and airline sources are saying the flight was bound for Cairo from Alexandria when it was hijacked by at least one armed person.

    The person who took over flight MS181 told the crew he was wearing an explosives belt.

    "The pilot said that a passenger told him he had an explosives vest and forced the plane to land in Larnaca," the Egyptian civil aviation ministry said in a statement.

    "The information we have so far is that it is one hijacker. The person has yet to make any demands," Cypriot foreign ministry Alexandros Zenon said to French

  103. Un avion d'Egypt Air, qui effectuait la liaison intérieure Alexandrie/Le Caire, a été détourné vers l'aéroport de Larnaca à Chypre...

    La télévision publique chypriote indique que tous les passagers ont été libérés à l'exception de quatre étrangers et des membres de l'équipage.

    Selon l'Aviation civile, un passager a menacé le pilote de faire exploser une ceinture d'explosifs. Le pirate de l'air se nommerait Ibrahim Samaha. Son but initial aurait été de détourner le vol vers Istanbul. Des pourparlers seraient actuellement en cours avec les autorités chypriotes. Ibrahim Samaha aurait par ailleurs demandé l'asile politique.

    Le vol en provenance d'Alexandrie avec 81 passagers à bord, et non une soixantaine comme initialement indiqué, a atterri à l'aéroport international de Larnaca à Chypre. Les pirates de l'air ont contacté la tour de contrôle à 08H30 (05H30 GMT) et le Boeing 737-800 a été autorisé à atterrir à 08H50, a précisé la police.

    1. Hijacking of the EgyptAir plane that landed at Larnaca airport in Cyprus earlier today is not a terrorist attack, Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades said on Tuesday...

      Among the hostages are the pilot, second pilot, flight hostess and a security officer, the minister said at a news conference.

      The hijacker, Ibrahim Samaha, has made no clear demands so far, he said, adding that the talks are ongoing. Fathy also refused to reveal any more details on what is going on at the Larnaca airport due to "security reasons.".......

    2. Egypt plane drama ends: hijacker arrested, passengers freed...

      An Egyptian man who hijacked an EgyptAir plane during a domestic flight to Cairo and forced it to land on the island of Cyprus on Tuesday has surrendered and was taken into custody after he released all the passengers and crew unharmed.

      His surrender ended an hours-long standoff at Larnaca airport on the island nation's southern coast. The hijacker had earlier freed most of the passengers but kept on board seven people -- four crew members and three passengers.

      The man's motivations were unclear, but officials said the hijacking was not terrorism-related, and that the hijacker had tried to communicate with his Cypriot ex-wife, who lives on the island.

  104. Obama verweigert Erdogan die Gunst eines Treffens ...

    Der türkische Staatschef Recep Tayyip Erdogan besucht in dieser Woche Washington, bekommt aber wohl von US-Präsident Barack Obama kein bilaterales Treffen gewährt. Dies geht aus US-Angaben vom Montag hervor. Die Beziehungen zwischen den beiden traditionellen Verbündeten USA und Türkei sind derzeit wegen der türkischen Militäroffensive gegen kurdische Kämpfer stark angespannt.

    Die USA unterstützen kurdische Einheiten in ihrem Kampf gegen die Dschihadistenmiliz "Islamischer Staat" (IS) im Irak und in Syrien.

    Erdogan reist ebenso wie mehrere weitere Staatschefs zu einem Gipfel über nukleare Sicherheit in die US-Hauptstadt. Am Rande des Gipfels, der am Donnerstag und Freitag stattfindet, plane Obama bisher nur ein einziges bilaterales Treffen, nämlich am Donnerstag mit dem chinesischen Staatschef Xi Jinping, sagte ein US-Regierungsmitarbeiter.....

  105. US, allies urge UN to consider 'appropriate response' to Iran missile tests...

    The United States and its European allies urged the UN Security council to consider "appropriate responses" to what it calls Iran's defiance of a UN resolution with its launching of nuclear-capable missiles, Reuters reports.

    In a letter written to U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon and Spain's U.N. Ambassador Roman Oyarzun Marchesi, the US, France, Germany and Britain said that Iran's ballistic tests fired missiles which were capable of delivering nuclear weapons and were "inconsistent with" and "in defiance of" council resolution 2231, said Reuters.

    Security Council resolution 2231 calls on Iran to refrain from developing ballistic missiles capable of carrying a nuclear warhead.

    The missiles were "inherently capable of delivering nuclear weapons," the letter says, and calls on Ban Ki-moon to investigate Iran's missile launches in relation to the

  106. White House denies lack of meeting is snub to Turkey’s Erdogan...

    US President Barack Obama will hold only an “informal discussion” with Tayyip Erdogan in Washington this week, in what was seen by some as a snub to the Turkish president who was also recently lampooned on German television.

    The White House has dismissed suggestions that the lack of a formal meeting represented a deliberate slight to the Turkish leader, even if Washington has sharply criticised Ankara over its military campaign against Kurdish rebels and intimidation of independent media.

    Erdogan will be among more than 50 world leaders attending a Nuclear Security Summit in Washington on Thursday and Friday, during which time he is due to have a formal meeting with Vice President Joe

  107. DPRK authorities called on citizens to prepare for hunger...

    The North Korean government had warned citizens about the coming difficult times in the economy, urging to prepare for the famine. About it writes The Telegraph with reference to the article in the party newspaper of North Korea’s “Nodong”it Said.

    “The path to revolution is long and difficult. We may again have to eat the roots of plants,” the publication States. It is noted that the country could face the same difficult situation, as during the four years of famine, which began in 1994. Then from lack of food killed 3.5 million out of 22 million people, writes The Telegraph.

    The British newspaper notes that the difficult economic situation will be the result of the unprecedented strict sanctions against North Korea adopted by the UN Security Council in response to Pyongyang’s test of a hydrogen bomb and launch missiles long range. Also, according to the publication, this year the DPRK has requested 440 thousand tons of food aid from other countries, but as of February was set to 17.6 thousand tons......

  108. Russia: Iranian missile tests do not violate UN resolution - Interfax...

    Iran's test launches of nuclear-capable missiles did not violate a United Nations Security Council resolution, the Interfax news agency cited a Russian foreign ministry representative as saying on Wednesday.

    The United States and its European allies said in a joint letter seen by Reuters on Tuesday that the launches has defied the resolution that endorsed last year's historic nuclear deal.

    "The resolution does not ban (the tests)," Interfax cited Mikhail Ulyanov, head of the ministry's department for non-proliferation and arms control, as saying.

  109. Some 16 people were detained on March 30 in Turkey’s southeastern province of Adıyaman over alleged links to Jabhat al-Nusra...

    The detentions were made as anti-terror police teams, along with the gendarmerie, carried out simultaneous operations on 20 addresses early in the morning. The teams captured 16 people for allegedly recruiting for the organization, while four people are reported to now be on the run.

    After health checks at a hospital, the suspects were sent to a police station to be interrogated.

    Operating in mostly in Syria, Jabhat al-Nusra has been designated as a terrorist organization by Turkey since 2014. Turkey recently stepped up measures against militants linked to al-Nusra and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), whose members have established cells in a number of cities across the country.

  110. One police officer was killed and two injured late Tuesday when two vehicles were blown up by an explosive device in Russia's Dagestan region, police said, while ISIS said it was behind the attack...

    "Two cars were blown up, the type of explosive device has not been established yet," Fatina Ubaidatova, a spokeswoman for the Dagestani police, told Reuters by phone.

    The Amaq news agency, which supports ISIS, posted online a statement saying its local affiliate was behind the attack...REUTERS

  111. Brazil's biggest party quits coalition, isolating Rousseff...

    Brazil's largest party announced on Tuesday it is leaving President Dilma Rousseff's governing coalition and pulling its members from her government, a departure that cripples her fight against impeachment proceedings in Congress.

    The Brazilian Democratic Movement Party (PMDB) decided at a leadership meeting that its six remaining ministers in Rousseff's Cabinet and all other party members with government appointments must resign or face ethics proceedings.

    Under Brazil's presidential system, Rousseff will continue in office but the break sharply raises the odds she will be impeached by Congress in a matter of months, which would put Vice President Michel Temer, leader of the PMDB, in the presidential seat.

    The opposition is pressing to impeach Rousseff for allegedly breaking budget laws. Their efforts gained steam as Brazilians have grown frustrated with the worst recession in decades and a vast corruption scandal reaching the president's inner circle.

    Rousseff has denied any wrongdoing and called the impeachment efforts a

  112. Greece begins moving hundreds of refugees stranded at port to other towns...

    Greek authorities Thursday began busing hundreds of migrants and refugees to accommodation in other parts of Greece from a port near Athens, where they have spent weeks sleeping in the open in filthy conditions.

    Nearly 6,000 people, most from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan, have been stuck at the port of Piraeus and tensions have increasingly flared over food and phone chargers. Piraeus is about 12 km (eight miles) from central Athens.

    The 6,000 people in Piraeus are among at least 51,000 refugees and migrants trapped in Greece after Balkan countries shut their borders this month, preventing them from moving on to wealthier northern Europe where they hope to start a new life.....REUTERS

  113. Belgian judicial authorities on Thursday approved the extradition to France of Paris attacks prime suspect Salah Abdeslam, prosecutors said, adding that a date for the transfer had not been set...

    "As Salah Abdeslam had declared to agree to be transferred to France, a federal magistrate took his formal declaration today... The transfer is possible," the federal prosecutor's office said in a statement.

    "Belgian and French authorities will now consider jointly on how to proceed further in the execution of the transfer," the statement added.

    French-Belgian national Abdeslam, 26, the sole surviving suspect in the November 13 Paris attacks in which 130 people were killed, was arrested in Brussels on March 18 after four months on the run.

    Abdeslam's lawyer Cedric Moisse said earlier that his client had consented to his extradition.....AFP


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