Category Archives: Security

ISIS claims responsibility for Liège attack

Islamic State (ISIS) terrorist group  has claimed responsibility for the shooting in the city of Liège (Belgium) where two police agents (pictured) and one civilian were killed. The ISIS informed via related news agency, that the attack in Liege was carried out by a ‘soldier of the Caliphate’.

The Amaq news agency passed the message, revendicating the actions of Belgium citizen Benjamin Herman, and acknowledging him as their “soldier of the Caliphate”,  however no evidence was given to proof any previous contacts between an assailant and the group.

 

 

 

Liège attack: two policemen shot dead

According to the Liège (Belgium) police, a man shot two policemen and took a cleaning woman as a hostage at Waha High School, located in the heart of the vibrant and busy city.

It was in the morning hours, around 10:30 on Tuesday (29/05) when gunshots were heard in the city center of Liège. According to  information local media obtained from the police, the alleged perpetrator shouted “Allahu akbar!“. The attacker shot two police officers and took a cleaning woman hostage at Waha High School, located in the busiest part of the city. As follows the rapid reaction of police the attacker was neutralised.

II. 12:45

According to preliminary reports, a man fired this morning on two policemen near the Cafe des Augustins, in the street of the same name in the city center of Liege. The two officers died, and a third, a member of the Anti-Banditry Squad (PAB), was reportedly injured during contact with the suspect.
A civilian, present in his car at the time of the events, also died.

Afterwards the attacker rushed to Waha High School, where he took a cleaning woman hostage. A rapid police intervention allowed to neutralize the culprit on the 6th floor of the school according to the RTBF news channel.

The Liège police will organize a press conference in the coming hours. Currently, there is still a large security perimeter organized around the premises. The police and rescue forces are massively present at the spot. A helicopter still flies over the scene.

The children of Waha High School are well and are safe under police protection and are supported by the PMS services. The burgomaster of Liège, Willy Demeyer, went to the scene and is in contact with the chief of police corps. The federal crisis center is following the situation, tweeted the Minister of the Interior, Jan Jambon, who said that his thoughts are with the victims of this “horrible act”.

Belgium King, Prime minister, and the other officials are in Liège.

EU-UN to enhance counterterrorist cooperation

Federica Mogherini the EU top diplomat, and UN Under-Secretary-General for Counter-Terrorism Vladimir Voronkov met in Brussels to discuss the cooperation between the European Union and United Nations in countering terrorism and preventing violent extremism, as well as UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ efforts to reform and strengthen the UN’s counter-terrorism work.

Federica Mogherini and Vladimir Voronkov spoke of possible steps the United Nations Office of Counter Terrorism (UNOCT) could take in further developing global counterterrorism policy, and in coordinating capacity-building efforts undertaken by the various UN entities in support of UN Member States. The EU top diplomat Mogherini confirmed the European Union’s commitment to the fight against terrorism both internally and globally, with full respect for fundamental rights and the rule of law. She underlined the European Union´s resolve to continue to work closely together with UNOCT and the wider UN system in strengthening multilateralism and global governance. Mr. Voronkov confirmed UNOCT´s commitment to play a central role in strengthening the partnership between the EU and the UN system based on shared values, common objectives and priorities.

Their encounter took place on the occasion of the first high-level EU-UN Leadership Dialogue on Counter-Terrorism. The Dialogue initiated a new spirit of practical collaboration aimed at strengthening multilateral coordination efforts in counter-terrorism and the prevention of violent extremism.

Discussions centered on collaboration between the UN and the EU in areas of common concern such as addressing the challenges of retuning/relocating foreign terrorist fighters, counter-terrorism capacity building efforts in Central Asia, South and South-East Asia, the Sahel region and Lake Chad Basin as well as promoting a whole-of-UN approach in preventing and countering terrorism. Both sides agreed on the need to adopt an “all of society” approach to preventing violent extremism and to include civil society organizations, the private sector, think tanks, as well as with governments at national and local levels in the process.

The dialogue was co-convened by UN Under-Secretary-General Mr. Vladimir Voronkov and Mr. Pedro Serrano, the Deputy Secretary General for Common Security and Defence Policy at the European External Action Service (EEAS) with the participation of Sir Julian King, the European Commissioner for Security Union, Mr. Gilles de Kerchove the European Union Counter-Terrorism Coordinator. Accompanied by Mr. Jürgen Stock the Secretary-General of INTERPOL, Mr. Voronkov led a delegation of representatives of 6 UN agencies including CTED, UNDP, UNESCO, UNICRI, and UNLOPS.

Kadyrov blames “Western” orders to Chechen terrorists

Four militants who tried to abdicate visitors of the Orthodox Church of St. Michael Church have been neutralised, Chechnya’s head Ramzan Kadyrov informed reporters on Saturday (19/05/2018). The families of victims will receive aid.

“The militants entered St. Michael Church, intending to abdicate churchgoers,” he said. “All four militants were neutralized in a special operation.”

A policeman died from injuries, and one churchgoer was severely injured, Kadyrov continued. (Some media sources indicated two killed policemen).

“According to the latest information, the militants received the order from a Western country,” Kadyrov said.

The leader of Chechnya added that he immediately arrived at the scene of the incident, where he “directly controlled the special operation, which took just a few minutes.”

“Measures are taken to identify the neutralised militants, and the incident site was cordoned off by law enforcement officers,” Kadyrov said.

A Chechen law enforcement source informed that one churchgoer was killed and the other seriously injured, and at them moment is in intensive care. The police cordon around the church was lifted soon after the end of the special force operation.

 

Afghanistan: first attack since Ramadan

Eight people were killed and 45 wounded by multiple explosions at a sports stadium in the eastern city of Jalalabad late on Friday (18/05/2018) night, according to official sources.

The blasts occurred at a football stadium in the city that was hosting a cricket match at the start of the holy month of Ramadan,

Local officials  said here was no immediate claim of responsibility by any of terrorist groups.

 

This week chancellor Angela Merkel said the German military would stay in northern Afghanistan and that she had fought hard politically in the past, already with then US president Barack Obama, against a rushed pull out of troops.

“This reveals something which I think Germany can be proud of. It’s sometimes said that ‘it takes forever before you guys reach a decision where you’re going.’ Yes, sometimes it might take a little longer than with others but once we’re there, we’re staying. So we have decided — and I fought hard politically for this, already with President Obama — not to pull out of Afghanistan too hastily,” Merkel said.

 

EUNAVFOR MED Sophia to open crime information cell

The Council today adopted a decision allowing for the creation of a crime information cell within EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia. The information cell will be composed of up to 10 staff members from relevant law enforcement authorities of member states and from the EU agencies FRONTEX and EUROPOL in order to improve information sharing between them.

The cell will be tasked to facilitate the receipt, collection and transmission of  information on human smuggling and trafficking, the implementation of the UN arms embargo on Libya, illegal trafficking, as well as crimes relevant to the security of the operation itself.

EUNAVFOR MED Operation Sophia is the EU naval operation set up to disrupt the business model of migrant smugglers and human traffickers in the Southern Central Mediterranean. Since the beginning of the active phase of the operation (October 2015), the operation has contributed to the arrest and transfer to the Italian authorities of 143 suspected smugglers and traffickers, and has neutralised 545 vessels. In addition, the operation has helped rescue 44251 lives.

The operation has also a number of supporting tasks:

  • training the Libyan Coastguard and Navy, and monitor the trainees to ensure the long-term efficiency of this training,
  • contributing to the implementation of the UN arms embargo on the high seas off the coast of Libya in accordance with UNSCR 2292 (2016) and 2357 (2017) and
  • conducting surveillance activities and gather information on illegal trafficking of oil exports from Libya in accordance with UNSCR 2146 (2014) and 2362 (2017).

The operation was launched on 22 June 2015 and its current mandate runs until 31 December 2018. EUNAVFOR MED’s Operation Commander is Rear Admiral Enrico Credendino, from Italy. The headquarters of the mission are located in Rome.

Kadyrov blamed French society for Paris attacker radicalisation

The leader of Republic of Chechnya (Russian Federation), Ramzan Kadyrov puts the blame for radicalisation of Paris terrorist  Khamzat Azimov (1997-2018) on French society.

I think it necessary to say that the entire responsibility for Khamzat Azimov stepping on a path to crime rests with the French authorities. Chechnya is only is birth place but he grew up in French society, where his personality,  his views and principles, were formed,Kadyrov wrote on his Telegram channel.

However Kadyrov acknowledged that the terrorist had Russian  citizenship in the past, formally receiving passport according to existing procedures at the age of 14, “but his passport became invalid as he skipped issuance of a new one at an age of 20,” he explained, adding that latest reports gave him grounds to think that Azimov had had contacts with French law enforcement and special services, and they were well aware of his radical views.

Kadyrov also extended his condolences to the family of a slain man, stabbed to death by Azimov in a lively touristic area next to Paris Opéra Garnier. The killing was qualified as a “terrorist act” by French authorities.

Khamzat Azimov came to France as an asylum-seeker from Chechnya  with his parents in early 2010, and lived in Nice and Strasbourg, he was naturalised the same year at age of 13, and later received a scholarship in Strasbourg University, graduating with a bachelor’s degree. Azimov came to police radar on 2016, and was monitored by special services as S-listed after his attempts to go to the Middle East to join Islamic State.

Daesh related news source #Amaq has posted an online video depicting Khamzat Azimov masked, giving an oath to  #IS commander Baghdadi in a move to proof he was their soldier (mujaheddin) and his act was premeditated.

 

 

 

 

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