Tag Archives: London

London jihadist released on licence

The assailant who strapped a fake bomb vest to his chest before stabbing two people in South London had been released from prison just days earlier, The Sun reports.

Sudesh Amman, 20, was being monitored by counter-terror police before the “knife obsessed” jihadi went on a rampage on Streatham High Road on Sunday afternoon.

Amman, from Harrow, North London, was sentenced to more than three years in jail for committing terror offenses but let-out on automatic release after serving half his sentence despite concerns he still held extremist views.

The ISIS-supporting jihadi, who was only a teenager when arrested, was jailed for possessing and distributing terrorist documents.

EU Ambassador to London

Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, announces the appointment of Mr. João Vale de Almeida, 62, as the first Head of the future EU Delegation to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. This has been duly notified to the United Kingdom. Mr. Vale de Almeida will take up his new functions on 1 February 2020.

As of that date, the United Kingdom will be a third country and as a consequence, the representation of the Union will be ensured by an EU Delegation.

João Vale de Almeida is a senior European Union diplomat, who served as EU Ambassador to the United Nations from 2015 to 2019, and previously as the first EU Ambassador to the United States of America, from 2010 to 2014.

Between 2004 and 2009, Vale de Almeida was the Head of Cabinet (Chief of staff and main adviser) for the European Commission President José Manuel Barroso. He accompanied President Barroso in all European Council meetings and ensured coordination with the private offices of Heads of State and Government in all 28 Member States of the EU. He was also the President’s Personal Representative for the negotiations on the Treaty of Lisbon and acted as his personal representative (sherpa) for G8 and G20 summits.

NATO moves to space as ‘operational domain’

Although the participants claimed that historic NATO 70 Summit in London was a success, the general public has witness the other version of the events while leaders were trading barbs, ending in refusal of a concluding press-conference.

The assembly was marked  by unusual assertiveness, and even remorse of President Trump who declared at his arrival to London the French President Macron remarks on NATO “brain death” as “nasty” and, while leaving, calling Canada’s prime minister “two-faced” for mocking him on a hot mic.

Nevertheless NATO’s Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg told a news conference that the allies  have been able to “overcome our disagreements and continue to deliver on our core tasks to protect and defend each other.”

The leaders declared that space is now an “operational domain,” after land, sea, air and cyber space.

In a joint declaration, the leaders said: “Russia’s aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security; terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a persistent threat to us all.”

There were some changes in initial positions, and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan did not further insist on his idea of blocking plans to enforce NATO infrastructure in northern and eastern Europe unless allies declared Kurdish fighters in Syria terrorists.

Marking the 70th anniversary of NATO, which was founded in 1949 to confront the security threat posed by the then Soviet Union, the leaders said the trans-Atlantic alliance is the cornerstone of their collective defense.

They also underlined their commitment to Article 5 of NATO’s Washington Treaty, saying “that an attack against one Ally shall be considered an attack against us all.”

The leaders then pledged to boost their military budgets in line with previous promises to move toward spending 2% of their annual GDP on defense by 2024.

They noted that European allies and Canada have increased spending for the last five years in a row and have invested an extra $130 billion since 2016. “We are making good progress. We must and will do more,” they said.

The leaders noted that NATO faces a multitude of threats, including from Russia and terrorism. “Russia’s aggressive actions constitute a threat to Euro-Atlantic security; terrorism in all its forms and manifestations remains a persistent threat to us all,” they said.

They also noted that “instability beyond our borders is also contributing to irregular migration.”

Arms control was also a theme, given the demise of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) treaty between Washington and Moscow.

We are fully committed to the preservation and strengthening of effective arms control, disarmament, and non-proliferation,” the leaders said.

They added: “We remain open for dialogue, and to a constructive relationship with Russia when Russia’s actions make that possible.”

The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to Afghanistan, where NATO has its longest and most ambitious security operation. They also underlined that they are increasing cooperation with the United Nations and the European Union.

North Macedonia‘s imminent membership was welcomed as a sign that NATO’s door remains open to European countries who want to join.

Turning to modern challenges, the leaders vowed to protect critical infrastructure, including 5th generation telecommunication networks, to ensure energy security and work together to counter cyber-attacks and hybrid warfare.

They said they must also address the “opportunities and challenges” posed by the rise of China.

To counter concerns about poor political decision making, the leaders accepted to set up a “reflection group” led by Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg “to further strengthen NATO’s political dimension including consultation.”

After three consecutive years of summits, the leaders agreed to meet again in 2021.

 

Erdogan blocks NATO Baltic advancement

Turkey announced it will oppose NATO’s plans for enhancing defence of three Baltic countries if the Alliance does not recognize militant groups that Ankara defines as terrorist, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday, ahead of a NATO alliance summit in London.

Relations between Turkey and its NATO allies have been strained over a number of issues, ranging from Ankara’s decision to purchase Russian air defense systems S-400  to policy vis-à-vis Syria. Several NATO members condemned Turkey’s decision to launch an offensive into northeastern Syria against the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) militia.

Ankara has refused to back NATO defense plan for the Baltics and Poland until it receives more support for its battle with the YPG, which it assesses as a terrorist organization.

London assailant hardcore djihadist

A man and a woman were killed and three pedastrians were stabbed on London Bridge on November 29. Police are still working to identify those who died.

The assailant in a fake suicide vest,carrying out the attack was named by police as 28-year-old Usman Khan, who was out of prison on licence at the time, having been convicted for terrorism offences in 2012.

Neil Basu, Scotland Yard’s assistant commissioner, said that Khan was “known to authorities” after being convicted in 2012. He had also been fitted with an electronic tag to monitor his movement since being released from prison on licence in December 2018, The Times newspaper reported.

Khan, who was from Stoke-on-Trent, in 2010 was arrested in a major counterterrorism operation, alongside eight others who had formed an al-Qaeda-inspired terror cell.
Khan was shot dead by police after members of the public restrained him. Passersby were widely praised by political leaders and others for showing “extreme courage”.

Police are carrying out searches at an address in Staffordshire where Khan had been living.

This morning, a police search believed to be linked to the London Bridge investigation is being carried out at a three-storey block of flats in Wolverhampton Road, Stafford, close to the town centre.

“Terrorist incident” at London Bridge

The UK police has declared the stabbing near London Bridge terror-related. Several people were injured, but at the moment the gravity of wounds in not made public. The suspect shot dead by police at scene, while wearing “hoax explosive device”.

At present neither of Islamists groups has claimed the attack, however the experts say in its style it is ISIS “inspired”.

There were some reports in social media about pedestrians, attempting to disarm the assailant, and they have succeeded.

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan thanked the emergency services, police and the “members of the public, who risked their own safety this afternoon – they are the best of us”, he concluded, asking Londoners to stay vigilant at all times.

Europarl Sassoli invited to London

European Parliament President David Sassoli today received a phone call from UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. It was the first conversation between the two leaders.

Prime Minister Johnson invited president Sassoli to meet in person in London and stressed the importance of the European Parliament in the Brexit process. He expressed his wish to find a positive agreement on the United Kingdom departure from the European Union. President Sassoli responded that this was also the wish of the bloc of EU27.

The call followed the approval of a new Brexit resolution which reaffirmed the European Parliament’s support for an orderly and managed Brexit. President Sassoli stressed in the call that Parliament’s priorities remain guaranteeing citizens’ rights and protecting the peace process in Northern Ireland. He also reiterated that any agreement will need to be approved by both the UK and European Parliament, so robust debate and parliamentary scrutiny is essential. The European institutions are ready to discuss any written proposal from the UK government to unblock the current impasse.

Russian Ambassador Yakovenko left London

Russian Ambassador to the UK Alexander Yakovenko (65) has relinquished his duties in London and left for Moscow, the Embassy in the UK informed on August 24.

24 August 2019 Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland Mr Alexander Yakovenko relinquished his duties and departed to Russia,” the embassy stated.” Ivan Volodin, minister-counsellor, will act as chargé daffaires a.i.”

Mr.Yakovenko was appointed ambassador to the UK in 2011.

25/08/2019 AMENDED

According to Novaya Gazeta Andrei Kelin, former Russian Permanent Representative to the OSCE, will be appointed as Moscow envoy to London.

Modern Tate incident caused by “schizophrenia”

The teenager charged with pushing a six-year-old French tourist boy off a balcony at the Tate Modern Gallery was a “schizophrenia” patient who had escaped from his carers, British authorities said.

The suspect of the crime reportedly stayed at a ‘secure home’ and was only allowed to leave with at least two minders accompanying him. The identity of the 17 year old culprit is protected by UK laws.

Metropolitan Police have arrested the suspect on August 4 after the boy, a French tourist, was thrown from the 10th floor of the London art gallery and landed on a fifth-floor roof, where he was found seriously injured and taken to a hospital by helicopter.  The child is in critical condition, and the medics refuse to make any prognostic.

The injured boy remains in a stable, but critical condition in hospital with his family, who continue to be supported by officers,” the Metropolitan Police said.

It is the second incident of the same type in a week in Europe caused by mentally unstable individuals. A boy in Frankfort  central station was pushed under the train by an Eritrean migrant from Switzerland at large. The mother of the victim, also pushed down, miraculously escaped the wheels rolling into passage between the rails.

Farage waits for Trump telephone call

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage said he did not know if he could  have a meeting with Donald Trump during the U.S. president’s state visit to the UK. (Image: archive).

Farage said he was waiting for a call from Trump.

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