Eye on Extremism, April 12, 2017

The New York Times: White House Accuses Russia Of Cover-Up In Syria Chemical Attack

“The White House accused Russia on Tuesday of engaging in a cover-up of the Syrian government’s role in a chemical weapons attack last week, saying that United States intelligence had confirmed that the Assad regime used sarin gas on its own people. A four-page report drawn up by the National Security Council contains declassified United States intelligence on the attack and a rebuttal of Moscow’s claim that insurgents unleashed the gas to frame the Syrian government. Instead, the White House asserted that Damascus and Moscow had released ‘false narratives’ to mislead the world. The document also urges international condemnation of Syria’s use of chemical weapons and harshly criticizes Russia for ‘shielding’ an ally that has used weapons of mass destruction.”

NPR: U.S. Soldier’s Death Highlights Threat Of ISIS In Afghanistan

“An American soldier was killed fighting ISIS over the weekend in Afghanistan. NPR takes a look at how serious the ISIS threat is there and how it fits into the wider conflict between American forces, their Afghan allies and anti-government insurgents and terrorists. An American soldier was killed in Afghanistan over the weekend. He was the first U.S. casualty in Afghanistan this year. Thirty-seven-year-old Staff Sergeant Mark De Alencar of Edgewood, Md., a Green Beret, leaves behind a wife and five children. Here’s what his former high school teacher, Kilo Mack, had to say about him.”

Daily Mail: ISIS Forces 33 Of Its Fighters To Have An EAR Cut Off After They Refused To Fight Iraqi Troops

“ISIS is now cutting the ears off fighters who try and flee from battle, it is reported. The terror group removed one ear from 33 soldiers caught fleeing the battle in Mosul, their last stronghold in Iraq, a source told Alsumaria News. The men had been imprisoned before the punishment was carried out, and were told the other ear would be removed if they tried to flee a second time. Typically deserters from the extremist group are executed, but the source said the terrorists are having to opt for less extreme punishments because they are running out of fighters.”

Associated Press: Street Turned To Rubble Shows Cost Of Fight For Iraq’s Mosul

“Two houses are all that remain standing on the street with no name in western Mosul, just blocks from the front lines of the battle to retake Iraq’s second-largest city from the Islamic State group. The once-bustling neighborhood has been reduced to rubble, its sidewalks piled high with a jumble of concrete, bricks and metal. Standing amid the debris of what was once his home on the newly liberated street, Maan Nawaf blamed IS for the destruction around him. It was IS fighters, he said, who drew the devastating firepower of the Iraqi and coalition warplanes to the street by positioning snipers on top of the buildings after ordering residents to leave, including his elderly mother. “We said we have a disabled woman, she can’t walk. They said if you don’t go, we will kill you,” he said. The family knew the militants would make good on the threat: IS fighters killed two of his brothers, one of whom was a policeman, as well as his nephew, Nawaf said.”

Newsweek: After Syria, The U.S. And Russia Are Now Clashing Over Afghanistan

“Tensions between Russia and the U.S. are again flaring up in the Middle East, but this time it’s not about Syria or chemical weapons. Instead, the conflict is over a potential peace deal in Afghanistan that could bring an end to 16 years of war that has ravaged the country. The Kremlin is slated to hold a meeting Friday in Moscow aimed at brokering a resolution between the Afghan government and the Taliban. Washington has refused to attend, instead accusing Russia of arming Taliban fighters and undermining NATO’s efforts to bring peace and security to the region.”

Associated Press: Churches In Southern Egypt Will Not Celebrate Easter

“Egyptian churches, in the southern city of Minya, said on Tuesday that they will not hold Easter celebrations in mourning for 45 Coptic Christians killed this week in twin bombings of churches in two cities during Palm Sunday ceremonies. The Minya Coptic Orthodox Diocese said that celebrations will only be limited to the liturgical prayers ‘without any festive manifestations.’ Minya province has the highest Coptic Christian population in the country. Copts traditionally hold Easter church prayers on Saturday evening and then spend Easter Sunday on large meals and family visits.”

Reuters: North Korea Warns Of Nuclear Strike If Provoked; Trump ‘Armada’ Steams On

“North Korean state media warned on Tuesday of a nuclear attack on the United States at any sign of American aggression, as a U.S. Navy strike group steamed toward the western Pacific – a force U.S. President Donald Trump described as an “armada”. Trump, who has urged China to do more to rein in its impoverished ally and neighbour, said in a tweet that North Korea was “looking for trouble” and the United States would “solve the problem” with or without Beijing’s help. Tension has escalated sharply on the Korean peninsula amid concerns that reclusive North Korea may soon conduct a sixth nuclear test and after Washington said at the weekend it was diverting the aircraft carrier strike group Carl Vinson toward the Korean peninsula in a show of force.”

New York Times :In Surprise Move, Iran’s Ahmadinejad To Run For President

“Iran’s former President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Wednesday stunned the country by unexpectedly filing to run in the May presidential election, contradicting a recommendation from the supreme leader to stay out of the race. Ahmadinejad’s decision could upend an election many believed would be won by moderate President Hassan Rouhani, who negotiated the nuclear deal with world powers. Though Rouhani has yet to formally register, many viewed him as a shoo-in following Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei’s recommendation in September for Ahmadinejad to stand down and conservatives’ inability to coalesce around a single candidate. Ahmadinejad’s firebrand style could prove appealing for hard-liners seeking a tough-talking candidate who can stand up to U.S. President Donald Trump. His candidacy also could expose the fissures inside Iranian politics that linger since his contested 2009 re-election, which brought massive unrest.”

USA Today: Why Turkey’s Referendum Matters To The U.S.

“Turkey holds a constitutional referendum Sunday that could give sweeping powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose post is now largely ceremonial. Opponents campaigning against the referendum say Erdogan would undermine Turkey’s democracy and secular traditions and institute a religious authoritarian regime in the mostly Muslim nation, which provides a bridge between Europe and its Western values and the Middle East. Political critics point to the government crackdown following an attempted military coup last July and pressure for women to cover up in Muslim clothing.”

Time: The Sole-Surviving Animals At Mosul Zoo Were Rescued: ‘We Came To Iraq To Save A Bear And A Lion’

“A lion and bear have been rescued from a privately owned zoo in the war-torn city of Mosul, Iraq, and flown to the neighboring Jordan for safety. Members of the international animal charity Four Paws, led by the vet Dr. Amir Khalil, found Simba the lion and Lula the bear abandoned in their cages at Montazah al-Morour Zoo when they gained permission to enter the ravaged city last February. The animals, which were the only creatures still alive, were suffering from diseases caused by malnutrition and lack of veterinary care, as well as bad teeth, pneumonia and ill joints, according to their blog post. Four Paws launched a mission to move the animals to a new, “species-appropriate home” and on March 28, the team flew from Kurdistan, to Mosul. Everything was going according to plan until they reached the first checkpoint. “There we were stopped and detained. We negotiated, but did not succeed. Lula and Simba had to go back to the zoo, we were asked to leave Mosul without them,” the team wrote in the blog post.”

United States

USA Today: U.S. Troops May Not Be Needed In Afghanistan By 2020, Ambassador Says

“Afghanistan’s military should be able to carry on the fight against Taliban insurgents mostly without the help of U.S. and other foreign troops by 2020, Afghanistan’s ambassador to the United States said Tuesday. ‘By 2020 our security forces will be able to have what they need to carry on the fight on their own for the most part,’ Hamdullah Mohib told the USA TODAY editorial board. ‘We’re not talking about creating a new military,’ Mohib said. ‘What we’re talking about is adjusting what we already have.’ He said the forecast assumes there won’t be any major changes in the security threat in Afghanistan. The Islamic State has made some inroads in the country, though is not considered a major threat.”

The Washington Post: Tillerson Brings Tough Line To Moscow Over Russian Backing For Syrian Regime

“As Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrived here Tuesday with a demand that Moscow back away from the Syrian government, Russian Foreign Ministry officials said relations with the United States had reached their lowest point since the Cold War. Following a U.S. missile strike on Syria last week, the Foreign Ministry said it was concerned that the Trump administration might be considering a similar blow against North Korea. And even before Tillerson exited his plane in Moscow, Russian President Vladimir Putin told a news conference that the Kremlin has ‘information’ that provocateurs are planning to plant chemical substances in suburban Damascus and blame it on Syrian authorities. He gave no further details on the claim.”

The New York Times: Sean Spicer Raises Outcry With Talk Of Hitler, Assad And Poison Gas

“The White House press secretary, Sean Spicer, set off an intense backlash on Tuesday when he suggested that President Bashar al-Assad of Syria was guilty of acts worse than Hitler and asserted that Hitler had not used chemical weapons, ignoring the use of gas chambers at concentration camps during the Holocaust. Mr. Spicer later apologized. During his daily briefing for reporters, Mr. Spicer was defending President Trump’s decision to order a missile strike on Syria by trying to lend gravity to the actions of Mr. Assad. American officials accuse the Syrian president of using sarin gas, a lethal chemical weapon, in an attack on a rebel-held area of Idlib Province last week that killed dozens, many of them children.”

CNN: Mattis On Syria: Isis Remains The Priority, But Chemical Weapons Will Not Be Tolerated

“Secretary of Defense James Mattis said Tuesday that America’s top priority in Syria remained fighting the Islamic State of Syria and Iraq, but he made it clear the use of chemical weapons would not be tolerated and could warrant additional military actions like last week’s missile strike against a Syrian air base. ‘If they use chemical weapons, they are going to pay a very, very stiff price,’ Mattis told reporters during his first Pentagon briefing as secretary. Mattis said there was ‘no doubt’ the government of Bashar al-Assad was responsible for the chemical attack in Syria last week that killed scores of civilians, including children, but he did not say whether he believed Syria’s key ally, Russia, was complicit.”

Reuters: U.S.-Russia Tensions Over Syria Will Not ‘Spiral Out Of Control’: Mattis

“Tensions between the United States and Russia will not ‘spiral out of control’ following last week’s U.S. cruise missile strikes on a Syrian air base, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Tuesday, describing it as a one-off response to Syria’s use of banned chemical weapons. President Donald Trump, in his biggest foreign policy decision since taking office in January, ordered the strikes after concluding that Syria waged a nerve gas attack in rebel-held territory that killed 87 people, many of them children. Russia, which has advisers on the ground aiding Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, warned the U.S. strike could have serious consequences. Syria denies involvement. ‘It will not spiral out of control,’ Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon.”

New York Times: Why Is Trump Fighting ISIS In Syria?

“The Trump foreign policy team has been all over the map on what to do next in Syria — topple the regime, intensify aid to rebels, respond to any new attacks on innocent civilians. But when pressed, there is one idea everyone on the team seems to agree on: “The defeat of ISIS,” as Secretary of State Rex Tillerson put it. Well, let me add to their confusion by asking just one question: Why? Why should our goal right now be to defeat the Islamic State in Syria? Of course, ISIS is detestable and needs to be eradicated. But is it really in our interest to be focusing solely on defeating ISIS in Syria right now? Let’s go through the logic: There are actually two ISIS manifestations.”


Washington Examiner: G-7 Summit Leaders: ISIS Uses Chemical Weapons, But Assad Isn’t Off The Hook

“Western powers acknowledged on Tuesday that ISIS has used chemical weapons “in one [case],” but they didn’t allow the finding to detract from their condemnation of Syrian President Bashar Assad’s military tactics. “Syrian Arab Armed Forces were responsible for the use of toxic chemicals as weapons in three instances and ISIL/Da’esh in the use of chemical weapons in one,” leaders at the G7 summit in Lucca, Italy, emphasized Tuesday. “We express our resolve to ensure that the use of chemical weapons remains a taboo.” The acknowledgment that ISIS has used such weapons might be used to amplify Russian government claims that the United States should not be certain that the Assad regime carried out the chemical weapons attack in Idlib province on April 4, which prompted President Trump’s cruise missile attack days later.”

Military.Com: US Forces Help Repel ISIS Attack On Southern Syrian Base

“U.S. special operators helped repel an Islamic State assault over the weekend on a small outpost in southern Syria where Americans train local forces to help fight the terrorists, Pentagon officials said Monday. Three U.S.-backed Syrian fighters were killed in the assault launched Saturday by ISIS against the al-Tanf base near Syria’s southern border with Jordan and Iraq, said Air Force Col. John Thomas, a spokesman for U.S. Central Command. No Americans were killed or injured in the fighting. Thomas described the attack as a “complex and coordinated” effort to take the base from the coalition. “Clearly it was planned,” Thomas told reporters at the Pentagon. “The coalition and our partner forces had the resources to repulse that attack. A lot of them wound up being killed and the garrison remains controlled by the people in control before being attacked.”

Reuters: Monitor Says Syria Drops Barrel Bombs Despite U.S. Warning; Syria Denies

“The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Syrian government warplanes dropped barrel bombs on rebel-held areas of Hama province on Tuesday, a day after the United States said their use could lead to further U.S. strikes in Syria. A Syrian military source denied the Observatory report and said the army did not use barrel bombs – drums or cylinders packed with explosives and shrapnel that cause indiscriminate destruction on the ground. The United States fired cruise missiles at a Syrian air base last week in response to a poison gas attack on a town in northwestern Syria, which Washington has blamed on government forces. The Syrian government denies responsibility.”

Reuters: Putin Says Expects ‘Fake’ Gas Attacks To Discredit Syria’s Assad

“President Vladimir Putin said on Tuesday that Russia had information that the United States was planning to launch new missile strikes on Syria, and that there were plans to fake chemicals weapons attacks there. Putin was speaking hours before U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson was due to arrive in Moscow for talks with Russia’s foreign minister and days after denouncing last week’s U.S. missile strike on a Syrian air base as illegal. Standing alongside Italian President Sergio Mattarella who was in Moscow for talks, Putin, when asked by a reporter if he expected more U.S. missile strikes on Syria, said.”

CNN: Putin Implies Plot To Stage Attacks In Syria And Blame The Syrian Regime

“Russian President Vladimir Putin has suggested that unnamed forces inside Syria are plotting chemical attacks, which they plan to blame on the Syrian regime. ‘We have information from a variety of sources that such provocations… are being prepared in other parts of Syria, including in southern suburbs of Damascus,’ Putin said Tuesday during a news conference with Italian President Sergio Mattarella. The Russian leader was responding to a question on the likelihood of further US military strikes against Syria, following Friday’s firing of 59 Tomahawk missiles against the Shayrat airfield.”


Reuters: Islamic State Has Lost Most Territory It Held In Iraq: Iraqi Spokesman

“Islamic State has lost most of the territory it has held in Iraq since 2014, an Iraqi military spokesman said on Tuesday. At the height of its power, the militant group controlled about 40 percent of Iraq, joint operations command spokesman Brigadier General Yahya Rasool told a news conference.  That area has been whittled down to about 6.8 percent of Iraqi territory after extensive military operations, which are still going on in the city of Mosul, he said. Islamic State militants still control the towns of Qaim, Tal Afar and Hawija in Iraq, as well as Raqqa, their de-facto capital in Syria.”

Newsweek: After Mosul Losses, ISIS Now Controls Less Than Seven Percent Of Iraq

“The Islamic State militant group (ISIS) now controls less than seven percent of Iraq, down from the 40 percent it held during 2014, an Iraqi military spokesman said Tuesday. ‘Daesh controlled 40 percent of Iraqi land,’ Brigadier General Yahya Rasool, spokesman of the Joint Operations Command that manages the campaign against ISIS, told reporters on Tuesday, AFP news agency reported. ‘As of March 31, they only held 6.8 percent of Iraqi territory.’ The jihadi group seized the northern city of Mosul as well as Tikrit, Fallujah and Ramadi in 2014. But a coalition of forces that included the Iraqi army, Shiite militiamen, Sunni tribesmen and backed by a U.S.-led coalition have managed to take back much of the country over the past three years.”

New York Daily News: Pentagon Unclear On Growing Number Of Civilian Deaths In ISIS Raids

“An uptick in civilian casualties during attacks on ISIS in Syria and Iraq has some wondering if the Trump administration has increased its attacks on the terror cell, according to a report. Pentagon officials have been skittish on why more civilians are dying in the strikes, the Washington Post reported. But military officials have maintained that the growing number could be, in part, because ISIS has fled to dense areas like Mosul, Iraq. In turn, they’ll let civilians be targeted, making it seem as if U.S. forces have a disregard for their lives. “What you see now is the result of fighting an evil enemy in a dense urban environment where ISIS is using civilians as human shields, using homes as fighting positions, schools as weapons storage facilities, and mosques and hospitals as bases for its terrorist operations,” a Pentagon spokesman told the Daily News via email.”


Reuters: Turkish Health Minister Says Tests Confirm Sarin Use In Idlib Attack

“Tests on victims of a suspected chemical attack in Syria’s northwestern Idlib province confirmed the use of sarin gas, Turkey’s health minister Recep Akdag was quoted as saying on Tuesday by the state-run Anadolu news agency. Both Washington and Ankara blame the Syrian government for the poison gas attack which killed nearly 100 people including children, but Damascus has denied responsibility. The United States launched missile strikes last week against a Syrian government air base in response. Akdag was quoted as saying that isopropyl methylphosphonic acid ‘has been identified in the blood and urine tests conducted on samples taken from the victims exposed to chemical warfare in Idlib’. The acid is formed from the degraded byproduct of sarin reacting with other compounds.”

USA Today: Why Turkey’s Constitutional Referendum On Sunday Is Such A Big Deal

“Sunday’s constitutional referendum on granting broad new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has deeply divided Elif Koc’s family, like many other Turks. The 18-year-old manicurist said her uncle opposes giving Erdogan so much authority, but she’s voting for the change. ‘That can lead us to be a better country,’ said first-time voter Koc. Whether a powerful presidency will lead to a better country is in sharp dispute. Supporters of the referendum say changing Erdogan’s job from a largely ceremonial post to a position more akin to the U.S. presidency will improve the economy and provide Turkey a strong leader at a time of enormous challenges. A civil war in neighboring Syria has sent 3.5 million refugees into Turkey, terrorist attacks are on the rise, and conflict is growing with minority Kurds seeking autonomy.”

BBC News: Blast Rocks Mainly Kurdish City Of Diyarbakir In Turkey

“A large explosion has struck a police headquarters in the mainly Kurdish city of Diyarbakir in south-eastern Turkey. Reports speak of at least four people injured. The city is at the heart of the conflict between the Turkish government and Kurdish separatists. Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu said the blast happened at a vehicle repair unit, and appeared to be an accident. He said ‘it seems there is no outside interference, and the explosion came from the vehicle under repair’. Mr Soylu said one person was trapped under rubble, another was seriously injured, and others had minor injuries. The blast brought a roof down, left a huge crater and a pall of smoke drifted over part of the city. The cause remains unclear.”


Reuters: Five Sudanese Soldiers Killed In Yemen Conflict

“Five Sudanese soldiers have been killed while fighting for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition against Houthi forces in Yemen, a spokesman for Sudan’s armed forces said on Wednesday. The statement was a rare acknowledgement of casualties suffered by Sudan since the east African nation sent hundreds of its soldiers to Yemen in 2015 to bolster Gulf Arab troops in the southern port city of Aden trying to keep out the Iran-allied Houthis. The army did not specify when the troops were killed. ‘We lost five martyrs and 22 others have been wounded… we inflicted huge losses on the enemy and are holding many prisoners of war,’ said army spokesman Brigadier General Ahmed Khalifa al-Shami.”


Associated Press: Leader Juggles Insurgency, Economy

“The deadly bombings of two churches have left Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sissi grappling with the question of how to defeat a tenacious Islamic State insurgency that three years of warfare have failed to crush. He’s also trying to repair a broken economy, carrying out tough austerity measures that have won praise from economists but have sent prices soaring. El-Sissi must juggle these tasks while fending off criticism of human rights violations and growing authoritarianism – all with an eye to presidential elections due in 14 months.”

Newsweek: What Does ISIS Want In Egypt?

“The twin bomb blasts that tore through two Christian churches in Egypt on Palm Sunday marked the latest episode in the Islamic State militant group’s (ISIS) violent campaign against the country’s Coptic minority. The attacks on a church in the Nile Delta town of Tanta and a cathedral in Egypt’s second city of Alexandria came as churches were packed with worshippers marking the beginning of the Easter week. In Tanta at least 27 people were killed and 78 injured as the first bomb exploded inside St George’s Church. Hours later a second bomber detonated an explosive device as he rushed towards St Mark’s Cathedral in Alexandria, killing at least 17 and wounding 48.”

Middle East

Haaretz: Hamas Makes More Arrests In Crackdown On Suspected Israeli Collaborators In Gaza

“The Hamas Interior Ministry released a statement Tuesday morning stating that the organization had arrested more people on suspicion of collaborating with Israel. According to Hamas spokesman Iyad al-Bazam, more collaborators who had been convicted for collaborating with Israeli intelligence would face execution in the near future. While the statement did not explicitly link the latest arrests to the recent assassination of senior Hamas militant Mazen Fuqha in Gaza, reports in local media claimed that the investigation had been completed and its findings passed on to Hamas leader Yahya Sanwar.”


Newsweek: How Boko Haram Spreads Hunger Beyond Nigeria’s Borders

“In February, the United Nations declared a famine in South Sudan and said Nigeria, Yemen and Somalia were on the brink of a similar humanitarian disaster. Cameroon, a country of 22 million people, is suffering because of its proximity to Nigeria. The Boko Haram conflict has displaced nearly 2.5 million people across the four countries around Lake Chad, and 7.1 million people are considered by the United Nations to be ‘food insecure.’ Cameroon hosts around 85,000 Nigerian refugees and nearly 200,000 internally displaced people (IDPs)—Cameroonians forced from their homes by the conflict spilling over from Nigeria. Hunger and armed conflict are very much linked,’ says Manuel Fontaine, director of emergency operations at UNICEF, the U.N. children’s agency.”


Politico: Germany Suspends Migrant Returns To Hungary

“Germany has stopped sending migrants back to Hungary until it can be sure that those transferred ‘will be dealt with according to European procedures,’ a spokesperson for the German interior ministry said Tuesday, according to BFMTV. ‘Without such assurance,’ the spokesperson said, ‘there would no referrals until further notice.’ Hungary, which recently began to detain migrants in camps on its border with Serbia, was widely criticized by human rights groups which believe the measures violate international and EU law.”

The New York Times: Explosions Hit Borussia Dortmund’s Bus In Germany, Wounding A Player

“As many as three explosions damaged the bus of one of Germany’s most storied soccer teams as it headed to its stadium in Dortmund on Tuesday, wounding one player and forcing postponement of the match, an important playoff in a major European championship. The Dortmund police chief, Gregor Lange, said at a late-night news conference that ‘we assume it was a targeted attack’ on the Borussia Dortmund team. The wounded player, Marc Bartra of Spain, was undergoing surgery on his right wrist, a spokesman for the team said. Hans-Joachim Watzke, Borussia Dortmund’s chief executive, said that ‘three explosive devices’ had detonated near a hotel outside Dortmund where the players were staying.”


The New York Times: Sweden’s Wisdom On Terrorism

“Each terrorist attack tests anew the values of openness and tolerance essential to free societies. Stockholm became the scene of another such attack on Friday when a barreling truck was turned, yet again, into a deadly weapon. This time four were killed and 15 were injured. Though details are still being investigated, the attacker was apparently an Uzbek man who had been denied asylum and ordered to leave Sweden. This will no doubt add grist to the arguments of those — the autocrat Viktor Orban, the French right-wing presidential candidate Marine Le Pen — who conflate terrorists with immigrants in search of a better life and refugees fleeing deadly conflict.”

The New York Times: Stockholm Attack Suspect Will Plead Guilty, His Lawyer Says

“The man accused of killing four people by steering a stolen beer truck into a crowd in Stockholm last week intends to plead guilty, his lawyer said in court on Tuesday. Appearing in public for the first time since his capture, the suspect, Rakhmat Akilov, entered Sweden’s largest secured courtroom, a subterranean space in Stockholm District Court that is only three-quarters of a mile from the pedestrian street where the authorities say he rammed the truck into a crowd shortly before 3 p.m. on Friday. He was arrested about five hours later in a suburb north of Stockholm. Accompanied by a lawyer and a Russian-language interpreter, Mr. Akilov was led into court by two police officers who gripped a black belt secured around his waist.”

Combating Terror Financing

Sada El-Balad: Question In Egyptian Parliament Concerning The Countries That Finance Terrorism

“The head of the African Affairs Committee in the Egyptian Parliament, MP Mostafa El-Guindi, questioned the Egyptian prime minister about the countries that financed the terrorist attack that took place in the Coptic churches in Tanta and Alexandria. This came after Prime Minister Sharif Ismail issued a statement in parliament on the imposition of a state of emergency for three months. In his speech, he claimed that the {unnamed} countries had financed the recent terrorist operations with billions of dollars they had granted terrorist organizations. MP El-Guindi commented angrily, “You didn’t say, Your Excellency the Prime Minister, which countries were financing terrorism in our country.” The Egyptian prime minister left quickly without responding, as the deputies gathered around him.”

Veto: Egypt: State Of Emergency To Help To Drain Sources Of Terrorist Financing

“Major General Kamal Amer, Chairman of the Committee of Defense and National Security in the Egyptian Parliament, announced its approval of the {Egyptian} President’s decision to declare a nation-wide state of emergency for three months. The announcement came on Tuesday, during the Committee-prepared presentation of the state-of-emergency report before the plenary session of Parliament. Amer stressed that the work of the security forces under the emergency law helps to drain the sources of terrorist financing and sever the {channels of} communication of terrorists abroad. The Egyptian Parliament’s Chairman of the Committee on Defense and National Security noted that there is also agreement regarding the need to confront everything that threatens the stability of the homeland and acts to disrupt public security.”

Parlmany: Egyptian Parliamentarians Call To Hold Accountable Countries That Support And Finance Terrorism

“Egyptian parliamentarians claimed that the recent terrorist incidents in the country were aided by foreign countries. Some of them argued that foreign intelligence agencies were behind the latest bombings. Parliament members welcomed comments by Ambassador Hesham Badr, Assistant Foreign Minister for Multilateral Relations and International Security, who stressed that it is time to hold accountable any and all countries that support and finance terrorism. For his part, MP Mohammed Al-Orabi, the former Egyptian Foreign Affairs Minister and present member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, agreed that Egypt should take measures to hold accountable anyone who finances and assists terrorist groups. He also called to take a serious stand towards terror supporters at the international level. Al-Orabi noted that countries and foreign intelligence agencies possess accurate information pertaining to the movements of funds that support Islamic organizations which resort to violence. “The world knows very well which countries support, or at least facilitate, terrorism,” Al-Orabi was quoted as saying.”

Muslim Brotherhood

Albawabh News: Egypt: Call To Accelerate Detention And Investigation Of 10 Muslim Brotherhood Members On Charges Of Financing Terrorism

“On Tuesday, the New Cairo Prosecution, headed by Counselor Mohammed Salama and under the supervision of First Attorney General Counselor Ahmed Hanafi, issued an order to hasten the arrest and trial of 10 suspected Muslim Brotherhood members. The New Cairo prosecutor had earlier heard the testimony of the wife of Mohammed Mahdi Akef, former Muslim Brotherhood member, who is accused of financing the group. Later, it was decided to release her.”

The Seventh Day: Social Media Users Launch Campaign To Inform On Muslim Brotherhood Members

“Facebook users in Egypt uploaded posts calling to inform on Muslim Brotherhood members. This comes following the declaration of the Emergency State. The campaign pertains to Brotherhood activists who are spreading rumors to raise fears on their Facebook pages or in the streets. A post calling for ‘tattling on’ the Brotherhood urged users that after activating the Emergency Law, “you should stay positive, remove the negativity and fear from within you in order to purify Egypt from the bloody Brotherhood.” The post added “report anyone who belongs to the bloody Brotherhood who spreads rumors on Facebook pages, or in the streets. Stay positive to remove this cancer that lives among us.”


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