United States continue bombing everyone, especially in Iraq and Syria [CENTCOM - 26/8/16]



As part of the settlement agreement which was reached to evacuate Daraya city in the Western Ghouta of arms and militants in preparation for the return of state institutions and families to it, the implementation of the first phase of the agreement started, including evacuating part of the people to temporary housing centers in Damascus countryside and 300 militants with their families towards the city of Idleb.

SANA reporter to the city of Daraya said that most of the people numbered 4000 will be relocated to temporary housing centers which the governorate of Damascus Countryside had prepared and provided them with all basic supplies.

A field commander told reporters from inside Daraya city that the city will be empty from militants on Saturday, pointing out that 300 militants along with their families will be getting out of Daraya towards Idleb city while the rest of them will get out of the city tomorrow. ... [SANA - 26/8/16]



‏@Fotomovimiento [26/8/16]:  Under the #UN office in #Oraiokastro camp: "We are not caged animals, WE ARE HUMANS". ...


@Fotomovimiento [26/8/16]:  "UN We are tired of your empty promises..!!" ...



Central Mediterranean: MSF condemns attack on rescue vessel [Media Release - 25/8/16]



Israel sold weapons to Argentina at height of Falklands War, reveal declassified Foreign Office files srael sold weapons to Argentina at the height of the Falklands War in 1982, according to newly declassified Foreign Office files.

British diplomats cited evidence that Israel had supplied the Argentine military junta with arms that were used against the Task Force during the campaign to liberate the islands.

Israeli military exports before the war included the Skyhawk jets that would later be used to bomb British warships, killing dozens of soldiers, sailors and marines. ... [Telegraph - 24/8/16]



La Perla trial delivers justice for Córdoba [Buenos Aires Herald - 26/8/16]



... When we were inside, all the prisoners would say that whoever managed to get out of there alive had the duty to denounce what happened to us and testify in the streets.

And that is what I’m doing now, for the memory of my partner and the others who disappeared. ... [Buenos Aires Herald - 25/8/16]



Day 160 refugee protests, Nauru



Image: ‏@elahe_zivardar [26/8/16]



Danish MP says he wanted to keep tour of concentration camp secret because of UNHCR protest [RNZI - 26/8/16]:


A Danish parliamentian planning to visit Nauru says the study tour of Australia's asylum seeker detention centre was meant to be kept secret.

Martin Henriksen said the trip of the six-party parliamentary delegation had been long in the planning and was to be made public after the MPs' return.

He told Radio24syv that he had been advised that during a recent visit of a United Nations delegation to Nauru people committed self-harm and died.

The travel plans were reportedly instigated at the behest of the Danish People's Party which wanted to study the Australian policy of processing asylum seekers abroad.

Observers in Denmark said it was problematic for a parliamentary delegation to use public funds for a trip which was not declared in advance.

Amnesty International in Denmark said the reason put forward for the trip's secrecy showed what was wrong about going to Nauru.



Refugee concentration camps and exile are Shorten's personal ALP policy. 100%  He, Michael Gordon and Russell Broadbent MP are full of shit.  ALP helps LNP lock in offshore detention [ABC - 24/6/15]



Turnbull and Dutton are under no pressure to do anything while they are covered by the ALP, and simply following their anti-refugee policy.  I urged Gillard to challenge Rudd: Bill Shorten [Sydney Morning Herald - 29/6/2010]



The Gillard government's offshore dumping policy [Project SafeCom]



Children can say no: Former ADF commander tells Royal Commission into child sex abuse [Nine MSN – 26/8/16]



A former high-profile Sydney oncologist who admitted to drugging and indecently assaulting a female registrar has been sentenced to a minimum of two years and three months in jail. ... [ABC - 26/8/16]



A second person has died from injuries sustained when two bombs exploded earlier this week at a hotel in Thailand's southern coastal town of Pattani, officials said on Friday.

The attack late on Tuesday at a hotel in Pattani, one of three Muslim-dominated provinces in the country's south, followed a string of bombings and arson attacks across seven provinces in Thailand's central south that killed four people and targeted tourist spots.

Police and Thailand's ruling junta have ruled out links between Tuesday's attack and the tourist-town bombings. ... [Reuters - 26/8/16]



A local Japanese governor on Friday asked Kyushu Electric Power to temporarily suspend the Sendai nuclear plant, one of two operating in the nation, further clouding efforts by the government and utilities to restart more idled reactors.

Anti-nuclear advocate Satoshi Mitazono, who was elected governor of Kagoshima prefecture last month, called on Kyushu Electric to re-examine safety and safety measures at its facility in southwestern Japan, raising concerns about a series of strong quakes that struck neighboring Kumamoto in April. ... [Reuters - 26/8/16]



Malaysian students plan rally on Saturday to call for arrest of 'Malaysian Official 1', said to have received 1MDB funds [Asia One - 26/8/16]



The New South Wales Police Service has spent millions of dollars defending four officers involved in the tasering death of Brazilian student Roberto Curti.

New figures obtained under Freedom of Information laws show the police service spent $1.2 million in legal fees to represent the four officers at the coronial inquest into Mr Curti's death, as well as their subsequent criminal trials. ... [ABC - 26/8/16]



Gunmen ambush police, kill six in South West Pakistan [The Indian Express - 26/8/16]



Bolivian government confirms Minister beaten to death by miners [teleSUR - 25/8/16]



Artists and intellectuals publish letter condemning impeachment process against suspended Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff [teleSUR - 25/8/16]



Palestinian police arrest 1, concluding deadly manhunt for Nablus shooters [Maan - 26/8/16]



The EU Missions in Jerusalem and Ramallah issue a Statement regarding the death in custody of detainee Ahmad Ezz Halaweh saying that the EU gravely concerned by the death in custody of detainee Ahmad Ezz Halaweh, allegedly at the hands of members of the Palestinian Security Forces, on 23rd August. ... [PNN - 26/8/16]



Israel military clears itself of wrongdoing over 2014 Gaza air strikes [Independent - 25/8/16]



Israeli naval forces detained a Palestinian fisherman early Thursday after heavily opening fire at his boat off the coast of the northern Gaza Strip, according to Palestinian sources, while Israeli sources told Ma’an a Palestinian fisherman was taken for medical treatment after being wounded by Israeli live fire. ... [Maan - 25/8/16]



Animals from Gaza's Khan Yunis zoo transferred to Israel and other countries [Maan - 25/8/16]:


... The recent transfer was the last group of animals that were set to be relocated from the Khan Yunis zoo, marking its permanent closure.

Head of COGAT in Gaza Uri Madar said that the zoo was closed because the administration in Gaza was not able to care for the animals, adding that during the past two years more than five lions, horses, and other animals had been transferred to zoos outside of the besieged enclave. ...



Palestinian prisoner Bilal Kayid suspends hunger strike after 71 days [Maan - 24/8/16]



Israeli forces kill Palestinian near Nablus after alleged stabbing attack [Maan - 24/8/16]:


A Palestinian was shot dead by Israeli forces Wednesday near Nablus after allegedly attempting to stab an Israeli soldier, according to Israeli sources.

An Israeli army spokesperson told Ma'an that Palestinians were "hurling stones" from a vehicle near Israel's Ariel settlement on Route 60, when Israeli forces began to chase their vehicle.

During the pursuit, one Palestinian reportedly exited the vehicle and tried to stab an Israeli soldier in the neck.

According to the spokesperson, the soldier opened fire on the Palestinian, which "resulted in his death."

The Palestinian Ministry of Health confirmed the Palestinian was killed at the scene. ...



Israel lobby smears Black lawmaker for meeting Palestinians [Electronic Intifada - 24/8/16]



A car bomb at a police headquarters in Turkey's largely Kurdish southeast killed at least eight and wounded dozens on Friday, officials said, two days after Turkey launched an incursion against Islamic State and Kurdish militia fighters in Syria. ... [Reuters - 26/8/16]



Death toll in Somalia beach restaurant attack rises to 10 [Reuters - 25/8/16]



The NATO mission, acknowledging its presence on the battlefield, has confirmed an uptick in fighting over the last month in Afghanistan, specifically in Helmand and Kunduz province. ... [Pajhwok - 26/8/16]



‏@pajhwok [25/8/16]:  ... US committed to lasting peace in Afghanistan: McKinley



Explosion targets Afghan lawmaker in Balkh, 4 killed, 14 wounded [Khaama - 25/8/16]



‏@pajhwok [25/8/16]: ... Lawmaker shot injured in Herat gun attack



The Afghan Air Force (AAF) received four new light attack helicopters from the United States on Thursday as efforts are underway to boost the capabilities of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF). ... [Khaama - 25/8/16]



Can you see the war? --->  French naval contractor DCNS gets a taste of the extortion that passes for journalism down under [Reuters -26/8/16]:


Australian defense officials warned French naval contractor DCNS to beef up security in Australia, where it is preparing to build a A$50 billion ($38.13 billion) fleet of submarines, in the wake of a massive data leak, a government spokesman said on Friday.

DCNS was left reeling after more than 22,000 pages outlining details relating to submarines it is building for India were published in The Australian newspaper earlier this week, sparking concerns about its ability to protect sensitive data.

A senior Australian defense official, acting on orders from Defence Industry Minister Christopher Pyne, warned DCNS that the government was deeply concerned by the implications of the leak, a spokesman for the minister told Reuters.

DCNS is locked in exclusive negotiations with Australia to build a fleet of 12 next-generation submarines after seeing off its rivals, Germany's Thyssenkrup AG and a Japanese government-backed consortium of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Kawasaki Heavy Industries. ...



... His name is King Leopold II of Belgium.

He “owned” the Congo during his reign as the constitutional monarch of Belgium.

After several failed colonial attempts in Asia and Africa, he settled on the Congo.

He “bought” it and enslaved its people, turning the entire country into his own personal slave plantation.

He disguised his business transactions as “philanthropic” and “scientific” efforts under the banner of the International African Society.

He used their enslaved labor to extract Congolese resources and services.

His reign was enforced through work camps, body mutilations, executions, torture, and his private army. ... When you kill ten million Africans you aren't called 'Hitler' [Films for Action/WalkingButterfly.com - 15/9/13]



Feyisa Lilesa: From Olympian to symbol of proud resistance for entire community [UNPO - 25/8/16]:


... Following his gesture, the athlete might face problems if he goes back to Ethiopia, where the authorities have been violently repressing protests for months.

The protests began several months ago as peaceful demonstrations regarding development plans, before the government's harsh and ongoing response led to the death of several people.

Many in Oromia now live in fear, and gestures like the one Lilesa made are essential symbols of resistance and solidarity. 

During the protests, the government had blocked internet service and scrambled social media apps to stop people from collaborating or expressing dissent.

She said Lilesa’s feat exemplifies how fearful a lot of the Ethiopian diaspora is to speak out on this subject.

Lilesa's silent statement while crossing the finish line in Rio instantly reverberated worldwide.

Rule 50 of the Olympic charter bans political displays or protests and the IOC have confirmed that they are gathering information to better understand the case.

Ethiopia's government has said he will be welcomed as a hero for winning a medal, but state media is not showing photos of him crossing the line.

Ethiopian state-owned television station EBC Channel 3 covered the race live, including the finish, but did not repeat the clip in subsequent bulletins - focussing instead on the winner, Kenya's Eliud Kipchoge. 

Information Minister Getachew Reda told the BBC the government had no reason to arrest him and it respected his political opinion.

He also said none of Mr Feyisa's relatives had been jailed over the Oromo protests.

Lilesa’s agent Federico Rosa stated that the runner would not be returning home after staging his protest, despite Ethiopian government assurances he would not face any problems if he went back.

A crowd-funding campaign to help Feyisa Lilesa seek asylum, has raised more than $136,000 (as of time written), to the surprise of its California-based organizer, who had initially set a target of $10,000, exceeding it within an hour.  ...



 ‏@addisstandard [23/8/16]:  The ever articulate #Ethiopia/n intellectual @awol_allo talking the significance of #FeyisaLilesa's act ...



They don't want any more "visitors" McKim.


"WE ARE ASKING THE WORLD TO TAKE US FROM THE HELL"  Day 158 refugee protests, Nauru via  ‏@elahe_zivardar [24/8/16]



Men women and children are being tortured and are dying - just for seeking asylum in Australia. If the Greens were truly "giving everything they've got" they would use their platform to challenge the bipartisan policy [ABC - 26/8/16]



"To never say when we will get freedom ... a deliberate part of Australian government policy. ..."  Behrouz Boochani, a 32-year-old Kurdish-Iranian journalist detained on #ManusIsland  ‏@AJListeningPost [25/8/16]



Manus camp a human 'experiment' [New Matilda - 25/2/14]:


The Australian government is maintaining a “charade” on Manus Island by pretending to process the claims of asylum seekers when in fact the detention camp is designed to be nothing more than a deterrent to others, a former staff member has told SBS Dateline in an interview to be aired tonight.

Migration agent Liz Thompson, who was working on the island during last week’s violent attack on detainees by G4S staff, locals and PNG police tells Dateline that she was part of a team of agents employed by the Australian government to assess the claims of detainees at the centre.

She says the process she was involved in was a “farce”.

“It’s not designed as a processing facility, it’s designed as an experiment in the active creation of horror, to deter people from trying in the first place,” she tells Dateline’s Mark Davis. ...



‏@Not1_More [25/8/16]:  Families from @puenteaz rally outside ICE to demand DHS #shutdowneloy & cutthecontracts with private prisons.



@PuenteAZ [25/8/16]:  Rigo is a victim of medical neglect inside of Eloy's detention center, end the abuse! ...



‏@Not1_More [25/8/16]:  There are 4 open cases of sexual abuse in Eloy. Guards put victims in solitary instead of investigating. ...



@PuenteAZ [25/8/16]:  Solitary confinement is the worst kind of punishment, end the abuse #ShutdownEloy  



US military now says ISIS leader was held in notorious Abu Ghraib prison [The Intercept - 26/8/16]



The two CIA-contracted psychologists accused of crafting the spy agency’s so-called “enhanced interrogation program” filed a motion to compel the U.S. government to turn over documents they requested so they can defend themselves in a separate lawsuit brought forth by survivors of the torture program.

The motion, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Monday, alleged that the CIA and Justice Department had been uncooperative in supplying James Elmer Mitchell and John “Bruce” Jessen with “documents critical to their defense.”

Their request is related to a separate ongoing lawsuit in Spokane, Washington, where the American Civil Liberties Union, on behalf of three former CIA detainees, is suing Jessen and Mitchell for their alleged role in creating and implementing an interrogation program that used techniques now considered to be torture. ... [Huffington Post - 23/8/16]



US Navy ship fires "warning shots" at Iranian vessel in Iranian waters [Reuters - 25/8/16]



Report: NYPD broke "rules of intelligence gathering" after 9/11 [Democracy Now - 25/8/16]:


Meanwhile, in New York, a new report says the New York Police Department Intelligence Bureau frequently broke rules while surveilling Muslim American residents after the September 11, 2001, attacks.

The report was issued by the Office of the Inspector General for the New York Police Department Tuesday.

 It says the agency failed to offer information about the role of undercover cops and informants in intelligence gathering and let deadlines pass during investigations.

The Inspector General’s Office says the violations demonstrate the need for continued oversight of the NYPD.




Get your NYPD t-shirt at Australia Fair, Southport!



A new investigation by Bloomberg Businessweek has revealed police in Baltimore have been secretly testing an aerial surveillance system that records the movements and actions of Baltimore residents in real time from a low-flying plane.

The technology has been adapted from the U.S. military’s surveillance programs aimed at detecting roadside bombs in Iraq.

The plane is equipped with multiple cameras that can record 30-square-mile swaths of the city at a time.

The plane is the creation of the private company Persistent Surveillance Systems.

The project is bankrolled by John Arnold, a former Enron trader and hedge funder.

The plane has been circling above Baltimore since January, without the public ever being notified. [Democracy Now - 25/8/16]



“Deadly heat” in US prisons is killing inmates and spawning lawsuits [The Intercept - 25/8/16]:


... Louisiana, for instance, made headlines earlier this summer when it was revealed that the state had spent more than $1 million of public funds on legal fees in an attempt to defend its refusal to install air conditioning on death row at Angola prison — even though the air conditioning would cost only about $225,000, plus operating costs, according to expert testimony.

That astonished U.S. District Judge Brian Jackson.

 “Is this really what the state wants to do?” Jackson asked, calling the bill “stunning.”

“It just seems so unnecessary.” ...



'Propagandising for war' - Gareth Porter responds to the BBC Today programme on Syria [Medialens - 25/8/16]



Syria: Rebels losing support among civilians in Aleppo, James Foley [PRI - 16/10/12]:


... Abu Sayed has fought hard for the revolution in Aleppo, his hometown.

During the holy month of Ramadan in August, he fasted with a bullet hole healing in his thigh. He continued to fight, limping across sniper alleys on the front lines of the city.

 Eventually his family’s apartment was overrun by the regime and he began sleeping in a mosque.

Three weeks later during a mortar attack, shrapnel ripped though his neck. When he woke up, he saw his friends above him, saying, “Abu Sayed was a good man.”

When he lost consciousness again, he dreamed his 17-year-old brother, Hamdino — who was shot through the heart during an earlier protest — was holding his hand, guiding him somewhere.

He brother then stopped and told Sayed he had to go back.

As Sayed recounted his near-death experience, he smoked a cigarette and tears welled in his eyes. Patches of gauze were still taped to his neck.

“You know one of the FSA leaders from Maraa?” he asked.

“They go into the free area when there’s fighting in Salahhadin. I see them taking screens, computers, telephones, everything they can lay their hands on.”

He said he's seen civilians executed after rebels recklessly accuse them of being mercenaries for the regime.

“I saw one beaten to death,” he said.

“The FSA didn’t check their facts, and now he’s dead. I know the man. He was 46. He has five children.”

“We have lost the civilians now,” he said, exhaling smoke.



... The video shows the father, Abu-Salah, attending the auction and offering his son Khaled as a sacrifice (2nd son to "sacrifice" his life).

The father receives 1.5 million Riyals ($400,000) as future compensation for his son's demise in Syria. ... [Liveleak - 15/5/12]



‏@AssangeLegal [25/8/16]:  Formal complaint requests Associated Press carry out investigation: Satter breached AP standards in WikiLeaks story



Judge orders search of new Clinton emails for release by September 13 [Reuters - 25/8/16]



Emails show Clinton Foundation donor reached out to Hillary Clinton before arms export boost [International Business Times - 22/8/16]



UN spokesman calls Turkey's military operation in Syria "incursion" [TASS - 25/8/16]



Iran’s Foreign Ministry Spokesman Bahram Ghasemi affirmed that combating terrorist groups in Syria must be done in coordination with the Syrian government. ... [SANA - 25/8/16]




26 August 2016