Connect with us

World

Phuket Gazette World News: NATO troop deaths reach 100; Kidnapped Dutch couple plead in video; Freed Guantanamo inmate killed in drone attack; ‘Gaddafi land’

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published 

 on 

Phuket Gazette World News: NATO troop deaths reach 100; Kidnapped Dutch couple plead in video; Freed Guantanamo inmate killed in drone attack; ‘Gaddafi land’ | The Thaiger
  • follow us in feedly
PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news compiled by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Insurgents kill NATO soldier in Afghanistan, raising year’s toll to 100
Phuket Gazette / News Wires

PHUKET: A coalition service member was killed yesterday when insurgents opened fire at foreign troops in eastern Afghanistan, the NATO led International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) said. It raises the number of foreign troops killed in Afghanistan so far this year to 100.

ISAF said one of its service members was killed as a result of a “direct fire attack” in Afghanistan’s eastern region, which is home to the country’s capital. But because the multinational force defers the release of specific details to national authorities, no other details about the incident were available, including the exact location.

The nationality of the service member involved was also not immediately disclosed by ISAF, again per its policy. “It is ISAF policy to defer casualty identification procedures to the relevant national authorities,” ISAF said in a brief statement, giving no specific details. The alliance does also not disclose whether other service members were injured.

An ISAF spokesperson did not elaborate on the meaning of the term “direct fire attack,” but confirmed it does not refer to a rocket or mortar attack. “ISAF and ANSF are currently assessing [the] attack in eastern Afghanistan,” the spokesperson said. “It is ISAF’s policy not to discuss operational security information during an ongoing investigation.”

The death raises the number of coalition troops killed in Afghanistan so far this year to 100, according to official figures. A total of 402 ISAF troops were killed in Afghanistan in 2012, down from 566 fatalities in 2011 and 711 in 2010. A majority of the fallen troops were American and were killed in the country’s south, which is plagued by IED attacks on troops and civilians.

There are currently more than 100,000 foreign troops in Afghanistan, including some 68,000 U.S. troops and 9,000 British soldiers. Approximately 3,800 British soldiers are expected to withdraw from Afghanistan by the end of 2013, with all foreign combat troops due to leave by the end of 2014.

Last month, Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced the fifth and final phase of security transition in which coalition forces hand over control of the remaining 95 districts – including Taliban stronghold areas in the south and east – to Afghan security forces. ISAF will still be responsible for military air support as well as support in combat operations until the end of 2014.

Dutch couple abducted in Yemen pleads for help in video
Phuket Gazette / News Wires

PHUKET: A Dutch couple kidnapped in Yemen last month have made an emotional appeal in a video posted online on Monday, saying their captors have threatened to kill them within 10 days unless the Dutch government meets unspecified demands.

Journalist Judith Spiegel and her husband, Boudewijn Berendsen, were abducted from their home in the Yemeni capital of Sana’a on June 15. The couple was taken by a group of unidentified gunmen from their house in a district which houses many diplomatic missions and is regarded as one of the most secure places in the country.

In a video posted online on Monday, the couple pleads for help to prevent their execution.
“In the beginning we spoke with the ambassador and we explained to him the conditions to get out of this, and until now nothing has happened, there has been no progress,” Spiegel said.

The journalist, sitting next to her husband, said their captors had previously offered the Dutch government 10 days to find a solution but they received no response.

“Now there are again 10 days to do something. These people are armed. If there is no solution in 10 days, they will shoot us,” Spiegel warned.

Berendsen, who is employed in the insurance industry, called on people to urge the Dutch government to agree to the demands of their captors. “We are very, very afraid and there really has to be a solution and we call on everyone in the Netherlands to get the government and the embassy to agree with the demands,” he said.

The demands for the couple’s release have not been made public and no group has claimed responsibility for the kidnapping.

“Family, media, Dutch people: do something,” Spiegel said, becoming visibly emotional while her husband holds her hand.

“We need to find a way because in this way we won’t be able to get out of this. Then we’ll be here forever if we aren’t dead in 10 days. Do something everyone. Do something.”

The Dutch Foreign Affairs Ministry said it had seen the video, but provided few other details.

“The case has our full attention. We are in contact with the families, and in the interest of Mrs Spiegel and Mr Berendsen we don’t make any additional announcements [other] than asking the media to exercise restraint,” ministry spokesman Aad Meijer said.

Arabian al Qaeda’s number two confirmed dead – AQAP statement
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: A Saudi who was freed by US authorities from detention at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, only to become second-in-command of Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), has been confirmed dead, AQAP said on Wednesday.

Said al-Shehri was killed in a US.-led drone strike in Yemen, senior AQAP official Ibrahim al Rubaish said in a video statement posted online.

He did not say when the strike occurred.

Gaddafi’s old Tripoli fortress to be turned into park
Reuters / Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: Muammar Gaddafi’s Tripoli compound, the city within a city from which he orchestrated eccentric defiance of Western powers and disdain for his own people for four decades, is to be turned into a public park, Tourism Minister Ikram Abdusalam Bash Imam said yesterday.

The sprawling 6 sq km (2.5 sq mile) Bab al-Aziziya complex once housed a swimming pool, sports pitches, senior officials’ villas and gardens as well as an underground bunker, government offices and buildings belonging to the feared and pervasive security apparatus.

Some residents recall how they were too scared to look at it when they drove past to avoid harassment by security agents. But the revolution that toppled Gaddafi reduced it to rubble.

“We will soon start moving the debris from Bab al-Aziziya as well as conducting a security scan of the area,” Imam told a news conference.

“Bab al-Aziziya will be an area of greenery and we hope to start seeing the first signs of this project in two months.”

The complex was first bombed by US jets in 1986 in retaliation for the Libyan bombing of a discotheque in Berlin – but finally pulverised in August 2011 when NATO warplanes bombed it to help rebels to seize control of the capital.

Rebel fighters poured in, smashing statues, burning Gaddafi’s Bedouin-style tents and seizing weapons; the names of the brigades who captured the compound are still commemorated in graffiti sprayed all over the walls.

Within hours, ordinary Libyans also flooded through the once forbidding high concrete walls to inspect the villas, loot flat-screen televisions or simply gloat over Gaddafi’s fall.— Phuket Gazette Editors

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.



Find more SE Asian News courtesy of The Thaiger.

Broke? Find employment in Southeast Asia with JobCute Thailand. Rich? Invest in real estate across Asia with FazWaz Property Group. Even book medical procedures worldwide with MyMediTravel, all powered by DB Ventures.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

World

US President Biden reverses Trump’s policies on first day of presidency

The Thaiger

Published

on

US President Biden reverses Trump’s policies on first day of presidency | The Thaiger

Just after being sworn in, the new US President Joe Biden is reversing Donald Trump’s policies by signing 15 executive actions, principally targeting pandemic and climate change. Joe Biden, now America’s 46th President, said there is “no time to waste” as he referenced America’s battle with Covid-19.

“Some of the executive actions I’m going to be signing today are going to help change the course of the COVID crisis, we’re going to combat climate change in a way that we haven’t done so far and advance racial equity and support other underserved communities. These are just all starting points.”

Among his initiatives, President Biden signed a mask mandate for those on federal property and federal employees. He also signed an order to designate a new White House office to coordinate the response to Covid-19 while halting the process of withdrawing from the World Health Organisation. His press secretary, Jen Psaki, says his quick actions were just the beginning of many changes.

“The Day One plans were just the start of a flurry of executive actions Biden would take soon after entering office. In the coming days and weeks, we will be announcing additional executive actions that confront these challenges and deliver on the president-elect’s promises.”

President Biden signed documents to begin the process of rejoining the Paris climate accord, including revoking the permit that was granted by former President Trump to the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

President Biden stopped Donald Trump’s emergency declaration that funded the border wall’s construction and ended travel bans on some majority-Muslim countries. It was reported that he will also reverse the ban on transgenders joining the military and reverse a policy that blocks US funding for abortion programs overseas.

He also asked to extend a moratorium on housing evictions until the end of March and on student loan payments until the end of September.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

Continue Reading

Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Covid-19 travel pass to pilot on Etihad and Emirates Airways flights

Avatar

Published

on

Covid-19 travel pass to pilot on Etihad and Emirates Airways flights | The Thaiger
PHOTO: Travel Daily

A travel pass for passengers inoculated against Covid-19 or who have tested negative will be piloted on flights for Dubai’s Emirates and Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways. With the travel pass issued by the International Air Transport Association, passengers can keep control of their data and share their test results with airlines and authorities for travel.

The travel pass will be offered on selected flights from Abu Dhabi in the first quarter, and will expand the pass to other destinations of the trail is successful. Emirates is going to implement phase 1 of the travel pass in April for flights departing from Dubai.

Recently, the IATA travel pass programme has been also tested in International Airlines Group and Singapore Airlines.

SOURCE: Reuters

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

Continue Reading

World

Australia might keep borders closed throughout 2021

Caitlin Ashworth

Published

on

Australia might keep borders closed throughout 2021 | The Thaiger
Stock photo by Josh Withers for UnSplash

It might be a while until tourists can visit Australia. Borders might not be fully reopen until at least 2022. Australia is rolling out its immunisation program next month, but even if most of the population is vaccinated against Covid-19, the Australian government says it will probably wait to make sure the vaccine prevents the transmission of the virus before fully reopening borders.

Australia’s borders are only open for citizens, residents, those with family in Australia and travellers who have been in New Zealand for the previous 14 days. All incoming travellers must quarantine for 14 days unless they come from an area classified as a “green safe travel zone.”

There are currently 1,881 active Covid-19 cases in Australia, according to Worldometers. No local Covid-19 cases were reported today. Since the start of the pandemic, Australia has reported more than 22,000 local cases and 909 deaths related to Covid-19.

The state of New South Wales is a main focus for Covid-19 prevention measures at this stage and some neighbouring states have imposed travel restrictions on those from the state. NSW state Premier Gladys Berejiklian floated the idea about allowing venues in the area to ban entry to those who aren’t vaccinated against Covid-19.

“Already airlines have indicated that if you’re not vaccinated you can’t travel overseas and I think that’ll be an incentive to a lot of people… We’ll also consider whether we allow venues … make up their own rules if they have a business or run a workplace about what they feel is Covid safe.”

SOURCE: Aljazeera

Keep in contact with The Thaiger by following our Facebook page.

Never miss out on future posts by following The Thaiger.

Continue Reading
Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 days ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18 | The Thaiger
Thailand3 days ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15 | The Thaiger
Thailand6 days ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14 | The Thaiger
Thailand7 days ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13 | The Thaiger
Thailand1 week ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12 | The Thaiger
Thailand1 week ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11 | The Thaiger
Thailand1 week ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Thailand News Today | 305 infections, No happy ending for massages, Phuket quarantine mooted | Jan 7 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | 305 infections, No happy ending for massages, Phuket quarantine mooted | Jan 7

Thailand News Today | 10,000 schools closed, 900 new migrant infections, Gambling crackdown | January 6 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | 10,000 schools closed, 900 new migrant infections, Gambling crackdown | January 6

Thailand News Today | PM reverses lockdown, Southern P.D.A. crackdown, Covid update | Jan 5 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | PM reverses lockdown, Southern P.D.A. crackdown, Covid update | Jan 5

Thailand News Today | Record daily infections, Covid restrictions, British arrivals ‘on hold’ | Jan 4 | The Thaiger
Thailand2 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | Record daily infections, Covid restrictions, British arrivals ‘on hold’ | Jan 4

Thailand News Today | Pattaya restrictions, 2021’s extra holidays, Covid update | December 30 | The Thaiger
Thailand3 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | Pattaya restrictions, 2021’s extra holidays, Covid update | December 30

Thailand News Today | Covid update, Bangkok restrictions, Gold rush | December 29 | The Thaiger
Thailand3 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | Covid update, Bangkok restrictions, Gold rush | December 29

Thailand News Today | No national lockdown, Bangkok schools closed, Abortion Bill | Dec 24 | The Thaiger
Thailand4 weeks ago

Thailand News Today | No national lockdown, Bangkok schools closed, Abortion Bill | Dec 24

Follow The Thaiger by email:

Trending