Frances Martel

Frances Martel

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isis

Rumors Spread of ISIS Abduction of North Korean Couple in Libya

Rumors and online reports, led by the social media news outlet Libya Observer, claim that the Islamic State has abducted a North Korean doctor and his wife in Muammar Qaddafi’s hometown of Sirte. South Korean outlets have picked up the news, though no mainstream outlet has yet confirmed the identity of the victims or their location.

Nicolas Maduro

Cuban-Style Economic Apartheid Hits Venezuela as ‘Dollar-Only’ Trade Grows

The rapid and steady decline of Venezuela’s national currency, the Bolívar, is forcing a growing number of businesses to do trade only in American dollars, freezing out Venezuelan citizens from buying cars, renting apartments, or boarding flights offered by businesses that refuse their currency even when they can muster an equivalent amount of retail prices in Bolívars.

Screenshot

Truck Owner Behind DC Pressure Cooker Scare Apologizes for ‘Stupid’ Parking

A man whose suspicious vehicle triggered a scare on Capitol Hill on Monday has apologized for parking so close to a Memorial Day concert event with a car full of propane gas and a pressure cooker. Israel Shimeles told NBC 4 Washington that the suspicious items were taken from his food truck, and that it was “stupid” of him not to realize that police would be immediately alarmed by a car with those contents parked so close to a large holiday gathering.

Reuters

Turkish President Lashes Out at ‘Shameless’ NYT over Free Press Editorial: ‘Know Your Place’

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan used the opportunity of speaking to a think tank in Istanbul on Monday to attack The New York Times for sounding the alarm on freedom of the press in Turkey. He suggested that its criticisms of Erdogan’s use of the legal system to intimidate news outlets was “overstepping the limits of freedom,” and told the New York outlet, “Know your place.”

Sipa via AP Images

Iranian Special Forces Commander: ‘Obama Has Not Done a Damn Thing’ to Fight ISIS

Iranian elite paramilitary force leader Major General Qassem Soleimani accused the United States of having “no will” to fight the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria and blasted President Barack Obama as not having “done a damn thing” to quell the terrorist insurgency. The remarks follow news that Shiite terrorist group Hezbollah is planning to increase its presence in Iraq to combat ISIS.

AFP PHOTO / HO / AL-FURQAN MEDIA

Sunni Body Calls for Help for Palmyra as 400 Women, Children Added to ISIS Death Toll

The Islamic State’s takeover of the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, in addition to endangering a host of priceless ancient Roman artifacts, has heralded in the news of yet another massacre at the hands of the terrorist group, with some estimating up to 400 civilian women and children have been killed for having ties to the regime of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

AP Photo/Sunday Alamba

As Boko Haram Victims Accuse Each Other of Radicalization, Nigeria Moves Women to Secret Location

Women and children freed from captivity under the jihadist terror group Boko Haram are being held at an undisclosed location by the Nigerian military after accusing each other of continuing to communicate with and work for the terrorist group. Nigerian officials claim they have been relocated to an undisclosed location for more focused therapy to help them work through their trauma.

AP Photo/Fernando Vergara

State Department Warns China: Stop Building ‘Sandcastles’ in South China Sea

Tensions are rising in the South China Sea as American officials have become increasingly vocal regarding their opposition to China’s development of islands over which Vietnam and the Philippines contend China has no sovereignty. In a scathing opinion piece in state media Friday, China has responded by telling American officials to stay out of Asian affairs.

Twitter

India’s Government Denies Report ISIS Slaughtered 39 Indian Captives

Harjit Masih, a 25-year-old Indian national, returned from Iraq to his native country this week after he and 39 other Indians working in Iraq were abducted by the Islamic State. He claims he survived by playing dead after being missed in a firing squad lineup, and that his colleagues are all dead, but the Indian government is denying the report, insisting the men are still alive.

AP Photo

Boko Haram Attacks Barracks in Nigerian Regional Capital, Forcing Lockdown

Suspected Boko Haram terrorists stormed barracks in the regional capital of Borno, Maiduguri, on Wednesday night, killing three soldiers and six vigilantes, as well as injuring 12 others who successfully thwarted the attack. It is the most ambitious attempt at storming the city, formerly Boko Haram’s headquarters, since March 14, and has left the city under a 24-hour lockdown.

AP Photo/Miguel Villagran

Human Rights Watch Report Details Beatings, Torture in Chinese Prisons

A new Human Rights Watch report accuses China law enforcement authorities of dodging new government measures designed to minimize the use of torture and abuse in the police system. Police still routinely use beatings, sleep deprivation, and hanging prisoners by the walls to force confessions, the organization alleges.

South China Sea Military

US Considers Sending Military to South China Sea to ‘Assert Freedom of Navigation’

Multiple reports indicate that American military officials are considering sending forces to monitor disputed areas of the South China Sea in an attempt, as Reuters describes it, to “assert freedom of navigation around rapidly growing Chinese-made artificial islands.” The reports arrive less than one week before Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to meet with Chinese leadership in Beijing.

Reuters

President of Chad: ‘Regrettable’ Cooperation with Nigeria Hurting Boko Haram Fight

The President of Chad, Idriss Deby, visited the Nigerian capital Abuja today to meet with both outgoing President Goodluck Jonathan and President-elect Muhammadu Buhari on how to best jointly combat the looming threat of Boko Haram. Speaking to reporters, Deby lamented that cooperation with Nigeria could use improvement, and that such coordination has been a problem in the past.

Reuters

Both Libyan Governments Oppose EU Military Plan Against Migrant Smugglers

Both the legitimately elected Libyan government in Tobruk and the Islamist faction controlling the nation’s capital, Tripoli, have expressed opposition to a plan by European Union nations to use military force to combat human trafficking across the Mediterranean Sea, which has cost a record number of lives already in 2015.

Reuters

Arab Nations to Meet over ISIS Takeover of Libya

An unnamed Arab League source tells Gannett’s Defense News that the heads of state of seven Arab countries will meet with Libyan officials on May 18 to discuss possible military intervention in that nation, as the Islamic State continues to expand its influence over large swaths of the country.

AFP PHOTO / MAHMOUD ZAYYAT

Report: Hezbollah Rakes in Up to $100 Million Annually from Latin America

A new blockbuster report in Argentine news outlet Infobae claims that Hezbollah generates between $60 to $100 million dollars a year in illegal activities in Latin America, particularly in the Tri-Border area uniting Paraguay, Argentina, and Brazil. The piece echoes years of reporting warning that the Lebanese Shiite terrorist group has expanded its influence in the region.

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