• Tension: Pope Francis speaks, reveals a very threatening truth

    28/Jul/2016 // 4566 Viewers

     

    PARIS, JULY 28, 2016: (DGW) THE Catholic Pontiff, Pope Francis has revealed a very threatening truth, adjured  the world to come to grip with realities and face the naked truth considering the resurgence of terror attacks in Europe, Asia and the rest of the world.

    He said the world is at war, a war not stirred by religion but by a sudden loss of peace triggered by vested interests, love for money and resources.

    He made the disclosure on arrival in the Polish capital after armed jihadists murdered a Catholic priest in Normandy, northern France.


    “We must not be afraid to speak the truth, the world is at war because it has lost peace,” the pontiff told journalists aboard a flight from the Rome to Krakow.''' 

    “When I speak of war I speak of wars over interests, money, resources, not religion. All religions want peace, it’s the others who want war.”

    “This holy priest died in the moment of offering prayers for the church is one victim. But how many Christians, innocents, children?” Francis told journalists travelling with him. 

    “The word we hear a lot is insecurity, but the real word is war. The world has been in a fragmented war for some time. There was the one in 14, one in 39-45 and now this,” he said referring to World War I and II.

     

     


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  • Breaking News: Wave of racist and xenophobic attacks rock the UK after Brexit vote

    28/Jun/2016 // 599 Viewers

     


    In the wake of Britain’s historic Brexit vote to leave the European Union last week, U.K. police have been receiving increased reports of xenophobic and racist threats made against immigrants across the country — particularly Polish people, local officials said.

    In Hammersmith, West London, the entrance building that houses the Polish Social and Cultural Association was defaced by graffiti that read, “Go home.” According to the Evening Standard, police are investigating it as a “racially motivated” crime.

    In Huntingdon, a town in Cambridgeshire, laminated cards carrying the message “Leave the EU/No more Polish Vermin” — written in both English and Polish — were reportedly left in the mailboxes of Polish families.

    According to the paper, a Polish primary-school student found several of the same signs outside his school in Cambridgeshire on Friday morning. Police there were said to be investigating the threatening signs as a possible hate crime.

    The referendum was widely seen as a rejection by Britons of the EU’s acceptance of immigrants from war-torn regions, including Syria and North Africa. And despite assurances by those who campaigned in favor of Brexit that the vote would not affect EU citizens who already reside legally in the U.K., the vote appears to have emboldened nationalists.

    “I’ve spent most of the weekend talking to organizations, individuals and activists who work in the area of race hate crime, who monitor hate crime, and they have shown some really disturbing early results from people being stopped in the street and saying, ‘Look, we voted ‘leave.’ It’s time for you to leave,’” Sayeeda Warsi, former Conservative Party chair, told Sky News. “And they are saying this to individuals and families who have been here for three, four, five generations. The atmosphere on the street is not good.”


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  • Italy hails mafia killer's arrest as historic

    28/Jun/2016 // 482 Viewers

    Mafia boss and convcited killer Ernesto Fazzalari has been evading capture for 20 years (AFP Photo/)

    Rome (AFP) - A convicted killer who was one of Italy's most wanted mafia bosses was arrested Sunday in an operation hailed by prosecutors as a historic breakthrough in the fight against organised crime.

    Ernesto Fazzalari, 46, a fugitive for 20 years, was captured in the early hours of the morning in an apartment in a remote part of the southern region of Calabria, home to the notorious 'Ndrangheta network of criminal clans.

    Fazzalari was a leading figure in 'Ndrangheta, now considered the most powerful of Italy's crime syndicates.

    He was the second most-wanted mafia fugitive after "superboss" Matteo Messina Denaro, a suspected leader of the Sicilian mafia, Cosa Nostra.

    On the run since 1996, Fazzalari was convicted in absentia in 1999 of mafia association, kidnapping, illegal possession of weapons and a double homicide linked to a bloody 1989-91 feud which left 32 people dead in his home town of Taurianova.

    Federico Cafiero De Raho, Calabria's chief anti-mafia prosecutor, said it was hugely significant that Fazzalari had been captured on home turf.

    "Taurianova is a place where the clans control every clod of earth," he said.

    "He felt safe. That is why he was found with only his girlfriend and no bodyguard. He thought he was protected on his own turf, that he would be warned if he was in danger.

    "But no alarm came. The investigation proceeded without him hearing a whisper. In the past people were afraid to talk but now I think the situation has changed.

    "We have accountants and business people prepared to give evidence because they know there are judges and police who are on their side."

    Interior Minister Angelino Alfano said: "This shows that you cannot run from justice. These are the kind of victories that encourage and support us in the difficult but winnable fight against organised crime."

    Notoriously ruthless, the 'Ndrangheta has surpassed the notorious Cosa Nostra and the Naples-based Camorra thanks to the wealth it has amassed as the principal importer and wholesaler of cocaine produced in Latin America and smuggled into Europe via north Africa and southern Italy.

    That trade is worth billions and previous police operations have indicated that the 'Ndrangheta has well-established links with Colombian producer cartels, Mexican crime gangs and mafia families in New York and other parts of North America.

    The organisation is made up of numerous village and family-based clans based in Calabria, the rural, mountainous and under-developed "toe" of Italy's boot.

    - Fed alive to pigs -

    The name 'Ndrangheta comes from the Greek for courage or loyalty and the organisation's secretive culture and brutal enforcement of codes of silence have made it very difficult to penetrate.

    A series of arrests in late 2014 and early 2015 confirmed that the organisation had expanded its Italian operations outside Calabria by buying up dozens of legitimate businesses across the wealthier north of the country, largely to launder cocaine profits.

    The arrests also provided an unprecedented glimpse into the group's shadowy culture with police secretly filming a quasi-religious initiation ceremony in which new "wise brothers" swear an "oath of poison" in which they vow to kill themselves rather than betray a fellow clan member.

    There are dozens of 'Ndrangheta figures still at large despite regular arrests in Italy and around the world -- but prosecutor Cafiero de Raho said the most important fugitives had all been caught.

    One alleged don, Rocco Zito, 87, was shot dead in Canada in January, Switzerland arrested 15 convicted 'Ndrangheta fugitives in March and last month the owner of a popular pizzeria in the Dutch seaside town of Scheveningen was unmasked as convicted Calabrian drugs smuggler Rocco Gasperini, 73.

    Two mobsters who stayed in their homeland were arrested in January "living like animals" in a Calabrian mountain bunker with a cache of sub-machine guns, rifles and pistols.

    Giuseppe Ferraro and Giuseppe Crea were hiding from gangster enemies as well as the authorities.

    In 2013 one of their associates, Francesco Raccosta, was killed by being fed alive to hungry pigs in revenge for his assassination of a rival boss.


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  • Crackdown On Muslim Groups: Police raid 190 Mosques, flats across 60 cities in Germany

    28/Nov/2016 // 701 Viewers

     


    Police launched dawn raids on about 190 mosques, flats and offices linked to an Islamist group in Germany as the government banned the organisation, accusing it of radicalising youngsters, the interior ministry said.

    Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said the DWR 'True Religion' organization had contacted young people as it distributed Korans and other religious material, and had persuaded about 140 of them to join militants in Iraq and Syria.

    DWR made no reference to the raids on its website and did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel has faced pressure to harden her line on security after a string of attacks claimed by Islamic State across Europe and criticism of her decision to let in about 900,000 migrants last year.

    "Today's ban is not directed against the distribution of the Quran or translations of the Quran," de Maiziere told reporters.

    "Today's ban is rather directed against the abuse of religion by people propagating extremist ideologies and supporting terrorist organisations under the pretext of Islam." The group had several hundred members, he added.

    Concern over the number of migrants entering the country has boosted support for Alternative for Germany, a populist party that says Islam is incompatible with the German constitution and has siphoned off support from Merkel's conservatives.

    A spokeswoman for the interior ministry said there was no indication that DWR was planning attacks itself.

    The ban means DWR is now prohibited from taking part in information and distribution campaigns.

    De Maiziere said police actions across 10 German states were the biggest crackdown on a group since the government shut down a movement known as Kalifatstaat (Caliphate State) in 2001, accusing it of "extremist activities".

    The government has also banned five other organization accused of having Islamist-Jihadist aspirations since 2012.


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  • Spain charges suspected ETA leaders with crimes against humanity

    28/Oct/2015 // 207 Viewers

    © SPANISH INTERIOR MINISTRY/AFP/File | A Spanish judge has leveled crimes against humanity charges against five Basque separatists, including former ETA military head Mikel Garikoitz Aspiazu Rubina, aka "Txeroki" (C), pictured in a photo released by Spanish police on October 8, 2014

     

    MADRID (AFP) - 

    A Spanish judge on Tuesday charged five suspected former leaders of the armed Basque separatist movement ETA with crimes against humanity for attacks carried out by the group after 2004 which killed 12 people.

    Judge Juan Pablo Gonzalez of the National Audience, which handles terrorism cases, laid the charges as part of a probe into crimes against humanity that he opened in July in response to a complaint filed by several victims' associations.

    The investigation centres on cases of murder or kidnapping carried out by the group since October 1, 2004, when Spain's criminal code was amended to include a chapter on crimes against humanity.

    This includes the bombing of a car park at Madrid airport by ETA militants on December 30, 2006 in which two Ecuadorian men died.

    The judge said the investigation has focused on the suspected leaders of ETA during this period since they "had knowledge of the plan of the crimes that were carried out" during this period and had issued instructions.

    Among those charged were the suspected former military heads of ETA, Garikoitz Aspiazu Rubina, alias "Txeroki", and Angel Iriondo Yarza who were arrested in 2008, Aitor Elizaran Aguilar, the suspected head of ETA's political apparatus who was detained in 2009 and Mikel Carrera Sarobe, arrested in 2010. The four are being held in jails in France, where they were arrested.

    The judge also charged Jose Antonio Urruticoetxea, also known as "Josu Ternera", a veteran leader of ETA between 1977 and 1992, who has been on the run since he escaped arrest in France in 2013.

    ETA is accused of killing 829 people in a four-decade campaign for the independence of the Basque region, which straddles the French and Spanish border.

    It announced the end of its armed campaign in October 2011, but has refused to hand over its weapons or dissolve the organisation, as demanded by governments in both countries.

    ETA began a unilateral disarmament programme in early 2014, in cooperation with the International Verification Commission, an independent group of experts from various countries that has not been officially recognised by the Spanish government.

    The group is considered to be a terrorist organisation by the European Union.


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  • All-female Russian crew starts Moon mission test

    28/Oct/2015 // 163 Viewers

    © AFP/File / by Anna Malpas | The full moon rises above Washington on June 23, 2013. This "super Moon” also known as the "perigee" full moon appears about 14 percent larger and 30 percent brighter than a regular full moon, according to NASA scientists. AFP PHOTO/Nicholas KAMM

     

    MOSCOW (AFP) - 

    Six Russian women on Wednesday clambered into a mock spaceship to begin a unique experiment testing how an all-female crew would interact on a trip to the Moon and back.

    For eight days, the female volunteers will live inside a wood-panelled suite of rooms at Moscow's Institute of Biomedical Problems, renowned for its wacky research into the psychological and physical effects of space travel.

    The institute in 2010 locked six male international volunteers in an isolation experiment lasting 520 days, to simulate a flight to Mars and back.

    "Such a crew is taking part for the first time in a simulation experiment. It's interesting for us to see what is special about the way a female crew communicates," said Sergei Ponomaryov, the experiment's supervisor.

    "It will be particularly interesting in terms of psychology," said the institute's director Igor Ushakov.

    "I'd like to wish you a lack of conflicts, even though they say that in one kitchen, two housewives find it hard to live together," he added.

    The volunteers include scientific researchers, a doctor and a psychologist.

    The test period simulates a flight to the Moon and back, with the women carrying out 10 experiments covering psychology and human biology.

    Russia sent the first woman into space, Valentina Tereshkova, in 1963 but has lagged behind since. Last year it sent its fourth female cosmonaut into space, Yelena Serova.

    Serova complained of a flurry of media interest in how she would wash her hair aboard the International Space Station, pointing out that male cosmonauts did not face the same line of questioning.

    Ponomaryov called the latest experiment an effort to make up for lost time.

    "There's never been an all-female crew on the ISS. We consider the future of space belongs equally to men and women and unfortunately we need to catch up a bit after a period when unfortunately there haven't been too many women in space."

     

    - 'Beautiful without makeup' -

     

    Despite the mission being presented as a giant step for gender equality, the women -- who wore red jumpsuits -- found themselves fielding questions at a press conference about how they would cope without men or makeup for eight days.

    "We are very beautiful without makeup," parried participant Darya Komissarova.

    Her colleague Anna Kussmaul was more direct: "We are doing work. When you're doing your work, you don't think about men and women."

    Like their counterparts on the International Space Station the women will have no shower, washing with wet wipes instead.

    They plan to spend their 1 1/2 hours per day of free time watching films, reading and playing board games.

    Team leader Yelena Luchnitskaya said she expected the women to deal with any conflict.

    "I'm sure we all have the education, personal qualities and the upbringing, at the end of the day," she said.

    "So far I can't imagine what would rattle us."

    by Anna Malpas


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  • Italian military prepares for cyber combat

    28/Sep/2015 // 267 Viewers

    Attaining deep cybersecurity knowledge is essential in the ongoing war against hackers and other cyber criminals. CSC experts conducted an extensive three-month training program for a team of Italian military officers that resulted in each of them successfully passing a key cybersecurity qualification exam.
    Across the globe, enterprises and government entities – including the military – must contend with ongoing cybersecurity threats. Organizations that provide IT security are required to comply with minimum security baselines, and common standards have been established for specifying and evaluating security in IT products and systems.
    The Common Criteria for Information Technology (IT) Security Evaluation, also known as ISO 15408, is endorsed by government bodies around the world as the standard for IT security testing and evaluation. Common Criteria evaluator certificates in participating countries are issued to those who successfully complete a rigorous evaluation of their cybersecurity knowledge.
    GAINING EXPERIENCE THROUGH TRAINING
    The Italian Defence Ministry sent four of its officers to CSC’s offices in Ottawa, Canada to be trained by a team of experts from CSC’s Security Testing and Certification Laboratory (STCL). In addition to offering training, CSC provides a wide range of Common Criteria and Federal Information Processing Standards (FIPS) related services, such as consulting, feasibility assessments, evidence preparation and evaluation and testing of IT security products and cryptographic modules. A global leader in cybersecurity, CSC is the only company accredited to perform Common Criteria IT security evaluations on three continents.
    The Italian military team was familiar with basic security issues but not highly experienced in advanced cybersecurity testing and evaluation. Carlo Fabiani, a colonel in the Italian Army and director of Italian Ministry of Defence’s Information Technology Defence Common Criteria Testing Laboratory, says, “The tough challenge was to meet the different technical and professional experiences of the four visiting officers. Nobody on the team had previous experience with Common Criteria.”
    CSC’s training was initiated by Lachlan Turner, STCL’s technical director, a recognized expert in all aspects of Common Criteria. CSC senior evaluator, Changying Zhou, conducted the majority of the intensive training program in three phases, with four weeks devoted to each phase. CSC subject matter experts (SMEs) participated in the training sessions to share their knowledge in areas such as cryptography and quality management.
    The first phase consisted of the four officers gaining a basic understanding of Common Criteria and associated evaluation methods. The next phase included on-the-job training focused on handling real-world situations as well as preparing the students to take the Common Criteria evaluator certification exam.
    Phase three included additional on-the-job training that focused on areas such as penetration testing, quality processes and relevant security standards. A LAN was set up so the students could perform functional and penetration testing using cybersecurity tools such as WebGoat and Nessus.
    The training also included vulnerability analysis, an overview of quality management systems and cryptographic evaluation. The cryptography-related training included an introduction to the (FIPS 140-2), which is used to validate cryptographic modules.
    ‘COMBAT-PROVEN’ SUCCESS
    The most significant milestone of the training was that each of Italian military officers successfully passed the Common Criteria evaluator qualification exam, which was administered by Communications Security Establishment Canada, a Canadian independent third-party evaluation and certification service for measuring the trustworthiness of IT security products.
    “CSC delivered an effective training course, whose success has been ‘combat proven,’” Fabiani says. In addition to leveraging decades of cybersecurity knowledge and experience, a key to the success of the training for CSC was fostering a positive learning environment for the students. Fabiani says the CSC team was very welcoming to the Italian officers, creating a friendly atmosphere that included several social events. He says the positive work atmosphere helped the officers increase their competence level quickly.
    Another success factor was that CSC tailored the course around the particular profile of the targeted audience. After the course got underway, periodic meetings were arranged to get feedback and the course curriculum was adjusted as needed. “The CSC training team made a concerted effort to fully understand what the four officers needed and were able to clearly define the best ways to achieve the results that were expected,” he says.
    Common Criteria includes a series of Evaluation Assurance Levels (EALs) that signify the rigor of an evaluation. The level for a security evaluation that indicates rigorous assurance requirements have been met is EAL4, and that is the level the four Italian military officers were certified for as evaluators. Now, the officers are fully qualified to perform security evaluations on IT security products and services up to EAL4.
    CSC background in Common Criteria-related work spans the globe and encompasses many areas such as feasibility assessments, security evaluations and assurance maintenance. Maureen Barry, program manager, CSC, who participated in instruction in management-related areas, says, “I believe working with the Italian military on training is a real complement to all of the Common Criteria services we provide. It clearly demonstrates to our clients that we have the expertise to manage their Common Criteria evaluations.”

    Source: CSC Logo - A global leader in providing technology enabled business solutions and services.


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  • German minister concerned migrant numbers via Libya, Italy will rise

    29/Apr/2016 // 304 Viewers

     

    POTSDAM, Germany (Reuters) - Migrants should no longer be able to get to Germany and Europe via the Balkan route, German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere said on Friday, adding he was concerned refugee numbers would rise with people now coming to Italy by sea from Libya.

    "It's clear that the Balkan route is a thing of the past and no longer will or should be a place again from where people will be waved through to Germany and Austria and to the centre of Europe," he said at a joint news conference with Austrian Interior Minister Wolfgang Sobotka in Potsdam near Berlin.

    "Now the issue is alternative routes ... we are of course concerned that we'll get rising refugee numbers again as they come via Libya and Italy," he added.

    De Maiziere said he agreed with Austria that the situation at Italy's northern border should not replicate the situation on the Balkan route last year.

    Austria has said it might reintroduce border controls at the Alpine Brenner pass to keep migrants from coming from Italy and Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has said Austria's plans to build a fence there were "shamelessly against European rules".

    Sobotka said the measure was necessary to prevent the route from turning into a major corridor for migrants seeking to reach northern Europe after they arrive to Italy through the Mediterranean from Libya and other north Africa nations.

    "What we have demonstrated is that the rule of law, the essential measure for us is that we want to register people who come to Austria, that our borders are not overrun," Sobotka said.

    He added: "This border management that has been in place since February is effective and we have applied this on the border with Hungary ... and we are preparing for this on the border with Italy."

    De Maiziere and Sobotka both piled pressure on Italy to take responsibility.

    "What is happening at the Brenner border crossing lies first and foremost in the hands of Italy," de Maiziere, said, adding that on the issue of border controls, states were working together but still needed a few more days to reach a European solution.


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  • Islamic State supporters call for more holiday attacks in Europe

    29/Dec/2016 // 522 Viewers

     

    CAIRO (Reuters) - A pro-Islamic State group on Wednesday urged supporters of the jihadists to carry out attacks on targets such as markets and hospitals in Europe over the Christmas holiday period and urged Muslims to stay away from Christian celebrations.

    The threat came as European authorities have stepped up security following an attack claimed by Islamic State in which a truck ploughed into crowds in a Berlin Christmas market and killed 12 people this month.

    The Nashir Media Foundation, which backs Islamic State, posted its message online, accompanied by images of fighters with guns and knives, Santa Claus, reindeer and a Christmas tree, according to the according to the U.S.-based SITE Intelligence Group, which monitors militant groups online.

    "Their celebrations, gatherings, clubs, markets, theatres, cinemas, malls and even their hospitals are all perfect targets for you," the online message to Islamist "lone wolves" in Europe said.

    It said Islamic State would "replace their fireworks with explosive belts and devices, and turn their singing and clapping into weeping and wailing".

    The message reminded Islamic State supporters of a call earlier this month by the group's new spokesman, Abu al-Hassan al-Muhajer, who said they should also attack Turkish consulates and embassies.

    Turkey may have been chosen as a target because it has backed rebels in Syria against Islamic State.


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  • Breaking News: Syria declares countrywide cease-fire effective at midnight - President Putin announces

    29/Dec/2016 // 239 Viewers

     

    PARIS, DECEMBER 29, 2016: (DGW) A cease-fire is to come into force between the Syrian government and the rebel groups with effect from midnight (22:00 GMT), on Thursday, Russian President Vladmir Putin announced on state television a few minutes ago.

    Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said earlier that Turkey and Russia would act as guarantors under the plan.

    The two countries back opposing sides in the conflict, which has raged for more than five years.

    The truce does not apply to two of the main jihadist groups in Syria, so-called Islamic State and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly the Nusra Front), Turkish sources say.

    But it reportedly does cover the rebel-held Eastern Ghouta area near Damascus, which had been a sticking-point in negotiations.

    Earlier this month, Moscow and Ankara negotiated a ceasefire in Syria's second city, Aleppo, that led to tens of thousands of rebel fighters and civilians being evacuated from an enclave besieged by government forces.
    Previous ceasefire initiatives this year brokered by the UN, or the US acting with Russia, have quickly collapsed.

    Mr Putin announced that three documents had been signed:
    An agreement between the Syrian government and the armed opposition on a ceasefire
    Measures for overseeing the ceasefire
    An agreement to start peace talks

    He described the deal as "fragile" but he praised the agreements as the result of the work of Russia's defence and foreign ministries with Moscow's partners in the region.

    He added that he agreed with a proposal by the defence ministry to reduce Russia's military presence in Syria but made it clear Moscow would "continue fighting international terrorism and supporting the Syrian government".


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