Monster Flood in Kashmir
Monster floods render thousands homeless in Kashmir
Incessant rainfall in fifty years brought total loss to Kashmir,this natural catastrophe resulted more than half million homeless and more than 500 deaths in the Kashmir region. Thousands of natives still trapped on rooftops and tourist from all parts of India stranded. Indian Army making hectic efforts to bring relief to the people of J& K. But residents in both India and Pakistan are criticizing their governments for not doing enough to help them. Indian Army is gradually shifting to from rescue to ‘relief operations’ with 215 columns deployed which have rescued 38,700 people till date, including approx 24,000 from Srinagar City alone.
In Srinagar, Army columns concentrated their efforts to cover areas of Rajbagh, Shivpura, Indira Nagar, Bemina and Tankpura. In Srinagar itself, 4000 persons were evacuated, which included Ambassador of Nepal along with a 17 member delegation and 28 member Pakistani golf team (part of SAARC team) on 08 Sep.
Deployment of Medical Teams has increased from 65 to 80 in J&K. Additional recourses being inducted include Engineer Task Forces, a Field Hospital, ‘Ready to Eat Meals’, packed milk, blankets, potable water, baby food (07 tons) etc. Approx 200 boats have been mobilized and more are underway.
Army has pressed 13 Chetak and 05 Advance Light Helicopters into service. 100 to 120 sorties are being flown daily towards the relief effort.
35 Pakistan militants killed in military airstrikes
Pakistan’s warplanes have struck three militant hideouts in a Taliban stronghold near the Afghan border, killing 35 fighters, the military said. The strikes on Wednesday morning targeted areas in the North Waziristan tribal region, where the military has been conducting a major offensive since mid-June, AP reported. The operation has so far killed over 900 militants, according to the army.
6.2 quake strikes Indonesia
A magnitude 6.2 earthquake has hit central Indonesia, in the Molucca Sea, between Sulawesi and Maluku chain of islands, according to the USGS. It was felt in the major cities of Manado and Gorontalo in northern Sulawesi, with residents reporting shakes and light tremors. A national disaster agency spokesman also told AFP that “people in Manado felt the quake and ran from their homes.” The Indonesian government ruled out the possibility of a tsunami. There were no immediate reports of damage or casualties after the quake, but the country is no stranger to natural disasters of the sort. It sits on the Pacific’s ‘Ring of Fire’, where continental plates collide, leading to quakes and volcanic eruptions.
US ‘finalizing’ new sanctions on Russia over Ukraine
Washington is drafting a new package of possible sanctions on Russia’s defense, energy and financial sectors over what it calls “intervention” in Ukraine. “The United States is finalizing measures to both deepen and broaden our sanctions across Russia’s financial, energy and defense sectors,” State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf told a daily briefing, Reuters reported. “We have tools at the ready. We are finalizing these packages, but we are going to make decisions based on what’s happening on the ground in the next few days.”
France to host conference on Iraq security on Sept. 15
Paris will host an international conference on the security situation in Iraq on September 15, President Francois Hollande’s office has said. Iraqi President Fuad Masum and leaders of regional and international powers will attend the gathering. Ahead of the conference, Hollande will visit Iraq to offer France’s support to Iraqi leaders in fighting the insurgents of Islamic State, the statement said, Reuters reported.
Polish PM Tusk resigns to take up EU post
Polish Prime Minister Donald Tusk has resigned after he was appointed President of the European Council so as to avoid a conflict of interest, Tusk told journalists, Itar-Tass news agency reported.According to the Polish constitution, a new candidate for prime minster should be submitted to President Bonislav Komorovski within the next two weeks.A new government is due to be formed by Sept. 25, although many key ministers will likely keep their positions.
Obama TV address to lay out plan for broader offensive against ISIS on Sept. 10
US President Barack Obama will address Americans on TV regarding the US government’s military campaign against the extremist Islamic State group. Scheduled for Sept. 10, the speech is planned to include notions of the threat the militants in the Middle East pose, and will inform people on the US strategy for combating radical jihadists. Ahead of his address, Obama will discuss the broader offensive with Congressional leaders. There has been no suggestion of a ground operation, but the current “limited airstrikes” campaign against the jihadist Islamic State could be expanded.
Ebola death toll reaches 2,296 – WHO
The death toll from the worst Ebola outbreak in history has risen to at least 2,296, the World Health Organization said Tuesday. In total, 4,293 cases were registered in five West African countries, Reuters said. The figures show almost 200 new deaths from the disease, as of September 6. WHO’s previous update related to September 5. The latest data also reflects the situation as of September 5 in Liberia, the worst affected country.
France to make decision on Mistral delivery to Russia ‘in late October’
France will make a decision on the delivery of Mistral-class helicopter carriers to Russia in late October, Itar-Tass quoted French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian as saying Tuesday. “The contract has been neither suspended nor terminated,” the minister said. The current situation “may be interpreted as a warning” to Russia and as a prediction of possible developments, Le Drian added. He reiterated President Francois Hollande’s statement that the implementation of the $1.6 billion contract will depend on the situation in eastern Ukraine.
New UN envoy makes first visit to Syria
The new UN special envoy to Syria began his first visit to Damascus on Tuesday to try end the three-year conflict. Staffan de Mistura arrived in Damascus after crossing by land from neighboring Lebanon, AP reported. He and his deputy, Ramzy Ezzedine Ramzy, assumed their functions at the beginning of the month. De Mistura was received by Syrian Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad. It was not clear if the envoy will meet with President Bashar Assad during his visit.
Leading Egypt Islamists get 20-year sentences over attack on policemen
The Cairo Criminal Court on Tuesday sentenced a top Muslim Brotherhood member and a prominent Islamist preacher to 20 years in prison, AP reported. Brotherhood leader Mohammed el-Beltagy, ultraconservative cleric Safwat Hegazy and two Brotherhood physicians were convicted of abducting, unlawfully detaining and torturing the two officers in a makeshift tent in the sit-in in a Cairo suburb against the ouster of then-President Mohamed Morsi, according to Egypt’s state news agency. The trial came as crackdown against top Brotherhood figures and their supporters is continuing.
Mosque roof collapses in Lahore, Pakistan, 9 killed
The roof of a mosque in Daroghawala, in the Pakistani city of Lahore, caved in on Tuesday and at least 30 people were trapped under debris, the Express Tribune reported. Nine people have lost their lives and six have been critically injured so far, it said, citing officials. Over 20 people were still stuck beneath the rubble.
Poland temporarily closes Iraq embassy
Poland on Tuesday suspended the work of its embassy in Baghdad over security concerns in Iraq, AFP reported. “Following the worsening of the security situation in Iraq, Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has decided to temporarily suspend the activities of the Polish embassy in Baghdad as of September 9,” the ministry said. The country’s consular agency in Iraq’s Irbil – the seat of the Kurdish regional government – will remain open.
S. Africa expects resumption of Iran oil imports in 3 months
South Africa is looking to resume oil imports from Iran, once its biggest supplier of crude, Reuters said. Deputy South African Foreign Minister Nomaindiya Mfeketo’s statement on Tuesday came after talks in Pretoria with her Iranian counterpart. Mfeketo hopes to resolve “sanction issues” that have blocked purchases within the next three months. South Africa, which bought around 68,000 barrels of oil per day from Iran, halted crude purchases in June 2012 because of Western pressure.
Human Rights Watch blasts Israel for treatment of thousands of African migrants
Human Rights Watch has sharply criticized Israel for its treatment of thousands of African migrants, saying it is forcing them to return to their home countries where they may face serious abuse, AP said. In a report issued Tuesday, HRW said Israeli authorities have coerced almost 7,000 Eritrean and Sudanese to return to their home countries. In response to the accusations, Israeli Interior Ministry spokeswoman Sabine Haddad said Israel was dealing with the challenge of the migrants “in a legal and appropriate way.”
Lufthansa pilots stage strike in Munich on Wednesday
Lufthansa’s pilots will walk off the job at Munich Airport for eight hours on Wednesday, AP said. The Vereinigung Cockpit union said Tuesday that pilots in Munich will walk out from 08:00 to 16:00 GMT. The strike follows two six-hour stoppages in the past two weeks. The pilots demand that Lufthansa keep paying a transition payment for those wanting to retire early, while the airline wants to cut those payments.
Flood toll in India, Pakistan rises to 400
The death toll from devastating floods in India and Pakistan rose to 400 on Tuesday, AFP reported. A rescue effort is underway in the divided mountainous region of Kashmir after monsoon rains submerged hundreds of villages. Rajesh Kumar, police inspector general for the Jammu region on the Indian side, said the toll had risen to around 200. Another 206 people were confirmed dead on the Pakistan side. Hundreds of thousands more are still stranded, some “neck-deep” in water after the deadliest flooding in over half a century, according to authorities.
3 foreigners arrested in Iran over suspect trip to Iraq
Three foreigners traveling through Iran have been detained under the suspicion of planning to join the extremists Islamic State group in neighboring Iraq, AP said. Iranian border guards stopped several travelers en route to Iraq and had “three cases of arrests,” the Iran daily on Tuesday quoted Interior Minister Abdolreza Rahmani Fazli as saying. Fazli said Afghan and Pakistani nationals were arrested. It was not clear when or where the arrests happened.
Suicide blast kills at least 12 civilians in Somalia
A suicide bomber associated with the Al-Shabab extremist group killed at least 12 people and wounded more than 20 others in Somalia on Monday, Al Jazeera reports. The attack – the most deadly move by the group since American airstrikes killed its leader last week – targeted African Union troops in the region, though it was civilians that were killed in the blast. Among the dead were four Americans.
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