Sunday, January 1, 2017

Istanbul Reina nightclub gun attack

Police are still looking for the suspect who opened fire in the well-known Reina nightclub in Istanbul’s Besiktas district.
600 people were thought to have been inside the club at the time of the attack. The Hurriyet newspaper cited witnesses as saying the attacker shouted in Arabic at Reina.
We were having fun. All of a sudden people started to run. My husband said don’t be afraid, and he jumped on me. People ran over me. My husband was hit in three places,” one club-goer, Sinem Uyanik,
A manhunt for the terrorist is underway. Police have launched operations. We hope the attacker will be captured soon,” said Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu.
At least 15 of the 39 people killed were foreigners, and four of the 69 injured are said to be in serious condition.
Nationals from Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Lebanon, and Libya are said to be among the victims, according to Turkish officials.
While the Belgian Foreign Ministry reported on Twitter that it fears one of the deceased may be from Belgium. An Israeli national Leanne Nasser, aged 19, and three Jordanians have also been confirmed dead.
According to officials, the attacker used a “long-range weapon” to “brutally and savagely” fire on people.
The suspect escaped the scene by changing clothes at the club after the attack, according to reports on Turkish media.
There have also been rumors that there was a second attacker, but officials are now just talking about one terrorist.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the attack.
Erdogan has dubbed the New Year’s Eve shooting spree that left 39 people dead at an Istanbul night club “dirty games,” vowing Turkey will fight to the end against all forms of terrorist attacks. A manhunt for the attacker is still ongoing.
They are trying to create chaos, demoralize our people, and destabilize our country with abominable attacks which target civilians,” Erdogan said in a statement, adding “we will retain our cool-headedness as a nation, standing more closely together, and we will never give ground to such dirty games.
As a nation, we will fight to the end against not just the armed attacks of terror groups and the forces behind them, but also against their economic, political and social attacks,” he promised.
The news received a strong international response, as world leaders, including those of Poland, Iran and Greece, condemned the attack.
It’s hard to imagine a more cynical murder than the killing of peaceful people amid a New Year celebration. But the concepts of human morals are absolutely alien to terrorists. Our common goal is to resolutely rebuff the terrorists’ aggression,” Russian President Vladimir Putin said.
US President Barack Obama has offered to help Turkey with the investigation, according to a White House statement.
The owner of the Reina’s nightclub, Mehmet Ko├žarslan, claimed that extra security measures had been taken prior to tonight’s incident after the club received a warning about a possible attack. He said that the information had come from US intelligence services.
“US intelligence warned about such an attack about one week or 10 days ago – and measures were taken, including [on] the sea front. And look what has happened,” Ko├žarslan told Turkish daily Hurriyet.
I have a bad news from Turkey. We have lost two Indian nationals in the Istanbul attack. Indian Ambassador is on way to Istanbul. /1
The victims are Mr.Abis Rizvi son of former Rajya Sabha MP and Ms.Khushi Shah from Gujarat. /2

Smog in northern China

More than 200 flights have been canceled today in Tianjin, Beijing’s next door metropolis, due to heavy smog in northern China, according to Reuters. At least 24 flights were also canceled at Beijing’s main airport, and all buses from it to neighboring cities have been suspended. A total of 24 Chinese cities have been put on red alert due to serious air pollution, state-run Xinhua news agency reports, adding that 21 metropolises and cities have issued orange alerts for air pollution, the second worst level out of four. The latest bout of air pollution is expected to persist until Thursday

ISIS claims responsibility for attack in southern Iraq

Seven policemen were killed and 17 injured when militants struck a police checkpoint in the city of Najaf in southern Iraq on Sunday. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the attack, saying four of its supporters had opened fire on the officers before setting off suicide vests. That assault was followed shortly by a fifth attacker, who blew himself up in his car. However, Iraqi authorities say the attackers came in two cars, the first of which exploded after being stopped for an inspection. The occupants of the second car were killed while trying to make a getaway. Najaf is considered the third holiest city for Shiite Muslims, whom the hardline Sunni jihadist group considers infidels.

AAP convenor demands an impartial probe

AAP convenor demands an impartial probe and white paper on the demonetisation mega scam
  • Prime Minister shying away from telling the country what has been achieved through demonetisation
  • People of the country going through hell since 50 days

Aam Aadmi Party national convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday demanded an impartial inquiry and a white paper on the entire demonetisation mega scam which has turned the lives of people of India into hell since last 50 days.
“We demand a thorough and impartial inquiry into the entire demonetisation mega scam and a white paper should be brought out on what was achieved and what the country lost due to this demonetisation, which led to more than 100 people losing their lives,” Kejriwal said, addressing a press conference in response to the Prime Minister’s address to the nation on new year’s eve.
Kejriwal said the people of the country have a right to know what were the objectives behind demonetisation, how far were these achieved and at what cost to the nation.
“The white paper should disclose the cost to the nation in terms of fall in GDP growth, in terms of fall in production and terms of fall in agriculture production,” Kejriwal said.
The country was hoping that the Prime Minister would atleast announce the withdrawal of 50 day-old restrictions imposed on taking out your own money deposited in banks, in his address to the nation on Saturday night.
It was also expected that the Prime Minister will share with the country what was lost and what was gained by his decision to ban Rs 500 and RS 1,000 currency notes, the AAP convenor said.
The Prime Minister did not even mention any of the objectives last night which he had wanted to achieve when he had announced the implementation of demonetisation on the night of 8th November. People of India have been deceived in a big way and their lives were turned into hell by this decision, Kejriwal said.
Despite having forced the people to undergo through numerous hardships, the Prime Minister failed to spell out whether any of the four stated objectives of eradication of black money, corruption, crackdown on terror funding and counterfeit currency were achieved ? He failed to touch upon any of these issues simply because nothing was achieved nor was there any will to do so, the AAP convenor stated.
The Prime Minister could not mention even a single positive point that was achieved in this 50 day exercise.
Kejriwal said Demonetisation has turned out to be a mega scam and during these 50 days the country witnessed many aspects of this mega scam.
First of all, BJP and its friends were tipped in advance and they were allowed to convert their black money with active help of government agencies.
Next, BJP President Amit Shah led the party in purchasing lands across the country in cash.
The only beneficiary of the demonetisation mega-scam has been Pay TM. What was the Prime Minister’s interest in promoting Pay TM, a company in which there is Chinese investment.
It is an open secret that for 50 days there was an organised racket which arranged conversion of old currency into new.
On the one hand, where the people of the country were forced to stand in queues for days, loans of 63 billionaires worth crores of rupees were waived off, the AAP convenor said.

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