1. Western leaders deplore 'sham' referendum results Ukraine and its western allies have again slammed Russian-led referendums to annex parts of Ukraine as "illegitimate" and a "sham". Pro-Russian officials in four regions of southeastern Ukraine declared on Tuesday that voters had chosen to join Russia. Widely-circulated images on social media showed armed soldiers moving door-to-door to enforce the vote. Donetsk, Kherson, Luhansk, and Zaporizhzhia together make up around 15% of Ukrainian territory -- roughly the same size as Portugal. Many countries have stated that they would not recognise the results of the hastily-organised referendums of annexation. The European Union's foreign policy chief Josep Borrell has denounced the annexation "referendums" as "illegal" polls with "manipulated" results. "Fictitious referendums. Fictitious results. We do not recognise them," added European Council President Charles Michel. Ukraine 'referendums': Full … [Read more...] about Ukraine war: Western leaders slam ‘referendum’ results and four other key stories
Syria declares war on turkey
A former Australian army major general has warned China could attack US resources in a similar way to the infamous surprise attack on Pearl Harbor in World War II. Liberal Senator Jim Molan believes it's possible China could achieve its twofold objective of removing American influence from the western Pacific and bringing Taiwan into its control by attacking US resources in the region. 'Having removed America from the Western Pacific they say to Taiwan, well, Taiwan, what are you going to do now? Are you going to fight on without the Americans backing you up? Of course they're not,' Mr Molan told Sky News Australia . He then went on to warn that Australia should be very careful about its commitment to the United States if such a scenario eventuated. 'Whatever it will be that war will be high technology, it will be sharp, it will be fast – and we won't have a clue that it's coming,' he said. Jim Molan (left) says China may target US resources in a … [Read more...] about ‘We won’t have a clue it’s coming’: Ex-army general Jim Molan’s chilling warning on a war with China
German federal prosecutors have charged a suspected member of the so-called Islamic State (IS) group with crimes against humanity. The German woman -- only identified as Nadine K. -- is accused of joining IS and having a Yazidi slave. She has been charged with aiding and abetting genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity, prosecutors said on Wednesday. Authorities claim that she travelled to Syria with her husband in December 2014 and joined IS there. The couple allegedly moved to the Iraqi town of Mosul in 2015 and raised their daughter in line with IS ideology. Prosecutors say the couple stored hand grenades, assault rifles and explosives in their house and also set up a reception centre for single female IS members. Since 2016, they also allegedly kept a Yazidi slave at their home. The couple forced the slave to observe Islamic rites, perform household chores, and take care of the children without pay, prosecutors said in a statement . … [Read more...] about German woman charged with crimes against humanity and IS membership
A German suspect member of the Islamic State is facing charges of war crimes after federal prosecutors accused her of letting a young girl die of thirst. Identified only as Jennifer W, the 27-year-old joined IS in Iraq in September 2014 after travelling there through Turkey and Syria. She quickly rose through the ranks of the organisation, German prosecutors said on Friday. It added that in 2015, Jennifer W and her husband bought a five-year-old girl and used her as a household slave in Mosul, northern Iraq. The girl later "fell ill and wet her mattress" and W's husband chained her up outside in the heat and let her die of thirst as punishment. “The accused allowed her husband to do so and did nothing to save the girl,” prosecutors said. The charges were laid in December in a Munich court that processes state security and terrorism cases. W is said to have been recruited by an IS morality squad and that she monitored women in Fallujah and Mosul. "Her … [Read more...] about German suspect member of Islamic State let ‘slave girl die of thirst,’ prosecutors
The backlog of asylum applications in the Netherlands is almost as high as during the 2015 refugee crisis, according to new data. Figures from Eurostat show that the Dutch immigration service has not yet responded to almost 30,000 asylum seekers. A total of 29,460 asylum applications to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) are pending, Eurostat noted. This is only 180 applications fewer than the backlog in 2015, even though the number of new applications in 2022 is much less. Martijn van der Linden, a spokesperson for the Dutch Council for Refugees, said they were "very concerned" about the impact of the backlog on refugees and asylum seekers. "On paper, the Netherlands has a lightning-fast, careful, and efficient asylum policy that is admired by other European countries, but due to the lack of structural funding, the IND had to reduce costs and dismiss staff shortly after the refugee crisis in 2015," van der Linden told Euronews. … [Read more...] about Backlog for Dutch asylum applicants as high as during the 2015 migrant crisis
The jihadi husband of a German woman who is currently standing trial for letting a 5-year-old Yazidi girl die of thirst has been arrested in Greece, his lawyer confirmed to Euronews. Serkan Alkan says Taha A., who is an Iraqi citizen and suspected member of the so-called Islamic State (IS), has been arrested and is likely to face extradition to Germany to stand trial alongside his wife where “of course he faces a life sentence”. Under international law, war crimes can be tried in any jurisdiction regardless of where the crime took place or the nationality of the alleged perpetrator or victim. Jennifer W. is on trial in Munich charged with committing murder and of murder as a war crime as well being a member of a terrorist organisation. The 27-year-old, who cannot be named in full due to German privacy laws, is accused of "purchasing" the Yazidi child and her mother, a co-plaintiff in the trial, as household "slaves" whom they held captive while living in … [Read more...] about Exclusive: Militant fighter suspected of letting Yazidi girl ‘die of thirst’ arrested in Greece
Ukrainian gunners destroyed two Russian howitzers, as purportedly can be seen in footage released by Ukrainian military officials. The video begins by showing what appear to be Russian military vehicles hiding in a forested area before they are repeatedly hit by Ukrainian ordnance. They eventually explode in a large fireball, with a plume of black smoke rising into the air as the footage ends. It is unclear where exactly in Ukraine the images were filmed, but they were obtained Monday from the Command of the Airborne Assault Troops of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, along with a statement saying: "Artillerymen of the Ukrainian Air Assault Forces and the Land Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine destroyed two units of 152-mm self-propelled howitzers. "Soldiers of the artillery units of the Airborne Assault Forces and the Ground Forces of the Armed Forces of Ukraine continue to destroy the Russian invaders in close cooperation. "Thus, the video recorded how defenders of Ukraine … [Read more...] about Watch: Ukrainian gunners reportedly destroy 2 Russian howitzers
Germany is on the frontline of controversial debate that has put European governments in a quandary – whether to recognise child marriage. The dilemma is a legacy of Europe’s migration influx, which has seen more than a million refugees and migrants arrive in Germany over the last two years. Denmark and The Netherlands have also been grappling with the issue, which UNICEF claims can lead to a lifetime of deprivation and disadvantage, putting the child at greater risk of falling pregnant early, dropping out of school and being in a violent relationship. There were 1,475 married children living in Germany last summer, according to official figures , but some NGO s say this figure could be much higher. Terre Des Femmes ( TDF ) says around a quarter of the children were assumed to be under 14, with one, a 13-year-old pregnant girl, thought to have married at 11. What should Germany do over #childmarriage among refugees? #Germany #Refugees — … [Read more...] about Refugee brides: what should Germany do about its child marriage problem?
This is an edition of The Atlantic Daily, a newsletter that guides you through the biggest stories of the day, helps you discover new ideas, and recommends the best in culture. Sign up for it here . “No one can predict how a revolution starts,” the Iranian American poet and author Roya Hakakian writes this week in The Atlantic . And make no mistake, she told me in an interview yesterday: The wave of protests now sweeping Iran is a revolution. After 22-year-old Mahsa Amini died in police custody following her arrest for improperly wearing the hijab earlier this month, Iranian men and women have filled the streets and set fire to the head coverings that have, for many, come to represent a collective loss of freedom since they were made mandatory following the 1979 revolution. I spoke with Hakakian about Iran’s “Ukrainian moment”—and about what comes next. But first, here are three new stories from The Atlantic . Is this the beginning of the end of the internet? … [Read more...] about ‘I Think the Women Are Winning’
By Mike Wendling Published 20 hours ago Share close Share page Copy link About sharing Related Topics US Capitol riots Members of the Oath Keepers, a far-right militia group, are on trial in one of the most high-profile cases stemming from the 6 January 2021 attack on the US Capitol. The group's leader, Stewart Rhodes, is charged, along with four others, with seditious conspiracy - plotting to oppose the transfer of presidential power. All have pleaded not guilty. Here's what you need to know about the case. Who are the Oath Keepers? A pro-gun, anti-government group launched in 2009, the Oath Keepers began with a rally in Lexington, Massachusetts - site of one of the first battles in the Revolutionary War. Its founder, Mr Rhodes, is a former US Army paratrooper who studied at Yale Law School and was once an aide to libertarian Republican congressman Ron Paul … [Read more...] about January 6th Capitol riot: Who are the Oath Keepers and why are they on trial?