Syrian troops retake Palmyra from IS

#Syria #Russia #ISIS #Palmyra #oasiscity #terrorism

Backed by Russia air strikes and ground troops, Syrian troops completed the recapture of the historic city of Palmyra from the Islamic State on Thursday.

Palmyra, one of the most beautiful oasis city, also home to priceless cultural heritage and also the UNESCO world heritage site, had seen its fair share of war over the last few years. The city was first siezed by IS in May 2015 when the group began to systematically destroy and loot the UNESCO world heritage site’s monuments and temples. In March 2016, the city was captured by the government. However, in December 2016 the city was recaptured when the government was focused on seizing rebel-held east Aleppo.

Moscow’s support has been key in the Syrian army’s Palmyra push, and its warplanes continued to bombard IS positions inside and near the city on Thursday, the Observatory reported.

Read the full article here.

Islamic State at a new all-time low.

#ISIS #VBEIDs #Iraq #Mosul #Children #Support #war

Children and disabled should be supported, helped, protected and treated with respect.

However, Islamic State jihadists are forcing children and disabled people into explosives-laden trucks (VBIEDs – Vehicle borne improvised explosive devices) and making them drive at Iraqi security forces in Mosul.

These disabled who might not be able to hear or walk, and children are being put in the VBEIDs, and chained to the seat. There mission is to kill as many security forces possible by blowing themselves up. However, more than half of such missions fail since their drivers veer off course and attempt to hide behind structures.

As its fighters are killed off and it loses ground, the IS group has developed new brutal ways to counter-strike, including by steering hobby drones fitted witih grenades and bombs at troops and civilians.

Read the full article here.

Truck rams crowd in Berlin Christmas Market!

A massive black truck with Polish license plates ran into a Christmas market filled with revelers in west Berlin on Monday, killing 12 people and injuring 48. The even turned the holiday season in Germany into a national tragedy.

The incident was described by the White House as a ‘terrorist attack‘. It seemed very similar to the French truck assault of Nice in July that had killed 86 people and was claimed by the Islamic State.

The German officials were questioning a male suspect who was arrested several hundred yards from the site and matched a description of the truck driver. The suspect is believed to be a Pakistani national who arrived in February as an asylum seeker. If this suspect is confirmed as the culprit, then the heated debate over opening the door to nearly a million migrants fleeing from the war in Middle East, will seem to rise again and Chancellor Angela Merkel will have to provide assurance to the German people that no such incidents like this will happen in the future.

After the incident, the scene remained a horrific tableau of crushed wood, broken glass and blood. Lying near the truck was a fallen Christmas tree, its star toppled. Read the full article here.

Kindly pray for the victims and wish for them to recover soon!

Jordan kills four terrorists.

Four terrorists were hiding in a castle in the Southern city of Karak, Jordan after having killed nine people , four civilians and five police officers, during a shoot-out. The terrorists were mentioned to have automatic weapons, large quantities of explosives, weapons and suicide belts earlier, which the police seized in a hideout. However, there was no mention of the terrorists identity or which terror organization they belonged. They could have been ISIS fighters or tribal outlaws with a vengeance.

Government spokesman Mohammad al-Momani said, “When we are in a region engulfed with fire from every side you expect that such events happen.” referring to the neighboring countries.

After several hours of gunfire exchange between the gunmen and security forces, the Jordanian security forces were able to kill the four terrorists.

The castle is one of the Jordan’s most popular tourist attractions. Footage shows security forces taking groups of young Asian tourists up the Castle’s steep steps to its main entrance. Read the full article here!

ISIS bombs Church in Egypt, warns more to come

On Sunday, a peaceful Coptic cathedral in Cairo was struck by a bomb blast that killed 25 people. The Islamic state said that it had sent a suicide bomber to the chapel on the grounds of St. Mark’s Coptic Orthodox cathedral. This was the deadliest militant attack on Egyptian civilians in years.

The ISIS/ISIL identified the bomber as Abu Abdallah al-Masri. However the egyptian authorities identified the attacker as Mahmoud Shafik Mohamed Mostafa. There was no explanation given for the discrepancy. Mr. Mostafa’s family said that he was jailed and released in 2014, and that was the time when they lost contact with him. It was inferred that he was tortured in jail, which may have led to his radicalization.

The ISIS also suggested that it was prepared to single out Egyptian Christians much as it did minority Shiites in countries like Iraq and Syria. This poses a new challenge for President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi, who is already confronting the problem of economic crisis. Read the full article here.