Syria: U.S. backed Militias hit by Russian Strike

Syria is a battleground with corpses, blood and ruins for the eyes, as far as they can see.  For years we have seen horrifying images from the civil war, sprouted as an uprising and turned into a full-scale conflict. A Russian strike wounded members of the US backed militias in Syria on Saturday from Russian jets. Six of its fighters were wounded in the strike, The Syrian Democratic Forces, an alliance of Khurdish and Arab militia fighting with the U.S. led coalition said.

Russia bombed a position east of the Euphrates river where it knew SDF fighters and coalition advisers were stationed- said The Pentagon. However, the jets did not injure any coalition forces.

The SDF accused Damascus of trying to obstruct the fighters, and that “such attacks waste energies that should be used against terrorism… and open the door to side conflicts”, it said. The attacks by Russia backed Syrian army and U.S. supported SDF have at times raised fears of clashes, which may result into greater tension between the world powers. 

Russian military request to strike an area in the province of Deir Ezzor, as they were coalition advisers and US backed Syrian forces there. Bu the Russians decided to carry out the strike anyway.

Ahmed Abu Khawla, the commander of the SDF’s Deir al-Zor military council, said Russian or Syrian fighter jets flew in from government territory before dawn on Saturday. 

The warplanes struck as the SDF waged “heated and bloody battles” in the industrial zone on the eastern bank, seizing factories from Islamic State militants, he said. 

Both the U.S. led coalition and Russia are battling in ISIS in Syria, but they are on two very different sides of the civil war. The United States and its allies support some anti-government rebel groups in their fight to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. And Russia backs his regime.

Sources: Reuters, CNN

Aung San Suu Kyi has a “last chance” to halt military attack: UN

Nobel Peace Prize winner and the de facto leader of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi has a “last chance” to halt military attack that is forcing hundreds of thousands of Rohingya to flee abroad, said the United Nations.

After the fresh outbreak of violence at the end of August, over 400,000 Rohingya Muslims have fled western Rakhine state into Bangladesh. On 25thAugust, the Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army (ARSA), an armed rebel group of fighters launched attacks on more than 25 military and boarder police killing a dozen Burmese Security Personnel. Rohingya who fled Myanmar say the militants responded to the ARSA attack with a brutal campaign, burning villages and attacking civilians to drive them out.

United Nations Secretary Antonio Guterres told BBC that unless Aung San Suu Kyi acted now, the tragedy will be absolutely horrible. Guterres’ warning came out after Bangladesh said that it is limiting the movement of more than 400,000 Rohingya who have fled Myanmar. The Bangladeshi police said that Rohingya would not be allowed to travel outside their allocated homes, not even to live with their family.

The Rohingya Crisis is set to appear as a key issue at the UN General Assembly in New York, where world leaders are gathering for meetings. Aung San Suu Kyi is skipping an appearance at the meeting. She claimed that the crisis is being distorted by a huge iceberg of misinformation that is promoting the interest of terrorists.

Sources: BBC, Press 24

Typhoon Talim rips across Japan

As typhoon Talim made landfall in southern Japan on Kyushu Island, forcing hundreds of flights alongside the timely bullet trains to be canceled. All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines canceled 225 flights and 151 flights, respectively.

Bullet trains have been suspended between Kyushu’s Kumamoto and Kagoshimachuo since today morning.

The Japanese Meteorological Agency issued its strongest warning for heavy rain, flooding, and high waves.Typhoon Talim is the 18th Typhoon of the season, which has earlier made landfall in China and led to the displacement of 200,000 people earlier this week. The name of the typhoon “Talim” comes from a Tagalog word which means “cutting edge”. Currently, the speed of the Typhoon is around 180kph alongside its center.

The typhoon is forecasted to batter western Japan, with rough weather affecting the entire nation including its capital Tokyo. It would gradually fade out till tomorrow evening, after hitting the northernmost island of Hokkaido. Since tomorrow is a public holiday in Japan as people will offer respect for the aged day, it will also help them to recover from the impact of the typhoon quickly.


Sources: Indian ExpressJapan Times

Chandrakant Kavlekar booked by ACB in DA case

After filing a case against Chandrakant Kavlekar, leader of opposition in Goa Assembly, the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) has booked his wife, Savitri for abetting the crime in the Disproportionate Assets (DA) case.

The ACB conducted raids at three of Kavlekar’s residences and offices at various places including in Betul.

The ACB released a statement that said that Kavlekar has combined wealth in the form of movable and immovable properties within and outside the state of Goa.

“It was also revealed that Kavlekar has purchased around 14 different landed properties worth Crores of rupees in the State of Kerala. He has not even disclosed the details of properties purchased by him in the state of Kerala in his Asset 84 Liability Statement submitted before the Institution of Goa Lokayukta during the period from the year 2013 to 2015,” read the statement.

According to the statement, Kavlekar amassed disproportionate assets of Rs 4,78,58.471, which was 59.21 percent above their known source of income. This was during the check period from January 2007 to April 2013, when Chandrakant was serving as the chairman of the Goa industrial development corporation (GIDC).

He has been booked under Prevention of Corruption act of 1988- section 13 (2) r/w 13 (1) (e) and under the Section 109 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Kavlekar is a three-term member of the Goa Legislative Assembly and represents the Quepem constituency and earlier in the day ACB filed a FIR against him in the said case.

Sources: ANI, Business Standard

Chief litigant of Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid case Bhaskar Das passes away

The head seer of Nirmohi Akhada and the chief litigant in the Ram Janmbhoomi-Babri Masjid case, 89 years old Mahant Bhaskar Das died due to brain stroke in Ayodhya. The seer was a petitioner in the case since 1959 in which the Nirmohi Akhada had filed a claim for the ownership of the Ram Janmboomi land. With his death, both the chief litigants from both the sides – Hindu and Muslim have passed away. Hashim Ansari, the main litigant of the Muslim side had passed away in July 2016, at the age of 95 years. Das’ disciple mahant Ram Das is likely to take over as the chief litigant of the case.

On September 12, Das was admitted to a private medical facility after he complained of breathing problems. According to the Hindu, the seer was advised to be taken to a super-speciality hospital either in Lucknow or Delhi but he refused to leave Ayodhya.

Several local BJP and RSS leaders including former UPCC president Nirmal Khatri paid their homage to the seer. As a mark of respect, all shops in the Hanumangarhi area in Ayodhya have shut their business for the day.

The final rites and cremation would take place on September 16 at the Tulsi ghat in Ayodhya.

 Sources: The Hindu, India Today

Modi inaugurates Sardar Sarovar Dam on his 67th Birthday

After many controversies and protests, Sardar Sarovar Dam was inaugurated today on the Narmada river by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his the occasion of his birthday.

The project would help take water to the Indo-Pak border in Gujarat, 700 km from the dam site, to fulfil the water needs of BSF soldiers, besides benefitting states like Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra.

Besides Gujarat, the Narmada canal will also irrigate 2,46,000 hectares of land in the desert districts of Barmer and Jalore of Rajasthan.

The dam became a reality today in Kevadia, Narmada district after 56 years, when its foundation was laid by former prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru on April 5, 1961.The project was mired in many controversies and faced impediments from pro- and anti-dam activists, till finally the Supreme Court gave the nod for its construction in 2000.
The apex court, on October 18, 2000, in a 2-1 majority judgement, allowed construction of the dam up to the height of 138 metres subject to completion of the rehabilitation process. However, despite the court verdict, the construction of the dam continued to face hurdles on rehabilitation issue.

Meanwhile, miles away from the inauguration of the dam, thousands of people took part in ‘Jal Satyagraha’, a protest that requires standing barefoot in water. This was led by Narmada Bachao Aandolan founder Medha Patkar to raise the issue for the 40,000 families who will be displaced since their home will be submerged.

Sources: Economic Times, NDTV

Image Source: PIB

Iceland Prime Minister Benediktsson resigns

Iceland’s President accepted the resignation of its Prime Minister Bjarni Benediktsson. Now the new elections are scheduled to take place on November 4. The Prime minister lost his nine month coalition after one party withdrew over an attempt to help a convicted pedophile.

A small party named Bright Future left the coalition, causing the government to loose the numbers. This was after the emergence of a letter urging a pardon for Hjalti Sigurjon Hauksson. He was convicted of raping his daughter almost every day in 2004. Under the laws of this volcanic island, a person convicted of a serious crime can apply to restore his honour and get employment.

Benediktsson said that some of the Iceland laws were completely out of sync with modern values. He recently took office in January after uniting his Independence Party, Reform Party and centrists. The former Prime Minister had resigned due to protests over his offshore holdings that were revealed in the Panama Paper leak. Even Benediktsson was named in the Panama Paper as having a stake in a Seychelles based company.

Iceland is a small volcanic island in the Arctic circle which faced a financial crisis in the year 2008. But now is flourishing due to a surge in tourism.

News Source: TOI, Fox News 

Image Source: Reuters