UK stops arms exports to Turkey

Following Turkey’s invasion of the Kurdish regions of Northern Syria, the UK has seized its sale of arms. Since 2014, the UK has supplied £1.1 billion worth of arms to Turkey, weapons which may have been used in Syria. The decision follows sharp criticism from both the UK Labour and Green party for the government’s initial reluctance to condemn Turkey’s actions during the EU foreign affairs council on Monday. Dominic Raab, Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, told condemned Turkey’s actions stating; “This is not the action we expected from an ally. It is reckless. It is counterproductive...

‘Kurds are no angels… PKK worse than ISIS’ says Donald Trump

US President Donald Trump has defended his decision to withdraw American troops from the Kurdish regions of norther Syria, stating it was “strategically brilliant”, whilst lashing out at the Kurds in the region. Speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Trump said the Kurds were “not angels” and said the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) were “probably worse at terror and more of a terrorist threat in many ways than" Islamic State. He also commented on Kurdish militants who fought Islamic State alongside US soldiers, stating they were “not angels”. "They fought with us. We made a lot of money for them...

Clashes between Catalonian separatists and police continue

Following the sentencing of nine of Catalonian separatist politicians on Monday, the streets of Barcelona have erupted in protest for a second day, bearing witness to clashes between the police and demonstrators. The Spanish Supreme Court’s ruling on Monday, that nine Catalonian politicians were guilty of sedition, has resulted in sentences between 9-13 years for the organisation of the October 2017 independence referendum. Whilst the referendum has been deemed illegal by Spanish courts, pro-secession politicians have vowed to hold another independence referendum. They have told reporters...

British Kurds protest Turkish aggression in Kurdistan

British Kurds took to the streets of London in a mass demonstration of over 20,000 people to march against the US withdrawal of troops from the Kurdish regions of Northern Syria and the subsequent Turkish attacks on the Kurdish controlled territories. The US withdrawal from the region came on the 8 October following a phone conversation between US President Donald J. Trump and Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan. Following this withdrawal Turkish troops immediately seized upon the opportunity and launched offensive airstrikes and fired artillery at Kurdish controlled territory in Northern Syria...

Catalan separatist leaders get up to 15 years in jail

Spain’s Supreme Court plans to convict and sentence Catalonia’s separatist leaders for up to 15 years in prison, over a 2017 bid for independence, according to a judicial source. The 12 leaders would be found guilty of charges of sedition and misuse of public funds. The verdict is expected to be signed by the judges and made public next week. The charges stem from the leaders’ role in an October 2017 referendum, which led to a short lived Declaration of Independence. Spanish courts ruled the referendum to be illegal. During the trial, the leaders stated that they did nothing wrong and were...

Former South African President on trial for corruption

Former South African President, Jacob Zuma, is expected to face trial on Tuesday on 16 counts of fraud, racketeering and money laundering. The accusations specify that during his reign as President, 2009-2018, he took bribes from the French defence company Thales which was related to a 1999 multi-billion-dollar arms purchase, which he oversaw as vice president. Zuma tried in March to have his case permanently dismissed however High Court Judge Wilie Sertie ruled against him; agreeing with the prosecution that aspects of his case we "scandalous and or vexatious". Charges were first brought...

Tibetans detained before China's Xi arrives in Chennai for summit

Police have detained the chief of the Tibetan Youth Congress and 11 other students for shouting slogans demanding freedom while holding "Free Tibet" flags ahead of President Xi Jinping's arrival in Chennai today for a summit with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Photographs: Tibetan Youth Congress Gonpo Dhondup, the chief of the Tibetan Youth Congress, and the other students were detained in several locations including the airport and the highway leading to the summit venue. Photograph: Tibetan Youth Congress Earlier this week, New Delhi said changes to Kashmir's status were an internal affair...

Iraq’s crackdown on protesters kills over 100

Following a week of protests which saw the deaths of at least 105 people, Human Rights Watch (HRW) has condemned the “excessive and unnecessary lethal force” of the Iraqi military who were sent to suppress rock-throwing demonstrators. In their report, HRW called upon Iraqi officials to hold accountable members of the security forces responsible for the brutal suppression of protesters in the capital Baghdad, and several other cities. Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at HRW, writes; "For more than a decade, Iraqi governments have said they would investigate abuses by security forces...

Two killed in German synagogue during live-streamed attack

Two people have been killed and another two seriously injured during a live-streamed anti-Semitic attack on a German synagogue on Yom Kippur. The attacker, known as Stephan B, is a 20-year-old German male, who broadcast his crimes on Amazon’s game streaming service known as Twitch. Reuters notes that during his broadcast he claimed: “I think the Holocaust never happened,” he began, before adding “feminism is the cause of decline in birth rates in the West” and mentioning mass immigration. He concluded: “The root of all these problems is the Jew.” During the video, the attacker drove a van...

Turkey launches military strike on Kurdish positions

Following the US withdrawal from the region, Turkey has launched airstrikes and fire artillery at Kurdish armed forces positioned around the border of Ras al Ain, in the Kurdish regions of northern Syria on Wednesday. Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan, has defended his actions claiming he intended to eliminate “a “terror corridor” on Turkey’s southern border. The attacks were launched against the Kurdish YPG militia which Turkey has accused of being an off-shoot of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PPK), a Kurdish organisation fighting for autonomy. Prior to the attack, Kurdish-led authorities...

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