Wednesday, August 31, 2016
72 MASS GRAVES REPORTED OVER 15,000 KILLED IN THE MASS GRAVES DISCOVERED AFTER ISIS HELD CITIES TAKEN OVER.
23 Thus he said, The fourth beast (EU,REVIVED ROME) shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth,(7TH WORLD EMPIRE) which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces.(TRADING BLOCKS-10 WORLD REGIONS/TRADE BLOCS)
24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings(10 NATIONS-10 WORLD DIVISION WORLD GOVERNMENT) that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings.(EITHER THE EUROPEAN UNION DICTATOR BOOTS 3 COUNTRIES FROM THE EU OR THE DICTATOR TAKES OVER THE WORLD ECONOMY BY CONTROLLING 3 WORLD TRADE BLOCS)
Turkey pledges loyalty to EU and Nato By Andrew Rettman-AUG 30,16-EUOBSERVER
BRUSSELS, Today, 10:56-Turkey’s rapprochement with Russia does not mean it will turn away from Nato or the EU, foreign minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has said.“The allegations that Turkey is turning its back on the West by normalising relations with Russia are unfounded," Cavusoglu told Greek newspaper Kathimerini in an interview published on Tuesday (30 August)."Turkey’s relationship with Russia is not an alternative to its partnership and alliance with the West.Our responsibilities and commitments toward our Nato allies and friends remain firmly in place.”“We continue to uphold our commitments to the EU, aiming for full membership and expect that the EU also does the same.”Relations with Russia collapsed last November, when Turkey shot down a Russian jet it said had crossed into its airspace from Syria.But Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan met Russia’s Vladimir Putin in St Petersburg on 9 August to mend fences after apologising for what Cavusoglu called the “undesired incident of 24 November”.The Erdogan-Putin meeting came amid fraying ties between Turkey and its Western allies.EU states and the US have criticised Erdogan’s internal crackdown after a failed coup of 15 July. Turkey has accused the US of sheltering Fethullah Gulen, an exiled Islamic preacher it says organised the coup.Turkey’s recent incursion into northern Syria, designed to push US-backed Kurdish forces away from its borders, also threatens to make matters worse.-'Threatening statements'-Cavusoglu told the Greek newspaper Athens should “take the right decision” on extraditing eight Turkish military officers who claimed asylum after the 15 July putsch, and added that EU states should expel Gulen sympathisers.“Those involved in terrorist acts … should not be able to seek refuge in third countries under the pretext of asylum requests,” he said.“We expect the support of our friends and allies in our requests for extradition and deportation of Feto [Gulenist] elements living in third countries.”He said Turkey was “disappointed” by EU remarks “questioning our legal measures” and by “threatening statements about our accession process”.He said the EU reaction had “damaged” its image in the eyes of Turkish people and could “fuel extremism”, but he said the increasing number of high-level visits by EU politicians to Turkey were “a tangible sign of the solidarity we would like to see".The minister added that if the EU wanted Turkey to keep on stopping migrants from going to Greece it should make good on its promise on visa-free travel.“Turkey cannot continue on its own to stop irregular migration toward the EU while the EU does not assume its obligations. We expect visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens at the latest in October 2016,” he said.Turkish assistance has considerably reduced the flow of people.The EU has said it will only grant the visa deal if Turkey amends its terrorist laws so that they cannot be used to harass journalists and academics, but Turkey has refused to take the step.
I wouldn't bet on Brexit, says commissioner Oettinger-By EUOBSERVER-AUG 30,16
Today, 13:32-The UK might not leave the EU if its economy tanks in the run-up to exit talks, Germany's EU commissioner Gunther Oettinger has told newspaper Bild. "It's possible that public opinion will tip if the economic situation in the wake of the Brexit vote worsens," he said. "In any case, I wouldn't place any major bets on Brexit." The UK is expected to start the talks early next year.
UK PM has no legal obligation to consult parliament on EU divorce: spokesman-[Reuters]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
LONDON (Reuters) - The British government has no legal obligation to consult parliament on triggering the formal divorce procedure with the European Union, but lawmakers will have a say, a spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May said on Tuesday.May has said she will not invoke Article 50 of the EU's Lisbon Treaty, beginning the formal two-year process for leaving the bloc, before the end of the year to allow the government time to prepare an exit strategy.Some opponents of Brexit say that since the EU referendum result is not legally binding, elected lawmakers should review the vote before the process is started but the government has insisted the prime minister has the power to trigger an exit.On Saturday the Daily Telegraph newspaper reported May would not hold a parliamentary vote before invoking Article 50."The will of the people must be respected and it must be implemented ... There is no legal obligation to consult parliament on triggering Article 50 - that position has been well set out," the spokesman told reporters, adding that parliament had overwhelmingly backed holding the EU referendum."Parliament will be involved, it will have a say, opinions will be aired."London law firm Mishcon de Reya has begun legal action to demand the British government win legislative approval from parliament before triggering Article 50. A hearing is scheduled in mid-October.The investment manager behind the legal challenge has said many British voters were fooled into backing Brexit without realizing there was no credible plan.(Reporting by Kylie MacLellan; editing by Stephen Addison)
End in sight for EU-Poland dispute, says deputy PM By Andrew Rettman-AUG 30,16-EUOBSERVER
BRUSSELS, Today, 13:11-Poland’s deputy PM has dismissed EU complaints over the rule of law as he prepares to go to the UK to try to poach City of London business.Mateusz Morawiecki told the TVN24 national broadcaster on Tuesday (30 August) that a dispute between Brussels and Warsaw over Poland’s constitutional court would be solved when the top judge steps down."I think that within several months, when the head of the constitutional tribunal leaves, this problem will disappear completely," he said, referring to Andrzej Rzeplinski, the tribunal’s president."Today [foreign investors] do not ask about this, they understand that this is an element of a political game, a paper chase, and they see the end of the escalation on the horizon.”Rzeplinski has been a fierce critic of the Polish ruling party, Law and Justice (PiS), over its attempt to install loyalists in the court and weaken its ability to vet new laws.In late July, the EU Commission gave PiS a list of recommendations to implement within three months or face potential sanctions.Ratings agencies including Moody’s have threatened to downgrade Poland.But the government shows no sign of complying with the EU's demands.“One can see, already today, that people are tired of this [judicial dispute] … this problem has decidedly less meaning [now] than three or six months ago,” Morawiecki said.The deputy leader spoke ahead of a trip to London, where he will try to persuade financial firms to relocate offices to Warsaw.“If Great Britain leaves the EU, and it will, because that’s what the British nation decided, then we will be in a very attractive position because we will give access on identical terms [as pre-Brexit UK] to the whole EU market,” he said.With other financial centres, including Dublin, Frankfurt, and Paris, also keen to poach the City of London's business, he said that since Poland was not a member of the euro it would be “difficult” to attract top banks and trading firms.But he said Poland would aim for risk-management companies as well as financial IT and data firms instead.He said Moody’s had a “sovereign” choice to make on Poland’s grade, but he urged investors to consider Poland’s economic stability and highly skilled workforce in their decisions.Poland has a “fantastic pool of skilled labour”, he said.“I hope that the analysts will consider our stable financial standing and the improving quality of Poland’s growth,” he noted.
25 And there shall be signs in the sun,(HEATING UP-SOLAR ECLIPSES) and in the moon,(MAN ON MOON-LUNAR ECLIPSES) and in the stars;(ASTEROIDS ETC) and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity;(MASS CONFUSION) the sea and the waves roaring;(FIERCE WINDS)
26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear,(TORNADOES,HURRICANES,STORMS) and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth:(DESTRUCTION) for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.(FROM QUAKES,NUKES ETC)
Hurricane to pass 'dangerously close' to Hawaii's Big Island-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
HONOLULU — The Central Pacific Hurricane Center on Monday issued a hurricane watch for the Big Island of Hawaii, saying Hurricane Madeline could pass "dangerously close."The storm should be near or over the Big Island by Wednesday, said forecaster Derek Wroe.At 11 p.m. Monday (2 a.m. PDT Tuesday), the centre said the storm had strengthened to a Category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds near 130 mph.The Center's advisory on Madeline predicted it will pass "dangerously close" to the Big Island Wednesday and Wednesday night. But it added that some weakening is forecast through late Wednesday.Residents could experience hurricane force winds, heavy rain and high surf, the Center said.Madeline was 515 miles east of Hilo late Monday night and moving west-northwest at 9 mph.Hawaii County, which covers the Big Island, urged residents to restock their emergency kits with a flashlight, fresh batteries, cash and first aid supplies.The county recommended that residents create evacuation plans and secure outdoor furniture.The Associated Press
North Carolina warily watching 2 tropical weather systems-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
BUXTON, N.C. — A tropical weather system off the coast of North Carolina's Outer Banks is expected to strengthen in the next day, bringing winds up to 45 mph and heavy rains that could flood low-lying areas, officials said.By Tuesday morning, the tropical depression with winds of 35 mph (55 kph) was about 85 miles (135 kilometres ) south-southeast of Cape Hatteras and was expected to become a tropical storm Tuesday afternoon but not grow any stronger.A tropical storm warning has been issued for areas of the coast from Cape Lookout to the Oregon Inlet along North Carolina's Outer Banks.National Weather Service meteorologist Shane Kearns in eastern North Carolina said in an interview that "anything is possible, but we're not really seeing any kind of significant strengthening for the storm."At the same time, forecasters at the National Hurricane Center in Miami said that another tropical depression in the Gulf of Mexico could hit northern Florida as a tropical storm later in the week and possibly head toward the Atlantic coast. They cautioned that the storm's exact path remained uncertain days in advance, but the storm was becoming better organized Monday night.Beachgoers, boat captains and business owners waited warily for the storm to wash out one of the summer's last busy weeks.Tourists in North Carolina sought to take the approaching storm in stride.Visitor Katherine Vega, 45, of Springhill, Tennessee, said she could handle a day indoors during her vacation. By Monday afternoon, she had already fled the Atlantic's swelling waves and strengthening currents off Hatteras Island in Buxton."We were just knee-deep, and there were a few times where we had to run out because it kept sucking us in," she said, adding she'd watch movies with her husband until the storm blows through."We came from Tennessee," she said with a shrug. "There are tornado threats over there.""I would advise everybody to take a look at the weather," Dare County emergency management director Drew Pearson said when asked whether visitors should keep their travel plans. "They need to make those decisions based on what they see in the weather forecast."The second depression was about 305 miles (495 kilometres ) west of Key West, Florida, with maximum winds of 35 mph (55 kph). It was moving west, but forecasters expect it could curve back to the northeast in the coming days. Authorities at some locations in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area of Florida were hauling out sandbags Monday to offer residents amid predictions of heavy rains.On North Carolina's Outer Banks, business owner Jennifer Scarborough said her biggest concern was that the first storm could saturate the area before another blow by the second storm."The second storm is the one I'm more worried about," she said. "I'm definitely keeping an eye on it and planning accordingly. ... If we have a lot of rain in a short amount of time that could be a problem."Roads along the thin barrier islands are prone to flooding and damage from erosion, including the two-lane N.C. Highway 12 that is the area's main north-south artery."N.C. 12, our lifeline on Hatteras Island, even in a winter storm has some challenges," Pearson said.Scarborough, who manages Hatteras Harbor Marina and owns the Harbor Deli next door, said she's receiving concerned calls from customers and that some captains are cancelling fishing trips for Tuesday and Wednesday. With Labor Day approaching, the week represents one of the last busy stretches of summer for the area."It's definitely making people think twice about coming here," she said.In the central Pacific, Hurricane Madeline strengthened Monday into a Category 4 storm about 515 miles (830 kilometres ) east of Hilo, Hawaii. Top sustained winds reached 130 mph (215 kph) as Madeline moved west at 9 mph (15 kph). A hurricane watch was posted for Hawaii County and those in the main Hawaiian Islands were urged to monitor the storm's progress.Elsewhere in the Pacific, Hurricane Lester weakened to a Category 3 storm with maximum sustained winds of 125 mph (205 kph) while churning west near 14 mph (22 kph) about 1,435 miles (2,305 kilometres ) east of the Hilo, Hawaii. It posed no immediate threat to land.___Drew reported from Raleigh, North Carolina.Ben Finley And Jonathan Drew, The Associated Press
State funeral in Amatrice to honour 37 quake victims-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
AMATRICE, Italy — Construction crews worked through the night to build a tent complex to host an Italian state funeral Tuesday in quake-devastated Amatrice after outraged residents rejected the government's plan to hold the service in a distant airport hangar.The evening Mass for 37 of the 292 people killed is the second state funeral for victims of the Aug. 24 temblor that flattened three towns in central Italy. The first, held Saturday, honoured victims from the Le Marche region. Tuesday's funeral is for the victims of neighbouring Lazio, which includes hard-hit Amatrice.The service will take place on the edge of Amatrice's obliterated medieval town centre on the grounds of a Catholic retreat. It comes as Italy observed a second day of national mourning, with flags on public buildings flying at half-staff.Initially, authorities planned to hold the funeral in the provincial capital of Rieti, 65 kilometres (40 miles) away, citing safety and organizational concerns. The quake area has seen more than 2,500 aftershocks and faces logistical problems in bringing relatives and government officials into a town with only one serviceable access road.But grieving residents rebelled at plans to let them watch it on TV or be bussed to Rieti. Sensing a public relations disaster, Premier Matteo Renzi reversed course late Monday and announced the funeral would be held in Amatrice.Early Tuesday, bulldozers and steamrollers prepared the grounds for the service while a huge, open-sided tented roof was erected to shelter the altar and seating area.Civil protection officials said 37 caskets would be on hand; many families have already claimed loved ones and held private funerals for them elsewhere.So far, 231 quake victims have been found in Amatrice and 11 more in nearby Accumoli. The bodies of as many as 10 people, including Amatrice's baker, are believed still buried in the rubble. Fifty people were killed in Le Marche.Romanian Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos was travelling to Amatrice to participate in the state funeral and comfort Romanian survivors, since 11 of the dead were Romanians. Some 8,000 to 10,000 Romanians live in the quake zone.As Italy prepared to bid farewell to more victims, prosecutors worked to see if construction firms or others bore any possible responsibility for buildings that collapsed in the 4.2-magnitude quake.Several public buildings, including a school and a church tower, had been recently renovated using public funds designated for anti-seismic improvements. Other buildings had been flagged as being at high seismic risk and public funds set aside, but renovations were never done, Italian newspapers reported.Rieti Prosecutor Giuseppe Saieva was examining to see what was stipulated in the contracts to restore the buildings and what exactly was done, including on Amatrice's elementary school, which collapsed despite being renovated in 2012 using earthquake funds."First we must obtain all the documents from the contract and bidding processes, through to the inspections," Saieva told the Il Messaggero daily on Tuesday. "Only then can we know what the responsibilities were of all those involved."For those who survived, Tuesday's funeral is only one step in tackling a long-term trauma."They're living through a blackout," said Letizia Bellabarba, a social worker who is tending to survivors. "I mean, in 20 seconds — that's how long the earthquake lasted — in 20 seconds their life changed. So they are disoriented, because they feel they were left without a future."___Winfield reported from Rome.Andrea Rosa And Nicole Winfield, The Associated Press.
Italy to hold mass funeral as search for bodies continues-[Reuters]-By Giulia Segreti and Iona Serrapica-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
AMATRICE, Italy (Reuters) - Dozens of coffins were laid out in a marquee on Tuesday ahead of a state funeral for some of the victims of an earthquake which leveled communities in central Italy last week, killing at least 292 people.Relatives and friends gathered around the 38 caskets, including those of two small children, which were carried into the tent in pouring rain after a summer storm broke over Amatrice, the worst-hit town from the Aug. 24 quake.Builders worked through the night hurriedly preparing the funeral site after furious locals warned they would boycott the event when they found out that the authorities planned to hold it in the city of Rieti, more than 60 km (37 miles) away.The bodies were originally taken to Rieti and officials said it would be easier to hold a mass funeral there rather than in the devastated Amatrice, but Prime Minister Matteo Renzi ordered a change of plan in the face of the local anger.In the center of Amatrice, which was voted last year one Italy's most beautiful, crews continued to dig for bodies under mounds of rubble left by the 6.2 magnitude quake."There are families which have been destroyed. We must give them hope," said Don Sante Bertarelli, who was a priest in Amatrice for 15 years and returned to help comfort his former parishioners after the disaster.Of the 292 confirmed dead, 231 were found in Amatrice.A number of foreigners were among the dead, including 11 Romanians and three Britons.Renzi, Italian President Sergio Mattarella and Romanian Prime Minister Dacian Ciolos were expected to attend the funeral, which was set to start at 6 p.m. (1600 GMT), the Civil Protection Agency said.Many of those who died in Amatrice were not residents and their funerals are being held in their hometowns.A fireman used a rope to hoist a wooden statue of Christ borrowed from a nearby church above a makeshift altar for Tuesday's service. Hours before the ceremony, relatives placed bouquets of flowers and pictures of their loved ones on the simple wooden coffins.-CONTROVERSY-In the town center, emergency workers used mechanical diggers and bulldozers to search for bodies, with up to 10 people still believed to be missing under the debris.It rained on Tuesday for the first time since the quake, complicating the search efforts and setting an even more somber mood.It is the second state-sponsored funeral in three days. On Saturday rites were held for victims of the quake from the adjoining Marche region. Amatrice is in the region of Lazio.Controversy has grown over poor construction techniques, which may have been responsible for some of the deaths.Investigators are looking into work done on the bell tower in Accumoli, which was recently restored but collapsed during the quake onto the home of a family of four, killing them all.A court sequestered the half-demolished school building in Amatrice, which had recently been remodeled in part to help it withstand earthquakes.Italy sits on two seismic faultlines. Many of its buildings are hundreds of years old and susceptible to earthquake damage.Almost 30 people died in earthquakes in northern Italy in 2012 and more than 300 in the city of L'Aquila in 2009. (Additional reporting by Antonella Cinelli and Matteo Berlenga; writing by Steve Scherer; editing by Andrew Roche and Crispian Balmer)
OZONE DEPLETION JUDGEMENT ON THE EARTH DUE TO SIN
26 Moreover the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold,(7X OR 7-DEGREES HOTTER) as the light of seven days, in the day that the LORD bindeth up the breach of his people,(ISRAEL) and healeth the stroke of their wound.
27 Behold, the name of the LORD cometh from far, burning with his anger, and the burden thereof is heavy: his lips are full of indignation, and his tongue as a devouring fire:
21 For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
22 And except those days should be shortened,(DAY LIGHT HOURS SHORTENED) there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake (ISRAELS SAKE) those days shall be shortened (Daylight hours shortened)(THE ASTEROID HITS EARTH HERE)
29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:
7 And I heard another out of the altar say, Even so, Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are thy judgments.
8 And the fourth angel poured out his vial upon the sun; and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
9 And men were scorched with great heat, and blasphemed the name of God, which hath power over these plagues: and they repented not to give him glory.
Ottawa weather forecast brings the heat once again-[CBC]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
Tuesday and Wednesday will be hot, but Thursday should bring a return to more fall-like temperatures.A high of 28 C is expected Tuesday, with the humidity making it feel more like 32. There will be a mix of sun and cloud in the sky with a 30 per cent chance of showers, risk of a thunderstorm, winds southwest at 20 km/h, and a high UV index of seven.Overnight mainly cloudy skies are expected with a 40 per cent chance of showers in the evening and after midnight, with risk of a thunderstorm in the evening. Fog patches will develop before morning, and the low will reach about 17 C.As for Wednesday, fog patches will dissipate in the morning, giving way to mainly cloudy skies with a 30 per cent chance of showers in the afternoon. The high will again reach 28 C, with a humidex of 34.Cloudy periods and a low of 14 C are expected Wednesday night. By Thursday, the high will reach 22 C. A high of 23 C is expected Friday to round out the week.
WORLD POWERS IN THE LAST DAYS (END OF AGE OF GRACE NOT THE WORLD)
EUROPEAN UNION-KING OF WEST-DAN 9:26-27,DAN 7:23-24,DAN 11:40,REV 13:1-10
EGYPT-KING OF THE SOUTH-DAN 11:40
RUSSIA-KING OF THE NORTH-EZEK 38:1-2,EZEK 39:1-3
CHINA-KING OF THE EAST-DAN 11:44,REV 9:16,18
VATICAN-RELIGIOUS LEADER-REV 13:11-18,REV 17:4-5,9,18
11 The earth also was corrupt before God, and the earth was filled with violence.(WORLD TERRORISM,MURDERS)(HAMAS IN HEBREW IS VIOLENCE)
12 And God looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth.
13 And God said unto Noah, The end of all flesh is come before me; for the earth is filled with violence (TERRORISM)(HAMAS) through them; and, behold, I will destroy them with the earth.
11 And the angel of the LORD said unto her,(HAGAR) Behold, thou art with child, and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael;(FATHER OF THE ARAB/MUSLIMS) because the LORD hath heard thy affliction.
12 And he (ISHMAEL-FATHER OF THE ARAB-MUSLIMS) will be a wild (DONKEY-JACKASS) man;(ISLAM IS A FAKE AND DANGEROUS SEX FOR MURDER CULT) his hand will be against every man,(ISLAM HATES EVERYONE) and every man's hand against him;(PROTECTING THEMSELVES FROM BEING BEHEADED) and he (ISHMAEL ARAB/MUSLIM) shall dwell in the presence of all his brethren.(LITERAL-THE ARABS LIVE WITH THEIR BRETHERN JEWS)
12 How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer,(SATAN) son of the morning!(HEBREW-CRECENT MOON-ISLAM) how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!
13 For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north:
14 I (SATAN HAS EYE TROUBLES) will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.(AND 1/3RD OF THE ANGELS OF HEAVEN FELL WITH SATAN AND BECAME DEMONS)
2 They shall put you out of the synagogues: yea, the time cometh, that whosoever killeth you will think that he doeth God service.(ISLAM MURDERS IN THE NAME OF MOON GOD ALLAH OF ISLAM)
AP documents 72 mass graves in territory freed of IS-[Associated Press]-LORI HINNANT and DESMOND BUTLER-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
HARDAN, Iraq (AP) — Peering through binoculars, the young man watched as Islamic State extremists gunned down the handcuffed men and then buried them with a waiting bulldozer. For six days he watched as IS filled one grave after another with his friends and neighbors.The five graves arranged at the foot of Sinjar mountain hold the bodies of dozens of minority Yazidis killed in the Islamic State group's bloody onslaught in August 2014. They are a fraction of the mass graves Islamic State extremists have scattered across Iraq and Syria.In exclusive interviews, photos and research, The Associated Press has documented and mapped 72 of the mass graves, the most comprehensive survey so far, with many more expected to be uncovered as the Islamic State group's territory shrinks.In Syria, AP has obtained locations for 17 mass graves, including one with the bodies of hundreds of members of a single tribe all but exterminated when IS extremists took over their region.For at least 16 of the Iraqi graves, most in territory too dangerous to excavate, officials do not even guess the number of dead. In others, the estimates are based on memories of traumatized survivors, Islamic State propaganda and what can be gleaned from a cursory look at the earth.Still, even the known numbers of victims buried are staggering — from 5,200 to more than 15,000.Satellites offer the clearest look at massacres such as the one at Badoush Prison in June 2014 that left 600 inmates dead. A patch of scraped earth shows the likely site, according to exclusive photos obtained by the imagery intelligence firm AllSource Analysis and shared with AP.On Sinjar Mountain, Rasho Qassim drives daily past the mass grave in Hardan that holds the bodies of his two sons.The sites are roped off and awaiting the money and the political will for excavation. The evidence they contain is scoured by wind and baked by sun."We want to take them out of here. There are only bones left. But they said 'No, they have to stay there, a committee will come and exhume them later,'" said Qassim, standing at the flimsy protective fence.IS made no attempt to hide its atrocities. But proving what United Nations officials and others have described as an ongoing genocide will be complicated as the graves deteriorate. The Islamic State group targeted the Yazidis for slaughter because it considers them infidels. The Yazidi faith has elements of Christianity and Islam but is distinct."There's been virtually no effort to systematically document the crimes perpetrated, to preserve the evidence," said Naomi Kikoler, who recently visited for the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C. The graves are largely documented by the aid group Yazda.Through binoculars, Arkan Qassem watched it all. His village, Gurmiz, overlooks Hardan and the plain below. When the jihadis swept through, everyone in Gurmiz fled up the mountaintop. Then Arkan and nine other men returned with light weapons, hoping to defend their homes.The first night, a bulldozer's headlights illuminated the killing of a group of handcuffed men. Then the machine plowed over their bodies.Over six days, the fighters killed three more groups — several dozen each, usually with hands bound. Once, the extremists lit a bonfire, but Arkan couldn't make out its purpose.Two years later, the 32-year-old has since returned home, living in an area dotted with mass graves."I have lots of people I know there. Mostly friends and neighbors," he said. "It's very difficult to look at them every day."Nearly every area freed from IS control has unmasked new mass graves, like one found near a stadium in Ramadi. The graves are easy enough to find, most covered with just a thin coating of earth."They are beheading them, shooting them, running them over in cars, all kinds of killing techniques, and they don't even try to hide it," said Sirwan Jalal, the director of Iraqi Kurdistan's agency in charge of mass graves.No one outside IS has seen the Iraqi ravine where hundreds of prison inmates were killed. Satellite images of scraped dirt along the river point to its location, according to Steve Wood of AllSource. His analysts triangulated survivors' accounts and began to systematically search the desert according to their descriptions of that day, June 10, 2014.The inmates were separated by religion, and Shiites had to count off, according to accounts by 15 survivors gathered by Human Rights Watch."I was number 43. I heard them say '615,' and then one ISIS guy said, 'We're going to eat well tonight.' A man behind us asked, 'Are you ready?' Another person answered 'Yes,' and began shooting at us with a machine-gun," according to the Human Rights Watch account of a survivor identified only as A.S. The 15 men survived by playing dead.Justice has been done in at least one IS mass killing — that of about 1,700 Iraqi soldiers who were machine-gunned at Camp Speicher. On Aug. 21, 36 IS militants were hanged for those deaths.But justice is likely to elude areas still under IS control, even when the extremists film the atrocities themselves. That's the case for a natural sinkhole outside Mosul that is now a pit of corpses. And in Syria's Raqqa province, where thousands of bodies are believed to have been thrown into the al-Houta crevasse.Hundreds of mass graves are believed to be in areas that can only be explored when fighting stops. So far, at least 17 are known, in the list put together from AP interviews with activists, fighters and residents in former IS strongholds.Some of the worst are in Deir el-Zour province. There, 400 members of the Shueitat tribe were found in one grave, just some of the up to 1,000 tribesmen believed to have been massacred by IS, said Ziad Awad, the editor of the local publication, The Eye of the City, who is documenting the graves."This is a drop in an ocean of mass graves expected to be discovered in the future in Syria," said Awad.___Butler reported from Washington. Associated Press writers Balint Szlanko and Salar Salim in Irbil, Iraq; Sinan Salaheddin in Baghdad; Zeina Karam and Philip Issa in Beirut, and Maya Alleruzzo in Cairo contributed to this report.
ISIS has buried up to 15,000 people in 72 mass graves, AP says, with more to be found-3:16 a.m. ET-AUG 30,16-THEWEEK
The Islamic State overran large swathes of Syria and Iraq in the summer of 2014, and the militants left traces of their massacres dotting the landscape. In a new report, The Associated Press identifies 72 mass graves in Syria and Iraq, and says many more will be uncovered as ISIS's territory shrinks. "This is a drop in an ocean of mass graves expected to be discovered in the future in Syria," says Ziad Awad, the editor of online publication The Eye of the City, who is trying to document ISIS's mass burial plots.Using satellite imagery, photos, and interviews, AP has found the location of 17 mass graves in Syria, and 16 of the mass graves the news organization located in Iraq are in areas still too dangerous to excavate. AP says anywhere from 5,200 to more than 15,000 ISIS victims are buried in the graves it knows about. "They don't even try to hide their crimes," Sirwan Jalal, director of the Iraqi Kurdistan agency in charge of mass graves, tells AP. "They are beheading them, shooting them, running them over in cars, all kinds of killing techniques, and they don't even try to hide it."The evidence and chances to identify the dead are waning with the passage of time and exposure to the elements, however, and the Iraqi Kurds and other local groups are seeking international help. Part of the goal is to build a case to convict ISIS leaders of war crimes, and part of it is so families can bury their dead. "We want to take them out of here," Rasho Qassim, an Iraqi Yazidi, says of the remains of his two sons. "There are only bones left. But they said 'No, they have to stay there, a committee will come and exhume them later'.... It has been two years but nobody has come." You can read more at AP, and watch the video below for more context and testimony about the ISIS massacres. Peter Weber.
Suicide bomber hits Somalia presidential compound, 12 dead-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
MOGADISHU, Somalia — A suicide bomber has detonated an explosives-laden truck near the gate of Somalia's presidential palace in the capital on Tuesday, killing at least 12 people, police say.The bomb exploded during a morning traffic jam, said Capt. Mohamed Hussein, a senior police officer.Some Cabinet ministers at the SYL hotel were among the 31 injured, said Hussein. The blast damaged nearby hotels often frequented by government officials and business executives, he said.The explosion was heard across Mogadishu, and smoke was seen billowing over the area of the presidential compound.Somalia's Islamic extremist group al-Shabab has claimed the responsibility for the blast, according to the rebels' Andalus radio station.The injured were taken to Mogadishu's Madina Hospital, said Dr. Mohamed Yusuf, the hospital's director.The massive blast left a trail of destruction across the hilltop presidential complex and to nearby hotels. The bombing tore into blast walls protecting hotels and blew off the roofs of nearby houses."Security forces tried to stop the bomber who used back roads before he sped through checkpoints near the presidential palace and detonated the bomb," said Col. Ali Nur, a police officer. "He reached near the gate of the state house with flat tires."While al-Shabab has been ousted from most of Somalia's cities, it continues to carry out bombings and suicide attacks, notably in the capital.In late July, two al-Shabab suicide bombers detonated explosives-laden cars outside the office of the U.N.'s mine-clearing agency and an army checkpoint near the African Union's main base in Mogadishu, killing 13.Other attacks have targeted hotels. In June, extremist gunmen stormed the Nasa-Hablod hotel, killing at least 14. Two weeks before that, extremist gunmen killed 15, including two members of parliament, at the Ambassador hotel.Abdi Guled, The Associated Press.
UN: France's burkini ban a 'stupid reaction' to extremism-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
GENEVA — The U.N. human rights office says local bans in France on burkini swimwear amount to "a grave and illegal breach of fundamental freedoms" and a "stupid reaction" to recent extremist attacks.OHCHR spokesman Rupert Colville says the rights agency wants local officials to "immediately" lift the bans, saying they don't increase security.A French high court has struck down on French town's ban on the burkini, effectively invalidating such bans in about 30 towns, though many remain.Colville says such bans "fuel religious intolerance and the stigmatization of Muslims," and "have only succeeded in increasing tensions."He said people who wear burkinis — body-covering beachwear worn by some Muslim women — or any another clothing "cannot be blamed for the violent or hostile reactions of others."The Associated Press.
Danish PM seeks emergency law to reject asylum seekers at borders-[Reuters]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - The Danish government on Tuesday proposed adoption of a law that would enable police to reject asylum seekers at the borders in times of crisis such as that in 2015 when thousands of migrants sought to enter the country.Denmark has already implemented tough immigration policies since a heavy influx of refugees last year, including border controls and a "jewelry bill", allowing the police to confiscate refugees' valuables.The government seeks to create a statutory power to reject asylum-seekers at the border to prevent a recurrence of the refugee crisis in September last year, the Ministry for Immigration, Integration and Housing said."We are getting the flow of refugees under control. But we cannot relax. The pressure on Europe and Denmark could intensify again," it said in a report.Last year over one million migrants and refugees crossed into European countries, putting pressure on the Dublin rules under which the member state where asylum seekers first apply for protection is responsible for examining their claims.The proposal is part of the government's political and economic plan for the next 9 years intended to spark growth, create jobs and trim welfare provisions.Inspired by law-making in neighboring Nordic country Norway, where a similar statutory power was adopted in June this year, the Danish government said it needed to prepare for a situation where the Dublin regulation would cease to work."The Dublin cooperation is working today and the pressure is off. But the situation can change," the ministry wrote.The number of refugees attempting to enter Denmark has declined since its peak of 21.300 applicants in 2015 down to 5,305 registered in the first seven months of this year, according to data on the ministry's website.The proposal has yet to be adopted by the parliament, where the minority government's Liberal Party holds only 34 out of 179 seats and depends on three other parties to pass laws.(Reporting by Nikolaj Skydsgaard; Editing by Richard Balmforth)
France says Turkish action against Syrian Kurds risks escalation-[Reuters]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
PARIS (Reuters) - Turkey's military push against Kurds in northern Syria risks escalating the conflict, French President Francois Hollande said on Tuesday, calling on all parties to stop fighting and return to peace talks.Hollande told an annual gathering of French ambassadors that almost a year after Russia intervened in support of Bashar al-Assad's government, "today it is Turkey that has made the choice to deploy its army on Syrian territory to defend itself against Daesh (Islamic State)."But also to carry out actions against Kurds who themselves have confronted Islamic State with the support of the coalition. These multiple, contradictory interventions carry risks of a general flare-up," Hollande said.The United States scrambled on Monday to get its feuding allies, Turkey and the Kurdish YPG militia, to focus their firepower on Islamic State instead of each other, after clashes that have threatened to unravel America's war strategy in Syria.Hollande, who has special forces operating in Syria alongside Kurdish and Arab forces as part of an international coalition fighting the militant group, said it was a matter of absolute urgency to stop the bloodshed.As part of those efforts, Paris wants a U.N. Security Council resolution condemning the use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government and Islamic State.Hollande said Russia, Assad's main backer, could not ignore the use of such weapons and had to support the resolution, which could then lead to a resumption of peace talks."The regime and its foreign backers still believe today in a military solution when the solution can only be political," Hollande said.He added that he would push Russian President Vladimir Putin on the issue when they meet at the G20 next week and when Putin visits Paris in October.(Reporting by Andrew Callus and John Irish; Editing by Ingrid Melander, Larry King)
China says bombing at embassy in Kyrgyzstan a "terrorist" attack-[Reuters]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
BEIJING (Reuters) - China's Foreign Ministry said on Tuesday that a bombing at its embassy in the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek was a "serious terrorist attack" and that China would "resolutely strike against all forms of terrorism".A suspected suicide car bomber rammed the gates of the embassy earlier in the day, killing the attacker and wounding at least three other people, officials said.(Reporting by Ben Blanchard; Editing by Mike Collett-White)
U.N. says 10,000 killed in Yemen war, far more than other estimates-[Reuters]-By Mohammed Ghobari-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
SANAA (Reuters) - At least 10,000 people have been killed in Yemen's 18-month-old civil war, the United Nations on Tuesday, approaching double the estimates of more than 6,000 cited by officials and aid workers for much of 2016.The war pits the Iran-allied Houthi group and supporters of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh against President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, who is supported by an alliance of Arab states led by Saudi Arabia.The new toll is based on official information from medical facilities in Yemen, U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator Jamie McGoldrick told a news conference in the capital Sanaa. It might rise as some areas had no medical facilities, and people were often buried without official records.The United Nations human rights office said last week that 3,799 civilians have been killed in the conflict, with air strikes by the Saudi-led coalition responsible for some 60 percent of deaths.McGoldrick gave no breakdown on civilian casualties, adding the conflict has displaced three million Yemenis and forced 200,000 to seek refuge abroad. The United Nations had information that 900,000 of the displaced intended to try to return to their homes."This is a big challenge, especially in areas still experiencing conflict," McGoldrick said.Some 14 million of Yemen's 26 million population needed food aid and 7 million were suffering from food insecurity.McGoldrick said the human situation in Yemen was "tragic"."Humanitarian work alone cannot solve these problems," he said.U.N.-sponsored peace talks ended earlier this month without agreement, and without an agreement for a new round.The collapse of negotiations was followed by stepped-up fighting across Yemen.U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said after talks in Saudi Arabia last week that the United States, Gulf Arab states and the United Nations had agreed on a new push for peace.He said the new talks would try to twin a proposal for the Houthis to withdraw from cities they seized since 2014 with setting up an inclusive government.(Reporting by Mohammed Ghobari; Writing by Sami Aboudi; Editing by William Maclean and John Stonestreet)
The refugee milestone Obama doesn't want to talk about-[Christian Science Monitor]-Howard LaFranchi-August 29, 2016-YAHOONEWS
As a planeload of more than 200 Syrian refugees arrived in the United States on Monday for resettlement in California and Virginia, the goal set by President Obama a year ago of accepting 10,000 Syrian refugees was achieved.The milestone met with little fanfare.On one hand, that seems an acknowledgment of the political moment. Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has been a vocal critic of the policy, and polls suggest many Americans side with him.Yet even among those who support the resettlement of Syrian refugees in America, Monday’s low-key announcement was hardly something to celebrate. Refugee and human rights advocates call it woefully insufficient given the dimensions of Syria’s tragedy.The number is not just lower than what the US is capable of handling, they say, but also well below what many American communities are prepared to welcome.It is an achievement, in other words, that satisfies few.In that light, the Obama administration is treading softly, seeking to avoid the kind of anti-refugee rhetoric that bloomed when President Obama first announced the goal, some advocates say.“We’re certainly pleased the administration has reached their goal, but at the same time it’s important to ground that in the reality that … 10,000 Syrians is a very low number compared to the need and to what others particularly in the region are doing,” says Jen Smyers, associate director for immigration and refugee policy at Church World Service (CWS), a relief and refugee assistance agency supported by Christian denominations. “When you set a low goal and then you meet it, there can only be so much fanfare – especially when you compare it to what we could be doing.”-PARTISAN SPLIT-More than 4 million Syrians have fled their country since the civil war began in 2011, with most of them settling in neighboring countries such as Jordan, Turkey, and Lebanon. In Lebanon, more than 1 in 5 people are now Syrians. Hundreds of thousands have also crossed the Mediterranean to seek refuge in Europe. Germany alone has taken a million refugees.Given such numbers, the US should “consider this 10,000 milestone ‘a floor and not a ceiling,’ ” said David Miliband, the former British foreign secretary who is now president of the International Rescue Committee, in a statement.Whatever the administration’s goals, now does not appear an opportune moment for trumpeting them.While 56 percent of Democrats support admitting Syrian refugees, only 18 percent of Republicans do – and that has dropped from 27 percent in 2014, according to a Chicago Council on Global Affairs poll released this week.Support among independents has also declined during the same time – to 32 percent from 40 percent, the poll found.Mr. Trump has made dire warnings about the impact of allowing more refugees – and particularly Syrians – into the US.Rep. Vern Buchanan (R) of Florida argued in a letter to Mr. Obama this month that the refugee program needs to be shut down.“We need to stop accepting Syrian refugees as a matter of national security,” he said.-PAST PROGRAMS-As recently as 1980, the US airlifted 200,000 Vietnamese and other Indochinese for resettlement in the US – and maintained that pace annually for the next decade.Last year, Secretary of State John Kerry said the US would look to increase resettlement of refugees from 85,000 in fiscal year 2016 (ending Sept. 30) to 100,000 next year. But CWS is pressing for a return to 200,000 – and certainly not less than 140,000.While there was a flare-up of anti-refugee sentiment after the Paris attacks last November, Ms. Smyers of CWS says, “since then people have come to see how secure the program is, and the outpouring of support for refugees that we’re seeing across so many communities is remarkable.”The number of CWS volunteers has quadrupled in the past year, as have donations to help refugees settle into their new homes. In many communities, the “outpouring of support” has surpassed the needs of the small numbers of Syrian refugees coming in, she says.Leon Rodriguez, director of US Citizenship and Refugee Services, told reporters at briefing last month in Washington that Syrians faced a tougher vetting process than any group that has entered the US recently.The overall acceptance rate among Syrians is about 80 percent. Many of those turned away are young men seen to pose a greater risk to US security.Most of those admitted are families – with large numbers of children. Statistics on the 10,000 Syrian refugees who have come to the US this year show that more than half are under age 18.
Oil fires cast black cloud over Iraqi town retaken from Islamic State-[Reuters]-By Stephen Kalin-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
QAYYARA, Iraq (Reuters) - It gets darker earlier these days in the northern Iraqi town of Qayyara, which Islamic State militants abandoned about a week ago after setting fire to many of the region's oil wells.Smoke billowing into the sky during a Reuters visit on Monday blotted out the sun in central districts hours before nightfall, producing an apocalyptic scene in this desert settlement which lacks electricity amid 49 degree Celsius (120°F) temperatures.The Iraqi military's recapture of Qayyara, along with a nearby airbase in July, is the latest and most significant advance in a U.S.-backed push to Mosul, the largest city under Islamic State control anywhere in its self-proclaimed caliphate.Baghdad wants to retake Mosul before the end of the year, which it says will effectively end the militants' presence in Iraq more than two years after they seized a third of its territory. Some officials from countries in the U.S.-led coalition supporting the Iraqi forces have said that timeline may be too ambitious.Yet the loss of Qayyara certainly dealt a blow to Islamic State, which had extracted oil from some 60 wells and sold it to help finance its activities.Islamic State used to ship at least 50 tanker truckloads a day from Qayyara and nearby Najma oilfields to neighbouring Syria. A sign remains on the main road announcing prices of crude in places like the Syrian city of Aleppo, 550 km (340 miles) west of Qayyara.Rudimentary refineries once used to refine oil for local consumption have been abandoned on the side of the road leading east out of the town.The smell of petrol now overwhelms the area, wind carrying the smoke from well fires into the town centre. More than a few minutes in the area leaves one's throat burning, and children walking the streets have quickly developed coughs.Abdel Aziz Saleh, a 25-year-old Qayyara resident, said he wants Baghdad to put out the fires as soon as possible."They are suffocating us," he said. "The birds, the animals are black, the people are black. Gas rains down on us at night. Now the gas has reached the residential areas."He and other residents said oil had spilled into the nearby Tigris River - assertions denied by the oil ministry, which said the oil spills had been contained by trenches. While several bodies were seen floating in the river on Monday, Reuters could not confirm it had been contaminated with oil.Iraq says it has put out fires at four oil wells in the Qayyara region, but Reuters could not locate any such efforts at the wells closest to residential areas.Around a dozen separate plumes of smoke were still distinguishable across the horizon as night fell, when a convoy of firetrucks approached the town.It was not immediately clear how long it will take to extinguish the flames. When Iraq's military torched hundreds of Kuwaiti oil wells in 1991 ahead of advancing U.S.-led forces, most fires burned for around two months but some wells were not capped for almost a year.The oil ministry said it does not expect to resume production from the Qayyara region before Mosul's recapture. The two main fields, Qayyara and Najma, used to produce 30,000 barrels per day of heavy crude before the takeover by Islamic State.-PEOPLE IN THE STREETS-Despite the well fires, Qayyara remains full of inhabitants. Whereas civilians in most other areas recaptured from Islamic State fled ahead of or during government offensives the majority of Qayyara's roughly 20,000 residents have stayed put.A counter-terrorism officer said that was partly due to the speed with which the army recaptured Qayyara, surprising the Islamic State fighters before they were able to dig in. Qayyara is also located near a military airfield, so many residents in the area have relatives in the army.With no power and no more fear of punishment from Islamic State's harsh rule, much of the population was in the streets on Monday, waving to military vehicles that handed out basic supplies like cooking oil, sugar and canned food.Children flashed peace signs and some played in the black reflective pools of oil that spilled into main streets after Islamic State blew up pipelines and wells next to a main hospital in a likely attempt to obstruct visibility for coalition air strikes.Commanders are confident electricity can be restored soon in Qayyara and said booby trapped streets and buildings are less of a concern than they were in the western cities of Ramadi and Falluja."We surrounded them quickly, so they didn't have time to lay many IEDs (improvised explosive devices)," said the officer from the elite counter-terrorism service (CTS), which spearheaded the Qayyara operation along with the army's 9th armoured division."There were a lot on the main street they thought we would use to enter but instead we came in from the desert."The militants still managed to put up a fight, he said, quickly mustering five vehicle-borne IEDs to attack the forces.The approach to the city shows signs of the fighting that followed, with many buildings collapsed by aerial bombardment. The U.S.-led coalition said it had launched more than 500 air strikes in support of Iraqi forces, nearly as many as in last year's battle for the much larger city of Ramadi.Qayyara and its nearby airbase - where the bulk of a 560-strong U.S. troop reinforcement will be based - will form the main staging base for the anticipated offensive on Mosul, 60 km (35 miles) to the north.Many neighbourhoods in Qayyara appear mostly or completely intact, and civilians, many of whom appeared to have recently shaved the beards that Islamic State requires men to grow, said they feel safe in their homes.After showing off the body of an Islamic State fighter crushed when the building he was in was hit by an air strike, two men from Qayyara alerted soldiers to a possible suicide bomber hiding in a nearby home, which they proceeded to investigate.A hundred metres from the decomposing corpse, a well fire burned, spewing smoke and bright flashes into the sky.(Writing by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Dominic Evans)
Myanmar Buddhist group criticizes former UN chief Kofi Annan-[The Canadian Press]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
YANGON, Myanmar — A prominent anti-Muslim group of Buddhist nationalists in Myanmar is criticizing former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan on social media, and accidentally taking actor Morgan Freeman down with him.Myanmar's government announced last week that Annan will lead an advisory panel aimed at finding "lasting solutions" to the conflict in Rakhine state, where human rights groups have documented widespread abuses against minority Rohingya Muslims. The group Ma Ba Tha, led by Buddhist monks, has been accused of helping to incite violence in the region that left hundreds of Muslims dead in 2012.Ma Ba Tha condemned Annan's involvement in a Facebook post Monday that called him "a funny-looking and disrespectful person cannot talk about our own issues in the country." It also called Annan, who is from Ghana, a "kalar," a slur used in Myanmar against Muslims and Indians.The post, however, included a photo not of Annan but of Morgan Freeman, the Oscar-winning actor. Freeman was marked with a red "X'' next to the words "We no need Coffee Annan he go away."Freeman has been confused previously not only with Annan but also with late South African President Nelson Mandela.The post has been widely circulated, and mocked, among Myanmar social media users.___Online: https://www.facebook.com/mabatha.mandalay/?fref=ts-The Associated Press.
Philippines to add 2,500 troops to insurgency-plagued southern island-[Reuters]-August 30, 2016-YAHOONEWS
MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines will send an additional 2,500 troops to a remote southern island this week as the army steps up an offensive against the Islamic State-linked Abu Sayyaf, a presidential spokesman said on Tuesday.About 45 soldiers and Muslim rebels have been killed on Jolo island since Thursday when the army launched an air-and-ground assault on the main base of the militants after President Rodrigo Duterte ordered the Abu Sayyaf to be "destroyed"."We are going full force, launching an all-out operation against the Abu Sayyaf there," presidential spokesman Ernesto Abella told reporters. "We are adding five battalions or about 2,500 people."The Abu Sayyaf has dogged successive Philippine governments, entrenching its network with vast sums of ransom money in what has become one of Asia's most lucrative kidnapping rackets.(Reporting by Manuel Mogato; Editing by Nick Macfie)
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