Monday, March 06, 2017
IRAN SUCCESSFULLY TESTS RUSSIAN S-300 MISSLE SYSTEM.NORTH KOREA ALSO TEST FIRES A MISSLE INTO THE SEA.
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.
18 By these three was the third part of men killed,(2 BILLION) by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.(ATOMIC BOMBS)(RUSSIA CHINA DESTROYED BY ISRAELS ATOMIC BOMBS)
3 A fire devoureth (ATOMIC BOMB) before them;(RUSSIAN-ARAB-MUSLIM ARMIES AGAINST ISRAEL) and behind them a flame burneth: the land is as the garden of Eden before them, and behind them a desolate wilderness; yea, and nothing shall escape them.
30 And I will shew wonders in the heavens and in the earth, blood, and fire, and pillars of smoke.(ATOMIC BOMB AFFECT)
12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people that have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their eyes shall consume away in their holes,(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB) and their tongue shall consume away in their mouth.(DISOLVED FROM ATOMIC BOMB)(BECAUSE NUKES HAVE BEEN USED ON ISRAELS ENEMIES)(GOD PROTECTS ISRAEL AND ALWAYS WILL)
13 And it shall come to pass in that day, that a great tumult from the LORD shall be among them; and they shall lay hold every one on the hand of his neighbour, and his hand shall rise up against the hand of his neighbour.(1/2-3 BILLION DIE IN WW3)(THIS IS AN ATOMIC BOMB EFFECT)
Mars astronaut radiation shield set for moon mission trial: Developer-[Reuters]-By Ori Lewis and Rinat Harash-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
HAIFA, Israel (Reuters) - A vest designed to shield astronauts from deadly solar particles in deep space is set for trials on a lunar mission ready for deployment on any manned mission to Mars, its Israeli developers said.The AstroRad Radiation Shield has been devised by Tel Aviv-based StemRad, which has already produced and marketed a belt to protect rescue workers from harmful gamma ray radiation emitted in nuclear disasters, such as Chernobyl and Fukushima.The vest will protect vital human tissue, particularly stem cells, which could be devastated by solar radiation in deep space or on Mars, whose sparse atmosphere offers no protection, StemRad's CEO Oren Milstein said.U.S. space agency NASA has said it hopes to send astronauts to Mars in the mid-2030s.The vest is made of layers that look like a contoured map and will be tailor-made for each astronaut. Non-metallic protective materials will be positioned on each shield to cover the organs of each astronaut."This product will enable human deep space exploration. Our breakthrough has come in creating the architecture of the multi-layered shield to accurately cover the most important organs," Milstein said.StemRad say it has proven the concept in the laboratory and in simulations, but testing will also take place on the Orion spacecraft, a joint project of Lockheed Martin, NASA and the European Space Agency.Orion is set to orbit the moon unmanned during the debut flight of NASA's heavy-lift Space Launch System rocket, scheduled for late 2018 but it is also assessing the feasibility of flying two astronauts on that mission.During the lunar flyby mission, the vest will be strapped to a "phantom" torso dummy, a device used to monitor radiation absorption. Another phantom will fly unprotected and the two will be analyzed after they return to Earth.NASA had no immediate comment on how the test could be affected if the agency decided to put astronauts on Orion.Stemrad's chief technologist, Gideon Waterman, said the vest needed to combine density with flexibility to protect astronauts while enabling them to move about as freely as possible.Mock-ups have been made, and the first protective vest is expected to be produced by the end of the year, Milstein said."Based on our simulations, we're sure it works but to be 100 percent sure, we're sending it up on EM-1," he said, referring to NASA's Exploration Mission-1, the first flight of the combined Space Launch System rocket and the Orion capsule.The Orion will have its own small shelter for solar storms or flares that have dangerous bursts of radiation, and the vest, Milstein said, will offer the same degree of protection so astronauts can keep safe in other parts of the spacecraft.Astronauts in Earth's orbit, such as those on the International Space Station, do not face the same risk because they are protected by the planet's magnetic field which acts as a shield, he added.(Additional reporting by Irene Klotz in Cape Canaveral, Fla.; Writing by Ori Lewis; Editing by Jeffrey Heller and Alison Williams)
CHINA AND KINGS OF THE EAST MARCH TO ISRAEL 2ND WAVE OF WW3 (200 MILLION MAN ARMY)
12 And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates;(WERE WW3 STARTS IN IRAQ OR SYRIA OR TURKEY) and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared.(THE TURKEY ATATURK DAM ON THE EUPHRATES CAN BE SHUT AND DRIED UP ALREADY BY TURKEY)
13 And I saw three unclean spirits like frogs come out of the mouth of the dragon,(SATAN) and out of the mouth of the beast,(WORLD DICTATOR) and out of the mouth of the false prophet.(FALSE POPE)
14 For they are the spirits of devils, working miracles, which go forth unto the kings of the earth and of the whole world, to gather them to the battle of that great day of God Almighty.(WERE 2 BILLION DIE FROM NUKE WAR)
15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.
16 And he gathered them together into a place called in the Hebrew tongue Armageddon.(ITS AT THIS TIME I BELIEVE WHEN AMERICA GETS NUKED BY RUSSIA ON THE WAY TO THE MIDEAST)
DANIEL 11:44 (2ND WAVE OF WW3)
44 But tidings out of the east(CHINA) and out of the north(RUSSIA, MUSLIMS WHATS LEFT FROM WAVE 1) shall trouble him:(EU DICTATOR IN ISRAEL) therefore he shall go forth with great fury to destroy, and utterly to make away many.( 1/3RD OF EARTHS POPULATION)
12 One woe is past; and, behold, there come two woes more hereafter.
13 And the sixth angel sounded, and I heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God,
14 Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four(DEMONIC WAR) angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates.(WORLDWIDE WAR)(TURKEY-IRAQ-SYRIA)(EUPHRATES RIVER CONSISTS OF 760 MILES IN TURKEY,440 MILES IN SYRIA AND 660 MILES IN IRAQ)
15 And the four(DEMONIC WAR) angels were loosed,(WORLDWIDE WAR) which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men.(1/3 Earths Population die in WW 3 2ND WAVE-2 billion)
16 And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand:(200 MILLION MAN ARMY FROM CHINA AND THE KINGS OF THE EAST) and I heard the number of them.
17 And thus I saw the horses in the vision, and them that sat on them, having breastplates of fire, and of jacinth, and brimstone: and the heads of the horses were as the heads of lions; and out of their mouths issued fire and smoke and brimstone.(NUCLEAR BOMBS)
18 By these three was the third part of men killed, by the fire, and by the smoke, and by the brimstone, which issued out of their mouths.(NUCLEAR BOMBS)
N.Korea fires 'unidentified projectile' into sea: Seoul-[AFP]-yahoonews-March 5, 2017
Seoul (AFP) - Nuclear-armed North Korea fired an "unidentified projectile" into waters east of the peninsula early Monday, the South's defence ministry said.The item was fired from North Pyongan province "around 7:36 am" South Korean time (2236 GMT Sunday), the ministry said in a statement adding it landed in the East Sea, also known as the Sea of Japan.The South's Yonhap news agency cited an unnamed ministry official as saying the projectile could be an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of reaching the US mainland.Seoul and Washington launched annual joint military exercises last week that regularly infuriate Pyongyang, which condemns them as provocative rehearsals for invasion.Visiting a North Korean army headquarters unit, leader Kim Jong-Un ordered the troops to "set up thorough countermeasures of a merciless strike against the enemy's sudden air assault", the state-run Korean Central News Agency said on the day the Foal Eagle exercises started.North Korea fired a ballistic missile last month -- its first such launch since October -- which Seoul had said was aimed at drawing "global attention" to its nuclear and missile programme and "testing the response from the new US administration" of President Donald Trump.North Korea is barred under UN resolutions from any use of ballistic missile technology. But six sets of UN sanctions since Pyongyang's first nuclear test in 2006 have failed to halt its drive for what it insists are defensive weapons.Last year the country conducted two nuclear tests and numerous missile launches in its quest to develop a nuclear weapons system capable of hitting the continental US.
North Korea fires unidentified projectile from near missile base: South Korea-[Reuters]-yahoonews-March 5, 2017
SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea fired an unidentified projectile from its Tongchang-ri region, where a missile base is located, South Korea's military said on Monday, a possible retaliation by the reclusive state to joint U.S.-South Korean drills that began last week.The projectile landed in the sea off North Korea's east coast, the military added.Tongchang-ri is near the North's border with China, where the isolated state fired a long-range rocket last year that put an object into orbit. The launch was condemned by the United Nations for violating resolutions that ban the use of missile technology.A South Korean military official said the launch, which came at 7:36 a.m. (5:36 p.m. ET on Sunday), was being analyzed to determine the type of the projectile used.North Korea has threatened to take "strong retaliatory measures" after South Korea and the United States began annual joint military drills on Wednesday that test their defensive readiness against possible aggression from the North.North Korea criticizes the annual drills calling them preparation for war against it.(Reporting by Jack Kim and Ju-min Park; Editing by Lincoln Feast)
Obama launched cyberwar to sabotage NKorea missile program: report-[AFP]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
Washington (AFP) - Former US president Barack Obama in 2014 launched a cyberwar against North Korea's missile program but it has failed to make significant gains, The New York Times reported Saturday.The United States still cannot effectively counter North Korea's nuclear and missile programs, the newspaper said following a months-long investigation, based on interviews with officials in the Obama and Donald Trump administrations as well as "a review of extensive but obscure public records."North Korea's threats remain so dangerous that when Obama left office he warned Trump that this would likely be the most urgent problem he'd face, the Times said.Three years ago Obama ordered the Pentagon to increase cyber and electronic attacks against North Korea to try to sabotage its missiles before launch or just as they lift off, the report said.The program appeared to be successful, as several of the North's rockets and missiles failed soon after launch.Advocates of the US program claimed success, believing that they had delayed for years North Korea's ability to mount a nuclear weapon on an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) and threaten a US city.Skeptics however said the failures could have resulted from shoddy manufacturing, disgruntled insiders and simple incompetence.Kim Jong-Un's isolated regime has continued to thumb its nose at the world with a series of missile launches over the years.It has conducted three successful medium-range rocket launches in the past eight months and two nuclear tests in 2016 in its quest to build an ICBM that could reach the United States.North Korea is barred under UN resolutions from any use of ballistic missile technology.The UN Security Council has imposed six sets of sanctions since Pyongyang first tested an atomic device in 2006.Kim boasted in January that Pyongyang was in the "final stages" of developing an ICBM in an apparent attempt to pressure the incoming US president. Trump shot back on Twitter, saying, "It won't happen."On February 12 North Korea fired what appeared to be a modified intermediate-range Musudan missile, which landed in the ocean.The Musudan has a range of 2,500-4,000 kilometers (1,550-2,485 miles), meaning it could threaten both Japan and US bases on Guam.Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called the test "absolutely intolerable."Days later, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson pledged that Washington would use the full range of its arsenal, including nuclear weapons, to defend allies Japan and South Korea against North Korea.
UN report shows North Korea using Africa to slip sanctions-[Associated Press]-CARA ANNA-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
JOHANNESBURG (AP) — North Korean weapons barred by U.N. sanctions ended up in the hands of U.N. peacekeepers in Africa, a confidential report says. That incident and others in more than a half-dozen African nations show how North Korea, despite facing its toughest sanctions in decades, continues to avoid them on the world's most impoverished continent with few repercussions.The annual report by a U.N. panel of experts on North Korea, obtained by The Associated Press, illustrates how Pyongyang evades sanctions imposed for its nuclear and ballistic missile programs to cooperate "on a large scale," including military training and construction, in countries from Angola to Uganda.Among the findings was the "largest seizure of ammunition in the history of sanctions" against North Korea, with 30,000 rocket-propelled grenades found hidden under iron ore that was destined for Egypt in a cargo vessel heading toward the Suez Canal. The intended destination of the North Korean-made grenades, seized in August, was not clear.A month before that, the report says, a U.N. member state seized an air shipment destined for a company in Eritrea containing military radio communications items. It was the second time military-related items had been caught being exported from North Korea to Eritrea "and confirms ongoing arms-related cooperation between the two countries." Eritrea is also under U.N. sanctions for supporting armed groups in the Horn of Africa.Discovering such evasions is challenging because Africa has the world's lowest rate of reporting on monitoring U.N. sanctions on North Korea. Just 11 of its 54 countries turned in reports to the panel of experts last year, the U.N. report says."African enforcement tends to be lax," Marcus Noland, an expert on North Korea at the Petersen Institute for International Economics, wrote last month, adding that "North Korea may deliberately target African countries as a circumvention strategy." He said North Korea's long military involvement in Africa, and its growing interest in trade there to reduce its deep dependence on China, "bring the continent's relationship with North Korea into increasing conflict with tightening U.N. sanctions."A year ago, the United States led an effort to impose the toughest U.N. sanctions in two decades against North Korea after the country's latest nuclear test and rocket launch. African nations then were pressured to cut ties with Pyongyang, with South Korean President Park Geun-hye making a three-nation African tour to press for its isolation.But North Korea continues to train and equip some African militaries, the new U.N. report says.In the most striking example, Congo's government received automatic pistols and other small arms from North Korea that were issued to the Central African nation's presidential guard and special units of the national police.Some of those national police units were deployed in the U.N. peacekeeping mission in neighboring Central African Republic, the report says. Neither the U.N. peacekeeping office nor Congo's government responded to requests for comment on how the North Korean weapons, part of a series of shipments to Congo that included assault rifles and anti-tank mines, made their way into the peacekeeping mission.In neighboring Angola, officials in September confirmed to the visiting U.N. panel of experts that North Koreans continued to train members of the presidential guard in martial arts, respite a warning that it was a violation of sanctions.And in Uganda, seen as a regional security ally for the United States, North Korea's military has been training Ugandan air force pilots and technicians under a contract set to expire in March 2018. Uganda has been warned that violates sanctions, the U.N. report says.A spokesman for Uganda's military, Brig. Richard Karemire, neither denied nor confirmed that the North Korean training continues and would not comment. Last year, under the international pressure to enforce sanctions on Pyongyang, Uganda said it was not renewing separate contracts for North Korean training of its police.But a number of African leaders, such as longtime Ugandan President Museveni, have continued to praise Pyongyang in the fight against what they describe as Western imperialism.The North Koreans, Museveni has declared, are "friends who have helped Uganda for a long time."___Associated Press writers Edith M. Lederer at the United Nations and Rodney Muhumuza in Kampala, Uganda contributed.
MIGRATING BIRDS IN ISRAEL EATS HUMANS FLESH FOR COMING AGAINST ISRAEL-JERUSALEM
11 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will give unto Gog (RUSSIA/ARAB/MUSLIMS) a place there of graves in Israel, the valley of the passengers (EAST OF THE DEAD SEA IN JORDAN VALLEY) on the east of the sea: and it shall stop the noses of the passengers: and there shall they bury Gog (RUSSIAN) and all his multitude:(ARAB/MUSLIM HORDE) and they shall call it The valley of Hamongog.(BURIEL SITE OF THE 300 MILLION,RUSSIAN/ARAB/MUSLIMS)
12 And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the land.(OF ISRAEL)
16 And also the name of the city shall be Hamonah. Thus shall they cleanse the land.(OF THE ISRAEL-GOD HATERS)
17 And, thou son of man, thus saith the Lord GOD; Speak unto every feathered fowl, and to every beast of the field, Assemble yourselves, and come; gather yourselves on every side to my sacrifice that I do sacrifice for you, even a great sacrifice upon the mountains of Israel, that ye may eat flesh, and drink blood.(OF RUSSIAN/ISLAMIC HORDES AGAINST ISRAEL)
18 Ye shall eat the flesh of the mighty, and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, of rams, of lambs, and of goats, of bullocks, all of them fatlings of Bashan.
19 And ye shall eat fat till ye be full, and drink blood till ye be drunken, of my sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you.
20 Thus ye shall be filled at my table with horses and chariots, with mighty men, and with all men of war, saith the Lord GOD.
21 And I will set my glory among the heathen, and all the heathen shall see my judgment that I have executed, and my hand that I have laid upon them.
22 So the house of Israel shall know that I am the LORD their God from that day and forward.
17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God;(AGAINST ALL NATIONS ARMIES THAT COME AGAINST JERUSALEM AND ISRAEL)
18 That ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses, and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.
1 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, set thy face against Gog,(RULER) the land of Magog,(RUSSIA) the chief prince of Meshech (MOSCOW) and Tubal,(TOBOLSK) and prophesy against him,
3 And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog,(LEADER OF RUSSIA) the chief prince of Meshech(MOSCOW) and Tubal:TOBOLSK)
4 And I (GOD) will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws,(GOD FORCES THE RUSSIA-MUSLIMS TO MARCH) and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords:
5 Persia,(IRAN,IRAQ) Ethiopia, and Libya with them; all of them with shield and helmet:
6 Gomer,(GERMANY) and all his bands; the house of Togarmah (TURKEY) of the north quarters, and all his bands: and many people with thee.(AFRICAN MUSLIMS,SUDAN,TUNESIA ETC)
7 Be thou prepared, and prepare for thyself, thou, and all thy company that are assembled unto thee, and be thou a guard unto them.
1 Therefore, thou son of man, prophesy against Gog,(LEADER OF RUSSIA) and say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech (MOSCOW) and Tubal: (TUBOLSK)
2 And I will turn thee back,(RUSSIA-ARAB MUSLIM ISRAEL HATERS) and leave but the sixth part of thee,(5/6TH OR 300 MILLION DEAD RUSSIAN/ARAB/MUSLIMS I BELIEVE) and will cause thee to come up from the north parts,(RUSSIA) and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel:
3 And I will smite thy bow out of thy left hand, and will cause thine arrows to fall out of thy right hand.
4 Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands,( ARABS) and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured.
5 Thou shalt fall upon the open field: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD.
6 And I will send a fire on Magog,(NUCLEAR ATOMIC BOMB) and among them that dwell carelessly in the isles: and they shall know that I am the LORD.
7 So will I make my holy name known in the midst of my people Israel; and I will not let them pollute my holy name any more: and the heathen shall know that I am the LORD, the Holy One in Israel.
8 Behold, it is come, and it is done, saith the Lord GOD; this is the day whereof I have spoken.
Warming, taller shrubs may affect birds breeding on tundra-[Associated Press]-DAN JOLING-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — More shrubs moving onto Arctic tundra because of climate change will have minimal effect on many of the bird species that breed there, but birds likely will seek other habitat when the shrubs grow tall, according to a new federal study.A study by the U.S. Geological Survey concludes that the size of the shrubs was more critical than the density in determining whether birds would continue in the habitat."Height came out to be the most indicative of bird habitat selection," said Sarah Thompson, a USGS research wildlife biologist based in Anchorage and the lead author of the study.Multiple studies have shown that tundra areas are getting more shrubs, Thompson said. Climate warming also is having effects in the form of longer growing seasons, thawing permafrost and more frequent and intense wildfires, the authors said."All across Alaska, you see this kind of shrub encroachment into places that previously didn't have shrubs or didn't have tall or many shrubs," Thompson said.The researchers over three summers studied 17 bird species on the Seward Peninsula, which juts 200 miles into the Bering Sea in western Alaska and includes the city of Nome. The peninsula, Thompson said, is ideal for study because it includes coastal habitat and inland settings at a variety of elevations. It's also along the transition between boreal forest and tundra, Thompson said."We can look at all these different kinds of habitats that might exist in different amounts in the future and see where birds are, and then we can project forward," she said.The 17 birds ranged in size from songbirds, such as the bluethroat, which flies in from Eurasia, to wading birds such as whimbrel and bristle-thighed curlews that fly in from other parts of North America to breed on tundra. The birds time the hatching of their eggs to the height of insect season, Thompson said.The research did not attempt to explain why tall shrubs made tundra less appealing to birds, such as effects on nesting or insects. That likely will be addressed in future studies, she said.George Divoky, director of the nonprofit Friends of Cooper Island, who has studied Arctic seabirds for more than four decades off the coast of northern Alaska, said the study is one more piece of evidence that the warming Arctic is having effects both at sea and on land to avian populations.However, he said, the paper only emphasized shrubs instead of other important factors affecting birds on the peninsula, such as warmer temperatures and birds' dependence on seeds and insects."They should have been going out ever since, certainly, the 1990s when climate change got to be an issue, and doing plots and actually measuring the changes in these birds, rather than going out now, and saying, 'Oh, by the way in the future, these things are going to happen,' " Divoky said.
Iran successfully tests Russian S-300 missile system-TEHRAN TIMES-March 4, 2017
The Iranian Armed Forces have successfully tested the S-300 surface-to-air missile defense systems, which Iran imported from Russia after a decade long delay due to sanctions over its nuclear program.Iranian experts conducted a number of tests on the Russian missile systems during drills, which were held in the presence of several military and government officials in one of the country’s defense units.The tests included all phases of performance, namely detection, identification, interception and target shooting.The military exercise was carried out to analyze the performance of the S-300 system and to assess the capability of the system in engaging targets with a low radar cross sections and ballistic missile threats, as well as the ability of the Iranian military personnel to use the system.Reportedly, two targets, a ballistic missile and turbojet-powered drone designated 'Karrar', had been successfully identified, intercepted and taken down by the system.Confirming the news, Farzad Esmaili, commander of the Iranian army's air defense force, said “the S-300 system hit the ballistic missile.”The contract to deliver five Russian S-300 systems to Iran was signed in 2007, however due to the adoption of UN Security Council sanctions on Iran in 2010, which barred hi-tech weapons sales to the Islamic Republic, it was stalled.After the 2015 nuclear deal, Russia resumed the talks on the delivery of S-300, when Russian President Vladimir Putin lifted the ban on the delivery of the missile systems.Earlier this week, Iran’s Deputy Defense Minister Amir Khatami announced that Iran is also carrying out tests of its Bavar (Belief) 373 long-range air defense system.The Bavar 373 has similar characteristics to Russia’s S-300 system and was unveiled in August 2016. The project to build these missiles was launched in February 2010, after Russia suspended the $900 million deal signed in 2007.Tehran has since persevered with its plans to produce its own ground-to-air missile system.“Work with the Bavar 373 complexes is progressing as planned, testing of the complex has been carried out. These tests will continue to be carried out until the complexes are delivered to their units,” Khatami said in an interview with Tasnim news agency.Russia’s S-300 surface-to-air missile system has a range of up to 150 km and can hit targets at an altitude of up to 27.000 meters traveling at 2,800 meters per second. Its 92N6E multi-functional radar has a 400 km range, which is able to engage six targets simultaneously.KB/PA.
Russia Tested NATO Aircraft Four Times In Same Day-[International Business Times]-Greg Price-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
Russian aircraft reportedly buzzed NATO counterparts four different times last month in Europe, all in the same day, a prominent U.S. general said Thursday, according to Military Times. The actions were yet another test of the international military body as Russia has repeatedly poked and prodded NATO forces while re-enforcing its military presence near and around Europe.The commander of the U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Africa, Gen. Tod Wolters, said there were four different “encounters” on Feb. 10 with three Russian Su-24 jets and a fourth with Ilyushin Il-38, a maritime patrol aircraft also capable of fighting submarines. Each was a separate incident according to Wolters, who spoke at the Air Force Association’s Air Warfare Symposium in Orlando, Florida.Wolters added that such actions have “plateaued” in the last six months and that U.S. officials had reached out to the Russians for an explanation but little information had been shared."Sometimes we don't get the answer we prefer," Wolters said. "Sometimes we get no answer at all." Wolters did not say where exactly the encounters occurred or what NATO aircraft was involved.He also described the incidents as “not similar in nature” and even admitted, when asked, that each could have been either a mistake by the Russian pilots or were possibly intentional.Russia, as part of President Vladimir Putin’s attempts to rearrange the world’s order, had increasingly poked and prodded NATO forces and put many of the Baltic states and other countries along its western border on high alert.Four days after the incidents described by Wolters, three Russian aircraft were intercepted by NATO forces as they flew over the Baltic Sea. Two days later similar aircraft repeated the same flyover it was believed to be a trip from Russia to Kaliningrad, a territory sitting between Poland and Lithuania that Russia has controlled since World War II.While the U.S. has closely monitored the advancements of Russia’s military, including calling for it to open its drills with Belarus later this year to the public, the movements have worried NATO members like Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, to say nothing of the commercial aircraft that had also come dangerously close to Russian military planes.
UN: If confirmed, chemical attacks in Mosul a war crime-[Associated Press]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
IRBIL, Iraq (AP) — The United Nations warned that the alleged use of chemical weapons in Mosul, if confirmed, would be a war crime and a serious violation of international humanitarian law, according to a statement released Saturday."This is horrible," Lise Grande, the humanitarian coordinator in Iraq said in the statement, "there is never justification — none whatsoever — for the use of chemical weapons."The alleged attack occurred this week in eastern Mosul, an area declared fully liberated by Iraqi forces in January. The attack hit a neighborhood along the Tigris River — which roughly divides the city in two.Doctors in an urgent care hospital in the nearby city of Irbil say they began receiving patients showing symptoms of chemical weapons exposure on Thursday."The mortar hit our house, right inside the living room where we were sitting," said Nazim Hamid, whose children had burns to their faces, arms and legs. The family was being treated in the Irbil hospital."There was a very bad smell, it was some kind of gas," he said. "My kids were affected, some of them were burned and some of them had difficulty breathing."Hussein Qader, the deputy director of the hospital, said all 10 patients admitted for exposure are in stable condition and will be discharged in the coming days.IS has used chemical weapons in Iraq and Syria at least 52 times according to a report published late last year by IHS conflict monitor, a London-based research and intelligence gathering group. The report said that at least 19 of the 52 attacks took place in and around Mosul.Iraqi and U.S.-led coalition officials have repeatedly expressed concern regarding IS chemical weapons attacks. However IS-claimed insurgent attacks in Iraq and attacks targeting civilians attempting to flee Mosul cause far greater numbers of injuries and deaths to civilians.Most of western Mosul is still under Islamic State group control despite a handful of recent gains on the city's southwestern edge by Iraqi forces over the past two weeks.The U.S.-led coalition campaign of airstrikes has been pivotal to securing those territorial gains, but has also resulted in civilian casualties and damage to infrastructure.Coalition airstrikes in Iraq and Syria between November and January killed 19 civilians and wounded 2, according to a statement from the Pentagon Saturday. The report brings the total number of civilian casualties acknowledged by the coalition to at least 220, according to the Pentagon.Independent monitoring organizations put the number of civilian casualties much higher. Airwars, an independent monitoring group based in London estimates the minimum number of civilian casualties caused by airstrikes to be at least 2,463.The Pentagon report added that 19 reports of strikes resulting in civilian casualties were still being assessed, 11 of which occurred in and around Mosul.Iraqi forces launched the operation to retake Mosul in October and began a push to retake the city's western half last month.After more than two years of slow territorial victories against IS by Iraqi ground forces backed by U.S.-led coalition air power, western Mosul is the last significant urban area IS controls in Iraq.
16 When I shall send upon them the evil arrows of famine, which shall be for their destruction, and which I will send to destroy you: and I will increase the famine upon you, and will break your staff of bread:
5 And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.
6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.(A DAYS WAGES FOR A LOAF OF BREAD)
7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.
Somalia says 110 dead in last 48 hours due to drought-[Reuters]-By Abdi Sheikh-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
MOGADISHU (Reuters) - Some 110 people have died in southern Somalia in the last two days from famine and diarrhea resulting from a drought, the prime minister said on Saturday, as the area braces itself for widespread shortages of food.In February, United Nations children's agency UNICEF said the drought in Somalia could lead to up to 270,000 children suffering from severe acute malnutrition this year."It is a difficult situation for the pastoralists and their livestock. Some people have been hit by famine and diarrhea at the same time. In the last 48 hours 110 people died due to famine and diarrhea in Bay region," Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire's office said in a statement."The Somali government will do its best, and we urge all Somalis wherever they are to help and save the dying Somalis," he said in the statement released after a meeting of a famine response committee.In 2011, some 260,000 people starved to death due to famine in Somalia.The country also continues to be rocked by security problems, with the capital Mogadishu and other regions controlled by the federal government coming under regular attack from al Qaeda-linked al Shabaab.(Reporting by Abdi Sheikh; Writing by George Obulutsa; Editing by Hugh Lawson)
Famine-hit South Sudan sharply raises foreigners' work fees-[Associated Press]-JUSTIN LYNCH-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — South Sudan has sharply increased the fees required for foreigners to work in the country — from roughly $100 to up to $10,000 — just days after famine was declared there.Even before the fee hike, the government had been repeatedly accused of restricting humanitarian aid access during the country's three-year civil war. With the famine declaration, the pleas for access are rising.The Ministry of Labor raised work permit fees to anywhere from $10,000 to $1,000 depending on skill level, according to a memorandum dated Thursday. Most foreigners in South Sudan work in humanitarian aid or the oil industry.The fee hikes apply only to foreigners and are aimed at increasing government revenue, Minister of Information Michael Makuei told The Associated Press on Saturday.South Sudan's government and the United Nations late last month declared a famine in two counties of the East African nation, saying about 100,000 people are at risk. The next day, President Salva Kiir said his government would ensure "unimpeded access" for all aid organizations.Such promises have had little effect. Some in Kiir's government have expressed hostility toward the international community, accusing it of meddling in the country's affairs. Minister of Cabinet Affairs Martin Lomuro recently told the AP that "most of the (humanitarian) agencies are here to spy on the government."The U.N. secretary-general has been among those accusing South Sudan's government of restricting aid access during the civil war, which has killed tens of thousands and forced more than 1.5 million people to flee the country.On Friday, the U.N. said in a statement that humanitarian agencies recently were told to evacuate the famine-stricken town of Mayendit.Late Saturday after arriving for a visit, U.N. humanitarian chief Stephen O'Brien tweeted the latest promise from South Sudan's government: "Foreign Minister Deng Alor Kuol gave us unqualified assurances of free access to all areas with people suffering."The need is urgent, O'Brien said. In another tweet, he showed a starving child he said had escaped attack when his grandmother carried him through one of the swamps where many South Sudanese are hiding and eating water lilies to survive."Parents missing. 1000s similar. Horrendous," O'Brien wrote.
IMF reaches deal with Ukraine paving way for next loan disbursal-[Reuters]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
KIEV (Reuters) - The International Monetary Fund said on Saturday it had reached an agreement with Ukraine on an updated memorandum under a $17.5 billion program, paving the way for its board to consider the disbursement of the fourth loan tranche later in March."The IMF staff has reached agreement with the Ukrainian authorities on an updated memorandum of economic and financial policies," Ron van Rooden, the IMF's Ukraine mission chief, said in a statement.Disbursements under the program have been delayed repeatedly over the past two years due to stop-start progress on reforms. The latest tranche of $1 billion was contingent on Ukraine passing an IMF-backed 2017 budget and implementing banking system reforms.(Reporting by Natalia Zinets; Writing by Alessandra Prentice; Editing by Hugh Lawson)
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)
Anti-Islamophobia motion brings out hundreds for protest, counter-protest-[CBC]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
Hundreds gathered for a protest — and counter-protest — at Nathan Phillips Square on Saturday, sparked by a polarizing anti-Islamophobia motion.The opposing chants of protestors from both sides rang out through the space in front of City Hall on Saturday afternoon. "My fears are not irrational," chanted a group opposing M-103, the motion tabled by Mississauga—Erin Mills Liberal MP Iqra Khalid back in December."No hate, no fear, Muslims are welcome here," chanted protestors in favour of the motion.M-103 aims to condemn and combat Islamophobia, acts of discrimination and hate against Muslims."The text of the motion... really calls for a study on all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination in Canada," Khalid told CBC on Saturday."And the intention was basically to understand what is happening at the grassroots level, and how we can, as a whole government, try to tackle issues that affect our diversity — which is our strength."Protestors for, against M-103-But the motion has led to fierce debate in the House of Commons and beyond, with some critics saying that it could stifle free speech, and petitions opposing it garnering thousands of signatures online."I've talked to many Canadians that are very worried that the freedom of speech is going to be little by little taken away from us, whereas we cannot even mention anything regarding Islam and Sharia Law," Georges Hallak, founder of the Canadian Coalition of Concerned Citizens — the group behind the protest against M-103 — told CBC earlier this week.In contrast, Sarah Ali, who was at Saturday's protest with the group Organizing Committee Against Islamophobia, hopes M-103 is "passed immediately.""Islamophobia, white supremacy and fascism are just not welcome on the streets of Toronto," she said.Police formed barricades during Saturday's protests. There were also multiple arrests, said Const. Allyson Douglas-Cook.Two people were arrested and are now facing charges, while a third was arrested and released at the scene, she said. There is no word yet on what the two were charged with.Similar protests were planned across the country, including at city halls in Saskatchewan, and in Montreal, Que., which led to several scuffles.Despite the controversy, Khalid stressed that the motion focuses on building bridges between communities."When we call for the flu shot, it's during the winter season... hate crime reports against the Muslim community, specifically, have doubled in the past number of years, and I think it's something that warrants looking at, but in the context of all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination," she said.M-103 is expected to be up for debate again in April.
Anti-Islamophobia motion spurs protests — and counter-protests — at Sask. city halls Saturday-[CBC]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
Rival protest groups stationed on opposite sides of the street used megaphones to shout their opposing views on Islamophobia when two rallies met in Saskatoon on Saturday.Boos and chants rang out from across the street as a group of protesters from the Canadian Coalition of Concerned Citizens gathered outside City Hall to protest the anti-Islamophobia federal Motion 103.Members of the counter-rally were staged outside the Saskatoon Public Library on 23rd Street.CCCC rallies and counter-rallies like the ones in Saskatoon were held in cities across Canada, with bigger gatherings in Montreal and Toronto.CCCC protests Motion 103-Motion 103 calls on the government to "condemn Islamophobia and all forms of systemic racism and religious discrimination."Tabled by Ontario Liberal backbencher Iqra Khalid, M-103 is a non-binding motion, not a bill or a law as it has been characterized by some critics.The CCCC group in Saskatoon, a gathering of about 15 people, spoke of their own immigrant heritage and wanting to protect Canadian values.Mike Landrie from North Battleford, Sask. said his opposition to M-103 was about fairness and freedom to express his beliefs."When you think you're entitled to something that I'm not entitled to, doesn't that set the system up for a two-tiered system?" asked Landrie."That's all it boils down to is being fair, equal and everything." Protesters at the counter-rally across the street carried signs with slogans including "smash fascism" and "refugees welcome."Islamic Association might reach out to CCCC-Omaer Jamil from the Islamic Association of Saskatchewan was part of the crowd outside the library.He said his organization would consider reaching out to the CCCC to try to find a better way to move forward."We live in Canada, everybody has freedom of speech, and freedom to basically gather peacefully. So we respect their right to do that," Jamil said.He added that although he generally feels safe, he does believe there are signs that Islamophobia is increasing in Canada.Jamil pointed to January's mass shooting at a mosque in Quebec, which he said has shaken the Muslim community."But then when we saw the prime minister and the response from all of Canada, all Canadians from all walks of life, responding in such a positive manner, and coming out in support of the Muslims, we felt very relieved," he said.-Critics say motion limits freedom of speech-Motion 103 critics including Georges Hallak, the founder of the Concerned Citizens group, believe the motion opens the door to the growth of Shariah law in Canada."Basically this is the beginning of Shariah law, where anyone that doesn't believe in Islam, they should be silenced," said Hallak.He also takes issue with the fact that the motion specifically refers to Islamophobia, saying it is not fair to create such a motion for Muslims and not similar motions for followers of other religions."I have no problem with Muslims, but we have the right to criticize any religion or belief in Canada," said Hallak.Counter-protest in Regina-Chelsea Taylor doesn't agree that the motion limits freedom of speech.She helped organize a counter-rally in Regina, and said Motion 103 was needed because Islamophobia is increasing.She referenced the arson attack on a mosque in Peterborough, Ont. in 2015 and the Quebec mosque shooting."I would only hope that the motion after the massacre in Quebec, that it would single out Islamophobia," said Taylor."There are real, hateful incidents happening."Taylor said she was also protesting against what she said was a trend in the growing misuse of facts and the spread of misinformation, particularly since the election of Donald Trump.-More about Motion 103-The text of the motion asks the government to: - Recognize the need to quell the increasing public climate of hate and fear. - Request the heritage committee study how the government could develop a government-wide approach to reducing or eliminating systemic racism and religious discrimination, including Islamophobia. - Collect data to contextualize hate crime reports and to conduct needs assessments for impacted communities and present findings within 240 calendar days.The motion has generated backlash online, with petitions garnering thousands of signatures opposing the motion.
Canada: No plans to clamp down at border to deter migrants-[Reuters]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada will not tighten its border to deter migrants crossing illegally from the United States in the wake of a U.S. immigration crackdown because the numbers are not big enough to cause alarm, a government minister said on Saturday.Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale said the issue had not risen to a scale that required hindering the flow of goods and people moving across the world's longest undefended border.Hundreds of people, mainly from Africa and the Middle East, have defied winter conditions and walked across the border, seeking asylum. They are fleeing President Donald Trump's immigration crackdown, migrants and refugee agencies say.It is not common to have so many asylum seekers in the United States looking for refuge in Canada over such a short period. The influx poses a political risk for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, who faces pressure from the left, which wants more let in, and from the right, which fears an increased security risk."We are concerned and we will deal properly with the extra hundreds (crossing illegally)," Goodale told reporters at a televised news conference in Emerson, Manitoba. "But the full border deals with 400,000 people moving in both directions every day. It also handles C$2.5 billion in trade every day."It is critically important for us to make sure that it is strong and secure. At the same time, it needs to be efficient and expeditious."Emerson, on the North Dakota border, has been overwhelmed by the migration and appealed for more government help to handle the influx.Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Manitoba say 183 people have walked across that border in sub-zero temperatures since Jan. 1. Goodale said the pace has picked up in recent weeks.On Jan. 25, a White House executive order temporarily banned visitors from seven mainly Muslim countries and also expanded immigration enforcement action domestically."The current accelerated rate started in the first week of February and we’ve been following this very very closely,” Goodale said.Canadian and U.S. officials are working on a plan to tackle asylum seekers crossing into Canada illegally, with American officials keen to discover how they entered the United States in the first place. U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly is to visit Canada this month for talks on the border.Goodale said it was important for both countries to have the same data and information about the migrants "to fully appreciate where the flow began and all of the factors – and it's not just one factor – that are contributing to the migration."(Reporting by Amran Abocar; Editing by Dan Grebler)
Federal ministers see the asylum seeker situation on the ground in Emerson, Man.[CBC]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
As the number of asylum seekers crossing into Canada surges, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale pledged cash for the small Manitoba town most affected by the influx and said the federal government will continue to watch the situation."At this moment it's simply not physically possible to predict what that flow will be some weeks down the road," he said.Goodale was joined by Manitoba MP and Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr on Saturday to observe what's happening on the ground in the town on the U.S.-Canada border.He said all levels of government are communicating with each other about the influx of people."The reaction of the community has been truly inspiring and I really want to say on behalf of the prime minister and the government of Canada and most importantly all Canadians that you have represented the very best instincts and values of Canadians in responding," Goodale said.Manitoba RCMP said Saturday they have come into contact with 183 people entering into Manitoba somewhere other than an official border crossing so far in 2017. That number doesn't include asylum seekers who may have walked over without coming into contact with police.From Tuesday to Friday alone, RCMP intercepted 40 people. Another 24 people crossed over on Friday night, according to Rita Chahal, the executive director of Manitoba Interfaith Immigration Council which works with asylum seekers."I am here to see the situation on the ground, to understand the exact physical and logistical circumstances," Goodale told reporters at the community's fire hall on Saturday morning.$30K for volunteer fire department-Goodale said meeting with people in Emerson will help the government anticipate the flow of asylum seekers into the future and appreciate what the local community, RCMP, Canada Border Services Agency and first responders have had to deal with as the flow of asylum seekers continues to grow.On Saturday, Goodale announced that Emerson would receive $30,000 so the community's "normal budget is not depleted by these extraordinary circumstances." The town had already used one-third of its fire department budget specifically to respond to asylum seekers.For the time being, Goodale added that no extra resources were necessary for RCMP and CBSA because the agencies were able to reallocate resources internally. Greg Janzen, the reeve of Emerson, said he has been happy with the response from all levels of government. Since the major surge in asylum seekers began about a month ago, he has been in constant communication with the province and the federal government, he said.The extra funds for the community will cover the current pressures put on the community's 21-member volunteer fire department, but Janzen said he has been assured that if the refugee flow continues, so will the funding."There is no cap on it right now, there is no end to it," he said. "I have [it] in good faith, I am confident that our costs will be covered."Settling asylum seekers-In Winnipeg, Manitoba Interfaith Immigration Council, which runs Welcome Place, a newcomer resettlement agency, made a public appeal for $300,000 to pay for the costs associated with the influx of asylum seekers on Saturday.Goodale said Ahmed Hussen, minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship, has been in touch with settlement agencies in Winnipeg and across the country to assess the situation."The assessment is being undertaken by the immigration department and they will be in touch with all of their partners in the private sector and among the civil society groups," he said.Premier Brian Pallister has also sent a letter to Justin Trudeau calling for more resources, as the province is under pressure because of the surge in asylum seekers.In the letter obtained by CBC News dated Feb. 21, the premier wrote that the rising number of refugee claimants entering Manitoba is having a significant impact in a number of areas — in particular, on the caseloads of Legal Aid Manitoba, which provides legal assistance from the initiation of the refugee claim to the completion of the process.Goodale said there have been conversations with the province and the premier, but the prime minister will respond the Pallister's letter.No changes to border, Goodale says-For people worried about safety, Goodale said the integrity of the border is being maintained. Each day, about 400,000 people cross the border and it handles $2.5 billion in trade, so the hundreds of asylum seekers need to be seen in the total context, Goodale added."I want to make the point that all Canadian laws are being enforced. That is an absolute fundamental in these circumstances," he said."It is the longest most open international boundary quite frankly in the history of the world and one of the most successful," Goodale added.Asylum seekers have been walking through snow-covered fields, often in frigid temperatures, to reach Canada.They've been using an exception in the Canada-U.S. Safe Third Country Agreement, which allows refugee claims from people who've entered the country somewhere other than an official port of entry.Under the agreement, refugee claimants are required to request refugee protection in the first safe country they arrive in — meaning would-be claimants arriving at an official border crossing from the U.S. would be turned back.There have been calls to suspend the agreement, but Goodale said there are still no plans to move in that direction."Safe Third is an agreement that has served Canada very well over the course of the last 10 to 15 years. It has proven to be an effective and compassionate tool and the immigration department, at this stage, has no basis to doubt its continued efficacy," he said.Manitoba Conservative MP for Provencher Ted Falk put out a news release in response to Goodale's visit, calling for more action to protect the border.Falk said the prime minister should publicly say if he opposes the irregular border crossings and "immediately close the loophole which is allowing for this abuse of our Canadian generosity."
Expert says Islamic State has badly damaged major Palmyra monument-[Reuters]-By Firas Maqdisi-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
PALMYRA, Syria (Reuters) - Islamic State militants have severely damaged a major Roman monument in the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra, an antiquities official said after visiting the site on Saturday.Under heavy Russian air cover, the Syrian army and allied militias drove the jihadist group out of the UNESCO world heritage site on Thursday, two months after it had seized it in a surprise advance.It was the second time the city had been recaptured from the militants in the course of Syria's six-year war.Antiquities official Wael Hafyan said he had seen serious damage to the Tetrapylon, a square stone platform with matching structures of four columns positioned at each corner. Only four of the 16 columns were still standing."The terrorists detonated it... the damage is extensive," he told Reuters. However, he said some of the fallen columns were not destroyed and could be restored using modern conservation techniques.There was also harm, but less serious, to the facade of a Roman theater, where the damage was to a part that was restored, not original, he said.Hafyan said the militants had caused less destruction during their second occupation of the city than in their first, when they ruined an 1,800-year-old monumental arch and the nearly 2,000-year-old Temple of Baalshamin."These two places are not in that same danger and the extent of destruction of the first occupation, when the damage was much more savage," Hafyan added. He said it would take some time to make a full technical assessment of the historic sites.Known as the Pearl of the Desert, Palmyra, about 215 km (135 miles) northeast of Damascus, was a prosperous city on the ancient Silk Road trading route.The militants have smashed ancient structures in Iraq and Syria they say do not conform to their strict interpretation of Islam.(Additional reporting by Kinda Makieh in Damascus, Writing by Suleiman Al-Khalidi; Editing by Mark Trevelyan)
Jordan says executes 15, with 10 for terrorism convictions-[Reuters]-By Suleiman Al-Khalidi-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
AMMAN (Reuters) - Jordan executed 15 people on Saturday, including 10 convicted on terrorism charges ranging from an attack a decade ago on Western tourists to the slaying of a writer in the largest mass execution in the country's recent history.Government spokesman Mohammad al Momani told state media those executed included one man who was convicted of an attack last year on an intelligence compound near a Palestinian camp that killed five security personnel.Another five were involved in an assault by security forces on a militant hideout by suspected Islamic State militants in Irbid city in the same year that led to the death of seven militants and one police officer. The rest related to separate incidents that go back as far as 2003.It was the largest number of executions in one day in Jordan's recent history, said a senior judicial source who was not authorized to speak publicly about the matter and requested anonymity.At least one hundred detainees have been sentenced to death in recent years, many on charges related to membership of militant Islamist groups, who could face capital punishment.Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement the death penalty was not a deterrence, citing a spike in militant attacks since last year."Whatever image of strength Jordan wishes to project, the death penalty will never deter terror attacks and murder, or make the citizens of Jordan safer," Whitson said."Just the terror attacks of the last two years shows that reinstating the death penalty in Jordan has done nothing to reduce the incidents of such violent attacks."Several security incidents over the past year have jolted the Arab kingdom, which has been relatively unscathed by the uprisings, civil wars and Islamist militancy that have swept the Middle East since 2011.However, Jordan is among the few Arab states that have taken part in a U.S.-led air campaign against Islamic State militants holding territory in Syria and Iraq Human rights group Amnesty International condemned the executions by hanging, saying they had been carried out in "secrecy and without transparency.""The scale of today's mass executions is shocking and it's a big step backwards on human rights protection in Jordan," Samah Hadid, deputy director of Amnesty International's Beirut regional office, told Reuters.Hadid said the death penalty was "problematic because in some cases confessions in Jordan were extracted under torture or duress", echoing widespread complaints by human rights activists.Amnesty said in a statement earlier: "Jordan had for years been a leading example in a region where recourse to the death penalty is all too frequent."Jordan in the past refrained from executing political detainees and either reduced or suspended death sentences handed to fundamentalist Islamists on terror-related charges.International human rights activists say militants are put on trial in military courts that are unconstitutional and lack proper legal safeguards, adding that there are growing cases of mistreatment and of extracting confessions under duress.The government denies it tortures prisoners or mistreats detainees, saying its courts abide by human rights laws.Another judicial source said the authorities also executed a man who last year shot dead outside a court a Christian writer who was standing trial for contempt of religion after sharing on social media a caricature insulting Islam.Also among the 10 was a gunman convicted of firing at a group of Western tourists near the Roman amphitheatre in downtown Amman in 2006, killing one Briton and injuring five other people, the source said on condition of anonymity.The five other executions were for rape and sexual assault.Jordan restored the death sentence by hanging in 2014 after a moratorium on capital punishment between 2006 and 2014.(Reporting by Suleiman Al-Khalidi; Editing by Ed Osmond and Richard Chang)
Turkey plans more pro-Erdogan rallies, German concerns mount-[Reuters]-By Ralph Boulton and Andrea Shalal-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
ISTANBUL/BERLIN (Reuters) - Turkey said on Saturday it would keep holding rallies in Germany and the Netherlands to urge Turks living there to back a vote to boost President Tayyip Erdogan's powers, despite opposition from authorities in both countries.Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu criticized German and Dutch restrictions on such gatherings as undemocratic, and said Turkey would press on with them in the run-up to the April 16 referendum."None of you can prevent us," he told a campaign event in southern Turkey. "We can go anywhere we want, meet our citizens, hold our meetings."The defiant Turkish comments highlight the importance Erdogan places on securing the new powers, especially since a failed military coup last July, in what could turn out to be a close vote.The disagreement has led to sharp exchanges between the North Atlantic Treaty Organization partners. Adding to the tensions, Germany has demanded the release of a German journalist arrested in Turkey on Monday, while Erdogan on Friday called him a "German agent."Chancellor Angela Merkel spoke by phone on Saturday with Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, a German government spokesman said, without providing details of the conversation.German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel, who will meet with his Turkish counterpart in Berlin this week, warned against stirring up tensions between the two countries, but also said Berlin would not refrain from criticism where warranted."The German-Turkish friendship runs deeper than the diplomatic tensions we are experiencing today," he wrote in an essay published in the Bild am Sonntag newspaper on Sunday. "We cannot allow hate and misunderstanding to grow out of political differences."Gabriel said Turkish politicians who wanted to campaign in Germany should respect the "rules of law, as well as decency."Several members of Merkel's coalition voiced concerns on Saturday about Turkish politicians rallying support among Germany's 1.5 million Turkish citizens.Juergen Hardt, foreign policy spokesman for her conservative Christian Democratic Union, told Reuters: "We don't want marketing for the undemocratic and illegitimate Turkish referendum on German soil."Several events have already been blocked for security reasons, sparking anger among Turkish leaders who accused Germany of a double standard.Turkish Economy Minister Nihat Zeybekci has had two events canceled, but plans to speak at events on Sunday in Leverkusen and Cologne in the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW), which has a large Turkish population.The state premier of NRW and local politicians want the federal government to provide guidance about such campaign events, something that Merkel and Gabriel would like to avoid as they struggle to balance the broader issues at hand with Turkey, including migration and the fight against Islamic militancy.Critics of Erdogan fear the proposed new powers, including freedoms to govern by executive orders, would entrench autocratic trends. Erdogan says they are vital in tackling Kurdish rebels, Islamist militants and other political enemies in a land with a history of unstable coalition governments.The Dutch government said on Friday it would inform Ankara of its opposition to "undesirable" proposals to hold a referendum rally in Rotterdam."The Netherlands told us 'You can't campaign in our public spaces.' What do you mean, we can't? Where is democracy ... where is freedom of expression?" Cavusoglu said.(Reporting by Ralph Boulton, Andreas Rinke, Gernot Heller, Reuters TV and Andrea Shalal; Editing by Mark Trevelyan and Richard Chang)
Syrian military plane crashes near Turkish border-[AFP]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
Ankara (AFP) - A Syrian military plane crashed in Turkey on Saturday near the country's border with Syria, the Turkish state-run news agency Anadolu said.The plane crashed in the Turkish province of Hatay, it said, quoting provincial governor Erdal Ata as saying police and medical teams were at the site."The plane's cockpit was empty. We believe that the pilots parachuted out," Ata said, adding that a search for them was underway.A Syrian military source quoted by state television said "contact was lost with a military aircraft on a reconnaissance mission near the Turkish border."The Syrian rebel group Ahrar al-Sham told AFP that it had shot down a government plane "as it was overflying Idlib province (in northwestern Syria) and carrying out air strikes."A monitor of the conflict, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said that a plane "which probably belongs to the Syrian regime crashed in Idlib province. The status of the pilot is unknown and there are contradictory reasons for the cause of the crash."Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim, quoted by Anadolu, said earlier that the cause of the crash was unknown, but he pointed to poor weather conditions at the time.Inhabitants of the Turkish border village of Samandag said they heard a loud noise at around 6:30 pm (1530 GMT) and alerted the police, the Dogan news agency said.More than 310,000 people have died since the war in Syria erupted in March 2011 after regime forces crushed anti-government protests. Millions have fled the country.The conflict has drawn in regional and international powers and helped the rise of brutal jihadist groups, including the Islamic State group.
Eastern Libya forces strike from air, aim to retake oil site-[Associated Press]-RAMI MUSA-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
BENGHAZI, Libya (AP) — Libyan armed forces based in the east launched more airstrikes Saturday against militias that seized oil terminals a day earlier, a spokesman said, accusing troops from the country's rival west of launching a war.Three strikes hit vehicles and targets in the area around the al-Sidra and Ras Lanuf terminals, where at least nine soldiers were killed in Friday's attack that drove out the army troops despite earlier air strikes supporting them, Col. Ahmed Mosmary, spokesman for forces commanded by army chief Gen. Khalifa Hifter said.The army has deployed more forces in preparation of a counterattack to drive out the militias, known as Benghazi Defense Brigades, which are comprised of Islamic militants and former rebels recently defeated by Hifter's forces in Benghazi, Libya' second largest city, he said. They're also joined by militiamen from the western city of Misrata."This is a war against a whole region," he said, referring to Libya's east. "They will not win."Libya has descended into chaos since the 2011 civil war, which ended with the killing of longtime dictator Moammar Gadhafi. The country has been split into two competing parliaments and governments in the east and west, each backed by a set of militias, tribes and political factions. It was not the first time the oil terminals have changed hands in the past three years, heavily impacting production that was finally increasing and had reached 700,000 barrels a day in February.The militias' occupation of the terminals has stoked fears that the facilities could sustain serious damage if clashes escalate.The eastern forces have said that some 1,000 militiamen in 200 vehicles took over the terminals and were joined by fighters loyal to eastern militia commander Ibrahim Jedran, a secessionist fighter who took over and oversaw the terminals until Hifter's forces seized them last year.Hifter's army is allied to the internationally-recognized parliament based in eastern Libya. The internationally-recognized government based in the capital Tripoli — which is opposed to Hifter— has condemned the fighting and says it has no role in it, according to a statement released by the so-called Presidency Council, the United Nations-brokered body tasked to form the government and which enjoys presidential powers.
220 civilians killed by strikes in Iraq, Syria since 2014: U.S. military-[Reuters]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Twenty-one civilians were killed in nine separate strikes by the U.S.-led coalition fighting Islamic State in Iraq and Syria between November and January, the U.S. military said on Saturday.That brings the total number of civilians unintentionally killed by the coalition since the start of operations against the militant group in 2014 to 220, the military said in a statement."Although the Coalition takes extraordinary efforts to strike military targets in a manner that minimizes the risk of civilian casualties, in some incidents casualties are unavoidable," the statement said.The military estimate is far lower than those provided by monitoring groups.At least 2,463 civilians have been killed by coalition air strikes, according to monitoring group Airwars.In an incident on Jan. 13, near the Iraqi city of Mosul, the military said eight civilians were killed during a strike on Islamic State fighters in a house."During post-strike video analysis civilians were identified near the house who were not evident prior to the strike," the statement said-As of Feb. 28, the coalition has carried out 18,666 strikes in Iraq and Syria since the start of the operation, according to U.S. military data. The average daily cost of operations is $12.7 million, according to the data.(Reporting by Idrees Ali; Editing by Chris Reese)
U.S. suspends fast processing of high-tech visa applications-[Reuters]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Foreigners aiming for temporary jobs at high-tech U.S. companies will undergo a longer visa approval process after the Trump administration announced it will temporarily suspend expedited applications for H-1B visas.The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) said on Friday that starting April 3 it will suspend "premium processing" for up to six months. Under this expedited procedure, applicants can be eligible for visa approvals within 15 days, instead of a regular review period that can last for up to a few months.The H-1B non-immigrant visa allows U.S. companies to employ graduate-level workers in several specialized fields, including information technology, medicine, engineering and mathematics.USCIS said that during the suspension period, individuals still can request expedited consideration, but must meet certain criteria, such as humanitarian reasons, an emergency situation or the prospect of severe financial loss to a company or individual.The United States currently caps H-1B visas at 65,000 a year, with an additional 20,000 allowed for those who have earned advanced college degrees in the United States.The visa is valid for three years but can be extended for an additional three years.The agency said that suspending premium processing will allow it to reduce a backlog of long-pending visa petitions and thus reduce overall H-1B processing times.The move comes as the Trump administration also has been implementing tougher deportation procedures against illegal immigrants in the United States and has attempted to impose a visa ban on people from seven primarily Muslim countries. That ban was put on hold by a federal court.President Donald Trump campaigned last year on a promise to crack down on immigrants who he said were taking jobs from U.S. citizens.(Reporting By Richard Cowan; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)
Immigration courts: record number of cases, many problems-[Associated Press]-KATE BRUMBACK-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
ATLANTA (AP) — Everyone was in place for the hearing in Atlanta immigration court: the Guinean man hoping to stay in the U.S., his attorney, a prosecutor, a translator and the judge. But because of some missing paperwork, it was all for nothing.When the government attorney said he hadn't received the case file, Judge J. Dan Pelletier rescheduled the proceeding. Everybody would have to come back another day.The sudden delay was just one example of the inefficiency witnessed by an Associated Press writer who observed hearings over two days in one of the nation's busiest immigration courts. And that case is one of more than half a million weighing down court dockets across the country as President Donald Trump steps up enforcement of immigration laws.Even before Trump became president, the nation's immigration courts were burdened with a record number of pending cases, a shortage of judges and frequent bureaucratic breakdowns. Cases involving immigrants not in custody commonly take two years to resolve and sometimes as many as five.The backlog and insufficient resources are problems stretching back at least a decade, said San Francisco Immigration Judge Dana Marks, speaking as the president of the National Association of Immigration Judges."It would be a shame if the mistakes of the past continue to be repeated," Marks said, citing previous attempts to ramp up enforcement without providing adequate resources to the courts.Trump's recent executive orders and subsequent memos from Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly have focused on hiring more enforcement agents to find and detain people in the country illegally, but the administration has been largely silent on beefing up immigration courts.The system includes 58 courts in 27 states. Their job is to decide whether noncitizens charged with violating immigration laws should be allowed to stay in the U.S. Immigration judges work for the Justice Department's Executive Office for Immigration Review, not the judicial branch.People appearing in immigration court are generally considered to have the right to an attorney, but the court isn't required to provide one for free as in criminal cases. Rulings can be appealed to the Board of Immigration Appeals, and board decisions can be appealed to a federal appeals court.Of 374 authorized immigration judge positions, 301 are filled. Fifty more candidates are in various stages of the hiring process, which typically takes about a year, said Kathryn Mattingly, a spokeswoman for the Executive Office for Immigration Review.The office "constantly evaluates the need to shift its resources," Mattingly said, and is reviewing ways to maximize its efforts on "priority cases."In all, more than 534,000 cases were pending before immigration courts nationwide in February, according to a recent memo from Kelly.Advocates worry the Trump administration will increase the use of procedures that allow authorities to deport people without using the court system at all."Instead of actually trying to make the courts better, they just want to use them less, even though that obviously is deeply problematic from a due-process standpoint," said Omar Jadwat, director of the American Civil Liberties Union Immigrants' Rights Project.The increased use of detention could also lead immigrants with valid claims for staying in the U.S. to accept deportation, just to avoid extended periods of time in detention, Jadwat said.Ira Mehlman, spokesman for the Federation for American Immigration Reform, which pushes for strict immigration policies, said the greater threat of detention could deter people from coming to the U.S. or encourage some who are here to leave.Mehlman agrees the system is broken, but said advocacy groups and lawyers who keep filing new motions and appeals are part of the problem."They understand that time works to their benefit and that the longer you can drag this out, the more bites at the apple you can get, the greater the likelihood that you can find some plausible reason for remaining here in the United States," he said.When asked if adding more cases to the backlog could threaten the due-process rights of noncitizens, Marks said it is the job of immigration judges to make sure that doesn't happen."But the pressures on the system certainly do allow more opportunities for errors to be made," she said. "You try to do your best to hear things fairly but also quickly, and there is always a tension between how you strike that balance."Slowing down can be more efficient because people are less likely to appeal if they feel their cases have been fairly heard, Marks said. More careful consideration also means a case might be less likely to be overturned.Symptoms of a broken system were on display when the AP visited the Atlanta court.On the same day the Guinean man's hearing was delayed, in a courtroom down the hall, detainees filled two rows of benches while lawyers stood crammed into the corner waiting — some for several hours — for their clients to be called.Two Haitian men appeared by video from a Georgia detention center nearly 200 miles away. They were among more than three dozen people on Judge Michael Baird's docket that morning. Neither had received a notice to appear in court, the document that initiates deportation proceedings.Clearly frustrated, the judge dismissed the cases, noting that the same thing had happened in other cases for months. He also questioned the government attorneys' plan to appeal. Why, he asked, would they do that when it could take four to six months and cost taxpayers money? Why not simply refile the charges? A few days earlier, Judge Earle Wilson had three cases on his calendar involving people seeking to have their deportation cases thrown out and their status changed to lawful permanent resident. But he told the lawyers and their clients he had time to hear only one.As for the other two cases? He set new hearings for Feb. 28, 2018 — a year and a day later.
DRCongo detains guru leader of outlawed cult-[AFP]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
Kinshasa (AFP) - The Democratic Republic of Congo announced Saturday that it had detained the spiritual leader of the Bundu dia Kongo (BDK) movement, an outlawed group that has called for an insurrection against the government.A policeman and three BDK fighters were killed when the police advanced on the compound in Kinshasa that housed Ne Muanda Nsemi and several of his followers.A statement from the communications ministry said that 307 people had surrendered and that Nsemi, his three wives and his son were being held.Nsemi will face charges of "insulting the head of state, inciting tribal hatreds, and encouraging civil disobedience," the statement said, without disclosing a trial date.The police had been hoping to dislodge the people holed up in the compound for two weeks, saying they wanted to search it.BDK stands for "Kingdom of the Kongo" in the Kikongo language, and its members have pursued secession in order to restore an African monarchy that included what is today Kongo Central (formerly Bas-Congo) along with parts of neighbouring Angola, the Republic of Congo and Gabon.Nsemi, a lawmaker originally from Kongo Central, in the west of the country, recently issued a call online for an uprising against President Joseph Kabila, saying he is not a Congolese citizen.Nsemi began seeking a rapprochement with Kabila starting in late 2015, but reversed course when Kabila refused to step down after his second and final mandate ended on December 20.Talks aimed at setting up a transition regime have stalled, and tribal violence has flared in several parts of the country.On Saturday, the United Nations said it would provide aid worth $5 million to help people affected by the humanitarian crisis in the Kasai region.At least 400 people have been killed in the region since September, the UN says, in clashes between government forces and supporters of a militia leader killed by the government last August.
Trump fans stage series of small rallies across U.S.[Reuters]-By Tim Branfalt-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
LANSING, Mich. (Reuters) - Supporters of President Donald Trump held a second day of small rallies on Saturday in communities around the country, a counterpoint to a wave of protests that have taken place since his election in November.Organizers of the so-called Spirit of America rallies in at least 28 of the country's 50 states had said they expected smaller turn-outs than the huge crowds of anti-protesters that clogged the streets of Washington, D.C., and other cities the day after Trump's inauguration on Jan. 20.Their predictions appeared to be correct, as they were on Monday when similar rallies were held. In many towns and cities, the rallies did not draw more than a few hundred people, and some were at risk of being outnumbered by small groups of anti-Trump protesters that gathered to shout against the rallies."People feel like they can't let their foot off the gas and we need to support our president," said Meshawn Maddock, one of the organizers of a pro-Trump rally of about 200 people in Lansing outside the Michigan State Capitol building."How can anyone be disappointed with bringing back jobs? And he promised he would secure our borders, and that's exactly what he's doing."Brandon Blanchard, 24, among a small group of anti-Trump protesters, said he had come in support of immigrants, Muslims and transgender people, groups that have been negatively targeted by Trump's rhetoric and policies."I feel that every American that voted for Trump has been deceived. Any campaign promises have already been broken," Blanchard said.In Denver, several dozen people held pro-Trump signs at the top of the steps of the Colorado State Capitol building, according to video footage streamed online.Two lines of police below them looked out on a small crowd of people protesting the rally at the bottom of the steps."No hate! No fear! Immigrants are welcome here!" the anti-Trump protesters shouted up the steps, along with obscene anti-Trump slogans.The pro-Trump demonstrators were quieter, holding up Trump signs as they milled about the steps, the video showed.In the nation's capital, more than a hundred people gathered near the Washington Monument, a short walk from the White House, although the president himself was again in Florida for the weekend."He does not hate Latinos, he does not hate Hispanics, he does not hate Mexicans," a woman who described herself as a Mexican-American supporter of Trump said, addressing the crowd from a small stage. "He's put his life at risk for us."(This story was corrected to fix last paragraph to make it "he does not hate Hispanics" instead of "he does hate Hispanics.")(Writing and additional reporting by Jonathan Allen; Editing by Dan Grebler)
Police: 3 teen girls kidnapped by Salvadoran gang in Houston-[Associated Press]-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
HOUSTON (AP) — Two MS-13 gang members from El Salvador, both in the United States illegally, held three teenage girls against their will and killed one of them in a satanic ritual, authorities in Houston said Friday.Miguel Alvarez-Flores, 22, and Diego Hernandez-Rivera, 18, have been arrested and charged with aggravated kidnapping and murder — both first-degree felonies punishable by up to life imprisonment. Bonds totaling $300,000 have been set for each, but immigration detainers will keep both behind bars.The 15-year-old girl's body was found Feb. 16 with gunshot wounds to the face and chest.Homicide detective Sgt. Chris Sturdivant said the girl's identity has not been officially determined but that investigators are confident they know who she is — a girl reported missing in January in nearby Jersey Village, Texas.The captives were three "young, impressionable women" ranging in age from 14 to 16 who succumbed to the allure of gang life before being taken to an apartment and held there against their will, Sturdivant said. The 14-year-old girl told investigators that they were fed drugs and alcohol and forced to have sex.The girl said the 15-year-old was killed in a satanic ritual because she had struck the gang's shrine to a satanic saint, according to investigators.She told investigators that Alvarez-Flores made a peace offering to the figure in the form of a cigarette."He returned from the statue and told the entire group that the beast did not want a material offering but wanted a soul," state District Judge Maria Jackson said during the men's initial court appearance Wednesday.The 14-year-old said she later awoke to find the 15-year-old gone, according to investigators.The case comes as President Donald Trump is promoting concerns over criminal immigrants in the United States illegally. He has announced that he plans to create an agency, called Victims of Immigration Crime Engagement or VOICE, to serve victims of immigrant crime and their relatives. It will be part of the Department of Homeland Security."The majority of the MS-13 members we come into contact with are here illegally," Sturdivant said.Attorneys for Alvarez-Flores and Hernandez-Rivera did not immediately return calls Friday night. Sturdivant said both men admitted their involvement in the abductions and killing after their arrests Monday. An FBI multijurisdictional anti-gang task force continues to investigate, and Sturdivant said authorities are seeking other gang members who were possibly involved in the crimes.MS-13, also called Mara Salvatrucha, is believed to have been founded in Los Angeles in the mid-1980s by immigrants fleeing civil war in El Salvador. It is now a major international criminal enterprise.
FRANKLIN GRAHAM IS A BOLD SPEAKING TRUE CHRISTIAN.
Franklin Graham thankful for controversy over Vancouver event-[CBC]-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
American evangelist Franklin Graham says he's thankful for all the attention he's received as he prepares to headline a free three-day evangelical Christian event at Rogers Arena in Vancouver."Of course there's been a little bit of controversy the last few weeks, which has helped even more to get the word out," said the 64-year-old son of televangelist Billy Graham.On Feb. 10, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson was part of a meeting of 14 local leaders from evangelical, Anglican, Roman Catholic and other Christian groups, which discussed concerns about Graham speaking in the city, considering his remarks about LGBTQ people and Islam.Graham says that the lifestyles of LGBTQ people are sinful and that America is, "under attack by Muslims at home and abroad."Dozens of Christian leaders from different ecumenical backgrounds made public a letter outlining their opposition to Graham being in Vancouver."Our concern is that the contentious and confrontational political and social rhetoric that Mr. Graham has used has the potential to overshadow the message of Jesus and incite hostility in our highly charged social climate," it read.On Friday, Graham responded to those concerns in a sit-down interview with CBC News and other media outlets."They certainly have the right to oppose, but they never were supporting me to begin with," he said."The 300 churches that invited me, that invitation is still there and they're still 100 per cent behind me being here."Graham says the goal of the festival, which has made a series of stops across Canada since 1989, is to have attendees accept Jesus Christ as their saviour and the one and only path to God."I'm here just to teach the truth and not to speak against anybody or any group and we're not against anyone. We're here for everyone," he said.Graham says he invites Muslims along with the LGBTQ community to attend along with those opposed to his coming to Vancouver.
2 CORINTHIANS 11:14
14 And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5 For many (MILLIONS) shall come in my name,(JESUS-I AM) saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.(MILLIONS)(THIS IS DEFINATELY THE NEW AGE MOVEMENT)
11 And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.
25 Behold, I have told you before.(CALIFORNIA THE NEW AGE CAPITAL OF THE WORLD-SO NO WONDER SAN FRANSICO IS THE SODOMITE RAINBOW GROUPERS CAPITAL OF THE EARTH ALSO).
1 TIMOTHY 4:1-2
1 Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits,(NEW AGE MOVEMENT) and doctrines of devils;
2 Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;(NEW AGERS BELIEVE SATANS LIES OF NO SIN,POSSITIVE THINKING,PEACE,LOVE,JOY,UTOPIA)
22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.
23 But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things.
2 TIMOTHY 3:13
13 But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.
15 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.
16 So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I(GOD) will spue (VOMIT) thee out of my mouth.
17 Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:
18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see.
19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.
Nigerians head to church to find earthly love-[AFP]-Stephanie FINDLAY-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
Ibafo (Nigeria) (AFP) - Thousands of people began to arrive at the Nigerian megachurch just after dawn on a cool morning, looking for love and hot tips on how to avoid "dating devils".The "singles summit" is one of several offered by hugely popular Pentecostal churches in the west African nation, where marriage is a cornerstone of society to which most people aspire.With the relentless hustle and bustle of city life, and challenging economic conditions in a period of recession, there's often little time to seek out love.But the Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries aims to change all that at its vast Prayer City complex, opposite an amusement park off the Lagos to Ibadan expressway.Its Gen218 programme -- named after the Bible verse in Genesis where God says "It is not good that the man should be alone" before making Eve -- promises to teach participants tricks for picking the right partner and avoiding pitfalls.The lucky ones may actually find a boyfriend or girlfriend.Michelle Michaels, a 37-year-old public servant in a brown striped dress, was among the crowds at the summit one Saturday in February."Obviously I'm a single, not married, searching and all that," she told AFP."But it's more about getting it right," she added, turning serious."Marriage can be a disaster. The rate of divorce is very high nowadays and I don't want to be part of it."- 'Aggressive prayer' -With an astonishing maximum capacity of more than 200,000 people, Prayer City bills itself as a "24 hours a day, 7 days a week, non-stop" venue facilitating "aggressive prayer".By 8:30 am the singles summit was well under way, with a dapper singer in a suit and red tie belting out majestic soft rock ballads that were more Coldplay than Kumbaya.Half an hour later, there was dancing in the aisles. By 10:00 am, many were crying. Some were sprawled motionless and face down on the floor in apparent rapture.The summit appeared to be reaching a climax but in fact hadn't even started: superstar pastor Daniel Kolawole Olukoya's appearance was still four hours away.A range of churches offer singles summits but the substance is more or less the same.It includes frank advice about the realities of married life, while divine guidelines are prescribed such as abstaining from sex until marriage, and there's a lot of praise.Pastor Matthew Ashimolowo of the Kingsway International Christian Centre held his own event earlier last month, teaching from his bestselling book "Don't Date Devils".On a different note, husband and wife team Bisi and Yomi Adewale, from the Family Booster Ministry, host singles events on the theme "12 Relationships You Must Avoid At All Cost"."The singles are not only going there to hook future sanctified partners but also to acquire the spiritual endowments and secular skills on how to become future rich husbands and wives," said Nimi Wariboko, a professor at Boston University's theology school who studies Pentecostalism."The summits are also places of pleasure, spaces where one can intensely party in the name of worship and experience huge emotional release without guilt."It's a bundled service package directed at a segment of Nigerians eager to cross over from one stage of life into another."- Traditional to modern -While the church may appear conservative in some ways, specifying that women must cover their hair on religious premises, for example, it's liberal in others.The Mountain of Fire and Miracles Ministries condemns forced marriage, child marriage, polygamy and inherited marriages, which see a widow passed on to another family member and are still common in Nigeria.In this way, the church helps guide young professionals as they adapt their traditional customs to modern life."There has been an evolution from arranged marriage to marrying for love, and of course a shared love of Jesus Christ is a way of legitimising a choice of who to marry," said Daniel J. Smith, an anthropology professor at Brown University in the United States.That said, Olukoya still emphasises patience, since hasty vows can result in an unhappy marriage to what he calls a "baby husband" -- someone who "loves his mother more than the wife" -- or an "acidic wife" -- a woman whom, "when she talks, you feel like committing suicide"."Being a single isn't a bad thing," said Oluboyede Oluwatosin, a thoughtful 31-year-old technician attending his first singles summit."It's good to be married but you don't just jump into marriage, there is some training you need. If you jump into marriage, you will surely jump out."
Pastor of Faith Healing Church Charged in Connection With Granddaughter's Preventable Death: Prosecutor-Inside Edition-YAHOONEWS-March 3, 2017
The pastor of a Pennsylvania church is now facing charges related to the death of his own granddaughter.According to prosecutors in Berks County, Pastor Rowland Foster of the Faith Tabernacle Congregation in Reading has been charged with failure to report child abuse following the death of 2-year-old Ella Grace Foster, who died of pneumonia in her home in November.Pastor Foster's church reportedly believes in faith healing and congregants rely on God alone to treat illnesses. "It's common practice of the church to anoint a person while they are ill," reads the criminal complaint that alleges Foster was with his granddaughter the night before she died.District Attorney John Adams has argued that, as a pastor, Foster is what's called a "mandated reporter" and under Pennsylvania law must report incidents of child endangerment even when his religion doesn't allow modern medical care."So he was well aware of the physical condition of this child and he was well aware that this child did not receive any medical care," Adams said, according to the arrest affidavit.According to The Associated Press, a forensic pathologist determined that Ella would have had a 95 percent chance of survival had she taken a routine course of antibiotics.The Faith Tabernacle Church was founded in 1971. Since then, 27 children in the church have died of preventable or treatable illnesses, according advocacy group Children's Healthcare Is a Legal Duty, which opposes faith-based medical neglect.A woman who answered the phone at the church's Philadelphia headquarters declined to comment.In the arrest affidavit, police say the 71-year-old Foster told them that the church "does not believe in medical care and that he had not been to a doctor in his 70 years." Police said Foster believes Ella's death was "God's will."Ella's parents, Jonathan and Grace Foster, have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and endangering the welfare of a child. Pastor Foster is not charged with manslaughter, but with failing to report child abuse.All three adults have been released pending trial.
MH370 families launch campaign to fund search for the missing jet-[Reuters]-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
KUALA LUMPUR (Reuters) - Families of passengers on board missing Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 on Saturday launched a campaign to privately fund a search for the aircraft.Flight MH370, carrying 239 people, went missing on its way from Kuala Lumpur to Beijing, nearly three years ago, on March 8, 2014.Australia, Malaysia, and China jointly called off a two-year underwater search for the aircraft in January.Grace Nathan, a Malaysian lawyer whose mother, Anne Daisy, was on the plane, said the families hope to raise $15 million to fund an initial search north of the previous search area."We won't start fundraising until we're sure that the governments are not going to resume the search and until the current data has been fully reviewed and analyzed," she said at the campaign launch and MH370 memorial event held at a mall in Kuala Lumpur.The three governments have said they will resume the search if any credible evidence on the whereabouts of the plane emerges.International experts last year assisted Voice 370, a support group for MH370 next-of-kin, in mounting their own search along the East African coast where debris had been discovered."They pinpointed to us accurately where the debris would have made landfall. They've been very helpful both on a personal level and to the investigation," Grace said.The memorial event, the first held since the search was suspended, featured musical and dance performances, while family members and friends of those aboard made impassioned pleas for the search to continue.Jiang Hui, whose mother was on the plane, recounted his experience discovering a piece of potential MH370 debris in Madagascar last year."I thought it was very miraculous and fortunate when I found the piece of debris that day, but I thought it was useless because this sort of searching activity should have been done by the government," said Jiang, who traveled from China to attend the memorial."It should not be us, the family members, who should have been subjected to this pain, to go and face this cruel reality."Malaysian Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai, who attended the event, said authorities had analyzed 27 pieces of potential MH370 debris along the East African coastline, including two new pieces found in South Africa two weeks ago.The government has also signed several agreements with countries along the East African coastline to coordinate searches for debris, Liow said.(Reporting by Rozanna Latiff; Editing by Richard Pullin)
Canada's Hydro One in talks to buy Toronto Hydro: sources-[Reuters]-By John Tilak-YAHOONEWS-March 4, 2017
TORONTO (Reuters) - Canada's Hydro One Ltd is in talks to buy municipal electricity distributor Toronto Hydro Corp for about C$3 billion ($2.2 billion) as the city of Toronto explores options to finance various infrastructure projects, people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.The two companies have been in discussions about the deal for the past few months but the talks have not entered final stages, one of the people said. They cautioned the talks could fall apart. The combined company could generate potential synergies of about C$1 billion, the people added.The city of Toronto, which owns 100 percent of Toronto Hydro, is also exploring other ways to monetize its assets, including by publicly listing Toronto Hydro, as well as by selling its Green P parking business or other real estate assets, one of the people added. The Green P parking asset, which includes a popular app, is likely worth more than C$1 billion, that person said.Toronto Mayor John Tory denied the sales talks are taking place."I can confirm that no discussions are taking place with respect to the sale of Toronto Hydro to anyone," Tory said in an emailed statement.Canada's most populous city needs a massive infrastructure upgrade to meet the growing demands of residents. But the city has struggled to raise sufficient funds to finance its rail and road networks.Toronto Hydro has also been under financial pressure as it attempts to make infrastructure investments surrounding its electricity grid. Last November, it cut its dividend to the city of Toronto.A deal would also help Hydro One's growth ambitions as a public company after it raised C$1.8 billion in one of Canada's biggest IPOs in 2015. Hydro One, backed by the province of Ontario, has a market value of C$14 billion.Under one proposal, Hydro One would pay about half the deal value in cash and the rest in stock, one of the people said. A cash-and-stock transaction with Hydro One would allow the city to benefit from Hydro One's dividend as well, the people said.Spokesmen for Hydro One and Toronto Hydro declined to comment. The people declined to be identified as the talks are confidential.The discussions involve Toronto Hydro Chief Executive Anthony Haines, Hydro One CEO Mayo Schmidt, Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Mayor Tory, one of the people said.While the talks are making progress, a successful deal faces significant hurdles as it requires approval of the city council. It would also have to overcome potential opposition from unions.(Reporting John Tilak in Toronto; Editing by Denny Thomas and Chris Reese)
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