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Old 12-08-2021, 07:30 AM
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Arrow Eye on Extremism December 8, 2021

Eye on Extremism - December 8, 2021
By: Counter Extremism Project 12-08-21

As of: December 8, 2021

CNN Philippines: Supreme Court Rules On Anti-Terrorism Law, Decision Out Soon

“The Supreme Court (SC) has deliberated and ruled on the controversial anti-terrorism law, an official confirmed on Tuesday. In a statement, SC Public Information Office chief Atty. Brian Hosaka said there would be a thorough review of the justices' votes given a string of issues resolved in the case. “Considering that there were numerous issues resolved in the case, as well as the fact that each Justice had to vote on each issue, there is a need to accurately confirm and tally the vote of each Justice in order to ensure the correct resolution of the Court per issue,” Hosaka said. He vowed the high court would release an “accurate summary” of its action on the highly-contested measure “at the soonest possible time.” Thirty-seven petitions have been filed challenging the constitutionality of the anti-terrorism law, which critics have labeled as “vague” and may be open to abuse and human rights violations. Several government officials have repeatedly dismissed these claims, saying there are enough safeguards in place to protect the rights of citizens. The high court wrapped up its oral arguments on the measure back in May. Chief Justice Alexander Gesmundo earlier said the fate of the pleas may be known before the year ends.”

Fox News: Religious Freedom Advocates Ask Biden To Put Nigeria Back On Watchlist For Anti-Christian Violence

“A broad array of religious freedom advocates has banded together in asking President Biden to put Nigeria back on the State Department's list of countries of particular concern (CPC) on religious freedom, citing the ongoing violence, killing and displacement of Christians at the hands of Boko Haram, Fulani militants and other mostly Muslim aggressors. Last month, Secretary of State Antony Blinken removed Nigeria from the list. A coalition of 12 organizations and 30 advocates, including Christians who faced persecution in the Muslim world, like Andrew Brunson (a former prisoner in Turkey), Mariam Ibraheem (who was sentenced to death for “apostasy” in Sudan) and Joy Bishara (a survivor of the Boko Haram kidnappings), praised former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's decision to place Nigeria on the CPC list in December 2020 and urged Biden to return to that designation. “The ongoing violence, killing, and displacement against Christians and others have only increased,” the advocates, organized by the Family Research Council (FRC), wrote in a letter provided to Fox News. “In fact, during 2021, massacres happen almost nightly, while by day, young boys are killed in the fields. Pregnant women are brutally dismembered, their babies mutilated before their eyes. And now, an entire church congregation has been abducted and held captive.”

United States

ABC News: Survivors Of The Pensacola Terror Attack Speak Out

“Two years after the Pensacola air base terror attack, Navy veteran George Johnson, 27, can still remember the moment he came face-to-face with Saudi Arabian Air Force officer Mohammed Alshamrani, who shot and killed three and injured eight others. “I looked him dead in the eye. He looks into the office and passes me, doesn't say a word, but a smirk,” Johnson recalled. During the early morning hours of Dec. 6, 2019, Alshamrani walked into a pilot training school at the Pensacola Naval Base and opened fire. The first shots were fired at the watch station at the training school in building 633. Sailors Kaleb Watson, 23, and Cameron Walters, 21, were killed while standing guard. Later, Alshamrani shot and killed 19-year-old sailor Mohammed Haitham, who had confronted the shooter. Alshamrani, 21, was a Saudi Arabian Air Force Officer training at the U.S. Navy base in Florida. He was a part of a pilot training program where Saudi officers and other foreign pilots were learning how to fly American fighter jets on the base. The program was tied to billions of dollars in U.S. arms sales to the country. Secretly, Alshamrani had pledged allegiance to terrorist group Al Quaeda. Following the shooting, Saudi Arabia condemned the attack, extended its condolences and pledged cooperation with the U.S.”

PBS: WATCH: House Oversight Subcommittee Hearing On Al-Qaida, ISIS And Other Militant Groups

“The House National Security subcommittee held a hearing at 9:30 a.m. on “Examining the Worldwide Threat of al Qaeda, ISIS and Other Foreign Terrorist Organization”. Watch the hearing in the player above. Those testifying included State Department Acting Principal Deputy Coordinator for Counterterrorism Christopher Landberg and Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Combating Terrorism Milancy Harris.”


Kurdistan 24: US-Backed SDF Arrest Two Suspected ISIS Members In Syria's Deir Al-Zor

“In a joint operation with the US-led coalition against ISIS, the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) arrested two of the terrorist group's “facilitators” in the Deir al-Zor region on Tuesday. The US Special Operations Joint Task Force-Levant (SOJTF LEVANT), which oversees activities in Syria, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Egypt, announced that the SDF carried out the operation against ISIS in a Tuesday tweet. “The partnership between the Coalition and the SDF is built on cooperation that serves to enable SDF's military capacity and promote security and stability in NE Syria (Northeast Syria),” the official account of the Combined Joint Task Force-Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR), the US-led coalition against ISIS, tweeted on Monday. “The fight to #DefeatDaesh continues and we are #StrongerTogether.” Even though ISIS lost the entirety of its self-styled caliphate over two years ago, the group still has networks of sleeper cells operating across northeast Syria that continue to threaten the security of that region. Most of these attacks are in Arab-majority Deir al-Zor. The SDF also arrested an alleged ISIS facilitator in Raqqa in a previous joint operation with the US-led coalition on Nov. 30.”


Reuters: Motorcycle Bomb Kills Four In Iraq, Official Blames Islamic State

“A bomb killed four people in the southern Iraqi city of Basra on Tuesday, the first such attack in years in a part of the country that has enjoyed relative stability, and a senior official said Islamic State militants were suspected of carrying it out. The blast, near a major hospital in the predominantly Shi'ite Muslim city, was caused by a motorbike rigged with explosives, the military said in a statement, citing preliminary information. There was no immediate claim of responsibility. “The blast carries fingerprints of Daesh (Islamic State),” Basra Governor Asaad al-Edani told reporters. Bomb attacks in the Basra area been rare - the last major one was in 2017, and claimed by Islamic State. The authorities have kept a tight grip on the area where the bulk of the OPEC member's oil is produced and exported. Policemen were collecting body parts from a minibus that was badly damaged by the blast, a Reuters witness said. The street was covered with broken glass and blood. The governor announced three days of mourning. “Today and after this terrorist act, the people of Basra must definitely be cautious and careful. Basra became unsafe today,” said Mohammed Ibrahim, a car mechanic whose workshop was near the blast site.”

The Guardian: Iraqis Who Helped ADF Fight Islamic State Say They Have Been Abandoned By Australia

“Two dozen Iraqi nationals who served alongside Australian soldiers battling Islamic State say they have been abandoned in their homeland, living in fear of militia groups who have sworn retribution against anyone who assisted foreign forces. “The threat is real and there will not be a ‘warning’ or anything like that,” said one former interpreter, Mohammed, who has gone into hiding. “The militias are criminals. They have killed people who worked with foreign forces before … if they catch me or any of us, there will not be a second chance.” In 2019, the Guardian reported more than 60 ADF interpreters were caught in a bureaucratic limbo – told they were ineligible for resettlement or unable to apply for visas from inside Iraq – as their country roiled under sectarian violence. However, some were subsequently able to get out. In mid-2020, former interpreters were invited, in an email from Australia’s defence department, to confirm their interest in applying through Australia’s dedicated Iraq Locally Engaged Employee (LEE) scheme. At least 35 of those interpreters have since been granted visas to resettle in Australia: 30 have already moved. But 25 say they remain stuck in Iraq, their applications to Australia stalled, and with no response from the Australian government for more than a year.”


Associated Press: Desperation Drives Thousands Of Afghans A Day Across Borders

“Over the course of an hour on a recent night, the bus waiting in the Herat station filled with passengers. Mostly young men, they had no luggage, just the clothes on their backs, maybe a bag with some bread and water for the long road ahead of them. That road is leading them to Iran. Every day, multiple buses rumble out of Afghanistan’s western city of Herat, carrying hundreds of people to the border. There they disembark, connect with their smugglers and trek for days, sometimes crammed into pickup trucks bumping through wastelands, sometimes on foot through treacherous mountains in the darkness, eluding guards and thieves. Once in Iran, most will stay there to look for work. But a few hope to go farther. “We’re going to get to Europe,” said Haroun, a 20-year-old sitting in the bus next to his friend Fuad. Back in their village there is no work. “We have no choice, the economy here is a wreck. Even if it means our death on the way, we accept that.” Afghans are streaming across the border into Iran in accelerating numbers, driven by desperation. Since the Taliban takeover in mid-August, Afghanistan’s economic collapse has accelerated, robbing millions of work and leaving them unable to feed their families.”


Sahara Reporters: Exclusive: Boko Haram Fighters Take Over Yobe Police Station, Barracks, Set Operational Vehicles Ablaze

“Militants from the Islamic State-backed faction of Boko Haram, the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), formerly known as Jamā'at Ahl as-Sunnah lid-Da'wah wa'l-Jihād, have taken over a police station in Buni Yadi town, Gujba Local Government Area of Yobe State. The Nigerian Army had claimed last week that the insurgents attempted to gain access into the town but met stiff resistance from troops of 27 Task Force Brigade and Special Forces School, supported by the Nigerian Air Force component. However, a military source told SaharaReporters on Tuesday that the terror group stormed the community, took over the police station and barracks newly renovated by the state government for several hours. He said the gunmen came in different groups and could not be counted. The source added that some policemen sustained injuries while others fled into the bush. It was learnt that the insurgents also “burnt two operational vehicles and some buildings in the facility.” Since the death of JAS leader, Abubakar Shekau, ISWAP has been consolidating its grip in locations around Lake Chad. Just recently, it appointed Wali Sani Shuwaram, a 45-year-old as the new Leader (Wali) of ISWAP in Lake Chad.”


Daily Mail: Sex-Slave Girls Forced To 'Marry' ISIS-Linked Militants Are Raped Daily After The Terror Group Kidnapped 600 Women And Children In Three Years In Mozambique, Report Reveals

“ISIS-linked militants in Mozambique have forced sex-slave girls into marriage after abducting more than 600 women and children over the past three years, a new report reveals. Women and young girls were abducted during raids on towns and villages by the militants known locally as Al-Shabab, who have pledged allegiance to ISIS, which has claimed responsibility for a number of their attacks. The group force young women and girls to 'marry' their fighters 'who enslave and sexually abuse them' while some have been sold off to foreign militants for between $600 and $1,800, it said. 'An armed group linked to the Islamic State (ISIS) has since 2018 kidnapped and enslaved more than 600 women and girls in Mozambique's northern Cabo Delgado province,' Human Rights Watch said in a statement. Some have been freed by Mozambican and foreign forces deployed this year to help quell the violence that has wreaked havoc in the region since October 2017.”

Africanews: Jihadist-Hit Niger Urges Crackdown On Libya Arms Traffic

“President of Niger, Mohamed Bazoum on Monday urged his country's allies to step up the fight against arms trafficking from Libya, which he said is fueling the Sahel's jihadist insurgency. Bazoum made this call at the opening of a major security forum in Senegal. “The partners' biggest failure has been their weak involvement in the fight against arms smuggling from Libya, which is the most important factor in the prevalence of this terrorism.” “They (the African states) also need - and this is important - better-tailored help from their partners, based on intelligence, air support and strengthening the capacities of their armed forces.” The region's former colonial power, France is leading European efforts to fight the jihadists, while the UN has a large peacekeeping force in Mali. “If France and its partners are opposed to Wagner, it is because they have seen in the Central African Republic their destabilising potential, the exploitation against the population, the loss of state sovereignty, the predation of resources, the failure on the operational level, the particular and economic interests that are placed above that of the population and that is not compatible with our vision.” At least 12 soldiers and “dozens of terrorists” were killed in a battle in western Niger on Saturday; the country’s defense ministry announced Sunday adding the bloodshed has displaced thousands of civilians.”

United Kingdom

BBC News: Terror Awareness Warning Ahead Of Christmas In Bedfordshire

“Christmas shoppers and people attending festive events are being urged to be vigilant to the threat of terrorism. Bedfordshire Police said the warning followed the recent increase in the UK's terrorism threat level. More uniformed officers are expected to be on the streets. Assistant Chief Constable Sharn Basra said: “It is essential that the public play their part in helping us to protect the UK. We need you to be vigilant, and we need you to be alert.” On 15 November the UK National Threat Level was raised from substantial to severe, meaning an attack was highly likely. Mr Basra said: “The public have a very real impact on the way our police, security and intelligence services fight terrorism. “In the last year Counter Terrorism Policing received around 10,000 reports from the public about suspected terrorist activity - of those, a fifth provided useful intelligence which helps officers stop terrorists.” Det Supt Andy Waldie, head of Counter Terrorism Policing for the eastern region, said: “We know that after last Christmas, everyone is excited to be able to celebrate properly this year and join in with the festivities. “However, as recent events in Liverpool and Essex have shown us, the terrorist threat has not gone away.”


Voice Of America: Rohingya Refugees Sue Facebook Over Myanmar Violence

“Rohingya refugees from Myanmar are taking legal action against Facebook’s parent company. Their lawsuit accuses the company of failing to stop hate speech that led to violence. The refugees are seeking $150 million in the class-action lawsuit. A U.S.-based legal team filed the case Monday in California. The case argues that Facebook’s parent company, Meta Platforms, should be held responsible for not doing enough to stop hateful posts on the social media service. The lawsuit states that hate speech that was permitted on Facebook incited violence against the Rohingya Muslim ethnic group by Myanmar’s military and its supporters. The case is based on the combined legal claims of Rohingya refugees. It seeks to cover anyone worldwide who survived the violence or had a family member who died from it. Lawyers in Britain say they plan to bring a similar lawsuit there. Facebook, which recently changed its corporate name to Meta Platforms, did not immediately answer requests for comment. In the past, the company has admitted that it was “too slow to prevent misinformation and hate” in Myanmar. Facebook said it has since taken steps to reduce the spread of such content. Members of the Rohingya ethnic group were forced to flee violence and persecution in Myanmar starting in 2017.”

O Almighty Lord God, who neither slumberest nor sleepest; Protect and assist, we beseech thee, all those who at home or abroad, by land, by sea, or in the air, are serving this country, that they, being armed with thy defence, may be preserved evermore in all perils; and being filled with wisdom and girded with strength, may do their duty to thy honour and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

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