Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα troops. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων
Εμφάνιση αναρτήσεων με ετικέτα troops. Εμφάνιση όλων των αναρτήσεων

Τετάρτη, Φεβρουαρίου 11, 2015

Obama seeks war authorization from Congress to fight IS

US President Barack Obama sent Congress his text today for an authorization to use military force in the campaign against Islamic State, limiting operations against the militants to three years and barring use of US troops in "enduring offensive ground combat."

According to the text, Obama also wants to repeal the 2002 measure that authorized the Iraq war. But his proposal leaves in place a 2001 authorization, passed shortly after the Sept. 11 attacks, for a campaign against al Qaeda and its affiliates.
Obama said he remained committed to working with Congress to "refine, and ultimately repeal" the 2001 AUMF. He said enacting a measure specific to the campaign against Islamic State fighters could serve as a model for revamping the 2001 measure.
"I have directed a comprehensive and sustained strategy to degrade and defeat ISIL," Obama wrote in a letter accompanying the draft, using an acronym for the Islamist militant group.
"Local forces, rather than US military forces, should be deployed to conduct such operations," he said.
The White House said Obama would make a statement on his request at 3:30 PM.
Obama's proposal must be approved by both the US Senate and House of Representatives, where it is expected to provoke strong debate between Democrats, who are generally wary of another Middle East war, and Republicans, many of whom have been pushing for stronger measures against the militant fighters.
Obama has defended his authority to lead an international coalition against Islamic State since August 8 when US fighter jets began attacking the jihadists in Iraq. But he has faced criticism for failing to seek the backing of Congress, where some accuse him of breaching his constitutional authority.
Facing pressure to let lawmakers weigh in on an issue as important as the deployment of troops and chastened by elections that handed power in Congress to Republicans, he said in November he would request formal authorization for the use of military force (AUMF).
Secretary of State John Kerry, who spent nearly three decades in the US Senate, said in a statement it was important that the administration work with Congress to secure its passage. The coalition fighting Islamic State will be stronger if it is passed, he said.
"The world needs to hear that the United States speaks with one voice in the fight against ISIL," he said.

Τρίτη, Δεκεμβρίου 23, 2014

France deploys extra army patrols in wake of attacks

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Tuesday said France had deployed 300 extra troops to patrol public areas over the Christmas period following a spate of attacks on police officers and shoppers.

In an announcement broadcast on live TV, Valls said he appreciated that the “deeply shocking” events had “understandably created great concerns”, but insisted that “each event must be treated separately”.

In a separate statement Tuesday, French President François Hollande urged citizens “not to panic” in the wake of the attacks.

The latest incident on Monday evening in the western city of Nantes saw a driver plough into a Christmas market, injuring 10 people before stabbing himself repeatedly. One person later died of injuries sustained during the attack, Hollande announced on Tuesday.

The incident came a day after a similar attack in Dijon, eastern France, which saw 13 pedestrians hurt.

And on Saturday, a man was shot dead after walking into a police station in the central town of Joue-les-Tours and attacking three officers with a knife, two of whom were seriously injured.

The man, a Burundian convert to Islam, reportedly shouted "Allahu Akbar" ("God is greatest") during the assault and had recently posted a flag of the Islamic State group on his Facebook page, prompting concerns that the attack was motivated by Islamic extremism.

Attackers had ‘psychological problems’

In his live broadcast, Valls said that there were “concerns of copycat incidents” and that “mentally deranged people may be influenced by propaganda messages”.

Valls announced that “up to 300” extra soldiers would be deployed on anti-terrorist “Vigipirate” patrols in busy areas, adding to the large number of troops, policemen and gendarmes already involved in active operations across France.

Earlier on Tuesday, Valls told Europe 1 radio that there was "no link" between the incidents and that both car rampages appeared to have been committed by people with psychological problems.

"The best response is to continue to live peacefully with the necessary vigilance of course," he added.

‘Fear over Christmas’

While the motives behind the incidents remain unclear, the violence has jarred nerves after repeated jihadist calls for "lone wolf" action in France over its fight against Islamic extremism.

"Fear over Christmas" titled local daily Le Parisien, while Le Figaro newspaper wrote a front-page editorial headlined "enemies within”.

In September, the radical Islamic State group that controls swathes of Iraq and Syria urged Muslims around the world to kill "in any manner" those from countries involved in a coalition fighting its jihadists, singling out the French.

Among instructions detailing how to kill civilians or military personnel was to "run him over with your car”.

But while the probe into Saturday's knife attack is veering towards extremism the two car rampages appear to have been committed by "unbalanced" people.

Both prosecutors in charge of probing the driving incidents insisted they were not "terrorist acts".

(FRANCE 24 with AFP)


Τρίτη, Οκτωβρίου 28, 2014

Peshmerga fighters to deploy to Kobane with heavy weapons: Kurdish officials

An agreement regarding the route for the deployment of Peshmerga fighters to the besieged Syrian Kurdish town of Kobane has been reached and troops are on the verge of departing, officials from the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) told Anadolu Agency on Oct. 28.

The spokesman of the KRG’s Peshmerga Ministry said discussions had dragged on because of negotiations regarding the heavy weaponry that the troops from Arbil will bring to assist Kurdish fighters in Kobane in their struggle against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

“All the preparations for our Peshmerga troops have ended. There were some technical issues for their departure. Now, all the planning and programming for their departure has concluded. They will depart as soon as possible,” KRG spokesman Halgort Hekmat said.

According to Kurdish security sources, the heavy weaponry will be conveyed by land while a group of fighters will fly to the southeastern Turkish province of Şanlıurfa before passing through a border corridor into Kobane. 

Hekmat said the heavy weaponry sent to Kobane does not include any weaponry given by coalition forces. He also rejected claims that the Peshmerga would only be training and providing logistical assistance to Kurdish fighters.

“The Peshmerga will fight in Kobane against ISIL,” he said, also thanking Ankara for its efforts for facilitating the deployment of the Peshmerga troops.

Meanwhile, Kurdish online newspaper Rudaw claimed that a group of Peshmerga forces will leave Arbil for Şanlıurfa in the early hours of Oct. 29. 

 [ hurriyetdailynews.com]

Πέμπτη, Οκτωβρίου 02, 2014

Turkish government gets OK for military operations in Syria, Iraq. The mandate to begin tomorrow will last for one year.

A comprehensive motion authorizing the government to deploy the Turkish army into Iraq and Syria and to allow the deployment of foreign troops on Turkish soil was approved Oct. 2 in Parliament, providing the necessary legality for Turkey’s potential contribution to the international coalition’s efforts to destroy jihadists.

The motion, based on Article 92 of the Turkish Constitution, received 298 votes in favor and 98 against.

Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) lawmakers voted in favor of the motion while the Republican People’s Party (CHP) and the People’s Democracy Party (HDP) voted against the mandate.

  • The Iraq-Syria motion gives a green light for the use of Turkish troops in Iraq and Syria, as well as for foreign forces to be deployed on Turkish military bases and to transit through Turkish territory in operations against Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants. The mandate to begin tomorrow will last for one year. The government merged two existing motions on Syria and Iraq into one, arguing that the threats and risks posed by terrorist organizations are using both countries’ territories. 

“The threat against Turkey has gained a new dimension. It’s our obligation to take measures against this threat and to protect our citizens in the frame of international law,” Defense Minister İsmet Yılmaz told Parliament. Yılmaz cited the efforts of the international coalition to battle against extremist jihadists in Syria and underlined that Turkey was also part of these efforts.

But just hours before the parliamentary session, Yılmaz stressed that the adoption of the motion did not mean that Turkey would take immediate steps in line with the scope of the motion. The three priorities Turkey has already outlined are to establish safe havens inside Syria to provide humanitarian assistance to Syrians in their own country, establish no-fly zones for the protection of these zones and train and provide logistics to the Free Syrian Army (FSA) in Turkey. Turkey is yet to decide what measures it will take in this framework but it has made it clear that all such potential measures to be carried out with the participation of coalition forces should also target the Syrian government. 

‘Assad is the main source of unrest’

“The main source of ISIL is the Syrian regime,” Yılmaz said, adding that Damascus had increased its oppression against dissidents in the country, committing massacres against its own citizens in various ways. “The developments in Iraq have proven that there is a need of a holistic and comprehensive strategy to respond to the regional clashes and humanitarian tragedy. The region will be dragged into further conflict in the event the international community does not take a decisive step,” he added.

Mehmet Şandır, a deputy parliamentary group leader of the MHP, stressed that they were voting in favor of the motion because of their sensitivity to national causes and security while adding that that did not mean that it approved the ruling party’s foreign policy line. “If there is a possibility of an attack against our country, we should take measures to defend our country,” Şandır said.

CHP: Motion is a battle cry

Akif Hamzaçebi, deputy parliamentary group leader of the CHP, described the motion as a “battle cry” and stressed that it was not aimed at fighting against ISIL but the Bashar al-Assad regime, which could drag Turkey into war with Syria. “Where is ISIL in this motion? Mr. President was caught red-handed yesterday with his address to Parliament as he outlined that their main objective was to topple the regime,” Hamzaçebi said. “We simply do not want to draw Turkey into this fire.”

Faruk Loğoğlu, speaking on behalf of the CHP, termed the point Turkey arrived at a crossroads that would negatively affect the future of Turkey and the region. “This motion is the result of an adventurous foreign policy. And we should all vote against it,” Loğoğlu said.

HDP: Gov’t still supporting ISIL

Ertuğrul Kürkçü, a lawmaker from the HDP, argued that the Turkish government did have any concerns over ISIL’s existence in Iraq and Syria and that the motion was just an attempt to show off on behalf of Turkey for its regional ambitions. “You were bystanders to the ISIL massacres. You had no such issue until Barack Obama targeted ISIL,” Kürkçü said. “You were the ones who supported ISIL, and you are still supporting it.”

Linking the ongoing Kurdish resolution process to the clashes between ISIL and the Syrian Kurds’ Democratic Union Party (PYD) in the Kobane region of northern Syria, Kürkçü said, “If Kobane fails, the resolution process will also fail.” 


Τρίτη, Σεπτεμβρίου 30, 2014

Turkey’s ISIL mandate includes 'military action abroad, opening bases to foreign troops'

The mandate the Turkish government is seeking from the Parliament to authorize the army to send troops into Iraq and Syria to deal with growing threat of extremist jihadists does also include opening its bases to foreign troops, a senior government official has said, signalling about potential Turkish contribution to the international military campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

“The motion we are about to send the Parliament is going to be comprehensive and to deal today’s and tomorrow’s threats,” deputy Prime Minister and spokesperson of the government, Bülent Arınç told reporters Sept. 30 following weekly cabinet meeting.

Upon a question whether the motion to be sent to Parliament will include sending troops to foreign countries to establish security zones, to allow deployment of foreign troops and to open Turkish military bases to foreign troops, Arınç said “Let me include one more option: All. The motion will refer to all of these points you have asked.”

“We are a determined government. We perfectly know what’s going on inside and outside Turkey. This issue of security zone and other issues all have diplomatic and military reflections,” he added.

After another question, Arınç said that the ISIL militants are advancing on Suleyman Shah Tomb in northern Syria, which Turkish soldiers continue to guard.

  • Turkey is insisting to establish safe havens in Syria for the protection of Syrian refugees inside the country. Apart from a security zone, it does also ask coalition members led by the United States to establish no-fly zones over Syrian airspace.   

The motion is based on Article 92 of Turkey's Constitution that stipulates parliamentary authorization for sending troops to another country or to allow deployment of foreign troops on Turkish soils.

Arınç said the motion has two parts, its reasoning and demands from the Parliament, and underlined that it will be as comprehensive as possible so that the government will not need a fresh parliamentary mandate.

“We were planning to extend already existing motions on Iraq and Syria that will expiry in October. Their validity could be extended in a routine way but we have thought to work on a text merging these motions that would address all threats and risks Turkey is facing in its region,” Arınç stressed.

The motion is expected to be voted at the Parliament on Oct. 2 following a closed session due to sensitivity of the issue.


Τετάρτη, Σεπτεμβρίου 03, 2014

EU prepares to toughen sanctions on Russia

BRUSSELS. -The European Union is preparing to increase sanctions against Russia unless President Vladimir Putin decides to pull Russian troops out of Ukraine, according to the EU Commission on Wednesday.
"European Commission has adopted proposals for consideration by EU member states to take significant further steps," EU Commission spokeswoman, Pia Ahrenkilde Hansen, said Wednesday in a statement.
The European Union aims to strike the most important sectors of the Russian economy, including the oil and defense sectors.

"New measures regarding the access to capital markets, defense, dual use goods and sensitive technologies," are being considered, the European Commission said. Hansen said the new measures, once adopted by member states, will be made public in the Official Journal of the European Union.

The dual use goods are products and technologies normally used for civilian purposes but which may have military applications, whereas sensitive technologies are technologies used for the interception of communications, or technologies used to communicate without intelligence services being able to monitor them.

Moscow reacted with severity following EU economic and trade sanctions against Russia by putting an agricultural embargo on EU states.

According to European Commission data last year, the overall EU agricultural exports to Russia were worth €11.3 billion. The Russian embargo measures cover exports worth €5.1bn -- 43 percent of these exports.

Brussels accused Moscow of sending Russian troops to Eastern Ukraine to help pro-Russian separatists fight the Ukrainian army, but Kremlin denies these allegations.

Παρασκευή, Ιουνίου 13, 2014

Obama: Iraq has to solve its own problems

President says US troops will not be sent back to Iraq, but his administration is reviewing options to assist Baghdad....

President Barack Obama has said that the United States will not be sending its troops back to Iraq, but is reviewing other options to assist the Iraqi government threatened by an advancing armed group.
"We will not be sending US troops back into combat in Iraq, but I have asked my national security team to prepare a range of other options that could help support Iraqi security forces," Obama said on Friday.

"The US will do our part, but ultimately it's up to the Iraqis, as a sovereign nation, to solve their problems," he said speaking at the White House lawn.
He said that the Islamic State of Iraq and The Levant (ISIL) has made significant gains in Iraq and that the armed group had overrun part of the country. 
The threat by ISIL fighters in Iraq poses a danger to the people of Iraq and also, potentially Americans, Obama said.

Administration officials said Obama was considering airstrikes using drones or manned aircraft. Other short-term options include an increase in surveillance and intelligence gathering, including satellite coverage and other monitoring efforts.
The US also is likely to increase various forms of aid to Iraq, including money, military training and both lethal and non-lethal equipment. 

Obama added that Iraq's government must make a sincere effort to address sectarian differences, or else US military help would not succeed in curbing the violence there.
He suggested it could take several days before the administration finalises its response to the situation on the ground.
The last US troops withdrew from Iraq in 2011 after more than eight years of war.

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