Minor began his path of conversion to Islam which led him to complete radicalization
“The young man – reads a police statement – from his birth resident in Switzerland, had undertaken a path of conversion to Islam when he was still a minor that led him to complete radicalization; precisely the profound sharing of the jihadist movement prompted him , in 2014, leaving for the Syrian-Iraqi quadrant to join the Qaedist formation Jabath Fatah al-Sham together with his wife, a Turkish citizen born in Germany, with whom he subsequently had three children “.
The foreign fighter and his family have been located in the Syrian area of Idlib and the young man has expressed his will to surrender to the Italian authorities. The foreign fighter’s wife and children remained in Turkey.
Aggressive man triggers blockade at Frankfurt Airport
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A man does not wear mouth and nose protection at Frankfurt Airport. A check escalates. “I’m going to kill you all, Allahu Akbar,” the man shouted, according to police reports. The situation ends with a large-scale operation.
EAn aggressive man without mouth and nose protection triggered a partial closure of Terminal 1 at Frankfurt Airport on Saturday evening – including a large-scale deployment of the federal and state police. A federal police patrol spoke to the man shortly after 5 p.m. – and he said: “I’ll kill you all, Allahu Akbar,” said the federal police. The emergency services had assumed a serious statement because of his aggressive behavior. The 38-year-old then tried to flee, but was overpowered “under threat of a firearm”.
The suspect known to the police was brought to the guard. He left his luggage behind when he tried to escape. Because of the initially unclear location, a large area of departure hall B was cordoned off. Defuser could give the all-clear after an investigation.
At the same time, a federal police control center reported that an armed man had allegedly been sighted in Terminal 1. Since a connection between the two incidents could not be ruled out, the cordoning off and evacuation measures were expanded. The regional train station at the airport was also closed.
“Slight delays in flight operations”
“The deployment resulted in greater disruption to air and rail traffic at Frankfurt Airport,” the Federal Police said. There were no flight cancellations, said a Fraport spokeswoman in the late evening. Because of the “slight delays in flight operations”, an exemption for take-offs and landings until midnight was granted. In the course of the evening – after about two and a half hours – the barriers were lifted again.
The 38-year-old is being investigated, among other things, on suspicion of the threat and resistance to law enforcement officers. “There are parallel investigations into the evidence of the armed people,” it said. There were more than 100 federal and state police officers as well as supporting customs officers at the airport.
According to a report, the number of people killed because of their faith increased by 60% in 2020.
Year after year, the statistics published by the Protestant Evangelical Association Doors Open, a member of the Protestant Federation of France and present for 66 years in 70 countries to help persecuted Christians, leave a bitter taste. Its “World Index of Persecution of Christians”, covering the figures for 2020 and published on January 12, shows that the number of Christians killed because of their faith has increased from 2,983 to 4,761, an increase of 60%. “On a global level, that makes 13 Christians killed per day for their faith”, comments one of the managers of the association.
With a terrible record, in Nigeria, where 3,520 Christians were murdered in one year. This country is plagued by the Islamists of Boko Haram and the radicalization of the Fulanis, a mostly Muslim nomadic shepherd people, nicknamed the Fulani. “91% of Christians killed were on the African continent in 2020”, underlines the association. It is “The rise of jihadist groups in sub-Saharan Africa” which explains this sharp increase in Christians killed in 2020, because these movements “Took advantage of the measures taken to fight the Covid epidemic to expand their fields of operation”.
Read also :Eight Christians Killed Every Day For Their Faith Around The World In 2019
If the churches, another statistical element, were less targeted in 2020, going from 9,488 to 4,488, this is due to the fact that the year 2019 had reached a peak in the matter, by outright destruction, by administrative closure or by elimination. crosses. The prize for attacks on churches goes to China this year. The index lists 3,088 churches targeted in this country in 2020, compared to 5,576 in 2019. “Many closed churches have not reopened this year, specifies Open Doors, there are therefore fewer “targets”. ” As for these “Attacks”, they go “Of the obligation to remove the crosses, underlines the report, to complete destruction. Nearly 18,000 churches have been targeted over the past seven years in China “.
Finally, the third annual index, that of Christians imprisoned “arbitrarily” for their faith: they went from 4,811 in 2019 to 4,277 in 2020, a slight decrease. The association concludes: “More than 340 million Christians have been severely persecuted or discriminated against for their faith in the 50 countries listed.” She adds – based on very precise criteria that have now been used for more than a decade – that “Anti-Christian violence has increased by 10% compared to 2019”.
A sophisticated tool
This organization has in fact developed a statistical tool based on the effective accounting of known persecutions. It supplements these figures with a system of analytical criteria which identify, depending on the country, the infringements of the freedom of Christians in their private, family, social, civil and ecclesial life. Once identified, these facts are then meticulously classified over the months into two main categories: “hammer-hammer persecution”, physical or material, often “brutal”, notes the report. Less visible, but “insidious” persecution, with rejection, discreet oppressions, denials of rights, exclusions.
The association thus denounces “The use of blasphemy law in Pakistan for personal gain of which Christians are disproportionately victimized.” Or, in Somalia, Christians, nicknamed “the Crusaders” who are notably accused of “Spread the virus” of the pandemic.
For the presentation of the 2021 index, Iran was highlighted, with special guest Dabrina Bet Tamra. Refugee in Europe, this committed evangelical Christian is harassed by the Iranian authorities, just like her family. She has been arrested several times. She suffered two strange car accidents. She was imprisoned. «In Iran, she explains, which nevertheless displays religious freedom, evangelical Christians are considered a threat against the regime. With the converts from Islam to Christianity, they suffer a lot: they have no freedom of religion, no right to assemble or to possess religious material. They do not have the right to bring up their children according to their religious convictions. They cannot be civil servants. Access to higher education is prohibited. They do not have the right to inherit, nor the right to adopt. And in prison they are deprived of a lawyer. “
Globally, that’s 13 Christians killed per day for their faith.
The Protestant Evangelical Association Doors Open
The strong point of this “world index of persecution of Christians”, which has become a reference, is to be nourished by a network and information from the field in sometimes opaque countries. Evangelical Churches are often small, discreet structures, very active for evangelization but independent therefore very free vis-à-vis institutions. Doors Open has thus played a leading role over the past two years in improving the situation of Christians in Algeria, for which it had denounced to international bodies, especially European bodies, the policy of closing places of evangelical worship. “This closure policy has come to an end, this is one of the good news of the year, notes a manager, even though these churches are still closed. ”
SEE ALSO – Jean-Christophe Buisson: “Armenia, the first Christian state in history, is sacrificed”
The taboo of a dialogue with the Islamists to get out of a war that has lasted for eight years has long been broken.
Officially nothing has changed. The famous formula “We do not negotiate with terrorists” remains the mantra on the agenda in the Sahel conflict. Emmanuel Macron recalled in November, in an interview with Young Africa, and with a somewhat martial tone, that he intended to stick to the Algiers accords alone. “These provide for a dialogue with different political and autonomist groups. But that does not mean that we have to dialogue with terrorist groups, which continue to kill civilians and soldiers, including our soldiers ”, explained the president. “I don’t quite see what we could talk about with people who intend to impose Sharia law on an entire country”, underlines a French official.
Read also :Rivalry between al-Qaida and IS ignites the Sahel
But beyond the postures, the taboo of a possible dialogue with the Islamists to get out of a war that has lasted for eight years, without the slightest outcome being in sight, has long been broken. The Malian government has openly mentioned and even promoted it. First fiercely
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Nine days before Donald Trump’s departure from the White House, the US State Department has classified Cuba among the “states supporting terrorism”. The socialist island had been part of this list between 1985 and 2015, when Barack Obama had withdrawn it, as part of the diplomatic thaw with the historic enemy. “With this measure, we will once again hold the government of Cuba responsible and send a clear message: the Castro regime must end its support for international terrorism and the subversion of American justice”, announced Monday the chief of the American diplomacy Mike Pompeo.
Falcon and pillar of Trumpism, Pompeo invokes several elements to justify the decision. First, Havana’s support for the government of Nicolás Maduro in Venezuela, which itself is not considered “terrorist”. Then, Havana’s refusal to extradite ten guerrilla leaders of the National Liberation Army (ELN) to Colombia after the attack
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Markus Söder regards opponents of the corona measures as potential terrorists – and accuses citizens who suffer from the lockdown to “stylize themselves” as victims. This aggressive rhetoric raises questions about his possible candidate for chancellor. .
Three days of national mourning for the hundred Nigerien villagers killed on Saturday January 2. This is the measure of the order of the symbol that the exceptional national security council decided on Monday, led by the head of state, Mahamadou Issoufou. “This massacre, the largest in number perpetrated on our soil, consecrates the bankruptcy of the State which does not have the power to ensure the security of its citizens”, affirms from Niamey, Ali Idrissa of the network of organizations for transparency and budget analysis (Rotad).
“A hundred motorcycles”
The jihadists came aboard a “Hundred motorcycles” in the villages of Tchoma Bangou and Zaroumadereye, according to the mayor of the municipality of Tondikiwindi who administers them. The two villages are located 120 kilometers north of Niamey, in the Tillabéri region, bordering Mali and Burkina Faso. This region known as “the three borders” has been regularly targeted for years by jihadist groups. Tuesday January 5, the attack had not been claimed.
In Paris, as in Niamey, no one dared to point out one culprit rather than another. The Support Group for Islam and Muslims (GSIM), a jihadist alliance affiliated with Al-Qaida, has proclaimed its innocence on the Internet. GSIM claims that its “Jihad” is not turned against its people and promises retaliation in the short or long term. An implicit threat to its rival in the region, the Islamic State group in the greater Sahara (EIGS), which it has been facing violently for a few months.
On the other hand, the GSIM claimed responsibility on Tuesday January 5 for the attack which claimed the lives of two French soldiers – Sergeant Yvonne Huynh and Brigadier Loïc Risser – Saturday January 2 in Mali. Since the release by the Malian authorities of 200 jihadists from the GSIM in exchange for four hostages, including the opponent Soumaïla Cissé and Sophie Pétronin, “The French army focused its offensive on this organization rather than on EIGS. It is also a way for France to show that it does not agree to negotiate with this organization as the Malian government has undertaken to do. This may explain the renewed violence of GSIM towards her ”, explains Caroline Roussy, at Iris.
The possibility of reprisals against village militias
As for the Nigerien villagers killed, in this same area of the three borders, they may have been the victims of reprisals linked to banditry. “A village is set on fire where the inhabitants have decided to organize themselves into a militia to defend themselves against groups who want to ransom them. This is what happens in Nigeria regularly against the terrorists of Boko Haram ”, analyzes a terrorism expert based in West Africa.
Other scenarios are possible. Near the border with Mali, communities have joined forces with armed groups and provide them with information on the movements of the army. In this same area, Hassan Boukar, member of alternatives civic space, documented “In a report by the national human rights commission the massacre of dozens of villagers by Nigerien security forces, uncovering mass graves. “
“How did the foreign armies not spot these motorcycles?” “
Jihadism, military exactions, banditry, “Niger cracks damn”, summarizes the expert on terrorism. “Both on the border with Nigeria, as well as that with Burkina Faso or west of Niamey. “ Villagers are fleeing instability and regrouping in urban centers. The circulation of motorcycles has been banned in some areas, such as the one where the massacre of villagers took place on Saturday. Ali Idrissa is surprised “How have the American armies stationed in the region or the French one present at the airport, with the means at their disposal, not been able to identify these movements of motorcycles? “
In the campaign and well placed for the second round of the presidential election, Mohamed Bazoum, the candidate of power, has promised : “We will strengthen the internal security forces to fight against these terrorists. Often it is a group on one or two motorcycles which ransom the population under the pretext of zakat (compulsory Islamic tax or alms) on the cattle, rather than a major threat ”.
Boko Haram and Daesh carried out the latest attacks
June 3, 2016. Twenty-six soldiers are killed in a Boko Haram attack in Bosso (south-eastern Niger).
October 4, 2017. Four American special forces soldiers and five Nigerien soldiers are killed near the Malian border in an attack claimed by the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara (EIGS) group, affiliated with Daesh.
December 10, 2019 and January 9, 2020. Two EIGS attacks against the military camp of Inates and then Chinégodar, in the west of the country, kill 160 people.
August 9, 2020. Six young French people from the humanitarian NGO Acted are killed with their Nigerien driver and guide in Kouré, by EIGS.
December 13, 2020. Boko Haram kills 34 people in Toumour, in the south-east.
The “Signal” messaging application topped the list of the most downloaded applications on the “Apple Store” and “Google Play” stores in several countries since its rival, WhatsApp, announced last Thursday, its intention to share more data with the parent network (Facebook).
Since many users of WhatsApp on social networks expressed their intention to move to “Signal”, like the president of “Tesla” Elon Musk, the free application is at the top of the list of most downloaded applications in India, Germany and France, and also in Hong Kong, as I mentioned. Signal via Twitter.
To attract more new users, Signal published a simple explanation of the usage rules to help them easily transfer their conversations from another messaging application, according to what was reported by the French Press Agency.
The new demand for the application has caused technical problems “Thursday” and “Friday”. Signal stated that “the verification codes are currently delayed (…) because many are trying to join (Signal) at the present time.”
Signal, which was launched in 2014, is classified by experts as one of the most secure messaging applications in the world, especially thanks to its ability to fully encrypt messages and voice or video communications between the two ends of the communication.
The application quickly gained popularity among journalists and whistle-blowers. Especially thanks to the support of Edward Snowden, who leaked classified data on the methods of the American intelligence services in spying on communications.
Users who refuse to accept the new terms will be banned from using their accounts from February 8th.
The group seeks to generate cash revenues by allowing advertisers to communicate with their customers through WhatsApp, until they sell their products directly through the platform, which is what the network began to do in India.
The company pointed out that the data that may be shared between “WhatsApp” and the “Facebook” system of applications (including “Instagram” and “Messenger”) includes contacts and profile information, but does not affect the content of messages that remain encrypted.
Attacks on two villages rock Niger on the day the presidential election results are announced. The state appears helpless.
Traditional clay granaries in a Nigerien village Photo: Reuters
COTONOUtaz | Once again they got on mopeds and caused one of the largest massacres Niger has ever seen in the Tillabéri region. On Saturday, suspected terrorists attacked the villages of Tchombangou and Zaroumdareye near the Malian border, murdered at least 100 people and injured another 20, according to Interior Minister Alkache Alhada.
Which militia they belong to was not yet known on Sunday afternoon. Al-Qaeda-affiliated groups and the Islamic State of the Greater Sahara (ISGS) operate in the region. However, the fighters are often less convinced Islamists than mercenaries who change their employers.
It is said that the attack was an act of revenge. Young people from Tchombangou had previously formed a self-defense alliance – state protection is often lacking in the rural areas of Niger – and killed two suspected terrorists with machetes. A little later the village was surrounded and the attack began.
The Tillabéri region has been more and more destabilized in the past. Just two weeks ago, seven Nigerien soldiers were ambushed there and murdered. Terrorists killed 20 civilians in Anzourou in May 2020. Six weeks later, ten employees of the non-governmental organization “Action and Program in the Sahel” (APIS) were kidnapped.
The state of emergency, which is extended every three months, has long been in force in parts of the region. A year ago, mopeds were banned in some places, but this does not deter attackers in any way. Observers criticize that they are still much more mobile than the security forces.
Between Mali, Burkina Faso and Niger
The fact that Tillabéri is particularly affected is also due to its geographical location. The region borders on Mali and Burkina Faso. The long borders are hardly secured. Jihadists are present in large areas in rural Mali and Burkina Faso, they even control some areas and thus invade western Niger. Neither the presence of foreign security forces nor the country’s own military are able to recapture territories.
According to the think tank International Crisis Group (ICG), this is also due to the fact that structures have collapsed: traditional conflict management does not work, nor has the state succeeded in building trust with the residents.
In the Diffa region in the southeast – border area with Nigeria and Chad – Boko Haram is again active. Only three weeks ago, supporters of this militia attacked Toumour and murdered 34 people.
Runoff election on February 20th
Niger’s security situation has been discussed a lot in the past few weeks. The reason for this was the parliamentary and presidential elections on December 27, in which attacks were expected. In fact, things remained calm on election day. Since none of the 30 presidential candidates achieved an absolute majority, there will be a runoff on February 20.
As before the first ballot, the most promising candidate is Mohamed Bazoum, 61, who was first foreign and then interior minister under the outgoing President Mahamadou Issoufou.
Bazoum, who received 39.33 percent of the vote, is considered a hardliner who could further restrict civil rights. With 17 percent, ex-president Mahamane Ousmane, 70, also made it into the runoff election. The election commission announced the result on Saturday, shortly before the bloody attack.
Two villages are attacked in Niger, killing more than 100 people. The interior minister speaks of jihadists to the attackers. French soldiers die again in neighboring Mali.
Gunmen killed more than 100 people in the terror-stricken West African country of Niger. Prime Minister Birgi Rafini announced on Sunday after visiting the two affected villages near the border with Mali. So far, no group has acknowledged the attack. According to the Nigerien interior minister Alkache Alhada, at least 20 people were injured in the attack. Alhada called the attackers jihadists. There are a number of terrorist groups active in Niger and other countries in this region that have sworn allegiance to Al Qaeda or the “Islamic State” (IS).
The attack happened on Saturday in the villages of Tchombangou and Zaroumdareye. The attack is believed to have been in retaliation for the murder of two fighters by villagers, the interior minister said. Young people from the two villages had tried to form a self-defense group in the contested area. The armed men are believed to have come from neighboring Mali on motorbikes. The Nigerien authorities are following them, said the interior minister.
Niger is one of the most important transit countries for African migrants who want to reach the EU via the Mediterranean. Together with Mali, Mauritania, Chad and Burkina Faso, Niger is part of the G5 Sahel group that wants to fight terrorist groups. The government has little control in the deserted expanses outside the cities, which is not only used by jihadist groups but also by criminal networks. In recent years, Europe had put pressure on the Nigerien government to curb people smuggling. Niger is also an important partner for the EU in the fight against terrorism in the Sahel region.
French soldiers died in Mali
In Niger, the preliminary results of the presidential and parliamentary elections were announced on the same day. Head of state Mahamadou Issoufou will, as provided for by the constitution, resign after his two terms in office. An ally of the outgoing president, former Foreign Minister Mohamed Bazoum, stood for the ruling party PNDS and received 39.6 percent of the vote. Like the strongest opposition candidate Mahamane Ousmane (16.9 percent), however, he did not achieve the necessary majority of votes, which is why a runoff election on February 22nd is necessary.
In another attack in neighboring Mali, two French soldiers were also killed on Saturday. A third was injured when an explosive device exploded under her vehicle, as announced by the Elysée Palace in Paris. The incident therefore occurred during a reconnaissance trip in the eastern Menaka region. On Monday, three French soldiers were killed in Mali when an improvised explosive device went off under their armored vehicle.