Reader links for Nov. 2 – 2015

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In order to preserve the flow of conversation about various posted items, and also in order to make it easier for visitors to find the list of related links being shared by other readers, regulars and interested parties in one place, each day a post is automatically created at a minute past midnight ET.

This way, under the various posts of the day, conversation can take place without as much ‘noise’ on the various links and articles and ideas in the main posts and all the news links being submitted can be seen under these auto-posts by clicking on the comments-link right below these ones.

Thank you all for those that take the effort to assist this site in keeping the public informed. Below, typically people can find the latest enemy propaganda, news items of related materials from multiple countries and languages, op-eds from many excellent sites who write on our topics, geopolitics and immigration issues and so on.

About Eeyore

Canadian artist and counter-jihad and freedom of speech activist as well as devout Schrödinger's catholic

35 Replies to “Reader links for Nov. 2 – 2015”

  1. Afghanistan to Accept Its Citizens Deported From Germany (abcnews, Nov 2, 2015)

    “Afghanistan will take back all its citizens being deported from Germany as the European country struggles to accommodate hundreds of thousands of refugees and other migrants who have arrived there this year, a Kabul official said.

    Afghans currently make up the second largest nationality, after Syrians, arriving in Europe. So far this year, an estimated 120,000 Afghans have left the country, legally and illegally, according to authorities.

    Germany’s interior minister complained last week of an “unacceptable” influx of Afghans from relatively safe areas of their country, and warned that many of them would have to return home. The minister, Thomas de Maiziere, said Afghans arriving in Germany included “increasing numbers of members of the middle class — including many from Kabul.”

    Germany, a longtime contributor to international forces in Afghanistan, currently has 944 soldiers in NATO’s support and training mission here….”

  2. Lying press: Germany’s misleading media (DW, Oct 30, 2015)

    “In a recent German survey, 44 percent of respondents said they partially, or wholly believe the media regularly lies to the people, as the Pegida movement asserts. Media experts examine whether that’s true.

    Media outlets in Germany “are controlled from the top,” and therefore spread “embellished and inaccurate reporting.” Nearly half of the 1,000 German citizens recently polled by the Dortmund-based Forsa Institute agreed with these statements.

    Currently, the refugee situation dominates media reports. But Germans are simultaneously experiencing the crisis first-hand in their own towns and cities – and often finding dramatic differences between their perceptions of these events and journalists’ representations of them.

    This discrepancy has been busying media experts since former Berlin Finance Minister Thilo Sarrazin began describing Germany’s integration of immigrants as a failure in his 2010 book “Germany Is Abolishing Itself.”

    The media outrage that rained down upon the veteran Social Democratic politician was enormous – despite polls suggesting large numbers of Germans agreed with him.

    This scenario was repeated four years later in reports on the Islam-critical Pegida movement (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West). Again, the media were universally scornful, while surveys showed many people agreed with Pegida’s concerns.

    “We are far from having freedom of opinion,” said Norbert Bolz, a communications researcher at the Technical University of Berlin, during a television interview. It is one thing to show images of well-integrated immigrants in the press, but to get the whole picture one has to report on the negative aspects of the story as well.

    That does not always happen on topics such as immigration and that gives rise to suspicions of manipulation. Bolz says many media outlets are under the influence of a left-wing intellectual discourse.

    “It is precisely the same people who years ago fought for transparency, freedom of the press and freedom of speech who are now the powers that decide what subjects are taboo,” he said. “Part of freedom of opinion is respect for those with dissenting views.”

    Bolz says this is often lacking – and other industry observers agree with him.

    When journalist Roland Tichy wrote critical reports about Russian President Vladimir Putin on his Internet blog, he experienced a flood of angry comments from Putin supporters. “They tried to crush us.”

    In the face of mechanisms such as the Kremlin’s use of paid Internet “trolls,” many journalists stop trying to defend themselves. That, he says, is a mistake.

    But Tichy, an experienced economist, editor-in-chief of several large business publications, and now CEO of the Ludwig Erhard Foundation in Bonn, offered very different examples during a presentation on the subject of “Media and Truth” at an event hosted by the Walberberg Institute for Social Sciences. “The borders between lies, concealment and self-censorship are fluid.”

    For example, Sebnitz: In this village of 8,000 residents in Saxony, where right-wing radicals often make headlines, the son of a German-Iranian couple, both of whom are pharmacists, died accidentally. The immediate headline read: “Neo-Nazis Drown Child.”

    In truth, the boy drowned after having a heart seizure. A newspaper that reported on the actual facts of the accident nevertheless added: But the way the mood is in Sebnitz, neo-Nazis could well have done it.”

    Above all, the issue is often about choice of words: BBC World reported: “Dutch politician Geert Wilders acquitted of hate speech charges in The Hague.” Germany’s national news broadcast, Tagesschau, formulated the same story thus: “The Islamophobe and right-wing populist politician, Geert Wilders…”

    An international comparison conducted by the Ludwig Erhard Foundation also showed that German journalists see their role differently than their colleagues around the world. Tichy says: “They are zealots for a cause, and they fight for something, instead of reporting on it.”

    Another example concerns words and images. Self-described “antifascists” attack police officers with clubs. But in the photo series only Pegida protesters are seen confronting police. Tichy says Pegida supporters are inevitably described as “growling,” while the left-wing countermovement only “calls.”

    Germany is also unusual when it comes to media descriptions of criminals. Tichy was forbidden by court order to write the name of an economic fraudster, who, after being released from jail, was once again trying to acquire investors for dubious oil shares.

    “Here we have a situation in which journalists are forced to conceal the truth,” he said. The German Press Council’s press code prevents journalists from writing about the ethnic background or religious affiliations of accused or convicted criminals except in exceptional cases. “Is that protection or censorship?” Tich asked.

    With the increased use of Internet sources and the interconnectedness of social media, mainstream media reports can be instantly compared and exchanged. The interpretational sovereignty of journalists is over, leading media scholars say.

    Above all, blogs have presented ideas that are not represented in the mainstream, left-wing media. And that fact has served to increase doubts about whether reporting is always truthful.

    “In any case, it would be too easy to simply disqualify accusations of mendacious media as right-wing populist fantasy.” That is how Lutz Hachmeister, communications scholar and longtime manager of the Adolf Grimme Institute, expressed his thoughts during an interview with DW.

    He says there are grounds for this accusation: “There are interrelations among the elite in journalism, politics and industry. People notice that. Then they think that these elites are somehow connected, intertwined and collusive, and that they are feeding us misinformation – that they are not independent enough.”

    Hachmeister has consistently reported on these elite interrelations in his publications. He says this interdependence can, for instance, be found even in the German public broadcasting system.

    This reached a low point in 2014, when the German Constitutional Court declared the structures of the supervisory boards of the German public television station ZDF to be illegal.

    Are elites controlling the press in Germany? “That is a conspiracy theory that simply isn’t true,” says Hachmeister, “but it does raise the question of when things are reported and when they are not.”

    That is often decided according to existing ties between media outlets and social elites, he said: “The public easily recognizes that there is much less independence than the press likes to claim.”

    Since political polarities have eroded, there are also fewer “gatekeepers” making sure that certain stories are reported, or certain tendencies followed in the media, Hachmeister said.

    Nevertheless, in a YouGov opinion poll last year, 47 percent of respondents considered German reporting on the Ukraine crisis to be one-sided. And only 40 percent said they believed that the German press was objective and independent.”

  3. Murders of journalists go unpunished (DW, Nov 2, 2015)

    “Journalists must increasingly worry about being hurt, abducted or killed during their work. The Committee to Protect Journalists names countries where the killings go unpunished. Miodrag Soric reports from Washington.

    Sabah al-Basi was reporting from Tikrit in March 2011 as al Qaeda terrorists seized a government building, where they took hostages. Iraqi security forces finally ended the siege – at a cost of more than 50 lives. Including that of Sabah al-Basi.

    Who exactly was responsible for the journalist’s death is a question that until now has not troubled the Iraqi judiciary. That, at least, is how Joel Simon, director of the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists, describes it. “Typical for Iraq – doing their jobs, covering this event.,” he said. “Caught up in violence, no investigation.”

    On November 2, the United Nations will once again remember the fate of people like Sabah al-Basi. The International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists is its annual call for crimes against journalists to not go unpunished.

    Simon says he has little hope that those responsible for al-Basi’s death will be held accountable. But he expects the Iraqi government to do everything it can to ensure that journalists in Iraq are not persecuted – at least not in the areas that Baghdad controls.

    Eight years ago, the Committee to Protect Journalists created the Global Impunity Index to map all the countries where the murderers of journalists do not receive their just retribution. “Somalia, for example, tops the list. For the first time this year, it is the country with the highest level of impunity around the world,” said Simon. “Iraq, which has lead the list since we created it, is now in second place. Syria, where we’ve seen a whole spate of violence, is now in third place.”

    Simon emphasizes that killers of journalists often escape punishment even in many democratic countries, such as Mexico, Brazil, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, India and Bangladesh. Even so, there has been some progress in the prosecution of the killers of Kremlin-critical journalist Anna Politkovskaya in Russia.

    Last year, a Moscow court found five men guilty of her death – a good eight years after she was shot outside her apartment. “This is a case where the Russian government has made progress,” said Simon. “Some who were involved with the crime have been sentenced. But the ringleaders have not.”

    A country is added to the index if the CPJ identifies at least five unsolved murders of journalists. This year there are 14 countries on this list, one more than last year.

    Worldwide, the organization has investigated 270 cases. It has found that in most instances it’s local reporters who are killed, often because they write about corruption. Many are abducted before being murdered. And it is very rare that all those responsible, including the people who ordered the killings, are held accountable, according to the CPJ.”

  4. Germany: Father accussed of strangling daughter to death over forbidden affair

    The trial Lareeb Khan’s parents, a 19-year-old girl was purportedly strangled by her father for having a love affair, continued on Monday at the regional court of Darmstadt. The father, Asadullah Khan, has confessed to the crime.

    SOT, Barbara Singer, Prosecutor (German): “It depends on whether the court decides that the missing translator’s verdict, is decisive for the process. When it is so then we should wait maybe until November 20. If the verdict is considered to be dispensable, then I believe that we will hold the pleas today and maybe also receive a judgement.”

  5. Palestinians Stab 80-Year-Old Woman, Others in 2 Attacks (abcnews, Nov 2, 2015)

    “A Palestinian stabbed and wounded a 70-year-old man in northern Israel before being shot by officers, police said Monday just hours after another Palestinian knifed several people, including an 80-year-old woman, in a stabbing spree near Tel Aviv, the latest attacks in more than a month of violence.

    The attacks came after Israeli troops shot dead a Palestinian who they say tried to stab a soldier in the West Bank.

    A Palestinian stabbed and wounded a 70-year-old Israeli man, seriously wounding him as he walked down the street in the northern city of Netanya, police said Monday evening before he was shot and wounded by police.

    Earlier, Israeli police said a Palestinian stabbed an 80-year-old woman in the back on a street in Rishon Lezion near Tel Aviv Monday afternoon and then stabbed a man in the chest before continuing to run down the street and carrying out another attack. Police Spokeswoman Luba Samri said that after stabbing the first two Israelis, the Palestinian, a 19-year-old from the West Bank city of Hebron, tried to enter a clothing shop but a woman in the store slammed a door on him. The Palestinian then went into a cosmetics store and stabbed another man. Bystanders managed to tackle and apprehend the attacker. Police then arrived on motorcycles and detained him.

    Yitzhak Scharf of Assaf HaRofeh Medical Center said that 80-year-old woman was stabbed in the back and waist and sustained damage to blood vessels and fractured her hip. A 40-year-old man was stabbed multiple times in the chest. Another person was lightly wounded he said.

    The military said the earlier incident in the West Bank was the third attempted stabbing near the checkpoint between the West Bank and Israel in recent weeks. After soldiers approached two Palestinians at a gas station, one attempted to stab a soldier with a knife before the soldiers shot him, the army said.

    Forces treated the wounded Palestinian at the scene, the army said, but he died of his wounds. Palestinian officials said he was 16 years old. The other Palestinian was arrested. The official Palestinian news agency Wafa said he was wounded in the incident.

    Video later emerged of a Palestinian smashing a female tour guide over the head with a bottle and then running away outside Jerusalem’s Old City. Police said they later apprehended the Palestinian.

    A series of Palestinian attacks linked to tensions over a sensitive Jerusalem holy site began in mid-September. In addition to the near-daily attacks, violent demonstrations have erupted in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza, with Palestinian stone-throwers clashing with Israeli troops.

    Eleven Israelis have been killed in Palestinian attacks, mostly stabbings. Sixty-nine Palestinians have died by Israeli fire, including 43 who Israel says were involved in attacks or attempted attacks.

    Israel says the outburst of violence is the result of Palestinian incitement. Palestinians say the violence stems from a lack of hope for gaining independence after years of failed peace efforts.

    In the West Bank city of Ramallah on Monday, Palestinian security forces held a military salute at a funeral ceremony for two Palestinians killed by Israeli fire. One had tried to grab a soldier’s rifle in Jerusalem, and the other had tried to stab a soldier at a West Bank checkpoint, according to the Israeli military.

    The Palestinian Authority has been holding official funeral parades in recent weeks in order to prevent militant groups like Hamas from using such ceremonies to whip up popular support, a senior Palestinian security official said on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak publicly about the practice.

    Also on Monday, Israel’s Haaretz newspaper reported that the EU will issue new guidelines on Nov. 11 about labeling products from settlements in the West Bank that are sold in European supermarkets.

    An Israeli diplomat said Israel has been informed the move could be soon.

    “We believe that the guidelines, particularly at this moment, represent a bonus to Palestinian violence and refusal to negotiate and are of a blatant discriminatory nature, the guidelines encourage an atmosphere of boycott against Israel,” he said on condition of anonymity in accordance to protocol.

    The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem and the West Bank, areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war from Jordan, as parts of a future independent state. Most of the international community view Israeli settlements in those areas as illegal.

    A small but growing number of European businesses and pension funds have begun to drop investments or limit trade with Israeli firms involved in West Bank settlements in recent years.”

  6. Turkey election: OSCE says ‘serious concerns’ over vote (BBC, Nov 2, 2015)

    “European observers have said violence marred the run-up to polls in Turkey in which the Justice and Development Party (AKP) regained its majority.

    The OSCE said that an increase in violence, particularly in the south-east, “restricted some contestants’ ability to campaign freely”.

    It also criticised curbs on media freedom.

    Earlier Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on the world to respect the result of Sunday’s election.

    Meanwhile, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) went further and denounced the entire process as “unfair”.

    In a statement on Monday, Ignacio Sanchez Amor, head of the OSCE observer mission, said: “Physical attacks on party members, as well as the significant security concerns, particularly in the south-east” had affected campaigning.

    He added that pressure on journalists – including a police raid on the Koza-Ipek media group in Istanbul last week – was a major concern.

    “Unfortunately, the campaign for these elections was characterized by unfairness and, to a serious degree, fear,” said Andreas Gross, Head of the PACE delegation.

    Responding to reports of pressure on journalists, the White House spokesman John Earnest said the US had urged Turkey “to uphold universal democratic values.”..”

  7. Nigeria’s Boko Haram reveals rocket-making factory (BBC, Nov 2, 2015)

    “Islamist militant group Boko Haram has released photos apparently showing a rocket-making factory in north-eastern Nigeria.

    The group has used rocket-propelled grenades in the past and many Nigerians have been asking where the weapons have been coming from.

    The photos seem to indicate that members of the group have the technical know-how to manufacture weapons.

    The pictures are believed to have been taken in a college in Borno state.

    They were sent as a Whatsapp messages to the BBC Hausa service using a telephone number from Cameroon, and have also been published on sites linked to so-called Islamic State, which Boko Haram has joined.

    Analysts say it looks as though the machinery is from Bama, a town in north-eastern Nigeria recently recaptured from Boko Haram…”

  8. Maldives Official: IED Found Near President’s Residence (abcnews, Nov 2, 2015)

    “The military on Monday found and deactivated an explosive device near the president’s official residence, a top Maldives official said.

    The discovery came a month after an explosion occurred on President Yameen Abdul Gayoom’s boat, injuring his wife, an aide and a bodyguard. Authorities described the blast as an assassination attempt and arrested the vice president. But on Saturday, the FBI said its investigation found no evidence that the explosion was caused by a bomb. The FBI investigated the explosion at the request of the Maldives authorities.

    Maldives Home Minister Umar Naseer said the improvised explosive device found Monday was in a parked vehicle near the president’s official residence. Gayoom does not live at the residence but uses it frequently for meetings.

    He said the device had been made with a dynamite stick and connected to a remote control device.

    Naseer said he suspected Gayoom was being targeted again “by the same people” who failed to succeed in the boat explosion. He did not say who they were.

    Vice-President Ahmed Adeeb was among nine people arrested on suspicion after the blast…”

  9. Somali Extremists Kill 15 Government Soldiers in Ambush (abcnews, Nov 2, 2015)

    “At least 15 government soldiers were killed in an ambush by fighters from the Somali Islamic extremist rebel group al-Shabab, one day after the same group of extremists killed a dozen people in an attack in the capital, a military official said Monday.

    The ambush happened late Monday near Walaweyn, a town in the Lower Shabelle region, about 93 kilometers (57.79 miles)south of Mogadishu, said Col. Ahmed Muse of the Somali military.

    The rebels seized three military vehicles during the attack, he told The Associated Press by phone from Walaeyn.

    Al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the attack, according to the group’s online radio known as Andalus, saying 30 soldiers had been killed. It wasn’t possible to independently verify the group’s claims.

    On Sunday, Islamic extremists attacked a hotel in Mogadishu, killing at least 12 people and injuring many others before all the assailants were killed by security forces.

    The Sahafi Hotel is often frequented by Somali government officials and business executives, and had been targeted before. Two French security advisers were abducted from the hotel by militants in 2009.

    Despite being forced out of Mogadishu and many other cities and towns across Somalia, al-Shabab continues to launch lethal attacks in the capital and elsewhere. Al-Shabab is fighting to oust the Mogadishu government and install a strict version of Shariah law.

    Al-Shabab has also attacked neighboring countries that have sent troops to support the Mogadishu government. The extremist rebels killed 148 people in an attack on a college in Garissa, Kenya, in April.”

  10. Internet firms to be banned from offering unbreakable encryption under new laws (telegraph, Nov 2, 2015)

    “Internet and social media companies will be banned from putting customer communications beyond their own reach under new laws to be unveiled on Wednesday.

    Companies such as Apple, Google and others will no longer be able to offer encryption so advanced that even they cannot decipher it when asked to, the Daily Telegraph can disclose.

    Measures in the Investigatory Powers Bill will place in law a requirement on tech firms and service providers to be able to provide unencrypted communications to the police or spy agencies if requested through a warrant.

    The move follows concerns that a growing number of encryption services are now completely inaccessible apart from to the users themselves.

    It came as David Cameron, the Prime Minister, pleaded with the public and MPs to back his raft of new surveillance measures.

    He said terrorists, paedophiles and criminals must not be allowed a “safe space” online.

    Ministers have no plans to ban encryption services because they have an important role in the protection of legitimate online activity such as banking and personal data.

    But there is concern over some aspects of so-called end-to-end encryption where only the sender and recipient of messages can decipher them.

    Terrorists and criminals are increasingly using such technology to communicate beyond the reach of MI5 or the police.

    On its website, Apple promotes the fact that it has, for example, “no way to decrypt iMessage and FaceTime data when it’s in transit between devices”.

    It adds: “So unlike other companies’ messaging services, Apple doesn’t scan your communications, and we wouldn’t be able to comply with a wiretap order even if we wanted to.”

    Last month, Metropolitan assistant commissioner Mark Rowley, the country’s most senior counter-terrorism officer, warned that for some firms it was “a part of their strategy – they design their products in full recognition that they will be unable to help us because of the way they have designed them”.

    However, proposals to be published on Wednesday will, for the first time, place a duty on companies to be able to access their customer data in law.

    A Home Office spokesman said: “The Government is clear we need to find a way to work with industry as technology develops to ensure that, with clear oversight and a robust legal framework, the police and intelligence agencies can access the content of communications of terrorists and criminals in order to resolve police investigations and prevent criminal acts…”

    • There is as well a poll on that site asking whether internet firms should be banned from offering unbreakable encryption… At the time of this post 88% participants (according to that poll app) said no.

        • The FBI head a couple of months back was ringing his hands that cell phones and computers were becoming extremely hard to break. Hopefully, they can become unbreakable for a couple of years before the NSA gets their quantum computers. Then we will be back to the one-time pads and secret message drops like in the Cold War.

  11. I am off the net for a while, I am not sick just having connection problems due to a purposed move. Will get back up when I can.

  12. Germany: Economic migrants have to return home, says Merkel

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel addressed members of her Christian Democratic Union (CDU) party during the so-called ‘Conference of the future’ (Zukunftskonferenz) in Darmstadt in the western German state of Hesse, Monday.

    “Those who want to be protected from war, from persecution, from terror – will receive protection from us. On the other hand, those who have already arrived but actually don’t need this protection – those who have arrived because of the understandable economic reasons – have to return home,” Merkel stated. She stressed several times that “all those who really need help will receive it, others have to return home.”

  13. Malik Ishaq was set to join Islamic State before his death, says official (tribune, Nov 2, 2015)

    “ISLAMABAD: Claims are reverberating within Pakistan about accelerated efforts in recent months by the Islamic State (IS), also known as Da’ish, to gain a foothold in the country. Authorities have even arrested some local militants believed to be linked with the Middle Eastern extremist group.

    But the biggest and perhaps more potent threat from IS was yet to come until security agencies in July this year discovered that Malik Ishaq, the co-founder of the Lashkar-e-Jhangvi (LeJ) sectarian extremist group, was all set to formally join Da’ish just days before he was killed in a police encounter in southern Punjab.

    Ishaq, accused of being behind sectarian killings and attacks, was killed along with 13 others including his two sons on July 29 in a firefight when his loyalists attacked a police convoy in Muzaffargarh.

    There were reports that the LeJ chief was in contact with Da’ish but the extent of his involvement with the ultra-extremist group has never been told before. A security official with the knowledge of the development told The Express Tribune that Ishaq was to become the chief of IS in Pakistan….”

  14. Citizenship programmes: High net-worth Pakistanis buying a safer haven (tribune, Nov 2, 2015)

    “Pakistan’s security situation may have improved a notch, but years of turmoil and lack of hope still push the country’s citizens into the arms of another.

    Dozens of high net-worth Pakistanis are buying citizenships of countries in North America and Europe every year as they try to secure a safer future for their families, away from the political and security turmoil at home, immigration consultants say.

    The citizenship-by-investment programmes offered by countries like Hungary, Cyprus, Grenada and Antigua and Barbuda have caught the interest of Pakistani investors in recent years, following in the footsteps of dual-nationality seekers from the Middle East, China and India.

    Citizenships and residency permits are up for sale for between Rs50 million and Rs150 million ($0.5 million to $1.5 million) – an amount roughly around the cost of an average 500 square-yard house in Karachi’s upscale DHA.

    “Between a 100 and 200 Pakistani families are availing this opportunity each year,” says Sikander Lalani, CEO of Lalani and Associates, a leading consultancy provider.

    “These are the sort of people who invest and then move back and forth. They are doing this to provide better education to their children and secure their capital.”…”

  15. PHILIPPINES – Terrorists release video demanding $100M to free hostage group that includes two Canadians

    Abu Sayyaf gunmen released a video Tuesday threatening to kill four hostages, including two Canadians, kidnapped in the southern Philippines six weeks ago unless it received a ransom of more than $100-million.

    The 90-second clip obtained by the SITE Intelligence Group showed black-clad men standing over Canadians John Ridsdel and Robert Hall, as well Hall’s Filipino girlfriend Marites Flor and Norwegian Kjartan Sekkingstad.

    “We’re being ransomed for each for one billion pesos,” Ridsdel said as a man held a machete above his neck. “I appeal to the Canadian Prime Minister and the people of Canada, please pay this ransom as soon as possible or our lives are in great danger.”

    Hall made a similar plea to the camera. “I’m a Canadian citizen. I’m being held hostage by Abu Sayyaf for 1-billion pesos,” he said. “These people are serious and very treacherous. Take them seriously. Help us, get us out of here.”

    The video ended after a masked gunman standing behind the Canadians said that if the demands were not met, “they will be killed by Abu Sayyaf.” The nine captors then chanted. The flag of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant was displayed in the background.

    But Prof. Zachary Abuza, a National War College expert on southeast Asian politics and security, said there was no evidence Abu Sayyaf was truly affiliated with ISIL. Rather, they are a gang that uses the imagery of terrorism to profit from kidnapping.

    “I think these guys are common thugs, there’s nothing Islamist about it,” Prof. Abuza said. Abu Sayyaf’s recent pledge of allegiance to ISIL was nothing more than an attempt to gain international media attention and “raise the ante,” he said.

    He believes Abu Sayyaf has been watching ISIL videos in order to mimic them. “They’ve been online, they’ve seen things, they’ve stepped up their game,” he said. But while the video had the look of one by ISIL, the demands were tellingly focused solely on money rather than Western foreign policy or military deployments. A billion Philippine pesos is about CDN$28-million.

    The hostages will be an early challenge for incoming prime minister Justin Trudeau and his Cabinet appointees in the public safety and foreign affairs portfolios. No deadline was provided in the video for the demand to be met.

    30 sec video on this page :

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