Reader’s Links, July 12, 2018

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About Eeyore

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

120 Replies to “Reader’s Links, July 12, 2018”

    • I heard something on this subject that needs to be passed on. As a Conservative Kavanaugh as an Appeals Court Judge was bound by the Supreme Court precedents. So his rulings aren’t a true sign on how conservative he is. Another thing I heard is that he likes to work slowly, instead of repealing Roe v Wade in one fell swoop he will be voting to chip away at it.

  1. Turkish Court Sentences 72 Defendants to Life in Coup Bridge Trial (tasnimnews, Jul 12, 2018)

    “TEHRAN(Tasnim) – A Turkish court sentenced 72 defendants to life in prison Thursday for their role in killing 34 people after seizing control of a suspension bridge in Istanbul two years ago during an attempted coup, state media said.

    The court sentenced the 72 defendants, who included a colonel and major in the Turkish military, for “attempting to destroy constitutional order” and sentenced another 27 defendants to more than 15 years in prison for helping that effort, according to state-run Anadolu agency.

    The defendants in the case were also originally charged with deliberately killing civilians who heeded a call from President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to challenge the coup plotters after they closed off the bridge across the Bosphorus Strait, Reuters reported.

    The verdicts come as Turkey prepares to commemorate the anniversary of the July 15, 2016 coup attempt on Sunday, and as Erdogan celebrates his recent election victory, which makes him the first holder of a new, all-powerful executive presidency.

    The Istanbul bridge, renamed the “July 15 Martyrs’ Bridge”, was a flashpoint on the night of the coup. Victims included Erol Olcok, an advertiser who ran political campaigns for Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) and his 17-year-old son.

    Turkey has detained 160,000 people since then in a crackdown targeting soldiers, academics and civil servants suspected of links to Fethullah Gulen, the Muslim preacher whom Ankara blames for the failed coup, and dismissed nearly the same number of employees, the UN human rights office said in March.

    Of those detained, some 77,000 have been formally charged and kept in jail during their trials, the interior minister said in April.

    Erdogan’s critics accuse him of using the failed putsch as a pretext to quash dissent. Turkey says the measures are necessary to combat threats to national security.

    Turkish media have been flooded with programs commemorating the thwarting of the coup, with television stations showing footage of soldiers who participated surrendering, stripped of their clothes and weapons, and headscarved women squaring off against tanks in the street.”

  2. British Bangladeshi nationals ‘ran’ Daesh drone programme (memo, Jul 12, 2018)

    “Daesh’s self-made lethal drone programme was reportedly procured by two British Bangladeshi brothers, a new Combating Terrorism Centre (CTC) report revealed yesterday.

    Daesh’s access to drones was “shaped” by the brothers, who leveraged companies in the United Kingdom, Bangladesh and Spain which they established to “move funds, drones, and other dual-use components to and on behalf of the Islamic State”, the report entitled “The Islamic State and Drones: Supply, scale and future threats” revealed.

    The drones were used for defensive and offensive operations, through a global and layered supply chain that involved purchases from more than 16 companies based in seven different countries.

    “At least one of these brothers also played a central role in helping to create and develop Dawatul Islam Bengal, the Islamic State’s local affiliate in Bangladesh,” the report claimed…”

  3. Egyptian court sentences 41 organ traffickers to up to 15 years in prison (ahram, Jul 12, 2018)–organ-traffickers-to-up-.aspx

    “A Cairo criminal court sentenced on Thursday 41 defendants to prison terms of three to 15 years for their involvement in an organ trafficking ring.

    The court sentenced six defendants to 15 years, 11 defendants to seven years, 20 defendants to three years, and acquitted three defendants.

    The court also fined the defendants between EGP 200,000 and EGP 500,000.

    The network included university professors, doctors, nurses, medical centre owners and brokers in organ trafficking.

    Investigations revealed that between January 2011 and December 2016, the defendants exploited poor Egyptians in need of money, removing their organs, mainly kidneys, and transplanting them into foreign recipients.

    The prosecution charged the defendants with profiteering, bribery, money laundering, dereliction of duty and causing permanent disabilities.

    The group’s illegal operations resulted in the death of one of the victims and permanent disabilities in others, according to investigations.

    The defendants accused of running the illegal network – who comprised Egyptians and foreigners – were arrested in December 2016.

    According to a law passed in 2017, those who perform an organ transplant by deception or force face life in prison and fines of between EGP 1 million ($56,000) and EGP 2 million ($112,000), and can face the death penalty if their operations result in a victim’s death.”

  4. Counter-terrorist operation in Sinai paying off (ahram, Jul 12, 2018)

    “Comprehensive Operation Sinai (COS) 2018 is still in progress, with regular updates furnished by the Armed Forces.

    The counter-terrorist operation was launched in February and 25 military communiqués have so far been issued reporting on the inroads made not just against terrorist groups but against other criminal activities, especially smuggling.

    Since the original three-month deadline for COS 2018 was extended indefinitely, Sinai officials and security experts say the capabilities of terrorist organisations in the peninsula have witnessed massive erosion.

    Sources say operations will continue until they attain all their stated objectives, echoing Armed Forces Spokesman Colonel Tamer Al-Refaai’s statement that COS will only end when “all the assigned tasks are completed”.

    In the meantime, movement by residents of Arish, who have faced severe restrictions on transport within the governorate and on their ability to leave, will be eased, according to North Sinai Governor Abdel-Fattah Harhour.

    Local Sinai sources reported a terrorist attack on Friday at a roadblock near the border zone in Rafah.

    It was later confirmed that an officer and a conscript were killed in the attack and a number of others wounded.

    Judging by the sounds coming from the area, say the sources, the attackers probably used RPG rockets.

    Sources in the area report some of the terrorist operatives failed to make it across the border between Egypt and Gaza/Israel, and were captured by Egyptian forces.

    While it remains unclear whether they were heading to Gaza or seeking to escape to Israel, previous incidents suggest the operatives were seeking refuge in Gaza following a schism in Sinai Province, affiliated to Islamic State (IS).

    The leadership of the terrorist organisation is almost exclusively comprised of Palestinians from Gaza, some of whom defected from Hamas’ paramilitary wing while others had been dismissed from Hamas’ security services.

    There are an estimated 130 of these operatives in Sinai. Their numbers are swelled, however, by other Palestinians who have infiltrated Sinai in the last three years, and by yet others who have been involved in arms smuggling for even longer.

    An Egyptian security source told Al-Ahram Weekly that terrorist operatives pursued by Egyptian security forces often flee in the direction of Israel, an apparent confirmation of Israeli security reports suggesting Sinai-based terrorists sometimes prefer to flee to Israel rather than Gaza…”

  5. Egypt court sentences seven Muslim Brotherhood members to death for killing policeman (ahram, Jul 12, 2018)

    “A criminal court in the Egyptian Nile Delta city of Zagazig sentenced to death on Thursday seven Muslim Brotherhood members convicted of killing a policeman in August 2015 while he was heading to a police station.

    The Brotherhood was designated a terrorist group in 2013 and a large number of its members have been convicted of multiple criminal charges over the past few years.”

  6. London police detain Maryam Nawaz’s son for ‘punching PTI worker’ (tribune, Jul 13, 2018)

    “Junaid Safdar, son of Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) leader Maryam Nawaz together with his cousin Zakaria Sharif, were taken into custody by London Police after being involved in a ‘scuffle’ with Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) workers on Thursday.

    The PTI workers informed the police officials present outside the Avenfiled apartments of the street brawl involving ousted premier Nawaz Sharif’s grandsons Junaid and Zakaria, who were immediately taken into custody and shifted to the nearest police station.

    The former first daughter claimed that PTI workers outside their Avenfield apartment verbally abused her son and spat at him.

    Maryam, daughter and political heir of the ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif, added that “anyone would have reacted” to such unacceptable act…”

  7. CHP deputy chair Tezcan fined 30,000 liras for calling Erdo?an ‘fascist dictator’ (hurriyetdailynews, Jul 12, 2018)

    “A court has ordered main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy chair and party spokesperson Bülent Tezcan to pay an immaterial compensation of 30,000 Turkish Liras ($6,200) for calling President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an a “fascist dictator.”

    Erdo?an’s lawyer Hüseyin Ayd?n announced the court’s verdict on Twitter.

    “In the immaterial compensation lawsuit we filed, the court ruled for a fine of 30,000 liras. Those who violate our president’s personal rights will be held accountable, no matter their status,” Ayd?n tweeted on July 12.

    At the hearing, Tezcan’s lawyer Celal Çelik argued that his clients’ remarks were not insulting.

    “Words such as ‘fascist and dictator’ are entirely political notions. Politicians must bear with all sorts of criticism, even the heaviest ones,” Çelik said, demanding the court reject the case.

    Erdo?an had filed the complaint in 2017, asking for 50,000 liras in compensation…”

  8. Istanbul court upholds jail term for Turkish actress over ‘insulting Erdo?an’ (hurriyetdailynews, Jul 12, 2018)

    “An Istanbul regional court ruled 11 months and 20 days in prison for Turkish singer and actress Zuhal Olcay for “insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdo?an” and postponed the sentence in a hearing held on July 12.

    The higher court first revoked the decision to sentence Olcay to 10 months in jail, ruled previously by the 46th Criminal Court of Peace, and increased the sentence to one year and two months before reducing the sentence over good behavior.

    Despite Olcay’s calls for abatement or a fine instead of a prison sentence, she received the jail term as the court ruled she had “purposefully insulted the president.”

    The performer’s jail sentence was postponed and Olcay was subjected to one year and six months of probation, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.

    Investigation launched over lyrics

    A lawsuit was filed against Olcay for “insulting” Erdo?an during a concert last year, with the prosecutor seeking a four-year prison sentence for the singer.

    The indictment prepared by the Istanbul Prosecutor’s Office said a citizen told police Olcay had made an insulting hand gesture about Erdo?an during a concert in the Kad?köy district of Istanbul on Aug. 5, 2016. An investigation was subsequently launched and footage from the concert was examined, Anadolu Agency reported on Dec. 12, 2017.

    Olcay was also accused of revising lyrics to the song “Bo? Vermi?im Dünyay?” (I Let Go of the World) to criticize Erdo?an, devising a hand-gesture to accompany the melody. According to the footage, the revised lyrics say: “Recep Tayyip Erdo?an, it’s all empty, it’s all a lie. Life will end one day and you’ll say ‘I had a dream.’”

    In her testimony, Olcay reportedly said she revised the lyrics because the president’s name fit the rhyme scheme and she “did not have any ulterior or insulting motive.”

    The singer also said the hand gesture had targeted an audience member in the front row after they had made a negative comment.”

  9. Rome, Berlin and Vienna reach migrant deal (ansa, Jul 12, 2018)

    “Interior ministers Matteo Salvini of Italy, Horst Seehofer of Germany and Herbert Kickl of Austria said after talks in Innsbruck Thursday that an “axis of the willing” led by Vienna, Berlin and Rome would curb migrant departures and landings in Europe, so that only those who are really fleeing was arrive in Europe.

    Italian proposals on migrants should become EU ones, Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said after three-way talks in Innsbruck Thursday with German and Austrian counterparts Horst Seehofer and Herbert Kickl. “It will bring satisfaction if Italian proposals become European ones with a reduction of migrant departures, landings and costs,” he said.
    “If the Italian model becomes European it will be cause for pride”.

    Premier Giuseppe Conte said after talks with German Chancellor Angela Merkel before the second day of a NATO summit Thursday that “an excellent opening on migrants came as far as the enactment of the conclusions that we shared at the European Council goes”. He said “now it’s a question of implementing this plan”.

    Conte said “this should be done with those ideas and principles that were agreed.
    “Therefore we must work on it in the coming days with her and with the European institutions”.

    Conte said that “I am drafting a letter to Juncker, Tusk and the European institutions to push Europe on the implementation of those innovative principles on immigration that emerged from the European Council”. He said he had discussed migrants in a tete-a-tete with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

    Conte added that there was no “acrimony or conflict” with French President Emmanuel Macron and “we will defend our positions everywhere”.

    Interior Minister Matteo Salvini said “Italy has a backlog of 500,000 illegal immigrants and if we don’t manage to expel more than 10,000 a year we’ll take 50 years to make up for the past”.

    He said there had been “no concrete results” from EU initiatives in Africa.

    Salvini said at an informal meeting of EU interior ministers that “It’s right to think of what will happen in a few months but another two migrant boats are arriving in Italy with hundreds of migrants. “My problem is today, not a few months’ time”.

    There has still been no interior ministry indication on the Diciotti coast guard ship offloading its 67 migrants at Trapani, ANSA sources said.

    Salvini said he wouldn’t authorise any migrants to get off the Diciotti, which docked at Trapani, before establishing who allegedly “attacked” the crew of the ship that rescued them, the Vos Thalassa. Two alleged “troublemakers” among the 67 rescued migrants allegedly threatened the lives of the crew on board the oil-rig tug.

    Prosecutors held a summit in Trapani to decide what measures to take on the Vos Thalassa, where the two rescued migrants, reportedly a Ghanian and a Sudenese, are accused of “taking over a vessel, threats and violence against the crew”.

    Meanwhile a sailboat with 60 migrants aboard is heading for the Siracusa area, while 23 Tunisians have landed at the stepping-stone island of Lampedusa.”

  10. Swiss court rules Eritreans who face national service can be deported (thelocal, Jul 12, 2018)

    “A new court ruling opens the door for the deportation of Eritreans who have failed in their bid to win asylum in Switzerland even if they if they face national service back home.

    In a statement dated July 10th, Switzerland’s Federal Administrative Court (FAC) stated deporting failed Eritrean asylum seekers who had not carried out compulsory military service was “both lawful and reasonable”.

    The new ruling is the latest setback for Eritreans who have seen their bid for asylum in Switzerland rejected.

    It comes after an Eritrean man appealed a deportation order arguing he would face national service on his return home.

    Examining the man’s appeal, the FAC addressed the issue of whether military service in the African nation constituted forced labour – something which is banned by the European Court of Human Rights (EHCR) and which would therefore make the man’s deportation impossible.

    The court noted that the length of public of military service in Eritrea was “hardly predictable and varies between five and ten years on average” and added that “various sources report cases of abuse and sexual assault.”

    But the court concluded that “although the reported conditions in Eritrean national service are difficult, they are not so severe as to make deportation unlawful.”

    The FAC went on to state the “ECHR only forbids deportation if there are reasonable grounds to believe that there is a real risk of a flagrant breach of the prohibition of forced labour.”

    The court said the “abuse and sexual assault are not sufficiently widespread to have any bearing on this assessment”, adding that it did not feel that “anyone returning to Eritrea voluntarily faces a real risk of detention or any accompanying inhumane treatment”.

    The latest FAC ruling further increases the pressure on the around 9,400 Eritreans living in Switzerland on temporary residence permits…”

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