Deadly Kenya grenade attack hits children in church

Deadly Kenya grenade attack hits children in church

BBC – One child has been killed and three seriously hurt, police say, in a grenade attack on a church’s Sunday school in the Kenya capital, Nairobi. The attacker targeted St Polycarp’s church on Juja Road. A police spokesman blamed sympathisers of Somalia’s al-Shabab Islamist militant group, angry over Kenya’s role in the UN-backed intervention force. A mob later rounded on Somalis living near the church with sticks and stones in a suspected revenge attack. Read Article

Suicide blast rocks Syria’s Kurdish city

Al Jazeera – A suicide car bomb has exploded in the Kurdish city of Qamishli, state television said, killing four in the first such attack in Syria’s Kurdish region which has kept out of the conflict between rebels and the regime. Government forces and rebels, meanwhile, pressed on for the northern city of Aleppo on Sunday – the main battleground since July of Syria’s 18-month conflict. The broadcaster said at least four people were killed in the Qamishli blast, while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR), a London-based activists group, said eight members of the security forces were killed and that the attack targeted their headquarters in the city. Read Article

String of Iraq blasts kills at least 32

Reuters – Coordinated bomb attacks killed more than 32 people across Iraq on Sunday, the latest violence in an insurgency the government has failed to quell more than nine months after the last U.S. troops withdrew. Violence in Iraq has eased since the carnage of 2006-2007, but Sunni Islamists still launch frequent attacks to undermine the Shi’ite-led government’s claim to provide security and prove they remain a potent threat. Read Article

US justice department rules out prosecutions over CIA prison deaths

Guardian – The US justice department has announced it has ended its investigation into CIA interrogations of terrorist detainees without bringing criminal charges. The decision in the inquiries of the deaths of two terrorist suspects marks the end of a wide-ranging criminal investigation by federal prosecutor John Durham into interrogation practices during the presidency of George Bush. Read Article

Irish gun thefts spark fears of new Ulster sniper campaign

Guardian – Anti-ceasefire republicans have stolen up to 30 high-powered rifles with telescopic sights that can be used in sniper attacks against the security forces in Northern Ireland, the Guardian has learned. The theft of the long-range rifles has raised the spectre of a new lethal sniper campaign similar to the one the South Armagh Provisional IRA conducted that resulted in the deaths of several soldiers and policemen in the 1990s. Read Article

Rebels strike Syrian power center with car bombs

AP – Syrian rebels struck deep in the fortress-like inner sanctum of President Bashar Assad’s rule Wednesday in Damascus, detonating two car bombs that engulfed the army headquarters in flames. The suicide bombings and subsequent gun battles in the Syrian capital killed at least five people, including a reporter for Iranian TV. The carefully orchestrated attacks highlighted the regime’s growing vulnerability, even as the 18-month battle to bring down Assad is locked in a stalemate. International diplomacy has failed to stop the bloodshed. Read Article

Syria unrest: Four guards killed in Damascus suicide attack

BBC – Four military guards were killed after suicide attackers drove vehicle bombs into the military HQ in the heart of Damascus, Syrian officials say. State TV contradicted earlier official accounts that no-one had died. It quoted army sources saying that 14 others were hurt in the attacks. The rebel Free Syrian Army and an Islamist group called Ansar al-Islam both said they carried out the attack. State TV broadcast footage of a minibus slowing before exploding at the HQ. Gunfire reverberated around the city for hours after the bombings, as rebels fought with soldiers at the compound. Read Article

Officials: 4 policemen killed in attacks in Iraq

AP – Officials say attacks against police checkpoints in central Iraq have killed four policemen, including a lieutenant colonel. Police officials in Babil province say the first attack took place early Wednesday when gunmen in two cars opened fire on policemen manning a checkpoint south of Baghdad. Two policemen and their commander died in that attack. Read Article

Seven dead in Turkey bomb blast

AFP – Six soldiers and one civilian have been killed after a bomb apparently targeting a military convoy exploded in southeastern Turkey, hospital sources say. The powerful blast in the centre of Tunceli city destroyed a military vehicle and hit another civilian vehicle, local security sources told AFP. The local governor’s office said “seven people lost their lives according to initial findings and one was injured,” cited by the Anatolia news agency. But it would not say how many of them were soldiers. The private NTV television network reported that the explosion caused panic among local residents, and many ambulances were rushing to the scene. Read Article

Suicide bomb kills 2 at Nigerian church

CNN – At least two people were killed when a suicide bomber attacked a church in northern Nigeria Sunday, officials said. In addition to the bomber, a woman and child were among the dead, the National Emergency Management Agency said. At least 22 people were injured in the blast, which occurred in the town of Bauchi. A witness said the car detonated near a gate at St. John’s Catholic Church as congregants were leaving a Sunday service. Authorities did not immediately say who was responsible for the attack. Read Article

Court clears way for cleric Abu Hamza’s extradition to U.S. on terror charges

CNN – A European court on Monday ruled that radical Muslim cleric Abu Hamza can be extradited from Great Britain to the United States, where he faces a host of terrorism charges. The European Human Rights Court issued its ruling, clearing the way for Hamza’s extradition. This means that he can now be moved to the United States, though no date has been set. Read Article

Security forces targeted in Iraq attacks

Al Jazeera – A series of apparently co-ordinated attacks against Iraqi security forces in and around Baghdad have killed at least six police and soldiers, security and medical officials say. The Associated Press news agency said nine people died and another 19 were wounded in Tuesday’s attacks. In Tarmiyah, north of the capital Baghdad, fighters attacked a police station with two car bombs, rocket-propelled grenades and Kalashnikov assault rifles, killing one policeman and wounding two, AFP news agency reported quoting an interior ministry official and a medical source. Armed men also attacked a checkpoint in Zayouna in east Baghdad, killing two police and wounding three, the interior ministry official said. In al-Amriyah neighbourhood of Falluja, 115km west of Baghdad, armed men killed army Brigadier-General Saleh Hassan Fezaa, while others attacked a checkpoint in al-Amil in the south of Baghdad, killing two soldiers and wounding three. Read Article

IRA bomber says Gerry Adams sanctioned mainland bombing campaign

Telegraph – A convicted IRA bomber claimed that Adams had sanctioned a series of attacks on London in 1972, including the bombing of the Old Bailey, which killed one man and injured 200 more. The claims were made by a woman at the centre of a legal battle in America over testimony she gave to an academic research project into the Troubles. Read Article

Suicide bomber attacks Catholic church in Nigeria

Indpendent – A suicide car bomber attacked a Catholic church conducting Mass in northern Nigeria today, killing two and wounding another 45 in a region under assault by a radical Islamist sect, officials said. An Associated Press journalist heard the explosion after 9am Sunday in the city of Bauchi, which has seen a number of bombings and shootings blamed on the sect known as Boko Haram. The blast appeared to hit a car park alongside the St John’s Catholic Church in the city. Read Article

The Second Scramble For Africa – U.S. expands its secret war in Africa

UPI — U.S. President Barack Obama’s “secret wars” against al-Qaida are steadily widening, most notably in Africa, with the U.S. military’s Special Forces Operation Command doubling in size and the CIA’s strike capabilities undergoing a radical expansion, international analysts said. “Ad hoc global ‘counter-terrorism’ efforts that began under President George W. Bush, and were encouraged by Obama, have now become institutionalized — and the bureaucracy that wages U.S. ‘secret wars’ will continue to expand for the next couple of years, particularly in Africa,” Oxford Analytica observed in a recent assessment. “Reliance on Special Forces and the CIA will increase in Afghanistan for the foreseeable future as conventional force numbers decline and move into a supporting role.” Read Article

Suicide car bomb kills 4 schoolchildren in Iraq

AP – A suicide car bomb went off near a school in Iraq’s western Anbar province on Monday, killing four children, officials said. The car exploded in the center of the town of Hit, 140 kilometers (85 miles) west of Baghdad, shortly after a police patrol passed by, said Mohammed Fathi, a provincial spokesman. He said six children were also wounded in the blast. The bombing came a day after the start of the new school year in Iraq. Mohammed Abdul-Munim, the administrator of Hit who confirmed the casualties, said the initial investigations indicated the school was not the primary target of the attack but the police, most likely. Read Article

Bomb leaves six dead in Thailand’s restive south

BBC – At least six people have been killed and 40 others injured by a bomb explosion near a market in Thailand’s restive south, police say. The bomb went off after gunmen opened fire at a shop in Sai Buri district, Pattani province, drawing in onlookers, officials say. The incident happened after Friday prayers in the mainly Muslim region. A separatist insurgency in Thailand’s south has killed more than 5,000 people since it flared up again in 2004. Read Article

Ivory Coast closes Ghana border after deadly attack

BBC – Ivory Coast has closed its border with Ghana after several people were killed in an attack on an army checkpoint. Ivorian Defence Minister Paul Koffi Koffi said “armed elements from Ghana” carried out the attack in the border town of Noe. At least five attackers died and others fled back over the border, he added. Ivory Coast has blamed previous attacks on its security forces on supporters of ex-President Laurent Gbagbo, some of whom are in exile in Ghana. Read Article

Female Car Bomber Kills 12 In Kabul

AFP – A female suicide car bomber attacked a van in Kabul on Tuesday, killing 12 people, including eight South Africans, in an assault insurgents said was revenge for an anti-Islam film made in America. The bombing on a highway to Kabul airport was the second suicide attack in the city in 10 days, reviving questions about stability as NATO accelerates a troop withdrawal and hands over to Afghan forces by the end of 2014. It came as officers revealed that Western troops are scaling back joint operations with Afghans after 51 NATO soldiers were shot dead this year by their local colleagues, a setback for the strategy that focuses on training Afghans. Read Article

9 dead in Pakistan blast

CNN – Nine people were killed in an explosion Wednesday in northwestern Pakistan, authorities said. Police suspect the blast on the outskirts of Peshawar targeted a vehicle carrying Pakistani air force officials, they said. Pedestrians and shoppers died, and three officers were among more than two dozen people injured, said government official Javid Marwat and Peshawar Police Chief Tahir Ayub. The explosion destroyed a van and nearby shops. Read Article

Cyber clues link U.S. to new computer viruses

Reuters – Researchers have found evidence suggesting that the United States may have developed three previously unknown computer viruses for use in espionage operations or cyber warfare. The findings are likely to bolster a growing view that the U.S. government is using cyber technology more widely than previously believed to further its interests in the Middle East. The United States has already been linked to the Stuxnet Trojan that attacked Iran’s nuclear program in 2010 and the sophisticated Flame cyber surveillance tool that was uncovered in May. Read Article

Afghan militants say bomb revenge for film; 12 dead

Reuters – A suicide attack on a minibus in the Afghan capital killed 12 people on Tuesday, including seven foreigners, and the Hezb-e-Islami insurgent group claimed responsibility, saying the blast was retaliation for a film mocking the Prophet Mohammad. “A woman wearing a suicide vest blew herself up in response to the anti-Islam video,” said Zubair Sediqqi, a spokesman for the militant faction, which does not usually carry out such attacks. Read Article

Egyptian soldier killed and seven injured in Sinai attacks

Guardian – An Egyptian soldier was killed and seven were injured in a set of retaliatory attacks on security forces in Sinai on Sunday as the fallout from a major attack that killed 16 border guards last month continues in the peninsula. Security forces had on Sunday carried out a series of raids arresting suspected militants linked to the 5 August attack near the town of Sheikh Zuwayed, four miles from the border town of Rafah. The raids were met with almost immediate retaliation by armed gunmen and a three-hour shootout ensued according to witnesses in the area. One soldier was killed and seven injured, in addition to two civilian injuries as a result of the clashes. The soldier died from wounds sustained in the clashes after being transported to a Cairo hospital. Read Article