About 47 people have died in clashes between rival Libyan militias vying for control over Tripoli’s international airport. According to the Health Ministry, the battle in Tripoli caused by Islamist militias from Misurata attacked the airport. Meanwhile, Zintan militias are occupying the airport. The battle of the two factions have lasted for over a week.
A $113 million passenger jet of Afriqiyah Airways was destroyed on Sunday after the clashes between the two factions. According to Libya’s Transportation Minister Abdelkader Mohammed Ahmed, it was the Libyan fleet’s pride as it had flown into South Africa, Bangladesh and China.
The terminal was ridden with bullet holes and debris from fragments.
The Health Ministry still has no comprehensive count on the number of people who have been killed and wounded in the skirmishes.
Meanwhile, Libya is in a state of political instability because of the militias. The clashes had forced government offices, gas stations and banks to close. The militias have also targeted activists and government officials. Recently, two lawmakers were kidnapped in the Tripoli suburbs.
A renegade general in Benghazi, Khalifa Hifter, had five of his soldiers killed after Islamist militias have attacked a barracks of his men. General Hifter had vowed to crush all Islamist Militias in Libya.
According to one of Iraq’s senior politicians, the country could ask its neighbour Iran to bomb the extremist group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria if the US will not comply with its request. Iraqi Parliament and Spokesman Dr. Haider al-Abadi said that the Iraqi government feels vulnerable against ISIS that it will take its chances with Iran’s cooperation just to eradicate the ISIS threat.
He added that Iraq has been waiting for the US to provide air support against the ISIS. Should the US comply, Iraq will disregard asking Iran. However, the fact remains that it may ask Turkey or Iran for bombing support.
However, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that launching an air strike against ISIS would be irresponsible because there is a sectarian divide in Iraq, which could further inflame if the US bombs the ISIS, composed primarily of Sunni Muslims.
The Iraqi Spokesman iterated that Iraq could survive with minimal military support, but a bombing run could help protect Iraq by kicking the ISIS out of Iraq’s territory.
The impact of ISIS and other extremist groups will greatly impact not just the areas in the Middle East, but the sectarians living in the other regions of the world. The UK is currently dealing with a security issue regarding UK Muslims joining the ranks of ISIS to fight in Iraq.
The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has captured four more towns in western Iraq and were met with very little assistance. As the ISIS continues its offensive, the Iraqi military is becoming morally weakened as their threat of speedy expansion continues.
The Obama Administration and US Secretary of State John Kerry had issued a warning against ISIS as they progressively become a grave threat to US national security. The destabilisation of Iraq could spill towards US allies, including Jordan, Turkey, Kuwait, and other Middle Eastern countries.
ISIS recently captured Anah, Rawa, Rotba and Haditha, a number of villages a few miles away from Baghdad.
US President Obama appeared on national television and said that the administration intends to create a focused strategy and help train the military to do their jobs properly.
The US recently sent 300 military advisers, who had assessed that the recent weak movements of Iraq’s military commanders, their inadequate equipment to defend against the militants, and the summary execution committed by ISIS, is gnawing at the morale Iraq’s soldiers.
Iran’s Leader Ayatollah Khamenei sees the US support for Iraq as having a vested interest to take advantage of the situation of the country.
The consecutive capture of towns that trail toward Baghdad will aid ISIS fighters with faster transfer of weapons and equipment to many battlefields.
In response to the public’s favour of populist and far-right political parties, European leaders had agreed to meet at an informal summit in Brussels after the recent parliamentary elections to review their priorities and come up with policies that will help them gain support from voters supporting the opposition.
According to the European Council President, as the EU emerges from the financial crisis, it also needs to have a positive and future-oriented agenda of growth, competitiveness and jobs. It is important that the EU preserve the unity of the EU.
Meanwhile, UK Prime Minister David Cameron said that he will block any attempt by anti-EU tories to forge alliances with the Eurosceptic parties in other countries. Cameron said he will block any request or attempt to invite the new Alternative for Germany parties in to the pan-European grouping.
In the UK, UKIP Leader Nigel Farage faced great success with the public. It was only centre-left Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi who broke the trend of Eurosceptic wins.
French Far Right Front National Party President Marine Le Pen, who had been campaigning for the purity of French nationalities, had won in the European Parliament elections.
According to political experts, the wins of the hard-left and far-right political parties is a reflection of the public’s dissatisfaction with over austerity, mass unemployment and immigration.
Two car bombs that exploded in Jos City’s Terminus Market in Nigeria killed more than 118 people according to Nigerian authorities. Authorities point to the Boko Haram extremist group as the culprits of the attack. They also said that the number of people killed may be more inside damaged buildings.
Nigeria’s President Goodluck Jonathan said that the two car bomb attack was a “tragic assault on human freedom.” He had also called the Boko Haram as cruel and evil. A statement from his office assures that the government will do all it can to win the war against terror.
The attack happened around 15:00 local time in the New Abuja Market Area of the city. A truck exploded in the nearby commercial district. Around 20 minutes later, a minibus exploded and wounded many emergency workers.
The United States Department of State had already declared Boko Haram as a terrorist group in 2013, but Nigeria is pushing for its identification in the UN Security Council. The UN can then place sanctions such as arms embargo, travel ban and asset freezes.
Boko Haram became infamous after assaulting a Nigerian mall and taking several people inside as hostages. Awareness about the group rose further when the families, friends and sympathizers of the 300 kidnapped schoolgirls had turned to social networks for help in recovering their children.
Turkey has banned May Day celebrations in Taksim Square. The government had deployed its security forces armed with plastic pellets, tear gas and water cannons to prevent any gatherings in Taksim Square. Protesters and May Day demonstrators threw stones, bottles, and used fireworks against riot police forces.
Aside from the clashes in Taksim Square, similar situations had arisen in Ankara and Izmir.
The government banned the protests citing that security threats from extremist groups can manifest in such gatherings. The government had also closed Istanbul’s subway systems, which closed commercial ferry services and it had blocked vehicular traffic in Istanbul’s roads.
It also justified the ban on the May Day rallies to the fact that it would hurt Istanbul’s image as a tourist destination.
Observers said the ban on rallies might also be due to the earlier protests in 2013 against the reconstruction of Gezi Park. The rallies erupted into violence and disrupted the peace in many areas of Turkey. Human rights groups had condemned the handling of the protests.
Taksim Square is also significant to Turkish leftists because many people had been killed in May 1, 1977, when gunfire triggered a stampede during a demonstration in the square.
Ukrainian investigators point to pro-Russian rebels as the suspects for the death of a local politician from Ukraine’s Acting President Oleksander Turchinov’s political party. The politician was found dead with signs of torture, according to investigators. This adds to the turmoil right after a Ukraine-Russia Accord forged in Geneva was immediately broken following a shoot-out at a pro-Russian activist checkpoint in Slaviansk.
The police found the local politician’s body alongside another floating body. According to police, the man resembled Rybak, a local councillor in the town of Horlivka in Donetsk. However, they have not fully identified the man’s body to be Rybak as formal identification procedures will be needed.
Russia and Ukraine continue to point each other for failing to address the action needed to ensure the implementation of the Geneva accord. Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov accused Ukraine’s Right Sector group of initiating the attack against the Slaviansk checkpoint. Ukraine accused Russia’s Secret Service for using the checkpoint assault as a pretext for Russia to take over the city.
Turchinov said that their crimes were carried out with full support and indulgence from the Russian Federation and he called out to Ukraine’s Security Agencies to relaunch and carry out effective anti-terrorist measures to protect Ukrainian citizens living in eastern Ukraine from possible terrorists.
A powerful 8.2 earthquake in the northern coast of Chile hit Earthquake-Prone Chile on Tuesday. Chile officials are now evacuating residents in coastal areas before a tsunami hits. The earthquake was first recorded at 8.0, and then to 8.2 as the region was rocked by numerous earthquakes over the past two weeks.
Local media showed that residents calmly evacuated their homes. All of Latin America’s Pacific coast had issued a Tsunami alert and a large wave was expected to hit the island of Juan Fernandez.
Chile’s emergency services reported some roads blocked by landslides but no casualties or injuries have been reported as of yet.
It is not the first time a massive earthquake hit Chile. As an earthquake-prone country next to Japan, Chile once had a magnitude 9.5 tremor in 1960 that killed 5,000 people and destroyed billions of dollars in properties. In 2010, a magnitude 8.8 earthquake and ensuing tsunami had destroyed 220,000 homes and claimed the lives of more than 500 people.
According to the US Geological Survey, the magnitude-8.2 earthquake has the power of a “destructive tsunami” that would hit coastlines and would be enough to flood several cities in the Latin American shorelines.
According to UK’s consumer protection and information group Citizens Advice, at least 1,050 PPI claims management companies are taking £5 billion of the £13.3 billion total recompense given to UK nationals because of the banks’ failure to inform their consumers regarding mis sold PPI. In 2011, UK’s high courts have ordered banks and financial institutions to recompense consumers mis sold payment protection insurance and inform them of its possibility. Despite the court order, banks still mis performed their task.
Reputable no win no fee claims management companies, such as PPIClaimsAdviceline.org.uk, stress that they only take PPI claims from consumers who are aware they are mis sold PPI. Most PPI claims management companies charge upfront fees, persuade consumers they have a mis sold PPI and that the company should pursue their payment protection insurance claims.
Citizens Advice also pointed out that consumers also experienced the lack of transparency from the services of such claims firms, especially with cancelling arrangements.
Cases also turned expensive especially when the bank decides to use the payment protection refund to wipe off in partial or full part of the consumer debt. Consumers had to find a way to pay the 25% due for the PPI claims management companies.
According to observers and satisfied consumers, PPI claims companies do a very good job in retrieving payment protection insurance, but they are only necessary if you cannot make your claim on your own because the Financial Ombudsman Service can help you with your claim should you do it on your own.
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi was hailed as the new Prime Minister of Italy and his reign, along with his 16-member cabinet who have an average age of 47.6 years, is now on its road to fulfilling the promises they had given the Italian public and government. Upon his appointment as Prime Minister, he had made a speech that lasted for an hour and 10 minutes that presented his government’s programme head before the senate even approved their confidence in him.
Renzi, compared to other former Prime Ministers, was less than boring than his predecessors during his speech. He was energetic and exciting according to local media. Renzi also showed he was a populist.
He announced about the promises he had made in the recent weeks. He had presented his programme, which expectedly had lacking detail, that tackled issues in the Senate and the Italian Justice System. He had promised that he would also cut taxation and ensuring that government debts to small and medium business they will address.
He also stressed about the EU’s advice to Italy regarding getting its economy back on track that the Italian people must not do it because they are the lenders, but because it is for the good and pride of Italy.
Despite Renzi’s youthful charm, many, even in his own Democratic Party, think that he and his cabinet may be prone to rhetoric due to the lack of political maturity that most senior politicians have.