JUNE 28, 2019
At around 11 p.m. local time, Taliban militants attacked a base of the Public Uprising Forces, a pro-government militia, in a village in the Nahrin district of the northern in Baghlan province. At least 30 members of the militia were killed in the six hours long fighting with the militants. The militants reportedly retreated after taking all militia weapons. The clashes come as Taliban representatives and U.S. government officials are due to hold a new round of peace talks in Qatar.
JUNE 28, 2019
At around noon, two suicide bombers detonated their explosives devices after infiltrating a military base in the village of Tanjung located in Indanan municipality in Sulu province. Three soldiers and three civilians were killed and 22 soldiers were wounded in the attack. Via its Amaq news agency the Islamic State (IS) claimed responsibility, for the attack, which was carried out by members of its affiliated Abu Sayaf Group and posted a photograph of two young men standing next to a black flag and wearing explosives vests. The attack marked the third suicide bombing in the Sulu archipelago this year.
JUNE 24, 2019
A 64-year-old man has been arrested for allegedly kidnapping a teenage girl near Tokyo and demanding a ransom of 20 million yen in return for her release. Isao Kimura is suspected of forcing a 16-year-old high school girl into his car in Fujisawa, Kanagawa Prefecture, on the evening of June 24 and taking her away, then calling her parents demanding ransom money. The girl's mother alerted police after receiving the phone call, during which the girl said she had been kidnapped. According to the police, Kimura and the girl were together at an accommodation in nearby Atsugi city when officers rescued her shortly after 10 a.m. a day later. The girl had been walking home when Kimura abducted her, the police said, adding that the two were unacquainted with each other. (japantoday.com, 26 June 2019)
JUNE 18, 2019
Madrid police rescued an Argentinian national after he was kidnapped on June 18 and held for €2 million ransom. The victim, who was not named, was rescued during a police raid on a property in the city’s Prosperidad district where a gang of four French nationals and a Russian held him. The national police launched an investigation after receiving, through diplomatic channels, a complaint filed in Argentina by a relative of the abductee after he contacted them and asked them to pay or he and his entire family would be killed if the demands were not met. Within hours after receiving the complaint, the national police was able to locate the house where the kidnapped man was being held. As officers surround the house, they realized that the gang was leaving the property with the victim. Fearing he was being moved to another location or was about to be harmed, the officers moved in on the gang immediately. According to the police, four of the suspects have experience in weapons handling and military operations. (euroweeklynews.com, 27 June 2019)
JUNE 17, 2019
Former president Mohammed Morsi, 67, who was ousted in a military coup d'état led by current President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, collapsed during a court appearance and died. Morsi, Egypt’s first democratically elected president was elected in 2012 following the Arab Spring that ousted than President Hosni Mubarak. A high official with the Muslim Brotherhood movement, Morsi served for a year until he was ousted in a coup in July 2013 that followed mass protests against his regime. He had since been imprisoned over various accusations during his brief time in office. Members of the now banned Muslim Brotherhood called his death a "full-fledged murder" and called for crowds to gather at his funeral. His death is likely to fuel further dissent, especially among members of the banned religious movement.
JUNE 03, 2019
During the first appearance of the suspected kidnappers in court, it was revealed that they had contacted the victims’ families demanding a ransom of US$800,000 in return for their release. According to a Senior State Attorney, who presented the facts to the court, the kidnappers smeared blood on their victims and on the floor to prove their seriousness to the families. Local media also reported that the Canadian government hired a French professional responder working for the London based NYA International, to negotiate the women release. The responder reportedly was in touch with the kidnappers via Facebook messenger and deposited US$120,000 to an account provided by them, but a National Security Operatives who took over the rescue mission, halted the payment. (ghanaweb.com, 14 June 2019 & ghanaweb.com, 15 June 2019)
The information ministry, announced the rescue of two young Canadian women who were kidnapped earlier in the in the city of Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti region. The two, whose names were disclosed by non-governmental organization Youth Challenge International as Lauren Tilley and Bailey Chitty, are reportedly in good health and getting emotional and psychological support from professionals as they travel back to Canada. According to Ghana police five Ghanaians and three Nigerians were taken into custody in connection with the kidnapping, no ransom was paid and no there was no foreign involvement in the rescue operation. The Global Affairs Canada spokesperson, confirmed the ‘release” of the two but stated that due to the provisions of the Privacy Act, and out of respect to the two woman, no further information will be disclosed. (abcnews.go.com, 12 June 2019 & cbc.ca, 12 June 2019 & reuters.com, 12 June 2019)
Two Canadian women volunteering at the Youth Challenge International aid agency were kidnapped in the city of Kumasi, the capital of the Ashanti region, located about 200Km/ 125 miles northwest of the capital, Accra. The two, aged 19 and 20, one of whom was identified only by her first name Lauren, were reportedly kidnapped around 8:30 p.m. local time as they arrived at the Silver Spring Apartments where they resided in the suburb of Ahodwo near the Royal Golf Club. The two reportedly traveled in an Uber with a third Canadian woman and were taken as they got out of the vehicle. The third woman then went to alert the police with the Uber driver. A spokesman for Global Affairs Canada confirmed that Canadians were kidnapped in Ghana, but citing security reasons, the official decline to provide any additional details. The two women are believed to have been in the country for less than two weeks before they were kidnapped. Though two other kidnappings of foreigners were recently reported, Kidnappings and violent crime against foreigners are rare in Ghana. (nationalpost.com, 5 June 2019 & ghanaweb.com, 6 June 2019 & yahoo.com, 7 June 2019)
MAY 19, 2019
An IED explosion hit a tourist bus and a private vehicle traveling near the Grand Egyptian Museum located about 3 Km/ 2 miles from the Giza pyramids. At least 16 people, including 12 South African tourists and four locals, were lightly wounded in the blast. The bombing marked the second such attack on foreign tourists near the Pyramids within five months in what is seems to be a deliberate attempt to hurt the nation’s tourism industry, which only recently started to recover following the downing of Russian plane over Sharm el-Sheikh in 2015. No group has claimed responsibility for the attack.