Four Islamic State members killed as Iraqi troops repel attack on borders with Syria

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Nineveh (IraqiNews.com) Four Islamic State members were killed as the pro-government troops repulsed an attack on the borders between Iraq and Syria.

A statement by the media service of al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) thwarted, on Thursday evening, an attack by the militants in Tal Sufuk region, on the Iraqi-Syrian borders.

Four of the attackers were killed, the statement added.

Lt. Gen. Abdul Amir Yarallah, deputy commander-in-chief of the Iraqi Armed Forces unveiled an Iraqi plan to tighten security measures on the country’s borders with all neighboring countries, particularly with Syria, to foil any possible infiltration attempt by Islamic State.

Islamic State continues to launch sporadic attacks across Iraq against troops. Security reports indicate that the militant group still poses threat against stability in the country.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi announced, in December, full liberation of Iraqi lands, declaring end of war against IS members. PMFs had previously gained complete control on Iraqi-Syrian borders.

Thousands of IS militants as well as Iraqi civilians were killed since the government campaign, backed by paramilitary troops and the coalition was launched in October 2016 to fight the militant group, which declared a self-styled “caliphate” from Mosul in June 2014.

 

Source :  Iraq News

25 Islamic State members killed, arrested in wake of attack, west of Mosul

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Mosul (IraqiNews.com) Iraqi troops, along with fighter jets, have killed and arrested more than twenty Islamic State members and leaders in west of Mosul, a security source was quoted saying on Friday.

“Security troops arrested, today, 17 IS members in al-Rayhaniya village and seize the weapons in their possession in Badush, west of Mosul,” the source told Baghdad Today website.

Moreover, the source added that “eight members including three leaders were killed in an airstrike against al-Atshana mountain, in the wake of their attack against a checkpoint in Badush and fleeing to mountainous areas.”

On Thursday the security media center announced repelling an IS attack against a checkpoint in Badush.

Security sources were quoted on Thursday saying that two soldiers were killed, while three others were injured as gunmen, who are believed to belong to Islamic State, attacked the checkpoint

Islamic State continues to launch sporadic attacks across Iraq against troops. Security reports indicate that the militant group still poses threat against stability in the country.

Thousands of IS militants as well as Iraqi civilians were killed since the government campaign, backed by paramilitary troops and the coalition was launched in October 2016 to fight the militant group, which declared a self-styled “caliphate” from Mosul in June 2014.

Source :  Iraqi News

Christians mass grave found in Mosul not for Islamic State victims: Official

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Nineveh (IraqiNews.com) An official from Nineveh province has denied news that the Christian victims found in a mass grave, recently found in west of Mosul, were killed by Islamic State members.

Speaking to Baghdad Today website, Dureid Hikmat, deputy governor of Nineveh for Christians affairs, said, “the mass grave that was found in Mosul is not for victims killed by Islamic State, but for people who were killed more than 30 years ago.”

Hikmat added that the buried people were Christians.

On Thursday, news reports said Al-Hashd al-Shaabi (Popular Mobilization Forces) along with security troops in Halila region, near Badush in west of Mosul, ran into a mass grave of Christians who were kidnapped from the region.

Security troops ran into tens of mass graves at regions recaptured from IS. More than 70 graves, including Yazidis killed by IS, were also found.

Violence in the country has surged further with the emergence of Islamic State Sunni extremist militants who proclaimed an “Islamic Caliphate” in Iraq and Syria.

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi declared in July victory over IS militants who had held the second largest Iraqi city since 2014. More than 25,000 Islamic State militants were killed throughout the campaign. Abadi announced, in December, full liberation of Iraqi lands, declaring end of war against IS members.

Source :  Iraqi News

Pink convoy reaches Dubai

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Saman Haziq/Dubai
Filed on March 2, 2018

Apart from the ride, the Dubai event was divided into three sections at three different venues in order to spread awareness to a larger audience.

Residents and citizens of all ages in Dubai came together to participate and support the eighth edition of the Pink Caravan on Friday. The Pink Caravan Ride completed the third day of its week-long tour of the seven emirates. It arrived in Dubai after covering Sharjah and Fujairah.

About 15 riders along with a whole entourage of volunteers, ambassadors, organisers and emergency vehicles started the 6-km ride from the Dubai Water Canal to the Etihad Museum. Apart from the ride, the Dubai event was divided into three sections at three different venues in order to spread awareness to a larger audience.

At the first venue, the event kicked off with adult riders starting to ride on horsebacks from the Dubai Water Canal to Etihad Museum from 9am to 10.45am. At the second venue in Palm Jumeirah, the Pink Regatta saw all participants including riders, volunteers, ambassadors of the ride and cancer survivors take a ride on pink boats around the Palm Dubai area from 1pm to 3pm.

At Al Qudra Lakes, the third venue, games and entertainment were organised for kids and their families from 10am to 6pm. A juniors ride was also organised between 4pm and 6pm in a UAE-shaped enclosed area.

Participating in the pink fervour was the Dubai Fountains at The Dubai Mall that turned pink after every hour.

Badr Aljaaidi, project manager of the Pink Caravan Ride, told Khaleej Times: “We have about 10-15 new riders every day. Our medical teams are positioned in different locations in Dubai, such as Ibn Battuta Mall, Zaabeel Park and Al Qudra Lakes, giving free screenings and examinations to all.

“Our riders are a mix of men and women to give out our message loud and clear that breast cancer is not only a disease that affects women. Men can also get this disease. Therefore, we seek to spread breast cancer awareness and highlight the importance of early detection through the provision of free medical screenings and expert consultations to members of the community.”

A total of 1,403 people have been screened for breast cancer through the initiative. Hamad Obaid Mohammed, 29, who works at the immigration department, dedicated his weekend to the cause of spreading awareness about the disease. Hamad, also an endurance rider, was one of the 15 riders at the Pink Caravan Ride in Dubai. “This topic is close to my heart as there is someone in my family who is affected by the disease and I want to use my skills to promote awareness about the same. I want to tell people that all it takes to prevent or manage this disease is to get a regular checkup done.”

Another male rider Abdul Wahid Aljeaidi, 42, who has been supporting the Pink Caravan since 2011, said: “It was a very special experience today. I have always driven on Jumeirah road but today for the first time, I was riding a horse on the same lane. This is a great way to get people’s attention and as people looked at us and asked our team what was going on, we distributed pamphlets about breast cancer awareness.”

saman@khaleejtimes.com

 

Source :  The Khaleej Times

Dubai turns into art canvas with 3D strokes

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Filed on March 2, 2018 | Last updated on March 2, 2018 at 10.50 pm

This year’s festival continues to support talented young Emirati artists.

The fourth edition of Dubai Canvas, a public art festival organised by Brand Dubai, opened on Thursday.

The event will run till March 7 at La Mer, which has been transformed into ‘open-air canvases’ for over 30 artists from around the world to display their stunning artworks.
Dubai Canvas features a broad array of global artists, including the stars of the 3D art world. Apart from 3D art, the festival features a range of art forms including graffiti spaghetti, object art, inflatable art and tape art.

This year’s festival continues to support talented young Emirati artists. This support is part of Brand Dubai’s objective of giving national youth a platform to showcase their talent, and enhance their involvement in the local art scene. International and local artists as well as UAE-based art organisations are holding free workshops that teach art skills to the general public on the sidelines of the festival.

Project manager of Dubai Canvas Ayesha bin Kalli said: “The workshops form part of our objective of helping the artists and the public connect with each other in an organic way. These workshops, which impart basic and advanced art skills, also present a rare opportunity for members of the public to interact with and learn from some of the world’s leading street artists. The workshops will inspire both adults and children to enhance their talent and skills, whatever level they are at.”

Leading global artists including Leon Keer, Tracy Lee Stum, Cuboliquido and Mr. Doodle will explain their distinctive artistic styles and approaches in their workshops. Jamie Harkins will be presenting a unique workshop on creating 3D sand art every morning of the event from 6am to 8am. Tape Over’s workshops will give the public opportunities to learn techniques for creating art with sticking tape. Local artists like Aysha Al Hemrani, Mahra Al Falahi, Asma Al Khoori and Fatma Al Ali are also among the artists conducting workshops.

UAE-based art organisations including Soul Art Centre, Neon Structure, Maraya Art Centre, Medaf Studio, Yadawei Ceramics Studio, Na7t Design, Oli Oli, Shoebox wand The Mine will conduct workshops. 1971 Design Space and Hibr Design will team up together to conduct a workshop on calligraphy art techniques.

reporters@khaleejtimes.com

 

Source :  The Khaleej Times

Fire erupts in newly-constructed Abu Dhabi building

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Filed on March 2, 2018 | Last updated on March 3, 2018 at 12.07 am

Police are still investigating the cause of the fire.

Abu Dhabi civil defense teams put out a major fire from an under construction building in the capital.

No injuries were reported.

The Civil Defense Operations room was notified about the fire at about 12pm on Friday and firefighters were immediately sent to the scene.

Brigadier Mohammad Mayouf Al Ketbi, director general of the civil defense department in Abu Dhabi said that the fire broke out on the lower levels of the building.

“The fire didn’t cause any loss of life or injuries. The firefighters had extinguished the blaze in the shortest time possible.”

Al Kutbi has urged construction firms and owners of buildings under construction to always comply with fire prevention and safety requirements and not to use ground floors to store flammable materials.

Police are still investigating the cause of the fire.

ismail@khaleejtimes.com

 

Source :  The Khaleej Times

Mother wins fight to have app used to bully her daughter removed from stores

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By Toby Crockford

It started as a spur-of-the-moment expression of anger just hours after her daughter had been told she should kill herself through an anonymous social networking app.

Just over a month later, Rockhampton mother Katrina Collins celebrated victory after her online petition to have the app Sarahah removed from the App and Google Play stores led to change.

Rockhampton mother Katrina Collins took on and beat cyberbullying.

Rockhampton mother Katrina Collins took on and beat cyberbullying.

Photo: Supplied

Ms Collins said the campaign was about more than just her and her daughter, it was created in the hope of stopping the same experience from happening to another child with no voice.

In January, Ms Collins’ 13-year-old daughter was sent a screenshot by a friend, it showed a conversation on Sarahah in which anonymous users said she should kill herself.

 “My insomnia is a result of messages my daughter received on an app called Sarahah. I’d never heard of it but now I’ve learnt about it, I’m adamant that it needs to be banned,” Ms Collins said.

“The app allows users to send ‘anonymous feedback’ messages to each other. My daughter doesn’t even have the app, yet she still received some of this ‘feedback’ – and it made me feel sick to the stomach.

“The message called my sweet, beautiful young daughter a ‘bitch’ and continued: ‘I hope SHE KILLS HERSELF. Seriously nobody will care’.

“I’ve read these words over and over and can’t get them out of my head. The sender knew my daughter would see this message about her. How could anyone be so cruel, so cold, so callous?”

Ms Collins’ Change.org petition attracted more than 450,000 signatures.

She also received a flood of messages from people who had had similar cyberbullying experiences, with some saying the hurtful messages had also been sent through the Sarahah app.

“I was just so surprised it (the petition) got some many signatures and got Apple and Google to remove the app,” Ms Collins said.

“I think it touched a raw note with people … especially after everything that happened with Dolly.”

While Apple never directly contacted Ms Collins, another journalist researching the app contacted her a few weeks after the petition had launched, saying they couldn’t find it in the App Store.

A few weeks later, Change.org, which had been helping Ms Collins liaise with Google regarding Sarahah, noticed the app had also disappeared from the Google Store.

“I was shocked, I didn’t think we would get to that point honestly,” Ms Collins said.

“They’re big companies and I didn’t think this whole thing through. I did it on a whim and was shocked by the whole thing.

“Our purpose was to stop the same thing from happening to another child with no voice.

“I like to think I’ve proven that one person can make a difference and make a change.”

Sarahah claims its filtering systems should have intercepted messages containing offensive language, but Ms Collins has screenshots proving otherwise.
Sarahah claims its filtering systems should have intercepted messages containing offensive language, but Ms Collins has screenshots proving otherwise.

Photo: Supplied

Sarahah CEO Zain-Alabdin Tawfiq said he shared Ms Collins’ concerns and had implemented new measures in the hope of preventing the app from being used for cyberbullying ever again.

“Sarahah would like to assure all its users that the prevention of misuse of its services is always paramount in our operations,” he said.

“We strongly share the parents’ concern over their children’s possible exposure to unwanted messages. Therefore, we have limited the registration in Sarahah to 17 years of age or more.

“We have also put in place extremely advanced filtering techniques that detect unwanted words and phrases and immediately delete any messages that contain such words.

“We took the case mentioned in the petition at Change.org very seriously and as soon as it came to our knowledge, we tested our system using a similar message to the one that was mentioned in the petition.

“Our system has detected the use of obscene language and deleted the test message right away.

“However, we did not stop at that and advanced the introduction of previously planned enhancements to our system using state-of-the-art techniques that provide the highest level of protection available.”

Ms Collins said the filters weren’t doing their job properly and has sent Sarahah the full screenshots which she said clearly showed the app’s logo with the hurtful messages.

Meanwhile, a Google spokesperson told Fairfax Media they work closely with app developers to ensure their products are in-line with Google policies.

“While we don’t comment on specific apps, our Google Play policies are designed to provide a great experience for users.

“We always do our best to work closely with developers to ensure they’re in compliance with our policies.”

 

Source :  The Brisbane Times

Onboard a RAAF Hornet display routine

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This weekend the Royal Australian Air Force will take to the skies above the Adelaide 500 with displays by the Roulettes and an F/A-18 Hornet. The Hornet display will be flown by “Traylz” from 2OCU based at RAAF Base Williamtown. If you are in Adelaide make sure you look up on Saturday and Sunday at 14:50 local time to take it all in!

If you can’t wait, here’s a preview from last year’s Coates Hire Newcastle 500 show using our 360 cam. Enjoy and have a great weekend!

To watch 360° YouTube videos, you need the latest version of Chrome, Opera, Firefox, or MS Edge on your computer. Or on mobile devices, use the latest version of the YouTube app.

 

Source :  Australian Aviation

Indigenous-painted Qantas 787 ‘Yam Dreaming’ arrives in Alice Springs

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Qantas Boeing 787-9 VH-ZND "Yam Dreaming" is welcomed to Australia at Alice Springs Airport. (Qantas/James Morgan)

Clear skies and Australia’s rugged outback have greeted the arrival of Qantas’s fourth Boeing 787-9, which features a special indigenous livery inspired by the work of artist Emily Kame Kngwarreye.

The aircraft, VH-ZND, departed Boeing’s final assembly line at Everett a little after 2100 (local time) on Wednesday. Some 15 and a half hours and almost 7,000nm later, it touched down at Alice Springs Airport a little after 0600 on Friday, where it received an Airservices Aviation Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) monitor cross.Qantas Boeing 787-9 VH-ZND "Yam Dreaming" coming into land at Alice Springs Airport. (Qantas/James Morgan)

Qantas Boeing 787-9 VH-ZND "Yam Dreaming" lands at Alice Springs Airport. (Qantas/James Morgan)

On hand to greet the arrival of Qantas’s fourth 787-9 were members of the late Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s family, as well as Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce and the local community.

“It is a privilege to welcome home this special aircraft together with Emily’s family, close to her home Country. We’re thrilled to showcase her striking artwork on our newest Dreamliner,” Joyce said in a statement.

“As the aircraft enters our international fleet, we believe this Dreamliner, through colour and image, will tell a story of our unique Australian landscape and, by sharing our Indigenous culture with the world, the important story of reconciliation.”

The aircraft, which is named Emily Kame Kngwarreye, is expected to operate a number of domestic flights on the Qantas network before being deployed on Melbourne-Los Angeles and Melbourne-Perth-London Heathrow flights.

Qantas’s first three 787-9s are named Great Southern Land (VH-ZNA), Waltzing Matilda (VH-ZNB) and Quokka (VH-ZNC).Qantas Boeing 787-9 VH-ZND "Yam Dreaming" at Alice Springs Airport. (Qantas/James Morgan)

Qantas Boeing 787-9 VH-ZND "Yam Dreaming" at Alice Springs Airport. (Qantas/James Morgan)

Northern Territory artist and senior Anmatyerre woman Emily Kame Kngwarreye was born some 230km north east of Alice Springs at Ahalkere in the Utopia Homelands.

Her 1991 painting, Yam Dreaming has been adapted for the aircraft by leading Indigenous-owned design studio Balarinji. The design depicts the culturally significant yam plant, an important symbol in Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s Dreaming stories and a staple food source in her home region of Utopia.

The airline said the livery features more than 5,000 dots and involved more than 60 graphic designers, engineers and painters, with the work taking 10 days to complete at Boeing’s Everett facility just outside Seattle in Washington State.

Emily Kame Kngwarreye’s 1991 work “Yam Dreaming” is on display at the Campbelltown Arts Centre in Sydney, where it part of the permanent collection.

The PWERLE Aboriginal Art Gallery posted a video of the aircraft on Instagram.

 

Source :  Australian Aviation

Shoura delegation to visit Russian Federation next Monday

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RIYADH – The Shoura Council delegation, led by its Assistant Speaker Dr. Yahya Bin Abdullah Al-Sama’an, will start an official visit to the Russian Federation next Monday in the context of strengthening bilateral parliamentary relations and enhancing joint cooperation between the two friendly countries, Saudi Press Agency (SPA) reported Friday.

Al-Sama’an said that the delegation will brief the Russian officials on efforts being exerted by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia under the leadership of Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Salman, to maintain security and stability in the region and its endeavors to support the Arab and Islamic countries to confront the blatant interference in their internal affairs.
He added that this visit aims to activate communication between the Shoura Council and the Russian Parliament and strengthen relations between the Kingdom and Russia, especially in the economic aspect and mutual investments between the two countries. – SP
Source :  Saudi Gazette
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