beverly thomas

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South African mercenaries' secret war on Boko Haram

Mercenaries from South Africa have proved quietly decisive in helping the Nigerian military turn around its campaign against Boko Haram, writes Colin Freeman in Abuja<p>With their roots in <b>South Africa</b> apartheid-era security forces, they do not fit the standard image of an army of liberation. But after …

European Union

A Truce in Ukraine? ‘Forget About It.’

On the front lines, the killing never stopped, and now it’s due to grow worse.<p>MARIUPOL, Ukraine — It was the worst five-day shift for the Donbas …

ISIS abducts Christians in Syria, groups say

<b>(CNN) —</b> Assyrians in northeastern Syria villages awoke Tuesday to ISIS militants at their doors, with the Islamist extremists abducting scores from the Christian group and forcing hundreds more to run for their lives, an advocate said.<p>The ISIS fighters burst past a few men guarding the village of …

Human Rights
Military

Embattled Debaltseve falls to Ukraine rebels; troops retreat

For the rebel fighters who seized control of this strategic town, Thursday was a day of jubilation and bragging of victory. The retreating Ukrainian soldiers were grim, stunned and relieved to have escaped with their lives as the scope of their losses became clearer: at least 13 dead and hundreds …

Anti-Semitism in Europe: Will it cause Jews to leave?

<b>(CNN) —</b> The door is open, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said to Jews worldwide.<p>"Extremist Islamic terrorism has struck Europe again, this time in Denmark," he said Sunday. "We are preparing and calling for the absorption of mass immigration from Europe. To the Jews of Europe and to the …

Israel

Tribal leader: Iraqi troops in Anbar could 'collapse within hours'

<b>(CNN) —</b> An Iraqi tribal leader said Saturday that ISIS militants are gaining ground in Anbar province, predicting a "collapse within hours" of Iraqi army forces there if tribal forces withdraw.<p>Sheikh Naim al-Gaoud, a Sunni Muslim leader of the Albu Nimr tribe, called for more U.S. intervention -- …

Islamic State (ISIS)

Ukraine ceasefire: European leaders sceptical peace plan will work

European leaders have praised Germany and France for brokering a ceasefire and peace plan for Ukraine, but privately voiced scepticism that the pact struck after a marathon all-night summit in Belarus would work. They worried that an upsurge in fighting before the truce is supposed to take hold in …

Europe

German police in Serbia to try to stem migrant exodus to EU

SUBOTICA, Serbia (AP) — German police officers equipped with thermal vision cameras joined Serbian security forces Friday on Serbia's border with Hungary in a bid to halt a torrent of migrants that has alarmed many European Union countries.<p>Tens of thousands of immigrants — mostly Kosovo Albanians …

North Africa

Pope's new cardinals from far-flung places, value ministry

VATICAN CITY (AP) — One hails from Tonga, where climate change is threatening the very existence of the archipelago. Several live in places tormented by drug violence and organized crime. Another represents a tiny, remote church that has witnessed firsthand the deadly drama of Mediterranean …

Red Hat

Fighting rages in run-up to Ukraine ceasefire

DONETSK, Ukraine (Reuters) - Ukraine and Russian-backed rebels fought fiercely across the east of the country on Friday despite a new peace deal brokered by Germany and France.<p>A ceasefire is due to come into effect from Sunday under the agreement, which also envisages a withdrawal of the heavy …

Russia

North Carolina teen's hanging ruled a suicide, but was it a lynching?

A young black man is dead. The police are roundly criticized. Angry protesters march through the streets.<p>But unlike the deaths of black men in New York and Ferguson, Mo., the death of 17-year-old Lennon Lacy in this tiny lumber town was not known to be at the hands of a white cop — or any cop. …

Seven recent blasts in Ukraine city stir fear of new Russian menace

At least seven bomb blasts in little more than a month in Ukraine's second-largest city, Kharkiv, have stirred fears among residents and the government in Kiev that Russia-backed rebels are trying to destabilize the militarily strategic region.<p>International monitorsfrom the Organization for …

Vladimir Putin's Novorossiya may mark just the start of his empire-building ambitions

Vladimir Putin has deftly tapped into Russians' sense of patriotism, evoking Moscow's defeat of the Nazis, while pursuing what critics say are alarming similar policies of expansionism - but sanctions are biting<p>For a man who has made a career out of Soviet-era nostalgia, it was a timely reminder …

Russia

Putin vows to punish speculators pushing down ruble’s value

Russian President Vladimir Putin vowed to punish speculators attacking the ruble with "harsh" measures in a defiant speech that reached into Russian history to defend his annexation of Crimea and compared his international opponents with Adolf Hitler.<p>"The authorities know who these speculators are …

Scientists: 'Positive' results in 1st human trial of experimental Ebola vaccine

The first human trial of an experimental Ebola vaccine has produced promising results, U.S. scientists said, raising hopes that protection from the deadly disease may be on the horizon.<p>All 20 healthy adults who received the vaccine in a trial run by researchers from the National Institutes of …

Royal Navy tracks Russian warships in English Channel

Convoy of Russian vessels anchored off northern France to "wait out a storm" after patrol ship HMS Tyne shadows it through Strait of Dover<p>The Royal Navy is “keeping an eye” on a convoy of Russian warships that entered the English Channel to undertake a series of exercises.<p>While the four ships – led …

Russia gets greater control over Black Sea region

MOSCOW (AP) — Russia tightened its control Monday over Georgia's breakaway province of Abkhazia with a new treaty envisaging closer military and economic ties with the lush sliver of land along the Black Sea.<p>The move drew outrage and cries of "annexation" in Georgia and sent a chill through those …

China building South China Sea island big enough for airstrip

Construction flies in the face of US calls for a freeze on building in the disputed Spratly Islands<p>Satellite images show China is building an island on a reef in the disputed Spratly Islands large enough to accommodate what could be its first offshore airstrip in the South China Sea, a leading …

Vladimir Putin vows that United States 'will never subjugate Russia'

Russian president echoes Al Capone as he says 'weapons and politeness' are better than 'politeness alone'<p>Vladimir Putin issued a defiant message to the West on Tuesday, accusing the United States of trying to "subjugate" Russia while promising it would never succeed.<p>The Russian president also …

Report warns of Russian aggression

Business (Canada)

Russian journalists set up shop in Latvia after Kremlin crackdown

As Moscow tightens its grip on the country’s independent media, a group of self-exiled reporters are hoping to evade the censors. Nadia Beard reports for The Calvert Journal<p>‘The news returns’ – that is the slogan for the Meduza Project, a new Russian-language independent media organisation based in …

Do Oslo's Olympic cold feet signal a shift in international sport?

The procedure, now, is commonplace. A glitzy stage, manned by executives in suits, an envelope dramatically opened. Then, cheers from representatives of the successful bid.<p>Despite these regular, euphoric scenes not every country seems to have aspirations to host a major sporting event. Earlier this …

Sweden intensifies search for suspected Russian submarine | News | DW | 19.10.2014

The Swedish military has ramped up search efforts for a suspected Russian submarine off the coast of the capital of Stockholm, military officials …

Denounce illegal Ukrainian elections and avoid 'frozen conflict', David Cameron tells Vladimir Putin

The Prime Minister meets the Russian President to push him to take decisive action by condemning illegal elections planned for December<p>David Cameron has challenged Vladimir Putin to denounce illegal elections in Ukraine to stop the crisis becoming a "frozen conflict".<p>The Russian President refused …

Russia

Panic over Ebola reaches fever-pitch despite calls for calm

The virus has killed nearly 4,500 people, most of them in Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, and the disease has reared its ugly head further afield in the United States and Spain, sparking post-apocalyptic fears of mass contagion.<p>And while tropical disease experts and health authorities have …

Disease