Canadians Need to be Vigilant to the Threat Posed by Islamic State-Inspired Terror Ahead of Canada D
Canadians Need to be Vigilant to the Threat Posed by Islamic State-Inspired Terror Ahead of Canada Day Long Weekend.
The Islamic terrorist threat continues a global scale, and in Canada, as we approach the Canada Day weekend and Canadians should remain vigilant. As a reminder of the danger posed Islamic-inspired extremism, a 32-year-old Toronto woman, Rehab Dughmosh, has been charged with uttering death threats while armed with a knife at a Canadian Tire store at Scarborough’s Cedarbrae Mall on June 3rd. She had pledged allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS) earlier this month and said she would attempt to kill “again and again” if released. Dughmosh has refused counsel, to accept the jurisdiction of the court, only recognizes Shari Law, and renounced her citizenship.
The US has warned that it has spotted "potential preparations for another chemical weapons attack" by the Syrian government at Shayrat Air Base. The US, UK, and France have warned of joint military action against the Assad regime should they use chemical weapons again. At least 100 people, including 25 children, were killed in the April 4th Assad regime chemical weapons attack in a rebel-held area of Syria. Two days later, the US fired 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles at the Shayrat Air Base that carry out the Chemical strike.
It was reported that Syrian Kurdish forces have seized a new western district of al-Qadisiya of Raqqa from ISIS, its self-declared capital. Syrian Democratic Forces have captured Mustajid Naqib from ISIS and completely encircled Raqqa. Meanwhile, US Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis, has said that the US will continue to provide weapons to Syrian Kurdish forces until the war is over.
Security forces in neighboring Iraqi provinces to Mosul are increasingly concerned about ISIS moving into Kirkuk, Diyala and Salahuddin provinces. Intelligence has warned that there is likely to be a surge in ISIS activities as they flee Mosul to other areas.
Swedish Hostage, Johan Gustafsson, held by al-Qaeda in Mali since 2011, has been freed and is heading home.
On Monday Boko Haram suicide bombers killed nine people and wounded 13 others in multiple blasts in northeast Nigeria's Maiduguri. There have been a series of attacks in Borno state over the last few weeks, including blasts that killed 12 people on June 19th and a June 7th raid which left 14 dead.
A US airstrike has reportedly killed Abu Khattab al Awlaqi, a senior leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, and two of his close aides on June 16th. The US has launched more than 80 airstrikes against al-Qaeda in Yemen since President Trump took office, more than double the number over the past five years.
Al Qaeda in the Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) has released a 20-page “code of conduct” emphasizing its allegiance to Ayman al Zawahiri and the emir of the Taliban. AQIS has stated that its members are currently fighting “shoulder-to-shoulder with the mujahideen” of the Taliban and called on its supporters throughout the subcontinent to join forces or support the “Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan.” The 'Code of Conduct for Mujahideen in the subcontinent' also directs that al Qaeda target Indian military personnel, whether on duty or on vacation.
The US State Department on Monday designated Hizbul Mujahideen's supreme commander, Syed Salahuddin, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) and imposed sanctions on him. Hizbul Mujahideen is the largest militant group in India-held Kashmir and the announcement comes just hours ahead of a meeting between Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, and US President, Donald Trump.
Sadly, a new ISIS execution video “Cubs of the Caliphate” shows children as young as eight-years-old, shoot prisoners in the head in Afghanistan where ISIS is fighting for ‘market share’ against the Taliban and al-Qaeda. This is not the first-time children have been featured in ISIS video’s carrying out executions. Previously there has been a video of children executing prisoners by beheading them.
The Afghan Taliban’s al-Emarah Studio has released a new video entitled “Omari Army 5,” promoting its terrorist training camps in Afghanistan. The seven training camps were identified as: Abu Bakr Saddiq, Abu Dujanah, Khalid bin Walid, Mullah Akhtar Muhammad Mansour, Omar Faruq, Omari, and Omar ibn Khattab. Footage has previously been released from the Abu Dujanah, Khalid bin Walid, and Omar ibn Khattab camps. The Taliban have stressed the “divine obligation” of Jihad for all Muslims and the need for attacks during Ramadan. Earlier this year, the US military warned that the Taliban is back on the move and controls or contests 40 percent of Afghanistan.
ISIS fighters in the Philippines are reportedly taking women as sex slaves and hiding behind 100 kidnapped “Christian human shields” in the battle to liberate Marawi City. Hostages are reportedly forced to convert to Islam and carry wounded fighters.
On the international security front, the first of two new 70,000 ton British aircraft carriers, HMS Queen Elizabeth, has left the dock at Rosyth, Scotland, to start sea trials. The second carrier, HMS Prince of Wales, is expected to be completed in 2019 and undergo sea trials thereafter.
The UN has warned about the emergence in recent months of a new and brutal Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) government rebel group calling itself the Bana Mura. Filled with ethnic rivals of the Kamuina Nsapu, the militia was created, armed and supported by the DRC government and has carried out horrific attacks and atrocities on villages aligned with anti-government rebels.
Bahrain has accused Qatar of "military escalation" after Turkish President, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, rejected a demand by Bahrain and several other major Arab states that Turkish troops leave Qatar. Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) issued Qatar a list of 13 ultimatums last week that included a demand to close a Turkish military base inside Qatar. The United States has described the demands as "difficult to meet" and continues to urge calm.
The head of Ukrainian Special Forces at the Chief Military Intelligence Office, Colonel Maksym Shapoval, was killed by a car bomb early on June 27th in Kiev. The car-bombing is the latest in a series of attacks against Ukrainian military and law enforcement officials in recent months, and the second car bombing in Kiev in a week. On March 31st, Colonel Oleksandr Kharaberiush, the Deputy head of the State Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) was killed in a car blast in Mariupol in Donetsk Oblast. On June 23rd, Ukrainian war veteran Sergiy Oliynyk was stabbed to death in an apparent argument in Kiev. As well, on June 23rd, a businessman was injured when the SUV he was driving exploded in Kiev’s downtown. In July 2016, a similar car blast killed Pavel Sheremet, a prominent Belarusian journalist and Putin critic. These targeted killings appear to bear the hallmarks of the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation (FSB).
The Russian military has announced that it has successfully test-fired a Bulava Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile (SLBM) from the Yuri Dolgoruky Nuclear-powered Ballistic Missile Submarine (SSBN) in the Barents Sea. The missile's warheads reportedly reached their designated targets in the Kura test range on the far eastern Kamchatka Peninsula. The Bulava SLBM carries six nuclear warheads and has a range of up to 9,300 kilometers. The Yuri Dolgoruky Borey-class SSBN carry up to 16 of the Bulava SLBMs and are basis for Russia’s strategic naval nuclear deterrent in the future.
A Russian warship and helicopters reportedly harassed the unarmed civilian cargo ship M/V Green Ridge in late May as it was bound for Lithuania with US military equipment for a NATO exercise.
The Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning will reportedly undergo two weeks of further training including a port visit to Hong Kong to mark the Marco Polo Bridge Incident on July 7th. The Liaoning armed with J-15 fighter aircraft and helicopters departed Qingdao in Shandong province on Sunday with escorting warships that include the destroyers Jinan, Yinchuan, and frigate Yantai. The Marco Polo Bridge incident marked the start of the Second Sino-Chinese War (1937-1945) and the visit commemorating the infamous incident is clearly meant to remind China’s neighbors of its sensitivity to its border areas. China has recently demanded the withdrawal of Indian border Guards from a disputed region.
The Chinese Navy is also reportedly building a unique catamaran-type design known as Small Waterplane-Area Twin Hull (SWATH) for a hydrographic surveying and research vessel to locate enemy submarines.
A cyberattack called “Petya” that started in Ukraine on Monday has reached Spain, India, Denmark, Russia, the UK, and Norway. Ukraine government has reported that the cyberattack has targeted the country's banks, electricity grid, and major public infrastructure. Computer systems from Russia to Britain were subjected to continuing ransomware cyberattack on Tuesday in a hack that bears similarities to the May attack linked to North Korea. The UK has warned that airstrike could be a possible option in dealing with the culprit that has launched the attacks.
Japan has decided to upgrade its ballistic missile defense system in cooperation with the US to meet the threat posed by North Korean ballistic missiles.