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Russia, Iran Outraged By US Cruise Missiles Attack on Syrian Airbase

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  • Russia, Iran Outraged By US Cruise Missiles Attack on Syrian Airbase

The Syrian government, Russia and Iran have denounced yesterday’s early morning strike by the United States on a Syrian government-controlled airbase which resulted in the death of at least seven people.

The US said it was in retaliation for a suspected chemical weapons attack by Syrian army on a rebel-held town that killed scores of civilians including women and children, a claim denied by the Syrian government describing the attack as “aggression and violation of international law.”

Also yesterday, three people were killed by truck driven into crowd in Swedish capital, according to Reuters. The truck plowed into a crowd on a shopping street and crashed into a department store in central Stockholm on Friday, killing three people and wounding eight in what the Prime Minister said appeared to be a terrorist attack.

In a statement carried by the state-run SANA News Agency and read on television, the Syrian military said the US strikes were done on a “pretext” of the Khan Sheikhoun attack, without the full facts being disclosed.

It also said the attack, which caused extensive damage to the base, made the US a partner of “terrorist groups”.

Syria’s State-news Agency, SANA gave a death toll of nine civilians, including four children.

It was the first direct military action the US has taken against Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s forces in the country’s long-running conflict, now in its seventh year.

“There can be no dispute that Syria used banned chemical weapons, violated its obligations under the chemical weapons convention and ignored the urging of the UN Security Council,” US President Donald Trump said in a televised statement after the strike.

Syria’s opposition National Coalition hailed the US attack, saying it puts an end to an age of “impunity” and should be just the beginning of further military action against Assad’s forces.

Russia, a key military ally of the Assad government, strongly condemned the strikes, saying Washington’s action would “inflict major damage on US-Russia ties”, according to Russian news agencies.

Russian government yesterday, suspended communication with the US effectively freezing the memorandum of understanding agreed between the two powers to avoid accidental military clash.

The Pentagon said that Russia had been notified ahead of the operation – but US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said that Washington had “sought no approval from Moscow”.

At least 86 people, including 27 children, were killed after a suspected poison gas attack on Khan Sheikhoun on Tuesday, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

The Syrian government denied carrying out the raid. Russia has blamed the opposition, saying a government shell hit a building where rebels were producing chemical weapons. The rebels deny this.

“I stress, once again, that the Syrian Arab Army did not and will not use such weapons even against the terrorists who are targeting our people,” Syria’s Foreign Minister Walid Muallem told reporters in Damascus on Thursday.

At the time of the US strike, Trump was at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, where he is holding two days of meetings with Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Trump said the strike was in the “vital national security interest” of the US.

“I call on all civilized nations to join us in seeking to end the slaughter and bloodshed in Syria, and also to end terrorism of all kinds and all types,” he said.

While yesterday’s strike was the first direct US military action against Assad’s forces, fighter jets by a US-led coalition last year killed dozens of troops fighting for the Syrian government after being “misidentified” as ISIL fighters, according to the US army.

The U.S. military strike on a Syrian airbase was “understandable”, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel said yesterday, given that the U.N. Security Council had failed to take decisive action after a deadly chemical weapons attack in Syria.

The US ambassador to the United Nation, Nikki Haley warned that the US would do more if necessary.

“I turned around and saw a big truck coming toward me. It swerved from side to side. It didn’t look out of control, it was trying to hit people,” Glen Foran, an Australian tourist in his 40s, told Reuters.

“It hit people, it was terrible. It hit a pram with a kid in it, demolished it,” he said.

“It took a long time for police to get here. I suppose from their view it was quick, but it felt like forever.”

Part of central Stockholm was cordoned off and the area was evacuated, including the main train station. All subway traffic was halted on police orders. Government offices were closed.

The suspect has been arrested.

CEO/Founder Investors King Ltd, a foreign exchange research analyst, contributing author on New York-based Talk Markets and Investing.com, with over a decade experience in the global financial markets.

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UK Government Has Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

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The United Kingdom on Wednesday Approved Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine

British government on Wednesday became the first country to approve Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for use, according to the UK government.

The vaccine will be rolled out from next week and the first dose could be administered as early as December 7th, stated people familiar with the matter.

Last week, the UK government announced it had ordered 40 million doses of Pfizer and BioNTech COVID-19 and appointed Nadhim Zahawi, the current junior business minister, as the minister responsible for the deployment of the vaccines.

British government on Wednesday morning said, “The Government has today accepted the recommendation from the independent Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) to approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine for use” 

“The vaccine will be made available across the UK from next week.”

Matt Hancock, Health Secretary, revealed that the programme would commence early next week.

“It is very good news,” Hancock said.

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Zabarmari Massacre: Buhari to Provide More Resources for the Nigerian Military

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President Muhammadu Buhari

President Muhammadu Buhari has promised to provide more resources to the military in the aftermath of the Zabarmari massacre.

On Saturday, Boko Haram killed 43 people with around 70 people still missing in Zabarmari, a village in Borno State.

Reacting to the massacre, Buhari, through his official Twitter handle @MBuhari said “Nothing is more important than ensuring the security of lives and property of Nigerians. Everything is secondary when security is at stake. I will ensure that more resources are made available to the military and other security agencies to prosecute the war against terrorism.

“As we mourn all the lives lost in Zabarmari, the Armed Forces have been given the marching order to take the fight to the insurgents, not on a one-off, but on a continuous basis, until we root out the terrorists.

“We will intensify our cooperation with neighbouring countries on bilateral and multilateral levels, to ensure that there is no hiding place for the terrorists.

“As I noted earlier, the massacre by Boko Haram in Zabarmari is nothing short of senseless, barbaric, gruesome and cowardly. It reinforces our resolve to root out all forms of insurgency and insecurity not just in Borno but everywhere across Nigeria.”

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Boko Haram Kills Rice Farmers in Borno State, Northeast Nigeria

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Rice farmers were killed on Saturday morning in the Northeast Nigeria by suspected Islamist militants, Boko Haram, according to a Reuters Report.

The report also noted that 30 of the people killed were beheaded while over a dozen others were still missing.

However, resident of the Zambarmari Village where the attacks took place said a total of 70 people were feared dead.

Another resident and Amnesty International were quoted as saying at least 10 women were among those missing.

In another statement by Edward Kallon, the United Nations’ humanitarian coordinator in Nigeria, it was armed men on motorcycles that led the brutal attack on civilians harvesting their fields.

Armed men on motorcycles led a brutal attack on civilian men and women who were harvesting their fields,” Edward Kallon stated.

“At least 110 civilians were ruthlessly killed and many others were wounded in this attack,” he added, noting that several women are believed to have been kidnapped.

“The incident is the most violent direct attack against innocent civilians this year. I call for the perpetrators of this heinous and senseless act to be brought to justice,” Kallon said.

On Sunday, Governor Babaganan Umara Zulum of Borno State, who was at the burial told journalists that at least 70 farmers were killed on Saturday.

The Governor, therefore, called on the Federal Government to recruit more Civilian Joint Task Force members, Soldiers and civil defence fighters to protect farmers in the region.

He added that people are facing desperate choices.

In one side, they stay at home they may be killed by hunger and starvation, on the other, they go out to their farmlands and risk getting killed by the insurgents,” he said.

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