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Mystery drones have been spotted flying over central Paris for the second night.
French police are no closer to knowing who is operating them.
There were five sightings by between 23:00 on February 24 and 02:00 on February 25, French media report.
Up to three drones were seen near the Invalides military museum, Place de la Concorde and two of the old city gates.
Flying drones over Paris at night is illegal and daytime flights require authorization from city authorities.
Five drones were seen the previous night in similar areas, including the Eiffel Tower and above the US embassy, close to Place de la Concorde.
However, some of the latest drone flights have been captured on film and will be analyzed by a 10-strong team of investigators set up after the first incidents.
The new sightings were also on the fringes of central Paris, at the key transport gates of Porte de Clignancourt in the north and Porte de Saint-Cloud in the south-west.
Small drones are inexpensive and easy to buy but their appearance in recent months over sensitive locations has worried French authorities.
It is against the law for any aircraft to fly lower than 19,700ft over central Paris. Flying any aircraft under that ceiling – including drones, police helicopters, and air ambulances – requires permission from city authorities.
Flying a drone at night is banned completely.
Drones present a problem for authorities in built-up areas, in that shooting them down could endanger the public. It is possible to jam GPS or radio signals guiding them.
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Secret Service staff recovered a small drone from the grounds of the White House, US media report.
A spokesman for President Barack Obama confirmed that a “device” had been discovered but said it posed no immediate danger.
Barack Obama and the First Lady are currently on a visit to India.
The Secret Service, which is tasked with the president’s security, has been criticized for recent lapses, leading to a leadership reorganization.
In September a man armed with a knife scaled the White House perimeter fence and gained access to the building.
Days earlier an armed private security guard had been allowed to ride in the same lift as the president.
Although President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama were in New Delhi when the device was found, their children are believed to be in Washington DC, according to the New York Times.
At a press briefing in India, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said: “I don’t have any reason to think at this point that the first family is in any danger.”
Although he did not specify what kind of “device” had been found, US media reports described it as a small drone.
Many such drones are available commercially or used as toys, unlike the larger versions used in a military capacity.
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World’s largest online retailer Amazon has announced it is testing unmanned drones to deliver goods to customers.
The drones, called Octocopters, could deliver packages weighing up to 5 lbs to customers within 30 minutes of them placing the order, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos said.
However, Jeff Bezos added that it could take up to five years for the service to start.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is yet to approve the use of unmanned drones for civilian purposes.
“I know this looks like science fiction, but it’s not,” Jeff Bezos told CBS’ 60 Minutes.
“We can do half-hour delivery… and we can carry objects, we think, up to five pounds, which covers 86% of the items that we deliver.”
The service will be called Prime Air and comes as Amazon is looking to improve its efficiency to boost growth.
Amazon also posted a video on its website showing a drone picking up a package from one of its warehouses and delivering it to the doorstep of a customer’s house.
However, it still has to wait for permission from US regulators.
Amazon has announced it is testing unmanned drones to deliver goods to customers
The FAA has approved the use of drones for police and government agencies, issuing about 1,400 permits over the past several years.
Civilian air space is expected to be opened up to all kinds of drones in the US by 2015 and in Europe by 2016.
Existing regulations are in place to minimise the risk of injury to people on the ground, said Dr Darren Ansell, an expert on unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) from the University of Central Lancashire.
“The UAVs do not currently have the awareness of their environment to be able to avoid flying into people. To deliver goods to people’s homes for example in residential areas, the UAVs must overfly densely populated towns and cities, something that today’s regulations prevent.
“Other things to consider are security of the goods during the transit. With no one to guard them the aircraft and package could be captured and stolen,” he said.
Amazon said: “From a technology point of view, we’ll be ready to enter commercial operations as soon as the necessary regulations are in place.”
The FAA was “actively working on rules for unmanned aerial vehicles”, the company said, adding that it hoped the green light would be given as early as 2015.
“One day, Prime Air vehicles will be as normal as seeing mail trucks on the road today.”
Zookal, an Australian textbook rental company, announced earlier this year that it would start using drones to make deliveries from 2015 if approved by Australia’s Civil Aviation Safety Authority.
Australian law allows the use of unmanned aircraft for commercial use.
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Eric Schmidt, Google chief and one of the world’s influential figures in digital technology, has called for civilian drone tech to be regulated, warning about privacy and security concerns.
Cheap miniature versions of the unmanned aircraft used by militaries could fall into the wrong hands, Eric Schmidt told The Guardian newspaper.
Quarrelling neighbors, the Google chief suggested, might end up buzzing each other with private surveillance drones.
Eric Schmidt also warned of the risk of terrorists using the new technology.
He is believed to have close relations with President Barack Obama, whom he advises on matters of science and technology.
Eric Schmidt has called for civilian drone technology to be regulated, warning about privacy and security concerns
“You’re having a dispute with your neighbor,” he told The Guardian in an interview printed on Saturday.
“How would you feel if your neighbor went over and bought a commercial observation drone that they can launch from their backyard. It just flies over your house all day. How would you feel about it?”
Warning of mini-drones’ potential as a terrorist weapon, he said: “I’m not going to pass judgment on whether armies should exist, but I would prefer to not spread and democratize the ability to fight war to every single human being.”
“It’s got to be regulated… It’s one thing for governments, who have some legitimacy in what they’re doing, but have other people doing it… it’s not going to happen.”
Small drones, such as flying cameras, are already available worldwide, and non-military surveillance were recently introduced to track poachers in the remote Indian state of Assam.
The US and Israel have led the way in recent years in using drones as weapons of war as well as for surveillance.
America’s Federal Aviation Administration is currently exploring how commercial drones, or unmanned aircraft systems, can be safely introduced into US airspace.
North Korea has released footage showing its leader Kim Jong-un supervising a “drone drill” attack amid tensions on the Korean peninsula.
Kim Jong-un is seen watching a rocket-launched small aircraft blowing up in the sky after being intercepted by anti-aircraft missile – on Friday he was seen brandishing a gun in a video.
The footage broadcast by North Korea’s state television comes amid reports the US has deployed an unmanned spy plane to Japan for surveillance following reports the rogue state has moved missile launchers to its east coast.
North Korea has released footage showing its leader Kim Jong-un supervising a “drone drill” attack amid tensions on the Korean peninsula
The Global Hawk will be stationed at the US airbase in Misawa, northern Japan – it was due to be deployed between June and September, but it has now been bought forward according to the Sankei Shimbun.
On Friday, foreign embassies in Pyongyang have been warned to evacuate staff as their safety cannot be guaranteed beyond Wednesday, April 10.
But on Saturday staff appeared to be staying in embassies across North Korea despite the appeal.
Several aid organizations were also given the warning, as the North Koreans moved more mid-range Musudan missiles to their east coast – where they could directly threaten Japan and America’s Pacific bases.
Senior Pakistani militant leader Mullah Nazir has been killed by a US drone strike, security officials say.
Mullah Nazir died with at least five fighters when two missiles struck his vehicle in the north-west tribal district of South Waziristan.
He was leader of one of four major militant factions in Pakistan and was accused of sending fighters to Afghanistan in support of the Taliban.
Mullah Nazir is one of the most high-profile insurgents killed by drones.
He had survived several attempts to kill him, including a suicide bomb attack blamed on rival militants in November.
Mullah Nazir and his fighters were reportedly hit by the missiles on Wednesday while preparing to change vehicles.
His pick-up truck had apparently developed a fault in Angoor Adda, near South Waziristan’s main town of Wana.
Reports say Mullah Nazir’s deputy, Ratta Khan, was also killed in the attack.
Officials also said four militants were killed in a separate attack in North Waziristan, but their identities are not known.
Senior Pakistani militant leader Mullah Nazir has been killed by a US drone strike
Local residents were quoted as saying that they had heard on mosque loudspeakers announcements that Mullah Nazir was dead. Funeral prayers were said for him.
Mullah Nazir’s group is one of several militant factions operating in Pakistan’s restive north-west – in recent years there have been divisions among these groups.
Analysts say Mullah Nazir formed an alliance with the government and opposed the Pakistani Taliban, with whom he was at odds because he favored attacking US forces in Afghanistan rather than Pakistani soldiers.
After November’s attack on him, his faction told a rival group led by Taliban leader Hakimullah Mehsud, to leave the Wana area.
Reports say he was also seen as an enemy of militants from the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU), and praised by Pakistan for expelling Uzbek and other foreign fighters from Pakistan in 2007.
His death could be a contentious issue between Washington and Islamabad, they add, because the Pakistani military views commanders like him as key to keeping the peace internally.
For years, he was a key figure involved in supplying fighters and support to the Afghan insurgency.
Pentagon spokesman George Little said he could not confirm Mullah Nazir’s death but added that, if true, it would be “a significant blow” to extremist groups in the region.
It would, he said, be helpful not only to the US and to Afghanistan but also to Pakistan because “this is someone who has a great deal of blood on his hands”.
Drone strikes have increased in frequency since President Barack Obama took office in 2009. Hundreds of people have been killed, stoking public anger in Pakistan.
The dead include senior al-Qaeda and Taliban leaders, as well as an unknown number of other militants and civilians.
The US does not normally comment on individual drone operations, but last year it emerged in the New York Times that the US president had personally approved or vetoed each drone strike.
Islamabad has called for an end to the attacks saying they violate the country’s sovereignty, but analysts say Pakistan has privately sanctioned such actions in the past.
Militants killed by drones in Pakistan
- January 2013: Senior Pakistani militant leader Mullah Nazir
- June 2012: Senior al-Qaeda leader Abu Yahya al-Libi
- February 2012: Al-Qaeda commander Badar Mansoor
- August 2011: Al-Qaeda commander Atiyah Abd al-Rahman
- June 2011: Senior al-Qaeda figure Ilyas Kashmiri
- August 2009: Taliban leader Baitullah Mehsud
Abu Yahya al-Libi, a senior al-Qaeda leader, was killed in a drone strike in Pakistan on Monday, a US official has confirmed.
US officials said Abu Yahya al-Libi was the target of an attack which hit a volatile tribal area of Pakistan’s north-west, killing 15 suspected militants.
There has been no confirmation of his death from sources in Pakistan.
According to officials, he played a critical role in the group’s planning against the West.
“There is no-one who even comes close in terms of replacing the expertise al-Qaeda has just lost,” the US official said.
The official added that al-Qaeda’s leadership “will be hard-pressed to find any one person who can readily step into [Libi’s] shoes”.
Washington believes that following Osama Bin Laden’s death last year, Abu Yahya al-Libi, an Islamic scholar from Libya, became al-Qaeda’s second-in-command after Egyptian-born Ayman al-Zawahiri.
Abu Yahya al-Libi, a senior al-Qaeda leader, was killed in a drone strike in Pakistan on Monday, a US official has confirmed
Abu Yahya al-Libi had gravitas as a longstanding member of al-Qaeda’s leadership, the official said, and his religious credentials meant he had the authority to issue fatwas and provide guidance to the Pakistan-based operation.
Analysts have said that he was in charge of day-to-day operations in Pakistan’s tribal areas.
He was reported killed in a drone strike in Pakistan in 2009, but it turned out to be a case of mistaken identity.
Pakistan’s frontier tribal region is considered a hub of activity by al-Qaeda and Taliban militants and it is very difficult to verify information from the region.
Reporters are prevented by the authorities from travelling to the area.
There are no further details explaining how US officials are certain that Abu Yahya al-Libi was killed by the drone strike.
In Monday’s strike, two missiles were fired at a suspected militant compound in Hesokhel, east of Miranshah – the main town in the volatile tribal region of North Waziristan.
The first missile struck the compound, killing three militants, Pakistani security officials said.
A second missile then killed 12 more militants who had arrived at the scene, they added.
It was just the latest assault after a recent surge of attacks in Pakistan – there have been eight drone strikes over the past two weeks.
It sparked anger in Pakistan and the foreign ministry lodged a formal protest with Washington’s deputy ambassador to Islamabad, Richard Hoagland.
Islamabad has called for an end to drone strikes, and today the government issued a statement saying they represented a “clear red line for Pakistan”.
Tension between the reluctant allies has been intensified by a dispute over Pakistan’s closure of supply routes to NATO troops in Afghanistan, after a NATO air strike along the Afghan border killed 24 Pakistani soldiers.
Many observers believe the attacks have been a means of applying pressure on Islamabad after a deal to reopen NATO supply routes fell through.
But drone strikes have increased in frequency since President Barack Obama took office in 2008 and hundreds of people have been killed.
The dead include senior al-Qaeda and Taliban leaders, as well as an unknown number of other militants and civilians.
The US does not normally comment on individual drone operations, but this strike came after it emerged in the New York Times that the US president personally approves or vetoes each drone strike.
A drone strike on al-Qaeda militants in southern Yemen killed at least 11 people, according to local residents and officials.
According to Reuters news agency, one tribal leader said at least four of the dead were local al-Qaeda leaders.
They were reportedly attacked by a drone in Abyan province.
Islamists began taking control of parts of Abyan last year. Security forces have tried unsuccessfully to push them out and suffered heavy losses.
The details of what happened are not clear, but some reports suggest a convoy of two cars was struck east of Lawdar city.
However, AFP news agency was told by tribal leaders that a control post and a school hosting a midnight meeting of local al-Qaeda chiefs and fighters were targeted in four overnight raids.
Regional al-Qaeda leader Abdul Monem al-Fahtani was among the dead, they said.
“We think they were carried out by American planes,” one tribal source told AFP, on condition of anonymity and without elaborating.