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The gunman who carried out Istanbul’s Reina club attack on New Year’s Eve has been identified, Turkey’s foreign minister says.

However, Mevlut Cavusoglu did not name the attacker.

He gave no further details about the inquiry into the murder of 39 people at the Reina club.

ISIS has said it was behind the nightclub attack in which dozens more were hurt.

Meanwhile, a number of suspects have been arrested in the western city of Izmir.

The police operation on January 4 was said to have targeted families who had recently traveled to Izmir from Konya, a central city where the main suspect was said to have stayed for several weeks before the attack.

Turkish authorities released images of the main suspect on January 3 but later discounted reports that he was a 28-year-old Kyrgyz national who had flown home from Istanbul.

The country is under growing pressure while the gunman remains on the loose. Checkpoints were set up in Istanbul on January 4 as officers checked cars and taxis. Police arrested 12 people in raids in Istanbul on January 3.

Turkish media have run images of a suspect, saying the pictures were handed out by the police. But the police have given no official details.

A video posted on social media showed a man being physically attacked on the Asian side of Istanbul on January 4 as people shouted: “It’s him” and “it’s the Reina attacker”. The man was punched, knocked to the ground and taken to a local police station before being released.

EU affairs minister Omer Celik said the gunman had clearly had training in the Middle East, and had managed to evade police by not using technology and steering clear of “all modern intelligence techniques”.

In his first public comments about the attack, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan vowed that the jihadist would not succeed in dividing Turks, saying: “In Turkey, no-one’s way of life is under any threat. Those who claim this have to prove it. It is my duty to protect everyone’s rights.”

The Reina club, which sits on the banks of the Bosphorus, is one of Istanbul’s most fashionable venues – popular with foreigners and often frequented by singers and sports stars.

The attacker is said to have arrived by taxi before rushing through the entrance with a long-barreled gun he had taken from the boot of the car.

He fired randomly at people in an assault lasting seven minutes, and then fled during the chaos.

On January 3, Turkey extended its state of emergency for another three months. It was implemented following the July failed coup which was blamed on a movement loyal to US-based Islamic cleric Fethullah Gulen.

However, Turkey’s big cities have also been targeted by ISIS and by Kurdish militants.

ISIS was blamed for an attack last June on Istanbul’s Ataturk airport, in which more than 40 people were killed. Police are investigating whether the nightclub suspect belongs to the same cell.

Turkey’s Deputy PM Numan Kurtulmus said on January 2 that Reina club attack was a “message” against Turkey’s operations in Syria but that they would not be affected.

Turkey launched a military operation in Syria in August to push back ISIS and Kurdish forces.


ISIS has claimed it was behind the New Year attack on Istanbul’s Reina club that killed 39 people in Turkey.

The Islamist group said in a statement it was carried out by “a heroic soldier”.

At least 600 revelers were celebrating in the early hours of January 1 at Reina club when the gunman began firing indiscriminately.

ISIS has been blamed for recent attacks in Turkey, which is taking military action against the group in neighboring Syria.

The group has already been linked to at least two attacks in Turkey in 2016.

Photo Getty Images

The ISIS statement accused Turkey of shedding the blood of Muslims through “its air strikes and mortar attacks” in Syria.

More details of the nightclub attack have been emerging. The attacker, who fired up to 180 bullets, arrived by taxi before rushing through the entrance with a long-barreled gun he had taken from the boot of the car.

The gunman fired randomly at people in an assault lasting seven minutes, starting with a security guard and a travel agent near the entrance. Both were killed.

The attacker is reported to have removed his overcoat before fleeing during the chaos.

Turkish media reports quote police sources as saying he may have been from Uzbekistan or Kyrgyzstan.

A manhunt is under way, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu confirmed, saying: “We hope the attacker will be captured soon.”

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused groups such as ISIS of trying “to create chaos”.

“They are trying to… demoralize our people and destabilize our country,” he said.

Turkey suffered a bloody 2016 with a series of attacks, some carried out by Kurdish militants.

However, a day before the ISIS claim, the banned Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) was quick to distance itself from Reina club attack, saying it would “never target innocent civilians”.

At least 25 of those killed were foreign, according to local media, among them citizens from Israel, Russia, France, Tunisia, Lebanon, India, Belgium, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

Security guard Fatih Cakmak was among the first to die.

At least 69 people are being treated in hospital, officials said, with three in a serious condition.

Reina club, which sits on the banks of the Bosphorus, is one of Istanbul’s most fashionable venues – popular with foreigners and often frequented by singers and sports stars.


Turkish authorities are hunting for a gunman who opened fire at Istanbul’s well-known nightclub Reina, killing at least 39 people and injuring other 69.

The club attack happened on January 1, as hundreds of revelers marked the New Year.

According to Turkish officials, at least 15 foreigners were killed, including citizens from Israel, Belgium, Lebanon, Jordan, France, Tunisia and Saudi Arabia.

The gunman left his gun before “taking advantage of the chaos” and fleeing the scene, Turkey’s PM Binali Yildirim said.

The prime minister also confirmed the gunman was not dressed as Santa Claus, contradicting earlier reports.

Image source European Pressphoto

The attack unfolded some 75 minutes into the New Year as around 700 people gathered in the waterside Reina club, one of Istanbul’s most upmarket venues.

The gunman shot dead a police officer and a security guard at the entrance before heading into the club, which is popular with celebrities and foreigners.

Eyewitnesses described seeing dozens of bodies lying on the floor. Some revelers reportedly threw themselves into the Bosphorus to escape the carnage.

At least 69 people are being treated in hospital, officials said, with four in a serious condition.

The attack reason is not clear, but suspicion has fallen on ISIS.

President Recep Tayyip Erdogan blamed terror groups “trying to create chaos”.

He said: “They are trying to… demoralize our people and destabilize our country.”

Earlier, Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu confirmed a “manhunt for the terrorist is under way. Police have launched operations. We hope the attacker will be captured soon.”

Turkish police believed there was only one gunman, although some eyewitness reports mentioned multiple attackers.

Details of those who died are starting to emerge.

The security guard at the entrance to the club has been identified as Fatih Cakmak.

His brother said he narrowly escaped a double bombing three weeks ago, having been on duty when Kurdish militants launched an attack near Besiktas stadium, killing at least 44 people, mostly police.

At least 35 people have been shot dead and other 40 injured in a nightclub in Istanbul, Turkey, the city’s governor has said.

Among those killed is one police officer, Vasip Sahin stated, adding that it was a terror attack.

The gun attack took place in the Reina nightclub, in the Ortakoy area, at about 01:30AM local time.

According to Istanbul’s governor, one attacker was involved. CNN Turk reported he was dressed in a Santa Claus costume.

Image source European Pressphoto

Vasip Sahin told reporters at the scene of the upmarket Reina nightclub, which sits on the banks of Bosphorus in Istanbul’s European side: “A terrorist with a long-range weapon … brutally and savagely carried out this incident by firing bullets on innocent people who were there solely to celebrate the New Year and have fun.”

There were reportedly as many as 700 people in the nightclub at the time of the attack, some of whom are believed to have jumped into the water to escape.

Some witnesses claimed the attackers were “speaking Arabic” while Turkish TV channel NTV said special force police officers were searching the club, Dogan news agency reported.

President Barack Obama, who is on vacation in Hawaii, was among the first international leaders to make a statement after being briefed by his team.

Meanwhile, the Turkish government has ordered a temporary media blackout in the wake of the attack, citing security and public order concerns.

This is not the first time such an order has been made.

Istanbul was already on high alert with some 17,000 police officers on duty in the city, following a string of terror attacks in recent months.

Many were carried out by ISIS or Kurdish militants.

Less than two weeks ago, Russian Ambassador Andrei Karlov was shot dead by off-duty Turkish police officer Mevlut Mert Altintas as he gave a speech in the capital Ankara in December.


An urgent manhunt is under way across Europe’s Schengen states after prosecutors identified a suspect in the truck attack on Berlin’s Breitscheidplatz Christmas market.

A warrant was issued at midnight. Details were not given but media reports say the suspect is a Tunisian man named only as Anis A., born in 1992.

The Tunisian suspect’s residence permit was found in the truck’s cabin.

The man may have been injured in a struggle with the driver, found dead in the cab. The attack claimed 12 lives in all.

Some 150 police officers are said to be involved in searches in the Emmerich area of North Rhine-Westphalia, western Germany, where the suspect’s permit was issued.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has met her security cabinet to discuss the investigation into the attack.

The Schengen area covers most EU states plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Image source Wikipedia

The suspect is also known to use false names, security sources told German media and Reuters.

His name was given using a German convention whereby suspects are identified by their first name and initial.

The Tunisian is reported to have traveled to Italy in 2012 and then on to Germany in 2015 where he applied for asylum and was granted temporary leave to stay in April 2016.

The suspect is said to be known to police and was briefly detained in August with fake Italian identity documents.

Sueddeutsche Zeitung reports that he moved within the circle of an Islamist preacher, Ahmad Abdelazziz A, known as Abu Walaa, who was arrested in November.

Broadcaster N-TV said measures were “now imminent” in North Rhine-Westphalia but there were no further details.

German Interior Minister Thomas De Maiziere refused to confirm or deny media reports about the man but said that officers were still investigating his residential status.

Some 49 people were also injured when the truck was driven into crowds at the Breitscheidplatz Christmas market.

ISIS said one of its militants carried out the attack but offered no evidence.

Polish citizen Lukasz Urban was found dead on the passenger seat with gunshot and stab wounds.

Investigators quoted by German media say there is evidence that, despite being stabbed, Lukasz Urban wrestled him for the steering wheel.

One official quoted by Bild said it appeared from the post-mortem examination that the driver had survived up to the attack and was shot dead when the truck came to a halt. No gun has been recovered.

Ariel Zurawski, the owner of the Polish transport company, said he had been asked to identify Lukasz Urban from photographs.

Police say they are acting on hundreds of tips from the public and are examining DNA traces from the cab of the truck.

German President Joachim Gauck visited some of the injured on December 21.

Officials released the only detained suspect on December 20, saying there was no evidence to link him to the attack.

ISIS claimed the attack through its self-styled news agency, saying it was “in response to calls to target nationals of the coalition countries”.

Prosecutor Peter Frank told reporters that the style of attack and the choice of target suggested Islamic extremism.

At least nine people have been killed and many more injured after a truck ploughed into a busy Christmas market in the heart of Berlin, police say.

German police say they suspect it was deliberate. Video shows stalls knocked over and people lying injured.

A suspicious person has been arrested nearby, while what police describe as a passenger was found dead, police say.

The Christmas market is at Breitscheidplatz, close to the Kurfuerstendamm, the main shopping street in Berlin’s west.

Chancellor Angela Merkel has been in contact with the interior minister and the mayor of Berlin, her spokesman, Steffen Seibert, tweeted.

“We are in mourning for the dead and hope that the many injured can get help,” he added.

Image source Twitter

As emergency vehicles filled the area, Berlin police said they had “no indications of further dangerous situations in the city near #Breitscheidplatz”.

They also appealed to the public to avoid the area and stay at home.

Facebook has set up a Safety Check page for people affected to let their loved ones know they are safe.

According to the DPA news agency, p

Police believe the truck drove 250ft through the market area during the incident, which occurred at 20:14 local time.

Images of the truck show it was registered in neighboring Poland and Polish media are suggesting it may have been stolen earlier.

The Polish haulage company which uses the vehicle has reportedly been unable to get in touch with the original driver, a Polish national, since 16:00.

The Berliner Zeitung reports that police have set up a meeting point for relatives at the scene.

A photographer for the DPA news agency said that armed police were at an entrance to the nearby zoo.

The market is situated at the foot of the Kaiser Wilhelm memorial church, which was kept as a bombed-out ruin after World War Two.

The Breitscheidplatz incident evoked memories of the truck attack on Bastille Day crowds in Nice,, France on July 14, when 86 people were killed. That attack was claimed by ISIS.


President-elect Donald Trump has said Somali refugee Abdul Razak Ali Artan, who went on a rampage at Ohio State University campus on November 28 “should not have been in our country”.

Donald Trump added that “ISIS is taking credit for the terrible stabbing attack”, which left 11 people injured.

Earlier, a ISIS-affiliated news agency claimed business student Abdul Razak Ali Artan as a “soldier”.

The 18-year-old’s mother says he acted normally on the day of the rampage at Ohio State University in Columbus.

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said on November 30 that investigators had found “no direct link” between Abdul Razak Ali Artan and any terrorist organization.

FBI special agent in charge Angela Byers said separately that hemay have been inspired by al Qaeda cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, who was killed by a 2011 US drone strike in Yemen.

Abdul Razak Ali Artan was a refugee who moved with his family in 2014 to the US from Pakistan, where he had been living since 2007.

Image source The Lantern

Image source The Lantern

According to US officials, no negative information was found during background checks on Abdul Razak Ali Artan when he was allowed into the US and when he became a legal permanent resident in 2015.

Police say Artan drove his car at a group of people on the campus as students were returning from the Thanksgiving weekend.

After his vehicle jumped the kerb, the student then began attacking them with a “butcher’s knife” before being shot dead by a campus police officer.

Donald Trump has vowed as president to institute an “extreme vetting” program to limit immigration to the US from countries that are believed to be at a heightened risk of terrorism.

He had previously called for a “total and complete shutdown” on Muslim immigration to the US.

Hassan Omar, president of the Somali Community Association in Columbus, Ohio, spoke to Abdul Razak Ali Artan’s mother, who said he had driven his siblings to school as usual on the day of the attack.

“He woke up and he went to school,” Hassan Omar said, relaying the conversation that he had with Artan’s mother on November 28.

She told him that she did not know anything was wrong until police arrived at her house.

Minutes before the rampage, Abdul Razak Ali Artan posted to Facebook about “lone wolf attacks”.

He said that “we will not let you sleep unless you give peace to the Muslims. You will not celebrate or enjoy any holiday”.

Artan’s post also complained about treatment of Muslims around the world.

He warned that some Muslims were in sleeper cells, “waiting for a signal. I am warning you Oh America!”

However, a friend said the attacker “actually loved America”.

Ameer Kadar, who last saw Abdul Razak Ali Artan two weeks ago, told NBC News: “He loved the fact of the opportunity he had here to go to school.

“He loved the fact that he was able to get a college degree.”

Abdul Razak Ali Artan grew up in Somalia, but moved to Pakistan in 2007.


ISIS claims it was behind the Ohio State University car and knife rampage that left 11 people injured.

The November 27 attack at OSU was carried out by one of its students, Somali-born Abdul Razak Ali Artan, the authorities said.

The ISIS-affiliated Amaq news agency called the 18-year-old business undergraduate a “soldier”.

Abdul Razak Ali Artan drove his car at a group of people, then attacked them with a knife before being shot dead.

Amaq posted an image of Abdul Razak Ali Artan wearing a blue shirt and sitting with greenery in the background, but did not say if the attack was directed from abroad, or if Artan had been self-radicalized.

Most of the victims were injured by the attacke’s car, but two were stabbed with a “butcher’s knife” and another suffered a fractured skull, officials said.

One of the wounded victims, William Clark, an OSU professor, described how Abdul Razak Ali Artan’s vehicle had crashed into a large concrete planter before bouncing off and striking him.

Image source The Lantern

Image source The Lantern

“It clipped the back of my right leg and basically flipped me up in the air and I landed on the concrete,” he told a news conference.

William Clark said Abdul Razak Ali Artan then got out of the car and began attacking students before he was shot down.

Surveillance photos showed the attacker in the car by himself just before the attack, but investigators are looking into whether anyone else was involved.

Dozens of FBI agents have searched Abdul Razak Ali Artan’s apartment for clues as to what may have triggered the attacks.

Neighbors described him as polite and said he attended daily prayers at a local mosque.

Abdul Razak Ali Artan, who was born in Somalia and was a US permanent resident, arrived in the country in 2014 as the child of a refugee.

He had been living in Pakistan from 2007 to 2014.

Abdul Razak Ali Artan recently posted on Facebook about the US treatment of Muslims, according to the AP, citing a law enforcement official who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

“If you want us Muslims to stop carrying lone wolf attacks, then make peace” with the Islamic State group, he allegedly wrote.

Representative Adam Schiff of California, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, said the act was indicative of someone who may have been self-radicalized.

ISIS militants have found recruits in the US Somali community in recent years.

About a dozen young men and women from Minnesota’s Somali community have traveled to Syria to join militant groups.

Nine men in Minnesota were sentenced on terror charges for plotting to join ISIS.

And a Somali-American man attacked 10 people with a knife at a central Minnesota mall before he was killed by an off-duty police officer in September.

Jaylani Hussein, the executive director of Council of American-Islamic Relations’ Minnesota chapter, said some Somali-Americans were concerned about being viewed as “guilty by association”.


Paris’ Bataclan hall will reopen for the first time since 90 people were killed by ISIS with a Sting concert.

Scores of survivors are expected to attend the concert, which is being held on the eve of the first anniversary of France’s bloodiest terror attacks.

Organizers said they decided to reopen the famed Paris concert venue to prevent it becoming a “tomb”.

Sting will donate the proceeds from the concert to two victims’ charities.

The Bataclan was the last place the militants targeted on November 13, 2015.

Image source Wikimedia

Image source Wikimedia

The co-ordinated attack had already struck the Stade de France and restaurants filled with people enjoying their evening.

The 130 people who lost their lives that night will be remembered in a series of low-key events over the weekend.

The concert at the Bataclan, where about 1,500 people had been watching American band Eagles of Death Metal when the gunmen burst in last year, is one of the most symbolic.

Jules Frutos, who has co-run the venue for the last 12 years, told AFP: “We had to go on after such horror and not leave a mausoleum, a tomb.”

He contacted Sting, who first performed at the Bataclan in 1978, about the concert after reading he wanted to help.

Sting says he hopes the concert will “respect the memory as well as the life affirming spirit of those who fell”.

The 1,000 tickets on offer for the concert sold out within 30 minutes of going on sale.

Hundreds of tickets were held for survivors, and there will be psychologists and counselors on stand-by for anyone who needs.

The concert venue will be closed on November 13, the actual anniversary, when a plaque is due to be unveiled in memory of those who lost their lives.

The Bataclan, the interior of which has been completely replaced, is opening again on November 16 for a series of concerts by Pete Doherty, Senegalese star Youssou N’Dour and British Sixties legend Marianne Faithfull.

Donald Trump has said Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy plan in Syria would trigger World War Three.

The Republican also said the US should focus on defeating ISIS rather than removing Syria’s president.

Hillary Clinton has proposed a no-fly zone over Syria. The top US military chief has said that could spell conflict with Russian jets in the region.

The Clinton campaign accused Donald Trump of “playing to Americans’ fears”.

The New York billionaire also attacked Republicans for not uniting behind his candidacy.

Photo AP

Photo AP

“If we had party unity, we couldn’t lose this election to Hillary Clinton,” Donald Trump told Reuters at Trump National Doral golf resort in Miami, Florida.

He struck an apocalyptic tone when criticizing his Democratic rival’s plan to control Syrian air space.

“You’re going to end up in World War Three over Syria if we listen to Hillary Clinton,” he said.

“You’re not fighting Syria anymore, you’re fighting Syria, Russia and Iran, all right?

“Russia is a nuclear country, but a country where the nukes work as opposed to other countries that talk.”

Donald Trump suggested there should be a refocus away from the long-held US position of trying to remove Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, saying: “What we should do is focus on IS. We should not be focusing on Syria.”

He also suggested Hillary Clinton would be unable to talk with Russian President Vladimir Putin after her sharp criticism of him.

Donald Trump questioned “how she is going to go back and negotiate with this man who she has made to be so evil” if she is elected president on November 8.

The Clinton campaign dismissed the criticism, saying both Republican and Democratic national security experts have denounced Donald Trump as unfit to be commander-in-chief.

“Once again, he is parroting Putin’s talking points and playing to Americans’ fears, all while refusing to lay out any plans of his own for defeating ISIS or alleviating humanitarian suffering in Syria,” Hillary Clinton spokesman Jesse Lehrich said in a statement.

Donald Trump’s warning of confrontation with Russia echoes concerns raised last month at a congressional hearing by the highest-ranking military officer in the US armed forces.

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Marine General Joseph Dunford told lawmakers a “no-fly zone” in Syria could spell war with Russia.

“Right now, senator, for us to control all of the airspace in Syria it would require us to go to war, against Syria and Russia,” he told the Senate Arms Services Committee.

“That’s a pretty fundamental decision that certainly I’m not going to make.”

At the final presidential debate in Nevada on October 19, Hillary Clinton outlined her support for the measure.

“A no-fly zone can save lives and hasten the end of the conflict,” she said on stage.

However, in a 2013 speech to Goldman Sachs, Hillary Clinton said establishing a no-fly zone would “kill a lot of Syrians”, according to a transcript disclosed by WikiLeaks.

ISIS has raided government buildings in and around the Iraqi city of Kirkuk.

According to Iraqi media, suicide bombers had attacked police stations and a power station, but that security forces had repelled the assaults.

A news agency affiliated to ISIS claimed its fighters had broken into Kirkuk’s town hall and seized a central hotel.

The attacks come as Iraqi pro-government forces continue an offensive to retake ISIS-held Mosul, to the north.US spendings  against ISIS

ISIS militants were reported to have set fire to a chemical plant south of Mosul as they retreated on October 20.

Sources said they started the fire at the sulphur plant in al-Mishraq deliberately when they were being pushed out of the area by security forces.

There are conflicting reports about the scale and extent of the attack on Kirkuk.

A local TV channel broadcast footage of black smoke rising over the city, with automatic gunfire audible.

The Beirut-based newspaper al-Sumaria reported that during the dawn attack, three suicide bombers had blown themselves up.

Kirkuk police sources said three Iranian workers at the power station were killed, along with eight Iraqis.

The city’s governor, Najm al-Din Karim, told the Kurdish news agency, Rudaw, that Kurdish Peshmerga and counter-terrorism forces were completely in control of the situation, and said the attackers were from ISIS sleeper cells.

Security forces had killed six suicide bombers, Najm al-Din Karim added.

Kirkuk, a multi-ethnic city that is located about 180 miles north of the capital Baghdad and 105 miles south-east of Mosul. It is claimed both by Iraq’s central government and by the country’s Kurds.


Salah Abdeslam’s lawyers say they will no longer defend the main suspect in last year’s Islamist attacks in Paris.

He will use his right to remain silent, one of the lawyers, Frank Berton, told BFM TV.

“We said from the beginning… that if our client remained silent we would quit his defense,” Frank Berton said, alongside fellow lawyer Sven Mary.

The attacks in Paris in November 2015 on bars, restaurants, a concert hall and the Stade de France killed 130 people.Salah Abdeslam arrested in Brussels

ISIS said it was behind the attacks.

Salah Abdeslam was arrested in Brussels in March 2016 and has kept silent since his transfer to France in April.

The attacker is being monitored 24 hours a day by video in his prison cell.

Frank Berton said in May the suspect was “particularly disturbed” by the surveillance.

Salah Abdeslam is thought to have played a key role in planning the Paris attacks and transporting the attackers, but investigators are yet to determine his specific role.

The lawyers informed Salah Abdeslam they would no longer represent him on October 6, BFM TV reports. It says that at present, he does not want to be represented by anyone else.

Legal representation is not required while the investigation continues but will be at his trial.

“The real victims of all of this are the victims of the Paris attacks, because they are entitled to this truth and they have the right to try to comprehend the incomprehensible,” Sven Mary said.

Ahmad Khan Rahami has been identified as suspect in September 17 explosion in the Chelsea area of New York City, officials say.

Ahmad Khan Rahami, 28, is a naturalized US citizen from Afghanistan.

The New York Police Department (NYPD) has released a photograph of the suspect.

Image source fbi.gov

Image source fbi.gov

The blast injured 29 people. Both the detonated bomb, and a device found nearby, were shrapnel-filled pressure cookers, according to US media.

Investigators have warned the suspect, whose last known address was in Elizabeth, New Jersey, should be considered “armed and dangerous”.

The announcement comes after a backpack containing up to five suspicious devices was discovered near a train station in Elizabeth.

One of the devices exploded on September 19 when a bomb disposal robot tried to deactivate it.

A backpack containing multiple bombs was found Sunday night near an Elizabeth, New Jersey, train station, according to the FBI and the city’s mayor.

The suspicious device exploded as a bomb squad was attempting to disarm it with a robot, officials say.

The backpack had up to five devices, Elizabeth Mayor Chris Bollwage said. It was found around 9:30 p.m. in a wastebasket outside a neighborhood pub, about 500 feet from a train trestle. The two men who found the backpack thought it might contain something valuable, but they alerted police when they saw wires and a pipe on the devices, the mayor said.

No cell phones or electronic timing devices were found, Chris Bollwage said. No-one was hurt.

Image source Fox5

Image source Fox5

The discovery came after three attacks at the weekend – bombs in New York and New Jersey, and stabbings in Minnesota.

The explosion in New York’s Chelsea area injured 29 people.

In New York City, the FBI said it had stopped a “vehicle of interest” in Brooklyn on September 18 but made no arrests.

Five people were taken into custody for questioning, officials told US media. But a spokeswoman said no-one had been charged and the investigation was continuing.

A man seen on surveillance video has been described as a “person of interest” in the police inquiries.

Both the bomb that detonated on September 17 in Chelsea, and a device found nearby, were shrapnel-filled pressure cookers – similar to the bombs used in the attack on the 2013 Boston marathon.

They also used flip phones and Christmas lights designed to trigger the explosive, the New York Times said.

The two instruments appeared to be “similar in design”, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said.

Some 1,000 extra security personnel are being deployed to New York’s transport hubs.

Authorities have described the weekend bombings in New York and New Jersey, along with a stabbing attack in Minnesota, as acts of terrorism and are trying to establish whether there are any links between them.

But they say they were so crude that it is unlikely an international group was behind them.

ISIS has said the suspected attacker in Minnesota was one of its “soldiers”. It is not clear whether ISIS was involved in planning the assault.

The US-led coalition has admitted its airstrikes in eastern Syria killed at least 62 Syrian troops fighting ISIS.

Russia and Syria said the strikes prove the United States and its allies are sympathetic to ISIS.

According to the Russian military, 62 Syrian soldiers were killed near Deir Ezzor Airport. The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights put the death toll at 83 and said at least 120 soldiers were wounded.

The strike occurred September 17 in an eastern part of Syria that is not a part of a delicate and nearly week-old ceasefire. The US military said it was targeting ISIS militants and if it hit Syrian troops, it was an accident.

Hours after US-led coalition airstrikes, the US and Russian ambassadors to the United Nations chastised each other outside an emergency Security Council meeting.

The US said its planes had halted the attack in Deir al-Zour when informed of the Syrian presence.

Bashar al-Assad has raised the possibility of Germany acting as a mediator to try to end Syria's 30-month-long civil war

A spokesman for the US administration expressed “regret” for the “unintentional loss of life”.

The attack caused a bitter row between the US and Russia at the United Nations Security Council.

US envoy Samantha Power accused Russia of “pulling a stunt” by calling an emergency meeting of the council.

Samantha Power’s opposite number, Vitaliy Churkin, said he had never seen “such an extraordinary display of American heavy-handedness” as shown by Power.

The Russians earlier said the current ceasefire in Syria was in danger of collapse and the US would be to blame.

The cessation of hostilities does not include attacks by the US on ISIS or other jihadist groups.

The US Central Command statement said the coalition believed it was attacking positions of so-called Islamic State and the raids were “halted immediately when coalition officials were informed by Russian officials that it was possible the personnel and vehicles targeted were part of the Syrian military”.

It said the “Combined Air Operations Center had earlier informed Russian counterparts of the upcoming strike”.

It added: “Syria is a complex situation with various military forces and militias in close proximity, but coalition forces would not intentionally strike a known Syrian military unit. The coalition will review this strike and the circumstances surrounding it to see if any lessons can be learned.”

Russia’s defense ministry earlier said that if the US air strikes did turn out to be an error, it would be because of Washington’s refusal to co-ordinate military action with Moscow.

Only if the current ceasefire – which began on September 12 – holds for seven days, will the US and Russia begin co-ordinated action against the Jabhat Fateh al-Sham group, which was previously known as the al-Nusra Front, and ISIS.

The Russian defense ministry quoted a statement by Syrian army general command as saying that the four coalition air strikes on Syrian troops had allowed ISIS to advance.

The Russian foreign ministry said the attack had jeopardized the US-Russia agreement on Syria.

The Syrian statement said that the air strikes were “conclusive evidence” that the US and its allies supported the jihadist group.

There have been no confirmed cases of US air strikes targeting Syrian troops.

Turkey and the US are ready to drive ISIS from its Syrian stronghold of Raqqa, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Edogan has suggested.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan said President Barack Obama floated the idea of joint action against the militants when they met at the G20 meeting in China.

He said Turkey would have “no problem” with such action.

In August, Turkey launched an operation inside Syria, targeting both ISIS and Kurdish rebels.

Photo Reuters

Photo Reuters

Turkish-backed militia drove ISIS from the border town of Jarablus, but Turkey has also been concerned with checking the advance of Kurdish forces whom it regards as terrorists.

The offensive continues, and Russia, who is allied to Syrian President Bashar al-Assad says it is deeply concerned by the movement of Turkish forces deeper into Syrian territory.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s comments on Raqqa were published in Turkish media. There has been no confirmation from the US.

“Obama wants to do some things jointly concerning Raqqa,” he said.

“We said this would not be a problem from our perspective.”

“I said <<our soldiers should come together and discuss, then what is necessary will be done>>,” Recep Tayyip Erdogan added.

Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, one of the longest-serving and most prominent leaders of ISIS has been killed in Aleppo, Syria, ISIS-affiliated Amaq News Agency announces.

He was “martyred while surveying the operations to repel the military campaigns against Aleppo”, it said.

Abu Muhammad al-Adnani was known for his calls for lone-wolf attacks in the West.

One of ISIS’ founder members, Abu Muhammad al-Adnani is also said to have masterminded attacks in Europe and elsewhere.Abu Muhammad al-Adnani killed in Aleppo

The statement did not say how Abu Muhammad al-Adnani, who had a US bounty of $5 million on his head, was killed.

A US defense official said US-led coalition forces had carried out an air strike on August 30 in Syria targeting a “senior leader” from ISIS in al-Bab in Aleppo province.

Abu Muhammad al-Adnani’s death comes at a time when ISIS is suffering military reverses in both Syria and Iraq.

He was last heard in an audio message in May urging Muslims to carry out attacks in the West.

Abu Muhammad al-Adnani was born Taha Sobhi Falaha in the northern Syrian town of Banash in 1977.

According to US officials, Abu Muhammad al-was one of the first foreign fighters to oppose the presence of US-led forces in Iraq after the 2003 invasion.

Twenty five Kurdish militants have been killed as Turkey continues to target Kurdish-held areas in Syria, near the border city of Jarablus, the Turkish military says.

However, the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said 20 people died in strikes on Jeb el-Kussa and another 15 were killed in a separate bombardment near al-Amarneh.

Four local fighters were also killed, the Observatory reported.

It is not yet clear whether the two reports relate to the same incident.

Photo Wikipedia

Photo Wikipedia

The strikes came on the fifth day of Turkey’s military operation to target ISIS militants and Kurdish militia inside Syria, dubbed Operation Euphrates Shield.

Speaking in Gaziantep, where ISIS militants killed 54 people at a Kurdish wedding last week, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said “operations against terrorist organizations will continue until the end”.

Turkish tanks and troops backed by Syrian rebels have captured territory from ISIS and clashed with the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG), a Kurdish militia supported by the United States, which is itself fighting ISIS.

On August 27, Turkey’s military suffered its first fatality of the offensive, when a soldier died in a tank hit by a rocket. Turkish authorities blamed Kurdish militia for the death.

Turkey has been targeting Kurdish-controlled villages around Jarablus, which Turkish-led forces captured from ISIS on the first day of the offensive.

It fears Kurdish fighters gaining an unbroken strip of territory along its border, which would be a huge boost to the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a banned Kurdish rebel group fighting for autonomy in Turkey.

Turkey’s operations further complicate the already protracted Syrian civil war. Both Turkey and Kurdish rebels are US allies.

The US has backed Turkey’s anti-ISIS operations in Syria, and both countries have demanded that Kurdish forces withdraw to the east bank of the Euphrates river.


Turkey has sent tanks and other vehicles across the Syrian border after heavy shelling of an area held by ISIS.

Military sources told Turkish media 70 targets in the Jarablus area had been destroyed by artillery and rocket strikes, and 12 by air strikes.

Syrian rebels who are following the advance say they have entered the town of Jarablus itself.

The operation is aimed against both ISIS and Kurdish fighters.

Turkey shelled Syrian Kurdish forces in the region this week, determined not to let them fill the vacuum if ISIS leaves.

Photo Wikipedia

Photo Wikipedia

US Vice-President Joe Biden warned Kurdish forces in Syria they would lose US support if they advanced west of the River Euphrates.

Making the highest-ranking visit to Ankara by a Western official since the failed Turkish coup on July 15, Joe Biden also sought to dispel any doubts about America’s solidarity with its NATO ally.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced in a speech in Ankara: “At 04:00 [01:00 GMT] our forces began an operation against the Daesh [ISIS] and PYD [Kurdish Democratic Union Party] terror groups.”

Operation Euphrates Shield was aimed at “putting an end” to problems on the border, he said.

Between 9 and 12 tanks crossed the border, followed by pick-up trucks believed to be carrying Turkish-backed Syrian rebels from the Free Syrian Army (FSA).

The FSA said progress was slow because of mines planted by ISIS fighters in the area. There were no immediate reports of fighting on the way in.

Turkey has vowed to “completely cleanse” ISIS from its border region, blaming the group for a bomb attack on a wedding that killed at least 54 people in Gaziantep on August 20.

This is Turkey’s first known ground incursion into Syria since a brief operation to relocate the tomb of Suleyman Shah, a revered Ottoman figure, in February 2015.

The air strikes are Turkey’s first inside Syria since the downing of a Russian jet in November. Moscow and Ankara only mended ties in June after punitive Russian sanctions.

Fighters from the Syrian Kurd YPG militia – the military wing of the PYD – led the battle to drive ISIS out of the strategic crossroads town of Manbij this month.

Responding to news of the Turkish advance, PYD leader Saleh Moslem tweeted that Turkey was now in the “Syrian quagmire” and would be defeated like ISIS.


Turkey has launched new artillery strikes on ISIS targets at Jarablus, northern Syria, amid reports Syrian rebels are to launch an offensive against the Islamist group.

Some 1,500 Turkish-backed Syrian rebels are thought to be in Gaziantep waiting to attack.

A bomb attack on a Kurdish wedding there killed 54 people on August 20.

Turkey also shelled positions at Manbij held by Kurdish YPG fighters, who have been advancing against ISIS.

According to new reports, the attack in Gaziantep, blamed on ISIS, may have been spurred by reports of the imminent Syrian rebel offensive.

Meanwhile, more victims of the suicide attack are being identified.

On August 23, Turkish artillery fired at least 40 shells at ISIS positions in the Jarablus area after two mortar bombs landed in the Turkish town of Karkamis, just across the border, Turkish media report.

Photo AP

Photo AP

Nobody was hurt in the attack on Karkamis.

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has said ISIS should be “completely cleansed” from northern Syria.

On August 22, Turkey also shelled of ISIS positions but equally the bombardment of Kurdish YPG positions in the Manbij area.

A Turkish official quoted by Reuters said artillery had fired on the Kurds 20 times.

The YPG has been at the forefront of the recent advance against ISIS in northern Syria, leading the liberation of Manbij this month and driving the jihadists towards Jarablus.

However, Turkey links them to its own Kurdish insurgents, the PKK, and is determined to keep them away from its border with Syria.

The fighters poised to enter Syria from Gaziantep are believed to be Turkish-backed Syrian rebels.

A senior rebel official quoted by Reuters said they were fighting under the banner of the Free Syrian Army.

It is believed that any such operation would be aimed at frustrating any further advance by the Kurds.

The Kurds themselves have non-Kurdish Syrian allies, fighting alongside the YPG under the banner of the Syrian Democratic Forces.

The identity and motive of the suicide bomber who attacked the wedding party have yet to be revealed.

Soon after the attack, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said ISIS was the likely perpetrator but PM Binali Yildirim said on August 22 that investigators actually did “not have a clue”.

The prime minister downplayed earlier reports that the attacker was a teenager, saying this could not be confirmed.

What is known is that it was a Kurdish wedding and ISIS has targeted Turkish Kurds in the past.

Many of the victims were children as young as 4-year-old.

Sixty-six people are still in hospital, 14 of them in a serious condition, Turkey’s Dogan news agency reported.


The suicide bombing which killed 51 people at a Kurdish wedding party in Gaziantep, Turkey, was carried out by a 12 to 14-year-old, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said.

President Erdogan said ISIS was behind the attack. Gaziantep, near the Syrian border, is known to have several ISIS cells.

The bomb wounded 69 people, Recep Tayyip Erdogan added, 17 of them seriously.

The bomber targeted the wedding guests as they danced in the street.

Photo euronews

Photo euronews

A suicide bomber believed to have links to ISIS killed two policemen in Gaziantep in May.

In a written statement published by local media, President Erdogan argued there was “no difference” between ISIS, the Kurdish militants of the PKK, and followers of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom he blames for the coup attempt last month.

The bomb went off in a part of town popular with students and which has a large Kurdish community.

According to a report by Turkey’s Dogan news agency, the couple had moved to Gaziantep from the Kurdish town of Siirt further east to escape fighting between Kurdish rebels and security forces.

The United States condemned the attack, calling it “barbaric act”.

At least 30 people have been killed and other 94 injured in a bomb attack at an outdoor wedding party in the south Turkish city of Gaziantep, the authorities say.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said ISIS was likely to have carried it out amid reports of a suicide bomber targeting the party.

The bomb attack, in an area popular with university students, could be heard across the city.

Photo AP

Photo AP

Gaziantep, near the Syrian border, is known to have several ISIS cells.

A suicide bomber believed to have links to ISIS killed two policemen in Gaziantep in May.

According to a report by AFP news agency, the bomb went off in a part of town with a large Kurdish community and there seem to have been many Kurds at the wedding.

In a written statement published by local media, President Erdogan argued there was “no difference” between ISIS, the Kurdish militants of the PKK, and followers of US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom he blames for the coup attempt last month.

“Our country and our nation have again only one message to those who attack us – you will not succeed!” the president said.

On August 20, Turkey’s government said the country would take a more active role in efforts to end the war in Syria.

PM Binali Yildirim said a future political settlement for Syria must not include President Bashar al-Assad, ISIS or Turkey’s own Kurdish separatist rebels, the PKK.


Boko Haram has released a second video showing some of the schoolgirls they abducted from Chibok, northern Nigeria.

The footage released by the Nigerian Islamist group shows some 50 girls and a gunman who demands the release of fighters in return for the girls, and says some girls died in air strikes.

The Nigerian government says it is in touch with the militants behind the video.

Journalist Ahmad Salkida who had contact with Boko Haram has been declared a wanted man by the Nigerian army.

Boko Haram is said to be holding more than 200 of the 276 final-year girls it seized from a school in April 2014.Chibok girls Nigeria

Non-Muslims were forcibly converted to Islam, and it is feared that many of the schoolgirls have been abused and forced into “marriage” by their captors.

Parents of the missing girls have described their anguish at seeing their daughters in captivity.

The video begins with a shot of a masked man, carrying a gun, speaking to the camera. He says that some of the girls have been wounded and have life-threatening injuries, and that 40 have been “married”.

Speaking in the Hausa language, the gunman says the girls on display will “never” be returned if the government does not release Boko Haram fighters who have been “in detention for ages”.

The footage concludes with footage of bodies, said to be the victims of air strikes, lying on the ground at another location.

The militant also carries out a staged interview with one of the captives, who calls herself Maida Yakubu, in which she asks parents to appeal to the government.

Maida Yakubu’s mother, Esther, is one of several parents of Chibok girls who recently published open letters to their daughters detailing the pain they feel at their children’s absence and their hopes for the future.

Another girl among those standing in the background can be seen with a baby. Some of the girls can be seen weeping as Maida speaks.

Boko Haram has waged a violent campaign for years in northern Nigeria in its quest for Islamic rule, and a faction of the group recently pledged loyalty to ISIS.

Thousands of people have been killed or captured by Boko Haram, whose name translates as “Western education is forbidden”. Many of the girls abducted in Chibok were Christian.

Nigerian Information Minister Alhaji Mohammed insisted the government was doing everything possible to secure the girls’ release.

“We are being extremely careful because the situation has been compounded by the split in the leadership of Boko Haram,” he said.

“We are also being guided by the need to ensure the safety of the girls.”

The video is the first to be seen since CNN obtained footage in April purportedly showing 15 of the girls.

The Nigerian army declared journalist Ahmad Salkida a wanted man after he published details of the new video before it was released.

Ahmad Salkida, who moved to Dubai a few years ago, has written extensively about the inside operations of the group.

The Chibok girls had been thought to be in a heavily forested area of northern Nigeria.

A girl said to be one of those captured, Amina Ali Nkeki, was found wandering in the Sambisa Forest in May by an army-backed vigilante group.


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has met his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, for the first time since the July 15 attempted coup.

Russia is ready to restore economic co-operation and other ties with Turkey, President Vladimir Putin has announced in St. Petersburg.

It is also President Erdogan’s first foreign visit since an attempted coup last month.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan thanked Vladimir Putin, saying “your call straight after the coup attempt was very welcome”.

Russian-Turkish relations soured last November when Turkey shot down a Russian bomber on the Syrian border.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit comes as Turkey’s ties with the West have cooled over criticism of the purge of alleged coup-plotters.

Before leaving Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan referred to Vladimir Putin as his “friend” and said he wanted to open a new page in relations with Russia.

“This visit strikes me as a new milestone in our bilateral relations, starting again from a clean slate,” he told Russia’s Tass news agency.

Photo Wikipedia

Photo Wikipedia

Vladimir Putin said their talks would cover “the whole range of our relations… including restoring economic ties, combating terrorism”.

After Turkey shot down the Su-24 jet Russia imposed trade sanctions and suspended Russian package tours to Turkey.

In June, the Kremlin said Recep Tayyip Erdogan had apologized for the downing of the jet and had sent a message expressing “sympathy and deep condolences” to the family of the dead pilot.

Then, after the July 15 coup attempt in Turkey, Vladimir Putin expressed support for Recep Tayyip Erdogan. He did not criticize President Erdogan’s crackdown on political opponents and purge of alleged “plotters” in state institutions.

Turkey’s ties with its NATO allies – especially the US – have been strained by disagreements over the Syrian civil war. Turkey’s priority is to weaken the Kurdish separatist forces, while the US is focusing on destroying ISIS.

Recep Tayyip Erdogan was angered by criticism from the EU and the US of the mass detentions of suspected plotters. He demanded that the US extradite cleric Fethullah Gulen, whom he accuses of organizing the coup. But the United States says Turkey must provide solid evidence before such a move can be considered.

Turkey’s Justice Minister, Bekir Bozdag, says more than 26,000 people have been detained after the attempted coup.

They back opposing sides in Syria. Turkey is furious at the scale of Russian air support for Syrian government forces, as Recep Tayyip Erdogan reviles Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Russia has accused Turkey of backing Islamist anti-Assad groups, including some accused of “terrorism” in Russia.

Turkey is at war with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and the PKK’s Syrian allies. Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused Russia of arming the PKK.

For centuries Russia and Turkey have been rivals for influence in the Caucasus and Black Sea region.

Turkey was also angered by Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, accusing Moscow of violating the rights of Crimean Tatars. The Muslim Tatars have long had close ties to Turkey.

A Russian military helicopter has been shot down by rebels in Idlib, northern Syria, killing five people on board, Russia has said.

The Mi-8 chopper was carrying three crew and two officers, Russia’s defense ministry said in a statement.

The aircraft was returning from delivering humanitarian aid to the besieged city of Aleppo, the statement added.

It is not clear which group brought the helicopter down.

An alliance of rebel groups, including hardline jihadist factions, is the dominant power in Idlib.

Russia has previously, though seldom, lost aircraft since it launched operations in support of the Syrian government at the end of September 2015.

Photo Flickr

Photo Flickr

In July 2016, two Russian pilots were killed when their helicopter was shot down east of Palmyra by ISIS.

In November 2015, the pilot of a Russian Su-24 fighter plane was killed when the aircraft was shot down by Turkey on its border with Syria.

A Russian marine sent on a mission to rescue the pilot was also killed when his helicopter was shot down.

Pictures on social media purportedly of the latest Russian helicopter downing showed burning wreckage and bodies, with armed men milling around.

Footage showed at least one body being dragged away.

Russia is a key backer of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and is supporting pro-government forces with air strikes on rebels.

Government forces cut off rebel-held eastern parts of Aleppo last month.

Russia and Syria announced the opening of what they called humanitarian corridors for civilians and rebels wanting to surrender, but few people are reported to have used them, fearing they would be targeted.