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Showing posts from October 27, 2014

Caucasus Emirate Leadership Adopts ‘Terror 2.0’ Tactics

The new Emir of the self-proclaimed Caucasus Emirate (CE), located in Russia’s North Caucasus region, is making changes to the modus operandi of the organization. Ali Abu Muhammad (Aliaskhab Kebekov) was originally appointed as qadi, or senior Islamic judge, in October 2010. After the death of Doku Umarov in September 2013, the group appointed Abu Muhammad as Emir in March 2014 (apparently, it had taken the group some time to confirm the death of Umarov). In recent media releases, Abu Muhammad has given notice of a number of new policies, and provided official comment on several pressing issues for the insurgency.

In one of his earlier releases, Abu Muhammad calls on fighters to engage in the conflict on a political, economic, and informational front – not just the military one. In relation to this, he admits that the insurgency cannot simply take every person who wants to join, especially those who are not physically fit. He has asked aspiring fighters not to attempt to make their way…

Three International Water Conflicts to Watch

Patrick Johnson

China-India: The Brahmaputra River

The Brahmaputra River is a 2,900 km river that originates in Tibet and flows through India’s Arunachal Pradesh state before merging with the Ganges and draining into the Bay of Bengal in Bangladesh. It is considered an important resource in all three countries that it flows through: for energy-hungry China, it provides hydroelectricity; and for India and Bangladesh, a key agricultural lifeline in otherwise overpopulated and arid region.

The Brahmaputra River is particularly important to the agricultural industry in India’s Assam plains, and worries have arisen recently regarding a series of hydroelectric plants that China is in various stages of construction on its Tibetan plateau. Some experts believe that these projects will reduce the flow of the Brahmaputra in India, compounding an already tenuous water situation in the affected areas.

While there is no comprehensive bilateral treaty in place for the sustainable management of the Brah…

Churkin: Thousands of deaths, a million homeless could have been avoided in Ukraine

A Donetsk bus stop, which was destroyed by a Ukrainian military artillery attack.(RIA Novosti / Gennady Dubovoy)

The result of the postponed Ukraine EU association agreement has been “thousands of lives lost and almost a million left homeless,” Russia’s ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin said. He also said that warnings from Russia almost a year ago were ignored.

Churkin said at the very start of the conflict that Russia had warned that all parties needed to be included in talks and the rights of all had to be respected, no matter which region they came from. With his pleas not heeded, a vast humanitarian catastrophe has taken place in the eastern part of Ukraine.

“What do we have today? Today Kiev and Brussels have returned to the position, which they needed to start with: suspend the association talks with the EU, which is exactly what the toppled President Viktor Yanokovich wanted,” said Russia’s Ambassador to the UN. “Due to a year of decisions, thousands of people have died, almos…

'Party of War’ Winning Ukrainian Parliamentary Elections: DPR Prime Minister

"Party of war" rather than the "party of peace" winning Ukrainian parliamentary elections: DPR Prime Minister said© REUTERS/ Sergei Karpukhin

The so-called "party of war" is winning the Ukrainian parliamentary elections, the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) is not ruling out the resumption of hostilities, said the DPR Prime Minister Aleksander Zakharchenko.

"According to the first results of the elections, the winner is rather the "party of war" than the "party of peace." Yatsenyuk, Turchynov, Lyashko and Poroshenko himself – all these politicians backed military actions against us," Zakharchenko told reporters on Sunday.

Zakharchenko added that the DPR expects Kiev to take a tough stance against the People's Republic. "The ceasefire that we discussed since September 5 was used by Kiev for troops repositioning, getting fresh forces and new weapons," Zakharchenko said.

Early parliamentary elections…