South Sudan Expels Second Aid Worker In A Week

South Sudan has over the past week ordered two senior employees of the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) to leave the country, without explanation, the aid organisation said Wednesday.

The expulsions follow the deportation of an American journalist from the war-torn country and come as alarm rises over spreading violence, with UN human rights experts warning “ethnic cleansing” was underway.

The NRC’s country director was asked to leave last Friday after being held by security services for more than a day, and its area manager for the northern Warrap state was told to leave on Tuesday.

“NRC has not received any formal explanation of the charges against these two individuals,” the organisation said in a statement.

“The order for a second senior staff member to leave is unacceptable,” said Jan Egeland, NRC’s Secretary General. “Without assurances from the authorities that we will be able to operate without interference, NRC may have to reassess our ability to deliver assistance at scale in South Sudan,” added Egeland.

The aid organisation has been present in South Sudan since 2004, and the first eight months of this year alone provided assistance to over 658,000 people across the country.

South Sudan on Thursday marks three years since civil war broke out, dashing hopes for the world’s youngest nation just two years after a hard-won independence from Sudan.

Internal rivalries erupted as President Salva Kiir accused his former deputy Riek Machar of plotting a coup, leading to violence that has left tens of thousands dead and more than 2.5 million people displaced.

An August 2015 peace deal was left in tatters when fighting broke out in Juba in July, with violence spreading throughout the country and no prospects for peace in sight.UN human rights experts warned two weeks ago of a nation on the brink of catastrophe, saying “ethnic cleansing” was underway in several areas of the country as well as “mindboggling” levels of sexual violence.

The NRC estimates that over six million people – more than half the population – need humanitarian assistance.

Source: South Sudan Expels Second Aid Worker In A Week

Kidnapping for ransom works like a market. How it is organized is surprising. (source -The Washington Post)

Hi, I would suggest all people involved in trip over “dangerous countries” and their organisations’ to read the linked article.

Ransom and mediation in a kidnap situation are always a big problem, and in the article you can probably understand how big is it!

As my short and probably “silly or naive” consideration, I think it would be way better for people, organisations, NGOs, etc, that work in dangerous areas, to attend a proper preparation and training, to connect themselves with serious and diligent “travel Risk Management” company, thus to drastically reduce the probability to be be subject to “an abduction”.


It isn’t kidnappers who regulate the market for hostage taking. It’s insurance companies. 

Read the article: Kidnapping for ransom works like a market. How it is organized is surprising. – The Washington Post

‘Kidnap gangs will seek soft targets in revenge’ – Nation | The Star Online

KOTA KINABALU: Kidnap-for-ransom groups will step up attacks and grab soft targets such as fishermen as a way to exact revenge on Malaysian security forces for killing a kidnap kingpin, said anti-kidnapping activist Prof Octavio Dinampo.

These southern Philippines-based cross border criminal groups are believed to be plotting to avenge the death of Abraham Hamid and two others by the Malaysian security forces on Thursday.

“They won’t confront the security forces.“Instead, they will try to abduct more soft targets to insult the Malaysians while collecting more hostages for ransom,” Octavio told The Star.

These criminals, he said, were prepared to lose their lives carrying out their activities.“So, they don’t mind the risks for a great reward,” said the Jolo island-based activist.

He said Abraham and other gunmen who encountered the elite Malaysian police squad, the Tiger Platoon, following an abduction and robbery spree in waters between Lahad Datu and Semporna, were part of a cross border criminals strike force.

“The gangs have fast vessels, usually powered by two big outboard engines, each at least 80 horsepower to stage the kidnappings.”He said these cross border criminal groups would have sympathisers in Sabah’s east coast who would provide them with information about the location of their targets.

Such sympathisers must be weeded out, Octavio said.

On Saturday, Sabah Police Commissioner Datuk Abdul Rashid Harun acknowledged that they were bracing for revenge attacks following the killing of three kidnappers and the capture of two others in the Thursday shootout.

He said the police were continuing to interrogate the two kidnappers who were arrested following the shootout near Pulau Gaya.

Also believed to have been injured then was another kidnap kingpin, Jul Hassan, who was in another boat.

The latest drama was the ninth such incident in waters off Sabah’s east coast this year.

Source: ‘Kidnap gangs will seek soft targets in revenge’ – Nation | The Star Online

Bandits abduct 35 women in Zamfara

Suspected armed bandits today abducted about 35 women working on a farm at Matankari village in Dansadau district of Maru local government area of Zamfara state.

Residents told Daily Trust that the armed bandits arrived at the farm in the forest on motorbikes carried the women and dashed in to the forest.

The incident came barely one month after 40 residents were abducted in Maru local government area of the state and released in a cows- for- persons swap deal with the state government.

The armed bandits are now in to kidnapping in Zamfara state and dozens of residents were abducted and millions of Naira paid in ransom to regain their freedom.

The abducted  women were threshing sorghum on a farm belonging to one Alhaji Adamu when the gunmen invaded the farmland and whisked them away. It was not clear whether they had demanded or would demand for ransom.

A resident Alhaji Mu’awuya told our reporter that after going deep inside the forest with the women the armed bandits decided to release the aged ones among them,  while the young ladies remained with them.

“One of my neighbours called Alhaji Garba Matankari whose aged mother was among the abducted  women but later released just left here I would have given him the phone for you to talk to him.” Alhaji Mu’a wuya said.

He further explained that the residents have mobilized and followed the armed bandits in search of the women adding that even those released by gunmen are still missing.

“My neighbour’s mother is at home now she is being treated after her feet became swollen because of the long distance trek inside the forest. The armed bandits were heard saying that they would descend on other villages around the area.” He added.

The spokesman of the state police command DSP Muhammad Shehu could not be reached for comments as at the time of filing this report.

Source: Bandits abduct 35 women in Zamfara

CIBSPOL Institut Pist.

Italian tourist shot dead after entering Rio slum on motorcycle



CIBSPOL Institut Pist.RIO DE JANEIRO, Dec 8 (Reuters) –

An Italian tourist traveling South America by motorcycle was shot dead on Thursday after mistakenly entering a hillside slum in Rio de Janeiro.

The tourist, identified by police as 52-year-old Roberto Bardella, was sightseeing with an Italian companion, also on motorcycle, when their GPS navigation system led them into a favela, as many of Rio’s poor neighborhoods are known.

There, a group of armed bandits opened fire on the two travelers, police said, and forced them from their motorcycles. Bardella died and his companion, whom police did not identify, was released.

The shooting, in the Morro dos Prazeres slum near the scenic hilltop neighborhood of Santa Teresa, comes as violence in Brazil’s best-known city rebounds following a years-long effort to reduce crime before Rio hosted games for the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Olympics.

An ongoing recession, rising unemployment and drained public security budgets have enabled drug traffickers and other criminal gangs to retake territory in many Rio neighborhoods where police had won an upper hand.As struggles between traffickers, other criminals and police have intensified, residents fear Rio could return to sort of violence common in decades past, when parts of the seaside city resembled war zones.

Last month, after daylong shootouts between police and suspected criminals in the favela of Cidade de Deus, a police helicopter crashed, killing four officers. Authorities are still investigating the cause of the crash, but said initially that the helicopter did not appear to have been shot down.

Many residents of the slum, subject of a blockbuster 2002 film known in English as City of God, accused police of using excessive force during the fighting, in which at least seven people were killed. (Reporting by Paulo Prada; Editing by Alan Crosby)

Source: Italian tourist shot dead after entering Rio slum on …

Myanmar reporter who covered logging industry found beaten to death | Reuters

Myanmar reporter who covered logging industry found beaten to death.

A newsman reporting on sensitive topics such as illegal logging and crime in Myanmar’s rugged northwest border region was found beaten to death on Tuesday, police said, the fifth killing of a journalist since 1999.

A vibrant domestic media has flourished since Myanmar eased media restrictions in 2012 as it began a transition from decades of military rule, but reporters can face intimidation or legal threats for covering touchy subjects.

Police launched an investigation into the death of the 35-year-old Soe Moe Tun, following the discovery of his body on Tuesday morning.

“Someone had attacked him and beaten him with a stick on the back of his head,” Captain Thein Swe Myint, of the northwestern Monywa police-station, told Reuters.”But we cannot say exactly why he was killed.

“Mining and timber are key industries in the mountainous forested Sagaing region on Myanmar’s border with India, where enterprises can often run illegal operations.

Soe Moe Tun had been reporting from Monywa, the area’s commercial hub, since early 2015, his employer, Eleven Media Group, which runs the popular Daily Eleven newspaper, said in a statement.

He was a prolific reporter who had recently tackled subjects such as a seizure of stimulant tablets and a surge in illegal karaoke lounges fronting for brothels, besides illegal logging operations in Sagaing, an editor at the paper said.

“He normally chased sensitive stories secretly,” the editor told Reuters on condition of anonymity, as the topic is sensitive.

In a statement, the Myanmar Journalists’ Association urged the authorities to “expose the truth behind this case and to give effective protection to journalists”.

Myanmar abolished pre-publication censorship in 2012, permitting private dailies to publish for the first time in decades. After landmark elections last year, a civilian government took power, led by Nobel laureate Aung San Suu Kyi

Rights groups say the risks of covering subjects such as illegal logging are growing in Asia.

Last year, Reporters Without Borders documented the murders of 10 journalists killed covering the environment since 2010, nine of them in South or Southeast Asia.

Four other journalists have been killed in Myanmar since 1999, the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists says.

(Reporting by Aung Hla Tun and Wa Lone; Writing by Simon Lewis)

Source: Myanmar reporter who covered logging industry found beaten to death | Reuters

Islamic State militants demand $200 million ransom for Japanese hostages | euronews, world news

Hear we are again!

I regretfully have to say that this kind of news will never get to an end!  If in one hand, terrorists are making of such treat a kind of “institution” (allowed me this term), on the other hand, there are to many people not really aware on what to do and how to behave when traveling or working in “high risk countries or environments”

No, I don’t want to say that it is Hostage fault, or that thanks to a better preparation and training such tremendous event (kidnapping) will get to an end, but I am sure it will become harder for these foolish criminals to kidnap people!

My thought goes to the two Japanese hostages and their families!

READ THE FULL NEWS Islamic State militants demand $200 million ransom for Japanese hostages | euronews, world news.