Tagged With syria

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Wikileaks withheld a batch of emails showing a $US2.2 ($3) billion transaction between the Syrian regime and a Russian government-owned bank, according to a Daily Dot report. If true, the report will likely have a lasting negative impact on Wikileaks' credibility. The report alleges that the transparency organisation betrayed its own core values of "pristine leaking" and did so in a way that protects Russia's public image.

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I look to my left and see a sorrowful parent sitting on the curb, comforting his daughter. I look to my right, and I see notes of sympathy among many flowers. Around me, I hear people murmuring respects and singing in French. I'm in the middle of a vigil in the streets of Paris, a week after last month's tragic shooting.

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The relationship between Russia and the West is becoming increasingly dangerous with potential flashpoints developing in both eastern Europe and Syria. After repeated incursions into Turkish airspace by Russian warplanes on bombing raids over Syria, NATO's secretary general Jens Stoltenberg warned Moscow that it stands ready to "defend all allies". Meanwhile Britain announced it would send troops to Baltic states to defend NATO's eastern boundaries against possible Russian aggression beyond Ukraine.

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EFF has noted and protested when authorities deliberately cut off Internet access in times of unrest. As a restraint on the freedom of expression of those affected, communication blackouts during protests are unconscionable. But recent research by Anita Gohdes, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Mannheim, suggests that Internet shutdowns are becoming part of a toolkit for more violent repression.

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It's kind of the oldest trick in the book. Catfishing is where you pretend to be someone you're not online so that you can trick someone else into doing something. And based on a new report, this is exactly how pro-Assad hackers have been robbing intel from opposition forces: They have been posing as hot girls on Skype and stealing battle plans from the Syrian rebel army.

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This is an aerial view of the Zaatari camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan. Since the camp opened in July 2012 hundreds of refugees have arrived daily and the population reached 144,000 in 2013. According to the New York Times, the number decreased to 85,000 in 2014, but the camp has become an informal city.

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Syria's agreement with the UN to eradicate its stockpiles of chemical warfare agents in exchange for the US not curb-stomping its Air Force is going about as well as you'd expect. That is, it's woefully behind schedule with little hope of actually being completed. But, if and when the Assad regime does finally turn over its chemical munitions, they'll be neutralized aboard this ship.

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Disposing of the world's chemical weapon stockpiles is far easier said than done. It's not like the good old days prior to WWII when we could just dump extraneous supplies of mustard gas and other chemical weapons into the open ocean or under Delaware roadways or just big pits at the Redstone Arsenal in Alabama — no, no, now we have to dispose of it in a responsible manner. That's why Army crews now rely on an ingenious explosive vacuum chamber to burn these deadly weapons to harmless ash.

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One of the remarkable things about the Assad regime is the veneer of tasteful normalcy that surrounds his family's public image, from a glowing Vogue feature on Asma al-Assad to their boring Instagram presence. That aura extends to the presidential palace, which was built by Kenzō Tange — the Pritzker Prize-winning architect who designed some of Japan's most recognisable buildings. Who knew evil could look so banal?