04 March 2018 Military News
- Talks at impasse as Taliban seek direct negotiations with US Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- The Afghan government's surprising new peace offer to Taliban is immediately running into a wall as the militants show no sign of shifting from their demand that talks for a conflict-ending compromise take place with Washington, not Kabul, a media report says.
- Unemployment Leads Dozens of Youths to Join IS Ranks in Eastern Afghanistan VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- Provincial officials in eastern Nangarhar province expressed concerns over the dozens of youths in the province recruited by Islamic State (IS).
Defense Policy / Programs
- China's defense input rate lower than other major countries: spokesperson People's Daily 04 Mar 2018 -- China's defense input rate is lower than other major countries, a spokesperson for the annual session of the country's national legislature said Sunday, stressing China's development will pose no threat to any other country.
- Taiwan Reportedly Bids for Bigger Military Role in Asia Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Taiwan is intending to increase its military expenditure in order to have more opportunities to promote peace in the region, Taiwanese media reported on Saturday.
- Scores killed as Houthis fight Saudi mercenaries outside Sana'a Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- A confrontation between Saudi-backed militants and Yemen's popular Houthi Ansarullah movement across the war-battered country has left around 80 people dead on both sides.
- Yemeni Houthi Rebels Release Dozens of Supporters of Saleh - Source Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Yemeni Shia Houthi rebels released 69 supporters of former President Ali Abdullah Saleh killed last year by the Houthis, a source in security bodies told Sputnik.
- Turkey, Russia Have No Disagreements Over Ankara's Afrin Operation - Erdogan Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- There are no contradictions over Turkey's Olive Branch operation in Syria's Afrin between Ankara and Moscow, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday.
- Turkish Army Claims to Have Neutralized Over 2,600 Militants During Afrin Op Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- The Turkish forces have neutralized 2,612 members of the terrorist organizations in Syrian northern district of Afrin since start of Ankara's operation in the region, the General Staff of the Turkish Armed Forces said Sunday.
- Syria's Assad vows to continue anti-terror operations in eastern Ghouta Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has vowed to continue operations in eastern Ghouta, stressing that they are part of the country's battle against terrorism.
- Statement by the Press Secretary on Russian and Syrian Regime Attacks on Eastern Ghouta The White House 04 Mar 2018
- Syrian Army regains control over al-Nashabiye town in Eastern Ghouta IRNA 04 Mar 2018 -- The Syrian Arab Army regained control over the town of al-Nashabiye as well as a number of villages and farms in Eastern Ghouta after inflicting heavy losses on Jabhat al-Nusra and groups affiliated with it, a military source announced on Sunday.
- Syrian army forces secure humanitarian corridor in Eastern Ghouta Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- A Syrian military source says government forces have secured a humanitarian corridor for civilians to leave the militant-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta near the capital city of Damascus.
- Triangle plot in Syria has become 'abortive': Gen. Safavi Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- A senior Iranian official says a "triangle" plot carried out by the US, Israel and their regional allies to oust the Syrian government has become "abortive" after 85 months.
- Russia: Militants impose curfew in Eastern Ghouta Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- The Russian military says militants based in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta have imposed a curfew during humanitarian pauses to prevent civilians from leaving the enclave.
- Syrian forces take full control of town in Eastern Ghouta Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Syrian troops have taken almost full control of the town of al-Shayfouniya in the Damascus suburb of Eastern Ghouta.
- Syrian Government Forces 'Seize Quarter Of Ghouta' RFE/RL 04 Mar 2018 -- Syrian government forces have seized about one quarter of the rebel-held enclave of eastern Ghouta in recent days, activists say.
- Assad: West Accuses Damascus of Chemical Weapons Attack on Syrian Army Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- The arrival of the militia in Syria's Afrin, where Turkey is waging a military campaign against local Kurdish forces, is "natural," while the Syrian government forces are involved in other operations, Syrian President Bashar Assad said Sunday.
- Militants Attack Humanitarian Corridor to E Gouta as Damascus Tries to Send Aid Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- The Syrian government has tried to send 46 trucks with humanitarian aid to Eastern Ghouta, but the attempt was undermined by the continuing shelling of humanitarian corridor by the militant groups, Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Fayssal Mikdad said late on Sunday.
- About 600 People Killed in E Ghouta Since February 18, Over 2,000 Wounded - UN Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- About 600 people have been killed in Syria's Eastern Ghouta since February 18 and over 2,000 have been injured, Panos Moumtzis, Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for the Syria Crisis, said in a statement Sunday.
- Militants in E Ghouta Impose Curfew, Ban Civilians' Mass Meetings - Russian MoD Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Over the past five days, only two children have managed to escape the terrorist-held Damascus suburb, despite the introduction of daily humanitarian pauses, according to the Russian military.
- Aid convoy for Eastern Ghouta should arrive on Monday, UN and partners announce UN News 04 Mar 2018 -- The United Nations and its partners plan to deliver much-needed relief assistance to the besieged Syrian enclave of eastern Ghouta this week, the global organization's humanitarian wing said on Sunday.
- Trump, May Blame Syria, Russia for Eastern Ghouta Humanitarian Woes VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump and British leader Theresa May agreed Sunday that Russia and Syria are responsible for the "heart-breaking human suffering" in the rebel-held enclave of Eastern Ghouta outside Damascus, the prime minister's office said.
- Syria's Assad: Offensive Against East Ghouta Rebels Will Continue VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- Syrian President Bashar al-Assad vowed Sunday that his military's offensive against rebels in East Ghouta would continue, even in the face of criticism from U.S. and British leaders that he is creating a humanitarian disaster.
- Egyptian Army Kills 10 Militants in Sinai Anti-Terror Raid Over Past 2 Days Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Egyptian forces have killed 10 terrorists over the last 48 hours and detained around 250 people suspected of extremist activities in the northern and central parts of the Sinai Peninsula, the army said in a statement on Sunday.
- 4 Egyptian soldiers killed amid Sinai offensive Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Egypt's army says at least four soldiers have been killed and three others wounded in an ongoing military operation against militants in the Sinai Peninsula.
- Mueller investigates possible UAE effort to buy political influence Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- US special counsel Robert Mueller's team is reportedly investigating possible efforts by the United Arab Emirates to buy political influence in the White House by supporting Donald Trump's 2016 presidential campaign.
- Students Build Program That Sniffs Out Twitter 'Bots' VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- For months, university students Ash Bhat and Rohan Phadte had been tracking about 1,500 political propaganda accounts on Twitter that appeared to have been generated by computers when they noticed something odd.
- Putin: Russian Citizens Accused of US Election Meddling Did Not Represent Moscow Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Russian citizens accused by the United States of interfering in the 2016 US presidential elections did not represent the country's authorities, Russian President Vladimir Putin told the NBC broadcaster in an interview aired on Sunday.
- Moscow will never extradite 13 Russians indicted by US: Putin Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin has vowed that Moscow will "never" allow the extradition of 13 Russian nationals who have been indicted by the US for alleged interference in the 2016 US presidential election in favor of incumbent American President Donald Trump.
- Tillerson to Reaffirm Ties With Africa During Trip VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson's highly anticipated trip to Africa is an opportunity to position the United States to "play a significant role in supporting" the continent and to "highlight the important relationship," according to a senior American official.
- China not to export "Chinese model": spokesperson People's Daily 04 Mar 2018 -- China will neither import foreign models nor export a Chinese model of development, a spokesperson for the annual session of China's top legislature said Sunday.
- Cooperation the only right option for China-U.S. ties: spokesperson People's Daily 04 Mar 2018 -- China and the United States share more mutual benefits than differences and cooperation is the only right option for both countries, said a spokesman for the annual session of China's national legislature Sunday.
- Constitutional revision "important task" for NPC annual session: spokesperson People's Daily 04 Mar 2018 -- Revising part of China's Constitution is an important task for the first annual session of the 13th National People's Congress (NPC), China's national legislature, a spokesperson said Sunday.
- Chinese National Congress to Vote on Constitutional Changes Next Week Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Members of the Chinese National People's Congress (NPC) will vote on amendments to the country's constitution on March 11 including a provision lifting a limit for consecutive presidential terms, Zhang Yesui, spokesperson for the first session of the 13th NPC, said on Sunday.
- North Korea must 'denuke' before US agrees to talks: Trump Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- US President Donald Trump says his administration will sit down for negotiations with North Korea only if Pyongyang agrees to eliminate its nuclear arsenal.
- We Won't 'Beg for Dialogue': North Korea Rules Out Talks With US Preconditions Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- North Korea lambasted the US for making up preconditions for dialogue between states, as Seoul prepares to send an envoy to Pyongyang to find a way to ease the nuclear standoff.
- South Korea 'to send high-level delegation to North' Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- South Korea has announced a decision to send a high-level political delegation to the North, raising hopes for a diplomatic solution to the decades-long conflict on the Korean Peninsula.
- South Korea To Send High-level Officials To North For Talks RFE/RL 04 Mar 2018 -- South Korea's president will send a delegation led by his national security director to North Korea this week for talks on how to ease nuclear tensions and help push for talks between Pyongyang and Washington.
- Seoul Plans to Send Special Envoys to DPRK - Reports Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in wants to send National Intelligence Service (NIS) chief Suh Hoon and head of the National Security Office (NSO) Chung Eui-yong as delegates to North Korea for taking part in bilateral talks, local media reported on Sunday.
- High-level South Korean Delegation to Hold Discussions With the North VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in will send a high-level special delegation to North Korea on Monday to discuss ways in which relations can be improved and to ease tension on the peninsula, South Korea's presidential Blue House announced on Sunday.
- President: Tehran committed to JCPOA as others follow suit IRNA 04 Mar 2018 -- President Hassan Rouhani appreciated Paris for its stances in favor of the JCPOA and re-emphasized the necessity for adherence of all sides to its provisions.
- Iran, France presidents discuss nuclear deal, Syria's Ghouta by phone Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, have discussed the latest developments regarding Iran's nuclear deal with the P5+1 group of countries and the current situation in Syria's Eastern Ghouta.
- French FM Takes Tough Line On Iran's Missiles Before Visit RFE/RL 04 Mar 2018 -- French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian has said ahead of a March 5visit to Tehran that the country needed to address concerns over its ballistic-missile program or risked new sanctions.
- France Plans to Continue Dialogue With Iran on Nuclear Program Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- France will continue to maintain dialogue with Iran over the latter's nuclear program and, as part of the nuclear deal, plans to preserve the agreement, the French Foreign Ministry said Sunday, on the eve of Foreign Minister Jean Yves Le Drian visit to Tehran.
- Political stalemate ends in Germany Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Members of Germany's Social Democratic Party (SPD) have decisively voted in favor of entering a new coalition government with Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative bloc, a party official says.
- Iraqi Parliament Adopts Year's Budget Amid Protests of Kurds Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- The Iraqi parliament adopted amendments to the country's budget for 2018 despite protests of the Kurdish lawmakers, member of the Iraqi parliament's finance committee Masud Haidar said.
- Bin Salman in Cairo after Egypt fully cedes sovereignty over islands Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Saudi Arabia's crown prince Mohammed bin Salman has finally begun his tour of Egypt a day after the North African country ignored public discontent and cleared all legal hurdles impeding the transfer of two Red Sea islands to the kingdom.
- Exit Polls Indicate No Clear Winner in Italy Polls VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- Exit polls released as Italian polling stations closed Sunday suggested no one party will command a parliamentary majority but that populist parties scored major gains. The election was one of the most divisive in recent memory
- Italians Vote in Tight General Election VOA 04 Mar 2018 -- More than 47 million Italians are eligible to vote in Sunday's general election, and polling booths will remain open until late with exit polls expected immediately after closing. Opinion polls were banned in the past two weeks of the campaign, but surveys before suggested no party would win the needed majority to govern the country.
- Millions of Italians casting ballots in general elections Press TV 04 Mar 2018 -- Italians are taking to the polls to cast their ballots in general elections that would determine the makeup of the country's parliament and its next government.
- Macedonians Rally Against Name Change RFE/RL 04 Mar 2018 -- About 10,000 people have taken to the streets of the Macedonian capital to protest a possible change to the name of the former Yugoslav republic to comply with a demand by neighboring Greece.
- Tehran Rejects Manama's Accusations of Plotting Terrorist Attacks in Bahrain Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Tehran is rejecting all Manama's accusations of supporting people who planned terrorist attacks in Bahrain, Iranian Foreign Ministry said Sunday in a press release.
- Bahrain Seizes Weapons, Arrests 116 Members of Alleged Iran-Linked Terror Cell Sputnik 04 Mar 2018 -- Bahrain on Saturday announced the arrest of 116 people accused of forming a terrorist cell allegedly tied to Iran's Revolutionary Guards, and said the country had averted a number of attempted terrorist attacks by the group on its security forces and its oil and other vital facilities.
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