19 December 2018 Military News
- White House Defends Declaration of Victory Against IS VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- Without offering specifics on what led to a declaration of victory against the Islamic State (IS) terror group in Syria, the White House defended both the declaration and the decision to start bringing U.S. troops in the war-torn country back home.
- US Started Returning Troops Home From Syria - White House Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- Earlier on Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that the US military was preparing to withdraw all of its forces from northeastern Syria.
- White House: U.S. Troop Withdrawal From Syria Begins, But Campaign Against IS Continues RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States has started bringing home troops from Syria as it moves to a new phase in the campaign against the Islamic State (IS) extremist group, the White House says.
- White House: US Starts Withdrawing Troops From Syria VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The White House said Wednesday the United States has begun withdrawing troops from Syria, shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted the U.S. has defeated the Islamic State terror group there.
- US Lawmakers 'Blindsided' by News of US Troop Withdrawal from Syria VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The White House's announcement that U.S. troops are withdrawing from Syria caught U.S. lawmakers by surprise and angered some of President Donald Trump's top allies on Capitol Hill.
- What You Need to Know About US Involvement in Syria VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The White House said Wednesday that 2,000 U.S. troops in Syria had begun withdrawing, shortly after President Donald Trump tweeted that the U.S. had defeated Islamic State in the Middle Eastern country. The announced withdrawal marked a sudden reversal in U.S. military strategy in the region, where senior U.S. military and other officials have been pushing for a longer-term military presence to help ensure IS does not re-emerge.
- US forces establish new base in Iraq near border with Syria: Report Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- US forces have established a new military base in Iraq's western province of Anbar near the border with neighboring Syria in defiance of widespread calls to end its military presence in the Middle East region.
- Afghan Taliban, US Conclude Marathon Peace Talks Arranged by Pakistan VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States and the Taliban have concluded two days of marathon peace talks in the United Arab Emirates, promising to meet again in the Gulf country for another round "to complete the Afghanistan reconciliation process."
- U.S. Afghan Peace Envoy Held 'Productive' Three-Day Talks In U.A.E. RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The U.S. special peace envoy for Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, says he had "productive" meetings in the United Arab Emirates (U.A.E.) this week as part of efforts to encourage negotiations between the Taliban and Kabul to end the 17-year war in the South-Asian country.
- UAE reports 'positive' results from latest round of US-Taliban talks Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The United Arab Emirates has reported tangible and positive results from the latest round of talks between the United States and Afghanistan's Taliban militant group which was held in the capital Abu Dhabi.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Washington National Guard and Malaysian army plan for upcoming exercises Army News 19 Dec 2018 -- With the goal of finalizing plans for multiple bi-national exercises, the Washington National Guard wrapped up the final planning conference for exercise Bersama Warrior and Keris Strike 2019 on Dec. 6 in Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia.
- Hospital Ship USNS Comfort Returns to Norfolk After Completing Mission in South, Central America NNS 19 Dec 2018 -- U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Comfort (T-AH 20) pulled into Naval Station Norfolk, Dec. 18, after completing its deployment to South and Central America in support of Enduring Promise.
- Secretary of the Navy Visits Bahrain NNS 19 Dec 2018 -- Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer met with leadership, visited ships, and spoke to service members on board Naval Support Activity Bahrain, Dec. 19.
- Joint Anti-Submarine Exercise Conducted by France, Australia, US in C5F NNS 19 Dec 2018 -- Maritime forces from France, Australia and the United States participated in Ship Anti-Submarine Warfare Readiness and Evaluation Measurement (SHAREM) 195 exercise in the Arabian Sea, Dec. 14-18.
- US Navy Mulls Moving Sub-Hunters to Alaska to Track China, Russia Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The US Navy is considering whether to deploy submarine-hunting P-8 Poseidon aircraft to a Cold War-era base in Alaska in an effort to keep a closer eye on Chinese and Russian movements in the Arctic.
- Statement by the NATO Spokesperson Oana Lungescu on the Secretary General's phone call with Mr Haradinaj NATO 19 Dec 2018 -- The NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg had a phone call today with Mr Ramush Haradinaj of Kosovo. He informed Mr Haradinaj that the North Atlantic Council had an initial discussion on the recently adopted laws on the transition of the Kosovo Security Force (KSF). The Secretary General informed Mr Haradinaj that, as the mandate of the KSF is evolving, the North Atlantic Council will re-examine NATO's level of engagement with the KSF in the new year. NATO will continue its KFOR mission to ensure a safe and secure environment in Kosovo. KFOR operates under a UN mandate and will not be affected by the laws on the transition of KSF. The Secretary General will continue his engagement with all actors relevant for regional stability.
- NATO agrees 2019 civil and military budgets for further adaptation NATO 19 Dec 2018 -- NATO Allies have agreed the civil and military budgets for 2019. At a meeting of the North Atlantic Council on Tuesday (18 December 2018), Allies agreed a civil budget of €250.5 million and a military budget of €1.395 billion for 2019. All member countries contribute to these budgets, according to an agreed cost-sharing formula based on Gross National Income. In the face of a more demanding security environment, NATO continues to adapt – including through the modernization of the NATO Command Structure, and a functional review of the Alliance's Headquarters in Brussels.
- Putin Approves Military Doctrine of Union State - Order Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Union State of Russia and Belarus was established in 1996 with the intention of providing greater political, economic, and social integration between the two longstanding allies.
- Russia Conducts Live-Fire Drills With S-400 in Crimea Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The drills come after Alexander Dvornikov, commander of Russia's Southern Military District, announced that the military had completed rearming air defence forces stationed in Crimea with the potent, world-renowned S-400 system.
- China warns US against 'weaponizing' space Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- China has opposed the "weaponization" of space by the United States, a day after President Donald Trump ordered the creation of a new command center for controlling military space operations.
- China Warns US Against 'Turning Space Into the New Battleground' Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- US President Donald Trump's recent call for the creation of a new space agency within the Pentagon caught the attention of Chinese officials this week, and Beijing is stressing its concern that the US will weaponize space.
- Kosovo Creates Govt Panel to Work on NATO Accession Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The authorities of Kosovo have set up an intergovernmental commission which will manage issues related to the self-proclaimed republic's accession to NATO, Prime Minister Ramush Haradinaj said on Wednesday following phone talks with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
- GSLV-F11 successfully launches GSAT-7A Press Information Bureau 19 Dec 2018-- Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F11) successfully launched the communication satellite GSAT-7A from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre (SDSC) in Sriharikota today.
- India Succesfully Launches Military Communications Satellite Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Indian Air Force's (IAF) long pending dedicated communications GSAT-7A satellite is set to radically transform the country's network-centric warfare capabilities, as it will be able to accomplish all communication-related tasks, whether standalone or network-dependent, that are part of defence preparedness and operations.
- Indian Navy Adds More Teeth With 5th Landing Craft Ship Near Strait of Malacca Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Indian Navy is looking to bolster its military capabilities at the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, situated near the Strait of Malacca - one of the world's major maritime choke-points.
- India Defends Decision to Procure Short-Range Russian Air Defence System Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Russian-made Igla-S Air Defence System was recently declared the lowest bidder for the Indian Army's Very Short Range Air Defence System (VSHORADS) program, beating Saab's RBS 70NG and MBDA's Mistral. Responding to the defeat, Saab alleged that the Igla-S does not meet the performance requirements outlined in the original tender document.
- Taking Cue From Doklam, India Builds 18 New Border Outposts Near Bhutan Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB), India's border force, has built 18 new outposts in Sikkim and Arunachal Pradesh over the past year, after Indian and Chinese forces engaged in a bitter standoff at Doklam – a disputed territory.
- Minister: Defense industry prioritizing to utilize modern technology IRNA 19 Dec 2018 -- Iranian Minister of Defense said making dual efforts and using world's latest technology to address the concerns of the armed forces of Iran is of prime importance.
- Japan approves new defense guidelines amid controversies, opposition People's Daily 19 Dec 2018 -- Japan on Tuesday approved new defense guidelines, part of which includes the controversial upgrading and deployment of aircraft carriers in a move unprecedented since the end of World War II.
- 'Russia to fulfill S-400 sale to Turkey despite Patriot deal' Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The Kremlin says there is no link between Turkey's possible purchase of US Patriot surface-to-air missile (SAM) systems and that of the advanced Russian-built S-400 air defense missile system, saying Moscow is in the process of fulfilling the terms of the deal with Ankara.
- U.S. Proposes Sale Of Patriot Missile System To Turkey RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The State Department says the United States has proposed the sale of a $3.5 billion Patriot missile system to Turkey.
- Turkey's Purchases of Russian S-400, US Patriot Systems Not Connected - Kremlin Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- Kremlin believes that Turkey's possible purchase of US Patriot Missile System and of Russian S-400 Triumph air defense systems are not connected, and that Russia-Turkey contract on S-400 purchase will be continued, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Wednesday.
- State Department: US Authorizes $3.5Bln Sell of Patriot Missile System to Turkey Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The US government approved a proposed deal worth $3.5 billion for Patriot Missile System and related equipment to Turkey, the State Department said in a statement.
- Bulgaria's Defense Modernization US Dept. of State 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States welcomes Bulgaria's defense modernization plans and looks forward to the country's imminent selection of a new multirole fighter aircraft.
- DoD News: Contracts for December 19, 2018
- France's CSO-1 military observation satellite in orbit Thales 19 Dec 2018 -- The CSO-1 military observation satellite was successfully launched today by Arianespace, using a Soyuz rocket from the Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana. Developed for the French Ministry for the Armed Forces by French space agency CNES, delegated as contracting authority by French defense procurement agency DGA, it was built by Airbus Defence and Space, and features a very-high-resolution optical observation instrument built by Thales Alenia Space.
- New acquisition plans for 2019 and beyond Krauss-Maffei Wegmann 19 Dec 2018 -- NATO and EU member state Hungary is modernizing its land forces and seeking a European alliance for its equipment.
- 19 December 2018 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 19 Dec 2018
- Political settlement to the war in Yemen: Foreign Secretary's statement UK FCO 19 Dec 2018 -- Jeremy Hunt gave a statement in Parliament on how the UK will continue to use diplomatic and humanitarian tools to help settle this terrible conflict.
- Complex Preparations Under Way for Release of Yemeni Prisoners VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- Complex preparations are under way for a mass prisoner exchange between the Saudi-backed government in Yemen and Houthi rebels toward the end of next month, the International Committee of the Red Cross reports.
- Saudi fighter jets attack international airport, airbase in Yemeni capital city Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- Saudi military aircraft have carried out a string of airstrikes against the Sana'a International Airport and al-Dailami airbase in the Yemeni capital city as the Riyadh regime presses ahead with its atrocious aerial bombardment campaign against its impoverished southern neighbor.
- Yemen's Houthis blast Sudan for planned war deployment Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- Yemen's popular Houthi Ansarullah movement has condemned Sudan for seeking to retain and even increase its troops in a Saudi Arabian-led coalition that has invaded the impoverished Arabian Peninsula country.
- Syrian Kurds 'Gravely Concerned' About US Exit VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- Syrian Kurdish officials and residents voiced concerns Wednesday that the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Syria, announced earlier in the day by the White House, could affect the war on the Islamic State terror group and create yet another conflict in the war-torn country.
- Syrian Constitution Committee meeting to be held early 2019 IRNA 19 Dec 2018 -- The Russian Foreign Minister announced that the first meeting of the Syrian Constitution Committee is slated to be held early 2019.
- Russia slams US illegal presence in Syria as 'obstacle' to settlement Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- Russia has slammed the "illegal" presence of US troops in Syria as "a dangerous obstacle" to finding a peace settlement.
- Daesh terrorists executed over 700 prisoners in eastern Syria in two months: Observatory Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says members of the Daesh Takfiri terrorist group have executed more than 700 prisoners in Syria's troubled eastern province of Dayr al-Zawr.
- State Dept Denies Trump Gave 'Greenlight' for Turkish Offensive in Syria Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Monday that US President Donald Trump had responded positively to Turkey's plans to launch an offensive on the eastern side of the Euphrates River.
- Allies React With Alarm to Trump Pull-out Tweet, Kurds Fear Turkish Attack VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- Syrian Kurdish allies of the United States reacted with alarm Wednesday at the surprise announcement by President Donald Trump on Twitter that all American forces have begun withdrawing from Syria.
- Who Are the Kurds? VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The Kurds' involvement in the conflict in Syria is difficult to understand because of their own troubled history that spreads across several regional borders. Here is a look at the current Kurdish crisis and how it came to be:
- Russia Not Increasing Military Presence in Azov Sea - Foreign Ministry Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- Russia is not increasing its military presence in the Sea of ??Azov, its forces there are guarding the Crimean Bridge, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Wednesday.
- 'Multiplicity' of rights violations in Ukraine as fifth winter of conflict bites UN News 19 Dec 2018 -- Rights violations have continued unabated and unaddressed in Ukraine and people are still dying amid ongoing conflict between Government forces and armed separatists in the east of the country, a top UN rights official said on Wednesday
- WFP to cut food aid for Gaza, West Bank Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations' World Food Programme (WFP) says it would cut food aid to around 190,000 impoverished Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank - half of all its recipients there- due to funding shortages.
- EU: US plan on Palestine-Israel conflict must respect 1967 lines Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- Eight European Union member states have warned that US President Donald Trump's plan on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, which is yet to be unveiled, will not be successful if it fails to take into account internationally-agreed parameters for peace, namely a two-state solution along the pre-1967 boundaries.
- IDF Reveals Location of Hezbollah Tunnel Near Blue Line Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The Israeli military revealed on Wednesday that one of the recently discovered Hezbollah tunnels originates near the town of Ramyah on the Lebanese side of the Blue Line, claiming it terminates "several meters into Israeli territory," near the Israeli moshav of Zarit.
- Confirmed 'Blue Line' tunnels 'do not appear' to surface in Israel - UN peacekeeping chief UN News 19 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) has confirmed the existence of at least two tunnels crossing the "Blue Line" – the border demarcation between Lebanon and Israel – but they "do not appear thus far" to have exit points leading to the surface on Israeli territory, the United Nations top peacekeeping official told the Security Council on Wednesday.
- UN Air Service Facing Closure in CAR Due to Funding Shortages Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) might be grounded in the Central African Republic (CAR) because of lack of funds, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said in a press briefing on Tuesday.
- US State Department Calls on Gunmen to Surrender Libya's Sharara Oil Region Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States calls for the immediate and unconditional withdrawal of armed elements from the Sharara oil field region in Libya, US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Robert Palladino said in a press release.
- Somali Region Gets New President After Deadly Election Campaign VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- Lawmakers in Somalia's South West region elected a new president Wednesday, with a former leader of militant group al-Shabab kept off the ballot despite angry protests last week from supporters.
- Jammu & Kashmir: Terror-Infested Indian State Set to Go Under President's Rule Sputnik 19 Dec 2018 -- The central government has recommended the imposition of president's rule in the northernmost Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir at the behest of a report submitted by the state governor.
- U.S. Extends Sanctions On Russian Prosecutor's Son, Daughter Of Late Uzbek President RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The White House has extended financial and travel restrictions on government-linked people from Uzbekistan, Russia, Ukraine, and elsewhere, under a U.S. law aimed at human rights abusers and corrupt officials worldwide.
- OFAC Notifies Congress of Intent to Delist En+, Rusal, and EuroSibEnergo US Treasury 19 Dec 2018 -- The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today notified Congress of its intention to terminate the sanctions imposed on En+ Group plc ("En+"), UC Rusal plc ("Rusal"), and JSC EuroSibEnergo ("ESE") in 30 days. OFAC has determined that the significant restructuring and corporate governance changes will enable them to meet the criteria for delisting. Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska will remain sanctioned, and his property will remain blocked.
- US imposes fresh sanctions on Russia for global 'malign activities' Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States has imposed new sanctions against Russian individuals and entities over what it calls their "malign activities" around the world.
- Soviet Sentimentality: Russians' Regret At U.S.S.R.'s Collapse Hits 14-Year High RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- More Russians regret the breakup of the Soviet Union than at any other time since 2004, an opinion poll shows.
- Sanctions Announcement on Russia US Dept. of State 19 Dec 2018 -- Today, the Departments of State and the Treasury took joint action against Russia's continued and blatant disregard for international norms.
- Treasury Targets Russian Operatives over Election Interference, World Anti-Doping Agency Hacking, and Other Malign Activities US Treasury 19 Dec 2018 -- Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) took action in response to Russia's continued disregard for international norms. Specifically, OFAC designated a former officer of Russia's Main Intelligence Directorate (GRU) for having acted on behalf of sanctioned oligarch Oleg Deripaska (Deripaska). OFAC also issued new designations related to the Internet Research Agency (IRA), an entity previously sanctioned for its efforts to interfere in U.S. elections.
- U.S. Targets GRU Officers Linked To Hacking, Skripal Poisoning With New Sanctions RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The United States has imposed new sanctions on more than a dozen current and former Russian military intelligence agents, including two tied to the poisoning of a former Russian spy in England earlier this year and one linked to Kremlin-connected oligarch Oleg Deripaska.
- US Sanctions More Russians for 'Malign Activities' VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The Trump administration is slapping more sanctions on Russian officials and entities for election interference and what the Treasury Department calls other "malign activities."
- Lithuania Arrests Several Citizens Suspected Of Spying For Russia RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- Several Lithuanians have been arrested and charged with spying for Russia, the Baltic state's chief prosecutor said, drawing an angry reaction from Moscow.
- Russian Businessman Perepilichny Likely Died Of Natural Causes, U.K. Inquest Finds RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- A Russian businessman who was found dead in southern England six years ago likely died of natural causes, a British inquest has found.
- Report Describes Thousands of Hacked EU Diplomatic Cables VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The New York Times reported late Tuesday that hackers, using methods similar to ones long used by an elite unit in the Chinese military, gained access to European Union diplomatic communications networks for three years. The breach allowed the infiltrators to download thousands of sensitive cables.
- Al-Assiri made clandestine visits to Israel to discuss purchase of spyware: Report Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- A report reveals that a high-ranking Saudi intelligence official, who was fired over the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, made clandestine trips to Israel on behalf of Crown Prince bin Salman over the purchase of an Israeli spy tool that is said to have helped the kingdom track dissidents abroad.
- North Korea's Human Rights Emerge as Issue as Nuclear Talks Stall VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- North Korea's human rights record is emerging as the latest issue separating Washington and Pyongyang, as denuclearization talks have stalled.
- President Rouhani: Pres Erdogan stance toward US sanction against Iran decisive IRNA 19 Dec 2018 -- Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, before his departure to Turkey, said Turkey's and Turkish Recep Tayyip Erdogan's positions in recent months vis-à-vis the conspiracy of the US sanctions against Iran have been good and decisive.
- Mogherini: JCPOA opens new channels to engage with Iran IRNA 19 Dec 2018 -- Iran nuclear deal has created new channels for engagement, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Federica Mogherini said.
- Iran's Araqchi in meeting with Finnish officials: Europeans must take operational steps to safeguard JCPOA ISNA 19 Dec 2018 -- Iranian deputy Foreign Minister for Political Affairs, who is in Finland for bilateral talks, has held separate meetings with a number of Finnish officials in Helsinki.
- EU stresses need to maintain JCPOA to keep door open for talks with Iran Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The European Union has once again reaffirmed the need to safeguard the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, saying it keeps the door open for further talks with the country.
- Iran plans exports platform to counter 'economic war' Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- The Iranian government has finalized a directive under which exporters would have to sell their foreign currency earnings on an online trading platform administered by the state.
- Khatami's Brother Prosecuted Over 2009 Election Fraud Claim RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- The brother of Iran's former reformist President Mohammad Khatami is being prosecuted for claiming in a recent interview that ballot-stuffing occurred during the disputed 2009 presidential election, a senior judiciary official has said.
- Iran says Europe's political support of JCPOA praiseworthy, but not enough Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- Iran says Europe's political support for the 2015 nuclear deal is "valuable", but that's not enough, as it must translate its words into action by taking "operational" steps to salvage the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) after the US withdrawal.
- As US 'Debt-Trap Diplomacy' Rhetoric Heats Up, China-Africa Relations Hold Fast VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- When U.S. National Security Adviser John Bolton rolled out the United States' new Africa strategy last week, he used the occasion to identify China as an imminent threat to both American and African interests.
- China embracing world People's Daily 19 Dec 2018 -- President Xi Jinping reaffirmed China's commitment to opening-up even more to the world at a grand gathering on Tuesday to mark the 40th anniversary of the country's reform and opening-up.
- China marks 40th anniversary of reform and opening-up with greater resolve People's Daily 19 Dec 2018 -- China held a grand gathering Tuesday to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the country's reform and opening-up, a great revolution that has changed the destiny of the Chinese nation and influenced the world.
- U.S. senators urge action against CCP meddling in Taiwan elections CNA 19 Dec 2018 -- Six American senators have asked U.S. government agencies to help Taiwan investigate China's alleged meddling in its elections and take action to prevent Beijing from interfering in future elections in democracies around the globe.
- Nikki Haley: Saudi crown prince must stop 'thuggish' behavior Press TV 19 Dec 2018 -- US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley has said that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS) must stop the "thuggish nature in which he has been acting," in the wake of the murder of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
- Abdulrahman El Bahnasawy Sentenced to 40 Years in Prison for Plotting to Carry out Terrorist Attacks in New York City for ISIS in Summer of 2016 US Dept. of Justice 19 Dec 2018 -- Abdulrahman El Bahnasawy, 20, of Missausagua, Canada, was sentenced to 40 years in prison, and a lifetime of supervised release, for plotting to carry out terrorist attacks in New York City during the summer of 2016 in support of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), a designated foreign terrorist organization. El Bahnasawy pleaded guilty on Oct. 13, 2016, to a seven-count Superseding Information charging El Bahnasawy with terrorism offenses.
- World Police Body Warns of 'Second Wave' of Terrorists VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The Islamic State group may be defeated geographically in the Middle East, but radical extremism is spreading to other parts of the world, and a new crop of potential terrorists now in prison will be out in a few years.
- Britain, EU Accelerate Planning for 'No-Deal Brexit' VOA 19 Dec 2018 -- The European Commission says it has started to implement plans for a no-deal Brexit – in preparation for Britain crashing out of the European Union without a withdrawal deal – which would dislocate manufacturers' supply chains, disrupt air-travel, and gridlock busy seaports on both sides of the English Channel.
- Trump Urges Kosovo To Reach 'Historic' Deal With Serbia RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- U.S. President Donald Trump has urged Kosovo to do everything to reach a long-standing deal with Serbia two decades after their war ended, according to the Kosovo president's website.
- Kyrgyz President Says He Is 'Not Fighting' With His Predecessor RFE/RL 19 Dec 2018 -- Kyrgyz President Sooronbai Jeenbekov says he is not "fighting" with his predecessor, Almazbek Atambaev. Speaking to journalists at his first annual meeting with the media as president, Jeenbekov said on December 19 that his major goal is "nothing but to work day and night for our people and our country."
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