Port Louis – VIJAY SHAH via NICOLAS ATHIANE and Inside News
The concept of ‘standing your own ground’ has taken on a new meaning in the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius, after an elderly couple were arrested for allegedly beating to death a burglar who targeted their restaurant businessin the Sainte-Croix district of the capital Port Louis, Inside News reports.
To Chun Marlene Leung, aged 68, and her brother, named only as Alex and aged 65, were arrested after the death of a local and notorious criminal, 50-year-old Gaëtan Patrick Suave, who was said to have climbed into the restaurant via a window above a door. Suave then threatened the Leung siblings with a tool. A struggle ensued as the restaurant owners tried to disarm the crook, and Suave was left in what local police officers described as a ‘bloodbath’.
Police were called to the restaurant yesterday morning around 2.00 am, and found Suave unconscious. He was ferried to the city’s Dr AG Jeetoo Hospital but died five hours later. The Leungs were also taken to the same hospital after sustaining injuries in the fight to protect their business. Alex is still undergoing treatment and has not yet submitted a statement to police. Marlene Leung appeared at Port Louis Court yesterday afternoon on a possible charge of murder, after being taken into custody by the city’s police.
Silang – VIJAY SHAH via MARLLY ROME BONDOC and GMA News
Mirroring the introduction of body cameras for police forces in the countries of Europe and North America, the national police of the Philippines have announced that they will be considering fitting body cameras to their officers in the new year, according to a report by GMA News Online today.
The small cameras, usually attached to the police officer’s helmet, hat or upper body, help ensure the officer’s safety when apprehending criminals or carrying out raids, but also serve as valuable video evidence for court cases. This year, police in the United Kingdom have also adopted the cameras, particularly in road patrols and traffic law enforcement duties.
The director general of the Philippines National Police (PNP), Ronald Dela Rosa, welcomed the plan to fit his officers with camera devices, an initiative suggested by some local governments in the archipelago. However the final decision on procuring the cameras rests with the national government, who will assess whether the program can be funded from the country’s budget. If all goes well, the first cameras will be distributed to police forces next year, GMA News reports.
Dela Rosa, in a doorstop interview conducted while visiting the PNP Academy in Silang, Cavite province yesterday, said that the initiative is currently passing through the Philippines Congress (parliament) where a bill on it is being debated. He also said the cameras will be useful in anti-narcotics operations and praised the idea as a ‘welcome development’. The Philippines president, Rodrigo Duterte, has made fighting the endemic drugs problem in the Philippines a major plank of his presidency, although critics at home and abroad have condemned Duterte for ordering the wholesale killing of both dealers and addicts, often by police and paramilitaries in his attempts to rid the archipelago of drugs. Thousands of people have already lost their lives in extrajudicial encounters.
Police in the city of Pasig, on the outskirts of capital Manila, have already started wearing cameras since last week, with Eastern Police District director Chief Superintendent Romulo Sapitula announcing that the cameras would help prevent police officers there from accusations of improper behaviour when carrying out their duties. A total of 48 devices were procured, with each police unit receiving three.
The country’s Congress is considering making it legally compulsory for police to wear body cameras and a portion of the budget has been set aside to obtain more than 37,000 devices for distribution nationally.
A policeman on the island of Mauritius has been arrested after he was found in possession of a drug described by media as the ‘new Valium’, local news site Mo Ti News reports.
Avinash Buleeram, a constable aged 29 attached to a police station in Moka, in the island’s centre, was found carrying ninety pills of a drug called Pregabalin. The highly potent drug is normally used to treat epilepsy, fibromyalgia, nerve pain and anxiety, but has also raised concerns due to its increasing use as a recreational drug, especially among prisoners, and has the effects of calming and ‘taking the edge off of things’. Pregabalin can be lethal in high doses.
Buleeram was arrested this past Thursday by the Flacq district’s drug squad while at a bus station in the small town of Sebastopol in Mauritius’ east, close to the border of Flacq and Moka districts. The drugs were allegedly found in a grey Toyota car he was driving with a friend. Both men were promptly arrested and appeared at a court in Flacq on Friday.
The constable, who has six years’ service with the Mauritian police, is now being detained at Beau Bassin central jail, after fellow police officers protested against Buleeram being set free on bail. He could face a drug trafficking charge. Buleeram’s passenger was also found in possession of a cannabis cigarette, but was successful in getting bail.
Officers arrested the two man based on surveillance, catching them unawares at the Sebastopol bus station. A search of the vehicle revealed cigarettes blended with cannabis and a box of Pregabalin tablets at 150 mg strength. Police carried out further searches, turning up another 34 Pregabalin pills along with 27 tablets of another version of the drug, marketed as Cabalin.
Buleeram was found not to have a medical prescription for the pills seized from him, and his friend denied all knowledge of the constable’s possession. It was not reported for what reason Buleeram had the drugs.
Accomplished Baltimore rap artist Sullee Justice (Sullee J) returns with a brand new single off his fresh new EP album “Spear”, released this past Wednesday. The single, “Pay Homage” is a special collaboration with local talent Fudge, with production by Valentine Beats.
Pay Homage focuses on the passion that fuels an artist as they head for their big break and struggles they face as they try to climb to the top of their game. One hundred percent animated and with backing vocals from both Sullee and Fudge, you hear the struggle told as a story while navigating life, police corruption, Islamophobia, crime and other issues of now. Even the Donald makes an appearance sitting in the Oval Room, voting people off like he was an America’s Got Talent judge.
The video highlights the hypocrisy in the American mainstream media, particularly against the Muslim community and how certain circumstances are staged in order to encourage hatred against a minority.
Pay Homage’s amazing new video can be viewed on the official GlobalFaction YouTube channel and you can also listen free of charge and download it to your Spotify album here.
In the wake of a massive rise in reported hate crimes such as racist attacks and taunts following the outcome of the EU referendum in June 2016, a London local government body has launched a specialised helpline for its residents to report incidents and crimes of xenophobia, anti-Semitism and other forms of hate.
Harrow Council, in north-east Greater London, had set up the service after several people in the borough of Harrow came forward to report ‘low level’ incidences of verbal racial abuse, which the council’s iHarrow portal stated was “causing distress amongst community members” in the borough of 215,000, one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse among London’s 32 borough areas. The council also expressed concerns that while Harrow escaped the worst of the spike in hate-motivated incidents in the wake of Brexit, much of these crimes were going unreported to the police.
The new hotline, 0800 138 1625, which is free to call and runs 24 hours a day, was set up by the council in tandem with the Stop Hate UK service. The service is also being promoted across the borough to encourage people to speak about hate crimes affecting them, their families, friends and communities.
People who witness others being personally attacked or having their property attacked because of their disability, race, religion, creed, sexual orientation or gender identity and where it is not an emergency can call the helpline in strict confidence. People whose first language is not English can arrange for a translator to return their call within five working days by simply leaving their contact details.
VIJAY SHAH via Ace Worldwide News Group/Dogan News Agency/Hurriyet
As Turkey still reels from several bombings in Istanbul and Ankara and an attempted coup by a faction of the armed forces last Friday, more tragedy struck today as a number of ‘unknown assailants’ opened fire on a group of police officers in the Maçka district of Trabzon province in northern Turkey, which borders the Black Sea. Two officers were reported killed, according to the English-language version of the newspaper Hürriyet, via Ace Worldwide News Group and local news organisation, the Doğan News Agency.
The police officers were conducting road checks when the gunmen opened fire on them from a nearby forest. Two officers were killed on the spot and five other officers and a passing civilian were injured. Extra police and ambulances were drafted in. Locals angered by the atrocity and spurred on by the recent failed coup, took up arms and proceeded to the forest to find the killers. Clashes were reported, however there is no word as to the fate of the gunmen.
Last Friday, a coup was instigated by members of the Turkish army opposed to the government of president Tayyip Recep Erdogan. While the president was on holiday in the Mediterranean port of Marmaris, soldiers and army officers were seen driving tanks down main streets in Ankara, the country’s capital, and road blocks were set up in Istanbul. An F-16 bomber plane even aimed gunfire at the Turkish parliament. The rebellion was quickly put down, with around 200 people killed and more than a 1,000 injured. Since then, Erdogan has vowed to flush the ‘virus’ of rebellion out of the armed forces and police. Thousands have been arrested or dismissed from their posts, with some senior army officers fleeing to nearby Greece.
It is not known if the Maçka attackers were connected to the coup, or to Kurdish rebels or Daesh, both of whom have a history of launching fatal attacks on Turkish soil. The Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) usually launch attacks on army or police attachments and patrols, but their attacks are largely confined to the Turkish part of Kurdistan.
Drugs are horrible substances. Whether legal or illegal, recreational narcotics usually cause harm to the body, damaging the user from the inside and out. So instead of sniffing that line or hitting that pipe, why not tuck into some Mauritian-style dhal puri instead. You’ll look a million rupees, and you won’t have to worry about the police pulling you over and busting you for illicit dhal puri possession.
For those who have never encountered the awesomeness that is dhal puri, let me explain. This is a snack popular on the island of Mauritius and an unforgettable part of my island’s culinary landscape. It is unleavened bread (rather like a chapati or thick tortilla) filled with lentils and spices, and often consumed as street food. Also known as ‘dhol/dhall puri’, this food goes great with a dollop of ‘zasar’ (pickle).
Bomb disposal squads were called into the airport on Saturday to investigate an item left in a bin on the airport’s premises at the North Terminal. The terminal was shut down and evacuated and a controlled explosion was carried out on the item, later identified as a gun.
British airports are on high alert after the killing of around 130 people by three teams of gunmen armed with guns and explosive devices in the centre of Paris on Friday afternoon. Two or three bombs exploded near the Stade de France where a football friendly was taken. People were also massacred at a concert and while dining at a Cambodian restaurant and at local bars. Several of the gunmen are believed to have entered France via road from Belgium with contraband weapons possibly smuggled in from the Balkans.
Alongside the weapon at Gatwick, police also found personal items possibly linked to the French citizen, who is now in custody. Sussex Police said that the items were removed to be forensically examined and that the viability of the weapon, whether it was live or decommissioned, has not yet been established by their ballistics team.
The Daily Mail newspaper reported that the French national, a man whose details have not been given in the Crawley News report, has in fact two guns on his person. He was said to have walked up to a check in desk operated by budget airline EasyJet. This has not yet been confirmed officially though.
The report does identify the man as being of 41 years of age and originating from Vendôme, a small ton in central France, around 100 kilometres from Paris. He has been charged with firearms offences. Airport officials say the French citizen had not passed through any passport or security checks.
Detective Superintendent Nick May said: “The man is being interviewed as we try to determine the circumstances of the incident, but at this time it is too early to say what his intentions, if any, were.
“However, given the events in Paris on Friday evening, there is heightened awareness around any such incident and it is best that we treat the matter in all seriousness.
“We are aware that there is concern about what has happened in France, but the general threat level remains the same and people should be aware as usual of anyone acting suspiciously and report any concerns immediately.”
Police attended the incident at 9.30 am local time and the North Terminal was evacuated about an hour later, the Crawley News reports.
A Gatwick Airport spokesman said: “Following a full and thorough search by the Police, we are now able to re-open our North Terminal to passengers. Passengers should check with their airlines for information about their journey.
“Our priority is always the safety and welfare of our passengers and extra Gatwick staff are on hand to assist those who have experienced significant disruption to their journey today.
“We are working with our airlines to return North Terminal to usual operations. South Terminal is operating as normal.”
The French capital is in mourning today after a coordinated attack by terrorists said to be allied with the so-called Islamic State on bars, restaurants and the Stade de France left around 150 people dead. Most of the fatalities occurred at a Cambodian restaurant where terrorists armed with AK-47s gunned down diners and tourists as they dined. Suicide bombs were also set off at one of Paris‘ largest stadia, the Stade de France, where a football match between France and Germany was taking place. Gunmen also targetted a death metal concert, shooting at concert goers as they fled screaming.
The news has sent ripples of shock and disgust throughout the world, and social media posts urged people to pray for Paris and France, as well as the victims. Another 180 people have been hospitalised, many of them with serious injuries.
Indian news service Rediff.com reports that sets of terrorists, some carrying guns and others wearing bombs strapped to vests, attacked seven sites around central Paris. One of these is believed to be the Avenue de la Republique, popular with tourists and packed as Paris gears up for the Christmas season.
Rediff reported that the worst carnage took place on yesterday night (Friday 14th November) as gunmen stormed a concert where am American death metal band were performing. Dozens of fans were taken hostage, and the terrorists were reported as hurling grenades at panicked concertgoers as they tried to flee the venue. The Parisian gendarmerie later stormed the Bataclan concert hall building, killing three attackers, reeling in horror at the bloody scenes that unfolded before them last night. Pictures taken after the siege show police securing the road just outside the Bataclan and establishing a perimeter.
The prosecutor of Paris, Francois Molins, said that five attackers have been killed. Other reports said six militants had been taken down, but no-one has yet determined how many took part in the atrocities or if any gunmen are still at large.
In five other shootings, it was reported that 38 were murdered. These took place in the 10th and 11th arrondissements (districts) of Paris, an area comparable to outlying parts of central London. Two explosions occurred outside the Stade de France, where the France vs. Germany match was in attendance by the country’s president Francois Hollande. Reports of casualties at the stadium have not yet been confirmed by police or the prosecutor’s office, but spectators were seen vacating the stadium in droves.
It is not yet known who exactly was behind the attacks, but the president believes that IS were responsible. Some reports claim that IS have claimed responsibility, hours after British IS member Mohammed al-Emwazi, popularly known as ‘Jihadi John’ was allegedly killed in a drone rocket strike in Raqqah, Syria.
Following the attacks, Hollande declared a nationwide state of emergency, the first in many years and today also instituted a three-day period of mourning for the many who lost their lives going about their daily business. President Hollande also ordered the closing of France’s borders to prevent any remaining gunmen from fleeing. Paris has gone into virtual shutdown with the city’s Metro train service as well as schools, universities and government building closed down today.
Hollande who was led to safety as the Stade de France attack unfolded, spoke on French television to say that the country would stand firm and united.
“This is a terrible ordeal that again assails us,” he said. “We know where it comes from, who these criminals are, who these terrorists are.”
He later visited the Bataclan hall, and said that France would wage a ‘merciless’ fight against terrorist forces. Thousands of police, paramedics and doctors were put on immediate emergency duty and all leave of absence was cancelled. Around 1,500 army reinforcements were brought into Paris and hospitals were getting ready for the influx of injured.
IS have claimed responsibility, saying that the attacks were in revenge for Western and Arab state-led strikes against their operatives in Syria. They have lauded the atrocity as an ‘act of war’.
All sporting fixtures in Paris have been cancelled.
Several cities including London, Melbourne in Australia, New York and Dublin, Ireland have lit up buildings in the colours of the French tricouleur in solidarity with Paris.
UAE president Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan has sent a telegram stating that the Paris teror attacks are against all of humanity. Governments, including those from the UK and US have also expressed their horror at the atrocities.