“Final battle” of ISIS is in its final days, says commander of U.S.-backed Syrian forces – CBS News

The “final battle” with ISIS is in its final days, with ISIS is pinned down to an area of around a quarter of a square mile. That’s the update reporters received Saturday from the commander of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces, Jia Furat.

He said the final ISIS village of Baghuz Fawqani had not yet fallen, but his ground forces were holding fire and moving forward cautiously because so many civilians remain trapped as human shields.

Military officials say they severely underestimated the number of civilians inside that village when they launched the offensive to crush the last remnants of the so-called caliphate one week ago

Source: “Final battle” of ISIS is in its final days, says commander of U.S.-backed Syrian forces – CBS News

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Egypt mummies: New tombs found in Minya – BBC News

Fifty mummies dating back to the Ptolemaic era (305-30BC) have been found by Egyptian archaeologists, the antiquities ministry says.

The mummies, of which 12 were children, were found in four burial chambers 9m (30ft) deep in the Tuna El-Gebel site in Minya, south of the capital Cairo.artefact fragments on display in Minya

Some were wrapped in linen, others were in stone coffins or wooden sarcophagi.

Their identities were unknown, officials said, but they were likely to have held important positions.

Source: Egypt mummies: New tombs found in Minya – BBC News

Afghanistan attack: More than 100 security officers killed in Taliban assault on military base | The Independent

More than 100 security forces members have been killed in a Taliban assault on a military base in eastern Afghanistan, authorities said.

An interior ministry spokesperson said a suicide car bomber struck the base first, followed by insurgents who opened fire at the Afghan forces in Maidan Shar, the capital of Maidan Wardak province.

An official in the defence ministry, speaking anonymously, told Reuters the death toll was as high as 126.

Source: Afghanistan attack: More than 100 security officers killed in Taliban assault on military base | The Independent

Israel, in rare move, announces attacks on Iranian targets in Syria, delivers warning | Fox News

By Frank Mills

Israel confirmed early Monday that its military attacked Iranian targets in Syria, in a rare statement on such an operation.

The military’s statement was issued hours after Israeli missile defenses intercepted an incoming missile over the Golan Heights in the wake of rare daylight air raid near the Damascus International Airport.

The Israeli military initially had declined to comment on the airstrike, though it said a rocket fired at the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights was intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome defense system.

Israeli warplanes have used Lebanon’s airspace recently to strike deep inside Syria, including attacking a warehouse near Damascus International Airport earlier this month, according to Syrian state media.

Source: Israel, in rare move, announces attacks on Iranian targets in Syria, delivers warning | Fox News

Trump visits air base where remains of Americans killed in Syria are returned – CBS News

Four Americans were killed this week in an attack claimed by ISIS

President Trump announced Saturday morning he was heading to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware, where the remains of four Americans killed in an attack in Syria on Wednesday will be returned.

Source: Trump visits air base where remains of Americans killed in Syria are returned – CBS News

Syria attack kills US service members. ISIS claims responsibility – CNNPolitics

Washington (CNN)ISIS has claimed responsibility for a deadly explosion that killed US service members in the Syrian city of Manbij on Wednesday.

US service members were killed in the attack, according to a tweet from the spokesperson for the US-led coalition Operation Inherent Resolve.
“U.S. service members were killed during an explosion while conducting a routine patrol in Syria today. We are still gathering information and will share additional details at a later time,” the tweet said.
The coalition has not said how many service members were killed. Prior to Wednesday’s attack, only two US service members had been killed in action in Syria since the start of the campaign in 2014

Source: Syria attack kills US service members. ISIS claims responsibility – CNNPolitics

Iranian cargo plane crash kills 15, leaves 1 survivor

TEHRAN, Iran — A decades-old Iranian Boeing 707 military cargo plane reportedly carrying meat from Kyrgyzstan crashed on Monday while trying to land west of Iran’s capital, killing 15 people on board and leaving a sole survivor, authorities said.

The crash of the jetliner marked just the latest aviation disaster for Iran, which hoped to replace its aging fleet under terms of the 2015 nuclear deal with world powers.

But instead, President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the accord in May scuttled billions of dollars in planned sales by Airbus and Boeing Co. to the Islamic Republic, only increasing the danger for passengers in Iran planes.

The aircraft, which bore the paint scheme of the Iranian air force’s Saha civilian airline, was making emergency landing around 8:30 a.m. Monday at Fath Airport, an airfield controlled by Iran’s powerful paramilitary Revolutionary Guard. The plane skidded off the runway, crashed through a perimeter fence and into a residential neighborhood.

Source: Iranian cargo plane crash kills 15, leaves 1 survivor

Netanyahu Says Israel Struck Iranian Weapons Depot at Damascus Airport – CNN

In a rare acknowledgment of Israeli operations in Syria, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the country’s air force struck Syria over the weekend.

Speaking at Sunday’s weekly Cabinet meeting, Netanyahu said: “In the last 36 hours, the air force has attacked Iranian warehouses with Iranian weapons in the Damascus International Airport. The total sum of the last attacks prove that we are more determined than ever to act against Iran in Syria exactly as we promised.”
Netanyahu, who also serves as Israel’s Defense Minister, made the statement while addressing outgoing Israel Defense Forces (IDF) Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Gadi Eizenkot.

Source: Netanyahu Says Israel Struck Iranian Weapons Depot at Damascus Airport – CNN

5 killed in Afghanistan attack – CNN

Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN)Attackers killed five people at a police station in Herat, Afghanistan, on Saturday evening, Herat police Chief Aminullah Amarkhel told CNN.

The victims were three policemen and two civilians, according to the regional hospital in Herat, in the far west of the country. Herat provincial spokesman Jelany Farhad confirmed that one of the civilians killed was a child.
Four other people were wounded in the attack and brought to the hospital.
There was no immediate claim of responsibility.

Source: 5 killed in Afghanistan attack – CNN

Militant Suspected Of USS Cole Bombing Is Killed In U.S. Airstrike, Trump Says : NPR

President Trump and U.S. Central Command on Sunday confirmed that a United States airstrike in Yemen has killed one of the militants believed to be behind the deadly USS Cole bombing in 2000.

Jamal al-Badawi, an al-Qaida commander, was on the FBI’s most wanted list for his part in the attack. Seventeen American sailors died in the bombing, which came when two suicide attackers in a small boat detonated explosives as the Navy destroyer was refueling in Yemen’s Aden harbor. The blast left a gaping hole in the side of the Cole. Nearly 40 others were injured in the attack.

“Our GREAT MILITARY has delivered justice for the heroes lost and wounded in the cowardly attack on the USS Cole,” President Trump tweeted on Sunday. “We have just killed the leader of that attack, Jamal al-Badawi. Our work against al Qaeda continues. We will never stop in our fight against Radical Islamic Terrorism!”

U.S. military officials had previously announced they targeted al-Badawi in a “precision strike” in Yemen on New Year’s Day. They said there was no collateral damage.

Source: Militant Suspected Of USS Cole Bombing Is Killed In U.S. Airstrike, Trump Says : NPR

At least 30 workers killed in Afghanistan gold mine collapse : NPR

At least 30 workers were killed and several others injured when a gold mine in northeastern Afghanistan collapsed Sunday, local officials said.

Nek Mohammad Nazari, a spokesman for the provincial governor, told Agence France-Presse the victims were illegally searching for gold and had dug deep in a riverbed in the Kohistan district of Badakhshan province when the walls caved in.

Local villagers and the Taliban alike rely heavily on illegal mining for revenue in the region.

“The villagers have been involved in this business for decades with no government control over them,” Nazari said. “We have sent a rescue team to the area, but villagers have already started removing bodies from the site.”

Source: At least 30 workers killed in Afghanistan gold mine collapse : NPR

File image of gold mining on a mountainside in Baghlan province, Afghanistan in 2013

Source: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-46772155

Egypt police ‘kill 40 militants’ in raids after tourist bus blast – BBC News

Police in Egypt have killed dozens of militants during security raids on their hideouts, the interior ministry has said.

The raids killed “40 terrorists” in Giza and North Sinai on Saturday morning, according to a statement from the ministry.

It said the militants were planning a series of attacks on tourist sites, churches and military personnel.

The raids followed Friday’s roadside bomb attack on a tour bus in Giza.

No group has yet said it was behind the blast, which killed three Vietnamese tourists and an Egyptian tour guide, but Islamist militants have targeted tourists in Egypt in the past.

Source: Egypt police ‘kill 40 militants’ in raids after tourist bus blast – BBC News

Deadly blast hits tour bus near Giza pyramids in Egypt – BBC News

A roadside blast kills three Vietnamese tourists and an Egyptian tour guide in the Giza region.

A bomb hidden beside a wall went off as the bus carrying 14 Vietnamese tourists was passing.

Two people were critically wounded, Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly said.

The bus hit the device after it went off its planned route without alerting security forces, Mr Madbouly added.

All of the injured are Vietnamese tourists apart from the bus driver, who is Egyptian.

Source: Deadly blast hits tour bus near Giza pyramids in Egypt – BBC News