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Suicide vest is vital clue after Uganda blasts

In Uncategorized on July 15, 2010 at 1:00 pm

KAMPALA (AFP) – A suicide bomber carried out at least one of the two bomb attacks that killed 76 people as they watched the World Cup final in Kampala restaurants and arrests have been made, a minister said Wednesday.

A Somalian Al-Qaeda inspired group has claimed the attacks and police have already found an unexploded suicide vest at an another site, seen as evidence of a botched plan for a third bomb strike.

People look for survivors at an Ethiopian-owned restaurant in the Kabalagala area of Kampala. AFP

One militant blew himself up at an Ethiopian restaurant in Kabalagala, a southern Kampala district, where crowds had gathered to watch the football match on Sunday night.

“We can confirm at least for the case of Kabalagala that it was a suicide bomber,” State Minister for Internal Affairs, Matia Kasaija, told AFP.

“We have arrested some suspicious characters. These are people of interest. Some are Ugandans, some are Somalis,” he added.

The second attack at the same time was on a crowded bar in the Ugandan capital. The blasts have been claimed by Shebab insurgents in Somalia, who said it was in retaliation for the presence of Ugandan troops in an African Union force in Somalia.

US President Barack Obama said that groups like Al-Qaeda did not care about African lives as he condemned the Kampala attacks.

Obama, leveraging his African heritage, took direct aim at Shebab and Al-Qaeda over the attacks.

“What you?ve seen in some of the statements that have been made by these terrorist organizations is that they do not regard African life as valuable in and of itself,” Obama told the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC).

“They see it as a potential place where you can carry out ideological battles that kill innocents without regard to long-term consequences for their short-term tactical gains,” said the US leader, whose father was Kenyan.

Ugandan police have not given details of the identities of those arrested.

But national police chief Kale Kayihura said Tuesday that a suicide vest — laden with explosives and fitted with a detonator — had been found packed in a black laptop bag at a club in Kampala’s Makindye district on Monday.

“We have established that what was found at the discotheque was in fact a suicide vest, and it could also be used as an IED” or improvised explosive device, he told reporters.

While the bombers’ actions appeared to support the Shebab’s claim of responsibility, the police chief pointed a finger at a homegrown Muslim rebel group known as the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF).

“Shebab is linked with ADF,” he said. “ADF is composed of Ugandans, Shebab and ADF are linked to Al-Qaeda.”

Ismael Rukwago, a senior ADF commander based in Democratic Republic of Congo, denied any involvement. “We are not part of this thing, we are absolutely denying. We have no reason, these are innocent people,” he told AFP by telephone.

The bombings were the deadliest in East Africa since Al-Qaeda attacks against the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1988.

They were the first by the Shebab outside Somalia, marking an unprecedented internationalisation of Somalia’s 20-year-old civil conflict.

Shebab’s top leader had warned in an audio message this month that Uganda and Burundi would face retaliation for contributing to an African Union (AU) force supporting the western-backed Somali transitional government.

The Shebab accuse the AU force (AMISOM) of killing civilians during its operations around the tiny perimeter of Mogadishu housing President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed’s embattled administration.

The Ugandans were the first to deploy to Somalia in early 2007.

Many of the injured from the Kampala attacks remain in hospital and not all of the bodies have been identified. It is known that a US national and an Irish woman were among the dead.

Source: SGGP

Hull boss Brown avoids spotlight after vital win

In Uncategorized on November 9, 2009 at 12:00 pm

HULL, England, Nov 9, 2009 (AFP) – Hull manager Phil Brown opted to keep a low profile after his side eased the pressure on their beleaguered leader with a 2-1 win over Stoke.

Brown has been fighting to save his job in recent weeks and he chose not to speak to the media after Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink hit a last-gasp winner at the KC Stadium on Sunday.

Hull City manager Phil Brown issues instructions to his players during the match between Hull City and Stoke City (AFP photo)

Hull, having won just three times in 33 Premier League games, had seemed destined for another damaging defeat after a first-half strike from Matthew Etherington.

But Seyi Olofinjana levelled for the Tigers and Vennegoor of Hesselink struck moments after Stoke had Abdoulaye Faye sent off to lift Hull out of the relegation zone.

“He’s having a beer – he deserves one,” assistant manager Brian Horton said.

“He does like the spotlight, there’s nothing wrong with that but this time he’s chosen not to. He’s a good manager and does lots of good things that people don’t see. He’s got a great future in the game.”

Hull were the better team throughout and Etherington’s effort came against the run of play on 29 minutes after the hosts had already missed several chances.

Olofinjana, who quit Stoke for Hull in pre-season, hit a superb equaliser just after the hour.

Faye’s dismissal for a second bookable offence left the visitors hanging on, and substitute Vennegoor of Hesselink fired home after a Jimmy Bullard shot was beaten away.

Stoke boss Tony Pulis said: “It is the third time we have led away from home this year and not won the game.

“We weren’t at our best but when Matty scored we were hoping that would take us on.”

Source: SGGP Bookmark & Share

12th NA opens sixth session, discusses vital issues

In Politics-Society on October 21, 2009 at 1:08 am

12th NA opens sixth session, discusses vital issues

QĐND – Tuesday, October 20, 2009, 20:52 (GMT+7)

The sixth session of the 12th National Assembly convened in Hanoi on Oct. 20, putting on the table vital issues related to the country’s sustainable development in the context of the global economic recession.

Addressing the opening ceremony, NA Chairman Nguyen Phu Trong stressed the major difficulties and challenges to the country’s future sustainable development, stemming from the global economic crisis and the abnormal changes of the climate.

Highlighting the whole nation’s efforts to prevent an economic recession and maintain rational growth rates, Chairman Trong called for a firmer resolve to surmount obstacles in order to accelerate economic growth in 2010, stabilise the macro economy and ensure social security, creating a foundation for rapid and sustainable development in the coming years.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung presented the Government’s report, accenting emerging issues related to the implementation of the 2009 socio-economic development tasks.

The NA deputies also heard the President of the Vietnam Fatherland Front, Huynh Dam, summing up almost 1,700 opinions contributed by voters and people nationwide.

The opinions mainly focused on the implementation of the Government’s stimulus packages; labour, employment and people’s living conditions; environmental pollution and food hygiene; urban management and traffic safety; and combating corruption.

The NA’s Economic Committee presented a report on the socio-economic situation in 2009 and tasks for 2010.

The report said that though the country’s economy has averted recession and remained stable, there have been weaknesses in macro-economic management, restraining economic growth, slowing the disbursement of investment capital, and resulting in unsustainable poverty reduction.

The committee set targets for maintaining the macro-economy, preventing high inflation, keeping rational economic growth rates for 2010 in order to create a solid foundation for the following years.

The NA session is scheduled to last for 32 days.

Source: VNA

Source: QDND Bookmark & Share