*Videos* Obama’s Flip-Flop On Same-Sex Marriage: ‘As A Christian Man, I Believe Marriage Is Between A Man And A Woman’

gay-marriage

Barack Hussein Obama: “I believe marriage is between a man and a woman. I am not in favor of gay marriage.” He went on to say “for me as a Christian, [marriage] is a sacred union.”

Obama referred to same-sex marriages as unstrategic, and said it was against his religious beliefs, and something that should be in the hands of churches rather than government.

Here is a time line of Obama’s flip-flop stance on same sex marriages:

1996 – SUPPORTS MARRIAGE EQUALITY: Then Illinois Senate candidate Obama submitted a survey to a newspaper called Outlines saying, “I favor legalizing same-sex marriages, and would fight efforts to prohibit such marriages.” (Read the documents here.)

1998 – UNDECIDED ON MARRIAGE: In a political questionnaire, when asked if the “Illinois government should recognize same-sex marriages,” Obama’s response was “Undecided.”

2004 – LESS CONCERNED ABOUT ‘MARRIAGE’: In an interview with the Windy City Times, Obama avoided the issue of marriage, saying “I think we can get civil unions passed. […] I’m less concerned about the name.”

2006–2007 – SUPPORTS CIVIL UNIONS: Obama repeatedly separated his support for secular civil unions from recognizing religious definitions of marriage. In his 2006 bestseller The Audacity of Hope, he supported “a special place for the union of a man and a woman” (pp. 222-223) in society.  During a 2007 CNN debate, he said he supports equal rights, but “it’s up to the individual denominations to make a decision” on marriage, a sentiment he echoed at the HRC/logo gay issues debate (PDF).

2008 (February) – SUPPORTS DOMA REPEAL: In a campaign “Open Letter to the LGBT Community,” Obama wrote, “I support the complete repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act…I believe we should get rid of that statute altogether.”

2008 (August) – OPPOSES MARRIAGE: In an interview with Rick Warren at the Saddleback Church, Obama defined marriage by saying, “I believe that marriage is the union between a man and a woman. Now, for me as a Christian…it is also a sacred union. God’s in the mix.” Even though Obama still supported civil unions at this point, his statements drew a bold line between opposite-sex couples and same-sex couples.

2009 – SUPPORTS CIVIL UNIONS: In his 2009 Pride Month Proclamation, President Obama reiterated his administration’s support for “civil unions and Federal rights for LGBT couples.”

2010 (May) – SUPPORTS DOMA REPEAL: In his 2010 Pride Month Proclamation, he went further, revisiting his “Open Letter” promises by suggesting “we must give committed gay couples the same rights and responsibilities afforded to any married couple, and repeal the Defense of Marriage Act.” This statement implied a recognition that there are, in fact, married same-sex couples. By this point in time, same-sex marriage was legal in Iowa, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Vermont, and New Hampshire.

2010 (October) – EVOLVING ON MARRIAGE: It was during an interview with AMERICAblog’s Joe Sudbay that the President began “evolving” on the issue. He admitted, “I have been to this point unwilling to sign on to same-sex marriage,” but added that “I think that it is an issue that I wrestle with” and “I think it’s fair to say that it’s something that I think a lot about.”

2011 (February) – GRAPPLING WITH MARRIAGE: Though the decision to no longer defend DOMA was a big step toward marriage equality, White House spokesman Jay Carney said that Obama was still “grappling” with his personal views on the issue.

2011 (May) – NO MENTION OF COUPLES: Unlike in the previous two years, the White House’s 2011 Pride Month Proclamation notably omitted any mention of recognizing same-sex relationships, through civil unions or otherwise.

2011 (June 17) OPPOSED MARRIAGE IN 1996?: White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer told Netroots Nation that the president was not the one who filled out the pro-marriage equality questionnaire in 1996 (i.e. it was fake, though it had Obama’s signature). The White House distanced itself from Pfeiffer’s remarks, telling Metro Weekly, “Dan was not familiar with the history of the questionnaire that was brought up today.”

2011 (June 19) YES HE SIGNED IT, NO HE DIDN’T SUPPORT MARRIAGE: According to the New York Times, Pfeiffer was “mistaken.” Obama did fill out the 1996 questionnaire, but he was “really referring to civil unions.”

2011 (June 20) STILL EVOLVING ON MARRIAGE: Carney told the Washington Blade and Metro Weekly that Pfeiffer was actually referring to “another questionnaire” and refused to say anything more about the president’s position on the issue.

Barack Obama on Gay Marriage – 2008:

source: blog-logo

Wales UK: Dic Penderyn should be pardoned, MPs told in petition

Ann Clwyd says people feel Dic Penderyn was ‘wrongly executed’

A miner hanged for stabbing a soldier in a 19th Century industrial rebellion should be pardoned, MPs have been told.

Richard Lewis – known as Dic Penderyn – is regarded by many as a martyr for his part in the 1831 Merthyr Rising.

Presenting a petition to the House of Commons, Cynon Valley MP Ann Clwyd said there was a “strong feeling” in Wales that he was wrongly executed and should have his named cleared.

The decision lies in the hands of Justice Secretary Michael Gove.

Red flag

The Merthyr Rising was sparked by anger at low pay, debt and appalling working conditions in the ironworks and mines of the south Wales valleys.

The week-long rebellion, the first time a red flag was raised for a socialist cause, broke out over a threat to cut ironworkers’s wages.

MPs heard Lewis was arrested and charged with stabbing Donald Black with a bayonet as soldiers tried to quell the unrest in June 1831.

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Dic Penderyn faces the hangman’s noose – illustration by Dewi Bowen

Ms Clwyd told the Commons on Monday the people of Merthyr were convinced of Lewis’s innocence but he was convicted and hanged in August that year.

She said evidence had been suppressed, a witness admitted lying under oath, and another man – Ianto Parker – confessed on his deathbed in 1874 to having attacked the soldier.

Quoting from the petition, Ms Clwyd said: “There is strong feeling in Wales that Richard Lewis – Dic Penderyn – was wrongly executed, that his conviction should be overturned and that he should be granted a pardon.

“The petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the secretary of state for justice to grant a pardon to Richard Lewis – Dic Penderyn.”

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A plaque at Merthyr’s main library commemorates a man regarded as a working class martyr

South Wales UK: Operation Imperial: Man, 62, arrested on suspicion of slavery

A 62-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of slavery, servitude and forced labour offences.
The man, from Peterstone, near Newport, was arrested by officers from Gwent Police’s Operation Imperial team on Wednesday.
Operation Imperial is an ongoing investigation into serious offences against vulnerable adults.
Det Supt Paul Griffiths also appealed to an anonymous caller who called police on 27 May to contact the team.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.bbc.co.uk

See on Scoop.itUNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST

UK: Luton family of 12 ‘may have gone to Syria’

(Left to right standing) Rajia Khanom, Mohammed Toufique Hussain, Mohammed Saleh Hussain, Roshanara Begum, Sheida Khanam, (left to right sitting) Muhammed Abdul Mannan, Minera Khatun

(Left to right standing) Rajia Khanom, Mohammed Toufique Hussain, Mohammed Saleh Hussain, Roshanara Begum, Sheida Khanam, (left to right sitting) Muhammed Abdul Mannan, Minera Khatun

A family of 12 from Luton, including a baby and two grandparents, could have travelled to Syria after going missing, police have said.

They have not been seen since 17 May after visiting their home country of Bangladesh.

It is believed the family stopped in Turkey on their way home before entering the war-torn country.

A statement from relatives in the UK said they were “devastated” and the disappearance was “out of character”.

Bedfordshire Police said it had not confirmed whether the family had crossed the border, but inquiries were ongoing. It has not said whether any family member was on any terror lists.

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The family is:

  • Muhammed Abdul Mannan, 75, and his wife Minera Khatun, 53
  • Their daughter Rajia Khanom, 21, and sons Mohammed Zayd Hussain, 25, Mohammed Toufique Hussain, 19, Mohammed Abil Kashem Saker, 31, and his wife Sheida Khanam, 27
  • Mohammed Saleh Hussain, 26, and his wife Roshanara Begum, 24, along with three children, aged between one and 11
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The BBC understands Muhammed Mannan has diabetes and his wife Minera Khatun has cancer.

The couple live in Luton with other family members.

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Mohammed Saker is missing aged 31

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Mohammed Toufique Hussain is aged 19

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Another family member missing is Mohammed Zayd Hussain

The family was reported missing to police by two sons, understood to be Mr Mannan’s from a previous marriage, who live in Luton.

One of the sons declined to talk to the BBC.

Police said the family flew to Bangladesh on 10 April and flew back to Istanbul on 11 May. They were due back at Heathrow three days later but failed to return.

Community leader Ashuk Ahmed said he had known the family for 35 years, with Mr Mannan going to the local mosque a number of times a day.

“Initially they went to Bangladesh and on the way back they stopped at Turkey,” he said.

“Many families do – Turkish Airlines offers a break in Turkey either to Bangladesh or on the way back.

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Ashuk Ahmed said he had known the family for 35 years

“The community is extremely worried about the family. There are three generations.”

He said no-one knew if they had joined a specific extremist Islamist group in Syria.

However, he said people in the community had told him some women in the family might have been radicalised and took the rest of the family with them to Bangladesh to avoid detection.

Neighbour Syed Hussain said police visited the family house after they went missing and took out paperwork.

He said he heard the family went to Syria and he “felt sorry” for the elderly couple who “probably don’t know anything about it”.

Bedfordshire Police said a family member had been in touch with relatives in the UK but they did not say where they were.

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Neighbour Syed Hussain said police had visited the family’s house

So far 42 other British jihadists are thought to be in Syria or Iraq.

The total includes Luton man Abu Aziz who fled the UK after being convicted of an attack on a member of the public.

Luton mother-of-six Runa Khan was jailed last year for inciting terrorism in Syria. It is not known if the missing family knew Aziz or Khan.

In a statement, Bedfordshire Police said: “Police can confirm they are investigating the disappearance of a missing family of 12 from Luton who failed to return home from a holiday to Bangladesh.

“There is a suggestion that the family may have gone to Syria, however police have so far been unable to corroborate that information.

“Police are continuing with their enquiries and are working with relatives who are still in the UK.”

A statement from relatives said: “We are devastated by the disappearance of these 12 and are very concerned for their safety.

“This is completely out of character and we are very worried of the danger they may now be in.

“This just does not make any sense. We can only think they have been tricked into going there, it is no place for elderly or young people.

“We would urge any of them to please make contact with us or the police to let us know they are ok.”

source: BBC NEWS

*Video* Iraqi Jihadist Leader: “We Have The Right to Kill Anyone Who Does Not Respect Islam Or The Koran”

Najmuddin Faraj Ahmad, known as Mullah Krekar, is the original leader of an Iraqi jihadist group with links to al-Qaeda who said, “We will defend our religion with our blood,” and “anyone who dishonors Islam, or burns the Koran must die.” His words were deemed so threatening, Norwegian police arrested him after the interview. 

The Local reported that Krekar, an Iraqi Kurd, was charged for “inciting criminal offences” for the extreme statements, which caused uproar in Norway when the interview was aired on Wednesday.  “The cartoonist has become an infidel at war, and therefore it is permissible to kill him,” Krekar told the interviewer, arguing the attacks were justified under Islamic law.

“As he has trampled on our dignity, our principles and beliefs, so he must die. Anyone who does not respect 30 percent of the world’s population has no right to live.” Krekar saw the attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, which left eleven dead, as something to be celebrated.

Norway’s authorities ruled that Krekar should be expelled from he country on national security grounds as long ago as 2003, but because he faces the death penalty if he is returned to Iraq, they are prevented from doing so.

100 extremists a year lecture at universities: Fanatics given a platform to spread hatred of the West

  • Last year, there were 132 speeches by extremists at leading universities
  • Led to more than 20 university students being convicted of terrorism 
  • Many places haven’t participated in Government’s anti-extremism strategy
  • University which has had most extremists is Queen Mary, in East London 
According to the report, the university which tops the league table for hosting extremists over the past three years is Queen Mary, in East London (pictured)

According to the report, the university which tops the league table for hosting extremists over the past three years is Queen Mary, in East London (pictured)

Universities are providing a platform for more than 100 Islamist extremists every year, a disturbing report will reveal next week.

The fanatics are being allowed to make speeches at leading academic institutions despite ministers calling for a crackdown on radicalism.

The study says that more than 20 students who attended UK universities have been convicted of terrorism, or have lost their lives waging jihad in Syria.

Scroll down for video 

This graphic shows the list of extremists who spoke at universities and were then convicted of terrorism 

This graphic shows the list of extremists who spoke at universities and were then convicted of terrorism

They include young men guilty of planning a ‘dirty bomb’ attack and a plot to blow up a crowded London night club.

The report was compiled by the Student Rights group, which is a project run by the Henry Jackson Society – a respected Westminster think-tank.

It revealed that a string of student bodies have refused to participate in the Government’s anti-extremism strategy, Prevent.

Rupert Sutton of Student Rights said: ‘Universities should be the best place to challenge extremist ideas, yet at present this is simply not happening – something that must change if we are to successfully oppose on-campus radicalisation. 

‘Extremism on university campuses is a very serious issue, as the evidence presented in this report shows. Worse, the dominant narrative around Prevent remains a negative one – often fuelled by the very extremists it seeks to oppose, who campaign to undermine attempts to challenge the problem.’

Researchers carried out an exhaustive survey of social media and university websites and other literature to log speaking events.

Last year, there were 132 speeches by extremists, which featured claims such as ‘the West is waging a war against Islam’. There were also 145 events in 2013 and 132 in 2012. While the far Right hosted a handful of events, the lists were overwhelmingly dominated by Islamic speakers.

David Cameron this week ordered a 'full spectrum' response to extremism to 'take on the radical narrative that is poisoning young minds'

David Cameron this week ordered a ‘full spectrum’ response to extremism to ‘take on the radical narrative that is poisoning young minds’

The Student Rights report says the speakers have ‘expressed views which promote the idea that there is a Western war against Islam, support individuals convicted of terrorism offences and express intolerance or opposition to non-believers’.

The hardliners also oppose democracy and speak in favour of being governed by religious or sharia law. 

According to the report, the university which tops the league table for hosting extremists over the past three years is Queen Mary, in East London. Westminster, Kingston, King’s College and Aston University complete the top five.

The speaker who appears most regularly is Hamza Tzortzis of the Islamic Education and Research Academy, which tried to make men and women sit apart during a debate at University College London.

Tzortzis has been criticised for stating that apostates (non believers) who fight against the Muslim ‘community…should be killed’. He also reportedly said: ‘We as Muslims reject the idea of freedom of speech, and even the idea of freedom.’

Other speakers welcomed on to campuses have attacked the ‘scourge’ of homosexuality.

The student unions at King’s College London and the School of Oriental and African Studies said they would not take part in Prevent unless compelled by law and would educate students on the ‘danger’ it poses.

The National Union of Students pledged to ‘block or cease accepting’ any Prevent funding.

The NUS Black Students’ Campaign called on all universities to ‘condemn/disassociate’ from the key programme, which it claims ‘attempts to demonise and isolate Islamic societies’. The NUS passed a motion claiming that Prevent had resulted in a ‘racist witch-hunt in the tradition of McCarthyism’.

David Cameron this week ordered a ‘full spectrum’ response to extremism to ‘take on the radical narrative that is poisoning young minds’.

From today, schools, town halls, police and health bodies will all have a statutory duty to pay ‘due regard to preventing people from being drawn into terrorism’.

But a duty for universities and colleges to also adopt the guidance has been held up by a row over how it should apply to ‘extremist speakers’.

Originally, the Home Secretary wanted the power to issue a ministerial direction, backed by the threat of contempt of court proceedings, to universities that refused to comply with bans on extremist speakers.

All speakers would have been vetted in advance, with student unions required to give 14 days’ notice. Universities, however, insist they have to promote free speech.

A Home Office spokesman said: ‘Further guidance for higher and further education institutions on managing external speakers will be published following parliamentary approval of the specific advice on this matter. The duty will commence for universities and colleges once the guidance has been published.’

Security minister John Hayes said: ‘The new Prevent duty is about protecting people from the poisonous and pernicious influence of extremist ideas that are used to legitimise terrorism. Protecting those who are vulnerable and at risk of radicalisation is a job for all of us. The new duty will make sure key bodies across the country play their part.’

source: Mail Online

Foreign Fighter’s EPIC Open Letter To Cowardly Leaders Ignoring ISIS Atrocities

Tim Locks sold his possessions to join Christian militia Dwekh Nawsha fighting ISIS

Tim Locks has joined Dwekh Nawsha to stop the spread of Islamic State.

The 38-year-old former construction worker sold his home to join fight.

He said: ‘Any society which cuts people’s heads off must be challenged’.

Insists he will only return to the United Kingdom once IS are defeated.

For years now, the Islamic State has raged on in the Middle East, beheading, raping, and enforcing brutal Sharia law on a path very similar to the ones taken by the Ottoman Empire and the Islamic Prophet Muhammad himself. They have made their plans known, warning the most powerful Western nations of their slaughterous intentions. Still, the leaders of the free world ignore the horrific atrocities — and it’s all because of political correctness.

U.S. President Barack Obama has repeatedly chastised us for speaking out against Islam, saying that ISIS is not Islamic. He has gone so far as to campaign for sake of so-called “moderate” Muslims in the West, who need no protections, but continuously fails to take any action for the thousands terrorized and slaughtered by the countless Islamic terror groups, namely ISIS.

While Obama recapitulates that the real problem is Islamophobia, it appears as though British Prime Minister David Cameron has taken a note from the American President’s teleprompter with his latest indignant speech.

Just days after British citizens were savagely gunned down by Islamists on a Tunisian beach, Cameron took the opportunity at a press conference not to boldly stand against the enemy, but to excuse Islamic terror and reiterate that “Islam is a religion of peace.”

Instead of holding press conferences to apologize to the Muslims Cameron believes have had their religious ideology hijacked, there are those who are knee-deep in the blood and filth of the battlefield against these militants, and one of them in particular is voicing his opinion.

Tim Locks, a British foreign fighter against ISIS, exploded on social media over the inaction of democratic nations, especially his own.

letter to cameron 2 Capture

Wealthy Nightclub Bouncer Sells Everything, Takes Up Arms Against ISIS

Wealthy Nightclub Bouncer Sells Everything, Takes Up Arms Against ISIS…..The former builder from Bracknell in Berkshire said he will only return to the UK once Islamic State have been defeated

But Locks doesn’t just stop there. He reveals the hypocrisy and stupidity of political correctness, asking if officials feel like they would’ve still been elected if they campaigned again on what they’ve done while in office.

letter to Cameron Capture

Locks ends his open letter by calling on everyone to send the same message to their elected officials in an effort to force those in power to act and save people from these crimes against humanities. On top of a call to action, Locks asks that we fill the shoes of our incompetent leaders by giving directly to the cause at improvethesituation@hotmail.com, a PayPal account established for supplies, aid, and medical expenses that have exhausted the personal funds of his militia fighting ISIS.

Locks is also accepting supplies by post, of which the mailing address can be obtained by messaging him personally here

Like family: Mr Locks has joined Dwekh Nawsha, a Christian militia group, and said he feels they are 'like family' in Iraq 

Like family: Mr Locks has joined Dwekh Nawsha, a Christian militia group, and said he feels they are ‘like family’ in Iraq

Mr Locks has joined a group called Dwekh Nawsha, a Christian militia whose name in Assyrian means ‘the self-sacrificers’.

Mr Locks revealed that he made his decision to relocate to Iraq last August after watching the news reports about the plight of Yazidis on Mount Sinjar.

He said: ‘Last summer I was at home, watching the news and I saw pictures of Mount Sinjar. I just thought I have a great life, job, beautiful house and I thought it is time to help someone else.’

When asked whether he was motivated by religion, Locks said he wasn’t religious but had no problem fighting for a group with strong Christian values.

He said: ‘I had no specific wishes to join a specific group. I just wanted to help people out here. Any society which kills people, cuts people’s heads off needs to be challenged.

‘I put my home on the market and started to talk with a guy online. My house sold quickly and I met up en route with my friend from online.’

source: Mad World

Palestinian Authority Incites Summer Camp Kids with AK-47 Rifles

A "rifle-holding" lesson at a Palestinian Authority summer camp.

A “rifle-holding” lesson at a Palestinian Authority summer camp.

“The PA message to Washington is they want peace. The PA message to their kids is killing Israelis is heroic. It’s time the U.S. figured out which is the true message.”

The Palestinian Authority has copied Hamas’ version of summer camp for children and teaches them to dance in military uniforms, holding assault rifles and reciting anti-Zionist slogans.

The Palestinian Authority (PMW) has translated and published the gross incitement of terror by the Abbas regime, which still wins praise from the Obama administration for supposedly renouncing terror and ending incitement.

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas has not uttered a word on last night’s Palestinian Authority terrorist attack in Samaria that left one person clinging to life and three others with moderate to serious injuries.

The names of the groups of children in the summer camps say it all. One group of 150 children is part of “Martyrs and Prisoners” and participated in the camp known as “Jerusalem in the Eyes of the Lion Cubs and Flowers of Palestine.”

And who runs it? Not the Boy Scouts.

It is operated by the Palestinian Authority’s National Security Forces in coordination with the youth movement in the Fatah party headed by Abbas.

The camp’s activities highlighted by Palestinian Authority media are not tennis or playing tag.

The little kiddies wore military uniforms for the final ceremony of an early summer camp and danced. No, they did not dance with each other. They danced with AK-47 assault files, one of Abbas’ tools to further the peace process and a probably violation of the Geneva Convention

PMW reported that the official Palestinian Authority daily, after Israelis Independent Day (Yom Ha’Atzmaut) included the Al-Asima bi-weekly in which an article referred to Israel as:

The so-called ‘Israel';
The occupation state;
The Zionist entity.

The article also described the Israeli army in the 1948 War for Independence as “90,000 terrorists.”

Another blatant incitement of violence was recorded on a Fatah posting on Facebook last month, where it referred to “the weapon with which we will confront our Zionist enemy.” An image showed from Fatah’s Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigades with rifles and rockets:

The posting stated, as translated and published by PMW:

We promise that we will meet the enemy with two weapons in our hands – faith in Allah and in the inevitable victory, and the weapon with which we will confront our Zionist enemy. We will defend the honor of this Arab and Islamic nation. #Al_Aqsa_Martyrs’ Brigades.

Itamar Marcus, the founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch, stated:

The PA message to U.S. leaders in Washington is that they want peace. The PA message to their kids is that killing Israelis is heroic. It’s time the U.S. figured out which is the true message.

Defense Minister Moshe Ya’alon directly charged the Palestinian Authority with inciting the latest round of terror that has escalated since the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. He said:

People sit during the [Ramadan] holiday in their houses, watch television program and go outside and act [accordingly].

source: 

Tunisia attack: British victim shot in face and unable to speak writes heartbreaking letter asking for dead husband’s wedding ring

geena van dort Capture

Tragic: Gina van Dort with her husband Chris Dyer

A Brit shot in the face as she fled a crazed gunman is begging for the return of her wedding ring after she was discovered clinging to the body of her dying husband.

Gina Van Dort was unable to speak after gunman Seifeddine Rezgui calmly walked through a Tunisian hotel killing British tourists.

The 30-year-old was struck by a bullet under her chin which then exited her eye. A bullet also shattered her femur in the attack.

When paramedics arrived they found Gina, 30, sobbing and hugging her dying husband, refusing to let him go.

Because of her injuries, her beloved wedding ring had to be removed during the effort to identify her because her face was severely wounded and she was unable to speak.

Chris Dyer, 32, from Watford, who was shot dead in Sousse. He is pictured with his wife, Gina Van Dort, 30, who was shot through the face and received shrapnel injuries

Loss: Chris Dyer, 32, with his wife, Gina Van Dort, 30

She was among the last four British victims due to be evacuated from Tunisia in a large-scale RAF mercy mission.

Medics treating Gina said her husband, Chris Dyer, had been killed in the attack, but the Foreign and Commonwealth Office refused to comment.

Gina Van Dort

Desperation: Gina was found clinging to the body of her dead husband on the beach

But Dr Hajer Kraiem – one of the first paramedics on the scene – wept as she told how Gina’s face had been mutilated by a bullet.

She re-lived the scenes of devastations she encountered at the Imperial Marhaba Hotel.

She said: “Her husband was dead. I went to the hotel and there were three victims dead and the I saw Gina, she was hugging her husband.

Gina Van Dort

Plea: Gina Van Dort has written a note pleading for the return of her wedding ring

“She didn’t want to leave him. When we tried to bring her [to the ambulance] she held tighter. Maybe she didn’t know he was dead.

“She had major facial trauma and she couldn’t speak.”

Gina, a quantity surveyor, from Watford, Herts, underwent life-saving surgery after the attack, with medics carrying out intricate facial reconstruction.

She has lost her left eye and is unable to talk after undergoing a tracheotomy.

Dr Hajer made a heartbreaking visit to her bedside yesterday, where Gina begged for the return of her wedding ring.

In a touching tribute, Gina wrote a thank you note.

Dr Hajer said: “She said thank you, held my hand, and said thank you. She was very strong.

“It was important for me to go see her, because I didn’t want that to be my memory of her. It’s very difficult to forget.”

Gina Van Dort

Gina Van Dort: The victim lost her husband following the attack on the Imperial Marhaba hotel

Gina was due last night to make a 10-minute drive from the Sahloul Hospital to the nearby Monister Airport by ambulance, before boarding a C17 Globemaster.

Fellow Brit Cheryl Mellor, 55, from Cornwall, who lost her husband, Stephen, 59, in the attack, was also expected to be airlifted back to the UK.

Meanwhile critically wounded Allison Heathcote – who remains in a medically induced coma – was being comforted at her hospital bed after her son and brother jetted out to Tunisia.

Brother Jonty Boon, 39, flew out on Monday to be by her side at the private Essalem Clinic with Allison’s distraught son James.

Jonty, 39, said: “She’s stable, she’s had major surgery to her upper arm and abdomen.

“I’m massively relieved, we were told that she had lost a kidney and she wasn’t going to make it. Then to get here and the relief, to actually find out she’s very seriously injured but not the extent we first believed, she’s not lost any major organs or anything like that.

“We’re hoping she will pull through, nothing is a 100%, but we’re hoping.

“She’s in the best possible place, the facilities are fantastic, they have been brilliant and so hopefully fingers crossed she will pull through.

Gina Van Dort

Terror attack: Injured holiday makers leave Sahloul Hospital in Sousse, Tunisia to be transported on an RAF flight back to the UK

“If anybody can, she can, she’s the strongest person I know.

“We’ll be here until everything sorted. James is holding on.”

She remains in a critical but stable condition in a medically induced coma after being hit in the stomach repeatedly by a barrage of gunfire during Friday’s beach massacre.

British medics in Tunisia were last night deciding if she was stable enough to make the trip back to the UK. John Metcalf, 43, from Hazlemere, Bucks, was also expected to return to the UK after he was shot in the stomach.

Up to 30 Brits are thought to have been slaughtered in Friday’s brutal attack, with the official figure now standing at 18.

Paramedics revealed they were held outside the complex for an agonising 10 minutes as armed snipers brought Rezgui’s reign of terror to an end.

And when they finally gained access to the hotel garden they discovered a scene of utter devastation, with bodies strewn around the hotel.

Meanwhile details of further casualties continued to trickle through last night.

Flowers and a poignant tribute to slain Brits Denis and Elaine Thwaites were placed at the massacre scene visited by Theresa May yesterday.

Gina Van Dort

Fighting for life: A casualty from the attack at the Imperial Marhaba hotel, where 38 people were killed, is taken from Sahloul hospital with British medics

It showed Denis, 70, alongside Elaine, 69, by a bouquet of flowers.

The retired couple, of Blackpool, Lancs, arrived in Sousse on Wednesday.

In a heart-rending message, their daughter Lindsey and son-in-law Danny wrote: “You are our world. I loved you so very much. Rest in peace mum and dad.”

Former Birmingham City FC teen prodigy Denis sent a text to say they had arrived safely on Wednesday.

But their family did not hear from them after Kalashnikov-wielding Tunisian student Rezgui, 23, targeted Western tourists on the beach.

Winger Denis, who broke into the first team aged just 16, and Elaine were reported on Saturday to be recovering in hospital following the horror attack.

But, their family later said they had been misinformed. Their son-in-law Daniel Clifford, of Blackpool, said: “We were told by a Thomson rep through a friend that they were injured in hospital but this turned out not to be true.”

Seifeddine Rezgui

Gunman: Seifeddine Rezgui

Stuart Cullen, 52, from Lowestoft, Suffolk, was also confirmed among the dead. He was with his wife – who was injured but has now returned home – when he was gunned down.

The landlord and landlady of Mr Cullen’s local pub yesterday said they were struggling to come to terms with his violent death.

Mr Cullen often helped the couple with odd jobs at the King Alfred pub in Lowestoft, Suffolk, near his home.

His wife Christine is understood to have worked for many years as a travel agent for Thomas Cook.

The couple decided to jet off to Tunisia for a holiday having recently celebrated Christine’s 50th birthday in Spain. They arrived in Tunisia just hours before the massacre.

Landlords Mark and Maxine Richards said Mr Cullen was a “real character” and his death has left a hole in the community.

Mark, 50, said: “We knew him well he would come here every week. I know everyone says this but he was really was one of the good guys.

“He really would do anything for anyone. He made up the sign outside the pub for us and helped cover the chairs in the bar.

“He had a bad knee for many years so he hasn’t been able to work for a long time.

“The funny thing is he literally only had an operation on it at the end of last year and it was a bit better since then.

“Only last weekend he was in here and now he’s gone.

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“We had a friend who died in the tsunami and that was awful but at least it was a natural disaster that couldn’t be helped. But this is just so hard to come to terms with.”

The couple, who have run the pub for the last eight years, say the family have been regulars since they took over.

Mark said the couple’s daughter Emma-Jayne has worked in the production department of TV shows including Birds Of A Feather.

He added: “Emma was one thing I know Stuart was very proud of. She was a real daddy’s girl.”

Maxine, 57, added: “He was a very popular guy, he had lots of friends down here. There’s going to be a big hole here now.

“He was always laughing and joking. Everyone here is so shocked, it’s just unreal.

“When it’s one of your own it really brings it home. He was a real character we used to have banter all the time.”

The couple previously lived in Woodbridge, Suffolk, before moving to Lowestoft.

Tunisian gunman Seifeddine Rezgui

Killer: Tunisian gunman Seifeddine Rezgui who slaughtered British tourists on the beach

Mark said Mr Cullen didn’t work due to a disability but had previously worked as a prison guard in Woodbridge and worked offshore for a while.

Elsewhere former Premier League stars and referees paid tribute to three members of a football-mad family.

Walsall FC fans Adrian Evans, 44, died along with his father, 78-year-old Patrick Evans, both from Tipton, West Mids., and nephew Joel Richards, 19.

Joel’s 16-year-old brother Owen survived the attack and even risked his own life to help injured holidaymakers.

The family’s favourite football club Walsall FC became a focal point for people’s grief with dozens of scarves and shirts laid at the gates of Bescott Stadium.

Joel, from Wednesbury, West Mids., was a promising FA referee who oversaw matches across the Midlands and was tipped for future stardom.

Premier League referee Michael Oliver, 30, donated £50 towards tragic Joel Richards’ memory fund which has been set up in his honour.

An RAF Hercules C17 military transport aircraft waits on the tarmac at the Habib Bourguiba International airport in Monastir, south of the Sousse, to transport British citizens injured in the deadly shooting attack

Returning home: An RAF Hercules C17 military transport aircraft waits on the tarmac at the Habib Bourguiba International airport in Monastir, south of the Sousse, to transport British citizens injured in the deadly shooting attack

He wrote on the fundraising website: “Our thoughts are with Joel’s friends and family. RIP x Lucy & Michael Oliver.”

Former Aston Villa stars Tony Daley, Nigel Spink and Shaun Teale have all joined a Facebook group called Owen Richards Fund Tunisian Attack in support of the family.

Tributes and donations from fellow professional referees poured in.

Experienced Football League referees Geoff Eltringham and Oliver Langford donated £20 each to the memory fund.

Mr Langford, from West Midlands, wrote: “The world can be a very cruel place and leave you asking why. X”

Meanwhile dozens of supporters of various football clubs gathered at Walsall FC’s Banks’s Stadium to pay their respects to season ticket-holders Joel and his uncle Adrian.

Tributes to the three men placed outside Walsall FC’s main entrance included scarves and shirts from West Ham, Bristol Rovers and Shrewsbury Town.

A scarf representing German side Hannover 96 was also left at the stadium alongside flowers bearing messages of condolence.

sources: Daily Mirror/ YouTube

French terror suspect ‘denies religious motives’?

The Frenchman who confessed to decapitating his boss before crashing his vehicle into a gas factory in an attempted suicide attack has denied he was driven by religious motives, sources claim.

Well he is right inasmuch that Islam is not a religion, it is a political ideology disguised as a religion!

Yassin Sahli, who  beheaded his businessman boss, in what French authorities are calling a terrorist attack, took a “selfie” photo with the slain victim and sent the image via WhatsApp to a Canadian mobile phone number, officials said Saturday.

 The body of Cornara, 54, also bore signs of strangulation suggesting that he may have been killed at an unknown location prior to his decapitation.

Attacker sent selfie of beheading 'to Syria'

Businessman Herve Cornara was brutally murdered by an alleged ISIL supporter.

His one finger salute in his selfie was evidence enough of his motivation!…plus the Islamist flags hung on the fence with the severed head…..

He is playing mind games with the French authorities. I expect his next gambit will be a plea of insanity…

French investigators were working to determine the recipient’s identity, but weren’t able to immediately confirm media reports that it was an unspecified person who is now in Syria, where the radical Islamic State group has seized territory, the security officials said.

The wife of the suspected killer has been speaking live on French radio station Europe1.

“We have a normal family life. He goes to work, he comes back. We are normal Muslims. We do Ramadan. We have three children and a normal family. I don’t understand.”

French interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve named the suspect as Yassin Sahli, 35, of the city of Lyon, close to where the attack took place. He has been arrested and taken into police custody. On the morning of June 26, it’s believed that Sahli rammed his car into the premises of the Air Products gas plant and beheaded one man while injuring two others. Two flags of ISIS as well as Arabic writing were found close to the crime scene.

Salhi, whose wife and sister are also being detained along with a fourth person, is known to have associated with Islamists over more than a decade and had previously been flagged as a potential risk.

French security services knew the subject Yassin Salhi and his links to terrorism – but did nothing!

But there has so far been no claim of responsibility for the attack. Paris public prosecutor Francois Molins said on Friday that investigators would take time to piece together the sequence of events at the plant in Saint Quentin-Fallavier, 30 km south of Lyon, and establish whether Salhi was acting alone.

Northern Ireland: Bernadette Smyth: Anti-abortion protester wins appeal

Bernadette Smyth: Anti-abortion protester wins appeal

An anti-abortion protester convicted of harassing a Marie Stopes clinic director has won her appeal.

The case against Precious Life director Bernadette Smyth was thrown out of court in Belfast on Monday.

A judge ruled there was insufficient evidence that she harassed former clinic director Dawn Purvis.

The guilty verdict has been quashed. But prosecutors are seeking to retain a restraining order to stop her approaching Ms Purvis.

Mrs Smyth, 52, denied harassing Ms Purvis on two dates in January and February last year.

Last December, she was convicted and sentenced to 100 hours community service.

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Dawn Purvis is a former director of the clinic in Belfast

A five-year restraining order, stopping her from pestering Ms Purvis, a former Northern Ireland assembly member, or anyone seeking to enter the clinic, was imposed at the time.

In court on Monday, Mrs Smyth’s barrister challenged Ms Purvis’ claim that two incidents involving his client has left her in fear.

He said Ms Purvis had a former role within the Progressive Unionist Party which is politically aligned to loyalist paramilitaries, the Ulster Volunteer Force.

He questioned her claim that she felt intimidated by his client.

“Are you not a person with a bit more fortitude than that?” he asked.

“I was frightened,” she replied.

“I was fearful, and all of the protestors were causing me a lot of angst.”

At the end of the prosecution case, Mrs Smyth’s lawyer applied to have the case against his client thrown out.

The judge backed his submission and dismissed the charges, ruling that the evidence did not meet the standard required for a successful prosecution.

He will now consider a further prosecution request to maintain the restraining order despite the conviction being quashed.

Outside court Mrs Smyth, who was accompanied by family and supporters, said: “I just feel that justice has been done.

“I can now continue with the work I have been doing over the last 18 years, which is to advocate for unborn children.”

Asked if she had any message for Ms Purvis, she said: “None. I have closed that chapter and I don’t need to re-open it.”

Anti-abortion campaigners protested at the door of the Marie Stopes clinic after it opened in Belfast two years ago.

It was the first private organisation to offer early medical abortions in Northern Ireland, where the legislation regarding pregnancy termination is much more strict than in the rest of the UK.

A woman can only have an abortion if it can be proven that her life is at risk, or if there is a serious danger of permanent damage to her mental or physical health.

Related: 

Tunisia attack: National minute’s silence for UK victims

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A national minute’s silence will be held to remember those who have lost their lives in the Tunisian beach attack, David Cameron has announced.

The silence will take place on Friday 3 July at 12:00 BST, a week after the shooting which killed 38 people.

The official UK death toll stands at 18, but it is expected to rise to around 30, the BBC understands.

All Britons injured in killing will be returned to the UK within 24 hours, Downing Street has said.

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MPs stood and bowed their heads for the minute’s silence

In a speech to the Commons, following a minute’s silence held by MPs, the prime minister described the attack as “brutal and sickening”.

He confirmed the gunman was thought to have been part of Islamic State’s (IS) “inspired network”.

He also said there was a team of British consular staff on the ground within hours of the attack, and a team of 50 people were currently in Tunisia helping British victims and their families.

With the number of Britons killed in the Tunisian attack expected to rise, here is a breakdown of what we know so far about those who have died, and the missing and injured:

Tunisia attack: What we know about the British victims

Carly Lovett

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Carly Lovett was a 24-year-old beauty blogger and photographer from Gainsborough in Lincolnshire.

She was a graduate of Lincoln University, and according to reports in the local press worked for an e-commerce company called Fizzco Ltd in Fillingham near Gainsborough.

The University of Lincoln’s school of film and media tweeted: “Saddened to hear news reports of Carly Lovett in Tunisia – Graduate of our University 2013.”

According to the Daily Mirror, she was killed by a grenade during the attack.

Local MP Sir Edward Leigh expressed his “shock and sorrow” and offered condolences to Miss Lovett’s family.

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Patrick Evans, Adrian Evans and Joel Richards

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(L-R) Adrian Evans, Patrick Evans and Joel Richards were all fans of Walsall FC

Three members of the same family were killed in the attack.

Adrian Evans, 44, from Tipton, West Midlands, died along with his father, 78-year-old Patrick Evans, and nephew Joel Richards, 19, from Wednesbury.

Adrian Evans worked for Sandwell Council in Oldbury as a manager in the gas services department.

Council leader Darren Cooper said: “Adrian Evans was a very popular and long-serving employee.

“We are absolutely devastated for Adrian’s family, friends and colleagues and our thoughts are with them and all those affected by this tragedy.”

Mahoob Hussain, who worked with him, said: “I had a number of phone calls from the staff who worked for him, crying because it was his first day on holiday.

“My understanding is it was his first day – and suddenly the next thing the colleagues found out what happened in Tunisia and they were all in tears.”

Joel was a local football referee and a student at the University of Worcester.

Chad Ehlertsen, chief executive of Birmingham County Football Association, said: “He was just a leader of young people; a good organiser, a good communicator and an extremely talented young referee.”

The University of Worcester’s vice-chancellor and chief executive, Professor David Green, said: “At Worcester Joel has shown himself to be a highly intelligent, talented young man and an all-round outstanding person with a truly bright future ahead.

“Since joining the university, he has become very popular with his fellow students, team mates and with the many staff that have taught him throughout his time with us.”

Walsall FC said the men were all fans of the club and that their thoughts were with their family.

Fellow fans showed their support by laying scarves outside the main entrance of the stadium on Monday morning.

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Sue Davey and Scott Chalkley

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Ms Davey’s son Conor Fulford, from Tamworth in Staffordshire, posted on Twitter on Saturday night to confirm his mother’s death. He had taken to Twitter in the wake of the attack urging others to help find her.

After confirming he had been told of her death, he wrote: “Love you always Mom, I’ve got my teddy bear you got me tonight, Rest easy xxxx”

Ms Davey’s daughter Chloe is the partner of Leicester City footballer Marc Albrighton. The football club offered support to the family, saying: “They are all in our thoughts and prayers.”

Mr Chalkley, 42, was Ms Davey’s partner.

His son, Ross Naylor, from Derby, had posted appeals on Twitter following the attack.

He confirmed his father’s death in the “sickening attacks”, posting: “I want to say thanks to everyone who has helped, you have all been amazing. One love to all and rest in peace dad.”

Severn Trent Water, for which Ms Davey and Mr Chalkley worked, said: “We are immensely saddened by the news about Sue and Scott. They were much loved by their colleagues.

“Sue and Scott had a passion to help others however they could, they cared enormously for all those they worked with and were totally committed to our customers and our company.

“We will miss them deeply. Both Sue and Scott have family and friends at Severn Trent. Our thoughts are with each of them and all those that hold them dear.”

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Bruce Wilkinson

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Bruce Wilkinson had visited Tunisia with his wife Rita before the attack

Mr Wilkinson, 72, from Goole, East Riding, was a retired worker at Drax power station. His family said he was “a kind and compassionate man with a dry sense of humour”.

In a statement, the family said: “We are devastated at the loss of Bruce, who was a devoted husband, father and grandfather.

“Bruce was a loving family man, and in his working life worked to support the care of others.

“He was fun-loving, and will be deeply missed by friends and family alike.”

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Lisa Burbidge

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Ms Burbidge, in her 60s, was from Whickham, Gateshead.

Her family released a statement saying: “We are devastated with the tragic loss of the most beautiful, amazing, caring and gentle person in our lives.

“We have been left with a massive hole in our hearts.”

They added that she had “four fantastic grandchildren who were her world and will miss her tremendously”.

One of her granddaughters, Chloe Thompson, left a tribute on the Newcastle Chronicle’s Facebook page, saying: “My angel, my best friend love you always grandma, rest in peace.”

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Claire Windass

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Claire Windass, 54, from Hull, was on holiday with her husband when the attack happened.

In a statement, her family said: “Claire was sunbathing on the beach with her husband Jim Windass, who miraculously managed to escape physically unharmed and has now returned to his home in Hull, where he is surrounded by family and friends at this emotionally difficult time for us all.”

They added: “She was a warm, kind-hearted woman who made friends easily and was loved by everyone who knew her. She will be deeply missed.”

Mrs Windass, who had two children and two step-children, lived in Scunthorpe for 35 years before moving to Hull in 2012 when she married Mr Windass.

Staff at North Lincolnshire Council, where she worked, were said to be “deeply saddened” by news of her death.

“Our thoughts are with her family at this time,” said Chris Skinner, the council’s head of communications.

“Claire worked at the council for 18 years; within the learning disability and intermediate care services.

“She was a popular and well-respected member of staff who will be greatly missed.”

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Jim and Ann McQuire

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Prayers have been said for Jim and Ann McQuire at their local church in Cumbernauld, Scotland

Jim and Ann McQuire are thought to have died in the shooting, a congregation at Abronhill Parish Church in Cumbernauld has been told.

The recently retired couple were heavily involved with the church, and prayers were said for them during Sunday’s service.

Mr McQuire had volunteered with the Boys’ Brigade locally. The 55th Edinburgh Boys’ Brigade and Girls’ Association has tweeted: “Really shocked to hear that Jim McQuire, BB officer with the 5th Cumbernauld and his wife Ann were killed in the Tunisia shootings. RIP.”

Mr McQuire had been due to attend a royal garden party at Edinburgh on his return from Tunisia.

His friend Andrew Eadie, who was preparing to attend the event with him, said: “I can’t make sense of it, I just can’t understand the logic of what they have done.”

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Trudy Jones

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Trudy Jones, 51, a care home worker from Blackwood in South Wales, has been named locally as one of those killed in the shooting.

Gwent Police said Ms Jones was a divorced single mother of four on holiday with friends.

Her family described her as their “beautiful mother” in a statement.

“Our mother of all people didn’t deserve this, such a caring person who put everyone else before herself,” they said.

“Always willing to help others, she loved everyone around her including all of the people she cared for at work. She’ll be missed by so many people. She was the rock of our family and kept us all going.

“None of us have a clue how we’re going to cope without her.”

The manager of the care home where she worked as an activity co-ordinator said residents and staff were in “terrible shock”.

Shawkat Ilahi said: “She was a very popular member of the team. She was like a bottle of pop, very lively and always smiling.”

Her MP, Chris Evans, said: “The reality of this horrific and brutal attack has now been brought home to our communities with the news that Trudy Jones is among those murdered.

“My thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends at this difficult time.”

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Stuart Cullen

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Suffolk Police confirmed that Stuart Cullen, 52, from Lowestoft, was among those who died in the attack.

“Mr Cullen was believed to have died instantly and was with his wife at the time,” police said.

“Mrs Cullen received injuries during the incident but has been able to return home to Suffolk where she is being comforted by close family and Suffolk Police family liaison officers.”

Police said the couple had one adult daughter, Emma, and said the family were “truly grateful for the compassion afforded to them” since Mr Cullen’s death.

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Stephen Mellor

Stephen Mellor, 59, from Bodmin in Cornwall, was killed as he attempted to shield his wife Cheryl, 55.

She told the BBC’s Orla Guerin that when the shooting started they huddled together saying “I love you”.

Mrs Mellor was left with gunshot wounds to her arm and leg and is being treated in hospital in Sousse.

Father Graham Minors, vicar of St Petroc’s Church in Bodmin, told BBC Radio Cornwall a candle had been lit for the couple on Sunday morning.

He said: “So many lives have been broken by all of this.”

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Cheryl Mellor was shot twice
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THE INJURED

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Britons are being treated at hospitals in Tunisia and in the UK.

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Allison Heathcote

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Allison Heathcote, 48, from Lowestoft, Suffolk, suffered five gunshot wounds and is in a critical condition in hospital in Sousse, her brother Simon Boon told the BBC.

She had surgery on Saturday and is now in an induced coma.

A doctor treating Mrs Heathcote told the BBC she cannot be moved due to her condition – so flying her back to the UK is not currently an option.

She was stretchered from the scene of the shooting on a sunbed, Mr Boon said. He added he had not received any information about his brother-in-law Philip Heathcote.

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Tony and Christine Callaghan

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Tony Callaghan and his wife Christine

Among the injured are Tony Callaghan, 52, and his wife Christine, 62, from Norfolk, who were on holiday.

Mr Callaghan, who was shot in the knee, is a member of staff at Norfolk police, working at North Walsham public enquiry office as a property officer. Christine was shot in the leg.

Their injuries have required hospital treatment but are not life-threatening.

BBC correspondent Mark Lowen met the couple in hospital and saw the bullet holes in Christine’s handbag.

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Mr Callaghan with his wife’s handbag
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Tom Richards, 22, has been interviewed by the Guardian. He said he came face-to-face with a gunman, and has picked up an ankle wound.

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Matthew James

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Matthew James and Saera Wilson travelled to Sousse on 21 June for a two-week break

Gas engineer Matthew James from Trehafod, near Pontypridd, was shot three times and used his body as a shield to protect his fiancee Saera Wilson, 26.

He is recovering having been hit on the shoulder, chest and hip.

The 30-year-old, who later suffered a heart attack, has since been returned to the UK and is now “stable and comfortable” in hospital.

His family said he was “doing well”.

His plight has touched fellow gas engineers, who launched a fund-raising drive in honour of the father-of-two while he recovers from his injuries.

Organiser Ian Spedding, 53, from Burnley, said donations had surpassed £6,300 in just a few hours.

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Ross Thompson and Rebecca Smith

The couple, from Coventry, are recovering after receiving shrapnel injuries.

Mr Thompson told Sky News they fled and hid indoors when the attack started.

“We managed to get the room barricaded, got down low and just hid,” he said.

His girlfriend, with a dressing on her injured chin, said she got separated from her partner and hid in the staff toilets with another woman and her son.

“We locked ourselves in and hoped for the best,” she said.

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THE MISSING

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People have been trying to find family and friends who may have been caught up in the attack.

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John Welch and Eileen Swannack

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Daniel Welch, from Swindon in Wiltshire, said his grandfather John Welch, 74, and his partner of eight years Eileen Swannack, 70, have not made contact since the attack.

Mr Welch is from Biddlestone and Ms Swannack is from Corsham, both in Wiltshire.

Daniel told the BBC: “You know that we’re going to get some sort of news at some point, whether it be today, tomorrow or the next day, and you know it’s probably not going to be great, because they haven’t been able to make contact themselves by now.”

The couple were staying at the Hotel Riu Imperial Marhaba, one of the hotels targeted by the gunman.

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Angie and Ray Fisher

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The couple are from Nottinghamshire.

Son Adam Fisher, from Redhill in Surrey, has not spoken to his parents since they left for their holiday.

He told the BBC he felt “powerless” over the situation.

“I’ve been in touch with the Foreign Office but they won’t give any information out… I don’t know what to do,” he said.

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John and Janet Stocker

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The couple are from Crawley.

Sam Stocker has launched an appeal to find his grandparents and has spoken to media outlets.

The hashtag #FindJohnStocker has been trending on Twitter.

He tweeted: “If you’re in #Tunisia #ImperialMaharba and you’ve seen this man, please let me know he’s safe. #FindJohnStocker”.

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Denis and Elaine Thwaites

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The family of the missing Blackpool couple had been told they were alive but injured and in a Tunisian hospital.

However, this has turned out to be wrong.

Son-in-law Daniel Clifford said: “We are now back to square one and fearing the worst.

“We are thinking of flying out there because we can’t get anything out of the Foreign Office.

“We just need to know. We are absolutely frantic.”

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William and Lisa Graham

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Married couple William Graham, 51, known as Billy, and Lisa Graham, 50, are from Perth in Scotland.

They were staying at the Imperial Hotel in Sousse, and hotel staff say their room still has their clothes and belongings in it.

The couple’s daughter Holly Graham said she was desperately worried and had struggled to find out what was happening from the tour operator and the Foreign Office.

“I’ve had friends phoning on my behalf because you can imagine I’m a little bit of an emotional wreck at the moment,” she said.

“Foreign Office – they just tell you that they’ve got no information, they’ll phone you when they do.”

UK: Two suspicious packages found near Exeter school prompt evacuation

Police cordon

A suspect package was found beside the railings of St Sidwell’s primary and nursery school

Two suspicious packages, including one with “wires hanging out”, have been found in Exeter, prompting a primary school and streets to be evacuated.

The suspect package with “wires” was found beside railings at St Sidwell’s school at about 07:00 BST and another was found in a city centre car park.

St. Sidwell’s Church of England Primary School, Exeter

Explosives experts have been called to the scene around York Street and armed police are patrolling the area.

Residents living nearby were also evacuated from the area.

Devon and Cornwall Police said the “second suspect package” was found at the King William Street Car Park at about 09:15 BST.

The force said: “This has resulted in further road closures in the area and evacuation of a small number of local properties.”

York Road at both the Sidwell Street and Longbrook Street entrances have been closed along with others in the area. People have been urged to avoid the area.

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Police have cordoned off the area and have evacuated residents

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Police evacuated St Sidwell’s School shortly after 07:00 BST and cordoned off the area

source: BBC NEWS

Tunisia terror attack: British survivor says ‘more than one gunman’ carried out massacre

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Injured: Kirsty Murray and fiancee Radley Ruszkiewicz

A British woman shot in both legs during the Tunisia gun attack insists more than one man carried out the killing.

Kirsty Murray was shot by a man carrying a handgun who she believes was not Seifeddine Rezgui.

Rezgui is the gunman pictured on the rampage with an automatic rifle who was eventually killed by police.

Ms Murray was at the swimming pool with her fiance Radley Ruszkiewicz at the Hotel Marhaba in Sousse when Rezgui opened fire on holidaymakers, the Daily Mail reports.

The 25-year-old, from Braintree in Essex, says she was not wounded by bullets from Rezgui’s AK-47 but by a small calibre weapon.

READ: Follow  latest updates here:

Her father Neil told the Mail that she and her fiance ran from the pool into the hotel and into a corridor where a grenade exploded.

He was badly injured but she was able to carry on fleeing but ended up at a dead-end where she was shot in the legs at close range.

He said: “He was shooting women in the legs and men in the head – and he stepped back over her a couple of times but she played dead.

“She believes there were at least two gunmen because she was shot at close range with a handgun.

“Both her and her fiancé have said there was more than one gunman.”

At least 38 people were killed in the gun attack.

At least 30 of the dead are believed to be British – although only 12 have been named so far.

Tunisia Attack: ‘At Least 30 Britons Killed’

People place flowers on the beach in Sousse, Tunisia

People lay flowers at the scene of Friday’s massacre

At least 30 British people are believed to have died in the Tunisia terror attack, according to Sky sources.

If confirmed it would double the number of Britons known to have been killed in the deadly rampage by the gunman Seifeddine Rezgui.

It would also mean UK citizens make up the majority of the 38 victims of the atrocity at the beach resort in Sousse on Friday.

The massacre is the worst loss of life of Britons in a terror attack since the 7/7 bombings.

The growing list of UK fatalities comes as footage emerged of 24-year-old Rezgui sprinting along the shore with his Kalashnikov rifle after opening fire on tourists.

On Saturday, Sky News obtained pictures of the armed attacker strolling along the beach.

Witnesses have described how he was “very, very calm” when he opened fire on holidaymakers after emerging from the sea where he had apparently washed himself.

He was also said to be grinning and ignoring pleas to stop the attack.

The slaughter only ended when he was shot dead by police. A bomb was found on his body.

His father Hakim Rezgui reportedly said he was “shocked” by what happened and did not know who “put these ideas in his (son’s) head” and “warped his mind”.

He said he was “really sorry”, was “so ashamed” and felt like he had died along with the victims.

Mr Rezgui and three of his son’s roommates at university have been detained and were being questioned in the capital Tunis.

Investigators are searching for one or more accomplices in the attack, according to one official.

A phone found by a swimmer reportedly showed the gunman called his father just before the assault and authorities believe the suspected accomplices provided the Kalashnikov assault rifle to Rezgui.

Thousands of British tourists have been returning to the UK after cutting short their holidays on the Mediterranean resort.

Witness Lee Inwood said his wife was “confronted” by the terrorist on the beach before the attack.

The couple were walking towards the sea when she stumbled on a children’s spade and nearly fell into a group of people, Mr Inwood said.

The Briton said among the four local men and four local women was the gunman who confronted her.

Mr Inwood said the group was later acting “very strangely” and the women were taking photos of the men with tourists’ children and also pictures of holidaymakers on sunloungers without permission.

He said “something was not right, it feels weird” and claimed local people do not normally “hang around” that area and leave the tourists alone.

He thought the photos were “trophy pictures”.

Mr Inwood also said he was told by his hotel director that there were three gunmen in the attack, not just one that authorities claimed. He said he had given a statement to British police.

Scotland Yard said more than 600 officers were involved in what was its largest counter-terrorism operation since the 7/7 bombings.

Carly Lovett Carly Lovett, 24, recently became engaged and was from Gainsborough, Lincolnshire. She worked as a beauty blogger and was a former student at the University of Lincoln

Three generations of a family killed

Six of the British victims

Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley, national policing lead for counter-terrorism, said 16 detectives and forensic experts were already in Tunisia to help local officers, with almost 400 meeting survivors at UK airports to identify possible witnesses.

He said: “Because of the scale of the attack, the numbers of fatalities and the international nature of it, it is likely that several hundred counter-terrorism and other police officers and staff will be working on this case for some time.”

source: Sky News

UK: Armed Forces Day Bombing Plot By Islamic State Thwarted By Undercover Reporter

armed forces day london

Police have urged members of the public to attend Armed Forces Day events as normal

Police have encouraged the public to attend Armed Forces Day events as normal after it was reported that the parade had been targeted by Islamic State.

The suicide blast at a parade in south London on Saturday was intended to strike soldiers from the unit of murdered Lee Rigby, according to The Sun.

The plot to explode a pressure cooker bomb — killing soldiers and bystanders on the route — failed after an IS leader in Syria unwittingly recruited an undercover investigator from the newspaper to carry it out.

It is claimed that a leading figure in IS, whom it named as Junaid Hussain.

Grenadier Guards undergo drill and music rehearsal in London ahead of Armed Forces Day on Saturday.

Grenadier Guards undergo drill and music rehearsal in London ahead of Armed Forces Day on Saturday.

Hussain, originally from Birmingham, told the investigator: “It will be big. We will hit the kuffar (unbelievers) hard InshAllah. Hit their soldiers in their own land. InshAllah. Soldiers that served in Iraq and Afganistan will be present. Jump in the crowd and detonate the bomb.

“They think they can kill Muslims in Iraq and Afghanistan then come back to the UK and be safe. We’ll hit them hard InshAllah.”

The newspaper said the plot to bomb the parade in Merton was thwarted when it told police and security services about it.

The parade was targeted because it was closest to the barracks in Woolwich, south east London, where Fusilier Rigby, 25, was murdered by Islamist extremists in 2013, the newspaper said.

armed forces day london

The attack was intended to strike soldiers from the unit of murdered drummer Lee Rigby

Fusiliers from his regiment, serving Gurkhas and war veterans will be among the 250 marchers, it added.

A Scotland Yard spokesman said: “The police, together with our security partners, remain alert to terrorist threats that may manifest here or where individuals overseas may seek to direct or inspire others to commit attacks in and against the UK.

“It is always helpful when journalists share with us information, as The Sun did in this case, that could indicate terrorist or criminal activity.”

The spokesman cited the terrorist attacks in Tunisia, France and Kuwait on Friday as examples of the “global nature of terrorism and the threat level in the UK from international terrorism remains unchanged at severe”.

The Islamic State has claimed responsibility for the Tunisia shootings that have left 38 dead, and the suicide bombing in Kuwait that killed 25.

The spokesman said the public should continue to attend the parade as planned: “While the UK threat level from international terrorism remains severe, we would like to reassure the public that we constantly review security plans for public events, taking into account specific intelligence and the wider threat.

“Our priority is the safety and security for all those attending or involved, the public are encouraged to continue with their plans to attend or take part in events as normal.

“We would also like to reiterate our long-standing advice to remain vigilant and alert.”

Arrests made over Kuwait Shia mosque attack

Kuwait has arrested several people in connection with the suicide bombing of a Shia Muslim mosque on Friday that killed 27 people, according to a security source.

A mass funeral will be held on Saturday after the Gulf country’s worst militant attack in years, which has been claimed by Islamic State (Isis). More than 220 others were wounded in the al-Imam al-Sadiq mosque, the first attack on a Muslim place of worship in the emirate.

The interior ministry said an unspecified number of suspects were being questioned in connection with the attack, including the owner of the vehicle that took the bomber to the mosque. Officials were now looking for the driver of the Japanese-made car, who left the mosque immediately after the bombing.

Mosque authorities said that “Kuwait martyrs” will be laid to rest at the Shia cemetery, west of the capital. Saturday has been declared an official day of mourning. At the Grand Mosque, the largest place of worship for Sunni Muslims, worshippers were being encouraged to come to pay tribute to the dead in a show of solidarity.

Shias form a third of Kuwait’s 1.3 million native population, and Sunni groups have been quick to condemn the attack that Kuwait’s emir, the government, parliament and clerics have said was aimed at igniting sectarian tensions.

The nation’s leader, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah, visiting the site of the bombing, said that the “criminal attack is a desperate and evil attempt targeting Kuwait’s national unity”.

A group in Saudi Arabia, calling itself Najd Province, which said it is affiliated with Isis, named Abu Suleiman al-Muwahhid as the mosque bomber. The group said that the mosque had been promoting Shia Islam, which it considers to be heresy.

The statement on Twitter said the bomber had targeted a “temple of the apostates”. The same group had claimed responsibility for a pair of bombing attacks on Shia mosques in Saudi Arabia in recent weeks.

The Kuwaiti justice, religious endowment and Islamic affairs minister, Yacoub al-Sanna, described the attack as a “terrorist and cowardly action which threatens our nation and works at tearing apart the national unity”.

Sanna told the official state agency Kuna that the government would take all necessary measures to ensure protection of houses of worship. “Kuwait was, and will remain, the oasis of security and safety to all components of the Kuwaiti society and sects,” he said.

Kuwait also has increased security to the highest level at state-run oil companies.

Sourced through Scoop.it from: www.theguardian.com

See on Scoop.itUNITED CRUSADERS AGAINST ISLAMIFICATION OF THE WEST

The relationship between Ramadan and Jihad (fighting) in the way of Allah

We are witness to an upsurge in Islamic violence. In addition to the horrors of the Islamic State being perpetrated in Iraq and Syria,we also have the barbaric and cowardly attacks being perpetrated, in this unholy month, against innocent unarmed holidaymakers in Tunisia, the beheading at a Chemical Plant in France,the suicide bombing of a Shia Mosque in the capital of Kuwait, as well as an attack by Al-Shabab on an African Union military base in southern Somalia.

3 attacks ramadan Capture

 The media, the Politicians and Moslems themselves would have us believe that Islam is a [religion] of peace and tolerance , when in actuality the holiest of holies Ramadan is built around the culture of Jihad (fighting) and an unholy war against the Kafir ( the unbeliever)

You see, contrary to the belief that Ramadan is a time when no jihad or fighting should take place, it is the exact opposite. This month is in fact the time where Allah grants military victories to his followers through jihad. It is known in Islamic history as a key period for jihad. It goes back to year one in fact. But don’t take my word for it. Consider the words of one Islamic website on this:

“Jihad is the summit of Islam. Its virtue is countlessly high, as mentioned in many places of the Koran and Sunnah. The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said: “Verily, there are one hundred degrees in Paradise which Allah has reserved for the fighters in His cause.

The distance between every two degrees is like the distance between the sky and the Earth, so if you ask Allah for anything, ask Him for the Firdaus, for it is the last part of Paradise and the highest part of Paradise, and at its top there is the Throne of Beneficent, and from it gush forth the rivers of Paradise”. (al-Bukhari).

The month of Ramadan in the life of the Prophet (pbuh) and the righteous ancestors was a month of forthcoming. The greatest battles during the lifetime of the Prophet (pbuh) occurred in this blessed month, the month of jihad, zeal and enthusiasm. The first battle in the history of Islam was the battle of Badr.

This event became a dividing line between the era of humiliation and weakness, and the beginning of the era of force and revival of the case of the Prophet (pbuh) and the believers. This day became a turning point in the spreading of the call of the Prophet (pbuh).” (fisabililaahi.blogspot.co.uk)

The month of Ramadan which witnessed the establishment of the Islamic nation was chosen by Allah to raise high the banners of Jihad to protect the nation that raises the banner of monotheism “La ilaha illa Allah (there is no deity but Allah).” 

This nation of Islam sums up the history of the divine calls since Adam, the father of mankind till Muhammad, the master of mankind, who sealed the messages of prophets and whose religion is the last one.

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Therefore, his followers were entrusted with protecting, disseminating, and making the religion of Allah superior by Jihad in the way of Allah which has no parallel among the acts of worship.

The Messenger of Allah answered when a man asked him: “Direct me to an action that equals Jihad?” He said: I do not find any. then said: “If the Mujahid (one who fights in the way of Allah) goes for Jihad, can you enter your Masjid(mosque) to offer Salah frequently and fast without breaking your fast?”

Who is allowed to do that?

Because of the importance of Jihad for the Islamic nation to make the word of Allah superior and the word of those who disbelieve inferior, Jihad was made as a collective duty: if some do it, others will be overlooked except if the enemy conquers a Muslim country, in this case all Muslims, even women, must go for Jihad to ward off the enemy.

Islam has made Jihad a great honor which no other action can match and whoever does not gain that honor should, at least, wish for it, otherwise he will die while have a quality of hypocrisy as the Messenger said: “Whoever dies and he neither participated in Jihad nor wished to participate in will die while having a quality of hypocrisy.”

jihadCapture

Linking Jihad in general with Ramadan is a link between two close friend. Fasting of Ramadan contains no hypocrisy exactly as Jihad. The fasting of Ramadan contains forbearance to hardship exactly as Jihad needs patience for hardship. For this reason, fasting was a training for Jihad but it is one of the important factors in a prophet’s choice to the leaders of his army.

It was reported that the Messenger  sent a group of his Companions for a battle, but they differed and returned back before going to the battle. When the Prophet  saw them, he became angry and said: “You went as a group but came back apart. By Allah, I will send a man who is not the best among you but he is more patient to hunger and more patient to thirsty.” Fasting and Jihad are correlated, so there is no wonder that Ramadan contains all these victories and battles which changed the course of history.

Ramadan, the first year after Hijrah (migration):

The first military detachment in Islam was formed under the leadership of the Prophet and about them the following Ayah was revealed: “And fight in the Way of Allâh those who fight you, but transgress not the limits. Truly, Allâh likes not the transgressors. [This Verse is the first one that was revealed in connection with Jihâd, but it was supplemented by another (9:36)].” [Surat Al Baqarah: 190].

Here are some of the battles that took place in the month of Ramadan: 

The first Ramadan in 666 AH:

King Al Zhahir seized Antioch and expelled Tatars.

The tenth  Ramadan 1393 AH:

Crossing the Suez Canal, destroying the Bar-Lev Line, and eliminating the myth of the Israeli army which was unbeatable.

11 Ramadan 880 AH:

Muhammad Al Fatih gained victory and subjugated the Tatars in the Crimean peninsula to the rule of the Ottomans.

11 Ramadan 1126 AH:

Ottomans retook Archipelago of the Aegean Sea.

14 Ramadan 1218 AH:

The eruption of a demonstration from inside Al Azhar Mosque against the French occupation.

16 Ramadan 4 years before Hijrah:

`Umar ibn Al Khattab announced the necessity of declaring the Islamic call.

17 Ramadan 2 AH:

The great battle of Badr.

19 Ramadan 939 AH:

The Turkish Sultan, Sulayman Al Qanuny besieged (Vienna) the capital of Austria.

22 Ramadan 2 AH:

The Prophet’s invasion to Banu Sulaym as a response to their conspiracy with his enemy in the time of adversity and war.

22 Ramadan 1251 AH:

The hero `Abdul-Rahman Al Jaza’iry led the war against the French.

25 Ramadan 658 AH:

The Battle of Ain Goliath which stopped the advance of the Mongols in the East.

28 Ramadan 1303 AH:

Al Mahdi army defeated the British occupation army and Al Mahdi settled down in Sudan.

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Moreover, in Ramadan there were two great victories from the greatest in the Islam conquests which were the opening of Makkah in which the last idol of the Pre-Islamic Era was destroyed in order that the people would enter in the religion of Allah in groups and there the truth has come and the falsehood was vanished.[according to Islam]

The second opening was (the opening of Andalusia) which conveyed Islam to Europe and caused the light of Islamic civilization to enter into Europe and placed Europe at the age of renaissance.

Today, the conditions were reversed and Muslims are lagging behind, whereas the Europe has advanced, so, when will Muslims make a new opening in the field of civilization in order to be at the level of responsibility toward the Islamic religion which Allah entrusted to them?……. I think they have just begun!!

Tunisia attack on Sousse beach: DEATH TOLL RISES TO 37

Medics help an injured man in Sousse

Medics help an injured man in Sousse… Several people were injured in the attack

At least 37 people, mostly foreigners, have been killed and 36 injured in an attack on a beach in the Tunisian resort town of Sousse, according to the health ministry.

Officials say one gunman has been shot dead and another is being pursued.

Tunisians, Britons, Germans and Belgians and at least one Irish citizen are among the dead.

In March militants killed 22 people, mainly foreign tourists, in an attack on a museum in the capital Tunis.

Tunisian President Beji Caid Essebsi has gone to Sousse’s Sahloul hospital to visit the injured.

Security officials said one attacker, who had posed as a swimmer but was carrying a rifle under a parasol, was shot dead in an exchange of fire with police.

Local media reported that the second attacker had been arrested, but this has not been confirmed. A photo purporting to show the body of the first attacker is circulating on social media.

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Day of attacks

The shooting in Tunisia comes on the same day as:

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One of those killed was an Irish woman, Irish Foreign Minister Charles Flanagan said.

A British man on holiday told the BBC that he heard the attack on a neighbouring hotel.

From his room, he saw a man with a pistol but did not know whether this was an attacker or a member of the security forces.

The Hotel Imperial Marhaba was named as one of the hotels close to the attack.

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Analysis by the BBC’s Aidan Lewis

It is often hard to prove the links between separate cases of violence, even when claims of responsibility are issued by the same group.

Violence is often driven by local grievances, with militant factions switching allegiances as the fortunes of bigger international “franchises” like al-Qaeda and Islamic State rise and fall.

That leads to uncertainty as to whether the bigger group directed, co-ordinated, or inspired a given attack, or simply claimed it after the fact. That is what officials and security analysts will be seeking to understand in the aftermath of this bloody day.

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Police were seen detaining this man in the aftermath of the attack

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The bodies of the victims were strewn across the beach

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Tourists were ordered off the beach into the neighbouring hotels

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Briton Glenn Leathley told the BBC his daughter had been at the scene and rang him to say “there’s gunfire on the beach”.

Another British holidaymaker, Steve Johnson, told the BBC: “We were just laying on the beach as usual and… we heard what we thought at first was fireworks.

“But it was soon pretty obvious… that it was firearms that were being discharged and people screaming and starting to run.”

One image circulating on social media appeared to show a man lying face down in the sand with what looks like blood around his head.

The Islamic State militant group had called on its followers to increase attacks during the Islamic fasting month of Ramadan, but no-one has yet said they were behind this attack.

The UK Foreign Office said the British embassy in Tunis was sending a crisis team to the area.

“Any British nationals in these hotels or nearby should remain indoors, and contact their tour operator and the Foreign Office. For security reasons they should not advertise their location on social media or when speaking to journalists,” the FCO sais in its updated travel advice.

The Belgian foreign ministry is advising against all travel to Tunisia and the Belgian Jetairfly airline has announced it is cancelling all flights to Tunisia because of the attack.

A spokeswoman for the Thomson and First Choice tour operators said: “We are working closely with our teams in Tunisia and the relevant authorities to determine exactly what has happened and provide assistance to those affected.”

Tunisia has seen militant Islamists gain strength since the overthrow of long-serving ruler Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali in a popular uprising in 2011.

Democratic elections after Ben Ali’s removal saw the moderate Islamist Ennahda party take power before the secularist Nidaa Tounes government won a parliamentary poll in October.

However, neither party has been able effectively to combat Islamist violence made worse by a raging conflict in neighbouring Libya and by Tunisian fighters returning home after going to join Islamist campaigns in Iraq and Syria.

TUNISIA TOURISM Capture

SOURCE: BBC NEWS

Somalia attack: Al-Shabab ‘kills 30′ at AU military base

Al-Shabab fighters in somalia

Al-Shabab has said it carried out the attack

At least 30 people have been killed after gunmen attacked an African Union military base in southern Somalia, witnesses say.

A suicide car bomber drove into the main gates of the base in Leego, along the main road connecting the capital, Mogadishu and the city of Baidoa.

The militant Islamist group al-Shabab says its fighters have taken control of the base but this is not confirmed.

Al-Shabab is battling Somalia’s government for control of the country.

The base is manned by Burundian soldiers from the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom), which has more than 20,000 troops in the country.

Amisom confirmed on its Twitter account that an attack was ongoing, but has not given any details on casualties.

Leego residents have seen militants burning vehicles, carrying off weapons and removing the bodies of their fighters killed in the attack, reports the BBC’s Mohamed Moalimu from Mogadishu.

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The governor of Lower Shabelle province told the BBC that militants had conducted at least three separate attacks in his region but that most had been repelled.

Al-Shabab has vowed to intensify attacks during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan.

On Wednesday, the first day of Ramadan, the United Arab Emirates ambassador survived a suicide attack on his convoy in Mogadishu.

Related:

source: BBC NEWS