Somalia militants break ties with US jihadist

Updated 17 December 2012
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Somalia militants break ties with US jihadist

NAIROBI, Kenya: Somalia’s Al-Qaeda linked Shabab militants said Monday they had broken ties with a US extremist who rose to fame for his rap videos urging fellow Americans to join him to fight.
Omar Hamami — better known as Abu Mansoor Al-Amriki (the American) — was once viewed as a key foreign leader within the Shabab, and was placed last month on the FBI’s list of most wanted terrorists.
But the Shabab on Monday accused Amriki of “spreading discord and disunity” among the insurgents, following video release and statements from the 28-year-old alleging he had been threatened by fellow fighters.
“Abu Mansoor Al-Amriki does not, in any way, shape or form, represent the views of the mujahedeen in Somalia,” a statement posted via a link on the Shabab’s Twitter site read.

The “superficial allegations” made in the videos and statements are “the results of personal grievances that stem purely from a narcissistic pursuit of fame,” the statement added.

Amriki, who grew up in the town of Daphne in Alabama, was raised by a southern Baptist mother with Irish roots and a Muslim father with a Syrian background.
Reportedly based in anarchic Somalia since late 2006, he has issued previous videos calling for foreign recruits, including singing rap songs praising jihad, despite the fact that the Shabab ban music under their strict interpretation of Islam.
Amriki had previously been seen as a leader for foreign fighters in the Shabab, alongside top Somali commanders Muktar Robow and Sheikh Hasan Dahir Aweys.
But the Shabab, while saying they still welcomed foreign fighters, dismissed Amriki’s importance.
“The jihadi theater nevertheless accommodates people of all sorts. Some, above others, occasionally rise to prominence often with little merit save for their uniqueness,” the statement read.
“Contrary to portraits of the grand strategist, recruiter and fundraiser portrayed by the Western media, Abu Mansur Al-Amriki does not hold any position of authority.”
The Shabab are on the back foot having lost a string of key towns in recent months to African Union forces, Somali troops and Ethiopian soldiers.


Australian nun who angered Duterte wins stay in deportation

Updated 18 June 2018
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Australian nun who angered Duterte wins stay in deportation

  • Sister Patricia Fox, 71, was briefly detained in April after Duterte ordered her arrest
  • The nun was accused of political activism that violated the rules of her visa

MANILA: An Australian nun ordered to leave the Philippines after angering President Rodrigo Duterte won a reprieve on Monday from imminent deportation but is still subject to proceedings to expel her.
Sister Patricia Fox, 71, was briefly detained in April after Duterte ordered her arrest, accusing her of political activism that violated the rules of her visa.
The move came as the government cracked down on foreign critics of his human rights record.
The immigration service had canceled her visa and directed Fox to leave the Philippines by Monday, but the justice department nullified the order as having no legal basis.
“What the (immigration service) did in this case is beyond what the law provides, that is why it has to be struck down,” said a statement from Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, who oversees immigration matters.
The decision gave Fox a reprieve but the department also ordered the immigration authorities to hear a case on her visa’s cancelation along with pending deportation proceedings.
“Until a final resolution of the... proceedings is reached, or until the expiration of her missionary visa, whichever comes first, Sister Fox may continue to perform her duties as a missionary in the Philippines,” the statement said.
Fox, who declared herself relieved after the decision, said her visa was valid until September 9.
“We are very pleased actually, because we weren’t sure what would happen,” she told AFP. “I was just so relieved.”
Fox, who has been living in the Philippines since 1990, attracted Duterte’s wrath after joining a fact-finding mission in April to investigate alleged abuses against farmers — including killings and evictions by soldiers fighting guerrillas in the southern Philippines.
Duterte, 73, has also launched a deadly crackdown on drugs and has railed against human rights critics, especially foreigners whom he accuses of meddling in his nation’s affairs.
In April Duterte accused Fox of “disorderly conduct.”
“Don’t let her in because that nun has a shameless mouth,” he said then.
A missionary of the Sisters of Our Lady of Sion, Fox has denied engaging in politics, saying her actions were part of her work to advocate for justice and peace. She adds she enjoys freedom of expression.
Before Monday’s decision was released Fox said she would fight moves to deport her.
“It’s more of looking at getting due process for myself (and) this happening to others,” she told ABS-CBN television.
“I’m thinking if there’s no due process when I am high profile, how much more in the provinces where people are being arrested?“