Tag Archives: siege

Gunman in deadly California siege was decorated veteran treated for PTSD

Gunman in deadly California siege was decorated veteran treated for PTSDBy Scott Bransford YOUNTVILLE, Calif. (Reuters) – Details emerged on Saturday about a decorated former U.S. serviceman who took three women hostage at a California veterans home where he had undergone treatment for PTSD, in a standoff that ended when police found him and his captives dead. The Veterans Home of California in Yountville, the largest such facility in the United States, was the scene on Friday of the latest mass shooting to rock a country still shocked by the slaughter last month of 17 people at a Florida high school. Officials named the gunman as Albert Wong, 36, of Sacramento, and said he had served with the U.S. Army on active duty from May 2010 to August 2013 and spent a year in Afghanistan.



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Turkey's Erdogan says Syria's Afrin town under siege, entry imminent

Turkey's Erdogan says Syria's Afrin town under siege, entry imminentTurkey’s military and its rebel allies have besieged the northern Syrian town of Afrin and were nearing its town center, President Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday, in what would mark a major advance in Turkey’s military operation. Turkey launched its operation, dubbed “Olive Branch”, in northern Syria nearly seven weeks ago to sweep the Syrian Kurdish YPG from the Turkish border. Turkey sees the YPG as a terrorist group and an extension of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).



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Kabul hotel attack: 19 dead, including 14 foreigners, in overnight Taliban siege

Kabul hotel attack: 19 dead, including 14 foreigners, in overnight Taliban siegeAt least 19 people were killed during a 13 hour siege after Taliban gunmen in army uniforms stormed a luxury Kabul hotel popular with Afghan officials and foreigners. Eyewitnesses described how the gunmen deliberately targeted foreigners as they rampaged through the six-floor Intercontinental Hotel.   One Afghan man told the BBC that he was spared by militants who shouted "Where are the foreigners?" as they ran into the hotel's restaurant at around 9pm local time on Saturday night. At least 14 of the dead were believed to be foreign nationals, among them two Venezuelans and six Ukrainians. The gun battle ended on Sunday morning as Afghan special forces killed the last of the six gunmen, who were armed with grenades, automatic weapons and suicide vests. By 10am, Special Forces could be seen sweeping the roof of the hotel as firefighters attempted to extinguish a blaze which had ripped through the sixth floor. Thick clouds of black smoke could be seen pouring from the building, an imposing 1960s structure set on a hilltop. Afghan security personnel stand guard as black smoke rises from the Intercontinental Hotel after an attack in Kabul Credit: AP Photo/Rahmat Gul Some 150 desperate staff and guests managed to escape the building throughout the night, amid heavy gunfire and explosions. One witness told AFP that the hotel's security team fled "without a fight". Dramatic footage showed people clambering down from upper-floor balconies using bedsheets tied together. Telecoms executive Aziz Tayeb posted a desperate plea on Facebook from a hiding place behind a pillar as attackers sprayed guests and staff with bullets: "Pray for me. I may die." Mr Tayeb was at the hotel for a major IT conference set to take place yesterday. The Intercontinental hotel in Kabul is under siege from gunmen. Credit: Reuters Abdul Rahman Naseri, also at the hotel for the conference, described how he saw four gunmen dressed in army uniforms. "They were shouting in Pashto, 'Don't leave any of them alive, good or bad'. 'Shoot and kill them all,’ one of them shouted," Mr Naseri said. "I ran to my room on the second floor. I opened the window and tried to get out using a tree but the branch broke and I fell to the ground. I hurt my back and broke a leg." The attackers are believed to have got into the hotel via the kitchen, and a worker in the restaurant said the men had sat down and ordered food, before opening fire. A man tries to escape from a balcony at Kabul's Intercontinental Hotel during an attack by gunmen  Credit: Reuters "They were wearing very stylish clothes," the man, named as Haseeb, told Tolo News. "They came to me and asked for food. I served them the food and they thanked me and took their seats. Then they took out their weapons and started shooting the people." A senior security official said that the attackers had moved directly from the first floor to the fourth and fifth floors, suggesting the attack had been carefully prepared, possibly with inside help. An Afghan policeman keeps watch near the site of an attack on the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul, Afghanistan. Credit:  REUTERS "When the sixth floor caught fire this morning, my roommate told me, either burn or escape," said Mohammad Musa, who was hiding in his room on the top floor. "I got a bed sheet and tied it to the balcony. I tried to come down but I was heavy and my arms were not strong enough. I fell down and injured my shoulder and leg.""There were dozens of dead bodies lying around me." The Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul was previously targeted in 2011. Credit: Reuters Wahid Majroh, a spokesman for the ministry of public health, last night said 19 bodies had been brought into the city's hospitals, but a senior Afghan security official said the death toll was over 30 and might climb higher. At least 11 of the dead worked for private Afghan airline Kam Air, which on Sunday suspended domestic flights. It said a further 14 emloyees were still missing. A security personnel points his weapon near the Intercontinental Hotel after a deadly attack in Kabul, Afghanistan. Credit: Massoud Hossaini Also among the dead was Dr Abdullah Waheed Poyan, a well-respected academic who had worked for the Afghan diplomatic corps. Interior ministry spokesman Najib Danesh said a private company had taken over responsibility for security at the hotel three weeks ago and there would be an investigation into possible failings, just days after a US embassy warning of possible attacks on hotels in Kabul. Afghan security forces arrive the site of an attack on the Intercontinental Hotel in Kabul, Afghanistan. Credit:  REUTERS The raid was the latest in a series of attacks that have underlined the city's vulnerability and the ability of militants to mount high-profile operations aimed at undermining confidence in the Western-backed government. The Taliban, which attacked the same hotel in 2011, claimed responsibility for the attack, its spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said in a statement.



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Bel-Air wildfire joins the siege across Southern California

Bel-Air wildfire joins the siege across Southern CaliforniaA wildfire erupted in Los Angeles' exclusive Bel-Air section Wednesday as yet another part of Southern California found itself under siege from an outbreak of wind-whipped blazes that have consumed multimillion-dollar houses and tract homes alike.



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California communities under siege from wind-driven fires

California communities under siege from wind-driven firesVENTURA, Calif. (AP) — Wind-driven fires tore through California communities Tuesday for the second time in two months, leaving hundreds of homes feared lost and uprooting tens of thousands of people.



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The Latest: End of Marawi siege is move against extremism

The Latest: End of Marawi siege is move against extremismCLARK, Philippines (AP) — The Latest on the Philippine fight to end the militant siege of Marawi (all times local):



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Philippines declares end to 5-month militant siege in Marawi

Philippines declares end to 5-month militant siege in MarawiCLARK, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine government declared the end Monday to the militant siege of a southern city that lasted five months, left more than 1,100 people dead and sparked fears of the Islamic State group gaining a foothold in Southeast Asia.



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Man's fingertip torn off as wild boar rampage puts German town under siege

Man's fingertip torn off as wild boar rampage puts German town under siegeTwo aggressive wild boars attacked and injured several people in the small German town of Heide on Friday morning, tearing through the town centre in a rampage which lasted for hours. Four people were injured, and one man’s fingertip was torn off, according to police reports. Others suffered leg injuries, as they were hit by the fully-grown animals in the northernmost state of Schleswig-Holstein.  The boars tore through the streets and ran through the market square, before making their way into a local bank branch, according to police, who issued a warning at around 9am urging people to avoid the town centre and to stay in their houses or in shops. One eyewitness saw a woman lying on the ground, screaming, after her trousers had been torn, according to German radio station NDR 1 Welle Nord. Another said they were "completely bewildered" and that the boars had come "out of nowhere".  After a large-scale operation, during which police and hunters chased the boar with stun rifles, one was killed by huntsman Uwe Ingwersen at 11am – two hours after the animals were first spotted – with a targeted head shot. The second ran away from the centre and police say it is now outside the city area.  Terror in Ditmarschen���� pic.twitter.com/mheLOKa5RK— Daggi (@danishkeks) October 20, 2017 Customers in the bank, which was invaded by the boars, were evacuated through open windows using ladders, according to police reports. Several cars were also damaged. Wild boar still roam the forests of Germany and are seen as a menace by much of German society. Marcus Börner, press officer at the Country Hunting Association, told the Schleswig-Holstein newspaper that it is highly stressful for boars, which have spread extensively in the state in recent decades, to be caught between walls and among so many people, causing them to become aggressive.  Earlier this year, a herd of wild boars attacked several people, injuring three, near Berlin's Tegel airport. Local media reported that it took authorities 18 shots to down one 200-kilogram boar, while the rest of the herd escaped.



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Battle for Marawi: bitter siege that left a city in ruins

Battle for Marawi: bitter siege that left a city in ruinsThe death of top Islamist fighter Isnilon Hapilon is a rare celebratory moment for the Philippines military, which has been bogged down in a gruelling four-month battle to retake the southern city of Marawi. What began as a surprise takeover by militants that Manila said would be easily defeated, quickly descended into house-to-house fighting against a deceptively well-planned Islamist insurgency. The insurgents have withstood a relentless US-backed bombing campaign, raising awkward questions about the Philippines’ ability to defend itself from an increasingly assertive Islamist presence in its violence-plagued south.



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Philippines: 3 Marawi siege leaders dead, 2 still fighting

Philippines: 3 Marawi siege leaders dead, 2 still fightingMANILA, Philippines (AP) — The Philippine military chief said Monday that three leaders of Islamic State-linked militants who besieged a southern city have been killed in months of fighting but two others, including one of Asia's most wanted terror suspects, were still alive and leading a final stand.



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