Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : February 9th 2015 Contents A23
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DOUGLASVILLE---A man shot six
people Saturday afternoon, killing four of
them, including his ex-wife and several
children before turning the gun on himself
on a quiet, suburban street outside
Atlanta, police and neighbours said.
Horrified neighbours called police and
tended to the severely injured victims as
best they could before rescuers arrived.
The shooting happened around 3 pm in
a housing development west of Atlanta,
Douglas County Sheriff's Lt Glenn Daniel
The shooter appeared to have targeted
his ex-wife and her household, including
several children who tried to flee, Daniel
said. Investigators believe the gunman
killed himself at the end of the shooting
spree, and were still trying to determine
the shooter's motive.
"I've been in law enforcement out here
20 years and this is the worst I've ever
seen," Daniel said.
Police: 5 dead, including gunman, in US shooting
BRATISLAVA---A nationwide refer-
endum on restricting gay rights in
Slovakia has failed to produce a legally
binding result after the required num-
ber of eligible voters did not turn out.
In Saturday s vote, Slovaks were asked
whether they agree to three points: that
marriage can only be called a union
between a man and a woman; that
same-sex partners must be barred from
adopting children; and that it s up to
parents to decide whether their children
receive sex education.
The vote was forced by the Alliance
for Family, a social conservative group
that received a massive support from
the Catholic Church.
With all the votes tallied early Sunday
by the country s Statistics Office, voters
in the predominantly Catholic country
overwhelmingly voted "yes"---95, 92
and 90 per cent, respectively---to the
But turnout reached only 21.4 per
cent, far less than the 50 per cent need-
"It s a success of Slovakia s democ-
racy," said Silvia Porubanova, an ana-
A leader of the alliance, Anton
Chromik, said he was delighted that a
clear majority of the voters who par-
ticipated in the ballot supported the
alliance and called it "a good base" for
its further activities.
Romana Schlesinger, a LGBT activist
said, she hoped the government will
now work to make it possible for same-
sex couples to live in registered part-
nership "because all our partnerships,
our families are living without legal
recognition or protection."
Slovakia doesn t allow same-sex
partners to live in registered partnerships
and the country s constitution was
amended last year to define marriage
as a union between a man and a
The vote in Slovakia---which follows
a similar one that succeeded in Croatia
in 2013---points to a cultural divide within
the European Union in which more
established western members are rapidly
granting new rights to gays, while eastern
newcomers entrench conservative atti-
tudes toward LGBT people. AP
on gay rights
have arrested 32 extremists and
thwarted an ambitious plot to
attack civilian and military sites
around the country, including
the Interior Ministry.
The spokesman for the Interior
Ministry, Mohamed Ali Aroui,
said some of those arrested over
several days had travelled to bat-
tlefronts abroad, notably Syria.
The announcement late Sat-
urday came just as Tunisia s new
government is taking power after
a long transition to democracy
prompted by the Arab Spring
uprisings. A major task for the
new leadership will be fighting
extremism that has flourished
since protesters overthrew
Aroui said the hunt for other
suspects was still underway with
plans to comb Kasserine, near
the Algerian border where Mus-
lim radicals are holed up resisting
Tunisian soldiers trying to rout
them out. The towns of Kef and
Jendouba, in the northwest, also
are being searched.
The spokesman, speaking Sat-
urday night on TV and radio, said
those arrested belonged to the
Okba Ibn Nafaa Brigade, thought
to be linked to al-Qaeda s North
African affiliate, which has in the
past claimed responsibility for
deadly attacks at Mount Chaambi
on Tunisian soldiers.
Among targets of the disman-
tled network were the Interior
Ministry, in the heart of the
Tunisian capital, and two Nation-
al Guard posts, Aroui said Sat-
urday night on Tunisian TV and
radio. Also targetted were "strate-
gic" sites in two southern towns,
Tunisian authorities are par-
ticularly monitoring those return-
ing from Syria.
Some 3,000 Tunisians are esti-
mated to have left for jihad,
mainly with the Islamic State
group, in Syria and Iraq. Former
Interior Minister Lotfi Ben Jeddou
said recently that several hundred
had returned home and were
AMMAN---Jordan has launched 56 airstrikes against
Islamic State group weapons depots, training centers
and military barracks since militants released a
video of them burning a Jordanian pilot to death,
Jordan s air force chief said Sunday.
Jordanian officials have said they would retaliate
harshly for the slaying of the pilot, Lt Muath al-
Kaseasbeh, who was set ablaze while trapped in a
Since Thursday, the Jordanian air force has attacked
and destroyed 56 Islamic State targets, the air force
chief, Gen Mansour al-Jabour, told reporters. This
includes 19 targets on the first day, 18 on the second
and 19 on the third, he said.
"We achieved what we were looking for: revenge
for Muath," the general said. "And this is not the end.
This is the beginning."
In recent days, Jordanian officials have delivered
tough warnings to Islamic State, saying the retaliation
campaign would not stop until the group has been
The United States and several Arab allies, including
Jordan, have been striking the Islamic State group in
Syria since September 23, while warplanes from the
US and other countries have been waging an air cam-
paign against the extremists in Iraq for even longer.
The campaign aims to push back the jihadi organisation
after it took large parts of Iraq and Syria and declared
Al-Jabour said coalition planes have flown 5,500
sorties since the beginning of the air campaign, includ-
ing 2,000 reconnaissance flights. He did not say
whether this included flights over both Syria and
Iraq. He said Jordan s air force participated in 946
The general said about 7,000 Islamic State group
militants have been killed since the beginning of the
coalition airstrikes, without elaborating.
Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Bahrain and the United Arab
Emirates have been participating in the Syria airstrikes,
with logistical support from Qatar.
US officials have said that the UAE suspended
airstrikes after the capture of the Jordanian pilot. The
UAE announced Saturday it was sending a squadron
of F-16 fighters to Jordan.
The Emiratis did not say what role the planes would
play. A Jordanian official said they would participate
Jordan says it
launched 56 airstrikes
against Islamic State
Britain's Prince Charles inspects an honour guard upon his arrival for a meeting with Jordan's King Abdullah II,
in Amman, Jordan yesterday. Prince Charles has toured a sprawling camp for Syrian refugees in Jordan,
chatting with residents and sampling tea and bread on a walk down the main road. AP PHOTO
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