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Fury as Australian senator Fraser Anning blames immigration for mosque shootings in Christchurch | World News

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An Australian senator has provoked outrage after blaming immigration for the mosque shootings in New Zealand.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said it was “one of New Zealand’s darkest days” and called the shootings a terrorist attacks. At least 49 people were killed in Christchurch and another 20 were seriously injured.

But Fraser Anning, a senator in Queensland, has issued a statement describing the terror attacks as “vigilantism” and claiming that Muslim immigration was to blame for the atrocity.

“I am utterly opposed to any form of violence within out community, and I totally condemn the actions of the gunman,” he wrote.

“However, whilst this kind of violent vigilantism can never be justified, what it highlights is the growing fear within our community, both in Australia and New Zealand, of the increasing Muslim presence.”

The statement was immediately criticised by people in Australia and New Zealand, as well as others around the world, including Australian prime minister Scott Morrison.

An injured person is loaded into an ambulance at the Al Noor mosque
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An injured person is loaded into an ambulance at the Al Noor mosque

Former Australian PM Malcolm Turnbull said: “Fraser Anning’s comments today are contemptible.

“He is a disgrace to the Senate and what is worse by spreading hatred and turning Australians against each other he is doing exactly what the terrorists want.”

Another user responded to Mr Anning directly, saying: “You’re an embarrassment. The people of Queensland deserve better than you. A literal piece of **** would suffice.”

Paul Brislen responded to Mr Anning: “I don’t know who you are but you’re a ****wit of the highest order.

“The good news is New Zealand is better than that and we stand shoulder to shoulder with our Muslim whanau,” he added, using the Maori word for extended family.

Another user said: “Maggots like Fraser Anning are directly responsible for this violence.

“They give platforms to racists, white-supremacists. They embolden and encourage these overwhelmingly right-wing, white men.

“They all share the same dream, a white ethnostate.”

Mr Anning has previously been criticised for his perceived racism, including using the phrase “final solution” as part of his proposals on immigration.

The phrase “final solution” is most often known as a euphemism used by the Nazis through the Holocaust during the Second World War.



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Healthy dog put down because owner wanted to be buried together | US News

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A healthy dog was put down because her owner requested she be buried with her in her will.

Emma, a Shih Tzu mix, was euthanized two weeks after arriving at a shelter in Chesterfield County, Virginia on 8 March.

Her owner had died and her will stipulated she be buried with her dog.

Staff at the shelter where Emma was staying were in contact with the executors of the will in the hope of convincing them to sign over the animal so they could have her adopted.

Carrie Jones, the manager of the animal services, said: “We did suggest they could sign the dog over on numerous occasions, because it’s a dog we could easily find a home for and re-home.”

According to WWBT in Richmond, Virginia, the dog was taken to a vet, euthanized and the ashes were placed in an urn and returned to the woman’s estate.

The process is legal in Virginia, by a law which came into force in 2014. But cemeteries have to allocate a separate part of the land for pets, and they can’t be in the same niche as humans.

Other states allow pets to be buried with owners.

The shelter offered to have the dog adopted
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The shelter offered to have the dog adopted

Speaking to AP, vet Dr Kenny Lucas said his clinic would not do it, but admitted it was an “emotional decision”.

Larry Spiaggi, president of the Virginia Funeral Directors Association, said it was abhorrent.

He told WWBT: “It’s not legal to put a dog’s cremated remains – or any animal – in a casket and bury them.”

The state is considering legislation to address the problem.

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UN tells Britain to end ‘colonial administration’ of Chagos Islands | World News

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Britain should end its “colonial administration” of the Chagos Islands and return them to Mauritius within six months, the UN has demanded.

The 193-member world body approved a resolution supporting a finding by the International Court of Justice that the Indian Ocean island chain be given back to Mauritius.

The General Assembly resolution, like the court’s ruling, is not legally binding but it does carry weight as it came from the UN’s highest court, and the vote – 116-6 with 56 abstentions – reflects world opinion.

The court said in its opinion Britain had unlawfully carved up Mauritius, which the Chagos Archipelago was a part of, in 1965 when Mauritius was a British colony.

It said: “The United Kingdom is under an obligation to bring to an end its administration of the Chagos Archipelago as rapidly as possible.”

DATE IMPORTED:22 October, 2008A demonstrator demanding her return to the Chagos Islands in the Diego Garcia archipelago shouts during a protest outside the Houses of Parliament in London October 22, 2008. Britain's highest court ruled in favour of the British government on Wednesday, blocking the return of hundreds of Chagos Island people to their homes in the south Indian Ocean after nearly 40 years of exile. The decision by the House of Lords ends a years-long battle to secure the Chagos Islan
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Many Chagossians resettled in the UK and have fought in British courts to return to the islands

Britain evicted about 2,000 people from the Chagos Archipelago in the 1960s and 1970s so the US military could build its air base on Diego Garcia.

Many resettled in the UK and have fought in British courts to return to the islands.

Britain’s UN ambassador, Karen Pierce, told the assembly: “British Indian Ocean Territory has been under continuous British sovereignty since 1814. Mauritius has never held sovereignty over it and we do not recognise their claim.”

She added that the government stands by the 1965 agreement with the Mauritian Council of Ministers to detach the British Indian Ocean Territory in exchange for fishing rights and other benefits and a commitment “to cede the territory when it is no longer needed for defence purposes”.

Mauritius Prime Minister Pravind Kumar Jugnauth told the assembly his country “is extremely disappointed” in the position of the British government.

Mr Jugnauth said the 1965 agreement on the Chagos Archipelago “was carried out under duress” and labelled the forcible eviction of islanders as “a very dark episode of human history akin to a crime against humanity”.

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Warnings over Trump’s plans to pardon war crimes suspects | US News

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Donald Trump’s plans to pardon several US military members accused or convicted of war crimes have been met with disbelief and anger.

Earlier this week the US president asked for files to be prepared on pardoning the former troops, including one who faces charges of shooting unarmed civilians in Iraq.

The timing indicates he could be intending to pardon the men on Memorial Day in the US (27 May), two sources told the New York Times.

One of those officials said that processing a pardon usually takes months but the Justice Department had asked for these ones to be finished before the holiday weekend.

Among those who have criticised the move was Army General Martin Dempsey, the former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

He wrote on Twitter: “Absent evidence of innocence or injustice the wholesale pardon of US service members accused of war crimes signals our troops and allies that we don’t take the Law of Armed Conflict seriously.

“Bad message. Bad precedent. Abdication of moral responsibility. Risk to us.”

Retired General Charles Krulak, a former commandant of the Marine Corps, told the LA Times: “If President Trump issues indiscriminate pardons of individuals accused – or convicted by their fellow service members – of war crimes, he relinquishes the United States’ moral high ground and undermines the good order and discipline critical to winning on the battlefield.”

Ted Lieu, a Democratic congressman who served in the US Air Force’s Judge Advocate General’s Corps for four years, said: “No one ever said hey, I support war crimes like murdering an unarmed girl and murdering unarmed captives.

“Until Donald Trump came along. And military leaders are now rebelling at that insanity.”

One of the requests for pardon reportedly relates to Special Operations Chief Edward Gallagher of the Navy SEALs, who is due to stand trial in the coming weeks.

Gallagher is accused of killing a wounded Islamic State prisoner under his care in Iraq in 2017 and shooting indiscriminately at civilians. He denies all charges.

US troops have been fighting in Afghanistan since 2001
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Reports say the pardons could be timed for Memorial Day, which is intended for the remembrance of those troops killed in war

Also believed to be included is Mathew Golsteyn, a former Army Green Beret (special forces) who faces a murder charge after being accused of killing an unarmed Afghan who he believed was a Taliban bomb-maker in Afghanistan in 2010.

He also denies doing anything wrong, saying he acted under the laws of armed conflict.

Eric Carpenter, a former Army prosecutor, told US military newspaper Stars and Stripes that pardoning the men would be a “terrible decision”.

He added: “He plays into our enemies’ narrative, which is that we don’t care about Muslim lives.”



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