A second American citizen who died fighting for terror group ISIS in Syria has been identified as Abdirahmaan Muhumed of Minneapolis, reports have said.
Fox News reported that the 29-year-old Somali-American died in the same battle as Douglas McArthur McCain, the first American to be identified as having died on the Islamic militant side. Muhumed's family has apparently received a photo of his body from Syria, but hasn't been notified by the State Department yet.
The White House confirmed McCain's death earlier this week, but spokeswoman Jen Psaki said on Wednesday that it had not yet received independent confirmation of the second American's death. more >>
A group of online, crowdfunded bloggers claim that they have pinpointed the location of a terrorist training ground used by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). By simply examining peripheral landmarks in pictures posted by the terrorists to social media accounts, the bloggers claim to have verified the locations of the pictures using free online satellite imagery programs.
A team of journalists, researchers and bloggers contributing to the crowd-sponsored investigative blog Bellingcat.com, which researches conflict zones and other "issues being ignored" by the U.S. government, claim that they found that the general area of the training ground is near the west bank of the Tigres River in the north side of the city of Mosul.
The website received over $85,000 in funding donations through its participation with the Kickstarter.com funding website. The site was started by Elliot Higgins, who first came to fame for proving that Syria was using chemical weapons by using online videos and images. Higgins said he started the project to show that everyday people are capable of uncovering secrets of the state. more >>
A Ukrainian military official said that Russia is carrying out a "full-scale invasion" in Ukraine and is sending tanks to aid the pro-Russian rebels who have attacked and captured several Ukrainian cities. President Petro Poroshenko has in response cancelled a planned trip to Turkey, citing "Russian troop deployments" in the east of the country for changing his schedule.
"I have made a decision to cancel my working visit to the Republic of Turkey due to sharp aggravation of the situation in Donetsk region... as Russian troops were actually brought into Ukraine," Poroshenko said in a statement.
The Church of England has called on British Prime Minister David Cameron to do more to help Christians and religious minorities fleeing persecution from terror group ISIS by offering asylum.
John Sentamu, the Archbishop of York, said that it is time for Cameron to "take a lead" on the issue and warned that the time for "speeches and condemnation has passed," The Telegraph reported.
Sentamu revealed that he had written the PM three weeks ago asking for Britain to offer asylum to refugees, but had not received a reply. more >>
Terror group ISIS has demanded a $6.6 million ransom for the release of a 26-year-old American woman it captured over a year ago while she was doing humanitarian relief work in Syria.
The woman, whose identity was not released due to a request from her family, is the third of at least four Americans who are known to be held captive by ISIS, also known as the Islamic State, ABC News reported on Tuesday. The militants are also demanding the release of Aafia Siddiqui, an MIT-trained neuroscientist convicted by the U.S. in 2010 of trying to kill two American officials two years before.
ISIS, which has captured significant territory in Iraq and Syria, beheaded American journalist James Foley last week, and warned President Barack Obama to stop air strikes against ISIS targets. more >>
Israel and militant group Hamas have agreed to a long-term ceasefire in the Gaza Strip aimed at ending the conflict that has killed over 2,200 people. Israel has agreed to ease its economic blockade of Gaza, while Hamas has said it will stop firing rockets into Israeli territory.
The Associated Press reported that the truce was holding as of Wednesday. The open-ended deal was brokered by Egypt, with hopes it will stop the fighting, which besides the heavy death toll, has led to widespread destruction in Gaza.
"Israel has accepted an Egyptian proposal for a complete and unlimited-in-time ceasefire. Israel accepted already the Egyptian proposal on July 15. Israel has always supported an unconditional, open-ended ceasefire," an Israeli government official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity. more >>