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Some 2,000 fighters of the Azov, Dnipro and Lviv volunteer battalions, deployed near the disengagement line between Kiev forces and DPR military, have gotten out of control of the Ukrainian military command, Eduard Basurin, spokesman for the Defense Ministry of DPR, said at a briefing Wednesday. A grouping of the militants belonging to these battalions has been revealed between the inhabited localities of Novgorodskoye and Troitskoye. 50 items of hardware, including tanks, infantry combat vehicles, armored personnel carriers and field artillery, have been concentrated in the same area in violation of the Minsk Agreements.
Ukraine has refused to streamline the process of crossing the disengagement line with DPR and LPR, a source close to the peace negotiating process in Minsk said. For example, there are huge lines at the disengagement line in the DPR because Ukraine and the LPR just have no crossing points for motor transport. This issue was raised in the humanitarian issues subgroup but the Kiev side has been evading the question what they have done to solve the problem.
Australia’s maritime border control allegedly paid people smugglers to turn back refugee boats headed for New Zealand. The claims made by Amnesty International also accuse Canberra of essentially colluding with a people-smuggling operation. Australian officials paid six crew members a total of US $32,000 to make sure they did not continue on to New Zealand. Instead, the crew returned to Indonesia, with 65 asylum seekers. The incident took place in May 2015.
The al-Shabaab militant group has taken 12 hostages after a military transport plane crashed in Somalia. According to the local authorities, the hostages were US citizens. The aircraft was coming from Kenya’s capital of Nairobi, carrying supplies for peacekeeping forces in Somalia. The news agency reported that Pentagon had denied the reports of US citizens aboard the aircraft. The US officials are likely sure that “moderate rebels” don’t take hostages.
A road map for the accession of India and Pakistan to the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) has been worked out and submitted for the current member-states’ consideration, the organization’s Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS) said on Thursday. The SCO is a political, economic and military alliance composed of six member states, including Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. It is expected that the mechanism for the road map’s implementation will be discussed at the meeting of the SCO Council of Heads of Government in December in China.