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Chechen Rebel Threaten 2014 Olympics

Chechen Rebel Threatens with ‘Maximum Force’ to Prevent 2014 Olympics in Sochi
By Mike Chiari
(Featured Columnist) on July 3, 2013

Threats of terrorism are already looming over the 2014 Winter Olympics.

The 2014 Winter Olympics are set to take place next February in Sochi, Russia, but a notorious Chechen rebel warned Russian President Vladimir Putin that he would use “maximum force” to prevent the Games.

According to Sky News, Islamic extremist Doku Umarov posted a video message online at Kavkaz Center, an independent Chechen news agency, claiming that it is the duty of Muslims in the North Caucasus region to disrupt the Sochi Olympics.

They (Russia) plan to hold the Olympics on the bones of our ancestors, on the bones of many, many dead Muslims, buried on the territory of our land on the Black Sea.

We as mujahideen are obliged to not permit that, using any methods allowed us by the almighty Allah.

Umarov had previously banned the Islamist guerrilla fighters known as mujahideen from attacking Russian targets outside of the North Caucasus, according to Sky News. However, he lifted the ban in the video, which means that his followers have been given clearance to attack in Sochi.

Umarov is among the most wanted terrorists in the world as he has already used lethal force in the past. According to Sky News, Umarov is wanted for a suicide attack at a Moscow airport back in 2011, which ultimately killed 37 people.

He has also claimed responsibility for a suicide bombing in the Moscow subway system in 2010—an attack that took the lives of 40 people.

Per the report, Umarov’s motivation is to break away from Russia so that the North Caucasus can become an Islamic state that is independent from Russia.

Putin reportedly said that there will be heightened security at the Sochi Games, so organizers figure to be prepared if Umarov or anyone else attempts to stage an attack. Neighboring nation Georgia also pledged to help keep the Games safe for all involved.

Regardless, threats like this one need to be taken extremely seriously, particularly in the current landscape of the world. Look for everyone involved with the Olympics to take measures to ensure that the athletes and spectators are safe next February in Sochi.

At least 18 killed in post fight violence

Police: At least 18 killed in stadium stampede as spectators protest boxer’s loss in Indonesia
Published July 14, 2013
Associated Press

JAKARTA, Indonesia – Police say at least 18 people have been killed in a stadium stampede after spectators rioted to protest a local boxer’s loss in a championship match in eastern Indonesia.

Lt. Col. Gede Sumerta Jaya said Monday the victims were trampled as about 1,500 spectators scrambled out the stadium when a riot broke out just before midnight Sunday.

The local boxer lost on points in the championship match for the Bupati Cup, or Regent Cup, at Kota Lama Sport Stadium in the Papua province town of Nabire.

Jaya said the riot began after the boxer’s supporters threw chairs at the judges. He said 12 of the dead were women, and at least 47 other spectators were injured and hospitalized.

Police and soldiers were deployed to stop the fighting.

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Dozens trampled at Spain’s Pamplona bull run

PAMPLONA, Spain (Reuters) – Dozens of people were trampled at Spain’s San Fermin bull run on Saturday when they were trapped at the narrow entrance to the bullring with the bulls that had been chasing them.

The bull run at San Fermin – made famous by Ernest Hemingway in his novel “The Sun Also Rises” – is one of hundreds in Spain every year and attracts large numbers of foreign visitors.

Local authorities said a 19-year-old Spaniard was being treated in hospital and was in a “very serious” condition. A 28-year-old man from Ireland had suffered chest trauma although his injuries were not thought to be as serious, they said.

At least 23 people were being treated in hospital, medical officials said. A 35-year-old man American was gored in the buttocks by a bull during the run, while an 18-year-old from Spain was gored in the armpit in the scrum at the bullring gate.

The sheer number of runners trying to enter the ring had forced shut a door that was usually left open. Runners and bulls were trapped together in the bottleneck for almost two minutes.

Three men were gored during Friday’s run, including an American tourist who had to have his spleen removed.

The Pamplona run takes place at 8 a.m. (2:00 a.m. EDT) every morning for one week in July. Saturday’s run lasted 4 minutes and 15 seconds. Sunday is the last day.

Goring happens from time to time but stampedes are rare and only 14 have died in the last 100 years in the San Fermin run – a festival that that dates from the 13th century.

Runners dress all in white with red neckerchiefs and many spectators stay up drinking all night in bars beforehand.

The bulls are usually killed by bullfighters in the ring.

(Reporting by Susana Vera and Clare Kane; Editing by Louise Ireland)

PNC Park stops new security measures to wand Pirates fans

By Alex Zimmerman / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
June 11, 2013

The wands weren’t magic, but the decision to stop using them made the lines disappear.

A security measure announced Monday that would have required all fans entering PNC Park to be searched by metal-detecting wands was abandoned minutes after the Tuesday night game against the San Francisco Giants was scheduled to begin.

The decision to add a layer of security was directly related to a review of stadium procedures in the wake of the April 15 Boston Marathon bombing, according to Brian Warecki, a Pirates spokesman.

“The Boston bombings gave us an opportunity for us to look at everything we do at PNC Park in terms of safety and security,” he said.

Initially, many fans agreed the wands were an appropriate — albeit slightly annoying — measure. “Anything to make us feel safer, you have to do it in this day and age,” said Joel Andrews of Avalon.

But as the line to the home plate entrance snaked all the way to the right field gate, expletive-laden murmurs began emerging from the increasingly restless crowd.

By 7 p.m., the line in front of the home plate entrance devolved into a mosh-pit of rankled fans who expressed frustration with the new procedure.

“How many shootings have you heard of in a Pirate game?” said Frank Fabus of Dormont, a longtime Pirates fan who used to attend games at Forbes Field. “People can still sneak stuff through.”

By about 7:15, hundreds of people were still waiting in line and security personnel were instructed to stop using the metal detecting wands. Within minutes, the lines evaporated.

On Tuesday evening Pirates president Frank Coonelly said:

“On behalf of the Pirates organization, I apologize to our fans who experienced long lines at the gates prior to tonight’s game. … We stopped the wanding procedure at the start of the game and were able to clear the lines at the gates by the end of first inning.

“The experience was simply unacceptable and we will ensure this does not happen again.”

The Pirates chose to deploy the new security measure on a mid-June weeknight game, when crowds typically hover around 20,000, instead of the 40,000 numbers that the team hopes for on weekends, according to Mr. Warecki, who added, “We don’t expect it to run perfectly smoothly out of the gate.”

That official number was 30,614 in part because Gerrit Cole, a top prospect, made his debut.

“It was a dumb night to start it,” said Patty Haeck, a partial season ticket holder from Mount Lebanon who got in line at 6:30. She joked: “They should get someone from Disney. They know how to run a line.”

MLB does not universally require teams to screen fans with metal-detecting wands at their facilities, according to league spokesman Mike Teevan.

But the league plans to review operating practices across the country.

This security change isn’t the first of the year at PNC Park. The amount of security personnel, surveillance cameras and training have all increased, Mr. Warecki said.

The wand procedure hasn’t been used at PNC Park since the 2006 All-Star game, but “it won’t be anything new for our fans,” Mr. Warecki said, noting that the Steelers and other large events often use the metal-detecting wands.

Most fans weren’t surprised by the new procedure but said that it wasn’t well-executed.

Others pointed out that giving up on the procedure may have negated its potential benefits.

“What’s the point if you’re going to end up stopping?” one fan asked, adding “They obviously need more staff.”

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