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China Unveils Powerful Laser Gun

China has developed a powerful new counter-terrorism laser gun, which can hit targets at 200 meters within one second. The weapon has a handset for aiming, a back pack containing the power supply, a remote control and laser emitter, the developer Hongfeng, a company affiliated with China Aerospace Science & Industry Corporation (CASIC), told Chinese English-language newspaper The Global Times. The laser gun shoots faster and more accurately compared to conventional weapons and can hit targets within 200 meters in “just one second,” said Yan Azhe, one of the gun engineers. Besides, it emits no sound or light when fired. Among its other advantages is its inexpensive maintenance and easy use – the gun does not recoil. It might be specifically handy for the country’s security forces.  The laser gun has already been exhibited at recent counter-terrorism drills in Central China’s Hunan province.


Running out of time

(WNS)–Religious minorities in Iraq and Syria could become a distant memory soon if the United States doesn’t take significant steps to help them, advocates told Washington lawmakers last week. Christians, Yezidis, and other religious minorities are victims of genocide at the hands of Islamic State (ISIS) in Iraq and Syria, according to the U.S. State Department. Although ISIS no longer retains control of much of its former territory, its victims still suffer from the aftermath. Thousands of displaced religious minorities have no home to return to. “I am sad to say that if bold action is not taken by the end of the year, I believe a tipping point will be reached and we will see the end of Christianity in Iraq,” Frank Wolf, senior fellow at the 21st Century Wilberforce Initiative, told a congressional panel Oct. 3. “In other words, ISIS will have been victorious in their genocidal rampage.”


Cameroon echoes global cries for independence

(WNS)–At least 17 people died in weekend clashes between security forces and protesters in Cameroon’s English-speaking region amid calls for independence from the country’s French-majority region, according to Amnesty International. The unrest is the latest in a global wave of secession movements that have escalated in recent weeks. The southeast Biafra region in neighboring Nigeria continues to push for separation from the country. A similar movement 50 years ago killed between 1 million and 10 million people. Close to 90 percent of voters in the Spanish autonomous region of Catalonia cast ballots on Sunday in favor of independence from Spain. Security forces clashed with voters there, and more than 800 people sustained injuries. Iraq’s Kurdish region similarly held an independence vote despite fierce opposition from the Iraqi and regional governments.


Thousands of trapped migrants discovered in Libya

(WNS)–Rescue groups in Libya’s northwestern city of Sabratha said thousands of migrants have been trapped in the smuggling hub as rival militia groups battled for control since mid-September. Officials said the clashes began after Italy struck a deal with two militia groups to stem migrant flows. The United Nations migration agency said rescue groups transferred at least 4,000 people, including pregnant women, newborn babies, and unaccompanied children, out of the city. Anti-ISIS Operation Room, created last year to clear Islamic State militants out of Sabratha, has taken control of the city, spokesman Saleh Graisia said. More than 90 people died and thousands others were displaced. Sadeeq Al-Jayash, head of the emergency committee in the city of Zuwara, said hundreds of migrants arrived there from Sabratha. “They came walking in groups,” Jayash told Reuters. “For example, there were various groups that came on Sunday—50, then 100, and 200 at night.


Archeologists Uncover Dramatic Finds in Jerusalem

Israel’s Antiquities Authority announced this week that archeologists working in Jerusalem’s Old City have uncovered parts of the Western Wall which had been buried for centuries under 8 meters of soil and stone. Remnants of a 200 seat Roman theater, referenced in ancient writings describing Jerusalem during the Second Temple Period, were also uncovered during the recent excavations. Dr. Joe Uziel, Tehillah Lieberman and Dr. Avi Solomon, who are leading the project, said: “From a research perspective, this is a sensational find…there is no doubt that the exposure of the courses of the Western Wall and the components of Wilson’s Arch are thrilling discoveries that contribute to our understanding of Jerusalem. But the discovery of the theater-like structure is the real drama.”


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