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Pacific Siege in Sydney Chocolate Cafe ends - hostages were seen holding up flag bearing the Shahada

Discussion in 'Breaking News' started by Ishna, Dec 15, 2014.

  1. Ishna

    Ishna
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    ARMED men are holding up to 50 people hostage at a cafe in Martin Place in Sydney.

    There are reports that two gunmen have taken hostages at the popular Lindt chocolate shop, which has several entrances. The situation has been ongoing since 10am.

    Some members of staff could be seen wearing their shop aprons and standing with their hands up at the windows. There is also a black and white flag being held up in a window. It is believed to be the Black Standard, a jihadist flag.
    Lindt Australia CEO Steve Loane told news.com.au he believes there are 40 to 50 people inside the cafe, including customers and staff.

    Other reports are suggesting there may only be 13 hostages.

    Police handcuffed a man 200m from the cafe siege but a police statement has since clarified the arrest was unrelated to the siege.

    Read more: http://www.news.com.au/national/a-m...artin-place-cafe/story-fncynjr2-1227156241649
     
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  3. Ishna

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    Update:

    The following is a snippet of a full article from here: http://www.theaustralian.com.au/new...-workers-held-up/story-e6frg6nf-1227156254036

    ~-~-~
    5.55am:Anthony Klan has been on the scene all night. This is his description of how the siege ended: At 2.10am three gunshots rang out in rapid succession - followed by a volley of gun fire - bringing to an end the 16 hour siege which had terrified the nation and captured the attention of the world.

    As building fire alarms rang out a team of about six heavily armed tactical response police officers began throwing what appeared to be stun hand-grenades into the building.

    Just minutes before a hostage had come running out from the building with his hands raised in the air, before laying down on the ground where he was approached by police.

    A female police officer came running down the street yelling for assembled media to move back.

    Police this morning confirmed three people had been killed, including gunman Haron Monis, 50, who was pronounced dead when he arrived at hospital.

    Those dead included a man, 34, and a 38 year-old woman.

    Four others were wounded including a policeman who suffered non-life threatening injuries and a woman with a shotgun wound to the shoulder.

    NSW Police said a “critical incident investigation” had been launched into the operation.

    Witness Ehab Ibrahim this morning told The Australian it appeared as though something had “gone wrong”.

    “It was like they were preparing and there was a big bang and then we saw rescuers running in and checking the faces of the police officers for injuries,” Mr Ibrahim said.

    “Then there was a woman was screaming and pulled out holding her feet.”

    Andre Balfe, an Irish tourist among those to watch the dramatic scenes unfold, described the events as “terrifying”.

    “Nothing had happened for hours and then of a sudden everything happened so quickly, we weren’t expecting it, it all happened so fast,” Mr Balfe said.

    “Initially (I felt) it was shock but now I’m happy it’s all over.”
    ~-~-~

    Man Haron Monis is known around Sydney as the "Fake Sheikh".
     
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  4. Ishna

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    National Sikh Council of Australia Inc
    170- Ninth Avenue Austral N.S.W 2179
    (Inc No: INC9877869)
    Voice of the Sikhs in Australia
    President: Ajmer Singh Gill JP
    Secretary: Bawa Singh Jagdev OAM JP

    Press Release

    The National Sikh Council of Australia (NSCA) condemns the siege at Martin Place Sydney in the strongest terms. We feel for the innocent hostages whose basic human rights were violated and are saddened by the unnecessary loss of life. We offer our sincere condolences to the families and friends of those who have so tragically lost their lives and wish the injured a speedy recovery. We commend the NSW government and police for their swift and professional response and the Australian government for their total support. We appreciate the Australian community for maintaining a positive attitude during this difficult time.

    While great strides have been made by NSCA to explain the Sikh identity, many Sikhs still look over their shoulder when in public places. As a result of the tragic events of September 11, 2001, Sikhs all over the world had become targets of mistaken identity with the Taliban and many Sikhs were attacked and killed. Once again the siege in Sydney has sparked fear across the Sikh community and created a situation where turban wearing Sikhs may well become targets of hatred due to mistaken identity.

    The turban is the external identity of a Sikh. This confuses some ignorant people, who compare Australian Sikhs with the images in media that specifically relate to terrorists that may wear turbans. These ignorant people then perpetrate hate crimes, harassment, bullying and reprisal attacks; including attacks on places of worship. We should learn from similar incidents in the US and UK as the same degree of public awareness is required to build stronger community relationships through all forms of media for such crimes go against our spirit of multiculturalism and have the potential to divide the Australian community.

    NSCA urges the Sikh Community to be vigilant of the possibility of such attacks. Please seek help from the Police and inform the NSCA through www.facebook.com/sikhcouncil or info@sikhcouncil.org.au.

    Ajmer Singh Gill
    president@sikhcouncil.org.au
    For and on behalf of the National Sikh Council of Australia
     
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  5. Ishna

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    DSGMC writes to Australian government to ensure safety of Sikhs
    Yudhvir Rana, TNN | Dec 18, 2014, 01.25AM IST
    http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/...sure-safety-of-Sikhs/articleshow/45555157.cms

    AMRITSAR: After the December 15 hostage incident in Sydney, Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) has written to the Australian government to protect Sikhs and ensure that they were not mistaken due to their identity.

    DSGMC president Manjit Singh GK told TOI on Tuesday that he had written a letter to the Australian Prime Minister, Tony Abbott, urging him to deal with the issue of Sikh identity with much care, compassion and empathy. The letter has been sent through the Australian high commission in New Delhi, he informed.

    Quoting media reports, GK said the alleged suspect had dressed himself in an attire identical to that worn by Sikh men at large, which has become a cause of concern for the community members living across the globe. "Earlier Sikhs have been victims of mistaken identity, and I hope the same wouldn't happen in Australia. I want to assure the people of Australia that Sikhs always aspire for welfare and prosperity of the nation wherever they are living. Australia has been home to a large number of Sikhs who have always promoted strong India-Australia relations," GK said.

    While offering condolences to the people of Australia for the trauma they underwent due to the hostage crisis at Sydney on December 15, which led to the loss of two innocent lives, Manjit wrote in the letter to PM Abbott, "Sikhs advocate humanity, peace and prosperity and disapprove any such activity including fanaticism."

    The DSGMC chief said turbans were inseparable part of Sikh men, which was mandatory as per 'rehat maryada (code of conduct).' In the past, DSGMC had taken up the issue of Sikh identity with different foreign embassies and high commissions and had launched a campaign about the community, he said. GK said they had also issued an appeal to Sikhs living all around the globe to make people living in their neighbourhoods aware of their culture, ethos, 'rehat maryada' and distinct identity.
     

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