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Terror in Turkey: how common are women terrorists?

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Six people are dead after a terror attack in Istanbul, with a woman believed to be the perpetrator

A Sunday afternoon explosion has left 81 wounded in a popular pedestrian thoroughfare in Istanbul.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan described the attack as “vile” and said “the smell of terror” was in the air.

Erdogan is travelling to Indonesia for the G20 summit but spoke to the media a short time before his departure.

“We detected that a woman played a role. The work continues.”

Recep Tayyip Erdogan, TURKISH PRESIDENT

Women in conflict are not a new phenomenon, but some researchers believe there are a lack of case studies on the topic.

Meanwhile, others argue it is a surprise when there is a new iteration of terror attacks with women behind them.

In fact, a 2021 study published in Perspectives on Terrorism, found discounting women’s involvement in extreme-right groups is an “analytic blind spot”.

“Women’s participation has been under-studied or ignored due to assumptions about women’s desire to participate in a particular group/movement and the organisation’s willingness to include women,” the paper notes.

In some cases, there is a distinction between active agency and coercion in terrorist activities. For example, in the case of women’s recruitment into ISIS.

In fact, women and minors accounted for up to 25 per cent of all recorded foreign ISIS affiliates in theatre, and around one-in-five (21%) of returnees.

Why do women become terrorists?

One study surrounding women’s participation in terrorism uncovered the factors, which drove women to ISIS.

“The group were less ideational and more emotional, such as feelings of acceptance, empowerment and the development of interpersonal bonds,” researchers found.

However, it went on to learn “once inside, some women do challenge jihadi gender norms, such as the prohibition of women to work and commit violent jihad.”

In most cases, women tend to prefer working within roles, which uphold gender norms than openly oppose the rules entirely.

The rationale behind men and women joining terrorist organisations is quite different. However, Professor Beverley Milton-Edwards from Queen’s University Belfast, said women are still making choices.

“It’s just that the frame of choice that they’re making is not what we as a society expect them to make because we believe that these groups are only offering opportunities that bind women, that enslave women, and exploit them.”

PROFESSOR BEVERLEY MILTON-EDWARDS

However, Professor Milton-Edwards believes some women still find their involvement in terrorist regimes as “a form of empowerment, liberation, and an opportunity to live in a society with a belief system that they subscribe”.

Costa is a news producer at ticker NEWS. He has previously worked as a regional journalist at the Southern Highlands Express newspaper. He also has several years' experience in the fire and emergency services sector, where he has worked with researchers, policymakers and local communities. He has also worked at the Seven Network during their Olympic Games coverage and in the ABC Melbourne newsroom. He also holds a Bachelor of Arts (Professional), with expertise in journalism, politics and international relations. His other interests include colonial legacies in the Pacific, counter-terrorism, aviation and travel.

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Big tech caught in political drama

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Nine Google employees were escorted out of company offices in New York and Sunnyvale, California, following a sit-in protest against a cloud contract with Israel’s government.

The protest in Sunnyvale targeted Thomas Kurian’s office, CEO of Google’s cloud division, while in New York, it occupied a common area on the tenth floor.

Videos showed Google security staff and local police involved in the removal. Four workers in New York and five in Sunnyvale were reportedly detained, but details of any charges remain unverified.

The protest aimed to pressure Google to drop a $1.2 billion cloud computing contract known as Project Nimbus, citing concerns about its involvement with the Israel Defense Forces.

The protesters included software engineers and activists from groups opposing tech contracts with Israel. This incident reflects ongoing activism within tech companies regarding political issues, such as Israel’s actions in Gaza.

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Antitrust concerns arise for streaming sports venture

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U.S. lawmakers Jerry Nadler and Joaquin Castro expressed competition concerns regarding the planned sports streaming joint venture involving Walt Disney, Fox, and Warner Bros Discovery.

They addressed these concerns in a letter to the CEOs of the media companies, questioning the impact on access, competition, and choice in the sports streaming market.

Voicing apprehension about potential consumer price hikes and unfair licensing terms for sports leagues and distributors, they requested responses by April 30, urging the companies to also send their replies to the Department of Justice.

Despite the companies’ announcement in February of launching a joint sports streaming service in the autumn to attract younger viewers, the deal faces DOJ scrutiny and an antitrust lawsuit from FuboTV. While Disney and Warner Bros remained silent on the matter, Fox declined to comment.

The joint venture encompasses a broad range of professional and collegiate sports rights, including NFL, NBA, MLB, FIFA World Cup, and college competitions, offering non-exclusive access to sports networks such as ESPN, Fox Sports 1, and TNT via a new streaming app.

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Trump trial: will the jury selection impact the trial’s outcome?

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The Trump hush money trial has progressed with the selection of the first seven jurors, marking a significant step in the legal proceedings.

  • Seven jurors were selected

  • Defense and prosecution lawyers questioned potential jurors for impartiality

  • The judge warned lawyers he would not tolerate disruptions after he said Former US President Donald Trump audibly muttered during a prospective juror’s questioning

The selection of jurors is a crucial step in ensuring a fair trial, as they will ultimately decide Formers US President Donald Trump’s fate in this legal battle, as reported by Reuters.

The process of jury selection involves careful vetting of potential jurors to ensure impartiality and fairness.

Each juror’s background, beliefs, and potential biases are scrutinised to ensure they can render an impartial verdict based solely on the evidence presented in court.

With seven jurors already chosen, the selection process is expected to continue as both the prosecution and defence seek individuals who can objectively weigh the evidence.

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