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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.

Climate Change

Why ‘zombie viruses’ could be the next biggest public threat

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A new report reveals the world will see an increase in so-called ‘zombie viruses’ that are emerging beneath us

A new report by scientists at the French National Center for Scientific Research has revealed the global threat of ‘zombie viruses.’ As climate change continues to take effect, the earth is undeniably getter hotter.

Global warming essentially means significant areas of permafrost are now melting. Permafrost is a frozen layer on or under the Earth’s surface, holding beneath it millions of ‘zombie viruses’ not seen in millions of years.

The now melting permafrost means it is lifting the veil on potentially dangerous microbes that human kind isn’t prepared for.

In Siberia, the scientists uncovered a ‘zombie virus’ which they believe is 50,000 years old. This would be the oldest age of a frozen virus returning to life and able to infect.

Researchers are concerned about the global health impact if the earth continues to warm at its current rate.

 

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Urgent health warning for Australian gardeners following death of Sydney woman

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An urgent health warning for Australian gardeners following the death of a 60-year-old woman

Health authorities in Sydney are on high alert, after a woman was killed while handling potting mix.

The 60-year-old inhaled bacteria from the mix, causing her to fall sick with Legionnaires’ disease.

While, it is common to find the bacteria in potting mix, it can also be found in air conditioning vents and water systems.

Symptoms to look out for include fever, chills, headache, muscle aches and shortness of breath.

Experts are now urging gardeners to wear a face mask and gloves when in the garden.

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Violence erupts across China over lockdowns

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There have been more protests on the streets of Shanghai, as frustrations rise over China’s strict Zero Covid policy.

Demonstrations are also spreading to other cities following a deadly apartment fire in the far west of the country – with some linking the tragedy to the continued lockdowns.

Hundreds have taken to the streets in eight cities in China after the tragedy was blamed on Xi Jinping’s draconian zero-Covid lockdown.

From Beijing to Shanghai, the deaths have led to protests across China and police have descended onto the streets to keep order as tensions boil over.

Video on social media showed hundreds of workers marching on a road and confronted by riot police as well as people wearing hazmat suits.

The protest turned violent — footage shared with AFP and captured by a factory worker showed one person lying inert on the ground next to a man in a blood-spattered jacket having his head bound in an apparent effort to staunch a wound.

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