Weekly News Briefs: June 12


Jon Ossoff leads Karen Handel in Polls 51-44

CNN reported on June 10 that Democratic candidate Jon Ossoff had a seven percent lead over of his rival, Republican Karen Handel, in the race for a Georgia House seat. The poll was taken by the Atlanta Journal Constitution and did not include how many possible voters were involved with the survey; the figures have a four percent margin of error. The poll showed five percent of voters were undecided which could mean Ossoff’s advantage over Handel could eventually close. Ossoff has gained support from 13 percent of Republicans and half of the Independents in Georgia’s sixth congressional district. However, this district has reliably voted Republican, Handel on the other hand, has gained virtually no Democratic support. The House seat for the sixth district has been a main target for Democrats who view the position as a great chance to secure a special election and provide a setback President Donald Trump.


Anti-Sharia protesters are demonstrating across the country

According to the Washington Post, ACT for America, an organization that has been described as a an anti-muslim activist group, has organized protesters for a nationwide march against Sharia Law. One of the rallies took place in downtown New York City; among those participating were anti-government groups known as Oath Keepers and Three Percenters. Counter-protesters identifying as labour activists, Jewish and Muslim protesters and Left-wing anarchists met the members of ACT with air horns and whistles and banners with anti-fascist messages. The organizer of the ACT protest, Pax Hart, criticised “leftist ideology”, the media and accused the counter protesters as Marxists and “idiots”. Part of the motivation for the rally was to memorialize the anniversary of the Pulse Nightclub shooting that took place in Orlando, Florida, but overall ACT wants to raise awareness about the purported negative effects of Muslim immigration in the United States. ACT rallies have taken place in Austin, Seattle and Harrisburg.


U.S forces provide aid for Philippines in Marawi siege

The BBC reported that The United States are providing technical assistance to the Philippine army. No fighting on the part of the U.S is expected to take place. ISIS militants have been under siege in the southern city of Marawi since May 23 and are led by the “self-styled IS emir”, Isnilon Haplion. He and Abdullah Maute are currently held up in the city. 58 Philippine troops, 138 militants and 20 civilians have been killed in the fighting according to the Philippine government. BBC reported that the Maute brothers could be among the dead, as suggested by intercepted communications between jihadist groups. Brig Gen Restituto Padilla Jr, the spokesperson for the Philippine army vowed to end the siege and restore the Philippine national in the city by June 12. However, the Philippines have missed past deadlines to defeat the militants throughout two weeks of air and ground assaults.