The Turkish Army has seized more than 20 tons of marijuana from Kurdish rebels in what local authorities said December 15 was one of the biggest ever crackdowns on “terrorist income.” “We have unearthed 21-tons of marijuana, as well as several cells filled with ammunition and explosives,” said Mustafa Toprak, governor of the Kurdish-majority Diyarbakir province in Turkey’s southeast. The stash, with an estimated street value of US$ 22.4 million, was seized after hundreds of special security forces were deployed on December 13. “The operation landed a huge blow to the terrorist income,” Toprak said, referring to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), whose main source of income is believed to be drug trafficking. Ankara says Turkish troops frequently seize sacks full of hashish and marijuana near Turkey’s border with Iran and Syria, where the PKK stashes the bags for shipment to Europe. In October, marijuana with an estimated value of US$ 1.1 million was seized in the eastern province of Van. The PKK, considered a terrorist organization by much of the Western world and Turkey, denies drug trafficking. Several PKK leaders are labeled as suspected drug traffickers in the United States, which has frozen their assets and shunned them from doing business there. This year has seen an increase in drug seizures in Turkey, as well as an escalation of clashes between the PKK and Turkish forces, which have claimed 45,000 lives since rebels took up arms in 1984. By Dialogo December 18, 2012
Swansea City manager, Steve Cooper, has conceded Black Stars captain, Andre Ayew’s level is above playing in the Second-tier League of English football; the Skybet Championship.Andre was an exemplary performer for the Jack Army throughout the season and the Welsh side’s center of attraction week-in-week-out in the just-concluded season.The 30-year-old attacking midfielder bagged 18-goals in all competitions for the Swans and provided seven assists as his side were knocked out by Brentford in the Championship Play-offs semi-finals second leg as they lost 3-2 on aggregate.Cooper, who has been an admirer of his deputy captain, speaking to the media admitted to the quality of the former West Ham man and said he would hold talks with him to discuss his next line of action.“I think that’s a conversation I and Andre need to have,” Cooper told the media when asked about Andre’s future.“I would like nothing more than for Andre to be playing with us again next season,” he added.“We have seen the real level of player he is this year; with the goals he has scored and the impact he has had on and off the pitch. It’s been brilliant to work with him.“But I understand Andre is a better player than the Championship. That’s a matter of fact and I am sure he will have offers to do that.”The 40-year-old former Welsh international continued:“We need to have a good conversation over the next couple of days. We trust each other 100 per cent and in the end, we will come to a resolution that’s right for everybody.”Andre spent the 2018/19 season on loan at Fenerbahce when Swansea went down to the Championship but it wasn’t as electric as his time in the Championship last term.Fingers will be crossed to see what decision Andre will take next; whether to stay with Swansea or move elsewhere in search of top-flight football.
The Management of SIC Insurance and the leadership of the Professional Footballers Association of Ghana (PFAG) have revealed plans to provide insurance cover to all 480 players of Ghana’s Premier League.This was made known over the weekend when a delegation from both sides visited the coach and some players of the Asante Kotoko team who are still on admission at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital.The Kotoko team bus crashed into slowing moving truck on their way to Kumasi from Accra after a Premier league game with Inter Allies.The delegation which was led by the Acting Managing Director of SIC Insurance, Mr. Faris Attrickie and Mr. Tony Baffoe, the General Secretary of the PFAG and other officials of both parties told the media that the visit was to show solidarity with the injured players and to assure them that various insurance packages are in place to support them.Speaking at the event, the Ag. MD of SIC Insurance emphasized that the PFAG and SIC started working on the project about three years ago and finally launched it last year under PFAG’s “Life after football Fund” in Accra.The Ag. MD of SIC stressed that the insurance cover provides benefits for both temporal and permanent disabilities, death and other defined situations all in a bid to provide some cushion to the Ghana Premier League players. The premium for the insurance policy has been paid in full by the PFAG. He lauded the PFAG for their foresight and encouraged other sporting disciplines to learn from their example.On his part, the General Secretary of the PFAG, Anthony Baffoe, commended SIC Insurance for the role they have played so far and called on all football administrators, players and other stakeholders to continue to support this initiative to breathe life into our local football.