ISIS chiefs hiding out in Turkey are plotting jailbreaks in Syria

ISIS chiefs hiding out in Turkey with ‘vast amounts of money’ are plotting mass jailbreaks in Syria and Iraq to resurrect the caliphate, according to the head of Iraqi intelligence

  • Lt. Gen. Saad al-Allaq said nine ISIS chiefs were living in Turkey
  • He said the men had ‘vast amounts of money’ and were planning jail breaks 
  • Among the men, Allaq said, were ‘the best bomb makers that ISIS ever had’ 
  • An estimated 10,000 ISIS fighters are detained in jails in northern Syria

ISIS leaders with ‘vast amounts of money’ are plotting mass jail breaks to rebuild their so-called caliphate from Turkey, according to the head of Iraqi intelligence.

Lieutenant General Saad al-Allaq said he had provided dossiers on nine alleged senior ISIS members to Turkish officials.

Among them are financiers able to fund carnage throughout the world and ‘the best bomb makers that ISIS ever had,’ Lt. Gen. Allaq told CNN. 

These men were able to escape north and paid large sums to be smuggled into Turkey while the Islamic State was decimated at Baghouz earlier this year, Lt. Gen. Allaq said. 

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ISIS chief Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi was killed in a US special forces raid on his heavily fortified compound in northern Syria on October 26

‘We have concluded that the real intention of ISIS is to begin a mission called “Break Down the Fences” to storm jails inside Iraq and Syria to free terrorists,’ Lieutenant General Saad al-Allaq told CNN

‘Those elements who are right now in Turkey play a key role in the recruitment of fighters and terrorists,’ he told CNN. 

The military chief revealed it was the intention of the ISIS leadership to break open prisons holding jihadists in Iraq and Syria.

There are an estimated 10,000 alleged ISIS fighters, including many foreigners from Europe, detained by the Kurdish-led SDF militia in Syria.

Many thousands of their wives and children, who still fervently believe in the ruthless Islamist ideology, are held in nearby camps.  

Alleged jihadists inside a prison cell in the northeastern Syrian city of Hasakeh on October 26

A senior US State Department official warned last week it was ‘a ticking time bomb’ to have so many detainees in such a precarious security situation. 

‘We have concluded that the real intention of ISIS is to begin a mission called “Break Down the Fences” to storm jails inside Iraq and Syria to free terrorists,’ Lt. Gen. Allaq told CNN. 

‘Huge international efforts should be taken to deal with this issue because these criminals … are able to leave these camps and go back to their countries and thus they pose great danger in countries like Europe, Asia and northwest Africa.’

The lieutenant general said if the jihadists detained in Syria were able to escape it would bring ‘catastrophe.’ 

Women gesture as they stand together al-Hol displacement camp in Hasaka governorate, Syria in April

Lt. Gen. Allaq, who rarely gives interviews, worked closely with the CIA in their efforts to track down slain ISIS chieftain Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi last month.

Despite his death in a US special forces raid on northern Syria, the so-called ’emirs’ of the Islamic State are forming new terror cells with their vast resources in Turkey.

Turkish officials told CNN they were looking into the suspects.

Earlier this month Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced that his men had captured one of Baghdadi’s wives.

Erdogan did not confirm how the wife – one of four wives of the ISIS chief – was captured nor did he identify her.

Rasmiya Awad, believed to be the sister of former ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, who was captured earlier this month in the northern Syrian town of Azaz

Earlier that week Turkey announced it had captured the ISIS chief’s older sister, Rasmiya Awad, who was was found living in a trailer with her family in Syria. 

A Turkish official said she was captured during a raid in the town of Azaz along with her husband, daughter-in-law and five children.  

‘This kind of thing is an intelligence gold mine. What she knows about [IS] can significantly expand our understanding of the group and help us catch more bad guys,’ an official said at the time. 

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Ukraine says it's ready to accept 'reasonable compromise' on conflict

KIEV (Reuters) – Ukraine is ready to accept a “reasonable compromise” at a four-way summit on settling the conflict in eastern Ukraine, Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko said on Tuesday.

Leaders of Ukraine, Russia, Germany and France are expected to meet next month in the so-called Normandy format to try to end a conflict between Ukrainian troops and Russian-backed forces that has killed more than 13,000 people in five years.

“We are going to the Normandy meeting with open ideas, an open mind, ready to accept a reasonable compromise,” Prystaiko told reporters at a meeting with German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas.

Maas said Germany and France would do everything to help reach a permanent solution to the conflict and added that “from our point of view it’s time for Russia to step up to the plate” to help end the conflict.

The summit will be the first time the leaders of the four countries have met in more than three years and will follow a series of confidence-building measures by Kiev and Moscow, including a prisoner swap and phased troop withdrawals.

Russia annexed Ukraine’s Crimea peninsula in 2014 after a Moscow-backed president was ousted in street protests, and was placed under international sanctions soon afterwards.

Ukraine says Russia engineered unrest by pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine that developed into a full-scale conflict, an accusation that Moscow denies.


Previous attempts to end the fighting have failed, with each side accusing the other of violating a ceasefire that was agreed in Minsk, the capital of Belarus, in 2015.

“The implementation of an agreement that’s been reached can only be measured through actions and results. And through actions and results, trust can also be established,” Maas said.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy came to power this year on a pledge to end the war, but his peace moves have also led to protests by demonstrators who accuse him of ceding too much ground to Moscow.

Speaking at a separate event earlier on Tuesday, Zelenskiy said Ukraine wanted to negotiate a clear timeline for the return of its territories and people at the four-way summit.

Usually clean-shaven, Zelenskiy was sporting facial hair and said he would not shave until he saw with his own eyes the return of three ships captured in a skirmish with Russia last year. Russia handed back the ships on Monday.

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Staff waited SIX HOURS for police – but had to let teen shoplifters go

Security guards who waited SIX HOURS for police after catching two teenage shoplifters had to let them go – even though one girl’s father wanted her arrested

  • Staff at Beales department store in Bournemouth, Dorset, had to let two girls go
  • The teenagers, aged 16 and 17, were caught stealing £58 of make-up from shop
  • Police were too busy to attend and told staff to call the teenagers’ parents  

Shop security staff who waited six hours for police to arrive and arrest two teenage shoplifters had to let them go – to the fury of one of the girls’ own parents.

Staff at Beales department store in Bournemouth, Dorset, caught the pair stealing £58 of make-up but when they called the police, officers were too busy to attend.

They were instead told to call the 16 and 17-year-old girls’ parents – who couldn’t get to the shop until 8pm.

When one of their fathers arrived he said he had wanted his daughter arrested, but police decided to ‘take no action’.

Security at Beales department store in Bournemouth (pictured is the CEO Tony Brown) had to let two teenage shoplifters go after they waited six hours for police to arrive and were told to call the girls’ parents instead

Tony Brown, CEO of the Bournemouth store said it is the latest in a spate of incidents where his staff have had to let shoplifters go free because police did not turn up.

He also spoke at his frustration at having to let persistent shoplifters go free because of a lack of police.

The business man said his staff often have to act as guardians when a juvenile is caught and give them food and drink because they are with them for so long.

In the case of the teenagers, they were caught at 2.15pm but couldn’t be collected until 8pm, leaving the store to handle them for six hours.

He said: ‘Last weekend a 16-year-old and 17-year-old girl were caught and we called the police straight away, but they said they were dealing with other issues.

‘The least they should do is send someone from another force or a social worker to come out and look after the juveniles.

The teenagers were looked after by two staff members before they could be picked up (file picture of Beales)

‘We contacted their parents but they were away so they couldn’t get here until 8pm.

‘We kept the two girls our security room and two members of staff were taken off the shop floor to look after them. We made sure they were well looked after.

‘I feel there is a moral obligation for us to call the police in the first instance but if they take too long to then call their parents.

‘We have to make sure juveniles are safe when we release them. In this case they were decent parents and I think they expected the police to deal with their children.

‘I have sympathy for police when they are dealing with major incidents but I pay my business rates and do expect some form of support, especially for big thefts.’   

He added that a couple of months ago his staff had to release a 16-year-old boy who had stolen £150 of goods after holding him for six hours because police didn’t turn up – despite him also having class A and B drugs in his possession.

He said: ‘We held him for six hours but the police then called to say we should let him go and release him into his guardian’s care.

‘He had drug paraphernalia on him and he could have been involved in county lines drugs.’

The store has also dealt with other recent incidents including a woman who had previously made off with six Radley handbags worth £750 who was caught with six purses and a handbag totalling £498.

Police were called at 3.15pm but the shoplifter was let go at 8pm – almost five hours later – because they had again not turned up.

In another theft, a man and woman attempted to make off with fragrances worth £150. Police were called at 5.15pm but did not come to the scene and the pair were let go at 7.55pm. 

Mr Brown said: ‘As we enter the busy Christmas period, we can’t carry on with thieves just being able to walk away after stealing hundreds of pounds of product.

‘This is a real crime, it’s not penny sweets from Woolworths.’ 

Dorset Police said they were ‘committed’ to attending incidents where alleged offenders have been detained at location ‘where possible’.

Police Superintendent Gavin Duffield said: ‘We are committed to investigating all reported offences of shoplifting and where possible we will attend incidents where alleged offenders have been detained at location.

‘Two of the incidents mentioned occurred during the past week where officers in Bournemouth town centre have been heavily committed with other incidents of a serious nature, including a rape investigation and murder enquiry.’

In 2018, a £200 threshold was introduced as part of the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act (2014) meaning anyone accused of ‘low value shoplifting’ no longer has to attend court.

They can plead guilty by post in the same way as a speeding motorist.

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Fuming tennis fans slam Barca ace Pique for ‘killing’ Davis Cup as new tournament makes rocky start with empty seats – The Sun

ANGRY tennis fans claim Gerard Pique's new-look Davis Cup is already "killing" the famous tournament.

The Barcelona defender's World Cup-style tournament opened in Madrid  on Monday to huge swathes of empty seats after being turned into a season-ending, 18-nation shootout.

But the new format has "sold the soul" of tradition and the Davis Cup "doesn't exist anymore," according to critics on social media.

One fan tweeted: "Davis cup is DEAD 💀 !!! @3gerardpique killed it" and another labelled it the "Pique Cup".

The Spain and ex-Manchester United star Pique hit back when another tennis follower posted: "Not the biggest crowd…yet. 15 people sitting on this side of the stands."

The 32-year-old replied: "Are you sure there are just 15??" – and added four emojis of crying with laughter.


But fans pointed out the reference to low attendance was based on "missing local people" – not supporters of the teams involved.

Legend Roger Federer is among those absent as Switzerland failed to qualify.

Britain, though, landed a wildcard and a favourable draw for their squad of Andy Murray, Dan Evans, Kyle Edmund, Jamie Murray and Neal Skupski.

Two-time Wimbledon champ Murray wants the tournament to be given "a chance" and is "open to change".

But Australia captain Lleyton Hewitt protested strongly earlier this year.

The 2000 US Open winner said: "We're getting run by a Spanish football player. That's like me coming out and making changes to the Champions League."

Pique and his newly-formed Kosmos Tennis agreed to pump in 3billion dollars – around £2.7bn – for the tournament over the next 25 years.

But so far the reaction on social media has been sceptical at best.

One fan said: "Shame on ITF, all voters, Piqué and players who supported this change."

That brought the response: "They will try to sell it as success. Maybe because of a full main stadium. But that’s not what Davis Cup was about. Sad to see."

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Watch Man Utd youngster Dillon Hoogewerf score stunning goal for Holland U-17s as he dribbles from half-way line – The Sun

WHIZKID winger Dillon Hoogewerf scorched half the length of the pitch for a solo goal he hopes will propel him into the Manchester United team just as quickly.

The 16-year-old recruit from Ajax turned into the Hoogewerf's Express with electrifying wizardry, topping a scintillating surge for Holland Under-17s against the USA with a breathtaking finish from almost the goal-line.

Pocket rocket Hoogewerf is already a stand-out player for United's U-18s, having been compared to Arsenal legend Marc Overmars in his homeland.

The 5ft 4ins pace ace rejected a first professional deal with Dutch champs Ajax for Old Trafford over the summer.

And Hoogewerf 's incredible intervention for the Dutch juniors sparked a dramatic conclusion to the Nike International Friendlies tournament in Florida.

Turning just inside his own half, he accelerated away at such speed that his first pursuer gave up the chase.

And when Hoogewerf reached the box, he swerved outside a second opponent, who also never got within even within an arm's reach.

The Dutch flier then conjured composure and confidence to match his approach play as he drilled home from the tightest of angles.

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Grain shippers worried as CN Rail workers strike

Grain shippers are concerned about the impact of a strike by about 3,200 Canadian National Railway Co. workers in an already tough harvest year.

The Teamsters Canada Rail Conference announced the work stoppage Monday night after the two parties failed to reach a deal by the midnight deadline.

Conductors, trainpersons and yard workers were on the picket lines, halting freight trains across the country and triggering worries about lost sales and contract penalties among grain elevator operators and farmers.

“When you lose a day of shipping you never recover it,” said Wade Sobkowich, head of the Western Grain Elevator Association.

“There’s really nothing that can be done. Once they’re not moving trains, you’re basically shut down without any alternatives until the issue is resolved.”

CN services about half the elevators in Western Canada, Sobkowich said, on top of exclusive access to the grain terminal on Vancouver’s North Shore and the port in Prince Rupert, B.C.

The federal government urged CN Rail and the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference to continue negotiating.

Labour Minister Patty Hajdu said Tuesday the government is concerned about the impact of a work stoppage on Canadians, but remains hopeful the two sides will reach an agreement.

Union spokesman Christopher Monette said they are still in talks with CN in hopes of reaching ending the labour dispute as soon as possible.

The union has said passenger rail services in the country’s three biggest cities would not be affected by the strike.

A delayed grain crop has already caused headaches for the industry following a dry spring and wet summer. Though the yield was big, some of it remains in the field, increasing pressure on the rail system.

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Wetaskiwin commits $65K to open emergency shelter

Wetaskiwin city council has approved $65,000 in funding to open an emergency shelter this winter.

At a council meeting last Tuesday, administration was directed by council to open an emergency shelter at the civic building in the city south of Edmonton.

A financial commitment of up to $65,000 was approved to cover the shelter’s operational costs until March 31, 2020.

“While setting up an emergency shelter again for our vulnerable population is a great first step, it remains just that — a first step,” Mayor Tyler Gandam said in a media release.

Hope Mission and Lighthouse Church have both provided city council with quotes on the anticipated costs of running the shelter. With winter looming, the city said it will give preference to the organization that can get the shelter up and running in the shortest time frame.

“The city will continue to seek financial support from the provincial government, as well as from neighbouring communities,” Gandam said.

The city had a working emergency shelter for three months from February to May 2019. During that time, the city said it experienced a large decrease in the number of calls for service by the RCMP, as well as a drop in the number of hospital visits.

The city had previously set up livestock shelters in hopes of curbing the homeless problem. In September 2018, the city said the shelters were put up as a place for vulnerable people to get out of the elements.

While the city admitted it was not the final solution, it said homelessness has been a long-standing challenge in Wetaskiwin, with people camping out in bushes and parking lots.

The temporary shelters were met with mixed reviews by local residents. They were destroyed by fire in October 2018.

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Vegan sues Burger King for cooking Impossible Whopper on meat grill

A vegan man in Atlanta, Ga., is suing Burger King after the restaurant allegedly served “contaminated” plant-based burgers, which he claims are being cooked on the same grill surface as beef burgers.

U.S. customer Phillip Williams is the lead plaintiff in a proposed class-action lawsuit surrounding the Impossible Whopper, Burger King’s answer to the plant-based meat craze sweeping through the fast-food industry.

Williams claims he was served a contaminated Impossible Whopper at a Burger King drive-thru in Atlanta on Aug. 8. In the lawsuit, he says he would not have paid a premium price for the Impossible Whopper if he’d known that it was “coated in meat by-products.” He also took issue with Burger King’s marketing pitch, which says the Impossible Whopper is “0% beef and 100% Whopper.”

The lawsuit is seeking damages for all U.S. customers who bought the Impossible Whopper. It also seeks an injunction that would force Burger King to “plainly disclose” that it cooks Impossible Whoppers on the same grills as regular burgers.

The lawsuit was filed in a Miami court on Monday.

Burger King’s Toronto-based parent company, Restaurant Brands International Inc., has declined to comment due to pending litigation.

The chain launched a plant-based version of its Whopper in August as part of a partnership with Impossible Foods Inc., one of the top meatless producers on the market.

Impossible Foods says the product was designed as a plant-based alternative for meat eaters. It wasn’t designed specifically for vegans or vegetarians.

“For people who are strictly vegan, there is a microwave prep procedure that they’re welcome to ask for in any store,” Dana Worth, Impossible Foods’ head of sales, recently told Reuters.

Williams’ lawyer did not immediately respond to a Reuters question about the microwave cooking method.

On Tuesday, the Impossible Whopper was listed on Burger King’s U.S. website as “100% Whopper, 0% beef.” It also included a disclaimer for customers seeking a meat-free option.

“A non-broiler method of preparation is available upon request,” the disclaimer read.

An archived version of the same webpage shows that disclaimer was not present on Aug. 8, when Williams bought his burger.

The disclaimer on Aug. 8 warned that the Impossible Whopper is “flame-grilled in the same broiler used for beef and chicken.”

It’s unclear when the disclaimer was changed.

Burger King’s Canadian menu does not include the Impossible Whopper. Instead, it features a soya-based veggie burger.

With files from Reuters

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Hollywood Banks on ‘Star Wars,’ ‘Jumanji 2’ for Big Box Office Finish

When exhibitor Jeff Logan talks to friends and customers about upcoming movies, he’s sometimes greeted with a shrug.

“I’ll tell them there’s a new ‘Terminator’ and they’ve brought back Arnold and Linda Hamilton, and they don’t seem too excited about that,” says Logan. “Or there’s another ‘Rambo,’ and they’ll go, ‘Geez, isn’t he getting old?’ Sometimes they go back to the well too many times.”

Logan has been in the movie business all his life. As the owner of Logan Luxury Theatres, a cinema chain his father started in 1933, he runs three venues in South Dakota, and he has a good feel for the health of the industry, at least when it comes to Middle America. He’s been through boom and bust times, and in 2019, he thinks that the problem for theaters hasn’t been Netflix or HBO or any of the myriad entertainment options: It’s been the films.

Year to date, ticket sales are down 5.5%, with blockbusters including “Avengers: Endgame” and “Joker” not successful enough to paper over flops such as “Men in Black: International” and “Terminator: Dark Fate.” But Logan and other theater owners believe that help is on the way. In the coming months, “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle,” “Frozen 2” and “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” are all scheduled to hit movie screens — a trio of likely hits perfectly timed to close out the year on a high note.

“The business can’t set a record every year, but we’re going to close out strong,” Adrian Smith, Sony’s president of domestic distribution, predicts. “The industry is poised for a strong fourth quarter. There’s a diverse slate for all audiences during Thanksgiving and the holiday season.”

The blockbuster-hopefuls will be complemented by a slew of awards contenders and more modestly budgeted crowd-pleasers, such as “Bombshell,” “Cats,” and “Knives Out,” which could help close the gap in terms of revenues.

“As with every year, there is plenty of competition, but this year it feels like a good mix of offerings where audiences will take the opportunity to see more than one thing during the holidays,” says Cathleen Taff, Disney’s president of global distribution.

When 2020 rolls around, analysts be­­lieve the domestic box office will top out at $11.5 billion, a more than 3% drop from the $11.9 billion record set in 2018 but an impressive rebound from a year that sputtered out of the gate. During the first quarter, revenues were down 16%, leaving ticket sales hustling to make up lost ground.

“It’s a solid year,” says Eric Handler, an analyst with MKM Partners. “It’s the second largest ever, so it’s not fair to say, ‘Oh, my God, the box office is falling apart.’”

Handler blames a number of factors for the shortfall. He notes that Disney fielded so many blockbusters — from the most recent “Avengers” to the upcoming “Star Wars” and “Frozen” sequels — that other studios steered clear, holding their most promising releases for 2020 and beyond. In some instances, that meant that highly anticipated films such as “Wonder Woman 1984” that were supposed to debut in the fall were moved into the next calendar year, thus limiting the overall box office tally.

“If those movies came out this year, we might have been up or at least flat,” says Handler.

Though Disney remakes and “Avengers” sequels maintained a chokehold over the box office in 2019, studio executives are optimistic that audiences have a growing appetite for original fare.

“There are real signs that there is opportunity for movies that tell their cinematic narrative in a fresh way,” says Kyle Davies, Paramount’s president of domestic distribution. “When ‘Us,’ ‘Once Upon a Time in Hollywood,’ ‘Hustlers’ and ‘Rocketman’ are in the top 25, it tells you there is a hunger for original storytelling.”

A bright spot in recent weeks has been a resurgent independent box office, one in which edgier and more esoteric fare such as the World War II satire “Jojo Rabbit” and the Korean thriller “Parasite” have put up impressive grosses. That trend could continue as other Oscar bait such as “Little Women,” “1917” and “Uncut Gems” arrive in theaters.

“People love blockbusters and scary films — and they do make so much money — but once you’ve seen those, you want to see something else,” says Frank Rodriguez, president of distribution at Fox Searchlight.

Studios typically gripe about the blood sport that is the holiday season. It’s a time of year when everyone fights for screens and attention as they try to take advantage of the massive number of students who are out of school or people taking time off from work. These days the competition isn’t just from other blockbuster hopefuls, it’s also from an onslaught of streamers. Disney Plus launched to great fanfare this month, offering up a live-action version of “Lady and the Tramp” and the “Star Wars” spinoff series “The Mandalorian.” The coming months will see the debut of services from WarnerMedia and Comcast. Analysts and studio executives are divided about what that means for the future of exhibition.

“Disney Plus is going to carve out a huge audience,” predicts Jeff Bock, a box office analyst with Exhibitor Relations. “That’s going to continue to erode the box office until Hollywood can consistently bring its “A” game every time — and we know how difficult it is to make great movies.”

Others believe that streaming represents no more of an existential threat than the advent of television, home video, DVD or any of the other emerging entertainment forms that captured the public imagination without spelling the end of cinema.

“The theatrical experience has been declared dead many times,” suggests Jim Orr, head of distribution at Universal. “The rise in streaming is certainly worth paying attention to, but the communal experience will never go away. It’s the greatest presentation of the content — the way it’s meant to be seen.”

There is one piece of streaming content that may have adversely impacted box office results. Martin Scorsese’s epic mob story “The Irishman” has earned rapturous reviews and Oscar buzz, but because it’s a Netflix release, it’s being seen on only a few hundred screens instead of the thousands that would typically play such a hotly anticipated film. Netflix refuses to give theaters an exclusive three-month run for its movies, preferring to offer them on its platform within weeks of their debut. For that reason, major chains such as AMC and Regal declined to screen the film.

“That one had real commercial potential,” says Patrick Corcoran, chief communications officer of the National Assn. of Theatre Owners, an exhibition industry trade group. “They could have done some serious business with that movie.”

For the most part, exhibitors seem happy with the Christmas bounty to come. For Brock Bagby, executive VP of B&B Theatres, a family-run chain with 50 locations across the Midwest, this holiday season represents the culmination of a major push to position the company for a new generation of moviegoing. Over the past four years, B&B has replaced outdated seating with luxury recliners, added high-end menu items and offered new forms of exhibition such as multi-projector screens and 4D. It’s taken time and money, but Bagby says he thinks the next month and a half will prove all the hard work was worth it.

“It’s fitting,” says Bagby. “We’ve been preparing for this as a company. And just as our saga is coming to a close, so is the saga of the Skywalkers with the new ‘Star Wars.’ It’s kind of the culmination.”

Popular on Variety

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Helen Hunt Says She’s ‘Glad to Be Here’ After ‘Scary’ Car Accident

One month after surviving a terrifying car accident, Helen Hunt isn’t taking a single day for granted.

Currently celebrating the launch of her Mad About You reboot series, the Oscar winner, 56, is also happy that she was able to finish production on the TV show and continue work with her pal and costar, Paul Reiser.

“It was scary,” she told Entertainment Tonight on Monday while on the Mad About You set. “I’m grateful to be here with my friend.”

“Me too,” Reiser added.

Hunt was briefly hospitalized on Oct. 16 after her black SUV was t-boned while attempting to drive through an intersection. The car then rolled over on its side from the impact of the collision. The actress was a passenger, riding in the backseat of the car, according to TMZ, which also had footage of the accident.

Helen Hunt

The accident occurred in Los Angeles’ Mid-City area on the corner of San Vicente and Tremaine Avenue, a spokesperson with the Los Angeles Police Department told PEOPLE at the time.

Hunt was among a number of people who were transported to a local hospital, the spokesperson said, but police investigated the traffic incident and determined that there was no crime committed.

After being brought to the hospital and examined by doctors, the actress was released later that evening.

One week later, Hunt returned to the Mad About You set, letting fans know that she had recovered by sharing a smiling Instagram selfie alongside Reiser with the caption, “Back at work. 🙏🏽”

Hunt continued to tell ET that she believed it was the right time to bring back her hit rom-com, which ended in 1999.

“We agreed for 20 solid years that it was a terrible idea, we must never do it,” she told the outlet. “Then, I don’t know, Will & Grace was good and we realized that our [characters’] daughter — who was born the last year of the original show — would be leaving home, and so suddenly [an] empty nest seemed like [something] we could write about.”

Reiser added with a laugh, “Plus, if we waited any longer we would be dead,” to which Hunt joked, “It would be a really slow reboot.”

Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser

The longtime friends never let their relationship fade after the famous sitcom wrapped — often scheduling lunch dates to keep in touch.

“We had lunch every few months,” Hunt previously told PEOPLE. “I’d hear about what he was working on or how his kids were and vice versa.”

Reiser added, “It was like being with your best friend. We would hit the ground running. And I’ll tell you something people might not know about Helen Hunt: She [likes] Chinese chicken salad without the chicken!”

Admitting that they’re not unlike an old married couple, Reiser said the two share “code words” they have cultivated over the years as means of communication with each other.

“Working with Paul is the most fun,” said Hunt. “We are so like-minded and that’s just very comforting. It’s a rare thing to find someone who shares your taste and sensibility.”

The Spectrum Originals series premieres on Nov. 20.

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