ONS: 12 February 2018

by TRG Alerts Admin on February 13, 2018

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: South Africa’s ruling ANC party intends to finalize a power transition that would see the deputy president take over from President Jacob Zuma, who is under pressure to resign.
  • AMERICAS: In Venezuela, at least 18 people were killed at the illegal Cicapra gold mine during clashes with security forces looking to take control of the area.
  • ASIA: Tonga declared a state of emergency as it braced for destructive winds and potential flash flooding from Tropical Cyclone Gita.
  • EUROPE: Emergency workers searched snow-covered fields outside Moscow, looking for body fragments and clues after a fatal plane crash that killed all 71 people on board.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Turkey claimed the US is intentionally stalling the fight against Islamic State militants as an excuse not to cut ties with Syrian Kurdish militiamen as Ankara has demanded.
  • TECHNOLOGY: Iranian telecommunication officials say hackers who accessed the websites of some of the country’s dailies are from the US and Britain.

TOP STORY

  • Iraq: Conference opens in hopes to raise billions for post-IS recovery.
    • Kuwait opened a week of conferences seeking aid for rebuilding Iraq after the onslaught of the Islamic State group.
    • About USD 22B will be required in the short term and another USD 66B billion in the medium term, the director-general of Iraq’s planning ministry, Qusay Adulfattah said.
    • Adulfattah said funds are urgently needed to “restore basic and infrastructure services” in many provinces.
    • So far, non-governmental organizations have pledged USD 330M of humanitarian aid to Iraq.
    • Baghdad declared victory against IS in DEC2018, after almost three years of war against the jihadist group that left large swathes of the country destroyed and millions displaced.
    • Coverage: AFP, AP, Reuters, Reuters-2

AFRICA

  • Region: The Mo Ibrahim prize for leadership in Africa has been won by the former Liberian president Ellen Johnson Sirleaf. (Guardian)
  • Egypt: A major Egyptian military operation against jihadists has killed 28 fighters in the Sinai Peninsula so far. (AFP)
  • South Africa: The ruling ANC party intends to finalize a power transition that would see the deputy president take over from President Jacob Zuma, who is under pressure to resign. (AP)

AMERICAS

  • Region: Mexican authorities detained 229 migrants from Mexico and Central America while waiting to cross the border into the US. (EFE)
  • Puerto Rico: Most of San Juan and a strip of northern Puerto Rico municipalities were plunged into darkness after an explosion at a power station. (AFP)
  • Venezuela: At least 18 people were killed at the illegal Cicapra gold mine during clashes with security forces looking to take control of the area. (WSJ)

ASIA

  • Region: Pakistan warned India against cross-border strikes in the disputed region of Kashmir after Indian authorities blamed a Pakistan-based group for a two-day attack on an army camp. (Reuters)
  • Bangladesh: Thousands of protesters rallied across the country, demanding the release of jailed opposition leader Khaleda Zia and free and fair elections. (AFP)
  • Cambodia: The country deported seven of ten foreign tourists charged with producing pornography. (BBC)
  • Sri Lanka: Former strongman Mahinda Rajapaksa called for snap parliamentary elections after his party swept local elections. (AP)
  • Tonga: The island nation declared a state of emergency as it braced for destructive winds and potential flash flooding from Tropical Cyclone Gita. (Reuters)

EUROPE

  • Region: A day before his first visit to Russia, Dutch FM Halbe Zijlstra acknowledged lying about attending a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in 2006. (AP)
  • Region: Turkish warships continue to impede a rig from reaching a location off Cyprus where Italian energy company Eni is scheduled to drill for gas. (AP)
  • Russia: Emergency workers searched snow-covered fields outside Moscow, looking for body fragments and clues after a fatal plane crash a day earlier killed all 71 people on board. (Reuters)
  • Turkey: Pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party co-leader Pervin Buldan is being investigated for possible violation of the country’s sedition laws and for allegedly engaging in terror propaganda. (AP)
  • United Kingdom: London City Airport canceled all flights in and out after an unexploded World War II-era bomb was found nearby in the River Thames. (AP)

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: Russia, Turkey and Iran discussed a possible meeting of their foreign ministers on Syria, which could be held in Kazakhstan’s Astana in MAR2018. (Reuters)
  • Iraq: Five people were killed and six others wounded in gunfire and bomb attacks in the provinces of Salahudin and Diyala. (Xinhua)
  • Kuwait: The Philippines expanded a ban on its citizens working in the country after reports of Filipino workers suffering abuse and exploitation. (AFP)
  • Saudi Arabia: The country agreed to give up control of Belgium’s largest mosque in an attempt to shed its reputation as a global exporter of an ultra-conservative brand of Islam. (Reuters)
  • Syria: Turkey claimed the US is intentionally stalling the fight against Islamic State militants as an excuse not to cut ties with Syrian Kurdish militiamen as Ankara has demanded. (AP)

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Technology: Thousands of websites, including ones run by the US and UK governments, were infected for several hours with code that causes web browsers to secretly mine digital currencies. (Reuters)
  • Technology: Iranian telecommunication officials say hackers who accessed the websites of some of the country’s dailies are from the US and Britain. (AP)

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone Gita
    • Location: 222 nm SW at Niue
    • Wind: 125 mph
    • Movement: W at 12 mph
    • Map
  • Cyclones: Tropical Storm Sanba
    • Location: 108 nm N of Sonsorol
    • Wind: 40 mph
    • Movement: W at 12 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to Report
  • Earthquakes: 136 km ESE of Rota, Northern Mariana Islands
    • Magnitude: 6.0
    • Depth: 10 km
    • Map
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to Report
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
      • Suspected Cases as of 20JAN: 61,613 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, and Venezuela)
        • Suspected Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 349,936
          • Confirmed Cases as of 20JAN: 123,087 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, México, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Martin (French part), and Venezuela)
        • Confirmed Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 152,250
      • Deaths as of 20JAN: 101 (Brazil, Ecuador)
        • Deaths (01JAN16-31DEC16): 172
        • Deaths (01JAN15-31DEC15): 91 (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Puerto Rico)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, CDC, CDC-2
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 05FEB: 2,143 (Saudi Arabia (KSA), Jordan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the United Kingdom (UK), France, Tunisia, Italy, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Malaysia, Greece, Egypt, Lebanon, the Netherlands, Iran, Algeria, Austria, Turkey, The Philippines, Germany, China, South Korea, and the US)
        • Deaths as of 05FEB: 750 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2.

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (13FEB)

  • Global: Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday) – Unknown
  • Global: World Radio Day – 2013
  • Armenia: Trndez (the Eve of Candlemas) – Unknown
  • Kuwait: Ministerial meeting of the US-led International Coalition against the Islamic State
  • Qatar: National Sports Day – 2012
  • United Kingdom: Court to issue a ruling on whether or not an arrest warrant for WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange should be kept in place

END

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