ONS: 14 May 2013

by TRG Alerts Admin on May 14, 2013

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: A UN investigation found that a Congolese army battalion that received its formative training from the US military went on to commit atrocities last year.
  • AMERICAS: The Colombian government’s chief negotiator Humberto de la Calle said a new round of peace talks between the government and the  FARC will be held on May 15-25 in Cuba.
  • ASIA: In Afghanistan a motorcycle bomb hit a market in Helmand province killing at least three people, as NATO reported that US special forces had come under attack the previous day north of Kabul.
  • EUROPE: A Pew Research survey indicates that popular support for the EU and greater economic integration to combat the debt crisis has fallen sharply.
  • MIDDLE EAST: The first group of Kurdish fighters leaving Turkey as part of a push for peace with Ankara arrived in Iraqi Kurdistan.
  • TECHNOLOGY: The Associated Press said the US Justice Department had secretly obtained two months of phone records from its news operations, calling it a “massive and unprecedented intrusion.”

 

TOP STORY

  • Syria: International pressure on government increasing in wake of Turkey bombing, increased internal violence
    • US President Obama and British PM Cameron vowed to increase pressure on Assad, and insisted that he could not be part of a democratic transition.
    • The US and Britain said they had found common ground with Russia on how to proceed.
    • Syria’s information minister said the government needed more details about a proposed U.S.-Russian initiative before it would decide whether to attend.
    • Russian President Putin and Israeli PM Netanyahu began talks on the conflict amid growing concern about Moscow’s continuing arms deliveries to the regime.
    • The UNSC said that the perpetrators of the “reprehensible” bomb attacks on Turkey’s border with Syria must be brought to justice.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AFP-3, AP, Reuters, Xinhua, Xinhua-2

 

AFRICA

  • Region: The UNSC called for a comprehensive approach to fighting terrorism in Africa by promoting economic and social development. (Xinhua)
  • DR Congo: A UN investigation found that a Congolese army battalion that received its formative training from the US military went on to commit atrocities last year. (WaPo)
  • DR Congo: A UN official said the first troops belonging to an intervention brigade arrived for their mission. (AFP)
  • Egypt: The Obama administration criticized Egyptian authorities for detaining a prominent youth movement leader on possible charges including “incitement to protest” and insulting the government’s interior minister. (AP)
  • Libya: The ICC is considering a challenge by the Libyan government in the case of two Gadhafi-era officials suspected of human rights abuses. (UPI)

 

AMERICAS

  • Colombia: The government’s chief negotiator Humberto de la Calle said a new round of peace talks between the government and the  FARC will be held on May 15-25 in Cuba. (Xinhua)
  • Guatemala: A court ordered the government to apologize for atrocities committed against indigenous people in the country’s civil war. (Reuters)
  • Mexico: The mayor of Santiago Amoltepec was ambushed by gunmen and shot over the weekend. (EFE)
  • Venezuela: President Maduro launched a security plan aimed at curbing street crime. (BBC)
  • Venezuela: The government said that a shipment of 760,000 tons of food will arrive in the country as a product of agreements reached during President Maduro’s tour of the Mercosur trade bloc.
  • (EFE)

 

ASIA

  • Afghanistan: A motorcycle bomb hit a market in Helmand province killing at least three people, as NATO reported that US special forces had come under attack the previous day north of Kabul. (AP)
  • Afghanistan: Three Georgian soldiers were killed in a suicide attack on their base in the south of the country. (Reuters)
  • Indonesia: Authorities shot and killed a suspected militant after a failed attempt to bomb police in central Indonesia. (AP)
  • Pakistan: The final vote count from national elections confirmed a win by a significant margin for former PM Sharif’s party. (AP)
  • Taiwan: The government said it would conduct a naval drill in waters near the Philippines if Manila did not officially apologise for the killing of a Taiwanese fisherman. (AFP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: A Pew Research survey indicates that popular support for the EU and greater economic integration to combat the debt crisis has fallen sharply. (AFP)
  • Region: European finance ministers bid to unlock a trillion-euro annual crackdown on tax evasion. (AFP)
  • Germany: The finance minister warned that only EU treaty change would create the legal framework needed to allow the formation of a single bailout agence. (AFP)
  • Greece: Eurogroup President Dijsselbloem announced that finance ministers of the eurozone had approved two bailout tranches of 7.5 billion euros for Greece. (Xinhua)
  • Russia: An official of Dagestan’s counter-extremism centre was killed in Makhachkala. (Itar-Tass)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Iran: The government played down a decision by the US to boycott meetings of the UN Conference on Disarmament when Iran takes over the body this month. (AFP)
  • Iran: The government expressed regret for the shooting deaths of Afghan migrants entering the country illegally over the weekend. (AP)
  • Iraq: The first group of Kurdish fighters leaving Turkey as part of a push for peace with Ankara arrived in Iraqi Kurdistan. (AFP)
  • Israel: The government approved a controversial austerity budget for 2013-14. (DPA)
  • Syria: The opposition National Coalition warned that 30,000 civilians in the rebel-held town of Qusayr faced an “extremely dangerous situation” as regime troops prepare to attack. (AFP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Communications: The Associated Press said the US Justice Department had secretly obtained two months of phone records from its news operations, calling it a “massive and unprecedented intrusion.” (AFP)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone 01B (Mahasen)
    • Location: 525 NM SSW of Kolkata, India
    • Movement: NE at 8 mph
    • Winds: 50 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: 39 km W of Agrihan, Northern Mariana Islands
    • Magnitude: 6.8
    • Depth: 601.8 km
    • Map
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (15MAY)

  • Global: International Day of Families.
  • Asia: MilSatCom Asia, Asia’s largest gathering of high level government, military and industry SatCom experts, will begin in Singapore (to 16MAY).
  • Asia, Americas: Next round of Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations begins in Lima (to 24MAY).
  • Afghanistan: Anniversary of Soviet troops beginning to withdraw from Afghanistan – 1988.
  • Colombia: The government and FARC negotiators will begin a new round of peace talks in Cuba (to 25MAY).
  • France: Cannes film festival opens.
  • Iran: IAEA will hold talks with Iran in Vienna; EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton will meet Iran’s chief negotiator Saeed Jalili in Istanbul as a follow-up to last month’s nuclear talks.
  • Iran: Qatari PM Hamad bin Jassim bi Jaber al-Thani will likely pay a visit to Iran.
  • Japan: Anniversary of Okinawa returning to Japanese sovereignty – 1972.
  • Mali: A conference co-chaired by European Commission chief Jose Manuel Barroso and French President Francois Hollande to raise money for war-hit Mali will be held in Brussels.
  • Mali: Government-placed deadline for Malian troops to gain control of Kidal from Tuareg rebels.
  • Palestinian Territories: Nakba Day, the day of “the catastrophe,” commemorates the dispossession of Palestinians after Israel declared itself independent – 1948.
  • Peru: Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations begin in Lima (to 24MAY).
  • Russia: Hearing for Russian opposition blogger Alexei Navalny and his suspected accomplice Pyotr Ofitserov will begin (to 16MAY).
  • Sweden: The foreign ministers of the Arctic Council, an international forum for the eight states bordering the Arctic, will meet in Kiruna.
  • United States: Ukrainian delegation will participate in the meeting of the US-Ukraine Working Group on Nonproliferation and Export Controls in Washington (to 16MAY).
  • Judaism: Shavuot, a two day festival that marks when the first harvest was taken to the Temple, begins.

END

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