ONS: 16 October 2014

by TRG Alerts Admin on October 16, 2014

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: Agriculture ministers from western African countries said that financial aid and global coordination are needed to prevent the Ebola crisis from becoming a food emergency.
  • AMERICAS: Venezuelan President Maduro said a Colombian paramilitary group collaborated in the killing of a young congressman earlier this month.
  • ASIA: Hong Kong’s leader reopened his offer of talks with student leaders a week after the government pulled out of discussions.
  • EUROPE: Ukrainian President Poroshenko discussed the crisis in the country’s east with US President Obama.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A top Iranian official warned that a death sentence passed on a prominent Shiite cleric in Saudi Arabia could escalate tensions and called for the decision to be reversed.
  • TECHNOLOGY: A survey of 59 US firms by the Ponemon Institute with Hewlett-Packard found the average annual cost of responding to cyber attacks was USD12.7 million, up 96 percent over the previous five years.

 

TOP STORY

  • Syria: Kurdish forces make progress against IS near Kobane.
    • US officials said the military has sharply increased the number of airstrikes against IS militants in Kobane, aided by information provided by Kurdish fighters.
    • A Kurdish official in Kobane said that “Before [US airstikes] they (IS) were in control of 30 percent of Kobane and now they control less than 20 percent”.
    • The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said that ground fighting alone has killed more than 600 combatants since IS launched the offensive on Kobane.
    • Idriss Nassan, the deputy head of Kobane’s foreign relations committee, is calling on the international community to allow weapons to cross the border into Kobane.
    • The Pentagon said that IS militants do not appear to have seized any chemical weapons as they have moved across Iraq and Syria.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AP, NYT, Reuters, WP

 

AFRICA

  • Region: Agriculture ministers from western African countries said that financial aid and global coordination are needed to prevent the Ebola crisis from becoming a food emergency. (AP)
  • Egypt: The Carter Center closed its field office in the country and officials said they would not send observers to parliamentary elections later this year. (AP)
  • Morocco: Authorities in Casablanca arrested a man who was en route to join IS fighters in Syria. (AFP)
  • Mozambique: The country’s combined electoral observation mission called for calm after voting officially closed in the general elections. (Xinhua)

 

AMERICAS

  • Brazil: President Rousseff and her social democrat contender Aecio Neves technically tied in two new polls of voting intentions. (EFE)
  • Colombia: A case in which 100 farmers are suing oil giant BP for environmental damage opened in the High Court in London. (AFP)
  • United States: US President Obama pledged a “much more aggressive” domestic response to the Ebola threat. (NYT)
  • Venezuela: President Maduro said a Colombian paramilitary group collaborated in the killing of a young congressman earlier this month. (AP)

 

ASIA

  • Afghanistan: At least 15 Taliban militants were killed in an ISAF drone strike on a militant’ hideout in Herat. (Xinhua)
  • China: Hong Kong’s leader reopened his offer of talks with student leaders a week after the government pulled out of discussions. (AFP)
  • India: PM Modi unveiled key labor reforms aimed at easing business and strengthening manufacturing infrastructure. (Xinhua)
  • Malaysia: Police said 14 people arrested this week for suspected links to the IS included a government engineer and two others who used Facebook to recruit fighters for the extremist group in Syria. (AFP)
  • Pakistan: The military said it had killed 21 militants in air strikes in the Tirah valley of Khyber district. (AFP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: German Chancellor Merkel said in a speech in parliament that sanctions against Russia over Ukraine were necessary but they did not preclude dialogue with Moscow. (Reuters)
  • Greece: Europe’s leading human rights body criticized conditions in prisons and migrant detention centers in the country, saying no improvements have been made despite recommendations made two years ago. (AP)
  • Ukraine: President Poroshenko discussed the crisis in the country’s east with US President Obama. (AFP)
  • United Kingdom: Negotiations aimed at bolstering Northern Ireland’s power-sharing government opened in Belfast. (AP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: A top Iranian official warned that a death sentence passed on a prominent Shiite cleric in Saudi Arabia could escalate tensions and called for the decision to be reversed. (AFP)
  • Saudi Arabia: Authorities beheaded a Pakistani man for smuggling heroin, bringing to almost 60 the number of executions in the kingdom this year. (AFP)
  • Yemen: Suspected al-Qaeda militants seized control of the town of Udain, 20 kilometers west of the now rebel-controlled Ibb. (AFP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Cybersecurity: A survey of 59 US firms by the Ponemon Institute with Hewlett-Packard found the average annual cost of responding to cyber attacks was USD12.7 million, up 96 percent over the previous five years. (AFP)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Storm 02C (Ana)
    • Location: 494 NM SE of Hilo
    • Movement: W at 10 mph
    • Winds: 58 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Hurricane Gonzalo
    • Location: 540 miles SSW of Bermuda
    • Movement: N at 9 mph
    • Winds: 140 mph
    • Map
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
      • Cases: 8376 (Guinea, Mali, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Nigeria, DR Congo, US, Spain)
      • Deaths: 4024 (Guinea, Liberia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 02OCT: 852 (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Italy, Iran, France, Germany, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, UAE, United Kingdom, Egypt, US, Yemen, Austria)
      • Deaths as of 02OCT: 301 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (17OCT)

  • Global: International Day for the Eradication of Poverty
  • Lesotho: Parliament to reconvene after shutdown
  • Tajikistan and Russia: Tajik parliament leaders are expected to visit Moscow

 

END

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