ONS: 18 March 2014

by TRG Alerts Admin on March 18, 2014

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA:  Uganda warned that Somalia’s al Shebab insurgents were planning to use fuel tankers as bombs.
  • AMERICAS: The Venezuelan government deployed hundreds of soldiers in a part of Caracas where weeks of protests had taken place.
  • ASIA: The Thai government said it will lift a nearly two-month-old state of emergency in Bangkok and surrounding areas.
  • EUROPE: The Italian navy said it had rescued nearly 600 Syrian, Palestinian and Eritrean migrants crossing the Mediterranean in two boats.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Israeli Defense Minister Yaalon said his country cannot depend on the US to lead an action against Iran’s nuclear program and that Israel can only rely on itself.
  • TECHNOLOGY: Japan faces a full-on cyber attack across government departments in a drill aimed at bolstering national security as the country gears up to host the 2020 Olympics.

 

TOP STORY

  • Russia: Putin backs Crimea’s application to join Russia amid sanctions.
    • President Putin formally informed the parliament of Crimea’s request to become part of Russia in the first legislative step required for the peninsula’s de-facto annexation.
    • US VP Biden arrived in Poland for talks with President Komorowski and PM Tusk, as well as the presidents of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania.
    • French FM Fabius reported that Russia had been suspended from the G-8.
    • The US and its European allies stepped up their pressure on Russia by imposing the most comprehensive sanctions against Russian officials since the Cold War.
    • Ukrainian PM Yatsenyuk said that his country had no plans to join NATO.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AFP-3, AFP-4, AP, AP-2, BBC, NYT, Reuters, WP

 

AFRICA

  • Region: UN special envoy to the Great Lakes Region Mary Robinson is on a two-day visit to DR Congo to encourage ongoing efforts to consolidate peace in the region. (Xinhua)
  • Region: Uganda warned that Somalia’s al Shebab insurgents were planning to use fuel trucks as bombs. (AFP)
  • Kenya: Police intercepted a car with improvised explosive devices intended for a terrorist attack in Mombasa. (AP)
  • Malawi: President Banda said clashes between opposition protesters and police following an election rally were “politically motivated” and called for an investigation. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • Colombia: An oil pipeline was bombed in Norte de Santander province in the 17th time this year it has been attacked. (UPI)
  • Mexico: Police detained a member of the Knights Templar cartel who is suspected of kidnapping children to harvest their organs. (AP)
  • Venezuela: The government deployed hundreds of soldiers in a part of Caracas where weeks of protests had taken place. (NYT)

 

ASIA

  • Afghanistan: A suicide bomber killed at least 15 people at a crowded market in Maimanah. (AFP)
  • Afghanistan: President Karzai nominated the former parliament speaker Mohammad Yunus Qanuni for the post of first vice president. (DPA)
  • China: The government urged the world community not to provoke tensions by “politicising” human rights in North Korea. (AFP)
  • Pakistan: The Pakistani Taliban asked the government to release from jail 300 people they say are non-combatants as part of an ongoing peace process. (AFP)
  • Thailand: The government said it will lift a nearly two-month-old state of emergency in Bangkok and surrounding areas. (AFP)

 

EUROPE

  • France: Several dozen Greenpeace activists snuck into a nuclear power plant in the latest break-in by the environmental group. (AFP)
  • Greece: Authorities reported that seven immigrants drowned in the eastern Aegean Sea after traveling illegally from Turkey. (AP)
  • Italy: The Navy said it had rescued nearly 600 Syrian, Palestinian and Eritrean migrants crossing the Mediterranean in two boats. (AFP)
  • Serbia: Police in the country and Montenegro arrested Darko Saric who allegedly organized an attempted transfer of 2.7 tons of cocaine from South America to Europe. (AP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Iran: Talks between the country and six world powers aimed at agreeing a lasting nuclear deal resumed in Vienna. (Reuters)
  • Israel: Defense Minister Yaalon said his country cannot depend on the US to lead an action against Iran’s nuclear program and that Israel can only rely on itself. (AP)
  • Lebanon: A local official reported that gunmen from the militant Shiite group Hezbollah and Shiite residents have tightened their control on a Sunni town near the Syrian border. (AP)
  • Saudi Arabia: Foreign Minister Saud al-Faisal warned there will only be rapprochement between Riyadh and Doha when Qatar “modifies” its policy toward the Muslim Brotherhood. (AFP)
  • Yemen: A suicide car bombing at a military intelligence headquarters in Tuban killed one person and wounded a dozen others. (AFP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Cybersecurity: Japan faces a full-on cyber attack across government departments in a drill aimed at bolstering national security as the country gears up to host the 2020 Olympics. (Reuters)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases: Global Number of Cases as of 17MAR: 191 (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Italy, France, Germany, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, UAE, United Kingdom)
      • Deaths: Global Number of Deaths as of 17MAR: 82 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (19MAR)

  • Asia: China’s Shenyang hosts talks between Japanese, North Korean and Red Cross officials (to 20MAR)
  • Algeria: Ceasefire with France leads and end of Algerian War – 1962
  • Brazil: ISC Brasil 9th Annual Conference on International Security
  • Congo: The president of the Republic of Congo, Marien Ngouabi, is assassinated at his official residence in Brazzaville – 1977
  • Egypt: Anniversary of Egyptians casting their first free vote – 2011
  • Libya: Operation Odyssey Dawn begins – 2011
  • Russia: Day of Russian Submarine Forces
  • Rwanda: Launch on Coalition of Political Parties for Change (CDC)
  • South Africa: The National Union of Mineworkers of South Africa called for marches in major cities across the country

 

END

 

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