ONS: 19 December 2013

by TRG Alerts Admin on December 19, 2013

Overnight News Summary

Produced by the Rendon Group

19 December 2013

 

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA:  US AMB to the UN Power is visiting the Central African Republic in an effort to halt the current violence.
  • AMERICAS:  The Bolivian government charged that the US helped one of its citizens jailed for money laundering break out of jail in what it called an “elite operation.”
  • ASIA: The Indian government demanded that US drop case against diplomat who was arrested New York City.
  • EUROPE: Protesters blocked traffic around the site of a EU summit in Brussels to protest many of the policies up for discussion during the two-day meeting.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A suicide bomber in Iraq detonated an explosives belt among Shiite pilgrims in the Dura area of south Baghdad killing at least 17 people.
  • TECHNOLOGY: A US review board set up following revelations of US surveillance programs called for a wide-ranging overhaul of NSA practices while preserving “robust” intelligence capabilities.

 

TOP STORY

  • South Sudan: Foreign nationals evacuate as rebels make gains.
    • The military admitted losing control of the key town of Bor in Jonglei state to a military faction associated with former VP Machar.
    • Army spokesman Aguer said government officials in Bor may have defected.
    • The UK dispatched aircraft to evacuate British nationals, with the Foreign Office reporting that 150 of the estimated 500 citizens in the country had contacted officials.
    • The US evacuated 120 people from the country in three plane-loads.
    • Top ministers from Kenya, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Uganda flew to the country to kick start peace efforts.
    • US Secretary Kerry called for political differences in the country to be resolved “by peaceful and democratic means.”
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AFP-3, BBC, BBC-2, LAT, NYT, WSJ

 

AFRICA

  • Egypt: Police arrested a leading secular activist wanted for trial in a raid on the office of a rights group in Cairo. (AFP)
  • Egypt: A Cairo court acquitted former leader Mubarak’s two sons and his last PM of corruption charges. (AP)
  • Central African Republic: Amnesty International said that December clashes in the country killed over 1,000, more than three times previous estimates. (BBC)
  • Central African Republic: US AMB to the UN Power is visiting the country in an effort to halt the current violence. (AP)
  • Madagascar: Voters return to polling stations on 20DEC to choose a new president in a run-off election. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • Bolivia: The government charged that the US helped one of its citizens jailed for money laundering break out of jail in what it called an “elite operation.” (AFP)
  • Peru: Special forces troops destroyed 20 clandestine landing strips used to fly drugs out of the jungle to Bolivia and Brazil. (AP)
  • United States: The government announced it had transferred two Sudanese detainees from Guantanamo to their home country. (AFP)
  • Venezuela: President Maduro held a meeting with opponents, challenging them to collect signatures to oust him in 2016 if they wanted but to work with him until that time. (Reuters)

 

ASIA

  • Region: East Timor launched legal action against Australia at the Hague, alleging Australian intelligence officials illegally seized documents from a lawyer representing Dili in a row over spying. (AFP)
  • Afghanistan: National Security Advisor Spanta called for regional cooperation to combat ongoing terrorism and extremism. (Xinhua)
  • India: The government demanded that US drop case against diplomat who was arrested New York City. (AP)
  • Pakistan: Militants threatened opposition leader Imran Khan after he criticized their attacks on polio vaccination teams. (AFP)
  • Thailand: The country’s Election Commission warned of potential unrest at upcoming polls and suggested a postponement. (AFP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: Protesters blocked traffic around the site of a EU summit in Brussels to protest many of the policies up for discussion during the two-day meeting. (AP)
  • Region: EU finance ministers reached a banking union accord. (AFP)
  • Russia: President Putin said the country had not yet decided to place nuclear-capable Iskander missiles in the exclave region of Kaliningrad that borders the EU. (AFP)
  • Turkey: Influential US-based cleric Fethullah Gulen denied that he was behind a police corruption and bribery probe targeting PM Erdogan’s allies. (AP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Iran: GEN Barkhor said the country’s air force will hold a military drill over the Strait of Hormuz on 20DEC. (AP)
  • Iraq: A suicide bomber detonated an explosives belt among Shiite pilgrims in the Dura area of south Baghdad killing at least 17 people. (AFP)
  • Palestinian Territories: Officials accused Israel of a “dangerous escalation” after the army killed two people in the West Bank, calling the violence a deliberate attempt to sabotage peace talks. (AFP)
  • Syria: Russia issued a rare criticism of President Assad, saying statements that he wanted to run in presidential elections in 2014 risked harming the atmosphere ahead of peace talks. (AFP)
  • Syria: The UN Reported that approximately 60 nations have been invited to a 15JAN14 second donors conference for the country in a bid to raise USD6.5 billion in humanitarian aid. (AFP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Cybersecurity: A US review board set up following revelations of US surveillance programs called for a wide-ranging overhaul of NSA practices while preserving “robust” intelligence capabilities. (AFP)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone 4S (Bruce)
    • Location: 280 NM W of Cocos Island
    • Movement: WSW at 9 mph
    • Winds: 86 mph
    • Map
  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone 03S (Amara)
    • Location: 740 NM ENE of La Reunion
    • Movement: WSW at 10 mph
    • Winds: 120 mph
    • Map
  • 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 17DEC: 165 (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Italy, France, Germany, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, UAE, United Kingdom)
      • Deaths: Global Number of Deaths as of 17DEC: 71 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (20DEC)

  • Madagascar: Second round of presidential elections
  • Panama: Anniversary of US Operation Just Cause – 1989
  • Spain: Anniversary of the assassination of PM Blanco – 1973
  • Syria: UN meeting to prepare for the Geneva II conference

 

END

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