ONS: 21 February 2015

by TRG Alerts Admin on February 21, 2015

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: A recently released Nigerian Boko Haram propaganda videos indicated that the group has ties to the Islamic State.
  • AMERICAS: Venezuelan President Maduro accused Caracas opposition mayor Ledezma of being involved in a US-backed coup, indicting him for plotting violence against the govt.
  • ASIA: North Korean Marshall Kim Jong-un guided a military drill simulating the capture of an island, instructing KPA troops to “remove formalism” from tactics.
  • EUROPE: At a last-ditch meeting, Europe gave Greece some breathing room to present alternative reforms in a bid to save its crucial financial lifeline.
  • MIDDLE EAST: IS militants burned alive in iron cages 43 local police and government-backed Sahwa paramilitary group members in western Anbar province, Iraq.
  • TECHNOLOGY: NATO’s Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe said “the West is facing twin threats from Russian President Vladimir Putin: modern “hybrid warfare” – the use of cyber attacks, political agitation and sabotage – combined with old-style Soviet land-grab tactics.”

 

TOP STORY

  • Indonesia: Executions postponed but immanent despite international pressure.
    • Brazilian President Rousseff refused to accept the credentials of the Indonesian ambassador to demonstrate her anger at last month’s execution of a Brazilian citizen for drug smuggling.
    • Indonesia said that it recalled its newly designated ambassador to Brazil to protest the abrupt postponement of the approval of his credentials.
    • Australian PM Bishop called on Indonesia to give two Australians on death row an “indefinite stay of execution” as she clarified her PM’s comments linking their fate to aid.
    • Indonesia reaffirmed its intention to execute two Australian drug smugglers, despite continuing high-level diplomatic efforts from Australia to prevent their deaths.
    • Indonesian President Widodo pledged no clemency for drug offenders, despite pleas from the European Union, Brazil, Australia and Amnesty International.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AP, Guardian, Reuters

 

AFRICA

  • Region: Congolese and Rwandan forces prepared for clashes as threats lingered to civilians during crop harvests. (AFP)
  • Nigeria: A recently released Boko Haram propaganda videos indicated that the group has ties to the Islamic State. (NYT)
  • Nigeria:  A “ghost town” of burnt-out and looted properties greeted residents returning to Gamboru for the first time since Chadian forces retook it from Boko Haram. (AFP)
  • Zimbabwe: The EU renewed decade-long sanctions against the country, and an asset freeze and travel ban on its leader, Robert Mugabe, and his wife Grace. (XIN)

 

AMERICAS

  • Colombia: A US missionary arrested on charges of aiding Colombia’s largest rebel group, the FARC, was released by a judge due to insufficient evidence. (EFE)
  • Mexico: The local chairwoman of the Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI) was murdered in Lagunillas, according to constituents. (EFE)
  • United States: The largest Muslim civil liberties group in the country demanded North Dakota House Republicans apologize for canceling a Muslim’s opening address. (AP)
  • United States: A federal judge ordered the Obama administration to stop detaining women and children who were caught illegally crossing the border. (NYT)
  • Venezuela: President Maduro accused Caracas opposition mayor Ledezma of being involved in a US-backed coup, indicting him for plotting violence against the govt. (BBC)

 

ASIA

  • Afghanistan: Defense Secretary Carter met troops and commanders in Kabul to assess whether US withdrawal plans are too risky to the country’s security. (AP)
  • India: A gunfight erupted between the Army and militants in Kashmir, as police and the Army continued rooting out holed-up guerillas in the region. (XIN)
  • India: Police said a 35-year-old Nigerian woman was allegedly gang-raped in a moving car in the Indian capital, Delhi. (DPA)
  • Korea, North: FM Ri Su-yong left Pyongyang for a visit abroad that will see him participate in next month’s U.N. Human Rights Council session in Geneva. (Kyodo)
  • Korea, North: Marshall Kim Jong-un guided a military drill simulating the capture of an island, instructing KPA troops to “remove formalism” from tactics. (XIN)

 

EUROPE

  • Greece: At a last-ditch meeting, Europe gave Athens some breathing room to present alternative reforms in a bid to save its crucial financial lifeline. (AFP)
  • Netherlands: A team of international aviation experts probed the wreckage of Flight MH17 at the Dutch air force base Gilze-Rijen. (XIN)
  • Ukraine: Pro-Russian rebels said they will swap prisoners as part of a battered truce that the West hopes will cool the conflict that has poisoned relations with Moscow. (AFP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: The Islamist Hamas movement slammed what it called a “campaign of incitement” by some Egyptian journalists against the Palestinians in Gaza Strip. (XIN)
  • Iraq: IS militants burned alive 43 local police and government-backed Sahwa paramilitary group members in iron cages in western Anbar province. (XIN)
  • Yemen: Former president Hadi fled the capital after Shiite rebels who surrounded his house let him go under international and local pressure. (AP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Hybrid Warfare: NATO’s Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe said “the West is facing twin threats from Russian President Vladimir Putin: modern “hybrid warfare” – the use of cyber attacks, political agitation and sabotage – combined with old-style Soviet land-grab tactics.” (Independant)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: 128 km ENE of Miyako, Japan
    • Magnitude: 6.1
    • Depth: 40 – 60km
    • Map
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
      • Cases: 22,894 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, United Kingdom, United States)
      • Deaths: 9,177 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, United States)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, BBC
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK) – Americas
      • Suspected Cases as of 06FEB: 1,172,787 (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Mexico, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, United States, US Virgin Islands, and Venezuela.) Confirmed Cases: 25,255
      • Deaths as of 06FEB: 181 (Colombia, Puerto Rico, Martinique, Grenada, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Dominican Republic)
      • Sourcing: WHO, CDC, CDC-2
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 16FEB: 983 (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 and the US)
      • Deaths as of 16FEB: 360 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (22FEB)

  • Middle East Region: Anniversary of the United Arab Republic formed – 1958
  • Poland and Ukraine: President of Poland Bronislaw Komorowski will visit Ukraine
  • St Lucia: Independence Day – 1979

 

END

 

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