ONS: 23 August 2013

by admin on August 23, 2013

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: Islamist supporters of ousted Egyptian President Morsi called new protests against the army.
  • AMERICAS: Paraguay’s Congress gave President Cartes new powers to use the military within the country
  • ASIA: A North Korean man claiming to have defected appeared on South Korean Gyodong island.
  • EUROPE: Romanian FM Corlatean said Romania and Bulgaria will work to join the Schengen Area based on the two-phase solution.
  • MIDDLE EAST: The Israeli Air Force bombed a militant target in Lebanon near Na’ameh in retaliation for a cross-border rocket salvo on Thursday
  • TECHNOLOGY: Researchers reported that hackers from the former Soviet Union are increasingly producing high quality malware and cyber attacks with minimal risk.

 

TOP STORY

  • Syria: UN, US investigate chemical weapons claims and pressure Assad for access
    • UNSG Ban Ki-moon said the use of chemical weapons would constitute a “crime against humanity” and urged the regime to allow a UN inspection team already in Syria to begin an investigation.
    • US President Obama said in an interview that new allegations of chemical weapons use by Syrian forces were of “grave concern”.
    • US President Obama ordered US spy agencies to urgently probe claims that Syrian forces launched a chemical attack on civilians.
    • Russian FM Lavrov told US Secretary Kerry that Russia has called on the Syrian government to cooperate with the UN chemical experts.
    • Syrian activists said they have prepared body tissue samples from victims of an alleged chemical weapons attack near Damascus and are trying to get them to a team of UN inspectors.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AFP-3, BBC-1, BBC-2, CNN, Reuters, WaPo, WSJ

 

AFRICA

  • DR Congo: The UN said that mortar shells that left three injured on the outskirts of Goma were targeted at UN positions. (AFP)
  • Egypt: Islamist supporters of ousted President Morsi called new protests against the army. (AFP)
  • Somalia: AU troops said they thwarted an attack by islamist Shebab fighters on their base in Kismayo. (AFP)
  • South Africa: President Zuma approved the deployment of peacekeeping troops in the DRC. (Xinhua)
  • Tunisia: The opposition coalition rejected proposals by the ruling islamists for ending a month-long political crisis. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • Colombia: VP Garzon reiterated the country’s view that the ruling by the ICJ on its maritime dispute with Nicaragua is “inapplicable.” (Xinhua)
  • Guatemala: The UN International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala reported that impunity in corruption has fallen from 93 percent to 70 percent. (AP)
  • Jamaica: The IMF said the country is fulfilling its loan requirements following its first quarterly review. (Xinhua)
  • Paraguay: Congress gave President Cartes new powers to use the military within the country. (AP)

 

ASIA

  • China: One of the country’s most well-known civil rights advocates, Xu Zhiyong, was formally arrested on charges of disrupting public order. (AP)
  • Korean Peninsula: A North Korean man claiming to have defected appeared on South Korean Gyodong island. (AFP)
  • Pakistan: The government released approximately 340 Indian fishermen held for violating territorial waters amid high tensions over the disputed of Kashmir. (AFP)
  • Philippines: President Aquino promised to reform a system that allows lawmakers to allocate government funds after an audit found that millions of dollars were misused. (AP)
  • Vanuatu: US and Australian agents seized 750 kilograms of cocaine worth 330 USD from a yacht. (AP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: Romanian FM Corlatean said Romania and Bulgaria will work to join the Schengen Area based on the two-phase solution. (Xinhua)
  • Greece: German Finance Minister Schaeuble said he expects a future aid package for Greece to be much smaller than the country’s existing rescue deals. (AP)
  • United Kingdom: Counter-terror police launched a criminal investigation into documents seized from the Brazilian boyfriend of a journalist working to publish secrets from US intelligence leaker Edward Snowden. (AFP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: The Independent reported that the UK runs a secret internet-monitoring station in the Middle East that taps into and extracts data from the underwater fiber-optic cables passing through the region. (The Independent)
  • Region: Japanese PM Shinzo Abe begins a six-day trip to the region on  on 24AUG. (AFP)
  • Israel: The Air Force bombed a militant target in Lebanon near Na’ameh in retaliation for a cross-border rocket salvo on Thursday. (Reuters)
  • Syria: The UN reported that the number of children who have fled Syria hit one million. (AFP)
  • Yemen: A suicide bombing by suspected al Qaeda militants killed two soldiers and wounded six others in Hadramawt province. (AFP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Cybersecurity: Researchers reported that hackers from the former Soviet Union are increasingly producing high quality malware and cyber attacks with minimal risk. (Reuters)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Depression 01C (Pewa)
    • Location: 436 NM NNE of Wake Island
    • Movement: NW at 1 mph
    • Winds: 40 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Tropical Depression 9E
    • Location: 350 miles SW of Cabo San Lucas, Mexico
    • Movement: NW at 7 mph
    • Winds: 35 mph
    • Map
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Novel Coronavirus (Sars)
      • Cases: Global Number of Cases as of 01AUG: 94 (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Italy, France, Germany, Jordan, Qatar, UAE, United Kingdom)
      • Deaths: Global Number of Deaths as of 01AUG: 46 (Saudi Arabia, France, United Kingdom)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-1

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (24AUG)

  • Egypt and Palestinian Territories: The Rafah crossing from Egypt to Gaza will reopen for four hours daily, after having been closed a week earlier.
  • Russia: Independence Day – 1991.
  • Ukraine: Independence Day – 1991.

 

END

 

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