ONS: 25 April 2015

by TRG Alerts Admin on April 25, 2015

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA:  Suspected Boko Haram insurgents have forced hundreds of Nigerian soldiers to flee Marte, a border town along the shores of the Lake Chad, a local official and witnesses said.
  • AMERICAS: Chilean authorities continue to evacuate areas around the active Calbuco volcano due to potential volcanic mudslides.
  • ASIA:  Taliban attacks and counter attacks in Afghanistan have claimed 28 lives including 25 militants across the northern Kunduz province.
  • EUROPE: Italian police said they had dismantled a network of Islamist radicals allegedly planning an attack on the Vatican.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Israeli tanks hit a position of the Islamist movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip after a rocket was launched from the Palestinian enclave, the army said.
  • TECHNOLOGY: The European Union’s decision to take on Google last week stems from official complaints by 19 companies in Europe and the United States, including Microsoft and a number of small firms, people familiar with the matter said.

TOP STORY

  • Nepal: Earthquake near Kathmandu kills at least 449
    • A 7.9 earthquake hit the capital, Kathmandu, causing massive amounts of damage and at least 449 casualties.
    • Buildings throughout the city collapsed and caused panic.
    • Noted Nepalese landmark and historic UNESCO site Dharhara tower collapsed, killing dozens.
    • Tremors from the earthquake were felt on Mt. Everest, causing an avalanche, putting climbers’ lives at risk.
    • The earthquake was felt in India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, causing casualties in India and Bangladesh.
    • A 6.6 aftershock occurred one hour later, causing additional damage.
    • The Indian air force has been put on high alert for possible search and rescue missions.
    • Coverage: AP-1AP-2BBCCNNReutersXinhua-1Xinhua-2NYTWSJ

AFRICA

  • Nigeria:  Suspected Boko Haram insurgents have forced hundreds of soldiers to flee Marte, a border town along the shores of the Lake Chad, a local official and witnesses said. (AFP)
  • South Sudan: The country’s warring leaders must strike a compromise deal, the European Union’s aid chief said, warning the international community was running out of patience over the country’s civil war. (AFP)
  • Togo: The country votes for a new president, with the incumbent Faure Gnassingbe seeking a third term in office to extend his family’s grip on power into a second half-century. (AFP)

AMERICAS

  • Chile: Authorities continue to evacuate areas around the active Calbuco volcano due to potential volcanic mudslides. (AP)
  • Colombia: The country’s second-biggest guerrilla group says exploratory talks with the government are very advanced and the “peace train” could start soon, but warns any deal will have to rule out jail time for the rebels. (Reuters)
  • El Salvador: About 400 feared gang members were transferred under heavy guard to a high-security prison in an attempt to choke the criminal networks behind an upsurge in already sky-high violence. (AFP)

ASIA

  • Afghanistan:  Taliban attacks and counter attacks have claimed 28 lives including 25 militants across the northern Kunduz province. (Xinhua)
  • Pakistan: Police say gunmen have killed a prominent women’s rights activist in the southern city of Karachi. (AP)
  • South Korea: South Korea and the United States concluded this year’s Foal Eagle joint military maneuvers. (EFE)
  • Thailand: No major changes are planned to the country’s draft constitution, a spokesman for the committee pulling it together said, despite criticism from politicians that it is undemocratic as the one-year anniversary of a military coup approaches. (Reuters)

EUROPE

  • Region: Huge military exercises are underway off and around Britain’s coast, but NATO insists they are not a deliberate response to the Russian military’s increasingly brazen behavior. (CNN)
  • Italy: Police said they had dismantled a network of Islamist radicals allegedly planning an attack on the Vatican. (AFP)
  • Ukraine: President Petro Poroshenko has approved a decree on the Ukraine-NATO national yearlong cooperation program for 2015, president’s press service reported. (Interfax)
  • Turkey: Turkish President Recep Tayip Erdogan hosted leaders from the former Allied powers of World War I to pay tribute to the tens of thousands killed in the Battle of Gallipoli 100 years after one of the most wasteful yet emblematic campaigns of the conflict. (AFP)

MIDDLE EAST

  • Iraq: Fighters from the Islamic State group ambushed an army convoy with a bulldozer packed with explosives, killing the commander of the Iraqi 1st Division and three of his staff officers north of Fallujah, said military officials. (AP)
  • Israel:  Tanks hit a position of the Islamist movement Hamas in the Gaza Strip after a rocket was launched from the Palestinian enclave, the army said. (AFP)
  • Syria: The Islamic State shot down a regime aircraft near a key military airport, with pro-IS Twitter accounts saying the jihadist group had captured the pilot, a monitor said. (AFP)
  • Syria: The United Nations envoy said he will know by the end of June if there is any appetite among the opposing sides to find a peaceful way out of the conflict after separate talks are held in May. (AFP)
  • Yemen: Secretary of State John Kerry is backing Saudi Arabian airstrikes against Houthi rebels as long as the rebels persist in attacking Yemeni government forces. (AP)

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Technology Litigation: The European Union’s decision to take on Google last week stems from official complaints by 19 companies in Europe and the United States, including Microsoft and a number of small firms, people familiar with the matter said on Friday. (Reuters)

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes:
    • Bella Bella, Canada
      • Magnitude: 6.1
      • Depth: 10 km
      • Map
    • Lamjung, Nepal
      • Magnitude: 7.9
      • Depth: 15 km
      • Map
  • Volcanoes:
    • Chile: Calbuco eruption continues, prompting new evacuations and cancelling flights to Argentina. (Reuters)
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
      • Cases: 26 044 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, United Kingdom, United States)
      • Deaths: 10 808 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, United States)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, BBC
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK) – Americas
      • Suspected Cases as of 10APR: 1,338,026 (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: 30,309
      • Deaths as of 10APR: 184 (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 16APR: 1106 (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, Germany, and the US)
      • Deaths as of 16APR: 421 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (26APR)

  •    Cuba: Cuban runoff general elections
  •    Ukraine: Anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear accident – 1986

END

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