Russia’s Ambassador to Turkey Assassinated in Ankara
A gunman shot and killed Russian Ambassador to Turkey Andrei Karlov during a photography exhibit in the country’s capital of Ankara.
After killing Karlov, the gunman shouted, “Don’t forget Aleppo, don’t forget Syria!”
The gunman also wounded at least three others before he was shot dead by Turkish special forces.
Russia and Turkey have supported opposing sides in the Syrian conflict. Turkey backs the rebels while Russia assists the government of President Assad.
Despite their conflicting interests, the two sides cooperated to implement a ceasefire that would allow civilians to leave the besieged city of Aleppo.
IMF Chief Christine Lagarde Convicted in France for Criminal Negligence
IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde has been found guilty for criminal negligence while serving as France’s finance minister in 2008.
Lagarde does not face jail time or a fine, but analysts say she could lose her job as the head of the International Monetary Fund.
The trial revolved around arbitration for a corruption case in which the French state lost $420 million.
The conviction could have carried a one-year prison sentence, but the judge cited Lagarde’s good reputation at the IMF as a reason for leniency.
Last February, Lagarde was re-appointed to a second-five year term as the IMF chief.
Opposition in Congo Calls for Kabila to Step Down as his Mandate Expires
Opposition politicians and protesters are trying to force the president of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Joseph Kabila, to resign before his term in office expires on Monday at midnight.
Kabila failed to organize new presidential elections, and opposition parties are now accusing him of clinging to power. Kabila is not legally allowed to run for a third consecutive presidential term.
Protests were cut short on Monday following a wave of arrests and a shutdown of social media.
Negotiations between the government and opposition groups are scheduled to continue later this week, but observers are concerned that violence could flare up at any moment.
Joseph Kabila took over the presidency in 2001 when his father was assassinated, and went on to organize the country’s first successful presidential elections in 2006. He was then reelected in 2011.
Poverty has increased significantly in recent years. Two-thirds of the population live on less than $2.00 per day.
UK Based Palestine Solidarity Campaign to Legally Challenge Restrictions Boycott and Divestment
The UK-based Palestine Solidarity Campaign will launch a legal challenge against the UK government’s current restrictions on boycott and divestment campaigns targeting the state of Israel.
In February this year, the British government issued “procurement guidelines” for public procurement contracts and pension fund investment.
Under the rules, public bodies could be investigated or de-funded for participating in divestment or boycotts.
Boycott, Divestment and Sanction (BDS) is a strategy used to pressure the South African government and those who did business in the country to end apartheid.
BDS targets corporations and institutions implicated in human rights violations and violations of international law within the Occupied Palestinian Territories and the state of Israel.
U.N. Security Council Unanimously Approves UN Monitors for Evacuation of Eastern Aleppo
The UN Security Council has unanimously agreed to send UN observers into eastern Aleppo.
Eastern Aleppo was retaken by the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and allied militias following bloody battles, airstrikes and mortar attacks that have spanned 3 years.
Jabhat Fatah al-Sham, al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria formerly known as Jabhat al-Nusra, is accused of burning four convoy buses and killing at least one of the drivers that were set to evacuate civilians from two villages in the surrounding area.
TeleSUR English is reporting that officials from Russia, Iran and Turkey will meet tomorrow in Moscow to negotiate a deal over Aleppo.
Trump Donated 10,000 Dollars to an Israeli Colony in 2003
President-elect Donald Trump donated $10,000 to the illegal Israeli colony of Beit-El in 2003. The donation was revealed yesterday by Yaakov Katz, a founder of that colony. Katz explained that the donation was made in honor of David Friedman, then Trump’s bankruptcy lawyer who was named last week to be the U.S ambassador to Israel. The donation was made during a gala thrown by funders of the illegal colony in honor of Friedman. The document confirming the donation was published yesterday by the Jerusalem Post. The Beit-El Colony was established in 1977 in the Israeli-occupied West Bank on the outskirts of the Palestinian city of Ramallah. It serves as the seat of the Israeli military government in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. The colony also receives donations from the Kushner Foundation, owned and managed by the Kushner family, who are also Trump’s in-laws.
Amnesty International Accuses Myanmar of War Crimes
In October, Myanmar troops killed civilians, made widespread and arbitrary arrests, raped and sexually assaulted women and girls, and burnt over 1,200 homes to the ground in the Rohigya region, according to a new report from Amnesty International. The police claimed to be responding to a “violent attack” against police stations near the border.
The attacks and subsequent flight of villagers from the military attack have created a humanitarian catastrophe in the area affecting hundreds of thousands of people. The Myanmar government refused to allow humanitarian organizations access to the affected area at the time.
In response to the crisis, neighboring Bangladesh has sealed its border to keep out refugees.
British Cluster Bombs in Yemen
The Guardian revealed today that the British government was aware of UK-built cluster bombs used in Yemen, alongside U.S-made cluster bombs.
Cluster bombs are a banned munition, yet ample evidence has emerged of their use by the Saudi-led coalition against the Houthi rebels in Yemen.
Earlier this month, Prime Minister Abdulaziz bin Habtour of the Houthi region accused the British government of committing war crimes by providing cluster bombs to Saudi Arabia. According to the Guardian, the British government knew that Saudi Arabia was using cluster bombs before Habtour’s accusation.