Weekly News Wrap: Thursday, October 10, 2013
Your weekly selection of international law and international relations headlines from around the world:
- A team of UN disarmament inspectors in Syria have begun the process of destroying the country’s chemical weapons and production facilities.
- Turkey has lifted a decades-old ban on headscarves in the civil service as part of a package of reforms by the government meant to improve democracy.
- Asia-Pacific leaders convened for the annual APEC economic summit this week in Bali with a notable absence of US President Barack Obama because of the US government shutdown and ASEAN leaders met in Brunei.
- Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chinese President Xi Jinping shook hands during the APEC regional summit in Bali, but had no talks on a territorial island dispute.
- China will be able to fend off U.S. forces and successfully invade Taiwan by 2020, the island’s Defense Ministry said, the first time Taipei has given such a precise timetable for the threat it says it faces.
- The Bangladesh garment factory hit by a fire that killed at least nine people and injured some 50 more on Tuesday had manufactured clothing for western retailers including Hudson’s Bay Co.
- In the aftermath of the attack on a Nairobi shopping mall, Kenya’s president appears increasingly unlikely to attend his trial at the ICC, where he is charged with crimes against humanity and has asked to appear via video link.
- The UN Security Council is planning to vote this week on a draft resolution that would urge the UN to explore the possibility of establishing a UN peacekeeping force in Central African Republic.
- Charles Taylor will serve his 50-year sentence in the UK.
- The ICC has had the busiest year on record, the body said in a report to the UN General Assembly, in which it also called for greater support from the UN Security Council.
- Pakistani teenager Malala Yousafzai, shot in the head by the Taliban for campaigning for education for girls, won the European Union’s annual human rights award. In response, the Taliban has vowed to attack her again if they have the chance.
- The Netherlands has issued an apology to Russia over the arrest and detention of a Russian diplomat by police in The Hague; an investigation established that the arrest of Dmitry Borodin late on Saturday was a breach of the Vienna Convention that regulates diplomatic relations between nations, including diplomatic immunity.
- Russian investigators said they had found drugs aboard a Greenpeace ship used in a protest against offshore Arctic drilling and would press new charges against some of the 30 people being held for alleged piracy.
- The US is reducing its military aid to Egypt following the ouster of President Mohamed Morsi and the subsequent crackdown on his supporters by the military-backed government.
- Allegations that Canadian security officials spied on a Brazilian government ministry give Canada “a black eye in the world,” a top opposition leader said, putting more pressure on Prime Minister Stephen Harper to explain the affair.
- Glenn Greenwald, the US journalist who broke the first stories about the US National Security Agency’s (NSA) global spying program, has asked Brazilian senators to grant asylum to NSA leaker Edward Snowden.
- Foreign Policy offers an analysis of the known unknowns of counterterrorism ops and measuring success in the war on terror.