Weekly News Wrap: Monday, March 17, 2014
Your weekly selection of international law and international relations headlines from around the world:
- US Navy SEALs have boarded and taken control of an oil tanker that escaped earlier this month from a rebel-held Libyan port with armed men at the helm.
- Nigerian security forces have committed human rights abuses as they fight a near five-year Islamist insurgency by the Boko Haram sect, according to the UNHCHR.
- Gunmen have killed at least 100 people in attacks on three villages in central Nigeria.
- China warned the Philippines to abandon a disputed shoal in the South China Sea after Manila said it planned to challenge a Chinese naval blockade of the area by sending supplies to its troops stationed there.
- The US and Japan made some progress on resolving a deadlock over tariffs on farm and industrial exports which is dragging on a wider Pacific trade deal, a senior Japanese official said on Wednesday.
- In the war zones of Colombia, discussions of peace talks raise new fears.
- An Indian diplomat charged in New York with visa fraud and making false statements about her domestic worker has won a dismissal of her federal indictment, in a move that could help smooth over a dispute that has frayed U.S.-India ties.
- A suicide car bomb attack has killed at least four people in a Hezbollah-dominated area of the Bekaa Valley in Lebanon, near the border with Syria.
- Israel is to allow the resumption of diesel deliveries into Gaza, a day after the territory’s sole power plant stopped working due to a lack of fuel, officials have said.
- Palestinian fighters in the Gaza Strip have fired more rockets at Israeli cities in a third day of a cross-border flare-up.
- The United Arab Emirates summoned Iraq’s ambassador to protest against his prime minister’s accusations that its ally Saudi Arabia was funding terrorism, state news agency WAM reported, while Bahrain called the comments “irresponsible.”
- Crimea’s regional assembly has declared independence from Ukraine and applied to join Russia, saying all Ukrainian state property on the peninsula would be nationalized. The West has threatened sanctions.
- Hackers brought down several public NATO websites, in what appeared to be the latest escalation in cyberspace over growing tensions over Crimea.
- US President Barack Obama and European Union leaders will promise to remove all tariffs on bilateral trade at a summit on March 26, an ambitious step towards the world’s largest free-trade deal, according to a draft statement seen by Reuters.
- EU environment ministers agreed last week to re-open discussions on a legislative proposal that would allow member states to restrict or prohibit the cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in all or part of their territory, even after they have been authorised at the EU level.