16 Jun Weekly News Wrap: Monday, June 16, 2014
16.06.14 | 2 Comments
Your weekly selection of international law and international relations headlines from around the world:
- Three armed groups from northern Mali have agreed to begin peace talks with the government aimed at resolving long-standing disputes in the country.
- More than 50,000 children in South Sudan face death from disease and hunger, the United Nations has warned while seeking over $1bn to support those hit by six months of civil war.
- Entire elephant populations are dying out in many African countries due to poaching on a massive scale, wildlife regulator CITES has warned, while also hailing the continent for improving its crackdown on ivory smuggling.
- The Philippines said on Monday that China’s “expansion agenda” in the disputed South China Sea threatened security and stability in the region, calling on all claimant states to halt construction activities that may raise tensions.
- Thailand’s junta denied on Monday that they were pursuing a “sweep and clean” policy of driving illegal foreign workers out of the country, despite mass departures by fearful Cambodians since the military took power last month.
- Bangladesh’s Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) has filed a case with local police accusing 17 people of breaching regulations over the construction of a building that collapsed last year, killing nearly 1,130 mostly garment workers, officials have said.
- NATO is preparing measures to help Ukraine defend itself in its stand-off with Russia, and must adapt to the fact that Moscow now views it as an adversary.
- Ukraine’s energy minister says Russia has cut off all natural gas supplies to his country, adding however that he guarantees reliable gas flows will continue to Russia’s European clients who get imports through pipelines via Ukraine.
- UK’s Prime Minister David Cameron’s Conservative party said on Thursday it would resume a stalled drive to make a referendum on Britain’s membership of the European Union legally binding, a move designed to woo Eurosceptic voters and unite the party.
- Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko took office this past weekend, immediately promising to sign a long-awaited trade deal with the European Union as soon as the latter approves the pact.
Middle East and Northern Africa
- An offensive by insurgents that threatens to dismember Iraq seemed to slow on Saturday after days of lightning advances as government forces regained some territory in counter-attacks, easing pressure on the Shi’ite-led government in Baghdad.
- Sunni rebels in Iraq have posted pictures on Twitter apparently showing their fighters killing many Shia soldiers.
- Israeli forces have killed a Palestinian man and arrested the speaker of parliament, as the hunt for three Israelis believed to have been kidnapped in the West Bank continued.
- Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos won a second term on Sunday with an election victory that allows him to continue peace talks with Marxist guerrillas to end a half-century war.
- President Barack Obama has said that the United States will not be sending its troops back to Iraq, but is reviewing other options to assist the Iraqi government threatened by an advancing armed group.
- Nuclear-armed states are modernizing their arsenals and appear determined to keep sizable numbers of such weapons of mass destruction for the foreseeable future, the SIPRI think-tank said in its annual report on Monday.