By Patrick Pierson.
ETA, the militant separatist group of Spain’s Basque country, announced their complete disarmament on Friday. Dozens of Dutch citizens of Turkish descent are being held in Turkey. Lithuanian intelligence services contend that NATO forces are needed in the Baltic states to counter the increased threat of Russian aggression. The government in Kosovo has put off plans to establish an army, a move opposed by the country’s Serb minority. French authorities are investigating a number of death threats – mailed alongside bullets – that arrived at news outlets and magistrate offices this week. After years of a diplomatic freeze, China and Norway have resumed free trade negotiations. In an apparent terror attack, a truck drove into a crowd in Stockholm on Friday.
Police in Dubai have arrested a number of hackers who targeted senior White House officials. Hackers from North Korea are now linked to attacks on banking institutions in well over a dozen countries. An airstrike by the Afghan Air Force killed over twenty Taliban insurgents this week. A suicide bomber targeted a group of census officials in Lahore, Pakistan – the Pakistani Taliban claimed credit for the attack. China has expressed its frustration with India’s decision to host the Dalai Lama in a disputed region along the India-China border. New reports have surfaced of a Chinese fighter jet on a disputed island in the South China Sea. In a related move, Rodrigo Duterte – president of the Philippines – ordered his troops to occupy a number of uninhabited islands claimed by the Philippines in the South China Sea. A temporary joint ceasefire was reached this week between the Philippine government and a Maoist rebel group. A recent law passed in Malaysia fails to criminalize child marriage. An opposition leader in the Maldives has been arrested on accusations of plotting a government overthrow.
Uganda is now host to the single largest refugee camp in the world. In a second attack in as many months, Somali pirates hijacked an Indian vessel off the coast of Puntland. Al-Shabaab seized a key Somali town this week after Ethiopian troops withdrew from the city’s military base. Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, Somalia’s new president, has extended an offer of amnesty to al-Shabaab militants for the next sixty days. The US State Department issued a warning for Americans in Kenya ahead of the country’s elections scheduled for August 8th. This piece provides an informative look at the Kenyan opposition in the run-up to elections. Media repression is on the rise in Tanzania. Authorities in Mali have charged four people over the kidnapping of a Colombian nun, Gloria Cecilia Argoti, in February. Piracy remains a serious threat in the Gulf of Guinea. A dog saved a number of individuals at a wedding in Nigeria when it attacked a would-be suicide bomber. More than 60,000 people took to the streets in South Africa in protest of President Zuma’s government.
A teenager in New Jersey has pleaded guilty to involvement in a plot aimed at killing Pope Francis during his 2015 visit to the United States. A US citizen was arrested this week after attempting to board a flight from Toronto to Chicago with a ‘mock’ bomb in his suitcase. A Mexican newspaper has closed its doors, citing an inability to guarantee the safety of its journalists. Leftist candidate Lenin Moreno has won Ecuador’s presidential election, but his opponent is refusing to concede defeat. Henrique Capriles, a key Venezuelan opposition leader, has been banned from holding political office. Chile has offered political asylum to a pair of Venezuelan opposition politicians accused of conspiring to overthrow the government. Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto met with a leading Venezuelan opposition activist, suggesting a shift in policy towards Venezuela.