BRITAIN BEGINS AIRSTRIKES AGAINST ISIS
Britain’s Royal Air Force has joined the anti-ISIS coalition, launching its first airstrikes last night against the jihadist group in Iraq, before U.S.-led forces targeted fighters in villages near the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, not far from the Turkish border. Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby warned yesterday against those who might think the fight against ISIS “would be easy or quick,” while the BBC reports that militants are adapting quickly to the reality of U.S. airstrikes and have, for example, stopped using phones to avoid being detected.
HONG KONG PROTESTS
As China celebrates the 65th anniversary of the foundation of the People’s Republic, large crowds in Hong Kong defied calls this morning to leave the streets and are gathered at the city’s main protest sites. Protest leaders have told reporters that they plan to occupy government building if chief executive Leung Leung Chun-ying doesn’t resign. Follow the updates live with The Guardian’s blog.
Meanwhile in Beijing, authorities are so scared of a possible attack that they reportedly carried out feathers and anal security checks on 10,000 pigeons before releasing them at sunrise on Tiananmen Square.
SHELLS KILL 10 IN DONETSK
A shell hit a school on the first day of class in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk, killing at least 4 people, while another hit a public minibus and killed 6 passengers, AFP reports. Pro-Kiev authorities in the region are accusing pro-Russian rebels, though Russian government-run broadcaster RT reported that the shell that fell on the school had been fired from Ukrainian army positions.
JAPAN VOLCANO TOLL RISES
A photo taken by a local after the eruption of Mt. Ontake, the volcano in Japan that has left at least 48 dead since first erupting on Saturday.
FIRST CASE OF EBOLA DIAGNOSED IN U.S.
An unnamed man was diagnosed with the Ebola virus in Dallas, Texas, after travelling to the U.S. from Liberia to visit relatives. According to USA Today, the patient showed no symptoms when he entered American territory on September 20 and only became sick days later, making him the first case diagnosed in the U.S. CDC Director Thomas Frieden said however that there was no danger of an outbreak like in West Africa. Meanwhile, a New York Times report shows how Nigeria seems to have succeeded in containing Ebola, where no new cases have occurred since the end of August.
AFGHAN TROOPS KILLED IN TALIBAN ATTACK
At least seven people were killed and more than 15 wounded as two Taliban suicide bombers carried out separate attacks on buses transporting Afghan troops in Kabul, Reuters reports. The bombings are the latest in a series of similar attacks that began in the summer, and come just one day after the new government signed a bilateral security agreement allowing 12,000 U.S. and NATO troops to stay in the country beyond the end of the year.
Former Bosnian Serb political leader Radovan Karadzic began closing his defense Wednesday, saying that he takes "moral responsibility" for crimes committed by Bosnian Serbs but denies he ordered any killings. The Hague's International Criminal Court has accused him of genocide and other crimes, with one charge relating to the July 1995 Srebrenica massacre. Read more here.
ISRAELI VEHICLES ENTER GAZA
Israeli military vehicles entered the southern Gaza strip this morning and opened fire in the direction of Palestinian farms, in a move which would represent a violation of the ceasefire, Palestinian news agency Ma’an reports citing local witnesses. According to the report, an Israeli army spokeswoman said she was looking into the incident, though other Israeli sources suggested this was an operation to “destroy Hamas tunnels.” More than a month after the ceasefire in Gaza was agreed, Haaretz reports that three Israeli soldiers have committed suicide since then.
Outside of Seoul are the graves of 769 North Korean soldiers, and a South Korean monk busy tending to their souls, Asian news outlet KBR media reports.
“The 58-year-old monk says he doesn’t consider them as enemies. "It isn’t about sympathy — they were soldiers and soldiers obey their orders. In Buddhism, we say when people die they do not vanish, their bodies go away, but their souls still exist and are later reborn in many different forms." Read the full article: This South Korean Monk Comforts North Korean Souls
A criminal court in Cairo issued lengthy jail sentences to 68 Muslim Brotherhood supporters Tuesday for their purported role in the deaths of 30 people during protests that took place last October in the Egyptian capital's Azbakiya neighborhood.
SIX SEPTEMBER FAREWELLS
An American actress and comedienne, Argentine singer and Northern Irish firebrand were among those who departed this past month.
THE PERFECT PACKED LUNCH
Growing fed-up with eating takeout at the office? Quartz has some great ideas for a perfect packed lunch that will both save you money and keep you healthy.
— Crunched by Marc Alves