Tuesday, July 29, 2014
U.S. SAYS RUSSIA VIOLATED NUCLEAR MISSILE TREATY
The United States claims Russia has violated a landmark Cold War-era arms treaty by testing a prohibited cruise missile, an assertion that President Barack Obama has conveyed by letter to President Vladimir Putin, The New York Times reports. “It is the most serious allegation of an arms control treaty violation that the Obama administration has leveled against Russia and adds another dispute to a relationship already burdened by tensions over the Kremlin’s support for separatists in Ukraine and its decision to grant asylum to Edward J. Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor,” the newspaper writes. Read more here.
ISRAEL WARNS OF EXTENDED WAR, HAMMERS GAZA
Despite calls for a new ceasefire, fighting intensified in Gaza late Monday and this morning, killing at least 26 people and wounding more than 40 as powerful and continuous air strikes rained down around a refugee camp, Shifa hospital and the center of Gaza City, CNN reports.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu warned in a televised speech that the conflict could be “prolonged” and much bloodier than expected.
After an Israeli attack today — in one of 76 strikes overnight in the nearly month-long conflict that has killed more than 1,000 people, 75% of them civilians — Gaza’s only power plant is in flames, and out of commission. “Thick black smoke billowed over Gaza City as the fire raged at the power plant, which is the enclave's second-largest source of electricity and the only provider inside the territory for its 1.8 million citizens,” NBC News reports.
A Netanyahu adviser told BBC’s Newsnight that Israel has evidence Hamas pays civilians not to leave Gaza. He also denied Israeli Defense Forces were responsible for recent civilian deaths at a school, as the UN claimed. See the video expand=1] here.
END-OF-RAMADAN ATTACK IN PHILIPPINES
“This is un-Islamic and very satanic,” Sulu Vice Governor Abdusakur Tan said of an extremist attack Monday that killed 23 Filipinos celebrating the end of Ramadan in Manila.
CHINESE OFFICIAL ACCUSED OF CORRUPTION
The Communist Party of China (CPC) announced today it was investigating the country’s retired domestic security chief Zhou Yongkang for suspected “serious disciplinary violation,” state-run Xinhua news agency reports.
Number 7: Lucky for many, but seemingly not for Brazil ...
SUICIDE BOMBER KILLS KARZAI COUSIN
The cousin of Afghanistan’s outgoing President Hamid Karzai has been killed by a suicide bomber in the southern city of Kandahar, the BBC reports. Hashmat Karzai was apparently greeting someone at his home, receiving guests during the end of the Muslim Ramadan holy month, when the man blew himself up. He was a campaign manager for Ashraf Ghani, one of two presidential candidates running to replace Hamid Karzai. Read more here.
MY GRAND-PÈRE'S WORLD
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As Caixin’s Zhou Dongxu writes, Southeast Asia is China's third-largest trade partner after the United States and the European Union and is home to some 40 million people. But while becoming increasingly dependent economically, China and countries from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, such as Vietnam and Thailand, find their political relations growing more and more divergent.“It's a basic economic principle that a major power will gain more benefits from cooperation," Fan says. “Of China's outbound investments, 85% of businesses are operating at a loss. The most profitable projects are based in Africa and Southeast Asia.”
Read the full article, China, Still A Shady Neighbor for Southeast Asian Countries.
DEADLY HEAT WAVE IN JAPAN
Over the last week, 15 people have died in Japan and 8,000 others have been hospitalized — mostly the elderly — as stifling heat has gripped the country. Temperatures have reached 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 Celsius), AFP reports.
MERMAID SCHOOL, ANYONE?
Yes, really. The Philippines Mermaid Swimming Academy is a thing.
— Crunched by Liz Garrigan.