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World in Focus (July-Aug 2014)

National & International News & MCQs

 

National

July 16: Security forces and the Bajaur political administration agreed to postpone a planned military operation in border areas of Mamond tehsil in Bajaur after tribal elders announced formation of a grand quami lashkar (militia) to combat militants.

July 16: The Jamaat-i-Islami challenged the newly-passed Protection of Pakistan Act (PPA) 2014 as ‘ultra vires’ before the Supreme Court.

July 16: The National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Law and Justice rejected, with a 4-1 vote, a bill seeking status of national language for regional languages. The bill was moved by PML-N lawmaker Marvi Memon.

July 16: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) of the United Kingdom claimed that representatives from Pakistan were accused of rape and child abduction.

Reports said Pakistan’s government partially lifted immunity in one case so the diplomat could be interviewed by police; there is no legal obligation to comply with the British request.

July 17: Two suspected terrorists and an official of an intelligence agency were killed during an operation near Raiwind Road to capture some suspects.

The incident took place a couple of kilometres from the Jati Umra residence of Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

July 17: Retired Maj Shabbir Ahmed assumed charge as head of the National Accountability Bureau, Sindh. He had held the same post form May 2011 to July 2012.

July 17: Pakistan lost the chance of holding the Islamic Development Bank’s top post of executive director for a full three-year term and will now share its tenure with three other countries: Afghanistan, the Maldives and Bangladesh.

Pakistan has the majority votes among the constituency members. It has 2.51% votes followed by Bangladesh’s 1.06%, Afghanistan’s 0.10% and the Maldives 0.09%.

July 18: An election tribunal headed by Chaudhry Abdul Hafiz, a retired district and sessions judge, disqualified PML-N MNA Sultan Mahmood Hinjra in NA-176 (Muzaffargarh).

July 18: The TAPI countries — Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and India — signed the operational agreement for laying down the trans-border 1,735-kilometre-long pipeline, starting from the Yolotan-Osman gas field in Turkmenistan and ending in India after passing through Afghanistan and Pakistan.

July 18: A steering committee of the Higher Education Commission for support of IDPs from North Waziristan announced free education along with Rs5,000 monthly stipends to the displaced students in all the major public sector and some private universities of the province.

July 21: A fact finding mission of the Human Rights Commission of Pakistan concluded that the Rangers-led Karachi operation launched in September last year had failed to achieve its targets.

July 21: The Supreme Court reinstated Hajj Policy 2014, declaring the decision of Lahore High Court (LHC) against the allocation of a quota of 15,000 pilgrims to Hajj group organisers as null and void.

July 21: The Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government launched Rs. 1 billion Islamic Micro Finance Scheme to provide loans to around 170,000 people for medium and small businesses.

The scheme will be implemented through the sole public-sector bank operating in the province, Bank of Khyber.

July 22: Provincial Minister for Higher Education Mushtaq Ghani replaced Shah Farman as minister for information of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government.

July 22: Islamabad High Court Chief Justice Muhammad Anwar Khan Kasi set aside the prime minister’s order of turning down minister’s order of turning down recommendations of the Central Selection Board (CSB).

July 23: Senior lawyer Syed Mubarak Raza Kazmi, son-in-law of well-known zakir Allama Talib Johari, was shot dead.

July 23: The single-engine plane of 17-year-old American-Pakistani pilot Haris Suleman, who was attempting a world record of travelling around the world in 30 days to raise money for the education of underprivileged children in Pakistan, crashed in the sea on his way from Hawaii to California.

July 23: Pakistan International Airlines (PIA), the country’s national flag carrier, is currently operating with just 19 airworthy planes out of a total fleet of 34 and needs new aircraft to survive, PIA chairman Muhammad Ali Gardezi told the Senate Standing Committee on Rules, Procedures and Privileges.

July 24: Former chief justice Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry served a Rs20 billion defamation notice on Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chief Imran Khan.

July 24: Pakistan is ranked at 146— the same spot as in the previous year — among the 187 countries in UN’s 2013 Human Development Index (HDI)’s annual rankings. The HDI forms part of the Human Development Report (HDR) 2014, a flagship study produced annually by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

July 25: Punjab University’s Department of Zoology and Institute of Mountain Hazard and Environment (IMHE) signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS).

July 25: The Peshawar High Court (PHC) restored the services of social mobilisers of Population Welfare Department across the province after suspending the provincial government’s notification.

July 25: Britain restored an agreement with Pakistan that provides for the transfer of convicted criminals. The agreement was declared null and void by Britain following the release of three dangerous prisoners from jails after they were brought to Pakistan during the previous government.

July 28: The Supreme Court observed that litigation between two former chairmen of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Najam  Sethi and Muhammad Zaka Ashraf had caused immense harm to the board and the game of cricket at the domestic and international level.

July 28: The European Union (EU) stopped Pakistan International Airlines from bringing cargo to the member states owing to security concerns.

July 28: The first ever title of ‘Master Chef Pakistan’, based on British TV show was won by Ammara Noman, an amateur cook. ‘Master Chef,’ a cooking reality show originating from Britain went global with national versions including Master Chef US, Master Chef Australia, Master Chef India, and now Master Chef Pakistan, etc.

July 31: At least 23 picnickers drowned in rough seas off Karachi during the Eid holiday, with the authorities blaming people for ignoring a warning against swimming during the monsoon season.

July 31: Defence Secretary retired Lt Gen Asif Yasin Malik retired on completion of his contract.

July 31: The government appointed Habibur Rehman Khan as head of the Overseas Pakistanis Foundation (OPF).

Aug 01: A 19-member task force, with Sherry Rehman, senior Pakistan Peoples Party leader and former ambassador to the United States, as its convener and MPAs and educationists as members was formed to accelerate progress of education reforms being implemented in Sindh.

Aug 01: US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Daniel Feldman, currently visiting Kabul, assumed the charge of office, after his predecessor Ambassador James Dobbins concluded his tenure on July 31.

Aug 04: The National Assembly called for an emergency session of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) to take “effective action” against the Israeli invasion of Gaza after the government managed to skip an opposition sought debate on its controversial move to call in troops in Islamabad without any judicial oversight.

Aug 04: Faqir Jamshed Ahmad Gesu Daraz, leader of the Pakistan Seraiki Party (PSP), and his companion were killed in a bomb blast in Kulachi.

Aug 04: The government appointed retired Lt Gen Mohammad Alam Khattak as the defence secretary.

Aug 04: The Supreme Court denied retired Justice Iftikhar Muhammad Chaudhry access to the official record of a contempt case which he as chief justice had initiated against PTI chief Imran Khan.

Aug 04: New reserves of gas and condensate were  found in Sindh’s Sanghar district.

The PPL, operator of Block 2568-18 (Gambat South) in Sanghar district with 65 per cent working interest, said its exploration well Sharf X-1 had found the new reserves.

Aug 04: Minister of State for Education and Interior Baleeghur Rehman disclosed the government is introducing “ethics” as a new subject in public-sector universities across the country.

Aug 04: Military operation Zarb-e-Azab is progressing well as towns of Miramshah, Mirali, Boya, Degan and area till Dattakhel have been cleared of Taliban militants, said Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR).

Aug 04: Punjab Ombudsman Javed Mahmood ordered Chairman Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education Sahiwal to give four marks in Urdu Paper-A to all the students appeared in the Intermediate part-I examination 2013 as these marks could not be given due to technical of BISE Sahiwal.

Aug 05: Justice Shah Khawar of the Lahore High Court (LHC) Rawalpindi bench restrained the metro bus project management from demolishing two building at Rehmanabad by issuing a status quo order.

Aug 05: Speaking at a media roundtable at the Pentagon, the new commander of the US and Nato forces in Afghanistan and US Army’s Vice Chief of Staff General John F. Campbell said that Pakistani military offensive in North Waziristan is a step in the right direction and there’s need for continuing such actions.

Aug 06: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif approved the appointment of Dr Nadeem Javed as Pakistan’s chief economist.

Dr Nadeem Javed holds a Ph.D. in Economics from France and has an extensive experience in economic and finance sector.

Aug 07: Air Marshal Sohail Gul Khan was appointed Vice Chief of the Air Staff. Air Marshal Khan was commissioned in the Pakistan Air Force in 1979 in the GD (P) branch.

Aug 07: The election tribunal declared the election of a Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf candidate to a provincial assembly seat void for obtaining illegal assistance of a presiding officer in the constituency.

The runner-up, a Jamaat-i-Islami candidate, was declared to have won the PS-93 seat.

Aug 08: Pakistan handed over Satyasheel Yadav, an Indian Border Security Force soldier who had mistakenly entered Pakistani territory, to BSF officials as a goodwill gesture.

Aug 08: Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunications Anusha Rehman informed the National Assembly that $1.2 billion earned from the sale of 3G and 4G licences were deposited in the exchequer.

Aug 08: Brigadier Shahid Nazir took over as Military Secretary to President Mamnoon Hussain.

Aug 08: A Pakistani Officer Cadet Shaheeer Ullah Khan won distinction at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst by gaining three awards on the basis of his outstanding performance over a year.

He was presented with three awards by General Sir Peter Wall, Chief of the General Staff, at the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst’s annual ‘The Sovereign’s Parade’.

Aug 09: Dawn newspaper appointed Mr Muhammad Ali Siddiqi as the newspaper’s first internal ombudsman to be called Dawn Readers’ Editor (DRE).

Aug 11: Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) Chairman Imran Khan named the former Chief Justice of Pakistan Iftikhar Mohammad Chaudhry, former caretaker chief minister Najam Sethi, retired senior judge of the Supreme Court, Khalilur Rehman Ramday, and three senior serving officials of the Election Commission of Pakistan (ECP) as having played a role in the rigging.

Aug 11: Making history, the National Assembly put the government’s top audit official, Auditor General of Pakistan (AGP), in the dock, charging him with ‘misconduct’ for having received more than Rs4.6 million in what it called ‘excess salary and privileges’ in about three years and demanding his removal through a presidential reference to the Supreme Judicial Council.

Aug 11: The Election Tribunal in Karachi declared the election of Ghulam Murtaza Jatoi, a member of the national assembly, void and held that the winning candidate was not sagacious, righteous, non-profligate, honest and Ameen.

The runner-up, a candidate of the Pakistan Peoples Party, was declared to have won the NA-211, a National Assembly seat in Naushahro Feroze.

Aug 11: Maulana Fazlur Rehman was elected unopposed chief of the Jamiat Ulema-i-Islam for the fourth three-year term.
Maulana Abdul Ghafoor Haideri retained the post of general secretary.

Aug 11: The Supreme Court restored Pervez Rathore as acting chairman and Kamaluddin Tipu as member of the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra).

Aug 11: Minister for Planning, Development and Reforms Ahsan Iqbal announced various projects, including a Rs10 billion Endowment Fund, for promotion of education in the country.

Aug 11:  Pakistan Vision 2025, unveiled by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, gave 10-point agenda for adding 25,000 megawatt electricity into national grid till 2025 in order to overcome lingering crisis in the country.

Aug 12:  Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif requested the Supreme Court to announce a commission to investigate PTIs allegations about the rigging in the May 2013 general elections in a bid to resolve the prevailing political crisis.

Aug 12:  The Punjab police rounded up dozens of office-bearers and activists of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf in several districts of the province during a crackdown.

Aug 12:  The Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) reached a four-point accord under which they will jointly hold the planned Aug 14 march.

Aug 12:  Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif inaugurated Qainchi signal-free junction project.
The scheme, completed within 170 days at the busiest point of Ferozepur Road, will benefit more than 200,000 vehicles daily, saving fuel worth Rs 2 billion annually.

Aug 12:  Minister of State for Information and Technology, Anusha Rehman and State Minister for National Health Services Regulation and Coordination, Saira Afzal Tarar inaugurated the operation of Azadi Train at Margalla Station, Islamabad.

Aug 14:  Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan finally announced the government’s decision to allow, in principle, both the Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) and the Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT) to march on the capital.

Aug 14:  Pakistan Navy took over the command of the multinational naval counter-terrorism coalition force from the UK Royal Navy.
The change of command of Combined Task Force150 took place at the United States Naval Forces Central Command Headquarters in Bahrain and Commodore Sajid Mahmood took over command of CTF-150 from Commodore Jeremy Blunden of the Royal Navy.

Aug 14:  On the 68th Independence Day of Pakistan, the Capital Development Authority (CDA) raised highest flag-pole of South Asia in Islamabad.
The National Flag measuring 60ft x 40ft at height of 215 feet is fluttering between Islamabad Highway and sector H-8.

Aug 15:  Moving quickly to pre-empt any possible military action against the democratically – elected government, a four-judge bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Nasir-ul-Mulk and consisting of Justice Jawwad S. Khawaja, Justice Asif Saeed Khan Khosa and Justice Mushir Alam, ordered state functionaries to act in accordance with the principles laid down in the case of the Sindh High Court Bar Association, otherwise known as July 31, 2009 verdict.

Aug 15:  The Sindh High Court declined a request of the Election Commission of Pakistan to appoint judicial officers as district returning officers, returning officers and assistant returning officers for by-elections on two provincial assembly seats.

Aug 15:  The National Refinery Limited awarded around $242.135 million of contract of installing its different plants to a Chinese company.

Trade & Economy

July 16: The government decided to establish dry ports at Torkham, Chaman and Wagha border points to facilitate trade with neighbouring countries.

The project will be completed in 36 months, which will make Pakistan third country in South Asia after Bangladesh and India having dedicated land ports for handling goods and passenger traffics at borders.

The establishment of land ports was part of the Strategic Trade Policy Framework (2012-15) announced in December 2012.

July 17: The booming Karachi stock market saw the KSE-100 index cross the coveted 30,000 points mark the highest ever in the bourse’s history.

July 18: The Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (Ecnec) formally approved two major projects the Gadani Power Park infrastructure development project and Rs25.5 billion for the first phase of the Greater Karachi Water Supply Scheme.

July 19: The State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) left its key policy rate unchanged at 10 per cent for the fourth consecutive time.

The rupee has remained stable in recent months as the country has rebuilt its foreign exchange reserves following the successful sale of the $2billion Eurobond, auction of 3G and 4G spectrum licences, and injection of cash from bilateral and multilateral lenders.

July 22: The federal government approved a proposal to float two special economic zones in Sindh, which will provide guarantees to investors under the Special Economic Zones Act of 2012 because under the said law, any incentives extended to investors cannot be withdrawn without an act of parliament.

July 24: Planning and Development Secretary Hassan Nawaz Tarar blamed Pakistan’s failure to meet the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) on low savings and financial crisis.

Pakistan’s savings were only at 13.2 per cent, almost 50 per cent less than its neighbours such as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, India and Indonesia. Mr Tarar said that the national savings of Bangladesh are currently at 29 per cent.

July 24: Bestway Cement Limited (LPCL) sealed the deal for buyout of 75.86 per cent shares in Lafarge Pakistan Cement Limited for purchase consideration of $218 million.

Aug 11: The stock market suffered its largest ever-one-day drop in share prices with the KSE-100 index witnessing a free fall of 1,309.09 points, or 4.46 per cent.

The index has lost 2,243 points, or 7.56pc, in just six trading sessions, which started the previous week, wiping out Rs486bn from the market capitalisation.

Transfers and Postings

July 20: The Punjab government appointed Hanif Khatana as the new advocate general. Khatana has previously served as the additional advocate general.

July 26: Provincial Governor Mohammad Khan Achakzai administered the oath of acting Chief Justice of Balochistan High Court to Justice Ghulam Mustafa Mengal.

Aug 08: President Mamnoon Hussain, on the advice of the prime minister, approved the appointment of Justice Rizwan-ul-Haq Mehmood, a retired BS-22 officer of the Foreign Service of Pakistan, as member Federal Public Service Commission.

Aug 09: Former judge of the Lahore High Court and Federal Shariat Court Sheikh Farooq Ahmed was appointed as chairman of Federal Service Tribunal for a period of three years.

Aug 12:  Punjab government appointed Dr Nasir Javed as Special Secretary Health, Punjab.

Sports

July 23: The Punjab Rugby Association (PRA) elected Rizwan Malik and Salman Majeed as president and secretary of the association respectively.

July 28: Former Pakistan captain Salim Malik, who was banned for life for match fixing in 2000, will have money from frozen pension funds released to him by the Pakistan Cricket Board.

Aug 02: Pakistan boxer Mohammad Waseem hit back at the judges after losing the final of the flyweight category to Australian Andrew Moloney at the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow.
Waseem lost by a unanimous decision with the judges scoring for Moloney in all three rounds.

Aug 06: The Pakistan and Indian Punjab sports authorities collaborated to launch the World Kabaddi League (WKL) from August 9.

Aug 06: Misbah-ul-Haq became the first Pakistani and 21st player overall to lead in Test match after 40th birthday. He was 40 years and 70 days old on the opening day of the first Test match against Sri Lanka at Galle International Stadium.

Aug 07: Top seed Muhammad Abid (ZTBL) clinched men’s singles title of the National Ranking Tennis Championship.

Aug 11: Pakistan off-spinner Saeed Ajmal, the world’s top-ranked bowler in one-day cricket, was reported for a suspect action, the second such incident in his career.

Aug 12:  Former Pakistan Test leg-spinner Danish Kaneria lost his final legal challenge in an English court against a life ban imposed by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) for spot-fixing while playing for county side Essex.
Judge Stanley Burton, sitting in England’s Court of Appeal, said an application by Kaneria to appeal against a life ban imposed by the ECB in June 2012, was “totally without merit”.

Obituaries

July 22: Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz MPA Khurram Gulfam passed away at the Services Hospital.

July 24: Comedian Mahmood Khan, who entertained people for more than three decades, breathed his last. He was 54.

July 26: Majid Nizami, a veteran journalist and editor-in-chief of the Nawai Waqt Group, died. He was 86.

July 28: Shahid Sajjad, a distinguished artist and the country’s premier sculptor, passed away. He was 77.

July 28: Ashraf Liaquat Ali Khan, the elder son of slain PM Liaquat Ali Khan and former Sindh governor Begum Ra’ana Liaquat, died. He was 77.
He was born in Simla, India, on October 3, 1937.

Aug 01: Retired Brigadier Niaz Ahmed, who played a very active role in negotiations between General Pervez Musharraf and Nawaz Sharif while the latter was in exile, died at the age of 80.

Aug 03: Veteran politician and the last crown prince of the princely state of Swat, Miangul Aurangzeb passed away in Islamabad. He was 86.
Miangul Aurangzeb, who served as governor of NWFP (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa) in 1999 and governor of Balochistan from 1997 to 1999, was born on May 28, 1928 in Saidu Sharif. His father Miangul Abdul Haq Jahanzeb was the last ruler (Wali) of the princely Swat state. Miangul Aurangzeb joined army in 1948 and served as aide-de-camp (ADC) to the then president Ayub Khan.
Miangul Aurangzeb represented the princely state of Swat in the West Pakistan Assembly from 1956 to 1958.
During the martial law of Ayub Khan, he was nominated to National Assembly in 1962.

Aug 03: Begum Dr Ashraf Abbasi, former deputy speaker of the National Assembly and a close aide to PPP founder leader Z.A. Bhutto and Benazir Bhutto, died. She was 91.

Aug 08: Anita Ghulam Ali, one of the country’s most famous teachers who served twice as education minister of Sindh. She was 76.

Place in News

Islamabad

On July 21, Speakers at a consultative seminar on ‘Climate Risks and its Impacts on Markets and Growth: The Case of Pakistan’, called for an immediate induction of social protection to help the country sustain and transit towards more eco-friendly approaches as Pakistan is ranked as the eight most vulnerable country in the world to climate change.

The seminar was organised at Islamabad by Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) as a first test run to share reports on climate risks and climate markets and identifying multiple vulnerabilities to climate change within Pakistan.

Lahore

On Aug 07, the Pakistan Model United Nations (PKMUN) 2014 concluded at Lahore after a day of committee sessions. During the sessions, the conference committees passed their final resolutions on the crises being addressed as delegates reached consensus on diverse topics, including the Iraq Crisis, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs), Women’s Rights and the US in Afghanistan.

People in News

Aamir Bhatti

On July 17, Aamir Bhatti, a young Pakistani seminarian preparing to become a Catholic priest in Rome for the past three years, was selected in the Vatican cricket team.

Lord Tariq Ahmad

On July 18, Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon was promoted to Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at UK’s Department for Communities and Local Government.

Tehmina Durrani

On July 24, the French ambassador in Pakistan gave an award to Tehmina Durrani for her writings on social and women development. France announced the award for Tehmina as she has been working actively to highlight the issues concerning women.

Samina Baig

On July 26, Samina Baig became the first Pakistani woman to climb all seven highest peaks in the seven continents in just under eight months when she stood at the top of Mt Elbrus, the highest peak in Russia, with her brother, holding the Pakistani flag high.

Deepak Perwani

On July 28, Deepak Perwani, who recently received accolades from the European Fashion Council, earned 6th place in the Eirene Awards’s list of top ten designers of the world.

International

July 16: A Swedish court upheld its detention order on Julian Assange, reaffirming the legal basis for an international warrant for the WikiLeaks founder which has kept him hiding in the Ecuadorean Embassy in London for two years.

July 16: Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was sworn-in for a new term.

July 16: A court in the Netherlands ruled that the Dutch state was liable for the deaths of over 300 Bosnian Muslim men and boys in the Srebrenica massacre, the worst atrocity on European soil since World War II.

Families of the victims had brought a case to the Dutch government over the 1995 killings, accusing Dutch UN peacekeepers of failing to protect the 8,000 slaughtered by ethnic Serb troops just a few months before the end of the Bosnian war.

July 17: A Malaysian airliner carrying 295 people from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur crashed in rebel-held east Ukraine.

Ukraine’s government and pro-Russian insurgents traded blame for the disaster.

July 17: The World Punjabi Congress nominated new office-bearers for its Indian chapter. The new leaders are: Prof Deepak Manmohan Singh (director Punjabi Centre, Punjabi University, Patiala), president; Dr Vaneeta (Sahitya Award Winner, New Delhi), vice-president; Prof Ravail Singh (University of Delhi), general secretary; Gurbhajan Gill (eminent writer), secretary; and Veer Davinder Singh Hakam Wala, in charge Press and Publicity.

July 17: Sri Lanka appointed a high-powered three member panel of international experts to advise the post-war commission appointed last year to investigate the complaints of missing persons in Sri Lanka. The mandate of the commission was expanded to include an inquiry into the war crimes allegedly committed by the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.

July 17: A crater was discovered in Russia’s Siberia region. Russian scientists believe the 60-metre-wide crater could be the result of changing temperatures in the region. 80 per cent of the crater appeared to be made up of ice and that there were no traces of an explosion, eliminating the possibility that a meteorite had struck the area.

July 17: Conservative Member of the European Parliament (MEP) Sajjad Karim was re-appointed as chairman of the European Parliament’s powerful Code of Conduct President Advisory Committee.

July 17: The world is getting warmer, as greenhouse gases reach historic highs and Arctic sea ice melts, making 2013 one of the hottest years on record, said the annual State of the Climate report 2013. It is a review of scientific data and weather events over the past year, compiled by 425 scientists from 57 countries.

July 17: Thailand’s military government gave permission for former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra to travel overseas for the first time since it overthrew her government in May.

July 17: The United States began a joint naval exercise with South Korea as the South Korean president, Park Geun-hye, urged her forces to “retaliate with a strong initial countermeasure” if North Korea provoked the country militarily.

July 17: Kyushu Electric Power Company’s Sendai plant, a nuclear plant in Japan, cleared an initial safety hurdle that could make it the first nuclear facility to restart under new safety regulations designed after the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

July 17: The Australian government repeated laws requiring large companies to pay for carbon emissions, fulfilling a key election promise of Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

The Senate voted 39 to 32 to repeal the so-called carbon tax, after Mr Abbott’s conservative government secured the support of several independent senators.

July 18: Israel intensified its land offensive in Gaza with artil1ery, tanks and gunboats and warned it could “significantly widen” an operation.

July 18: The Colombo High Court sentenced, Sampath Chandrapushpa Vidana Pathirana, a politician belonging to Sri Lanka’s ruling party to 20 years rigorous imprisonment on charge of murdering a British Muslim tourist.

July 18: US President Barack Obama announced to have seen evidence to suggest that Russian–backed separatists fired the surface-to-air missile, which brought down a Malaysian airliner in Ukraine.

July 18: An Italian appeals court acquitted former Premier Silvio Berlusconi in a sex-for-hire case, reversing a lower court conviction that had carried a seven-year prison sentence and a lifetime ban on holding political office.

July 18: People around the world celebrated “Mandela Day” for the first time since the iconic South African leader’s death by doing good deed on what would have been his 96th birthday.

July 18: Some of the world’s top AIDS experts, bound for an international conference in Melbourne, Australia, were among those killed in Malaysian Airlines MH17 crash.

July 19: Iran and six world powers failed to meet their target date for cutting a nuclear deal but agreed to extend the talks until Nov 24 in a bid to overcome stubborn differences over the size and capacity of activities by Tehran that could be used to make nuclear arms.

July 19: The UN team tasked with investigating allegations of human rights violations and war crimes against the Sri Lankan government and the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), will hold hearings in New York, Geneva and Bangkok.

July 19: Israel’s operation against Hamas saw one of its bloodiest days, with 46 Palestinians killed in Gaza and two Israeli soldiers dying in a clash with militants who infiltrated the Jewish state.

July 21: China agreed to provide Venezuela with a new $4 billion credit line, with the money to be repaid by oil shipments from OPEC member Venezuela. The deal was inked during a 24-hour visit to Venezuela by Chinese President Xi Jinping, who is on a tour of Latin America.

The money will go into the Joint Chinese-Venezuela Fund, which focuses on infrastructure and economic development in the South American country.

July 21: Georgian Prime Minister Irakly Garibashvili fired five ministers and moved two to other ministerial positions in the first cabinet reshuffle since coming to power two years ago.

July 21: June 2014 was the hottest June since record-keeping began in 1880, according to a monthly report out by US government climate scientists.

July 22: A scandal involving expired meat sold by a China unit of US food supplier OSI Group spread to Japan, as McDonald’s confirmed that the now shut factory provided Chicken McNuggets to its restaurants.

Shanghai authorities shut an OSI plant a supplier to McDonald’s and KFC in China for mixing out-of-date meat with fresh product, re-labelling expired goods and other quality problems.

July 22: Turkish authorities arrested scores of senior police officers on suspicion of illegally eavesdropping on top officials, including Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

July 22: The reform-minded governor of Jakarta, Joko Widodo, was declared the winner of Indonesia’s presidential election. He will now lead the world’s third-biggest democracy.

July 22: EU foreign ministers agreed to speed up wider sanctions against Russia and to examine tougher measures after the downing of Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 allegedly by pro-Moscow rebels.

At a meeting in Brussels, the EU foreign ministers for the first time raised the possibility of restricting Russian access to European capital markets, defence and energy technology, asking the executive European Commission to draft proposals.

July 22: British Prime Minister David Cameron called for a worldwide ban on female genital mutilation (FGM) and child marriage as he launched the first UN-backed “Girl Summit” on issues that affect millions around the globe.

Mr Cameron announced that parents in Britain would face prosecution for failing to prevent their daughters from being subjected to FGM.

July 22: A US federal appeals court ruled that the federal government may not subsidize health insurance plans for people in 36 states that decided not to set up their own marketplaces under the law.

July 23: The United Nations launched an international inquiry into human rights violations and crimes that may have been committed by Israel during its military offensive in the Gaza Strip.

The UN Human Rights Council condemned the Israeli assault which involved disproportionate and indiscriminate attacks, including aerial bombing of civilian areas, collective punishment, and the killing of more than 650 Palestinians.

July 23: The Israelis admitted for the first time that Hamas has now hardened into a formidable foe.

July 23: A Somali lawmaker and prominent singer-songwriter, Saado Ali Warsame, was shot dead in the capital Mogadishu by Shebab insurgents.

July 23: The Saudi cabinet decided to allow women to contest and vote in the municipal elections to be held next year in a major step taken against the background of existing political and social norms.

July 23: Animal feed manufacturer Dodson and Horrell launched an investigation after Queen Elizabeth’s racehorse Estimate tested positive for the banned substance morphine.

Buckingham Palace said that Estimate, winner of 2013’s Ascot Gold Cup and runner-up this year, was one of the five horses to have tested positive for morphine, allowed in training as a pain killer or sedative but banned on race days.

July 24: Kurdish politician Fuad Masum was named Iraq’s new president.

Massoum, 76, one of the founders of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan party led by the previous president, Jalal Talabani, accepted the position after winning two-thirds of the votes.

July 24: China’s food regulator visited close to 600 restaurants, businesses and food distributors as it investigates a fast spreading food safety scare that has dragged in a number of global brands and hit food outlets as far away as Japan.

July 24: The United States, India and Japan are set to kick off week-long war games in the Pacific, beefing up naval ties as they warily eye an increasingly assertive China and its military buildup.

Known as the Malabar Exercise, the annual event usually involves India and the US, but Japan’s Maritime Self-Defence Force (MSDF) will take part this year, the third time since 2007.

July 24: Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk announced his resignation, opening the way for new elections that would reflect the country’s starkly changed political scene after the ouster of pro-Russian President Viktor Yanukovych in February.

July 24: Far-right hawk Reuven Rivlin was sworn in as Israel’s 10th president at a formal ceremony in parliament which saw elder statesman Shimon Peres stepping down.

July 24: Save the Children, an international non-governmental organisation, expressed deep concern over the killings of children in Gaza in the ongoing war.

In a statement issued, it said children were bearing the brunt of the ongoing conflict. One in five people being killed are children and the number has increased by over 40 per cent since the ground offensive into Gaza began on July 17.

July 24: An Air Algerie flight crashed en route from Ouagadougou in Burkina Faso to Algiers with 110 passengers on board.

July 24: The new jihadist rulers of Iraq’s northern city of Mosul completely levelled the shrine of Hazrat Yunus (PBUH).

July 24: The United Nations sent its first humanitarian aid convoy into rebel-held areas of Syria without government consent as UN chief Ban Ki-moon accused warring parties of denying assistance to millions of people in need as a tactic of war.

July 25: Kyrgyzstan’s exiled former president Kurmanbek Bakiyev was sentenced in absentia to life in prison and his assets confiscated for trying to put down anti-government protests in 2010.

July 25: An American “peace ambassador”, Ron McGerity, a 60-year-old who had travelled 120,000 kilometres (75,000 miles) over the past 15 years on his bike visiting 61 countries with a message of peace, was run over and killed by a Russian drunk driver in a hit-and-run accident.

July 26: Norway closed part of the airspace over its second city Bergen and tightened border checks, two days after the country upped security following a terror alert.

July 26: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe struck a series of energy deals with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the start of a five-country Latin American tour.

July 26: Terrorists from the Islamic State group that controls large parts of Iraq have blown up a revered religious shrine of Prophet Shees (AS) in Mosul.

July 27: The wife of Cameroon’s vice prime minister was kidnapped and at least three people were killed in an attack by Boko Haram militants in the northern town of Kolofata.

July 28: World Hepatitis Day was observed under the theme of Think Again to raise awareness about the disease and to consider viral hepatitis a silent killer. This was the 7th annual World Hepatitis Day.

July 31: Jume Tahir, the government-appointed imam of China’s 600-year-old, and the largest mosque, Id Kah mosque in the city of Kashgar, was killed.

July 31: The US House of Representatives passed a measure that will let House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio sue President Barack Obama for failing to implement parts of the Affordable Care Act without authorisation from the Congress.

July 31: Bolivia renounced a visa exemption agreement with Israel in protest over its offensive in Gaza, and declared it a terrorist state.

July 18: Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon was promoted as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Communities and Local Government.

His responsibilities will include departmental business in the House of Lords, European programmes, transparency, productivity, procurement and value of money.

Aug 03: A magnitude 6.3 earthquake struck south-western China, killing at least 367 people and leaving 1,881 injured in a remote area of Yunnan province.

Aug 04: Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) Secretary-General Iyad Ameen Abdullah Madani admitted that the Arab states cannot take any practical steps to stop Israel from attacking Gaza.

Aug 04: An overloaded ferry sank in rough conditions in central Bangladesh with up to 200 passengers on board, in the latest disaster to hit the country’s rivers.

Aug 04: World leaders commemorated the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of World War I by warning of lessons to be learned in the face of today’s many crises, including Ukraine.

Aug 04: The Human Rights Watch accused the Israeli forces of firing on and killing civilians in the southern Gaza town of Khuzaa.

Aug 04: Islamic State (IS) fighters captured a strategically key hydroelectric dam, the Mosul Dam. This electricity-generating dam provides electricity for the 1.7 million residents of Mosul.

Aug 05: LinkedIn paid nearly $6 million in back wages and damages to 359 current and former employees after a US investigation found it had failed to compensate them appropriately for overtime work.

Aug 05: A South African village became the first in the world to be powered by fuel cells. Experts and administrators hope the new scheme could help remote areas of the continent access electricity for the first time.

Aug 05: Egypt’s president inaugurated the digging of a new section of the Suez Canal, a $4 billion military-led project to expand a key corridor of world trade that he says will be finished next year.

Aug 05: An Afghan soldier shot dead Maj. Gen. Harold J. Greene at an army training centre, named the Marshal Fahim National Defence University, in Kabul. He is the highest-ranking American officer to be killed since the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Aug 05: Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his government to draft a response to “unacceptable” Western sanctions over Moscow’s perceived backing of pro-Kremlin rebels in Ukraine’s volatile east.

Aug 05: Senior Foreign Office Minister and Minister for Faith and Communities Baroness Sayeeda shocked Prime Minister David Cameron by tendering her resignation from the cabinet in protest at “morally indefensible” UK government policy on Israel’s aggression on Gaza.

Aug 07: The United States put Harakat-ul-Mujahideen and all its affiliates on a list of “foreign terrorist organisations” and “specially designated terrorists”.

Aug 07: Two Khmer Rouge leaders, “Brother Number Two” Nuon Chea, and Khieu Samphan, were jailed for life after being found guilty of crimes against humanity, the first sentences against top figures of a regime responsible for the deaths of up to two million Cambodians.

Aug 08: More than 200 celebrities from the worlds of sport, literature, theatre and the arts signed an open love letter to the people of Scotland, urging them to vote no to independence in the coming referendum.

Aug 08: The main suspect in the murder of India’s Phoolan Devi was found guilty, 13 years after the iconic “bandit queen” was gunned down in broad daylight.

Aug 08: West Africa’s Ebola epidemic constitutes an international health emergency and the virus, which has killed nearly 1,000 people, could continue spreading for months, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said.

Aug 08: Afghanistan’s rival presidential candidates agreed in writing to work together to form a government of national unity, following meetings with US Secretary of State John Kerry.

Aug 09: Tens of thousands of pro-Palestinian demonstrators marched through central London, urging Britain to take a tougher line against Israel over its military assault on Gaza.

The Palestinian Solidarity Campaign said 150,000 people attended the march, the third major demonstration for Gaza in London in the past four weeks.

Aug 09: An Egyptian court dissolved the Freedom and Justice Party (FJP), the political wing of the banned Muslim Brotherhood.

Aug 12:  The UN refugee agency accused Sri Lanka of breaking international law in its growing campaign to kick out Pakistani asylum seekers without a fair hearing.

Aug 12:  Europe’s final robot cargo ship to the International Space Station (ISS) docked with its target as scheduled.

Aug 12:  The US and Australia signed an agreement that will allow the two countries’ militaries to train and work better together as US Marines and airmen deploy in and out of the country.

Aug 12:  The World Health Organisation authorised the use of experimental drugs to fight Ebola as the death toll topped 1,000 and a Spanish priest became the first European to succumb to the latest outbreak.

Aug 12:  A Chinese zoo unveiled newborn panda triplets billed as the world’s first known surviving trio, in what it hailed as a “miracle” given the animal’s famously low reproductive rate.

Aug 12:  Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on a second visit to Jammu and Kashmir condemned the “continuing proxy war by Pakistan.”

Aug 13:  Maryam Mirzakhani, an Iranian-born mathematician, became the first woman to win a prestigious Fields Medal, widely viewed as the Nobel Prize of mathematics.

Aug 14:  Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism announced this year’s winners of the oldest award in international journalism, the Maria Moors Cabot Prize, for excellence in reporting on Latin America and the Caribbean.

Columbia said those being honoured include Frank Bajak, chief of Andean news for The Associated Press; Tracy Wilkinson, Mexico bureau chief for The Los Angeles Times; Paco Calderon, cartoonist with El Heraldo de Mexico, and Giannina Segnini, until recently the editor of the investigating team of La Nacion in Costa Rica.

A special citation is being given to investigative journalists Tamoa Calzadilla and Laura Weffer for work they did at Ultimas Noticias of Venezuela.

Aug 14:  The United Nations announced its highest level of emergency for the humanitarian crisis ignited by the advance of Islamic State (IS) militants across much of Iraq’s north and west.

Aug 14:  Brazilian presidential candidate Eduardo Campos died when his campaign jet slammed into houses in Santos city in bad weather, killing all seven people on board and setting buildings alight.

Aug 14:  The southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu passed legislation upholding the right of men to wear traditional wraparound garments known as “dhotis” in fancy clubs and end what lawmakers called “sartorial despotism”.

Aug 15:  The leader of Lebanese group Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrullah, described the radical Islamist movement that has seized territory in Iraq and Syria as a growing ‘monster’ that could threaten Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and other Gulf states.

Aug 15:  Panama celebrated the 100th anniversary of its famous canal with a ceremony and gala, even as it scrambled to make up lost time by enlarging it to maintain its competitiveness in the 21st century.

The canal, an engineering masterwork that transformed global commerce, opened on August 15, 1914, connecting the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans and saving ships the long, dangerous trip around South America.

Aug 15:  Boko Haram Islamists kidnapped scores of people from fishing communities in Nigeria’s extreme northeast, hauling some of the hostages away on boats across Lake Chad.

Aug 15:  Iraqis and foreign brokers alike breathed a sigh of relief after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki stepped aside.

Aug 15:  India’s new rightwing premier Narendra Modi announced an end to Soviet-style economic planning in an Independence Day speech as he pressed ahead with overhauling cumbersome government policymaking.

Aug 15:  US universities dominated the top 20 in an annual ranking of global educational institutions released by a Chinese organisation, with Harvard remaining in first place ahead of Stanford.

The top 20 in the 2014 Academic Ranking of World Universities included only four non-American institutions, all from Europe including Cambridge in fifth place and Oxford in joint ninth.

Aug 15:  A Sri Lankan court ordered authorities to stop deporting Pakistani asylum seekers.

Trade & Economy

July 17: Microsoft Corp will slash up to 18,000 jobs, or 14 per cent of its workforce this year.
Major job cuts by tech firms
Here are some of the major job cuts announced by technology companies in recent years:

Hewlett-Packard

May 2014: The personal computer maker announced to cut as many as 16,000 jobs.

Sept 2012: HP said it would lay off 29,000 employees over the next two years.

Intel Corp

April 2014: The chipmaker had cut 1,500 jobs in Costa Rica.

Jan 2014: Announced plans to reduce its global workforce of 107,000 by about 5 per cent this year.

Google Inc.

March 2014: The search giant said it would cut 1,200 jobs, or 10pc of the workforce at its then Motorola Mobility unit, on top of the 4,000 it eliminated in August 2012.

Texas Instruments (January 2014): The chipmaker said it would cut 1,100 jobs, or about 3pc of its global workforce.

Zynga Inc (January 2014): The game developer said it would shed 314 jobs, or 15pc of its workforce, to slash costs.

Acer (November 2013): The Taiwanese computer maker said it would cut 7pc of its global workforce of 8,000.

Broadcom Corp (October 2013): The chipmaker said it would cut up to 1,150 jobs.

BlackBerry (September 2013): The smartphone maker said it would cut 4,500 jobs, or more than a third of its global workforce. Cisco Systems (August 2013): Announced 4,000 job cuts, or 5pc of its workforce.

AOL Inc (August 2013): The company said a restructuring would lil(ely reduce its workforce by 10pc. AOL had 5,600 employees at the end of 2012.

Sony Corp (April 2012): The Japanese electronics and entertainment giant announced plans to cut 10,000 jobs, or about 6pc of its global workforce.

July 28: The European Commission cleared Apple’s $3 billion (2.2bn euros) acquisition of US headphone maker and music streaming business Beats.

Aug 09: Four Silicon Valley companies including Apple and Google failed to persuade a US judge to sign off on a $324.5 million settlement to resolve a lawsuit by tech workers, who accused the firms of conspiring to avoid poaching each other’s employees.

Aug 15:  Shares in US investment star Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway group topped $200,000 apiece for the first time, less than eight years after breaking the $100,000 barrier.

Already the priciest on US markets, Berkshire shares got even more expensive for investors in a 7.5 per cent climb since the company announced record quarterly earnings at the start of August.

At the close of trade Berkshire A shares were up $3,500, or 1.8pc, to $202,850.00.

Obituaries

July 17: Heinz Zemanek, who briefly put Austria in the vanguard of European computing in the 1950s with his “May Breeze”, the first computer on mainland Europe to run purely on transistors instead of vacuum tubes, died at the age of 94.

July 31: Julio Grondona, the veteran president of the Argentine Football Association (AFA) and FIFA vice president, died at the age of 82.

July 31: Ahed Zaqout, a former Palestinian national team player, was killed by an Israeli bomb that hit his apartment in Gaza.

July 31: US documentary film director Robert Drew, considered the father of American cinema verite, died. He was 90 years old.

Aug 04: Dick Smith, Hollywood’s preeminent master of film make-up who made a young Dustin Hoffman look like a 121-year-old man and who made Linda Blair’s head spin in The Exorcist, died. He was 92.

Smith, who was entirely self-taught, devised many of the innovations that redefined movie make-up artistry, including new ways to create age-lined faces and to depict blood spurting from bullet wounds. Even his formula for fake blood, using corn syrup and food colouring, has become the Hollywood standard.

He shared an Academy Award for best make-up in 1985 with Paul LeBlanc for Amadeus. In that film, Smith did what he considered his finest work, creating the skin and hair that transformed actor F. Murray Abraham into the aging composer Antonio Salieri, the embittered rival of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Aug 04: James Brady, the White House press secretary who was wounded during the 1981 assassination attempt on President Ronald Reagan, died. Brady was 73.

Aug 09: The former Dynamo Kiev and Soviet international mid-fielder Andrei Bal died at the age of 56.

Aug 11: Famed Croatian goalkeeper Vladimir Beara, who secured a 1952 Olympic silver for the former Yugoslavia national team, died, aged 85.

Aug 12:  Robin Williams, the actor whose madcap comic style made him one of television and film’s biggest stars, was found dead after an apparent suicide at his home in Northern California. He was 63.

Aug 13:  Legendary actress Lauren Bacall, an icon of Hollywood’s golden age who lit up the silver screen in a series of classic movies opposite her husband Humphrey Bogart, died aged 89.

Sports

July 18: Germany captain Philipp Lahm quit international soccer at the age of 30, five days after leading his side to World Cup victory in Brazil.

July 18: Zimbabwe beat Afghanistan by six wickets in the first of four One-day Internationals, the latter’s first bilateral series against a Test-playing nation.

July 20: Germany’s Nico Rosberg won his home grand prix for Mercedes to his overall lead in the Formula One championship to 14 points.

July 20: Caroline Wozniacki claimed her first Tour title of the year by strolling to a win over Roberta Vinci in the Istanbul Cup final.

July 22: The Brazilian Football Confederation (CBF) named Dunga, 50, to run the national team after Luis Felipe Scolari’s humiliation at the World Cup, including a devastating 7-1 defeat by Germany.

July 27: Pablo Andujar of Spain won his first title in more than two years, beating Juan Monaco of Argentina in the Swiss Open final.

July 28: Top-seeded John Isner won his second straight Atlanta ATP title with a victory over unseeded Israeli Dudi Sela.

July 28: Vincenzo Nibali became the first Italian to win the Tour de France since the late Marco Pantani.

Aug 02: Belgium’s David Goffin claimed his first ATP Tour title by beating Dominic Thiem to win the Kitzbuehel Cup.

Aug 02: Two years after winning the inaugural Olympic title, the 31-year-old Nicola Adams also became the first female Commonwealth Games boxing champion.

Aug 03: England triumphed in the Commonwealth Games medals table for the first time in 28 years. Pakistan could win only four medals with three Silver Medals and one Bronze Medal.

Aug 04: World number one Serena Williams beat Angelique Kerber in the final of the Stanford Classic.

Aug 08: Didier Drogba announced his retirement from international football after 12 years playing for the Ivory Coast.

Aug 11: Jo-Wilfried Tsonga beat second seeded Roger Federer to cap a scintillating march to the Rogers Cup title. The 13th-seeded Frenchman won his first ATP Tour title of the season and 11th overall.

Aug 11: Former world-record holder Asafa Powell won a 100-metre race in Brazil in 10.02 seconds, his fastest mark of the year.

Aug 14:  Roger Federer became the first man to win 300 matches at the ATP Masters 1000 level.

Aug 14:  Elmira Alembekova of Russia kept up a national tradition when she strode to victory in the 20km walk at the European Athletics Championships. Alembekova finished in 1hr 27min 56sec.

Aug 14:  Borussia Dortmund beat Bayern Munich in the German Super Cup to win the first domestic title of the season.

Aug 14:  Luis Suarez failed to win a reprieve from his four-month ban for biting Italy’s Giorgio Chiellini at the World Cup, but got a green light to resume training.

Aug 15:  Yohann Diniz of France smashed the world 50km walk record at the European Athletics Championships in a time of 3hr 32min 33sec.

The previous record of 3:34:14 was set by Russia’s Denis Nizhegorodov in Cheboksary in May 2008.

Aug 15:  Former world pole vault champion Giuseppe Gibilisco announced his retirement from athletics after failing to qualify for the finals of the European Championships in Zurich.

People in News

Robert Downey Jr

Robert Downey Jr, the star of Disney’s Marvel superhero film franchises “Iron Man,” and “The Avengers,” became Hollywood’s highest paid actor for the second consecutive year, with estimated earnings of $75 million.

Jarrel Seah and Jennifer Tang

On Aug 04, Jarrel Seah and Jennifer Tang, both 22, of Melbourne’s Monash University, were crowned winners of the Microsoft Imagine Cup in Seattle after inventing an app that uses a selfie to detect if someone is anaemic.

Hu Shull

On July 31, a Chinese investigative journalist, Hu Shull, whose work led to the ouster of corrupt officials, and a Chinese environmental lawyer are among this year’s six recipients of the Ramon Magsaysay Awards, often regarded as Asia’s version of the Nobel Prize.

Jacques Kallis

On July 31, South Africa’s Jacques Kallis retired from all international cricket, as one of the game’s greatest all-rounders admitted that a swansong at the World Cup next year was ‘a bridge too far’.

Places in News

Washington D.C.

On Aug 04, dozens of world leaders descended on Washington for the start of President Barack Obama’s first major US-Africa summit, focused on trade ties but also overshadowed by war and disease.

Some 50 countries sent high-level delegations led by 35 presidents, nine prime ministers, three vice presidents, two foreign ministers and a king to the three days of talks and ceremony in the US capital.

Maiduguri, Nigeria

On Aug 12,
military wives in the restive Nigerian city of Maiduguri took to the streets, burning tyres to prevent their husbands’ deployment to fight Boko Haram.

About 300 women and 500 children gathered at the gates of a military base in the Borno state capital, claiming that their spouses were ill-equipped to take on the Islamist militants.

London

On July 22, British Prime Minister David Cameron called for a worldwide ban on female genital mutilation and child marriage as he launched the first UN-backed “Girl Summit” on issues that affect millions around the globe.

New Delhi

“Tihar Food Court” in west Delhi, a rehabilitation effort kicked off by the Tihar prison, was opened on an “experimental basis” while awaiting formal clearances. There is nothing unusual, except that the most of employees are convicted and are serving time in South Asia’s largest prison complex.

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