Recently in International News Blog Category

Earthquake hits Indonesia causing damage and panic

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According to RTT News, a U.S. Geological survey said a 6.6 magnitude earthquake hit Papua, Indonesia on Saturday.

It is also reported the quake hit nearly 29.8 kilometers beneath the ocean floor near the north coast of the Papua province.This earthquake closely follows a 6.1-magnitude struck off Indonesia's Sumatra Island, RTT News reports.

The Guardian
reports that although the powerful earthquake hit and panicked residents to vacate buildings, homes, and schools, authorities said it did not have the potential to trigger a tsunami.

It is also reported that the area has suffered a few quakes exceeding 8.0 magnitude, and is prone to these natural disasters due their location along what is named the "ring of fire" on the Pacific Ocean.

Bombs explode while President Obama is in Colombia for summit

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MSNBC and NBC News reports fours small bombs exploded in Colombia, after Obama arrived for the Summit of the Americas.

According to CNN, two small explosions took place in Cartagena, far from where the world leaders gathered for the beginning of the Summit, one near a bus station and the second near a shopping mall.

Two further bombs exploded near the American embassy in the capital Bogota, as reported by EuroNews. They also report police say they may have been planted by leftist rebels.

It is also reported no one was killed or injured in the attacks.

Avalanche in Pakistan buries at least 100 troops

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An avalanched engulfed a military complex Saturday, burying at least 135 people, according to the Associated Press.

They also reported rescue workers used bulldozers to plow through nearly 80 feet of snow, and after over 24 hours, no bodies are yet recovered.

A Pakistani military spokesman told the Miami Herald that the avalanche smothered the garrison headquarters, located 16,000 feet high in the Gayari sector of the Siachen Glacier, shortly before 6 o'clock in the morning.

The Siachen Glacier is located at the border of Pakistan, India, and China, in the Kashmir region.

Indonesia Parliament Allows Government to Raise Gas Prices

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According to Businessweek, Indonesian lawmakers voted 356 to 82 in favor of a proposal to allow an increase if the crude price exceeds the budget assumption by 15 percent over a six-month period. This amendment follows the biggest public protests since President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono's efforts to control the budget cap in 2008.

The Wall Street Journal reported that protests against the amendment spread Thursday with thousands participating across Archipelago, in rallies that become violent as well.

It is also reported that the escalating costs of food and fuel in one of the world's most populated areas caused riots that later rid the country of the long-reigning dictator.

DUBLIN - According to the Associated Press, officials at Christ Church Cathedral in Dublin, Ireland say the theft of the precious relic, the preserved heart of St. Laurence O'Toole, has left them perplexed.

Displayed in the cathedral since the 13th century, the heart was secured by a wooden heart-shaped box, locked in an iron cage on the wall of the chapel.

The BBC reports the thief would have needed metal cutters to pry open the iron bars. A church spokeswoman told the BBC that the relic was specifically targeted by the thief, adding that items of value such as gold chalices and candlesticks were bypassed.

Suicide bomb in Nigerian church kills 3 people

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JOS, Nigeria -- The BBC reported that a suicide bomber smashed his car through gates and into a packed church Sunday. Witnesses say the bomber killed a woman in the process. The detonation of the bomb killed a father and his child.

According to the New York Times, the car bomber killed three and injured 38 people in Jos, Nigeria, where many people have been killed due to ethnic and religious violence.

It is also reported that spokesperson Abul Qada of the radical Islamist sect Boko Haram claimed responsibility for the bombing of a Church in Christ morning service.

Riot in Mexican prison leaves 44 dead

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MEXICO CITY - According to the Wall Street Journal, officials say one of the deadliest prison riots due to warring drug cartels killed 44 inmates Sunday.

Nuevo Leon state public security spokesman Jorge Domene told the Atlanta Journal Constitution the riot started at 2:00 a.m., and may have been staged as a cover for a prison break.

Domene told reporters while counting the dead, officials discovered some prisoners missing.

The fight was reportedly between two cell blocks, each containing 750 prisoners. Investigators are now looking into if the two cell blocks housed members of two well-known rival cartels, Gulf and Zeta.

Image of Nelson Mandela on South African Banknotes

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In celebration of the 22nd anniversary of Nelson Mandela's release from prison, his image will appear on the new currency in South Africa.

Mandela, 93, was released from prison in 1990 after spending 27 years for protesting the apartheid.

President Jacob Zuma at the Reserve Bank headquarters was quoted by The Hindu saying, "On behalf of government and the people of South Africa, it is my honor and pleasure to announce that the new South African bank notes will bear the image of President Mandela, the President of a free, democratic South Africa."

The Wall Street Journal reports the South African bank notes are issued in denominations of 10, 20, 50, 100, and 200 rand, and all will include the image of Nelson Mandela.

19 Americans included in criminal charges filed by Egypt

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CAIRO -- A nongovernmental organization, or NGO, that employed 19 Americans and several other employees, is currently on trial for charges involving receiving foreign funds illegally and involvement in banned activities, reported by the Miami Herald.

All defendants involved in this highly-publicized case could face a travel ban that would prevent them from leaving Egypt

The New York Times reports that the investigation could jeopardize the annual $1.55 billion expected in American aid this year, including $1.3 billion to the military.
It is also reported that U.S. Congress requires the State Department to certify that Egypt is making progress toward democracy before aid is released, which includes respect to civil society groups under investigation.

In Nairobi, Kenya, four Kenyan leaders were charged by the International Criminal Court in The Hague with crimes against humanity during the post-election violence in 2007 that killed at least 1,000 people.

Two of the four men charged include Uhuru Kenyatta, deputy prime minister, finance minister and son of the country's founder president, Jomo Kenyatta, and William Ruto, former higher education minister. Both men plan to run for president in upcoming elections, aware that rulings in this case may affect their campaigns.

Allegations include violent conflict between the major contenders and their respective camps. Kenyatta, a part of the Kikuyu camp, and Ruto, a Kalenjin, are both aware of the involvement of both camps in much of the post-election violence in December of 2007. As reported by The Wall Street Journal Africa, the court states that both ethnic groups mobilized militias to attack political rivals and are accused of organizing murder and forcible transfer of people and rape.

The Associated Press via The Washington Post
reported The ICC prosecutor commended Kenya's political leaders for cooperating with the international tribunal.

The International tribunal officials have since warned Kenyan leaders and political hopefuls against acts of 'organized intimidation,' making it clear those parties not in accordance will be held accountable.

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