HRH the Princess Royal visits the Philippines

Her Royal Highness the Princess Royal is visiting the Philippines next week. This is part of a series of high level visits from the UK to the Philippines to strengthen relations between the two countries. This will be her second visit to the country; her last visit was in March 1999. Her Royal Highness’s programme of engagements is essentially in support of her many charities, and she also travels abroad extensively undertaking Foreign and Commonwealth […]

U.S. calls on China to release detained women’s rights activists

The United States called on China on Thursday to immediately release five women’s rights activists, who were detained for apparently planning to demonstrate against sexual harassment on public transport. U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, described the detention of the women in a tweet as a “sad reflection on ‘women’s rights are human rights.’” The women were planning demonstrations in Beijing and the southern city of Guangzhou on the weekend of International Women’s […]

Islamic State leader accepts allegiance of Nigeria’s Boko Haram

The leader of the Islamic State militant group that controls tracts of Syria and Iraq has accepted a pledge of allegiance from Nigerian Islamists Boko Haram, his spokesman Abu Mohammad al-Adnani said, calling on supporters to fight in Africa. Boko Haram, which has killed thousands and kidnapped hundreds during a six-year campaign to carve out an Islamist state in northern Nigeria, pledged its allegiance last week, highlighting increased coordination between jihadi movements across north Africa and […]

Terry Pratchett, author of fantasy “Discworld” novels, dies at 66

Terry Pratchett, the British author of the popular “Discworld” series of fantasy novels, has died of a form of Alzheimer’s disease at the age of 66, his publishing house said on Thursday. Pratchett died at home surrounded by his family with his cat sleeping on his bed, Transworld Publishers said. “In over 70 books, Terry enriched the planet like few before him,” said Larry Finlay, managing director at Transworld, a division of Penguin Random House. […]

UNICEF: 14 million children impacted by conflict in Syria and Iraq

NEW YORK/AMMAN, 12 March 2015 – Some 14 million children across the region are now suffering from the escalating conflict sweeping Syria and much of Iraq, said UNICEF today. With the conflict in Syria now entering its fifth year, the situation of more than 5.6 million children inside the country remains the most desperate. That includes up to 2 million children who are living in areas of the country largely cut off from humanitarian assistance […]

FBI chief warns of Islamic State recruits, lone wolf attacks

The radicalization of Americans by Islamic State and other groups, particularly through sophisticated use of social media, is a top concern for the FBI as it grapples with evolving terrorism threats, Director James Comey said on Thursday (March 12). Like other militant groups, Islamic State, also known as ISIL, has called for lone wolf attacks in Western countries and has specifically encouraged attacks on soldiers, law enforcement and the intelligence community, Comey said at an […]

British girls helped by spy from country fighting Islamic State, says Turkish minister

Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said on Thursday (March 12) that a spy working for a country in the U.S.-led coalition fighting Islamic State helped three British girls who are believed to have crossed into Syria via Turkey. “Do you know who the person was who helped these girls? This person was caught. It turned out to be someone who worked in the intelligence services of a country in the coalition,” said Cavusoglu in an […]

IMF seeks ‘immediate’ stabilization in latest Ukraine bailout

(Reuters) – The International Monetary Fund has agreed to pump $10 billion into Ukraine’s troubled economy over the next year, providing swift assistance for the country’s struggling finances as part of a larger four-year bailout. The IMF board on Wednesday approved a loan of $17.5 billion, with the bulk of the money heading out the door fast: $5 billion likely by the end of this week and another $5 billion in coming months, IMF officials […]