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International News for the week

Digest of international news for the week Dec 20- Dec 26, 2014


Washington: Richard Rahul Verma, who quietly played a key role in the Congressional passage of the civil nuclear deal and a strong advocate of deepening Indo-US ties, has been sworn in as the US Ambassador to New Delhi, becoming the first ever Indian-American to hold the post.

Islamabad: Pakistan says that Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, a key planner of the 2008 Mumbai attack, has not been released from jail and a petition challenging the bail given to him is being firmed up.


New York: Two New York police officers were executed at point-blank range in their patrol car by a black man here with an apparent grudge before committing suicide with the same gun, officials say, amid weeks of nation-wide protests over police killings of unarmed black men.


Lagos: A bombing at a bus station in northeast Nigeria killed at least 20 people, as Boko Haram was blamed for a separate attack in the embattled region.

United Nations: A UN Security Council panel has issued a “revised” letter removing the term ‘sahib’ from the name of Mumbai terror attack mastermind and JuD chief Hafiz Saeed, saying it regrets the mistake after India objected to the use of the salutation.


Islamabad: For the first time, Pakistan and Russia have signed an energy deal worth USD 1.7 billion to lay a gas pipeline from Karachi to Lahore, a move that may lead to further improvement in their ties.

Lahore: Malik Ishaq, dreaded chief of banned LeJ that has carried out attacks on minority Shias and the mastermind of the assault on the Sri Lankan cricket team in 2009, has been released after three years in jail with the Pakistan government not seeking an extension of his detention.

Peshawar: The death toll in the brutal Taliban attack on a school run by Pakistan army here rose to 150 with two more children succumbing to their injuries.


Tokyo: Prime Minister Shinzo Abe promised at the start of his new term to revive Japan’s economy so he can pursue “powerful diplomacy”, but China’s state media warned him to be wary about changing the pacifist constitution.

Washington: In the latest incident to fuel tension between US police and the black community, a teenager was shot dead by a white officer in a suburb of St Louis, ground zero of a new protest movement.

Islamabad: Pakistan announced formation of a 5,000-strong counter-terrorism force to fight militants as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif described the prevailing situation as “extraordinary” and says “extraordinary steps” were required to tackle the menace.


Lahore: Set to be released, banned militant outfit Lashkar-e-Jhangvi’s chief Malik Ishaq has been remanded to judicial custody in a murder and terrorism case pending against him by a Pakistani court for two weeks.

Vatican City: Pope Francis roundly condemned jihadist violence and the “brutal persecution” of religious minorities in a Christmas message to the world’s 1.2 billion Catholics and millions of others.


Peshawar: A senior Taliban commander, believed to be a key planner in the Peshawar school massacre, has been killed by the security forces in Pakistan’s troubled Khyber Agency.

Paris: With India expected to spend over USD 200 billion in the next decade to modernise its military, French defence firms are eyeing a piece of the cake and are ready to “adapt” to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘Make in India’ push.

Islamabad: Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi, the key planner of 2008 Mumbai attacks, challenged his detention under a public security order in the high court here after the Pakistan government rejected his plea seeking release.

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