Irish separatists in Northern Ireland exploded a car bomb today in the town of Newry. The bombers gave police notice of the bomb and no one was hurt, Wall Street Journal.
After 11 days of heavy fighting in the town of Marjah in Afghanistan, residents received food aid today. NATO is attempting to secure the town from the Taliban, Al Jazeera.
40 people associated with the military in Turkey were arrested after an alleged coup attempt, BBC News.
Officials at the Pentagon announced that the U.S. military will lift its ban on women serving on submarines, Reuters.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 10015.86 today, reaching 10,000 for the first time since October of 2008. The boost was thanks to a better-than-expected profit from bank JP Morgan Chase. That marks a 53 percent gain in only seven months, Wall Street Journal.
Confusion has erupted over whether an agreement has been reached in Honduras between the ousted government and coup leaders. Negotiators for ousted President Manuel Zelaya have said an “unified text” has been agree upon, but representatives of interim leader Roberto Micheletti deny this. Talks are likely to resume again tomorrow, BBC News.
The Iraqi government has estimated that 85,000 citizens were violently killed during the 2004 to 2008 American occupation. The estimate does not include foreigners or insurgents. Past reports have placed the number anywhere between 100,000 to over half a million, BBC News.
European officials have criticized Turkey over threats to freedom of expression in the country. This comes after controversy about a $3.9 billion fine against Dogan Yayin, Turkey’s largest media conglomerate, who have been critical of the current government, New York Times.
China now boasts 130 individuals worth more than $1 billion U.S. At the top of the list is auto entrepreneur Huang Guangyu, Reuters.
Pakistan has started its military offensive in South Waziristan. Pakistani officials say that 80 percent of militants attacks are planned in the region. Bombers destroyed 15 houses in the Makeen, Ladha and Barwand regions of South Waziristan. Ground troops will go into the area later this week, Associated Press.
U.S. President Barack Obama has approved 13,000 support troops to be sent to Afghanistan. The troops will be medical officers and engineers, etc, not combat troops. The lead general in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, has said that he needs a significant increase in troops if the mission has a chance of succeeding, Voice of America. Afghan President Hamid Karzai says he would welcome more troops. Karzai is still under heat for the widespread fraud reported during the recent presidential election, Reuters.
Though neither qualified for the 2010 World Cup, teams from Turkey and Armenia will play a football match on Wednesday as part of the renewed diplomatic relations between the two countries, AFP.
One family’s battle with cancer has become a battle for health care, CNN.
“I don’t think I could bear to listen to those words again. … ‘You have cancer,’ ” Elder said. “I’ve said to my husband, if I start to get sick, just set me up with a nice pill cocktail on a beach, because nobody cares. That’s the message you hear every day from insurance companies.”
Six gunmen disguised as military attacked Pakistan’s military headquarters in the city of Rawalpindi earlier today. 4 of the men were killed and 2 were able to escape. 6 troops were killed in the attack, Voice of America. The 2 escaped men are now said to be holding military personnel hostage in the compound, BBC News.
3 people arrested during the protests that followed Iran’s disputed presidential election last June have been sentenced to death, Al Jazeera.
Turkey and Armenia are expected to sign an agreement today that will reestablish diplomatic ties and reopen the border. The two countries have been in conflict for over a century. A key issue, Armenia’s insistence that the killing of 1.5 million Armenians near the end of the Ottoman Empire was genocide, was not explicitly addressed but the agreement calls for a scientific review of historical events, Associated Press.
In a search for water, NASA crashed two spacecraft on the surface of the Moon, Scientific America.
Today is the 40th anniversary of the first step on the moon. More information about the moonwalk, MSNBC. The homepage for the commemoration is We Chose the Moon with timelines, video, and maps.
Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the sole surviving member of the terrorists who attacked Mumbai last November, has changed his plea to guilty. 166 people died in the multi-day attack, CNN-IBN.
Clerics in Iran have called for a referendum on last month’s disputed presidential elections, BBC News.
56 people are on trial in Turkey for a plot to overthrow the government, Bloomberg.
The U.S. is reaching a deal to sell India arms. The deal would feature monitoring systems to make sure the arms do not end up in the wrong hands and would allow monitoring agencies into Indian nuclear sites, AFP.
Frank McCourt, Nobel prize winning author of Angela’s Ashes, a memoir of his childhood in Ireland, has died, Christian Science Monitor.
U.S. led strike in western Afghanistan kills dozens of civilians according to the Red Cross. 25 to 30 Taliban were also killed in Bula Balek. The fighting started after Taliban fighters attacked police checkpoints, killing three Afghan police. The Afghan army and U.S. trainers called in airstrikes after the fighting escalated. The strike comes just as Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari and Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai meet with President Obama in Washington DC, BBC News. President Obama’s schedule. Violence has increased as a peace agreement between Taliban militants and Pakistan collapsed in the Swat Valley near the Pakistan/Afghanistan border.
Mohammed Ajmal Kasab, the sole surviving member of the group that carried out the Mumbai attacks has pled not guilty, Washington Post.
Two blasts in Iraq kill at least 11, Al Jazeera.
Eight charged in Turkey for the blood-feud fueled attack during a wedding, Belfast Telegraph. Nicholas Birch on how the feud is indicative of the destabilizing effects of the war in Kurds in Turkey, the Independent.
19 are dead and 180,000 homeless in heavy flooding in Brazil, Associated Press.
Jailed Iranian/American journalist Roxana Saberi has ended her hunger strike. Saberi was convicted in Iran of spying and is awaiting appeal. Iranian officials have said that, unlike at her original trial, Saberi’s lawyer will have time to prepare her case and independent lawyers will be able to observe the trial. The appeal will also be decided by a panel of three judges rather than just the judge who made the initial guilty ruling, CNN.
An attack at a wedding ceremony in Turkey’s Mardin province killed at least 45, six of them children, today. Grenades and automatic weapons were used in the attack, but the mayor of Mardin has said the attack does not appear to be terr0r-related. Some reports say it was the families of the bride and groom that were fighting, BBC News.
A Pakistani spoke to the New York Times about the troop surge in Afghanistan and the Taliban’s new strategy. The source told the Times that the terrorist group were planning to move in and out of Pakistan, counting on the fact that troops can not reach them in Afghanistan’s neighboring country, NY Times.
The Boston Globe is still alive after the newspaper’s owner extending talks with unions to save one of the U.S.’s top papers. The Globe’s owner, the New York Times, says it will shut down the paper if agreements are not reached to lower salaries and pensions, BBC News.
The Israeli government has issued an emergency in order to help save the Sea of Galilee, a place where Christians believe Jesus performed miracles such as walking on water. The body of water is in an environmental disaster as mismanagement and drought has killed most wildlife, Sky News.
The Iraqi suicide attack death toll from this morning has risen to 87 dead, making it the deadliest day in Iraq this year. 28 people were killed in central Baghdad and over 50 wounded by a female suicide bomber. There was a piece of good news from the war-torn country: Omar al-Baghdadi, leader of an al Qaeda-linked umbrella group, was captured in Baghdad yesterday, CNN.
The United Nations is sending a relief team to Sri Lanka to help over 50,000 civilians caught in a civil war between the government and a rebel group, the Tamil Tigers. Doctors Without Borders volunteers told BBC News that the hospitals in the area are overflowing, with one hospital having 400 beds for 2,000 injured or sick people, BBC News.
Turkey and Armenia have agreed to work on fixing their strained relations. The two countries have been on the outs for decades, notably because Turkey refuses to recognize the 1915 genocide of over a million Ottoman Armenians. The statement from Turkey’s Foreign Minister did not say how they would mend relations, but did say Switzerland was acting as a mediator, NY Times.
The AP is saying Iraq’s own tally has recorded 87,215 civilians dead since 2005, at a minimum. The tally only includes violent deaths, such as bombings, execution-style shootings, and beheadings. The numbers put the total of deaths since the U.S. war started in 2003 well over 100,000, NPR.