Last update: Wed, 29 Jun 2016 03pm

General News: World


A suicide bomber detonated explosives at a Sunni mosque near Baghdad where worshippers were gathered for prayers, killing at least nine people, officials said on Tuesday. The attack on the mosque in Abu Ghraib, which also wounded at least 28 people, took place during evening prayers on Monday. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack, but the Islamic State jihadist group frequently carries out suicide bombings targeting civilians in Iraq.
Israel's army chief has revoked a decades-old directive that allowed troops to use massive firepower to prevent soldiers being captured alive, the army said Tuesday. The so-called Hannibal Directive allowed soldiers to fire at enemy forces attempting to abduct their colleagues, even if that risked killing the Israeli soldier. "The chief of staff has ordered to cancel the procedure," an army spokeswoman told AFP Tuesday.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's uncle, suspected of using ill-gotten gains to build a real estate empire in France, has been charged with corruption, a judicial source said Tuesday. Rifaat al-Assad, 78, who commanded Syria's notorious internal security forces in the 1970s and early 1980s, was charged on June 9 with receiving embezzled funds and tax fraud, the source told AFP.
Bolivia, Ethiopia and Sweden on Tuesday were elected to serve a two-year stint on the UN Security Council, with Kazakhstan vying with Thailand and the Netherlands facing off against Italy for two remaining spots. Five non-permanent seats are up for grabs in the vote by the UN General Assembly, three of which were filled in a first round of secret ballot voting. After the first round, Kazakhstan was ahead with 113 votes compared to 77 for Thailand, but the central Asian country fell short of the two-thirds majority required to win election to the seat reserved for Asia.
European leaders told Britain on Tuesday to act quickly to resolve the political and economic chaos unleashed by its vote to leave the European Union, a move the IMF said could put pressure on global growth.Financial markets recovered slightly after the result of Thursday''''s referendum wiped a record $3 trillion off global shares and sterling fell to its lowest level in 31 years against the dollar, but trading was volatile and policymakers said they would take all necessary measures to protect their economies.
Germany on Tuesday approved new measures to rein in the activities of its foreign intelligence agency after a scandal over improper collusion with the US National Security Agency. Two months after replacing the head of the BND service over the damning revelations, Chancellor Angela Merkel's cabinet signed off on the reforms to keep the country's spies on a tighter leash. Oversight of the spy agency directly from Merkel's office will be beefed up with an external watchdog panel of jurists, and the list of duties the BND carries out for the NSA has been overhauled.
Russia's defence ministry on Tuesday accused an American destroyer of coming dangerously close to a Russian frigate in the Mediterranean Sea, calling the incident a "gross violation" of international agreements. "On June 17, in the east of the Mediterranean Sea, the American destroyer USS Gravely came dangerously close to a Russian warship, 60 to 70 metres from the left side, and crossed the path of frigate Yaroslav Mudry at the dangerous distance of 180 metres from the bow," the ministry said in a statement.