Reuters World News Summary
Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
Palestine TV offices in Gaza ransacked, equipment destroyed
The Gaza offices of President Mahmoud Abbas's official Palestine Television station were attacked and ransacked on Friday, adding to tensions between his Palestinian Authority and the Islamist Hamas movement which rules the territory. Rafat Al-Qidra, the office director, said five men broke into the premises early on Friday and destroyed cameras, editing and broadcast equipment worth nearly $150,000.
Mexico urges regional bloc not to meddle in Venezuela
Mexico on Friday called on its peers to refrain from interfering in Venezuela's internal affairs, declining to back a regional declaration that urged Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro not to take office on Jan. 10. Mexico was the sole country in the 14-member Lima Group that opted not to sign a statement critical of Maduro, the first time Mexico has not backed a declaration by the group since it was created in 2017 to push for democratic reforms in Venezuela.
U.S. says has yet to see credible version of Khashoggi's killing from Saudis
The United States does not believe the Saudi version of the October killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi has "hit that threshold of credibility," a senior State Department official said on Friday even as Saudi Arabia prosecutes suspects. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will emphasize the need for accountability and credibility in the investigation of Khashoggi's death during a visit next week to the Middle East, including to Riyadh, the official said.
German politicians' data published online in massive breach
Personal data and documents from hundreds of German politicians and public figures including Chancellor Angela Merkel have been published online in what appears to be one of Germany's most far-reaching data breaches. A preliminary analysis showed the data had been obtained through "wrongful use of log-in information for cloud services, email accounts or social networks", Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said in a statement late on Friday.
U.S. targets suspected USS Cole bombing planner in Yemen: statement
A U.S. strike targeted a militant in Yemen believed to be one of the planners of a deadly bombing of the Navy destroyer USS Cole in 2000, but the results of the strike were still being assessed, the U.S. military said on Friday. U.S. Central Command said in a statement that the strike on Jan. 1 in the Marib governorate of Yemen had targeted Jamal al-Badawi, who was indicted by a federal grand jury in 2003 and was wanted for his role in the USS Cole attack. He escaped from prison in Yemen twice, once in 2003 and again in 2006.
U.S. anti-Islamic State meeting turns to damage control after Syria decision
A routine U.S.-hosted conference of nations fighting the Islamic State militant group has become a damage control effort following U.S. President Donald Trump's decision to withdraw from Syria, sources familiar with the matter said on Friday. The previously scheduled conference, tentatively set for Feb. 7 in Washington, aims to gather ministers from many of the 79 nations in the Global Coalition To Defeat Islamic State and galvanize their fight against the militant group.
U.N. chief regrets Somalia envoy expulsion, will send replacement
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres will appoint a new envoy to Somalia, a U.N. spokesman said on Friday, after failing to convince the country to retract its decision to expel the current representative over accusations of interference. Since Somalia's foreign ministry declared late on Tuesday that U.N. envoy Nicholas Haysom "cannot work in this country," Guterres has spoken twice with Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi, U.N. spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters in New York.
Britain cautions Russia not to use detained ex-U.S. Marine as pawn
Britain cautioned Russia on Friday that individuals should not be used as diplomatic pawns after a former U.S. Marine who also holds a British passport was detained in Moscow on espionage charges. Paul Whelan was arrested by Russia's Federal Security Service on Dec. 28. His family have said he is innocent and that he was in Moscow to attend a wedding.
'We are not fish': Migrants stranded at sea grow frustrated
After two weeks stranded at sea and battered by winter storms, migrants onboard a rescue ship are growing frustrated, supplies are dwindling and the crew are exhausted as European countries refuse to offer a safe port of call. The Sea-Watch 3, a vessel run by a German humanitarian group, plucked 32 people from an unsafe boat off the coast of Libya on Dec. 22, including three small children who are suffering from seasickness and four teenagers, who are traveling alone.
Argentine bishop in Vatican investigated for alleged abuse
An Argentine bishop working in a top Vatican financial department is under preliminary investigation for alleged sexual abuse, the Vatican said on Friday, in what could become another setback for Pope Francis over sex scandals pervading the Church. Gustavo Zanchetta, 54, the former bishop of Oran in northwest Argentina, had been working in the department known as APSA, a general accounting and human resources office that also manages the Vatican’s real estate holdings in Italy.
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