UNITED STATES: Exxon Mobile Requests Approval to Resume Venture with Rosneft

On 19 April, Exxon Mobil representatives requested approval to resume their Black Sea drilling venture with Rosneft. Rosneft, based near the Kremlin, is majority owned by the Russian government. The venture was stalled in 2014 due to the US sanctions on Russia. The request is being considered by President Donald Trump’s administration.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

SOUTH KOREA: Reports North Korean Spies Involved in Kim Jong Nam Death

On 27 February, South Korean intelligence services announced four North Korean individuals were involved in the death of Kim Jong Nam, the half-brother of Kim Jong Un. The intelligence services reported the individuals were North Korean spies working on behalf of the Ministry of State Security. Kim Jong Nam is said to have been estranged from Kim Jong Un.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

DENMARK: Aid Minister Offers Millions to US Abortion Groups

On 7 February, Denmark’s Development Aid Minister, Ulla Toernaes, announced Denmark was willing to give 14 million USD to US abortion groups affected by US President Donald Trump’s executive order. The executive order prohibits any international groups that provide information on or perform abortions from receiving federal funds. Toernaes called on other countries to join her stance.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

SWITZERLAND: UNICEF Appeals for US Funding

On 31 January, UNICEF announced the organization is appealing for 3.3 billion USD for 2017. UNICEF states the funds would go to children worldwide to deal with humanitarian emergencies such as malnutrition. In 2016, the US donated 407 million USD, making it the largest donor of 2016. UNICEF emergencies director Manuel Fontaine stated he hopes the US will continue to support UNICEF.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

RUSSIA: Former Kaspersky Lab Manager Charged with Treason

On 25 January, the Russian government charged Ruslan Stoyanov, former head of the Computer Incident Investigations Unit at Kaspersky Lab, with treason. The charge follows the December arrest of Stoyanov and a senior Russian intelligence officer. Kaspersky Lab has previously provided advice to intelligence agencies, as well as maintained an informal relationship.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

PAKISTAN: Officials Refuse to Release Doctor that Aided bin Laden Raid

On 18 January, Pakistant’s law minister announced Dr. Shakil Afridi will not be released from Pakistani custody. Afridi was considered instrumental in raid on bin Laden’s compound and is considered a “hero” by many Americans. Shortly after the raid, Afridi was arrested for running a fake vaccination campaign, which enabled the confirmation of bin Laden’s identity, and having relations with militant Islamists.

[Madison Landry madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

ITALY: Earthquakes Shake Central Italy

On 18 January, Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni announced the deployment of a series of rescue teams to villages effected by the four 5.2+ magnitude earthquakes. All of the earthquakes truck on the same day, and three struck within the same hour. The earthquakes occurred during a heavy snowstorm. Parts of central Italy are without power and clear roadways. There has been one death reported.

[Madison Landry madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

ITALY: Earthquakes Shake Central Italy

 

On 18 January, Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni announced the deployment of a series of rescue teams to villages affected by four 5.2+ magnitude earthquakes. All of the earthquakes struck on the same day, three within the same hour, during a heavy snowstorm. Parts of central Italy are without power and clear roadways. There has been one death reported.

[Madison Landry madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

UNITED STATES: Administration Shuts Down Dakota Access Pipeline

UNITED STATES: Administration Shuts Down Dakota Access Pipeline

On 4 December, the Obama administration announced it denied the permit required to complete the Dakota Access pipeline, leaving the project officially halted. The US Army Corps of Engineers also announced they would deny the easement required for the project, and called for another review and evaluation of the pipeline’s route. President-Elect Donald Trump announced his support for the project, indicating he would approve the permit once in office.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

ITALY: Explosion at Bologna Police Station

On 27 November, Italian authorities announced the investigation into an explosion that occurred late at night outside of a police station in Bologna. No one was injured in the explosion. Video surveillance revealed three unidentifiable, cloaked individuals who ignited gas canisters near the entrance to the station. The attack preceded the upcoming Premier Matteo Renzi’s visit to Bologna later the same day. The Bologna mayor stated he believes the two events are unrelated.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

UNITED STATES: Dakota Oil Pipeline Protestors Refuse Government Order

On 26 November, Dakota oil pipeline protestors announced they will refuse the government order to vacate the federal land they have been protesting on for months. Tribal leaders also announced the continuation of nonviolent protests. The announcement follows a letter from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers outlining land that will be closed for public access on 5 December due to safety concerns.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

SOUTH AFRICA: HIV Vaccine Trial

On 27 November, South African HIV scientists announced a new HIV vaccine trial, HVTN 702, to begin on 30 November. The trial will be conducted on over 5,000 men and women between the ages of 18 and 35 in 15 different locations. Volunteers for the trial will receive either the vaccine or placebo over the course of a year through five periodic injections. Scientists believe, if successful, the trial will be the “final nail in the coffin” for HIV.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

CANADA: Class Action Suit Against Hacked Casino

On 14 November, two individuals filed a class action lawsuit against Casino Rama in regards to “unauthorized access to personal information”. The suit was filed in the Ontario Superior Court and is seeking 60 million USD to encompass total damages. In November, the CEO was made aware of a cyberattack that had resulted in the unauthorized access to records containing personal information of its gamblers. The individuals filed the suit because they believe the casino was continuing to maintain the belief in its customers that their personal information was protected in order to continue to generate profits.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]

TURKEY: Officials Issue US-Bound Travel Warning

On 12 November, Turkish government officials issued an official travel warning for citizens traveling to the United States. Officials stated the warning was due to violent protests, as well as attacks and harassment against foreigners. The warning follows the US election in which president-elect Donald Trump won the electoral college but lost the popular vote.

[Madison Landry, madison.landry.ee@gmail.com]