World News | WRHL http://www.wrhl.net/pages/index.cfm?id=505 World News 2014-07-26T04:08:46Z World News Twelve-hour ceasefire takes effect between Israel, Gaza militants By Nidal al-Mughrabi and Maayan Lubell GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - A 12-hour humanitarian truce went into effect on Saturday after Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip agreed to a U.N. request for a pause in fighting and efforts proceeded to secure a long-term ceasefire moved ahead. The Gaza Health Ministry said 18 members of a single family were killed by Israeli tank shelling in the southern Gaza Strip shortly before the truce took effect at 8 a.m. (1 a.m. EDT). Israel's military said it would hold fire for 12 hours, but would press on with its search for tunnels used by militants. A spokesman for the Islamist group Hamas, which dominates Gaza, said all Palestinian factions would abide by the brief truce. EU edges to economic sanctions on Russia but narrows scope By Adrian Croft and Barbara Lewis BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Union reached outline agreement on Friday to impose the first economic sanctions on Russia over its behavior in Ukraine but scaled back their scope to exclude technology for the crucial gas sector. The EU also imposed travel bans and asset freezes on the chiefs of Russia's FSB security service and foreign intelligence service and a number of other top Russian officials, saying they had helped shape Russian government policy that threatened Ukraine's sovereignty and national integrity. FSB director Alexander Bortnikov and Mikhail Fradkov, a former prime minister who now heads the foreign intelligence service, were among 15 Russians or Ukrainians and 18 companies and other organizations named in the EU's latest sanctions list. Bad weather seen as probable cause of Air Algerie crash By Chine Labbé and Tiemoko Diallo PARIS/BAMAKO (Reuters) - Poor weather was the most likely cause of the crash of an Air Algerie flight in the West African country of Mali that killed all 118 people on board, French officials said on Friday. "French soldiers who are on the ground have started the first investigations," French President Francois Hollande told reporters. An earlier count of 51 French nationals among the dead was also raised to 54 by the French Foreign Ministry to include those with dual nationality. French, Malian and Dutch soldiers from a U.N. peacekeeping force (MINUSMA) secured the crash site, which lies about 80 km (50 miles) south of the northern Malian town of Gossi, near the Burkina Faso border. Ukraine faces bitter election in midst of conflict with Russia By Natalia Zinets KIEV (Reuters) - Ukraine's prime minister has launched what promises to be a bitter election campaign that could divide pro-Western parties and complicate their efforts to fight pro-Russian rebels in the country's east. Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk, a key interlocutor of the West during months of turmoil, announced on Thursday he would quit, saying parliament was betraying Ukraine's army and people by blocking reforms supported by Western backers. His move, following the exit of two parties from the ruling coalition, amounted to the start of a campaign for seats in a legislature still packed with former allies of pro-Russian president Viktor Yanukovich, ousted by protests in February. "History will not forgive us," Yatseniuk told parliament on Thursday, in what analysts said was the first campaign speech for the party led by Yulia Tymoshenko, a rival of President Petro Poroshenko, who was elected to replace Yanukovich in May. Pro-Western political forces in Ukraine have been bitterly divided almost continuously since the country won independence with the breakup of the Soviet Union in 1991. U.S. tells Pakistan: Do not let Haqqani fighters resettle By Phil Stewart ASPEN Colorado (Reuters) - The U.S. government urged Pakistan on Friday to prevent displaced Haqqani militants from returning to their traditional sanctuary after a Pakistani military offensive near the Afghanistan border. The Haqqani network, which mainly operates out of Pakistan's border areas, has been blamed for some of the deadliest and most sophisticated attacks on NATO and Afghan troops in Afghanistan. "What we've asked for is that the Haqqanis, yes they’ve been displaced, yes they've been disrupted, but that they not be allowed to regroup and resettle back into those historical areas," said Jeffrey Eggers from the White House's National Security Council, speaking at a security forum in Colorado. No one from the Haqqani network has been reported killed, however, since the offensive began in June in the remote region of North Waziristan. Libya seeks ceasefire as south Tripoli a militia 'war zone' By Patrick Markey and Aziz El Yaakoubi TRIPOLI (Reuters) - Black plumes of smoke marked shell blasts and bulldozed earthen barricades mapped out the frontlines around Tripoli's largest airport, now at the heart of a standoff between the country's powerful militias. With barrages of Grad rockets, anti-aircraft guns and artillery fired at their rival enclaves just kilometers apart, brigades of former rebels have turned parts of southern Tripoli in a battleground for nearly a fortnight. The clash over Tripoli International Airport is the latest eruption in a deepening rivalry among bands of ex-fighters who once battled side by side against Muammar Gaddafi, but have since turned against each other in the scramble for control. Since the 2011 fall of Tripoli, fighters from the western town of Zintan and allies have controlled the area including the international airport, while rivals loyal to the port city of Misrata had entrenched themselves in other parts of the capital. EU hits Russian intelligence chiefs with sanctions The European Union announced Saturday it had widened its sanctions against Russia over its role in conflict-torn Ukraine to include the heads of intelligence services. The director of the FSB security service, Alexander Bortnikov, and the head of the Russian Foreign Intelligence Service, Mikhail Fradkov are on the new list of 15 people and 18 entities targeted by an asset freeze and visa bans, the EU's Official Journal said. Also on the list is Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov. Bortnikov and Fradkov, both members of the Russian Security Council, are included for being "involved in shaping the policy of the Russian government threatening the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine," the Official Journal said. Perera spoils South African recovery in 2nd test COLOMBO, Sri Lanka (AP) — Sri Lankan off-spinner Dilruwan Perera captured two wickets in three deliveries to spoil South Africa's recovery on the third morning of the second cricket test, holding the visitors to 163-5 at lunch on Saturday. Top Asian News at 7:30 a.m. GMT HONG KONG (AP) — As skyscrapers around Hong Kong harbor erupted into a reverie of laser beams and giant digital displays during their synchronized nightly light show, one innocuous 28-story building near the water's edge had stayed dark for months, clad in bamboo scaffolding for a face-lift. Then, in June, the renovated tower came to life, flashing giant Chinese characters that some in Hong Kong saw as a warning. Japanese PM opens LatAm tour with Mexico energy deals Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe struck a series of energy deals with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the start of a five-country Latin American tour. Abe, whose visit to the region comes on the heels of Chinese President Xi Jinping's, met Pena Nieto at the presidential palace for talks that ended with the signing of a raft of deals. The new agreements included one between Mexican state oil firm Pemex and Japan's development bank, and another between Pemex and the Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation. Al Qaeda releases video of US suicide bomber in Syria Syria's Al-Qaeda affiliate has released a video of a US suicide bomber who blew himself up at an army post in the northwest of the country. Moner Mohammad Abu Salha, alias Abu Hurayra al-Amriki, was believed to be the first American national to carry out such an attack in Syria's more than three-year-old war. Hopefully it will be in heaven," Abu Hurayra says in broken Arabic in the 17-minute video posted on YouTube on Friday by Al-Nusra Front. The footage, released via Al-Nusra's official channel Al-Manara Al-Baydaa, also shows Abu Hurayra saying: "I came to Syria without money to buy a rifle or a pouch. Friday Sports In Brief BERGERAC, France (AP) — Ramunas Navardauskas of Lithuania led a late breakaway in a downpour to win the 19th Stage of the Tour de France on Friday after hitching a ride with his Garmin-Sharp teammates. UN warns of world inaction as South Sudan famine looms Top UN aid chiefs have begged donors to increase efforts to stave off looming famine in South Sudan, where a third of the population are in crisis after months of war. Nearly a million children aged under five face acute malnutrition, the World Food Programme (WFP) and UN children's agency UNICEF said in a joint statement released late Friday, after their top directors visited the impoverished nation. The UN Security Council said Friday the food crisis is now the worst in the world, as it called on countries who had pledged 618 million dollars in aid to make good on their promises. "If we are to rapidly expand our operations and save more lives, then we need more resources, and the international community has to act now," WFP chief Ertharin Cousin said. Top Asian News at 7:00 a.m. GMT HONG KONG (AP) — As skyscrapers around Hong Kong harbor erupted into a reverie of laser beams and giant digital displays during their synchronized nightly light show, one innocuous 28-story building near the water's edge had stayed dark for months, clad in bamboo scaffolding for a face-lift. Then, in June, the renovated tower came to life, flashing giant Chinese characters that some in Hong Kong saw as a warning. Israel and Hamas declare 12-hour Gaza truce The Israeli military and the militant Palestinian Hamas were set on Saturday to start a 12-hour ceasefire at 8:00 am (0500 GMT), but a longer-term truce remained elusive. Hamas said that it and other militant groups in Gaza had reached "national consensus on a humanitarian truce" and Israel later confirmed that it would observe what it called "a humanitarian window in the Gaza Strip". A statement from the Hamas-run interior ministry in Gaza warned people not to approach bombed-out buildings and militant bases for fear of "explosive objects". Earlier, US Secretary of State John Kerry, speaking from Cairo, said that efforts to broker a longer halt to the fighting had so far yet to bear fruit. Fragile 12-hour truce enters into force in Gaza A 12-hour humanitarian truce between Israel and the Palestinian Hamas group entered into effect on Saturday, as top diplomats pressed efforts to secure a longer-term ceasefire. The fragile ceasefire came into force at 8:00 am (0500 GMT) after Hamas and the Israeli military announced their consent in the early hours of Saturday morning. Hamas said it and other militant groups in Gaza had reached "national consensus on a humanitarian truce", and Israel later confirmed it would observe what it called "a humanitarian window in the Gaza Strip". The Hamas-run interior ministry in Gaza advised people not to approach bombed-out buildings and militant bases for fear of "explosive objects". No truce, but 12-hour lull in Gaza fighting begins GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip (AP) — Israel and Hamas began a 12-hour humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza Saturday after the efforts of U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry failed to produce a longer truce aimed at ending nearly three weeks of fighting. Top Asian News at 6:30 a.m. GMT HONG KONG (AP) — As skyscrapers around Hong Kong harbor erupted into a reverie of laser beams and giant digital displays during their synchronized nightly light show, one innocuous 28-story building near the water's edge had stayed dark for months, clad in bamboo scaffolding for a face-lift. Then, in June, the renovated tower came to life, flashing giant Chinese characters that some in Hong Kong saw as a warning. Holy month of Ramadan is a big boon for retailers DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Glitzy billboards in the Middle East and postage stamps in the U.S. Advertisements for lingerie and sales on modest skirts. Lavish buffets and cellphone apps. Israeli shells kill 18 Gazans of a single family: health ministry GAZA (Reuters) - Israeli tank shelling killed 18 Palestinians from a single family in the southern Gaza Strip on Saturday, the Gaza health ministry said, shortly before a 12-hour humanitarian truce agreed by Israel and Hamas went into effect. Gaza Health Ministry spokesman Ashraf Al-Qidra said that the 18 members of the Al-Najar family had been trapped inside their house in Khuzaa village east of Khan Younis since Thursday and that many others were wounded in Israeli tank shelling. ... In Chinese shadow, Hong Kong fights for its future HONG KONG (AP) — As skyscrapers around Hong Kong harbor erupted into a reverie of laser beams and giant digital displays during their synchronized nightly light show, one innocuous 28-story building near the water's edge had stayed dark for months, clad in bamboo scaffolding for a face-lift. Powerful Philippine Christian church celebrates 100 years A Philippine Christian church renowned for its discipline, money and political power will mark its 100th anniversary on Sunday with more than one million followers expected to join the celebrations. The Iglesia ni Cristo (Church of Christ) members will congregate at a giant complex especially built for the occasion near Manila, in an event that will showcase the religion's stunning success at home and abroad. "The pace of the spread of Iglesia... has exploded," church spokesman Edwil Zabala told AFP during a tour of the "City of Victory" complex, which includes a 55,000-seat indoor stadium, to promote the centenary. The Roman Catholic Church has for centuries been the dominant religious force in the Philippines, a former Spanish colony. China's Guangdong province removes over 850 'naked officials' from their posts More than 850 government workers in China's southern province of Guangdong have been forced out of their jobs as part of an anti-crackdown on officials whose spouses and children have emigrated abroad. An investigation by the provincial government identified 2,190 "naked officials" and 866 of them have been removed from their posts, according to a report posted on the Guangdong government's official news portal on Friday and carried in local media on Saturday. State media have reported that so-called naked officials will not be considered for promotion, as they are viewed as flight risks whose ability to escape overseas could make them more inclined to engage in acts of corruption. Xinhua said naked officials were a serious problem in Guangdong, which borders Hong Kong. Top Asian News at 5:30 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Top Asian News at 5:00 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Wildfire managers tap military for aid in U.S. West By Laura Zuckerman SALMON Idaho (Reuters) - Wildfire managers have turned to the U.S. Department of Defense for immediate access to two military C-130 aircraft retrofitted to carry retardant, boosting their forces to face the largest blaze in Washington state history. The U.S. Forest Service has its own fleet of more than 20 air tankers, but has in the past called on the military to provide aircraft to help suppress wildfires. Blazes that have raged across hundreds of thousands of acres (ha) of forests and grasslands in Washington state and Oregon triggered the call for the two aircraft, Steve Gage, a senior official with the U.S. Forest Service, told reporters in a conference call on Friday. Chronic drought has also parched much of California, New Mexico and Arizona, heightening the risk and intensity of wildfires. Top Asian News at 4:30 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Jihadists kill at least 50 Syria troops in ambush The assault in Raqa province, the IS jihadists' Euphrates valley stronghold, came amid their fiercest assault yet on Damascus-held territory. The deaths added to 74 already killed in the offensive across the north and northeast, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said. "At least 50 soldiers were ambushed, some of them were killed in fighting but most of them were beheaded," director Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP. "Allah be praised, 75 soldiers of the 17th division were captured at Abu Shared and they were beheaded," one sympathiser tweeted. Italy's Renzi runs into trouble on key reform Italy's energetic Premier Matteo Renzi has staked his reputation at home and abroad on an ambitious reform agenda, but he may have underestimated how difficult it would be to win over unruly opposition parties. The 39-year-old prime minister came to power in February with promises to boost growth in the debt-laden country and streamline Italy's notoriously bloated institutions. Since then he has run into trouble with a key bid to streamline the Senate. Italy's financial Il Sole 24 Ore daily wrote Friday of "concerns that... the stall on institutional reforms could put the whole government reform programme at risk" and weaken Renzi's hand as he tries to negotiate greater flexibility from Brussels over the country's debt levels. Top Asian News at 4:00 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Cameroon sends 14 Boko Haram members to prison Yaoundé (AFP) - A military court in Cameroon has handed down prison sentences of up to 20 years to 14 Boko Haram members, the country's state broadcaster Crtv reported. "Each of the Boko Haram members (was) sentenced to between 10 and 20 years" in prison, said the report, adding that the sentences cannot be appealed. The trial was reportedly the first of its kind in Cameroon where a large number of members of the radical group have been arrested in the north over the past weeks following attacks on police stations, as well as kidnappings and killings. More than 3,000 Nigerians fleeing Boko Haram attacks have taken refuge in the Cameroon town of Fotokol, according to a municipal official. Defending champ Isner advances in Atlanta John Isner kept his Atlanta ATP title defense on track with a 7-6 (10/8), 6-4 quarter-final victory over Australian Marinko Matosevic. A day after Isner fired 30 aces and still had to fight off two match points in a second-round win over Robby Ginepri, the towering American fired 17 aces and won 84 percent of his first-serve points in his win over Matosevic. Top Asian News at 3:30 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. California state senator facing additional charge SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal grand jury on Friday charged a California state senator with more felonies in addition to the eight counts he already faced in a sweeping organized crime and public corruption case centered in San Francisco's Chinatown. New EU sanctions to target Russian businesses BRUSSELS (AP) — A European Union document shows that among those targeted by the EU-wide asset freeze and travel ban are Alexander Bortnikov, head of the Russian Federal Security. Top Asian News at 3:00 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Aruba to hold Venezuelan official seeking immunity ORANJESTAD, Aruba (AP) — A judge in Aruba ruled Friday that the highest-ranking Venezuelan official ever arrested on a U.S. warrant must remain behind bars pending an extradition request on drug-trafficking charges, prompting Venezuela to cancel flights to the Dutch Caribbean island in retaliation. Top Asian News at 2:30 a.m. GMT SNIZHNE, Ukraine (AP) — It was lunchtime when a tracked launcher with four SA-11 surface-to-air missiles rolled into town and parked on Karapetyan Street. Fifteen hundred miles (2,400 kilometers) to the west, passengers were checking in for Malaysia Airlines Flight 17. It had been a noisy day in this eastern Ukrainian town, residents recounted. Plenty of military equipment was moving through. But still it was hard to miss the bulky missile system, also known as a Buk M-1. It left deep tread marks in the asphalt as it rumbled by in a small convoy. Aruba to hold Venezuela official seeks immunity ORANJESTAD, Aruba (AP) — A judge in Aruba ruled Friday that the highest-ranking Venezuelan official ever arrested on a U.S. warrant must remain behind bars pending an extradition request on drug-trafficking charges, prompting Venezuela to cancel flights to the Dutch Caribbean island in retaliation. WRHL 2014-07-26T09:08:46Z http://www.wrhl.net/pages/index.cfm?id=505