Devyani Khobragade gets a rap from her Ministry
The Indian Ministry of External Affairs on Friday relieved diplomat Devyani Khobragade of her duties as director on the partnership development division and placed her under ‘compulsory watch’. Khobragade was strip-searched in the US last year on charges of ill-treating her domestic help. Sources in the ministry said it acted after finding out that she had not disclosed that her two children had both US and Indian passports.
Taliban releases video identifying Umar Mansoor as mastermind of Peshawar attack
On Thursday, the Pakistani Taliban released a video showing one of its operatives, Umar Mansoor, trying to justify the December 16 attack in the Peshawar army public school. Mansoor has since been identified as the mastermind of the attack, which left more than 132 students of the school dead. The video describes him as amir, or leader, and says he is a father of two daughters and a volleyball enthusiast.
Obama vows US response to Sony Pictures hacks
Earlier this week, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation said the cyber-attacks against Sony Pictures had originated in North Korea. Since then, Sony has cancelled the Christmas release of its film The Interview, which shows a pair of American journalists assassinating North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un. On Friday, President Barack Obama vowed a US response to the attack, which stole thousands of sensitive documents, containing important technical information, from Sony’s servers. Obama also said that Sony should not have cancelled the release of the picture.
Mother arrested for stabbing eight children to death
In one of Australia’s worst mass-killings in recent times, a woman has been arrested for the murder of eight children, seven of whom were hers. A 20-year-old sibling of the eight is reported to have raised the alarm after seeing their bodies in their home in Cairns, a city in northern Australia. The mother, aged 37, was being treated for stab wounds to her chest. Police said she was in a stable condition.
Peshmerga liberate 10,000 Yezidis from IS siege
Kurdish Peshmerga forces broke a months-long by Islamic State fighters on Saturday, liberating a mountain on which some 10,000 Yezidis had been trapped. The Yezidis had fled to the mountain in August after the IS seized their north-western town of Sinjar. A spokesperson for the council of Yezidis in Germany said they were being moved out in cars. The IS, an extremist Sunni group, regards the Yezidis, who are followers of an ancient faith, as devil worshippers. The Peshmerga said their forces had retaken seven villages and the strategic town of Zumar since they began their campaign to Mt. Sinjar on Wednesday, assisted by US-led airstrikes.
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