Russia, China reportedly decode classified information
A British newspaper has claimed that the United Kingdom has been forced to withdraw spies positioned overseas after Russia and China decoded classified information in files leaked by Edward Snowden, a former United States security contractor. According to the report, British security service MI6 has removed agents from operations in certain "hostile" countries. Snowden, who was granted asylum by Russia in 2013, had claimed that the 1.7 million encrypted files he had leaked from US and British security agencies were secure. But as per the report, Britain now believes that Moscow and Beijing have cracked the files that could allow the spies to be identified.
Sudanese President barred from leaving South Africa
A South African court on Sunday barred Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir from leaving the country. Bashir, who is visiting South Africa for an African Union-organised summit, has been accused by the International Criminal Court of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed during the Darfur conflict. A judge will hear an application calling for Bashir’s arrest on Monday. The African National Congress-led government in South Africa had earlier granted legal immunity to all African Union delegates. The conflict in Darfur has killed over 300,000 people and has displaced over 2 million more.
Pakistan halts move to shut international charity
Pakistan has put on hold its move to close the main office of Save the Children, an international aid group, in Islamabad. However, a local spokesperson for Save the Children, which has 1,200 employees across the country, said on Sunday that they had not received any official communication from the government allowing the group to re-open its offices. The government had on Thursday abruptly shut the aid organisation's main office in Islamabad for "violating its charter", stating that it would not allow any non-government organisation to work against its interests.
Erdogan urges parties to expedite government formation
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Sunday urged political parties to expedite the formation of a government in the country. Erdogan said that he would do everything within his power to end the ongoing political stalemate. Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party or AKP lost its parliamentary majority during elections held in Turkey earlier this month. Meanwhile, Turkish Prime Minister and AKP leader Ahmet Davutoglu said that no opposition party had been excluded as a possible coalition partner. However, no opposition leader has yet issued a statement regarding an alliance with the AKP.
Zoo animals on streets of Georgian capital after floods
Several zoo animals including tigers, lions and a hippopotamus escaped from a zoo in Georgia's capital on Sunday following heavy flooding in Tbilisi which also killed 12 people. The animals fled the zoo premises after their enclosures were destroyed by the water. Some animals were seized and video footage showed an escaped hippo in one of the city's main squares. The animal was later subdued with a tranquilizer gun. While three zoo workers were killed, there were no reports of animal attacks being responsible for any of the casualties. With no clear information about the number of animals on the loose, authorities warned residents to stay indoors.