Erdogan orders 10 ambassadors ‘persona non grata’
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has ordered the removal of 10 Western ambassadors from the country for saying that a detained civil society leader should be released. The ambassadors from the US, Germany, France, the Netherlands, Canada, Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and New Zealand issued a joint statement Monday, calling for the release of Turkish philanthropist and civil society leader Osman Kavala, who has been detained for four years despite not being convicted of a crime.
Injured director ‘gutted’ over fatal shooting
Film director Joel Souza, who was injured when Alec Baldwin fatally shot 42-year-oldcinematographer Halyna Hutchins with a prop gun, has said he was “gutted by the loss of friend and colleague”. Souza, 48, paid tribute to Hutchins saying, “She was kind, vibrant, incredibly talented, fought for every inch and always pushed me to be better.” The American Film Institute has since set up a memorial scholarship to honour Hutchins.
Salvini on trial for refusing migrant ship docking
Italy’s right-wing former interior minister, Matteo Salvini, went on trial Saturday charged with kidnapping, for refusing in 2019 to allow a Spanish migrant rescue ship to dock in Sicily, keeping the people onboard at sea for days. The Public Prosecutor’s Office has called 26 witnesses including former Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte and actor Richard Gere. Lega leader Salvini said it was “surreal undergoing a trial because I did my job”.
Tens of thousands in Orban rally
Tens of thousands of supporters of Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban and his right-wing government marched in Budapest on Saturday in a demonstration of unity behind the populist leader’s contentious policies that have led to challenges to his power both in Hungary and the European Union. The rally was dubbed a “Peace March”, during which Orban delivered a rare public speech to his supporters in which he painted a dark picture of what Hungarians could expect if he is defeated in a national election scheduled for next spring.
Colombia captures most wanted drug lord
Colombia’s most wanted drug trafficker and the leader of the country’s largest criminal gang has been captured. Dairo Antonio Úsuga, better known as Otoniel, was seized after a joint operation by the army, the air force and the police. The government had offered an $800,000 (€687,000) reward for information about his whereabouts, while the US placed a $5m (€4.3m) bounty on his head. President Iván Duque hailed Otoniel’s capture.
Nigerian gunmen spring up 800 inmates
Security forces in Nigeria are hunting for 800 inmates who escaped from a jail in Nigeria’s Oyo State after it was stormed by heavily-armed men. The prison service said the attackers gained entry to the prison yard by blasting the walls with dynamite. Some 575 inmates, who were all awaiting trial, were missing while 262 escapees had since been recaptured.
Less homework for Chinese students
China has passed a law to reduce students’ homework. It also prohibits parents from giving excessive study tasks to their children, stressing that the legal guardians of minors must “properly organise” the time for study, rest and physical activity for young people. They must also prevent minors from becoming addicted to the Internet.
4.5 billion use social media worldwide
The number of global social media users has surpassed the 4.5-billion-mark, growing at a rate of one million new users per day. The Digital 2021 October Global Statshot report by DataReportal says among the different platforms, the growth of TikTok stands out. According to the analysis in the last pandemic year, 400 million users joined the social networks (+ 9.9%). The present world population is 7.89 billion and has grown by 80 million people in the last year. According to current trends, by the first half of 2022, some 60% of the world population will have a social account.