Following is a summary of current world news briefs.
U.N. to vote in ‘coming days’ on North Korea sanctions -U.S. official
The U.N. Security Council will vote in the “coming days” on a U.S.-led push to strengthen sanctions on North Korea for its renewed ballistic missile launches, a U.S. official said on Wednesday, although China and Russia have signaled opposition. North Korea fired three missiles on Wednesday, including one thought to be its largest intercontinental ballistic missile, after U.S. President Joe Biden ended a trip to Asia. It was the latest in a string of missile launches by North Korea this year.
Tunisian president decrees a referendum for new constitution
Tunisian President Kais Saied issued on Wednesday a decree to call voters to a referendum on a new constitution on July 25, the official gazette said, ignoring the opposition’s calls to reverse the controversial move. Saied last week named law professor Sadok Belaid to head an advisory committee that included law and political science deans, to draft a new constitution for a “new republic,” excluding political parties from restructuring the political system.
Russia pounds Ukraine’s east as town buries dead in mass grave
Russian forces on Wednesday pounded Ukrainian-held twin cities in the Donbas region that is now the focus of the three-month war, threatening to shut off the last main escape route for civilians trapped in the path of their advance. After failing to seize Ukraine’s capital Kyiv or its second city Kharkiv, Russia is trying to take full control of the Donbas, comprised of two eastern provinces Moscow claims on behalf of separatists.
Tanks, but no ammo – Germany’s Ukraine pledges show military muddle
Four weeks ago, Germany agreed to send dozens of anti-aircraft tanks to help defend Ukraine from Russia’s invasion, part of what it called a turning-point after decades of military restraint. Berlin says it can deliver the first Gepard tanks in July. That’s too slow, a Ukrainian parliamentarian said on Tuesday, as Russian forces launched an assault on the country’s east.
Boris Johnson takes responsibility but will not quit over lockdown parties
Boris Johnson said he was humbled and took responsibility but refused to quit after a damning official report on Wednesday detailed a series of illegal lockdown parties at the British leader’s Downing Street office. Opposition politicians and some in his own party have repeatedly called for him to resign over the alcohol-fuelled gatherings in violation of COVID-19 rules all but banning people from socialising outside their households.
Canada police say they barred Trudeau from event over safety concerns
Canadian police said on Wednesday they had barred Prime Minister Justin Trudeau from a fundraising event over safety concerns after protesters with several cars and trucks started gathering outside the venue. Trudeau had been due to address an event held by the ruling Liberal Party in the province of British Columbia on Tuesday. Last year he had gravel thrown at him during an election campaign stop.
UN rights chief speaks with Xi amid criticism of China trip
Chinese President Xi Jinping spoke on Wednesday via video link with U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet, who is on a visit that has drawn criticism from rights groups and which the United States has called a mistake. While Bachelet’s six-day trip will include a visit to the western region of Xinjiang, where her office said last year it believed mostly Muslim ethnic Uyghur people had been unlawfully detained, mistreated and forced to work, there was no mention of it in either side’s public remarks.
A boat carrying 842 Haitian migrants bound for the United States strayed off course and washed ashore along the north coast of Cuba instead, according to Cuban state media reports on Wednesday, leaving island authorities scrambling to provide the group with humanitarian aid. State broadcaster Telecubanacan showed images of a single large gray ship crowded with Haitians lining the decks from bow to stern, and even on the rooftop, as it swayed in rough, windswept seas.
Blast tears through Kabul mosque, killing at least five
A blast tore through a mosque in Afghanistan’s capital on Wednesday evening, killing at least five people, authorities and hospitals said, the same day deadly explosions hit passenger vehicles in the northern city of Mazar-i-Sharif. A spokesman for the capital’s commander said at least two people were injured in the blast on a mosque in Kabul. Emergency Hospital said in a tweet that it had received five bodies from the blast and more than a dozen wounded patients.
A new website that published leaked emails from several leading proponents of Britain’s exit from the European Union is tied to Russian hackers, according to a Google cybersecurity official and the former head of UK foreign intelligence. The website – titled “Very English Coop d’Etat” – says it has published private emails from former British spymaster Richard Dearlove, leading Brexit campaigner Gisela Stuart, pro-Brexit historian Robert Tombs, and other supporters of Britain’s divorce from the EU, which was finalized in January 2020.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)