Germany (DW) UN Security Council to convene after Russia seizes Ukrainian navy ships near Crimea; The US ambassador to the United Nations announced the planned meeting on Twitter. Russia said it opened fire after the Ukrainian ships illegally entered its territorial waters on Sunday. Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB), which oversees the country’s border guard service, said it was forced to open fire on the ships on Sunday after they illegally entered Russian territorial waters.”There is irrefutable evidence that Kyev prepared and orchestrated provocations,” it said. “These materials will soon be made public.” Three Ukrainian sailors wounded in the clashes were in a stable condition and receiving medical care, it added.
(DW) Brexit deal: EU bids sad farewell to United Kingdom; German Chancellor Angela Merkel has called the EU-Brexit deal a ‘diplomatic work of art,’ while UK Prime Minister Theresa May is ready to fight for it back home. Bernd Riegert reports from Brussels. “It is a sad day,” EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said during the two-hour special meeting of the European Council. “It is no reason to celebrate when a country leaves the EU. It is a tragedy.” The Brexit deal to end the UK’s 46-year membership in the EU was agreed to unanimously by the EU’s 27 member states. The end of 21 months of tough negotiation left no one in a party mood. “This is not about who won or lost,” European Council President Donald Tusk said ahead of the meeting.
(DW) India marks 10 years since Mumbai terror attacks; Scores of people were killed when Islamist militants launched attacks on several targets across India’s financial capital. A decade later, India and its allies have called on Pakistan to bring the masterminds to justice. India’s financial capital Mumbai on Monday marked the tenth anniversary of terror attacks that killed 166 people and injured hundreds more across the city. Several memorial services were held for the victims, survivors and their families at the sites of the attacks. “Tributes to those who lost their lives in the gruesome 26/11 terror attacks in Mumbai,” Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi said in a tweet. “A grateful nation bows to our brave police and security forces who valiantly fought the terrorists during the Mumbai attacks.”
(DW) British ‘spy’ Matthew Hedges pardoned by UAE; Emirati officials showed a confession video of the British national convicted of spying, where he admitted to being an MI6 captain. Hegdes was arrested in the United Arab Emirates while on a research trip.
(DW) Germany may increase troop numbers to 203,000 by 2025; The defense ministry is set to approve a plan to create 5,000 more Bundeswehr jobs than initially foreseen, according to a newspaper report. Whether officials can convince young Germans to sign up is another matter.
(DW) Protesters mark UN International Day for Elimination of Violence against Women; Protesters in cities across Europe and elsewhere have marked the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women. Demonstrators in some cities were met with tear gas.
(DW) Switzerland votes against putting ‘Swiss Law First’; Swiss voters have rejected a plan to put Swiss court rulings ahead of international ones. However, they approved allowing insurers to spy on customers and against a ban on the dehorning of cows. Some 66 percent of voters and all of the country’s 26 cantons voted on Sunday against the “Swiss law, not foreign judges” measure. The measure, backed by right wing groups, called for domestic law to be placed above international law, a move that opponents claim would damage the neutral country’s global standing. The anti-migrant, right wing Swiss People’s Party (SVP) had sought to portray the measure as essential for safeguarding national sovereignty. However, government and business groups were staunchly opposed. They warned that hundreds of vital trade deals could have been put at risk by a formal repudiation of international courts.
FRANCE (France24) Russia seizes three Ukrainian ships in Black Sea after firing on them; Russia seized three Ukrainian naval ships off the coast of Russia-annexed Crimea on Sunday after opening fire on them and wounding several sailors, a move that risks igniting a dangerous new crisis between the two countries. Russia’s FSB security service said early on Monday its border patrol boats had seized the Ukrainian naval vessels in the Black Sea and used weapons to force them to stop, Russian news agencies reported. The FSB said it had been forced to act because the ships — two small Ukrainian armoured artillery vessels and a tug boat — had illegally entered its territorial waters, attempted illegal actions, and ignored warnings to stop while manoeuvring dangerously. “Weapons were used with the aim of forcibly stopping the Ukrainian warships,” the FSB said in a statement circulated to Russian state media. “As a result, all three Ukrainian naval vessels were seized in the Russian Federation’s territorial waters in the Black Sea.”
(France24) Trading bullets for ballots, former al Shabaab No. 2 tests Somalia’s democratic process; When al Shabaab’s deputy leader Mukhtar Robow defected from the jihadist group, it was hailed as a major step for peace hopes in Somalia. But now that he’s running for a December 5 regional election, some think it’s a step too far. At a crowded meeting hall in the southern Somali city of Baidoa last month, Mukhtar Robow faced a gathering of local politicians and reporters squeezed into the room as a crowd of supporters and curious onlookers gathered outside the premises. Robow, also known as Abu Mansour, is no stranger to the media spotlight. As one of the founding members of al Shabaab — the al Qaeda-linked Somali terrorist group — Robow once served as the jihadist group’s deputy leader and spokesman. For many years, he was the public face of the organisation, appearing in al Shabaab propaganda videos, granting interviews to local journalists and addressing press conferences in the Somali wilds. As an al Shabaab military commander with battlefield experience and training in Afghanistan, Robow was considered a dangerous man. The US slapped a $5 million bounty on his head and the Treasury Department imposed sanctions on him as a “specially designated global terrorist”.
(France24)Ukraine considers martial law after naval clash with Russia;
(France24) Russia launches air strikes on rebels after toxic gas attack in Syria’s Aleppo; The Russian Defence Ministry said on Sunday its warplanes had carried out air strikes against militants it says are responsible for firing shells filled with chlorine gas in the Syrian city of Aleppo. Russian news agencies cited Major-General Igor Konashenkov as saying that the strikes had destroyed all of their targets and that Russia had warned Turkey (which backs some rebel factions and has brokered a ceasefire with Moscow in the Idlib region) of the bombing raid in advance via a telephone hotline. Earlier on Sunday, Moscow, a key Damascus ally, accused insurgents of poisoning 46 people, including eight children, in the attack, while the state news agency SANA reported “107 cases of breathing difficulties”. The Russian defence ministry said the attack on Aleppo, a regime-held city, was launched from territory that former al-Qaeda militants control in the rebel stronghold of Idlib.
JAPAN (NHK) Nissan CEO explains Ghosn’s dismissal to employees; Nissan Motor President and CEO Hiroto Saikawa has explained to employees about former chairman Carlos Ghosn’s alleged misconduct. Saikawa told reporters before the briefing on Monday that he wants employees to stay calm and that he would explain what happened and what happens next. The briefing was relayed to Nissan employees at the company’s offices and factories in Japan and abroad. Saikawa spoke about the allegations that Ghosn understated his compensation in securities reports and used company funds for personal expenses. He said Ghosn’s misconduct had been confirmed through internal investigations.
(NHK) Japan protests S.Korean lawmakers’ Takeshima trip; Japan’s Foreign Ministry has strongly protested a visit by South Korean lawmakers to the disputed Takeshima Islands in the Sea of Japan. A cross-party group of 8 South Korean lawmakers traveled to the islets by helicopter on Monday. They visited a recently renovated facility for security guards and offered the guards encouragement. South Korea controls the islands. Japan claims them. The Japanese government maintains the islands are an inherent part of Japan’s territory. It says South Korea is illegally occupying them. Kenji Kanasugi, the head of the Foreign Ministry’s Asian and Oceanian Affairs Bureau, lodged a protest with a senior official of South Korea’s Embassy in Tokyo. Kanasugi told the official that the lawmakers’ visit is totally unacceptable in light of Japan’s position on the islands’ sovereignty. The Japanese Embassy in Seoul lodged a similar protest with the South Korean Foreign Ministry. Japan’s Foreign Ministry says it learned of the planned visit last week and asked that it be canceled. Another group of 13 South Korean lawmakers landed on the islands last month to demonstrate their claimed sovereignty there. Earlier this month, a South Korean research ship also entered Japanese waters near the islands without consent.
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