Eye on the World
The Guardian reports U.K. security abuse
The Guardian revealed last Monday that England’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) has gathered emails from journalists based in the US and UK. “Emails from the BBC, Reuters, the Guardian, the New York Times, Le Monde, the Sun, NBC and the Washington Post were saved by GCHQ and shared on the agency’s intranet as part of a test exercise,” wrote the Guardian, citing files leaked by Edward Snowden. Additionally, an internal document warns, “journalists and reporters representing all types of news media represent a potential threat to security.”
Unrest in Yemen
Houthi, an Shia insurgent group, rebels in Yemen assaulted Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi’s house last Tuesday. The rebels, a Shia minority group in the north of the country, are strongly opposed to the United States’ anti-terror activity in the country, including drone strikes. The Houthi view the Yemeni government as conceding its sovereignty to the US. Yemeni President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi along with his Prime Minister and intelligence chief resigned in protest on Thursday over the Houthi rebels actions. Parliament did not accept the resignations.
King Tut’s beard broken in Egypt
The Egyptian Museum in Cairo is investigating why Pharaoh Tutankhamen’s beard had to be glued back on. The beard on the pharaoh’s burial mask is said to have been hastily reattached with quick drying glue.
Saudi Arabian king dies
Following the death of Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah, half-brother Crown Prince Salman bin Abdulaziz al-Saud ascended to the throne on Friday. Aged 79, he has already moved to appoint heirs and ministers, pledging to continue the traditions and policies of his predecessors. “We will continue adhering to the correct policies which Saudi Arabia has followed since its establishment,” he said.
Draught plagues Brazil
Brazilian Environment Minister Izabella Teixeira has said that the drought in the states of Sao Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, and Minas Gerais is the worst since recordkeeping began 84 years ago. The drought is affecting industry, agriculture and hydroelectric dams with no end in sight. Brazilian TV reports that the city of Sao Paulo’s Cantareira water reservoir is at 5.2 percent capacity while the state of Rio de Janeiro’s primary reservoir is completely empty. So far, water rations have not been imposed.
ISIS executes Japanese journalist
A video announcing the execution of Japanese journalist Haruna Yukawa by the Islamic State was released earlier this week. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has condemned the killings and demanded the release of another hostage, reportedly Kenji Goto. Japanese and American specialists are trying to establish the authenticity of the video.
Spacecraft photographs Pluto
NASA’s New Horizons space probe took its first photos of Pluto in preparation for its approach to our solar system’s outermost planet on Sunday. The photos will help scientists fine-tune the spacecraft’s trajectory toward the Pluto-Charon system. New Horizons will zip past Pluto in July.