Nearly 100 killed by Taliban in Afghanistan
At least 95 people were killed last Saturday when attackers drove an explosive-laden ambulance past a police checkpoint into a secure zone in Afghanistan’s capital, Kabul. The alleged target was an interior ministry building. The Taliban, who also killed 22 in a Kabul hotel last week, have since claimed the attack. Aside from those who were killed, 158 people were injured in the blast. According to the deputy spokesperson for the Interior Ministry, Nasrat Rahimi, the attacker made his way through a police checkpoint by telling police he was transporting a patient to Jamhuriat hospital. Officials say that all cars passing through the checkpoints must be searched and their drivers must show proper identification. Officials will now have to investigate how the driver made it through. The Afghan government accused Pakistan of providing support for the attackers. The United States cut its security aid to Pakistan after saying Pakistan’s government had failed to take proper action against terrorists inside its borders.
Rainfall swells river Seine in Paris
After weeks of heavy rainfall, the river Seine is expected to peak at a water level nearly 20 feet above normal. Paris has put riverside businesses and homes on high alert as the river threatens to overflow. The Louvre museum was forced to close a lower gallery, touring boats have been tied up and police have closed riverside roads. Reporters also say rats are being flushed out from their usual habitats below ground. The Zouave, a statue of a French soldier from the Crimean War that the city has used as an unofficial marker for water levels, was submerged up to his waist last weekend. In 1910, historical flooding submerged the statue up to its neck. Mayor Anne Hidalgo said the recent summer waves and flooding was “clearly a question of the town adapting to climate change.” The mayor warned that the water level would remain high through the upcoming week as the river drains slowly into waterlogged soil.
Digital exchange loses millions in Japan
A hacking attack on its network may have cost one of Japan’s largest digital currency exchanges $534 million worth in virtual assets, representatives said last weekend. The firm, Coincheck, assessed its losses in NEM, a lesser-known currency, and froze all deposits and withdrawals for all currencies except Bitcoin. The attack is alleged to have taken place early last Friday, but security did not catch the breach until nearly nine hours later. A representative told Japanese media that the lost funds may not be able to be reimbursed. The exchange kept the funds in an online “hot wallet” as opposed to a “cold wallet” in which the currency would have been stored securely offline. Company chief operating officer Yusuke Otsuka told the media, “We know where the funds were sent … We are tracing them and if we’re able to continue tracking, it may be possible to recover them.” In 2014, another Tokyo exchange, MtGox, was forced to close its doors after $400 million was stolen from its network. If last Friday’s theft is confirmed, it will be the largest theft in digital currency’s history.