This week, the violence continued in Eastern Ukraine despite attempts at a peace deal, thousands took to the streets of Sri Lanka to rally in support of the country’s ex-president, and closer to home Alberta’s fiscal future looks uncertain.
Each Friday, we bring you a roundup of some of the biggest stories making headlines around the world. Here’s 9 things that happened outside of Vancouver over the past week that you should know about (in no particular order):
Germany has rejected Greece’s request for a six-month extension on its euro zone loan. Greece put forth the request in order to avoid running out of money. However, the nation was met with a firm rejection from Germany- the EU paymaster. Germany called Greece’s request “not a substantial solution.” The loan will expire in a week and Greece is desperately looking for ways to prevent a lack of funds. On Friday, the Eurogroup will decide whether or not Greece will receive a loan extension.
The Syrian government is has agreed to a six-week trial ceasefire in Aleppo. Syrian government attacks have been on going in Aleppo in order to fight rebels and cut a supply route north of the city. According to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, at least 150 soldiers and rebels have been killed in Aleppo. The city has been torn apart by rebel and government control since 2012.
Fighting continues in East Ukraine amidst attempts for a cease fire in the area. Last week, France, Germany, Ukraine and Russia agreed to a peace deal when they met at the Minsk conference in Belarus. However, the fighting raged on as shelling continued near the town of Debaltseve and there are reports that mortar bombs have been launched as well. Western countries believe that Russia is responsible for the rebel advances and the recent attacks, as they have reportedly deployed soldiers to fight in Eastern Ukraine in support of separatists. However, Moscow has repeatedly denied this claim and said that the comments were beyond “diplomatic ethics.”
On Sunday, ISIS released a gruesome video which depicted the beheadings of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians on a Libyan beach. The five minute video was released by the militant group’s media organization, known as Al-Hayat Media. Egypt has responded to the attacks by carrying out air strikes in Libya targetted against ISIS.
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On Tuesday, a group of Chelsea football fans racially assaulted a 33-year-old Souleymane S. at a Paris train station, preventing him from boarding a metro train. A video of the assault has gone viral. The group of men chanted “we’re racist, we’re racist, we’re racist and we like it” at Souleymane while pushing him out of the train several times. Chelsea has suspended three people involved with the attack and life bans are pending.
Alberta will release its third-quarter fiscal update next week and it is predicted to bring some troubling news for the province. The recent decline in energy prices for oil have expunged $7 billion from government funds, meaning the province will most likely be in deficit for the current fiscal year. To ease the deficit, Alberta’s provincial government is considering a provincial sales tax or raising corporate taxes.
Over 20,000 people took to the streets of Colombo to rally for the return of Sri Lankan ex-president, Mahinda Rajapaksa, after he was defeated last month by Maithripala Sirisena. Supporters of Rajapaksa want him to return to office because they feel the new government is jeopardizing the nation’s unity by being overly tolerant of the country’s Tamil minority. In a statement made by Rajapaksa, he said that he cannot ignore the wishes of his supporters and he may consider running for prime minister.
NASA is gearing up to do make some renovations on the International Space Station. Astronauts Barry “Butch” Wilmore and Terry Virts will carry out a number of space walks in order to make changes to the outside of the station in order to create new docking ports. These ports will serve as parking spots for other spacecrafts that will visit in the future.
Shootings at a Copenhagen cafe on Saturday and a synagogue on Sunday have left two people dead and five injured. Film maker Finn Noergaard was killed on Saturday at an event for free speech. On Sunday, security guard Dan Uzan was shot outside a synagogue. The shooter was identified as 22-year-old Omar El-Hussein. He was Danish born and had a previous history of crime. He was released from jail two weeks prior to the shooting. El-Hussein was killed by police on Sunday.
Missed last week’s roundup? Read it here.
Also check out our weekly series, published every Wednesday – 9 good things that happened around the world last week.
Feature Image: Leonhard Foeger / Reuters