TDB Top 5 International Stories: Friday 30th December 2016




TO DATE, THE only public evidence that the Russian government was responsible for hacks of the DNC and key Democratic figures has been circumstantial and far short of conclusive, courtesy of private research firms with a financial stake in such claims. Multiple federal agencies now claim certainty about the Kremlin connection, but they have yet to make public the basis for their beliefs.

Now, a never-before-published top-secret document provided by whistleblower Edward Snowden suggests the NSA has a way of collecting evidence of Russian hacks, because the agency tracked a similar hack before in the case of a prominent Russian journalist, who was also a U.S. citizen.

The Intercept

4: Philippine President Walks Back on Comment That He Once Threw Someone from a Helicopter

“If you are corrupt, I will fetch you using a helicopter to Manila and I will throw you out,” Duterte said in Filipino during a speech about typhoon-relief efforts. “I’ve done it before; why can’t I do it again?”

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte made another shocking claim this week when he said that he once threw a “corrupt” person from a helicopter in flight as punishment. He then threatened to do it again.

Vice News


3: Shuar tribe face government in Amazon mining protests

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Morona-Santiago, Ecuador – The death of a police officer during a standoff between military and indigenous Shuar people in a takeover attempt of a mining camp in Ecuador’s southern Amazon on December 14, catalysed a government mobilisation of armed forces in the region.

With a 30-day state of exception imposed across the entire Amazonian province of Morona Santiago, the government has reportedly mobilised up to 1,000 military and police personnel to protect the mining camp and hunt down what top officials have called an “illegally armed group” that they say does not represent the Shuar nation.

Under the emergency decree, which has suspended rights such as freedom of expression and the inviolability of the home, reportedly five Indigenous Shuar and four mestizo men have been arrested and sentenced to 90-day preventive incarceration.



2: US military says Mosul airstrike may have killed civilians at hospital

An airstrike by the US-led coalition operating against Islamic State militants near the northern Iraqi city of Mosul hit a van in a hospital compound parking lot and may have killed civilians, the US military said on Thursday.

A van carrying Isis fighters was targeted and hit in the airstrike, the Combined Joint Strike Force said in a statement.

“The van was struck in what was later determined to be a hospital compound parking lot resulting in possible civilian casualties,” it said.

The Guardian 


1: US expels Russian diplomats over cyber attacks

The US has expelled 35 Russian diplomats and closed two Russian compounds in a response that Barack Obama says was “necessary and appropriate” against “efforts to harm US interests”.

The US president, whose term ends in January next month, said on Thursday that actions against Russia are “a necessary and appropriate response to efforts to harm US interests in violation of established international norms of behaviour”.