06-10 Jan Weekly News


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Iran promises revenge after assassination of Soleimani

Iran's president promised to avenge the assassination of Qassem Soleimani. Using strong words, the president said: "The Americans do not realise what grave error they have committed. Revenge for Soleimani's blood will be secured, and the filthy hands of America will be cut off forever from this region." Iran's religious leader was similarly defiant. He said: "Severe retaliation awaits murderers with blood on their hands." Mr Soleimani's death will increase tensions.

Qassem Soleimani, 62, was the second most powerful person in Iran. He was the top military leader and was behind Iran's spreading regional influence. Some media call him the "rock star general". The U.S. president ordered the assassination after the killing of an American in the U.S. embassy in Baghdad. He said the assassination was to stop war in the region. He called Soleimani a terrorist who was responsible for thousands of deaths. "World War III" is now a top hashtag on social media.


Japan looking at escape of ex-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn

The Japanese government promised to make its border controls stronger. This is because of how easy it was for someone on bail to escape the country. Ex-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn fled Japan to Lebanon on December the 30th. Courts in Tokyo were waiting to put Mr Ghosn on trial for fraud. Ghosn escaped from Japan even though the police had his three passports. Japan's justice minister, Masako Mori, said Japan would strengthen its border departure checks. She also said she would review bail conditions. Ms Mori told reporters that she has already taken actions to prevent anyone else on bail leaving the country. She said: "I have instructed the immigration agency to further tighten the departure process."

It is still unclear how Mr Ghosn escaped from Japan. There were security cameras at his home that operated for 24 hours a day. News sources say he took a bullet train from Tokyo to get to the airport. He then hid in the case of a double bass. He chose a regional airport where security was not so tight. He then flew from Osaka to Turkey and then on to Lebanon, apparently without a passport. However, Lebanese officials said he entered Lebanon legally on Monday with a French passport. He has not been seen since. The international crime agency Interpol has created a "wanted" notice for Mr Ghosn. Japan cannot ask Lebanon to return Mr Ghosn because there is no extradition treaty.


Sadio Mane named African footballer of the year

Senegal's Sadio Mane is the Confederation of African Football's Player of the Year. Mane, 27, beat his teammate Mohamed Salah to win. Mane helped his team Liverpool win the Champions League in 2019. He was prolific in attack and scored 30 goals in the 2018-19 season. This meant he was co-winner of last season's Premier League Golden Boot. This is awarded to the league's top goalscorer. Nigeria's Asisat Oshoala was the women's Player of the Year.

Mane was ecstatic at winning. It is the fourth time he has been shortlisted. He said at the awards ceremony: "I'm really happy and proud to win this. Football is my job. I love it. I would like to thank my family, my national team, staff, the federation and Liverpool." He said the Senegalese people would be pleased with his win, saying: "They will be glad watching me win this award, especially the people in my village whom I promised I would win."


Prince Harry to leave UK to live in Canada

The British royal family is in shock. Queen Elizabeth's grandson Prince Harry has decided to leave the UK and walk away from the royal family. Harry and his wife Meghan will move to Canada. They both want a new life away from the paparazzi in the UK. Prince Harry's mother, Diana, Princess of Wales, died because paparazzi photographers chased the car she was in. Harry does not want journalists to affect the life of his wife and baby son. Harry told the world about his decision on social media. He wrote on Instagram: "We intend to step back as 'senior' members of the Royal Family." He added that living in Canada would provide his family, "with the space to focus on the next chapter".

The UK media reported that the Queen was not happy with Prince Harry's decision. The Queen, Harry's father Prince Charles and brother Prince William talked to Harry about his future. Reporters said Charles might cut the money he gives to his son. Harry and Meghan have official titles as members of the royal family - they are the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. If they leave the UK, they may lose those titles. Reporters say they hope to make money from their fame. The opinion of people in the UK is divided. Some say Harry is a traitor; others support Harry and say the media was racist towards Meghan. London's waxworks museum Madame Tussauds has removed Meghan and Harry from its royal family display.


Kenya attack

One US service member and two American civilian contractors were killed in a terror attack at a Kenya Defense Force base in Manda Bay, Kenya, on Sunday. Al-Shabaab, a group affiliated with Al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for the attack, and said the attack also destroyed US military equipment. However, those claims are unsubstantiated, and US Africa Command (which is responsible for military relations with several African nations) says the group often exaggerates reports of damage on the ground. Africa Command also said US and Kenyan forces successfully secured the base and killed four terrorists responsible responsible for the attack.


Ukrainian airline crash

A Ukraine International Airlines plane bound for Kiev crashed just minutes after takeoff from Tehran's international airport in Iran, killing all 176 people aboard. The crash was due to technical difficulties, an Iranian news agency reported, and Iran's Civil Aviation Authority said it launched an investigation. Initially, the Ukrainian Embassy in Tehran said terror or rocket attacks had been ruled out as causes of the crash. But it retracted that statement, saying, "Information on the causes of the plane crash is being clarified by the commission." Passengers from seven countries were on the 737, and almost half were Iranian nationals. Follow live updates as the situation develops.



The ongoing crisis in Venezuela reached a chaotic high during a showdown between the country's opposition lawmakers and members of the military. Some background: In mid-2019, opposition leader Juan Guaido tried to wrest power from President Nicolas Maduro; he declared Maduro illegitimate, and the country's been in a state of flux ever since. Over the weekend, pro-government lawmakers blocked Guaido from attending a vote to choose the new leader of the National Assembly. Guaido was expected to win the role, but instead, a small faction of pro-government lawmakers named a rival politician to it. Yesterday, Guaido and other opposition lawmakers were stopped from entering the National Assembly building by soldiers in riot gear. But they forced their way in and swore in Guaido as Venezuela's interim president. The US has voiced support for the move, saying Guaido is the only legitimate president. Still, other countries have expressed alarm.



Here's some good news: The cancer death rate in the US saw the largest one-year drop from 2016 to 2017, according to new data from the American Cancer Society. It's also the 26th year in a row that cancer deaths have declined. A large part of the trend is due to a sharp drop in deaths from lung cancer -- the leading cause of cancer death in the US. While reduced smoking rates obviously contribute to that, the study also cites better and more effective treatment options. In fact, researchers concluded the decline in death rate for four major cancers (lung, breast, prostate and colorectal) shows how far the medical field has progressed in treating the disease.


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