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Curated top stories of the day
- Communist Party moves to extend Xi’s rule – The Communist Party of China proposed removing a constitutional clause that blocks presidents from serving more than two terms, effectively paving the way for President Xi Jinping to stay in office indefinitely. The measure was announced by state broadcaster Xinhua. The proposal, which also covers the position of vice-president, was made by China’s powerful Central Committee, a body of 205 full members made up of the top leaders of the Communist Party. Contribute to WikiTribune’s developing story on the proposal.
- Democrats publish memo – Democrats on the U.S. House Intelligence Committee published a memo on the FBI’s decision-making regarding potential Russian interference in the 2016 election as a rebuttal to one made public by their Republican counterparts on February 2. Read the full Democratic memo here and contribute to WikiTribune’s developing story here.
Syrian-Kurdish leader arrested – Czech police arrested a prominent Syrian-Kurdish leader in Prague after Turkey issued a warrant for his involvement in a bombing in Ankara. Saleh Muslim, a former co-chair of the main Syrian-Kurdish movement, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), was arrested early on February 25. The Turkish justice ministry said it has begun efforts to extradite Muslim. He has been indicted over a February 2016 bombing in Ankara that targeted a convoy of shuttles at the military headquarters during the evening rush hour, killing 37 people.
India and Pakistan exchange fire – Artillery fire broke out between India and Pakistan in the disputed Kashmir region on Saturday. The fighting, in the Uri sector on the Line of Control, forced hundreds of people to flee, police in Indian Kashmir said. This month an attack on an Indian army camp in Kashmir also killed six soldiers.
- UN Security Council votes for immediate Syria ceasefire – The United Nations Security council unanimously approved a measure calling for a 30-day ceasefire in Syria. The news provides some hope for thousands of civilians trapped in eastern Ghouta. A government siege and campaign of “indiscriminate” air bombings has killed at least 500 people in the past week (The Guardian). The UN resolution allows for food and medical supplies to be delivered to war-torn areas. The U.S. ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, said the ceasefire should be put into place immediately after the vote was postponed several times while members worked on an agreement. Western diplomats accused Russia of stalling on making a decision.
- Airlines sever ties with NRA – United and Delta airlines are the latest in a string of companies to sever ties with the National Rifle Association. Both companies said they would halt discounts to NRA members as a result of the Florida school shooting on February 21. That day a heavily-armed former student walked into his former school and killed 17 people. Consumers are threatening to boycott firms that deal with the gun lobby. Some other companies that have cut links to the NRA are car rental giant Hertz and software firm Symantec.
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What the community is up to
- A court in Istanbul sentenced six journalists to life in prison for their alleged role in a failed coup in 2016. The state run news agency said that on February 16, Ahmet Altan, his brother Mehmet, Nazli Ilack and Sahin Alpay and two other journalists were sentenced on charges of attempting to “subvert the constitutional order.” Read community member Gregorio Bisso’s report on the charges here.
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