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Friday Digest: Nigeria, Iran, Syria, China


This is our new Friday Digest! Every Friday, this weekly news round-up gives us the occasion to share with you news from various topics: politics to arts, entertainment, media, science, sports, fun and less fun news…

This digest is a list of news published this week on the Internet (Friday to Friday), selected by the Sama Team, and it is by no means exhaustive. If you want to suggest a news to be added in the next Friday Digest, contact us.

 

Thousands take to Moscow streets, calling for fair elections
Thousands of people took to the streets Saturday in Moscow, braving bitterly cold weather to demand for fair elections after what they claim were rigged results earlier this month that returned Vladimir Putin’s party to power. The protest, organized primarily through social media and word of mouth, comes on the heels of an announcement by President Dmitry Medvedev of sweeping political reforms…

Two new Earths and the search for life
Americans were enthralled by fake reports of an alien invasion in the Orson Welles “War of the Worlds” radio broadcast on Halloween Eve in 1938. Hundreds of science fiction movies from the 1902 silent epic “A Trip to the Moon” (featured in the current film “Hugo”) to “Star Wars” to this year’s “Cowboys and Aliens” have fed a deep curiosity about intelligent beings elsewhere in the universe. Hang on to your hats…

Shell: Nigeria Oil Spill Contained
The worst Nigeria offshore oil spill in more than a decade has been contained before reaching the West African nation’s coast, officials with Royal Dutch Shell PLC said Monday, less than a week after one of its lines bled crude into the Atlantic Ocean. An investigation into how the spill of less than 40,000 barrels — or 1.68 million gallons — happened remains ongoing, though company officials acknowledged…

Iranian woman sentenced to be stoned to death may be hanged instead
A court sentenced Sakineh Mohammadi Ashtiani to be stoned in 2006 but the sentence was suspended last year after an international outcry. However, under a judicial review being carried out she still could be hanged. “There is no rush … our Islamic experts are reviewing Ashtiani’s sentence to see whether we can carry out the execution of a person sentenced to stoning by hanging,” said Malek Ajdar Sharifi…

China jails dissident Chen Xi for 10 years
A Chinese court has handed down a 10-year jail sentence to Chen Xi, the second dissident in four days to be convicted of inciting subversion through online essays. Another democracy campaigner, Chen Wei, was sentenced to nine years on 23 December. The two men are not related. It is one of the heaviest sentences for inciting subversion since the Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo was jailed for 11 years on Christmas…

Syria pulls tanks from streets of restive city
After days of punishing assaults, Syria’s army began withdrawing tanks from the restive city of Homs on Tuesday just as a team of Arab League observers was on its way to the central city, according to activists and an Arab official. Opposition activist Mohammed Saleh said the heavy bombardment of Homs stopped Tuesday morning and tanks were seen pulling out of the streets. Another Homs-based activist said he…

Kim Jong Un Declared ‘Supreme Leader’ Of North Korea
North Korea’s power brokers declared Kim Jong Un the supreme leader at a massive public memorial for his father Kim Jong Il, cementing the Kim family’s hold on power for another generation. The son, dubbed North Korea’s Great Successor, stood with his head bowed and somber in a dark overcoat on a balcony at the Grand People’s Study House overlooking Kim Il Sung Square and watched the memorial…

Deaths in Somalia underscore risks MSF endures
A second foreigner working with Doctors Without Borders died of his wounds in an attack in Somalia that also killed the group’s country director, though the aid organization declared Friday that despite the risks it would still provide medical care in one of the world’s most dangerous countries. The deaths in Mogadishu of Philippe Havet, 53, from Belgium; and Andrias Karel Keiluhu, 44, from Indonesia…




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