Top News Stories –
Who’s the daddy? –
A Cuban man convicted of spying in the US and committed to a double life sentence in 1998 has become a father a month after his release. Gerardo Hernandez, who was released last month by the US as part of a diplomatic thaw with Cuba, requested to have his wife artificially inseminated with his sperm while he was still in jail.
Imran bowled over –
Sportsman-turned-politician Imran Khan has married his fiance, Reham, at a small wedding ceremony at his home in Islamabad, Pakistan. Khan was Pakistan’s most successful cricket captain, playing for the Pakistani cricket team from 1971 to 1992 and leading them to victory at the 1992 Cricket World Cup.
Team Wiggo launched –
Former Tour de France champion and Sky Team member Sir Bradley Wiggins launches his own cycling team to help preparations for the Rio 2016 Olympics. The four-time Olympic champion will try to break the individual world hour record as part of his build-up to Rio2016. Team Wiggins will operate independently of British Cycling but the governing body has given its backing to the team.
App designers golden year –
Apple revealed today that app developers earned more than $10 billion in revenue in 2014, partly due to a 50 percent rise in billings. The App Store has grown to 1.4 million apps since launching in 2008, with 725,000 designed for the iPad.
Russia says drivers must not have ‘sex disorders’ –
The Russian government is tightening medical controls for drivers because the country “has too many road accidents”. Transsexual and transgender people are among those who will no longer qualify for driving licences and fetishism, exhibitionism and voyeurism are also included as “mental disorders” now barring people from driving.
Job for life but don’t turn up –
A.K. Verma, an executive engineer at the Central Public Works Department, India, was fired after last appearing for work in December 1990. Even after an inquiry found him guilty of “wilful absence from duty” in 1992, it took another 22 years and the intervention of a cabinet minister to remove him, the government said.
Video of the Day –
When you say you’re a swimmer –
“When You Say You’re a Swimmer” from Chris Shimojima on Vimeo.
Top Twitter Trends –
Other News Stories –
- Armed conflicts and attacks
- Charlie Hebdo shooting
- One of the suspects in the killings, Hamyd Mourad, voluntarily surrenders to police in Charleville-Mézières while the other two suspects are still at large. (The New York Times) (CNN)
- On the night of January 7 and morning of January 8, assailants throw grenades and fire guns at three mosquesthroughout France. (ForeignPolicy.com)
- 2015 Baga massacre
- Boko Haram militants raze the entire town of Baga in north-east Nigeria. Bodies lay strewn on Baga’s streets with as many as 2,000 people having been killed. Boko Haram now controls 70% of Borno State, which is the worst-affected by the insurgency. (BBC)
- Iraqi insurgency (2011–present)
- A suicide bomber targets a police checkpoint in the town of Youssifiyah, killing seven people. (AAP via The Australian)
- Business and economy
- Dunkin’ Donuts signs a franchise agreement for 1,400 new cafes in China by the year 2035. (Reuters)
- Coca-Cola announces that it plans to cut 1,800 jobs worldwide. (CNBC)
- Subaru recalls 199,000 vehicles (2008-2014), citing brake line rust issues. (NBC Bay Area)
- Disasters and accidents
- Schools in the Midwestern and Northeast United States close for a second successive day due to bitterly cold temperatures. (Reuters via Yahoo! News)
- A Princess Tours catamaran, Pura Vida Princess, catches fire and capsizes off the coast of Punta Leona, Costa Rica, while carrying 98 passengers and ten crew; the Costa Rican Red Cross confirms that three are dead. (AP via The Costa Rican Times),(The Costa Rican Times)
- Law and crime
- An unknown gunman shoots dead Nerlita Ledesma, a journalist from the Philippine tabloid Abante in the province ofBataan; her death is the 172nd murder of a journalist since the return of democracy in 1986 and the 31st during thepresidency of Benigno Aquino III. (Rappler)
- The Obama administration fines Honda $70 million for failing to report deaths and injury complaints from 2003 to 2014.(KNTV)
- Brunei officially bans all future public celebrations of Christmas, in accordance with its conservative Islamic law Shariah.(International Business Times)
- Politics and elections
- Sri Lankan presidential election, 2015
- Voters in Sri Lanka go to the polls for a presidential election with a tight contest predicted between PresidentMahinda Rajapaksa and challenger Maithripala Sirisena. (BBC)
- The US Olympic Committee chooses the city of Boston as the American bid city to host the 2024 Summer Olympics.(The New York Times)
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