Venezuela political unrest continues
Caracas – The death toll in the continuing political protests dividing the country reached at least 13 as the Pope called for an end to the violence. The unrest started in the Western states at the beginning of February. The protest started with a student rebellion but swiftly spread to multiple political groups and took root in the capital. The focus of complaints has been soaring crime rates and economic hardship during a time of record inflation. The opposition parties have called for President Nicolas Maduro to step down and have declared they will boycott his promised “peace talks”.
UK soldier’s killers jailed
London – Two men who murdered soldier Lee Rigby outside of his barracks in London in May 2013 were convicted on Wednesday. One man was jailed for life, the other for 45 years. The two ran Rigby down with a car before hacking at him with machetes before attempting to behead him in front of passers-by. The judge said their actions, inspired by what he described as religious extremism, “betrayed” the Islam they espoused.
Homosexuals face life in prison
Kampala – Uganda, under President Yoweri Museveni, this week implemented new laws that increase penalties for homosexual practices. Acts of “aggravated homosexuality” will now attract life sentences. In Uganda, widespread homophobia, spurred by rightwing American missionaries, has led to activists being threatened with death, newspapers “outing” alleged “top homosexuals” and even the murder of one leading activist, David Kato, in 2011.
Whistleblowers again embarrass UK spy agency
London – A new document released through the Intercept by Edward Snowden’s whistleblower colleague Glenn Greenwald has detailed the processes Britain’s spy agencies use to control, manipulate and infiltrate groups on the internet. The report reveals training documents used by Government Communications HQ to instruct other agencies, including the US National Security Agency, on how to “destroy the reputations of its targets”. – Compiled from agency and web sources by Andrew Leeson
Top image of Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni taken from the UK Department for International Development’s Flickr photostream.