Weekly News Round-Up 10/4/15-10/9/15: War Crime?

Stories of the Week

War crime in Afghanistan. The US military bombed an MSF (Doctors Without Borders) hospital in Kunduz, which has recently been overtaken by the Taliban. The hospital was given no warning, as is required by international law. The military has insisted they bombed the hospital due to a request from Afghan forces. MSF has is demanding an inquiry into the bombing, however, and is accusing the US of committing a war crime. President Obama called MSF’s head mid-week to apologize for the incident.

Oregon trauma. Following a shooting in Oregon at a community college last week, America’s gun debate has begun anew. There seems to be little indication that real change will come from the shooting, but politicians on both right and left have exchanged heated remarks. Notable fact: There have been more mass shootings in the US than days in the 2015 calendar year so far.

More Putin more problems. Russia’s sudden involvement in Syria’s war has been unpopular across the board. The country has repeatedly crossed into Turkish airspace, an infringement on NATO’s turf–meaning Russia is to an extent pitting itself against the US. This is mean even more real by Russian strikes targeting US-backed rebel groups in the country. It’s unclear just how the situation will unfold, but scholars across the board argue Vladimir Putin is making, well, a relatively stupid move here. Update: Russian missiles aimed at Syria crashed in Iran on Thursday. Oops.

Sun sets over Palmyra, Syria several years ago. (flickr | Alessandra Kochman)
Sun sets over Palmyra, Syria several years ago. (flickr | Alessandra Kochman)

Blues Buzz

Regional Updates

South Asia:

  • US forces hit an MSF hospital in Kunduz province, Afghanistan this weekend. The organization is calling the attack a war crime, and over two dozen people have been reported dead or injured.
  • Protests over Nepal’s new constitution have led to numerous deaths. Ethnic Madhesis are angered because the constitution divides the country into seven new states, the lines of which cut through their ancestral homelands.
  • In Delhi, a clean air space plan is being demanded as hazardous environmental conditions threaten the city’s inhabitants.
  • Two aides have been arrested for explosions last month that seemed to target the Maldivian president.
  • Mumtaz Qadri, the bodyguard who killed Punjabi (Pakistan) governor Salman Taseer several years ago, has had his death sentence upheld.

Southeast & East Asia:

Europe & Eurasia:

Middle East & North Africa:

Sub-Saharan Africa:



  • A 15 year-old who shot and killed a police worker in Parramatta, Australia, has been identified as a young Muslim man from the area. He was killed by police following the initial shooting, and there is some concern that the situation could further isolate Australia’s Muslim community.
  • Australian asylum seekers on the island of Nauru now have freedom of movement around the area.
  • Antarcticans have a drinking problem.

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