CNN said Monday it was launching a research project with the Georgia Institute of Technology on how drones could be used for newsgathering by media organizations. The research will evaluate the technology, personnel and safety needs to operate effectively and will share its findings with the Federal Aviation Administration, which is considering rules for unmanned aerial vehicles. "Our hope is that by working cooperatively to share knowledge, we can accelerate the process for CNN and other media organizations to safely integrate this new technology into their coverage plans," said David Vigilante, CNN senior vice president, in a statement. Georgia tech researcher Mike Heiges said drones "have a number of applications that benefit society, such as search and rescue, disaster response and agricultural mapping and crop assessment," and added that "we're excited to be engaging with CNN to study the newsgathering applications" for drones.
Guinea-Bissau's new president Jose Mario Vaz on Monday vowed to fight poverty and bring stability to the impoverished west African nation as he was sworn into office. The 57-year-old is Guinea-Bissau's first elected leader since the army mutinied in 2012, plunging into chaos a state already in the grip of powerful cocaine cartels and beset by political violence. Standing before a crowd of 15,000 and leaders from across west Africa in the capital Bissau, Vaz pledged to work with other political groups to bring stability to the fragile nation of 1.6 million. Vaz, from the dominant African Party for the Independence of Guinea-Bissau and Cape Verde (PAIGC), won an overwhelming 62 percent of the vote against independent rival Nuno Gomes Nabiam in a May election.
US President Barack Obama on Monday warned Vladimir Putin that Russia would face new sanctions if it failed to both stop the flow of weapons into Ukraine and halt support for separatists. The White House said that Obama delivered the warning in a telephone call with the Russian leader, in which he called for "concrete actions" by Moscow to de-escalate the situation. White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Obama used the call to drive home consistent US and Western warnings on Ukraine -- that Russia must stop supporting separatists in the east of the country and stop the flow of weapons across the border.
A car bomb, an apparent suicide attack, exploded in a southern suburb of Beirut populated mainly by Shiites, a security services source said early Tuesday. "It was a car bomb and there is a strong possibility that it was a suicide attack," the security source told AFP. The car bombing came three days after a suicide attack in the east of the country which left one person dead and 30 wounded. The area of south Beirut, a stronghold of Lebanon's Shiite movement Hezbollah, has been the target of attacks for many months.
Convinced they would be able return to Yarmuk in southern Damascus after a truce and ceasefire, Palestinians went to the embattled camp's entrance Monday but their wait was in vain. Forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad have been laying siege to Yarmuk since last year. On Saturday evening, an agreement was struck under which rebel fighters were to vacate the camp, according to Anwar Abdel Hadi, political director of the Palestine Liberation Organisation in Syria.
US-Polish ties are very solid, the State Department insisted Monday, refusing to be drawn into the row surrounding a secret recording of critical remarks attributed to Poland's top diplomat. I'm just not in a position to verify that," said State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf. A Polish magazine reported on Sunday it has audio recordings of Poland's foreign minister dismissing Warsaw's ties with the US as "worthless", the latest leak in a bugging scandal that has rocked the Polish government. In the latest recording, Wprost reported that Polish Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski had said to former finance minister Jacek Rostowski: "You know the Polish-US alliance is worthless."
Jail sentences against Al-Jazeera journalists Monday in Egypt have dealt a blow to the Qatari network that championed Arab Spring revolts which toppled autocratic regimes, analysts said. The pan-Arab news channel has come in for strong criticism in Egypt over its coverage seen as favourable to the Muslim Brotherhood, the movement of ousted Islamist president Mohamed Morsi. Three of its journalists, including award-winning Australian Peter Greste, each got seven years in jail by a Cairo court, accused of supporting the blacklisted Brotherhood, a verdict condemned around the world. Eleven defendants tried in absentia, including one Dutch and two British journalists, were given 10-year sentences.
Brasília (AFP) - Activists burned a mock World Cup trophy Monday in protests called to demand more investment in health and education as Brazil played a clutch match against Cameroon. The protests in Brasilia, where the match was being played, and Sao Paulo, the cradle of Brazil's recent protest movement, drew relatively small crowds and did not descend into the violence that has at times marred similar demonstrations in the past. "I want to see a worker earn the same salary as Neymar," was one of the rallying cries for some 200 protesters in Brasilia who marched from a bus station to the stadium where the star striker was leading the team into its final Group A match. One group of protesters burned a replica of the gold World Cup trophy Brazil hope to win for a sixth time.
Tunisia began voter registration on Monday for heavily-delayed legislative and presidential elections due to take place later this year. The elections would consolidate the gains of an accord in January to end months of political crisis, which had blocked the democratic transition in the birthplace of the Arab Spring. Prime Minister Mehdi Jomaa and Chafik Sarsar, who heads the electoral organising commission, gave the order to begin the registration process at Tunis city hall, the government said. After months of negotiations, the electoral commission this month proposed that legislative polls take place on October 26 and the first round of the presidential poll on November 23, with the run-off on December 28.
US authorities have stressed that thousands of underage migrants rushing to make it into the United States, most of them from violent regions of Central America, will face deportation. Very few people get asylum in the United States," Esther Olivarria, an adviser to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, said Monday. The United States has seen a huge surge in young migrants fleeing gang violence and poverty in Central America, mostly Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
President Barack Obama on Monday lamented that America was on its "lonesome" as the only developed nation not to offer paid maternity leave, as he called for a new family-friendly 21st Century workplace. Obama headlined a "Working Families Summit" in Washington and flexed his presidential powers to direct government agencies to adopt more flexible workplace practices to allow parents to manage home and professional commitments. If France can figure this out, we can figure it out," Obama said, calling for a new approach to maternity and family leave, and early childhood education. "There is only one developed country in the world that does not offer paid maternity leave," Obama told a supportive crowd at a Washington hotel.
Lawyers at Canada's justice department were fooled into providing confidential information by responding to phishing emails far more than average Internet users, according to security test results released Monday. According to Canadian government figures, 156 million phishing emails are sent worldwide on a daily basis. No government information was at risk in the "controlled exercise designed to inform and educate employees on issues surrounding cyber security," department spokeswoman Carole Saindon told AFP.
Russia's media watchdog on Monday demanded US-based microblogging service Twitter block several "extremist" accounts as the Kremlin continues to tighten its control over the Internet. Agency head Alexander Zharov earlier in the day met with Twitter's public policy chief Colin Crowell a month after Moscow threatened to block the service if it did not comply with new stringent rules. Zharov gave Crowell "detailed information about 12 accounts whose content has been identified as extremist" and is now expecting Twitter to delete or block them, the agency said in a statement.
A New York court on Monday released an edited version of a secret government memo legally justifying a drone attack that killed a US citizen, radical Islamic cleric Anwar al-Awlaki, in Yemen in 2011. The federal appeals court released the document following a lawsuit from The New York Times and American Civil Liberties Union demanding to know the basis for the killing of three Americans. So-called "targeted killings" are the leading tactic in the US war on suspected terrorists in Pakistan, Somalia and Yemen, but activists say the assassination program is too secret and lacks legal limits. Awlaki's teenage son, Abdul Rahman, was killed in a separate US drone strike in Yemen in October 2011.
By Patricia Zengerle WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Democratic U.S. lawmakers announced legislation on Monday that would provide lawyers for thousands of undocumented minors streaming across the border into the United States, saying forcing children to face deportation proceedings alone goes against fundamental American values. "It is a fantasy to believe that they have a fair shot in immigration proceedings without counsel," New York U.S. Representative Hakeem Jeffries told a news conference. Jeffries and the other House of Representatives Democrats introducing the bill said as many as 40 to 50 percent of the undocumented children would have legitimate claims to remain in the United States under current law, citing studies by the United Nations and other agencies. They also said their bill could save some $2 billion a year because timely immigration proceedings would eliminate the need to house thousands of children for months at a time.