WASHINGTON -- U.S. President Donald Trump has signed an order to ban bump-stock devices which increase the rate of fire of semi-automatic firearms and were used by a gunman who killed 58 Las Vegas concert-goers last year.
Winter Olympics 2018
ECOLOGY -- Norway is celebrating the tenth anniversary of The Svalbard Global Seed Vault, but scientists are keeping a close eye on the facility after a recent thaw threatened 5,000 crop species stored inside.
MOSCOW -- If Vladimir Putin, Russia’s longest serving leader since Joseph Stalin, wins a fourth term as president on March 18, he could near 25 years in power – almost as long as Stalin’s 29-year rule.
CARACAS -- Hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans are fleeing across borders to escape the growing political and economic crisis in their country, leaving nearby countries straining to cope with the migrant wave.
DAMASCUS -- Syrian government air raids, rocket strikes and shelling of Eastern Ghouta has killed more than 190 people and injured 850 others since Sunday, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.
MOSCOW -- A shadowy mercenary group known as “Wagner” has come to play a crucial role in Russian operations in Syria. The actions of Wagner coincided with the Kremlin’s intervention in Syria in September 2015.
MIDEAST -- The United Arab Emirates is due to bring the Arab world’s first nuclear power station online in 2018. The Barakah plant will have capacity of 5,600 megawatts of electricity, with four 1400 MW reactors.
MIDDLE EAST -- Strava, the popular exercise tracking app that posts a map of its users’ activity, has unwittingly revealed previously unknown locations of U.S.-led coalition military bases in Iraq, Syria and Jordan.
MOSCOW -- Russia's election officials have registered eight candidates for the presidential election, including President Vladimir Putin. With his approval ratings topping 80%, Putin is set to easily win a fourth term.
BRUSSELS -- The European Court of Justice is to rule on whether crops developed using so-called “New Breeding Techniques” like CRISPR/Cas are the same as those achieved through traditional plant breeding.
BEIJING -- Photos circulating online appear to show the first experimental deployment of a new “supergun” aboard a Chinese warship, fuelling speculation that the weapon could be an electromagnetic railgun.
ROME -- Italy’s general election on March 4 will see the first use of the new “Rosatellum” election law that favours coalitions. Rosatellum mixes a first-past-the-post system and proportional representation.
LOS ANGELES -- CubeSats are ultra-small spacecraft that piggyback to orbit on big, expensive rockets – but affordable rockets, like Rocket Lab’s Electron, are launching a new generation of space start-ups.
ITALY -- The general election will pit a centre-right coalition against populists and a divided left, with polls suggesting a hung parliament and prolonged uncertainty in the eurozone’s third-largest economy.
PYEONGCHANG 2018 -- Cross-country skier Marit Bjorgen has become the most decorated Winter Olympian of all time -- winning her 14th medal by taking bronze in the women’s team sprint with Norway in PyeongChang, overhauling fellow countryman Ole Einar Bjorndalen.
SOCCER -- Borussia Dortmund travel to Atalanta, and Celtic take on Zenit St. Petersburg, with both teams defending a one-goal advantage. Heavyweights Arsenal, AC Milan and Atletico Madrid all aim to ease into the Last 16.
ATHLETICS -- Wilson Kipsang of Kenya will aim to defend his title against fellow countryman Dickson Chumba, while in the women’s race, Ruti Aga heads the field against Ethiopian teammate Berhane Dibaba.
MOTOGP -- The 2018 season once again commences in Qatar, ending in Valencia on Nov 18. Thailand’s Chang International Circuit has been added to the calendar, which this year will take in 19 road circuits.