This Week in the World: March 21, 2014

Small budget to stop terrorism

Kenya’s Anti-Terror Police Unit is working with a very small budget to stop a second Westgate Mall-style terrorist attack. The Associated Press is reporting that the anti-terror unit is operating on a shoe-string budget of $2,205 for January, February and March, a total of $735 a month. Sixty-seven people were killed when Nairobi’s Westgate Mall was attacked by Somali militants in September 2013. Many fear a similar attack will be attempted in the near future, and are concerned that the limited budget makes it hard for police to adequately prepare. President Kenyatta has pledged greater resources to police and military. He and his vice-president have taken twenty per cent pay cuts, and have urged other government officials to take pay cuts too. A Kenyan Member of Parliament earns $45,000 on average during a three month period. A government spokesperson denied that the anti-terror unit was only given $2,205 this quarter, but did not provide alternate figures.

Malaysia Airplane still missing

Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has said that the communications of a Malaysia Airlines plane that went missing over a week ago were deliberately disabled. According to satellite and radar evidence, the plane changed course after the communications system was disabled, and could have continued flying for up to seven hours. He did not openly say that it was a hijacking, but simply stated that they were looking into all possibilities. The plane had 239 people on board, two of whom had stolen passports. The foreign ministry of Malaysia has asked for the help of other twenty-five countries in locating the airplane. There were 153 Chinese citizens on board, thirty-eight Malaysians, along with citizens of Iran, Canada, the US, Indonesia, Australia, India, France, New Zealand, Ukraine, Russia, Taiwan, and the Netherlands.

Man fatally shoots his own son

A teacher will not be charged after fatally shooting his own fifteen-year old son. Jeffrey Giuliano went outside his New Haven, Connecticut home in September 2012 when his sister called to say that someone was trying to break into her house next door. Giuliano saw a person he didn’t recognize who had a ski mask over his face, was dressed all in black and was manipulating the lock on the front door. Giuliano yelled at the boy to stop, and the boy supposedly growled in an aggressive tone. Giuliano noticed a small, metallic object in the person’s hand that was believed to be a knife or gun. Giuliano fired seven times at him, and later found out that it was his son who had suffered three gunshot wounds. The Associated Press reported that it is unknown why the boy was sneaking around at night with a roll of duct tape and a flip-style knife.

Six soldiers killed in Cairo

Six Egyptian soldiers have been killed by gunmen at a checkpoint in Cairo, The BBC reported. Two bombs were also left behind by the attackers, but were diffused shortly after. This violence comes only two days after another soldier was shot dead in an attack on an army bus in Cairo. Hundreds of soldiers and police have been killed in numerous attacks by Islamist militants since the upsurge of violence after President Mohamed Morsi was overthrown by the military last July. The attack was carried out as the soldiers took part in their dawn prayers.The military has accused Morsi’s Muslim Brotherhood of carrying out the attack, although the Brotherhood has denied these accusations and any involvement in violence, saying that it is committed to a peaceful campaign.

Self-harm more common in Canadian hospitals

Mental health services in Canada are under increasing strain as an alarming amount of teens are showing up at emergency rooms across the country with self-inflicted injuries or suicidal thoughts, The Canadian Press has reported. The Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario reports seeing twice as many teens for mental health purposes than they did just ten years ago. Wait times for outpatient services have grown to eight or ten months, and mental health providers are facing unprecedented workloads across Canada. Many specialists say that many youth who are seeking help for self-inflicted wounds do not have the hallmarks of a psychiatric disorder, which doctors say is very distressing, leaving them with no clear answers to why they are seeing an increasing number of teens with these kinds of injuries.

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