Dozens feared drowned off Libya +++ UN warns of Idlib catastrophe

Dozens feared drowned off Libya +++ UN warns of Idlib catastrophe +++ Migrant clashes in Calais +++ Trump attacks FBI, Justice department +++ Mine workers rescued in S. Africa +++ The Weather

News | 2 February 2018

Joanna King

Dozens feared drowned off Libya

The International Organisation for Migration says at least 90 migrants may have drowned off the coast of Libya after a boat capsized early this morning. The UN agency said survivors told aid workers that most of those who drowned were Pakistani nationals.

UN warns of Idlib catastrophe

A senior United Nations official has warned of a humanitarian catastrophe in northern Syria as government forces continue their offensive in the rebel held province of Idlib. UN aid coordinator Panos Moumtzis says the government onslaught begun in mid-December has severely impacted civilians: “We are really extremely worried about the situation on the ground. We have seen about quarter of a million additionally newly displaced, people who fled their homes basically heading toward the Turkish border. This is really a total catastrophe for the people who are living in Idlib.”

Migrant clashes in Calais  

At least five migrants have been shot in the port city of Calais in France, after a mass brawl between Afghans and Eritreans. Four migrants from Eritrea are in critical condition in hospital. Police reinforcements have been sent to in Calais, where migrants converge in hopes of crossing to Britain.

Trump attacks FBI, Justice department 

White House officials say Congress is expected to be informed today that President Donald Trump has approved the release of a controversial memo alleging the FBI and Justice department are biased against him. The memo was written by Republican members of the House intelligence committee. Former FBI assistant director Ron Hosko says morale has been affected at the agency: “There is a sag on morale. They’re troubled by what they’re hearing reported. And they know that some of what’s being reported, what’s being stated and alleged, is just flat out untrue.” Democrats have said the move is an attempt to discredit the investigation into links between the Trump campaign and Russia. In a tweet just posted, president Trump has directly attacked top leaders at the FBI and justice department.

Mine workers rescued in S. Africa

In South Africa, over 900 workers who had been trapped underground in a gold mine since Wednesday have been rescued. The workers were trapped after a severe thunderstorm brought down power lines. Mine unions have been highly critical of the Sibanye-Stillwater company in Free State province for its failure to have a back-up plan for evacuation.

The Weather

Snow and rain in the south and east. Mainly dry elsewhere with sunny spells. Top temperatures minus 2 to plus 6 degrees.


  • Joanna King