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The world news daily digest update from Guardian Liberty Voice for July 29, 2014 provides coverage of the fuel depot fire in Libya. Meanwhile, China investigates its former security chief, Zhou Yongkang. The Ukraine crisis spills into sports, as United Kingdom lawmakers demand Russia to be stripped of the 2018 World Cup.
Fire in Libya Threatens Lives of Civilians
Officials in Libya warned civilians of the growing dangers from a large, fast spreading fire at a fuel depot in city of Tripoli. The fire started on Sunday after a rocket hit a fuel storage tank located near the city’s international airport. In a public statement by Mohamed al-Harari, a spokesman for Libya’s National Oil Company, it was released that the depot’s storage contained nearly 16 million gallons of diesel and petroleum, as well as canisters of potentially explosive liquid gas. At least two storage tanks of petroleum are on fire.
Firefighters battling the blaze were pulled from the area as the fighting between militias continues in the area. Meanwhile, Libya requested help from neighbouring countries, asking for firefighting aircraft. So far that request has been refused.
China Investigates Former Security Chief
Chinese president Xi Jinping has continued to battle with corruption by announcing an investigation into the former Public Security Minister Zhou Yongkong. The 71-year-old Zhou, who retired in 2012, is one of the most senior party figures to ever face a formal investigation in China. According to the state-run news agency, the anti-corruption agency of China decided to investigate Zhou for violations of discipline.
Much of Zhou’s family holds assets worth $160-million in the sectors that were heavily controlled by Zhou during his political career. It is believed that the wealth of his family is the main reason for the investigation.
United Kingdom Wants Russia Stripped of the 2018 World Cup
United Kingdom Deputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, called for Russia to be stripped of the honour to host the 2018 World Cup. Clegg continued by saying that Russia’s president, Vladimir Putin’s behaviour towards Ukraine has reached a tipping point. Britain’s Prime Minister, David Cameron, opposed the suggestion, believing that politics and sports should not be mixed. According to a spokesperson for David Cameron, the Prime Minister believes other mechanisms, such as asset freezes, should be used to punish Russia instead.
Nick Clegg is not the only politician to demand that Russia, many of the German politicians have called on the international football federation, FIFA, to stop Russia from hosting the tournament. Following the crash of the Malaysian Airlines Flight 17, which has been widely blamed on Russia, Netherlands is planning to meet and decide whether or not they will participate in the 2018 World Cup. Almost 200 Dutch citizens lost their lives in the Boeing-777 crash.
FIFA, has so far rejected calls from politicians to strip Russia of the championship, believing that the tournament can help achieve a change for the better. A FIFA official announced that boycotting sporting events is not the most effective way of solving problems. Meanwhile, the public attention the World Cup can bring “can be a powerful catalyst for constructive dialogue between people and governments.”
World News Digest Commentary by Ivelina Kunina
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