The world news daily digest from Guardian Liberty Voice for August 22, 2014 covers stories around the globe. In South America, a Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro paid a birthday visit to Fidel Castro, bringing gifts and congratulations to the former president. An Australian woman speaks up after being sexually assaulted by a crew member on a Malaysia Airlines flight in early August. Meanwhile, in Eastern Europe tensions are rising again after the Russian convoy carrying humanitarian aid to Luhansk has finally been allowed to cross the border only to be denounced by the Ukrainian government which has called the move to be an equivalent of an invasion.
Venezuelan President Visits Fidel Castro
Venezuelan president Nicolas Madura visited Cuba on Tuesday, paying the former Cuban leader a belated birthday visit. Fidel Castro, who served as a president of Cuba for 32 years, turned 88 on August 13. President Maduro did not come empty-handed, bringing a basket of fruits and a track suit as gifts for the ageing revolutionary. According to Castro’s weekly column, President Maduro promised to visit him on his 88 birthday. The two men discussed the crisis in Gaza, with Fidel Castro comparing the Israeli offensive to the Nazi Germany, claiming that Israel was committing genocide against Palestinians.
It is unknown if President Maduro had any official agenda in Cuba, potentially meeting with Cuban President Raul Castro, Fidel Castro’s younger brother. Venezuela and Cuba have been close allies for years, with Fidel Castro frequently providing advice to the Venezuelan government officials.
Australian Woman Speaks Up After Sexual Assault on Malaysia Airlines Flight
In early August, an aircraft steward for Malaysia Airlines had allegedly sexually assaulted an Australian woman. The 26-year-old Laura Bushney recorded the offense using her phone, after the steward, who was believed to be comforting the woman began touching her inappropriately. She had also recorded the second altercation between herself and the man, when he had realized what he had done. The alleged attacker is 54-year-old Mohd Rosli Bin Ab Karim, who is married and has three children. When the aircraft landed, Rosli was detained by the police at Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris, he remains in custody after admitting to the charges of sexual assault.
Malaysia Airlines had confirmed the allegations and with the recent streak of bad luck for the airline, they have been unable to shake their tarnished reputation. Across the world, Malaysia Airlines became well-known for their misfortune. In March flight MH370 disappeared with 239 people aboard and in July, flight MH17 was shot down in Eastern Ukraine, killing all 298 people aboard.
Trucks Carrying Humanitarian Aid to Eastern Ukraine Cross Border
Some of the Russian trucks filled with humanitarian aid were granted access by the Ukrainian border officials on Friday and have since been able to reach the war-torn city of Luhansk. Soon after the trucks were granted access across the border, Kyiv officials denied granting the convoy permission to cross the border, claiming that the trucks had crossed the border illegally. This creates a difficult position for Russia as it is now blamed for invading Ukraine. Some citizens of Luhansk have met the convoy with signs that read: “Motherland Russia will not abandon us.” In the besieged city, citizens have been left without food or water for weeks, with no provision of humanitarian aid from the Ukrainian government.
The United States government has warned Russia to not invade Ukraine, as it will only further escalate the crisis, meanwhile North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) chief blamed Russia, stating that President Vladimir Putin and his government were doing everything to worsen the situation.
World Commentary by Ivelina Kunina
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