Both North and South Korea tested ballistic missiles on Wednesday, ratcheting up tensions exponentially in what was already one of the most volatile regions on the planet. Pyongyang fired the first missiles on Wednesday, sending two into waters off the east coast of the Korean Peninsula five minutes apart. Seoul followed that test less than three hours later, firing a new submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM).
The EU must learn the lessons of the abrupt end of the US-led mission in Afghanistan and acquire the “political will” to build up its own military force to deploy to future crises, the European Commission’s president, Ursula von der Leyen, has said. Von der Leyen said there would be crises where the EU’s own military force should operate independently from both the UN and Nato.
Three former US intelligence and military officers have admitted working as mercenaries for the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and carrying out sophisticated hacking operations targeting victims in America. The charges against them are published amid growing concerns that foreign states may be compromising US security by recruiting intelligence personnel to bolster their own capabilities. The clandestine unit helped the UAE spy on human rights activists, journalists, and rival governments.
Female players from Afghanistan’s junior national soccer team have crossed the border into Pakistan. The girls had spent the past month in hiding amid fears of a crackdown on women’s rights by the Taliban. Members of the women’s side flew out of Kabul last month but the youth team were reportedly left stranded as they lacked passports and other documents.
A judge in Mexico has sentenced drug lord Vicente Carrillo Fuentes to 28 years in prison for organized crime, money laundering and weapons violations, prosecutors announced Tuesday. Carillo Fuentes was a former leader of the Juarez drug cartel, based in the border city of Ciudad Juarez, across from El Paso, Texas. He is the brother of drug lord Amado Carrillo Fuentes, known as “The Lord of The Skies,” who died in a botched plastic surgery in 1997.