Nato has expelled eight Russian diplomats it says have been working secretly as intelligence officers. The military alliance has also halved the size of Moscow’s mission working at its Brussels headquarters to 10. It is the first time Nato has taken such action against Moscow since it expelled seven Russian diplomats from the mission in the wake of the 2018 Salisbury spy poisonings.
A federal judge temporarily blocked on Wednesday a near-total ban on abortion in Texas, the toughest such law in the United States, following a challenge from President Joe Biden’s administration after the U.S. Supreme Court let it proceed. The action by U.S. District Judge Robert Pitman in Austin prevents the state from enforcing the Republican-backed law, which prohibits women from obtaining an abortion after six weeks of pregnancy, while litigation over its legality continues.
At least 20 people have been killed after an earthquake struck Pakistan’s southern Balochistan province early on Thursday, officials have told the BBC. Authorities say the death toll may increase, and that many people were killed when structures collapsed. Many of the dead were women and children, the Reuters news agency said. The US Geological Survey said it was a 5.9 magnitude quake that struck at a shallow depth of 9km.
Tanzanian author Abdulrazak Gurnah has won the 2021 Nobel Prize in literature, the award-giving body said. The prestigious prize was awarded on Thursday by the Swedish Academy, which cited Gurnah’s “uncompromising and compassionate penetration of the effects of colonialism and the fate of the refugee in the gulf between cultures and continents”. Born in Zanzibar and based in England, Gurnah recently retired as a professor of post-colonial literature at the University of Kent.
Netflix has edited out a phone number that appears in its hit series Squid Game after a South Korean woman and others who use similar combinations were deluged with calls – with some callers even asking to join the show’s life-or-death games. The South Korea-made production has topped Netflix popularity charts in 90 countries since its launch last month and is on track to become its most watched series ever.