News from around the world February 2019
By Sakuni Kalyanaratne
Here are some of the top stories that captured the world’s attention during the month of February 2019.
Oscars 2019The 91st Academy Awards ceremony was held on the 24th of February 2019, at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, Los Angeles, California. This year’s show was the first to be conducted without a host, since the 61st Academy Awards in 1989. Bohemian Rhapsody led with four awards for the night, including one for its leading man Rami Malek, who own for Best Actor for his portrayal of Queen front-man Freddie Mercury, after a close battle with fellow nominee Christian Bale for his role of Dick Cheney in Vice. Olivia Colman won for Best Actress for her take on Anne, Queen of Great Britain, beating the close second Glenn Close from The Wife. Green Book won for Best Picture while Alfonso Cuaron won Best Director for his movie Roma, which also won Best Foreign Language Film, making it the first Mexican submission to do so. Front runner Lady Gaga won for Best Original Song for her song Shallow from the movie A Star is Born.
Brexit UpdateBrexit hangs in the balance as the British PM still fighting to get the required votes for her deal before March 29th 2019. The Prime Minister's deal was defeated by the House of Commons in January and following that defeat, Theresa May went to Europe to get further legal assurances on the major sticking point which is the Irish Backstop. However, the European Union is refusing to renegotiate the deal that was agreed upon, thus making Theresa May vulnerable to further defeats in days to come in the House of Commons. There is consistent talk of extending deadline day as the British parliament is struggling to pass through the Brexit bill that would make Britain leave European Union.
Indu-Pakistan WarA truck of Indian vehicles were attacked by Pakistani suicide bombing terrorists in Pulwama in Kashmir. The attack took the lives of 40 soldiers in the Indian Army which resulted in wide spread shock and anger in India. The situation further escalated when the Indian government decided to launch air strikes against the Pakistan militants in Pakistan held Kashmir. This violated Pakistan air space who reacted by shooting down two Indian fighter jets and taking prisoner of one of the pilots in the struck down jets, who was later released by Pakistan. The decision by the Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan to release the pilot was a gesture of peace but both sides remain on high alert along the Kashmir border.
Trump-Kim Jung talksThe much anticipated second summit of the U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung Un was held on 27-28 February 2019, in Hanoi, Vietnam. The summit was widely anticipated as many believed this would ultimately lead to a peace deal between the U.S. and North Korea. However, Donald Trump decided to end the summit abruptly as the North Korean leader demanded that U.S. sanctions against his country be lifted in return to denuclearizing of North Korea, which Trump declined. The future of the discussions between the two countries remain in balance as both fail to come to a middle ground.