Great News for Diplomacy
THE NSA MAY HAVE BEEN MONITORING ANGELA MERKEL'S PHONE FOR A DECADE
Which is disappointing, because usually the US government is so trustworthy
Following news that the NSA have monitored calls of at least 35 world leaders, it emerged that Angela Merkel's phone might have been bugged for over a decade.
According to Der Spiegel, the German chancellor's mobile number had been listed by the NSA's Special Collection Service (SCS) since 2002, however the nature of the monitoring is unknown – Merkel's conversations could have been monitored, or it could simply be that her contacts were assessed by the intelligence organisation.
The White House is now under intense pressure to reveal how much President Obama knew about the surveillance operations targeting world leaders, or indeed if he authorised any of them himself.
In an SCS document cited by Der Spiegel, exposure of the "not legally registered spying branch" in the US embassy in Berlin would lead to "grave damage for the relations of the United States to another government".
Which seems pretty obvious, and the repercussions of the news will undoubtedly unravel over the next few days, not least when a delegation of German intelligence officials arrive in the US this week to meet their counterparts and demand answers about the scope of NSA activities in their country.
THE FBI ARE INVESTIGATING THE FATAL POLICE SHOOTING OF A 13-YEAR-OLD BOY
The child was carrying a pellet gun that the sheriff's deputy reportedly thought was an AK-47
The FBI is conducting an independent investigation into the shooting of 13-year-old Andy Lopez by a sheriff's deputy in northern California.
Santa Rosa police say that Lopez was carrying a pellet gun that looked like an AK-47 rifle, and that – despite commands to drop the gun – the teen kept holding on to it, before turning towards the deputies and raising the barrel.
This, according to Lt Paul Henry, made the unnamed deputy "fearful that he was going to be shot", causing him to open fire.
Hundreds of community members marched for more than three miles last Wednesday night to commemorate Lopez's life and protest against the shooting.
Hugely Anticlimactic Discoveries
MANCHESTER POLICE DIDN'T FIND THE UK'S FIRST 3D-PRINTED GUN
Turns out the parts everyone made a big fuss about were probably printer components
A 3D-printed object found by Greater Manchester police that they suspected to be a gun trigger.
Greater Manchester police (GMP) sent the press into a frenzy last week with claims that they had potentially uncovered parts for the UK's first 3D-printed gun.
Only, it turns out the stuff they found probably has nothing to do with firearms whatsoever.
According to New Scientist, the "trigger" and "magazine" the GMP found are both likely to be 3D-printed components of a 3D printer, not – as the GMP first suggested – parts that "could be fitted together to make a viable 3D gun".
It seems that the GMP have also realised that their first statement might have been a little premature, with Assistant Chief Constable Steve Heywood later saying, "We need to be absolutely clear that, at that this stage, we cannot categorically say we have recovered the component parts for a 3D gun."
So, if you live in Manchester and were starting to get worried about people jumping you with a plastic gun, stop worrying.
LOADS OF WOMEN DROVE IN SAUDI ARABIA TO PROTEST THE NO DRIVING LAWS
More than 60 Saudi women got behind the wheel to prove that driving won't harm their ovaries
Activists claim that more than 60 Saudi women drove cars this weekend to protest against the ban on women driving in the country.
Saudi professor and campaigner Aziza Youssef said the activists have received 13 videos and 50 phone messages from women showing or claiming they had driven. If the numbers are legitimate, it would make the protest the largest ever against the ban on women driving.
There is no specific Saudi law against women driving, but the kingdom does not issue licenses to women, meaning they must rely on drivers or male relatives to drive them around.
After claims by a prominent cleric that driving can harm women's ovaries, three female members of the Saudi advisory council recommended that the ban be rescinded, but no debate has yet taken place