While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, March 26 edition

Three more arrested in Brussels police operation over attacks

Belgian police arrested three more people on Friday as investigations into Tuesday’s suicide bombings by Islamist militants in Brussels threw up more links to killings in Paris last year.

The federal prosecutor’s office said the operation was connected to the arrest in Paris on Thursday of an Islamist convicted in Belgium last year and suspected of plotting a new attack.

Nine people in total have been arrested since Thursday in Belgium and two in Germany, as European authorities swoop on Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) militants they link both to the Brussels bombings that killed 31 people and to the attacks in Paris last November that killed 130.


Football pitch suicide attack kills 30 south of Baghdad

A suicide bomber blew himself up on the football pitch as trophies were being presented after a local tournament south of Baghdad Friday, killing at least 30 people.

The Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) group claimed responsibility for the attack, that wreaked carnage on the field where supporters, officials and security forces were gathered after the game.

“They were just handing the trophy to the winners, the suicide attacker blew himself up in the crowd,” a police captain from the village, Al-Asriya, told AFP.


US health officials tell couples exposed to Zika to wait to conceive

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued guidelines on Friday recommending how long men and women exposed to the Zika virus should wait before trying to conceive babies.

Zika has been linked to a spike in microcephaly, a rare birth defect, in Brazil.

Women diagnosed with Zika should wait at least eight weeks after symptoms began before trying to conceive, while men should hold off for at least six months, health officials recommended.


Rolling Stones to rock Cuba in historic concert

The Rolling Stones made final preparations for their first-ever concert in Havana on Friday, with Cubans once banned from even listening to rock 'n roll expected to attend in huge numbers.

Although there were no posters or other visible signs of the event around the Cuban capital, which does not allow street advertising, news spread by word of mouth and as many as 500,000 people were forecast to gather in the Ciudad Deportivo sports complex.

A stage 80m long was erected, flanked by 10 giant video screens in a stadium-level production that is the most advanced Cuba has seen.


Football: Fans put rivalries aside at friendly to pay homage to Johan Cruyff

Dutch and French football fans filling Amsterdam’s ArenA stadium on Friday evening for once put rivalries aside, united in the memory of Johan Cruyff, who died a day before aged 68.

A usually festive atmosphere for the friendly international was tempered by the news of Cruyff’s passing in Spain, with many fans speaking respectfully of the Netherlands “greatest-ever” footballer.

Inside the 53,000-capacity stadium, the game was halted in the 14th minute for an unprecedented tribute – the moment chosen for the number 14 that Cruyff wore on the back of his playing shirt.