Sri Lanka to probe anti-Muslim riots
COLOMBO • A probe into anti-Muslim riots that spread in central Sri Lanka, prompting the authorities to declare a nationwide state of emergency, was announced yesterday by President Maithripala Sirisena.
A panel of three retired judges will probe the breakdown in law and order in the picturesque hill resort of Kandy, Mr Sirisena's office said in a statement.
Tillerson cancels Kenya activities
NAIROBI • US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who is on his first Africa tour as Washington's top diplomat, yesterday cancelled his programme in Kenya because he was feeling unwell, officials said.
"The secretary is not feeling well after a long couple (of) days working on major issues... and has cancelled his events for the day," said a brief statement from Undersecretary of State Steve Goldstein.
Syrian army cuts off main town in Ghouta
DOUMA (Syria) • Syrian regime forces yesterday cut off the largest town in eastern Ghouta from the rest of the opposition enclave in a blow to rebels defending their last bastion near Damascus.
Government troops and allied militia have recaptured half of the besieged region in an assault launched on Feb 18. They have pursued a divide-and-conquer strategy eating away at rebel-held towns and successfully isolated Ghouta's main town of Douma yesterday.