World News – Week of April 8


North Korea. The North Korean government officially launched its first and only online shopping website for citizens Friday. The site, Okryu, is regulated by the state and sells food and medicine. However, it remains unclear how many citizens will have access to online shopping as internet use is tightly controlled and usually only accessible by the elite. Most online purchases are expected to be made on handheld devices such as smartphones because ownership of a computer requires governmental permission. The development of this online market reflects North Korea’s recent attempts to improve their IT systems, according to Kim Heung-kwang, former professor at Pyongyang Computer Technology University.

BBC News

Great Britain. Dorset firefighters had to save a pig that fell into a swimming pool Thursday. The fire and rescue team was called to the city of Hampshire after the animal, nicknamed “Pigwig,” fell and could not get out. The animal rescue squad used ropes and lines to tie the large pig onto a rescue board, an effort that took them about 40 minutes.

BBC News

Iran. Iranian sports officials announced the ban on women attending sporting events will be lifted for certain events. The announcement was made on Saturday, offering women and families the opportunity to enter sporting arenas within the following year. Women will still only be allowed at indoor sporting events. After Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, the ban was instituted because mixed-gender crowds at sporting events was deemed un-Islamic. Sepp Blatter, president of Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), called the ban “intolerable” and stated it “cannot continue.” He is one of many international sports officials to criticize the regulation against women.


United States. A bee interrupted President Barack Obama at the White House easter egg roll Monday while he read Maurice Sendak’s children’s book “Where the Wild Things Are.” The annual tradition was paused when the children began to scream as the insect flew near the president. He laughed at their reactions and told his listeners, “You aren’t supposed to be scared of bees when you’re a wild thing.” The White House recently established a task force to investigate the current decline in bees across the country, although it was not called to the South Lawn at the time of the incident. “Bees are good,” Obama reportedly announced to the crowd.

TIME Magazine


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