News Watch

Cyclone Idai struck the coast of Mozambique on March 15, hitting the city of Beira (pop. 530,000) with winds over 100 miles per hour. The storm killed more than 500 people there, with the death toll estimated to top 1,000 as recovery efforts continue. Homes and bridges were destroyed, and the entire city was left without electricity or clean water. The storm caused a dam to collapse, wiping out the only road into the city.

The storm continued to Zimbabwe and Malawi, killing at least...


A ferry rated to carry 100 passengers but carrying at least 200 sank in swift waters in the Tigris River in Mosul, Iraq, on March 21, killing more than 80 people. The ship, most of whose passengers were Kurds celebrating Nowruz, or New Year, was heading to Umm Rabaen, a river island popular with tourists, north of the city center.

Before the incident, officials had warned boat operators that the level of the Tigris was unusually high, as the gates at Mosul Dam had been opened.


Flash flooding in southern Iran killed 19 people and injured more than 100 others on March 26. Hardest hit was the historical city of Shiraz, where hundreds of buildings and roads were damaged. The flooding occurred during the Persian New Year, so many businesses and government facilities were closed, meaning that fewer people were on the streets.

A gunman identified as an Australian white supremacist attacked two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, killing at least 50 people and injuring 20 others in what is being described as an act of terrorism.

After being chased off at the second targeted mosque by one of the worshipers, who had picked up an empty, discarded shotgun, the attacker was arrested when police rammed his car a few blocks from the first attack. Police believe he may have been headed to attack a third location....


A man opened fire on a public tram in Utrecht, Netherlands, on March 18, killing three people and injuring five others. The suspect, identified as a Turkish national, was arrested hours later after a city-wide manhunt. He had a criminal history and recently had been released from prison while awaiting trial on a rape case.

Authorities suspect the shooting may have been an act of terrorism, at least in part due to a letter found in the suspect’s stolen getaway car.


Packages containing explosives were found in three locations in London on March 5: Heathrow Airport, London City Airport and the Waterloo train station. Another package containing explosives was mailed to the University of Glasgow in Scotland.

A letter sent to British authorities said the devices were sent by the Real Irish Republican Army (Real IRA), a Northern Ireland separatist group classified as a terrorist group by the UK and US. The letter included a code phrase indicating it...


Two long-range missiles were fired from the Gaza Strip on March 14, landing outside of Tel Aviv, Israel, and causing no damage or casualties. They were the first missiles fired at Tel Aviv since the 2014 Gaza War. After the missiles were fired, Israeli jets and helicopters conducted air strikes on strategic but reportedly abandoned locations in Gaza, injuring two people.

After the air strikes, it was reported that Israeli officials believed the missiles had been fired by accident...


As many as 800,000 people gathered in Algiers, Algeria, on March 1 to protest the announcement that President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who has been in power since 1999, was running for a fifth term.

On March 11, Bouteflika announced he would not seek a fifth term, but, as of press time, no successor had been named. Since suffering a stroke in 2013, Bouteflika had not been seen or heard in public until he announced he was stepping down. After that announcement, protests continued, with...