NEWS BRIEFS: On Campus, Across the Nation & Around the World

President Obama confirms death of American aid worker in Syria

President Barack Obama confirmed the death of American aid worker Peter Kassig at the hands of ISIS, according to the New York Times.

The article said Kassig had disappeared a year ago while delivering medical supplies in Syria.

President Obama confirmed Kassig’s death hours after a video was released by ISIS which showed a masked figure standing over a severed head.

President Obama condemned the killing, saying that Kassig “was taken from us in an act of pure evil by a terrorist group,” in the article.

This video was different from previously released ISIS execution videos because of the amateur quality of the recording.

Previous executions were shot with multiple cameras at many different angles, while the execution of Kassig was shot with one camera from a single spot, according to the article.

Experts believe this might mean that ISIS is currently on the run and is unable to film the elaborate executions they had in the past.


First photos of Philae probe released

The first images of the Philae probe landing on comet 67P have been released, according to BBC.

The probe initially made contact with the comet and bounced a mile back into space before eventually landing a half-mile away from its intended landing spot, according to the article.

The European Space Agency have reported that images of the probe on the planet’s surface have been identified, with the probe a few pale pixels in the photo.

The Philae probe is currently transmitting pictures and other data back to Earth, but the difficulties that it faced on its landing have crippled its ability to recharge its battery, according to the article.

Scientists have rotated the solar panels on the lander to maximize the light that it sees, and they remain hopeful that they can gain even more information about the comet.


Afghan lawmaker survives suicide attack

Shukria Barakzai, Afghan women’s rights leader and a member of parliament in Kabul, survived a suicide bombing in Afghanistan, according to the New York Times.

The bomber killed three and wounded 32 others, according to the article, with the attack occurring close to Parliament.

Barakzai is an outspoken leader for women’s rights in Afghanistan and her criticism of powerful warlords has made her many enemies, according to the article.

The article said she described her Parliament as “a collection of lords. Warlords, drug lords, crime lords.”

Barakzai also ran an underground school for girls during the Taliban era in Afghanistan.

Currently, no terrorist group has claimed responsibility for the attack, according to the article.

The Taliban has not commented on the attack yet, with Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid saying that he would comment after checking with the Taliban.


Brazilian trio sentenced for cannibalism

A judge in Brazil has sentenced three people to 20-23 years in jail for killing a woman and cannibalizing her, according to BBC.

The three people were identified as Jorge Beltrao Negromonte da Silveira, his wife Isabel Cristina Pires and his mistress Bruna Cristina Oliveira da Silva.

They were charged with the murder of Jessica da Silva, as well as confessing to killing two other women, which they will be sentenced for later.

The trio also allegedly sold pastries made with the victims flesh to neighbors, according to the article.

The article said they described their act of murder and cannibalism as a purification ritual, saying that they are a part of a group that supported “the purification of the world and the reduction of its population.”

The trio was arrested in 2012, and were convicted of murder, desecration and concealment of the body.



In the article “Should athletes have priority registration?,” published on Nov. 12, information was stated wrongly. Sports teams do not bring huge revenue through game tickets, as the tickets are free for students.

The Echo regrets the error.


Matthew Garvin

Staff Writer

Published November 19, 2014