Wikinews Shorts: February 20, 2014
A compilation of brief news reports for Thursday, February 20, 2014.
Ukrainian truce established
Ukraine's President Viktor Yanukovych declared a truce after a violent evening in Kiev's . There was brief peace just five days ago when protesters agreed to unblock downtown streets. That was soon broken as violence occurred when interior ministry troops, special " " security forces, and police officers confronted protesters.
So far 26 people, including protesters and ten police officers, have been killed in Independence Square clashes. This is the most violence the country has seen since it gained independence 20 years ago.
- Nick Paton Walsh, Greg Botelho and Victoria Butenko. "Truce declared in bloodied Ukraine, but will it last through talks?" — , Wed February 19, 2014
- Ian Traynor and Harriet Salem. "Ukraine suffers 'black day' that will never be forgotten" — , Wednesday 19 February 2014
Facebook plans to purchase messaging service for US$16 billion
yesterday announced a plan to purchase for 16 billion. Facebook's plan says it will pay US$12 billion in stocks and US$4 billion in cash. All parties are still waiting regulatory approval. The deal could potentially be worth US$19 billion with US$3 billion more being offered to employees. Employees who remained at Facebook for four years would be offered restricted stock.
WhatsApp is a messaging service where users can send text, picture, and video messages using their data plans, instead of their messaging plan. The company has over 450 million world-wide active users, with about 70 percent of those users being active daily. WhatsApp adds about one million new users per day. Facebook foundersaid the app will not change for users.
- Julianne Pepitone. "Facebook to Buy WhatsApp for a Whopping $16 Billion" — , February 19, 2014
- Allstair Barr. "Facebook agrees to buy WhatsApp for $16 billion" — , February 19, 2014
Australia releases confidential information of thousands of refugees
The records of around 10,000 asylum-seekers inwere made available by the Australian government until made authorities aware yesterday the data was freely accessible. Confidential refugee files were accessed, featuring the names, nationalities, locations, and arrival information. Paul Power, chief executive of the advocacy group Refugee Council of Australia, said the situation risked those in refugee centers in Australia, as well as their families.
In a speech delivered last November, Immigration Ministersaid that the Australian government was responsible for protecting the identities of refugees. Now the is being called to account for its role under Australia's privacy laws, including negligence.
- "Australia mistakenly publishes asylum seekers' names, other personal details" — , February 19, 2014
- Oliver Laughland, Paul Farrell and Asher Wolf. "Immigration Department data lapse reveals asylum seekers' personal details" — , February 18, 2014