Gun control, nuke testing, and more

Shorter Question Everything

Nuclear Security Helicopters Testing Radiation Levels Above DC Area: Helicopters have been conducting radiation tests above portions of the Washington, D.C. area using remote gamma radiation sensing technology. The National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) has been flying the radiation missions since Dec. 27, 2012 and they will continue until next Friday, Jan. 11. The flights have been conducted during daylight only, and the pilots fly about 80 miles per hour at 150 feet above the approximately 70-square mile radiation assessment area.

• The administration of President Barack Obama is considering a broad array of measures to curb the nation’s gun violence, including more than just a reinstatement of a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition, The Washington Post reported Sunday.

• The head of the African Union is set to visit Ottawa this week. Thomas Yayi Boni’s meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper could bring a request for Canadian troops to be involved in an international mission in Mali.

Canada was on a list of terrorist targets found by U.S. Navy SEALs during the May 2011 raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan, according to a newly declassified intelligence report. The report by the Integrated Threat Assessment Centre is the first official government confirmation that the cache of papers recovered during the operation that killed the al-Qaeda leader named Canada as a target. The April 2012 threat assessment, released by the Canadian Security Intelligence Service, confirms Canada was on a list of targets found during the raid. The report does not say bin Laden had developed any specific plans to attack Canada.

Pakistani and Indian troops exchanged fire Sunday along their hotly disputed border in divided Kashmir, with each side accusing the other of starting the clash. Pakistan said one of its soldiers was killed and another wounded when Indian troops crossed the de facto border and stormed a military post, an accusation denied by the other side. A Pakistani military statement said the Indian troops came across the frontier known as the Line of Control in the Haji Pir sector, 80 kilometres (49 miles) north of Islamabad, and “physically raided” a checkpost named Sawan Patra.

The Palestinian Authority officially changed its name to the State of Palestine. P.A. President Mahmoud Abbas decreed Friday that the name would be changed to reflect the recent upgrade of the Palestinians’ status at the United Nations, The Associated Press reported. Palestinian stamps, signs and letterheads will be changed to reflect the change, according to Wafa, the Palestinian news agency.

• Kyrgyz prosecutors launched a criminal case Monday over an alleged attack on a guard post bordering Uzbekistan’s territory. A large group of residents of the Uzbek enclave of Sokh in the Ferghana Valley reportedly attacked Kyrgyz border guards at a local post over the weekend near the village of Charbak. The villagers tried to seize firearms from the frontier guards, injuring some them. The incident took place when the Kyrgyz guards were erecting supports for electricity transmission lines.

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