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Digest year-ender for international stories for month of March, 2019

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Press Trust of India New Delhi
Mar 1: Dubai: Saudi Arabia announced Friday it had revoked the citizenship of Hamza bin Laden, the son of the late al-Qaida leader who has become an increasingly prominent figure in the terror network.
Mar 2: United Nations: The UN Security Council has designated Hamza bin Laden, the son of slain Al Qaida chief Osama bin Laden, under its sanctions list, describing the terrorist, thought to be based near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border, as the "most probable successor" of the group's current leader Aiman al-Zawahiri.
Mar 5: Washington/New Delhi: President Donald Trump has announced plans to scrap the preferential trade treatment for India, claiming that New Delhi has failed to assure the US of "equitable and reasonable" access to its markets, a move India said will not have a "significant impact" on its exports to America.
Mar 6: Islamabad: Pakistan on Wednesday intensified its crackdown against the banned organisations and took control of several seminaries and assets belonging to Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and its wing Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF).
Mar 7: Islamabad: A total of 121 members of the proscribed groups have so far been taken into "preventive detention" across Pakistan, the Interior Ministry announced Thursday, amidst global pressure on Islamabad to rein in the militant groups on its soil after the Pulwama terror attack.
Mar 9: London: UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid has certified India's extradition request for fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi, wanted in the Rs 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case, officials involved with the proceedings in the UK confirmed on Saturday, even as he was tracked living openly in a swanky 8-million pound apartment in London's West End and running a new diamond business.
Mar 11: Beijing: Amid reports that the resolution to declare Pakistan-based JeM chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist would come up in the UN Security Council on March 13, China on Monday said "a responsible solution" can only come through discussions.
Mar 12: New York: "Desperate Housewives" star Felicity Huffman and fellow Hollywood actress Lori Loughlin were among 50 people indicted Tuesday in a multi-million dollar scam to help children of the American elite cheat their way into top universities.
Mar 13: Melbourne: Cardinal George Pell, the most senior Vatican official to be convicted of sex abuse to date, has been sentenced to six years in prison by an Australian court for the "callous" assault of two choirboys in the late 1990s.
Mar 15: Christchurch: Mass shootings at two mosques full of worshippers attending Friday prayers killed 49 people in New Zealand as authorities charged one person, detained three others and defused explosive devices in what appeared to be a carefully planned racist attack.
Mar 17: Christchurch: New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has reiterated her promise that there will be changes to the country's gun laws in the wake of a terrorist attack on two mosques and said her Cabinet will discuss the policy details on Monday.
Mar 18: Beira (Mozambique): More than a thousand people are feared to have died in a cyclone that smashed into Mozambique last week, while scores have been killed and more than 150 are missing in neighbouring Zimbabwe.
Mar 19: London: In a fresh blow to embattled Prime Minister Theresa May on Brexit, House of Commons Speaker John Bercow, in a surprise move, disallowed any attempt to hold a third vote on her withdrawal deal with the EU which has already been rejected by MPs twice.
Mar 20: United Nations: Indians are not as happy in 2019 as they were in 2018 and the country figures at 140th place, seven spots down from last year, on this year's UN World Happiness Report released Wednesday which is topped by Finland for the second year in a row.
Mar 21: Wellington: New Zealand imposed an immediate ban on assault weapons on Thursday, taking swift action in response to the Christchurch massacre and triggering renewed calls from leading American politicians for curbs in the United States.
Mar 22: Beijing: The death toll in the powerful explosion at a chemical plant in eastern China climbed to 64 on Friday as a number of people succumbed to their injuries.
Mar 23: Bamako, Mar 23 (AP) Militia fighters descended on a village in central Mali before dawn Saturday, killing at least 115 people in the latest deadly attack blamed on an ethnic militia, local authorities said.
Mar 24: Bangkok, Mar 24 (AFP) Thailand's ruling junta took an unexpected lead in the country's first election since a 2014 coup with more than 90 percent of ballots counted, putting it on course to return to power at the expense of the kingdom's pro-democracy camp.
Mar 26: Paris, Mar 26 (AFP) China's President Xi Jinping on Tuesday attempted to dispel concern about his country's growing presence in Europe at a meeting with French, German and EU leaders who stressed their desire for a more balanced relationship.

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First Published: Dec 31 2019 | 3:31 PM IST

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