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This happened: the rich got richer, the Pope left Asia, Israeli strikes were denounced and so were Charlie Hebdo cartoons, AirAsia flight was not linked to terrorism

Good morning!

Overnight the world’s richest continued to accumulate wealth.

Pope Francis preached religious tolerance before leaving Asia, while protesters in Chechnya demanded respect for Islam. Critics were warning of retaliation after Israel hit Hezbollah targets in Syria.

The crash of AirAsia was said to have nothing to do with terrorism.

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The rich got richer

By 2016, the world’s top one percent of billionaires will own more than half of the world’s wealth, according to a report by anti-poverty charity Oxfam. At the moment they hold a whopping 48 percent. The report was published ahead of the World Economic Forum in Davos, where presidents, business leaders, global authorities on science – and Pharrell Williams – will gather to discuss issues including terrorism, climate change, global economics and ebola.

READ MORE: Richest 1% owns almost half world wealth as inequality gap widens

An Israeli strike on Syria was denounced as provocative

Insiders warned of retaliation after an Israeli helicopter fired missiles on a convoy in Syria, killing six Hezbollah operatives fighting there. Amongst those killed was the son of Hezbollah’s late military leader. This comes days after the Lebanese group’s leader called Israeli strikes an act of “major aggression”, that Syrian forces had a right to respond to.

READ MORE: Reprisals feared as Israel strike in Syria kills son of Hezbollah’s late military leader

Pope Francis left Asia after a record-breaking mass in the rain

Despite torrential rain, about 7 million congregants wearing plastic macs in the Vatican’s favourite hue, yellow, gathered to hear the Pope give a service in the Philippines capital, Manilla. It’s the record number of people at a papal gathering – seems like his tour in Asia to drum up support for the Catholic church was a success, then.

READ MORE: Pope attracts record crowd of 7m for soggy service in Philippines

Air Asia investigators didn’t find evidence of terrorism

After listening to the black box recorders, the investigators in the case of doomed AirAsia flight have so far ruled out terrorism. They are currently trying to filter out the noisy warning sounds that dominate the last few minutes on the voice recording in order to hear what was said in the cockpit before it crashed. An initial report on the crash is set to be published next week.

READ MORE: AirAsia crash was not terrorism-related, say Indonesian investigators

Chechnya Muslims protested against Charlie Hebdo cartoons

We continue to learn that not everybody “is Charlie Hebdo”. This morning thousands of demonstrators gathered to condemn the cartoons published in Charlie Hebdo, in Grozny, the capital of the mostly-Muslim region of Chechnya, Russia. Leader RamzanKadyrov said the cartoons of Prophet Mohammad were “vulgar and immoral” and that they would not be tolerated.

READ MORE: Chechnya rally protests against “immoral” Charlie Hebdo cartoons

 
 
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