Last 24 Hours: Rough weekend in Lebanon

The Crimean parliament declared official independence Monday morning after the Ukraine region held a Sunday referendum on aligning with Russia. The outcome came to be positive with 97 percent backing Russia. After the declaration this morning, Crimea is now moving fast to integrate financially with Russia.

Lebanon dealt with a busy weekend of growing violence midst its ongoing fears of spillover from the civil war in the neighboring country of Syria. Car bombs – both unexpected and controlled – went off in a town in the Bekaa region. It was also reported two rockets landed in that same area.  In response to this, the Lebanon army was sent to the Syrian border just as rebels fled. Clashes also ensued in Tripoli where a soldier and civilian were killed this Sunday.

United States President Obama and Palestinian leader Abbas meet as Mideast peace talks deadline nears.

In ongoing territorial struggles with rebels, United States forces – the Navy SEALS – seized an oil tanker leaving a rebel-controlled port early Monday morning. Over Sunday, a car bomb killed seven soldiers in Tripoli.

Should know:

Tunisia; Police kill three militants in shootout — Venezuela; Soldiers storm protesters’ stronghold in Caracas — Algeria; Three killed in sectarian clashes in Ghardaia — Egypt; Militants outwit army in Sinai — Nigeria; Herdsmen kill 100 in attacks16 killed in stampedes for jobs 

Turkey; Turkish activists charged over protests, cleric says Erdogan crackdown worse than army coup era — Sri Lanka; Police arrest two human rights activists — Serbia; Ruling party wins big in national election

To watch: 

United States/Mexico; Another group of 60 migrants tries to enter the U.S. — Iran; Iran accuses foreign agencies in new sabotage plot — El Salvador; Ex-guerrilla declared president — Koreas; South Korea says North Korea test fired 25 missiles

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