9th suspect arrested in Paris attacks
Belgian authorities announced the arrest of a ninth suspect linked to the Nov. 30 terrorist attacks in Paris that killed 130 people, a Belgian man whom they said had been in contact several times with the cousin of the suspected ringleader. The Belgian federal prosecutor’s office identified the man only as Abdoullah C, born in 1985.
Americans in Beijing warned of threat
The U.S. Embassy in Beijing warned of “possible threats” to U.S. citizens in a popular shopping and embassy district in the Chinese capital over the holiday period. “U.S. citizens are urged to exercise heightened vigilance,” read a statement on the embassy website. Beijing authorities put swaths of the city under lockdown, stationing armed guards on street corners and in pedestrian plazas. Several hours after the U.S. statement, the British Embassy issued a similar notice.
More cities issue alerts for heavy smog
More Chinese cities are issuing their first red alerts for pollution in response to forecasts of heavy smog after Beijing issued two this month following criticism for not releasing them earlier. Shandong Province in eastern China issued alerts in four cities after warning that the density of particulate matter in the air would exceed high levels for more than 24 hours.
Four killed in latest West Bank violence
Four Palestinians were killed, among them three who Israel said were carrying out attacks on soldiers in the West Bank, the latest in a three-month-long wave of unrelenting Israeli-Palestinian violence. The four separate incidents came as revelers were gathering in the West Bank city of Bethlehem for Christmas celebrations, festivities that are being dampened by the latest outburst of violence.
25 killed, including child, in hospital fire
Fire ravaged the maternity and neonatal intensive care unit of a hospital in Saudi Arabia, killing at least 25 people and injuring more than 100. Saudi news media said the blaze may have been started by an electrical problem. At least one of the dead was a child.