Kofi Annan has resigned as the U.N. and Arab League special envoy to Syria. His mandate expires on August 31st and according to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Annan did not wish to renew his mandate. A successor is now being sought out to continue peace efforts…in a conflict that is now internationally regarded as civil war between an armed resistance movement and the Syrian government.
Russia and China have persistently disagreed with tough action against the al Assad regime. Russian Ambassador to the U.N—Vitaly Churkin—had this to say about Annan's resignation…..
More than 17 thousand have been reportedly killed in the 17-month uprising , that has now spilled into two Christian-populated areas in the capital of Damascus. Reports have suggested that many of the 1.5 million Christians in the largely Muslim country are fleeing due to fear of what Syria's uncertain future may bring. Many rebel and anti-government forces have portrayed President Assad as a tyrant who needs to be brought down. However, many Christian groups have expressed fears about the outcome if radical Islamists take over.
Chick-fil-A reported record sales on Wednesday as supporters rallied around the fast-food chain amid a debate over its president's support for same sex marriage. Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee declared a Chick-fil-A appreciation day following the backlash against the company and its president . It started when Dan Cathy appeared in The Baptist Press in mid July. He said that he supported the biblical definition of a family unit.
Meanwhile for Chick-fil-A appreciation day in Dallas…..a line of cars waiting at the drive-thru was so long, it backed up into the street. In Fort Worth, a seminary planned to buy more than 200 sandwiches to show their support, while Gay rights groups are planning a same-sex kiss day at Chick-fil-A locations today.
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association has announced plans to hold the largest North American event in more than 60 years of the ministry on the week of Billy Graham's 95th birthday next year. However, unlike the huge stadium outreaches that he is perhaps best known for, the "My Hope With Billy Graham" event planned on Nov. 7, 2013, will use the latest in media distribution technology to present the gospel message. The event has been a 10-year project in which the organization has partnered with churches and Christians throughout the world to introduce the Gospel through Reverend Graham's messages.
An Ebola outbreak is reported at a hospital in Uganda with 30 suspected cases. The deaths have caused fear about the highly infection virus…spreading. Market day was canceled in Uganda and officials are advising the public to avoid public gatherings in the affected "Kya-manywa" district.
A man and a woman in Mali were forced into two holes and stoned to death for adultery. The woman had two young children: a boy and a girl. A leader of a radical Islamic group in the region said Sharia law condemns relationships outside of marriage. al Qaeda-linked Islamists have seized control over most of Mali. They recently destroyed two historic tombs at the Timbuktu Mosque, classified as a World Heritage Site, sparking international outrage. They especially target Sufi shrines, which they believe are sacrilegious.
HERE'S THE THE OLYMPICS ROUNDUP…….
All time star Michael Phelps beat his own historic record of 19 medals to win….yet another gold, bringing the count to 20. Now, he's the first male swimmer to win the same individual event at three straight Olympics in the 200-meter individual medley.
Canadian doubles badminton players Alex Bruce and Michele Li lost their shot at playing for gold when they fell to Japan in the semi-finals. Canada picked up a silver yesterday in women's rowing to make it 7 medals so far.
The U.S. has the most medals at 37 with China at 34; and the U.K…15. Speaking of China: the tense relations between America and China are playing out at the London games with both sides continuing to accuse each other of doping and poor sportsmanship.