Australia to join international effort to quell destabilising activity in North Korea - plus more 8AM Zedlines

Supreme leader of North Korea Kim Jong-un launched a fourth unsanctioned nuclear test on Wednesday, causing widespread concern in the international community. Picture source: Wikimedia Commons

Alarming rise of DV calls in Queensland

Industry workers have revealed an unprecedented rise in the amount of women placing calls into domestic violence support hotlines throughout Queensland.

A 24-hour domestic hotline service in Queensland, DV Connect, received approximately 2000 calls in the four days following New Year’s regarding domestic disputes.

Chief Executive Diane Margan stated the service had never seen that level of demand in her 40 years of working in the sector, saying it was triple the amount of calls received in the same period last year.


Shark attack victims recovering 

AN 11-year-old boy is recovering in Gladstone hospital after a black-tip reef shark bit him on the leg while he was wading in knee-high water off Heron Island.

It was the second shark ­attack in central Queensland in four days after Allan Countryman pun­ched a shark to fend it off while spearfishing at Miall ­Island, near Great Keppel Island, last Saturday.

Both the victims are recovering in hospital and are in a stable condition.


Australia to stand against NK nuclear testing

Foreign Minister Julie Bishop says Australia will partner with other countries in order to end North Korea’s “provocative behavior”.

While North Korea is claiming yesterday’s seismic activity was the successful detonation of its first ever hydrogen bomb, the international community has yet to confirm the details of the nuclear test.

Ms Bishop said the actions of the rogue nation continue to pose a threat to international peace and security.


RAAF to convert jets to spy planes

The Royal Australian Air Force is set to spend over $90 million dollars converting corporate jets into state-of-the-art spy planes over the coming year.

A brief statement posted on the US Defense Department’s website has revealed a fixed-price contract for converting several G550, stating the contract was for “100-percent foreign military sales to Australia”

Peter Jennings from the Australian Strategic Policy Institute said he is not surprised the RAAF has chosen the option.

The jets are expected to come into service at the end of next year.


UN condemns North Korean nuclear detonation 

The United Nations has demanded North Korea cease further nuclear activities, after the country’s of successfully testing a hydrogen bomb.

UN secretary-general Ban Ki-Moon described the DPRK’s underground testinging as “deeply troubling” and “profoundly destabilising for regional security". 

North Korea’s claim could potentially take days to verify, with experts remaining sceptical about whether or not an H-bomb test actually occurred within the country.

Multiple countries have condemned the activities, with the Chinese government stating they “firmly oppose” North Korea’s actions while NATO stating the move is a threat regional and international security.


Obama unveils gun restriction plans

US President Barack Obama has unveiled new restrictions on firearm purchases in the United States. 

Obama’s executive actions, utilised without congress approval, are set to widen background checks on potential gun buyers.

The National Rifle Association stated they would directly oppose President Obama’s measures, while leader of the House Of Representatives Paul Ryan said Obama was “undermining liberty” with his actions.

Sales of firearms in the United States have risen over the past few weeks, amid speculation that the White House was going to tighten laws.