Year in Review: International News

Posted by on Dec 29, 2015 in Year in Review

As we close the page on another year, btw brings you its traditional year-end look at what events that took place in 2015 that most captured our attention. This week we focus on those things that took place around the world.

Multicultural people holding peace signs around the world

Credit: ImageZoo/SuperStock


Perhaps the biggest world news story of the year is the consequence of the ongoing unrest in Syria. What began in 2011 continues to rage, and the numbers of refugees fleeing that country continues to grow. Which has left the rest of the world to decide how to best help and manage the situation. A coalition of nations that includes the US, Germany, Turkey, France, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and Great Britain vocally admonished Russia’s decision to act on its own with air strikes at the beginning of the year. By the end the European Union (EU) worked out a deal with Turkey (the country currently accepting the most refugees) to provide better living conditions to those in crisis.

Terrorist Attacks

The so-called Islamic State (IS, ISIS or ISIL) escalated its presence and attacks on the innocent in 2015, with attacks in Paris and Beirut among the most visible. While it has made itself the most visible threat, it was not the only extremists group to wreck havoc this year. In January, two gunman struck the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo headquarters because they were offended by parodies of the Muslim prophet, Mohamed. Boko Haram continued its threat across Nigeria, seizing control of villages across that country and slaughtering hundreds of innocent people. In November, three separate terrorists groups took responsibility for taking nearly 170 people hostage and killing 20 in a hotel in Mali. World leaders will continue their efforts to combat ISIS.

Other News Around the World

Nepal and Chile experienced natural disaster with a massive earthquake and volcano, respectively. Russian President Vladimir Putin made news at the beginning of the year with an uncharacteristic absence and continued his uneasy relationship with the US and much of the rest of the world. The European Debt Crisis raged, with Greece on the verge of economic collapse. In good news across the world, Nigeria elected a new president, Ireland became the first country in history to legalize same-sex marriage by popular vote. Collectively, the world (by way of the United Nations) developed 17 sustainable development goals, and at the end of the year, representatives from 200 countries gathered for COP21 (the 21st UN Conference of the Parties) to offer solutions to curb Climate Control.

What Do You Think? What do you think the biggest international story of the year was? Why? Choose a topic from the story above that you are less familiar with and dig a little deeper, writing at least one paragraph on what you learned and why it might not have captured your attention before.