NIGERIA

Bomber kills 21 people

A suspected Boko Haram suicide bomber detonated himself in the middle of a procession of hundreds of Shiite Muslims on Friday, killing 21 people and injuring about 40, local religious leaders said. The attack occurred during the annual Arbaeen procession from Nigeria’s second-largest city, Kano, to the ancient Islamic city of Zaria, said Aliyu Yusuf Kakaki, a spokesman for the Shiite community in Kano. The leader of Shiites in Kano, Sheikh Muhammadu Mahmud Turi, told reporters on Friday that 21 members of the sect lost their lives in the blast. A second suicide bomber was detained and was being interrogated, Kakaki added.

RUSSIA

Visa-free travel suspended

Russia announced Friday that it will suspend visa-free travel with Turkey amid the spat over the downing of a Russian warplane by a Turkish fighter jet at the Syrian border. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov announced that Moscow will halt the existing visa-free regime starting Jan. 1, saying that Turkey has become a conduit for terrorists and has been reluctant to share information with Moscow about Russian citizens accused of involvement in terrorist activities.

AUSTRALIA

Tree lights set record

An Australian set his third Christmas-themed world record in as many years Friday by illuminating a 72-foot steel tree in downtown Canberra with 518,838 lights. Guinness World Records confirmed that David Richards had broken the record for the most lights on an artificial Christmas tree that had been held for five years by Universal Studios Japan in Osaka. That 118-foot tree had set a benchmark of 374,280 lights this month. Richards raises money for the Sudden Infant Death Syndrome charity, SIDS and Kids.

MEXICO

Attack kills civilian patrol

Mexican authorities said attackers killed four members of a civilian police patrol in the southern state of Guerrero, while two city police officers and five gunmen died in a series of gunbattles in the northern border town of Rio Bravo. The prosecutors’ office in Guerrero said late Thursday that seven members of a community police force were attacked as they patrolled the streets of the city of Tixtla, which is home to the teachers college that had 43 of its students vanish more than a year ago.

Compiled from wire reports.