►European Union leaders are gathering in Brussels today for a summit to address economic sanctions against Russia for seizing Crimea. However, experts warn that such sanctions would pose serious consequences to Europe’s economy. A number of measures against Russia are already in place, including travel bans and asset freezes, according to German Chancellor Angela Merkel. EU leaders will “make it clear that we’re always ready to enact stage-three measures if the situation worsens,” Merkel said. “And without any doubt, this will also be about economic sanctions.” Trading relationships with several European countries along with the economic fallout from the European debt crisis are delaying a united response to Russia’s actions.
►Taliban insurgents assaulted a police station in Jalalabad, Afghanistan, early Thursday morning, killing 10 police officers and a civilian, according to CTV News. The brazen attack, which culminated in a four-hour gunfight with police, involved a suicide bomber, two remotely detonated bombs, and seven insurgents. All seven insurgents were killed. The attack was the latest in the region as next month’s presidential elections draw closer.
►The United Kingdom is working on creating a £1 coin with enhanced security features that will help reduce counterfeiting. The Royal Mint is using an integrated secure identification system (iSIS), which takes existing security technology used in banknotes and embeds it into coins. iSIS incorporates three tiers of covert security and can be authenticated via high-speed automated detection units, which can be used in any industry, including retail and vending equipment.The 12-sided prototype coin has micro-text with specific textures along the edges and would be made up of two different colored metals. It is estimated that there are more than 40 million counterfeit coins in circulation in the United Kingdom, according to Coin Update.
►A field hearing on combating human trafficking in major cities is being held today at Texas Southern University in Houston. Local and national law enforcement officials and trafficking experts will discuss domestic and international human trafficking using Houston as a case study.