People hold up their phones and cameras to take a photo of Pope Francis in Manila, Philippines. Pope Francis will visit venues across Leyte and Manila during his visit to the Philippines from January 15 – 19. The visit is expected to attract crowds in the millions as Filipino Catholics flock to catch a glimpse of the leader of the Catholic Church in the Philippines for the first time since 1995. The Pope will begin the tour in Manila, then travelling to Tacloban to visit areas devastated by Typhoon Haiyan before returning to Manila to hold a mass at Rizal Park. The Philippines is the only Catholic majority nation in Asia with around 90 percent of the population professing the faith.
Young boys dressed as the Swiss Guard rest as they wait for Pope Francis at the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Manila, Philippines. Tens of thousands of people poured on to the streets on Friday to catch a glimpse of the pope amid the most intense security of his two-year pontificate
Afghan prisoners leave jail following their release by the orders of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, in Jalalabad, Afghanistan on Thursday. Ghani ordered some 27 prisoners including 9 women with less than a year to serve to be released in honor of Prophet Muhammad’s birthday.
Displaced Iraqis from the Yazidi community, who fled violence between Islamic State group jihadists and Peshmerga fighters in the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar, wait for bread to bake at Dawodiya camp for internally displaced people in the Kurdish city of Dohuk, in Iraq‘s northern autonomous Kurdistan region. Tens of thousands of members of the Yazidi religious minority were trapped by IS on Mount Sinjar for days in the searing August heat in a first siege by IS that sparked fears of genocide.
Lam Yik Fei/Getty Image
Filipino Catholics gather for Pope Francis’s arrival in Manila, Philippines.
Workers climb an electric pylon in Kuala Lumpur to install a high-voltage electric power transmission line. Currently 16% of electricity generation in Malaysia is hydroelectric, the remaining 84% being thermal.
A combination photo shows children from the minority Yazidi sect, who fled the Iraqi town of Sinjar due to violence by Islamic State militants, as they pose at their holy Lilash temple in northern Iraq. Thousands of Yazidis have been shot, buried alive or sold into slavery by Islamic State militants, who regard them as devil-worshippers. U.S. President Barack Obama authorized air strikes in Iraq in August, citing the duty to prevent an impending genocide of Yazidis at the hands of Islamic State militants after they overran a vast swathe of northern Iraq. Simonovic said that Islamic State was forcing Yazidis to either convert to Islam or be killed with the intent of destroying the religious group. Islamic State originally attacked the area around Sinjar, in northwestern Iraq, in August. They advanced on Iraq’s Sinjar mountain, tightening a siege of thousands of stranded Yazidis, who called on the United States and its allies to act to avert more bloodshed.
On the street outside her home, hairdresser Lisandra works on a woman’s extensions as others await their turn in Old Havana, Cuba.
Ukrainians fish in the frozen river Dnipro in Kiev, Ukraine.
A car balances on a section of road that caved in in Guangzhou, Guangdong province in China. The hole, which measures approximately 25 square metres, appeared on Wednesday morning.
Shizuo Kambayashi/AP Photo
People walk across a pedestrian crossing in Tokyo.
Seagulls flock over a rubbish dump in the Crimean city of Sevastopol.
A Sadhu or a Hindu holy man takes a holy bath at Sangam, the confluence of the Ganges, Yamuna and Saraswati rivers, on a foggy winter morning during the Makar Sankranti festival in the northern Indian city of Allahabad. Makar Sankranti is celebrated by Hindus across the country and marks the start of the harvest season.
Students at Ghausia Madrassa, an Islamic school in Peshawar, Pakistan, held prayers for the Islamist militants who conducted attacks in Paris last week. Seventeen victims, including journalists and police, died in three days of violence that began with an attack on the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo.
Exam markers inspect students’ exam papers for the national college entrance examination to the higher academy of fine arts at the paper inspection site in Xi’an, Shaanxi province, China.
Rupak De Chowdhuri/Reuters
A Hindu holy man offers prayers after taking a dip at the confluence of the river Ganges and the Bay of Bengal, ahead of the one-day Makar Sankranti festival at Sagar Island, south of Kolkata, India. Hindu monks and pilgrims are making their annual trip to Sagar Island for the festival on Wednesday.
Jorge Dan Lopez/Reuters
An activist kicks at military police during a demonstration in Iguala, Mexico. Activists and relatives of 43 missing trainee teachers broke into a military zone, less than a mile from where the students went missing. The remains of only one of the students has been identified so far.
A woman walks past houses that were heavily damaged by flash floods two months earlier, in the coastal Moroccan village of Aglou, north of Sidi Ifni. The floods, that were described by the residents as the heaviest storms to hit southern Morocco in decades, killed at least 32 people and left others homeless.
Residents of the garbage dumpsite Payatas, eat a “pagpag” or recycled meal to celebrate Pope Francis’s planned visit on Thursday to Quezon city, northeast of Manila, Philippines. Pope Francis is embarking on a five-day visit to the only predominantly Catholic nation in Asia between January 15 and 19 and is expected to draw hundreds of thousands of the Filipino faithful.
Free Syrian Army snipers dressed in camouflage train in Jabal al-Akrad area in Syria‘s northwestern Latakia province