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The Weekly Global Roundup

The Weekly Global Roundup: Iranian Demonstrations, And A Deadly Start To 2018 (January 1 to 6, 2018)

This roundup covers news summaries across six regions: Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, North America, and South America. Wherever possible I draw links to Singapore, but I think it is more important to understand geopolitical developments around the world, to draw attention to meaningful news stories, and to highlight both positive and negative events.

Around the world, I rely primarily on the email newsletters from “The Economist“, “Foreign Policy“, “Muck Rack“, “The New York Times“, “The Wall Street Journal“, and “The World Post“. In Singapore, the weekly digests from the European Union Centre and the Middle East Institute are handy. Do send me recommendations of news outlets or articles too, to jinyao.guan.yin.miao[a]gmail.com!

Taken from https://qzprod.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/iran-protest-sanctions-nuclear-deal-trump-rouhani-khamenei.jpg?quality=80&strip=all&w=2400.

Demonstrations in Iran.

January 1 to 6, 2018

With concerns over rising prices, corruption, and Iran’s interventions abroad, the “Protests Everywhere” anti-government demonstrations have spread spontaneously to several major cities, and current president Hassan Rouhani has insisted that Iranians have the right to protest. Slogans have chanted against Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the ruling system of the Islamic Republic. These demonstrations have led commentators to draw comparisons with the unrest in the same country almost nine years ago, which were then prompted by claims that the re-election victory of former president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad was rigged. The crackdown against the protestors then were ferocious, and critics characterised President Barack Obama’s response as “weak”. “The Interpreter” raised four questions that observers should be looking out for: First, the profile of the protestors; second, whether the protests are about systemic opposition or change; third, opinions of the other segments of society; and fourth, the response by Iran’s elites.

In other news, natural disasters and man-made accidents have accounted for fatalities around the world: Fires in India, Mexico, and the United States, road accidents or plane crashes in Australia, Costa Rica, Kenya, and Peru, and a shooting in Egypt.

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Africa

  • Equatorial Guinea said a coup against President Teodoro Obiang Nguema – allegedly “mounted by foreign mercenaries recruited by his political opponents” – was thwarted in late-December last year. The president has been accused of electoral fraud and corruption.
  • The government of Ethiopia said it is releasing political prisoners from a notorious prison in its capital, Addis Ababa, before turning the prison into a museum. Rights groups, however, have expressed scepticism over the lack of precision of the announcement.
  • A head-on collision between a bus and a lorry in Kenya killed 36 people. About 3,000 people die annually in road accidents in the country, and the death toll for this particular stretch of road has reached 100 this month.
  • A train crash in South Africa killed at least four people.

The Asia-Pacific

Europe

The Middle East

  • In Egypt, at least nine people were killed after gunmen opened fire at a Coptic Christian church.
  • To help tackle “the dangers and funding of terrorism“, the state of emergency in Egypt has been extended for three months. The current state of emergency was imposed in April last year, after two church bombings killed at least 45 people.
  • Anti-government demonstrations in Iran – initially against rising prices and corruption – have spread to several major cities. “There is also anger at Iran’s interventions abroad”, and the demonstrations have taken authorities by surprise.
  • The protests continued to spread in the week, and the country’s Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei has laid blame on foreign “enemies”.

North America

Latin America

About guanyinmiao

A man of knowledge lives by acting, not by thinking about acting. Carlos Castaneda.

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