- AFRICA: In Libya, Islamic State militants launched an attack on the port of al-Sidra, the country’s largest oil terminal, military officials said.
- AMERICAS: In the US, anti-government militiamen occupied an Oregon wildlife reserve for a second night, warning that their protest could last months.
- ASIA: India will ask Pakistan to act within 72 hours against a militant group suspected to be behind the attack upon an Indian airbase last weekend, or will cancel the foreign secretaries’ meeting scheduled for this month.
- EUROPE: For the first time in half a century, Sweden was demanding photo identification for all travellers from Denmark in a drastic move to stem an unprecedented influx of refugees.
- MIDDLE EAST: Unidentified militiamen bombed three Sunni mosques in Iraq’s central province of Babil, two days after the execution of a prominent Shiite cleric in Saudi Arabia.
- TECHNOLOGY: More than 80 percent of villages in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region have access to the Internet, according to the latest statistics.
- Iran & Saudi Arabia: Crisis deepens as diplomatic ties are severed; barbs traded.
- Saudi Arabia’s execution of a leading Shiite cleric has triggered the worst crisis between the Sunni kingdom and Iran in more than two decades.
- Saudi Arabia has given Iranian diplomats two days to leave the country, amid a row over the Saudi execution of a top Shia Muslim cleric.
- Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister Hossein Amir Abdollahian said later the Saudi decision could not distract from its “big mistake” of executing Nimr, who was a prominent critic of Saudi Arabia’s ruling royal family.
- Saudi Arabia used an attack on its embassy in Tehran as a pretext to fuel tensions, Iran’s foreign ministry said after Riyadh severed diplomatic relations.
- Oil prices remain volatile after both countries severed diplomatic ties.
- Bahrain has announced it is severing diplomatic ties with Iran, following a similar move by Saudi Arabia.
- Coverage: BBC, BBC-2, Bloomberg, CNN, Reuters, VOA
- Central African Republic: Results from the country’s presidential election show former PM Faustin Touadera has a surprise lead with a quarter of votes counted. (BBC)
- Libya: Islamic State militants launched an attack on the port of al-Sidra, the country’s largest oil terminal, military officials said. (DPA)
- Zambia: The country will hold presidential and parliamentary elections on 11AUG under a new constitution. (Reuters)
- Argentina: The new government has invited the UK to resume talks aimed at settling the Falklands sovereignty dispute “fairly and definitively.” (AFP)
- Mexico: Morelos state governor, Graco Ramirez, has taken command of police services in 15 towns and cities following the murder of a newly-elected mayor. (BBC)
- United States: Anti-government militiamen occupied an Oregon wildlife reserve for a second night, warning that their protest could last months. (AFP)
- Region: India will ask Pakistan to act within 72 hours against a militant group suspected to be behind the attack upon an Indian airbase last weekend, or will cancel the foreign secretaries’ meeting scheduled for this month. (Xinhua)
- Region: Hong Kong leader Leung Chun-ying said there was no indication outside agents were involved in the disappearance of five booksellers specializing in publications critical of China, but that it would be “unacceptable” if any were. (Reuters)
- Afghanistan: Troops battled to end a gun and bomb siege near the Indian consulate in Mazar-i-Sharif city. (AFP)
- Myanmar: Aung San Suu Kyi said the country’s peace process will be the first priority of her new government that will take power later this year. (Reuters)
- Region: For the first time in half a century, Sweden was demanding photo identification for all travellers from Denmark in a drastic move to stem an unprecedented influx of refugees. (AFP)
- Poland: FM Witold Waszczykowski says he is disturbed by various EU commissioners’ comments concerning the changes taking place under the country’s new government. (AP)
- Russia: Japanese PM Shinzo Abe has called for talks with President Vladimir Putin so that the two countries can negotiate a peace treaty. (BBC)
- United Kingdom: British security officials are studying an Islamic State group video that threatens more action against the country. (AP)
- Iraq: Unidentified militiamen bombed three Sunni mosques in the central province of Babil, two days after the execution of a prominent Shiite cleric in Saudi Arabia. (Xinhua)
- Jordan: The country released Zaki Bani Ersheid, a top leader of the Muslim Brotherhood opposition group after he served over two-thirds of his 18-month prison term. (AP)
- Yemen: Authorities in the city of Aden imposed a curfew after violence blamed on suspected jihadists killed at least 17 people. (AFP)
TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS
- Technology: More than 80 percent of villages in southwest China’s Tibet Autonomous Region have access to the Internet, according to the latest statistics. (Xinhua)
- Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone 06P (Ula)
- Location: 256 S of Suva, Fiji
- Wind: 80 mph
- Movement: SW at 4 mph
- Hurricanes: Nothing to Report
- Earthquakes: 29km W of Imphal, India
- Magnitude: 6.7
- Depth: 55.0 km
- Volcanoes: Feugo, Guatemala
- Black ash eruption, but authorities have not ordered the evacuation of nearby villages. (Reuters)
- Volcanoes: Momotombo, Nicaragua
- Gas and lava eruption. (AFP)
- Global Disease Outbreaks:
- Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
- Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
- Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
- Suspected Cases as of 04JAN: 607,961 (Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bermuda, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Colombia, Costa Rica, Curacao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Jamaica, Martinique, Mexico, Montserrat, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Sint Maarten, Spain, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands, United States, US Virgin Islands, and Venezuela.)
- Confirmed Cases: 35,019
- Deaths as of 04JAN: 77 (Colombia, Puerto Rico, Martinique, Grenada, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Dominican Republic)
- Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, CDC, CDC-2
- Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
- Cases as of 04JAN: 1621 (Saudi Arabia (KSA), Jordan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the United Kingdom (UK), France, Tunisia, Italy, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Malaysia, Greece, Egypt, Lebanon, the Netherlands, Iran, Algeria, Austria, Turkey, The Philippines, Germany, China, South Korea, and the US)
- Deaths as of 04JAN: 584 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)
- Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2
TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (05JAN)
- China and Britain: British Foreign Secretary to visit China (to 06JAN)
- Venezuela: Anniversary of the National Assembly opening in Venezuela – 2011
- Sikhism: Guru Gobind Singh Jayanti – 1666