ONS: 13 December 2017

by TRG Alerts Admin on December 14, 2017

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: The Committee to Protect Journalists says Egypt remains among the world’s “worst” jailers of journalists.
  • AMERICAS: US President Donald Trump signed into law a defense policy bill that authorizes a USD 700B budget for the military.
  • ASIA: South Korea, China and the US pushed for dialogue to help reduce tensions over North Korea’s nuclear program, as South Korean President Moon Jae-in arrived in Beijing for an official visit.
  • EUROPE: EU nations agreed to set quota levels that ensure more sustainable fishing in the Northeastern Atlantic and the North Sea.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A Saudi-led coalition aircraft struck a military police camp in the Yemeni capital Sanaa, killing at least 39 people and wounding 90 more, including prisoners.
  • TECHNOLOGY: Google will open an artificial intelligence research center in China to target the country’s local talent.

 

TOP STORY

  • Jerusalem: Islamic summit in Turkey rejects US declaration of Israeli capital.
    • The Organization of Islamic Cooperation gathered in Turkey for a summit to forge a unified stance against US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
    • Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan urged leaders of Muslim nations to recognize Jerusalem as the “occupied capital of the Palestinian state”.
    • Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas said the US has “disqualified” itself from future Israel-Palestine peace talks after proving its “bias in favor of Israel.”
    • Turkey was not seeking sanctions in response to the US move, but wanted the summit to issue a strong rejection of the US decision.
    • Several key players, including Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are unlikely to want to risk their key relationship with Washington for the sake of an anti-Washington OIC statement.
    • Coverage: Al-Jazeera, AP, BBC, Guardian, Reuters

 

AFRICA

  • Burundi: President Pierre Nkurunziza launched a campaign to support constitutional amendments that could extend his rule despite warnings by his opponents of more violence ahead. (AP)
  • Egypt: The Committee to Protect Journalists says the country remains among the world’s “worst” jailers of journalists. (AP)
  • Mozambique: President Filipe Nyusi sacked four ministers, including those with the foreign affairs and energy portfolios. (Reuters)
  • South Africa: The country’s High Court ordered President Jacob Zuma to pay for an attempt to block an inquiry into claims of influence-peddling in his government. (Reuters)

 

AMERICAS

  • Region: Former Colombian vice-minister Gabriel Garcia Morales was sentenced to prison after admitting to taking millions of dollars in bribes from Brazilian construction giant Odebrecht. (Reuters)
  • Honduras: Opposition presidential candidate Salvador Nasralla met with OAS and EU observers to present what he said was evidence of fraud in the 26NOV elections. (EFE)
  • United States: President Donald Trump signed into law a defense policy bill that authorizes a USD 700B budget for the military. (AP)

 

ASIA

  • Region: South Korea, China and the US pushed for dialogue to help reduce tensions over North Korea’s nuclear program, as South Korean President Moon Jae-in arrived in Beijing for an official visit. (WSJ)
  • Region: China called for deeper ties with Japan as they marked the 80th anniversary of the Nanking Massacre involving Japanese soldiers. (AP)
  • Japan: A boy was injured in Okinawa when a metal window frame fell from a US military helicopter, escalating anti-American sentiments on the southern island. (AP)
  • North Korea: US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson offered to begin direct talks with the country without pre-conditions. (Reuters)
  • Philippines: The Philippine Congress approved President Rodrigo Duterte’s request to extend martial law in the south by a year as the military warned terrorist threats continue. (AP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: EU nations agreed to set quota levels that ensure more sustainable fishing in the Northeastern Atlantic and the North Sea. (AP)
  • Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel met with Social Democrat leaders, in a new bid to end a political stalemate nearly three months after elections. (AFP)
  • Poland: PM Mateusz Morawiecki’s new government won a vote of confidence in parliament, opening the way for the Cabinet to start functioning. (Reuters)
  • Russia: A Russian court froze the assets of conglomerate Sistema to secure a pending USD 2B lawsuit from the country’s largest oil company, the state-owned Rosneft. (AP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: The Israeli military carried out airstrikes in Gaza in response to Hamas rocket fire, but without casualties. (AP)
  • Saudi Arabia: Sulaiman al-Rashudi, an 82-year-old former judge and prominent rights advocate, was freed after five years in prison. (AP)
  • Yemen: A Saudi-led coalition aircraft struck a military police camp in the Houthi-controlled capital Sanaa, killing at least 39 people and wounding 90 more, including prisoners. (Reuters)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Technology: Google will open an artificial intelligence research center in China to target the country’s local talent. (Reuters)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Nothing to Report
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to Report
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to Report
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to Report
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
      • Suspected Cases as of 08DEC: 61,549 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, and Venezuela)
        • Suspected Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 349,936
      • Confirmed Cases as of 08DEC: 123,073 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, México, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Martin (French part), and Venezuela)
        • Confirmed Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 152,250
      • Deaths as of 08DEC: 101 (Brazil, Ecuador)
        • Deaths (01JAN16-31DEC16): 172
        • Deaths (01JAN15-31DEC15): 91 (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Puerto Rico)
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 19NOV: 2,103 (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 19NOV: 733 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (14DEC)

  • Bangladesh: Martyred Intellectuals Day – 1971
  • Belgium: European Council (Summit of EU leaders) to open (to 15DEC)
  • Belgium: Donor conference to raise funds for G5 Sahel counter-terror operations to be held in Brussels
  • China: President Xi Jinping to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in to discuss North Korea
  • Turkey: First meeting of ombudsmen of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Northern Cyprus to be held in Ankara (to 15DEC)
  • United Kingdom: Japanese and British Defense and Foreign Ministers to hold security talks in London
  • United States: FCC to vote on a new order that would roll back net neutrality laws adopted in 2015

 

END

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