ONS: 20 November 2013

by TRG Alerts Admin on November 20, 2013

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: At least 10 Egyptian soldiers were killed and 35 wounded by a car bomb in the Sinai.
  • AMERICAS: US Senators voted down both a bill to loosen and a bill to tighten restrictions on transferring detainees from Guantanamo.
  • ASIA: The Afghan government said it had reached a deal on the framework of a security pact with the US amid conflicting reports of the prerequisite conditions.
  • EUROPE: The Turkish parliament is deadlocked over efforts to draw up a new constitution.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A spokesman for the OPCW said destroying the country’s stockpile of chemical weapons at sea is a possible alternative to finding a host country.
  • TECHNOLOGY: The World Congress of News Agencies opened in Riyadh under the theme, “Reinventing the news agency in the 21st century.”

 

TOP STORY

  • Iran: International community pushes for nuclear agreement amid heightened tensions.
    • President Rouhani spoke with British PM Cameron in the first such high-level exchange in a decade.
    • Ayatollah Khamenei said he will not allow any “retreat” on the country’s nuclear rights and said the Iranian team was instructed to respect Tehran’s “red lines.”
    • Israeli PM Netanyahu departed for Russia in a last-minute bid to sway the emerging deal on Iran’s nuclear program.
    • US President Obama said he did not know whether world powers would reach an interim deal with Iran over its nuclear program during talks this week.
    • The National Iranian Gas Company said it is facing collapse, the latest sign of deepening economic distress from international sanctions.
    • Coverage: AFP, AFP-2, AFP-3, AFP-4, BBC, WSJ

 

AFRICA

  • Central African Republic: Interim President Djotodia announced “exceptional measures” designed to quell violence by ex-rebels without providing details. (AFP)
  • Egypt: At least 10 soldiers were killed and 35 wounded by a car bomb in the Sinai. (AFP)
  • Libya: Nawasi, a main armed militia group, withdrew from Tripoli in accordance with a parliament decision to dissolve all armed formations in the capital. (Xinhua)
  • Mozambique: Polls opened in local elections amid concerns that political violence will disrupt voting. (AFP)
  • Sudan: SPLA-N rebels fired mortar bombs into the capital of South Kordofan state. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • Canada: The country is set to resume negotiations for a bilateral FTA with South Korea after the last round of talks five years ago ended in a deadlock. (Yonhap)
  • Colombia: FM Holguin said the country is not seeking an armed confrontation with Nicaragua following an unfavorable resolution on the two countries’ territorial dispute. (Xinhua)
  • Cuba: The Revolutionary Armed Forces launched a three day nationwide military exercise expected to be the largest drill in the last four years. (Xinhua)
  • United States: Senators voted down both a bill to loosen and a bill to tighten restrictions on transferring detainees from Guantanamo. (AP)

 

ASIA

  • Afghanistan: The government said it had reached a deal on the framework of a security pact with the US amid conflicting reports of the prerequisite conditions. (Reuters)
  • Burma: Police arrested three people suspected of planning bomb attacks on mosques. (AFP)
  • Indonesia: President Yudhoyono said the country is suspending cooperation with Australia on people smuggling following allegations of Australian spying. (AFP)
  • Korean Peninsula: South Korean Defense Minister Kim Kwan-Jin said North Korea is believed to be capable of producing nuclear weapons from enriched uranium as well as from its existing plutonium stockpile. (AFP)
  • Pakistan: Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz said the US said it would not carry out drone strikes during peace talks with the Taliban. (Xinhua)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: The US hailed the resumption of talks between the presidents of Armenia and Azerbaijan. (Xinhua)
  • Russia: The leader of Makhachkala militants in Dagestan, Murad Kasimov, was killed in a special operation. (Itar-Tass)
  • Turkey: The parliament is deadlocked over efforts to draw up a new constitution. (AFP)
  • Turkey: Thirteen PKK members surrendered to security forces in the southeast of the country. (Xinhua)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: The UNHCR said 2,200 Syrian families have fled into Lebanon in the past five days. (AP)
  • Iraq: A wave of attacks primarily targeting Shiite neighborhoods in Baghdad killed at least 28 and wounded more than 70. (AFP)
  • Israel: A new missile interceptor, being developed in partnership with the US, passed its second live trial. (Reuters)
  • Yemen: Three police officers and at least three suspected al Qaeda militants were killed in clashes in Hadramawt province. (AFP)
  • Syria: A spokesman for the OPCW said destroying the country’s stockpile of chemical weapons at sea is a possible alternative to finding a host country. (AP)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Communications: The World Congress of News Agencies opened in Riyadh under the theme, “Reinventing the news agency in the 21st century.” (AFP)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone 04B (Helen)
    • Location: 501 Nm SSW of Calcutta, India
    • Movement: NW at 3 mph
    • Winds: 59 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Subtropical Storm Melissa
    • Location: 855 mi ENE of Bermuda
    • Movement: NW at 23 mph
    • Winds: 50 mph
    • Map
  • Earthquakes: 110km NNE of Tobelo, Indonesia
    • Magnitude: 6.3
    • Depth: 38.8 km
    • Map
  • Volcanoes: Mount Sinabung, Sumatra, Indonesia
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Novel Coronavirus (Sars)
      • Cases: Global Number of Cases as of 18NOV: 157 (Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Italy, France, Germany, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, UAE, United Kingdom)
      • Deaths: Global Number of Deaths as of 18NOV: 66 (Saudi Arabia, France, United Kingdom)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (21NOV)

  • Afghanistan: Assembly of elders to consider US post-2014 security pact
  • Austria: Ukrainian President Yanukovych will make an official visit to Austria
  • Egypt: Anniversary of President Morsi’s constitutional amendments to extend powers – 2012
  • Georgia and Russia: Officials to review relations over the past year
  • Latvia: Russian and Latvian foreign ministers to discuss relations
  • Pakistan: Anniversary of mob attack against US embassy in Islamabad – 1979
  • Ukraine: Parliament due to debate four bills dealing with jailed former Prime Minister Tymoshenko

 

END

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