ONS: 27 September 2015

by TRG Alerts Admin on September 28, 2015

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: Deadly clashes broke out in the Central African Republic’s capital city after a Muslim motorbike taxi driver was killed.
  • AMERICAS:  Speaking at the UN for the first time, Cuban President R. Castro hailed renewed diplomatic ties with the US as “major progress” but strongly criticized a US trade embargo as the top obstacle to Cuba’s economic development.
  • ASIA: Self-proclaimed fighters from the Islamic State have for the first time launched coordinated attacks on police checkpoints in an eastern Afghan province.
  • EUROPE: Catalonia is voting in regional elections that nationalist parties hope will set them on the road to independence from Spain.
  • MIDDLE EAST:  In a wide-ranging interview, Egyptian President Sisi said Syria should not be divided after its civil war, that the his country’s military needs to be “augmented” to defeat terrorists fighting in the Sinai and Western Desert, and that efforts should be renewed to solve the Palestinian issue and expand Cairo’s nearly 40-year-peace with Israel to include more Arab countries.
  • TECHNOLOGY:  Chief executive of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, promoted access to the Internet as “an enabler of human rights” and a “force for peace”, as he announced that his company would help the United Nations bring Internet connections to refugee camps.

 

TOP STORY

  • Syria and Iraq: The UN General Assembly is serving as a forum for state leaders to confront each others’ policies and negotiate the ongoing conflict as it nears its fifth year mark.
    • Iraq said its military officials were engaged in intelligence and security cooperation in Baghdad with Russia, Iran and Syria to counter the threat from the Islamic State, a pact that could raise concerns in Washington.
    • US Secretary Kerry, top European and other diplomats discussed the civil war with senior Iranian officials, as diplomatic efforts to find a political solution to the war geared up on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.
    • Secretary Kerry sought to draw Iran into the search for a political solution to the conflict as he began a week of diplomacy over the fighting there.
    • Russian President Putin spoke to Saudi Arabia’s King Salman about finding a solution to the Syria crisis, just two days before he is due to address the UN on the issue.
    • British PM Cameron is expected to drop his opposition to Syrian President Assad playing a role in any transitional government.
    • French FM Fabius said Syrian President Assad cannot play any role in a future political transition because it would not be credible to the Syrian people after so many deaths at the hands of his government.
    • France announced it had launched air strikes against Islamic State militants in Syria in an effort to stem its growing presence there.
    • Nearly 30,000 foreign recruits have now poured into the country, many to join the Islamic State, a doubling of volunteers in just the past 12 months and stark evidence that an international effort to tighten borders, share intelligence and enforce antiterrorism laws is not diminishing the ranks of new militant fighters.
    • Coverage: Reuters, WSJ, NYT, AFP, BBC, Reuters, AP, NYT

 

AFRICA

  • Angola: The country’s foreign minister dismissed a downgrade by Fitch Ratings and said authorities had taken the right steps to shield the oil-dependent economy from falling crude prices. (Reuters)
  • Central African Republic: Deadly clashes broke out in Bangui after a Muslim motorbike taxi driver was killed. (BBC)
  • Somalia: A bomb explosion killed at least 4 people, wounded several others in Kismayo city. (Xinhua)

 

AMERICAS

  • Region: Speaking at the UN for the first time, Cuban President R. Castro hailed renewed diplomatic ties with the US as “major progress” but strongly criticized a US trade embargo as the top obstacle to Cuba’s economic development. (Reuters)
  • Canada: The government used a controversial new law to revoke the citizenship of one of the organizers of a failed 2006 Toronto bombing plot. (NYT)
  • United States: House Speaker Boehner’s resignation “throws the congressional agenda into disarray,” with short-term hope for passing crucial items offset by the long-term fear that old battles will only be repeated. (WP)

 

ASIA

  • Region: Malaysia summoned China’s ambassador to clarify his remarks criticizing extremism and racism ahead of a planned pro-Malay rally in the capital. (Reuters)
  • Afghanistan: Self-proclaimed fighters from the Islamic State have for the first time launched coordinated attacks on police checkpoints in an eastern province. (AFP)
  • Taiwan: Almost 3,000 people, most of them tourists, were evacuated from outlying islands as Typhoon Dujuan gathered strength as it neared. (AFP)

 

EUROPE

  • Region: Hungary defended its opposition to Brussels’ plans for compulsory migrant quotas, saying it did not wish to repeat the West’s “failed experiments” in multiculturalism. (Telegraph)
  • Spain: Catalonia is voting in regional elections that nationalist parties hope will set them on the road to independence. (AFP)
  • United Kingdom: This week Labour party members may commit a future Labour government to scrapping the Trident nuclear arms program. (AP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: In a wide-ranging interview, Egyptian President Sisi said Syria should not be divided after its civil war, that the his country’s military needs to be “augmented” to defeat terrorists fighting in the Sinai and Western Desert, and that efforts should be renewed to solve the Palestinian issue and expand Cairo’s nearly 40-year-peace with Israel to include more Arab countries. (AP)
  • Region: Iran`s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei demanded Saudi Arabia apologise for a stampede that killed nearly 770 pilgrims at the hajj, at least 144 of them Iranians. (AFP)
  • Saudi Arabia: A general was killed in the south of the country near the border with Yemen, the second high-ranking military official announced killed on the border in the last 72 hours. (Guardian)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Technology and Global Internet Access:  Chief executive of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, promoted access to the Internet as “an enabler of human rights” and a “force for peace”, as he announced that his company would help the United Nations bring Internet connections to refugee camps. (NYT)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone Dujuan (23W)
    • Location: 320 NM ESE of Taipei, Taiwan
    • Wind: 144 mph
    • Movement: WNW at 9 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Tropical Storm Marty
    • Location: 13.6N 103.0W
    • Wind: 40 mph
    • Movement: N at 5 mph
    • Map
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report
  • Volcanoes: Telica volcano in NW Nicaragua
    • Authorities said the Telica “belched gas, ashes and rocks” in a series of blasts that raised fears of a “full-on eruption.” Experts are closely monitoring the activity.
    • Sourcing: AFP
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
      • Cases: 28,331 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, United Kingdom, United States, Italy)
      • Deaths: 11,310 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, United States)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, BBC
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
      • Suspected Cases as of 25SEP: 565,353 (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: 21,722
      • Deaths as of 25SEP: 62 (Colombia, Puerto Rico, Martinique, Grenada, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Jamaica, Dominican Republic)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, CDC, CDC-2
    • Cholera – Tanzania
      • Cases as of 11SEP: 971
      • Deaths as of 11SEP: 13
      • Sourcing: WHO
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 27SEP: 1570 (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 27SEP: 555 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (28SEP)

  • Global: World Heart Day – 1999
  • Global: High-level ministerial meeting at UN General Assembly, world leaders to speak
  • Russia and Japan: Russian President Putin and Japanese PM Abe to meet in NYC

 

END

 

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