ONS: 31 December 2017

by TRG Alerts Admin on January 1, 2018

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita named former defense minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga new prime minister, a day after the government resigned.  AMERICAS: Russian President Vladimir Putin called for “pragmatic cooperation” in his New Year wishes to US President Donald Trump.
  • ASIA: South Korean authorities have seized a Panama-flagged vessel suspected of transferring oil products to North Korea in violation of international sanctions.
  • EUROPE: Catalonia’s fugitive former president has called for Spanish authorities to open negotiations regarding the restitution of what he calls his “legitimate government.”
  • MIDDLE EAST: The World Health Organization, UNICEF and the World Food Program said in a joint statement that the situation in Yemen has become “the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.”
  • COMMUNICATION: At least 81 reporters were killed doing their jobs this year, while violence and harassment against media staff has skyrocketed, the world’s biggest journalists’ organization says.

 

TOP STORY: Two protesters were killed in Iran, with anti-regime demonstrations continuing despite threats from the authorities.

  • Protests began three days ago in response to economic woes and rising prices, but have grown to voice more general dissatisfaction with the clerical regime.
  • Some protestors have even called for the removal or death of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khomeini.
  • Two protesters were reportedly killed in clashes with security forces in the western city of Dorud, believed to be the first fatalities to emerge.
  • Government officials have issued repeated warnings and threats against the continuing disturbances.
  • Most recently, the hardline Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps said that protesters would face the “iron fist” if they continued.
  • Sources: Reuters, Telegraph, AFP, BBC, NYT

 

AFRICA

  • Congo: The government ordered telecommunications providers to cut internet and SMS services across the country ahead of planned anti-government demonstrations. (Reuters)
  • Ethiopia: Renewed unrest in central Oromia regional state left one person dead and four others injured, a regional official said. (Xinhua)
  • Mali: President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita named former defense minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga new prime minister, a day after the government resigned in a surprise move just months ahead of presidential polls. (AFP)
  • Nigeria: Boko Haram fighters opened fire on a group of loggers in a remote village in the northeast, killing four people, a survivor and a militia leader said. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • United States: Russian President Vladimir Putin called for “pragmatic cooperation” in his New Year wishes to US President Donald Trump. (AFP)
  • United States: The revelation that more than 660,000 power customers across Puerto Rico still lack electricity more than three months after Hurricane Maria has sparked outrage, surprise and resignation among some islanders. (AP)
  • Venezuela: Officials are investigating Rafael Ramirez, a once powerful oil minister and former head of state oil company PDVSA, in connection with an alleged $4.8 billion Vienna-based corruption scheme. (Reuters)

 

ASIA

  • India: Four soldiers and three suspected militants were killed after rebels stormed a paramilitary camp in disputed Kashmir, officials said. (AP)
  • Philippines: Two months after recapturing the southern city of Marawi from the Islamic State-linked militants, so-called “Maute group”, the Philippine troops continue to clear the city of explosives and other munitions left behind by the extremists. (Xinhua)
  • South Korea: Authorities have seized a Panama-flagged vessel suspected of transferring oil products to North Korea in violation of international sanctions, a customs official said. (Reuters)

 

EUROPE

  • France: President Emmanuel Macron signed into law three bills underpinning his contentious tax reform and other aspects of his election platform. (DPA)
  • Spain: Catalonia’s fugitive former president has called for Spanish authorities to open negotiations regarding the restitution of what he calls his “legitimate government.” (AP)
  • Turkey: The Foreign Ministry slammed a decision in Greece to grant asylum to a Turkish helicopter co-pilot, who fled the country after last year’s failed coup, as “politically motivated” and warned of a negative impact on bilateral relations. (AFP)
  • Ukraine: Hostages kept in a post office of the city of Kharkov have been freed, President Petro Poroshenko wrote. (TASS)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Egypt: Security forces killed three suspected militants in an exchange of gunfire at a farm they believed to be a militant hideout on the outskirts of Giza. (Reuters)
  • Israel:  The IAF launched a second strike on a Hamas post in the Gaza Strip, saying it was a response to a rocket fire from the coastal enclave a day before. (Xinhua)
  • Palestine: The PA has withdrawn their envoy to Pakistan after he appeared at a rally with a radical cleric linked to the 2008 Mumbai attacks. (AP)
  • Yemen: The World Health Organization, UNICEF and the World Food Program said in a joint statement that the situation in the country has become “the worst humanitarian crisis in the world.” (The Hill)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Communication: At least 81 reporters were killed doing their jobs this year, while violence and harassment against media staff has skyrocketed, the world’s biggest journalists’ organization says. (AP)

 

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 22DEC: 61,613 (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 22DEC: 123,087 (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 22DEC: 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 24DEC: 2,121 (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 24DEC: 740 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (01JAN)

  • Global: New Year’s Day – 42 BCE
  • Global: World Day of Peace – 1968
  • Global: Fifteen countries to begin a three-year term of service on the UN Human Rights Council
  • Global: Netherlands to take Italy’s seat on the UN Security Council
  • Cameroon: Independence Day – 1960
  •  Cuba: Triumph of the Revolution – 1959
  • Czech Republic: Restoration Day of the Independent Czech State – 1993
  • Eurasia: Eurasian Economic Union customs code set to come into effect
  • Haiti: Independence Day – 1804
  • Iraq: Sovereignty Day – 2012
  • Lithuania: Flag Day – 1919
  • Slovakia: Day of the Establishment of the Slovak Republic – 1993
  • Sudan: Independence Day – 1956
  • Switzerland: Alain Berset to assume the presidency
  • Taiwan: National Day – 1912

 

END

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