Today's headlines: Tehran blocks internet to obscure pro-Mahsa Amini protests; Japanese government ready for reshuffle, more women; There has been no news of the Chinese Defence Minister for a fortnight; Jakarta wants to ban business transactions on social media; Hindu leader instigator of violence against Muslims in Haryana state arrested; Russian Minister of Economic Development proposes visa facilitation for Middle Eastern countries to encourage tourism.
Tensions are running high in Iran at the approach of the first anniversary of the death by the regime’s morality police of the 22-year-old Kurdish woman. Last weekend, authorities in the southwest of the country jailed six people for "organising" riots to remember her. An uncle of the young victim has also targeted. The Islamic Republic’s reign of terror and repression continues; more than 500 people have died during the unrest. At present, Iran’s economic woes risk overshadowing the fight for rights.
Judges had initially sentenced the 35-year-old to death for rioting and apostasy, but the Supreme Court overturned the sentence. Official version of death speaks of epileptic seizure. Activist groups denounce flogging, torture and lack of treatment. The wave of arrests continues nearly a year after the 22-year-old Kurdish woman was killed because of her hijab.
Civil nuclear power in the Mideast is becoming another sore point between China and the United States. Irked by US indecision, Saudi leaders might turn eastward. The Abraham Accords and Israeli resistance hover in the background. Nuclear deals are “deeply political”.
At Johannesburg summit Argentina, Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates officially invited to join as member countries from Jan. 1, 2024. "Willing to explore opportunities" on the use of local currencies as an alternative to the dollar. Beyond the "photo opportunity" problems of distancing between Beijing and New Delhi persist.
Today's headlines: Chinese central bank cuts prime rate by 10 basis points; Japanese government still considering date for release of treated water from Fukushima atomic power plant into the sea; HRW accuses Saudi border guards of mass killings; At least 11 workers killed in Pakistan bomb blast; Tehran cuts off flow of Little Zab River in Iraq fueling water crisis in neighboring country; With EU embargo, Brazil becomes second largest buyer of Russian oil.