Is a military coup possible in Iran? | Hassan Rouhani

Since the beginning of the year, Iran has witnessed persistent protests. In January, massive demonstrations against the government spread to more than 80 cities in 29 provinces in which at least in 21 people were killed. In early February, dozens of women were arrested for taking off their head scarves and protesting against mandatory veiling in Tehran. Later the same month, police clashed with members of the Gonabadi Sufi order, which led to five deaths, according to Gonabadi activists, and hundreds arrested. In late March, Arabs staged protests in Khuzestan province after a…

Al Jazeera wins Peabody for The Cut documentary | News

Al Jazeera Media Network has been named as one of the recipients of the 77th annual Peabody Awards for its documentary The Cut, which explores the dangerous and painful practice of female genital mutilation (FGM) in many countries around the world. Journalist Fatma Naib explored the subject of FGM – the partial or total removal of the external female genitalia – which is also known as “cutting”. The practice is most prevalent in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, but it also happens in Europe, the United States and Latin…

Italian court rules Iuventa rescue vessel will remain impounded | Italy News

Rome – Italy’s Supreme Court has rejected an appeal against the seizure of an NGO rescue ship, the Iuventa, impounded in August 2017 following an investigation initiated by the Italian authorities into NGOs in the Mediterranean. Evidence collected as part of that investigation led to the pre-emptive seizure of the vessel – the only one operated by the small German non-profit Jugend Rettet (“youth rescue”) – under accusations of abetting illegal migration and collusion with smugglers. The Iuventa has been held in the port of Trapani since a judge in the…

Nicaragua: Protesters demand Ortega’s resignation | Nicaragua News

Tens of thousands of protesters have taken to the streets in the capital of Nicaragua demanding the resignation of President Daniel Ortega after days of demonstrations in which nearly 30 were killed. The demonstrators marched in Managua on Monday evening, a day after Ortega backed down on controversial pension reforms that sparked the deadly protests.  Protests broke out on Wednesday, two days after the Nicaraguan government approved a resolution that would increase contributions by workers and employers into the Nicaraguan Institute for Social Security (INSS), while reducing payouts by five percent.  Police…

Kuwait: Not resolving GCC crisis is destructive to region | Kuwait News

Kuwait’s deputy foreign minister said the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) member-states were determined to resolve the ongoing crisis in the Gulf because not doing so would be destructive to the region, the official KUNA news agency reported on Tuesday. Deputy Foreign Minister Khaled al-Jarallah who met Qatar’s foreign minister, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani, on Tuesday discussed the “means of solving the crisis.” “Everybody realises the longer this division the deeper the wound will be in the Gulf body,” he said. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt cut diplomatic…

Indonesia: Setya Novanto sentenced to 15 years for corruption | News

An Indonesian court has sentenced a former speaker of parliament to 15 years in prison for his role in the theft of $170m from public funds, a victory for anti-corruption police fighting the country’s rampant corruption. Setya Novanto, who also served as the chairman of the Golkar party, sat impassively as the guilty verdict and sentence were announced at the Jakarta Corruption Court on Tuesday. Prosecutors said Novanto was among about 80 officials who used the introduction of a $440m electronic identity card system in 2011 and 2012 to steal more…

Anti-sexual harassment message resounds in Africa | Africa

Like a baton pass in the world’s most painful relay race, revelations that powerful men have – presuming a right to pleasure – sexually harassed their female colleagues have spread around the world. It started in the entertainment industry (the first allegations were against Hollywood executive Harvey Weinstein) and then moved to politics, the media and the not-for-profit sector. In the latter, the hashtag #AidToo has shown that despite its noble intentions, the development and humanitarian industry is as susceptible to abuses of power and the violence that most of…

Vehicle incident kills nine pedestrians in Toronto | News

A man in a van drove into a crowd of pedestrians at high speed in Canada’s largest city, killing at least nine people and wounding 16 others. Meaghan Gray, police spokeswoman in Toronto, said the vehicle jumped the curb on Monday at about 1pm (17:00GMT), but the reason was not yet clear. “At this point, it’s too early to tell what if any motive there was,” said Gray. Deputy Police Chief Peter Yuen later told reporters that nine people were killed and 16 injured.  The white van fled the scene…

Zimbabwean nurses return to work after strike | Zimbabwe News

Thousands of Zimbabwean nurses have returned to work after ending a major strike, according to their union said, which said that renewed negotiations with the government were expected to begin. More than 15,000 staff demanding better work conditions and improve pay walked out of public hospitals a week ago. During the standoff, the government announced that the nurses had been sacked and accused them of being “politically motivated”. “Nurses have gone back to work today although their grievances still stand,” Enoch Dongo, spokesman for the Zimbabwe Nurses Association, told AFP news agency…

After Each Attack He Carried the Wounded. Then He Became a Victim.

But many Afghan and American officials say there is often an overlap between the facilitating networks used in urban attacks claimed by the Islamic State in recent years and those used by the extreme elements of the Taliban, particularly the Haqqani Network, which had a long history of deadly urban attacks even before the rise of the Islamic State. In the small foothold the Islamic State maintains in eastern Afghanistan, it carries out particularly barbaric acts of violence. In the Chaparhar district of Nangarhar Province, officials said three brothers were…