World News at a Glance
Posted December 2, 2018 9:42 p.m. EST
Israeli Police Urge Bribery and Fraud Charges Against Netanyahu. Again.
Israeli police recommended Sunday that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu be indicted on bribery, fraud and other charges, accusing him of trading regulatory favors for fawning news coverage, in what is potentially the most damaging of a series of corruption cases against him. It was the third time this year that police have urged that Netanyahu face criminal prosecution. And it dealt another blow to his teetering governing coalition, which narrowly averted collapse last month and is clinging to a one-vote majority in parliament. Netanyahu must await the decision of the attorney general, whom he appointed, on whether to indict him.
Macron Returns to Turmoil
President Emmanuel Macron returned to France on Sunday from a summit in Argentina to find his country in turmoil after a day of violent protests. After surveying the destruction, Macron ordered Prime Minister Edouard Philippe to meet with representatives of the “Yellow Vests” protest movement and the leaders of the opposition political parties. Those meetings will start Monday. A third weekend of nationwide protests by the movement, largely made up of working-class people angry about a planned increase in fuel taxes and their dwindling purchasing power, left burned cars and smashed store windows in several of Paris’ wealthiest neighborhoods.
Intercepts Solidify CIA Assessment That Saudi Crown Prince Ordered Khashoggi Killing
The CIA has evidence that Mohammed bin Salman, the Saudi crown prince, communicated repeatedly with an aide around the time that a team believed to have been under the aide’s command assassinated Jamal Khashoggi, according to former officials familiar with the intelligence. U.S. intelligence agencies have evidence that Crown Prince Mohammed and the adviser, Saud al-Qahtani, had 11 exchanges that roughly coincided with the hit team’s advance into the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul, where Khashoggi was murdered. The exchanges are a key piece of information that helped solidify the CIA’s assessment that the crown prince ordered the killing of Khashoggi.
Israeli Software Helped Saudis Spy on Khashoggi, Lawsuit Says
A Saudi dissident close to murdered journalist Jamal Khashoggi has filed a lawsuit charging that an Israeli software company helped the royal court take over his smartphone and spy on his communications with Khashoggi. The lawsuit adds pressure on the company, NSO Group, and on the Israeli government, which licenses the company’s sales to foreign governments of its spyware, called Pegasus. The lawsuit, filed in Israel by the Montreal-based Omar Abdulaziz, follows suits by journalists, activists and others charging that NSO Group improperly helped the governments of Mexico and the United Arab Emirates spy on them.
U.S. Airstrike Kills Senior Taliban Commander in Afghanistan
The Taliban’s most senior commander in southern Afghanistan was killed in a U.S. airstrike, the insurgent group and Afghan and U.S. officials said Sunday. The commander, Mullah Abdul Manan, had orchestrated the insurgents’ campaign to take over much of Helmand province. He was also believed to be a key figure in developing the Taliban’s special forces, the Red Unit, which have carried out deadly attacks across the country. The Taliban described the death of Mullah Manan, who was born Mullah Mohammad Rahim, as a great loss, but insisted it would not affect the group’s momentum.
Spain’s Far Right Could Help Oust Socialists in Largest Region
Spain’s governing Socialist party suffered an unexpected election setback Sunday as right-wing parties won enough votes to oust the Socialists from power in the nation’s largest region for the first time since the country returned to democracy. The result in Andalusia was a blow to Pedro Sánchez, Spain’s Socialist prime minister, who has been in office since June and could be forced into a snap general election next year. The Socialists won 33 of the 109 seats in the regional parliament, according to provisional results released late Sunday. It was the party’s worst result in Andalusia since 1982.
Killings of Journalists Show the Bloody Fingerprints of Organized Crime
In Mexico, journalists have been killed by arson, gunned down at a cafe and shot execution-style while at a bar. In Malta, one was killed by a bomb hidden in her car, and in Ecuador, two were kidnapped and killed by a drug cartel. The last two years have been deadly for journalists, with 31 murdered around the world this year, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. But a report released last week by Reporters Without Borders documented more than two dozen who had been killed by members of organized crime since the start of 2017.
Egyptian Actress Dressed to Impress. She Could Be Jailed for Debauchery.
When an Egyptian actress strutted down the red carpet in Cairo last week, twirling and smiling in a revealing lace dress, she had hoped to turn heads in the movie world. Instead, she faces criminal charges that could land her in prison. Three Egyptian lawyers known for using the courts to engage in moral vigilantism filed a lawsuit against the actress, Rania Youssef, accusing her of wearing an outfit at the Cairo International Film Festival that constituted “incitement to debauchery.” A trial has been scheduled for January, and Youssef, who is in her 40s, could face a five-year jail term.