Iran protests claim over 20 lives +++ South Korea offers Olympics talks with North
News | 2 January 2018
Iran protests claim over 20 lives
Iranian state television says nine more people were killed overnight in clashes between anti-government protesters and the security forces, taking the total death toll in six days of violence to more than 20. Iran's Supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, has accused enemies of the country of stirring unrest. The protests, which began last Thursday, are the biggest challenge to Iran's clerical leadership in nearly a decade. But Karim Sadjadpour - from the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace - says a lack of leadership may doom the protest effort: "Essentially it's a leaderless protest, it's not organised. They're for the most part unarmed. And they're up against a regime which is very organised, highly armed and well-practised in the science of brutality and repression."
South Korea offers Olympics talks with North
South Korea has proposed holding direct talks with North Korea next week - to discuss its possible participation in the 2018 Winter Olympic Games. It comes after the North's leader Kim Jong-un said he was considering sending a team to Pyeongchang in South Korea for the Games next month. Addressing a news conference the South Korean Unification Minister, Cho Myoung-gyon, suggested a meeting should take place at the border next Tuesday: "The Unification Ministry, and Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, should swiftly create measures to resume the inter-Korean talks and help the North Korean squad so they can participate in the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics."
New law could hinder division of Jerusalem
The Israeli parliament has passed legislation that would make it more difficult for the government to cede part of Jerusalem to Palestinians under any future peace deal. It's widely seen as a further blow to hopes for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Hollywood women launch anti-abuse campaign
Hundreds of actresses, writers, film directors and lawyers have launched a campaign in the United States to fight sexual harassment at work. The focus of the campaign, called Time's Up, is on people with low-paid jobs. It follows a wave of allegations of sexual misconduct by high-profile men. Melissa Silverstein is the founder of the lobby group Women and Hollywood: "People are really trying to figure out, how can we remake these systems that are so rotten that we can create the ability for women and for people of colour to have more of the power - so this doesn't repeat itself again. The momentum on this is tremendous, and it's going to keep going."
Rain and snow showers are forecast for areas north of the Alpine ridge. The east and south should remain dry. Top temperatures ranging from 0 to 10 degrees.