Tunisian democracy group wins Nobel Peace Prize
A Tunisian democracy group won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for its contributions to the first and most successful Arab Spring movement. A Tunisian democracy group won the Nobel Peace Prize on Friday for its contributions to the first and most successful Arab Spring movement.
The Norwegian Nobel Committee cited the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet “for its decisive contribution to the building of a pluralistic democracy” in the North African country following its 2011 revolution. The prize is a huge victory for small Tunisia, whose young and still shaky democracy suffered two extremist attacks this year that killed 60 people and devastated the tourism industry. There were 273 candidates nominated for the 2015 peace prize, five fewer than in 2014. Nobel Committee
Russian missiles crash in Iran
At least four Russian cruise missiles, headed for Syria, have reportedly crash-landed in Iran, Pentagon sources tell CNN and other outlets. Russian and Iranian sources did not confirm the incident, though Iran’s semi-official Fars News Agency is carrying the story. It is not known whether the missiles detonated or whether there are any casualties.
Russia has been launching cruise missiles from its fleet in the Caspian Sea, firing them over Iran and Iraq toward Syria, so northwest Iran is on their normal flight path. For all Russia’s military might — its force, one of the largest in the world, has been modernizing in recent years — its higher-tech equipment such as cruise missiles has long lagged behind Western standards. Cruise missiles are particularly difficult technology, flying many hundreds of miles at high speed, often automated. Early American cruise missiles also crashed often, requiring many years of testing and refining before they worked as well as they do now, and the Russian land-attack cruise missiles here are recently developed. VOX
Report: Markets expand in N. Korea despite crackdown
A new report by a U.S. think tank says, Markets in North Korea have expanded in most cities over the past 10 years, a possible indication that authorities are losing their grip on the country’s economy.
The report highlighted findings from a study that examined the trend of markets in major North Korean cities, including the capital, Pyongyang, by analyzing information from various sources, including interviews with defectors and satellite imagery of the cities between 2008 and 2014. In Sinuiju, a northwestern city bordering China, total market space grew by 114 percent between 2003 and 2014. Other cities experienced more moderate increases. In Kaesong, home to an inter-Korean industrial complex, aggregate market size grew by approximately 16 percent between 2004 and 2013. VOA news
Walter Scott shooting: Family agrees $6.5m settlement
North Charleston city in South Carolina has reached a $6.5m settlement with the family of an unarmed black man shot dead by a white police officer in April.
Walter Scott, 50, was shot in April by officer Michael Slager while running from a routine traffic stop. It was one of several cases across the US in which unarmed black men died during encounters with police officers. Michael Slager was charged with murder and dismissed from the police force. A police dashboard camera caught the moment Mr. Scott ran from his car, while footage from a bystander’s mobile phone showed the officer firing eight shots at him as he fled.
In July, New York City agreed to pay $5.9m to the family of Eric Garner, who died after allegedly being put in a chokehold by a police officer. And in September, the City of Baltimore agreed to pay $6.4m to the family of Freddie Gray, who died of a critical spine injury while in the back of a prisoner transport van in April. BBC
Dam exploded in Washington State, 6 injured
An explosion Thursday injured six employees at the Priest Rapids Dam in central Washington.
All of the injured workers are employed by Grant County Public Utility District, and their conditions are unknown. Authorities said the explosion was related to a malfunction at the dam, but the investigation is ongoing, KREM reports. The Priest Rapids Dam is on the Columbia River, and the structure is stable, a utility district spokesman said. The Week
Iran Revolutionary Guards commander killed in Syria
Islamic State group jihadists have killed General Hossein Hamedani, a commander in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards in Syria, the elite branch of the Iranian military said Friday.
An Iranian guards statement said, Hamedani had been playing an “important role… reinforcing the front of Islamic resistance against the terrorists”. Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s Supreme National Security Council, described Hamedani’s death as “a huge loss” in the fight against jihadist groups in Syria. AFP