Monday, 3rd November 2014

ROMANIA Prime Minister of Romania, Victor Ponta, won the first round of Romania’s presidential election, a step towards a victory that would consolidate his leftist party’s hold on power but would also raise questions about judicial independence. (Reuters)

ISRAEL An Israeli government committee on Monday advanced plans for 500 settler homes in East Jerusalem, an official said, in the face of disapproval from the United States at construction on occupied Palestinian land. (Reuters)

EGYPT – Ansar Bait al-Maqdis, Egypt’s most active militant group, has sworn allegiance to Islamic State, a statement from Ansar said Monday night. (Al Arabiya)

Tuesday, 4th November 2014

TURKEY – A Turkish politician was stabbed repeatedly in the capital Ankara on Tuesday, in an attack that his pro-Kurdish party blamed on a government-led “lynch campaign” against it. Prime Minister of Turkey, Ahmet Davutoğlu, condemned the stabbing of Ahmet Karataş, a member of the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), and denied the government had done anything to make him a target. He said a suspect had been detained and had confessed. (Daily Mail)

LIBYAFrance, United Kingdom and the United States on Tuesday asked a UN Security Council committee to add Libyan Islamist group Ansar al-Sharia to a UN terror list for its ties to al-Qaeda. Inclusion on the UN terror list means members of the group are subject to visa bans, asset freezes and an arms embargo, and the move more broadly cuts the group off from the political mainstream. (Al Arabiya)

SPAINThe head of Spain’s Catalonia region, Artur Mas, has vowed to go ahead with a symbolic vote on independence on Sunday in defiance of a court ban. Spain’s constitutional court ordered the regional government to suspend the planned vote on Tuesday. (BBC)

 

Wednesday, 5th November 2014

JORDANJordan complained to the UN Security Council about a raid by Israeli security forces on Wednesday on a sacred compound in Jerusalem housing the al-Aqsa Mosque and said it would “take lawful steps and measures” to stop further attacks. (Reuters)

PALESTINEAmid soaring tensions fueled by religious fervor and Palestinian anger over control of East Jerusalem, two drivers on Wednesday plowed their cars into Israelis in separate episodes, killing one police officer and injuring three soldiers. The two episodes, in Jerusalem and the West Bank, have added to fears that a third intifada, or uprising, is taking shape as the latest crisis continues to reverberate beyond Israel’s borders. (The New York Times)

 

Thursday, 6th November 2014

LIBYAThe Supreme Court of Libya declared the internationally recognized parliament on Thursday as unconstitutional, in a ruling likely to fuel further chaos in the north African oil producing nation. (Reuters)

IRAN President of United States, Barack Obama, has written to Ali Hosseini Khamenei, Supreme Leader of Iran, in a rare diplomatic overture to discuss their shared fight against Islamic State militants. However, while not confirming nor denying the existence of the letter, administration officials said there were still no plans to cooperate or coordinate with Iran against the militants. (The Telegraph)

EUROPEAN UNIONLess than a week after taking over as head of the European Union’s executive arm, Jean-Claude Juncker, the former longtime leader of Luxembourg, was buffeted by a flood of leaked documents detailing his home country’s role as a haven for hundreds of companies seeking to drastically reduce their tax bills. Pressure mounted on Juncker, who was Prime Minister of Luxembourg from 1995 until last year, to clarify his involvement in tax avoidance schemes. (The New York Times)

 

Friday, 7th November 2014

JORDANSeveral thousand protesters took to the streets of Jordanian cities on Friday, calling on the government to scrap its peace deal withIsraelfollowing escalating violence at the al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. (Reuters)

PALESTINE Palestinian protesters fought with Israeli security forces in East Jerusalem and the occupied West Bank on Friday, the latest clashes in a fortnight of violence over access to Jerusalem’s holiest site. (Reuters)

BULGARIAThe new Prime Minister of Bulgaria, Boyko Borisov, promised an immediate push for reforms to spur economic growth and lure investment on Friday, as his minority coalition government was endorsed by a vote in parliament. (Reuters)