ECM WORLD WATCH: NATIONAL AND GLOBAL NEWS

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January 3, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) - East County Magazine's World Watch helps you be an informed citizen on important issues globally and nationally. As part of our commitment to reflect all voices and views, we include links to news sources representing a broad spectrum of political, religious, and social views.  Top world and U.S. headlines include:

U.S.

WORLD

For excerpts and links to full stories, click “read more” and scroll down.

U.S.

Congress will return to a full slate of difficult issues (Washington Post)

Congress faces a jam-packed to-do list this month with deadlines looming on difficult issues — including how to fund the government and avoid a shutdown, stabilizing the nation’s health-insurance program for poor children, and whether to shield young undocumented immigrants from deportation.

Trump dissolves voter fraud commission (The Hill)

President Trump on Wednesday dissolved a controversial commission that was set up to investigate his unfounded claims of widespread voter fraud during the 2016 election…The White House said Trump decided to disband the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity because several states failed to hand over voter information.

U.S. military to accept transgender troops on Monday: Pentagon (Reuters)

Transgender people will be allowed for the first time to enlist in the U.S. military starting on Monday as ordered by federal courts, the Pentagon said on Friday, after President Donald Trump’s administration decided not to appeal rulings that blocked his transgender ban.

Kim Jong Un Wants the U.S. To Know That His Nuclear Arsenal Is Complete (NPR)

In his annual New Year's address, North Korea's leader said his country had completed its nuclear weapons and that the "entire area of the U.S. mainland is within our nuclear strike range."

Tina Smith replaces Al Franken in Senate, marking record number of 22 female Senators (ABC)

…Smith replaced former Sen. Al Franken, also a Democrat, who stepped down from his seat last month amid sexual misconduct allegations and a Senate Ethics Committee investigation.

WORLD

The Photos That Tell Some Of 2017's Biggest International Stories (NPR)

As 2017 draws to a close, we take a look back at some of the year's most important stories, as told through powerful images from around the world. 

Protests in Iran Continue With Reports Of 20 Killed and Hundreds Arrested (NPR)

Violent protests in Iran are continuing since they began six days ago. They're highlighting economic problems and the question of what impact U.S. sanctions have on Iranians. 

Crisis of expectations: Iran protests mean economic dilemma for government (Reuters)

Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani may have to step back from some of his core economic policies in the face of nationwide protests by tens of thousands of people frustrated by high unemployment and stagnant living standards.

A visual that shows just how many Rohingya villages have been burned (Reuters)

(Reuters) - In the four months since the Myanmar military began a crackdown after Rohingya militants attacked an army base and police posts on Aug. 25, around 655,000 members of the stateless Muslim minority have fled the western state of Rakhine and crossed into neighboring Bangladesh.

Egypt sentences ex-President Mursi, 19 others to three years in jail for insulting judiciary (Reuters)

A Cairo criminal court sentenced former Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi and 19 others to three years in prison on Saturday, and fined him 2 million Egyptian pounds ($112,700) on charges of insulting the judiciary.

Russia says it has detained a suspect in St. Petersburg supermarket blast (Reuters)

 Russia’s FSB security service said on Saturday it had detained the individual suspected of organizing and carrying out a bombing that injured 13 people in a St. Petersburg supermarket…. but it did not provide details of the person’s identity….the explosion, caused by what investigators said was a homemade bomb packed with pieces of metal…. That attack was claimed by a militant group which said the suicide bomber was acting on the orders of al Qaeda. 

Gunman kills 11 in attacks on Coptic church, Christian-owned shop in Egypt (Reuters)

A gunman killed at least 11 people on Friday in attacks on a Coptic Orthodox church and a Christian-owned shop near Cairo before he was wounded and arrested, the Egyptian interior ministry and church officials said.

More Than 40 Dead and Dozens Injured After Bombing in Kabul (NPR)

On Thursday, more than 40 people were killed and dozens wounded in a suicide bombing at a cultural center in Kabul, Afghanistan. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack. NPR's Robert Siegel talks to Reuters' Kabul bureau chief James Mackenzie for an update on the details of the attack.

Man with explosives takes 11 hostages in Ukraine (Reuters)

A man believed to be strapped with explosives has taken nine adults and two children hostage in a post office in the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, police said on Saturday.