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Pakistan appoints new spy chief

Rizwan Akhtar, considered close ally of army chief, named head of powerful Inter-Services Intelligence.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia-pacific/2014/09/pakistan-appoints-new-spy-chief-2014922102914395374.html
 
Saudi, Iran foreign ministers meet in New York

Saudi and Iranian foreign ministers held a meeting on Sunday on the sidelines of the U.N. General Assembly in New York.

“This is a new page in relations between the two countries,” Iran's Mohammad Javad Zarif said, quoted on the government’s website.

“We hope this will have a positive impact on restoring peace and security in the region and the world, and for the interests of all Muslim nations,” he said after the talks.

Ties between the two rival Gulf powers have long been strained on a wide variety of issues.
http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/09/22/Saudi-Iran-foreign-ministers-meet-in-New-York.html
 
Palestinian prisoners to stage mass hunger strike in Israel jails

Dozens of Palestinians, who were rearrested by the Tel Aviv forces after being freed in a prisoner exchange, are set to stage a mass hunger strike in Israeli jails.

Palestinian media reports say some 63 prisoners will begin their strike in the Israeli jails on Wednesday.

They were all among a group of 1,027 prisoners freed by Israel in 2011.

Sources say the hunger striking inmates are demanding that the Palestinian negotiators ensure their release as quickly as possible.
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/09/22/379611/palestinian-inmates-to-stage-hunger-strike/
 
Ashraf Ghani declared winner of Afghan poll

Election commission declares former finance minister winner of presidential poll after months of political stalemate.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/asia/2014/09/ashraf-ghani-declared-winner-afghan-poll-2014921133512174572.html
 
Thousands of Hong Kong students start week-long boycott

Thousands of students in Hong Kong have converged on a university campus to begin a week-long boycott of classes.

They are protesting against China's stance on electoral reform in the territory. Students from more than two dozen institutions are taking part.

It is a prelude to a larger protest on 1 October planned by pro-democracy group Occupy Central.

Beijing has rejected open nominations for the city's leadership poll, dashing hopes of those seeking full democracy.

The boycott saw thousands of students gathering at 14:00 local time (07:00 BST) for a sit-in at the Chinese University of Hong Kong campus in Sha Tin, several kilometres north of the city centre.

Most are wearing white T-shirts with yellow ribbons - a colour adopted by pro-democracy activists.
http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-china-29306128
 
Echoing Tiananmen, 17-year-old Hong Kong student prepares for democracy battle

He's one of the fieriest political activists in Hong Kong — he's been called an "extremist" by China's state-run media — and he's not even old enough to drive.
Meet 17-year-old Joshua Wong, a skinny, bespectacled teen whose meager physical frame belies the ferocity of his politics. Over the last two years, the student has built a pro-democracy youth movement in Hong Kong that one veteran Chinese dissident says is just as significant as the student protests at Tiananmen, 25 years ago.
Echoing the young campaigners who flooded Beijing's central square in 1989, the teen activist wants to ignite a wave of civil disobedience among Hong Kong's students. His goal? To pressure China into giving Hong Kong full universal suffrage.
Wong's movement builds on years of pent-up frustration in Hong Kong.
http://edition.cnn.com/2014/09/21/world/asia/hong-kong-joshua-wong-democracy-protest/index.html?hpt=ias_c1
 
Pak opposition rally held in Karachi

The supporters of Pakistani opposition politician Imran Khan have held a huge anti-government demonstration in the southern port city of Karachi.

The protest rally was staged on Monday after a major month-long sit-in in the capital, Islamabad.

Addressing the crowd, Khan called on the Pakistanis to unite behind him to bring change to the country.

“No one was ever caught and punished for rigging the elections. Those who have usurped the rights of the people were never caught and that is why I have come out. I am telling you Nawaz Sharif, until you resign, this campaign will not end,” Khan said.

Khan, who heads the Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) party, and cleric Tahir-ul-Qadri, the head of Pakistan Awami Tehreek (PAT), have been leading daily protest rallies in Islamabad since August 14.

The two opposition figures say the country’s May 2013 general elections, which were won by Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League-N (PML-N) party, were fraudulent. They want Sharif’s resignation and an overhaul of the country’s electoral system.

Several anti-government rallies have turned violent over the past weeks.

Talks between representatives from Sharif’s Pakistan Muslim League and the opposition groups have stalled, as both sides refuse to back down.

The ruling party says Sharif will not resign, while the opposition refuses to accept any solution short of his resignation.
 
Ebola burial team attacked in Sierra Leone

Health workers burying Ebola victims come under attack on second day of national curfew to stop spread of disease.

http://www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/2014/09/ebola-burial-team-attacked-sierra-leone-2014920224246228487.html
 
More unions join Israel Post strike

A three-week-old strike by Israel Post employees spreads as other labor unions join the walkout in protest at a recovery plan that involves layoffs.

Courthouses were closed to the public on Sunday, and tax and customs officials at the border crossings with Jordan and Egypt did not let goods in and out of Israel as of 8 a.m. local time (0500 GMT).

Moreover, labor sanctions are ongoing at Israel’s Health Ministry facilities, where employees are not offering public services and are not monitoring imported food and medication.

The strike by Israel Post employees has put the nearly bankrupt mail service in more financial trouble, and the postal service is expected to be out of cash within six months.

The striking postal workers object to a layoff plan that includes 1,500 employees with more than five years’ seniority.

On September 18, workers at the Airport Authority went on a three-hour strike in solidarity with postal workers. The strike shut down Ben Gurion Airport and an estimated 8,000 passengers were stranded.

Later in the day, Israeli Finance Minister Yair Lapid met with chairman of Histadrut labor federation Avi Nissenkorn and a host of representatives from various unions to resolve the dispute, but failed to reach an agreement. They are scheduled to renew negotiations later this week.
http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/09/21/379483/more-unions-join-israel-post-strike/
 
Yemen clashes cast doubt on U.N. deal signing

Despite a U.N.-brokered agreement due to be signed on Sunday, clashes between Shiite Houthi rebels and government forces continued for a fourth day in the Yemeni capital of Sanaa, Reuters news agency reported.

Residents reported hearing heavy shelling throughout Saturday night in an area of the capital near the headquarters of the first armored division camp and close to Iman University.

Fighting escalated on Thursday following weeks of clashes between rebels and Yemeni forces, posing the biggest challenge to a democratic transition backed by the U.N, Reuters said.

U.N. special envoy to Yemen Jamal Benomar announced late on Saturday that an agreement was reached between the warring sides, following two-day talks with Houthi leader Abdulmalek al-Houthi.

http://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/middle-east/2014/09/21/Clashes-in-Yemeni-capital-cast-doubt-on-deal-signing.html