The Hill Talk’s Glance at the Globe

Iran jails another American:  Following the revelation two Iranian-Americans, Siamak Namazi, and Baquer Namazi, were imprisoned by a Tehran court in mid-October, Iran announced 46-year-old Robin Shahini, a graduate student with dual American-Iranian citizenship, had been sentenced to 18-years in prison for allegedly collaborating with a hostile government.

Shahini, who left Iran in 2000 and returned to visit family, was arrested in July and was convicted after a three-hour trial earlier this week.

Although Shahini’s conviction has not been affirmed by senior Iranian legal officials, Mr. Shahini revealed to the Los Angeles Times his plans to go on a hunger strike until he is freed.

Venezuela begins impeachment of Maduro:  Adding to untold economic chaos consuming the country, Venezuela’s Asamblea Nacional voted to begin impeachment proceedings against President Nicolas Maduro.

Maduro has been charged with violating democracy.

Opposition groups initially attempted to use the Supreme Tribunal of Justice to order a presidential re-call, but after failing turned to legislative action.

Calais “Jungle Camp” dismantled:  Often the location of violence between settlers and law enforcement, the Calais “Jungle Camp,” the temporary housing for migrants and refugees most often from the Middle East and Africa, has been closed and razed.

Once intending to reach the UK, refugees and migrants formerly inhabiting the camp are slated to be re-settled throughout France.

Growing from a small encampment run by the International Red Cross in 1999 to the larger “Jungle Camp,” the site eventually housed over 6,500, according to estimates.

Gambia pulls out of ICC:  Citing the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) alleged refusal to prosecute war crimes committed by Westerners and seeking only to prosecute Africans, The Gambia announced its intent to leave the ICC.

The Gambia’s decision follows Burundi and South Africa quitting the Hague-based international court in the last two week period.

South Africa announced it is withdrawing from the court over criticism the ICC leveled at Pretoria for hosting Sudanese leader, Omar Hassan al-Bashir, who the ICC has accused of war crimes.  South Africa took the extraordinary step of ignoring an ICC order to arrest al-Bashir.

Burundi’s lower House approved a measure to leave the ICC, but has yet to formally announce its departure from the league.

Iraqi parliament bans alcohol:  In a move believed to satisfy Muslim religious groups, the Iraqi Council of Representatives voted to ban the manufacture, sale and importation of alcoholic beverages.

Praised by some Iraqi MPs as consistent with Islamic law, the ban was assailed by Christian MPs, some of whom claimed it would violate full religious rights of Christians, Yazidis and Sabeans.

A fine of 10,000-25,000د.ع would be assessed for violations to the new law.


[BBC] [The Telegraph] [RT News] [Reuters] [AFP via Yahoo News]