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In The News

Iran Executes Protester, Peru President Ousted, Most Googled Word

Peruvians took to the streets chanting 'Castillo Corrupt'. Hundreds of citizens, some wrapped in the national flag celebrated the removal of President Pedro Castillo.
Emma Albright, Hugo Perrin and Anne-Sophie Goninet

👋 སྐུ་གཟུགས་བཟང་པོ།*

Welcome to Thursday, where Peru gets its first female president after Pedro Castillo is impeached and arrested, the trial of Germany's biggest fraud case opens and we know Google’s most-searched item of the year. Meanwhile, Persian-language media Kayhan-London looks at the prosecutions of demonstrators in Iran, just as the government announces the first publicly known execution related to the ongoing protests.

[*Kuzu zangpo la, Dzongkha - Bhutan]

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🌎  7 THINGS TO KNOW RIGHT NOW

• Iran carries out first protest-related execution: Iran has announced the execution of a man found guilty of “waging war on God” for allegedly attacking a security officer with a knife — the first publicly known execution of a protester stemming from the ongoing anti-government unrest.

• More than 93,000 Russian troops killed, says Ukraine: Ukraine’s general staff of the armed forces has claimed that more than 93,000 Russian personnel have been killed since the start of the invasion, with 340 troops killed in the last 24 hours. Russia’s published statistics announce a much lower number of losses.

• Peru’s ousted president arrested, new president sworn in: Dina Boluarte becomes Peru’s first female president after left-wing leader Pedro Castillo faced an impeachment trial and was detained by the police in Lima for accusations of “rebellion” and “conspiracy” for trying to cling to power by illegally dissolving Congress.

• Xi Jinping in Saudi Arabia: Chinese President Xi Jinping has arrived in Saudi Arabia for a three-day trip, his first in the country in six years, to meet Saudi Crown Prince and Prime Minister Mohammed bin Salman to sign agreements reportedly worth $29.6 billion.

• Wirecard boss on trial over German fraud scandal: The trial of Wirecard ex-CEO Markus Braun and two other former executives of the payments company opens in Munich in what is considered the biggest fraud case in German history. Braun, who denies any wrongdoing, faces charges of commercial gang fraud, breach of trust, market manipulation and accounting manipulation.

• Bali bomber freed: Indonesia has released on parole Umar Patek, a convicted terrorist and the main bombmaker of the deadly 2002 Bali attacks, prompting anger from survivors and families of the 202 victims. Patek was jailed for 20 years in 2012, serving just over half of his original sentence.

• Wordle is most Googled word in 2022: Google has revealed its most-searched terms in 2022: the five-letter guessing game Wordle takes the top spot globally and in the U.S., followed by India vs England, Ukraine and Queen Elizabeth.

🗞️  FRONT PAGE

“Security forces thwart coup d'état,” titles German daily Süddeutsche Zeitung, reporting on the arrest of at least 25 people, including a 71-year-old prince and an acting judge and former MP for the far-right Alternative für Deutschland. The suspects were reportedly planning a violent overthrow of the German state and to install a former member of a German royal family as national leader. Authorities announced today they are expecting further arrests in the coming days.

#️⃣  BY THE NUMBERS

$184.7 billion

French fashion magnate Bernard Arnault briefly overtook Elon Musk again to become the world's richest person on Wednesday at 3:30 p.m. Arnault was worth an estimated $184.7 billion at the time, with Musk trailing him by $100 million, worth $184.6 billion. But when U.S. markets closed at 4 p.m, Musk had regained the lead.

📰  STORY OF THE DAY

Iran confirms first execution of a protester

Iranian authorities have begun prosecuting multiple demonstrators arrested at recent mass protests, accusing them of the gravest crimes that are punishable by the death penalty, reports Persian-language media Kayhan-London. Authorities this morning confirmed the hanging of a man arrested at a Tehran protest in October, the first confirmation of an execution of a protester since the uprising began in September.

⚖️ Iran's clerical regime, which has faced persistent anti-state protests since mid-September, is activating a tried-and-tested mechanism for terminating opposition: executions. In recent days the judiciary has leveled the gravest charges in its juridical arsenal at dozens of detained protesters, namely "waging war on God" (muhariba) and "spreading corruption in the land" (afsad fi al-arz). On Thursday, Iranian state media reported for the first time that the regime has executed a man arrested during the uprising.

🛑 The regime likely sees executions as an "edifying" message to dissuade Iranians from engaging in further protests. On November 16, the judiciary announced it had issued three other death sentences for detained protesters, while some reports claim the judiciary has already issued at least 20 death sentences without publicizing them. In early November, 227 members of Iran's parliament — arguably representing the regime, not their constituents — asked the courts to issue the harshest penalties possible in these cases.

🔍 On November 24, the UN Human Rights Council voted to investigate the rights violations likely to have been committed in response to these protests. The Special Rapporteur for rights in Iran, Javaid Rehman, recently told Reuters that he feared this would prompt the regime to become harsher with protesters. His count of Iranian detainees facing possible execution for the protests is 21, while an Iranian NGO, Iran Human Rights, has listed the names of 26 so far. The regime has said it will not collaborate with any UN inquiry.

➡️ Read more on Worldcrunch.com

📣 VERBATIM

We are aware of what nuclear weapons are. We aren’t about to run around the world brandishing this weapon like a razor.

— The president of Russia Vladimir Putin said during the annual human rights council meeting that Russia would "under no circumstances" use nuclear weapons first and would not use the nuclear arsenal as a threatening instrument. Putin also claimed that Russia had the most modern and advanced nuclear weapons in the world. He contrasted Russia’s nuclear strategy to the U.S.: "We do not have nuclear weapons, including tactical ones, on the territory of other countries, but the Americans do" he said.

✍️ Newsletter by Emma Albright, Hugo Perrin and Anne-Sophie Goninet


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Ideas

A Writer's Advice For How To Read The Words Of Politics

Colombia's reformist president has promised to tackle endemic violence, economic exclusion, pollution and corruption in the country. So what's new with a politician's promises?

Image of Colombian President Gustavo Petro speaking during a press conference in Buenos Aires on Jan 14, 2023

Colombian President Gustavo Petro, speaks during a press conference in the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) Summit in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on January 24, 2023.

Manuel Cortina/ZUMA
Héctor Abad Faciolince

-Essay-

BOGOTÁ — Don't concentrate on his words, I was once advised, but look at what he's doing. I heard the words so long ago I cannot recall who said them. The point is, what's the use of a husband who vows never to beat his wife in January and leaves her with a bruised face in February?

Words are a strange thing, and in literal terms, we must distrust their meaning. As I never hit anyone, I have never declared that I wouldn't. It never occurred to me to say it. Strangely, there is more power and truth in a simple declaration like "I love her" than in the more emphatic "I love her so much." A verbal addition here just shrinks the "sense" of love.

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