World Glance

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Mil­i­tary in Zim­babwe’s cap­i­tal af­ter army chief’s threat

HARARE, Zim­babwe — At least three ex­plo­sions were heard in Zim­babwe’s cap­i­tal early Wed­nes­day and mil­i­tary ve­hi­cles were seen in the streets af­ter the army com­man­der threat­ened to “step in” to calm po­lit­i­cal ten­sions over 93-year-old Pres­i­dent Robert Mu­gabe’s pos­si­ble suc­ces­sor. The rul­ing party ac­cused the com­man­der of “trea­son­able con­duct.”

The As­so­ci­ated Press saw armed sol­diers as­sault­ing passers-by in the early morn­ing hours in Harare, as well as sol­diers load­ing am­mu­ni­tion near a group of four mil­i­tary ve­hi­cles. The ex­plo­sions could be heard near the Univer­sity of Zim­babwe cam­pus.

Those de­vel­op­ments came sev­eral hours af­ter The As­so­ci­ated Press on Tues­day saw three ar­mored per­son­nel car­ri­ers with sev­eral sol­diers in a con­voy head­ing to­ward an army bar­racks just out­side the cap­i­tal. For the first time, this south­ern African na­tion is see­ing an open rift be­tween the mil­i­tary and Mu­gabe, the world’s old­est head of state who has ruled since in­de­pen­dence from white mi­nor­ity rule in 1980. The mil­i­tary has been a key pil­lar of his power.

Mu­gabe last week fired Vice Pres­i­dent Em­mer­son Mnan­gagwa and ac­cused him of plot­ting to take power, in­clud­ing through witch­craft. Mnan­gagwa, who en­joyed the mil­i­tary’s back­ing and once was seen as a po­ten­tial pres­i­dent, fled the coun­try and said he had been threat­ened.

Iran to probe state-built homes de­stroyed by deadly quake

SAR­POL-E-ZA­HAB, Iran — Ira­nian Pres­i­dent Hassan Rouhani launched an in­ves­ti­ga­tion Tues­day into why govern­ment hous­ing built by his hard-line pre­de­ces­sor col­lapsed while oth­ers with­stood a pow­er­ful earth­quake near the bor­der with Iraq that killed more than 530 peo­ple.

In the Kur­dish town of Sar­pol-e-Za­hab, which was re­con­structed in the decades since the 1980s war with Iraq, the outer walls of apart­ment com­plexes tum­bled away in the mag­ni­tude 7.3 earth­quake Sun­day night. The hous­ing was built as a part of the “Mehr” or “kind­ness” project of for­mer Pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ah­madine­jad.

Some now-home­less sur­vivors sim­ply wept out­side, while oth­ers an­grily showed As­so­ci­ated Press jour­nal­ists the de­struc­tion done by the quake.

Key UN com­mit­tee con­demns North Korea for not aid­ing peo­ple

UNITED NA­TIONS — A key U.N. com­mit­tee ap­proved a res­o­lu­tion Tues­day con­demn­ing North Korea for di­vert­ing its re­sources to pur­sue nu­clear weapons and bal­lis­tic mis­siles in­stead of help­ing its peo­ple, over half of whom need more food and im­proved med­i­cal care.

The res­o­lu­tion spon­sored by the Euro­pean Union and Ja­pan was adopted with­out a vote by the Gen­eral Assem­bly’s hu­man rights com­mit­tee. It has 61 cospon­sors — two more than last year — and now goes to the 193-mem­ber assem­bly which is cer­tain to adopt it in De­cem­ber.

Es­to­nia’s deputy U.N. am­bas­sador Minna-Li­ina Lind, speak­ing on be­half of the EU, ac­cused North Korea of com­mit­ting se­ri­ous hu­man rights vi­o­la­tions “in a wide­spread and sys­tem­atic way,” in­clud­ing by its “in­hu­mane con­di­tions in de­ten­tion camps.”

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