The Independent

World news in brief


Netanyahu denounces ‘anarchist’ protesters

Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his allies have denounced protesters as “anarchists” after they massed outside a Tel Aviv salon where his wife was getting her hair done at the end of a day of demonstrat­ions against the government’s plan to overhaul the judiciary. Sara Netanyahu has long been a polarising figure in Israel, and the incident late on Wednesday in a posh neighbourh­ood in Tel Aviv reflected Israel’s emotionall­y

charged divide over the overhaul, seen by opponents as an existentia­l threat to the country.

Demonstrat­ors outside the salon chanted “shame, shame” but did not try to force their way inside. Hundreds of police were sent to the scene and eventually escorted her into a limousine. Meanwhile, Mr Netanyahu and his political partners showed no signs of easing up on a push to pass a series of bills to overhaul Israel’s judiciary. These moves have further inflamed an already deeply riven country and drawn the largest protests in more than a decade.

Protest organisers planned more demonstrat­ions yesterday, a day after their self-proclaimed “day of disruption” turned violent when police used a heavy hand against participan­ts at a Tel Aviv rally. Yesterday’s demonstrat­ions in Jerusalem included speeches by former government ministers and senior security officials. Former top economists, including two former Bank of Israel heads and a Nobel Prize laureate, spoke at a conference in Tel Aviv about the economic fallout from the overhaul.

Justice minister Yariv Levin, one of the architects of the judicial overhaul, said on Wednesday night that despite the mounting public outcry, Mr Netanyahu’s government “will not stop the legislatio­n”. The proposed bills would give politician­s and parliament control over judicial appointmen­ts, the power to overrule the Supreme Court, and the ability to pass laws impervious to judicial review.

UN chief in Iran for ‘high-level’ nuclear talks

The UN nuclear watchdog said yesterday its chief Rafael Grossi will travel to Iran for “high-level meetings” as diplomats say he wants to jolt Tehran into cooperatin­g with an investigat­ion into uranium traces found at undeclared sites.

Iran’s stonewalli­ng of the Internatio­nal Atomic Energy Agency’s years-long investigat­ion into uranium traces found at three undeclared sites prompted the IAEA’s 35-nation board of governors to pass a resolution at its last quarterly meeting in

November ordering Iran to cooperate urgently with the probe. That cooperatio­n has not materialis­ed and Mr Grossi is hoping that a meeting with Iranian president Ebrahim Raisi will help smooth the way towards ending the deadlock, diplomats say.

“Director General @rafaelmgro­ssi will travel to Tehran for highlevel meetings,” the IAEA said on Twitter, confirming a visit first announced by Iran. “The DG will hold a press conference upon his return to Vienna on Saturday, late afternoon.” Diplomats have said for weeks that Mr Grossi wants to meet Mr Raisi on this visit. The IAEA did not spell out whom he would meet. Reuters

India complicit in Myanmar junta’s war crimes, says rights group

An Indian state-owned arms manufactur­er has shipped multiple artillery barrels to Myanmar during the military’s violent crackdown on dissent, an activist group has said. Myanmar has been gripped by a bloody civil war since the junta, led by general Min Aung Hlaing, toppled the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi in a 2021 February coup.

The junta takeover plunged the country into an economic as well as security crisis, derailing decades of progressiv­e reforms and inviting fresh internatio­nal sanctions. Arms manufactur­er Yantra India Limited allegedly sent 20 gun barrels measuring 122mm to the southeast Asian country in October last year, according to a report by Justice For Myanmar. The barrels, valued at $330,000 (£250,000), were shipped to Yangon-based Innovative Industrial Technologi­es Company Limited, which is owned by the Myanmar military’s arms broker.

Stray dog kills month-old child sleeping next to mother in India

A month-old child sleeping next to his mother at a government hospital in India was taken away by a stray dog and mauled to death. The child’s body was found outside the hospital in Rajasthan state’s Sirohi district. Surveillan­ce footage showed two dogs entered the hospital’s tuberculos­is ward during the

early hours of Tuesday and one of them dragged the infant away, local police said.

The father of the child, identified as Mahendra Meena, was admitted to hospital for silicosis treatment. According to the police, the child’s mother was attending to the patient and had fallen asleep. There was no hospital staff present inside the ward during the incident. “Post-mortem has been conducted by a medical board. A case will be registered in the matter after further investigat­ion,” the police said in a statement.

The infant’s family have accused hospital authoritie­s and the local police of making his wife sign “blank papers”. The infant’s father alleged the officers performed the baby’s last rites without informing him. “I was admitted to the hospital on Monday. Dogs were coming inside the ward and I chased them away,” he was quoted as saying by news agency PTI. “My wife woke up at 2am [local time] and found the dogs mauling our child. I could not even see my son’s face.”

The hospital authoritie­s said the patient’s attendant was sleeping, while the hospital guard was attending to the other ward.

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 ?? ll (AFP/Getty) ?? Security forces detain a protester during a demonstrat­ion against the Israe l i government’s controvers­ia l justice reform bi , near the prime minister’s residence in Jerusa l em
ll (AFP/Getty) Security forces detain a protester during a demonstrat­ion against the Israe l i government’s controvers­ia l justice reform bi , near the prime minister’s residence in Jerusa l em
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