Sunday Headlines

Is Cooperation Between Russia And US Possible In Syria
Michael McFaul, U.S. Ambassador to the Russian Federation from 2012 to 2014, and a  Hoover Institution Fellow says the prospects of the US and Russia working together toward a solution in Syria is not far-fetched, but that some key issues must first be resolved.

First and foremost, Russia must stop bombing those forces opposed to Syrian dictator Bashir al-Assad under the guise of anti-terrorism efforts. Secondly, McFaul says it is important for Russia to firmly commit to international meetings intent on formulating a political solution to the crisis, even if that means removal of Assad.

Mexican Mayor Killed Day After Assuming Office
Two people have been killed and three others arrested a day after the slaying of Gisela Mota, the newly-elected mayor of Temixco, Morelos State.

Graco Ramirez, who heads the state where Temixco is located, said the killing was related to organized crime, according to CBS News.

The murder was a continuation of the drug cartel violence which marked 2015, a year in which crime increased, rather than decreased.

Fallout Over Saudi Executions Increases Regional Tensions The execution of Shia cleric Nimr al-Nimr has resulted in protests in Saudi Arabia and the world beyond and is seen by Shias throughout the world as a cause celebre and an example of Saudi’s mistreatment of their population. Iran has pledged “direct vengeance”

According to the New York Times, the Saudi government responded with a statement that accused Iran of “blind sectarianism” and said that “by its defense of terrorist acts” Iran is a “partner in their crimes in the entire region.”

The executions reflect an increasingly aggressive – and potentially dangerous – Saudi foreign policy, analysts say.

“Iran betted in the past on a hesitant foreign and domestic Saudi policy, but over the past year, things have completely changed and Riyadh has assumed a position that is rather provocative towards Tehran,” said Mahjoob al-Zweiri, professor of Middle Eastern studies at Qatar University.

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