Welcome to the Overnight News Digest with a crew consisting of founder Magnifico, regular editors side pocket, maggiejean, Chitown Kev, Interceptor7, Magnifico, annetteboardman, Besame and jck. Alumni editors include (but not limited to) Man Oh Man, wader, Neon Vincent, palantir, Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse (RIP), ek hornbeck, ScottyUrb, Doctor RJ, BentLiberal, Oke (RIP) and jlms qkw.
OND is a regular community feature on Daily Kos, consisting of news stories from around the world, sometimes coupled with a daily theme, original research or commentary. Editors of OND impart their own presentation styles and content choices, typically publishing each day near 12:00 AM Eastern Time.
Please feel free to share your articles and stories in the comments.
Right-wing nationalist Ersin Tatar wins in northern Cyprus
Right-wing nationalist Ersin Tatar has won the presidential election in northern Cyprus, the Turkish-controlled part of the Mediterranean island.
Mr Tatar, who is pro-Turkey and wants Cyprus to be two separate states, won just under 52% of the vote to defeat the incumbent, Mustafa Akinci.
Mr Akinci wants reunification with the southern Greek part of the island.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has sent his congratulations to Mr Ersin.
But there has been no comment yet from the Cypriot government in Nicosia, although opposition parties there have lamented the result.
Covid-19: Italy tightens rules after coronavirus cases surge
Italy has announced a new raft of measures to tighten restrictions amid a surge in coronavirus cases.
A mask-wearing PM Giuseppe Conte said the measures were needed "to avoid a new lockdown".
Mayors will get powers to close public areas after 21:00 and the opening times of restaurants and the size of groups allowed will tighten.
The moves came as Italy recorded its highest daily infection rate for the second day in a row.
Another 11,705 new cases were announced on Sunday, beating the previous record, which came a day earlier on Saturday, of 10,925.
Italy was the European nation hardest hit at the start of the pandemic. It has now recorded 414,000 confirmed coronavirus cases. Its 36,500 deaths place it second to only the UK in Europe.
Tens of thousands march in Belarus despite police threat to fire
Tens of thousands of people have marched through the streets of the Belarusian capital Minsk to demand the resignation of veteran President Alexander Lukashenko, despite a threat by officials to use firearms against protesters.
Belarus, a former Soviet republic closely allied with Russia, has been rocked by strikes and weekly street protests since authorities announced Lukashenko, who has ruled in authoritarian fashion since 1994, had secured re-election on August 9 with 80 percent of votes.
Some protesters chanted “Strike!” and “You and your riot police get out!” during Sunday’s march.
The Interfax news agency put the number of protesters at more than 30,000. While it said about 50 had been arrested by the police, Belarusian interior ministry spokeswoman Olga Chemodanova told the AFP news agency more than 100 people had been arrested in Minsk.
Interfax also reported the mobile broadband signal had been disrupted in parts of the city. It also said loud noises that sounded like stun grenades had been heard close to the march.
A senior police official said last week officers would reserve the right to use firearms against demonstrators.
Saudi Arabia resumes prayers at Mecca’s Grand Mosque
Saudi Arabia is allowing its citizens and residents inside the kingdom to perform daily prayers at the Grand Mosque in Mecca, the holiest site in Islam, for the first time in seven months.
Sunday also marked the start of the second phase of the gradual return of citizens and residents to performing the Umrah – an Islamic pilgrimage to the holy cities of Mecca and Medina undertaken any time of the year – expanding the capacity to 75 percent.
Earlier this month, Saudi Arabia resumed allowing citizens and residents to perform the Umrah at Islam’s holiest sites, Mecca and Medina, after a seven-month pause due to coronavirus concerns.
With the start of phase one on October 4, Saudi Arabia had allowed 6,000 citizens and residents of the kingdom to perform Umrah daily, representing 30 percent of a revised maximum capacity of 20,000 pilgrims allowed into the Grand Mosque every day under new precautionary health measures.
Chile anniversary rallies turn violent as churches burned, police fire tear gas
SANTIAGO (Reuters) - Tens of thousands of Chileans gathered in the central square of Santiago to mark the one-year anniversary of mass protests that left over 30 dead and thousands injured, with peaceful rallies on Sunday devolving by nightfall into riots and looting.
People gathered early in the day in demonstrations downtown and in cities throughout Chile that gained size and fervor through the evening. Many touted signs and rainbow colored homemade banners calling for a “yes” vote next Sunday in a referendum over whether to scrap the country’s dictatorship-era Constitution, a key demand of the 2019 protests.
The demonstrations, while largely peaceful early on, were marred by increasing incidents of violence, looting of supermarkets and clashes with police across the capital later in the day.
Man denied German citizenship for refusing to shake woman's hand
A German court ruled on Friday that a Muslim man who refused to shake the hand of a woman should not receive German citizenship.
The 40-year-old Lebanese doctor, who came to Germany in 2002, said he refuses to shake women's hands for religious reasons.
The Administrative Court of Baden-Württemberg (VGH) ruled that someone who rejects a handshake due to a "fundamentalist conception of culture and values" because they see women as "a danger of sexual temptation" was thereby rejecting "integration into German living conditions."
The doctor studied medicine in Germany and now works as a senior physician in a clinic. He applied for citizenship through naturalization in 2012, for which he signed a declaration of loyalty to the German constitution and against extremism. He passed the naturalization test with the best possible score. Nevertheless, he was not granted citizenship because he refused to shake hands with the responsible official when the naturalization certificate was handed over in 2015. The woman therefore withheld the certificate and rejected the application.
Appalachian Town Must 'Wait And Wait' As Pandemic Puts Plastics Plant On Hold
From his bar in Shadyside, Ohio, Matt Coffland has been counting on his town getting a new petrochemical plant since it was first planned, seven years ago. He says the southeastern part of the state has long been neglected.
"For us to get something like that, rightfully, I think we deserve it by now," he says.
The plant, to be built by Thailand-based oil and gas company PTT, would be a major construction project.
"You're talking an influx of close to 10,000 people at one point," Coffland says.
The ethane "cracker," as it's called, would turn natural gas from nearby wells into petrochemicals and plastics. It's part of a much-planned wave of petrochemical construction across Appalachia.
Oil and gas backers say a decade of fracking has unlocked enough gas in this region for four or five chemical plants like PTT's. But so far only one is under construction, a Shell plant near Pittsburgh, which President Trump has visited to tout U.S. "energy dominance."
Now, as the Ohio project has stalled amid the pandemic, some wonder if it will ever be built.
New York Times
With Covid-19 Under Control, China’s Economy Surges Ahead
BEIJING — As most of the world still struggles with the coronavirus pandemic, China is showing once again that a fast economic rebound is possible when the virus is brought firmly under control.
The Chinese economy surged 4.9 percent in the July-to-September quarter compared with the same months last year, the country’s National Bureau of Statistics announced on Monday. The robust performance brings China almost back up to the roughly 6 percent pace of growth that it was reporting before the pandemic.
Many of the world’s major economies have climbed quickly out of the depths of a contraction last spring, when shutdowns caused output to fall steeply. But China is the first to report growth that significantly surpasses where it was at this time last year. The United States and other nations are expected to report a third-quarter surge too, but they are still behind or just catching up to pre-pandemic levels.
New York Times (This is a big story)
As local News Dies, a Pay-for-Play Network Rises in Its Place
Maine Business Daily is part of a fast-growing network of nearly 1,300 websites that aim to fill a void left by vanishing local newspapers across the country. Yet the network, now in all 50 states, is built not on traditional journalism but on propaganda ordered up by dozens of conservative think tanks, political operatives, corporate executives and public-relations professionals, a Times investigation found.
The sites appear as ordinary local-news outlets, with names like Des Moines Sun, Ann Arbor Times and Empire State Today. They employ simple layouts and articles about local politics, community happenings and sometimes national issues, much like any local newspaper.
But behind the scenes, many of the stories are directed by political groups and corporate P.R. firms to promote a Republican candidate or a company, or to smear their rivals.
Pootie News from The Guardian
Huge cat found etched into desert among Nazca Lines in Peru
The dun sands of southern Peru, etched centuries ago with geoglyphs of a hummingbird, a monkey, an orca – and a figure some would dearly love to believe is an astronaut – have now revealed the form of an enormous cat lounging across a desert hillside.
The feline Nazca line, dated to between 200BC and 100BC, emerged during work to improve access to one of the hills that provides a natural vantage point from which many of the designs can be seen.
A Unesco world heritage site since 1994, the Nazca Lines, which are made up of hundreds of geometric and zoomorphic images, were created by removing rocks and earth to reveal the contrasting materials below. They lie 250 miles (400km) south of Lima and cover about 450 sq km (175 sq miles) of Peru’s arid coastal plain. “The figure was scarcely visible and was about to disappear because it’s situated on quite a steep slope that’s prone to the effects of natural erosion,” Peru’s culture ministry said in a statement this week.