Hard Numbers: An American in Egypt dies on hunger strike

Hard Numbers: An American in Egypt dies on hunger strike

1.7 billion: Hong Kong's embattled chief executive Carrie Lam has pledged $1.7 billion in state spending to ease residents' financial burdens ahead of February's annual budget. Anti-government protests in Hong Kong have dealt a major blow to the city's once-booming economy, leading to its first recorded recession in a decade.


7: The US slapped sanctions on seven Venezuelan officials associated with the regime of strongman Nicolas Maduro. The move is in response to their attempts to lay siege to Venezuela's National Assembly palace and to hold a rigged election to replace opposition leader Juan Guaido as speaker of the country's Congress. This after soldiers stopped Guaido from entering the building to allow a Maduro ally to claim the post instead.

6: An American citizen detained in Egypt for over six years on unproven terrorism charges died Monday after a long hunger strike. Moustafa Kassem, a New York taxi driver, was arrested in Egypt in 2013 just as Abdul Fattah el-Sisi took control in a military coup, enforcing a clampdown on political opposition and civil society that has only intensified.

101: A vessel carrying 101 Syrians fleeing that war-torn country was intercepted on Tuesday off the coast of Cyprus. It was one of the largest arrivals of refugees from Syria in recent months, likely spurred by the Assad regime's brutal offensive in Idlib province that's prompted hundreds of thousands of Syrians to seek refuge in neighboring Turkey.

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