9 January 2017

Rafsanjani, Iran leader whose life mirrored nation's, dies

In this Dec. 21, 2015 file photo, former Iranian President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani waves to journalists as he registers his candidacy for the elections of the Experts Assembly, in Tehran, Iran. Iranian media said Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017, that Rafsanjani, who served as president from 1989 to 1997, has been hospitalized because of a heart condition. The official IRNA news agency reported that Rafsanjani was taken to a public hospital north of the capital, Tehran.
Iran's former President Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani died Sunday after a decades-long career in the ruling elite, where his moderate views were not always welcome but his cunning guided him through revolution, war and the country's turbulent politics.
The political survivor's life spanned the trials of Iran's modern history, from serving as a close aide to Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini during the 1979 Islamic Revolution to acting as a go-between in the Iran-Contra deal. He helped found Iran's contested nuclear program, but later backed the accord with world powers to limit it in exchange for sanctions relief.

Truck attack kills 4 Israeli soldiers in Jerusalem

This frame grab from video, shows Israeli emergency services personnel covering bodies with plastic sheets at scene of a truck-ramming attack in Jerusalem that killed at least four people and wounded several others in Jerusalem, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2017. Israeli police and rescue services said a Palestinian rammed his truck into a group of Israeli soldiers in one of the deadliest attacks of a more than yearlong campaign of violence. Security camera footage shows the truck barreling at a high speed off the road and into a crowd of people in the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood.
A Palestinian truck driver rammed his vehicle into a crowd of Israeli soldiers at a popular Jerusalem tourist spot Sunday, killing four people and wounding 17 others in the deadliest single attack of more than a year of Israeli-Palestinian violence.
The attack came at a time of heightened tensions in Jerusalem, where Palestinians have warned of dire consequences if incoming President Donald Trump follows through on his promise to move the U.S. Embassy to the city. The atmosphere among Israelis is also charged following last week's manslaughter conviction of an Israeli soldier who fatally shot a wounded Palestinian attacker.