In our news wrap Monday, Iran’s powerful Revolutionary Guard warned protesters they will face “decisive” action if nationwide unrest does not stop. Angered by a 50 percent hike in gasoline prices, people occupied streets and set fire to cars and buildings this weekend. Also, in Iraq, anti-government protesters seized a major bridge in Baghdad, vowing to stay until a new government tackles reform.
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In the day's other news: Iran's powerful Revolutionary Guards warned protesters they will face — quote — "decisive action" if nationwide unrest doesn't stop.
People occupied streets and set fire to cars, banks and other buildings over the weekend. They were angered by a 50 percent hike in gasoline prices. The government cut off Internet access in an effort to smother the protests.
Ali Rabiei (through translator):
Today, the situation was calmer, more than 80 percent compared to yesterday. Only some minor problems remain. And by tomorrow and the day after, there will remain no riots.
The protests took place in dozens of cities and put more pressure on Iran's government as it struggles with an ailing economy and U.S. sanctions.
In Iraq, anti-government protesters again seized a major bridge in Baghdad, burning tires to block traffic. They also held a funeral procession for a protester killed by security forces. More than 320 demonstrators have been killed in recent weeks, as they demand a new government and political and economic reforms.
The Trump administration is softening its policy on Israeli settlements in the West Bank. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced today he will abandon a 1978 State Department legal finding that the settlements are inconsistent with international law.
Pompeo said the finding had hindered the path to peace.
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo: We have had a long time with the policy, the legal interpretation announced today being the other way, and it didn't work. That's a fact in evidence.
We believe that what we have done today is, we have recognized the reality on the ground. We think, in fact, we have increased the likelihood that the vision for peace that this administration has, we think we have created space for that to be successful.
Today's move is one of a series of Trump administration decisions that weaken Palestinian claims to statehood.
North Korea declared today it doesn't want — quote — "meaningless nuclear talks" with the U.S.. President Trump had hinted at a third summit with Kim Jong-un. But North Korea's Foreign Ministry said Kim rejects any summit unless he gets something tangible.
A senior official said — quote — "We will no longer gift the U.S. president with something he can boast of."
Kim has demanded that the U.S. offer acceptable terms by the end of the year, in return for him ending North Korea's nuclear program.
The city of Venice, Italy, struggled to begin recovering today, after unprecedented tidal flooding. On Sunday, tourists and officials waded through historic St. Mark's Square, though some businesses stayed open despite the water.
The mayor said the record flooding is a warning.
Luigi Brugnaro (through translator):
Venice is a way to give a signal that we need scientists here. They need to come here and create a permanent place where they can study and then recount what is happening here because of climate change, with all its effects. Venice is a frontier. We are in the trenches.
The water levels on Sunday reached nearly five feet for the third time in the past week. That had not happened since record-keeping began in 1872.
Back in this country, a congressional watchdog group says at least 60 percent of Superfund sites are prone to flooding or other effects of climate change. Those sites contain hazardous industrial waste. The Government Accountability Office called today for the Environmental Protection Agency to state explicitly that it will focus on the problem.
President Trump has often derided talk of climate change.
Seven people are dead after two shootings in different parts of the country. In Duncan, Oklahoma, three people were killed today outside a Walmart. Police said the gunman shot two people in a car, before killing himself.
Meanwhile, a manhunt is under way in Fresno, California, for two men who shot and killed four people on Sunday evening. It happened at a backyard gathering where about 30 people, including children, were watching a football game. Six more people were wounded in the shooting.
They walked into the backyard and began immediately firing into the crowd; 10 of those 16 people at that event were hit and struck by bullets. The unknown suspects fled the scene on foot.
What I can tell you is, this wasn't a random act.
Police say some of the victims may have been involved in an incident last week.
Supreme Court Chief Justice John Roberts has ordered a hold on letting House Democrats see President Trump's tax records. A federal appeals court had ruled in favor of enforcing a House subpoena for the documents. The Roberts order today blocks enforcement for an unspecified time to give the high court time to issue a definitive ruling.
President Trump is backing away from a plan to bar sales of most flavored e-cigarette products. He had said in September he would announce a ban to try and curb teenage vaping. But it was widely reported today that he changed his mind after being warned that a crackdown could cost jobs and votes.
And on Wall Street Today, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 31 points to close at 28036. The Nasdaq rose nine points, and the S&P 500 added one point.