News Wrap: Kurdish fighters make gains against Islamic State in Kobani

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  • GWEN IFILL:

    Worries about Ebola, and Europe, and the U.S. economy sent Wall Street to new extremes today. Stocks plunged sharply at the open, and at one point, the Dow Jones industrial average had lost 460 points.

    But a late-day rally brought the market part of the way back. The Dow ended with a loss of 173 points to close at 16,141; the Nasdaq fell nearly 12 points to close at 4,215; and the S&P 500 dipped 15 to 1,862.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Kurdish fighters in Syria claimed gains today in the battle for the town of Kobani. They said they have pushed back Islamic State forces with the help of stepped-up airstrikes. U.S. warplanes launched 18 more strikes in and around the town on the Turkish border. That followed nearly two dozen sorties the day before.

    At the Pentagon, Rear Admiral John Kirby said Islamic State forces are taking heavy casualties.

  • REAR ADM. JOHN KIRBY, Pentagon Press Secretary:

    The more they want it, the more resources they apply to it, the more targets we have to hit. And part of what we're trying to do is put pressure on them, and these strikes against them and their positions in and around Kobani allow us to do that. And as I said, we know we have killed several — several hundred of them.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Also today, the Pentagon announced the official name for the U.S. air campaign against Islamic State forces. It will be called Operation Inherent Resolve.

  • GWEN IFILL:

    Egypt has stepped up its attack on Islamist militias in neighboring Libya. Egyptian officials today reported new airstrikes in Benghazi. They said Libyan authorities asked for the operation. One Libyan lawmaker said the planes are being rented from Egypt and flown by Libyan pilots.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    Pro-democracy protesters in Hong Kong braced for new trouble tonight after the worst violence in more than two weeks of demonstrations. Riot police severely beat one man last night, dragged others away, and arrested at least 45.

    John Sparks of Independent Television News reports from Hong Kong.

  • JOHN SPARKS:

    Meetings of the Hong Kong Social Workers Association are usually relaxed affairs, but there was nothing tranquil about this gathering.

    They met in a park, then unfurled a banner, and began to paint angry slogans about the police. "Shame," said one. "Repressors," said another, as one man wiped away his tears.

    And here's the reason why. Their colleague Ken Tsang was carried off by police last night after a pro-democracy protest turned violent. The officers involved, two inspectors and five constables, dumped him in an isolated corner. Then it's alleged that several lashed out with feet and fists. A number of others stood guard. They probably thought they were out of sight.

    That video went viral. And, tonight, several hundred social workers took to the streets determined to make their views known. Upon reaching police headquarters, they held up signs and waved their fists and shouted, "Police shame, police shame."

    There's a big crowd here, a boisterous crowd, and they have now surrounded the local police station in this district. And they are clearly very angry about what has happened to Ken Tsang. And the risk for the authorities and the police is that their outrage further fuels the protest movement.

    A battered-looking Mr. Tsang was released from custody tonight. He's been charged with unlawful assembly and obstructing officers. Several hundred social workers are continuing their sit-in. And many have filed into the station house to make complaints about police brutality. And a movement that was losing momentum has found itself a brand-new rallying cry.

  • JUDY WOODRUFF:

    In Beijing, China's central government intensified its criticism of the protesters. The newspaper of the ruling Communist Party said in an editorial, they are doomed to fail.

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