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In our news wrap Friday, the Labor Department reports employers added a net 136,000 jobs in September and the unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent--a new 50-year low. But factories shed 2,000 jobs amid fears the manufacturing sector is now in a recession. Also, Iraqi security forces shot and killed at least 17 more protesters, bringing the week’s death toll to 59 as the prime minister urged calm.
In the day's other news: U.S. businesses managed to make slight job gains in September. The Labor Department reports that employers added a net of 136,000 jobs last month. That came as factories shed 2,000 jobs, amid concerns that the manufacturing sector is now in a recession.
Overall, the unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent. That is the lowest it has been in 50 years.
In Iraq, security forces in Baghdad shot and killed at least 17 more protesters, bringing the week's death toll to 59. The shooting sent people running for cover, after they defied a curfew. Hospitals reported dozens hurt, despite the prime minister's televised appeal for calm.
Prime Minister Adil Abdul-Mahdi (through translator):
Your demands in countering corruption, providing job opportunities, and comprehensive reforms are rightful demands. First, we have to bring life back to normal in all the provinces. We have to respect the authority of law under which we are all are living in peace and stability.
Iraqi troops have also killed protesters in other cities this week. The country's leading Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, called today for an end to the violence, before, he said, it is too late.
Anger intensified in Hong Kong today after the government banned protesters from wearing face masks. Thousands of demonstrators turned out, wearing masks. They protested into the night, vandalizing storefronts, setting fires at subway stations and defying the city's chief executive.
If there's no violence, if there's no protests, we do not need to have all these instruments with us in order to deal with this violence.
Of course, if the situation worsens — I suppose that's your question — then, as a responsible government, we will continue to have to identify other means that we could tackle the situation.
The protesters wear masks to avoid being identified and punished. But, as of Saturday, violations could mean a year in jail.
Greece is demanding that Turkey reimpose controls on the outflow of migrants. Turkey had agreed in 2016 to seal off the route to Greece. But in the past two months, a new wave of migrants arrived at jam-packed refugee camps on the Greek islands of Lesbos and Samos. Greece says that Turkey is using the surge to ask for more financial help from the European Union.
Microsoft says that hackers linked to Iran have targeted a 2020 U.S. presidential campaign, plus government officials and journalists. The company today reported that attempted hacks of more than 240 e-mail accounts, with four actually compromised. It didn't name the campaign that was targeted.
Top U.S. officials stepped up the pressure on Facebook today over its plans to encrypt its messaging platform. The company says that it would enhance user privacy.
But, in Washington, FBI Director Christopher Wray warned that the platform could become — quote — "a dream come true" for predators and child pornographers.
Attorney General William Barr said that the government is not asking for a backdoor into any and all communications.
We would be happy if the companies providing the encryption keep the keys. What we are asking is some responsible party have the keys, so that when we can demonstrate a lawful basis, probable cause that crimes are being committed, we can gain access to that evidence.
Facebook says that it can still identify sexual predators, even in encrypted systems.
The U.S. Supreme Court will take up the issue of abortion again, in the midst of the 2020 presidential race. Today's announcement involves a Louisiana law that says doctors who perform abortions must have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals. The case is expected to be argued in the winter, with a decision expected by next June.
On Wall Street, the September jobs report fueled a Friday rally that erased most of the week's losses. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 372 points to close at 26573. The Nasdaq rose 110 points, and the S&P 500 added 41.
And pioneering actress Diahann Carroll has died of complications from breast cancer. In 1968, she broke through racial barriers in "Julia," the country's first TV series portraying a black professional woman. Carroll was also a singer, winning a Tony Award in "No Strings," and she was nominated for an Oscar in the 1974 film "Claudine."
Diahann Carroll was 84 years old.
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