While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Nov 28

Mexican Finance Minister Jose Antonio Meade attends a conference marking the International Day of Family Remittances 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico on June 16, 2017.
Mexican Finance Minister Jose Antonio Meade attends a conference marking the International Day of Family Remittances 2017 in Mexico City, Mexico on June 16, 2017.PHOTO: REUTERS

Mexico finance minister Meade resigns to run for presidency

Mexico’s finance minister Jose Antonio Meade stepped down on Monday (Nov 27) to seek the 2018 presidential nomination for the ruling party, which hopes his honest reputation will help counter the taint of corruption that has blighted its record in power. 

Meade had been widely expected to run for the centrist Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI), whose credibility has been seriously undermined by graft scandals, gang violence in the country and persistent accusations of electoral fraud. 

“I’m going to register as presidential pre-candidate for the Institutional Revolutionary Party. I do so after 20 years of serving my country continuously with integrity and honesty,” said the 48-year-old, who has held most of the top jobs in government. 

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Indonesia arrests second militant trying to travel to Marawi this month

Indonesian national police's elite counterterrorism unit, Densus 88, arrested a terrorist suspect who planned to travel to Kuching, Malaysia, then Marawi in the Philippines to join ISIS, said a police source.

Nurul Hadi, 36, was arrested at the departure hall of Supadio international airport in West Kalimantan province at 11am Monday (Nov 27), the source said.

Colonel Martinus Sitompul, a police spokesman, confirmed the terrorist suspect's name as Nurul but did not provide details.

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Berlin Christmas market opens post-attack with tight security

The Christmas market in central Berlin targeted in 2016 by a deadly truck assault opened for the season on Monday (Nov 27), nearly a year after the attack, with new security measures.

Tunisian national Anis Amri, 24, hijacked a truck on Dec 19 last year and slammed it into a crowd of shoppers at the Breitscheidplatz market, killing 12 and injuring more than 70 others.

On Monday, visitors to the festive outdoor space saw new additions to the traditional bright lights, stollen cake and mulled wine: Concrete barriers hidden behind Christmas trees and a heightened police presence.

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EU breaks stalemate to renew licence on controversial weedkiller

EU countries broke months of deadlock on Monday (Nov 27) when they voted to renew the licence for the controversial weedkiller glyphosate for five years after heavyweight Germany surprisingly voted in favour despite health concerns.

With the bloc's largest population, Germany's change of heart was instrumental in ending the stalemate within the 28-nation union over the fate of the pesticide, which some critics fear causes cancer.

But its U-turn appeared also to reveal extraordinary tensions in Chancellor Angela Merkel's efforts to form a new governing coalition, after a minister in Berlin said German officials in Brussels had disobeyed direct orders to abstain on the vote.

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Spain reports case of 'mad cow disease'

A case of "mad cow disease" has been discovered in northwestern Spain, the Paris-based World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) said on Monday (Nov 27).

The cow found to be carrying bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in the province of Salamanca was destroyed, Spain's agriculture ministry said in a report on the case.

The "atypical" strain of the disease was uncovered on Nov 10 during a routine screening, the OIE said, adding that the source of the infection was "unknown or uncertain".

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