World News Brief, Friday June 19

Iran's day of mourning as hundreds of protesters detained; China looks to invest in the US; American note presses Israel to open Gaza; EU summit debates financial regulation; and more

Top of the Agenda: Iran Protests Escalate

Political turmoil following Iran's disputed presidential elections heightened today, with more protests planned and opposition leader Mir Hossein Mousavi calling for a day of mourning (BBC) to commemorate slain demonstrators. Al-Jazeera reports hundreds of protestors, politicians, and activists have been detained by the Iranian government following yesterday's mass protests.

The state-run Iranian news source PressTV reports a council of clerics is planning further protests in support of Mousavi for the weekend.

Meanwhile, Iran's powerful Guardian Council, a panel of clerics that has historically held authoritative sway over the country's politics, agreed to meet with the three candidates (NYT) challenging the official results of the election. Earlier this week, the Guardian Council said it would hold a recount, but the candidates have rejected this offer on the grounds that the vote collection processes were rigged and many ballots may have been destroyed.

As the turmoil has unfolded, Washington has continued to pursue a quiet tack the Washington Post says is aimed at acknowledging the protests without alienating Iran's Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.


In a new interview, Arang Keshavarzian, a professor at New York University who was in Tehran on the day of the vote, describes how the chaos unfolded and says Iran's current government, including Ayatollah Khamenei, appear to be suffering from a "crisis of legitimacy."

Writing in the Wall Street Journal, CFR's Daniel Senor and another analyst, Christian Whiton, outline five ways the Obama administration can productively promote a free political system in Iran.


PACIFIC RIM: China Growth Forecast

The World Bank raised its growth forecast (Dow Jones) for China amid signs the country's economy is doing better than expected, but cautioned that it is too early to say whether sustained economic recovery is on the way.

CHINA: The state-run Chinese news outlet China Daily reports Chinese financial experts are saying Washington's financial reform proposals, released yesterday, would work to secure Chinese investments in the United States.



News reports indicate Washington pressing Israel on Gaza siege.
EU leaders to address financial reform and Europe's constitution at summit.

This is an excerpt of the Daily News Brief. The full version is available on