The Early Edition: November 9, 2016

Before the start of business, Just Security provides a curated summary of up-to-the-minute developments at home and abroad. Here’s today’s news.

US PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION

Within minutes of Donald Trump’s victory in the US presidential election security councils around the world convened emergency meetings, even while world leaders expressed their congratulations, Simon Denyer and Griff White write at the Washington Post.

The victory of Donald Trump is an “unexpected bonus” for the Kremlin, though in some ways the result of the US presidential election was less important to President Putin than the fact that Russia can use the campaign as evidence that the West is in chaotic decline, suggests Neil MacFarquhar at the New York Times.

Will US military support for Western Europe remain under Trump? Rick Noack at the Washington Post reflects that Trump’s victory comes on the 27th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin wall and the end of Western-Soviet hostility – and also at a time when those tensions are running high again with Russia’s military movements on the eastern borders of Europe.

Trump’s election as president raises the prospect that the US will pull out of the nuclear deal it signed with Iran last year, suggests Reuters.

Uncertainty in the Middle East over how the president-elect will navigate the “tangled web” of regional alliances he says he supports has been generated by Trump’s victory, the Wall Street Journal’s Maria Abi-Habib reports.

What does Trump’s victory mean for the Middle East? Gilbert Achcar writing at Al Jazeera explains that Syrians and Palestinians are to suffer most under the “most unpredictable man” to have occupied the position of President.

“US leadership is as important as ever,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said, congratulating Trump on his victory this morning. [The Hill’s Rebecca Kheel]

The EU must take responsibility for dealing with Russia, Africa and the Middle East, the bloc’s commissioner for neighborhood policy said today following Donald Trump’s election success. [Reuters]

EU leaders invited Trump to a summit to discuss security and trade ties as soon as his schedule allows in a letter today, Reuters reports.

SYRIA

Russia announced it would launch “large-scale” cruise missile and airstrikes on Aleppo to coincide with the US presidential election, according to Russian media, Julian Borger reports at the Guardian.

US-led coalition airstrikes killed at least 16 people overnight in the Islamic State’s de facto Syrian capital Raqqa, according to the UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, while the US-led coalition said it had no information but would look into it. [Reuters]

Another 21 civilians were killed in two separate airstrikes on the northwestern rebel-held province of Idlib. [AP]

It is “naïve” to use Syrian-Kurdish fighters in the operation to retake Raqqa as it amounts to attacking the Islamic State with “another terror organization,” Turkey’s President Erdoğan said on Monday. [Al Jazeera]

IRAQ

Evidence of torture was identified on bodies found in a mass grave in the town of Hamam Al-Alil occupied until recently by the Islamic State, William Booth and Aaso Ameed Shwan report at the Washington Post. Earlier reports that all 100 corpses discovered were decapitated have been refuted.

The bodies have been identified as members of Iraq’s security forces and their family members, reports Margherita Stancati, Ben Kesling and Ghassan Adnan at the Wall Street Journal. This tallies with reports received by the UN last month that the Islamic State had executed 50 former police officers in the area.

US-led airstrikes continue. US and coalition forces carried out 17 airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Syria on Nov. 7. Separately, partner forces conducted 10 strikes against targets in Iraq. [Central Command]

AFGHANISTAN

The Afghan Taliban called on president-elect Donald Trump to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan today, Reuters reports.

TURKEY

The EU is considering freezing negotiations over Turkey’s bid to join the bloc over measures President Erdoğan’s government has taken following the July 15 coup attempt, Valentina Pop reports at the Wall Street Journal.

EUROPE

Oussama Atar has been identified as the suspected coordinator of the Paris and Brussels terror attacks by investigators, a French intelligence source has told CNN’s Margot Haddad, Erin McLaughlin and Tim Hume.

Atar is believed to be resident in Syria and to have coordinated the Paris attacks from that country, DW reports.

RUSSIA

Under surveillance in Russia. Roman Dobrokhotov, a Moscow-based journalist writing at Al Jazeera explains how and why Russia has been increasing surveillance of activists, journalists and opposition figures. 

Filed under:
About the Author(s)

Zoë Chapman

Former Assistant News Editor at Just Security, Legal Researcher at UK-based human rights organization, JUSTICE