October 16, 2018 / 12:20 PM / a month ago

Tuesday Morning Briefing

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo meets Saudi king on Khashoggi case, Beto O’Rourke faces off against Ted Cruz in Texas Senate showdown and Delhi braces for choking smog. Catch up on the latest headlines.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo greets Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir after arriving in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, October 16, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis/Pool

Saudi Arabia

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met Saudi Arabia’s King Salman to discuss the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, as Turkish police prepared to search the Saudi consul’s residence in Istanbul in a widening probe. Alphabet’s Google became the latest company to drop out of a business conference in Saudi Arabia.

Commentary: Will the Khashoggi case bring down Saudi Arabia's crown prince? The 33-year-old Mohammed bin Salman appears to have vastly misjudged the reaction to the disappearance of journalist Jamal Khashoggi as well as the power of Donald Trump and Jared Kushner to defend the interests of Saudi Arabia in the U.S. Congress, writes David Andelman, a former foreign correspondent of author of "A Shattered Peace: Versailles 1919 and the Price We Pay Today." "Whether MbS is actually the individual able to take up the challenge of reforming Saudi Arabia and leading it is becoming increasingly questionable."

Politics

Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said President Donald Trump has reassured him of his full support after the Republican president described his Pentagon chief as “sort of a Democrat” who could leave the administration.

Democratic U.S. Representative Beto O’Rourke faces a key test when he faces off in his second debate with U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, as recent opinion polls show the Republican incumbent pulling away from his liberal challenger for the Texas seat.

A U.S. judge dismissed adult film actress Stormy Daniels’s defamation lawsuit against Trump and ordered her to pay his attorney’s fees, saying a tweet the president had written referring to her was protected by free-speech laws.

World

Venezuelans carry their belongings along a pathway after illegally entering Colombia through the Tachira river close to the Simon Bolivar International bridge in Villa del Rosario, Colombia August 25, 2018. Groups of migrants, mostly young men but also entire families, can be seen illegally crossing the river all day. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins

Smugglers, in ever growing numbers, emerge with a ragtag group of Venezuelan migrants – men struggling under tattered suitcases, women hugging bundles in blankets and schoolchildren carrying backpacks. They step across rocks, wade into the muddy stream and cross illegally into Colombia. This is the new migration from Venezuela.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, whose government faces a crucial by-election in four days, said Canberra was open to recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, prompting concern from Indonesian and Palestinian officials.

India

Graphic: reut.rs/2yGADuq

India is again preparing for its worst weeks of air pollution. Each year, from late October, a thick blanket of smog settles over vast swathes of northern India, including the capital, New Delhi, pushing air pollution levels off the charts - here's why.

The Bollywood actress who helped trigger the #MeToo movement in India challenging sexual harassment and abuse sees it as part of her religious education after an experience 10 years ago she said effectively ended her career.

Business

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, the man who persuaded school-friend Bill Gates to drop out of Harvard to start what became the world’s biggest software company, died at the age of 65, his family said.

At week’s end, global investors and policy makers will likely be given a stark reminder of the costs of a bitter Sino-U.S. trade war, with a Reuters poll predicting that China’s third-quarter growth will slow to its weakest pace since the global financial crisis.

A rise in oil prices to four-year highs is heaping pressure on big emerging-market crude consumers such as Turkey, India, Indonesia and South Africa that are already grappling with current account deficits, weak currencies and rising inflation.

The Italian cabinet signed off on an expansionary 2019 budget, boosting welfare spending, cutting the retirement age and hiking the deficit to set up a showdown with authorities in Brussels over compliance with EU rules.

Reuters TV 

Exclusive: Facebook will ban false information about voting requirements and fake reports of violence or long lines at polling stations in the run-up to and during next month’s U.S. midterm elections, company executives told Reuters, the latest effort to reduce voter manipulation on its service.

Exclusive: Facebook to ban misinformation on voting
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