Daily briefing

10 things you need to know today: October 31, 2022

Lula beats Bolsonaro in Brazil's presidential election, at least 141 die in collapse of pedestrian bridge in India, and more

1

Lula defeats Bolsonaro in Brazil's presidential election

Leftist former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva won Brazil's presidential runoff on Sunday, beating right-wing incumbent President Jair Bolsonaro 50.8 percent to 49.2 percent, the South American nation's Supreme Electoral Court said. Bolsonaro, who said last year he might not accept the election results due to the possibility of fraud, did not immediately concede. The vote showed that Brazil remains deeply divided after Bolsonaro's controversial term in office. Critics say he accelerated destruction of Brazil's Amazon rainforest and mishandled the response to the coronavirus pandemic, which has killed nearly 700,000 people in Brazil. Da Silva, known as Lula, led Brazil through an economic boom, but later served 580 days in prison for a corruption conviction that was subsequently overturned.

2

At least 141 die in India as pedestrian bridge collapses

At least 141 people died Sunday when a 19th-century pedestrian bridge collapsed in India's western Gujarat state. As many as 400 people were on the suspension bridge when a cable snapped and it fell into the River Machchhu. The 754-foot, Victorian-era bridge had been reopened days earlier after repairs. A witness told Reuters that many of the people who had been walking on the bridge were children. Survivor Prateek Vasava told the Gujarati-language news channel 24 Hours that he fell into the river and swam to the bank, unable to save any of the children near him. "I wanted to pull some of them along with me but they had drowned or got swept away," he said.

3

Russia targets Ukrainian infrastructure following attack on fleet

Russian missiles hit critical infrastructure in Kyiv, Kharkiv, and other Ukrainian cities on Monday. Water and electricity were cut off in large parts of Kyiv, the country's capital. There were reports of power outages in Zaporizhzhia and Kharkiv, as well. "Instead of fighting on the battlefield, Russia fights civilians," Ukraine's foreign minister, Dmytro Kuleba, tweeted. The attacks came after aerial and naval drone strikes damaged ships in Russia's Black Sea Fleet in the Crimean port of Sevastopol over the weekend. Ukraine has not claimed responsibility for the attack. Russia suspended the United Nations–brokered deal to allow Ukrainian grain exports after the drone strikes, triggering what Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said would be "conditions of artificial famine" around the world.

4

Man accused of attacking Pelosi's husband carried zip ties

David DePape, the man accused of attacking House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband, had zip ties with him when he broke into the Pelosis' San Francisco home, one of several parallels with the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol, The Associated Press reported Sunday, citing a person briefed on the investigation. Pelosi's 82-year-old husband, Paul Pelosi, was hospitalized after being hit with a hammer, but his condition was improving. The attack came as threats against public officials reached an all-time high less than two weeks before the Nov. 8 midterm elections, and DePape's social media feeds suggest he prescribed to right-wing conspiracy theories. Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel said it was "unfair" for Democrats to link GOP criticism of Nancy Pelosi to the home invasion.

5

Musk tweets link to site known for right-wing misinformation

Elon Musk on Sunday retweeted, then deleted, a post promoting a conspiracy theory about the attack on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband, Paul Pelosi. Musk, who just bought Twitter, was responding to a tweet by Hillary Clinton accusing Republicans of emboldening the attacker by spreading "hate and deranged conspiracy theories." Musk said, "There is a tiny possibility there might be more to this story than meets the eye," and he shared a link to a post by the Santa Monica Observer, which is notorious for publishing bogus news, claiming baselessly that Paul Pelosi was drunk and got into a fight with a male prostitute. The incident renewed questions about how Musk will "combat misinformation" on Twitter, according to The New York Times.

6

New York to pay $26 million settlement over men exonerated in Malcolm X killing

New York City agreed to pay $26 million to settle lawsuits filed on behalf of two men who were exonerated last year after serving more than 20 years in prison for the 1965 assassination of Malcolm X, The New York Times reported Sunday. A judge last year found that the rushed arrests and trial of the two men, Muhammad A. Aziz and Khalil Islam, were "serious miscarriages of justice." The overturning of the convictions came after a 22-month investigation by the Manhattan district attorney's office and the men's lawyers found that prosecutors, the FBI, and New York police withheld evidence that probably would have caused the men to be acquitted. Aziz, 84, was released in 1985. Islam was released two years later and died in 2009.

7

Iranian students continue protests after government ultimatum

Iranian students defied a government ultimatum and returned to the streets for more anti-government protests on Sunday. Students at dozens of universities continued protests over the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini after her arrest by morality police over the way she was dressed. Security forces used tear gas and gunfire in an attempt to disperse Sunday's crowds. "Security is the red line of the Islamic Republic, and we will not allow the enemy to implement in any way its plans to undermine this valuable national asset," hardline President Ebrahim Raisi said, as quoted in state media. Tehran has accused the United States and Israel of encouraging the unrest.

8

2 Americans among victims in deadly South Korea Halloween crowd crush

Two Americans have been confirmed to be among the more than 150 people killed in a Halloween crowd surge in South Korea's capital over the weekend. The South Korean government said Monday it would conduct a full investigation into how the tragedy happened. Police admitted to errors in the management of the crowd when tens of thousands of people gathered Saturday in the Itaewon nightlife district of Seoul, which is popular with foreigners. Twenty-four foreign nationals were among those killed when panicked revelers were crushed in a narrow alley flanked by clubs. Many of the victims were in their teens and 20s, and dressed in costumes during South Korea's first Halloween celebration without COVID-19 restrictions since the pandemic began.

9

Lebanon's president steps down with no successor in place

Lebanese President Michel Aoun stepped down on Sunday, a day before the official end of his six-year term, leaving the nation without a leader as it faces an ongoing financial crisis. Lebanese lawmakers have been unable to agree on a successor to fill the void left by the departure of the 89-year-old Christian president, who held power through a deadly 2020 port blast that killed more than 220 people, and a financial meltdown that started in 2019 and has left more than 80 percent of the population in poverty. Aoun said recently he didn't have enough power to confront the financial crisis. Lebanon is being run by a caretaker Cabinet with a premier-designate.

10

Thousands commemorate Mussolini's rise to power

As many as 4,000 fascist sympathizers marched to the crypt of the late Italian dictator Benito Mussolini on Sunday to mark 100 years since the day Mussolini entered Rome and pulled off a bloodless coup that led to two decades of fascist rule. Two days after the 1922 March on Rome by black-shirted fascists, Italy's king authorized Mussolini to form a government. The march participants on Sunday wore black and carried fascist symbols in Predappio, the town in the northern Emilia-Romagna region where Mussolini was born and laid to rest. The crowd was larger this year than in past marches, with the event occurring as a party with neo-fascist roots leads the Italian government for the first time since World War II.

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