Both moves may signal official jitters ahead of the Communist Party congress next month, as the authorities extend control to pave the way for what is expected to be the anointing of President Xi Jinping for five more years in power.
• Rights advocates in the U.S. are challenging President Trump’s latest travel ban, which, citing national security, indefinitely bars most citizens of Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, Chad and North Korea.
Citizens of Iraq and some groups in Venezuela will also face new scrutiny if it goes into effect, as planned, on Oct. 18. New rules on refugees are expected within days.
“President Trump’s original sin of targeting Muslims cannot be cured by throwing other countries onto his enemies list,” said the executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union.
• One aspect of Syria’s future seems increasingly clear: President Bashar al-Assad is here to stay.
The Islamic State is losing ground and Syrian rebels are on the wane, leaving in place a leader considered a pariah in much of the world.
His prize: a blasted, divided land beholden to foreign powers and lacking the resources to rebuild.
• In neighboring Iraq, results are expected within a day or two for the Kurds’ referendum on independence.
The expected strong “yes” vote would not lead to independence anytime soon, but could provide Kurdish leaders leverage for the future.
But the cost could be high. Turkey and Iran have threatened to close borders and impose sanctions, and Iraq considers the vote illegal.
• The C.E.O. of Uber, reacting to the loss of the company’s license to operate in London, issued an open-letter apology for the company’s “mistakes.”
• War rooms? A…