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The Daily Brief: Evacuations from Afghanistan Continue Along With Deaths

As evacuations are guided by international communities, anti-Taliban forces work towards a resistance effort.

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The U.S. Army, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Summary:

  • Ahmad Massoud, an anti-Taliban leader, wants to hold peaceful negotiations with the Taliban, stating “that the only way forward is through negotiation.” He is also ready to fight if necessary.
  • Massoud expressed his desire for an inclusive government in Kabul that includes all ethnic groups, while urging the international community to fight against a “totalitarian regime”.
  • The anti-Taliban forces also include “many other people from many other provinces who are seeking refuge in the Panjshir valley who are standing with us and who do not want to accept another identity for Afghanistan,” according to Massoud.
  • Three districts near the Panjshir Valley are claimed to have been taken by groups opposing the Taliban, according to ​​a tweet by Defence Minister General Bismillah Mohammadi.
  • Troops leading a resistance effort against the Taliban are meeting in the Panjshir Valley, where the Taliban announced they are sending “hundreds” of fighters.
  • Khalil Ur-Rahman Haqqani, a Taliban leader, emphasised the Taliban’s goal to “provide safety to the Afghan people,” but many are hesitant to believe this will be the reality.
  • The British army announced that seven people had died at the gates of Kabul airport on Saturday, and a total of 20 people are believed to have been killed in the past week.
  • US President Joe Biden expressed openness to extending the August 31st deadline for the withdrawal of American troops, but hopes it is not necessary. The UK has stated that the US should extend the deadline.
  • The US has called on commercial airlines to assist in evacuations from safe sites outside of Afghanistan.
  • UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson urgently called a G7 meeting “to ensure safe evacuations, prevent a humanitarian crisis and support the Afghan people to secure the gains of the last 20 years.”
  • The US Air Force shared that an Afghan woman gave birth in the aircraft’s cargo hold after it landed in Germany, with both the baby and mother currently in good condition.
  • The situation in Kabul airport is increasingly desperate, with thousands waiting at the gates and in surrounding areas to evacuate. There have been cases with families being split up and sent to different countries.

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Merkel and Zelensky Discuss Russian Gas Pipeline

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Kremlin.ru, CC BY 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • In her meeting with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky, German Chancellor Angela Merkel stated that sanctions may be imposed on Russia over use of its Nord Stream 2 project, a controversial gas pipeline, if used as a weapon or against Ukraine.
  • Zelensky has stated that the pipeline is a security issue, and that this “geopolitical weapon of the Kremlin” will give Russia too much influence over the region’s energy supply.
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin promised to give Ukraine more than one billion dollars for their renewable energy efforts. Germany also pledged to assist in renewable energy efforts.

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Qatar Announces Date for First Shura Council Elections

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Francisco Anzola, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • Qatar announced October 2nd as the date for its first legislative elections for its Shura Council. Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani stated that the elections are an “an important step” for the country.
  • Thirty seats out of forty-five will be chosen by vote, and one third by the Emir. The Shura Council advises the emir on legislative policies and approves state policies, among other duties. 
  • Some controversy has brewed over eligibility to vote in the elections, with a certain law stating that one’s family must have been in Qatar before 1930. Out of the countries with a Gulf monarchy, Kuwait and Bahrain give the most power to its elected parliament.

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Yordenis Ugas Defeats Manny Pacquiao in Boxing Match

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https://www.flickr.com/photos/roger_alcantara/, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • Yordenis Ugas, a Cuban boxer and former Olympian, defeated boxing legend Manny Pacquiao on Saturday night.
  • Ugas’s victory against the 42-year-old Filipino senator defended his WBA welterweight champion title in the 12 round match in Las Vegas.
  • Pacquiao threw 815 punches while Ugas threw 405 punches. Ugas accepted the opportunity to fight against Pacquiao with only two weeks to train.
  • The 35-year-old welterweight champion’s victory by unanimous decision leaves Pacquiao’s future in the sport uncertain.

Tweets:

Burial of Josephine Baker to Take Place in France’s Pantheon 

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Carl Van Vechten, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

  • American-born dancer and civil rights activist, Josephine Baker will be the first Black person to be buried in France’s Pantheon.
  • Ms. Baker was one of France’s great music-hall stars and will be honoured in the monument that houses the most revered individuals of France, including Marie Curie and Victor Hugo.
  • The sensational dancer became famous in France, where she moved to from the United States to escape racial discrimination.
  • The approval to be buried in France’s Pantheon comes from President Emmanuel Macron – amid upcoming elections, the move could be politically beneficial as France grapples with issues of race and integration.

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Israel Gaza Conflict Escalates After Protests Turn Violent

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https://www.flickr.com/people/45644610@N03, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • A Palestinian protest organized by Hamas in support of Jerusalem turned deadly after Israeli aircraft strikes targeted the weapon sites of Hamas.
  • Hundreds gathered to protest near the Gaza Strip’s border where some tried to scale the fence and throw explosives towards Israeli soldiers.
  • The Israeli military stated it responded with the necessary means to disperse the riots, including live gunfire.
  • The violence led to several serious injuries, including that of an Israeli solider and 13-year-old Palestinian child, and wounded 41 Palestinians. 

Tweets:

Swedish Prime Minister WIll Resign in November

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European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

  • Swedish Prime Minister Stefan Lofven stated Sunday that he will step down as prime minister in November, after holding power for seven years.
  • Mr. Lofven, leader of the Social Democratic Party, became the first ever prime minister to lose a motion in Parliament in June.
  • Elections will be held in 2022 –  Mr. Lofven stated he wishes the best for his successor and is taking action in the interest of his party.
  • It is not yet clear who would replace Mr. Lofven, although the finance minister, Magdalena Andersson, is a potential candidate.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

Daily Brief

Salman Rushdie Severely Stabbed due to his Publication of the Book “The Satanic Verses”

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Salman Rushdie 2014
  • Salman Rushdie, an author, was severely stabbed in his neck and abdomen on stage by a suspect named Hadi Matar, causing him to be on a ventilator and potentially losing an eye.
  • An Iranian leader back in the 20th century wanted Rushdie killed because of his novel, Satanic Verses, that many Muslims found disrespectful. This led Salman to go into hiding for almost a decade.
  • Translators from different countries reading this book were harshly stabbed to death when the book came out and Iranian leader, Ayatollah Khomeini called for Salman’s execution for three million dollars.
  • The Iranian government has not yet responded to this issue, but many Iranians in the media claim him to be an apostate who later became an atheist.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

China Threatens Consequences if Pelosi Visits Taiwan

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  • US House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi has landed inTaiwan. Prior to the visit, China’s Foreign Ministry has voiced their disapproval, stating that “China will take resolute responses and strong countermeasures to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity.”
  • US Secretary of State Antony Blinken emphasized in response  that “The speaker will make her own decisions about whether or not to visit Taiwan,” and that the US is looking to Beijing to “act responsibly and not to engage in any escalation going forward.”
  • The US has made it clear that members of Congress routinely visit Taiwan and that this trip is non-threatening and has precedent. Even so, some officials have expressed concern that China may invade Taiwan’s air defense zone or send missiles near Taiwan in retaliation.
  • Pelosi has criticized China’s leadership and vocalized support for Taiwan in the past. She is currently on her tour of Asia, with scheduled visits to Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea and Japan.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

First Grain Ship Departs Ukraine After Six Months of Russian Blockade

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Odesa pristav
  • The first shipment of grain departed the port of Odesa on Monday after Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian ports for the last six months trapped around 20 million metric tons of wheat and corn.
  • Russia recently made a deal with Ukraine, brokered by the UN and Turkey, allowing grain exports to resume, appeasing fears of a global food supply crisis and rising prices.
  • Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba celebrated the shipment, calling it a “day of relief for the world, especially for our friends in the Middle East, Asia, and Africa.”
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was more hesitant to celebrate the shipment, stating “it is too early to draw any conclusions and make any forecasts” and he wants to “see how the agreement works and whether security will be really guaranteed.”

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Concerns Rise As US Teeters on the Brink of Recession

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US Stock Market Investing in the United States
  • The US economy declines for the second quarter in a row, causing, what other countries would consider, an economic recession. 
  • The prices for groceries, gas, and other basics are rising at the fastest pace since 1981. The US Central Bank is quickly trying to raise borrowing costs in order to cool the economy and ease the prices on goods, but with the contraction, at the annual rate of 0.9% in the 3 months to July, many are still getting concerned. 
  • President Biden struggles to convince the public that the economy is sound, with the unemployment rate at a low 3.6%. But with inflation in the US hitting 9.1% in June, the fastest price appreciation in 4 months, consumer spending has slowed at an annual rate of 1%. 
  • Many other countries, such as China and the UK, have been hit harder by the surge in energy prices and the War in Ukraine, causing risks from abroad. Other countries are facing much more serious problems and once they’re hit, their problems can spill over and affect the US. 

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

North Korea Could Possibly Be Preparing another Nuclear Test

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  • North Korea could be preparing a seventh nuclear test, especially after Mr. Kim announced that the country is fully ready for any military confrontation with the US at a Korean War Anniversary event. 
  • A US special representative in North Korea states that Jong-Un has tested an unprecedented number of missiles this year—31 to 25. Jong-Un also stated that threats from the US required North Korea to achieve the urgent historical task of strengthening its self-defense. 
  • Jong-un also stated that South Korea is reviving a plan to counter North Korea’s threat by mounting precautionary strikes; in June alone, South Korea launched 8 missiles of its own.
  • The North Korean regime is especially angry with South Korea’s new president Yoon Suk-yeol and his so-called Kill Chain strategy. This strategy allows South Korea to launch ballistic missiles and air strikes on North Korean targets if it ever feels threatened. 
  • North Korea has also not been getting as much engagement with Washington ever since Biden replaced Trump, and could be hinting at some sort of deliberate escalation by the North, and preparations have been underway at the Punggye Ri test site since March.

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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Daily Brief

Russia Limits Gas Supply to Germany

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Black Sea port of Theodosiya panoramio
  • Gazprom, a major Russian energy provider, has stated it will reduce the supply of gas to Germany by half via the Nord Stream 1 pipeline due to repair work. 
  • Germany has said that they see no technical reason for the decrease in gas supply. The European Union continues to accuse Russia of weaponizing energy, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stating, “This is an open gas war that Russia is waging against a united Europe.”
  • Ukraine and Russia signed an agreement to allow the export of grain via the Black Sea after Russia continued to block millions of tonnes from being exported. The next day, Russia struck missiles at the port, some of which hit the infrastructure of the port.
  • The US and Ukraine are optimistic that the agreement will still be implemented, with the US State Department stating, “Despite these attacks, we do understand that the parties are continuing preparations to open Ukraine’s Black Sea ports for food and fertilizer exports…we also continue to expect that the Black Sea agreement will be implemented.”

All views expressed in this editorial are solely that of the author, and are not expressed on behalf of The Analyst, its affiliates, or staff.

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