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The Daily Brief: Nicaragua Severs Ties With Taiwan And Stands With China

Amid continuing pressure from China, Nicaragua has severed diplomatic ties with Taiwan and declared that China is the only governing body of the island nation, leaving Taiwan officials stunned

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  • On Thursday, officials from Nicaragua and China signed a joint communique resuming diplomatic ties between the two nations thus severing diplomatic ties between Nicaragua and Taiwan.  
  • With the loss of Nicaragua, the island nation of Taiwan is now down to only 14 formal diplomatic allies, many of which are smaller countries in South America, the Caribbean, and the Pacific Islands. 
  • Taiwan’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs responded to the news stating it “deeply regretted” Nicaragua’s decision to sever ties with them and that they were saddened by Nicaragua’s disregard for their diplomatic friendship. 
  • Experts believe China may have pressured Nicaragua to realign with them after offering hefty trade deals, and foreign aid in return for their allyship. 
  • The renewed diplomatic ties between Nicaragua and China comes as a blow to the US as well, as both nations have been criticised in recent months by the US for their ongoing policies. 
  • Nicaragua has relied on the financial support of Taiwan in the past, accepting a $3 million donation to their police force in 2018 and a $100 million loan in 2019.

At Least 54 Dead And Dozens Injured in Truck Crash In Mexico

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  • In what is considered one of the worst accidents of its kind in Mexico, 54 people have died and dozens of others are injured after a crammed tractor-trailer carrying over 150 migrants rolled over in Chiapas, Mexico.
  • The truck was reportedly speeding when it flipped after taking a sharp turn, crashing into a pedestrian bridge which caused the trailer to break in half and tore the roof off. 
  • Many of the migrants who were crammed into the trailer were Guatemalan men, women, and children. 
  • Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said the painful crash will be investigated and serves as a reminder that the issue of migrants fleeing their vulnerable homes is a growing crisis. 

US Wins Crucial Appeal And Is One Step Closer To Extraditing WikiLeaks Founder Back To The US

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  • On Friday, the US won a crucial appeal and is one step closer to extraditing WikiLeaks Founder, Julian Assange back to the US on multiple charges of espionage from the UK.
  • The appeal was ruled in favor of the US by Judge Timothy Holroyde after the US provided satisfactory assurances that they will protect Assange should he be extradited such as ensuring Assange will not be placed in a Maximum Security Prison and the possibility of Assange completing his sentence in Australia should he be convicted. 
  • Human rights groups and journalists around the world were appalled by the ruling stating that the ruling was a threat against the freedom of the press. 
  • Assange sought refuge in Ecuador in 2012 but was later dragged to the UK where he has been for over 10 years after releasing highly classified information and US military secrets in 2010 via WikiLeaks. 

Unvaccinated Citizens in Austria and Greece Will Face Fines For Refusing The Jab

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  • With only 68% of their citizens fully vaccinated, Austria announces a plan to make COVID vaccines mandatory for anyone 14 and older or they will face fines of 3,600 euros ($4,071) every three months if they refuse. 
  • Though the plan still needs to be approved by the Austrian Parliament, should the law pass, it will be the 1st of its kind for an EU country and will begin in February 2022 and last until January 2024. 
  • Greece, which only has 68% of its population fully vaccinated, will also begin issuing citizens 60 and over who refuse to receive the vaccine a “health levy” of 100 Euros ($120) per month, beginning January 2022 should they continue to refuse. 
  • As COVID variant Omicron begins to surge, many countries are now focussing on ensuring their citizens are vaccinated rather than continue with enforcing lockdowns. 

EU Countries Agree To Take in 40,000 More Afghan Refugees

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  • 15 different EU countries have agreed to resettle 40,000 Afghan refugees with Germany accepting the bulk at 25,000, the Netherlands accepting 3,159, Spain and France accepting 2,500 each, and other smaller countries accepting smaller amounts. 
  • The EU Commissioner, Ylva Johansson stated the agreement was an act of solidarity amongst the EU countries and that controlled arrivals of Afghan refugees will hopefully ease the irregular arrivals that many countries are currently facing. 
  • The agreement comes as a result of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees urging the EU to accept 42,500 Afghan refugees over five years as many are currently living in vulnerable situations. 
  • The EU has not yet decided on a timeline for when the 40,000 refugees will arrive in the bloc. 

Myanmar’s Military Leader Accused Of Crimes Against Humanity

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  • The Myanmar Accountability Project (MAP) has submitted a case to the International Criminal Court (ICC) against Myanmar’s military leader, Min Aung Hlaing, for overseeing the deadly crackdown on those who opposed the February 2nd military coup. 
  • MAP believes that as the leader of the military, Hlaing is responsible for Mynamar security forces’ use of torture and deadly force against protestors and activists. 
  • Since the coup in February, 1,305 people have been killed including 75 of which were children, and at least 10,756 people have been arrested for their opposition.  
  • With the UN’s recent report of the deadly situation in Myanmar, MAP believes a conviction will come easy as they have overwhelming proof that Hlaing is guilty of crimes against humanity.
  • The ICC has yet to make a statement regarding the newly submitted case. 

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, 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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  • 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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  • 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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  • 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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