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The Daily Brief: Thousands Protest Lockdown Measures in Australia

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  • Thousands in Australia have gathered to protest recent Covid lockdown measures while facing, at times violent, clashes with the police. More than 250 protestors have been arrested, and at least seven police officers injured.
  • The protests occurred the same day as Australia’s highest reported number of daily cases.
  • Majority of new cases in Australia originated from Sydney, which has been on lockdown for the past two months. Police blocked private and public transport in the city to deter protestors.
  • The bulk of protestors gathered in Melbourne, the same place where the most violence took place. Pepper spray was used by officers against protestors in Melbourne.
  • Fines were given to hundreds of protestors for violating health ordinances. Most protestors neglected to wear masks.
  • Australia has recently been facing a surge of infections due to the Delta variant. New South Wales implemented harsh lockdown procedures after it recorded almost 900 locally-acquired infections.
  • NSW has announced that the lockdown will last till the end of September, including a nightly curfew in some parts of the city.
  • Australia consistently had a low number of cases throughout the pandemic, and only recently started to see a rise in cases due to the Delta variant.

Sources

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-australia-58291873

https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/21/asia/australia-covid-worst-day-intl-hnk/index.html

https://apnews.com/article/health-arrests-australia-coronavirus-pandemic-235cbc89759672e00b030663b396ea1b

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Warnings of Possible ISIS-K Attack Leave Kabul Airport Dangerous

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  • The US has announced that people trying to evacuate Afghanistan should find alternative routes to Kabul Airport, or avoid it altogether, due to a potential attack from ISIS-K, a terror group offshoot from ISIS.
  • The Taliban, who are an enemy of ISIS, are coordinating with the US on evacuation routes and avoiding large crowds gathering together. Germany and Switzerland have also stated that the airport is dangerous.
  • US President Joe Biden stated that the White House is “keeping a close watch on any potential terrorist threat at or around the airport, including from the ISIS affiliates in Afghanistan who were released from prison when the prisons were emptied.”
  • The US Embassy gave instructions to only travel to the airport if they received personal instructions from a US government representative.

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Greece and Turkey Complete Border Wall Amidst Influx of Afghan Migrants

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  • Fueled by a possible influx of Afghan migrants, Greece has finished its wall bordering Turkey. The wall is 25 miles long and includes a surveillance system.
  • Greece’s Citizens’ Protection Minister Michalis Chrisochoidis emphasised that Greece’s “borders will remain secure and inviolable.” Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also stated that the influx of migrants “is inevitable if the necessary measures are not taken in Afghanistan and in Iran.”
  • Thousands of Afghans are fleeing the country after the Taliban’s takeover, leading countries around the world deciding how to handle the surge of migrants.

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Hurricane Grace Hits Mexico, Kills 8

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  • A category 3 hurricane hit Mexico this weekend, killing eight people causing power shut downs and highway closures. 
  • Hurricane Grace brought severe torrential rains, floods, and landslides. The hurricane center stated that 6 to 12 inches of rain were expected through the weekend. 
  • The hurricane had previously hit Yucatan this Thursday, passing over Haiti which just faced a 7.2 magnitude earthquake earlier this month. 
  • President Andres Manual Lopez Obrador announced the emergency, calling on “Veracruz, Puebla, San Luis Potosí, Tamaulipas, and Hidalgo to seek refuge in high places with relatives and in shelters that are being set up.”

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Hurricane Henri Predicted To Hit Northeast This Weekend

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  • Hurricane Henri is expected to make contact soon in the U.S., predicted to hit Long Island or New England.  
  • The National Hurricane Center reported that the hurricane gained winds up to 75 miles per hour, stating it will be ““at or near hurricane strength when it reaches the coasts.” 
  • The Hurricane has made contact eight times in the Northeast region, well known for its damaging winds and storm impacts. 
  • Meteorologists put emphasis on the importance of preparing for the hurricane which is expected to arrive this weekend. 

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China Passes 3 Child Policy

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  • China formally passed the 3 child policy this week in an attempt to increase the country’s birth rate. 
  • The policy passed by the National People’s Congress permits couples to have up to 3 children and cancels the “burdens” of having children, including fees having to be paid for extra children and lengthening short parental leaves. 
  • The policy also aims to decrease workplace discrimination against mothers and pregnant woman, who make up very little of the Chinese workforce. 

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King of Malaysia Chooses Country’s Ninth Prime MInister

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  • Ismail Sabri Yaakob succeeds Muhyiddin Yassin after the latter resigned amid unrest in his coalition. 
  • Prime Minister Yaakob is from the United Malaysia National Organisation coalition which was in power from 1957 to 2018. 
  • Yaakob headed Malaysia’s pandemic response and was criticized for poor handling of the COVID-19 crisis; Malaysia continues to see infection rates rise even though the country has been in lockdown since June. 
  • Yaakob has also been previously criticized for inflaming racial tensions; he made controversial remarks aimed at the ethnically diverse coalition that was ruling in 2019. 

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

Credit Suisse Found Guilty for Involvement in Money Laundering Scheme

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  • Switzerland’s Federal Criminal Court found Credit Suisse, Switzerland’s second largest bank, guilty for its involvement in a money laundering scheme involving a Bulgarian drug trafficking gang.
  • The bank is being fined 21 million Swiss francs ($22 million) due to its poor monitoring and implementation of anti-money laundering rules. More than 12 million francs worth of assets are also being confiscated due to their connection with the criminal group.
  • Credit Suisse has denied any wrongdoings and stated that it has been “continuously testing its anti-money laundering framework and has been strengthening it over time, in accordance with evolving regulatory standards.”
  • This case originated from actions taken by a former employee in 2007 and 2008, and two other Bulgarian citizens’ actions in 2005 and 2009. Some of their sentences and fines were suspended due to the amount of time passed since the crimes took place.

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

Chlorine Gas Leak in Jordan Port City Kills Thirteen People

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  • A gas leak in Aqaba, Jordan killed at least thirteen people and injured more than 250. A storage container carrying between 25 and 30 tonnes of chlorine gas fell as it was being exported to Djibouti, releasing the gas.
  • A video of the incident on state TV shows the container being dropped onto the deck of the ship and a yellow colored gas spreading through the air as people try to evacuate. The accident seems to be a result of the crane malfunctioning.
  • If chlorine is inhaled at high levels, it can cause life-threatening damage. A nearby beach in Aqaba was evacuated as a safety precaution, and residents who live in the nearest residential area, about 25 kilometers (15 miles) away, were advised to stay inside and close windows.
  • Jordan’s Prime Minister Bisher al-Khasawneh traveled to Aqaba and visited some of the injured at the hospital. He also formed a team led by the interior minister to investigate the incident.

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

Russian Missile Sets Ukraine Shopping Center on Fire

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  • A busy shopping center in Ukraine was set on fire by Russian missiles on Monday, killing at least thirteen people and injuring dozens. The total number of casualties is still unknown.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky stated that “The number of victims is impossible to imagine” and that there could have been up to 1,000 people in the mall.
  • The attack came during the G7 summit, where world leaders condemned recent atrocities and promised to support Ukraine “for as long as it takes” in a joint statement. President Zelensky spoke to the leaders at the summit and stated that he wants the war to end before winter.
  • NATO has decided to increase the number of troops in its rapid reaction force from 40,000 to 300,000, more than eightfold. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg stated this move is part of the “biggest overhaul of collective defense and deterrence since the Cold War.”
  • The United States has announced that it will provide Ukraine with advanced medium and long-range air defense capabilities.

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

World Watches as the United States Supreme Court Abolishes a Woman’s Right to an Abortion

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  • The United States’ top justices voted to eliminate the constitutional right to an abortion, a law that had been in place for over 50 years.
  • The closely watched decision was heralded by some and derided by others, depending on their position on the controversial concept of a woman’s right to choose for her own body.
  • With the abolition of the constitutional right, it is expected that many states in the U.S. will implement near total bans of abortion rights, while other states such as California, Oregon and Washington have reaffirmed their commitment to preserve the right to an abortion.
  • Planned Parenthood, the advocacy face for abortion rights, is mobilizing around the country to bolster and increase services in those states that will preserve the right, and engage voters in those states that plan to abolish the right.

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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

The EU Approves Ukraine for Candidacy

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  • The EU has finally approved the application of Ukraine to become a candidate country for admission to the 27- country organization. Ukraine will now join the official candidate list, which already includes Albania, the Republic of North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Turkey. 
  • The US is expected to provide an additional $450m in security assistance to Ukraine. Which includes four more High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems. 
  • The EU and Norway have agreed to cooperate and provide the EU’s 27 countries with gas from Western Europe’s biggest provider. The EU imports roughly ⅕ of its gas from Norway compared to the 40% it was receiving from Russia. Currently, Russia has been cutting gas supplies to countries refusing to pay for it in roubles. 
  • Melbourne is considering utilizing its largely vacant $200m Center for National Resilience building to house hundreds of refugees fleeing war-torn Ukraine and Afghanistan. The center will only be able to temporarily house about 500 refugees from Afghanistan and about 200 from Ukraine. 
  • Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov thanked US Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin after receiving and welcoming the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems (HIMARS) from the United States. 
  • Nike joined other leading Western brands by formally making a full exit from Russia, three months after suspending its operations. Telecoms equipment maker Cisco is also planning to wind down business in Russia and Belarus as well.

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

US Supreme Court Expands Gun Carrying Rights Causing National Outrage 

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  • The US Supreme Court expanded gun carrying rights after a New York law denied the plaintiffs Robert Nash and Brandon Koch from carrying a concealed weapon in public, despite them having licenses for recreational gun ownership. 
  • The US court ruled that the New York law requiring residents to prove “proper cause” to carry a concealed weapon is unconstitutional. Justice Clarence Thomas, who represented the 6 justices who ruled in favor of the decision, stated that Americans have the right to carry “commonly used” firearms in public for personal defense. 
  • This decision comes amid an intense national debate over gun violence, and could possibly challenge the  outcome of similar regulations in other states, such as California and New Jersey, and affect a quarter of Americans by allowing more people to carry guns legally. 
  • Three liberal justices, Elena Kahan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Stephen Breyer, were against the majority decision, and Justice Breyer noted that “since the start of this year alone (2022), there have already been 277 reported mass shootings – an average of more than one per day.”
  • While the National Rifle Association (NRA) celebrated the judgment, President Biden stated that he was “deeply disappointed” by the court’s decision and that the ruling “contradicts both common sense and the Constitution, and should trouble us all.” 
  • New York Mayor Eric Adams also agreed with Biden and stated that he would review other ways to restrict gun access by restricting the application process for buying guns and looking into bans of firearms at specific locations. 

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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