ONS: 21 June 2017

by TRG Alerts Admin on June 22, 2017

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: In South Sudan, a four-month old famine has ended, the UN said, but extreme hunger has increased to its highest levels ever.
  • AMERICAS: Venezuela’s Supreme Court began an investigation that could lead to the removal of Attorney General Luisa Ortega from office, seen as an effort to silence the most outspoken government critic of President Nicolás Maduro.
  • ASIA: Islamist militants seized an elementary school in the southern Philippine town of Pigcawayan, which said that the gunmen might be holding hostages.
  • EUROPE: Belgian authorities now know the identity of a man who was fatally shot at Brussels Central Station after a failed bombing.
  • MIDDLE EAST: US-backed Iraqi forces said they began a push toward the mosque of Mosul, where Islamic State declared a self-styled caliphate three years ago.
  • TECHNOLOGY: Bots airing pro-Kremlin views have flooded the Russian-language portion of the social media platform Twitter, in an effort to scuttle political discussion and opposition coordination in Russia.

TOP STORY

  • Saudi Arabia: King Salman executes royal shake-up; names son his new heir.
    • Saudi Arabia’s King Salman appointed his son Mohammed bin Salman as crown prince – replacing his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef, as first in line to the throne.
    • The royal decree appointed Bin Salman crown prince and deputy prime minister, retaining defense, oil and other portfolios.
    • The surprise announcement arrives at a critical time for the Sunni Muslim kingdom as it grapples with the economic fallout from declining oil prices and a costly military campaign it leads against Shiite rebels in neighboring Yemen.
    • Bin Salman has always had a visible role in the government, and has spearheaded the kingdom’s attempts to wean itself off oil as part of an economic strategy announced last year.
    • Coverage: BBC, CNN, Reuters, WP

AFRICA

  • Region: The UN Security Council will vote on a draft resolution to back a West African force to combat terrorism and arms, drug and human trafficking in the Sahel region. (Reuters)
  • Central African Republic: At least 35 people were wounded in fighting a day after a peace deal was signed to end years of bloodshed in the country. (Reuters)
  • Nigeria: Nigerian refugees who fled Islamist militants are returning from Cameroon into a country that is still not equipped to support them, and they risk creating a new humanitarian crisis, the UN said. (Reuters)
  • South Sudan: A four-month old famine has ended, the UN said, but extreme hunger has increased to its highest levels ever across the war-torn country. (AFP)

AMERICAS

  • Region: Mexico is determined the General Assembly of the Organization of the American States will not end without any agreement on the crisis in Venezuela. (EFE)
  • Brazil: The federal police said investigators found evidence President Michel Temer received bribes to help businesses. (AP)
  • Colombia: The FARC rebel group began the final handover of individual weapons as part of the nation’s historic peace accord. (AP)
  • Venezuela: The country’s Supreme Court began an investigation that could lead to the removal of Attorney General Luisa Ortega from office, seen as an effort to silence the most outspoken government critic of President Nicolás Maduro. (NYT)

ASIA

  • Region: Japan and South Korea will strengthen pressure on North Korea to abandon its development of nuclear weapons. (Kyodo)
  • Australia: US officials are “in the final stages” of vetting up to 1,250 refugees rejected by the country for resettlement in the US. (AP)
  • Indonesia: The country is set to approve a law allowing authorities to jail citizens coming home after joining militant groups abroad for up to 15 years. (Reuters)
  • Philippines: Islamist militants seized an elementary school in the southern town of Pigcawayan, which said that the gunmen might be holding hostages. (NYT)

EUROPE

  • Belgium: Belgian authorities now know the identity of a man who was fatally shot at Brussels Central Station after a failed bombing. (CNN)
  • France: Justice Minister Francois Bayrou and European Minister Marielle de Sarnez are targeted in possible probes and have resigned. (AP)
  • Hungary: Four men went on trial in the country, charged with murdering 71 refugees found suffocated to death in the back of a lorry in 2015. (Reuters)
  • Netherlands: Dutch prosecutors say an 18-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of spreading propaganda for the Islamic State group. (AP)
  • Spain: Spanish police arrested three Moroccans, including a suspected member of the Islamic State group, who was considered a national security threat. (AP)

MIDDLE EAST

  • Region: Egypt began to deliver fuel to Gaza, in an attempt to ease the Palestinian enclave’s desperate electricity crisis. (AFP)
  • Region: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas mingled with ordinary Palestinians in a rare trip outside his West Bank headquarters in an apparent attempt to dispel rumors that he suffered a stroke. (AP)
  • Iraq: US-backed Iraqi forces said they began a push toward the mosque of Mosul, where Islamic State declared a self-styled caliphate three years ago. (Reuters)
  • Syria: Australia will resume airstrikes against Islamic State targets in the country after operations were suspended because a US fighter jet shot down a Syrian warplane. (AP)

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Communications: Bots airing pro-Kremlin views have flooded the Russian-language portion of the social media platform Twitter, in an effort to scuttle political discussion and opposition coordination in Russia. (WP)

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Nothing to Report
  • Hurricanes: Tropical Storm Cindy
    • Location: 230 NM S of Morgan City, Louisiana
    • Winds: 60 mph
    • Movement: NW at 7 mph
    • Map
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to Report
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to Report
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Ebola Virus Disease (EVD)
      • Cases as of 27MAR16: 28,646 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Spain, United Kingdom, United States, Italy)
        • Deaths as of 27MAR16: 11,323 (Guinea, Liberia, Mali, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, United States)
      • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, BBC
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
      • Suspected Cases as of 16JUN: 59,443 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, and Venezuela)
        • Suspected Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 349,936
      • Confirmed Cases as of 16JUN: 28,780 (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, México, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthelemy, Saint Martin (French part), and Venezuela)
        • Confirmed Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 152,250
      • Deaths as of 16JUN: 13 (Brazil)
        • Deaths (01JAN16-31DEC16): 172
          • Deaths (01JAN15-31DEC15): 91 (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Puerto Rico)
        • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, CDC, CDC-2
      • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
        • Cases as of 19JUN: 2,029 (Saudi Arabia (KSA), Jordan, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the United Kingdom (UK), France, Tunisia, Italy, Oman, Kuwait, Yemen, Malaysia, Greece, Egypt, Lebanon, the Netherlands, Iran, Algeria, Austria, Turkey, The Philippines, Germany, China, South Korea, and the US)
          • Deaths as of 19JUN: 704 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)
        • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2
      • Zika Virus
        • Reported autochthonous Transmission as of 24MAY:  American Samoa, Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Bolivia (Plurinational State of), Bonaire (Netherlands), Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cabo Verde, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Curaçao, Dominica, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Fiji, French Guiana, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau, Guyana, Haiti, Honduras, Indonesia, Jamaica, Malaysia, Maldives, Marshall Islands, Martinique, Mexico, Micronesia (Federated States of), Montserrat, New Caledonia, Nicaragua, Palau, Panamá, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Martin, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Samoa, Singapore, Sint Eustatius and Saba (Netherlands), Sint Maarten, Suriname, Thailand, Tonga, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks and Caicos, United States of America, Vietnam, United States Virgin Islands, and Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of).
        • Outbreak Terminated as of 24MAY: Bangladesh, Cambodia, Cook Islands, French Polynesia, Gabon, Isla de Pascua (Chile), Lao People’s Democratic Republic, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu.
        • Locally Acquired Without Vector Borne Transmission as of 24MAY: Argentina, Canada, Chile, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Peru, Portugal, Spain, and the United States of America.
        • Sourcing: WHO, WHO-2, CDC, CDC-2

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (22JUN)

  • Eastern Europe: Day of Remembrance of the Victims of the Great Patriotic War – 1945
  • Afghanistan: Anniversary of attack on Afghan parliament, injuring 18 people – 2015
  • Croatia: Anti-Fascist Struggle Day – 1945
  • Latvia: Heroes Remembrance Day – 1945

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