ONS: 23 March 2018

by TRG Alerts Admin on March 24, 2018

KEY STORYLINES

  • AFRICA: Gambian prosecutors have charged eight former spies with conspiracy to murder in the case of an activist whose death sparked the ouster of former leader Yahya Jammeh.
  • AMERICAS: President Trump has imposed tariffs on up to $60 billion of Chinese goods, while exempting the European Union, South Korea, Brazil, Canada and Mexico from what were supposed to be worldwide tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.
  • ASIA: China released a list of potential tariffs on $3 billion worth of US goods, from pork to fruits and wine, that it could impose in response to new US tariffs.
  • EUROPE: Hundreds of thousands took to the streets in France as strikes for pay rises and against President Emmanuel Macron’s reform plans disrupted train and air travel.
  • MIDDLE EAST: The United States Senate formally approved defense contracts and arms sales  totaling more than $1 billion with Saudi Arabia
  • TECHNOLOGY:  European Parliament President Antonio Tajani pressed Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg to answer questions in person from the body.

 

TOP STORY

  • United States: President Trump fires National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, replacing him with John Bolton.
    • Rumors surrounding McMaster’s imminent removal have circulated for many months, due to his disagreements with others in the administration.
    • His replacement Mr. Bolton previously served as Ambassador to the UN under President George W. Bush.
    • Bolton has a reputation for hawkishness, particularly with regards to Iran and North Korea.
    • His appointment is consistent with the administration’s recent hardline swing on those issues, including the recent replacement of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson with Mike Pompeo.
    • The cabinet shakeup may complicate recent diplomatic efforts between the United States, South Korea, and North Korea.
    • Reporting: AP, AFP, Reuters, WaPo, NYT

 

AFRICA

  • Gambia: Prosecutors have charged eight former spies with conspiracy to murder in the case of an activist whose death sparked the ouster of former leader Yahya Jammeh. (AFP)
  • Ivory Coast: Riot police arrested protesters and fired teargas to prevent an opposition demonstration from going ahead. (AFP)
  • Zambia: A former minister and a leading critic of President Edgar Lungu was arrested in Lusaka over allegations of making profits from criminal activity. (AFP)

 

AMERICAS

  • Brazil: The Supreme Court suspended its hearing of a plea from former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva that he not be sent to prison for a corruption conviction until he exhausts all possible appeals. (Reuters)
  • Peru: Thousands of protesters gathered in the capital Quito to demand new elections following the resignation of President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski (AP)
  • United States: The Senate passed a $1.3 trillion spending package that will increase funding for the military and domestic spending and will keep the government funded through the end of September, (CNN)
  • United States: President Trump has imposed tariffs on up to $60 billion of Chinese goods, while exempting the European Union, South Korea, Brazil, Canada and Mexico from what were supposed to be worldwide tariffs on steel and aluminum imports (NYT)

 

ASIA

  • Region: Pakistan has extended the stay of nearly 1.4 million registered Afghan refugees until June 30, 2018, the foreign ministry said. (Xinhua)
  • China: The government released a list of potential tariffs on $3 billion worth of US goods, from pork to fruits and wine, that it could impose in response to new US trade duties. (AFP)
  • Philippines: Police said they killed 13 drug suspects and arrested more than 100 suspected dealers and criminals in one day of raids in Bulacan province. (AP)

 

EUROPE

  • France:  Hundreds of thousands took to the streets as strikes for pay rises and against President Emmanuel Macron’s reform plans disrupted train and air travel. (DPA)
  • Poland:  Technical problems will delay the completion of the Polish section of a U.S. missile defence shield by two years to 2020, the defence ministry said (Reuters)
  • Spain: Catalan separatist parties failed to elect Jordi Turull as regional head after the most radical faction of Catalonia’s independence movement refused to back him. (AFP)

 

MIDDLE EAST

  • Gaza: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas urged Hamas to hand over its power to the national unity government, or to take the blame for failing reconciliation efforts. (Xinhua)
  • Israel: Police said they arrested 20 ultra-Orthodox Jews who threw stones at officers and blocked a main artery near Tel Aviv, in protest against the military draft. (AFP)
  • Saudi Arabia: The United States formally approved defense contracts and  arms sales totaling more than $1 billion with the kingdom. (AFP)
  • Syria: The Failaq al-Rahman group in the central part of Damascus’ Eastern Ghouta countryside declared a ceasefire to negotiate its withdrawal from the region. (Xinhua)

 

TECHNOLOGY AND COMMUNICATIONS

  • Technology: European Parliament President Antonio Tajani pressed Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg to answer questions in person from the body. (AFP)

 

WORLD

  • Cyclones: Tropical Cyclone Marcus
    • Location: 481 nm W-NW of Learmonth, Australia
    • Wind: 120 mph
    • Movement: S at 12 mph
    • Map
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to Report
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to Report
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to Report
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • Chikungunya Virus Disease (CHIK)
      • Suspected Cases as of 20JAN: 61,613 (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 20JAN: 123,087 (Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guadeloupe, Martinique, México, Nicaragua, Panamá, Paraguay, Perú, Puerto Rico, Saint Barthélemy, Saint Martin (French part), and Venezuela)
        • Confirmed Cases (01JAN16-31DEC16): 152,250
      • Deaths as of 20JAN: 101 (Brazil, Ecuador)
        • Deaths (01JAN16-31DEC16): 172
        • Deaths (01JAN15-31DEC15): 91 (Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, French Guiana, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Puerto Rico)
    • Novel Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, SARS-related)
      • Cases as of 05MAR: 2,143 (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 05MAR: 750 (Saudi Arabia, France, Qatar, United Kingdom, UAE, Oman, South Korea)

 

TOMORROW’S OUTLOOK (24MAR)

  • Global: WHO World Tuberculosis Day – Unknown
  • Global: International Day for the Right to the Truth concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims – 2010
  • Argentina: Day of Remembrance for Truth and Justice – 1976
  • Ivory Coast: Senatorial elections to be held
  • Northern Mariana Islands: Commonwealth Covenant Day – 1976
  • United States: March for Our Lives anti-gun-violence rally to be held in Washington, DC

 

END

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