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The Weekly Global Roundup

The Weekly Global Roundup: India In The Spotlight (January 2 to 7, 2017)

This roundup covers news summaries across six regions: Africa, the Asia-Pacific, Europe, the Middle East, North America, and South America. Wherever possible I draw links to Singapore, but I think it is more important to understand geopolitical developments around the world, to draw attention to meaningful news stories, and to highlight both positive and negative events.

Around the world, I rely primarily on the email newsletters from “The Economist“, “Foreign Policy“, “Muck Rack“, “The New York Times“, “The Wall Street Journal“, and “The World Post“. In Singapore, the weekly digests from the European Union Centre and the Middle East Institute are handy. Do send me recommendations of news outlets or articles too, to jinyao.guan.yin.miao[a]gmail.com!

Taken from http://cdn.narendramodi.in/cmsuploads/0.34592100-1450848819-indian-pm-narendra-modi-russia-remains-our-principal-partner.jpg.

Indian Prime Minister Nadendra Modi.

January 2 to 7, 2017

In this new year, news from India makes the headlines. India’s Supreme Court, by a four-to-three majority ruling, banned politicians from using religion and caste to win votes. The landmark ruling comes weeks ahead of a crucial election in the Uttar Pradesh state, and in the past political parties – including Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, or the BJP – have not only selected their candidates based on their religion or caste, but have also campaigned over these issues. In Bangalore, Karnataka State Home Minister G Parameshwara blamed young people for “copying the Westerners, not only in their mindset, but even in their dressing”, following reports that women were molested by revellers at New Year celebrations.

And in the United States, the government has been tracking an India-based criminal fraud scheme targeting Americans.

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The Asia-Pacific


Director of the European Union (EU) Centre in Singapore, Dr. Yeo Lay Hwee, wrote a neat commentary about key developments and trends in Europe in 2016, on “the rise of populism, right-wing nationalism, and backlash against globalisation due to rising socio-economic inequalities“. The EU has been resilient thus far, but there are even more challenges in 2017.

The Middle East

  • Weeks after President Bashar al-Assad regained control of industrial capital Aleppo, Syria, the Syrian government and Russia announced a planned cease-fire with weakened rebel forces. Officials from Iran and Turkey – but not the United States – were also involved in the negotiations. Past cease-fire accords, however, have repeatedly failed.
  • Thousands are starting to return to the Eastern parts of Aleppo formerly held by the rebels, though they “face appalling conditions“.
  • At least 39 people were killed in a “terror attack” on New Year’s eve, in Istanbul, Turkey. The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria claimed responsibility. A few weeks ago in December last year, two explosions in the country killed at least 38 people.

North America

Latin America

  • Described as “the biggest massacre” ever committed at a prison in the state, a 17-hour riot in a prison in Brazil left at least 60 dead, many of whom were decapitated. Fighting had erupted between two gangs, and the violence reflect broader problems about gang controls, the justice system in the country, and the need for greater prison capacity.
  • El Salvador is one of six countries where abortion is banned under all circumstances, and “the strict laws and lack of alternatives have fuelled an underground abortion economy” and made it hard for health workers.

About guanyinmiao

A man of knowledge lives by acting, not by thinking about acting. Carlos Castaneda.

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