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The Weekly Global Roundup

The Weekly Global Roundup: Of Unstable Governments And Coalitions (February 5 to 10, 2018)

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://images.asianage.com/images/aa-Cover-onp9m1da90h3ovm890b13dgnb5-20180205000752.Medi.jpeg.

President of the Maldives Abdulla Yameen.

February 5 to 10, 2018

The governments and coalitions of the Maldives and Germany, respectively, are now characterised by instability. In the Maldives, the Supreme Court ordered the release of top opposition politicians – which would give the opposition the majority in the country’s assembly to potential impeach the president – yet President Abdulla Yameen has instead refused to comply with the order and has declared a state of emergency. Mr. Yameen also sent envoys to China, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia, whereas opposition leaders have urged India to intervene. And in Germany, even though Chancellor Angela Merkel has agreed on a coalition deal with her previous governing partners, including the Social Democrats, her conservative party had to give up the finance ministry, and the outcome of the deal is contingent upon a vote by members of the Social Democratic Party. The three parties returning to government, moreover, had their worst electoral showing last year since the 1940s.

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The Asia-Pacific

  • Eight people were killed in China, after a cave-in at a construction site.
  • In Hong Kong, the Court of Final Appeal quashed the jail terms of student activists Joshua Wong, Nathan Law, and Alex Chow. The trio was initially spared jail, but the Court of Appeal imposed jail terms instead. Lawyers for the trio, at the Court of Final Appeal, said “that the Court of Appeal had overstepped the boundaries of what it was entitled to do“.
  • To improve healthcare access in India, the government has announced “a national health protection scheme targeted at 100 million poor and vulnerable families“, which is expected to benefit nearly 40 per cent of the country’s population.
  • The collapse of a crane at a construction site in Jakarta, Indonesia, killed four people. This follows a series of crane accidents in the city in January, though no fatalities were reported in the previous accidents.
  • Landslides and floods caused by torrential rain in Jakarta, Indonesia, killed at least four people.
  • A political crisis is brewing in the Maldives, after the Supreme Court ordered the release of top opposition politicians, which will then give the opposition the majority in the assembly, “meaning they could potentially impeach the president“. President Abdulla Yameen – who has also declared a state of emergency and ordered the arrest of top judges – refused to comply with the order.
  • At least 11 soldiers were killed by a suicide bomber in Pakistan. The attack was claimed by the Pakistani Taliban.
  • Heir apparent of Samsung Lee Jae-Yong, in South Korea, had been convicted of bribery and sentenced to five years in prison last year. An appeals court, however, has suspended the jail sentence, after the Seoul High Court had reduced the original term by half.
  • An earthquake in Taiwan left at least two people dead. The death toll later increased to nine people.


The Middle East

North America

  • There were two accidents involving Amtrak trains in the past week: The first, when a train carrying Republican lawmakers hit a garbage truck in Virginia; and the second, when a train collided with a freight train in North Carolina.
  • President Donald Trump approved the release of a classified Republican memo, commissioned by the Republican chairman of the House of Representatives Intelligence Committee Devin Nunes, which “alleges bias against [Mr. Trump] at the FBI and Justice Department“.
  • The House Intelligence Committee then voted unanimously to release a 10-page rebuttal by the Democrats.
  • On Monday, the Dow Jones – which averages the stock prices of 30 major companies – had the worst single-day point decline in history.

Latin America

About guanyinmiao

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

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