World

‘Feverish Russophobia’ says Kremlin as it terms EU, US sanctions as intervention in Russia’s internal affairs
Europe, World

‘Feverish Russophobia’ says Kremlin as it terms EU, US sanctions as intervention in Russia’s internal affairs

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has said that the feigned partnership of the European Union and the United States is based only on unbridled Russophobia, and it does not pursue any constructive solutions to any challenges. She was speaking to Vesti FM radio station on Wednesday. “This is sort of a quasi-alliance with the […]

China’s work scheme planned to reduce Uighur population density in Xinjiang says study
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

China’s work scheme planned to reduce Uighur population density in Xinjiang says study

A study by Nankai University of China shows that the government labour programmes in Xinjiang are mostly designed to reduce the population density of the Uighur ethnic minority group.
The report provides new evidence from Chinese sources that show Xinjiang’s labor transfers to other regions or provinces in China meet the forced labor definition of the ILO.
The report indicates that labor transfers are not just serving economic purposes, but are implemented with the intention to forcibly displace the ethnic minority populations from their heartlands

The ‘Pineapple’ in China’s flesh – How the tropical fruit helped Taiwan fight economic bullying by its Communist neighbour
Analysis, Asia, Featured, World

The ‘Pineapple’ in China’s flesh – How the tropical fruit helped Taiwan fight economic bullying by its Communist neighbour

China imposed a blanket ban on all imports of Taiwanese pineapples last week, alleging that “harmful organisms” had been found in the fruit.
President Tsai condemned China for its “ambush-like, unilateral notice that it would ban imports of Taiwan pineapples”, despite the fact that 99.79 percent of imported batches had passed inspection.
China’s move has been interpreted by observers in Taiwan as directed at the governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), which is frequently critical of China.
Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu launched the “Freedom Pineapple” campaign on Twitter. The aim of the online campaign was to secure orders for pineapple from farmers
Taiwanese farmers received pre-orders for 41,687 tons of pineapples from companies, e-commerce platforms, and consumers, already exceeding the annual quantity of exports to China.
With the call to take on the ban by China, Taiwanese businesses and citizens made up for the potential shortfall in sales by buying an entire year’s worth of the tropical fruit in just four days!
The U.S., Japan, and Canadian embassies in Taiwan all came on board to help promote Taiwan’s pineapples, in response to a Chinese import ban on the fruit.
While Taiwan has shown that it can stand up to economic bullying, it has also offered the olive branch to China urging it to respect its fruit inspection negotiation system.

Thousands of Algerians join the renewed ‘Hirak’ movement to demand change in political system
Africa, Featured, World

Thousands of Algerians join the renewed ‘Hirak’ movement to demand change in political system

Nationwide protests emerged against then-Algerian President Abdelaziz Bouteflika after his nomination for a fifth term sparked mass outrage from citizens
The citizens were frustrated with growing corruption, sluggish economy and lack of freedom in a country besieged by the clout of the military and the islamists.
Bouteflika resigned on 2 April 2019 after months of mass protests. However, the Hirak members were unsatisfied with the resignation as they demanded a change in the entire system.
New President Tebboune signed a decree adopting a new constitution but protesters allege that the army remains the center of power behind a civilian facade led by Tebboune.
Though Arab Spring has ended in countries where it began, the flame of the spring is being kept alive by the Hirak movement.
The Hirak pro-democracy movement is important for a country which has long felt trapped between the Military controlled regime and the Islamists.

COVID-19 Education Crisis – More than 168m children worldwide have missed school for a year
World

COVID-19 Education Crisis – More than 168m children worldwide have missed school for a year

Schools for more than 168 million children globally have been completely closed for almost a full year, says UNICEF
UNICEF unveils ‘Pandemic Classroom’ at United Nations Headquarters in New York to call attention to the need for governments to prioritise the reopening of schools
The analysis on school closures report notes that 14 countries worldwide have remained largely closed since March 2020 to February 2021.
Two-thirds of those countries are in Latin America and the Caribbean, affecting nearly 98 million schoolchildren.

Cybersecurity firm says China-linked RedEcho hacker group Targeted Indian Power Sector – What we know so far
Asia, Defence & Security, Featured, National

Cybersecurity firm says China-linked RedEcho hacker group Targeted Indian Power Sector – What we know so far

Study by Cybersecurity firm Recorded Future found that China-linked hacker Group RedEcho targeted at least “10 distinct power sector organisations” with malware known as ShadowPad last year resulting in power shutdowns and loss of power to Mumbai’s metro network on 13 October 2020. The findings which were published on the firms website was reported by New York Times on Monday.

China’s new Coastguard law – An open call for war with neighbors?
Analysis, Asia, World

China’s new Coastguard law – An open call for war with neighbors?

China’s newly-enacted Coast Guard Law allows the Chinese Coast Guard (CCG) to “take all necessary measures, including the use of weapons, when national sovereignty, sovereign rights, and jurisdiction are being illegally infringed upon by foreign organizations or individuals at sea.”
The new law also empowers the CCG to halt construction or destroy foreign structures on Chinese-claimed land features, like those on the Philippine-occupied Pag-asa Island and Second Thomas Shoal.
Several Asian countries including Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam and Indonesia have opposed China’s law saying it could escalate maritime disputes and be invoked to assert “unlawful claims”.
The Philippines has filed a formal rejection of the law, emphasizing that, given the large area involved and China’s ongoing disputes in the South China Sea, the law is a verbal threat of war to any country that defies it.
The lack of a definition of ‘jurisdictional waters’ in the final version of the new law will increase the potential for conflict.
In addition to creating opportunities for misunderstandings between foreign vessels and the CCG, it gives the coastguard flexibility to conduct law enforcement outside of its traditional jurisdictional waters.

“The battle of Thanakha” – How the traditional cosmetic paste ‘Thanakha’ became a tool for civil disobedience against military coup in Myanmar
Asia, Featured, World

“The battle of Thanakha” – How the traditional cosmetic paste ‘Thanakha’ became a tool for civil disobedience against military coup in Myanmar

Thanakha is Myanmar’s traditional yellowish-white cosmetic paste made from ground barks of the Thanakha tree.
Now, civil disobedience movement (CDM) participants are using the country’s traditional facial cosmetic paste ‘thanakha’ as a tool to send the message of boycott and disobedience.
The protesters designed a campaign titled as “The battle of Thanakha” where the participants painted “CDM” on their foreheads.
The use of Thanakha for protests is expected to further increase the demand for the paste and in turn help the growers and producers.

State-sponsored terrorism by Pakistan is a threat, not only to India but to other countries in the region and beyond – India at UNHRC
Featured, World

State-sponsored terrorism by Pakistan is a threat, not only to India but to other countries in the region and beyond – India at UNHRC

India reiterated that the entire Union Territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh are an integral and inalienable part of India.
The steps taken by the Government to ensure good governance and development in these Union Territories are our internal matters, it said.
India highlights institutionalized discrimination and persecution faced by Pakistan’s minorities and its state-sponsorship of terrorism at UNHRC council
As many as 126 individuals and 24 entities, sanctioned under the UN Security Council 1267 and 1988 Committees’ Lists, are associated with Pakistan.
India also condemned statements by Turkey and OIC as factually incorrect and unwarranted references to internal matters of India

“Could boost uranium enrichment to a purity of 60% if Iran needs it”, says Ali Hosseini Khamenei as law to limit international nuclear inspections comes into force
Middle East, World

“Could boost uranium enrichment to a purity of 60% if Iran needs it”, says Ali Hosseini Khamenei as law to limit international nuclear inspections comes into force

Iran could boost its uranium enrichment to a purity of 60 percent if the country needs it, Supreme Leader Ali Hosseini Khamenei has said a day before a law passed in November 2020 to limit international nuclear inspections comes into force. In a speech on Monday to members of the Assembly of Experts, Khamenei said […]