Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Venezuela’s opposition said Mali received Venezuelan gold shipped in Russian planes by the Nicolas Maduro regime in exchange for euros and US dollars, despite sanctions.
  • AMERICAS: The US House of Representatives canceled today’s session after Capitol police warned of a militia plot to breach the legislature’s building.
  • ASIA: South Korea’s central bank announced that the country’s economy contracted for the first time in 22 years in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic shattering the country’s service industry and depressing consumer spending.
  • EUROPE: Northern Irish loyalist paramilitaries told British Prime Minister Boris Johnson they are withdrawing their support for the 1998 Good Friday Agreement until their rights are restored and parts of the 2020 Brexit pact are amended to allow unfettered trade to Northern Ireland.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Yemen’s Houthi rebels report they attacked an oil facility in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: A court in Turkey has started the in absentia hearings of 26 Saudi Arabian defendants suspected of being involved in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Top Story

  • Myanmar: Pro-democracy protesters return to streets after bloodiest day since coup.
    • Violence against anti-coup protesters in Myanmar has increased dramatically, as the country witnessed its bloodiest day since the protests first began.
    • The United Nations said at least 38 people were killed during protests yesterday, with online images showing security forces firing into crowds and bullet-riddled bodies of protesters.
    • The violent suppression by security forces has not deterred the country’s anti-coup protesters yet however, and they resumed demonstrations today, only to be met with tear gas and gunfire.
    • There are currently no reports or counts of casualties for today’s protests.
    • The UN Security Council is expected to hold a closed-door meeting to discuss the situation in the country tomorrow, but any coordinated action by the UN Security Council is unlikely due to Russia and China being likely to veto any substantial efforts.
    • Reporting: Reuters, BBC, AFP, AP, NYT, WaPo, WSJ

Africa

  • Djibouti: Twenty migrants who were traveling from the country to Yemen died after being tossed overboard by smugglers. (AP)
  • Mali: Venezuela’s opposition said the country received Venezuelan gold shipped in Russian planes by the Nicolas Maduro regime in exchange for euros and US dollars, despite sanctions. (Reuters)
  • Rwanda: The country became the first in Africa to receive a shipment of Pfizer/BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine. (AFP)

Americas

  • Region: Migrants from Central America and the Caribbean blocked two lanes of a US-Mexico border crossing in Tijuana demanding that the new US administration allow them to apply for asylum in the United States. (AFP)
  • Region: Guyana said two Venezuelan fighter jets entered its airspace overnight and circled around the border between the two countries before returning to Venezuela. (Reuters)
  • Brazil: The country reported a record number of daily coronavirus deaths since the pandemic first started. (BBC)
  • Nicaragua: The Committee to Protect Journalists urged President Daniel Ortega’s administration to stop harassing journalists. (AP)
  • United States: The House of Representatives canceled today’s session after Capitol police warned of a militia plot to breach the legislature’s building. (Reuters)

Asia  

  • Region: Indian Foreign Minister S Jaishankar arrived in Bangladesh to discuss water sharing, trade, border issues and the fate of 81 Rohingya refugees who were recently rescued from a stranded vessel in international waters. (Reuters)
  • Afghanistan: A bomb blast in the city of Jalalabad has killed one doctor, in what officials said appeared to have been a targeted attack. (AFP)
  • Cambodia: Prime Minister Hun Sen was inoculated with one of the 324,000 vaccine doses that arrived in the country via the WHO’s COVAX vaccine sharing initiative. (AP)
  • South Korea: Seoul’s central bank announced that the country’s economy contracted for the first time in 22 years in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic shattering the country’s service industry and depressing consumer spending. (AP)

Europe

  • Region: Switzerland, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Singapore jointly issued guidelines to speed-up the development of modified COVID-19 vaccines targeting new coronavirus variants. (AP)
  • Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel said the country will join Belgium and France and now allow over-65s to receive the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine. (BBC)
  • Sweden: Eight people were left injured in a stabbing attack in the town of Vetlanda, which the police are treating as a suspected terrorist attack. (BBC)
  • United Kingdom: Northern Irish loyalist paramilitaries told Prime Minister Boris Johnson they are withdrawing their support for the 1998 Good Friday Agreement until their rights are restored and parts of the 2020 Brexit pact are amended to allow unfettered trade to Northern Ireland. (Reuters)

Middle East

  • Region: The International Criminal Court opened a formal investigation into alleged war crimes in the Palestinian territories since 2014. (BBC)
  • Region: Yemen’s Houthi rebels report they attacked an oil facility in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah. (AP)
  • Israel: The government accused Iran of having links to a recent oil spill off its Mediterranean shore, calling the incident ecological terrorism. (Reuters)

Tech & Communications

  • Media: A court in Turkey started the in absentia hearings of 26 Saudi Arabian defendants suspected of being involved in the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi. (DPA)

World

  • Cyclones:
    • Cyclone Niran
      • Location: 229 nautical miles E-NE of Cairns, Australia
      • Wind: 105 mph
      • Movement: E-SE at 9 mph
      • Map
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global (as of 04MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 115,222,221
      • Total recovered cases: 65,176,260
      • Deaths: 2,560,965
      • Countries with confirmed cases: 192
      • Sourcing: John Hopkins University
    • Ebola Virus Disease: DR Congo (as of 28FEB21)
      • Confirmed cases: 17
      • Deaths: 7
      • Sourcing: WHO
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 28FEB21)
      • Confirmed cases: 8
      • Deaths: 4
      • Sourcing: WHO

Tomorrow’s Outlook (05MAR21)

  • Europe: NATO’s Dynamic Manta 2021 naval drills will conclude.
  • Europe: The foreign ministers of EU member-states will hold an informal meeting.
  • China: The country’s top legislature, the National People’s Congress, will hold its annual session. (to 11MAR)
  • China: The 13th National Committee of the CPPCC, the country’s top political advisory body, will hold a session. (to 10MAR)
  • Cyprus: EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell will visit ahead of reunification consultations between the country’s two main divided ethnic groups. (to 06MAR)
  • Iraq: Pope Francis will visit. (to 08MAR)
  • Latvia: Hungarian Foreign Minister Peter Szijjarto will visit and meet with his counterpart Edgars Rinkevics, Health Minister Daniels Pavluts and President Egils Levits.
  • Myanmar: The UN Security Council will potentially hold discussions over the situation in the country, at the request of the United Kingdom.
  • Nepal: The government will unveil details of a peace agreement with the Biplav communist rebel group.
  • Portugal: Opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaia will visit and meet with Prime Minister Antonio Costa and Foreign Minister Augusto Santos Silva. (to 07MAR)
  • Rwanda: The country’s coronavirus vaccination campaign will begin.
  • South Korea: Seoul and the US will hold negotiations on a cost-sharing agreement for US forces stationed in the country.

END