Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Uganda has signed a military intelligence sharing agreement with Egypt amid rising tensions in the region over Ethiopia’s Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Nile river.
  • AMERICAS: The mission of the US forces in Iraq has shifted to training and advisory roles, enabling a potential redeployment of the forces away from Iraq, though the timing of any such redeployment was not given.
  • ASIA: China accused the United Kingdom of sheltering “wanted criminals” after London decided to grant political asylum to prominent Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Nathan Law.
  • EUROPE: Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney called for an end to the nightly outbreaks of violence in Northern Ireland before people start getting killed and urged political and community leaders to work together to ease tension.
  • MIDDLE EAST: The US announced it will restore hundreds of millions of dollars in US aid to Palestinians.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: Twitter launched a new emoji to mark the first use of the “Milk Tea Alliance” meme which has grown into a symbol of pro-democracy movements in Asia.

Top Story

  • Global: Myanmar Ambassador who criticized coup is locked out of embassy in UK.
    • The United Kingdom no longer recognizes Myanmar’s Ambassador to London after Myanmar’s ruling junta notified the UK it did not support Ambassador Kyaw Zwar Minn for his support of Myanmar’s ousted democratic government.
    • The UK’s announcement came after Zwar Minn was barred from entering Myanmar’s embassy in London by pro-junta officials at the embassy.
    • British Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab condemned the junta’s decision, which he called “bullying actions”, but the government still accepted the junta’s decision.
    • Meanwhile, back in Myanmar, security forces shot dead eleven anti-junta protesters in the town of Taze in Myanmar’s northwest.
    • Additionally, according to local media reports, anti-coup protesters in Myanmar’s northwest are retaliating with hunting rifles and firebombs against the security forces crackdown on protesters.
    • Reporting: Reuters, NYT, AFP, BBC, WaPo

Africa

  • Region: The African Union has dropped its plan to acquire coronavirus vaccines from India’s Serum Institute and is instead exploring options with Johnson & Johnson. (Reuters)
  • Region: Uganda has signed a military intelligence sharing agreement with Egypt amid rising tensions in the region over Ethiopia’s Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on the Nile river. (Reuters)
  • Benin: Troops fired tear gas to disperse opposition protesters in the central city of Save three days ahead of the country’s presidential election. (AFP)
  • Ivory Coast: President Alassane Ouattara said former President Laurent Gbagbo and a close ally were free to return to the country following their definitive acquittal on charges of crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court. (AP)

Americas

  • Region: A Honduran delegation is visiting the US to seek economic help for devastating hurricanes that ravaged the Central American country last year and triggered an increase in immigration to the United States. (Reuters)
  • Argentina: The government increased its coronavirus restrictions, including curtailing the leisure industry and blocking nonessential workers from using public transport. (Reuters)
  • Mexico: President Andrés Manuel López Obrador defended the ruling that freed Rafael Caro Quintero, one of the most wanted drug lords by US authorities, even as the Supreme Court later called the ruling a mistake. (AP)
  • United States: The mission of the country’s forces in Iraq has shifted to training and advisory roles, enabling a potential redeployment of the forces away from Iraq, though the timing of any such redeployment was not given. (AP)

Asia  

  • Region: China blamed the US for increasing tensions over Taiwan, asking rhetorically if China could sail in the Gulf of Mexico as a “show of strength”. (Reuters)
  • China: Beijing accused the United Kingdom of sheltering “wanted criminals” after London decided to grant political asylum to prominent Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Nathan Law. (AFP)
  • India: The country’s record coronavirus spike continued as several states complained of vaccine shortages and demanded inoculations be expanded to younger people. (Reuters)
  • Philippines: Health authorities have suspended the use of AstraZeneca’s controversial coronavirus vaccine for people under 60 after reports of blood clots overseas. (AFP)
  • South Korea: President Moon Jae-in’s ruling party suffered defeats in key mayoral elections following political scandals and policy blunders. (Reuters)

Europe

  • Region: Irish Foreign Minister Simon Coveney called for an end to the nightly outbreaks of violence in Northern Ireland before people start getting killed and urged political and community leaders to work together to ease tension. (Reuters)
  • Region: The European Medicines Agency said blood clotting should be listed as a “very rare” side effect of AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine. (Deutsche Welle)
  • Germany: Health Minister Jens Spahn said the government plans on holding talks with Russia if its Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine is approved by EU regulators. (AFP)
  • Russia: Alexei Navalny’s lawyer said the opposition politician is beginning to lose sensation in his legs and hands. (BBC)
  • Ukraine: President Volodymyr Zelensky is traveling to the country’s eastern frontline amid a surge in fighting in the region and increasing tensions with Russia. (AFP)

Middle East

  • Region: The US announced it will restore hundreds of millions of dollars in US aid to Palestinians. (NYT)
  • Iran: The country reported a record daily coronavirus caseload as its total number of coronavirus cases passed two million. (AFP)
  • Israel: The country marked the remembrance of Holocaust victims with silence and a two-minute siren. (AP)
  • United Arab Emirates: The country agreed to work together with Japan on the development of hydrogen production technology and create an international supply chain. (Reuters)

Tech & Communications

  • Social Media: Twitter launched a new emoji to mark the first use of the “Milk Tea Alliance” meme which has grown into a symbol of pro-democracy movements in Asia. (DPA)

World

  • Cyclones:
    • Tropical Cyclone Seroja
      • Location: 346 nautical miles N-NW of Learmonth, Australia
      • Wind: 65 mph
      • Movement: SW 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 08APR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 133,195,909
      • Total recovered cases: 75,722,072
      • Deaths: 2,889,746
      • Countries with confirmed cases: 192
      • Sourcing: John Hopkins University
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 28MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 18
      • Deaths: 9
      • Sourcing: WHO
    • Ebola Virus Disease: DR Congo (as of 28MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 12
      • Deaths: 6
      • Sourcing: WHO

Tomorrow’s Outlook (09APR21)

  • Global: The IMF and the World Bank will hold their annual spring meeting. (to 11APR)
  • Global: Special Presidential Envoy for Climate John Kerry will visit the United Arab Emirates, India, and Bangladesh.
  • Africa: Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez is expected to visit Senegal and Angola.
  • Europe: The European Medicines Agency will meet again to discuss the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.
  • Middle East: The deadline for Israel to respond to the International Criminal Court’s war crimes probe over the 2014 Gaza War.
  • Djibouti: The first round of the country’s presidential elections will be held.
  • India: Kazakhstan’s Defense Minister Nurlan Yermekbayev is visiting. (to 10APR)
  • Qatar: The government will reimpose a coronavirus lockdown.
  • Samoa: Legislative elections will be held.
  • United States: Honduran Foreign Minister Lisandro Rosales will visit.

END