Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: The office of Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said he returned to his usual work in the capital Addis Ababa and has left the battle front.
  • AMERICAS: Peru’s congress voted down a motion to impeach President Pedro Castillo.
  • ASIA: Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed that his country would follow the United States in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics.
  • EUROPE: US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin yielded no breakthrough after two hours of talks on the escalating crisis near Russia’s border with Ukraine.
  • MIDDLE EAST: An Israeli woman was stabbed and lightly wounded by a Palestinian female minor in a neighborhood in east Jerusalem.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: A US labor complaint alleges that Apple’s restriction of workplace messaging app Slack violates employees’ protected rights to speech and organizing.

Top Story

  • Germany: Olaf Scholtz takes over as Chancellor marking the end of the Merkel era.
    • Lawmakers elected Social Democrat Olaf Scholz as chancellor, ending 16 years of conservative rule under Angela Merkel and paving the way for a pro-European coalition government that has promised to boost green investment.
    • Lawmakers voted by 395-303 to elect the center-left leader, with six abstentions — a comfortable majority, though short of the 416 seats his three-party coalition holds in the 736-seat lower house of parliament.
    • The new coalition has set itself the targets of combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and raising the statutory minimum wage.
    • Scholtz told the Bundestag that “Germany is venturing a new departure, one that takes up the major challenges of this decade and well beyond that.”
    • Scholz’s center-left Social Democrats party has worked with the Greens and the Free Democrats on a coalition deal, which was finally signed on Tuesday.
    • For the first time in 16 years, Germany will now have a center-left government led by a new chancellor.
    • Reuters, AP, DPA, WaPo, BBC, NYT

Africa

  • Ethiopia: The office of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said he returned to his usual work in the capital Addis Ababa and has left the battle front. (BBC)
  • Nigeria: At least 21 passengers were burnt to death when their bus was ambushed by shooters in the north-western state of Sokoto. (BBC)
  • South Africa: Parliament failed to secure the two-thirds majority it needed to amend the constitution to pave the way for land expropriation without compensation. (BBC)
  • Uganda: The army protested against the financial sanctions imposed on Major General Abel Kandiho, the country’s head of military intelligence. (BBC)

Americas

  • Brazil: Health regulators announced unvaccinated travelers entering the country will be required to quarantine for five days after President Jair Bolsonaro said he opposed vaccine passports. (Reuters)
  • Colombia: Health Minister Fernando Ruiz announced that travelers wishing to enter the country must present a negative COVID-19 PCR test or a vaccination certificate starting on Dec. 14. (Xinhua)
  • Peru: Congress voted down a motion to impeach President Pedro Castillo. (Reuters)
  • United States: Congressional leaders reached an elaborate deal to pass legislation raising the national debt limit without any Republican votes. (AP)

Asia

  • Australia: Prime Minister Scott Morrison confirmed that his country would follow the United States in a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics. (DPA)
  • Indonesia: The death toll climbed to 39 following the eruption of the Semeru volcano in East Java province over the weekend. (DPA)
  • Malaysia: An appeals court upheld former prime minister Najib Razak’s guilty verdict in a case linked to the 1MDB corruption scandal. (Reuters)
  • New Zealand: Defense forces warned of the security threat from an increasingly powerful China as it assertively pursues its interests in the Indo-Pacific region. (Reuters)
  • South Korea: Daily new COVID-19 cases in the country have risen above 7,000 for the first time. (Yonhap)

Europe 

  • Region: US President Joe Biden and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin yielded no breakthrough after two hours of talks on the escalating crisis near Russia’s border with Ukraine. (AP).
  • France: A Saudi national suspected of taking part in the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul was arrested at Charles de Gaulle Airport on a Turkish warrant. (AP)
  • Lithuania: Energy Minister Dainius Kreivys said the country last week successfully tested a coupling of its power grid to the European continental system. (Reuters)
  • Ukraine: Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said that talks between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin had enabled “deterrence and de-escalation.” (Reuters)
  • United Kingdom: Prime Minister Boris Johnson faced a backlash after a video surfaced showing his staff laughing and joking over how to explain a gathering in Downing Street during a Christmas COVID lockdown last year. (Reuters)

Middle East

  • Israel: A woman was stabbed and lightly wounded by a Palestinian female minor in a neighborhood in east Jerusalem. (WaPo)
  • Lebanon: Two international human rights groups called on authorities to immediately release a freelance American journalist who was detained in Beirut last month and continues to be held even after a prosecutor ordered her release. (WaPo)
  • United Arab Emirates: The Economy Ministry will allow the creation of companies for acquisition or merger purposes. (Reuters)
  • Yemen: The United Nations said that fighting between the internationally recognized government and Houthi rebels displaced over 25,000 people around the port city of Hodeida last month. (WaPo)

Tech & Communications

  • Technology: A US labor complaint alleges that Apple’s restriction of workplace messaging app Slack violates employees’ protected rights to speech and organizing. (Reuters)

World

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes:
    • Mount Semeru, Indonesia
      • Explosive activity continues
      • Erupting
      • Source
    • La Palma, Spain
      • Explosive activity continues
      • Erupting
      • Source
    • Global Disease Outbreaks:
      • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global (as of 08DEC21)

Tomorrow’s Outlook (09DEC21)

  • Global: International Anti-Corruption Day.
  • Global: UN Security Council open debate on terrorism and climate change.
  • Event: Heritage Foundation hosts discussion with former USAID Administrator Mark Green.
  • Austria: World Space Forum in Vienna.
  • Europe: Meeting of EU justice and interior ministers in Brussels. (to 10DEC)
  • Europe: Meeting of EU transport, telecommunications, and energy ministers in Brussels.
  • Europe: 30th anniversary of Treaty on European Union drafted.
  • North America: US-Canada negotiations on modernizing Columbia River Treaty regime.
  • Pakistan: Ceasefire between Pakistan and the Taliban to expire.
  • Tanzania: Independence Day.
  • United States: Summit for Democracy, virtual. (to 10DEC)
  • United States: US-Africa Energy Forum in Houston.
  • United States: House Foreign Affairs subcommittee hearing on Libya.

END