Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Equatorial Guinea’s government imposed their country’s first ever coronavirus curfew, limited flights and reintroduced other measures and restrictions amid a coronavirus surge.
  • AMERICAS: Colombian President Ivan Duque said his administration will give protected status to almost one million undocumented Venezuelan migrants currently living in Colombia, making it easier for them to work, seek permanent residency and get access to health services in the country.
  • ASIA: Two US carrier groups conducted joint exercises in the South China Sea, following which China denounced the US for damaging peace and stability.
  • EUROPE: Germany’s exports declined by 9.3% in 2020 due to the global coronavirus pandemic, according to newly released government data.
  • MIDDLE EAST: The United Arab Emirates’ Amal spacecraft is set to become the Arab world’s first interplanetary spacecraft to swing into the orbit of Mars.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: Government critic and newspaper publisher Jimmy Lai, who is facing charges under Beijing’s sweeping new national security law, was denied bail by a Hong Kong court.

 

Top Story

  • Myanmar: Police cracks down on people defying anti-coup protest ban. 
    • Thousands of people in Myanmar defied the military’s ban on protests in the country and took to the streets to continue demonstrations demanding the restoration of the country’s recently elected government. 
    • The police subsequently used rubber bullets against protesters and fired shots into the air to disperse them in capital city Naypyitaw, while the police used water cannons against protesters in the town of Bago and Myanmar’s second largest city, Mandalay.
    • At least one protester was seriously injured by the police’s use of rubber bullets against them. 
    • This is the fourth consecutive day of continued protests against the recent military coup in the country, and the first day of protests in defiance of rules making protests illegal.
    • Reporting: Reuters, AFP, AP, BBC, Guardian

 

Africa

  • Ethiopia: The government gave approval to the deployment of 25 UN staff members to the country’s embattled Tigray region. (AP)  
  • Equatorial Guinea: The government imposed the country’s first ever coronavirus curfew, limited flights and reintroduced other measures and restrictions amid a coronavirus surge in the country. (AFP)
  • Nigeria: Police freed three Chinese nationals who were kidnapped last week from a gold-mining site in the country’s southwestern Osun state. (AFP)
  • Sudan: Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok reshuffled his Cabinet to include rebel ministers as part of a peace deal between the country’s transitional authorities and a rebel alliance. (AP)

 

Americas

  • Region: The Colombian government said Cuba tipped them off about a plan by the left-wing ELN guerrilla group to attack Colombia’s capital city Bogota in the “next few days”. (AFP)
  • Region: The Biden administration reportedly rejected El Salvador President Nayib Bukele’s request for a meeting during an unannounced trip to Washington last week. (AP
  • Colombia: President Ivan Duque said his administration will give protected status to almost one million undocumented Venezuelan migrants currently living in the country, making it easier for them to work, seek permanent residency and get access to health services. (BBC)
  • Honduras: President Juan Orlando Hernández rejected accusations by US prosecutors of protecting drug traffickers in exchange for bribes. (AP)

 

Asia  

  • Region: Two US carrier groups conducted joint exercises in the South China Sea, following which China denounced the US for damaging peace and stability. (Reuters)
  • Afghanistan: A series of attacks in the country, for which no group has yet claimed responsibility, resulted in the deaths of five government employees and four policemen. (AP)
  • China: The WHO investigative team sent to the country to trace the origins of the new coronavirus failed to identify the source of pandemic-causing virus, but ruled out the Wuhan lab-leak theory of the virus’s origins. (AFP)
  • North Korea: Pyongyang reportedly maintained and developed its nuclear and ballistic missile programs through 2020 in violation of international sanctions against the country, using approximately $300 million stolen through cyber hacks to fund them. (Reuters)

 

Europe

  • Region: A group of European Parliament lawmakers are reportedly set to call for EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell to resign after his recent “humiliating” visit to Russia. (DPA
  • Region: The governments of Germany, Poland, and Sweden each expelled a Russian diplomat from their countries in a tit-for-tat move after Russia’s own recent ejection of three diplomats from those countries. (BBC)
  • Germany: The country’s exports declined by 9.3% in 2020 due to the global coronavirus pandemic, according to newly released government data. (DPA)
  • Italy: Former European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi is set to meet with the country’s biggest parties in his bid to form a new government. (DPA)

 

Middle East

  • Region: Iran’s Intelligence Minister said one member of the country’s armed forces is suspected of involvement in last November’s assassination of Tehran’s top nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, for which Iran has previously accused Israel of being responsible. (AFP)
  • Iran: The government has launched a coronavirus vaccination program for healthcare workers using Russia’s Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine. (AP)
  • Syria: The US said its forces in the country are focused on fighting the remnants of the Islamic State group and not on defending oil fields as ordered by former US President Trump. (AFP)
  • United Arab Emirates: The country’s Amal spacecraft is set to become the Arab world’s first interplanetary spacecraft to swing into the orbit of Mars. (AP)

 

Tech & Communications

  • Media: Government critic and newspaper publisher Jimmy Lai, who is facing charges under Beijing’s sweeping new national security law, was denied bail by a Hong Kong court. (AP)

 

World

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global (as of 09FEB21)
      • Confirmed cases: 106,533,071
      • Total recovered cases: 59,471,099
      • Deaths: 2,327,231
      • Countries with confirmed cases: 192 
      • Sourcing: John Hopkins University

 

Tomorrow’s Outlook (10FEB21)

  • Global: The OECD’s Global Parliamentary Network will hold a virtual meeting. 
  • Global: Turkish Foreign Minister will pay official visits to Kuwait, Oman, and Qatar. (to 11FEB)
  • Global: The UN Security Council will meet and discuss the situations in Sudan, Iraq, and Kuwait.
  • Asia: The Asian Development Bank will launch its Asian Economic Integration report.
  • Asia: The foreign ministers of India and Afghanistan could hold a virtual meeting to discuss and potentially sign a pact on the construction of the Shahtoot dam in Afghanistan.
  • Europe: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will discuss the regional bloc’s coronavirus vaccination campaign with EU lawmakers.
  • Europe: European Parliament Member Zeljana Zovko will discuss EU-Turkey relations in an online event organized by the German Marshall Fund.
  • Cambodia: The country’s coronavirus vaccination campaign will begin, with Prime Minister Hun Sen receiving the first vaccination.
  • China: The country’s Tianwen-1 Mars probe and rover will enter Mars’ orbit.
  • Germany: Chancellor Angela Merkel will discuss the country’s coronavirus vaccination campaign with state premiers. 
  • Mali: Swiss Federal Councilor Ignazio Cassis will visit and meet with President Bah N’Daw and Foreign Minister Zeyni Moulaye. (to 11FEB)
  • United States: President Biden will meet with Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin at the Pentagon.
  • United States: El Salvador’s Ambassador to the US Milena Mayorga will discuss the upcoming elections in El Salvador in an online event organized by the Wilson Center.
  • United States: The Commission on International Religious Freedom will hold a virtual hearing.

 

END