Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: At least two international aid groups said that some of their staff members have been killed during the conflict in Ethiopia’s Tigray region.
  • AMERICAS: An FDA advisory panel has overwhelmingly endorsed the widespread use of Pfizer/BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine in the US.
  • ASIA: Taiwan’s government commissioned a new fleet of advanced catamarans capable of being equipped with missiles to boost its coast guard.
  • EUROPE: EU leaders have agreed to target a 55% cut in greenhouse gas emissions compared to 1990 levels by 2030.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A UN tribunal has sentenced Hezbollah member Salim Ayyash to life imprisonment for his involvement in the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in an in-absentia trial.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: China has detained a Chinese national working for Bloomberg News in Beijing on suspicion of endangering national security.

Top Story

  • China: Pro-democracy tycoon Jimmy Lai charged under Hong Kong security law.
    • Pro-democracy media tycoon Jimmy Lai has been charged under China’s national security law for Hong Kong that was imposed in June.
    • Lai is facing allegations of conspiring with foreign forces to endanger the country’s national security and a potentially lengthy jail sentence, including a life imprisonment.
    • Media tycoon Lai, who founded the Apple Daily newspaper and has been a fierce critic of Beijing, is so far the most high-profile individual charged under the national security law.
    • The national security law has been criticized for its broad definitions of secession, subversion, terrorism, and collusion with foreign forces.
    • Lai will reportedly appear before court tomorrow to respond to the allegations against him.
    • Reporting: Guardian, WaPo, BBC, AP, Reuters, NYT, DPA

Africa

  • Ethiopia: At least two international aid groups said that some of their staff members have been killed during the conflict in the country’s Tigray region. (AP)
  • Morocco: The country has agreed to normalize relations with Israel in a US-brokered deal that will see the US recognizing Rabat’s claim over the disputed Western Sahara region. (BBC)
  • Nigeria: Health Minister Osagie Ehanire warned the country of a second wave in coronavirus cases following a sudden rise of new infections in the country. (AFP)
  • South Sudan: Parts of the country are reportedly on the brink of famine according to a new report by the Famine Review Committee. (AP)

Americas

  • Region: Authorities in both Honduras and Guatemala are trying to break up a caravan of hundreds of Hondurans traveling to the US. (Reuters)
  • Brazil: The Senate has approved a bill proposing the increased opening of the natural gas sector to private competition and breaking the monopoly held by state-controlled oil company Petrobras. (Reuters)
  • Haiti: Thousands of people took part in a peaceful March for Life in honor of International Human Rights Day in the capital city of Port-au-Prince. (VOA)
  • United States: An FDA advisory panel has overwhelmingly endorsed the widespread use of Pfizer/BioNTech’s coronavirus vaccine. (AP)

Asia  

  • Australia: One of the country’s coronavirus candidate vaccines being developed by CSL and the University of Queensland has been abandoned after trial participants returned false HIV positive results. (BBC)
  • Bhutan: Parliament has voted in favor of amending laws in order to decriminalize same-sex relations. (AP)
  • South Korea: The US military has agreed to give back 12 sites in the country to Seoul after years of negotiations between the two countries. (Reuters)
  • Taiwan: The government commissioned a new fleet of advanced catamarans capable of being equipped with missiles to boost its coast guard. (Reuters)

Europe

  • Region: EU leaders have agreed to target a 55% cut in greenhouse gas emissions compared to 1990 levels by 2030. (Deutsche Welle)
  • Region: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen reportedly told EU leaders that a No-deal Brexit is more likely to take place than the UK striking a trade deal with the EU prior to its exit from the bloc. (DPA)
  • Region: European Council President Charles Michel announced that the leaders of EU member-states had agreed to an unprecedented $2.1-trillion coronavirus fund after a weeks-long blockade by Poland and Hungary. (DPA)
  • Norway: The government said the country’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic will be faster than previously anticipated. (Reuters)
  • Russia: The number of daily coronavirus deaths reached a record high in the country, just as it begins a mass vaccination drive. (AFP)

Middle East

  • Region: Bahrain announced free coronavirus vaccine plans for the public while Saudi Arabia gave the greenlight to the Pfizer/BioNTech coronavirus vaccine. (AP)
  • Region: The US deployed two B-52H bombers to the region to deter Iran from making any potential attacks. (VOA)
  • Lebanon: A UN tribunal has sentenced Hezbollah member Salim Ayyash to life imprisonment for his involvement in the 2005 assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in an in-absentia trial. (AP)

Tech & Communications

  • Media: China has detained a Chinese national working for Bloomberg News in Beijing on suspicion of endangering national security. (Reuters)

World

  • Cyclones:
    • Tropical Cyclone Three
      • Location: 53 nautical miles S-SE of Port Hedland, Australia
      • Wind: 40 mph
      • Movement: SE at 24 mph
      • Map
    • Tropical Cyclone Four
      • Location: 313 nautical miles North of Suva, Fiji
      • Wind: 40 mph
      • Movement: SW at 8 mph
      • Map
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes:
    • Taiwan
      • Location: 25 km E of Yilan, Taiwan
      • Magnitude: 6.1
      • Depth: 73.2 km
      • Map
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
  • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global
    • Confirmed Cases as of 11DEC20: 69,688,577
    • Total Recovered Cases as of 11DEC20: 44,963,147
    • Deaths as of 11DEC20: 1,584,063
    • Countries with Confirmed Cases: 191
    • Sourcing: John Hopkins University

Tomorrow’s Outlook (12DEC20)

  • Global: The UN, UK, and France will co-host the virtual Climate Ambition Summit.
  • Global: The UN’s International Day of Neutrality – 2018
  • China: Pro-democracy Hong Kong media tycoon Jimmy Lai will reportedly appear before court to answer to allegations of conspiring with foreign forces to endanger national security.
  • Germany: Anti-coronavirus restrictions protests are expected across the country.
  • Kenya: Jamhuri Day (Independence Day) – 1963
  • United States: Supporters of President Donald Trump are expected to ‘March for Trump’ in capital city Washington, DC.
  • Venezuela: Popular consultation organised by the country’s Congress.

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