Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Ghanaian police said they were on high alert following reports that bandits “in possession of military grade weapons” were planning to cross from Burkina Faso and attack communities in northern Ghana.
  • AMERICAS: At least 36 people were left wounded after an ELN car bomb exploded inside a military base in the Colombian border city of Cucuta.
  • ASIA: Kim Jong Un admitted that North Korea faced a “tense” food situation, according to state media reports.
  • EUROPE: US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet today for a highly anticipated in-person summit.
  • MIDDLE EAST: IAEA chief Rafael Grossi said any revival of the 2015 JCPOA nuclear pact will have to be put on hold until the formation of a new government in Iran.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: British police charged a 57-year-old man with abusive behavior after an anti-lockdown crowd harassed and chased a BBC journalist.

Top Story

  • Middle East: Israel strikes Gaza after nationalist march raises tensions.
    • Israel conducted air strikes on Hamas compounds in Gaza after incendiary balloons were launched from the territory.
    • Hamas said the incendiary balloons were a response to a flag march by Israeli nationalists in occupied east Jerusalem.
    • This marked the first such exchange since a shaky ceasefire last month halted the violence between Israel and Hamas, as well as the first such exchange since Israel’s new government took power a few days ago.
    • There were no immediate reports of any casualties following the events, though the incendiary balloons sparked 20 fires in southern Israel.
    • Reporting: NYT, WSJ, WaPo, BBC, AP

Africa

  • Region: Ghanaian police said they were on high alert following reports of bandits “in possession of military grade weapons” were planning to cross from Burkina Faso and attack communities in northern Ghana. (Xinhua)
  • Region: Arab countries called upon the UN Security Council to discuss the controversial Ethiopian plans to fill the GERD dam on the river Nile. (Reuters)
  • DR Congo: The Senate rejected a request by prosecutors to lift former Prime Minister Matata Ponyo Mapon’s immunity so that they could indict him for his role in a graft case related to a failed agricultural project. (Reuters)

Americas

  • Colombia: At least 36 people were left wounded after an ELN car bomb exploded inside a military base in the border city of Cucuta. (AFP)
  • Nicaragua: The Organization of American States expressed alarm over the detention of opposition leaders in the country. (Reuters)
  • Peru: Leftist candidate Pedro Castillo claimed victory in the country’s recent presidential election, though his conservative opponent Keiko Fujimori refused to concede and pledged to fight the result. (Reuters)
  • United States: US Homeland Security chief Alejandro Mayorkas repeated that the US southern border is not open to irregular migration and that the White House is working to create “lawful pathways” to reduce the flow of people at the border. (Reuters)

Asia  

  • Region: Taiwan said China deployed 28 military planes into Taipei’s air defense identification zone, marking the largest such intrusion by China. (DPA)
  • China: Authorities said five fuel rods at the Taishan Nuclear Power Plant near Hong Kong had broken but added that no radioactivity had leaked. (AP)
  • North Korea: Kim Jong Un admitted that the country faced a “tense” food situation, according to state media reports. (AFP)
  • Philippines: Labour Secretary Silvestre Bello is seeking government approval of a plan to allow 5,000 additional healthcare workers to be deployed overseas. (Reuters)
  • Singapore: The country recorded its slowest decade of population growth since its independence. (Reuters)

Europe

  • Region: The United Kingdom said it was keeping all options open as a response in its Brexit dispute related to issues with Northern Ireland’s border with the EU. (Reuters)
  • Region: US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet today for a highly anticipated in-person summit. (AP)
  • Germany: Two people were injured after a Greenpeace protester parachuted into a Munich stadium where a EURO 2020 match was being played. (DPA)
  • Greece: Public transport workers in capital city Athens went on strike for the second time in a week ahead of a parliamentary vote on a new labor law which unions fear will bring longer hours and weaken workers’ rights. (Reuters)
  • Russia: Moscow made COVID-19 vaccinations for service industry workers mandatory due to a “dramatic” rise in the number of COVID-19 cases. (AFP)

Middle East

  • Iran: IAEA chief Rafael Grossi said any revival of the 2015 JCPOA nuclear pact will have to be put on hold until the formation of a new government in the country. (Reuters)
  • Saudi Arabia: Authorities executed Mustafa bin Hashim bin Isa al-Darwish for his alleged involvement in an anti-government rebellion by minority Shiites. (AP)
  • Syria: Ukraine is repatriating one of its citizens and their seven children from the country. (RFE-RL)
  • Yemen: The UN envoy for the country, Martin Griffiths, said the UN should continue negotiations with the country’s Houthi rebels but keep other options open to ensure that an oil tanker moored off the country’s coast does not rupture and trigger an environmental catastrophe. (AP)

Tech & Communications

  • Media: British police charged a 57-year-old man with abusive behavior after an anti-lockdown crowd harassed and chased a BBC journalist. (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 16JUN21)
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 16JUN21)
      • Confirmed cases: 16
      • Deaths: 12
      • Sourcing: WHO

Tomorrow’s Outlook (17JUN21)

  • Global: UN World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought – 1995
  • Global: South Korean President Moon Jae-in will embark on a European tour, attending the G7 Summit as an invited guest and visiting Austria, and Spain post-summit.
  • Global: The Institute for Economics and Peace will release the latest edition of its annual Global Peace Index.
  • Global: The World Health Organization will release the LIVE LIFE guide on preventing suicide.
  • Global: An International donors conference in solidarity with migrants and refugees from Venezuela will be held virtually.
  • Europe: A Eurogroup meeting of eurozone finance ministers will be held.
  • Europe: Russia, Belarus, and Serbia will conduct the joint Slavic Brotherhood 2021 military exercise. (to 18JUN)
  • Europe: Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babis will participate in the GLOBSEC 2021 Bratislava Forum.
  • Europe: Czech and Polish officials are scheduled to hold discussions on a dispute related to the Turow mine.
  • Europe: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will visit Denmark and Greece to discuss their plans on spending their allocation of the EU’s COVID-19 recovery fund.
  • Bulgaria: North Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev will visit.
  • China: The country will launch three astronauts into space.
  • Iceland: Independence Day – 1944
  • Ivory Coast: Former President Laurent Gbagbo is scheduled to return to the country after years following his acquittal at the International Criminal Court.
  • Japan: The government will start vaccinating workers for the upcoming Olympic Games.
  • New Zealand: The government will release its latest GDP figures.
  • Poland: German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will visit.
  • Russia: Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei will visit and meet with his counterpart Sergey Lavrov. (to 18JUN)
  • United States: Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas will testify to the House Committee on Homeland Security on his department’s budget request.

END