Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Former Ivorian President Laurent Gbagbo checked-in at Brussel’s main airport, as he returns to the country following his acquittal at the International Criminal Court.
  • AMERICAS: The US House of Representatives voted in favor of making Juneteenth a new federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery.
  • ASIA: China’s Shenzhou-12 craft transported three astronauts to the country’s Tianhe space station, marking a milestone in Beijing’s space program.
  • EUROPE: The UK reached an agreement to resolve the Airbus-Boeing trade dispute with the United States, two days after a similar agreement between the EU and the US.
  • MIDDLE EAST: A Palestinian teenager who was shot by Israeli troops in the West Bank yesterday, died of his injuries.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS:  Hong Kong police arrested senior staff members of the Apple Daily newspaper in early morning raids, accusing them of colluding with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security.

Top Story

  • Global: Biden and Putin hold Geneva summit.
    • President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin praised their discussions as they made important, though hardly relationship-changing progress, as they held their first in-person meeting in Geneva, Switzerland.
    • Both leaders agreed to return their chief diplomats to each other’s capitals after they were recalled following a deterioration in the US-Russia relationship in recent months.
    • Biden and Putin also agreed to restart dialogue on nuclear arms control and work on a plan to solidify the last remaining treaty limiting nuclear weapons between the two countries.
    • Putin also agreed to hold consultations with the United States on ransomware and cyberattacks.
    • Nevertheless, both leaders continued to remain apart on human rights, electoral interference, and other issues after the three-hour long summit.
    • Reporting: WSJ, WaPo, BBC, AP, NYT, Reuters, AFP, DPA

Africa

  • Region: French forces detained Dadi Ould Chouaib, also known as Abou Dardar, whom they described as a “high-ranking fighter of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara” (EIGS) in the tri-border region between Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso. (AFP)
  • Central African Republic: UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres criticized the country and its allied forces for targeting UN peacekeepers. (AP)
  • Ivory Coast: Former President Laurent Gbagbo checked-in at Brussel’s main airport, as he returns to the country following his acquittal at the International Criminal Court. (AP)
  • Libya: The UN said more than 270 Europe-bound migrants were rescued at sea and handed over to the country’s coast guard, who then sent them to detention centers. (AP)

Americas

  • El Salvador: The World Bank rejected the country’s request for help in implementing Bitcoin as legal tender. (BBC)
  • Mexico: A preliminary report into last month’s Mexico City metro overpass collapse found that it was caused by construction flaws. (BBC)
  • United States: The House of Representatives voted in favor of making Juneteenth a new federal holiday commemorating the end of slavery. (AP)
  • Venezuela: Consumer prices increased by 28.5% in May, with the annual inflation rate increasing to 2,719%, as the country struggles to contain inflation. (Reuters)

Asia  

  • Region: Macau joined Hong Kong in closing its representative office in Taiwan. (AP)
  • China: The Shenzhou-12 craft transported three astronauts to the country’s Tianhe space station, marking a milestone in the country’s space program. (AP)
  • Indonesia: The WHO urged increased social restrictions due to a coronavirus surge linked to new, worrisome variants, as President Joko Widodo ordered officials to speed up the country’s vaccination campaign. (AP)
  • Myanmar: The country’s military junta set fire to the Kin Ma village in the Magway region, leaving at least two people dead in the process. (Guardian)
  • New Zealand: Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the details of her government’s coronavirus vaccination campaign. (Reuters)

Europe

  • Region: German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer will meet with her Turkish counterpart Hulusi Akar. (DPA)
  • Region: Germany withdrew a platoon stationed in Lithuania after its members were allegedly involved in racist and anti-Semitic behavior. (AFP)
  • Russia: Lawmakers approved legislation requiring US tech companies to establish offices in the country or face punitive measures. (Reuters)
  • Sweden: The Left Party will seek backing from other parties for a no-confidence vote in Prime Minister Stefan Lofven over his plans to ease rent control regulations, in a move that could result in snap elections. (Reuters)
  • United Kingdom: The country reached an agreement to resolve the Airbus-Boeing trade dispute with the United States, two days after a similar agreement between the EU and the US. (Deutsche Welle)

Middle East

  • Region: A Palestinian teenager who was shot by Israeli troops in the West Bank yesterday, died of his injuries. (AP)
  • Region: Bahrain said it was communicating with Israel’s new government to be informed on its policies to bring peace to the region. (Reuters)
  • Iran: President Hassan Rouhani urged the public to set aside grievances and vote in tomorrow’s presidential election. (Reuters)
  • Qatar: Masoud al-Ameri was appointed as the country’s new justice minister as part of a limited government reshuffle. (Reuters)

Tech & Communications

  • Media: Hong Kong police arrested senior staff members of the Apple Daily newspaper in early morning raids, accusing them of colluding with a foreign country or with external elements to endanger national security. (Guardian)

World

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report.
  • Hurricanes: Nothing to report.
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
  • Volcanoes:
    • Indonesia
      • Mount Merapi ejected hot clouds as far as a mile away.
      • Sourcing: Xinhua
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global (as of 17JUN21)
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 16JUN21)
      • Confirmed cases: 16
      • Deaths: 12
      • Sourcing: WHO

Tomorrow’s Outlook (18JUN21)

  • Global: The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees is expected to release its annual Global Trends report.
  • Global: The UN General Assembly will hold a debate on a possible second term for UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres.
  • Global: The Turkish government will host the Antalya Diplomacy Forum. (to 20JUN)
  • Global: Malaysian Foreign Minister Hishammuddin Hussein will visit Turkey, and Egypt. (to 21JUN)
  • Europe: The finance ministers of EU countries will hold a meeting.
  • Europe: Russia, Belarus, and Serbia will conduct the joint Slavic Brotherhood 2021 military exercise.
  • Europe: Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi will speak at the Cercle D’Economia conference.
  • Armenia: Russia will send a parliamentary delegation to the country ahead of the country’s upcoming elections. (to 21JUN)
  • China: Authorities will partially open the country’s commodities markets to foreign investors.
  • Germany: French President Emmanuel Macron will visit and meet with Chancellor Angela Merkel.
  • Iran: Presidential elections will be held.
  • Luxembourg: European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will visit and discuss the government’s plans to spend its allocation of the EU’s COVID-19 recovery fund.
  • Norway: Prime Minister Erna Solberg is scheduled to announce the country’s post-pandemic reopening plans.
  • Russia: Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei will visit and meet with his counterpart Sergey Lavrov.
  • Seychelles: Constitution Day – 1993
  • Turkey: Deputy Foreign Minister Alvin Botes will visit. (to 20JUN)

END