Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Guinea’s largest political parties vowed to defy the ruling junta’s ban on protests and demonstrations.
  • AMERICAS: Chile’s Congress voted to approve an increase in the minimum wage as the Andean country struggles with soaring inflation.
  • ASIA: US President Joe Biden will depart for a six-day trip to South Korea and Japan aiming to build rapport with the Asian nations’ leaders.
  • EUROPE: Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said his country is working with the UN to ensure safe passage of Ukrainian ships carrying grain via the Black Sea.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Jordan and Iraq agreed to establish a joint economic zone on their border to boost economic cooperation between the two countries.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: New York Attorney General Letitia James launched an investigation into the role of social media platforms, including Twitch and Discord, in Saturday’s mass shooting in Buffalo.

Top Story

  • Global: Monkeypox Cases Investigated in US, Canada, and Europe.
    • Cases of suspected and confirmed Monkeypox are being investigated in the US, Canada, Spain, Portugal, and the UK.
    • Canada was the latest country to report it was investigating more than a dozen suspected cases of monkeypox, after Spain and Portugal detected more than 40 possible and verified cases.
    • Britain confirmed nine cases since May 6, and the United States verified its first case on Wednesday, saying a man in the state of Massachusetts had tested positive for the virus after visiting Canada.
    • The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) detected the first case in someone who traveled from Nigeria, though later cases were possibly through community transmission.
    • The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) called on “public health authorities and laboratory partners across Canada to be alert for and investigate any potential cases.”
    • According to the CDC, the virus can infect people by entering the body through broken skin, entering the respiratory tract, by entering mucous membranes such as the eyes, nose, or mouth, and direct contact with body fluids.
    • BBC, AFP, NPR, The Guardian, CBC, NewsWeek

Africa

  • Guinea: The country’s largest political parties vowed to defy the ruling junta’s ban on protests and demonstrations. (AFP)
  • Kenya: A court temporarily barred the electoral body from clearing former governor of Nairobi Mike Sonko from running for the same seat in the coastal city of Mombasa. (BBC)
  • Mali: The UN’s top political official for Africa called the country’s decision to withdraw from the Sahel regional counterterrorism force “unfortunate and regrettable.” (AP)
  • Rwanda: Prime minister Edouard Ngirente said the first batch of asylum seekers from the UK “will arrive soon” and that everything is ready to host them. (BBC)
  • Togo: Around 15 assailants were killed during a “terrorist” attack last week in the north that also left eight soldiers dead. (AFP)

Americas  

  • Brazil: A group of lawyers and legal experts sent a petition to the United Nations to investigate President Jair Bolsonaro’s attacks on the judiciary. (Reuters)
  • Chile: Congress voted to approve an increase in the minimum wage as the Andean country struggles with soaring inflation. (Reuters)
  • Colombia: The government has increased security for right-wing presidential candidate Federico Gutierrez following threats from paramilitary and drug trafficking groups. (AFP)
  • Nicaragua: Opposition leader Yubrank Suazo was arrested, the latest in a line of dozens of opponents of President Daniel Ortega to be imprisoned. (AFP)
  • United States: President Biden invoked the Defense Production Act to address a nationwide shortage of infant formula. (Reuters)

Asia

  • Region: US President Joe Biden will depart for a six-day trip to South Korea and Japan aiming to build rapport with the Asian nations’ leaders. (AP)
  • China: The government removed some COVID-19 test requirements for air travelers from the United States and other countries. (Reuters)
  • India: A court convicted a top Kashmiri separatist leader in a terrorism-related case that carries a maximum punishment of the death penalty or life imprisonment. (AP)
  • North Korea: Vice Admiral John Hill, head of the US Missile Defense Agency, said that Pyongyang has not yet developed a hypersonic weapon, but its tests warrant concern. (Yonhap)
  • Thailand: Residents of Bangkok will cast their ballots for the city’s leader Sunday in a vote seen as a barometer of the public mood ahead of a general election. (AP)

Europe

  • Germany: The country’s top court approved rules requiring that health workers be vaccinated against COVID-19. (AP)
  • Italy: Prime Minister Mario Draghi will visit Turkey in July for discussions about the Ukraine war and tensions over Ankara blocking NATO membership to Finland and Sweden. (AFP)
  • Spain: Former king Juan Carlos I is set to return to the country for his first visit since leaving nearly two years ago amid a cloud of financial scandals. (AP)
  • Turkey: Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said his country is working with the UN to ensure safe passage of Ukrainian ships carrying grain via the Black Sea. (TASS)
  • Ukraine: US intelligence allegedly shows that some Russian officials are concerned that their forces’ abuses in Mariupol will backfire and further inspire residents to resist occupation. (AP)

Middle East

  • Region: Jordan and Iraq agreed to establish a joint economic zone on their border to boost economic cooperation between the two countries. (Xinhua)
  • Iran: An independent United Nations expert said that the impact of sanctions imposed by the United States on Iran was “devastating”, describing them as illegal and urging them be lifted. (Al-Monitor)
  • Israel: Police arrested one of the pallbearers of slain Al Jazeera reporter Shireen Abu Akleh but rejected his lawyer’s claim that the detention was linked to his role at the funeral. (AFP)
  • Lebanon: The head of Hezbollah called on parliamentary factions to cooperate, following elections that saw no bloc achieve a majority and the representation of independent lawmakers rise. (Al-Monitor)
  • Yemen: The Houthi rebel group said they are considering renewing an UN-brokered truce with the government currently set to expire in two weeks. (AFP)

Tech & Communications

  • Social Media: New York Attorney General Letitia James launched an investigation into the role of social media platforms, including Twitch and Discord, in Saturday’s mass shooting in Buffalo. (BBC)

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 19MAY22)

Tomorrow’s Outlook (20MAY22) 

  • Event: Atlantic Council conversation with Head of the Office of the Ukrainian President Andriy Yermak.
  • Americas: Visit by US First Lady Jill Biden to Ecuador, Panama, and Costa Rica trip. (to 23MAY)
  • Asia: Visit by US President Joe Biden to South Korea and Japan. (to 24MAY)
  • Cambodia: Day of Remembrance.
  • Cameroon: National Day.
  • Ethiopia: United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ilze Brands Kehris begins a three-day mission to Addis Ababa.
  • Germany: Visit by US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.
  • Germany: International Transport Forum Annual Summit in Leipzig.
  • Germany: G7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting in Bonn.
  • Germany: G7 Health Ministers meeting in Berlin.
  • Germany: Visit by Emir of Qatar Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani.
  • Italy: Council of Europe Committee of Ministers session in Turin.
  • Japan: Ban on exporting high-tech goods to Russia to enter into force.
  • Japan: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Rafael Mariano Grossi holds a press conference in Tokyo.
  • Thailand: Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Trade Ministers meeting in Bangkok. (to 22MAY)
  • Timor-Leste: Restoration of Independence Day.
  • Vietnam: Southeast Asian Games in Hanoi. (to 23MAY)

END