Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Ethiopia recorded 1,994 additional COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the nationwide tally to 183,863, the country’s Ministry of Health reported. 
  • AMERICAS: El Salvador’s populist President Nayib Bukele will have control of Congress as of May; official results reported his allies won 61 of 84 seats in legislative elections and dealt a setback to the country’s traditional parties.
  • ASIA: China’s state media reported the country’s first local COVID-19 case since February, involving a hospital staff worker at a hospital, who had taken two shots of a vaccine between the end-January and early February.
  • EUROPE: Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan removed another central bank governor after only a few months on the job, the Anadolu news agency reported early Saturday, citing an overnight decree.
  • MIDDLE EAST: With support from Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, Ben Gvir’s Jewish Power party is expected to gain its first spot in the Knesset and possibly even a cabinet position in the next government, aiding the ultranationalist group in its bid for legitimacy. 
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk announced his company would close down if its cars were used to spy, in his first comments on the news that China’s military has banned Teslas from its facilities.

 

Top Story

  • India: US Defense Secretary Austin Lloyd is visiting India to shore up a united front against China and promote ties. 
    • US secretary of defense Lloyd Austin praised India’s growing ties with “like-minded partners” as he conducted talks in New Delhi that were expected to be dominated by discussions of an anti-Chinese alliance.
    • Top defense officials from India and the United States pledged Saturday to expand their military engagement, underscoring the drive to strengthen defense ties between the two countries, concerned over China’s growing influence in the Indo-Pacific region.
    • The United States would like to elevate and strengthen security ties with India, especially in information sharing and logistics, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin told his Indian counterpart.
    • Indian defense minister Rajnath Singh said, “We focused on expanding military-to-military engagement,” and added that talks with the US were comprehensive and fruitful.”
    • Reporting: AFP. AP, Reuters, NDTV,  

 

Africa

  • Region: COVID-19 cases on the African continent have reached 4,076,147, the Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) reported. (Xinhua
  • Ethiopia: The nation recorded 1,994 additional COVID-19 cases in the past 24 hours, bringing the nationwide tally to 183,863, the country’s Ministry of Health reported. (Xinhua
  • Libya: The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) noted concern over the death and injury of children by a landmine in the south of the capital city of Tripoli. (Xinhua)  

 

Americas

  • Region: Three trailer trucks filled with hundreds of migrants have been found in Mexico in the latest sign that many would-be immigrants reject calls from Joe Biden not to attempt trying to enter the United States. (The Guardian
  • Ecuador: The health minister resigned after only 19 days in the job during a growing scandal over the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines to well-connected figures. (AFP
  • El Salvador: The nation’s populist President Nayib Bukele will have control of Congress as of May; official results reported his allies won 61 of 84 seats in legislative elections and dealt a setback to the country’s traditional parties. (AFP)
  • United States: Louisiana will vote for two vacant US House seats in special elections that aren’t expected to change the parties’ balance of power, but that could add a woman to the state’s all-male congressional delegation. (AP

 

Asia  

  • Australia: The nation’s east coast was struck by heavy rains, causing dangerous flash flooding that forced the evacuation of multiple regions as the fast-moving waters unmoored houses, engulfed roads, stranded towns, and cut power lines. (Reuters)
  • China: China’s state media report the country’s first local COVID-19 case since February, involving a hospital staff worker at a hospital, who had taken two shots of a vaccine between end-January and early February. (Reuters)  
  • Myanmar: The nation’s people have significant expectations from the United Nations and the international community following the Feb. 1 coup, with many asking for sanctions and some urging the UN to send peacekeepers to stop the killings of peaceful protesters seeking a return to democracy, the country’s top UN official announced. (AP)  
  • Pakistan: Police are investigating the killing of a local journalist by an unknown hitman at a barbershop in southern Sindh province. (AP

 

Europe

  • France: A month-long COVID-19 lockdown has gone into effect in Paris and other regions, as the country attempts to prevent a possible third wave of cases. (DPA
  • Turkey: President Tayyip Erdogan removed another central bank governor after only a few months on the job, the Anadolu news agency reported early Saturday, citing an overnight decree. (DPA
  • Ukraine: Some 26.3% of citizens of the east and south of the nation are in favor of NATO membership, while 39.9% are against, according to the results of a poll Taken within the nation. (Interfax

 

Middle East

  • Israel: With support from Prime Minister Netanyahu, Ben Gvir’s Jewish Power party is expected to gain its first spot in the Knesset and possibly even a cabinet position in the next government, aiding the ultranationalist group in its bid for legitimacy. (WaPo
  • United Arab Emirates: Dubai’s Road and Transport Authority reported that it had awarded a $147 million (AED542 million) contract for the operation and maintenance of its rail services to a French-Japanese consortium. (Reuters)  
  • Yemen: Houthi forces said they launched attacks at King Khalid Air Base in Khamis Mushait city of southwestern Saudi Arabia, using two explosive-laden drones. (Xinhua)  

 

Tech & Communications

  • Cybersecurity: Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk announced his company would close down if its cars were used to spy, in his first comments on the news that China’s military has banned Teslas from its facilities. (Reuters)  

 

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 20MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases:122,374,789
      • Total recovered cases: 69,325,837
      • Deaths: 2,702,694
      • Countries with confirmed cases: 192 
      • Sourcing: John Hopkins University
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 14MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 18
      • Deaths: 9
      • Sourcing: WHO
    • Ebola Virus Disease: DR Congo (as of 14MAR21)
      • Confirmed cases: 11
      • Deaths: 5
      • Sourcing: WHO

 

Tomorrow’s Outlook (21MAR21)

  • Global: Anti-Racism Day
  • Japan: The nation lifts remaining COVID-19 state of emergency in Tokyo
  • Palestinian Territories: The government launches COVID-19 vaccination program
  • Republic of Congo: Presidential elections

 

END