Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: 11 Nigerian military officers, including Chief of Army Staff Ibrahim Attahiru, died aboard an air force plane in a crash in the country’s northwestern state of Kaduna.
  • AMERICAS: A senator leading the upper house’s inquiry into the government’s handling of the crisis said that Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro never wanted to buy Covid-19 vaccines and initially bet on herd immunity beating the COVID-19.
  • ASIA: The Nepalese president dissolved Parliament and announced fresh elections after the prime minister, who was leading a minority government and was unlikely to gain a vote of confidence in the chamber, recommended the move.
  • EUROPE: The United States blacklisted more than a dozen Russian ships engaged in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, days after exempting the pipeline’s Russian operator and CEO.
  • MIDDLE EAST: An Egyptian diplomat says two teams of Egyptian diplomats are in Israel and the Palestinian territories to continue talks on supporting the cease-fire deal — and securing a long-term calm.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: Hackers have stolen data on about 4.5 million Air India customers worldwide in the newest breach reported by a major airline.

Top Story

  • South Korea- United States: President Biden and President Moon meet in Washington D.C. to strengthen the U.S-South Korean alliance. 
    • The leaders attempt to engage North Korea in dialogue over its nuclear weapons, with Biden saying he would meet its North Korean leader Kim Jong Un under the right conditions.
    • Speaking in a joint press conference at the White House following their talks, Biden promised to provide full vaccinations for all 550,000 South Korean troops “both for their sake, as well as the sake of the American forces.”
    • President Biden appoints ex-Ambassador to South Korea Sung Kim as a special envoy on N. Korea.
    • The United States and South Korea are “deeply concerned” about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program and want to focus on a diplomatic solution, US President Joe Biden stated.
    • Biden thanked South Korean companies, including Samsung, Hyundai, SK, and LG, which announced more than $25 billion in new investments in the U.S, aiding the Biden administration’s goal of building supply chain resilience in its rivalry with China.
    • Reporting: Reuters, YNA, YNA, DPAVOA,

Africa

  • Ghana: The nation has been selected as a possible manufacturing hub by the European Commission for COVID-19 vaccines in Africa. (Xinhua)
  • Nigeria: 11 military officers, including Chief of Army Staff Ibrahim Attahiru, died aboard an air force plane in a crash in the country’s northwestern state of Kaduna. (Xinhua)
  • Nigeria: Terrorism analysts believe that the death of Boko Haram’s leader will increase the influence of Islamic State affiliates. (The Guardian)

Americas

  • Region: Subtropical Storm Ana, the first named storm of the season, has formed northeast of Bermuda in the Atlantic Ocean. (Reuters)
  • Brazil: A senator leading the upper house’s inquiry into the government’s handling of the crisis said that President Jair Bolsonaro never wanted to buy Covid-19 vaccines and initially bet on herd immunity beating COVID-19. (The Guardian)
  • El Salvador: The United States said it would end aid to several authorities in the nation after the country’s new government dismissed constitutional judges. (DPA)
  • United States: California will lift most remaining crowd-capacity limits and physical distancing requirements related to COVID-19 on June 15, proceeding to fully reopen its economy as the vaccination rates increase. (Reuters)

Asia  

  • China: A strong, shallow quake shook the country near the border with Myanmar, killing at least three people and injuring more than two dozen, while a separate 7.3-magnitude earthquake collapsed a bridge and caused damage in the central provinces. (AP)
  • Myanmar: The ruling junta chief threatened to outlaw the political party of ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi over alleged voter fraud in the 2020 election. (AFP)
  • Nepal: The president dissolved Parliament and announced fresh elections after the prime minister, who was leading a minority government and was unlikely to gain a vote of confidence in the chamber, recommended the move. (AP)
  • Taiwan: The nation recorded another increase in domestic COVID-19 cases, but the health minister said the trend remained stable with new infections concentrated in the northern part of the island near Taipei. (Reuters)

Europe

  • Region: The United States blacklisted more than a dozen Russian ships engaged in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, days after exempting the pipeline’s Russian operator and CEO. (RFE)
  • Germany: The nation is adjusting its classification of the United Kingdom to identify it as a “virus variant area” due to the spread of the COVID-19 strain first identified in India. (DPA)
  • Russia: The death toll in an accident at a water treatment plant outside the city of Taganrog, in Russia’s Rostov Region, has risen to 11. (TASS)

Middle East

  • Region: US President Joe Biden promised to support efforts to rebuild Gaza and said creating a Palestinian state alongside Israel is the “only answer” to the conflict. (AFP)
  • Region: An Egyptian diplomat says two teams of Egyptian diplomats are in Israel and the Palestinian territories to continue talks on supporting the cease-fire deal — and securing a long-term calm. (AP)
  • Region: U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced that he will visit Israel and the West Bank to build on the Gaza truce. (Reuters)

Tech & Communications

  • Cybersecurity: Hackers have stolen data on about 4.5 million Air India customers worldwide in the newest breach reported by a major airline. (AFP)

World

  • Cyclones: Nothing to report
  • Hurricanes:
    • Subtropical Storm Ana
      • Location:34.2N 62.2W
      • Movement: WSW
      • Wind:45 mph
      • MAP
  • Earthquakes: Nothing to report
  • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
  • Global Disease Outbreaks:
    • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global (as of 22MAY21)
    • Ebola Virus Disease: Guinea (as of 16MAY21)
      • Confirmed cases: 16
      • Deaths: 12
      • Sourcing: WHO

Tomorrow’s Outlook (23MAY21)

  • Israel: COVID-19 vaccinated tourist groups allowed from today.
  • United States: Rally and march in Minneapolis to mark 1st anniversary of George Floyd’s death.
  • Vietnam: Parliamentary elections.

END