Key Storylines

  • AFRICA: Japan’s Nagashiki Shipping, the company that owns the vessel behind a major oil spill off Mauritius’ coast, said it felt its responsibility acutely and intends to take steps towards assessing compensation.
  • AMERICAS: Mexico’s President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said former Mexican presidents Enrique Pena Nieto and Felipe Calderon should testify over a growing corruption scandal following a complaint by a former head of state oil firm Pemex.
  • ASIA: New Zealand’s new coronavirus outbreak in the city of Auckland grew to 17 cases, with officials warning the number will likely increase further, with the initial three-day lockdown of the city likely to be extended.
  • EUROPE: The Greek and French militaries reportedly conducted training exercises off the Greek island of Crete amid growing tensions between Athens and Turkey over disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean.
  • MIDDLE EAST: Lebanon’s Parliament held its first session since the last week’s port explosion in capital city Beirut that forced the government to resign and is set to discuss extending the state of emergency in Beirut.
  • TECH & COMMUNICATIONS: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo landed in Slovenia where he is expected to make the case for high-speed wireless networks that bar Chinese companies like Huawei.

 

Top Story

  • Belarus: Police detain 700 protesters overnight, but protests continue.
    • Belarusian police say they detained an additional 700 people overnight for participating in protests over the country’s disputed presidential election.
    • The overnight arrests did not deter protesters, as hundreds of people are back in the streets of capital Minsk to show solidarity with the detained protesters, including large groups of women forming long “lines of solidarity.” in southwestern Minsk where police shot rubber bullets at protesters overnight.
    • The total number of people detained by authorities for protesting in recent days now stands at more than 6,700.
    • Neighboring Lithuania’s Prime Minister Saulius Skvernelis meanwhile announced that Belarusian citizens will be allowed entry into Lithuania “for humanitarian reasons”.
    • Earlier in the day, a 25-year-old man became the second protester to die in police custody, with the UN condemning the use of violence by authorities against the protesters.
    • Reporting: Reuters, AP, AFP, DPA, BBC

 

Africa 

  • Mauritius: Japan’s Nagashiki Shipping, the company that owns the vessel behind a major oil spill off the country’s coast, said it felt its responsibility acutely and intends to take steps towards assessing compensation. (Reuters)
  • Nigeria: A court made the first convictions under the country’s new anti-piracy law which fined three men $52,000 each for hijacking a ship and securing a ransom to release its crew members in March. (BBC)
  • Sudan: The Interior Ministry said the government increased its security presence in the Red Sea state and imposed a curfew in its main sea gateway of Port Sudan after 32 people died in recent tribal clashes. (Reuters)

 

Americas 

  • Bolivia: The government denounced armed protesters, whose blocking of roads it says is preventing vital medical supplies from reaching hospitals amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. (AFP)
  • Brazil: The state of Parana signed a deal with the Russian Direct Investment Fund to potentially test and produce Russia’s new coronavirus vaccine. (AFP)
  • Ecuador: Interior Minister María Paula Romo said former President Abdalá Bucaram is detained in an organized crime probe. (AP)
  • Mexico: President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said former presidents Enrique Pena Nieto and Felipe Calderon should testify over a growing corruption scandal following a complaint by a former head of state oil firm Pemex. (Reuters)
  • United States: Protesters in Bend, Oregon blocked Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials from detaining two men. (AP)

 

Asia 

  • Region: Japanese Foreign Minister Toshimitsu Motegi expressed concern over the arrests of Hong Kong pro-democracy activist Agnes Chow and media tycoon Jimmy Lai. (Reuters)
  • Region: Taiwan will increase its defense spending by $1.4 billion next year, as China announced details of its latest combat drills near the democratic island. (Reuters)
  • New Zealand: The new coronavirus outbreak in the city of Auckland grew to 17 cases, with officials warning the number will likely increase further, with the initial three-day lockdown of the city likely to be extended. (AP)
  • North Korea: US-based think-tank 38 North say satellite imagery shows that recent flooding could have damaged pump houses connected to the country’s main nuclear facility at the Yongbyon Nuclear Scientific Research Center. (Reuters)

 

Europe

  • Region: The Greek and French militaries reportedly conducted training exercises off the Greek island of Crete amid growing tensions between Athens and Turkey over disputed waters in the eastern Mediterranean. (Reuters)
  • Region: The US will maintain 15% tariffs on Airbus aircraft and 25% tariffs on other EU goods. (Reuters)
  • United Kingdom: The country’s police can now stop, question and detain people at the borders on suspicion of espionage or foreign interference, in response to a 2018 chemical attack blamed on Russian agents. (Reuters)

 

Middle East

  • Region: The US said Iranian forces boarded a Liberian chemicals tanker in international waters in the Gulf of Oman, utilizing a helicopter and two ships to take over the vessel for several hours before eventually releasing it. (AFP)
  • Israel: Defense Minister Benny Gantz said the military successfully conducted a test of the country’s advanced missile defense system against long-range ballistic attacks. (AP)
  • Lebanon: Parliament held its first session since the last week’s port explosion in capital city Beirut that forced the government to resign and is set to discuss extending the state of emergency in Beirut. (AP)
  • Saudi Arabia: The country’s 84-year-old monarch is in the under-construction planned city of Neom in the Red Sea region for rest after an operation. (DPA)

 

Tech & Communications

  • Cybersecurity: US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo landed in Slovenia where he is expected to make the case for high-speed wireless networks that bar Chinese companies like Huawei. (AP)

 

World 

  • Cyclones:
    • Tropical Storm Mekkhala
      • Location: 216 nautical miles W-SW of Taipei, Taiwan
      • Wind: 80 mph
      • Movement: N-NW at 13 mph
      • Map
    • Hurricanes:
      • Tropical Depression Eleven
        • Location: 1405 miles E-SE of the Northern Leeward Islands
        • Wind: 35 mph
        • Movement: W at 13 mph
        • Map
      • Earthquakes: Nothing to report.
      • Volcanoes: Nothing to report.
      • Global Disease Outbreaks:
        • COVID-19 Coronavirus Disease: Global
          • Confirmed Cases as of 13AUG20: 20,643,028
          • Total Recovered Cases as of 13AUG20: 12,846,169
          • Deaths as of 13AUG20: 749,764
          • Countries with Confirmed Cases: 188
          • Sourcing: John Hopkins University
        • Ebola Virus Disease: DR Congo (11th Ebola outbreak figures from Equateur Province)
          • Confirmed Cases as of 08AUG20: 75
          • Probable Cases as of 08AUG20: 4
          • Deaths as of 08AUG20: 33
          • Sourcing: WHO

 

Tomorrow’s Outlook (14AUG20)

  • China: The government will release economic data for the month of July.