In the United Kingdom COP26, the 26th United Nations conference on climate change, has ended. A final deal was agreed by all countries, however a last minute intervention by India and China reduced the importance of the deal. Within the final hours of the conference India and China said that the agreement should change the words “phase out coal” to “phase down coal”. Alok Sharma, the president of the conference, cried as he told the conference that he was incredibly sorry for the change - which is suspected to mean that India and China will continue to burn coal for energy for many more years....
“Ma y I just say to all delegates I apologize for the way this process has unfolded, and I am deeply sorry. I also understand the deep disappointment. But I think as you have noted, it is also vital that we protect this package.”
Coal is the world’s biggest contributor to global warming. India's environment minister Bhupender Yadav said that developing countries have a right to use coal for their development...
“Developing countries have a right to their fair share of the global carbon budget, and are entitled to the responsible use of fossil fuels within this scope. Developing countries have still to deal with their development agendas and poverty eradication.”
Other deals signed at COP 26 include agreements on methane use, deforestation, electric cars, and the financing of the fossil fuel industry. Antonio Guterres, the head of the UN, said that not enough had been done, and that the world needs to move into ‘emergency mode’...
“We must accelerate action to keep the 1.5 degree goal alive. Our fragile planet is hanging by a thread. We are still knocking on the door of climate catastrophe. It is time to go into emergency mode.”
Belarus has said that it will stop flying in people from Iraq, Syria and Yemen. The European Union has accused Belarus of deliberately helping illegal immigration from Belarus into Poland and other EU countries. Thousands of migrants are currently stuck in freezing cold temperatures on the border between Belarus and Poland and 8 people have died, according to Reuters news agency. The European Union has threatened to place more sanctions on Belarus, and any airline which flies illegal immigrants into Belarus.
In Tunisia there were protests this weekend against President Kais Saied. In July Saied suspended parliament and fired the Prime Minister, giving himself near total control of Tunisia.
In Burkina Faso, two attacks this weekend killed at least 25 people, mostly policemen. No group has claimed responsibility for the attacks, near the borders with Niger and Mali, however islamist groups are common in the area.
In the Spanish Canary Islands, migrants have died when trying to cross from West Africa. Coastguards on the Canary Islands yesterday found the bodies of eight African migrants in a boat. Sixty-two migrants were rescued - all men and one12-year old boy, and many are critically ill after their boat drifted for one week. According to government data, more than 13,000 migrants have made the journey from West Africa to the Canary Islands since the beginning of this year.
In Libya, the son of former leader Muammar Gaddafi has announced that he will run for president. Saif al-Islam Gaddafi registered yesterday, to be a candidate in the election on 24th December. After Muammar Gaddafi was killed in 2011, Libya entered a civil war which resulted in the East and the West of the country being controlled by rival governments. This will be the first nationwide election since 2014.
In Ecuador a prison riot has killed at least 68 people. The Litoral prison in Guayaquil is the same prison where over a hundred prisoners were killed in fighting in September. Fighting between rival gangs in prisons in Ecuador has killed more than 300 prisoners this year. The Ecuadorian army found knives and guns in the prison.
Argentina held elections for its Congress and Senate yesterday. Polls show that the party of President Alberto Fernandez may lose the majority that they have in the senate. In Argentina voting is obligatory.
India’s capital city - Delhi, is shutting its schools for a week because of pollution. Construction won’t be permitted for 4 days. Scientists have said that breathing in Delhi at the moment is equivalent to smoking 20 cigarettes a day.
In Iran there were two strong earthquakes yesterday. A 6.4 magnitude earthquake was followed by a 6.3 magnitude earthquake one minute later. One person is known to have died.
Chinese President Xi Jinping and US President Joe Biden will have a virtual meeting today. Relations between the US and China have been bad recently, because of China’s position on Taiwan. Taiwan is a fully functioning independent democracy, that has been separate from China since 1949, however China claims Taiwan as part of its territory.
Japan’s former Princess Mako has left Japan to start a new life in the United States. Mako Komuro officially left the royal family two weeks ago, in order to marry her non-royal partner. In the Japanese royal family, only men can become emperor, however some polls have shown that most people in Japan would like to change this rule - to allow female emperors.
That's your world news in 7 minutes. You can read the transcripts for every episode at send7.org. They are totally free. I’m Stephen Devincenzi. Tomorrow you will be with our new guest presenter Juliet Martin. Have a great day.