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Thursday 18th November 2021

Africa


In Sudan, at least 10 people have been shot dead in anti-coup protests. Thousands of people are protesting against last month’s military take-over. They want a democracy and for the coup leaders to be tried in court. The Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors says 10 people have been killed by security forces, who used tear gas and bullets on the protesters.


In Ethiopia, the United Nations believes that at least 1,000 people have been detained by police officers in the last week. Earlier this month, Ethiopia declared a state of emergency due to fighting between government forces and Tigray rebels. Most of the people detained by the Ethiopian police are suspected to be linked to the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front. The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission has said that it is “concerned at some reports of ill-treatment in detention”.


Europe


In Greece, aid workers who were involved in rescuing refugees are facing trial. This week, 24 aid workers associated with the Emergency Response Center International will go on trial for spying and disclosing state secrets. Amnesty International’s European Director Nils Muiznieks has called the charges “farcical” and Human Rights Watch says they are politically motivated.


Hungary’s Stop Soros law breaks EU law, says the European Court of Justice. Hungary’s law makes it illegal for people to help asylum seekers and refugees apply for asylum. On Tuesday, the European Court of Justice ruled that the law means that Hungary has “failed to fulfil its obligations” under EU law.


Asia


In Afghanistan, the Taliban has asked the United States to release frozen Afghan assets. Washington has taken nearly USD 9.5 billion in assets from the Afghan Central Bank since the Taliban took power in August. In an open letter, Taliban Foreign Minister Amir Khan Muttaqi said the biggest challenge facing Afghanistan is financial insecurity, and the problem comes from the American government freezing its assets.


In India, the New Delhi smog is getting worse. Schools have been closed, five coal power plants have been closed and construction work has been banned. The amount of pollution is seven times the safe level. India’s authorities are considering a lockdown to reduce pollution.


Pakistan’s parliament has passed a law allowing electronic voting. Opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif has said that this is an attempt to rig the next elections.


Americas


In the United States, the Centre for Disease Control and Prevention has said that booster vaccines for Covid-19 are working. Director Rochelle Walensky has said that vulnerable people who have had the booster are less likely to become seriously ill.


“Although the highest risk are those people who are unvaccinated, we are seeing an increase in emergency department visits among adults aged 65 and older, which are now again higher than they are for younger age groups.

Similarly we also have new data that look at Covid 19 cases in long term care facilities from our National Healthcare Safety Network. When we compare rates of Covid19 disease between those who are vaccinated with 2 doses and those who have received a booster dose, the rate of disease is markedly lower for those who received their booster shot, demonstrating our boosters are working. So we want to reinforce the importance of people who are eligible getting boosted now, especially those at highest risk for severe diseases.”


Chile’s senate has voted against impeaching president Sebastian Pinera. Pinera has been accused of corruption. In the vote on Tuesday, Pinera’s allies saved the president from being removed from his position and from being banned from public office for five years.


Nicaragua’s president Daniel Ortega and his officials have been banned from the United States by President Joe Biden. Biden has called Ortega’s government undemocratic and authoritarian, after the recent presidential election was described as a “sham”.


Mexican artist Frida Kahlo’s self-portrait has sold at auction for USD 34.9 million, the highest price ever paid for a painting by a South American artist. The painting is called “Diego and I” and shows Kahlo and her husband, Diego Rivera.


That’s your world news in 7 minutes. You can contact us in writing or by audio message at send7.org. I’m Juliet Martin, tomorrow you’ll be with Stephen Devincenzi. Have a lovely day!

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