Thursday 20th January 2022


Ukraine’s former president Petro Poroshenko has won a court ruling to avoid being detained. Poroshenko is being investigated for treason. He says the case is politically motivated by allies of current president Volodymyr Zelenskiy. Thousands of Poroshenko’s supporters demonstrated outside the court.

French members of the European Parliament have debated president Emanuel Macron’s domestic policies. Macron was appearing at the National Assembly to set out France’s aims for when it is president of the European Union. For a French president to respond to lawmakers’ questions at the National Assembly is very unusual.

The Czech Republic has removed its policy which made Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory for key workers and over 60s.


Chad has released some of around 250 rebels from prison. Rebel groups have been invited to join national peace-building talks in mid-February. The main rebel group in Chad said it would only attend peace talks if the interim government made gestures of peace.

In South Africa, representatives of the land’s first inhabitants, the Khoi and San, have gone to court to stop the construction of Amazon’s new headquarters. The headquarters would be 70,000 square meters in size and would be built land the groups consider to be sacred.


In Brazil, hundreds of armed police are occupying parts of Rio de Janeiro to combat gangs. Governor Claudio Castro has said it is the start of a new effort to transform poor areas known as “favelas” which are often controlled by drug gangs.

United States Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said that the United States will try to avoid an attack from Russia on Ukraine.

“We will continue our relentless diplomatic efforts to prevent renewed aggression and to promote dialogue and peace. At the same time, we continue to bolster Ukraine’s ability to defend itself and make clear the cost that the US and Europe will impose on Moscow if it rejects the diplomatic path that we’ve laid out and proceeds with an unwarranted, unprovoked unacceptable invasion or destabilisation of Ukraine.

"We have given more security assistance to Ukraine in the last year than at any point since 2014, and as I say we’re doing that on a sustained basis. The deliveries are ongoing - again, as recently as the last few weeks, and more are scheduled in the coming weeks.

"Should Russia carry through with any aggressive intent and renew its aggression and invade Ukraine, we’ll provide additional material beyond that that is already in the pipeline.”


Kazakhstan’s president Kassym-Jomart Tokayev has fired his defence minister. He accused Murat Baktanov of failing to show leadership during Kazakhstan’s recent unrest. Tokayev says the armed forces need modernisation and better military intelligence.

Cambodia has resumed the trial of banned opposition party leader Kem Sokha. Sokha is accused of treason, and the trial was delayed for two years due to the pandemic. The United States has said that the case is politically motivated.

Afghanistan's acting prime minister Mullah Hasan Akhund has called for international governments to officially recognise the Taliban administration.

The Philippines has opened a zoo as a vaccination centre. It hopes to attract young and elderly people who are reluctant to get vaccinated. Manila zoo is offering vaccinations to people aged 12-17 and the elderly, and allowing people who got vaccinated to spend time observing elephants, peacocks and other animals.

That’s your world news in 7 minutes. You can get in touch with us in writing or in an audio message at I’m Juliet Martin, tomorrow you will be with Stephen Devincenzi. Have a great day.

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