Tuesday 7th September 2021
In Afghanistan, the Taliban have declared victory over the province of Panjshir, what was the last part of Afghanistan not to be controlled by the Taliban. Yesterday, the group posted footage online of their fighters raising their flag. Resistance fighters however said they will continue to fight. Their leader has called for a "national uprising" against the Taliban. The Taliban took control of the rest of Afghanistan three weeks ago. They took over the capital, Kabul, after the collapse of the government. It comes nearly 20 years after US forces led an invasion to take down the Taliban.
In Australia, nearly half a million doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine arrived yesterday. This is the first batch from a swap deal with Britain. Under the deal, Australia will send the same amount of doses back to the UK later in the year. Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the extra vaccines would help Australia come out of its lockdowns sooner.
In Guinea, the leader of the coup which removed the President said a new "union" government will be formed in weeks. Yesterday, Col Mamady Doumbouya also said there would be no punishment or imprisonment of former officials, but that they could not leave Guinea and had to hand over their official vehicles to the military. President Condé remains in detention. The United Nations and the African Union have condemned the coup and called for a return to civilian rule. Col Doumbouya said his soldiers had taken over because they wanted to end corruption and human rights issues.
In Tunisia, former presidential candidate Nabil Karoui has been sent to jail. He has been charged with entering Algeria illegally and is awaiting trial. Mr Karoui, the leader of the second largest party in Tunisia, had been arrested last month together with four others, including his brother. In 2019, Mr Karoui was jailed in Tunisia while running his presidential campaign. He was released but is still under investigation for money laundering and tax evasion.
In the UK, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has promised not to abandon UK allies left behind in Afghanistan. He said the UK would do "everything possible" to help Afghans who worked for British forces get out safely.
BJ: “So, let me say to anyone to whom we’ve made commitments and who is currently in Afghanistan: We are working urgently with our friends in the region to secure a safe passage, and as soon as roots are available, we will do everything possible to help you to reach safety.”
In The Netherlands, families of those killed on flight MH17 in 2014 have begun to testify at the trial of four suspects. International investigators say the plane was shot down over Ukraine with a missile fired by pro-Russian rebels. About 90 relatives will speak in court over the next three weeks. Three Russians and a Ukrainian are on trial but none of them will appear in court. All four have denied involvement. The Malaysian Airlines flight was travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur when it was shot down.
In Mexico, a statue of Christopher Columbus will be replaced by a statue honouring indigenous women. The well known Columbus statue was taken down ahead of an annual demonstration last year. The mayor of Mexico City said the new statue aims to give “social justice” for the historic role of women in Mexico, particularly Indigenous women.
In the United States, yesterday was labour day. President Joe Biden marked the Labor Day holiday by delivering sandwiches to union members, the people he says built the middle class.
And finally, NASA has confirmed that its Perseverance rover has collected its first rock sample on Mars. This is the first time a rock collected on another planet that will be returning to Earth.
And that’s your World News in 7 minutes. Find transcripts or send us a message at send7.org. I’m Namitha Ragunath, and tomorrow you will be with Stephen Devincenzi. Have a great day.