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Wednesday 1st July 2020

Starting in Asia today…

The international community has criticised China for its new security law in Hong Kong. Democracy activists and international organizations say that the new law will damage Hong Kong’s freedoms. A group of 27 countries, including EU members, the UK, Australia and Japan, have asked China to reconsider the new law, and have asked Beijing to maintain the right to free speech in Hong Kong. Australia has received refugee applications from Hong Kongers. Yesterday Hong Kong leader Carrie Lam said that the law was necessary for Hong Kong’s stability…

“The legislation will not undermine one country two systems and Hong Kong’s high degree of autonomy Hong Kong is a free and diversified society. We respect differences in opinion and thrive on reaching consensus but the one country principal is non-negotiable, and cannot be compromised as without one country, two systems will stand on shaky ground and Hong Kong’s stability and prosperity will be at risk.”


In Iran gas explosions have killed at least 19 people. Last night there were explosions at a medical facility, expected to be caused by a gas leak. Fires continued into the night.


Vietnam yesterday suspended all Pakistani pilots from flying. The Vietnamese aviation authority said that Pakistani pilots are temporarily suspended from flying, because last week 260 Pakistanis were found to have fraudulent licenses. For the same reason, the European Union has suspended the flights of Pakistan International Airlines.


Americas

The United States has been reporting its highest rates of daily coronavirus infections recently. Yesterday the governments top disease expert Anthony Fauci, said that if precautions are not taken, daily cases could reach 100,000…

“We can’t just focus on those areas that are having the surge. It puts the entire country at risk. We are now having forty plus thousand new cases a day. I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around, so I am very concerned.

United States Presidential candidate Joe Biden has said that he will not hold any campaign rallies before the election in November, because of the coronavirus pandemic. He said that Donald Trump was driving people apart, instead of bringing people together…

“Today we are facing a serious threat, and we have to meet it. We have to meet it as one country. But the president gives us no direction, and he pits us against one another. We can’t continue like this – half recovering – and half getting worse. We cant continue, with half wearing masks and half rejecting science. We can’t continue – half with a plan, and half just hoping for the best.


Latin America quickly… Venezuela’s President Nicolas Maduro has ordered the head of the European Union in Venezuela to leave the country. This is in response to EU sanctions against 11 Venezuelan officials. In Colombia soldiers have been accused of raping a 15 year old indigenous girl. This is the second accusation of child rape by Colombian soldiers in two weeks.


Europe

United Kingdom Prime Minister Boris Johnson yesterday announced plans to spend billions of pounds on the infrastructure of the UK. Johnson spoke yesterday with a new slogan, of ‘Build, Build, Build’…

“And with every home we make, with every mile of full-fibre broadband that we lay, every flood defending culvert that we dig, with every railway station, hospital or school that we build, we will of course be tackling the next wave of this crisis, by helping to create thousands of high paid, high skilled jobs.”


Africa

In Sudan hundreds of thousands of people protested for reforms yesterday. These have been the first protests for a year, since a transitional council was started – made of half military and half civilian members. The transitional council is expected to control Sudan until elections in 2022.


In Mauritania yesterday the G5 Sahel bloc met – the leaders of Burkina Faso, Chad, Mali, Niger and Mauritania were joined by French President Emmanuel Macron. Speaking in Noukachott, Macron declared support for the continuing fight against jihadist extremism in the Sahel, and said that it is necessary for stability in Africa and Europe.


In Ethiopia there have been large protests after the killing of a popular singer. Hachalu Hundessa, a musician and activist, was shot dead in Capital Addis Ababa. At least 8 people have died in continuing protests. The police say they are investigating the death of Hachalu Hundessa. This podcast will end with some music of Hundessa, who sang in the Oromo language…

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