Thursday, October 28, 2021

Kidnap Crisis in Nigeria

Nigeria has seen an alarming rise in mass school kidnappings in the past year and especially these last few months, leaving at least 1 million students unsure as to whether they will be able to attend school this year due to safety concerns. Armed groups have targeted schools to carry out their mass abductions for ransom, with more than 1,400 children abducted and 16 dead so far this year. At this point, 200 are still missing, leaving “families and communities remain[ing] fearful of sending children back to their classrooms”, said Peter Hawkins, UNICEF Representative in Nigeria.

America Pulls Out of Afghanistan

20 years after the most awful terrorist attack in American history on September 11, 2001, the United States has pulled out of its longest war in history. Started under George W. Bush to focus on finding Osama bin Laden and bring down the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, Operation Enduring Freedom marked the rise of America’s presence in Afghanistan when airstrikes bombed Kabul on October 7, 2001. After losing over 2,400 American soldiers and over 40,000 Afghani civilians, the Taliban continues to freely operate in Afghanistan. 

Belarus Forces Down Airliner to Arrest Dissident-Grace Hwang

International outrage has been mounting ever since what is being called a “state-sponsored hijacking” that occurred on Sunday, May 23. A Ryanair flight carrying about 120 passengers headed to Vilnius, Lithuania from Athens, Greece, was intercepted by a Belarusian fighter jet mid-flight and ordered to land in Belarus’ capital, Minsk, due to “a potential security threat on board”.

Drug Crisis in Africa

As the opioid epidemic continues in North America, the same crisis has slowly grown in Africa over the last decade. Tramadol - an opioid used to treat pain - has spread throughout the continent in alarming amounts. In 2013, 300kg of the substance was seized in Africa. By 2017, it had gone up to three tons. Currently, 87% of opioid seizures globally occur in Africa, and the future does not look promising for the already struggling continent.

United Kingdom Elections

On May 6, voters in England, Scotland, and Wales headed to the polls. In England, voters voted for candidates for their respective local councils. In Scotland and Wales, voters voted in their respective regional parliaments.

Sheikh Jarrah Protests Escalate

As the conflict between Israel and Palestine escalates in the Middle East, many across the globe are expressing their support for one side or another. Tensions are building up across Israel and Palestine, in particular across the Gaza Strip, which is occupied by Hamas, a Palestinian militant group, where much of the fighting has taken place. In fact, a building containing AP and Al Jazeera offices in Gaza was destroyed by Israeli forces.

Colombia Protests Turn Deadly

At least 42 people have died so far in ongoing protests across Colombia. The protests began on April 28th as demonstrations against a new economic policy proposed by President Iván Duque that was meant to address the country’s pandemic-related economic deficit. However, the proposal to increase taxes on household items like milk, eggs, and utilities, as well putting an income tax on those who earn more than 2.4 million Colombian pesos (about $624) a month, really became proof of the disconnect between government policies and the predicament of the working class in the eyes of the Columbian people. The protests then evolved from there, encompassing the public’s demand for a solution to the scarceness of vaccines in the country, the ever-deepening poverty and inequality, and police violence.

India Now Facing Destructive Second Wave

The biggest problem comes from hospital’s lack of resources to handle the magnitude of cases they are now experiencing. Specifically, an oxygen shortage has families crowding outside hospitals in major cities, dying from lack of oxygen while waiting for a hospital bed.

Prince Philip Dies at 99

Prince Philip would be known for a lifetime of public service representing the British royal family at public events. Prince Philip was commonly referred to as the Duke of Edinburgh. He was the longest lived male member of the royal family.

Chad’s President Dies on the Battlefield

Following clashes with local rebels, Chad’s president Idriss Déby died of injuries on April 19. After winning his sixth term in office, Déby was scheduled to give a victory speech on Monday. However, he decided to visit soldiers battling local rebels north of N’Djamena. No public information has been released on the specific circumstances of his death.

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