Biden Administration Re-enacts Remain in Mexico Policy

The Biden administration ‘reluctantly’ reactivated the controversial “Remain in Mexico” policy on December 6, despite efforts taken by United States President Joe Biden to permanently end it on his first day in office, NPR reports. The policy, which was initially implemented under the Trump administration in 2019, targets single men, women, and family units, but will not affect unaccompanied minors.

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Putin’s Visit to India Complicates Geopolitical Relations with the United States and China

On Monday, December 6, Russian President Vladimir Putin traveled to India to meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and discuss the maintenance and growth of relations between the two states. In just his second international trip since the global emergence of COVID-19, Putin’s arrival comes amid complex geopolitical developments throughout Asia.

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African Nations Push Back Against Omicron Travel Bans

Several African nations are pushing back against what they call a discriminatory imposition of travel bans on countries in Southern Africa following the emergence of the Omicron COVID-19 variant. The protests come amidst the fact that despite cases of the new variant being discovered in several countries, including Israel, Hong Kong, The United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, and The Czech Republic, travel bans have only been placed against countries in Africa, reports CNN.

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Emergence of Omicron Variant Provokes Global Fears

On November 26, 2021, the World Health Organization (WHO) distinguished the COVID-19 variant B.1.1.529, or Omicron. Although South Africa was the first nation to report the Omicron variant to WHO on November 24, scientists are unsure of where and when it originated. According to The Washington Post, the variant has been detected all over the world, including in the United States, UK, EU, Israel, Hong Kong, and Botswana.

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Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega Re-Elected in Denounced Election

Early results from the Nicaraguan general election on November 7 indicate that incumbent President Daniel Ortega has won by a landslide, BBC News reports. The result was unsurprising to many onlookers across the globe, as President Ortega secured nearly 76 percent of the vote, winning his fourth consecutive term in office. 

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Belarus Accused of Inciting Border Crisis

Belarus has come under fire from the European community for what is seen as an orchestrated attempt to destabilize Poland and Lithuania and pressure the EU to relax sanctions on President Aleksandr Lukashenko’s regime in Belarus. These tensions stem from an ongoing border crisis, in which migrants are being systematically pressured, in part by Belarusian officials, to enter Europe through Belarus’s border with Poland and Lithuania.

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WHO Rejects Turkmenistan’s Zero-COVID Claim

The government of Turkmenistan continues to claim it is free of the COVID-19 pandemic, despite growing backlash from opposition groups abroad and a visit from the World Health Organization (WHO). The Central Asian former Soviet Republic is one of nine nations that has yet to report a single COVID-19 case, according to ABC News.

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Bosnia Risks Implosion Amid Serb President’s Ethnic Rhetoric

Decades-old tensions are flaring in Bosnia and Herzegovina as the leader of one of the country’s three dominant groups moves toward secession. The Balkan nation is governed by an ethnicity-based system of government featuring three presidents: one Bosniak, one Croat, and one Serb.

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A Summary of the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference

On November 12, The United Nations Climate Change Summit, known this year as COP26, came to an end in Glasgow, Scotland. The conference, which started on October 31, saw roughly 20,000 heads of state, diplomats, and activists meet in person after being delayed from last year due to COVID-19. Following two weeks of climate change negotiations, world leaders of the Conference of the Parties discussed topics such as climate impacts, fossil fuel policy, and climate finance.

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