Author: Juliet Nangini

2021May 2021International NewsAsia

India Continues to Set Global Records in COVID-19 Cases

Every four minutes, someone dies from COVID-19 in Delhi, India. Smoke from mass cremation sites covered the skies in a thick layer, as seen in CNN’s drone footage. On Friday, April 30, the country continued its streak of diagnosing over 300,000 new cases in a single day, the ninth consecutive day with over 200,000 total deaths. There is increasing evidence, however, that the death toll may be five to ten times higher than reported, partly due to the country’s large population of nearly 1.4 billion people. India faces a lack of vaccines, hospital beds, vaccines, and oxygen supplies; even crematoriums are struggling to keep up with the pandemic.

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2021April 2021FocusSeparatist MovementsMiddle East

FOCUS on Separatist Movements: Kurdistan 

Among global separatist movements, the Kurds stand as the largest nation without an independent state and make up the fourth-largest ethnic group in the Middle East, according to BBC News. There is an estimated population of 30 million Kurds scattered across the mountainous regions within the borders of Armenia, Iran, Iraq, Syria, and Turkey. The Kurds often say that they have “no friends but the mountains.” The Economist also reports that “internal division has been one of their worst enemies.”

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2021March 2021FocusVaccine DiplomacyMiddle East

FOCUS on Vaccine Diplomacy: Israel

The world’s most pressing challenge is the rush to inoculate everyone against COVID-19 and achieve herd immunity. Some countries choose to exchange vaccines with foreign nations to reward compliant behavior, while others seek to help countries that do not have access to vaccines. The Soufan Center, a non-profit research center, calls this a “new arms race,” states  France 24. Amid this “vaccine diplomacy” race, Israel is demonstrating its power to the international community and stands as number one in global vaccine rollouts. The country vaccinated almost 60 percent of its residents over 16 years old with the first dose, according to The Wall Street Journal. 

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2021March 2021International NewsMiddle East

Palestine Struggles with Vaccines While the Virus Transcends Borders

Israel stands tall on the international stage with its success in vaccination distribution, while Palestinians under Israeli occupation await access to vaccines. According to Al Jazeera, “[Israel] has already supplied vaccine doses to more than half of its 9.3 million people in just less than two months, making it the world leader in the vaccination drive to inoculate populations.” However, recently, Israel has been criticized for shipping vaccines overseas as Palestinians remain unvaccinated.

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FocusNovember 20202020Elections in the Age of Coronavirus

Focus on Elections During Coronavirus: New Zealand

Many individuals have pointed to the astounding efforts of New Zealand to control COVID-19. Along with the international community, the country’s handling of the coronavirus was also praised by its citizens. This played an important role in the re-election of Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, who orchestrated early virus restrictions. Her immediate plan was to not just control the spread of the virus, but eliminate it entirely.

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October 2020Focus2020Mass Migration

Focus on Mass Migration: Myanmar

The Rohingya population is an estimated one million in Myanmar, which has a majority Buddhist population. Although the Rohingya can trace their origins centuries back, the government denied the Rohingya legal recognition as one of the country’s official ethnic groups. In 1982, the country passed the Burma Citizenship Law, which essentially denied the Rohingya citizenship and left many stateless. The government of Myanmar sees the Rohingya as “illegal immigrants from Bangladesh,” says BBC News.

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October 2020International NewsAsia2020

High level of COVID-19 cases in India is Pushing Children out of School and into Child Labor

As schools have shut down, India is facing an increase in child sex trafficking, child labor, and forced child marriages. To cope with the pressures of the pandemic, families have no option but to send their children to work. Children across India are working in a broad spectrum of fields such as “carpet-weaving, garment-making, domestic service, agriculture, fisheries, and mining,” Reuters says. This issue was already prominent in India and is only worsened by the pandemic.

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September 2020International News2020Middle East

Fire Breaks Out Once Again as Lebanon Deals with the Aftermath of the Beirut Explosions

After the one-month anniversary of the August 4 Beirut explosions that took place in the port of Lebanon’s capital, dark skies blanketed the city once again with two new fires that erupted within the past week. The former erupted on Tuesday, September 8 and the latter blazed through the port just two days after. The fire has since been contained and no new injuries have been reported. According to NPR, the Lebanese army declared that the latter blaze occurred in a warehouse that housed oils and tires in the port’s duty-free area.

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