Ethiopian Government Declares Humanitarian Ceasefire in Tigray

Ethiopian and Tigrayan leaders have agreed to a humanitarian ceasefire to halt the civil conflict that has raged in the country’s northern Tigray region for over a year. The United Nations and other international actors are hopeful that the cessation of fighting will allow for humanitarian aid to the region. Reuters reports that the ceasefire comes at a time when “more than 90 percent of the 5.5 million Tigrayans need food aid,” despite Ethiopian authorities affirming that aid deliveries have never been impeded.

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Myanmar Military Vows to ‘Annihilate’ Resistance

Myanmar’s military vowed to crack down on opposition forces as the nation celebrated its Armed Forces Day, reports Al Jazeera. The leader of Myanmar, Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, claimed that his forces would ‘annihilate’ civilian opposition groups and urged ethnic minorities away from supporting militia groups that oppose the Tatmadaw, the country’s military-led government. However, one civilian resistance group, the National Unity Government, prompted people to take part in a ‘Power Strike’, turning off their lights and TVs during the parade broadcast ABC News reports. 

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India’s Neutral Foreign Policy Threatened by Ukraine Crisis

On February 24, Russia made the conscious decision to invade Ukraine for yet another time since 2014. This active encroachment into non-Russian territory, which was condemned internationally, triggered the largest refugee crisis in Europe since World War II, reports Reuters. Although Europe has been heavily affected by this Russian aggression, the actions taken by those less impacted by the conflict will set the tone for how the international community reacts to similar crises in the future.

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Russian Attacks on Mariupol Devastate the City

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky compared the ongoing Russian siege of Mariupol as mirroring the Nazi siege of Leningrad in a speech on March 16 as the city underwent heavy bombardment by the Russian military, reports The Guardian. This comparison may not be entirely inaccurate, as The Red Cross claims that the Russian Siege of Mariupol is veering towards a humanitarian crisis. Ukrainian reports estimate nearly 3,000 civilians have been killed.

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With the World Watching, Could Taiwan be at Risk?

Considering the strategic and symbolic significance of Taiwan to the People’s Republic of China, several experts have argued that China’s invasion of the island is a matter of when and not if. Many have questioned Chinese President Xi Jinping’s decision to support Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, given that Russia’s actions are in direct contradiction to China’s century-long foreign policy tenet of non-interference.

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FOCUS on Ukraine: Global Sanctions

Although the United States and its European allies have so far avoided direct military contact with the Russian armed forces, they have engaged in a different kind of warfare. Economic warfare has been employed to deter further Russian aggression in Ukraine and punish the regime for its illegal territorial expansion.

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FOCUS on Ukraine: Refugees

Since Russia invaded Ukraine on February 24, an estimated 3.1 million Ukrainians have fled the country, reported by the Brookings Institution as of March 18.  It is currently estimated that the number may reach 4 million if Russia’s military offensive continues at its current rate.  

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Global Reactions to Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine

Across the globe, the world is shunning Russia in a multitude of ways to protest President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. As The New York Times examines, from culture to commerce and sports to travel, many doors have been closed on Russia and its people, in a capacity not seen since the days of the Cold War. Such a worldwide rejection of Russia has been intended to show solidarity with the beleaguered  Ukrainians, while also attempting to force President Putin to pull back Russian forces.

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FOCUS on Ukraine: Ukrainian Resistance

Ukrainians have mounted a “stiffer-than-expected” military and civil resistance since Russian troops invaded the country in late February, the New York Times reports. 

The Ukrainian military, one of Europe’s largest with over 370,000 active and reserve troops, has spent billions training its soldiers to counter Russian offenses in the aftermath of the annexation of Crimea in 2014. Thus far, it appears that their efforts have paid off – Russia, despite its military and economic advantages, has managed to capture only one major city in 10 days, the southern city of Kherson.

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Sanctions May Not Stop Putin, But They Will Certainly Hurt the Russian People

As the world watched in horror while Vladimir Putin launched his illegal and indefensible invasion of Ukraine, many immediately called for the harshest sanctions possible to be imposed on Putin’s regime. The United States and its allies showed remarkable unity in implementing comprehensive sanctions targeting key sectors of the Russian economy. According to Vox, the U.S. and Europe immediately sanctioned Putin and other Russian oligarchs by freezing their assets and confiscating properties belonging to individuals close to the Russian government. 

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