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News

August 16, 2018

Trump, Seeking to Relax Rules on U.S. Cyberattacks, Reverses Obama Directive

By Dustin Volz | The Wall Street Journal (subscription required)

President Trump has reversed an Obama-era memorandum dictating how and when the U.S. government can deploy cyberweapons against its adversaries, in an effort to loosen restrictions on such operations, according to people familiar with the action.

ISIS Member Arrested in Sacramento, U.S. Says

By Matt Stevens & Gabe Cohn | The New York Times

Federal authorities said Wednesday they had arrested an Iraqi national and longtime member of al-Qaida and the Islamic State who fled after killing an Iraqi police officer in 2014, eventually settling in Sacramento as a purported refugee.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

News

August 15, 2018

Trump Administration Sanctions Companies Helping North Korea

By Alan Rappeport | The New York Times

The Trump administration announced new sanctions on Wednesday against three organizations and an individual accused of facilitating illicit shipments to North Korea, keeping pressure on the government of Kim Jong Un amid ongoing negotiations over the dismantling of his nuclear program.

The Americas

News

August 16, 2018

Brazil’s Attorney General Raquel Dodge filed an objection on Wednesday against the presidential candidacy of former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva before the Superior Electoral Court, after the Workers’ Party officially named him as its presidential candidate in the October election.

More from WPR: Brazil’s Workers’ Party May Soon Be Forced to Start Pondering Life After Lula

Japan’s Foreign Minister Arrives in Colombia for Bilateral Visit

By The Editors | Latin American Herald Tribune

The Japanese minister of foreign affairs arrived in Bogota on Wednesday for a two-day visit in which he will meet with the Colombian authorities to review the issues on a bilateral agenda, Colombia’s foreign ministry said.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Cautious Conservatism in Canada Won’t Outshine Trudeau

By J.J. McCullough | The Washington Post

Andrew Scheer, the head of Canada’s Conservative Party, has 14 months to make the case that he would not merely make a decent prime minister, but a better one than Justin Trudeau. Only by doing so can he convince voters to make the relatively unprecedented move of unseating an incumbent Canadian majority government after a single term.

Europe

News

August 16, 2018

Protesters in Russia Accuse Government of Entrapping Young Critics

By Neil MacFarquhar & Ivan Nechepurenko | The New York Times

Hundreds of demonstrators walked through downtown Moscow on Wednesday to protest against a growing number of arrests of young Russians on extremism charges for material shared or stored on social media sites.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Seven years ago, when Arabs revolted against their autocratic rulers, European leaders engaged in a collective mea culpa. From now on, democracy and human rights would be the cornerstones of the European Union’s Middle East policy, they vowed. But the high-mindedness was short-lived. Driven by a fear of migrants, European governments have once again embraced strongmen.

Why Putin’s Approval Ratings Are Declining Sharply

By Andrei Kolesnikov | Foreign Affairs

In the last few months, rising public frustrations over domestic policy and a government proposal to weaken the social safety net have led to a sharp decline in Putin’s popularity. For Russia’s political class, this decline is a sign that Putin’s ratings have lost their cloak of invulnerability, a development that could have real implications for his new term and the potential succession fight to follow.

Africa

News

August 16, 2018

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Africa Cannot Count on a Demographic Dividend

By David Pilling | Financial Times (subscription required)

If you asked people to identify the most important trends shaping the world, many would name climate change, the rise of China, the potential of artificial intelligence or the surge of nationalism. Few would mention the dramatic increase of the population in a continent that to many is an afterthought.

Middle East & North Africa

News

August 16, 2018

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Asia-Pacific

News

August 16, 2018

Two women on trial for the brazen assassination of the North Korean leader’s half brother were told Thursday to make their defense after the judge found evidence of a “well-planned conspiracy,” extending their murder trial until next year.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Is a Korean Peace Deal Impossible?

By Mitchell Blatt | The National Interest

If South Korea is having trouble arriving at a peace deal with the North at the height of progressive power, then that does not bode well for health of a peace regime.

News

August 15, 2018

Suicide Bomber Targets Shiite Students in Kabul, Killing 48

By Rahim Faiez & Amir Shah | Associated Press

A suicide bomber struck a private education center in a Shiite neighborhood of Kabul on Wednesday where high school graduates were preparing for university entrance exams, killing 48 young men and women and leaving behind a scene of devastation and tragedy.

United States

News

August 16, 2018

Trump, Seeking to Relax Rules on U.S. Cyberattacks, Reverses Obama Directive

By Dustin Volz | The Wall Street Journal (subscription required)

President Trump has reversed an Obama-era memorandum dictating how and when the U.S. government can deploy cyberweapons against its adversaries, in an effort to loosen restrictions on such operations, according to people familiar with the action.

ISIS Member Arrested in Sacramento, U.S. Says

By Matt Stevens & Gabe Cohn | The New York Times

Federal authorities said Wednesday they had arrested an Iraqi national and longtime member of al-Qaida and the Islamic State who fled after killing an Iraqi police officer in 2014, eventually settling in Sacramento as a purported refugee.

Trump Says He Is in ‘No Rush’ to Renegotiate NAFTA

By Michael C. Bender | The Wall Street Journal (subscription required)

President Trump said that negotiations have stalled over his attempt to rewrite the North American Free Trade Agreement and that he is no longer in a hurry to overhaul the pact.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

News

August 15, 2018

Trump Administration Sanctions Companies Helping North Korea

By Alan Rappeport | The New York Times

The Trump administration announced new sanctions on Wednesday against three organizations and an individual accused of facilitating illicit shipments to North Korea, keeping pressure on the government of Kim Jong Un amid ongoing negotiations over the dismantling of his nuclear program.

U.S.-Turkey Tensions Could Stall Progress Against ISIS, Officials Say

By Helene Cooper & Eric Schmitt | The New York Times

American and European intelligence and counterterrorism officials said on Tuesday that the escalating tensions between President Trump and President Recep Tayyip Erdogan of Turkey could jeopardize information sharing and law enforcement cooperation between the two countries as they fight the Islamic State in Syria.

U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Wednesday pledged closer defense cooperation with Argentina. Standing beside his Argentinian counterpart, Oscar Aguad, Mattis said the military partnership can be strengthened. He alluded to the help the U.S. Navy provided Argentina last November when one of its submarines went missing with 44 sailors aboard.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

The U.S.-Canadian Relationship Must Remain Strong

By Paul R. Pillar | The National Interest

The Trump administration’s treatment of Canada is deeply disturbing for reasons that go far beyond personal fondness. Americans owe Canadians an apology—if not for voting for Donald Trump, then for somehow making his abusive treatment of our northern neighbor possible.

Tucked inside the $716 billion John McCain 2019 National Defense Authorization Act that President Trump signed Monday is a provision barring any U.S. university from using Pentagon resources for any program involving Confucius Institutes, Chinese government-funded language schools embedded inside U.S. colleges.

The Americas

News

August 16, 2018

Brazil’s Attorney General Raquel Dodge filed an objection on Wednesday against the presidential candidacy of former president Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva before the Superior Electoral Court, after the Workers’ Party officially named him as its presidential candidate in the October election.

More from WPR: Brazil’s Workers’ Party May Soon Be Forced to Start Pondering Life After Lula

Japan’s Foreign Minister Arrives in Colombia for Bilateral Visit

By The Editors | Latin American Herald Tribune

The Japanese minister of foreign affairs arrived in Bogota on Wednesday for a two-day visit in which he will meet with the Colombian authorities to review the issues on a bilateral agenda, Colombia’s foreign ministry said.

Brazil’s Temer Backs Other Party’s Presidential Candidate

By Mauricio Savarese | Associated Press

Brazilian President Michel Temer is endorsing another party’s candidate as well as his own in October’s presidential election. Temer said in an interview published Thursday by the Folha de S.Paulo newspaper that he sees former Sao Paulo Gov. Geraldo Alckmin of the right-leaning Brazilian Social Democracy Party as a candidate who would carry on with his work.

More from WPR: Fed Up With Corrupt Politicians, Can Brazilians Resist the Lure of Demagogues?

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Cautious Conservatism in Canada Won’t Outshine Trudeau

By J.J. McCullough | The Washington Post

Andrew Scheer, the head of Canada’s Conservative Party, has 14 months to make the case that he would not merely make a decent prime minister, but a better one than Justin Trudeau. Only by doing so can he convince voters to make the relatively unprecedented move of unseating an incumbent Canadian majority government after a single term.

News

August 15, 2018

Ex-Dictatorship Police Agents Sentenced in Chile

By AP Editors | Associated Press

Chile’s Supreme Court has sentenced 24 former police agents to prison for the disappearance of a man who was arrested during the “dirty war” crackdown on leftists under dictator Augusto Pinochet.

One Dead, Two Arrested in Mega-Operation Involving 1,900 Soldiers in Rio

By The Editors | Latin American Herald Tribune

The Brazilian army carried out on Tuesday a mega-operation involving over 1,900 security personnel in several communities in the western zone of Rio de Janeiro, resulting in one dead, two suspects arrested and one minor detained, according to official sources.

Election season has officially started in Brazil and a record 13 candidates are due to register for October’s presidential poll. They will face a tough task: trying to win over a polarized electorate, rocked in recent years by mammoth corruption scandals, a deep recession and rising violence.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

Europe

News

August 16, 2018

Protesters in Russia Accuse Government of Entrapping Young Critics

By Neil MacFarquhar & Ivan Nechepurenko | The New York Times

Hundreds of demonstrators walked through downtown Moscow on Wednesday to protest against a growing number of arrests of young Russians on extremism charges for material shared or stored on social media sites.

Turkey Arrests Another German Citizen

By DW Editors | Deutsche Welle

Another German citizen has been arrested by Turkish police on charges of terrorism after criticizing the Turkish government online, his lawyer said on Thursday. Ilhami A., 46, was arrested on Tuesday morning while visiting his mother in the town of Saribasak in a largely Kurdish region of eastern Turkey, public broadcaster ARB reported.

More from WPR: The Cost of a German Breakup With Turkey

Russian Strategic Bombers Deploy Near Alaska

By AP Editors | Associated Press

The Russian military says that two nuclear-capable strategic bombers have flown to the easternmost Chukotka Peninsula, near Alaska, as part of an air force exercise.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Seven years ago, when Arabs revolted against their autocratic rulers, European leaders engaged in a collective mea culpa. From now on, democracy and human rights would be the cornerstones of the European Union’s Middle East policy, they vowed. But the high-mindedness was short-lived. Driven by a fear of migrants, European governments have once again embraced strongmen.

Why Putin’s Approval Ratings Are Declining Sharply

By Andrei Kolesnikov | Foreign Affairs

In the last few months, rising public frustrations over domestic policy and a government proposal to weaken the social safety net have led to a sharp decline in Putin’s popularity. For Russia’s political class, this decline is a sign that Putin’s ratings have lost their cloak of invulnerability, a development that could have real implications for his new term and the potential succession fight to follow.

News

August 15, 2018

The U.N. refugee agency is urging European countries to end a string of impasses over ships carrying rescued migrants and put together a Mediterranean regional arrangement that makes clear where such vessels can dock.

Russia’s President Vladimir Putin will hold “a possible energy dialogue” amid other bilateral issues with his Turkmen counterpart Kurbanguly Berdymukhamedov later on Wednesday, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told a conference call with reporters.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

How Europe Can Learn to Stop Worrying and Love Power

By Zaki Laidi | Project Syndicate

Faced with Donald Trump’s inward-looking America, Europe must reestablish itself as a true global player, not by attempting to emulate a classic superpower, but rather by consolidating and deploying different types of power. To do so, however, it must address three key weaknesses.

Europe Must Let Us Rescue Lives in the Mediterranean

By Peter Martin | The Washington Post

We’re amateurs, and this summer our job became harder. During two weeks in June 2017, we intercepted and rescued more than 300 migrants. But this year we couldn’t help anyone. The European Union has tried to stop our operations while handing over search-and-rescue responsibilities to the Libyan coast guard.

News

August 14, 2018

Malta to Let Rescue Boat Dock With 141 Migrants Aboard

By Stephen Calleja & Barry Hatton | Associated Press

Malta on Tuesday agreed to let a private rescue ship dock on the island, with the 141 migrants it is carrying to be distributed among five fellow European Union nations in what was described as a “responsibility-sharing exercise.”

The leader of Bosnia’s Serbs denied on Tuesday that genocide was committed in Srebrenica and called for the withdrawal of a government report that acknowledged the massacre of more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys in the eastern Bosnian enclave in 1995—triggering possible new tensions in the war-scarred Balkan state.

Africa

News

August 16, 2018

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Africa Cannot Count on a Demographic Dividend

By David Pilling | Financial Times (subscription required)

If you asked people to identify the most important trends shaping the world, many would name climate change, the rise of China, the potential of artificial intelligence or the surge of nationalism. Few would mention the dramatic increase of the population in a continent that to many is an afterthought.

News

August 15, 2018

Ebola Outbreak Spreads to Conflict Zone in Democratic Republic of Congo

By Nicholas Bariyo | The Wall Street Journal (subscription required)

A deadly outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo has spread outside the province of North Kivu, the country’s health ministry said Tuesday, entering for the first time an active conflict zone and raising the threat of a wider outbreak.

Ugandan Legislator Bobi Wine Charged With Treason

By Daniel Mumbere | Africa News

Uganda’s vocal legislator, Robert Kyagulanyi, who is popularly known as Bobi Wine, has been charged with treason in the aftermath of the deadly clashes that rocked the West Nile town of Arua on the last day of campaigns to elect a member of parliament for the municipality.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

News

August 14, 2018

Mali President Claims Election Victory Amid Fraud Accusations

By Tiemoko Diallo & Fadimata Kontao | Reuters

Malian President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita has won re-election “comfortably” based on his campaign’s vote count, his spokesman said on Tuesday, dismissing claims from the opposition that they won.

Middle East & North Africa

News

August 16, 2018

Egypt is finalizing details of a long-term truce deal between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip, an Egyptian security source said on Thursday, amid easing tensions on the border of the enclave where some two million Palestinians live.

Turkish Finance Minister Rules Out Talks With IMF

By Tuba Sahin, Jeyhun Aliyev & Gokhan Ergocun | Anadolu Agency

Turkey’s Treasury and Finance Minister Berat Albayrak held a teleconference with around 6,100 international investors on Thursday. “We are not in talks with the International Monetary Fund. We will continue to ensure funding from international markets,” a statement by his office quoted him telling the teleconference.

More from WPR: Why Erdogan Is Insulated From Turkey’s Economic Woes

Opinion

August 16, 2018

News

August 15, 2018

Israel allowed commercial goods back into the Gaza Strip on Wednesday, in a sign of an easing of tensions as neighboring Egypt pursued a long-term ceasefire between Israel and Hamas, the Palestinian enclave’s dominant armed faction.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

The West Must Face Reality in Turkey

By Richard N. Haass | Project Syndicate

Turkey’s currency crisis and standoff with the United States over the imprisonment of an American pastor have exposed the crumbling edifice of the two countries’ Cold War-era partnership. Rather than hold out hope that Turkey will return to the Western fold, U.S. and European policymakers must consider a new policy toward the country.

News

August 14, 2018

Fighting between two pro-government factions in Yemen has killed at least 18 people on both sides in the past two days, officials said Tuesday, as a U.N. delegation visited children wounded in an airstrike last week that killed dozens of civilians.

Saudi Arabia has freed three Iranian fishermen detained by the kingdom’s coastguard last year, Iran’s state news agency IRNA quoted an Iranian official as saying on Tuesday, following negotiations between the two regional rivals.

Asia-Pacific

News

August 16, 2018

Two women on trial for the brazen assassination of the North Korean leader’s half brother were told Thursday to make their defense after the judge found evidence of a “well-planned conspiracy,” extending their murder trial until next year.

A court in central Vietnam sentenced an activist to 20 years in prison Thursday after finding him guilty of attempting to overthrow the Communist government, his lawyer said, in a case decried by international rights groups.

Thailand will ban imports of 432 types of scrap electronics within six months, an environment ministry official said on Thursday, the latest country to respond to China’s crackdown on imports of high-tech trash this year.

Opinion

August 16, 2018

Is a Korean Peace Deal Impossible?

By Mitchell Blatt | The National Interest

If South Korea is having trouble arriving at a peace deal with the North at the height of progressive power, then that does not bode well for health of a peace regime.

News

August 15, 2018

Suicide Bomber Targets Shiite Students in Kabul, Killing 48

By Rahim Faiez & Amir Shah | Associated Press

A suicide bomber struck a private education center in a Shiite neighborhood of Kabul on Wednesday where high school graduates were preparing for university entrance exams, killing 48 young men and women and leaving behind a scene of devastation and tragedy.

Afghan Officials: Taliban Attack in North Kills 30 Troops

By Rahim Faiez & Amir Shah | Associated Press

A Taliban assault on two adjacent checkpoints in northern Afghanistan killed at least 30 soldiers and policemen, officials said, as life gradually returned to normal on Wednesday in parts of the eastern city of Ghazni after a massive, days-long insurgent attack, with sporadic gunbattles still underway in some neighborhoods.

China Accused of Using Belt and Road Initiative for Spying

By Stefania Palma | Financial Times (subscription required)

Chinese cyber espionage linked to the Belt and Road Initiative is increasing, with experts warning that Beijing is using the huge infrastructure project to spy on companies and countries as well as to damp down dissent.

Pakistan Parliament Elects Khan Ally as Speaker

By Munir Ahmed | Associated Press

Pakistan’s lower house of parliament elected an ally of Imran Khan to be its next speaker on Wednesday, paving the way for the former cricket star and longtime politician to become the next prime minister.

New Zealand school teachers went on strike on Wednesday for the first time in more than 20 years, challenging the Labour government’s plans to balance promised fiscal responsibility against growing demands to increase public sector salaries.

Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan Agree To Work On Land Swap Near Border

By The Editors | Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan are working on a possible land swap near the border between the two Central Asian states, some parts of which have not been formally delineated since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Opinion

August 15, 2018

The Elusive ‘Better Deal’ With China

By Gabe Lipton | The Atlantic

By letting the country into the World Trade Organization back in 2001, Washington laid the groundwork for the tensions roiling relations with Beijing today.

News

August 14, 2018

China said Tuesday that Malaysia should handle any problems it has with multibillion-dollar Chinese-backed infrastructure projects through talks, a day after the Southeast Asian country’s leader told The Associated Press his government wants to cancel such deals.

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