News Wire | Wednesday, July 27, 2022

Trump Conduct, Conversations Part of Justice Dept. Investigation

Carol D. Leonnig, Devlin Barrett, Josh Dawsey & Spencer S. Hsu | The Washington Post

The Justice Department is investigating President Donald Trump’s actions as part of its criminal probe of efforts to overturn the 2020 election results, according to four people familiar with the matter.

Biden and Xi to Hold Call as Tensions Grow Over Pelosi Visit to Taiwan

Demetri Sevastopulo | Financial Times

Joe Biden and Xi Jinping will hold a telephone call Thursday, according to a US official, as tensions escalate over the planned visit to Taiwan by Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Kraken, a U.S. Crypto Exchange, Is Suspected of Violating Sanctions

Ryan Mac & David Yaffe-Bellany | The New York Times

Kraken, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchanges, is under federal investigation, suspected of violating U.S. sanctions by allowing users in Iran and elsewhere to buy and sell digital tokens, according to five people affiliated with the company or with knowledge of the inquiry.

What Does Nancy Pelosi Think She’s Doing in Taiwan?

Mike Chinoy | Foreign Policy

A risky trip seems more about dramatic gestures than actual help.

Protesters Against Panama’s Soaring Costs End Roadblocks

AFP

Protesters angry at the high cost of living in Panama ended their three-week blockade of major roads Tuesday, authorities said, as negotiations between the government and groups behind the demonstrations continued.

U.N.: Violence Rising in Rural Colombia Despite Peace Deal

Manuel Rueda | Associated Press

Violence is increasing in many rural areas of Colombia despite a 2016 peace deal between the government and the country’s largest guerrilla group, the United Nations Human Rights Office said in a report. It called on the government to boost rural development and take steps to encourage members of Colombia’s remaining illegal groups to demobilize.

El Salvador to Buy Back Some Debt in Surprise Move

Nelson Renteria | Reuters

El Salvador’s president announced Tuesday a plan for a voluntary repurchase offer to holders of bonds maturing between 2023 and 2025.

The Barbados Rebellion: An Island Nation’s Fight for Climate Justice

Abrahm Lustgarten | The New York Times

Caribbean nations are trapped between the global financial system and a looming climate disaster. One country’s leaders have been fighting to find a way out.

Macron Wins French Lawmakers’ Backing for Budget to Nationalize EDF

Victor Mallet | Financial Times

President Emmanuel Macron’s government pushed a crucial draft budget law through the National Assembly in the early hours of Wednesday, but only after four days of heated debate that showed how difficult it will be to govern for the next five years without a parliamentary majority.

Ukraine Forces Strike Key Bridge in Russian-Occupied South

Susie Blann | Associated Press

The Ukrainian military used a U.S.-supplied precision rocket system to deliver a morale-lifting knockout punch Wednesday to a bridge Russia used to supply its forces in an occupied region of southern Ukraine.

Viktor Orban Adviser Resigns After Hungarian Premier’s ‘Mixed Race’ Speech

Valentina Pop | Financial Times

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban is facing a growing international backlash over inflammatory comments about race that led to the resignation of one of his close aides.

Anti-U.N. Protests in Congo Leave 15 Dead, Including Three Peacekeepers

Steve Wembi & Abdi Latif Dahir | The New York Times

At least 15 people, including three U.N. peacekeepers, have been killed and 60 others injured in the east of the Democratic Republic of Congo in an escalation of dayslong protests against the United Nations in a mineral-rich region that has been ravaged by incessant deadly violence.

Ethiopia Forces Kill 85 Al-Shabab Fighters Near Somalia, State TV and Commander Say

Reuters

Regional forces in southeast Ethiopia killed 85 al-Shabab militiamen during border clashes Monday, the state broadcaster and a regional commander said, days after the insurgents staged rare raids in the area.

France to Help Benin and Gulf of Guinea States Battle Militants

The Editors | Reuters

France aims to “respond positively” to requests from Benin and other countries for air support and intelligence to combat Islamist militants, a French official said Wednesday, as President Emmanuel Macron arrived in the West African state.

Suicide Bombing in Somalia Kills 11 Including Local Official

Omar Faruk | Associated Press

Witnesses say at least 11 people are dead after a suicide bomber blew himself up at the entrance to a government building in southern Somalia.

Cameroon Becomes a Go-To Country for Foreign Fishing Vessels

Richa Syal & Grace Ekpu | Associated Press

Off the coast of West Africa, the Trondheim is a familiar sight: a soccer field-sized ship, plying the waters from Nigeria to Mauritania as it pulls in tons of mackerel and sardines — and flying the red, yellow and green flag of Cameroon.

Saudi Crown Prince Arrives on First EU Trip Since Jamal Khashoggi Murder

Eleni Varvitsioti & Andrew England | Financial Times

Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman held talks with Greek leaders Tuesday as the Saudi royal embarked on his first trip to EU states since the 2018 murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Israel’s Interim Leader Meets Jordan’s King in Amman

Associated Press

Israel’s caretaker prime minister and Jordan’s king met on Tuesday in the Jordanian capital Amman, both leaders’ offices said.

The New Old Middle Eastern Order

Marc Lynch | Foreign Affairs

Biden’s trip shows why Washington is still getting the region wrong.

At U.N., Iraq and Turkey Escalate Dispute Over Deadly Attack

Edith M. Lederer | Associated Press

A dispute between Iraq and Turkey over a recent deadly attack in Iraq’s northern Kurdish region escalated at an emergency meeting of the U.N. Security Council on Tuesday.

Pacific Defense Chiefs Meet Against Backdrop of Rising China

Lolita C. Baldor | Associated Press

Defense chiefs from across the Indo-Pacific gathered this week to bolster their connections against a backdrop of China’s ongoing campaign to expand its influence and military presence in the region.

Japan to Join ‘Garuda Shield’ Military Drills for First Time

Elaine Lies & Stanley Widianto | Reuters

Japanese defense forces will participate for the first time in military exercises in Indonesia next month alongside the United States and Australia, Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said Wednesday after talks with Indonesian President Joko Widodo.

For Hong Kong’s Beijing-Backed Officials, Xi’s All That – The New York Times

Austin Ramzy & Tiffany May | The New York Times

The city’s leaders are rushing to embrace Xi Jinping, China’s leader, a performance of devotion that is a jarring shift for Hong Kong’s once rambunctious political culture.

China’s Pacific Push Is Backfiring

Derek Grossman | Foreign Policy

An aggressive diplomatic strategy hasn’t produced many results.

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