Mercy Wambua, center, the CEO of the Law Society of Kenya and other lawyers march to protest the Kenyan government’s deportation of an opposition politician, Feb. 15, 2018 (AP photo by Ben Curtis).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Africa Watch, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about the African continent. Subscribe to receive it by email every Friday. If you’re already a subscriber,  adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. Last Friday, Kenya’s Court of Appeal upheld a May judgment by the High Court blocking a government bid to make fundamental changes to the country’s constitution. The ruling marks a setback to President Uhuru Kenyatta’s legacy-building project and is certain to shift the political landscape […]

President Joe Biden pauses as he listens to a question about the bombings at the Kabul airport that killed at least 13 U.S. service members, Washington, Aug. 26, 2021 (AP photo by Evan Vucci).

This is the web version of our subscriber-only Weekly Wrap-Up newsletter, which gives a rundown of the week’s top stories on WPR. Subscribe to receive it by email every Saturday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. By now, the shock of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan has begun to wear off. But the outrage over the Biden administration’s handling of the evacuation of Western civilians and Afghan nationals at risk of Taliban retaliation seems to have only risen this week, even as the airlift gathered pace. That outrage turned to horror Thursday, when […]

Sunbathers on the beach in Barcelona, Spain, July 9, 2021 (AP photo by Joan Mateu).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Europe Decoder, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about Europe. Subscribe to receive it by email every Thursday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  The island of Malta is known as a tourist destination for its scenic views. Perhaps less recognized is that it now has the world’s highest coronavirus vaccination rate, with 80 percent of the total population, including children, and 90 percent of people over the age of 12 fully vaccinated. It […]

A passenger wearing a facemask exiting the arrival hall at the Hong Kong International Airport terminal, Hong Kong, Oct. 24, 2020 (Sipa photo by Miguel Candela via AP Images).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, China Note, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about China. Subscribe to receive it by email every Wednesday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  A quarantine waiver granted by authorities in Hong Kong to Hollywood star Nicole Kidman has drawn outrage and charges of double standards by local residents. But a bigger problem underlies the saga: The city is caught between two different COVID-19 strategies, with no way out.  Kidman, who arrived in […]

U.S. President Joe Biden shakes hands with Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi during their meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, July 26, 2021 (AP photo by Susan Walsh).

Fears of the collapse of the state are growing in Iraq as the Afghanistan debacle deepens, with each passing day revealing more details about the lack of detailed planning and foresight about the consequences of a U.S. pullout for Afghans.  A similar lack of attention to the crucial American role in influencing events in Iraq could result in a pitched struggle among the competing militias and factions there for control of political power and state resources. Simply put, Iraq’s stability risks becoming an afterthought for U.S. policymakers calibrating a global rebalancing, despite the enormous consequence of instability in Iraq for domestic […]

Voters wait to vote at a polling station during Zambia’s presidential election in Lusaka, Zambia, Aug. 12, 2021 (AP photo by Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Africa Watch, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about the African continent. Subscribe to receive it by email every Friday. If you’re already a subscriber,  adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. In a dramatic rebuke to the tenure of incumbent President Edgar Lungu, Hakainde Hichilema—the leader of Zambia’s main opposition party, the United Party for National Development, or UPND—scored a resounding victory in last week’s presidential election. According to results released by the country’s electoral commission, Hichilema, […]

The first plane with returnees from Afghanistan arrives in Spain with 53 people, five of them Spanish and the rest Afghans who have collaborated with the Spanish government and their families, Madrid, Spain, Aug. 19, 2021 (Photo by Juan Carlos Rojas for A

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only Weekly Wrap-Up newsletter, which gives a rundown of the week’s top stories on WPR. Subscribe to receive it by email every Saturday. If you’re already a subscriber,  adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. International attention has remained focused on Afghanistan this week, where the U.S. along with its NATO allies continued efforts to evacuate their nationals as well as Afghan civilians at risk of retribution from the Taliban. Although the situation remains chaotic and volatile, it has so far not deteriorated in the week since the Taliban […]

Life jackets at the waste disposal site near Molivos, Lesbos, Greece, March 12, 2020 (AP photo by Grigoris Siamidis).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Europe Decoder, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about Europe. Subscribe to receive it by email every Thursday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. Six years after the peak of the 2015 migrant crisis, which upended European politics, the European Union is faced with the prospect of another wave of refugees and asylum-seekers, as the continent braces itself for the fallout from the rapid departure of the U.S. and its NATO allies from […]

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi with a delegation of the Taliban leadership in Tianjin, China, July 28, 2021 (photo by the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, China Note, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about China. Subscribe to receive it by email every Wednesday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings  to receive it directly to your email inbox. While the rest of the world continues to be shocked at the harrowing scenes and images accompanying the U.S. military evacuation from Afghanistan, Chinese nationalist media pundits like Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief of the hawkish, state-owned tabloid Global Times, have made little effort to hide their glee […]

President Joe Biden, right, meets with former Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, left, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, June 25, 2021 (AP photo by Susan Walsh).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Middle East Memo, which takes a look at what’s happening, what’s being said and what’s on the horizon in the Middle East. Subscribe to receive it by email every Monday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it.  The return of Taliban rule to Afghanistan 20 years after the group’s ouster by a U.S.-led coalition came as a great shock, first and foremost to the Afghan population. Its many flaws notwithstanding, the now-dissolved, Western-backed Afghan central government allowed Afghans to live under a considerably less repressive system than […]

Uganda’s Peruth Chemutai, left, and Kenya’s Hyvin Kiyeng celebrate after Chemutai won gold and Kiyeng won silver in the women’s 3,000-meter steeplechase final at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, Aug. 4, 2021 (AP photo by Ben Stansall).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Africa Watch, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about the African continent. Subscribe to receive it by email every Friday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  No sooner had the 2020 Summer Olympics commenced than now-familiar tales of inadequate preparation and administrative snags involving African Olympic athletes began to trickle out of Tokyo. And by the closing ceremony and the handover to Paris for the 2024 Olympics, millions of Africans who tuned in […]

Afghan security personnel work at the site of a powerful explosion in Kabul, Afghanistan, Aug. 3, 2021 (AP photo by Rahmat Gul)

This is the web version of our subscriber-only Weekly Wrap-Up newsletter, which gives a rundown of the week’s top stories on WPR. Subscribe to receive it by email every Saturday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. This week, the Taliban continued its offensive, which has now overrun 11 provincial capitals in Afghanistan, including in parts of the country outside of the group’s historical base of support. Today’s Weekly Wrap-Up recaps and distills several WPR articles from the past week, including three that take a closer look at the roots of the Afghan army’s […]

A woman cools-off in a fountain in downtown Milan, Italy, Aug. 10, 2021 (AP photo by Antonio Calanni).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Europe Decoder, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about Europe. Subscribe to receive it by email every Thursday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  PALERMO, Italy—The temperature reached a record-high 48 degrees C, or 116 degrees F, yesterday in Sicily, where the sunny skies have at times been obscured by haze from nearby wildfires from which hundreds of people have been rescued in the past two weeks. This week, another African anticyclone has arrived, trapping hot air […]

Supporters hold banners as they wait for of Zhou Xiaoxuan outside at a courthouse where Zhou is appearing in a sexual harassment case in Beijing, China, Dec. 2, 2020 (AP photo by Andy Wong).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, China Note, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about China. Subscribe to receive it by email every Wednesday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  The Alibaba Group has once again come under scrutiny this week, after a female employee of the online shopping behemoth accused her supervisor of rape during a business trip, sparking furor on the internet and across China. The allegation is far from an isolated incident, as the problems of […]

Families of the victims of the Beirut Port blast demonstrating near the explosion site, in Beirut, exactly one year after famous explosion that killed more than 200 people and wounded thousands, Aug. 4, 2021 (AP photo by Ammar Abd Rabbo).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Middle East Memo, which takes a look at what’s happening, what’s being said and what’s on the horizon in the Middle East. Subscribe to receive it by email every Monday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it. On Aug. 4, Lebanon observed a somber one-year anniversary of the massive explosion at the Beirut Port that according to Human Rights Watch killed 218 and wounded 7,000. To mark the occasion, people bravely shared moving stories on social media about the toll the event took on their mental health, […]

Former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta hold the flags of their countries after a meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, July 5, 2016 (AP photo by Sayyid Abdul Azim).

Editor’s Note: This is the web version of our subscriber-only weekly newsletter, Africa Watch, which includes a look at the week’s top stories and best reads from and about the African continent. Subscribe to receive it by email every Friday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox. Last month, the African Union granted observer status to Israel, after nearly 20 years of Israeli diplomatic efforts to that effect. Israel had previously held observer status in the Organization of African Unity, or OAU, the AU’s predecessor. But it lapsed after the OAU was disbanded in 2002 […]

Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban during a press conference in Belgrade, Serbia, July 8, 2021 (AP photo by Darko Vojinovic).

This is the web version of our subscriber-only Weekly Wrap-Up newsletter, which uses relevant WPR coverage to provide background and context to the week’s top stories. Subscribe to receive it by email every Saturday. If you’re already a subscriber, adjust your newsletter settings to receive it directly to your email inbox.  It’s perhaps a sign of the times that a visit to Hungary by an American television personality known for his provocations on race and immigration has generated international news coverage. But the visit by Tucker Carlson—whose Fox News program has become a clearinghouse of far-right talking points, and misinformation, in the U.S.—has highlighted […]

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