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Mozambique – Starving Malagasy forced to eat leaves, locusts for survival (Al Jazeera)

Near-total disappearance of food sources has created a ‘full-blown nutrition emergency’ in southern Madagascar, World Food Programme warns. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/30/famine-looms-in-southern-madagascar-uns-food-agency-says

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Mozambique – UN: Nearly 30,000 fled attacks in Mozambique’s Palma since March (Al Jazeera)

Attacks marked major intensification in violence that has wreaked havoc across Cabo Delgado province for over three years. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/30/un-nearly-30000-flee-mozambique-attacks-since-late-march

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Palestine – ‘A coup’: Palestinian factions slam parliamentary poll delay (Al Jazeera)

Hamas says President Abbas’s decision ‘coup against the path of national partnership and consensus’. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/30/palestinian-factions-reject-abbas-decision-to-delay-polls

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Palestine – Abbas delays Palestinian parliamentary polls, blaming Israel (Al Jazeera)

Critics say Palestinian leader using the Jerusalem issue as an excuse to avoid elections that a divided Fatah might well lose to Hamas. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2021/4/30/palestinians-polls-hamas-plo

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Iraq/USA – Iraq: The Missing Keystone in U.S. Policy in the Gulf (CSIS)

Anthony H. Cordesman One of the odd side effects of both the U.S. focus on withdrawal from Afghanistan and on the possible revival of the JCPOA agreement with Iran is that U.S. relations with Iraq seems to be getting passing attention at best. In practice, U.S. relations with Iraq, its development as a stable and […]

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Africa/USA – Africa Reacts to Biden’s First 100 Days in Office (CSIS)

In our “Africa Reacts” series, the CSIS Africa Program asks prominent African journalists, civil society activists, and thought leaders to share their analysis on the U.S. political process. By flipping the script—featuring African analysts’ views on U.S. politics rather than U.S. analysts’ opinions on African developments—we are seeking to start a new conversation about the […]

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China/Space – China’s New Space Station Is a Stepping-Stone to Achieving Broader Ambitions (CSIS)

Matthew P. Funaiole, Brian Hart Space has long been the province of major powers. Only a handful of countries possess the resources and technological capabilities needed to conduct orbital space launches, and even fewer—the United States, Russia, and China alone—have launched humans into space. On April 29, China deployed the first module of the new Chinese […]

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Creating Fiscal Space in the Covid-19 Era (CSIS)

Stephanie Segal Global health challenges threaten the United States’ health and economic security, a reality made painfully clear over the past 14 months. Many low- and middle-income countries lack adequate domestic resources to invest in public health and, at the same time, face mounting debt burdens that impede their ability to raise new funding for essential […]

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Russia/Ukraine – Energy sanctions can prevent a new Russian offensive in Ukraine (Atlantic Council)

Ariel Cohen and David Pasmanik A major Russian military buildup on the border with Ukraine has recently sparked fears of a potentially dramatic escalation in the simmering seven-year conflict between the two countries. Although tensions have eased somewhat following Moscow’s April 22 announcement of troop withdrawals, the threat of a new Russian offensive remains.

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Computing to win: Addressing the policy blind spot that threatens national AI ambitions (Atlantic Council)

Saurabh Mishra and Keith Strier Artificial intelligence (AI) is causing significant structural changes to global competition and economic growth. AI may generate trillions of dollars in new value over the next decade, but this value will not be easily captured or evenly distributed across nations. Much of it will depend on how governments invest in […]

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Iran/Saudi Arabia/UAE – Adding an Ishmael Track to the Abraham Accords: How to pursue détente between Iran, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE (Atlantic Council)

Kirsten Fontenrose The Abraham Accords between Israel and Gulf nations have taught us the important lesson that long-standing animosities can be set aside when greater national interests are served by making peace. Which raises the question: Do national interests make a compelling case for a thaw in the Gulf?

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Computer vision inches towards ‘common sense’ with Facebook’s latest research (TechCrunch)

Devin Coldewey Machine learning is capable of doing all sorts of things as long as you have the data to teach it how. That’s not always easy, and researchers are always looking for a way to add a bit of “common sense” to AI so you don’t have to show it 500 pictures of a […]