Categorie
Cyber Security, Digital Transition, Technology Geopolitics & Worlds

Daily news – February 9, 2022

News from: Al Jazeera, Brookings, East Asia Forum, Global Times, Key4Biz, Reuters, RFE RL, The Jamestown Foundation, ThinkChina, US Department of State 

AFRICA

The criticality of climate finance for Africa. Amar Bhattacharya, Brookings: Climate finance will be critical for enabling Africa to adapt to the growing impacts of climate change and to ensure that its future development path is consistent with the goal of limiting global warming to no more than 1.5°C. Africa has contributed little to global emissions so far, but it is already being disproportionately affected by the impacts of climate change. How Africa develops will also be critical to future emissions given that its energy use is projected to grow rapidly to meet its development needs, with its share of the world’s population projected to increase from 17 percent to 40 percent by 2100, even as the world population increases from 7.9 billion to almost 11 billion by the end of the century. The criticality of climate finance for Africa (brookings.edu)

BELARUS

The Nuclear Potential of Belarus in the Context of NATO-Russia Relations (Part Two). Maxim Starchak, The Jamestown Foundation: After the United States and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) predictably rebuked Russia’s maximalist proposals for new security guarantees, President Vladimir Putin promised a “military-technical response. Some in the Russian military expert community have suggested that these retaliatory measures could include deploying nuclear weapons on Belarusian soil—arguably permitted under the recently approved new Military Doctrine of the Russia-Belarus Union State as well as the amended Belarusian constitution (see Part One in EDM, February 1). Russian military specialists have already begun to suggest ways such a policy might be undertaken. The Nuclear Potential of Belarus in the Context of NATO-Russia Relations (Part Two) – Jamestown

Belarus and the Showdown Over Ukraine. Grigory Ioffe, The Jamestown Foundation: Belarusian President Alyaksandr Lukashenka annually convenes a meeting devoted to the major tasks of the state border service. During the latest such meeting, on January 24, he unexpectedly responded to Zenon Poznyak’s assertion that Belarus was being militarily occupied by Russia (Pool Pervogo, January 24). Belarus and the Showdown Over Ukraine – Jamestown

CANADA

Mercato Tlc, per il 72% dei consumatori canadesi ci vuole più concorrenza. Paolo Anastasio, Key4Biz: Il 72% dei cittadini canadesi chiede maggior concorrenza sul mercato delle Tlc e misure che facilitino l’ingresso sul mercato di player più piccoli per ampliare l’offerta. Mercato Tlc, per il 72% dei consumatori canadesi ci vuole più concorrenza (key4biz.it)

CHINA

Will China abandon its ‘no first use’ nuclear policy? Li Nan, ThinkChina: Li Nan notes the seeming contradiction of China expanding its nuclear force while vowing not to fight a nuclear war. He explains that China seeks to ensure that it has nuclear counter-attack capabilities that can survive the first nuclear attack and launch retaliatory strikes. At the moment, its “no first use” policy is intact, but the debate around it suggests that China’s nuclear strategists have begun to explore the possibility of limited nuclear war that can be winnable against enemy targets. Will China abandon its ‘no first use’ nuclear policy?, Politics News – ThinkChina

World’s largest iPhone factory in China steps up recruitment prior to new product launch. Zhang Dan, Yin Yeping, Global Times: The world’s largest iPhone factory, operated by Foxconn Technology Group in Zhengzhou, Central China’s Henan Province, is on the race to hire at least 20,000 workers prior to the release of new Apple products and as demand for iPhones and iPads remains robust in China and overseas. World’s largest iPhone factory in China steps up recruitment prior to new product launch – Global Times

Chinese social media platforms block accounts that disseminate abusive comments. Global Times: Chinese social media platforms have blocked accounts that denigrate, insult, attack or spread disinformation about athletes at the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games, while urging everyone to enjoy the Games in a measured and sensible way, with more moral and encouraging comments, and avoid using aggressive or abusive words. Chinese social media platforms block accounts that disseminate abusive comments – Global Times

Chinese market regulators summon iron ore information providers, to maintain price stability. Global Times: Chinese iron ore market information providers were summoned by the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) and State Administration for Market Regulation amid recent volatility seen in iron ore prices, and called for publishing accurate market information. Chinese market regulators summon iron ore information providers, to maintain price stability – Global Times

Offshore financial institutions must hold domestic licenses to operate in mainland: official. Global Times: A Chinese government official has reiterated that overseas financial institutions must have licenses to carry out business in China, amid government efforts to regulate unlawful business operations in China’s increasingly open financial market. Offshore financial institutions must hold domestic licenses to operate in mainland: official – Global Times

CHINA – ARGENTINA

Xiaomi’s Tierra del Fuego venture may herald the age of Chinese smartphone makers in Latin America. Global Times: Just as China and Argentina pledged on Sunday to deepen strategic cooperation on trade, currency and the infrastructure-focused Belt and Road Initiative, it is reported that Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi is planning to open up stores in Argentina and make cellphones in the country’s Tierra del Fuego. Biz Quick Take: Xiaomi’s Tierra del Fuego venture may herald the age of Chinese smartphone makers in Latin America – Global Times

CHINA – AUSTRALIA

Australia’s hasty nuclear submarine plan to be outpaced by China’s development: experts. Liu Xuanzun, Leng Shumei, Global Times: In an attempt to contain China, Australian Defense Minister recently said that Australia could get the first nuclear submarine under the framework of AUKUS before 2038. However, Chinese military experts said on Tuesday that this delivery schedule is too hasty and China’s rapid development during this period will outpace the Australian one. Australia’s hasty nuclear submarine plan to be outpaced by China’s development: experts – Global Times

CHINA – LITHUANIA – EUROPE

EU must recognize Lithuania’s mistake, or reported talks will be futile. Global Times: The EU appears to be increasingly putting itself into a diplomatic dispute between China and Lithuania over the Taiwan question. After it filed a case at the WTO claiming “economic coercion” by China against Lithuania last month, a claim that has been refuted by China, it now seems to be seeking “consultations” with Beijing. Biz Quick Take: EU must recognize Lithuania’s mistake, or reported talks will be futile – Global Times

China rejects ‘coercion’ accusation as Lithuanian FM hypes it in Australia. Li Qiaoyi, Liu Xin, Global Times: While hyping the “coercion” accusation against China, Lithuania is anxiously seeking political support from countries around China and trying to draw more countries into its anti-China clique during its Foreign Minister’s visit to Singapore and Australia. However, analysts said its plans to dump unsalable products to other countries are doomed as China’s market and industrial chain influence are irreplaceable and its attempts to continue provocation against China’s sovereignty are also meeting with increasing opposition. China rejects ‘coercion’ accusation as Lithuanian FM hypes it in Australia – Global Times

CHINA – USA

US bets its own economic fate to shoehorn sanctions on China. Global Times: The Biden administration may think reckless suppression on Chinese companies and industries will help them win the strategic rivalry with China, but in reality, their abuse of sanctions is threatening to inflict further damage on US economy in the form of the aggravating supply chain and inflation problems. GT Voice: US bets its own economic fate to shoehorn sanctions on China – Global Times

DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO – UGANDA

ICJ to rule on DRC’s $11bn war reparations claim against Uganda. Al JazeeraThe United Nations’ top court is set to rule on a long-running compensation fight between the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and Uganda. The International Court of Justice is set to deliver its verdict at 14:00 GMT on Wednesday over a claim the DRC – which is asking for billions of dollars in reparations for a brutal 1998-2003 war – launched against Uganda more than 20 years ago. ICJ to rule on DRC’s $11bn war reparations claim against Uganda | United Nations News | Al Jazeera

EUROPE

Sovranità digitale europea: la Francia propone 20 fondi da un miliardo l’uno per favorire l’innovazione “made in EU”. Flavio Fabbri, Key4Biz: Dalla Conferenza UE sulla sovranità digitale e tecnologica di Parigi è emersa la volontà di prendere coscienza delle potenzialità europee in termini di innovazione e competitività, puntando di più sui super-giganti tecnologici europei: ne avremo una decina almeno entro il 2030 grazie allo strumento del “Fondo dei fondi”. Sovranità digitale europea: la Francia propone 20 fondi da un miliardo l’uno (key4biz.it)

IRAN

Iran Unveils Missile That Could Reportedly Reach Israel, U.S. Bases In RegionIran has unveiled a new missile with a reported range of 1,450 kilometers that would bring within reach both U.S. bases in the region as well archrival Israel. Iran Unveils Missile That Could Reportedly Reach Israel, U.S. Bases In Region (rferl.org)

IRAN NUCLEAR TALKS

Iran Nuclear Deal ‘In Sight’ As Talks Reportedly Resume In Vienna. RFE RLIndirect talks between the United States and Iran to revive a landmark nuclear deal have reportedly resumed in Vienna, with officials signaling an agreement was “in sight.”. The negotiations — attended by Britain, China, France, Germany, Iran, Russia, and indirectly the United States — had broken off on January 28 to allow diplomats to return to their capitals for consultations. Iran Nuclear Deal ‘In Sight’ As Talks Reportedly Resume In Vienna (rferl.org)

ISRAEL – UAE

Israel warns of UAE crisis over Dubai aviation security dispute. Al JazeeraIsrael has extended a security arrangement with Dubai, keeping Israeli airlines’ flights to the United Arab Emirates running while an aviation security dispute is negotiated. It warned of a potential crisis with the Gulf state unless the issue is resolved. Israel warns of UAE crisis over Dubai aviation security dispute | Aviation News | Al Jazeera

ITALY

Dal PNRR 730 mila posti di lavoro entro il 2026, ma come ci arriveremo tra mancanza di competenze e bassi salari? Flavio Fabbri, Key4Biz: Nei prossimi quattro anni, la trasformazione digitale creerà 200 mila occupati in più, mentre altri 180 mila arriveranno dalla transizione ecologica. Ma come centrare quest’obiettivo se partiamo da un presente fatto di scarse competenze. bassi salari e giungla contrattuale? Da PNRR 730 mila posti di lavoro entro il 2026, ma come ci arriveremo? (key4biz.it)

KAZAKHSTAN

HRW Urges Independent Inquiry Into Deadly Kazakh Protests. RFE RL: Human Rights Watch (HRW) has called on the Kazakh authorities to invite international experts to join its domestic investigative efforts into serious human rights violations during a deadly wave of unrest in the country last month. HRW Urges Independent Inquiry Into Deadly Kazakh Protests (rferl.org)

LIBYA

Libyan parliament set to name new PM amid signs of power struggle. Al JazeeraLibya’s parliament is set to name a new prime minister to head the transitional government on Thursday, raising concerns over the possibility of a new power struggle. The effort to replace interim Prime Minister Abdul Hamid Dbeibah comes after the date for Libya’s first presidential election – scheduled for December 24 last year – came and went during his watch. Libyan parliament set to name new PM amid signs of power struggle | News | Al Jazeera

MALAYSIA

Malaysia’s big budget belies year of COVID-19 brutality. Shankaran Nambiar, East Asia Forum: Things were rough for the Malaysian economy the past year. The government’s response to the COVID-19 crisis was made within a narrow fiscal space, though Kuala Lumpur did make valiant efforts to minimise the impact of the pandemic, which saw high infections, deaths and a public health system under severe pressure. Malaysia’s big budget belies year of COVID-19 brutality | East Asia Forum

NEW ZEALAND

New Zealand’s year of looking inwards. Robert Ayson, East Asia Forum: As the first full year of Jacinda Ardern’s second term as New Zealand’s Prime Minister, 2021 began with the promise of political continuity. The October 2020 general election left her Labour Party in a commanding electoral position. National, the leading opposition party, was in tatters, and a rapid succession of leaders would offer few answers to Ardern’s popularity. New Zealand’s year of looking inwards | East Asia Forum

PERU

Peru’s president swears in fourth cabinet in six months. Al JazeeraPeruvian President Pedro Castillo has sworn in his fourth cabinet since taking office six months ago, replacing his latest prime minister who lasted three days on the job. The latest reshuffle comes amid continued internal struggles within the government that have defined the left-wing leader’s first months as president. Peru’s president swears in fourth cabinet in six months | Government News | Al Jazeera

RUSSIA – UKRAINE

Pope says war in Ukraine would be ‘madness,’ backs talks. Al JazeeraPope Francis has said that war in Ukraine would be “madness” and voiced hope that tensions between that country and Russia can be overcome through multi-lateral dialogue. Speaking at his Wednesday general audience, Francis thanked those who took part in his January 26 international day of prayer for peace in Ukraine. Pope says war in Ukraine would be ‘madness,’ backs talks | Ukraine-Russia crisis News | Al Jazeera

Ukraine-Russia crisis: What is the Minsk agreement? Al JazeeraFrench President Emmanuel Macron has pointed to the 2015 Minsk Agreement between Kyiv and Moscow as the blueprint for a breakthrough in the Ukraine crisis. Following talks with his Russian and Ukrainian counterparts, Macron said on Tuesday that the Minsk II agreement – which was aimed at ending the war in eastern Ukraine – is the “only path on which peace can be built”. Ukraine-Russia crisis: What is the Minsk agreement? | Ukraine-Russia crisis News | Al Jazeera

Four Crimean Tatars Detained After Their Homes Searched. RFE RLFour Crimean Tatars have been detained after their homes were searched in Ukraine’s Russia-occupied Crimean Peninsula. Four Crimean Tatars Detained After Their Homes Searched (rferl.org)

European Leaders Pledge Unity As Macron Urges ‘Firm’ Dialogue With Moscow On Ukraine. RFE RLEuropean leaders have vowed to stay united in their goal of defusing tensions over Russia’s military buildup near Ukraine as French President Emmanuel Macron said he saw a path forward in resolving the crisis after a high-profile round of shuttle diplomacy. Speaking in Berlin at the end of his two-day whirlwind tour to Moscow and Kyiv, Macron urged continued “firm dialogue” with the Kremlin as the only way to defuse fears Russia could invade Ukraine. European Leaders Pledge Unity As Macron Urges ‘Firm’ Dialogue With Moscow On Ukraine (rferl.org)

No, Russia will not invade Ukraine. Harun Yilmaz, Al Jazeera: Over the past year, as Russia amassed troops along its border with Ukraine, there have been growing fears of an imminent invasion. A number of Western leaders have repeatedly warned of this possibility. Moscow has denied that it is making such plans, although it has not withdrawn its troops. Some observers have interpreted these Russian statements as untruthful and even accused the Russian authorities of preparing a false-flag operation. No, Russia will not invade Ukraine | Ukraine-Russia crisis | Al Jazeera

Moscow Security Experts Say Any Russian Invasion of Ukraine Will Not Be a Cake Walk. Paul Globe, The Jamestown Foundation: Even though Russian officialdom continues to insist Moscow has no plans to invade Ukraine, many Russian political commentators in recent weeks have been increasingly aggressive in suggesting that their country can easily defeat and occupy its largest western neighbor and that there is nothing the Ukrainians or the West can do about it. But a contrary media narrative has unexpectedly sprouted up as well: namely, two Russian military experts and an Academy of Sciences specialist on security issues involving Ukraine have cast doubt over the persistent argument that Russia would face an easy time defeating Ukrainian forces in the field or pacifying the country after doing so. And while none of these cautionary voices argues that the Russian military would not win the first round of fighting, all three see an outcome with potentially fatal consequences for the Russian Federation over the longer term. Moscow Security Experts Say Any Russian Invasion of Ukraine Will Not Be a Cake Walk – Jamestown

RUSSIA – WAGNER GROUP – AFRICA

Russia’s Wagner Group in Africa: Influence, commercial concessions, rights violations, and counterinsurgency failure. Federica Saini Fasanotti, Brookings: Russia is intensifying its competition with the United States in Africa. In its asymmetric race, Russia uses nominally private, but in fact state-linked actors such as the private security company the Wagner Group and the infamous St. Petersburg “troll farm” the Internet Research Agency (IRA). Both are a major threat to democracy and rule of law in Africa and beyond. Russia’s Wagner Group in Africa: Influence, commercial concessions, rights violations, and counterinsurgency failure (brookings.edu)

SRI LANKA

Sri Lanka’s central bank denies risk of default. Al JazeeraSri Lanka’s central bank has said that the country is committed to honouring all forthcoming debt obligations, and that the island nation is not on the verge of a sovereign default. Sri Lanka is facing its worst financial crisis in decades, and foreign exchange reserves have fallen to $2.36bn, according to Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) data. Sri Lanka’s central bank denies risk of default | Business and Economy News | Al Jazeera

SYRIA

Syrian soldier killed in Israeli missile attack near Damascus. Al JazeeraA Syrian soldier has been killed and five wounded in an Israeli attack near the capital, Damascus, Syrian state media said. The Israeli army acknowledged it struck Syrian facilities early on Wednesday using targeting aircraft, including “radar and anti-aircraft batteries”. Syrian soldier killed in Israeli missile attack near Damascus | News | Al Jazeera

TUNISIA

Tunisian judges on strike as fears grow over authoritarian rule. Federica Marsi, Al JazeeraTunisia’s Judges Association has called for a two-day strike of all courts in the country in protest against President Kais Saied’s move to dissolve the top judicial watchdog, amid growing fears of a return to authoritarian rule. The decision to disband the Supreme Judicial Council on Sunday was the last in a string of exceptional measures since July 25, when Saied granted himself extraordinary powers under a state of emergency, dismissed the government and froze parliament. Tunisian judges on strike as fears grow over authoritarian rule | Politics News | Al Jazeera

Tunisian president steps up power grab with move against judges. , Reuters: President Kais Saied’s move to dissolve Tunisia’s top judicial authority has triggered a critical confrontation over rule of law and his own accountability as he slides further towards one-man rule. Tunisian president steps up power grab with move against judges | Reuters

TURKEY

Turkey says Deutsche Welle, others must obtain licences or have access blocked. Reuters: Turkey’s broadcasting watchdog has given three international news agencies 72 hours to obtain an operating licence or else have access to their platforms blocked, a member of the agency said on Wednesday. Turkey says Deutsche Welle, others must obtain licences or have access blocked | Reuters

USA

In U.S. battle over redistricting, competition is the biggest loser. , Reuters: Republican and Democratic lawmakers across the United States are drawing political maps that will likely deepen polarization and encourage more extreme candidates by eliminating competitive congressional seats, a new Reuters analysis shows. Analysis: In U.S. battle over redistricting, competition is the biggest loser | Reuters

America’s new reality of high inflation and what it means for the world. Cai Daolu, ThinkChina: Despite past macroeconomic stability, the US economy is beginning to see increased inflation across many sectors. Reports say that US consumer price figures for January due on Thursday could show core inflation rising to the fastest pace since 1982 at 5.9%. The situation is not helped by the government’s recent move to issue additional debt which was mostly purchased by Fed banks. If the US government defaults on its debt, the global financial market will be affected. Higher interest rates to fight inflation in the US may also require that China and other Asian economies adjust their own domestic policies on interest rates and exchange rates. America’s new reality of high inflation and what it means for the world, Economy News – ThinkChina

Secretary Antony J. Blinken Remarks to the Press En Route Melbourne, Australia. US Department of State: Secretary Antony J. Blinken Remarks to the Press En Route Melbourne, Australia – United States Department of State

Internet gratis per le famiglie a basso reddito in Florida. Paolo Anastasio, Key4Biz: AT&TComcastGoogle FiberSpectrum e decine di altri internet provider minori si stanno unendo in seno alla Federal Communications Commission (FCC) per offrire ai cittadini statunitensi indigenti accesso a internet più a buon mercato. Internet gratis per le famiglie a basso reddito in Florida (key4biz.it)

Running for office is still for men—some data on the “Ambition Gap”. Jennifer L. Lawless and Richard L. Fox, BrookingsAs the 2022 midterm election season gets underway, speculation is already mounting that it’s going to be another banner year for female candidates. Early reports suggest that Black women and Republican women are especially poised to make historic gains. But make no mistake, even if 2022 is another so-called “Year of the Woman,” politics is still a man’s game. Running for office is still for men—some data on the “Ambition Gap” (brookings.edu)

Two ways to improve Senator Klobuchar’s needed antitrust legislation. Mark MacCarthy, BrookingsThe Senate Judiciary Committee took a major step forward on January 20th by reporting out Senator Amy Klobuchar’s platform nondiscrimination bill with a bipartisan vote of 16-6. It is now up to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer whether to bring it up for a vote on the Senate floor. The bill and its markup provide an almost-perfect illustration of the overlap of competition, privacy, and content moderation issues raised by attempts to regulate digital companies. Legislators seeking to legislate in one of these policy areas must assess how their efforts affect the others. It is a theme I explore at length in a book forthcoming from Brookings Institution Press entitled The Regulation of Digital Industries: Competition, Privacy and Content Moderation. Two ways to improve Senator Klobuchar’s needed antitrust legislation (brookings.edu)

Diverse neighborhoods are made of diverse housing. Tracy Hadden LohJoanne Kim, and Jennifer S. Vey, Brookings: From the era of frontier cabins to suburbs lined with white picket fences, a single-family house with a yard has lived in the popular imagination as a symbol of American virtue and prosperity. Conversely, urban neighborhoods with dense housing—particularly, Black and brown communities—have been depicted as crowded and dangerous. Evidence of this old yet durable narrative can be found almost a century ago in the Supreme Court’s 1926 ruling that established the principle of exclusionary land use zones in the United States: “[V]ery often the apartment house is a mere parasite, constructed in order to take advantage of the open spaces and attractive surroundings created by the residential character of the district.”. Diverse neighborhoods are made of diverse housing (brookings.edu)

Is Trump’s hold on the Republican Party getting weaker? Elaine Kamarck, Brookings: For the past year it has been assumed that Donald Trump is the undisputed leader of the Republican Party. And with good reason. He has held onto the loyalties of Republican voters, he has managed to spread the Big Lie (that he won the 2020 presidential election) to many of his followers and to many Republican politicians who initially were against him, and he has raised enormous sums of money, most of it from small donors. Is Trump’s hold on the Republican Party getting weaker? (brookings.edu)

UZBEKISTAN

High expectations in Uzbekistan. Ivailo Izvorski, Brookings: Uzbekistan’s economic transition from plan to market started three decades ago when it became an independent country. But for much of this time, economic modernization proceeded at a snail’s pace. In late 2016, Uzbekistan surprised everyone. It started structural reforms—how it managed macroeconomic policy, how it regulated enterprise, and how it provided public services—with a breadth and speed that exceeded even what we had observed in some of the earlier reformers like Kazakhstan at a similar stage of the process. In 2019, The Economist declared Uzbekistan the most improved economy—the country of the year. High expectations in Uzbekistan (brookings.edu)

YEMEN

Yemen’s war explained in maps and charts. Mohammed Haddad, Al Jazeera: Yemen is facing one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises as its brutal war enters its eighth year. The UN estimates the war has killed 377,000 people as of the end of 2021, both directly and indirectly through hunger and disease – with 70 percent of those deaths being children. Yemen’s war explained in maps and charts | Infographic News | Al Jazeera

PANDEMIC

WHO appeals for $23 billion to end global COVID emergency. Al JazeeraThe World Health Organization (WHO) is urging wealthier countries to step up and end the COVID-19 pandemic as a global health emergency by helping low and middle-income nations obtain tests, treatments and vaccines. The appeal, launched on Wednesday, asks 55 of the world’s richest nations to provide $23bn in funding. WHO appeals for $23 billion to end global COVID emergency | World Health Organization News | Al Jazeera

The Global Eye is published in cooperation with The Science of Where Magazine