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(Mali) Mali interim President Assimi Goita is ‘well’ after knife attack (Al Jazeera)

Al Jazeera writes: Mali’s interim President Assimi Goita has been targeted in an attempted stabbing attack after Eid al-Adha prayers at the Grand Mosque in the capital, Bamako, his office said. “The attacker was immediately overpowered by security. Investigations are ongoing,” the presidency said in a Twitter post on Tuesday.

go to Al Jazeera website: Mali interim President Assimi Goita is ‘well’ after knife attack | Mali News | Al Jazeera

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(USA) US charges Trump ally with undisclosed lobbying for UAE (Al Jazeera)

Al Jazeera writes: Tom Barrack, a billionaire ally of Donald Trump who chaired the former president’s inaugural committee in 2016, has been arrested on foreign lobbying charges, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) said on Tuesday. Barrack, 74, was charged in a federal court in New York with seven counts of unlawful efforts to advance the interests of the United Arab Emirates, the DOJ said in a statement released by the department’s public affairs office in Washington, DC.

go to Al Jazeera website: US charges Trump ally with undisclosed lobbying for UAE | Crime News | Al Jazeera

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(Tunisia/Pandemic) Tunisia health minister sacked as COVID-19 cases surge (Al Jazeera)

Al Jazeera writes: Tunisia’s Prime Minister Hichem Mechichi has sacked Health Minister Faouzi Mehdi amid spiralling coronavirus cases in the North African country. The ministry said earlier this month that Tunisia’s health system had “collapsed” under the weight of the pandemic, which has caused more than 17,000 deaths in a population of about 12 million.

go to Al Jazeera website: Tunisia health minister sacked as COVID-19 cases surge | Coronavirus pandemic News | Al Jazeera

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(Turkey/Cyprus) Turkey says Cyprus town of Varosha to reopen amid Greek objection (Al Jazeera)

Al Jazeera writes: Authorities in the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus announced on Tuesday a partial reopening of an abandoned town for potential resettlement, drawing a strong rebuke from Greek Cypriot and international leaders including the United States.

go to Al Jazeera website: Turkey says Cyprus town of Varosha to reopen amid Greek objection | Europe News | Al Jazeera

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(Israel) Enlightened Israelis must admit Israel is guilty as charged (Al Jazeera)

Andrew Mitrovica writes for Al Jazeera: The unforgettable image should still shame enlightened Israelis. It is July 2014. Israel has decided, yet again, to teach Palestinians a lengthy, lethal lesson. Bit by inevitable bit, day and night, from the land, sea and air, the Israeli army went about methodically obliterating swaths of Gaza and the imprisoned children, women and men who try, often in vain, to survive the recurring terror.

go to Al Jazeera website: Enlightened Israelis must admit Israel is guilty as charged | Middle East | Al Jazeera

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(Southeast Asia/Pandemic) Is there a way out of Southeast Asia’s COVID-19 disaster? (East Asia Forum)

Swee Kheng Khor writes for East Asia Forum: The second year of the COVID-19 pandemic has not been kind to Southeast Asian countries. The region is experiencing accelerated national-level tragedies played out in accelerated speed. Only three Southeast Asian countries have any semblance of control. Brunei has had no community transmission since May 2020. Singapore has done comparatively more tests (2.2 tests per capita to Indonesia’s mere 0.04 per capita). And Vietnam has the region’s lowest mortality rate (0.71 per million — impressive given its population of 96 million).

go to East Asia Forum website: Is there a way out of Southeast Asia’s COVID-19 disaster? | East Asia Forum

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(South Korea) South Korea’s soft power struggles (East Asia Forum)

Roald Maliangkay writes for East Asia Forum: South Korea has become a powerhouse of cultural production. Its cultural influence in global entertainment is spread across industries in various media operating at the vanguard of cultural developments around the world. South Korean policymakers claim that the ‘Korean wave’ is driven by the quality of its artists and products. Others have looked for answers in South Korea’s marketing and funding schemes.

go to East Asia Forum website: South Korea’s soft power struggles (eastasiaforum.org)

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(West and Fragile Countries) Events of last six months show fragile countries must remain priority for the US and its allies (Brookings)

Alexandre Marc and Bruce Jones write for Brookings: The West is shifting its gaze from fragile states. After 20 years, the United States is headed for the exits in Afghanistan, pulling NATO with it. French President Emmanuel Macron is ending the Barkhane operation, pulling many of the more than 5,000 French troops from the Sahel, where they’ve been fighting a vicious jihadi insurgency since 2014. The U.K. has discussed a draft security and development review which suggests a major redeployment of its efforts to Asia. The EU is rethinking its global strategy to focus more on new global risks including China and Russia.

go to Brookings website: Events of last six months show fragile countries must remain priority for the US and its allies (brookings.edu)

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(Bitcoin) The brutal truth about Bitcoin (Brookings)

Eswar Prasad writes for Brookings: Bitcoin, the original cryptocurrency, has been on a wild ride since its creation in 2009. Earlier this year, the price of one Bitcoin surged to over $60,000, an eightfold increase in 12 months. Then it fell to half that value in just a few weeks. Values of other cryptocurrencies such as Dogecoin have risen and fallen even more sharply, often based just on Elon Musk’s tweets. Even after the recent fall in their prices, the total market value of all cryptocurrencies now exceeds $1.5 trillion, a staggering amount for virtual objects that are nothing more than computer code.

go to Brookings website: The brutal truth about Bitcoin (brookings.edu)

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