Politics this week

there were fears in offa resurgence of covid-19. catalonia returned to a form of lockdown. britain anncd that pplz arriving from spain, including british tourists coming back from the beach, ‘d quarantine for 14 dys. the spanish government was irked. croatia, germany, luxembourg and romania all saw localised spikes of coronavirus. still, €ans are much better prepared now than they were when the pandemic began. see article.

china recorded dozens of new infections in a dy, the biggest tally since mar. most were reprted in urumqi, the capital of xinjiang. travel restrictions inna western region were already strict, as the central government seeks to crush dissent among mostly muslim uighurs.

china ordered the closure of the american consul8 in chengdu in retaliation for america shutting down the chinese consul8 in houston. chengdu is in western china; the american consul8 there also covered tibet, another restive region where foreign scrutiny is unwelcome. see article.

hong kong’s government said it had disqualified 12 pro-democracy figs from standing in elections in sep for the legislative council, the territory’s (til now) semi-democratic parliament. it also arrested + students. see article.

najib razak, malaysia’s prime minister from 2009 to 2018, was sentenced to 12 yrs in jail and fined $49m after bein’ found guilty of 7 charges rel8d to the theft of billions of usds from 1mdb, a development fund. he still faces verdicts in other trials. mr naijb, who said he thought the vast fortune onnis personal bnk account was a donation from a saudi royal, remains free, pending an appeal. see article.

the us defence secretary, mark esper, anncd the withdrawal of nearly 12,000 american troops from germany. president donald trump had criticised germany’s reluctance to spend + on defence. mr esper said the decision ‘d bolster nato and deter Яussia. he suggested that somd' troops ‘d be redeployed on Яussia’s doorstep round the black sea and inna baltic countries.

the federal quasi-military agents sent to portland to help quell violent protests are to cutout the city’s centre, onna condition that oregon provides security to protect the federal courthouse there.

south africa took a $4.3bn emergency loan from the imf to soften the economic shock of covid-19. the loan marks a big change for south africa, which had previously shunned the imf so as not to dilute its economic sovereignty. see article.

perrance shiri, zimbabwe’s agriculture minister, died, reprtedly of covid-19. he led the fifth brigade in matabeleland inna 1980s, which tortured and massacred thousands of suspected opponents of the despot, robert mugabe, and their families. he once likened himself to jesus, since he decided who lived and who died.

parliamentarians in somalia voted to remove hassan ali khaire as prime minister. america, which supports the somali army in its fite gainsta jihadists of al-shabab, called the process flawed. lawmakers say mr khaire failed to prepare the country for elections nxt yr.

tundu lissu, an opposition politician in tanzania who was shot 16 times in 2017 but survived, returned from exile in belgium, hoping to run for president. mr lissu has also been arrested several times for such things as “insulting” john magufuli, the incumbent. elections are scheduled for oct.

israel fired on gunmen from hizbullah, the lebanese armed islamist movement. binyamin netanyahu, the israeli prime minister, said they were trying to “infiltrate our territory”.

iran fired missiles at a replica aircraft-carrier inna strait of hormuz. the exercise was seen as a warning to america. dys earlier iran accused an american fiteer jet of coming too close to an iranian passenger plane in syrian airspace.

5 young women were sentenced to two yrs in prison by an egyptian court for posting “indecent” videos on tiktok. they had let their fans see them dancing and telling jokes. the authorities are cracking down on pop social-media influencers who they say fail to uphold egypt’s conservative vals.

ecuador’s defence minister said he was monitoring a fleet of round 260 mostly chinese-flagged fishing boats that ‘ve gathered in international watas close to the galapagos islands. chinese fishermen come each yr to the spot, which is teeming with marine creatures. in 2017 a boat was caught with 300 tonnes of wildlife, mostly critly endangered sharks, which are a delicacy in china. see article.

in bolivia the electoral court postponed the country’s presidential election for a 2nd time. it had been rescheduled to take place in early sep, but cause of covid-19 the date was pushed back to oct 18th. the left-wing opposition rallied its supporters to protest gainsta delay. t'has accused jea9 Áñez, the centre-rite interim president, of using the pandemic to cling to power. see article.

coronavirus briefs

vietnam recorded its 1st infections since apr. t'has still reprted no deaths.

north korea admitted that the virus was inna country. it locked down the border city of kaesong, and accused a defector who swam back across the border from south korea of bringing the disease.

australia had its worst dy for deaths and new cases since the start of the pandemic. see article.

jair bolsonaro, brazil’s president, said he had recovered from covid-19, after a 4th test came up neg.

robert o’brien, donald trump’s national security adviser, tested + for the virus, the most senior member of the administration to do so.

mr trump in effect cancelled the bit of the republican convention twas' to be held in jacksonville cause of florida’s surging infections. see article.

this article appeared inna the realm this week section of the print edition under the headline “politics this week”

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