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A week in review 09/01/21
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By Joseph Rios

Military and police chiefs ousted in Zambia
- Zambia President Hakainde Hichilema announced new commanders of the Zambian army, air force, national service and a new inspector general of police. The announcements signal a new day for security forces being more accountable to residents. Hichilema won the country’s presidential election last month and has been a victim of police brutality in the past. Regional police commissioners have been relieved of their duties, and replacements are expected to be announced soon.

Thousands missing across Africa - The International Committee of the Red Cross recently announced that more than 44,000 people are currently declared missing in Africa with 45 percent of those missing being children. The organization’s declaration came as the International Day of the Disappeared was recently recognized. Nigeria has declared 24,000 people missing in the country. The rise in missing people is due to armed conflicts and other types of violence.


North Korea restarts nuclear reactor
- The UN atomic agency recently reported that North Korea appears to have restarted its Yongbyon nuclear reactor. It is believed the nuclear reactor has been operational since July. This is the first time since December 2018 that the reactor has appeared to be operating. North Korea last tested nuclear weapons in 2017.

China cuts online gaming - Online gaming in China for those under the age of 18 will be restricted. The National Press and Publication Administration said that game playing will only be allowed between 8 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Fridays, weekends and holidays. Online gaming companies will also be subject to inspections and are being instructed to prevent children from playing outside of the new time frame.


Hundreds of migrants rescued in Italy
- The Italian coastguard rescued 539 migrants from a fishing boat off the Italian island of Lampedusa. It is one of the largest migrant rescues the island has seen in a single day. Some of the migrants reportedly showed signs of violence against them and an inquiry into what may have happened has been opened. Lampedusa has a migrant camp designed to hold fewer than 300 people.

Vaccination rates slow down in Europe - The World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the combination of a slow down in vaccination rates along with a spike in Coronavirus infections could hold back Europe from ending the pandemic. WHO European Director Hans Kluge said increases in COVID-19 cases and deaths are “deeply worrying.” Kluge predicted Europe could record 236,000 COVID-19 related deaths by December. Russia, France, the UK, Turkey and Spain recently recorded the most cases in Europe.

Latin America

Bank robbers raid Brazilian city
- Around 20 people took part in a heist that killed at least three people, including one suspect, in the southern Brazilian city of Aracatuba. Robbers strapped hostages to the top of their getaway vehicles. Officials said at least 14 bombs were placed across the city that may be triggered by heat or motion. Schools are closed, and people are being urged to stay indoors until the bombs are dismantled.

Venezuela searches for survivors after landslide - Rescue workers are searching for more than 12 people after landslides struck towns in western Venezuela. Rain is also expected to trigger new mudslides in the coming days. Government officials said more than 8,000 homes have been destroyed already. At least 20 people are confirmed dead. In 2005, mudslides hit Venezuela and left more than 40 people dead.

North America

Hurricane Ida hits New Orleans
- Over the weekend a million people were left without power in Louisiana due to Hurricane Ida. The hurricane reached 150 mph and has killed at least one person in the Baton Rouge area. Heavy rain could still cause flooding in parts of the state. Officials said the full scale of the destruction the caused will become clear as the day goes on. President Joe Biden declared a major disaster in the state, leading the way for extra funds for rescues to be completed.

Robert F Kennedy assassin recommended for parole - Sirhan Sirhan, the murderer of 1968 Democratic presidential candidate Robert F Kennedy, has been granted prison release after a Californian parole board vote. He has been in prison for 53 years and was deemed as a non threat to the public by the board. However, California Governor Gavin Newsom will decide whether or not Sirhan walks. In Los Angeles, the local district attorney’s office said they will not oppose his release.

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