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Returning from the Land of Jihad: The Fate of Women Associated with Boko Haram

Women are streaming home from Boko Haram’s domain in north-eastern Nigeria, some having escaped captivity and others having left jihadist husbands behind. ICG The state should safeguard these women from abuse, so that they stay in government-held areas and encourage men to come back as well. What’s new? The Nigerian military’s battle with Boko Haram has led tens of thousands of women formerly associated with the group to return to government-held towns across the north east. While prejudice against them ... Read More »

Of Tanks and Banks: Stopping a Dangerous Escalation in Libya

An under-reported banking crisis threatens to exacerbate deadly fighting in Tripoli, ignite a protracted resource war and deepen the country’s east-west divide. ICG A way out requires agreeing to a ceasefire in Tripoli and ending the four-year split between the Central Bank’s rival branches. What’s new?  A neglected banking crisis in Libya is coming to a head just as forces under Field Marshal Khalifa Haftar are trying to capture Tripoli. A protracted conflict will hinder efforts to reunify the divided ... Read More »

Migration is a growing issue, but it remains a challenge to define who actually is a migrant

According to the United Nations, more people live in a country other than their place of birth today than ever before. Authors: The Conversations The 2017 migration statistics show that about 34 people out of every 1,000 lived away from their place of birth. This number was over 31 in 2010, and 28 in 2000. Although the number of migrants is expected to grow, a clear understanding of contemporary migration remains a challenge. Defining who is a migrant This challenge ... Read More »

Why the US and China will have to make it work

Earlier this month, the US and China seemed on the point of a trade rapprochement. The tariffs Washington and Beijing have slapped on each other in recent months were about to be reversed. Brisbane Times / Telegraph, London Then Donald Trump took to Twitter – a phrase future historians will be using a lot, perhaps – signalling Sino-US trade negotiations had shifted from sweet to sour. “The trade deal with China continues, but too slowly,” Trump tweeted. “They broke the ... Read More »

A Path to War With Iran

How Washington’s Escalation Could Lead to Unintended Catastrophe Philip H. Gordon Foreign Affairs When President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of the Iran nuclear deal last May, many critics argued that he risked setting off a chain of events that could lead to war. The nuclear deal wasn’t perfect, supporters of the deal acknowledged, but if the United States precipitously walked away and the deal collapsed, Iran might resume its nuclear enrichment program, and to stop it, the ... Read More »

Election 2019: This is where it all went wrong for Labor and Bill Shorten

In the end, it was probably a blessing that Bob Hawke wasn’t alive to see it. Samantha Maiden The New Daily Scott Morrison has emerged as a modern-day Liberal Party hero, defying the predictions of the polls, his critics, his predecessors and even Liberal frontbenchers who voted with their feet to… The Labor Party was trounced on Saturday night, and it is a result that will ensure the ALP doesn’t pick a fight with retirees on tax reform again any ... Read More »

Be principled, but not so much that you scare voters

“The art of democratic statesmanship,” said the politician, “is of presenting your principles, presenting your convictions, in ways which sufficiently impress the public such that you are seen as a man or woman of principle, but which don’t so worry the public that they think you would be a risk if you found yourself in a… Jacqueline Maley The Canberra Times SMH/The Age The sentiment was pure pragmatism. The politician expressing it was Tony Abbott, talking in 2008 to a ... Read More »

The Merkel Model

The German chancellor has shown how to win and keep power in a man’s world. Kati Marton, Author of Alone: The Life and Times of Angela Merkel The Atlantic To the six women currently running in the 2020 presidential race, I offer this advice: Study German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the world’s most successful living politician, on the basis of both achievement and longevity. Now in her 14th year as chancellor of Europe’s powerhouse, Merkel has upended the rules of the ... Read More »

India’s acrimonious election comes to an end

Voting in one of India‘s most acrimonious elections in decades entered its final day on May 19 as Hindu nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi scrambled to hang on to his overall majority. VARANSI, India – Agence France Presse Hurriyet Polls close at 6:00 pm (1230 GMT) in the seventh and final round of voting, ending the world’s biggest election with 900 million eligible voters from Goa’s beaches to Mumbai’s slums and… Long queues formed outside polling stations in eight northern states electing the final ... Read More »

HEMP’s grassroots campaign hot on heels of Palmer’s $60 million ad barrage

Clive Palmer and his staggering $60 million spend on United Australia Party’s election campaignhas only managed to secure 20,000 more Senate votes nationally than a minor party forced to “scratch around” just to… Hamish Hastie WAtoday As of Sunday afternoon the Help End Marijuana Prohibition party had secured 141,500 first preference Senate votes or 1.9 per cent of the national vote, just behind UAP’s 161,000. It’s the party’s best result since being registered in 2010 and is a huge jump in ... Read More »

Austrian government collapses over Russia scandal

Kurz calls for snap election after video shows far-right leaders offering contracts for cash. Matthew Karnitschnig Politico Turns out Russian collusion isn’t a “witch hunt hoax” after all. At least not in Austria. The country’s government collapsed on Saturday after Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said he was pulling the plug on his ruling coalition after just 17 months in office. The move came barely 24 hours after the release of a bombshell video showing Heinz-Christian Strache, the far-right leader of his junior coalition partner, ... Read More »

Christians seek refuge after deadly Burkina attacks

KAYA, Burkina Faso (Reuters) – Concerned about a rise in violence against Christians in Burkina Faso, Pastor Jacques Ouedraogo changed the time of his Sunday service as a precaution. He believes this is what saved his life. Thiam Ndiaga Reuters Later, his church was one of two targeted by gunmen on May 12 in the town of Dablo in a series of deadly attacks on churches and a religious procession in the last two weeks in Burkina’s formerly peaceful Central ... Read More »

How Australia ended up taking in Rwandans accused of killing tourists

Australia’s government faces questions over secret deal with US in which the men were granted humanitarian visas Helen Davison The Guardian Just hours out from a federal election, the Australian government is facing questions over its decision to grant humanitarian visas to two Rwandan men accused of the brutal 1999 murder of tourists in Uganda. The Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, has said that the men were subject to – and cleared – security checks, and on Friday distanced himself ... Read More »

Venezuela’s Collapse Is the Worst Outside of War in Decades, Economists Say

Butchers have stopped selling meat cuts in favor of offal, fat shavings and cow hooves, the only animal protein many of their customers can afford. Anatoly Kurmanaev The New York Times MARACAIBO, Venezuela — Zimbabwe’s collapse under Robert Mugabe. The fall of the Soviet Union. Cuba’s disastrous unraveling in the 1990s. The crumbling of Venezuela’s economy has now outpaced them all. Venezuela’s fall is the single largest economic collapse outside of war in at least 45 years, economists say. “It’s ... Read More »

A Greek Canary in a Global Goldmine

After 2008, Greece came to symbolize global capitalism’s failure to balance credit and trade flows. Yianis Varoufakis Project Syndicate Today, as the global mismatch between economic reality and financial returns grows, there is clear danger that, once again, the country is foreshadowing a new phase of the global crisis. ATHENS – The eurozone country that has become synonymous with insolvency is today proving to be a treasure-trove for some. Traders who bought Greek assets a few years ago have good ... Read More »

Taiwan becomes first in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage

Supporters celebrate as legislation is passed giving gay couples right to marry Lily Kuo The Guardian Taiwan has legalised same-sex marriage, the first of any Asian state, with the passage of legislation giving gay couples the right to marry. Lawmakers on Friday comfortably passed part of a bill that would allow gay couples to enter into “exclusive permanent unions” and apply for marriage registration with government agencies. Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen, who campaigned on a platform of marriage equality, tweeted after the ... Read More »