Updated: September 20, 2021 11:00:55 am
Here is a round-up of the top developments around the world today.
Russia’s ruling United Russia party, which supports President Vladimir Putin has retained parliamentary majority in the Russian Parliamentary Elections 2021, partial results showed on Monday. With 64% of ballots counted, the Central Election Commission said United Russia had won nearly 48% of the vote, with its nearest rival, the Communist Party, at about 21%. This is still a relatively weaker performance by the party who won with over 54 per cent of vote share in the 2016 elections.
Reasons for this: The faltering living standards in the country, allegations of corruption from jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny who has drained Putin’s support, compounded by a tactical voting campaign organised by Navalny’s allies as well as allegations of large-scale vote rigging in the elections.
As leaders reconvene at UN, climate and covid-19 top the list
With the coronavirus pandemic still raging in many parts of the world, leaders from more than 100 nations are heading to New York this week for the United Nations’ annual high-level gathering a COVID-inflected, semi-locked down affair that takes place in one of the pandemic’s hardest-hit cities of all.
It will be a departure from the last in-person meeting of the General Assembly in 2019 and far different, too, from last year’s all-virtual version.
Awaiting them: daunting challenges enough to scare anyone who runs a country, from an escalating climate crisis and severe vaccine inequities to Afghanistan’s future under its new Taliban rulers and worsening conflicts in Myanmar and the Tigray region of Ethiopia.
France has cancelled a meeting between Armed Forces Minister Florence Parly and her British counterpart planned for this week after Australia scrapped a submarine order with Paris in favour of a deal with Washington and London, two sources familiar with the matter said.
Parly has reportedly personally taken the decision to drop the bilateral meeting with British Defence Secretary Ben Wallace, the sources said. The French defence ministry could not be immediately reached and the British defence ministry declined comment as well.
US removing migrants from Texas border camp, begins flights to Haiti
As thousands of migrants throng at the Texas border in the US, the state border agents have started removing groups of mostly Haitan migrants from a large makeshift camp they had setup across the Rio Grande separating Mexico with the states. This took place as the first repatriation flight arrived in Haiti on Sunday.
Since Friday, the authorities have moved 3,300 migrants from Texas and announced a new daily schedule of flights to the Haitian capital. “Over the next six to seven days, our goal is to process the 12,662 migrants that we have underneath that bridge as quickly as we possibly can,” US Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz told a news conference in Del Rio, Texas.
Syria’s defence minister visited Jordan on Sunday to discuss stability on their mutual border, the first such meeting since the Syrian conflict erupted a decade ago when the two neighbours supported opposing factions, officials said.
The meeting follows a major army offensive to retake the last rebel bastion in southern Syria, and after restabilising control this month over Deraa, a city south of Damascus, in a Russian brokered deal that averted an all-out military assault led by Iranian-backed units of the army.
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