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Cramm for 5/14/21
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THE HIGHLIGHTS

All eyes are on Tigray. 

 

THE BACKGROUND.

Meet Abiy Ahmed. You may know him as the prime minister of Ethiopia. You may know him as the guy who won a Nobel Peace Prize for getting along with Eritrea. And you may know him as the guy who tried to violently take further control of the Ethiopian region of Tigray last year, leading to thousands of deaths and hundreds of thousands of displacements. The United Nations even accused Ethiopian and Eritrean troops - who had been aiding the effort - of possible war crimes and crimes against humanity. So a few weeks ago, Abiy finally pledged to leave Tigray. 

 

THE HAPPENINGS. 

Scratch that, because yesterday, a CNN investigation (confirmed by the UN) revealed that Eritrean troops - often disguised as Ethiopian troops - continue to operate in Tigray. They’re killing. Raping. Patrolling hospitals and threatening medical staff. Blocking humanitarian aid to starving populations. And there appears to be no sign that these troops will leave the region anytime soon. 

 

THE REACTION. 

Outrage. The top House Foreign Affairs member in the US is calling on the Biden team to impose sanctions on Ethiopia and Eritrea. Meanwhile, the US Sec of State is demanding an independent investigation into the human rights abuses being committed in Tigray. 
 

THE TAKE.

These atrocities have been taking place for months. Stay tuned.


THE ACTION

CORONAVIRUS: Yesterday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention made a big announcement: fully vaccinated Americans no longer have to mask or socially distance. The only exceptions: hospital, doctor’s offices, nursing homes, airports, and public transportation. The CDC is leaving it up to states and bizes to figure out specific mandates, while new guidance on schools should come soon. The US isn’t the only place cutting back on coronavirus restrictions. Greece is ending its lockdown measures and opening up to tourists. Meanwhile, a major doctor’s union in Japan is calling on the gov to cancel the Tokyo Olympics. And back in the US, nearly 2 million Americans will lose jobless benefits early after 16 states trashed them. 

 

WORLD: The violence is continuing to escalate in Israel-Palestine. Israel is sending troops to the border with Gaza, raising fears of a possible ground invasion. The military has continued to shell targets inside Gaza as Hamas has fired about 1,800 long-range rockets throughout Israel. At least 122 Palestinians and 6 Israelis, including civilians and kids, have been killed. Meanwhile, five High Court judges in Kenya just blocked a gov-blacked plan to make fundamental changes to the constitution. It’s the court’s most significant ruling in years. In other news, Turkey’s Karpowership, which provides one-quarter of Lebanon’s electricity, is shutting down. Hint: the biz, which is facing a legal battle, says it’s owed more than $100 million. 

 

USA: The Biden team has its mind on immigration. Quick refresher: towards the start of the pandemic, Trump enacted a policy called Title 42 that expelled migrant families at the US-Mexico border. Critics argued the policy exposed asylum-seekers to potentially dangerous conditions in Mexico - plus caused some families to separate from their kids, since Title 42 only applies to adults. Now, it looks like Biden is planning to identify vulnerable migrant families in Mexico and admit them to the US. In other news, the state trial for the three other ex-police officers accused of aiding and abetting in the murder of George Floyd was just delayed until next March. The idea is to let a federal trial take place first. 


WHAT TO KNOW

TikTok:” what’s reportedly testing a new tool for brands to find employees on the app. UhOh. 


SAY WHAT?

“Dionne Warwick confirms on Twitter that Dionne Warwick is not dead” - an actual headline

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