BELARUS, BELALOSE?

Since 9 August, tens of thousands have taken to the streets of Minsk, Belarus to protest the re-election of incumbent President Alexander Lukashenko. Despite overwhelming public support for Svetlana Tikhanovskaya prior to the election, Lukashenko had declared a landslide victory, with 80% of the votes.

MURDER EPIDEMIC IN SOUTH AFRICA

South Africa has come under international attention for its recent spike in femicide rates. Within just two weeks after the 27 March pandemic lockdown, more than 148 people have been arrested for committing gender-based crimes. The South African President, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa has expressed his apologies and condolences in an open letter to the nation.

WHAT’S SLOWER THAN SNAIL MAIL?

Amidst a funding crisis, the United States Postal Service announces cost-cutting measures that would slow down mail deliveries. Americans worry for the fate of their mail-in ballots. Having been granted an additional US$25 billion in funding by the US House of Representatives, USPS announced that it will postpone its cost-cutting measures to after the Presidential Election.

RUSSIA’S VACCINE KINDA SUS

On 11 August, Russia became the first country to approve a vaccine for COVID-19. The Russian vaccine, named “Sputnik V”, has been hailed by President Vladimir Putin as “quite effective” and claimed to offer “sustainable immunity” against the virus. However, the vaccine’s truncated clinical trials phase raises questions.

NOBODY ASKED, BUT MAHATHIR FORMS A NEW PARTY

Malaysia’s former Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad forms a new political party again. This comes after he was expelled from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), another political party that he established four years ago. It remains to be seen if Home Minister Hamzah Zainudin, who is part of Bersatu’s leadership, would officiate Dr Mahathir’s newest party.

BEIRUT EXPLOSION

On 4 August, 2 successive explosions occurred in Beirut, the capital city of Lebanon. It was caused by the ignition of 2,750 tonnes of ammonium nitrate that had been lying unsecured in a warehouse for six years. The explosion aggravated the Lebanese’s already fuelling discontent towards their government amidst an economic crisis.