Globetrotter: News in a Nutshell

Violence in Chile reach new lows. Credits : Reuters

The first week of November, has so far, seen political restlessness all across the world. From violent demonstrations in Chile to the suppression of the free press in Pakistan, this week’s Globetrotter covers all the major incidents.

Chile, South America

Over the past two weeks, Chile has seen violent anti-establishment protests. The demonstrations began after the president made economic sanctions, sparking a massive public outcry.

Anti-government demonstrations in Chile. Credits : The Guardian

According to the Economist, President Piñera succumbed to the pressure and replaced eight members of his cabinet. The new cabinet has a friendlier face. The president, who promised “better times” when he took office in 2018, says these changes are the beginning of “new times”.

Violence has lessened, but continues. Some protesters are demanding Piñera’s resignation.

England, Till Now in Europe

Boris Johnson was accused of heading a cover-up after it emerged that Downing Street refused to clear the publication of an inflammatory report examining Russian infiltration in British politics.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Credits : PA

The Guardian says that the PM’s office indicated on Monday that it would not allow a 50-page dossier from the intelligence committee to be published before the election, prompting complaints over its suppression.

The committee’s chairman, Dominic Grieve said that there was no reason for the refusal had been given, while Labour and Scottish National party politicians accused the PM of refusing to recognise the scale of Russian meddling.

Mali, Africa

The Guardian reports that Islamic militants in Mali have killed dozens of soldiers in its deadliest strike against the African country’s military till date.

At least 53 soldiers and one civilian died in the attack on an isolated military base in the north-east of the country, the government said.

Islamic State claimed responsibility for the attack in a report by its Amaq news agency on Saturday. However, it did not cite any evidence for the claim.

USA, North America

The Economic Times reported that the Democrats laid out a map for President Trump’s impeachment on October 31 as they gathered more evidence to support charges that he improperly pushed Ukraine to boost his own 2020 electoral prospects.

One day after an army officer told investigators he witnessed Trump pressure Ukraine, three other State Department officials on Wednesday offered more evidence supporting the allegations against him.

And the inquiry testimony set dates for three more witnesses, including former National Security Advisor John Bolton, who has first-hand knowledge of the president’s alleged effort to leverage military aid to Ukraine in exchange for investigating his rival Joe Biden.

Pakistan, Asia

For six years, Talat Hussain, a well-regarded Pakistani journalist, wrote for the Diplomat, openly talking about political issues. But last year, that changed. Forced to comply with a “total blackout” of news that criticised the military or Imran Khan, Hussain found it impossible to speak freely.

While Pakistan has a rocky relationship with press freedom, under Imran Khan, elected as prime minister in 2018 with strong military backing, censorship is heavier than ever.

Novelist Mohammed Hanif’s 2017 New York Times article was replaced with an empty page. Credits : Graeme Robertson

Journalists, authors and politicians spoke to the Guardian of a climate of “extreme fear and self-censorship”, and the suppression of opposition voices, even worse than during the military dictatorship of General Zia between 1977 and 1988.

– By Sayantan Guha and Sashwata Saha

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