UN: without new government, Iraq risks revolt

Today's headlines: Tibetan community in Qinghai evicted to make way for hydroelectric power plant; Russia becomes India's 4th largest oil supplier;  Australia votes with Premier Morrison leading in the polls;  5,600 civilians have died in Myanmar since military coup; Crimeans fear Ukrainian military advance.



UN special envoy for Iraq,  Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert, says the country's streets are about to "boil over," and the risk is to see massive street protests as in 2018. The U.N. diplomat called on the political authorities to finally initiate a new executive seven months after the elections.


Chinese authorities have forced residents of the Tibetan village of Tsolho (Qinghai) to leave their homes to make way for a hydroelectric power plant. The same fate befell monks from the nearby Atsok Gon Dechen Choekhor Ling monastery. Petitions by locals to block the project were to no avail.


In April Russia became the fourth largest supplier of oil to India; previously it was 10th. Compared to the previous month, India's purchases of Russian crude grew by 6.9 percent. Delhi is taking advantage of Western sanctions over Moscow's attack on Ukraine by buying at cheaper prices.


The latest polls for the May 21 legislative elections give incumbent Premier Scott Morrison's conservative coalition on the rise. Anthony Albanese's Labor is at 51 percent, compared to 49 percent for the Liberal-National bloc. The vote hinges on rising inflation and loss of purchasing power for wages, and difficult relations with China.


The Isp Myanmar Institute has calculated that since the military coup in February 2021, and the subsequent conflict between the military and the armed opposition, more than 5,600 civilians have died in the country, victims of the military's operations. Meanwhile, anti-coup forces are demanding arms from the West.


Panic is spreading in Crimea over the Ukrainian counterattack. After initial enthusiastic support for Ukraine's invasion, criticism is now spreading of the Russian army, which is seen as a loser on the peninsula. After the liberation of Kherson, it is certain that the Ukrainians will try to retake Crimea.


Kazakhstan has proposed that other countries in the region join efforts to create a regional e-commerce platform in imitation of Amazon, Ali-Baba, and AliExpress. Proposal launched during a seminar organized by the Nur-Sultan Ministry of Commerce dedicated to simplifying customs procedures in the area.