09/07/2023, 09.42
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Armenia: military exercises with the US. Repercussions are feared in Nagorno-Karabakh

Today's headlines: Russia tries to enlist Cubans for the war in Ukraine; China proposes a ban on clothes that 'hurt the nation's sentiment'; Japan joins moon race; Myanmar sentences a photojournalist to 20 years in prison; Bangladesh in throes of worst dengue epidemic ever recorded.


Armenia, a longtime ally of Russia, has announced it will host a joint military exercise with the United States next week, at a time of mounting military tension with neighboring Azerbaijan, with which it is in conflict over control of the enclaves of the Nagorno-Karabakh. The decision comes at a time of Armenia's intense frustration with Moscow. Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan accused Russia, distracted by the war with Ukraine, of failing to protect Armenia from what he called continued aggression by Azerbaijan. For example, Armenian defense officials said Azerbaijan fired on their positions on the border last night.


Cuba's foreign ministry has denounced Russia for "trading in human personnel" in attempts to enlist Cubans for the war in Ukraine with economic promises, but "these attempts have been neutralized and criminal investigations have been opened against the organizers of the initiatives”, above all because “Cuba does not participate in the Ukrainian operation”.


After recent changes to public security laws, a bill was introduced in China to ban clothes that "hurt the nation's feelings," under which those who wear or force others to wear clothes that "undermine the spirit of the Chinese people” risk 15 days of detention and a fine of up to 5,000 yuan (680). Chinese Internet users have wondered how law enforcement can determine when the nation's "feelings" may be "hurt."


Japan, after India, is also aiming for the moon: this morning a rocket was successfully launched carrying a spacecraft - called SLIM - for lunar exploration, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) announced ), after three launches in one week were postponed last month due to unfavorable weather. The 0 million mission is expected to reach the moon by February next year.


A Myanmar court has sentenced photojournalist Sai Zaw Thaike to 20 years in prison after he was arrested while documenting the aftermath of Cyclone Mocha, which struck Rakhine State in May, killing dozens of people. The outlet he worked for, Myanmar Now, said it did not know what charges Sai Zaw Thaike was convicted of, after being held without access to a lawyer or family visits before his trial. Meanwhile, the military junta camp has announced that elections in the country will not be held before 2025.


Pakistani troops yesterday repulsed a cross-border attack from Afghanistan. Islamabad accuses Kabul of hosting militants linked to Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), the Taliban who target Pakistan's government institutions. “There were hundreds of them and they were armed with light and heavy weapons. We were ready to deal with the attack and the firefight continued for about four hours," said Mohammad Ali, deputy commissioner of Chitral district. The Torkham border crossing, along another part of the border, was then closed for other border skirmishes.


According to the World Health Organization, Bangladesh is afflicted by the worst dengue epidemic ever recorded, probably due to climate change which has caused an increase in the presence of mosquitoes, responsible for the transmission of the disease. Since the beginning of the epidemic in April, more than 135,000 cases of dengue and 650 deaths have been recorded. More than 300 deaths from the disease were reported in August alone.

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