07/28/2022, 09.58
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Baghdad, Sadrists attack parliament against pro-Iranian PM candidate

Today's headlines: lockdown returns for Covid in Wuhan; two Indian blue helmets killed in the Democratic Republic of Congo; Malaysia-Indonesia agreement on migrant workers; Erdogan wants full reopening of borders with Armenia.



Hundreds of followers of Iraqi Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr stormed the parliament building in Baghdad yesterday afternoon to protest against the candidacy of Mohammed Shia al-Sudani as prime minister by Iranian-backed parties. At the time of the raid, Parliament was empty and security forces reportedly let the protesters in. The al-Sadr bloc won 73 seats in the October 2021 Iraqi elections, making it the largest faction in the 329-seat parliament, but for months the clash between the two Shia factions has made the formation of a government impossible. 


Two Indian soldiers serving the Monusco blue helmets, the UN peacekeeping contingent in the Democratic Republic of Congo, were killed during an attack by rebel militias in Butembo, Kivu province. Together with Shishupal Singh and Sanwala Ram Vishnoi, a soldier from Morocco was also killed. 


A lockdown was again triggered for nearly one million people in a suburb of Wuhan, the city in central China where the coronavirus was first recorded. Residents of Jiangxia district were ordered to stay inside their homes or buildings for three days after four asymptomatic cases of Covid were detected. 


North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has returned to using threats against the US and the government in Seoul by saying that Yoon Suk-yeol and his 'military gangsters' will be annihilated if they carry out a pre-emptive strike against Pyongyang. The harsh intervention - delivered on the 69th anniversary of the armistice that ended the Korean War - comes as observers believe North Korea is preparing a new nuclear test. 


The Malaysian government announced an agreement with Indonesia to lift the ban on sending migrant workers to the country as of 1 August. The decision comes after the two countries agreed to integrate existing systems to facilitate the recruitment and hiring of Indonesian workers entering Malaysia. 


Turkish President Erdogan spoke on television and appealed to the leadership in Yerevan, stating that "we are serious and determined to normalise relations with Armenia, and we expect concrete steps, beyond general statements", referring to the full reopening of the borders between the two countries.


The private military company 'Wagner', linked to the Petersburg entrepreneur Evgenij Prigozhin known as 'Putin's cook', very active especially in Africa, has been given the opportunity to exploit 186 thousand hectares of forest in the Central African Republic in an area populated by gorillas, leopards and elephants at risk of extinction.

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