07/31/2023, 13.00
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Six die in intra-Palestinian clashes at the Ain al Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon

Today's news: Lao police arrest Chinese human rights lawyer who defended Hong Kong pro-democracy advocates. Suicide bombing in Pakistan kills at least 44 people and wounds another 200. Seven satellites made in Singapore were successfully launched from India. In Herat the Taliban torch musical instruments that “cause the youth to go astray.” At the Russia-Africa summit, Putin rewards the Zimbabwean president for his "loyalty".


Rival Palestinian factions clashed over the weekend with at least six people killed and more than 40 wounded, including Lebanese soldiers. Members of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s Fatah fought members of Islamist groups at the Ain al Hilweh refugee camp, the largest in the country, home to more than 50,000 people. One of the dead was a Fatah commander.


Lao police have arrested a Chinese human rights lawyer on his way to the United States. Lu Siwei could be deported at Beijing's request. In 2021, he had his licence to practise law revoked for defending 12 Hong Kong pro-democracy activists. According to the authorities in Vientiane, there were "irregularities" in his passport.


At least 44 people died yesterday in an explosion in what appears to be a suicide attack against a gathering organised by Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam-Fazl (Jui-F), an Islamist party, in the north-western district of Bajaur. More than 200 people were wounded, some critically.


Seven satellites made in Singapore were successfully launched yesterday from India, as part of a joint space programme. The rockets lifted off at 6:31 am local time aboard a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, off the coast of Andhra Pradesh, in the south. An Earth observation satellite was also launched.


In Herat the Taliban set fire to musical instruments and other equipment, on the grounds that music is contrary to Islam. “Promoting music causes moral corruption and playing it will cause the youth to go astray,” said Aziz al-Rahman al-Muhajir, head of the Herat office of the Ministry for the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice.


Russian President Vladimir Putin personally met almost every African leader who attended the Russia-Africa summit in St Petersburg. The Russian leader rewarded the Kremlin’s most loyal supporter, Zimbabwean President of Emmerson Mnangagwa, with a helicopter paid by Russian taxpayers’ money.


Turkish Defence Minister Jashar Güler and his Tajik counterpart, Šerali Mirzo, signed a military and financial collaboration agreement between the two countries. The deal was inked on the margins of this year’s International Defence Industry Fair (IDEF) in Istanbul, one of the foremost events showcasing new weapons.

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