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Year of Variants: Stubborn virus marks momentous 2021 (February)

Year of Variants: Stubborn virus marks momentous 2021 (February)
Myanmar army seizing power, Germany, Poland and Sweden declaring Russian diplomats persona non grata made headlines in February

ANKARA (AA) - Myanmar military declaring state of emergency followed by seizing power, EU countries like Germany, Poland and Sweden declaring Russian diplomats "persona non grata" as a retaliation and thousands of Ennahda supporters demonstrating in the Tunisian capital Tunis marked the top news stories globally in February.


February 1

- Myanmar's military declares state of emergency, seizes power and said it will rule the country for at least one year after detaining top political leaders.

- Azerbaijan’s National Assembly approves agreements allowing passport-free travel between Azerbaijan and Turkey and the establishment of a joint media platform between the two countries.

- Kosovo and Israel officially establish diplomatic relations through a special virtual ceremony.

Feb. 2

- Moscow City Court sentences Russian opposition politician Alexey Navalny to two years and eight months in prison for violating parole.

Feb. 3

- Kyrgyzstan appoints Ulukbek Maripov new prime minister, bringing a long-running political crisis to a close.

Feb. 4

- The International Criminal Court convicts Dominic Ongwen, a Ugandan child soldier-turned rebel commander, of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

- President Joe Biden formally ends US support for a Saudi-led campaign in Yemen.

Feb. 5

- Mohammad Younes Menfi becomes president of Libya’s interim government, Abdul Hamid Mohammed Dbeibah prime minister in the Presidency Council during voting in an unnamed location in Switzerland.

- Central African Republic extends state of emergency for six months across the war-torn country as the fight against rebel groups continues.

Feb. 6

- Canadian theater, film, and television actor Christopher Plummer dies in the US at the age of 91.

- Chadian diplomat, Moussa Faki Mahamat receives sweeping vote of confidence among African leaders to serve as chairman of the African Union Commission for another four-year term.

Feb. 7

- South Africa’s Health Minister Zweli Mkhize announces temporarily halting the use of the AstraZeneca coronavirus vaccine due to a new study that revealed the vaccine is less effective against the South African variant of the virus.

Feb. 8

- Germany, Poland and Sweden declare Russian diplomats persona non grata in retaliation for similar measures taken last week by Moscow.

- One week after carrying out a coup, Myanmar's military junta imposed a nationwide dusk-to-dawn curfew following protests in several cities.

Feb. 9

- Turkey unveils its national space program, a roadmap based on realistic and competitive goals, according to the country's president.

- Algeria declares a state of emergency after the World Organization for Animal Health's announcement of a H5N8 bird flu outbreak in the east.

- Team of international experts from the World Health Organization and China say there is insufficient evidence that the coronavirus spread in Wuhan before December 2019.

Feb. 10

- China's first Mars probe mission successfully enters orbit.

- 20 UN peacekeepers wounded in central Mali in an attack on their base.

Feb. 11

- Prominent British scientist Sharon Peacock warns that the Kent variant of the coronavirus is likely to spread across the world.

Feb. 12

- China celebrates its Lunar New Year with week-long public holidays amid measures to avoid contracting the coronavirus.

- Tokyo Olympics chief Yoshiro Mori resigns because of sexist comments made at a meeting where he said, "women talk too much."

Feb. 13

- The US Senate votes to acquit former President Donald Trump on a sole impeachment article following the Jan. 6 insurrection carried out by his supporters.

- Former central banker Mario Draghi formally accepts the challenging task to forge Italy’s next government, unveiling a mixed Cabinet of technocrats and politicians from a broad coalition of support.

Feb. 14

- Portion of the Nanda Devi glacier, India’s second-highest mountain, breaks off in the Tapovan area of Uttarakhand state, damaging the Rishiganga hydropower project, killing 51 and leaving 150 missing.

- Former Argentine President Carlos Menem dies at Los Arcos Sanatorium in the capital of Buenos Aires at 90 following long-term health issues.

Feb. 15

- The West African country of Guinea declares a new Ebola virus outbreak.

- Nigeria's Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala becomes the first woman and African to head the World Trade Organization that has been hobbled by dissent in recent years.

- Sama Lukonde Kyenge becomes the new prime minister of the Democratic Republic of Congo.


- France’s National Assembly approves a controversial bill that has been criticized for targeting Muslims.

Feb. 17

- Zanzibar’s First Vice President Seif Sharif Hamad, 77, dies. He had been undergoing treatment for COVID-19 in hospital.

- A cold front with record-level snowfall causes major problems in transportation, power, and water supplies in most parts of the Attica region of Greece.

- Israel demolishes an Arab Bedouin village in the southern Negev region for the 183rd time.

Feb. 18

- Millions of residents in the US state of Texas continue to struggle without power amid frigid and icy conditions as yet another snowstorm nears the state.

- Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia announces his resignation.

- NASA’s Perseverance rover lands safely on Mars, beginning what is slated to be an almost two-year search for ancient life on the red planet.

Feb. 19

- Heavy clashes erupt between security guards of opposition leaders and government forces near Somalia's presidential palace in Mogadishu, with several people feared dead.

- EU renews its arms embargo and assets freeze against Zimbabwe Defense Industries, citing a lack of substantial reforms and continued human rights violations in the southern African nation.

- A woman, 20, dies 10 days after she was shot in the head during an anti-coup protest in Myanmar’s administrative capital.

Feb. 20

- A Moscow court rejects an appeal by Navalny of his suspended sentence being replaced by prison time, but further trimmed his time behind bars.

- At least five people are killed in the Afghan capital of Kabul in back-to-back blasts caused by sticky bombs during the morning rush hour.

Feb. 21

- Serbian tennis superstar Novak Djokovic wins his ninth Australian Open title with a 3-0 set victory against Daniil Medvedev in the 2021 men's singles final.

- A devastating fire in Bangladesh’s capital Dhaka destroys more than 100 shanties.

- Libyan Interior Minister Fathi Bashagha survives an assassination attempt.

- The World Health Organization calls on Tanzanian authorities to release COVID-19 data and implement public health measures to break the chain of transmission of the deadly virus.

Feb. 22

- Canada votes to label the Chinese human rights abuse of Uyghur Muslims as genocide -- a deliberate attempt to obliterate a group of people.

- Canadian parliament votes 229-29 to lobby the Olympic committee to move the Games if China does not stop the genocide.

- Daft Punk breaks up. The iconic Parisian electronica duo’s pop-infused funk and futurist aesthetics brought nearly three decades of hits to international audiences.

- Spanish police arrests at least 160 protesters after six nights of sometimes-violent protests triggered by rapper Pablo Hasel's jailing.

Feb. 23

- Niger elects Mohamed Bazoum as president in the second round of polls.

- Georgia’s parliament votes to approve new Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili and the Cabinet he put forward.

- At least 50 inmates die in clashes in Ecuador in what authorities describe as a "concerted action" of criminal gangs.

Feb. 24

- Ghana becomes the first African country to receive COVID-19 vaccines from the COVAX facility as 600,000 Oxford-AstraZeneca doses arrived in the capital, Accra.

- World’s largest cricket stadium with a capacity o110,000 opens in India, with the hosts facing England in the third Test of their ongoing four-match series.

- Hungary becomes the first European Union member state to use the Chinese vaccine against COVID-19.

- A Turkish court hands down jail terms to three people who were accused of aiding former Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn’s escape from Japan to Lebanon via an airport in Istanbul.

Feb. 25

- Chinese President Xi Jinping declares “complete victory” in eradicating absolute poverty in the world’s most populous country, local media reports.

- The Armenian military demands the resignation of Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan, saying the call was not made under any pressure.

- Australia’s parliament passes a controversial law that forces digital giants like Google and Facebook to pay local media for news content they display on their platforms.

- The militaries of India and Pakistan agree to a cease-fire along the disputed Kashmir border.

Feb. 26

- More than 400 inmates escape and 25 people die in a prison break in Haiti

- More than 300 schoolgirls are kidnapped in Nigeria in the wee hours, according to witnesses who said armed men attacked their school.

- US rolls out what it is calls the "Khashoggi Ban" -- a new visa restriction policy under existing law meant to punish governments who work to silence dissents abroad.

Feb. 27

- Amnesty International reports Eritrean troops fighting in Tigray systematically killed hundreds of unarmed civilians in the northern city of Axum on Nov. 28-29, 2020.

- Thousands of Ennahda supporters demonstrate in the Tunisian capital, Tunis, demanding a solution to the ongoing political crisis.

Feb. 28

- Jordan’s King Abdullah II accepts the resignation of the interior and justice ministers for violating coronavirus measures.

- American film Nomadland wins the Best Picture Award in Drama at the 78th Golden Globes. Its director Chloe Zhao becomes the first woman to win the Best Director Award since 1984.

source: News Feed
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