Morning Briefing: Aug. 3, 2023
Anadolu’s recap of top stories from around the globe
By Rabia Ali
ISTANBUL (AA) - Here’s a rundown of all the news you need to start your Thursday, including evacuation of foreign nationals from Niger, phone call between Turkish and Russian presidents, and extreme hot weather in South Korea claiming lives.
- Niger coup leader rejects external intervention as countries evacuate foreign citizens
Niger’s coup leader Gen. Abdourahmane Tchiani, the commander of the presidential guard who declared himself the head of a transitional government, has refused any interference in the country’s internal affairs.
In a televised speech, the coup leader struck a hard stance, saying the junta would “not give in to threats” to restore the deposed president, Mohamed Bazoum, and rejected sanctions being imposed.
Meanwhile, countries including the US, France, Italy and Japan scrambled to evacuate their citizens from the West African country.
- Türkiye to pursue ‘intense’ efforts in resuming Black Sea grain deal: President Erdogan
Türkiye will continue to carry out “intense” efforts and diplomacy for the resumption of the Black Sea grain deal, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in a phone call.
Erdogan said long-term suspension of the agreement, officially known as Black Sea Grain Initiative, will not benefit anyone, and low-income countries in need of grain will suffer the most.
He emphasized that grain prices, which decreased by 23% during the deal implementation period, increased by 15% in the last two weeks.
- Extreme heat in South Korea claims lives of 23 people
The number of people who lost their lives due to extreme heat in South Korea increased to 23 on Wednesday, nearly three times the number of people who died in a heat wave in 2022.
There were 21 deaths attributed to heat-related illnesses from May 20 to the end of July, with two deaths reported on Tuesday.
Authorities have raised the heat wave alert to "serious," the highest level in the four-stage warning system.
NEWS IN BRIEF
- Ukraine said Russian drones damaged port infrastructure in the Odesa region.
- US Capitol Police cleared all Senate office buildings after receiving a report of "a possible active shooter" on Capitol Hill.
- Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy said the decision to start talks on his country’s accession to the EU must be approved by the end of the year.
- Spain’s Catalonia region declared a “drought emergency” in 24 municipalities, and will begin to impose significant water restrictions next week.
- More than 6 million people in Sudan, about 13% of the population, are now one step from famine, according to the UN, warning that hunger and displacement are "spiraling out of control" amid ongoing fighting.
- Firefighters continued to battle the largest wildfire in the state of California, which is encroaching on the iconic Joshua tree groves in the Mojave Desert.
- China blamed “geopolitics” for the outcome of a G-20 meeting in India in which environment ministers failed to reach a consensus on ways to address the global climate crisis.
- The Somali Olympic Committee suspended the chairwoman of the Somali Athletics Federation for selecting an “unskilled” female athlete to represent the country at the FISU World University Games in China.
- Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he and his wife Sophie are separating after 18 years of marriage.
- Mertens' screamer sends Galatasaray to next round in Champions League qualifiers
Galatasaray booked their place in the third qualifying round of the UEFA Champions League as the Lions eliminated Lithuania's Zalgiris.
Belgian forward Dries Mertens scored from long range in the 31st minute as Galatasaray beat Zalgiris 1-0 at the Rams Park in Istanbul to win 3-2 on aggregate.
- Brazil, Italy eliminated from FIFA Women's World Cup
Brazil and Italy were eliminated from the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup after their last group stage games.
South Africa beat Italy 3-2 in Group G, while Brazil settled for a goalless draw against Jamaica in Group F.
France defeated Panama 6-3 in the Group F game and Sweden beat Argentina 2-0 in Group G.
BUSINESS AND ECONOMY
- US Treasury chief says Fitch downgrade 'puzzling'
US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said Fitch Ratings’ downgrade of the US's credit rating was "puzzling" and "unwarranted."
Fitch on Tuesday downgraded the US's long-term foreign-currency credit rating to "AA+" from "AAA" with a stable outlook, saying the change reflects expected fiscal deterioration over the next three years and a high and growing general government debt burden as well as debt limit standoffs and last-minute resolutions.
- Nigeria cuts off electricity supply to Niger following coup
Nigeria cut off electricity supply to its northern neighbor Niger following last week's military coup in the West African country.
Niger is said to rely on Abuja for 70% of its electricity needs.
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