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  • Erica Na

Week of January 28

Updated: Feb 17

International

Middle-East

  • The US, Britain, Germany, and several other countries are suspending funding to the UN agency in Gaza after Israel accused some members of being involved in the October 7 attacks. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency has fired several of the employees. The agency said it will be forced to shut down by the end of February if funding doesn’t resume. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the aid group should shut down despite the millions of Gazans who rely on the agency. 

  • A drone attack in Jordan by an Iranian-backed militia left 3 American troops dead and more than 30 injured. This is the first time US troops have died in the Middle East since the start of the Israel-Hamas war. In response, the US struck over 85 targets that were used by Iranian-backed militias in Syria and Iraq.

  • At Harvard, Muslim and Palestinian students filed a complaint, claiming that the university failed to protect students from on-campus harassment including racial attacks, stalking, and assault.

France

  • France is moving to guarantee abortion rights through constitutionalization. On Tuesday, the National Assembly overwhelmingly passed a bill to solidify abortion rights into law with a vote of 493 to 30. The bill is set to move up to the Senate, where it will face greater opposition and criticism from conservative Republicans and right-wing members. 

Pakistan

  • Imran Khan, former Pakistani prime minister, was sentenced to 14 years in prison a day after his 10-year sentence for leaking state secrets. This time, his wife also received the sentencing after the couple illegally sold state gifts.  


 

US Politics

Border

  • Trump has attempted to obstruct bipartisan legislation on the border issue in order to undermine Joe Biden's campaign, intending to leverage the lack of compromise as ammunition for his presidential campaign.

  • House Republicans released two articles of impeachment against Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for committing crimes in his mishandling of the US-Mexico border. The Department of Homeland Security has denounced these efforts, claiming that the upcoming committee vote was a “distraction from other vital national security promises.”

 

Tech

  • CEOs of TikTok, Meta, Discord, Snapchat, and X appeared to testify to Congress about internet safety for children. Members of the Senate Judiciary Committee pressured the CEOs to apologize for their role in internet harassment and address the families of abuse victims who were in the room. 

  • On Monday, Elon Musk’s Neuralink company shared that it had successfully implanted a human brain chip. If successfully, brain implants may help people who are unable to use their limbs or communicate.

  • The US Federal Communications Commission announced that they are working to make AI-generated robocalls illegal. AI voice generators mimicked Joe Biden and deceived thousands of New Hampshire voters. This raises concerns for the spread of disinformation in the comping elections.  

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