This is the third edition of a new MediaFile series. Every week the International section takes on the task of curating a list of five important world news stories that you may have missed this week because of news from the American election cycle.
This week in the Middle East, the former Lebanese Prime Minister, Saad Hariri, endorsed former Lebanese Army Commander Michel Aoun for president. A Congressional assembly will meet next week and speculations suggest the nomination for president will be proposed during the meeting. Since Lebanon’s presidential position has been vacant since May 2014, the rivalries between Christian and Muslim politicians have grown strong in the extended period of time. Hariri, a Sunni, has previously been opposed to Aoun as he is allied with the Shiite movement that supports Iran in sending fighters to support President Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
Ex-army head, Hezbollah ally Aoun tipped for Lebanon presidency
This week, Japanese locals from the town of Taiji spoke up after 7 years of silence about the Oscar-winning documentary, The Cove. The Taiji community feels they were wrongly portrayed by western media, despite filmmaker Megumi Sask’s best efforts to accurately depict both sides of the story. Their 400-year-old tradition is what makes their culture unique, they say. As a community that kills 2,000 dolphins a year they feel they do not understand people’s sensitivity to the slaughtering of animals yet as an isolated area. None of the species of dolphins targeted are endangered or threatened to make the practice sustainable in Taiji society.
Taiji fishermen push back on critics of dolphin slaughter
Last Monday, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was “deeply frustrated” by British Prime Minister Theresa May over Brexit talks. Britain is seeking a “hard Brexit” which would give Britain control over immigration into the UK at the cost of access into the EU’s single market. Sturgeon advocated for a more “flexible Brexit” that would permit Scotland to keep trade access with the EU free trade bloc. Sturgeon is unwilling to allow May to pursue a “hard Brexit” in the Brussels negotiations next year. Instead, she has launched a draft bill to call for a second referendum for independence from England like that of 2014.
Scotland’s Sturgeon fails to win support from UK PM May for ‘flexible Brexit’ | News | DW.COM | 24.10.2016
Following last week’s Russian three-day ceasefire, mortar fire from regime forces targeted the al-Mashad neighborhood in Aleppo, Syria. It seems that few civilians took advantage of leaving the war zone during the “humanitarian pause.” It is thought that about 250,000-275,000 residents are trapped by government troops in the city. Some residents told CNN they would not evacuate because they mistrust the Syrian and Russian governments alike. On Friday, the United Nations proved unable to offer necessary medical evacuations due to security assurances being withdrawn.
Aleppo: Mortar attack marks end of ceasefire
Venezuelan parliament has voted to hold a trial against President Nicolas Maduro on charges of violating the constitution this week. They are claiming that Maduro is ineligible to retain his office claiming that he is a dual citizen with Colombia and therefore unfit to serve as president. However, legally, the National Assembly does not exist according to Supreme Court rulings. It stated that Congress be illegitimate until three MPs are removed on account of vote-buying claims. The trial is called for next week’s session to determine Maduro’s fate, if he makes an appearance.
Venezuela opposition votes to put Maduro on trial
These are just a few of the many current affairs going on around the world, and if you have any suggestions regarding next week’s post, please tweet @MediaFileDC and let us know.