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More than 200 people are reported dead following flooding and mudslides in Nepal. Around 40 others have been injured and authorities are searching for dozens of people who remain missing. Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba visited the flood-stricken areas in the western parts of the country on Thursday, promising a government relief package, but residents say they’re still waiting for assistance. Heavy rains destroyed crops, bridges and homes. The unseasonably strong downpours have also caused havoc in neighboring India.
Ethiopian forces have conducted airstrikes on the regional capital of Tigray for a fourth day this week. The raids forced a United Nations humanitarian flight to abandon its landing in Mekelle, the capital of the Tigray region. Government spokesman Legesse Tulu said the strikes targeted a former military training center that is now being used as a hub by rival Tigray forces. The region has seen nearly a year of fighting between government forces and the Tigray People's Liberation Front. Thousands of people have been killed, and 2 million have been displaced by the fighting since last November. About 6 million people face a government blockade and humanitarian groups fear widespread starvation.
Popular Russian newspaper Komsomolskaya Pravda has had to shut down its branch in Belarus after authorities arrested a member of its local staff there. The paper came under pressure after it ran a story about a shootout in Minsk that left an opposition supporter and a KGB officer dead. The Belarusian Ministry of Information blocked access to the paper's website in the country last week ahead of the arrest. The Committee to Protect Journalists released a statement on Thursday saying, “Belarusian authorities should stop harassing independent journalists and refrain from charging or imprisoning members of the press over their work.”
Pascal Danaë, who founded the band Delgrès, often draws inspiration from his Guadeloupean roots and his parents' immigrant and working-class background. The group's latest album is "4 a.m.," the time when most factory workers, like his father, wake up to start their long day. Danaë spoke to The World's Marco Werman about his new album and from where he draws his inspiration.
The Global Hits Spotify playlist with music from Delgrès and other artists we have featured in the show is here — over 4 hours of global music. 🎶
Courtesy of Monica Campbell
It's fair to say that Haiti has had a brutal year. In July, the nation's president was assassinated. A month later, a massive 7.2 earthquake rocked the country, killing more than 2,000 people. The country is now plagued by a transportation strike and shortages of gas and water. The World's Monica Campbell is in Haiti reporting from the Pestel region to give us an on-the-ground look at the deep problems plaguing the Caribbean nation.
Concerns over “security” led to the detention of a robot in Egypt. British-built artist robot Ai-Da 🤖 and her sculpture were held in Egyptian customs for 10 days before being released on Wednesday, sparking a diplomatic fracas. There were worries that the robot was part of a wider espionage plot. “The British ambassador has been working through the night to get Ai-Da released, but we’re right up to the wire now,” said Aidan Meller, the human force behind Ai-Da, shortly before her release. “It’s really stressful.”
So far, many have considered France's presidential election next April a close race between President Emmanuel Macron and far-right candidate Marine Le Pen. But recently, far-right columnist and TV commentator Eric Zemmour has been soaring in opinion polls, throwing the race wide open. And, court battles are keeping the Biden administration from completely undoing the Trump-era "Remain in Mexico" policy. It's kept thousands of asylum-seekers waiting in Mexican border towns while their asylum petitions move through US courts. Plus, blues-rock musician Pascal Danaë and his trio, "Delgrès," has a new album called “4 a.m.” Danaë tells us about how his ancestors in Guadeloupe, and seeing his great-great-grandmother's affidavit of her freedom from slavery in 1841, influenced the trio's new album.