Newsletter of November 13, 2021

Today’s newsletter covers a new mineral observed for the first time, UK recruitment of Kenyan nurses, a Russian symbol banned in Latvia during public events, a Turkey-South Korea military deal, and more.

diamond from Botswana where davemaoite was found
Davemaoite was found in three microscopic imperfections of this diamond from Botswana | © Aaron Celestian, Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County

A mineral from deep Earth observed for the first time

Davemaoite was only synthesized in laboratory but never found in nature before because it cannot keep its form under atmospheric pressure. Its brief observation after cutting off a diamond offered an unprecedented view of the Earth’s inner layer and opened new areas of research like for the better understanding of the movement of tectonic plates.

UK stops recruiting healthcare staff from Kenya

Except for one category of healthcare workers: nurses. Last summer, Kenya had the ambition to become the “Philippines of Africa signing an agreement on healthcare with the United Kingdom.

Latvian parliament bans an ancient Russian symbol in public

Latvia prohibited the ribbon of Saint George to be used in public. Worn to commemorate WWII in Russia like the puppy in Britain, it also became a political message, reviving the Soviet Union era for the Latvian parliament.

Turkey fears the US block a deal with South Korea for building tanks

Turkey made a deal with South Korea to move forward with a delayed program to build its own military tanks. But the plan may change as Turkey reportedly fears the U.S. would pressure South Korea to avoid transferring military technology.

Somewhere else in the world…

Former Brazil President Lula da Silva starts a political tour in Europe

Former President Lula da Silva will go to Germany, Belgium, France and Spain. He will participate in conferences, attend a debate in the European parliament and meet social-democrat politicians. Presidential elections in Brazil will be held in 2022 and Lula is considered as a potential rival to Jair Bolsonaro.

Benin receives looted royal treasures from France

26 pieces of art, including statues and a throne, have returned to Benin on November 11. French colonial troops had stolen them in 1892. They used to be exposed in the Quai Branly Museum in Paris. They will move to Ouidah, a former port involved in international slave trade, once the renovation of a museum is complete.

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