Newsletter of January 27, 2022

Today’s newsletter covers the Australian national day, Saudi Arabia and Thailand relations, corruption in South Africa, irrational gifts to Indian voters, and more.

Australian national day and protests to change the date

January 26 was Australia‘s national day. Thousands protested against the treatment of Indigenous people across Australia and, calling the date “Invasion Day“. A day before, the government spent US$14 million to buy the copyright to the Aboriginal flag.

Saudi Arabia and Thailand restore relations after three decades of tensions

The blue diamond affair created vivid tensions between both countries. In 1989, a Thai houseworker stole for 91 kg (200 pounds) of jewelry and gems to a Saudi Prince.

More than half of the public contracts for the Covid-19 response show irregularities in South Africa

With the declaration of a national state of disaster in March 2020, some public officials didn’t care about regulations. The Health Minister of South Africa resigned last August because of a corruption scandal.

India’s Supreme Court concerned about irrational gifts politicians offer to voters

Indian politicians may offer so many gifts trying to influence the population before elections that the Supreme Court of India is concerned about these irrational freebies.

When a prime minister’s WeChat account is sold to a Chinese company

The WeChat account of Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has been bought by a Chinese company. The account holder rejected allegations of political interference.

Some more news from the world

  • The International Monetary Fund revised on January 25 its global growth forecast for 2022 to 4.4%, which is 0.5 percentage point lower than previously forecast, mainly because of downgrades for the United States (4% instead of 5.2%) and China (4.8% instead of 5.6%).
  • The San Jose City Council in California voted on January 26 to require most gun owners to pay a fee and carry a liability insurance, a first in the U.S. The bill may pass into law in August but gun rights advocates threaten to file a lawsuit.Australian girl was missing for two weeks as the whole country was looking for her.
  • In Norway, Noah was the most popular name given to boys in 2021 before Oscar. Norah was the most popular name for baby girls before Emma. Noah and Emma are as popular in Norway as in the Netherlands.

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