Timeframe: September 24th – September 30th, 2021
To read the Bangla version, click here
Mansib Khan, Mashrefa Tarannum, Musarrat Sarwar Chowdhury, Sabyasachi Karmaker, Samia Tahsin Hoque, and Farhan Uddin Ahmed.
1. Economics & Business
Evergrande to raise $1.5bn as debt payment looms
Chinese real estate developer Evergrande has said it is selling a $1.5bn (£1.1bn) stake it owns in a commercial bank, as it scrambles to raise money owed to customers, investors and suppliers. Evergrande made the announcement on September 29, driving its shares up nearly 16% in Hong Kong. The company will be selling a nearly 20% stake in Shengjing Bank to state-owned Shenyang Shengjing Finance Investment Group.
Afghanistan: Biden was advised to keep 2,500 troops, say generals
Two top US generals have said they recommended keeping a force of 2,500 troops in Afghanistan, ahead of the full US withdrawal in August. Testimony by Gen Mark Milley and Gen Frank McKenzie to Congress seemed to contradict President Joe Biden, who said he did not recall any such advice.
The Taliban took power in August, after rapidly advancing through the country. Gen Milley said the US had been taken by surprise by the speed of the Afghan government’s collapse. The two US generals were questioned by the Senate armed services committee along with Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin on Tuesday.
3. Significant Corona Update
When will it end? Experts predict how the next six months will pan out
Compared to the last five pandemics, COVID-19 is shaping to be more severe than the others. In its second year and a third wave sweeping across the globe already, the end is nowhere in sight. What seems clear to experts is that the pandemic will not be cleared within the next six months. Only when 90-95% of the global population is immunized, thanks to vaccination or previous infection, will the outbreak be tamed as per experts.
4. Science & Technology
Facebook Delays Instagram App for Users 13 and Younger
Facebook said on Monday that it had paused the development of an Instagram Kids service that would be tailored for children 13 years old or younger, as the social network increasingly faces questions about the app’s effect on young people’s mental health. The pullback preceded a congressional hearing this week about internal research conducted by Facebook that showed the company knew of the harmful mental health effects that Instagram was having on teenage girls. The Silicon Valley company said it still wanted to build an Instagram product intended for children that would have a more “age-appropriate experience.”
5. RMG/ Agriculture
Bharat bandh: India farmers strike to press for repeal of laws
Hundreds of farmers in the Indian states of Punjab and Haryana have blocked roads as they re-energized their protest against contentious farm laws. Farmers, who have been camping at Delhi’s borders since last November, want a repeal of the laws. Several rounds of talks between farmer unions and the government have yielded no results. The government says the laws will increase farmers’ income, but unions see them as unfair and exploitative.
6. Social and Education
Evergrande saga may risk Chinese families
Beijing is careful not to intervene in the Evergrande saga. The real estate giant has missed several interest payments, and if declared insolvent will impact creditors holding USD 300 billion worth of debt. Chinese families may find their apartment bookings at risk.
Greta Thunberg mocks world leaders’ words at Youth4Climate
At a youth climate summit in Milan, Swedish activist Greta Thunberg criticized world leaders, including US President Joe Biden and UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, saying the last 30 years of climate action had amounted to “blah, blah, blah.” Thunberg copied the politicians by repeating their commonly used statements about the climate problem, dismissing them as hollow words and pledges that would not be kept. She went on to emphasize later in the speech that change is “not only possible but urgently necessary,” and that people should not give up hope.
8. Expert Opinion
Lab-grown meat is supposed to be inevitable. The science tells a different story.- Joe Fassler
The environmental ravages we face are vast, destabilizing, and encroaching on our real lives right now. In all this, it would be so good to know we have lab-grown meat as a solution. But until solid, publicly accessible science proves otherwise, cultured meat is still a gamble and we should ask ourselves if that’s a chance we want to take.
Disclaimer: The information provided here is obtained solely from the third parties mentioned above. Youth Policy Forum (YPF) is not responsible for any misinformation or misrepresentation.