News Watch

At press time, satellite data showed that there were more than 2,500 active fires burning in the Brazilian Amazon. Smoke from the fires caused dangerous smog levels in São Paulo, despite the city’s being more than 1,000 miles away. (“Active” is not a description of the size or longevity of a fire; it only means that, at the time of detection, it was burning and was distinct from other fires, so a small, short-lived fire would still have been counted.)

Up until Aug....

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On Aug. 19, two wildfires on Gran Canaria, the second-most populated of Spain’s Canary Islands, forced 9,000 people to evacuate. The fires were not near any major city or tourist destination, but at press time they were encroaching on Tamadaba National Park, home to some of the island’s oldest pine forests.

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The US Department of State posts up-to-date travel advisories on every country and many territories, ranking each 1 (Exercise normal precautions), 2 (Exercise increased caution), 3 (Reconsider travel) or 4 (Do not travel). Note: A country’s regions are also ranked and may have different rankings than the country as a whole. Visit travel.state.gov and click on “Travel Advisories” at the top of the page.

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A group of masked people armed with wooden and metal rods attacked pro-democracy protesters at the Yuen Long metro station in Hong Kong on July 21, injuring at least 45 people. In the melee, passersby were also attacked.

The armed group, wearing white, attacked people wearing black clothing, which is associated with the pro-democracy protests that have been ongoing in Hong Kong since June 9. It is believed that the attackers were members of the Triad organized crime group. Hong Kong...

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More than 1,000 people were arrested during protests in Moscow on July 28. Protesters gathered in response to more than 30 opposition candidates having being left off of the ballot for a vote scheduled for Sept. 8. Some of those candidates were also arrested before the protest.

An approved protest against the ballot, held on July 21, attracted at least 20,000 people, resulting in dozens of arrests. Officials say that the July 28 protest was unapproved and contained about 3,500 people...

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Protests across Israel, begun after an off-duty police officer shot and killed an unarmed Ethiopian-Israeli teen, descended into violence on July 2. During protests, at least 64 civilians and 47 officers were reported injured and more than 130 people were arrested. In some locations, cars were overturned and fires were set. Violent protests continued into July 3 before dying down.

The Ethiopian-Israeli Jewish community has long complained of discrimination since it was brought into...

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In Paris, on July 14 (Bastille Day), “yellow vest” protesters clashed with police near the Champs-Élysées after the annual military parade passed through the area. Police responded with tear gas and arrested more than 150 people.

The yellow vest protests, so called because members of the groups wear yellow safety vests, began in November 2018 in opposition to rising fuel costs and stagnant wages. The movement largely subsided in March 2019, but organizers used the Bastille...

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Thousands of people took to the streets of Algiers, Algeria, and other cities across the country on July 19 to protest against corruption and the current acting government. A wave of demonstrations forced the former president, Abdelaziz Bouteflika, to resign on April 2 after 20 years in power.

Since that time, a temporary military-appointed government has been in place. The military said it would hold democratic elections for the next government but has postponed the vote, originally...

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