Globe Trot A summary of international news compiled by senior editor Mindy Belz

Russia seizes Navalny’s apartment

International | The opposition leader continues to recover from poisoning in Germany
by Mindy Belz
Posted 9/24/20, 04:04 pm

RUSSIA: Russian authorities seized Putin opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s apartment days after he was discharged from a German hospital where he was being treated for poisoning. Navalny, 44, remains in Germany in rehab, where he’s tweeting again.

CHINA: A Sino-Vatican agreement now up for renewal “has not shielded Catholics from the Party’s depredations, to say nothing of the Party’s horrific treatment of Christians, Tibetan Buddhists, Falun Gong devotees, and other religious believers,” writes U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in First Things. With a dramatic drop in clergy installations since the secret agreement was enacted in 2018, the church “could wither away in a generation,” writes Hudson Institute’s Nina Shea.

ITALY: Another worrying sign as the human toll mounts and the European Union grapples with a new plan on migrants—ships turning off their radios in European waters that may be overflowing with refugees and after a commercial oil tanker was denied permission to land for five weeks because it rescued refugees in trouble.

SYRIA: The United States plans to send 100 U.S. service members and additional materiel to northeast Syria—part of a zigzagging policy that previously had President Donald Trump approving a pullout from the strategic area—after a skirmish with a Russian convoy last month left American soldiers wounded.

MOZAMBIQUE: Officials are asking for EU intervention in stopping a wave of attacks by ISIS-linked militants. As the attacks have gathered momentum this year, more than 300,000 residents have fled homes and a food crisis looms.

THAILAND: Pastors are finding opportunities amid a pandemic, with a record-breaking 1,435 baptisms earlier this month.

MALAYSIA: As global demand for palm oil has surged, so have plantation labor abuses, environmental risks, and corruption.

BELARUS: The man at the center of ongoing protests and known as Europe’s last dictator, Alexander Lukashenko, was sworn in as president in a secret ceremony. Could be those protesters are too polite.

IRAN: The latest video game Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has in the pipeline will depict Iran’s elite paramilitary Basijis rescuing George Floyd from U.S. police. Said IRGC officer Sardar Naqdi, “Today, inside the United States, people are chanting ‘Death to America’ and setting its flag on fire. American domestic politics, like the international arena, has failed and the gap between its people is widening.”

I’M READING Magdalena: River of Dreams: A Story of Colombia by Wade Davis.


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Mindy Belz

Mindy wrote WORLD Magazine's first cover story in 1986 and went on to serve as international editor, editor, and now senior editor. She has covered wars in Syria, Afganistan, Africa, and the Balkans, and she recounts some of her experiences in They Say We Are Infidels: On the Run from ISIS with Persecuted Christians in the Middle East. Mindy resides with her husband, Nat, in Asheville, N.C. Follow her on Twitter @mcbelz.

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