OTHER THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – JANUARY 16

Panama Covid-19 update – another 2,197 active cases added to running total, to give us now 56,965 – or around 1.3% of the population. 7,278 new cases and 8 new fatalities reported today. 54 patients in ICU (down 3) and 508 in other wards (up 18), and there are another 527 in the hospital-hotles isolation.

Since the programme began on 7 January, the health ministry say 26,050 vaccinations for the under-12s have been administered (as the country prepares for the start of the new school year in March).

Our son returned to the UK today and asked me to print out his paperwork – which would normally mean just the air ticket. This involved 8 pages of ticket, certificates, confirmation from the airline, etc…added to which was a health ministry certificate to confirm he had completed his mandatory quarantine after testing positive while here.

16 JANUARY 2022

WOMAN ARRESTED AT DUBLIN AIRPORT IS FIRST CHARGED UNDER NEW PEOPLE SMUGGLING LAW

On 15 January, the Irish Times reported that a Swedish woman has become the first to be charged under stronger laws brought in to tackle people smuggling.  She has been charged with an offence under the recently introduced Criminal Justice (Smuggling of Persons) Act 2021 and is accused of intentionally assisting entry, transit across or presence of another person in the State in breach of a specified provision.

https://www.irishtimes.com/news/crime-and-law/woman-arrested-at-dublin-airport-is-first-charged-under-new-people-smuggling-law-1.4777694

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU REPORTEDLY NEAR TO PLEA BARGAIN IN CORRUPTION TRIAL

On 16 January, the Guardian reported that the former Israeli PM understood to be in advanced talks with state attorney’s office over admitting to 2 counts of breach of trust.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/jan/16/benjamin-netanyahu-israel-plea-bargain-trial

ALIGNMENT OF THIRD COUNTRIES WITH EU SANCTIONS REGIMES

On 14 January –

  • Montenegro, Albania and Norway, member of the European Economic Area (as well as Ukraine) have aligned with EU sanctions on Ukraine updated on 13 December;
  • North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Georgia have aligned with EU sanctions on Syria as of 6 and 27 May;
  • North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Ukraine and Moldova have aligned with EU sanctions on Burundi as of 31 October; and
  • North Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Iceland, Norway, Ukraine and Georgia have aligned with EU sanctions on Mali as of 13 December.

https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/01/14/declaration-by-the-high-representative-on-behalf-of-the-european-union-restrictive-measures-in-respect-of-actions-undermining-or-threatening-the-territorial-integrity-sovereignty-and-independence-of-ukrai/

https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/01/14/declaration-by-the-high-representative-on-behalf-of-the-european-union-on-the-alignment-of-certain-countries-concerning-restrictive-measures-against-syria/

https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/01/14/declaration-by-the-high-representative-on-behalf-of-the-european-union-on-the-alignment-of-certain-countries-with-council-implementing-decision-concerning-restrictive-measures-against-syria/

https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/01/14/declaration-by-the-high-representative-on-behalf-of-the-european-union-on-the-alignment-of-certain-countries-with-council-decision-concerning-restrictive-measures-in-view-of-the-situation-in-burundi/

https://www.consilium.europa.eu/en/press/press-releases/2022/01/14/declaration-by-the-high-representative-on-behalf-of-the-european-union-on-the-alignment-of-certain-countries-concerning-restrictive-measures-in-view-of-the-situation-in-mali/

NORTH KOREA REGISTERS 8 TRADEMARKS AND 3 PATENTS IN 2021

On 14 January, RFA reported that North Korea last year issued 8 international trademarks and 3 international patents to 7 companies.

https://www.rfa.org/english/news/korea/patent-01122022164044.html

BRAZIL’S ILLEGAL GOLD RUSH IS FUELLING CORRUPTION, VIOLENT CRIME AND DEFORESTATION

On 14 January, Mongabay reported that illegal mining is once again surging across the Amazon and the article details a range of challenges facing efforts to rein in the gold mining sector.  The latest spike in wildcat mining is driven by international demand. The price of gold is up from $400 in 2000 to over $1,800 an ounce in 2022. 

https://news.mongabay.com/2022/01/brazils-illegal-gold-rush-is-fueling-corruption-violent-crime-and-deforestation/

Any modest contributions for my time and ongoing expenses are welcomed!  I have a page where you can do so, and where one-off contributions start as low as $3, at https://www.buymea3coffee.com/KoIvM842y

THE QUIET EXPANSION OF CHINESE PRIVATE SECURITY COMPANIES

On 12 January, a briefing from the Center for Strategic and International Studies says that estimates suggest as many as 20 to 40 Chinese PSC are operating abroad in some 40 countries, China operates more than 7,000 PSC domestically; and that they are a well-positioned tool for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) to project power abroad. The briefing provides background on the use of private military and security companies for power projection;

  1. History of Chinese reliance on private companies in the military and security sectors, in particular the use of Chinese PSC;
  • Future areas of opportunity for China to leverage PSC, including deployments in support of projects along the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), in the maritime domain, and training foreign police forces; and
  • Policy options for the US to address Chinese use of PSC.

https://csis-website-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/s3fs-public/publication/220112_Markusen_StealthIndustry_ChinesePSCs.pdf?agENkxBjcx0dJsycSrvu_Y_AmBObnHNk

Any modest contributions for my time and ongoing expenses are welcomed!  I have a page where you can do so, and where one-off contributions start as low as $3, at https://www.buymea3coffee.com/KoIvM842y