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- Experts and government officials in South Korea are braced for a potential military statement from their northern neighbour, as North Korea prepares to celebrate the anniversary of its independence. On 9 September last year, Kim Jong-un’s regime carried out its fifth nuclear missile test, while observers have warned that it may demonstrate its inter-continental ballistic missile capabilities as a stand-off with the U.S. shows no sign of abating.
- The car transportation company Uber is being probed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), The Wall Street Journal reported. Investigators are looking into whether Uber used software to illegally interfere with the services of its rival Lyft Inc.. The software in question is known internally as “Hell,” which tracks drivers working for Lyft, as well as faking customer accounts to trick Lyft’s system into believing it has potential customers. This is another addition to Uber’s year of chaos, which includes the resignation of its CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick under pressure from investors, and multiple suits for sexual assault from female employees.
- The United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) has put the estimated number of Rohingya who have been forced to flee Myanmar in the last two weeks at 270,000 and warned that shelter in Bangladesh is “already exhausted”. In a statement, the UNCHR said: “The Rohingya are a stateless Muslim minority in Myanmar who have faced discrimination and extreme poverty for decades,” and called for “urgent action” to address the causes of the violence against them.
- During a press conference with the Emir of Kuwait, U.S. President Donald J. Trump said military action against North Korea is not “inevitable”. He went on to say: “I would prefer not going the route of military but it’s certainly something that could happen..if we do use it on North Korea it will be a very sad day for North Korea.” The comments came a day after China, North Korea’s main trading partner, was urged to agree to actions by the United Nations to end the nuclear crisis.
- The Hungarian Prime Minister, Viktor Orban, has said Hungary will not take in more immigrants despite the European Union’s court ruling, which dismissed Hungary and Slovakia’s challenge to not accept migrant quotas.
What we’re watching and reading
- Al Jazeera carries a programme on India’s “slumdog press”, a newspaper run by children that reports on the poverty and injustice suffered by the subcontinent’s two million street children.
- A New Yorker piece, “The Risk of Nuclear War with North Korea,” by Evan Osnos warns that a potential war with the hermit kingdom may be repeating a similar story: the Iraq War. “Iraq taught us the cost of going to war against an adversary that we do not fully understand. Before we take a radical step into Asia, we should be sure that we’re not making that mistake again”
- “Parasites are nature’s great givers. Protecting them must be on our tick-list” by Jules Howard explores why parasites are important, after a recent report found that climate change could wipe out a third of global parasites.
- Is Trump becoming more re-conciliatory? Ross Barkan’s piece in the Guardian: “Trump cut a deal with the Democrats. Is a new era upon us? investigates how Trump’s deal with Democrats to give relief aid to areas devastated by Hurricane Harvey has infuriated some Republicans.