‘2020’ remarks the circling return of epidemics after every 100 years. As every nation is involved in the epidemic economically, socially and culturally, so the pandemic seems like another World War. The crisis is alarming us the evolution of the traditional security issues. The COVID-19 attack has made the world nations shocked. Every nation is responding to the crisis differently according to their culture. So the national and international governance should take strategies on the basis of the nations’ culture and adaptation ability. The post-pandemic reconstruction cost depends on how innovative the taken strategies are during the pandemic. New Zealand reported zero cases on the 8th June,2020. Prime Minister Jasinda Ardern has been showing praiseworthy leadership by adopting decisions and implementing policies which are made on the New Zealanders culture. She announced a very effective four level alert system (prepare, reduce, resist and eliminate) and maintained a collaborative network. The concept of lockdown and quarantine referred to as ‘the Bubble’ to ensure peoples’ staying safe at home. This bubble concept is truly commendable as it is easier to understand and implement by the general population of the country. Surprisingly, the New Zealand government did not indicate the word lockdown and quarantine in the emergency crisis management initiatives as they can be hard nuts for their peoples. Jordan developed a well-formulated national preparedness and response strategy with maintaining a high level of awareness and determination among the citizens. As a result of an effective and intelligent leadership, the upper-middle status holding country announced a country curfew on 20th March evaluating the culture of the citizens. The country maintained a strict international travel ban and travel regulations during the early overseas transmission. These proved a very strong and appropriate measure in combating the war. Strong unity between federal and provincial authorities and impressive solidarity across the entire country made Canada’s COVID-19 responses successful. Canada, a middle power country, followed the travel ban recommendations of WHO appropriately and implemented large scale social programs such as the Canadian Emergency Response Benefit and Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy. The laudable leadership of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his daily briefings spread divine influence on the Canadian people to fight against the coronavirus. Japan is an ideal model in this war situation. The country holds the largest number of old people in the world but the death rate is too low. Their behavioural culture made it possible. The Japan government’s request to stay at home turned the picture of the country into a lockdowned area. The health researchers of the country informed about the ‘historical immunity’ the Japanese possess which battled strongly against the coronavirus within their body. Surprisingly, the government took no measure to ensure social distancing and health security regulations in this crisis moment. The Japan Prime Minister Shinjo Abe proudly announced that Japanese culture of obedience made the ‘Japan Model’ in this war. New Zealand and Canada took lessons from the 2003 SARS outbreak. They used their health sector preparedness and response initiatives of 2003 to mitigate the damages of 2020. While Japan adopted necessary COVID-19 health regulations after the 1919 Flu pandemic and developed contact tracing systems after the 1950 TV pandemic. By contrast, the Trump Administration largely broke down the epidemic monitoring and command groups within the US National Security and Department of Homeland Security in 2018, set up by the Obama Administration after the 2014 Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa. Many countries in the world are dealing with such respiratory diseases for the first time and facing strategic gaps. Bangladesh faces such a health emergency crisis earlier and this global pandemic impacted largely the health, economic, political and social security sectors. In this emergency crisis the government took many initiatives to ensure the containment of COVID-19 but there are lackings in their implementation process. Adoption of the western concepts like lockdown and quarantine firstly failed the general less literate people to make understanding about social distancing and health regulations. The connectivity gap between the Prime Minister and the country people and the collaboration gap between public and private authorities are the main reasons for the strategic mistakes there. Experts recommended the decision makers and strategists to adopt strategies and policies on the basis of Bangladeshi culture and peoples’ response to the crisis.

TEHRAN, 4 May 2020, TON: A Spokesman of Iran's Foreign Ministry said on Monday, “Iran is still prepared for prisoner exchange with the United States and European countries”.  Seyed Abbas Mousavi Spokesman of Iran's Foreign Ministry said, "We had announced our readiness both officially and through messages and even proposed to exchange certain prisoners some of which took place."

Abbas Mousavi added that nearly 20 Iranians are in detention in the United States "on false charges of trying to circumvent sanctions" and said Iran is prepared to work for resolving the situation.

In October 2019 Foreign Minister Mohammad-Javad Zarif said Iran had made an offer of prisoner exchange with the United States through the Swiss Embassy in Tehran and submitted a list of Iranian prisoners in the United States for the exchange. However, there was no breakthrough in the talks.

In another development, confirming of some kind of deal with the US, Abbas Mousavi  said, “ Dr. Sirous Asgari, an Iranian scientist is in prison in the United States on the charges of stealing trade secrets,  has contracted the Coronavirus in prison.He will be tested again and  if his test is negative he will come back to Iran".

GENEVA, 2 May 2020, TON:   World Health Organization (WHO) top emergencies expert Dr. Mike Ryan  said,  countries must lift lockdowns gradually, while still being “on the look-out” for COVID-19 and ready to restore restrictions if the virus jumps back. He said, vulnerable people in institutions, including those in long-term care facilities, prisons and migrant dormitories, must be protected and even if the virus is coming under control, communities must know to still follow physical distancing and hygiene measures, and testing of suspect cases must continue.

The virus has spread in facilities for the elderly in Europe and North America, while in Singapore it has infected migrant workers in dormitories, he said, adding: “Because a spark in a situation like that turns into a fire very very quickly.”

Ryan acknowledged the difficulty for governments to maintain lockdowns during the pandemic, “for social, psychological and economic reasons” and apologized for severe measures, “So we are very anxious that we can move to a situation where the disease can kept under control with less severe measures.”

He claimed that there are worrying trends of spread in countries from Haiti to Somalia and Yemen, Ryan said. He also cited Sudan, South Sudan, Syria, Yemen, Afghanistan, Sierre Leone, Central African Republic, and a “serious cluster” in Kano, northern Nigeria. He clarified, regarding the new coronavirus that first emerged late last year in the central Chinese city of Wuhan, he reiterated that scientists examining its genetic sequences have assured the WHO that “this virus is natural in origin”.

Biden says "Note my words" Trump will try to delay the vote in November. Trump has called it "make-up propaganda."

 

WASHINGTON, 28 April 2020, TON: US military delegation as a part of the Pentagon’s military engagement strategy on Tuesday, met an Afghan faction known as Afghan Taliban leaders in Doha in an undisclosed location. The visit was aimed to “Reduce Violence”. Spokesman for the US military, Sonny Leggett could not be approached for comments. If we recall, NATO commander of US origin in Afghanistan, Austin Miller met with representatives of Afghan faction Taliban’s political office in Doha on 10 April, to discuss the reduction of violence. 

In the past Afghan Taliban published video footage claiming to show a house bombarded by US forces in Badakhshan Province on 10 April. Its authenticity could not be independently verified at that time but after the publication of report by UN Secretary General's special representative for Afghanistan and head of UNAMA the report supports Taliban claims. The UN Report says that during timeframe; 1st January and 31st March 2020, Afghan government forces and international troops caused more child casualties than anti-government armed groups.

 

WASHINGTON, 27 April 2020, TON: The US Army has moved its combatants for a news role to confront threats in the Sahel. In the recent decision from Pentagon, the US personnel and helicopters available for casualty evacuation flights and medical aid in Africa would end mission. But this withdrawal would be redeployed in Sahel region including Niger to join local combat forces to defeat rebels. According to a report US has deployed Bell 214ST and H225 Super Puma helicopters for new joint combat role with the regional forces in Niger.

If we recall back in 2017, the US forces carried out similar operations against Boko Haram.  US Commander in Niger claimed that their fight is against mix of Islamic State and Al Qaida fighters in tri-border region of Niger, Mali and Burkina Faso.

The decision was taken after last month Diffa Operation on border with Nigeria in which a number of residents in the border area were killed on the suspicion of links with extremists. 

 

NEW YORK: 18 March 2020, TON: "The temporary shutdown of cross-border movement within the EU will inevitably impact when and how vulnerable children in Greece are relocated to Germany, Finland and other states," a senior UNICEF official said.

European border bounds will affect refugee children because of the Coronavirus will affect plans to transfer hundreds of children out of "dire and dangerous" refugee camps in Greece, a senior official for the United Nations children's fund (UNICEF) said on Tuesday.

European countries including Finland, France, Portugal and Luxembourg, and the German city of Berlin, agreed in recent weeks to take unaccompanied minors from Greece after thousands of refugees and migrants arrived in the EU member state, including those fleeing violence in Syria.

But some EU member states have now imposed checks at borders that are normally in a zone of control-free travel, and EU leaders were expected later on Tuesday to seal the bloc's external borders.

"The temporary shutdown of cross-border movement within the EU will inevitably impact when and how vulnerable children in Greece are relocated to Germany, Finland and other states," Afshan Khan, Special Coordinator for the Refugee and Migrant response in Europe, said by email in response to a question from Reuters.

She urged countries to explore "all possible measures to expedite the transfer of these children, so they can begin moving as soon as the borders reopen".

She also called for coronavirus testing procedures to be set up for the children and alternatives found to collective living arrangements.

The UN refugee agency (UNHCR) said on Tuesday there were at least 10 confirmed coronavirus cases among refugees and asylum seekers in Germany. Some aid officials worry this might undermine future support for taking refugees.

UNHCR spokesman Andrej Mahecic urged all national authorities to treat refugees and asylum seekers who fall sick with the virus the same way as other nationals.

Un should play its immediate role to assist the refugee children and to provide medical care and assistance to the effected.

Paris, 17 March 2020, TON: The French Open has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic and will take place from September 20 to October 4, organisers said Tuesday.

The Grand Slam event was to have taken place from May 24 to June 7, but organisers said: "The current confinement measures have made it impossible for us to continue with our preparations and, as a result, we are unable to hold the tournament on the dates originally planned."

The new dates would mean the tournament would start just one week after the US Open, if that event remains in its scheduled slot.

"The whole world is affected by the public health crisis connected with COVID-19. In order to ensure the health and safety of everyone involved in organising the tournament, the French Tennis Federation has made the decision to hold the 2020 edition of Roland-Garros from 20th September to 4th October 2020," read a statement.

"In order to act responsibly and protect the health of its employees, service providers and suppliers during the organisation period, the FFT has chosen the only option that will allow them to maintain the 2020 edition of the tournament while joining the fight against COVID-19."

French federation of tennis president Bernard Giudicelli said: "We have made a difficult yet brave decision in this unprecedented situation, which has evolved greatly since last weekend. We are acting responsibly, and must work together in the fight to ensure everybody's health and safety."

Last week, the ATP announced it was suspending the men's tennis tour for six weeks "due to escalating health and safety issues" arising from spread of the virus. All events on the ATP Tour and second-tier ATP Challenger Tour are cancelled until April 27.

The International Tennis Federation, which runs the lower tiers of the professional game as well as the junior and senior circuits, followed the ATP by announcing there would be no tournaments on any of its tours until April 20 at the earliest.

The WTA Tour said Monday it was suspending the women's season until May 2, having already called off events in Bogota, Guadalajara and Charleston.

Next month's Fed Cup finals in Budapest have also been postponed indefinitely.

The revamped 12-team women's competition scheduled for April 14-19 as well as a series of play-off ties were both put on hold.

London, 17 March 2020, TON: England’s deputy chief medical officer has insisted the stricter measures to tackle the coronavirus had not been introduced too late.

Prof Jonathan Van-Tam told: “We are following the science very carefully and consider the measures we announced yesterday have been announced at the right time - not too early and certainly not too late."

“We don’t rule out taking further measures if these are necessary but much of this depends on how the next two weeks play out.”

He could not rule out the strict measures having to last for a year but predicted they would last at least “several months”.

The more people will encounter the coronavirus and become resistant with herd immunity, but “that will take time”.

“But, yes, you’re absolutely right that we can’t say how long this will need to go on for,” he said.

“I don’t know if it could be a year yet. I think we are too far out to make those kind of predictions but I certainly think it could be several months.”

ZIMBABWE, 15 March 2020, TON: Zimbabwe’s Defense Minister says the coronavirus pandemic is God’s way of exacting revenge for countries that have imposed economic sanctions on the country.

Minister Oppah Muchinguri singled out the United States going as far as saying President Trump should know that “he is not God.” Trump renewed sanctions on the country recently.

She was speaking on Saturday at an event in Chinoyi, capital of the West Mashonaland Province. Her address was in a local language, a translation of which was as follows.

They are now stuck in their homes. There is nothing else for them to do. Their economies are now screaming. Isn't it they are making ours scream too? Trump must know that he is not God. They are suffocating us, where do they want us to go? Now it is your turn to be suffocated by coronavirus. So that you will feel how p

“This coronavirus that has come, these are sanctions, isn’t it? These are sanctions that have been imposed on countries that imposed sanctions on us. God has punished them.

“They are now stuck in their homes. There is nothing else for them to do. Their economies are now screaming. Isn’t it they are making ours scream too? Trump must know that he is not God.

“They are suffocating us, where do they want us to go? Now it is your turn to be suffocated by coronavirus. So that you will feel how painful it is.”

Zimbabweans on social media have been reacting to the pronouncements. A section calling for her to be fired, others making jest of the comment whiles for others the fact that China, an ally of the country, was the epicenter of the outbreak, has caused them to brand the Minister as ignorant.

“On behalf of the people of Zimbabwe, I would like to apologise to those countries that have been affected by the coronavirus; the provocative and ignorant comments by the Defence Minister do not reflect the thinking of the generality of Zimbabweans who wish you a speedy recovery,” a former deputy ministerGodfrey Gandawa  tweeted on Sunday.

The Zimbabwe government continues to insist that economic sanctions was all but worsening the struggling economy of the southern African nation. 

MALI, 12 March 2020, TON: As the Australian government has intensified issuance of additional permits to export arms to Mali, the independent United Nations human rights expert in Mali has called on Australia to cease selling arms to the war-torn country and urged the international community to do more to stop nations “actively producing and selling weapons” in conflict zones.

He said, “The international community, notably the security council of the United Nations and the African Union, must hold countries which are actively producing and selling weapons accountable, and pressure them to cease these practices in all conflict zones, including the Sahel.”

Last year Australia had issued 16 permits to arms manufacturers to export weapons or military technology to Mali in 2019. In response to United Nations human rights expert concerns, the Australian government said its export licenses are only issued after thorough assessments on whether arms will be used to breach human rights or any of Australia’s international obligations. In case of risk that the weapons could be used to commit violation of humanitarian law, it will not issue an export permit.

DAR ES SALAAM, 3 February 2020, TON:  Pastor Boniface Mwamposa had been drawing huge crowds by promising prosperity and cures for diseases to worshippers who step in what he calls “blessed oil” during his services.

Pastor Boniface Mwamposa was arrested by Police when he was trying to flee the country.

Tanzania has seen a rise in the number of Christian missionaries in recent years, who promise to lift people out of poverty and perform what they call miracle cures.

Go to top