From India’s highs to Thailand’s lows, Asia’s weather is hitting extremes

The final days of April saw further unbearable temperatures recorded in India and Pakistan. Temperatures peaked at 49C in Jacobabad, Pakistan on 30 April, with a high of 47.2C observed in Banda, India. The Indian Meteorological Department confirmed that average temperatures in April were the highest for northern and central parts of the country since records began over 100 years ago. Heatwaves are a common occurrence at this time of year in India and Pakistan, but scientists believe the intensity, duration and arrival time of the conditions witnessed so far…

Your Thursday Briefing: A Ban on Russian Oil?

Good morning. We’re covering the E.U.’s plan to ban Russian oil, growing U.S. frustration with the politicized Supreme Court and a separatist movement in Pakistan. The E.U. may ban Russian oil With no end to the Ukraine conflict in sight, the European Union took a major step on Wednesday toward weakening Moscow’s ability to finance the war, proposing a total embargo on Russian oil. If approved this week as expected, it would be the bloc’s biggest and costliest step yet toward supporting Ukraine and ending its own dependence on Russian…

Rising Violence by Separatists Adds to Pakistan’s Lethal Instability

Pakistan’s security agencies have cracked down on educated Baluch youth, forcibly “disappearing” suspected militants, sometimes for years, without trial, according to news reports, student advocates and human rights groups. “These days, law enforcement agencies consider every university student from Baluchistan a potential militant,” said Faisal Nawaz, a student from Panjgur, in Baluchistan, who is studying at the University of Karachi. Separatist attacks have been concentrated in the sparsely populated Makran region of Baluchistan, where residents depend on illegal cross-border trade with Iran in fuel and other commodities. In a desert…

Your Friday Briefing: China’s Stimulus Plan

Good morning. We’re covering China’s economic stimulus plan, President Biden’s push for war funds and extreme heat in India and Pakistan. China’s Covid stimulus plan As China’s lockdowns continue and new infections continue to spread in Beijing, the central government has laid out a wide-ranging economic stimulus plan to staunch expected losses. The government will subsidize businesses, pausing unemployment insurance payments if companies avoid mass layoffs, as well as electricity and internet charges. Young people graduating from college will be subsidized if they start their own businesses, since few jobs…

Four killed by female suicide bomber near China institute in Pakistan

A suicide bomber from a Pakistani separatist group has killed four people, including three Chinese nationals, in an attack on a minibus carrying staff from the Confucius Institute at Karachi University. The Baloch Liberation Army – one of several groups fighting for independence in Pakistan’s biggest province – claimed responsibility for Tuesday’s bombing, saying it was the first suicide attack by a female assailant. Chinese targets have regularly been attacked by separatists from Balochistan, where Beijing is involved in huge infrastructure projects as part of its belt and road initiative.…

What does political upheaval in Pakistan mean for the world?

Pakistan’s prime minister, Imran Khan, was ousted from office in a no-confidence vote in parliament in the early hours of Sunday after three years and seven months in power. A new government will be formed, most likely under opposition leader Shahbaz Sharif, after parliament reconvenes on Monday to vote for a new prime minister. The country of more than 220 million people lies between Afghanistan to the west, China to the north-east and India to the east, making it of vital strategic importance. Since coming to power in 2018, Khan’s…

Your Friday Briefing: Russia’s Growing Isolation

your friday briefing russias growing isolation

Good morning. We’re covering Russia’s departure from the U.N. human rights council, a political blow to Pakistan’s Imran Khan and Shanghai’s growing frustration with Covid restrictions. Diplomacy: Prospects for successful peace talks have dimmed: Russia’s foreign minister said Ukraine had proposed a new draft deal that deviated from previous versions, and President Aleksandr Lukashenko of Belarus demanded that his country be included in the negotiations. State of the war: Khan in jeopardy after court ruling Pakistan’s Supreme Court overturned Prime Minister Imran Khan’s move to dissolve Parliament on Thursday, setting…

Your Tuesday Briefing: The Fallout from Bucha

your tuesday briefing the fallout from bucha

Good morning. We’re covering the fallout from Russian atrocities in Bucha, the end of Carrie Lam’s tenure as Hong Kong’s leader and Pakistan’s political crisis. Rising calls to punish Russia President Biden called the indiscriminate civilian deaths in Bucha a “war crime” and said the U.S. would impose additional sanctions on Russia. Some European leaders also demanded tougher sanctions, including a total ban on Russian fuel imports. Here are the latest updates. Moscow has denied that its soldiers had anything to do with the atrocities, which have come to light…

Opposition Leaders Accuse Pakistan’s Imran Khan of High Treason

opposition leaders accuse pakistans imran khan of high treason

Opposition leaders in Pakistan reacted with outrage to Prime Minister Imran Khan’s move to dissolve Parliament, accusing him of high treason and subverting the country’s constitutional order. Shehbaz Sharif, the leader of the opposition who was expected to become the interim prime minister if a vote of no confidence had succeeded, said Mr. Khan had violated the Constitution and called on Pakistan’s Supreme Court to intervene. “It is nothing short of a high treason,” Mr. Sharif wrote on Twitter on Sunday, adding that Mr. Khan “has pushed the country into…

The Guardian view on Putin and the world: it’s not just about China | Editorial

When Vladimir Putin recognised Donetsk and Luhansk as independent republics, days before his invasion of Ukraine, one of the most powerful denunciations came from Kenya’s envoy to the UN. Martin Kimani cited his country’s own history as he warned against irredentism and expansionism: “We must complete our recovery from the embers of dead empires in a way that does not plunge us back into new forms of domination and oppression,” he said. On two general assembly resolutions – the first denouncing the invasion, the second blaming Russia for creating a…