Global Review – 2nd November

Denmark’s Socialists win razor-thin election

Denmark’s Social Democrat Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen will retain power after the country’s left-wing bloc won a one-seat majority in the general election. “I’m very, very happy”, Frederiksen, in power for the past four years, said early on Wednesday as she arrived at parliament to greet supporters. The very last votes counted in the knife-edge election gave Frederiksen’s “red” side 87 seats in mainland Denmark, with another three coming from autonomous overseas territories – the Faroe Islands and Greenland – giving the bloc a majority of 90 seats in the 179-seat parliament. The right-wing “blue” bloc – an informal liberal and conservative alliance supported by three populist parties – won 72 seats in mainland Denmark and one in the Faroe Islands.

Israeli exit polls point to Netanyahu win

Former Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu appears well placed to return to power after exit polls following the election showed his right-wing bloc heading for a narrow majority lifted by a strong showing from his far-right allies. With 44.6% of the votes counted, Benyamin Netanyahu’s Likud is confirmed as the first party with 32 seats. In second place Yesh Atid, the party of Prime Minister Yair Lapid with 25 seats and in third place the party of far-right religious Zionism of Itamar Ben Gvir with 15 seats. But in the centre-left area there is strong apprehension because at the moment three of its lists do not exceed the entry threshold: the Meretz party for civil rights and the Arab lists Balad and Raam. Under the circumstances, Netanyahu, Israel’s longest-serving premier, on trial over corruption charges which he denies,would get a clear majority in the Knesset. A final result is not expected until later in the week.

Bolsonaro declines to concede defeat

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro did not concede the election he lost to leftist Lula da Silva in a brief speech that marked his first comments since results were released on Sunday. But after yesterday’s speech, Chief-of-Staff Ciro Nogueira told reporters that Bolsonaro had authorised him to begin the transition process. Bolsonaro’s address didn’t mention election results, but he said he would continue to follow the rules of the nation’s constitution. Earlier on Tuesday, Brazil’s Supreme Court ordered the federal highway police to immediately clear truck drivers and other Bolsonaro supporters who blocked hundreds of roads across the country. By noon Tuesday, police said they had removed 306 blockades, but more than 260 were still in place. Dozens of flights were cancelled because of roadblocks to Sao Paulo’s International Airport.

Medvedev threatens nuclear war

Russia returns to threaten the use of nuclear weapons, in case Kiev wants to regain the territories annexed by Moscow. On Telegram, the vice-president of the Russian Security Council, Dmitri Medvedev, warned that if the West wants Ukraine to win the war and if Kiev’s goal is to take back all the territories that previously belonged to it and therefore “snatching them from Russia, threatening its existence as a state, this would trigger” the state nuclear deterrence policy. “Isn’t this a direct provocation of a world war with the use of nuclear weapons?” asked the former president, underlining then that by supporting Kiev the West is causing a global war. “Only Russia’s victory is a guarantee of peace,” he added.

UN watchdog visits sites of Russia’s dirty bomb allegations

Experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency – the UN’s nuclear watchdog – on Tuesday began inspecting two sites in Ukraine at the centre of “dirty bomb” allegations leveled by officials in Moscow. The IAEA are visiting the sites at Kyiv’s invitation, and Ukrainian and Western officials have widely dismissed Russia’s allegations. Renewed Russian attacks were again recorded across the country on Tuesday.

South Korea fires three missiles north of the maritime border

South Korea has launched three “precision air-to-surface missiles” in the waters north of the inter-Korean maritime border, in response to the 10 missile launches made today by Pyongyang. The South Korean army said it had fired the missiles into waters “near the Northern Limit Line at a distance corresponding to the area” where those tested today from the North ended up, never so close to the territorial waters of the South. At the beginning of the day, the North launched at least three short-range ballistic missiles into the Sea of ​​Japan, of which one that departed from the Wonsan area flew across the maritime border with South Korea. The launch came just hours after Pyongyang demanded that the United States and South Korea stop joint large-scale military exercises. President Yoon Suk-yeol condemned the latest missile launches, calling them a violation of the territory of the South and ordering “swift action to make the North pay for the provocations”.

Five police officers killed in Ecuador

At least five Ecuadorean police officers were killed in explosive attacks in response to prisoner transfers from overcrowded and violent penitentiaries, prompting President Guillermo Lasso to declare a state of emergency in two provinces. The attacks overnight and early on Tuesday morning, including nine explosions in two cities, were an open declaration of war by gangs, Lasso said in a video address. He has repeatedly blamed violence, including inside prisons, on drug gang retaliation for his government’s efforts to combat the trade. Ecuador is a transit point for drugs destined for the United States and Europe.

Algeria hosts first Arab League Summit in 2 years

Leaders from across the Arab world met in Algeria on Tuesday for the 31st summit of the Arab League as the region battles to find common ground over a series of divisive issues amid rising inflation, energy and food shortages, and drought. The Palestinian cause, relations with Turkey and Iran, normalisation with the Syrian government, tensions between Algeria and Morocco, the conflict in Yemen and Libya’s political disorder are all on the agenda.

‘More human rights violations in Libya’ – NGO

Cases of human rights violations to the detriment of civilians and migrants continue to be recorded in Libya, including killings and kidnappings. This is what emerges in the latest report, relating to October, published by Libyan Crimes Watch, a non-governmental organization committed to monitoring and documenting human rights violations in the North African country. In October alone, 42 unidentified bodies were found from a mass grave uncovered in the naval city of Giza in Sirte.

Migrants missing after boat sinks off Greek island

Greece’s coast guard has been searching for dozens of migrants reported missing after their overloaded sailboat they were on capsised and sank in rough seas off an island near Athens, authorities say. Ten survivors, all men, were rescued and transported to the island of Evia, off the eastern coast of the Greek capital. They told authorities there had been around 68 people on the sailboat, that had set sail from Izmir on the Turkish coast, when it sank.

Tory Party suspends Matt Hancock

Former health minister Matt Hancock, who led the UK through the pandemic, has been suspended from his party for joining a ‘bug-eating’ reality TV show –  the UK’s version of “I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here” while parliament was sitting. Hancock quit government after he was filmed kissing an adviser.

Taylor Swift takes all first 10 places in ‘Billboard’

Taylor Swift makes music history by taking all the top 10 spots on the Billboard Hot 100 charts. Last month the 32-year-old singer-songwriter kept fans awake with her midnight debut of ‘Midnights’, hertenth and final album. Three hours later the pop star released seven extra tracks in an updated version, and her record allowed her to become the first artist to hit all of the top 10 spots on the chart. For industry experts and music critics, this is an extraordinary and unheard-of achievement for any artist.”This is a really good album and she is one of the biggest music stars in the world,” said Steve Knopper, Billboard’s editorial director.