- Russia continues to pursue stronger ties in the Middle East through arms sales and a coalition with Syria and Egypt to fight ISIS (USNews, RT).
- A controversial nuclear treaty was signed between Iran, China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, United States, Germany, and the European Union. The treaty will lift sanctions on Iran in exchange for various compromises to Iran’s nuclear program, primarily reductions in nuclear materials and equipment as well as open access for IAEA inspectors (Wikipedia).
- The Taliban is on the rise again in Afghanistan and coalition forces have suffered several setbacks in recent weeks, including US soldiers killed.
- Greece has secured a third bailout in 3-years worth of loans, but the Eurozone’s economy may not be out of trouble yet. Additionally, thousands of refugees are migrating to Greece from Turkey as a result of the ongoing Syrian conflict. (BBC).
- Finland is considering an experiment with basic income for all citizens to replace some welfare benefits (BBC).
- A massive explosion of a chemical weapons warehouse in Tianjin, China killed at least 114. Safety violations and official corruption are both considered contributing causes to the disaster (UsAToday).
- A move to devalue China’s economy by policymakers there caused volatility in markets across the globe at the end of August (Fidelity).
- Japan’s Prime Minister has proposed legislation to amend Article 9 of the Japanese constitution to allow them to participate in conflicts outside Japan for the first time since WWII. Pacifists across the country oppose the security bills (JapanTimes).
- N. Korea exchanged artillery fire with S. Korea. The South accuses the North of planting mines that killed their soldiers. The North insists the South cease propaganda broadcasts.
- In Thailand a blast at the Hindu Erawan Shrine, a popular tourist location in Bankok, killed 20 people.
- A Massacre at a Charleston church prompted removal of the confederate flag across the country, especially in government facilities in southern states (UsAToday).
- Obama announced several executive actions and more to further subsidize alternative energy efforts ( WhiteHouse).
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