South Africa eases restrictions - South Africa is shortening an overnight curfew, easing alcohol restrictions and allowing large gatherings again. The country has seen COVID-19 cases drop and has one of the highest vaccination rates in Africa. Around one in five adults are fully vaccinated in South Africa. Only 3 percent of Africa’s population has been vaccinated.
First woman Defense Minister in Tanzania - Stergomena Tax recently became the first woman to become Tanzania’s Defense Mnister. She is replacing Elias Kwandikwa who passed away last month. Tax is 61 and previously served as the executive secretary of the Southern African Development Community. Tanzania President Samia Suluhu also recently replaced three cabinet ministers and appointed a new attorney general.
Taliban announces new rules affecting women - The Taliban will segregate Afghanistan universities by gender and will introduce a new dress code. Women will be required to wear hijabs, but it is unknown if additional face coverings will also be enforced. The Taliban said they will allow women to be educated and have jobs, but since Aug. 15, women have been asked to stay away from work unless they work in the public health sector.
India appoints three top women judges - Justice Hima Kohli, Justice Bela M Trivedi and Justice BV Nagarathna were all sworn into India’s top court at the beginning of the month. The country’s law minister called the move a historic moment for gender representation. India’s ambassador to the United States also told the country that the judges taking office was a “proud moment.” Only 4.2 percent of India’s 256 Supreme Court judges have been women in the past 71 years.
Wildfires in Spain - Nearly 2,000 people were forced to leave their home due to wildfires in Andalusia, a southern Spanish region. Military members have been deployed to help firefighters tame the blaze. The wildfires have scorched through about 18,200 acres and forced multiple towns and villages to evacuate. Climate change and dry weather is likely fueling the wildfires.
Pope visits Hungary - Pope Francis warned that the threat of anti-Semitism is still “lurking” while he was visiting Hungary. He met with the country’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban, who has been known to be anti-immigrant. Orban has been accused of taking an anti-Semitic stance, but he called the accusations ridiculous. Hungary is home to 100,000 Jewish people.
Haiti President assassination case continues - Haiti Prime Minister Ariel Henry has been asked to testify over his connection to the main suspect accused of killing President Jovenel Moise. Henry is accused of having made multiple phone calls to Joseph Felix Badio, the man accused of killing Moise. Those calls allegedly took place after the assassination. Moise was killed in his home by gunmen in July.
Nicaragua orders arrest of award-winning author - Prosecutors in Nicaragua have ordered the arrest of Sergio Ramirez, an award-winning author. Ramirez is accused of inciting hatred and conspiring to destabilize Nicaragua. Other influential Nicaraguans have already been detained as President Daniel Ortega continues to crackdown on his critics. Among those who have also been detained include presidential hopefuls, newspaper editors and union leaders. Ramirez won Spain’s Cervantes Prize for literature in 2017.
British actress missing in L.A. - Tanya Fear, a British actress, has been missing since last Thursday in Los Angeles. The Los Angeles Police Department told media outlets a missing persons report was filed for Fear last Thursday. She has been on multiple TV shows and was last seen at a Trader Joe’s grocery store. The hashtag #FindTanyaFear is being used on social media to help gather information about her whereabouts.
FBI releases documents related to 9/11 attacks - The FBI released declassified documents that looks into connections between Saudi citizens in the United States and two 9/11 attackers. Relatives of victims have argued that the files would show Saudi officials had knowledge of the attacks before they were carried out. Most of the 19 hijackers on 9/11 were Saudi nationals, but the documents showed no evidence that the Saudi government was linked to the 9/11 attacks.