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EsadeGeo Daily Digest, 03/11/2021

EsadeGeo Daily Digest, 03/11/2021

The Washington Post – Gregory Schneider and Laura Vozzella / Republican Glen Youngkin wins Virginia governor’s race

  • Virginia voters chose Republican Glenn Youngkin as their next governor, dramatic reversal for a state that had appeared solidly Democratic in recent years and a significant loss for President Biden and the party’s establishment.
  • Former Democratic governor Terry McAuliffe came up short in his bid to become only the second Virginia governor since the Civil War to win a second term, with key suburban districts joining rural parts of the state in favoring Youngkin by a narrow margin.
  • Republicans appeared to sweep the other statewide races, with Winsome Sears projected to win lieutenant governor and Del. Jason Miyares (Virginia Beach) declaring a win for attorney general. Sears is the first Black woman elected statewide in Virginia and Miyares would be the first Latino.
  • A red wave also washed through the House of Delegates, turning a 55-45 Democratic majority into what could become a 51-49 Republican majority.
  • Vox – Andrew Prokop / What Glenn Younkin’s Virginia win means for Democrats

Politico – Zia Weise / At COP26, more than 100 countries commit to reducing methane emissions

  • The European Union and the United States have launched a landmark pledge to slash emissions of the powerful greenhouse gas methane, a commitment that could prevent 0.2 degrees Celsius of global warming.
  • The alliance’s members will seek to lower global emissions of methane — the second-largest contributor to climate change after carbon dioxide — by 30 percent below 2020 levels by 2030. Besides the EU and the U.S., more than 103 countries have signed up so far, including major methane emitters like Nigeria and Pakistan.
  • Some of the world’s top emitters of methane, however, haven’t signed up. Missing from the list of signatories are China, Russia and India.
  • The European Commission, for its part, hopes that the International Methane Emissions Observatory it helped launch this weekend will monitor commitments made by the pledge’s signatories.
  • Bloomberg – Jennifer A Dlouhy and John Ainger / Kerry’s secret to sealing a global methane deal: lower the bar

The Guardian – Julian Borger / Bosnia is in danger of breaking up, warns top international official

  • The international community’s chief representative in Bosnia has warned that the country is in imminent danger of breaking apart, and there is a “very real” prospect of a return to conflict.
  • In a report to the UN seen by the Guardian, Christian Schmidt, the high representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, said that if Serb separatists carry out their threat to recreate their own army, splitting the national armed forces in two, more international peacekeepers would have to be sent back in to stop the slide towards a new war.
  • International peacekeeping duties in Bosnia are currently the task of a residual EU force (Eufor) that is 700 strong. Nato retains a formal toehold with a headquarters in Sarajevo. The year-long mandate for both is up for renewal this week at the UN security council, but Russia has threatened to block a resolution unless all references to the high representative are removed, potentially undermining Schmidt’s authority as the overseer of the 1995 Dayton peace deal.
  • In his first report since taking up the post in August, Schmidt, a former German government minister, warned that Bosnia was facing “the greatest existential threat of the postwar period”.
  • Politico – Arminka Helić and Anthony Mangnall / We need to talk about the Western Balkans

Financial Times – David Pilling and Andres Schipani / Ethiopia declares state of emergency as conflict escalates

  • Ethiopia’s government has declared a state of emergency as forces from the northern Tigray region said they were gaining ground and authorities in the capital prepared for a possible military assault. The two sides have been at war for almost a year though the conflict has mostly been confined to the north of the country.
  • It has recently spread further south and fighting has sharply escalated in the past few days. “The state of emergency is aimed to protect civilians from atrocities being committed by the terrorist TPLF group in several parts of the country,” state-affiliated media reported on Tuesday, referring to the Tigray People’s Liberation Front that ruled the country for three decades until 2018.
  • The declaration of a state of emergency came after Abiy Ahmed, Ethiopia’s prime minister, called on citizens to take up arms to against what he said was a TPLF advance that threatened to “push the country to its demise”.
  • Thousands of people are believed to have been killed and more than 2m to have fled their homes since a civil war erupted in November last year when Abiy, a Nobel Peace laureate, sent troops to quell unrest in Tigray after what he said was an attack on Ethiopian forces by troops loyal to the TPLF.
  • International Crisis Group / Ethiopia’s civil war: cutting a deal to stop the bloodshed

Today´s further reading:

The selected pieces do not necessarily reflect the views of Javier Solana and EsadeGeo. The summaries above may include word-for-word excerpts from their respective pieces.


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