Weekly Round Up 26th November-2nd December

694px-Freedom_Square,_Tbilisi._Georgia's_Independence_Day_celebrations_26.05.2017
Freedom Square, Tbilisi

 

Turmoil in Tbilisi

Who?
Citizens of Georgia

What?
Protesting elections results

Where?
Tbilisi, Georgia

Why is it important, relevant, worth consideration or keeping an eye on?
Salome Zurabishvili was elected president in the Caucasian Republic of Georgia this week. Despite the role of president being largely ceremonial in the former Soviet Republic, the opposition party has cried out declaring election fraud and vote buying. On the weekend thousands of Georgians gathered in the streets of Tbilisi, the country’s capital to protest Zurabishvili’s election. While opposition leader Grigol Vashadze calls the whole affair a stolen election and says that Georgia is without a president, Zurabishvili is hopeful. In the days after her victory, she announced that her taking office was a step forward for women everywhere as well as a step closer for all of Georgia towards Europe. All the same, Zurabishvili has confronted some of the claims of her opposition by taking a hard stance on Moscow, calling Russia an “occupying power” and an “unpredictable neighbor.”

For more on President-elect Zurabishvili, find our story on her here.

Full Articles:
AFP
AFP
Al-Jazeera
Reuters
Reuters

 

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Occupied Roundabout near Beaune
20181201_160636
Road block at a Tollstation on a French Motorway

When Tax-hikes turn violent

Who?
Disgruntled French Citizens

What?
Rioting against sharp hike in fuel prices

Where?
France

Why is it important, relevant, worth consideration or keeping an eye on?
On the 17th of November thousands of citizens across France began an on going campaign of protests that have recently escalated to rioting and violence. They are protesting an unexplained hike in fuel prices nation wide. This weekend Paris has seen the most violence protests and riots since the summer of 1968. Across France, the protestors clad in their iconic yellow high visibility jackets have caused turmoil and traffic jams on the major motorways. In one instance witnessed by the author, traffic was backed for several kilometers leading up to one of the toll booths on the motorway. Not only had the protestors essentially occupied the toll station itself, but small mopeds and tractor trailer trucks were being used to artificially stall traffic leading up to the station.
In other parts of the country protestors had occupied the roundabouts causing choke points leading into and out of cities.Paris has seen a circumstances close to what is being called urban warfare with fires and barricades on the Champs Élysées.

With over 500 arrested on the weekend, French president has denounced the action declaring that he will never accept violence as a means to change politics or policy.
It remains to be seen how this situation will develop. The French government has yet to reveal what the money from the fuel tax is meant to go towards. On the other hand, although protesting, known as “faire grève” in french, is something of a national pass-time in France, President Macron is likely to push his line of argumentation and rhetoric.

Full Articles:
AFP
AFP
AFP
Al-Jazeera
Al-Jazeera
Reuters
Reuters
Reuters

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Chinese President Xi Jinping

Tariffs on Pause

Who?
Presidents Xi and Trump

What?
Agreed to pause on “Trade war”

Where?
G20 Summit, Buenos Aires

Why is it important, relevant, worth consideration or keeping an eye on?
Chinese and American Presidents were able to put a 90 day pause on the on going tariff war between the new countries. The goal of this “cease-fire” is to give the two governments time to reach a lasting agreement on trade and tariffs. At the end of a bilateral meeting Trump was positive claiming that his relationship to Xi was one of the main factors that made the current understanding possible. One of the biggest victories for the United States in this situation is the Chinese Government agreeing to label the synthetic opioid “Fentanyl” as a controlled substance. The United States continues to face an opioid crisis at home.

It is clear that both sides have reached compromises in this agreement, although the relationship is not yet back to business as usual. This relationship is worth following in the coming months as both the United States and China are two of the biggest actors in the global economy.

Full Articles:
AFP
AFP
Al-Jazeera
Reuters

 

***

Full List of Resources Used:
https://www.afp.com/en/news/15/thousands-georgians-protest-stolen-election-urge-snap-polls-doc-1ba3rl2

https://www.afp.com/en/news/3954/opposition-rejects-vote-georgia-elects-first-woman-president-doc-1b719g4

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/georgians-demand-polls-bought-election-181202143953218.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-georgia-president/georgian-president-elect-takes-strong-line-towards-moscow-after-contentious-vote-idUSKCN1O03OK

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-georgia-protest/thousands-in-georgia-protest-against-presidential-election-results-idUSKBN1O10KG

https://www.afp.com/en/news/15/macron-surveys-damage-after-paris-riots-calls-talks-doc-1ba2bq6

https://www.afp.com/en/news/3954/violent-clashes-engulf-paris-new-anti-macron-protests-doc-1b882z26

https://www.afp.com/en/news/3954/its-burning-scenes-urban-warfare-rock-paris-doc-1b97tj1

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/macron-visits-arc-de-triomphe-worst-paris-riots-decade-181202112642368.html

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/hundreds-arrested-paris-yellow-vest-protests-turn-violent-181202065955769.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-climate-change-france-protests/frances-macron-learns-the-hard-way-green-taxes-carry-political-risks-idUSKBN1O10AQ

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-protests-cleanup/stunned-parisians-clean-up-posh-central-district-after-worst-riots-since-1968-idUSKBN1O10EQ

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-france-protests/state-of-insurrection-as-fuel-tax-riots-engulf-central-paris-idUSKCN1O02WU

https://www.afp.com/en/news/3954/us-china-agree-trade-war-ceasefire-more-talks-doc-1ba1233

https://www.afp.com/en/news/3954/trump-xi-trade-war-dinner-went-very-well-white-house-advisor-doc-1b99ol5

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/12/china-declare-trade-war-ceasefire-trump-xi-summit-181202031620261.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-g20-argentina-trump-statement/china-u-s-declare-90-day-halt-to-new-tariffs-white-house-idUSKCN1O101U

 

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