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Views on the News – 12 June 2019

Headlines:

  • Sudan’s Army Resorts to Desperate Measures
  • When Allies Fall Foul
  • US-China Trade War Deepens

Sudan’s Army Resorts to Desperate Measures

Following the collapse of negotiations between the Transitional Military Council and the opposition, Sudanese security forces ramped up their response to continued protests in Khartoum. The civil disobedience campaign by the country’s opposition movement has substantially affected business operations in the Sudanese capital of Khartoum and its twin city of Omdurman. The ruling Transitional Military Council has deployed significant security forces and has extended an internet shutdown in the capital. Public transportation operated on a reduced schedule. This crackdown lead to scores of deaths last week and shows the chasm between the government and the opposition. This forced the security forces to round up some opposition leaders in an attempt to disrupt their activities. The army after months of protests have failed to placate the demands pf the people for change.

 

When Allies Fall Foul

US officials announced on Monday 10th June that Washington had halted the training of Turkish pilots on F-35 fighters at an airbase in the US state of Arizona. The United States said it is winding down Turkey’s involvement in its F-35 stealth fighter jet programme over Ankara’s plans to buy a Russian air defence system that could pose a danger to the aircraft. “The department is aware that the Turkish pilots at Luke AFB are not flying,” Air Force Lieutenant-Colonel Mike Andrews, a Pentagon spokesman, told Reuters news agency. “Without a change in Turkish policy, we will continue to work closely with our Turkish ally on winding down their participation in the F-35 programme.” Erdogan has worked hand in hand with the US ever since he emerged victorious back in 2002. But differences emerged over the Kurds in north Syria between the allies and the US has resorted to inducements and punishment to keep Erdogan in line. The threat to ban Turkey from the F-35 is just one aspect of this.

 

US-China Trade War Deepens

Chinese authorities have invited the Indian government to join efforts to offset the potential impact of “protectionist“ and “unilateral“ trade practices implemented by the US across the world over recent months. According to Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Hanhui, “trade frictions between China and the US and the specter of trade frictions between the US and India” may become a crucial subject for talks between the two states, bullied by Washington. The comment comes ahead of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit, in the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek. Chinese President Xi Jinping is expected to meet with his Indian counterpart Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the event. The top official stressed that the heads of state would reach deeper understanding on the issue of “upholding justice and opposing trade protectionism” in global trade. Moreover, Zhang expressed hopes that the neighbouring nations would agree on bilateral trade. As the trade war between the US and China deepens, China is being forced to look for alternative strategies as its run out of its economic ace cards.

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