Belarusians call Lukashenko bluff, go on strike; France recalls the Turkish ambassador; Chileans vote for new constitution


Top of The World – our morning roundup from the World editors. Subscribe here. Workers and students took to the streets in Belarus again on Monday in a nationwide strike to demand the resignation of President Alexander Lukashenko. In August, he claimed victory in a widely controversial re-election that fueled weeks of mass protests. Police used force – often violent – to arrest hundreds of people as Belarusian opposition sought to step up pressure on Lukashenko, who on Sunday challenged an ultimatum to cede power.

Exiled opposition leader Svetlana Tikhanovskaya calls on Belarusians to block roads and shut down workplaces and withdraw all money from their bank accounts. “The regime has once again shown Belarusians that violence is the only thing it is capable of,” Tikhanovskaya said in a statement from neighboring Lithuania.

If prolonged, the strikes could escalate tensions in Belarus and test whether the opposition has enough support to shut down the industry across the country of 9.5 million people.

Of the world: Belarusian opposition leader: “We are fighting for the future of our children”

What the world is following

France and Turkey spent the weekend exchanging beards, which led the French foreign ministry to recall its ambassador to Turkey on Sunday. This was followed by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who called on Monday for a boycott of French products. The spitting began following the brutal beheading of a teacher and what Erdoğan called Macron’s “anti-Islam” response. Erdoğan said French President Emmanuel Macron needed “some sort of mental treatment”. France condemned these comments, qualifying them as “unacceptable”.

And Chilean voters on Sunday approved a plan to tear up the country’s Pinochet-era constitution in favor of a new citizen-drafted charter. With more than three quarters of the votes counted Sunday night, more than 78% of voters had opted for a new charter. Chileans flocked to the country’s main squares to celebrate as fireworks erupted above and people sang in unison.

Nigerians in the Diaspora join #EndSARS protests

The #EndSARS protests against police brutality that erupted in Nigeria have spread beyond the country’s borders.

In the United States, Nigerians have become one of the most educated immigrant groups in the country. They have also made a name for themselves as prolific musicians and artists across the world.

The vocal response to the brutal crackdown on #EndSars protesters of Nigerians in the diaspora, including celebrities like Burna Boy, has demonstrated that no matter how far they go, Nigerians’ roots remain stronger than ever.

Explainer: How Biden and Trump would remake Iran nuclear deal

With sitting US President Donald Trump pulling out of the historic Iran nuclear deal, his Democratic challenger former Vice President Joe Biden is more likely to seek to get the JCPOA – along with its European allies – back on track .

Light point

Fall for the defenders of the environment. Fourteen endangered Loa water frogs were rescued and airlifted to the Santiago de Chile Zoo in 2019. Now, these rare frogs produced 200 offspring.

In case you missed itListen: How the rest of the world views the US presidential election

The last presidential debate last week largely focused on foreign policy issues. Foreign correspondents around the world share global reactions and what they see abroad in the run-up to the November 3 US election. And US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met with the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan and Armenia on Friday. This is the last attempt to find a solution to nearly a month of fighting in Nagorno-Karabakh. Also, when isn’t a burger a burger? This is a practical question facing the European Parliament during a discussion on Friday on whether plant-based alternatives can use names commonly associated with meat.

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