N KOREA/DRILL – North Korea conducted rare blackout exercises and mass evacuation drills in cities and towns outside Pyongyang last week according to NK News.

USA/N KOREA – U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis says he could not imagine the United States ever accepting a nuclear armed North Korea. His remarks were made in Seoul. Later this week President Trump begins a tour of Asian states including S Korea.

IRAQ/KURDISTAN – Iraqi Kurdistan’s leader Massoud Barzani will not extend his term in office past Nov 1st. He steps down following the Kurdistan vote for independence which triggered fighting between Iraqi and Kurd forces.

COMING UP

The U.S. election/Russian interference allegations are set to return to the headlines this week with at least one arrest expected and the Senate Intelligence Committee hearings continuing.

The fallout from the Kenyan election will play out all week. To what extent will the opposition accept that Uhuru Kenyatta won last week’s re-run Presidential election?

DIARY

Mon – UNESCO’s general conference (held every 2 years) opens in Paris. Absent will be the USA which quit the organization earlier this month.

Tues – Puerto Rico due to run out of money.

Tues – Barack Obama launches the ‘Obama Foundation’.

Tues – UK’s Prince Charles and Camilla begin 2-week tour of Asia stressing Commonwealth links while pretending the trip is not because UK is leaving the EU.

Tues –  Deadline Australia has set itself to close the Manus Island detention centre off the coast of Papua New Guinea. It has been used to detain people seeking asylum in Australia.

Weds – President Putin in Iran to meet President Rouhani.

Weds – France’s 2 years long State of Emergency ends. Most measures are now enshrined in law.

Weds – Russian ban on visiting websites anonymously comes into effect. VPNs etc banned.

Weds – CEOs of Twitter, Facebook, and Google testify before Senate Intelligence Committee re Russia’s alleged interference in US election

Weds – Hamas due to hand control of its side of the Rafah crossing in Gaza to the Palestinian ‘Unity Government’.    Palestinian

Thurs – Palestinian Authority has called for protests outside British Embassies around the world on 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration.

Sat – President Trump begins 12-day tour of Asia: Japan, South Korea, China, Vietnam and the Philippines.

 

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