News updates – 2017 – July – Week 2

These news updates are intended to provide an overview of daily news from media sources. To get our daily analysis and intel updates on financial and geopolitical events, you can subscribe to our premium podcast series.


16th July 2017:

  1. France supports the efforts of Kuwait, which acts as a mediator between the Gulf Arab states and Qatar and wants to promote the dialogue between the countries in order to achieve settlement of the diplomatic row, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said.
  2. Unable to push through plans to introduce visas for Russian citizens traveling to Ukraine, Kiev has introduced biometric controls instead, which may end up adversely affecting one third of Ukraine’s population.
  3. An opinion poll conducted by the Kyodo news agency revealed that public support for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe reached a record low.
  4. The world’s first self-fuelling boat has set off from Paris on a journey around the world that is expected to take six years.
  5. The problem of Transnistria must be solved “within the framework of a single Moldova,” and Russia’s role in the settlement is very important, Moldovan President Igor Dodon said.
  6. Polish Foreign Minister Witold Waszczykowski has said that Warsaw is hoping to convince Moscow of Poland’s “good intentions” in improving bilateral relations. Russian-Ukrainian journalist and RIA Novosti contributor Rostislav Ishchenko ponders the foreign minister’s remarks, and what they really mean for Russia.
  7. Abu Ali Basri, the head of the intelligence and counterterrorism department of the Iraqi Interior Ministry, stated that Abu Bakr Baghdadi, the leader of the Daesh terror group is likely to be alive and he is hiding in Syria’s Raqqa.
  8. Scientists have come up with new energy-recycling stairs that allow people with mobility problems to walk up or down stairs again.



15th July 2017:

  1. Russia may obtain its own technology for underwater production of hydrocarbons by 2021-2022
  2. US House Republicans have proposed adding North Korea sanctions to a bill targeting Russia and Iran, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said
  3. Israel Defense Force (IDF) bases in northern Israel are much too easily breached, according to the findings of a recent military inspection
  4. Western countries have blocked the contacts of the United Nations Organization for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO) with the heritage sites in Crimea, even though the organization itself did not suspended such ties
  5. The Bank of Russia sees further interest rate cuts in the foreseeable future
  6. Siemens decision to leave the Russian market is deeemed regrettable by Moscow but they will be replaced by other foreign companies
  7. Cuban leader Raul Castro said that Havana wishes to engage in dialogue with Washington, but warned that Cuba will not negotiate on matters of principles or accept any conditions
  8. German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen, who has faced criticism for her handling of recent abuse allegations in the Bundeswehr, is facing more pressure because the number of abuse of allegations has risen sharply

14th July 2017:

  1. Corruption charges against incumbent Brazilian President Michel Temer have been rejected by the Constitutional Justice Committee of Brazil’s Lower House
  2. Bahrain is determined to considerably increase the tourist flow from Russia, Bahraini Minister of Industry, Commerce and Tourism Zayed Alzayani
  3. Qatar has begun the process of importing 4,000 cows from Europe to bolster milk supplies, as the ongoing embargo by neighboring Gulf states has removed the country’s usual source for beef and milk
  4. The government of Ecuador has made a decision to suspend the construction of a wall at the border with Peru, which led to diplomatic tensions in bilateral relations
  5. Pyongyang’s diplomatic outpost in Beijing is in the midst of constructing a new building for as-yet unknown purposes
  6. The mission of Rossotrudnichestvo in the United States is in discussions on holding a large forum of US-Russian sister cities in the Russian territory
  7. Mexico and the United States agreed have agreed to strengthen bilateral cooperation in the energy sector during the visit of US Energy Secretary Rick Perry to Mexico City
  8. UK Prime Minister Theresa May has assured Spanish King Felipe that securing the rights of the Europeans living in the United Kingdom, including Spanish citizens, is a priority for her at Brexit negotiations
  9. The European Union should cancel any kind of financial support to industries related to fossil fuels and encourage low-carbon investments in order to support EU climate policy and contribute to implementation of Paris climate accord, the European Commission’s High-Level Expert Group (HLEG) on Sustainable Finance said
  10. US special envoy for Ukraine Kurt Volker will visit Ukraine again the coming days, the deputy head of the president’s administration, Kostiantyn Yelisieiev, said
  11. The White House is considering the possibility of returning Russian diplomatic property in the United States to Russia to enhance cooperation between Moscow and Washington
  12. Students in Mosul have failed to study for the past three years, as the city had been under the control of the Daesh terrorist group
  13. Maria Zakharova, spokeswoman of the Russian Foreign Ministry called the attempts to influence any of the Venezuelan conflict’s parties and interfere in the country’s domestic affairs unacceptable.
  14. Hundreds of people took to the streets of Paris on amid Bastille Day celebrations to protest against US President Donald Trump’s visit to the French capital.
  15. The Office for Budget Responsibility has said the UK’s public finances are in such a bad shape, that the country would suffer even more greatly than during the financial crisis if a recession took hold, an increasingly likely eventuality with Brexit looming on the horizon.
  16. Ankara has banned German lawmakers from a visit to a NATO military base in the Turkish province of Konya, where German military personnel are stationed
  17. A total of 7,348 people have been dismissed from their jobs today by the Turkish government as part of the latest crackdown from Ankara against those suspected of having sympathy for or involvement in the, failed coup attempt, last year

July 13th 2017:

  1. US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer formally notified South Korea that the United States wants to begin renegotiating its trade deal with Seoul
  2. The US General Services Administration (GSA) has withdrawn the Russia-based Kaspersky Lab products, services and equipment from its approved list because of the monitoring equipment they install required by Russian law
  3. An offensive by government troops in South Sudan has sent thousands of refugees fleeing to neighboring Ethiopia, joining millions already driven out of Africa’s newest nation
  4. A Brazilian court on Wednesday convicted former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva for corruption and sentenced him to 9.5 years in prison
  5. Russian energy giant Gazprom will issue 500 million Swiss francs ($518.1 million) worth of five-year eurobonds with a yield of 2.25 percent
  6. The Russian Black Sea Fleet is carrying out a combat readiness exercise in Crimea and in the Black Sea with coastal and naval units being put on high alert, the press office of the Southern Military District reported
  7. The Federal Reserve’s uncertainty of US inflation and economic growth, and delays in fiscal stimulus implementation have produced a decline in the US dollar’s FX rate against a basket of its 10 peers, particularly as the Fed’s optimistic view of the economy contradicted the published data
  8. Former US President Jimmy Carter collapsed was taken to hospital in Canada, the Carter Centre said in a press release on Thursday
  9. Kiev and the leaders of the European Union have discussed during the bilateral summit in Kiev the possibility of a new economic support plan for Ukraine, according to Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko
  10. Daesh has declared the Iraqi city of Tal Afar, west of Mosul, a state independent from the so-called caliphate
  11. Clamping down on its visa vetting methods, the US State Department will now be asking nations to provide more in-depth information about their citizens to determine whether any US visa applicants pose a terrorist threat

July 12th 2017:

  1. Mexico established a new record having created over 500,000 jobs during the first half of 2017
  2. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called on Chinese President Xi Jinping to stop oil supplies to North Korea during a meeting between the leaders held on the sidelines of the G20 summit
  3. US Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley is requesting information from homeland security and State Department officials about how the Russian lawyer who met with Donald Trump, Jr. in 2016 was admitted into the United States
  4. Moldova may become a member of the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU), country’s President Igor Dodon said adding that from his point of view that would be a right decision for Chisinau
  5. Attorney David Shimron, a personal lawyer to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Adm. Eliezer Merom, a former commander of the Israeli Navy, were questioned within the ongoing investigation into government contracts to purchase submarines from the German ThyssenKrupp company
  6. Ukraine’s presidential administration and US Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker have decided upon the steps that would provide a new impetus to the implementation of the Minsk agreements
  7. Contrary to official claims, Brexit doesn’t inevitably mean the UK has to leave the European Atomic Energy Community, Euratom, the international body governing civil nuclear power in Europe
  8. Russian Deputy Foreign Minister and US Ambassador to Moscow discussed controversial issues concerning world politics, the Russian Foreign Ministry said
  9. Russia welcomes contacts with Georgia at the lawmakers’ level and is ready for contacts in other formats as well
  10. The King of Spain has said he is confident Britain and Spain will reach a deal which would return the Rock of Gibraltar to Spain
  11. Paul Manafort, former campaign manager for President Donald Trump, will be called to testify before the US Senate Judiciary Committee
  12. The United States has allocated $25 million of security assistance to Ukraine in July, the US embassy in Kiev said
  13. The senate of the Netherlands on Wednesday approved a new surveillance law that will give the country’s secret services broad tapping powers
  14. Israel is not going to interfere in the situation in Syria, but will not allow the strengthening of Iran in the south of the country, according to Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Lieberman


July 11th 2017:

  1. Democrats in the US Senate have blocked 32 candidates for key positions in the administration of President Donald Trump, White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short said
  2. The first meeting in ten years between Russian and Georgian lawmakers will take place in Moscow and will be focused on discussion of humanitarian issues, Chairman of the State Duma’s Committee for the CIS Leonid Kalashnikov said
  3. The US Department of State has signed off on a deal to sell the Netherlands 32 Common Missile Warning Systems that are typically deployed on rotary- and fixed wing aircraft to detect hostile fire
  4. In accordance with US President Donald Trump’s edict to “Buy American and Hire American,” the Department of Defense has announced new regulations that will require manufacturers to rely on American materials for military weapons, equipment, uniforms and rations
  5. Daesh terrorists confirmed the group leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead
  6. Even though recent macro data suggest the Federal Reserve should postpone further rate hikes and balance sheet reductions, normalising US monetary policy is deemed crucial in the wake of a structural crisis in the US economy
  7. The EU Council said in a statement that it has finally approved the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement
  8. A missile factory currently being built by Iran in Lebanon will be 50 meters below the ground and fortified against Israeli airstrikes
  9. German company Siemens filed lawsuits in Moscow against companies implicated in the alleged supply of its turbines to Russia’s Crimea
  10. British Petroleum (BP) and Russia’s Rosneft expect to sign a final agreement on deliveries of Russian gas to Europe this year, with annual supply volumes reaching up to 20 billion cubic meters
  11. Turkey sent 200 cargo aircraft, loaded with goods worth more that $20 billion of goods to Qatar
  12. China plans to invest almost $2 billion in the Syrian industrial park
  13. China announced that it has grown weary of the US placing undue pressure on Beijing to rein in North Korea, saying that all nations involved should do their part to counter Pyongyang’s ongoing nuclear and ballistic missile activity, and calling for an end to the “China responsibility theory”

July 10th 2017:

  1. China’s first commercial quantum communication network, which experts said may provide a secure communication channel for the government in the future, has been successfully tested and will go into service by the end of August.
  2. Moscow is considering the possibility of lowering the level of diplomatic representation to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to the status of charge d’affaires ad interim after current Russian permanent representative to the NATO Alexander Grushko leaves his post.
  3. Moldovan President Igor Dodon said Chisinau would never pursue anti-Russian policy and should never join the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
  4. Turkey’s government is about to sign an order granting citizenship to a total of 7,000 highly qualified Syrians who “will not create a security problem”.
  5. Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan discussed the settlement of the conflict in Nagorno-Karabakh.
  6. North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg called for the enforcement of a set of ceasefire agreements in Ukraine as well as for European security observers’ full access to the country.
  7. Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has said he plans to “renew” his Cabinet and the Liberal Democratic Party in early August, but would preserve key allies within the government and refrain from calling a snap election.
  8. The United States is still ready to cooperate with Russia in the field of cybersecurity as proposed at the G20 summit in Hamburg, Russia’s G20 sherpa said.
  9. The Russian, German and French leaders discussed only the Ukrainian settlement at their meeting on the G20 summit’s sidelines in Hamburg, German government spokesman Steffen Seibert said.
  10. The ceasefire agreement in eastern Ukraine is not holding and European security observers are facing increasing threats, North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said.
  11. France may shut down up to 17 nuclear reactors until 2025 as part of the program on power production diversification, Ecological and Inclusive Transition Minister Nicolas Hulot said.
  12. US Vice President Mike Pence and Macedonian Prime Minister Zoran Zaev discussed by telephone the United States’ support of Macedonia’s aspiration to join the European Union and NATO, the White House stated in a press release.

July 9th 2017:

  1. Pope Francis asserted that the US and other powerful nations have a “distorted vision of the world”.
  2. Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir discussed with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson the Qatar crisis and Iran’s interventions in the region, as well as the fight against terrorism and called the meeting “fruitful”.
  3. Russia sent to the United Nations evidence that North Korea tested a mid-range and not intercontinental ballistic missile on July 4, including the Defense Ministry’s reference and the missile’s flight scheme, the Chinese Permanent Mission to the UN, which chairs the council in July, said.
  4. Donald Trump Jr., the eldest son of US President Donald Trump, along with Paul Manafort, Trump’s presidential campaign manager and Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, met with a Russian lawyer to discuss the suspended program of adoption of children from Russia by US citizens during the 2016 election campaign.
  5. On average, every fifth (20.1 percent) industrial computer was attacked by a malicious software monthly, according to the head of Critical Infrastructure Protection at Kaspersky Lab, Andrey Suvorov.
  6. Germany has started the withdrawal of its forces from the Turkish Incirlik airbase, which was approved by the Bundestag in June following Berlin’s row with Ankara.
  7. Iraq began drilling the first oil well in the Hawizeh Marshes located on the border with Iran in the Maysan Governorate.