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Syria needs aid for multiple crises

Christians call on the U.S. and Russian presidents to work together to help


A hospital in Afrin, Syria, that was damaged by artillery shells on Saturday Associated Press/Photo by Ghaith Alsayed

Syria needs aid for multiple crises

SYRIA: Leading Christian advocates are urging President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin to “put Syria first” as they meet Wednesday in Geneva. A worsening food crisis combined with another wave of COVID-19 cases comes as Putin is threatening to shutter the embattled country’s only humanitarian access point. The U.K. House of Lords’ Baroness Caroline Cox joined Christian Solidarity International and others to ask the heads of state to lift sanctions jointly and enable humanitarian aid into contested areas.

COVID-19 cases have doubled in northwestern Syria in the past month. Despite a batch of vaccines reaching Idlib camps, aid groups are warning, ahead of World Refugee Day on June 20, that refugees are being left out of vaccine rollouts. Across eight countries, World Vision found that 68 percent of refugees and internally displaced persons had not heard of vaccines.

MIDDLE EAST

Israel: After 12 years in power, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s term ended in a tight vote on Sunday night as Knesset members approved 60-59 an eight-party coalition that includes parties on the right and left, as well as a conservative Arab party.

Iraq: June 10 marked the seventh anniversary of the Islamic State (ISIS) capture of Mosul. Photographer Ali Al-Baroodi has captured the scenes and the city’s slow rebuild.

EUROPE

Britain: At the G-7 meeting in Cornwall, Western leaders lectured their adversaries while avoiding a serious response to the rapid rise of authoritarian regimes—analysis from Walter Russell Mead.

Germany: Euro 2020 (that’s right, 2020) opened with a heavyweight clash between World Cup champs Germany and France, with France dominating 1-0 despite a Greenpeace protester parachuting into the stadium.

AFRICA

Uganda: Faced with another wave of the coronavirus, Uganda is running out of vaccines and oxygen, and the country’s medical association warned the situation is dire. Last week officials reimposed strict lockdowns that prevent travel across districts.

Democratic Republic of Congo: Water supply to 200,000 people remains cut off, a month after the eruption of the Nyiragongo volcano sent a torrent of lava toward Goma. Besides destroying about 3,500 residences, it melted water mains and damaged a reservoir.

ASIA

Myanmar (Burma): Attacks by the Burma Army in Karenni State have forced more than 100,000 to flee as part of a military-led campaign upending the elected government. In the military capital of Naypyidaw, deposed leader Aung San Suu Kyi went on trial for inciting public disorder amid a Feb. 1 coup.

China: Following China’s wandering herd of wild elephants? You should be. They’ve been on the move for a year now, trekking more than 300 miles to just outside Kunming—and no one knows exactly why.


Mindy Belz

Mindy wrote WORLD Magazine’s first cover story in 1986 and went on to serve as international editor, editor, and now senior editor. She has covered wars in Syria, Afghanistan, Africa, and the Balkans, and she recounts some of her experiences in They Say We Are Infidels: On the Run From ISIS With Persecuted Christians in the Middle East. Mindy resides with her husband, Nat, in Asheville, N.C.

@MindyBelz

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