Adam Taylor, Washington Post
China’s state news agency Xinhua reported last week that a Chinese ship had conducted a successful test of a trading route along the long-fabled Arctic Northwest Passage. This was a major milestone, according to the agency, which proclaimed that “a new channel” between North America and Northeast Asia had been opened.
Pro-Beijing groups have called on the Hong Kong government to take action against activists who put up banners calling for independence for the city on university campuses, saying those who “break the law” should be punished. Protesters gathered outside the Hong Kong High Court and police headquarters on Tuesday, calling for a criminal investigation into the banners, which they said were a violation of the city’s mini-constitution and local criminal law.
Max Greenwood, The Hill
The number of American diplomats affected by mysterious health incidents at the U.S. Embassy in Havana rose Tuesday from 19 to 21, according to a Washington Post report. The State Department has received additional reports of American diplomats affected by the strange symptoms, according to the Post. The cause of the symptoms, however, remains unknown.
Michelle Ye Hee Lee, Washington Post
North Korea’s powerful nuclear test earlier this month may have been even stronger than first reported, equivalent to roughly 17 times the strength of the bomb that destroyed Hiroshima, according to a new analysis by a U.S. monitoring group. North Korea’s Sept. 3 nuclear test, its sixth and biggest, showed how much progress it has made on its nuclear and missile program. Preliminary estimates had found the yield, or the amount of energy released by the blast, to have been about 100 kilotons. In comparison, the bomb detonated over Hiroshima in 1945 released about 15 kilotons of energy.
Belarus says its upcoming military maneuvers with Russia won’t violate international agreements, amid Western concerns about the war games. The chief of the Belarusian Defense Ministry’s department for international cooperation, Major General Aleh Voinau, told journalists in Minsk on September 13 that international organizations and governments—including the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and NATO member states—have been informed in a timely fashion about the Zapad (West) 2017 exercises in accordance with OSCE rules known as the Vienna Document.
Elvira Dmitriyeva walked out of jail in Kazan, the capital of the Russian region of Tatarstan, on September 12 determined to continue doing the very thing that got her thrown into custody in the first place — campaigning for opposition politician and anticorruption activist Aleksei Navalny. Dmitriyeva, 38, just completed an eight-day jail sentence after being convicted for posting on social media an open invitation for the public to come to Navalny’s local campaign headquarters and take his literature.
A former Vietnamese official who Germany says was kidnapped in Berlin to face charges in Hanoi over financial losses at a state construction firm had been cleared of wrongdoing by the previous government, according to documents seen by Reuters. The decision to re-open the case and aggressively pursue prosecution shows the tougher stance taken by the ruling Communist Party since Vietnam’s security establishment emerged stronger from a power struggle last year in which ex-Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung lost out.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
September 13, 1971: People’s Liberation Army Marshal Lin Biao, fleeing the Mao’s Cultural Revolution and an impending purge, dies with his family in a mysterious plane crash in Mongolia. Mao is suspected of having him assassinated.
September 13: Guntis Ulmanis, fifth President of Latvia.