The Olympic Games of Rio 2016 have drawn the eyes of the world for reasons both good and bad; the transcendent nature of sportsmanship and salute to human physical prowess, coupled with the flagrant disregard for the poorest of Brazil’s citizens.
But whilst millions tuned in to watch the carefully choreographed carnival display, and even Japan’s PM Shinzo Abe arrive to accept the next Games dressed as Mario, here’s 5 things that were happening elsewhere.
It was revealed the tragic and fatal suicide bombing of a Turkish wedding that saw at least 53 people left dead with 22 of the victims under the age of 14 was carried out by a child no more than 13 years old. At the same time, footage has emerged showing the apparent arrest and disarming by Kurdish security forces of an alleged so-called-Islamic State teenage suicide bomber on his way to detonate at a mosque in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk.
Israel responded with dramatic force after a rocket was fired from Palestine into southern Israel, with no injuries or damage reported. With a least 50 reported strikes on the Gaza Strip, decimating the previous period of what had been deemed “limited retaliation”. Are we about to see a fresh and sustained escalation in the conflict?
An MEP from Hungary’s ruling far-right party has suggested affixing pig’s heads to the already monolithic border fence to further repel Muslim refugees from entering the country. After approving a colossal 146 of 177,135 asylum applications last year, Gyorgy Schopflin of the Christian Democratic European Peoples’ Party tweeted: “Human images are haram… pig’s head would deter more effectively.”
During their 5-2 victory over Israeli club H. Beer-Sheva FC on the 17th August, the ever vocal Celtic fans took the opportunity to protest the Israeli treatment of Palestine with vast sections of the home support chanting and displaying Palestinian flags. After being charged by UEFA for what is described by the books as “illicit banners”, a gofundme page set up to match the charge has already raised £34,000 to be split between Medical Aid Palestine (MAP) and the Lajee Centre, a Palestinian creative cultural children’s centre.
As war games proceed in South Korea involving some 25,000 US troops and 50,000 SK troops, North Korea has predictably upped its rhetoric ahead of what it declares are invasion rehearsals. Threatening to turn Seoul and Washington into “a heap of ashes through a Korean-style pre-emptive nuclear strike”, the under-fire regime may also be lashing out after a high profile defection earlier in the week of Senior Diplomat Thae Yong Ho, who they now describe as “human scum”.