World News Beat

Bite-sized news from around the world

USA – US-Mexico border wall to be built and higher security in the US refugee program to be implemented

President Donald Trump’s early campaign promise to build a wall along the United States-Mexico border has been placed in an order and signed to follow through with the plan. Trump has also devised a plan to strengthen border security and to act in the removal of the approximate 11 million undocumented immigrants. Per the executive order, there would be an immediate increase in the investigative process of deeming a refugee’s status as valid, as well as implemention of a month-long ban on allowing immigrants to enter the United States. Trump aims to reduce the size of the refugee program by half, bringing down the current 110,000 refugees to 50,000. The order states that allowing anyone from Syria, Iran, Sudan, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen to enter is “detrimental to the interests of the United States” for the time being.

With files from The New York Times and BBC News

Uganda – Makerere University Begins Student Headcount After Protests

Kampala’s Makerere university, Uganda’s largest public post-secondary institution, has begun a count to determine the precise number of students currently attending the university. The process is projected to take around three weeks. This comes after the university was shut down by the government amid various student- and staff-led protests relating to pay. The university just began a new semester on January 2 after its closure. Continuing students are required to present themselves with their university identity card and admission letter for counting, and first year students are to present themselves with their registration forms, an admission letter, and their former secondary school identity card or their national identity card. Failure to show up for counting will result in effective expulsion.

With files from and New Vision.

Brazil – 11.5 million vaccine doses ordered to combat the outbreak of yellow fever

An outbreak of yellow fever has appeared in the rural areas of Minas Gerais. 70 cases have been confirmed 40 of which were deaths  as well as 300 cases yet to be confirmed. This is the largest epidemic of yellow fever in Brazil since 2000. Fernando Damata Pimentel, the governor of Minas Gerais, has issued a 180-day state of emergency to combat the outbreak. Neighbouring states have also witnessed cases of the disease. Approximately 5.5 million vaccine doses have been distributed to five states.

With files from BBC News

Tanzania – President Magufuli to Face Potential Vote of “No Confidence”

The current opposition party, the Alliance for Democratic Change (ACT-Wazalendo), has stated that they will put forth a vote of “no confidence” in parliament against President John Magufuli in the event that Tanzanians start dying of hunger. This comes in the wake of the government denying that the country is facing a food shortage, even though the cost of food continues to increase. No previous president of Tanzania has faced a vote of “no confidence” in parliament. The motion can move forwards for debate if at least 20% of parliament members support it. President Magufuli has denied that famine is likely and has stated that his government will not provide food relief.

With files from