Six In The Morning Wednesday 27 September 2023

Former state minister of Nagorno-Karabakh arrested by Azerbaijan

Ruben Vardanyan detained as he tried to cross into Armenia in first high-profile arrest since Azerbaijani offensive

Azerbaijan has detained a former leader of the breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh government in its first high profile arrest since launching a lightning offensive last week that it said would lead to a “reintegration” of the territory into Azerbaijan.

Ruben Vardanyan, a wealthy businessman who had served as the state minister of the Nagorno-Karabakh republic, was detained as he tried to cross the border into Armenia on Wednesday morning, as one of more than 50,000 Armenians who have fled the region to avoid incoming Azerbaijani control.

Climate change: Young people sue 32 European nations

Six young people from Portugal are taking European governments to court over an alleged failure to act quickly enough on climate change. The plaintiffs say the lack of immediate action is a breach of their human rights.

Six young Portuguese people brought a case to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on Wednesday, alleging that 32 nations have failed to act on global warming.

The six, aged 11 to 24, claim they are suffering from  “having to live with a climate that is getting hotter and hotter.”

What is behind the claim?

The complaint to the Strasbourg-based court was sparked by wildfires that hit Portugal in 2017, killing more than 100 people and destroying swaths of land.

Some of the plaintiffs say they have suffered allergies and breathing problems since the firesand that the conditions are likely to persist if nothing is done.

“European governments are not managing to protect us,” said 15-year-old Andre Oliveira, one of the six who brought the suit.

Chairman of Chinese developer Evergrande placed under police surveillance, report says

The chairman of China Evergrande Group has been placed under police surveillance, Bloomberg News reported on Wednesday, raising more doubts about the embattled developer’s future as it grapples with the mounting threat of liquidation.

Citing people with knowledge of the matter, the report said Hui Ka Yan, who founded Evergrande in 1996 in the southern city of Guangzhou, was taken away by police earlier this month and is being monitored at a designated location.

Evergrande is the world’s most indebted developer with more than $300 billion in total liabilities and has been at the centre of an unprecedented liquidity crisis in China’s property sector, which accounts for roughly a quarter of the economy.

It was not clear why Hui was placed under residential surveillance, Bloomberg News said, adding the move was a type of police action that falls short of formal detention or arrest and does not mean Hui will be charged with a crime.

City in Nagasaki Pref decides against applying for gov’t survey on nuclear waste site


The mayor of Tsushima in southwestern Japan said Wednesday he has decided against applying to the state for a preliminary survey to gauge the city’s suitability to host an underground disposal site for highly radioactive waste from nuclear power generation.

“There is insufficient consensus among the public,” Mayor Naoki Hitakatsu said at a city assembly session, with some fearing the potential impact on tourism and primary industries such as fisheries.

Tsushima is located on a remote island in Nagasaki Prefecture and is closer to South Korea’s Busan, 50 kilometers away, than major Japanese cities.


Ukraine strikes deep inside Crimea, cuts through Surovikin Line

Ukraine dealt a crippling blow to the Black Sea Fleet leadership, reportedly killing many of its officers during a planning meeting in their headquarters.


Ukraine scored devastating deep strikes against Russian-occupied Crimea in the 83rd week of the war, as President Volodymyr Zelenskyy toured Europe and the United States picking up pledges of new long-range weapons and financing.

At the same time, Ukrainian and Western sources confirmed that Ukrainian troops had broken through the first and strongest line of Russian defence on the southern front, known as the Surovikin Line after the general who devised it. That success could accelerate their march towards the cities of Tokmak and Melitopol.

UN criticises France’s ban on its Olympic athletes wearing headscarves

Dress codes should not be imposed on women, spokesperson says, after Paris Games ban affecting French athletes

The UN has weighed in on France’s debate about secularism and women’s clothing, saying women should not be forced to abide by dress codes, after the French government said athletes representing France would be barred from wearing headscarves during the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

“No one should impose on a woman what she needs to wear, or not wear,” Marta Hurtado, a spokesperson for the UN’s human rights office, said on Tuesday after she was asked whether the ban met the UN’s criteria on human rights.

Her remarks came after France’s minister for sport, Amélie Oudéa-Castéra, highlighted the government’s commitment to secularism and its opposition to the display of religious symbols during sporting events.