Recent World Wide Alerts

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11.10.19  /  Medium  /  Ecuador – Demonstrations to Continue Indefinitely

Medium

11.10.19 Ecuador Demonstrations to Continue Indefinitely

On 10 October 2019, the president of the Confederation of Indigenous Nationalities of Ecuador (CONAIE) stated that demonstrations by indigenous groups will continue indefinitely in Quito until the Ecuadorian government repeals a decree that eliminated fuel subsidies. Meanwhile, President Lenín Moreno stated that he will attempt to resume dialogue with indigenous groups to end the protests and claimed that he was optimistic that a resolution would be reached “very soon.” On the previous day, thousands of demonstrators held rallies and marches across Ecuador to protest against the government’s elimination of fuel subsidies. Clashes occurred in downtown Quito as thousands of indigenous people and labor union members marched toward the government’s headquarters in Carondelet Palace. Police officers closed off the streets surrounding the palace and deployed tear gas to disperse the demonstrators, who threw stones at police officers. Meanwhile, in Guayaquil, thousands of pro- and anti-government protesters demonstrated downtown; security personnel kept the two groups separated and there were no reports of clashes between them. In addition, police officers deployed tear gas to disperse hundreds members of the Unity Front of Workers (FUT) union who were protesting on Blvd. 9 de Octubre. Ecuador’s interior minister has stated that many of Ecuador’s main roads remain closed due to protests.

11.10.19  /  High  /  China – Multiple Demonstrations Planned

High

11.10.19 China Multiple Demonstrations Planned

Multiple demonstrations are planned in Hong Kong between 10 and 14 October 2019. During the evening of 10 October demonstrators gathered outside the Tsim Sha Tsui police station to protest in support of a demonstrator who suffered an eye injury as a result of protest violence on 11 August. Additionally, Mass Transit Railway (MTR) officials suspended all operations at 2100 local time (1300 UTC) in order to conduct repairs and avoid unrest. MTR operations have closed early since 7 October, and are expected to continue to close early throughout the weekend. Between 2000 and 2100 local time on 12 October demonstrators plan to protest at the New Town Plaza shopping mall in Sha Tin. On 13 October a rally to thank international supporters of the protests is scheduled to begin at 1900 local time at Victoria Park and Edinburgh Place. On 14 October protests are planned for Edinburgh Place in Central and Victoria Park in Causeway Bay to thank healthcare workers for assisting demonstrators injured in the ongoing protests. Expected turnouts for the aforementioned demonstrations remains unknown. Whether organizers applied for Letters of No Objection from authorities also remains unknown. Additionally, spontaneous protests are expected to continue as well. In a related development, the Hong Kong Police Force announced that under a recent ban on facial covering that went into effect on 5 October, police officers have the authority to remove masks of journalists or medical patients during protests if they suspect the individuals are attempting to obscure their identities.

11.10.19  /  Extreme  /  Turkey – Turkish Military Forces Continue Operation "Peace Spring"

Extreme

11.10.19 Turkey Turkish Military Forces Continue Operation "Peace Spring"

On 10 October 2019, Turkish military forces continued operation "Peace Spring" in areas of northeastern Syria along the Syrian-Turkish border. Reports indicate that the Turkish military has been primarily targeting Kurdish forces in the northern cities of Ras al-Ayn -- located in the al-Hasakah governorate -- and Tal Abyad -- located in the Raqqa governorate -- and that the second day of airstrikes has resulted in further civilian casualties. An exact casualty count is currently unavailable, however, as military activities are ongoing. As a result of the military operation and associated periodic airstrikes, the Turkish government announced on the previous day that the country would be closing its airspace along the Turkish-Syrian border indefinitely. On October 9 -- the first day of the operation -- Turkish forces struck at least 181 targets in northeastern Syria. The Turkish military launched air and artillery strikes on several border towns, including Tal Abyad and Kobani; the first day of strikes killed at least 10 people and injured dozens more, including civilians. Turkish forces also launched a raid on the city of Ras al-Ayn and captured the villages of Tabatin and Mesrefe. Unconfirmed reports also indicate that Turkish airstrikes may have struck the al-Chirkin prison -- which currently holds a number of Islamic State (IS) prisoners -- in northeastern Syria. Turkey’s Defense Ministry announced that the military had seized “designated targets” in northeastern Syria, although officials did not specify what those designated targets were. Meanwhile, reports from officials with the heretofore U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) -- which the Turkish government accuses of being affiliated with the Kurdish militant Kurdistan Worker's Party (PKK) -- indicate that the fighting has displaced approximately 60,000 civilians. Several foreign governments have released statements condemning the Turkish operation, including France, Germany, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Israel, Egypt and Lebanon.

10.10.19  /  Extreme  /  Turkey – Commencement of Turkish Military Operations

Extreme

10.10.19 Turkey Commencement of Turkish Military Operations

On 9 October 2019, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announced the commencement of Turkish military operations in northeastern Syria, dubbed “Operation Peace Spring.” Shortly after the announcement, a spokesman for the Syrian Democratic Forces stated that Turkish airstrikes were targeting “civilian areas” in northern Syria. Erdogan stated that the objective of the operation is to destroy what he referred to as a “terrorist corridor” in the region, which includes threats from the Islamic State (IS) and U.S.-backed Kurdish forces known as the YPG. Erdogan stated that Turkish troops are conducting the operation in conjunction with Syrian rebel forces. Erdogan’s announcement coincided with reports of Turkish airstrikes against Kurdish targets in and around the town of Ras al-Ayn, located along the Syrian border with Turkey. A spokesperson for Kurdish forces stated that the strikes targeted civilian areas; there were no immediate reports of casualties. In addition, reports have emerged of Turkish ground forces conducting initial operations in the area in preparation for larger military actions.

10.10.19  /  High  /  Namibia – Health Alert

High

10.10.19 Namibia Health Alert

On 8 October 2019, the U.S. Embassy in Windhoek issued a Health Alert, which reads in part as follows: “Location: Kunene and Zambezi regions “Event: Reports of Suspected Anthrax in Livestock, Wildlife and Humans “The U.S. Embassy advises U.S. citizens to avoid all contact with dead animals in the wild, particularly following reports of suspected anthrax (Bacillus anthracis) in livestock, wildlife, and humans in the Kunene and Zambezi Regions. Bacillus anthracis is a naturally occurring bacteria that is present in Namibia. In previous seasonal outbreaks, the Namibian government has advised not to touch or eat meat from dead animals found in the wild. "The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) advises that people become infected with anthrax when spores enter the body. Anthrax is not contagious. “Actions to take:
  • The CDC advises against working with infected animals or animal products (including hides) and eating raw or undercooked meat from infected animals.
  • For more information about anthrax, please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.
  • To obtain CDC travel notices, call the CDC at 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636) from within the United States, or 1-404-639-3534 from overseas, or visit the CDC website.”

10.10.19  /  High  /  Philippines – Health Alert - Outbreak of Polio

High

10.10.19 Philippines Health Alert - Outbreak of Polio

On 9 October 2019, the U.S. Embassy in Manila issued a Health Alert that reads in part as follows: “Location: Philippines “Event: Health officials have reported an outbreak of polio in the Philippines. “Actions to Take:
  • The U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that all U.S. citizens living in or traveling to the Philippines be fully vaccinated against polio.
  • Before traveling to the Philippines, adults who completed their routine polio vaccine series as children should receive a single, lifetime adult booster dose of polio vaccine.
  • Read the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC’s) Polio in the Philippines webpage: https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/notices/alert/polio-philippines.”
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