2024 Foreign Policy Tracker

21 February

– Brazil kicks off its presidency of the G20 with a meeting of foreign secretaries. Brazil’s foreign minister called for reforms of the UN and other multilateral institutions, criticising their inability to prevent global conflicts, while Foreign Secretary David Cameron insisted in his address that Russia will face the consequences for its invasion of Ukraine.

20 February

– The World Food Programme pauses food deliveries to northern Gaza, saying aid convoys are enduring “complete chaos and violence” as crews face crowds, gunfire and looting amid “the collapse of civil order”. The WFP says Gaza is “hanging by a thread” and that it will seek to resume deliveries as soon as possible.

19 February

– Polish farmers dump grain from a freight train to blockade Ukrainian imports, as part of nationwide protests against cheap agricultural goods allegedly undermining business. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has accused the blockade as absurd, at a time when Ukraine faces the Russian invasion.

18 February

– At least 90,000 people rally in Mexico City, against proposed changes to Mexico’s autonomous electoral authority body, ahead of June’s presidential elections. President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has been accused of trying to weaken the body with reforms, which he argues are to root out bias and corruption.

– Israeli war cabinet minister, Benny Gantz, says Israel will launch its threatened ground offensive against Rafah if Hamas does not release the remaining Israeli hostages by the beginning of Ramadan, on the 10th March.

17 February

– Russia’s most significant opposition leader for the past decade, Alexei Navalny, dies in jail in the Arctic. Navalny was serving a 19 year sentence on charges of extremism, that were widely seen as politically motivated.

– Thousands of demonstrators march in Dakar, Senegal, demanding swift presidential elections following President Macky Sall’s attempt to postpone the election, which was struck down by Senegal’s top court on Thursday.

– The Assembly of Heads of State and Government of the African Union (AU) begins. The chair of the African Union Commission (AUC), Moussa Faki Mahamat, begins by calling on leaders to tackle conflicts in the continent, and condemns a series of coups across a number of nations.

– Hungary’s Prime Minister, Viktor Orbán, meets China’s minister of public security, Wang Xiaohong, in an effort to deepen security ties (including across counter-terrorism, transnational crimes, and law enforcement capacity building under the Belt and Road Initiative), in an unusual offer, given Hungary is a member of the EU and NATO.

16 February 2024

– World leaders gather for the Munich Security Conference, which will be closely watched given concerns about war and instability in the Middle East, Russia’s war in Ukraine and the future of the transatlantic alliance. Lord Cameron is among the speakers scheduled to speak today.

15 February 2024

– Two South African troops in the Democratic Republic of Congo are killed by a mortar bomb on their base. South African troops were deployed to the DRC in December to help the DRC’s military as it confronts a series of armed groups.

– Venezuela’s government suspends its technical advisory office of the UN high commissioner for human rights, accusing the office of promoting the Venezuelan opposition and holding a “colonialist, abusive and violating attitude”. The Government has pledged to carry out a holistic revision of the technical cooperation terms.

14 February 2024

– Indonesia, the world’s third largest democracy, heads to the polls in the world’s largest single-day democratic vote. Indonesian Defence Minister, Prabowo Subianto, looks set to win the Presidential vote, although official results are not confirmed until March.

– Israeli air strikes into Lebanon claim the lives of at 13 people, including 10 civilians, in a retaliation against Hezbollah rocket strikes that killed a soldier in Israel on Wednesday.

– Secretary General of NATO, Jens Stoltenberg, announces that a record 18 member countries are set to meet the defence alliance’s target of spending 2% of their economic output on defence this year – including Germany, for the first time in decades.

13 February 2024

– The US Senate passes a $95bn bill with aid for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan, after delays of months by Republican hardliners. The legislation will now go to the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, where it faces strong opposition.

A coalition including the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) and the Pakistan People’s party (PPP) agree to form the next government of Pakistan, shutting out the party of former prime minister Imran Khan, despite Khan’s Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) receiving the most votes in the election.

12 February 2024

– Thousands of Moroccans take to the streets of the city of Rabat, calling for an end to ties with Israel over the war in Gaza. Morocco established diplomatic ties with Israel in 2020, under the US-brokered Abraham Accords.

11 February 2024

– Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says the Israeli Defence Force will go ahead with its planned ground offensive into Rafah, despite international warnings, insisting an evacuation plan for civilians is being prepared.

10 February 2024

– Airstrikes by the Israeli Defence Force on the Gaza Strip’s southernmost town of Rafah, the territory’s last place of relative safety where more than a million civilians are sheltering, reportedly claim over 100 lives.

– At a campaign rally in South Caroline, former President Donald Trump says he would “encourage” Russia to attack any Nato member that fails to meet the spending commitments of the Western military alliance. US President Joe Biden calls Trump’s comments “appalling and dangerous”.

9 February 2024

– Violent protests in Haiti this week have claimed five lives, as citizens demand that Prime Minister Ariel Henry resign. An agreement reached in December 2022 stipulated that Prime Minister would hold elections and then cede power to newly elected officials on February 7, 2024, but Henry has remained in power. No elections have taken place since 2016, and the presidency remains vacant.

– Politicians in Pakistan, allied with the imprisoned former prime minister Imran Khan’s party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI), defy a military-led crackdown and alleged widespread election  rigging to win the most seats in Pakistan’s lower house of parliament, but fall short of a majority. The two other main parties, PML-N and Pakistan People’s party (PPP), have met to discuss forming a coalition to keep PTI out of power.

8 February 2024

Azerbaijan’s President, Ilham Aliyev, wins a fifth consecutive term in power, securing more than 92% of votes. Azerbaijan has been accused of repressing freedom of expression and targeting critical voices of the president, who faced no meaningful challengers in the election.

– President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, sacks the commander-in-chief of Ukraine’s armed forces, Valerii Zaluzhnyi, stating that the high command needs to be “renewed”. General Oleksandr Syrskyi was announced as his replacement, presenting the biggest change to Ukraine’s military leadership since the war began in February 2022.

– The Council of Europe’s committee for the prevention of torture and inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment calls on the UK Government to process asylum claims in the UK rather than in Rwanda, as allowed by the UK’s Illegal Migration Act, over concerns that asylum seekers may be exposed to human rights abuses if they are sent to Rwanda.

– US President, Joe Biden, will not face criminal charges for removing classified documents at the end of Barack Obama’s presidency, due to his cooperation with investigators, and that he would appear sympathetic to a jury.

7 February 2024

– Two explosions claim the lives of at least 28 individuals in the Pakistani province of Balochistan, just a day ahead of Pakistan’s general election, in a currently unclaimed attack. The election has been marred by violence and claims of poll-rigging.

– A senior commander of an Iran-backed militia, Abu Baqir al-Saadi, is killed in a US drone strike in Baghdad. The US says the commander was responsible for directing attacks on US forces in the region.

– Sudan enters an internet blackout, amid the country’s 10-month civil war. Reports of blackouts have been occurring since Friday. Many blame the paramilitary group, The Rapid Support Forces (RSF), which denies responsibility.

– The Government of Nicaragua has warned the UK, Germany, the Netherlands and Canada of its intention to take them to the International Court of Justice (ICJ), for supplying weapons to Israel and thus contributing to – or directly committing – violations of the Genocide Convention against the Palestinian people in Gaza.

6 February 2024

– Negotiations to form the next Dutch government collapse after Pieter Omtzigt, leader of the New Social Contract (NSC) party, quits talks. Far-right leader of the Party for Freedom (PVV), Geert Wilders, has been struggling to form a coalition, with migration issues initially emerging as the key stumbling block in negotiations.

– A US Senate bipartisan bill set to deliver billions of dollars in aid to Ukraine, along with stricter border enforcement measures, collapses as Republicans withdraw support, despite President Biden urging Congress to “show some spine” and stand up to Donald Trump.

– President of the European Commission, Ursula von der Leyen, announces plans to scrap a proposal halving pesticide use across the EU, in a concession to the farmers who have been protesting in many EU countries against tightening regulations.

5 February 2024

– President Nayib Bukele of El Salvador is re-elected in a landslide victory. Bukele has been largely credited for transforming one of the most violent countries in the world to one of the safest in Latin America, following a crackdown on crime.

– US Secretary of State Antony Blinken landed in Saudi Arabia to meet Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, on his fifth trip to the Middle East since the October 7 attacks on Israel. On his trip, Blinken will visit Egypt, Qatar, Israel and the Occupied West Bank, later this week.

– Lawmakers in Senegal agree to postpone the presidential election until December. Most opposition MPs were forcibly removed from the chamber amid heated debates, and three opposition MPs have since been arrested in the fallout.

4 February 2024

– Hundreds of people protest in Dakar, Senegal, at the news that lawmakers are due to debate a proposal to postpone the presidential election, scheduled for later this month, following a dispute about the eligibility of candidates. The proposal moves to hold the vote on 25 August and keep President Macky Sall in power until then.

3 February 2024

– The US and the UK have launched a fresh wave of strikes against 36 Houthi targets in Yemen – the third time the US and the UK carry out a joint operation to strike Houthi targets.

– Sinn Fein’s Michelle O’Neill becomes the new First Minister of Northern Ireland, with the DUP’s Emma Little-Pengelly as Deputy First Minister. The first and deputy first ministers hold equal power, but Michelle O’Neill received the position of First Minister because Sinn Fein is the largest party in Stormont. O’Neill is the first-ever republican first minister of Northern Ireland.

2 February 2024

– The US strikes more than 85 targets linked to Iran’s Islamic Revolution Guard Corps (IRGC) Quds Force, and affiliated militias, in Iraq and Syria, responding to the deaths of three US soldiers killed in Jordan on the 28th January.

1 February 2024

– European leaders agree a €50 billion aid package for Ukraine, after breaking a deadlock with Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.

– New Zealand Defence Minister steps up interest in joining the non-nuclear pillar of AUKUS, saying “we really want to look at what the opportunities are and whether or not its something we could be part of”, and adding that New Zealand could offer space and technology expertise.

– Over a thousand tractors block the streets around the European quarter in Brussels, as farmers protesting high taxes, rising costs, cheap imports, and the bloc’s decision to lift quotas on Ukrainian grain exports, throw eggs at the European Parliament.

31 January 2024

– Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and his wife are sentenced to jail for 14 years over illegal profiterring from state gifts, in addition to the 10 year sentence he had already recieved.

– Armenia formally joins the international criminal court (ICC). Armenia, a traditional Moscow ally and part of the Moscow-led military alliance, the Collective Security Treaty Organisation, is now obliged to arrest the Vladimir Putin if he sets foot on its territory.

30 January 2024

– Former Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is sentenced to 10 years in prison for leaking state secrets. His legal team are planning on appealing the ruling.

– Following changes to the post-Brexit agreement between the UK and EU, the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) drops its opposition to an executive being formed in Northern Ireland. The new deal agreed between the UK government and the DUP – called “Safeguarding the Union” – will reduce checks and paperwork on goods going from Great Britain to Northern Ireland. The decision paves the way for power-sharing to be re-established in Northern Ireland.

– Lord Cameron makes his fourth visit to the Middle East as Foreign Secretary, beginning in Oman. Cameron will use the visit to focus on de-escalating regional tensions, and move forward work to establish a Contact Group between the UK, the US, key EU, Gulf and Arab countries and Turkey, to build momentum towards a lasting peaceful solution.

29 January 2024

– 48 civil society organisations in Nigeria call on President Bola Tinubu to declare a state of emergency regarding violence across the country. Last week, 43 people were killed in fighting in Nigeria’s central Plateau state, while nearly 2,500 people have been killed, and over 1,800 have been abducted, since May 2023.

– UK Foreign Secretary Lord Cameron says the UK could consider recognising a Palestinian state, as part of concerted efforts to bring about “irreversible progress” on a peaceful two-state solution.

28 January 2024

– North Korea fires several cruise missiles in waters off its east coast, in the latest of a string of missile tests in recent months. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has become increasingly aggressive in his policymaking and rhetoric, leading to concerns that North Korea is preparing for war.

– Climate activists through soup over the Mona Lisa in Paris.

27 January 2024

– The UK, and a number of other countries, pause funding for UNRWA, the primary UN Agency providing aid to Palestinian refugees over allegations some of its staff were involved in the October 7th Hamas attack on Israel.

– A drone strike claims the lives of three US troops at a base in Jordan. The attack was claimed by the Iranian-backed umbrella group Islamic Resistance. US President Joe Biden has sworn to hold all responsible to account.

26 January 2024

– The International Court of Justice (ICJ) delivers its ruling on the emergency measures requested by South Africa in its genocide case against Israel over the Israel-Hamas war. The court ruled, among other things, that Israel must take steps to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza, but it stopped short of ordering a ceasefire.

– UK-Canada trade deal negotiations break down after nearly two years, over disagreements about cheese, cars and beef.

25 January 2024

– Violence in central Nigeria claims over 40 lives. The fighting was sparked by a row over cattle, in Nigeria’s Plateau state, which is fraught with ethnic and religious tensions between Muslim Fulani and Christian Mwagaful ethnic groups.

24 January 2024

– A Russian military plane crashes in Russia’s Belgorod region, killing 74 people onboard, including 65 Ukrainian prisoners of war. Moscow has accused Ukraine’s military of shooting down the plane, which Kyiv has not ruled out.

– Potential challenger to Russian President Vladimir Putin, Boris Nadezhdin, announces that he would end the war in Ukraine on day one of his presidency. Nadezhdin, a local councillor for over 30 years, is seen as a former insider of the regime, and so far his criticism of Putin and the Kremlin has been tolerated.

23 January 2024

– Former President Trump wins the New Hampshire primary, beating Nikki Haley, and taking 54% of the vote.

– Turkish MPs ratify Sweden’s bid to join NATO, removing the last major hurdle to Sweden joining the military grouping.

– Prime Minister Rishi Sunk announces that, while the UK is not seeking confrontation with Houthi forces, the UK will not hesitate to take further military action if the group continues its attacks in the Red Sea.

22 January 2024

– US and UK forces launch a fresh series of military strikes, targeting eight Houthi positions in Yemen, including an underground storage site and Houthi missile and surveillance capability. This is the eighth set of strikes by the US against Houthi targets in Yemen, and the second joint operation with the UK.

– House of Lords vote to delay the Government’s Rwanda policy over safety concerns.

– Ron DeSantis ends his bid for the Republican Presidential nomination, endorsing Donald Trump ahead of the New Hampshire primary.

– Cameroon rolls out the world’s first Malaria vaccine, using a vaccine developed by UK drugmaker GSK.

21 January 2024

– The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza announces that more than 25,000 people have now been killed in Gaza, in the more than three months since Israel’s air and ground operation began.

20 January 2024

– Air strikes hit Damascus, Syria, claiming the lives of a number of Syrian forces, and five senior members of Iran’s security forces. Iran has accused Israel of launching the attack.

– Sudan suspends its membership of north-east African bloc, The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad), over efforts to end the brutal nine month-long civil war between Sudan’s army and a rival paramilitary group, the Rapid Support Forces (RSF). Igad had reiterated its call for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire, and said Sudan’s army and the RSF must have a face-to-face meeting within two weeks.

19 January 2024

– A top NATO official warns that civilians of NATO states must prepare for all-out war with Russia in the next 20 years, urging civilians as well as governments to prepare for life-changing conflict and potential conscription.

– The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs says over half a million people from Sudan have crossed the border to South Sudan since fighting broke out in Sudan on 15 April 2023.

– Pakistan and Iran restore diplomatic ties, with both Ambassadors set to return to their respective posts. This restoration rounds out a week in which both countries exchanged reciprocal strikes on militant bases in each other’s territory.

18 January 2024

– Pakistan launches airstrikes into Iran, targeting alleged terrorists in retaliation for Iranian strikes against Pakistan on January 16th.

– Air strikes in Syria claim the lives of at least 10 people. The attack is suspected to have come from Jordan, which has reportedly carried out a number of air strikes over the past year, targeting suspected drug smugglers in Syria.

17 January 2024

– UK Parliament approves the Rwanda Asylum Bill by a majority of 44.

– Israel and Hamas reach a deal to allow more humanitarian aid into Gaza, amid the devastating Israel-Hamas war. Brokered by Qatar and France, the deal agrees that medicine will be provided to 45 hostages held by Hamas, in return for humanitarian supplies entering Gaza via Egypt.

– The United States launches a fourth round of strikes at Houthi targets in Yemen, following further attacks on commercial shipping.

16 January 2024

– North Korean leader Kim Jong Un calls for a constitutional amendment to change the status of South Korea to a separate state, designating South Korea as the “principal enemy”, and warning that while North Korea doesn’t seek war, it also doesn’t intend to avoid it.

– Iran launches airstrikes into Pakistan, reportedly aimed at Sunni militant group, Jaish al-Adl, claiming the lives of two children. This attack follows retaliatory strikes this week into Syria and Iraq following the bombing in Kernan earlier this month, and is the latest flashpoint of violence unfolding across the regional neighbourhood.

15 January 2024

– Former President Donald Trump wins the first contest in the Republican race for presidential nominee, the Iowa caucus, by a landslide, as expectations grow that he will secure the Republican nomination.

– Nauru cuts ties with Taiwan in favour of Beijing, just days after the DPP’s Lai Ching-te was elected President of Taiwan. Taiwan has accused China of buying Nauru’s switch in diplomatic relations with financial aid.

The 54th Annual Meeting of the World Economic Forum begins in Davos, Switzerland. The focus for this year’s meeting is on ‘Rebuilding Trust’, amid a global landscape of increasing division, heightened hostility and a surge in conflicts. 

14 January 2024

– King Frederik X ascends to the throne in Denmark following the abdication of his mother, Queen Margrethe II.

– The death toll in Gaza passes 24,000, on the 100-day anniversary of the October 7th Hamas attack into southern Israel, that killed at least 1,200 people and triggered the devastating Israel-Hamas war. The 100-day anniversary was marked by a commemorative event in Israel, in support of the Israeli hostages that remain in Gaza.

13 January 2024

– In Taiwan, the incumbent Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) wins its third straight presidency, with president-elect Lai Ching-te defeating opponents from the Kuomintang (KMT) and Taiwan’s People’s Party (TPP). China had views the DPP as seperatists and criticised the result.

– John Kerry announces he will step down as US Climate Envoy after three years.

12 January 2024

– UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak visits Kyiv, Ukraine to sign a new bilateral security pact. Sunak  announced that UK military funding to Ukraine will increase to £2.5 billion in the coming financial year, and that the UK will provide an extra £18 million in aid.

– Houthi leadership reports that five of their fighters have been killed in the US and UK’s military strikes, and warn that the militant group will retaliate and continue their attacks on Red Sea shipping vessels.

11 January 2024

– Two days of public hearings begin at the International Court of Justice, as South Africa presents its case accusing Israel of genocide.

– US and UK forces launch military strikes overnight, targeting 16 Houthi positions, including command centres. UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak says the strikes were a “limited, necessary and proportionate action in self-defence”.

10 January 2024

– US and UK naval forces report an uptick in drone attacks on commercial shipping by Yemen’s Houthi rebels in the Red Sea, with the two nations repelling 21 drones and missiles in one night. Since the 19th November, the Iran-backed Houthi’s have reportedly carried out 26 attacks, claiming to be targeting ships ‘linked to Tel Aviv’ in protest at Israeli actions in its war against Hamas.

– The UN Security Council vote to demand an immediate end to the Houthi attacks, and warned of collective action if they continue (Russia and China both abstained).

– A UN helicopter crew is seized in Somalia by al-Shabab, the Somali armed Islamist group that controls large parts of the nation’s centre and south. The insurgency group is affiliated to al-Qaeda and is a powerful player involved in Somalia’s civil war.

– Masked gunmen break into an Ecuadorian broadcaster’s live studio, following days of violence stemming from the President of Ecuador’s order that criminal gangs be “neutralised”.

9 January 2024

– Gabriel Attal is named as France’s next Prime Minister by President Emmanuel Macron, at just age 34, making him the youngest and first-ever openly gay French Prime Minister. 

– The People’s Democratic Party secures the most seats in Bhutan’s parliamentary elections. Former Prime Minister Tshering Tobgay is expected to lead the new liberal government.

– Polish police arrest two MPs in the country’s presidential palace, who were hiding under the protection of President Andrzej Duda after being sentenced to jail for abuse of power when running an anti-corruption office. This unravels amid tensions between President Duda and new Prime Minister Donald Tusk, who is seeking to dismantle and reform the past eight years of rule by the conservative Law and Justice Party (PiS).

8 January 2024

– Bangladesh’s Prime Minister, Sheikh Hasina, wins office for a fifth term, in an election overshadowed by a crackdown on opposition, including through intimidation and violence. The opposition – the Bangladesh Nationalist Party (BNP) – boycotted the vote and labelled it a ‘sham election’.

– Israel launches strikes against Hezbollah into southern Lebanon, reportedly killing one of its senior commanders and fuelling concerns of contagion to a regional war.

– Australia abandons plans to hold a referendum on replacing King Charles III as its Head of State, stating that it is ‘not a priority’.

– China’s Ministry of State Security announces that it has detained an individual on allegations of spying for Britain’s MI6.

7 January 2024

– Charles Michel announces he will step down as European Council President early, in order to stand in the election for the European Parliament, which will be held in June. The next President must be elected by a majority of the EU’s 27 leaders, and if no successor is found before 1 July, Hungary’s prime minister, Viktor Orbán, would temporarily hold the presidency.

– Italy’s foreign minister Antonio Tajani announces he wants to form a European Union army to manage peacekeeping across the continent. 

6 January 2024

– US President Biden marks the third anniversary of the January 6th 2021 attack on the US Capitol, calling Trump’s incitement of the violent mob “among the worst derelictions of duty by a president in American history”.

– French Foreign Minister Catherine Colonna calls Iranian Minister Abdollahian to demand that Iran and its affiliates immediately cease destabilising actions – in reference to the attacks on commercial ships in the Red Sea by Houthi rebels, based in Yemen and backed by Iran, in what has been termed a revenge campaign against Israel’s war against Hamas in Gaza. 

5 January 2024

– United States Secretary of State Anthony Blinken arrives in the Middle East for the fourth time since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war, hoping to curtail attacks against Palestinian civilians. Blinken will be visiting Israel, in addition to Turkey, Greece, Jordan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, amid heightening regional tensions.

4 January 2024

– Former President Donald Trump asks the United States Supreme Court to invalidate the ruling by Colorado’s Supreme Court that stated he was ineligible to be on Colorado’s Presidential Primary ballot. Maine’s Secretary of State has also barred Trump from appearing on Maine’s ballot, and a number of other states are considering following suit. 

3 January 2024

– Saleh al-Arouri, a senior leader of Hamas, is killed in a suburb of Beirut, Lebanon, by an explosion that Lebanon and the United States blamed on Israel. Mr al-Arouri is the most senior Hamas figure to have been killed in the Israel-Hamas war so far, and played a key role in Hamas’ relationships with its regional allies, and in increasing Hamas’ military capabilities.

– Over 90 lives are lost after two bombs are detonated in Kerman, Iran, at the grave of militant leader Qasem Soleimani, on the fourth anniversary of his assassination. Iranian officials initially accused Israel and the United States of being behind the attack, which has since been claimed by the Islamic State.

– Russia and Ukraine exchange hundreds of prisoners of war, in a deal brokered by the United Arab Emirates. It is the biggest prisoner swap since Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, with Ukraine receiving 230 prisoners, and releasing 248 Russian soldiers.

2 January 2024

– Israel’s Supreme Court strikes down a controversial judicial reform that would have limited the power of the Israel Supreme Court in overturning laws it deemed unconstitutional. The reform triggered nationwide protests last year, over concerns it would consolidate Prime Minister Netanyahu’s power.

– Lee Jae-myung, the leader of South Korea’s main opposition party, is stabbed in the port city of Busan. South Koreans are sharply divided over the politician, who is widely expected to run for the presidency again at the next general election, having narrowly lost to President Yoon in 2022. Among supporters he is considered a progressive champion, on the side of minorities and lower-income citizens, but his detractors, as well as state prosecutors, have accused him of corruption.

1 January 2024

– BRICS membership is officially extended from 5 to 10 members, with Russia assuming the Presidency for 2024. Russia hopes to use the Presidency to encourage greater foreign policy coordination between members and to strengthen BRICS relations with new partners.

– A string of strong earthquakes are recorded off the north coast of Japan, claiming the lives of 161 people.

Eliza Keogh

Eliza is BFPG's Researcher and Programmes Manager