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Hard Numbers: Biden makes US election history, foreign fighters in Nagorno-Karabakh, Ivorian vote, US drones for Taiwan

Joe Biden during the 2020 US presidential election campaign. Reuters

69.9 million: Joe Biden has now broken a record, having received the most presidential votes in US election history. By midday on Wednesday, Biden had won 69.9 million votes, over 300,000 more than the previous popular vote record set by his former boss, Barack Obama. Biden's tally could still increase further once millions of outstanding votes in California and other states get counted.


94: Alassane Ouattara was reelected president of the Ivory Coast Tuesday with 94 percent of the vote, which was boycotted by most of the opposition after their candidates were disqualified. The Ivorian leader's critics now plan to set up a shadow cabinet to call another election to oust Ouattara, who was controversially allowed to run a third term on a legal technicality despite a constitutional two-term limit.

2,000: Russia's foreign minister says that 2,000 militants from Middle Eastern countries are fighting on behalf of Azerbaijan in its conflict with Armenia over the disputed Nagorno-Karabakh region. Moscow, which backs the Armenians, has accused Turkey of sending Syrian fighters to bolster the Azeris, which the Turks have denied.

600 million: The US plans to supply $600 million worth of sophisticated drones to Taiwan amid growing tensions with China, which regards the island as part of its territory. This is the first sale since the Trump administration loosened its policy on exports of such advanced technology, partly in a bid to better protect Taiwan from a possible Chinese invasion.

Dating and debates, music festivals and dance classes, work and education – an increasing amount of our social interactions now take place online. With this shift to virtual venues, ensuring kindness and respect in everyday interactions and encounters is more important than ever.

The digital space has become a fundamental part of the national and international conversation, and has also, at times, become a breeding ground for bullying, trolling and hate speech. There is a clear need for more "digital good" to ensure that online encounters have a constructive impact on everyone involved. To learn more about digital good and what it means, visit Microsoft on the Issues.

As the global vaccination race heats up, the most populous country in the world is trying to do three very hard things at once.

India, grappling with the second highest confirmed COVID caseload in the world, recently embarked on what it called "the world's largest" coronavirus vaccination campaign, seeking to inoculate a sizable swath of its 1.4 billion people.

That alone would be a herculean challenge, but India is also making hundreds of millions of jabs as part of the global COVAX initiative to inoculate low-income countries. And as if those two things weren't enough, Delhi also wants to win hearts and minds by doling out millions more shots directly to other countries in its neighborhood.

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When America's top infectious diseases expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, was last on GZERO World in the fall of 2019, just weeks before the pandemic hit, he saw the country's the anti-vax movement as concerning, but still a fringe issue. What a difference a year makes, with one in five Americans saying today that they're reluctant to take the COVID-10 vaccine. Why has vaccine hesitancy grown so much?
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Millions of people leave their home countries each year, fleeing conflict or violence, seeking better work opportunities, or simply to be closer to family. What proportion of those people are women? In many of the countries that are home to the largest migrant populations, a majority, in fact. While many women leave home for the same reasons as men (social instability or economic opportunity) gender-based violence or persecution often play a special role in women's decisions to pick up stakes and move. Here's a look at the gender breakdown of some of the world's largest migrant populations.

El Salvador's President Nayib Bukele is an unusual politician. The 39-year old political outsider boasts of his political triumphs on TikTok, dons a suave casual uniform (backwards-facing cap; leather jacket; tieless ), and refuses to abide by Supreme Court rulings.

Bukele also enjoys one of the world's highest approval ratings, and that's what helped his New Ideas party clinch a decisive victory in legislative elections on February 28, securing a close to two-third's supermajority (75 percent of the vote had been counted at the time of this writing).

His triumph will resonate far beyond the borders of El Salvador, Central America's smallest country, home to 6.5 million people. Now that Bukele has consolidated power in a big way, here are a few key developments to keep an eye on.

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