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Hard Numbers

5,499: As of today, Turkey’s leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan has served 5499 days in office, first as Prime Minister and now as President. That makes him the longest serving leader in Turkey’s modern history — Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, who founded modern Turkey, served a mere 5491.

62: India’s new military budget of $62 billion, unveiled in February, passes an important milestone — for the first time since gaining independence in 1947, India now spends more on defense than its former colonial power in the UK. Globally only America, China, Saudi Arabia and Russia have higher defense budgets than India today.

21.8: Non-tech companies spent $21.8 billion on acquisitions in the AI industry in 2017, some 26 times more than they spent in 2015. It’s a sign that non-tech firms are increasingly focused on the impacts — both positive and negative — that AI will have on their markets and businesses.

4:1 : In Brazil, private security guards outnumber police officers by a ratio of four to one. Elsewhere in Latin America, one of the world’s most violent regions, the ratio is even higher. These weakly regulated forces aim to supplement strained police forces, but in practice they can fuel deeper cycles of polarization, inequality, and violence, according to a new report.

0: So far this year, Chinese coal exports to North Korea fell from about 8,500 tons monthly to a big fat zero, according to Chinese government data. Steel exports have also plummeted from about 15,000 tons a month to around 260. Beijing is putting more economic pressure on Pyongyang in order to help bring about a diplomatic solution to the nuclear crisis on the Korean peninsula.


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