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Municipality workers remove debris from the streets after flooding in Sheikh Jalal district, Baghlan province, Afghanistan May 12, 2024.

REUTERS/Sayed Hassib

Hard Numbers: Devastating floods, COVID reporter released, Catalonia votes, Swiss contestant wins Eurovision

315: At least 315 people in northern Afghanistan have died in severe floods that also injured over 1,600 others, wiped out thousands of homes, and devastated livestock herds that feed the region. Aid agencies expect chaos. It’s been a bad month for floods worldwide — similar inundations in southern Brazil and Kenya have killed hundreds in recent weeks.

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Annie Gugliotta

Graphic Truth: Who's who at Davos

For one week, heads of state, business titans, and thought leaders gather in the Swiss Alps and discuss the world’s most pressing problems. With all of that money, political power, and intelligence in the same room, Davos is, in theory, the perfect place to get big things done.

But that’s not always the case. This year's Davos didn’t surmount tangible progress on climate change, the war in the Middle East, or any of the countless political issues that were on the table to be discussed. Overall, global politics took a backseat at the World Economic Forum. Could this be because political leaders were vastly outnumbered by CEOs? To find out, we looked at who was in the room where it (didn’t) happen.

Jess Frampton

A pinch of the Davos "secret sauce"?

The 54th annual meeting of the World Economic Forum will begin in Davos, Switzerland, tomorrow, bringing together 2,800 of the world’s most powerful people, including 60 or so heads of state and government.

This year’s theme, as declared by Klaus Schwab, is to “rebuild trust” in a fractured world. The WEF founder was talking about trust in a more certain and optimistic future for people around the globe. But the forum has its own credibility issues that have led many to question whether it is a malign, even malevolent, institution.

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Skyline view of Davos, Switz., with the St. Johann church in the foreground.

REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

WEF’s worst global threats: Can we weather the storm?

If it’s light reading you’re after, you might want to skip the latest WEF Global Risks Perception Survey, which tries to identify and rank the hobgoblins that threaten our collective well-being.
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The national flag of Ukraine flies along with other countries' flags at the congress center for the 2022 edition of the World Economic Forum.

REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

Hard Numbers: Over half a century of summits, Gen-Z brings positivity, Thousands of troops, A pricey lunch

54: Happy 54th birthday to the World Economic Forum. For over half a century, the global elite has traveled to the Alpine town of Davos – with its population of just 11,000 – to discuss the biggest challenges facing the world. It started back in 1971 as the European Management Symposium and was rebranded as the WEF in 1987.

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Swiss Defense Minister Viola Amherd attends a news conference with Philippe Rebord, Chief of the Swiss Armed Forces


Will the Swiss sacrifice neutrality for Sky Shield?

Since 1515, Switzerland has practiced armed neutrality, priding itself on not getting involved in other countries’ affairs. But that could soon change if the land of William Tell joins the European Sky Shield air defense umbrella, which Bern announced on Tuesday it is keen to do.

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What We’re Watching: Russia’s Memorial banned, Switzerland vs EU, Venezuela’s oil rebound (for now)

Memorializing Memorial. Russia’s Supreme Court ordered the liquidation of Memorial International, one of the country’s leading human rights organizations, which for the last 30 years has chronicled abuses committed during the Soviet era, including by the KGB, President Putin’s former employer. The court said the group failed to register foreign funding under a state law that many deem unconstitutional. Meanwhile, Memorial Human Rights Center, an affiliate group that has been documenting political repression in post-Soviet Russia, now faces a separate court hearing that will determine its future. In handing down its verdict, the Supreme Court said that Memorial “creates a false image of the Soviet Union as a terrorist state,” but historians sayS the group, established in 1989, plays a crucial role in documenting what happened to millions who suffered the Gulag forced labor camps, as well as other forms of oppression. Memorial’s lawyers say they will launch an appeal, but we’re not holding our breath for an overturned verdict.

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Swiss photographer on trial in Hong Kong over protest clash

September 09, 2020 2:04 PM

HONG KONG (AFP) - A Swiss photographer went on trial in Hong Kong on Wednesday (Sept 9) charged with public disorder, with prosecutors accusing him of enabling an assault on a Chinese mainlander during last year's democracy protests.

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