person with toy airplane on world map

The Wednesday Politics Thread in a World

Focus has certainly zoomed out as the news digests worldwide reactions to a global crisis brought on by one man. Nascent stateside truck convoys are showing little signs of life as attention (and funding) has been kept on Russia. That hasn’t stopped some conspiracy-minded convoy-supporters from chalking up a nuclear power’s mobilization towards Europe as just a smokescreen to distract attention from them. Egocentricity abounds in spite of the continued piling on of problems that affect all of humanity, and require all of us to overcome. Even so, Russia’s war in Ukraine is bringing together large parts of the globe in cooperation to condemn one man’s foolish, selfish destruction. Let’s hope these relationships only grow stronger in the face of this challenge, so we may better handle the next.

Around 70 Japanese have volunteered to fight for Ukraine, report says

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called on Sunday for the formation of an “international legion,” prompting dozens from the United States and Canada to volunteer.

As of Tuesday, 70 Japanese men — including 50 former members of the Self-Defense Forces and two veterans of the French Foreign Legion — had applied to be volunteers, the Mainichi Shimbun daily said, quoting a Tokyo company handling the volunteers.

Japan Times [archive]

Ambassador to meet Ukrainian tourists stranded in Zanzibar

The Zanzibar government on Monday evening said that it was working closely with the Ukrainian embassy in Nairobi to help the stranded tourists.

They are in talks to help them fly to Poland, which is accommodating refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine. The Ukrainian airspace has been closed to all civilian flights following Russia’s military action.

Zanzibar said is currently accommodating almost 1,000 Ukrainian tourists.

Zanzibar’s Tourism Minister Leila Mohammed Musa said the stranded Ukrainians are being accommodated in various hotels, with some staying free of charge and receiving humanitarian support.

The East African [archive]

Ukraine: Kenya secures ‘safe passage’ for stranded nationals

A statement issued by the Kenyan Foreign Affairs Ministry said the country had negotiated for Kenyans to be allowed to leave Ukraine and temporarily stay in any of its neighbouring EU members.“

The government negotiated for unrestricted entry of Kenyans into the neighbouring EU states, a request that was honoured by Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Romania that Kenyans cross their borders via simplified procedure.”

The Ministry did not elaborate whether the procedure will involve seeking for visas as most of the stranded students had been barred from leaving the country for lack of proper papers.

The East African [archive]

Indian student killed in Ukraine amid criticism over evacuation

An Indian student has been killed in shelling in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, India’s foreign ministry says, as criticism over New Delhi’s evacuation of students from the war-torn country mounts.

Indians make up about a quarter of the 76,000 foreign students in Ukraine, by far the largest number, according to Ukrainian government data.

Earlier on Tuesday, the Indian embassy in Ukraine also issued an advisory, asking the Indian students to “leave Kyiv urgently”.

Al Jazeera [archive]

Ukraine is seeing an exodus of foreign students, and revenue

Ukraine’s sovereignty is at stake. Yet even if the country’s resistance manages to hold off the Russian assault, an important economic engine might struggle to recover: Better known for its export of wheat and corn, this country also earns significant revenue from foreign students.

In fact, international students contribute a greater chunk of Ukraine’s GDP than they do America’s, even though the US is the world’s top destination for foreign education. According to the Ukrainian government, 76,548 international students from 155 nations are enrolled at the country’s universities. India sends more than 18,000 – or nearly a quarter – of those students, followed by Morocco, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Nigeria, China and Turkey.

Al Jazeera [archive]

Alas, that’s all I’ve got for this week. The doomscrolling is real lately, and it seems like news has an extra short shelf-life these days. With that in mind, try not to serve or consume stale clams (refer to the uh, menu of them pinned at the top of the comments).

P.S. Be nice and considerate of each other, respect the McSquirrel Rule, and best of luck whether this be the peak of your week or the trough.