Good morning. We’re covering the fallout from Afghanistan’s earthquake and torrential flooding in China.
Afghanistan takes stock of the quake
Officials from Afghanistan stated that rescue efforts were in the final stages after Wednesday’s 5.9 magnitude earthquake. The earthquake was reported to have killed over 1,000 people.
As the hope of finding survivors faded, Taliban officials appealed for aid agencies’ assistance. According to the government, some supplies had already reached Pakistan, Qatar, and Iran. The U.S., U.N., and the W.H.O. also took steps to help. They also took steps for assistance. South Korea promised $1,000,000 in humanitarian assistance.
The remote southeast region of Paktika Province is difficult due to its terrain, weather, and deep poverty. The area is far from any hospitals or clinics that could provide assistance for the injured. These are the most recent updates and photos.
Background: Before the Taliban took power, foreign aid funded 75 percent of the Afghan government’s budget. The Taliban has struggled to attract foreign funds: Western donors have balked at edicts barring girls from attending secondary schools and restricting women’s rights.
Victims: Hawa, a 30-yearold mother, survived along with her 1-year-old child. She lost four of her other children, and 17 other relatives. “I lost everything, my whole world, my whole family, I don’t have any hope for the future,” Hawa told The Times.
What’s next: The U.N. warned of the possibility of cholera outbreaks if there is a shortage in clean drinking water and sanitation.
Zelensky addressed African leaders
Volodymyr Zelensky was finally allowed to address the African Union after repeated requests.
Zelensky had to fight hard lobbying leaders with close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin. Many African governments avoided condemning Russia’s invasion, refusing to vote at the U.N. and describing it as a war which does not directly affect their continent.
Learn More About the Russia-Ukraine War
Zelensky zeroed in on economic ramifications for Africa: high food prices caused by the conflict between two of the world’s largest grain producers, which have worsened food insecurity.
“Africa is actually taken hostage,” Zelensky said, according to The Associated Press.
Drought in Somalia, and the growing insecurity of the Sahel region’s food supply have brought to light the effects of rising food prices, especially wheat. The rising cost of fuel has further squeezed the continent’s nascent middle class and urban poor.
“They are trying to use you and the suffering of the people to put pressure on the democracies that have imposed sanctions on Russia,” Zelensky said in a video speech.
The response was quiet. In a post after the meeting, Moussa Faki Mahamat, chairman of the African Union, reiterated his call for dialogue.
It was a stark contrast to the enthusiastic crowd that Putin received earlier in the month. Pinned to Faki’s Twitter timeline is a photographHe and President Macky Sall from Senegal met with Putin in Sochi. Speaking as the rotating political head of the African Union, Sall called for an end to sanctions against Russia, referring to Putin as his “dear friend Vladimir.”
China is hit by extreme weather
As rising water submerges houses and cars, the devastating floods in southern China have disrupted lives of nearly half a million people. State television reported that factories in Shaoguan were forced to stop production due to water levels at 50-year highs.
Heat waves in northern and central provinces drove the demand for air conditioning to record levels. Cement roads in Henan buckled last week due to heat waves. Roadside temperatures reached 165 degrees Fahrenheit. Local media reported that it looked like the aftermath of an earthquake.
The concomitant weather emergencies reflect a global trend towards longer and more frequent episodes of extreme weather caused by climate change.
Background: China has transformed farmlands into cities over the past decade, helping millions of rural people out of poverty. But it has also become the world’s largest polluter, with greenhouse gas emissions exceeding those of all developed nations combined.
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India’s most famous fashion designer, Sabyasachi Mukherjee, has long dominated the country’s bridal industry with haute, maximalist traditionalism.
Now, for his American debut, he’s looking to establish himself as a sort of Indian Ralph Lauren. “He sold the idea of good American living to middle-class Americans,” Mukherjee said, “and I’ve sold the idea of good Indian living to middle-class Indians.”
ARTS AND IDEA
Zen art: The lessons
My colleague Jason Farago visited “Mind Over Matter: Zen in Medieval Japan,” an exhibition in Washington, D.C. He called it “a show of ravishing absence: a stark and beautiful exhibition where form is plunged into silence, and the ego dissolves into empty space.”
The show at the Freer Gallery of Art — an arm of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art — is a good introduction to Japanese painting from the 14th to 17th centuries. Jason, a critic at large highlighted its contemporary implications.
“Nowadays Zen has become Western shorthand for peace and calm, all too reducible as a lifestyle hack,” he writes. Zen is the most pure and austere tradition within Mahayana Buddhism. Zen, which is a Japanese term for meditation, is used to help practitioners empty their minds until they reach the highest level of consciousness, satori.
“For all their beauty, these idealized and streamlined Zen paintings are best understood as the efforts of individual monks to express and to stimulate the no-thought that would reveal even painting as just another part of this cycle of life and death,” Jason writes. “They offer no lesson, or, rather, they offer Zen’s primordial lesson: the lesson of nothingness.”
PLAY, WATCH, EAT
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That’s it for today’s briefing. See you next time. — Amelia and Lynsey
P.S. P.S. Yonette Joseph will be moving from Seoul to Mexico City in order to expand our global editing coverage.
The latest episode of “The Daily” is about a Supreme Court case that could doom U.S. climate goals.
Lynsey, Amelia, and the entire team can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Source: NY Times