Saturday, July 04, 2020

A Failed Rogue State

One of the countries hardest-hit by COVID-19, is an oil-rich nation of some 300 million people.

It has more than one in five households who does not have enough to eat. 

Even prior to the pandemic, the situation had been dire with nearly 14 percent of the population dependent on food aid, one in every six children not having consistent access to food and nearly a million suffering from chronic malnutrition. 

The situation is today complicated not just by disease which has claimed tens of thousands of lives but also by political protest and fears of bloodshed.

Following violent clashes between demonstrators and riot-police, the military has been called out into the streets to impose order. Journalists were targeted in the crackdown and thousands of demonstrators across the country have been arrested. 

The political unrest sparked by the murder by police of an innocent man has been exacerbated by the fact that the coronavirus pandemic has mostly devastated historically poor and marginalised communities including ethnic minorities and immigrants.

An authoritarian-inclined Head of State who received less votes than his opponent in his election has appointed close relatives with no experience to senior government positions, and used the privilege of office to interfere with the electoral process to prevent opposition supporters from casting their ballots.

Happy Birthday, America

No comments: