- The Guardian
- Issue #2073
POLAND: Close to a million people took part in what was called the ‘March of a Million Hearts’ in Warsaw last Sunday. The action was organised by the opposition centre-left party the Civic Platform (PO) with other political parties and associations joining the action. The Civic Platform leader Donald Tusk is a former prime minister, he also served as president of the European Council. The march participants protested against the current policies of the ruling party, the Law and Justice Party (PiS). Polish parliamentary elections will take place on October 15 and recent polls indicate that PIS, in power since 2015, may lose the elections.
SLOVAKIA is another European country to have a snap parliamentary election. A total of 150 seats in the parliament was contested by 25 candidates and one coalition. Among them was the main opposition party Smer (Direction – Social Democracy) led by the former prime minister Robert Fico. The party’s message to the voters was a promise to stop Slovakia’s military support for Ukraine. During the campaign it also highlighted the need to end economic sanctions against Moscow which Robert Fico blamed for soaring inflation and a spiralling cost-of-living crisis. Recently Slovakia, Poland and Hungary extended a ban on Ukrainian grain in order to protect their counties’ farmers. Robert Fico’s party has won the elections but lacking the majority it will have to form a coalition government, promising to put the interests of Slovakia first.
UK: The United Kingdom signed contracts worth US$4.8 billion with leading British manufacturers to develop powerful attack submarines as part of the AUKUS program with Australia and the US. Grant Shapps, UK Secretary of State for Defense, said: ‘I can announce that we have signed contracts worth 4 billion pounds with leading British businesses to drive forward the development of the most powerful submarines ever operated by the Royal Navy.’ The UK Defense chief added that ‘hunter-killer’ submarines would allow Britain to maintain its strategic advantage and help fund thousands of jobs in the country.
ARMENIA: Almost the entire population of Nagorno-Karabakh has fled to Armenia, leaving behind their homes and possessions. The population in the enclave was 120 thousand people. Now 100,500 of them are in Armenia – needing food, shelter, medical attention, etc. The government of Azerbaijan tried to reassure ethnic Armenians that they will be safe under their rule. However, Armenians remember only too well the 1915 genocide, still not not acknowledged by Turkey as such. Given the Turkish influence in Azerbaijan, ethnic Armenians do not take any chances.