This Week’s Under-reported News Summary June 17, 2020

Compiled by Bob Nixon

  • UN troops find mass graves in Tarhuna, Libya
  • Amid pandemic, debt cancellation, not debt relief sought in Africa
  • Memphis police spied on black reporters and activists for years

After the collapse of the rebel siege of Tripoli, Libya, advancing troops of the United Nations recognized Government of Nation Accord (the GNA) uncovered mass graves in the town of Tarhuna, the last holdout of rebel commander General Khalifa Haftar. Eight mass graves were found in the town which was run by a militia loyal to Haftar, who is supported by Egypt, Russia and the United Arab Emirates. During its recent offensive, the GNA forces were backed by military aid from Turkey.

A generation of economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa has now ended with the double shock of the coronavirus pandemic and the forecast of a serious debt crisis. But even before the Covid-19 health threat emerged in early in 2020, there were warning signs these poor developing nations were facing debt distress.

Veteran African American reporter Wendi Thomas was monitored by Memphis, Tennessee’s Police Department because of her many sources within the Black Lives Matter movement and among community activists. Her name came up two years ago, in the testimony given by police Sgt. Timothy Reynolds during a surveillance lawsuit brought by the ACLU of Tennessee. The lawsuit revealed that the intelligence unit inside the Memphis Police Department actively monitored social media posts of Thomas and three other journalists.

This week’s News Summary was narrated by Anna Manzo.

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