The White House on Monday announced a series of new agreements with Singapore aimed at combating cyberthreats, tackling climate change, addressing the COVID-19 pandemic and alleviating supply chain issues. The announcements coincide with Vice President Kamala Harris’ visit to the region. Harris’ Southeast Asian trip, which brings Harris to Singapore and then later to Vietnam this week, is aimed at broadening cooperation with both nations to offer a counterweight to China’s growing influence in the region.
China reported no new locally transmitted Covid-19 cases on Monday for the first time since July, according to its National Health Commission (NHC), as authorities double down on the country’s stringent zero-Covid approach. China has been grappling with the spread of the highly contagious Delta variant since July 20, when a cluster of Covid-19 infections were detected among airport cleaning staff in the eastern city of Nanjing.
At least 22 people have been killed and dozens more are missing following flash floods in the US state of Tennessee. Rescue crews are searching for more than 50 people in rural Humphreys County, which is west of Nashville. The record-breaking flooding began on Saturday, submerging entire roads and taking out telephone and power lines. Emergency workers are searching door-to-door in the worst-hit areas.
The Taliban have warned that there will be “consequences” if the United States and its allies extend the presence of troops in Afghanistan beyond next week, as chaos continued to overwhelm Kabul airport, with a deadly gun battle on Monday at one of the airport’s gates. The comments were made after a firefight between unidentified gunmen and US, German and Afghan guards at the airport left one Afghan guard dead.
Fifteen rescue dogs, including 10 puppies, have been shot dead by a rural Australian council under its interpretation of coronavirus restrictions. Bourke Shire Council in New South Wales destroyed the canines, which had been at its pound, to prevent volunteers at an animal shelter from traveling to pick them up and potentially spreading the virus. The spokesman said officials were investigating whether any animal cruelty laws had been broken.