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What the fuck is going on in Politics? Weekly rundown

Julie Ngalle unpacks some of the weeks news stories, from student finance cuts to EU students, violence in Burkina Faso, elections in Belarus, to the situation with Covid in Latin America.

Writer: Julie Ngalle 

What changes will be made with EU tuition fees from 2021? 

On the 23rd of June, the Government announced changes in tuition fees for EU students set to start University in 2021. Up until that date, EU students would have had to pay the same fee as UK residents.

Source: Save the Student

However, with the UK leaving the European Union, tuition fees have had to be rethought and the same international price will now apply for all non-UK students, European or otherwise.

As well as that, it was announced that that same branch of students would not be ineligible for student loans anymore either as they effectively lose every benefit of the “home fee status”. 

What is the situation like in Latin America? 

As Europe reopens it’s restaurants, bars, even borders and increasingly bigger groups exchange warm hugs of relief, Latin America, who for a while was able to tame the virus, is not as lucky. The epicentre of the virus has shifted to this continent where numbers are increasingly rising daily. 

Credit: AP

Overall, Brazil, Peru, Chile and Mexico have the highest infection rates with close to a combined 90 000 deaths. Brazil had been called out by many world leaders and scientists for the lack of attention Bolsonaro was giving this pandemic. The President who chose to ignore health recommendations, has been proven wrong with Brazil standing as the second most-infected country. 


Worryingly, the country has yet to reach their peak, and this could, due to the economic and social situation in many, have even more devastating effects. 

As influential and highly infected Mexico and Brazil still refuse to put in place more severe lockdown measures, and due to Mexico’s proximity to the United States, which is not doing well either, many fear that the situation will escalate in an unprecedented way throughout the summer as the continent recorded a new record in numbers of contaminations in a day since the outbreak of this pandemic. 

Why are people protesting in Belarus? 

Presidential elections are coming up in Belarus. But they’re political conditions are different from most other European countries. The current President Alexandre Loukachenko is expected to be elected again, has been in power since 1994. 

Credit: TIME

Loukachenko was able to change the Constitution during his first term, he changed the duration of presidential term from 4 to 7 years, allowing him to stay in power for longer. Over the years, the President has lost the trust of all his people notably due to his dictatorial ways and reported disregard towards his people which led them to start protesting his re-election over the month of June. 

Many of these protesters, journalists and opponents were arrested, not always by official police, and detained for sometimes days without being able to access any legal advice and representation or even contact their families. It has also been reported that this is a common practice for people who disagree with the President’s ways to end up getting arrested, blackmailed, falsely accused and even disappearing in order to keep them quiet. 

His government has also been known to control the media and hold undemocratic elections which highly help him stay in power. The people are tired of this oppression and, like for every election since 1994, are doing their best to try and topple the dictatorial government. 

What is happening in Burkina Faso? 

For the past two years, terrorist groups have been developing within the African country of Burkina Faso. This has led to a lot of destruction and death, leaving the country economically and humanly scarred.

Photo in Burkina Faso, credit to The New York Times.

However, the conflict recently took a new turn as the government has now decided to meddle in and are now killing as many civilians as the jihadists groups had been for years. The country is now considered to be in the middle of civil war, where, similarly to Yemen, citizens are left unsafe, traumatised and unhealthy. Many have also made the decision to join either side, which ultimately is simply going to intensify the conflict and its duration. 

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