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Foreign Policy

Trump returns to the White Home amid the outbreak

Here is today's one Foreign policy short: Donald Trump leaves the Walter Reed military hospital In widespread criticism, Ethiopia bans flights over the controversial Renaissance Damand European countries are starting a new round Coronavirus restrictions.

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Trump faces criticism of the treatment of his treatment

US President Donald Trump announced on Monday that he will be discharged from Walter Reed Military Hospital after undergoing a COVID-19 diagnosis he received last week. In the tweet announcing the news, Trump urged Americans “not to be afraid of Covid. Don't let it dominate your life ”and praised his government's development into“ some really great drugs and knowledge ”. The move came just three days after Trump was first hospitalized.

Take off the heat. Despite initial support from across the political spectrum, Trump's handling of his own diagnosis has generated fierce criticism. Critics accused Trump's message of not being afraid to play down the disease in the face of more than 210,000 deaths in the US. He was previously criticized on Sunday after leaving Walter Reed in a motorcade to drive past fans gathered outside. This led Dr. James Phillips, a treating doctor at the hospital, added scold the president argues that "the irresponsibility is amazing."

Lock up. Trump's release comes as his inner circle continues to be badly hit by the virus. Several senior officials from the White House and Republicans have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past few days. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany was the last after she announced on Twitter on Monday that she had tested positive.

A new beginning? There is some speculation that Trump's personal experience with the disease could lead him to change his approach to the pandemic and adopt a more serious tone, similar to what other infected leaders have done. But Foreign policyMicah Zenko wrote"The president will never take COVID-19 seriously, and the federal government's lack of urgency and general incompetence will persist."

More damage. Additionally, Trump's experience could damage the US's already damaged international reputation. Not only does it open up obvious weaknesses in the country's constitutional fabric that its opponents could exploit, but it also further undermines Trump's credibility and could make other governments even more suspicious of him. In the event of an international incident, Zenko warned that "in the remaining weeks of the presidential campaign … few would believe what Trump or anyone who works for him said".

What we are following today

Venezuela beats gold. Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro has scored an important victory in the UK. A UK appeals court ruled that a lawsuit over $ 1 billion in gold owned by the Venezuelan government but stored in London should be reconsidered. The ruling overturned a lower court ruling that the UK government had recognized opposition leader Juan Guaidó as interim president, meaning Maduro was unable to withdraw the funds. However, the judges who lead the case said the UK government's continued willingness to work diplomatically with Maduro was inconsistent with its official stand on the matter.

The status of the gold was left uncertain after Washington successfully persuaded London to block Maduro's access to it. Venezuela's central bank sued the Bank of England over the move, and Monday's decision placed Maduro in a stronger position to actually reclaim the gold.

Ethiopia prohibits flights over the Renaissance Dam. Ethiopia has forbidden All flights over the controversial Renaissance dam on the tributary of the Blue Nile, a move likely to exacerbate the ongoing dispute with Egypt and Sudan over the project. "All flights were banned to secure the dam," Wesenyeleh Hunegnaw, director general of the Ethiopian civil aviation authority, told Reuters. Later on Monday, Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde informed the legislature in a speech to the legislature that construction of a second filling of the dam would begin and that electricity generation would begin next year.

The dispute between Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan has intensified since Ethiopia began filling the dam in July. Despite several rounds of talks, however, no long-term solution was found. Ethiopia argues the dam is vital to its economic development, while Egypt and Sudan claim it threatens their fresh water supplies. Read FP's coverage of the dispute here.

Protests rock Kyrgyzstan. Have protests started in the Kyrgyz capital Bishkek and other parts of the country on allegations of fraud in the parliamentary elections last weekend. Protesters stormed a parliament building Tuesday and 120 people were hospitalized after police used force to disperse protesters. Two pro-government parties emerged as clear winners, but only two others out of 16 parties that were candidates exceeded the 7 percent threshold required to win seats. International observers have described allegations of electoral fraud as "credible" and "serious" and opposition parties have said they will not recognize the election results.

After Belarus, Armenia and Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan is the youngest in a number of former Soviet republics to face turmoil due to the emerging crisis and is testing Russia's ability to deal with multiple crises developing along its borders.

Europe is approaching lockdown. European countries are slowly introducing new restrictions to contain the spread of the coronavirus as cases continue to rise across the continent. On Monday the Irish government did declined Advice from a leading government health team recommending that the country be completely lockdown again but instead reintroducing a range of measures that restrict movement and limit the capacity of restaurants and pubs. The decision follows a move by France on Sunday to put Paris under maximum coronavirus warning, close all bars and impose certain restrictions on restaurants. Spain also announced partial bans in Madrid and two other cities.

Oman is normalizing relations with Syria. Oman cleverly a new ambassador to Syria on Sunday who became the first Gulf state to normalize relations with Syria following a mass diplomatic exodus from the country following Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's brutal response to protests against his rule at the beginning of the country's civil war in 2011 Oman stood out among its neighbors because it was one of the few Arab countries that did not completely sever relations with Syria, which reflected the country's determination not to take sides.

The decision also shows that Syria is slowly returning to normal after the Assad government largely restored its authority. Assad and Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov met last month to discuss Reconstruction of the Syrian economy. However, the United States has repulsed those moves. It was like that last week imposed a new round of sanctions against key Syrians.

Tasmanian devils were reintroduced into the wild in mainland Australia, a significant development for the carnivorous marsupials after the species was near endangered in many parts of the world. The Aussie Ark conservation group released several groups of Tasmanian devils – who got their name because of their high-pitched squeaks – in a 1,000 acre enclosed sanctuary to maximize their chances of survival, even though they had no food, water or shelter supplied to conditions in to mimic the wild. "We have some basic means of keeping track of them," said Tim Faulker, president of the Aussie Ark. "But basically it's the devil's business now to do what they do."

That's it for today.

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