Weekly Risk Roundup – Week 37

Headlines From This Week

  • Unrest in Myanmar – Myanmar’s military have been accused of human rights abuses and ethnic cleansing as they continue their crackdown on Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar’s Rakhine state. The military have claimed that they are targeting militants in the region but have been accused of targeting civilians. Over the past few weeks, an estimated 370,000 or more have fled from Myanmar across the border to Bangladesh. The Arakan Rohingya Salvation Army insurgent group have called a unilateral ceasefire to last until 9 October. This is to make way for aid; it is unclear if government forces will follow suit. This situation has put great deal of pressure on the Nobel laureate and Myanmar’s de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi, who has provided a response to the crisis which many international observers have deemed inadequate. She has also cancelled a planned visit to speak at the UN General Assembly in New York City as international pressures mount. Protests have been reported at numerous Myanmar diplomatic missions, notably in Muslim-majority nations.
  • North Korea Missile Launch – Pyongyang launched a further missile launch on 15 September, believed to have been a medium-range rocket. Much like the previous launch, it flew over Japan and is believed to have the range to hit Guam. In response, Russia and China have exchanged fierce rhetoric with the United States over who should take responsibility for insecurity in northeast Asia. This test does seem to be North Korea’s response to the latest round of UN sanctions. In an almost immediate response, South Korea fired two ballistic missiles into the sea to simulate a strike on North Korea.
  • Terror on the London Underground – On the morning of 15 September, an explosion occurred on the London Underground train system, believed to have been a terror attack gone wrong. Around 20 people were treated for non-critical injuries and no fatalities were reported. This failed attack demonstrates the ongoing and significant terror threat that the United Kingdom currently faces; this is the fifth terror attack in the UK in 2017.
  • Riyadh Terror Plot – Saudi Arabian authorities have claimed to have prevented an Islamic State attack on the country’s defence ministry. Two individuals arrested have been reported as being of Yemeni origin, while two more were locals. Saudi Arabian media have reported the confiscation of explosive belts, homemade grenades, and firearms.
  • President Temer Faces More Corruption Charges – Despite recently defeating corruption charges, Brazil’s top anti-corruption prosecutor has laid out more charges against the country’s president. Temer has been charged with obstruction of justice and racketeering. This second charges relates to the plea-bargain testimony of the owners of a meatpacker firm. While Temer has denied the allegations, this news is likely to lead to an increase in public unrest across Brazil against an already unpopular president, bringing further political instability.

What To Look Out For Next Week

  • Further Labour Unrest Due in France – Members of France’s most militant union, the CGT, are planning more strikes on 21 and 23 September in response to President Macron’s planned labour reforms. The move comes after CGT union members went on strike on 12 September, unrest was reported in major cities across the country, with clashes in places like Paris and Reims. It is unclear how well attended these next set of strikes are due to be but significant travel disruption can be expected. More than 200 flights were cancelled on 12 September due to the strikes.
  • Islamic New Year – Many places across the Muslim world will enjoy a public holiday to celebrate the beginning of the Islamic year. The festival, named Hijri New Year, begins on the evening 21 September, finishing the day later. Hijri New Year leads in Muharram, which is considered to be the second holiest month of the year in the Islamic calendar after Ramadan. Islamic militant groups often call for attacks during Muslim holidays so it is important that travellers remain vigilant during this period, especially in the Islamic world.
  • Asian Indoor and Martial Arts Games – The fifth occurrence of these games is due to occur in the Turkmenistan capital Ashgabat between 17 and 27 September. Human Rights Watch have claimed that the security precautions put into place by Turkmen authorities, a notorious hermit-like nation, amount to state of emergency like conditions. Despite the repressive nature of the regime, with international eyes on the Central Asian country, there is the potential for unrest. If this does occur, travellers should expect a brutal response from authorities.

Significant Dates & Events

  • 16 September – Mexico Independence Day
  • 16 September – Cycling World Championships begin in Bergen, Norway
  • 16 September – Papua New Guinea National Day
  • 18 September – Chile Independence Day
  • 21 to 30 September – Hindu festival of Navratri.

Click link to Download PDF: Weekly Risk Roundup – Week 37 The Weekly Risk Roundup highlights significant events from the last week and what to look out for next week. Week 37 Weekly Risk Roundup was compiled by Solace Global’s in-house intelligence team.