Global News: Missile Tests, War, and Civil Unrest

Jisang Yoo, News Editor

North Korea Fires Missiles

   North Korea, also known as the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, commenced further launches of ballistic missiles this year, a potentially serious issue for countries with poor diplomatic relations with the communist country.

   According to National Public Radio (NPR), after September, Kim Jong-un — the Supreme Leader of North Korea since 2011 — proclaimed North Korea a nuclear weapon state and said that the country will never negotiate denuclearization. North Korea has subsequently performed several consecutive missile tests (

   According to NPR, they launched four ballistic missiles into the sea on November 5 and the U.S. sent two supersonic bombers over South Korea to display military dominance. Furthermore, in November, North Korea launched its eighth intercontinental ballistic missile  this year, which potentially has the ability to target the United States (

   According to Voice of America (VOA), on December 5, North Korea fired approximately 130 artillery rounds into the western and eastern sea borders with South Korea as a warning in regards to their artillery training on the border of a town in Cheorwon (

   According to the Daily Mail, North Korean authorities allegedly executed two teens, aged 16 and 17, by firing squad, for watching South Korean drama shows and movies and distributing them among their friends. The two boys “…were marched on to an airfield in the city of Hyesan back in October and shot in front of locals for selling thumb drives contining South Korean films”  (

Russia Continues Barrage

   As Russia doesn’t seem interested in an armistice, the Russo-Ukrainian War continues.

   According to NPR, as a response to the bombing of the Crimean Bridge by an anonymous group, Russia launched more than 100 missiles over the next two days (

   According to Reuters, more than 19 people were killed, electricity was cut off in hundreds of towns, and many Ukrainians were driven into air raid shelters (

   According to the Cable News Network (CNN), on November 1, Russia finally proclaimed that its “partial mobilization” of citizens being drafted and forced to fight in the war had been completed and no more drafting would be necessary. Prior to this announcement, the Russian army deployed draftees with a day or two of training in Ukraine, resulting in protests within its country and thousands of draft-eligible men fleeing Russia (

   The Public Broadcasting System (PBS) reported that the missile that landed in the Polish village of Przewodow on November 15, and killed two people “…sparked emergency meetings of NATO and the world’s leading democracies. But initial findings suggest it was an errant Ukrainian air defense missile and not a Russian missile. Top U.S. officials say they support that initial assessment, but Ukraine rejects it” (

   CNN reported, “The Russian Defense Ministry said that Ukraine used drones to attack two Russian military airfields on Monday morning, adding that its air defenses intercepted the attacks ‘in the Saratov and Ryazan regions,’ according to a statement carried on the official Russian news agency RIA Novosti.imir” (

  Putin “…vowed to continue attacking Ukraine’s energy grid and presented the strikes as a response to the explosion on Moscow’s bridge to annexed Crimea in October” according to The Guardian (

China Protests Continue

   The Chinese government’s strict COVID-19 lockdown policy has caused a wave of protest among many people across the country.

   Protests have occurred all over China. According to Fierce Wireless, thousands of workers in an iPhone factory in Zhengzhou protested regarding Foxconn’s COVID-19 policy and their pay. Since October, Foxconn instituted a “closed-loop,” where workers would live in dormitories at the company’s campus with no contact with the outside world. Consequently, many workers left the company and in order to keep its new workers, Foxconn promised signing bonuses and better pay. However, workers began protesting that the company broke the promise. During the protests, many of the workers were violently beaten by the police (

   One result of the boundless protests against the zero COVID-19 policy is that the Chinese authorities, starting the week of December 5, have announced that the policy will be loosened, according to The New York Times. The effects of the loosening include: Mass testings will only be conducted in “high risk” areas such as buildings, units, and households, those infected with mild symptoms are free to isolate at home instead of in isolation facilities and hospitals, local offcials cannot forbid movement or temporarily suspend business operations in regions outside the “high risk” area, and the government pledged to do more vaccination campaigns for older people (

Iranian Protests Continue

   Tensions between the Iranian government and its people continue to escalate subsequent to the death of Ms. Masha Amini.

   On September 16, Amini, 22, according to NPR, died in police custody after being brutally beaten for not wearing a hijab “appropriately” (

   ABC News explained that her death ignited protests throughout the country, where Iranians of diverse backgrounds and professions congregated to represent a movement for women’s rights and other significant issues regarding freedoms. According to human rights activists in Iran, who have been monitoring the protests since the death of Mahsa Amini, at least 328 people have been killed and 14,825 arrested (

   The Iranian government, according to The Iranian Primer, is responding to this issue by mobilizing riot control teams, the police, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC), and the Basij paramilitary, along with other forces (

  According to the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation), Iran held its first execution of a protester over the anti-government unrest. They explained that on December 8, Mohsen Shekari was hanged for wounding a member of a paramilitary force with a machete. A human rights activist said that Shekari was convicted after a “show trial without any due process” (

Indonesia Restricts Sex

   In the country of Indonesia, new conservative legislation prohibits premarital sex and dissent against the government.

   In December 6, lawmakers in Indonesia passed a criminal code that criminalizes sex outside of marriage, according to CNN (

   According to CNN, this code — which also applies to foreigners and tourists — bans “cohabitation before marriage, apostasy, and provides punishments for insulting the president or expressing views counter to the national ideology” (

   Consequently, according to the Associated Press (AP), on December 7 there was a bombing at a police station that killed an officer and injured seven women. The West Java Police Chief stated that a piece of paper was found taped to the bomber’s motorbike that stated, “Criminal code is the law of infidels, let’s fight the satanic law enforcers” (