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Khan Shaykhun is Thightening the Syrian Knot

In Blog by Maximilian MayerhoferLeave a Comment

This article sheds light on events in the run-up Khan Shaykhun chemical attack on April 4, 2017 as well as its context and likely consequences for the war in Syria. Read the full article in German. In the weeks prior to the April 4 chemical attack on Khan Shaykhun, fierce battling between government and rebel forces had taken place along several fronts across Syria. Political landmarks such as the end of Turkey’s mission “Euphrates Shield” and its expected pivot towards expulsing Kurdish forces from the border region fell into the same period. No solid proof of the identity of the attack’s perpetrators has materialised thus far. International reactions were mixed, with Western governments largely putting the blame on the Syrian regime. A “retaliatory” US cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base took place on April 7. It is furthermore not entirely who has been controlling the area around Khan Shaykhun and might thus have been the target of the April 4 attack. The term “rebels” is indiscriminately used for a broad range of groups that differ in their origins, aims and motifs as well as in their supporters from abroad. At the same time, the near-total absence of observers that …

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Zika on the Rise

In Blog by Maximilian MayerhoferLeave a Comment

With the last confirmed death related to Ebola in January 2016, the disease looks tamed. Meanwhile however, the next adversary is emerging: The Zika virus started spreading in Brazil in April 2015 and quickly set out to other parts of Latin America and even as far as Europe. This article will give a quick recap on the virus itself, its latest history, known pattern of spreading and currently employed counter-measurements as well as research projects designed to fight it.