Home WorldAsia Your Thursday Briefing: A Deadly Earthquake in Afghanistan

Your Thursday Briefing: A Deadly Earthquake in Afghanistan

by YAR

We’re covering a deadly earthquake in Afghanistan and the effects of China’s ban on a Taiwanese fish.

An earthquake struck a remote and mountainous part of Afghanistan yesterday, killing more than 1,000 people and injuring at least 1,600 others.

The quake, which had a magnitude of 5.9, struck about 28 miles southwest of the city of Khost, but the heaviest damage was in neighboring Paktika province, which is on the border with Pakistan and where some residents live in houses made of clay and straw. It was the deadliest earthquake to hit Afghanistan in more than two decades, and the death toll was expected to rise, a UN agency said.

Search and rescue efforts, led by the Afghan Defense Ministry, were hampered by wind and heavy rain, preventing helicopters from landing safely. A UN representative for Afghanistan reported that nearly 2,000 homes were destroyed. Afghan families are often large and sometimes families live together, the representative said, and the earthquake will most likely displace many people.

Eyewitness: Sarhadi Khosti, 26, who lives in the Sperah district of Khost province, said the quake woke him up after 1 am and destroyed several houses, especially those made of earth or wood. “For now, we are still busy pulling the dead or injured out from under the rubble,” he said.

Pakistan: The quake was felt in various parts of Pakistan, but the country was spared the kind of damage seen in neighboring Afghanistan.

Government: The earthquake is just the latest challenge facing the fledgling Taliban government.


The slow and brutal advance of Russian troops has tightened its vise around Lysychansk and Sievierodonetsk, the neighboring cities where Ukrainian forces have been trying to prevent Russia from seizing the entire Luhansk province. Moscow forces already control most of Sievierodonetsk, making the defense of Lysychansk a key standoff for control of the Donbas region.

Russia controls about half of Donetsk province and is pushing from the east, north and south to try to take more territory there. But analysts say Russia’s battered forces face an even tougher battle in Donetsk than in Luhansk.

More news from the war in Ukraine:

  • Finland and Sweden, which applied to join NATO after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, had hoped for swift admission to the alliance. Turkey had other ideas.


China’s recent ban on importing grouper from Taiwan has quickly transformed a lucrative industry into one that struggles for support, threatening the livelihoods of fish farmers there and showing the extent of Chinese economic power.

Without the Chinese market, the price of grouper, known for its lean, moist meat, is plummeting. Last year, the vast majority of Taiwan’s grouper exports, 91 percent and worth more than $50 million, went to China. Most of those groupers were shipped live, and shifting markets to other locations would likely require a refrigerated or frozen transportation system, incurring additional costs.

The ban came as China’s leader Xi Jinping, who has said Taiwan’s unification with China is inevitable, ratcheted up pressure on the island, sending military planes to the island almost daily, removing its diplomatic allies and preventing it from join international organizations. . Recently, Beijing has sought to restrict the island’s access to China’s vast consumer market, banning Taiwanese pineapples and wax apples, and now grouper.

Whats Next: Taiwan’s Agriculture Council has said it will consider filing a complaint about the grouper ban with the World Trade Organization. Meanwhile, grouper farmers said they would have to settle for selling the fish on the domestic market at a heavy loss.

Families whose relatives have been kidnapped or imprisoned by North Korea are seeking to sue the country in hopes of holding it financially accountable. The odds of collecting money from the isolated nation are slim, but some recent payouts stemming from seized North Korean assets have given some families reason to be cautiously optimistic.

When it comes to cooking, we all have to start somewhere, and for some of us, that starts with chopping an onion or cracking an egg in a frying pan. Maybe you just graduated from college and you’re on your own for the first time, or maybe you’ve never learned how to cook. Either way, there is hope.

Nikita Richardson, food editor for The Times, has compiled these ten beginner recipes that can barely boil water. Arranged from easiest to hardest, they include a rice bowl with no-cook tuna mayonnaise on the easy end and oven-roasted chicken thighs with potatoes and lemons for an added challenge.

With practice, repetition, and patience, you’ll not only develop a skill set that you can apply to other feats in the kitchen, but you’ll also have 10 delicious dishes under your belt that are worth cooking over and over again. Bon Appetite! — Natasha Frost, Report Writer

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