5 things to know for June 20: travel chaos, COVID-19, Ukraine, January 6, Colombia

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1. Travel clutter

A combination of severe weather, staff shortages and infrastructure challenges has left major airlines struggling to keep up with the increase in travel. Between Friday and Sunday, more than 3,200 flights were canceled and about 9,000 delayed, according to the FlightAware dataset. The increase in delays and cancellations comes just days after Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg urged airline chief executives to improve their flight schedules and respond better to disruptions. The last Friday before Juneteenth emerged as the most popular day for air travel of 2022, according to statistics from the TSA. Airports haven’t been this crowded since Thanksgiving in 2021.

2. Corona virus

The CDC signed off on Covid-19 vaccines for children up to 6 months of age on Saturday, paving the way for immunizations to begin soon. The announcement came shortly after the CDC’s vaccine advisors voted unanimously to support recommending Moderna and Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccines for the nation’s youngest age group. President Joe Biden praised the CDC’s decision, calling it a “tremendous step forward in our country’s war against the virus.” While vaccinations may not start until Tuesday in some places, health officials now must deal with the large number of parents who are still reluctant to get vaccinated quickly. A survey in April found that only 18% of parents of children under five said they would vaccinate their children against Covid-19 once a vaccine was available.

3. Ukraine

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has warned that Ukraine’s bid to join the European Union could bring “more hostile activity” from Russia as the European Union considers whether to formally consider the country’s status as a candidate. Leaders of the 27 member states of the European Union will meet this week to discuss a possible path forward for Ukraine. However, although the European Union and its members have broadly supported Ukraine in its war effort, the ongoing fighting in Ukraine raises many issues and could slow down the timeline. Indeed, experts say it is highly unlikely that Ukraine will be able to meet the EU’s criteria for starting negotiations until after the end of the war. The average time it takes for a country to join the European Union is four years and 10 months.

4. January 6

Democratic Representative Adam Schiff told CNN Sunday that the House Select Committee to investigate the January 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol will hold a hearing Tuesday that will show evidence of President Donald Trump’s involvement in a scheme to introduce fake voters. Federal prosecutors are reviewing fake Electoral College certificates created by Trump allies that falsely declared him the winner of the seven states he lost in 2020. The fake testimony was sent to the National Archives by Trump allies in the weeks after the election and had no bearing on the outcome of the election. Schiff, the committee member, also said the committee plans to show “the brave state officials who stood up and said they wouldn’t agree to this plan to either call lawmakers into session or dismiss the findings for Joe Biden.”

5. Colombia

Leftist candidate Gustavo Petro won the Colombian presidential race on Sunday, becoming the first leftist leader to do so. A former guerrilla with a checkered past won by a slim margin of more than 50% of the vote, against 77-year-old businessman Rodolfo Hernandez. In this historic victory, fellow runaway Francia Márquez will become the first Afro-Colombian to hold executive powers. Petro, during his victory speech on Sunday, called for an agreement to end the violence in the country, saying: “What is coming here is real change, real change.” Outgoing Colombian President Ivan Duque said he called Petro to congratulate him on his victory and would meet with him soon to start the transition.

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day number

4 million

This is the number of people affected by monsoon floods in northeastern Bangladesh, according to the country’s Ministry of Disaster Management. The situation could soon worsen, with heavy rain expected in the next 24 hours. Officials said 90% of Sonamgang – one of the worst-hit areas – is under water and almost completely separated from the rest of the country.

Today’s quote

“We have to search for slogans that contradict the rulings of Islam and public morals, such as promoting homosexuality and targeting the younger generation,” he added.

– Saudi Ministry of Commerce, regarding the Saudi government’s move to confiscate toys and rainbow-coloured clothes from stores in the capital, Riyadh, saying that these items promote homosexuality. Authorities confiscated brightly colored items, ranging from children’s hair accessories, pencil cases and backpacks to rainbow streaks in crayons, all designed for children, according to Saudi state TV channel Al-Ekhbariya. Homosexuality is illegal in Saudi Arabia, which adheres to a strict interpretation of Islamic law.

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