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SNG Daily: Dozens Of Tornadoes Flatten Homes, Trees In Oklahoma; Blinken In Middle-East To Discuss Post-War Steps For Gaza

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Dozens Of Tornadoes Flatten Homes, Trees In Oklahoma

Aerial videos show just how widespread the devastation has been for the state of Oklahoma, in south-central US. Dozens of tornadoes flattened homes and trees over the weekend. Governor Kevin Stitt declared a ‘disaster emergency’. At least 4 people are dead including an infant. Weather officials have put more than 7 million people in the US under tornado warnings. The tornadoes left at least 30 people injured. The weather service has said the unsettled weather is forecast to continue across the midsection of the country into Monday as well.

China To Launch High-Stakes Mission To Far Side Of Moon

This week, China will be launching Chang’e 6, its high-stakes mission to the dark side of the moon. Chang’e 6 will carry payloads from France, Italy, Sweden and Pakistan. The round trip is the first of three planned missions to the moon by Beijing. Chang’e is named after the mythical Chinese moon goddess. China plans to land a spacecraft on the far side of the moon and return with approx 2 kilos of soil samples. Two more Chang’e missions are planned for 2026, 2028 and China hopes to put astronauts on the moon by 2030.

TikTok Star Killed In Iraq, Third Such Death In One Year

Nitin A Gokhale WhatsApp Channel

Um Fahad, a popular TikTok and Instagram influencer from Iraq was shot dead by an unidentified assailant. The 30-year-old’s real name was Gufran Mehdi Sawadi and she would often post videos of her wearing clothes that were tight and revealing, drawing the ire of conservatives. She had earlier been sentenced to 90-days in jail for a video showing her dancing at her son’s birthday. She is the third such assassination of a social media influencer in Iraq. In September, another TikTok star, 23-year-old Noor Alsaffer, who loved wearing women’s clothes, was similarly shot dead. In that case too, no arrest has been made. Two months ago, transgender personality Simsim was stabbed to death in southern Iraq.

Ukraine Pulls Back From Three Villages As It Waits For US Weapons To Reach Frontlines

The US has approved a $61 billion package for Ukraine but the weapons are yet to reach Ukraine. Result? Ukraine has had to pull back its soldiers from three villages where Russia has positioned a significant number of troops. Ukraine’s top commander Oleksandr Syrskyi acknowledged the setback saying, “The situation at the front has worsened.”

Blinken In Middle-East To Discuss Post-War Steps For Gaza

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken kicked off his Middle-East trip by arriving in Saudi Arabia on Monday. He plans to discuss post-war Gaza and urge Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to take immediate steps to address the humanitarian crisis there. He will meet Saudi leaders and hold talks with representatives from five Arab states, Qatar, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Jordan, to discuss the future governance of Gaza after the conflict. Israel and Hamas delegations are expected to reach Egypt to negotiate proposals for a hostage deal. On Sunday, Biden dialed Netanyahu even as the Israel PM was determined on the Rafah offensive. The US is aligned with Tel Aviv on the question of eradicating Hamas but does not support a re-occupation of Gaza by Israeli forces. Blinken will travel to Israel later this week.