Hello! Here’s what you need to know for Friday.
1. There could be hundreds of tonnes of dangerous chemicals at the site of two massive explosions in the Chinese port city of
Tianjin. Officials still don’t know what caused the blasts at a hazardous goods storage facility that killed 50 people and injured more than 700 on Wednesday.
2. Greece’s parliament is expected to vote early Friday on its third bailout deal worth about €85 billion (£61 billion, $US94.78 billion). Eurozone finance ministers are scheduled to review the deal Friday morning, though Greece could reportedly get a bridge loan if the ministers can’t agree.
3. China’s central bank on Friday strengthened the yuan currency against the US dollar by 0.05%. The move ends three straight days of China devaluing its currency.
4. Crude oil fell to a six-year low,
below $US42 (£26.90) per barrel, on Thursday. This follows an OPEC report that its output rose to a three-year high in July and the International Energy Agency’s prediction that the global oil market will remain oversupplied through 2016.
5. US Secretary of State John Kerry will raise the American flag for the first time in 54 years at its newly reopened embassy in Havana on Friday. Kerry’s visit to the Cuban capitol comes just one day after former Cuban President Fidel Castro said that the US owes Cuba “millions of dollars” for the damages caused by its decades-long embargo.
6. Turkey is likely to call a snap election later this year. Turkey’s ruling AK Party has been unable to form a coalition with opposition CHP, which is needed to govern after AKP failed to win a parliamentary majority in a June election.
7. This year’s
El Nino weather phenomenon, which can bring heavy rains or drought to different parts of the world, could be the strongest in modern history. US scientists predict that the weather pattern, determined by warming sea surface temperatures in the Pacific, could be among the strongest since 1950 when records began.
9. Scientists have bioengineered baker’s years to quickly produce painkilling opioids.
The process is not yet commercially viable, but it has the potential to radically change the drug industry by offering an alternative supply for pain medication.
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will deliver a World War II anniversary statement Friday evening to mark the 70th
anniversary of Japan’s surrender to the Allies in 1945. Abe has previously been criticised for downplaying Japan’s wartime past.
10. The European Space Agency’s Rosetta satellite made history early Thursday as it became the first spacecraft to accompany a comet on its closest approach to the sun while in orbit. Samples of dust and pictures taken by Rosetta of comet 67P/Churyumov — Gerasimenko as it reached its closest point to the sun will be analysed in the coming months.
And finally …