Over the weekend, the biggest news in the market was that Iranian’s Revolutionary Guard (IRG) had seized a British tanker at the Strait of Hormuz. This happened as tensions between the United Kingdom and Iran continued. In a statement, IRG said that the oil tanker had violated international rules after colluding with an Iranian fishing boat. This new capture happened after the UK captured an Iranian tanker that was transporting crude oil to Syria. Iran has also attempted to capture other British tankers. The new crisis at the Strait of Hormuz can be blamed on the Trump’s decision to pull out of the Iran nuclear deal and impose new sanctions on the country.
In Hong Kong, the protests that have been going on for the past few weeks continued this weekend. The antigovernment protesters came out in big numbers to protest outside the Chinese government liaison office. The weekend’s protests were the most chaotic since the protesters stormed the legislative building early this month. The protesters are demanding that the government withdraws the controversial bill that supports extradition to China. They have also called for the resignation of the country’s chief executive, Carrie Lam. It was recently reported that while Lam had agreed to resign, Beijing had refused to allow it.
In Japan, it was a victory for Shinzo Abe after his ruling coalition won a clear majority in elections to Japan upper house. This was evidence of Abe’s enduring popularity even after serving 7 years as prime minister. After the win, Abe’s coalition is in control of the upper and lower parliament. Because there was no defining policy issue during the campaign, the election was largely seen as a referendum on Abe’s government. This election came at a time when Japan is engaged in a mini trade war with South Korea.
In the United Kingdom. The political temperatures continued to heat up as Boris Johnson is expected to become the new prime minister. Boris has said that he will be ready to take the country out of the European Union without a deal. This has led to increased bipartisan action in parliament to prevent him from suspending the parliament to force the deal. In a statement, the chancellor of the exchequer, Philp Hammond said that he will quit if Johnson becomes the prime minister.
Over the weekend, it was revealed that Trump was preparing to meet with US senators to discuss sanctions on Turkey. Turkey has recently been criticized by the Trump administration for buying a Russian defense system. This is a controversial issue because Turkey is a member of NATO. Russia is a common enemy of the organization. The US believes that the purchase could pose risks to American technologies that are available to Turkey. Trump has said that he doesn’t want to sanctions Turkey.