• Huang Xiaojun Wins CIBMTR Distinguished Service Award for Transplantation Breakthrough: Chinese scientist Huang Xiaojun was honored with the prestigious Center for International Blood and Marrow Transplant Research (CIBMTR) Distinguished Service Award for his groundbreaking work known as the Beijing Protocol in transplantation and cellular therapy. As an Academician of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and Director of the Institute of Hematology at Peking University, Huang's techniques in non-T cell depleted haploidentical transplantation, particularly the G-CSF/ATG based Beijing Protocol, have significantly increased the three-year survival rate for leukemia patients from approximately 20 percent to about 70 percent. These techniques have been widely adopted in China and internationally, leading to a significant increase in haploidentical transplantation success rates. Huang's contributions have also played a pivotal role in fostering global cooperation in the field of hematology. The award ceremony took place during the 2024 Tandem Meetings, a global platform for leading experts to collaboratively share crucial insights dedicated to enhancing and preserving the lives of individuals grappling with blood-related disorders, organized by the American Society for Transplantation and Cellular Therapy and the CIBMTR.

  • China’s Men’s Basketball Team suffers Asian Cup Qualifiers Loss to Japan: In the opening match of the 2025 FIBA Asian Cup Qualifiers, the Chinese Men’s Basketball Team faced the Japanese Men’s Basketball Team, ultimately losing 73-76. Initially taking the lead, China saw Japan gradually narrowing the gap and eventually overtaking them. Despite an equalizing effort before halftime, China struggled in the second half as Japan maintained their shooting accuracy. The game culminated in a narrow lead for Japan, with China missing a crucial opportunity to score from beyond the three-point line in the final moments. Leading scorers included Hu Jinqiu and Hu Mingxuan for China, with Yudai Baba and Hawkinson contributing significantly for Japan. This loss marked a historic moment, as it was the first time since the 1936 Olympics that the Chinese men's basketball team had been defeated by Japan in Asian Cup and higher-level competitions organized by FIBA. Yudai Baba of the Japanese team had expressed anticipation for the match, highlighting their long-standing inability to defeat China. However, after 88 years, this record was finally broken with Japan securing a significant victory over China in the tournament.

  • Shanghai Launches Spring Recruitment Drive to Boost Employment Opportunities: Shanghai's Spring Recruitment Fair, held on February 24, 2024, marked the onset of the Lantern Festival and the city's full return to work mode. Organized by the Shanghai Municipal Human Resources and Social Security Bureau, the fair featured over 1,000 companies offering more than 20,000 jobs across 16 district venues. The positions predominantly focused on grassroots and labor-intensive roles, with competitive salaries reaching over 10,000 yuan for technical positions. Workers praised the abundance of opportunities and diverse industries represented, with some traveling from other provinces enticed by Shanghai's employment prospects. The Bureau's proactive approach in organizing recruitment events before and after the Spring Festival facilitated smooth transitions for both companies and workers, ensuring timely placements.. This year, the Bureau launched the "Shanghai Excellent+" action, aiming to optimize the city's employment environment, provide support to key industries, and facilitate entrepreneurship. Plans include hosting over 2,000 recruitment activities and offering 300,000 jobs, alongside initiatives to strengthen cooperation with enterprises and support entrepreneurial endeavors, particularly targeting youth and key groups. Additionally, the efforts will also focus on flexible employment arrangements, occupational injury protection, and the establishment of community employment service stations to foster a robust employment ecosystem in Shanghai.

  • China Implements Measures to Safeguard Workers in Evolving Sectors: China’s Ministry of Human Resources and Social Security  recently published guidelines aimed at enhancing the protection of workers' rights in emerging forms of employment like ride-hailing and food delivery.   The guidelines provide detailed rules to assist platform businesses in improving labor management and addressing common issues such as excessive working hours and lack of transparency in platform rules. Notably, the guidelines introduce minimum wage protection for workers engaged in platform economy activities, such as delivery, transport, and home services. Platform businesses are mandated to implement measures to prevent overwork, ensure fair compensation for work during holidays, and seek input from workers before making changes to algorithms affecting their rights and interests. These efforts come in response to the growing prominence of new types of occupations in China, which have become significant sources of job creation. With approximately 84 million workers involved in new employment forms, the government's initiatives aim to shed light on and improve the working conditions of these workers, aligning with previous documents released to safeguard their rights and interests amidst evolving business models and consumption patterns.

  • China’s anti-corruption entity in China unveils its work report: The 20th Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) of the Communist Party of China (CPC) released its work report. It was previously also presented by Li Xi, a member of the CPC Central Committee's Political Bureau Standing Committee and CCDI secretary, during the 20th CCDI's third plenary session on January 8. The released report focuses on advancing the quality of discipline inspection and supervision, reviewing CCDI's 2023 work, and outlining tasks for 2024. It emphasizes the faithful execution of duties outlined in both the Party and People's Republic of China Constitutions by discipline inspection commissions and supervision agencies. Additionally, it highlights the importance of eliminating corruption breeding grounds, deepening system reforms, strengthening discipline inspection and supervision institutions, and enhancing organizational development within these agencies.

  • Chinese Medical Team Provides Care to 20,000 Patients in Sierra Leone Mission: The 24th batch of the Chinese medical team in Sierra Leone, comprising 21 specialists from Hunan Province, provided healthcare for over 20,000 local patients during its one-year mission. Led by Chen Yongjun, the team conducted 400 surgeries and offered training to local medical staff across various specialties, despite facing challenges such as inadequate infrastructure and medical equipment at the Sierra Leone-China Friendship Hospital. Melrose During, a charge nurse, commended the team's readiness to help and their positive impact on patients' trust and well-being. Qin Fanghua, a team member, expressed fondness for her interactions with local patients and residents while serving as a nurse in the children's ward, expressing a sense of attachment to Sierra Leone. China has been sending medical teams to Sierra Leone since 1973, with the aim of improving the country's healthcare sector. In December 2023, Sierra Leonean President Julius Maada Bio expressed gratitude to the Chinese medical team for their dedication to enhancing healthcare services in the country.

  • Xinjiang's Akqi County Unharmed by Magnitude-5.8 Earthquake; no Casualties Reported: Authorities in northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region reported no casualties after a magnitude-5.8 earthquake struck Akqi County in Kirgiz Autonomous Prefecture of Kizilsu. The quake occurred at 12:14 p.m. Sunday, with its epicenter located 24 km from Akqi's county seat and 68 km from Wushi County's seat. Though the area is sparsely populated, residents in both counties felt strong tremors. The State Grid Akqi Power Supply Company confirmed normal operations, and local train services remained unaffected. The quake follows a magnitude-7.1 tremor in Wushi County on January 23 and subsequent smaller quakes in Akqi County. Gao Mengtan, an expert at the Institute of Geophysics of China Earthquake Administration, noted that aftershocks typically persist for up to several months after a major quake, gradually decreasing in frequency. Despite residents' concerns, authorities assure ongoing monitoring and preparedness for any seismic activity.


 Liu Bing's Lunar New Year Haircut Sparks Social Media Debate in China: Liu Bing's case has become a hot topic on Chinese social media after he cut his hair on the second day of the Lunar New Year, traditionally considered unlucky. Shortly afterward, his uncle tragically died in a car accident, leading Liu's aunt to accuse him of indirectly causing the death, demanding one million yuan compensation. However, the court ruled that the uncle's death was due to drink driving, dismissing the lawsuit. This incident has reignited debates on traditional superstitions, with the Chinese Association for Science and Technology debunking the belief as scientifically unfounded. Online discussions on platforms like Weibo have attracted widespread attention, with users expressing various opinions. One user criticized Liu's aunt's monetary demands, stating, "I can’t believe that Liu’s aunt dared to demand one million yuan. The greed of human beings seems to know no limits." Another expressed their own superstition, saying, "I don’t dare to get my hair cut during the Lunar New Year period for fear of bringing bad luck." This case illustrates the complex intersection between age-old beliefs and modern social media discourse in China.


China engagement in the African continent has been gaining signifcant momentum in the past few decades. More recently, the Chinese Medical Team provided care to 20,000 Patients in Sierra Leone, a country situated in West Africa. This is one of the many examples of China’s efforts to engage with Africa. Similarly, India too has been very active in building it's presence in a similar region. India's engagement with Africa is characterized by a comprehensive array of initiatives aimed at fostering closer ties and mutual development. Through programs like the Pan-African e-Network Project, India is facilitating tele-education and telemedicine, enhancing access to quality education and healthcare services. The India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) also serves as a pivotal platform for diplomatic, economic, and strategic collaboration, while initiatives like the Team-9 Initiative focus on agricultural and rural development cooperation. Additionally, India extends support through the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) program, offering training and capacity-building opportunities across various sectors. The Focus Africa Program promotes trade and economic cooperation, complemented by efforts in healthcare, exemplified by the India Africa Health Sciences Platform. Furthermore, India has been contributing to Africa's sustainable development through solar electrification projects as well as actively participates in peacekeeping operations. Furthermore, to enhance its presence in Africa, India must also focus to prioritize diplomatic ties, invest in infrastructure projects like roads and ports and support concrete sustainable development initiatives such as renewable energy projects and agricultural advancements. These efforts will not only strengthen partnerships and improve connectivity but will also foster mutual understanding and address pressing challenges, thereby solidifying India's goodwill and engagement across the African continent.




Prepared By

Aachal completed her graduation in Political Science from Banaras Hindu University. Currently she is pursuing her master's in Political Science from IGNOU. Her areas of interest revolve around international relations, foreign policy dynamics, defence and security. She has previously interned with the Council for Social Development and the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies.

CiCM 24th-25th February 2024

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