News Brief

The King of Swaziland Has Just Unveiled his 14th Wife

Siphelele Mashwama (19) is King Mswati III’s 14th wife.

Siphelele Mashwama (19) is King Mswati III’s 14th wife, City Press reports. The news was confirmed by royal festivities overseer Hlangabeza Mdluli, shortly after the country’s annual Reed Dance where such announcements are normally made.

This time around, things were different, as the presence of foreign media made it difficult for this announcement to be made.

Mashwama is currently in New York where the king is attending the United Nations general assembly. She is the daughter of a Swaziland Cabinet minister, Jabulile Mashwama, and her father is Dr Petros Mashwama, a lecturer in the computer science department at the University of Swaziland.

The young woman is a graduate of Swaziland’s Waterford Kamhlaba World University College. Prior to the announcement, she was given special treatment at the Reed Dance – nobody was allowed to mingle with her, men weren't allowed to look at her, no pictures of her were taken, and had royal escorts and heavy police presence around her.

Read the full report here.

 

Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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