#ThewRap: Things you need to know, July 28, 2017

Hello! Here are the stories you shouldn't miss this Friday.

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Hello!

Good morning Rapplers!

Classes in Metro Manila and some parts of Luzon were cancelled for the 3rd straight day on Friday, July 28, as Severe Tropical Storm Gorio (Nesat) and a tropical depression off Cagayan enhanced the southwest monsoon.

The southern Philippines, meanwhile, is the subject of fresh travel warnings by Britain, Canada, and Australia.

The United States Congress has approved sanctions against Russia, drafted in such a way that will leave President Donald Trump little room to waive the penalties.

Amazon, meanwhile, enters Southeast Asia via a Singapore launch, while the 2017 awardees of Asia’s equivalent of the Nobel Prize have been revealed.

Here are the major stories you shouldn’t miss.

Don't go to Mindanao – Brits, Canadians, Australians warned

Western governments are warning their citizens against travelling to nearly all of the southern third of the Philippines, citing the rising threats of terror attacks and kidnappings by terrorists. Fresh alerts from Britain, Canada, and Australia were released this week after President Rodrigo Duterte extended military rule across the southern region of Mindanao until the end of the year to combat the militants. Mindanao comprises roughly a third of the Philippine territory and is home to 20 million people.

US Senate passes sanctions vs Russia for US polls, Crimea meddling

The US Senate on Thursday, July 27, passed bipartisan sanctions on Russia, Iran, and North Korea, sending the package to President Donald Trump, who must decide whether to accept the tough approach to Moscow or veto the measure. The sanctions, which were approved on a 98-2 Senate vote and overwhelmingly passed the Houseon Tuesday, are sure to antagonize the Kremlin as well as European nations fearing their companies will be penalized. The measure, which notably constrains Trump's ability to waive the penalties, is aimed at penalizing the Kremlin for meddling in the 2016 US presidential election and Russia's annexation of Crimea.

Filipinos, Japanese, Indonesian, Sri Lankan, Singaporean to receive Asia's Nobel Prize

The 59th batch of Ramon Magsaysay awardees was announced Thursday, July 27. Created in 1957, and named after the former Philippine president, the Ramon Magsaysay Award is given to persons who address issues of human development in Asia "with courage and creativity, and in doing so have made contributions that have transformed their societies for the better.” To receive the award are former Philippine Economic Zone Authority Director General Lilia de Lima, the Philippine Educational Theater Association, Japan’s Yoshiaki Ishizawa, Indonesia’s Abdon Nababan, Sri Lanka’s Gethsie Shanmugam, and Singapore’s Tony Tay.

Amazon to give Alibaba direct competition in Southeast Asia

Amazon launched its express delivery service in Singapore on Thursday, July 27, the US online retail giant's first foray into Southeast Asia and a move that puts it in direct competition with China's Alibaba. Prime Now allows online shoppers in the affluent city-state of 5 million people to order a wide range of goods from baby products to food, electronic items and beer. It marks Amazon's entry into a region of more than 600 million people, where many countries have a growing middle class, and which is seen as the next e-commerce battleground.

Rains, floods in Metro Manila, parts of Luzon for 3rd straight day

Severe Tropical Storm Gorio (Nesat) intensified further early Friday morning, July 28, as it continued enhancing the southwest monsoon. State weather bureau Pagasa also continues to monitor a tropical depression located outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility, at 450 kilometers west of Calayan, Cagayan. Both Gorio and the tropical depression will continue to enhance the southwest monsoon, which will still bring moderate to heavy rain to the western part of Luzon, including Metro Manila. Affected areas should remain on alert for flash floods and landslides.

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