Iranian, Russian, and Chinese state media and government accounts focused on an array of major developments last week. Iranian accounts continued to cover the aftermath of the Beirut explosion—including continued accusations of U.S. and Israeli involvement in the explosion itself and in the protests that followed. Following the announcement of the UAE and Israel’s peace deal, Iranian accounts also leveled heavy criticism of the deal and amplified additional outside criticism. Russian state media and government accounts continued to closely follow the protests in Belarus, at times adopting contradictory coverage with foreign language coverage focusing on viral imagery of police brutality and Russian-language coverage noting accusations that external actors were responsible for fomenting the protests. Russian accounts also heavily celebrated the August 11 announcement that the Russian government had approved a coronavirus vaccine, focusing on it being the “world’s first.” Chinese state media accounts also noted the Russian vaccine announcement with significant coverage. However, Chinese government and media accounts most heavily focused on the ongoing tech conflict between the United States and China. Chinese government officials tweeted numerous criticisms of the Trump Administration’s “Clean Network” program, while state media detailed increased tensions over TikTok and WeChat.
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