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Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta visits President Xi Jinping in Beijing. Photo: How Hwee Young/Pool via Getty Images

China now owns more than 72% of Kenya's foreign debt, Quartz's Abdi Latif Dahir reports.

Why it matters: Kenya is one example of China's larger strategy to win influence across the world. Beijing accrues massive amounts of a smaller, poorer country's external debt by offering funding for infrastructure projects, then leverages that debt for influence in trade, domestic politics and beyond.

By the numbers:

  • Kenya owes China $5.3 billion, or about $11o for every Kenyan.
  • That's 10 times more than what China was owed in 2013.
  • China commands 8x more debt than Kenya's second largest lender, France.

The backdrop: The Kenyan government is defending the heavy borrowing from China and other countries as necessary to support key infrastructure projects, Dahir writes, but the public is skeptical and thinks the government is being naive about the strings attached to Chinese money, according to Quartz Africa editor Yinka Adegoke.

  • "All this happens as Kenya is roiled by a spate of corruption scandals involving government officials who allegedly siphoned tens of millions of dollars from state coffers using fake tenders and suppliers," per Dahir.

Go deeper: China's debt-trap diplomacy is spreading across Africa

Go deeper

Lawmakers call for Israel-Hamas ceasefire amid aerial bombardments

Combination images of Republican Sen. Todd Young and Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy. Photo: Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty Images/Greg Nash-Pool/Getty Images

Sen. Todd Young (R-Ind.) and 28 Senate Democrats on Sunday called for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas as fighting continued into the night.

Driving the news: In the first bipartisan call for a ceasefire, Young, a ranking member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on Near East, South Asia, Central Asia and Counterterrorism, joined its Chair Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) a statement saying: "Israel has the right to defend itself from Hamas' rocket attacks, in a manner proportionate with the threat its citizens are facing.

Bill Gates faces scrutiny over relationship with Microsoft employee, Epstein ties

Photo: Alessandro Di Ciommo/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Representatives for Bill Gates pushed back on claims Sunday that he left Microsoft's board because of an earlier sexual relationship and against two other reports detailing more extensive ties with Jeffrey Epstein than had previously been reported.

Driving the news: Microsoft said in an emailed statement to Axios that it "received a concern" in 2019 that its co-founder "sought to initiate an intimate relationship with a company employee in the year 2000," but denied a Wall Street Journal report that its board members thought Gates should resign over the matter.

AT&T in talks with Discovery to combine media assets

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

AT&T is in talks with media giant Discovery about merging its media assets, like CNN, TBS and TNT, according to two sources familiar with the discussions.

Why it matters: A potential merger could allow AT&T and Discovery to better compete with entertainment giants like Disney and Netflix in the video streaming wars.