May 16, 2022

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Plan to scrap parts of Northern Ireland protocol is only an ‘insurance policy’, says Boris Johnson

By Rowena Mason, Lisa O'Carroll and Rory Carroll
  • Boris Johnson has said a legal move to ditch parts of the Northern Ireland protocol is only an “insurance” policy, as it emerged that the controversial legislation has been delayed for some weeks.
  • During his visit, Johnson said he was committed to negotiations with the EU on the protocol but that he would not be dragging his heels on potential legislation if talks did not result in a solution.
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‘It’s Just Too Much’: 11 of Buffalo Shooting’s 13 Victims Were Black

By Paul Blest
  • The victims of the massacre in Buffalo Saturday were innocent bystanders—an elderly woman stopping for a bite to eat after visiting her husband in a nursing home, a writer for community newspapers who advocated for stricter gun control measures, and grocery workers just trying to do their jobs.
  • “I hope that as a nation as a community just people at home, they teach their kids how to love instead of hate because that's not what she represented and that's not what I teach my kids and that's not how our family [does] things,” her niece, Adrienne Massey, told WGRZ.
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Alleged gunman in California church shooting identified by police

  • At the the Irvine Taiwanese Presbyterian Church, a group of about 40 congregants had gathered in the fellowship hall for a luncheon after a morning service to welcome former Pastor Billy Chang, who had served the church for 20 years and was a beloved and respected community member.
  • “I knew someone was shooting,” said Jerry Chen who had just stepped into the kitchen of the church’s fellowship hall at about 1:30 pm on Sunday [20:30 GMT] when he heard the gunshots.
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Four new cases of monkeypox identified in the UK, bringing total to seven

By PA Media
  • “We are particularly urging men who are gay and bisexual to be aware of any unusual rashes or lesions and to contact a sexual health service without delay.
  • Due to the recent rise in case numbers and uncertainties about how the infections were transmitted, UKHSA has said it is working closely with NHS partners to establish whether there have been any more cases in recent weeks, and with international partners to examine whether other countries have seen a similar rise in monkeypox.
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Henry Arundell, London Irish’s teenage sensation, poised for senior England call-up

By Charlie Morgan
  • Regardless of whether Farrell is reinstated as captain over Courtney Lawes, Jones is known to be keen on teaming up the 30-year-old with fly-half Marcus Smith in midfield and reprising the combination that started a 32-15 victory over the Wallabies last November.
  • Because there are no English teams in the final of either the European Challenge or Champions Cup – the first time that has happened in nine years – Jones will be able to take his pick from the Premiership clubs.
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SFU student wins national award for research into city sounds

By Gordon McIntyre
  • An SFU graduate student has been helping develop an interactive board game that shows in real time how various decisions to build office towers, parks or walkways affect us, and she’s been honoured by a national research council for her work involving cities and sound.
  • The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council named Zora Feren one of its five national award winners in the 2022 Storytellers Challenge for her work helping create the first-of-its-kind game.
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Élisabeth Borne: a long-serving technocrat and ‘woman of the left’

By Angelique Chrisafisin Paris
  • When Borne served as the first female prefect of the western region of Poitou-Charentes, as she signed her first decree of French naturalisation for a person who had obtained citizenship, she reportedly cited her own family roots which she said symbolised the integration of refugees in France.
  • Borne, who describes herself as a “woman of the left” has been a regular in the corridors of French power for several decades, serving as an adviser to ministers on under François Mitterrand and advising the Socialist environment minister Ségolène Royal in 2014.
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Voices: Jake Daniels is a hero – more LGBT+ football players should follow suit

By Adam Bloodworth
  • In many ways, football feels like the last bastion of sexual intolerance; the last sport where you can’t say you’re gay, even though rugby, cricket and swimming have all had openly gay players for years.
  • Both men told me that they didn’t feel their sexualities mattered to their jobs as diversity and inclusion professionals – despite being the only two openly gay people working with top players that I could find.
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Ferdinand Marcos Jr urged to stop pretending he has an Oxford degree

By Ben Quinn
  • “According to our records, he did not complete his degree, but was awarded a special diploma in social studies in 1978,” Oxford said in a response to a freedom of information request lodged by a UK-based Filipina supporter of Marcos Jr’s nearest rival in last week’s election.
  • His website states : “He completed his undergraduate studies at Oxford University and graduated with a Special Diploma in Social Studies.”
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Bank of England warns of ‘apocalyptic’ global food shortage

By Tim Wallace
  • Mr Bailey told MPs on the Treasury Select Committee that he is increasingly concerned about a further surge in food costs if Ukraine, a major crop grower, is unable to ship wheat and cooking oils from its warehouses because of a Russian blockade .
  • The Governor of the Bank of England has warned of “apocalyptic” global food shortages and said he is “helpless” in the face of surging inflation as the economy is battered by the war in Ukraine.
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Leaked Prevent review attacks ‘double standards’ on rightwingers and Islamists

By Jessica Elgot and Vikram Dodd
  • The government’s counter-terrorism programme has been too focused on rightwing extremism and should now crack down on Islamism, according to leaked draft extracts from a landmark review of the Prevent strategy .
  • Sir Peter Fahy, the former police lead for Prevent, said the review extracts suggested Shawcross’s findings were an unwarranted attempt to “politicise counter-terrorism policing” and it was “quite dangerous to play off one ideology against another”.
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Elon Musk to Twitter CEO: ‘💩’

By Jason Koebler
  • A few days after Elon Musk announced that his deal to buy Twitter is “on hold” because of concern about spam and bots on the platform, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal tweeted a thread about how the company tries to fight spam.
  • The exchange follows tweets from Musk last week that took issue with the company's own estimate that spam accounts make up fewer than 5 percent of accounts on the platform.
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Jeff Bezos and White House battle over taxes and inflation

By Reuters
  • WASHINGTON — The White House and Amazon.com Inc founder Jeff Bezos squared off on Monday over the Biden administration’s handling of U.S. inflation and its plans to tax the rich.
  • “It doesn’t require a huge leap to figure out why one of the wealthiest individuals on Earth opposes an economic agenda for the middle class that cuts some of the biggest costs families face, fights inflation for the long haul, and adds to the historic deficit reduction the president is achieving by asking the richest taxpayers and corporations to pay their fair share,” White House spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement.
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Hezbollah allies projected to lose seats in Lebanon elections

  • The Lebanese movement Hezbollah and its allies could suffer setbacks in the parliamentary elections, according to partial results, with several anti-establishment candidates picking up seats in the first election since the economic crisis and the deadly 2020 Beirut explosion .
  • Hezbollah’s key non-Shia allies are expected to suffer losses, most notably the Free Patriotic Movement, which once held the largest Christian seats in parliament.
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Lockdowns cripple Chinese economy

  • The impact of lockdowns in large cities such as Shanghai is also being felt in the real estate market where the value of property sales nearly halved in April year-on-year, the steepest drop since 2006.
  • More and more German firms are complaining about supply bottlenecks concerning raw materials and a range of intermediate products as the world's biggest port in Shanghai struggles to operate at normal levels.
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Prince Harry speaks out at ‘critical moment’ for children’s online safety

By Dan Milmo Global technology editor
  • Harry said the world needed new laws such as the online safety bill in the UK, which requires tech firms to protect children and adults from harmful online content.
  • Prince Harry said the social media industry makes unbelievable amounts of money by “vacuuming” up time and information from users, adding that children should “demand better”.
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Biden OKs Plan to Send U.S. Troops Back to Somalia

By Robbie Gramer and Jack Detsch
  • A senior Biden administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity in a briefing to reporters under ground rules set by the White House, characterized Trump’s directive as “an abrupt and sudden transition to a rotational presence” that allowed the al-Shabab terrorist group to gain further strength and step up attacks against the Somali government and civilian targets in recent years.
  • A senior Biden administration official, speaking on condition of anonymity in a briefing to reporters under ground rules set by the White House, characterized Trump’s directive as “an abrupt and sudden transition to a rotational presence” that allowed the al-Shabab terrorist group to gain further strength and step up attacks against the Somali government and civilian targets in recent years.
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JetBlue goes hostile with reduced Spirit takeover bid – Al Jazeera English

  • made a hostile $3.3 billion cash bid for Spirit Airlines Inc., appealing directly to shareholders in an effort to prevail over a rival offer for the discount carrier by Frontier Group Holdings Inc.
  • JetBlue set up a website — www.JetBlueOffersMore.com — and issued a letter to Spirit shareholders as part of its attempt to derail the Frontier deal, with Chief Executive Officer Robin Hayes arguing that his own proposal offers more value, more certainty and more benefits for all stakeholders.
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Karen Andrews seeks to block funding for Gold Coast light rail that would run past her property

By Ben Smee
  • Last week Andrews wrote an open letter to residents of the Gold Coast suburb Palm Beach saying she had requested federal urban infrastructure minister Paul Fletcher oppose any federal funding for the fourth stage of the city’s light rail project – a proposed extension from Burleigh Heads to Coolangatta.
  • The home affairs minister, Karen Andrews, has sought to block federal funding for a Gold Coast light rail expansion that would run directly past an investment property she co-owns with her husband.
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Donald Trump’s social network deal may complicate Twitter return

By Gareth Corfield
  • Truth Social restrictions do not apply to Mr Trump's political campaigning, the filing says, potentially paving the way for the Republican to use Twitter as a launchpad for the 2024 presidency.
  • Donald Trump is legally obliged to post on his libertarian social network before sharing his thoughts elsewhere, filings have revealed amid speculation about whether the former President will return to Twitter.
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TRAIKOS: Why the Maple Leafs should fire Sheldon Keefe — and hire Barry Trotz

By Michael Traikos
  • In Trotz, who was recently fired by the New York Islanders after missing the playoffs for the first time in four years, you’ve got a head coach who has not only won a Stanley Cup, but who got a Washington team that looks a lot like Toronto does right now over the hump.
  • You could come up with a hundred or more reasons why Sheldon Keefe, who won a franchise-record 54 games and 115 points this year, deserves to be back behind the bench with the Toronto Maple Leafs next season.
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The Global Roots of the Buffalo Shooting

By Daniel Byman
  • The alleged shooter livestreamed his attack on Twitch and posted an online manifesto in which he expressed a variety of white supremacist beliefs, including the “Great Replacement” theory—a supposed conspiracy that globalist elites (aka Jews) promote immigration, intermarriage, homosexuality, and other supposed schemes to water down the white race and make white people a minority in countries they long dominated.
  • The alleged shooter livestreamed his attack on Twitch and posted an online manifesto in which he expressed a variety of white supremacist beliefs, including the “Great Replacement” theory—a supposed conspiracy that globalist elites (aka Jews) promote immigration, intermarriage, homosexuality, and other supposed schemes to water down the white race and make white people a minority in countries they long dominated.
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Judge Roasts Defendant Who Ran Bitcoin Sanctions Evasion Service

By Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai
  • The citizen, who is unnamed at this point, even advertised their platform as a way to avoid sanctions, and sent $10 million worth of Bitcoin between the U.S. and the sanctioned country, according to an opinion written by a judge and published on Friday .
  • The person operated an online payments and remittance platform that used Bitcoin and was based in a country sanctioned by the United States.
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No laughs for Olaf: 3 bitter election lessons for German Chancellor Scholz

By Florian Eder
  • Another option would be try to replicate the federal “traffic light coalition” of SPD, Greens and liberal Free Democrats (FDP) — named after the members’ party colors — in North Rhine-Westphalia.
  • Adding to their joy — and to the SPD’s sorrows — is that the Greens are now in the role of kingmakers in North Rhine-Westphalia: They could form a governing alliance with the CDU and its incumbent state premier Hendrik Wüst or try to cobble something together with the SPD.
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EU gives companies green light to buy gas from Russia

  • EU sanctions “do not prevent economic operators from opening a bank account in a designated bank for payments due under contracts for the supply of natural gas in a gaseous state, in the currency specified in those contracts,” the commission said.
  • The guidance does not prevent companies from opening an account at Gazprombank and will allow them to purchase gas in accordance with EU sanctions following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
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English soccer player Jake Daniels says he is gay

  • Daniels said he was inspired by Josh Cavallo of Australian team Adelaide United, who is the only openly gay man currently playing in a top division in world soccer following the 22-year-old midfielder’s announcement in October.
  • English soccer player Jake Daniels said he is gay on Monday in a trailblazing moment for the European men’s game.
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World Miss University to organize volunteer group of senior members

By Shim Woo-hyun
  • World Miss University Chairman Lee Seung-min said WMU decided to forge the World Senior Peace Service Corps Assembly Foundation, which will be joined by many senior members who competed in earlier editions of the beauty pageant.
  • Kang Sung-mo, who is in charge of the beauty pageant’s business and the chairperson of You&I Holdings, also noted that WMU will introduce new business projects that can utilize the global network of WMU members.
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Trump’s Poison Pills Are Still Toxic

By Michael Hirsh
  • That’s in large part because serious change has been made difficult by the “poison pills” Trump left behind: massive sanctions on Iran, high tariffs on China, draconian immigration rules, and more—combined with a nearly intractable political stalemate that his successor, current U.S. President Joe Biden, faces on Capitol Hill.
  • That’s in large part because serious change has been made difficult by the “poison pills” Trump left behind: massive sanctions on Iran, high tariffs on China, draconian immigration rules, and more—combined with a nearly intractable political stalemate that his successor, current U.S. President Joe Biden, faces on Capitol Hill.
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Ukrainian FM: ‘100% we will win, and Russia will be defeated’ – Al Jazeera English

  • Kuleba, who was invited as a guest at the meeting of foreign ministers from the group of world’s richest nations in Weissanhaus, Germany, also called for a ban on Russian oil imports and the seizure of Russian assets abroad to pay for the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine.
  • So it’s now two billion euros that the European Union has allocated to the military defence needs of Ukraine.
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Little Creatures, Big Hearts: SPCA offers small animals for adoption in ‘pay what you can’ promotion

By Joseph Ruttle
  • While dogs and cats get most of the attention when it comes to family pets, SPCA shelters also have plenty of other little creatures waiting for good homes, including rabbits, gerbils, guinea pigs, mice and rats, birds and reptiles.
  • Dogs and cats get most of the attention as family pets, but SPCA shelters have plenty of other little creatures waiting for good homes
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Alberta Premier Jason Kenney visits U.S. capital to talk North American energy security

  • Tuesday’s hearing comes at the invitation of the committee’s chairman, West Virginia Sen. Joe Manchin – a moderate Democrat and a critical swing vote in the evenly divided Senate – who paid a high-profile visit to Alberta last month.
  • Kenney is meeting with journalists today in advance of his testimony Tuesday before the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
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Climate change: EU emissions surpass pre-pandemic levels

  • Scientists from the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) have warned that humanity must radically reduce emissions by 2030 in order to have a chance of limiting warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius compared to pre-industrial levels.
  • In total, greenhouse gas emissions in the EU reached 1,041 million metric tons of CO2 equivalents in the last quarter of 2021, an increase from 1,005 million tons in the same period in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic hit.
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‘Poisonous pamphlets and pork’: what messages are cutting through to voters in this messy campaign?

By Cait Kelly
  • Last time around the ALP’s policy on franking credits sent him flying into the arms of the Liberals, and he says if Archer ran as an independent he would vote for her again – but he doesn’t want to see the PM keep his job.
  • Held by Liberal Bridget Archer with a 0.4% margin, Bass is known as an “ejector” – for the last 10 federal elections, only once has a sitting member been returned.
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Inside the Dispute Over a High-Profile Psychedelic Study

By Shayla Love
  • The authors of the Doss comment wrote, and McConway agreed, that in the Nature Medicine paper, there wasn’t enough of a difference in the change in modularity between the psilocybin group and the antidepressant group over time to say that the psilocybin had a unique effect on brain functioning, let alone how that mechanism might affect depression.
  • The authors of this paper—several of whom are well-known names in psychedelic research, like UCSF’s Robin Carhart-Harris, formerly of Imperial College London, and neuropsychopharmacologist David Nutt—offered a suggestion, writing that psilocybin might lead to a decrease in “brain network modularity,” or an increase in different parts of the brain functionally connecting with each other.
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‘When will it all end?’: Kharkiv counts the cost as Russians pull back

By Daniel Boffey in Kharkiv
  • Standing atop the damaged corrugated metal and asbestos roof of his house on the main road north from Kharkiv to a scattering of villages occupied by Russian forces until a few days ago, Konstantin Kharlamov, 53, had two hours earlier watched black smoke bellow in the distance.
  • Four people were said to have been wounded in strikes around the Shevchenkivskyi region of Kharkiv on Monday and one person was confirmed to have been killed in the liberated northern village of Tsyrkuny.
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Biden approves deployment of hundreds of US troops to Somalia

  • “President Biden has approved a request from the Secretary of Defense to reestablish a persistent US military presence in Somalia to enable a more effective fight against al-Shabab,” a senior administration official told Reuters.
  • United States President Joe Biden has authorised the deployment of American troops to Somalia, reversing a decision by his predecessor Donald Trump last year to remove nearly all forces that had been operating there.
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Mexico to talk to U.S. delegation, insists all countries have to attend Americas summit

By Reuters
  • López Obrador has said he will not attend the summit unless the United States invites all the countries in the Americas.
  • Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador said on Monday that he will receive a delegation on Wednesday of organizers of the U.S.-hosted Summit of the Americas, in which his government will set out why it wants all countries in the region to take part.
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Voices: I’m an expert on extremism. Here’s the hard truth about people like Payton Gendron

By Charlotte McDonald-Gibson
  • They are assisted by social media algorithms promoting extreme content to generate clicks and revenue, deeply polarized online platforms that reward the most outrageous posts, and the anarchic nature of a space that will always elude comprehensive regulation.
  • The brutal, racially motivated killing of 10 people at a supermarket in New York state by a white supremacist has once again highlighted the devastating role of loosely regulated online platforms in the propagation of hate speech and the promotion of extremist violence.
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US gun violence over weekend puts focus on easy access to weapons

By Edward Helmore in Buffalo, New York
  • The shootings, each horrific in their own way, punctuated the weekend’s main horror: an 18-year-old espousing white supremacist ideology who went to an African American neighborhood in Buffalo, New York, on Saturday and – in less than two minutes – gunned down 13 people at a grocery, killing 10.
  • That shooting – one of the deadliest racist massacres in recent memory – has renewed scrutiny on internet-promulgated hate speech, access to assault-style guns and body armor, and the inability of law enforcement authorities, elected politicians, religious leaders and the commercial sector to stop such violence from recurring.
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Gas is a dangerous distraction for Africa – Al Jazeera English

  • Despite United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres recently warning that investing in new fossil fuel infrastructure is “moral and economic madness”, leaders in Africa are being persuaded that extracting more gas is a prerequisite for the continent’s development.
  • New research shows that investing in renewables now could give the whole continent access to electricity in a decade and by 2050, Africa could completely phase out fossil fuels .
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Revealed: EU plans loans and grants to help rebuild Ukraine

By Jennifer Rankin in Brussels
  • Ukraine could receive loans, grants and possibly the proceeds of seized Russian oligarch property to help pay the multi-billion euro cost of rebuilding the country after the ruinous war launched by the Kremlin, according to a leaked EU reconstruction plan.
  • In the plan drafted in Brussels, the European Commission states that the Ukrainian government will have to take out loans to pay for rebuilding its war-ravaged country.
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‘SMOKE AND MIRRORS’: Ottawa Redblacks player rep Antoine Pruneau explains why CFL offer was bad

By Tim Baines, Postmedia
  • “When the commissioner talks to the player reps and says we have to negotiate in good faith, then you look at their first offer – of course you’re going to be pissed,” said Pruneau.
  • The league probably threw any good will it had with a ridiculous initial offer for a 10-year CBA that included no salary-cap increases and eliminated the Canadian player ratio.
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New poll predicts Allegra Spender will win Wentworth from Liberal MP Dave Sharma

By Anne Davies
  • The poll, which asked about preference intentions, shows that Spender is likely to pick up the lion’s share of preferences from Labor, which is has an 11.7% primary vote support, and the Greens, who have 6.2%.
  • A new poll has the independent Allegra Spender on track to claim the prize blue-ribbon seat of Wentworth in Sydney’s east, with the Liberal MP Dave Sharma’s primary vote at 36%, down from 47% at the 2019 election.
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Anglophones’ concerns over Bill 96 are unfounded, Jolin-Barrette says

By Jason Magder, Montreal Gazette
  • Speaking to reporters during a news conference in Châteauguay via videoconference, a COVID-positive Simon Jolin-Barrette said he acknowledged opposition to the bill, but said anglophones should rest assured that access to services in the domain of health and justice will remain unchanged.
  • Access to courts and health services will remain unchanged, the minister responsible for the French language says.
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Globe Climate: How two chefs are rethinking the local seafood supply chain in Ontario

By Sierra Bein
  • Chefs turned fishmongers Jon Klip and Matt Taylor have spent nearly two years trying to build something they believe is better than the status quo for sourcing and selling local fish from the Great Lakes.
  • For this week’s deeper dive, she speaks with two chefs turned fishmongers whose business, Affinity Fish, aims to better connect shoppers with their seafood.
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Yemen: A glimmer of hope in a devastating war – Al Jazeera English

  • The United Nations-brokered deal between a Saudi-led coalition and the Yemeni government on one side, and the Iran-aligned Houthi rebels, is a significant step towards ending a conflict that has killed tens of thousands and pushed millions into hunger.
  • With much of the attention on the Houthi-held north, many people living in the country’s government-held south talk of facing an “economic war”.
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Sri Lanka down to its last day of petrol, warns new PM

  • Sri Lanka’s newly appointed prime minister has said that the cash-strapped island nation has run out of petrol stock, as he said the country desperately needed to secure $75m in foreign exchange in the next few days to pay for essential imports, including medicine.
  • “We have run out of petrol … At the moment, we only have petrol stocks for a single day,” Ranil Wickremesinghe said on Monday in an address to the nation, as the country suffers from fuel and medicine shortages.
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Voices: Let’s call the Buffalo shooter what he is — a radical MAGA terrorist

By Skylar Baker-Jordan
  • Yet thanks to people like Carlson and Stefanik, this claim has become so widespread among the GOP base that it is increasingly difficult to divorce the radical conspiracy theorists from the mainstream Republican Party.
  • Over the weekend, a self-described fascist and white supremacist – 18-year-old Payton Gendron – travelled over 200 miles from his home in south central New York to Buffalo, where he killed 10 people at a supermarket and injured three more.
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Western Sydney’s time as a ‘stronghold’ for either major party is over, expert says

By Mostafa Rachwani
  • It says that while the region recorded swings against Labor three times the national average in the 2019 election, it was difficult to predict how voters had shifted since.
  • “Western Sydney’s quiet Australians are restless and its unlikely either of the major parties will be able to claim the region as its own for some time,” the report said.
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Antoinette Lattouf on writing a guide to anti-racism: ‘I was sitting there and sobbing’

By Rafqa Touma
  • The Black Lives Matter movement landed on Australian shores in 2020, and Lattouf, co-founder of Media Diversity Australia and former Network 10 reporter, sensed a shift in public awareness and an appetite for change.
  • Her guide speaks to both white Australians and people of colour, teaching readers to be better advocates and push back against institutionalised racism.
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Australian Conservation Foundation names Mount Isa the most polluted postcode in the country

By Eden Gillespie
  • Glencore said Mount Isa Mines has the “most intensive air quality monitoring network of any city in Australia”, as part of an “industry-leading” framework used to control emissions and dust at the source and prevent contaminates from escaping.
  • “Mount Isa Mines is regulated by over 75 separate permits and authorities, with stringent and transparent reporting of environmental performance and we operate within our environmental limits for sulphur dioxide emissions and lead,” the company said.
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Sri Lanka’s new PM warns ‘most difficult months of our lives’ ahead

By Hannah Ellis-Petersen South Asia correspondent
  • Sri Lanka’s new prime minister, Ranil Wickremesinghe, has warned that the financial crisis engulfing the country will get continue to get worse and “the next couple of months will be the most difficult ones of our lives”.
  • In his first address to the country since he was appointed as interim prime minister on Thursday, after Mahinda Rajapaksa stepped down from the role amidst Sri Lanka’s worst economic crash since independence, Wickremesinghe was blunt as he described the conditions of the country’s finances as “extremely precarious”.
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Over 70% of Australia’s aged care workers yet to receive $800 pandemic bonus, poll suggests

  • More than 70% of aged care workers are yet to receive a single payment through the Morrison government’s pandemic bonus scheme four months after it was announced, staff polling suggests.
  • Earlier this year, the aged care minister, Richard Colbeck, said the government was encouraging providers to pay their workers the payment at the time they lodge the application .
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Putin says Russia has ‘no problems’ with Finland, Sweden in NATO

By Victor Jack
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin said Finland and Sweden’s bids to join NATO posed no direct threat to Russia, but warned the Western military alliance against moving weapons into the two countries’ territories.
  • “As for the expansion [of NATO], including through new members of the alliance — Finland, Sweden — Russia wants to inform you that it has no problems with these states,” Putin said on Monday, speaking at a gathering in Moscow of leaders from the member countries of the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO), the Russia-backed military alliance.
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Pentecostalism and the LNP’s fight for its soul in Queensland’s Darling Downs

By Joe Hinchliffe
  • The headline factor has been Queensland’s only “voices of” independent candidate, social worker Suzie Holt, who is running against an incumbent on the right of the Liberal National party, mining engineer Garth Hamilton.
  • At the same time, refugee and women’s rights advocate Gen Allpass has run an unusually strong Labor campaign in an effort to prove the seat is “winnable” for her party, despite 120 years of evidence to the contrary.
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Australia quietly shuts down anti-terror taskforce set up after Christchurch attack

By Josh Taylor
  • In response to the Christchurch attack, the government convened a taskforce made up of government bodies, internet service providers and social media platforms to help tackle online extremism from far right and white supremacy groups in Australia.
  • A taskforce of Australian government agencies and social media companies set up to counter violent extremism online in the wake of the Christchurch terror attack has been quietly disbanded.
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Buffalo victims of Tops grocery store shooting

By Reuters
  • Patterson, 67, was known as “Jitney” because he drove people to and from the Tops grocery store and helped them with their groceries, according to the Buffalo News.
  • A former police officer, the 86-year-old mother of Buffalo, New York’s former fire commissioner, and a grandmother who fed the needy for decades were among those killed in a racist attack by a gunman on Saturday in a Buffalo grocery store .
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Tesco to pay out more to pig farmers as industry warns of ‘critical’ situation

By Sarah Butler
  • It had called on Tesco to act after rivals including Waitrose, the Co-op, Marks & Spencer, Aldi, Asda, Morrisons and Sainsbury’s agreed to pay more for British pork through their dedicated supply chains.
  • “This is a very welcome boost for beleaguered pig farmers, who are currently facing unprecedented costs of production and need a tangible increase in the price they are being paid in order to stay in business.
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Fauci says he will resign if Trump retakes the presidency in 2024

By Ramon Antonio Vargas
  • Dr Anthony Fauci bluntly said “no” when CNN’s Jim Acosta asked him during an interview Sunday if he would want to stay on as the director of the National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases in the event that voters gave Trump a second stint as president.
  • “If you look at the history of what the response was during the administration, I think at best you could say it wasn’t optimal,” Fauci said.
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Gas is a dangerous distraction for Africa

  • Despite United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres recently warning that investing in new fossil fuel infrastructure is “moral and economic madness”, leaders in Africa are being persuaded that extracting more gas is a prerequisite for the continent’s development.
  • New research shows that investing in renewables now could give the whole continent access to electricity in a decade and by 2050, Africa could completely phase out fossil fuels .
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‘He’s like Farage’: how Jim Allister fired up opposition to NI protocol

By Rory Carroll Ireland correspondent
  • Jim Allister is leader of the Traditional Unionist Voice, a one-man band with a simple message that has ensnared Northern Ireland ’s Democratic Unionist party ( DUP ) and by extension the UK government and European Commission.
  • The DUP leader, Sir Jeffrey Donaldson, might have sold a concession on the protocol last year to his party were it not for Allister shouting from the sidelines, said Shirlow.
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‘Apocalyptic’ food prices will be disastrous for world’s poor, says Bank governor

By Larry Elliott Economics editor
  • The Bank of England’s governor, Andrew Bailey, has blamed the war in Ukraine for the highest inflation in the UK for three decades and warned that “apocalyptic” food prices caused by Russia’s invasion could have a disastrous impact on the world’s poor.
  • Giving evidence to MPs, Bailey said that while he was unhappy about the current level of price rises, 80% of the inflation overshoot was down to factors outside the Bank’s control.
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McDonald’s to sell its business in Russia – Al Jazeera English

  • More than three decades after it became the first American fast food restaurant to open in the Soviet Union, McDonald’s said Monday that it has started the process of selling its business in Russia, another symbol of the country’s increasing isolation over its war in Ukraine.
  • Its restaurants in Ukraine are closed, but the company said it is continuing to pay full salaries for its employees there.
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Russians: tell us what the mood is like in your country

By Guardian community team
  • IP addresses will be recorded on a third party webserver, so for true anonymity use our SecureDrop service, however anything submitted on the form below will be encrypted and confidential if you wish to continue.
  • You can get in touch by filling in the form below, anonymously if you wish, or contact us via WhatsApp by clicking here or adding +44(0)7766780300.
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The Cocaine Queen of Honduras Was Just Arrested After a Shootout Killed Her Son

By Deborah Bonello
  • The swift arrest of Bobadilla following the push from the U.S government suggests that the recently-installed administration of President Xiomara Castro in Honduras could be starting to clean house, dismantling the narco state U.S prosecutors allege was overseen by her predecessor, former President Juan Orlando Hernández.
  • Herlinda Bobadilla, also known as “La Cinda,” the 62-year-old leader of the Montes drug cartel in Honduras, has been arrested two weeks after the U.S. placed a $5 million bounty on her head.
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Facebook Struggles to Keep Buffalo Shooting Video Offline

By Matthew Gault
  • Facebook said that any copies or links of any of this content will be removed and that it’s working closely with the GIFCT.
  • The proliferation of horrifying content online is a perennial problem online, and sites like Twitch, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube struggle to prevent this sort of thing from spreading, even if the initial upload is quickly taken down.
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Inflation rises in Nigeria amid fuel scarcity and insecurity

  • Inflation in Africa’s most populous country soared to 16.8 percent in April, driven by fuel price increases and accelerating costs for food, including bread and cereals, newly released data from Nigeria’s National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has shown.
  • Annual food inflation rose to 18.4 percent from 17.2 percent in March, sending the headline rate to 16.8 percent, the highest in eight months, according to the data released on Monday.
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JetBlue goes hostile with reduced Spirit takeover bid

  • made a hostile $3.3 billion cash bid for Spirit Airlines Inc., appealing directly to shareholders in an effort to prevail over a rival offer for the discount carrier by Frontier Group Holdings Inc.
  • JetBlue set up a website — www.JetBlueOffersMore.com — and issued a letter to Spirit shareholders as part of its attempt to derail the Frontier deal, with Chief Executive Officer Robin Hayes arguing that his own proposal offers more value, more certainty and more benefits for all stakeholders.
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Asylum seeker father faces 10 years in Greek jail for son’s death – Al Jazeera English

  • Dimitris Choulis, Hafez’s lawyer, said that as far as he knows, Hafez’s case is the first case of an asylum seeker being charged in Greece for the death of his child in a shipwreck.
  • A 26-year-old asylum seeker from Afghanistan is facing up to 10 years in prison in Greece for the death of his five-year-old son, who drowned after boarding a dinghy from Turkey to Greece with his father on November 8, 2020.
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‘It was terrifying’: Amber Heard testifies Johnny Depp hallucinated during fight

  • Johnny Depp was hallucinating and his sobriety had completely collapsed in the final months of his marriage, his ex-wife – fellow actor Amber Heard – testified on Monday in the civil lawsuit between the two.
  • At the beginning of her testimony on Monday, she corrected herself about the timing of the first time she said Depp slapped her, which revolved around her questioning him about one of his tattoos.
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McDonald’s announces it’s leaving Russia entirely after 3 decades

  • America's fast-food giant McDonald's rolled out on Monday the process to sell its hundreds of restaurants in Russia, joining scores of western companies who are exiting the Russian market amid international sanctions.
  • "The humanitarian crisis caused by the war in Ukraine, and the precipitating unpredictable operating environment, have led McDonald's to conclude that continued ownership of the business in Russia is no longer tenable," the Chicago-based company said.
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German state election leaves Chancellor Scholz reeling

  • As the federal election last September, the vote in Germany's most populous state was long described as a neck-and-neck race between the center-right CDU and the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), only for a previously unheralded candidate to score a clear victory.
  • And the CDU, humiliated on the federal level last year, now basks in a comfortable win and has the right to make initial approaches to potential coalition partners: The CDU took 37.7% of the vote, well ahead of the SPD on 26.7%.
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E-cigarettes ‘as safe as nicotine patches’ for pregnant smokers trying to quit

By Nicola Davis
  • “Many pregnant smokers find it difficult to quit with current stop smoking medications including nicotine patches and continue to smoke throughout pregnancy,” said Dr Francesca Pesola, an author of the new study who is based at Queen Mary University in London.
  • Only a small number of participants provided saliva samples to confirm smoking abstinence at the end of pregnancy, but once those who used non-allocated products were excluded, the team found higher rates of abstinence among the e-cigarette group.
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Quebec’s public health director should be independent of politics, coroner says

By Andy Riga
  • In a highly anticipated report into COVID-19 deaths in Quebec long-term care homes (CHSLDs), coroner Géhane Kamel recommends that Quebec’s public health director be independent of politics.
  • In the report, published Monday morning, Kamel noted that at the start of the pandemic, Dr. Horacio Arruda, the public health director at the time, did not make the wearing of a mask compulsory in CHSLDs.
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Biden okays plan to redeploy several hundred US ground forces into Somalia

  • President Joe Biden has signed an order authorising the military to once again deploy hundreds of Special Operations forces inside Somalia - largely reversing the decision by President Donald Trump to withdraw nearly all 700 ground troops who had been stationed there, according to four officials familiar with the matter.
  • The Biden administration's strategy in Somalia is to try to reduce the threat from al-Shabab by suppressing its ability to plot and carry out complicated operations, a senior administration official said.
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Jake Daniels becomes first openly-gay active male player in English football

By Telegraph Sport
  • A Blackpool statement read: "Blackpool Football Club has worked closely with Stonewall and the relevant footballing organisations to support Jake and is incredibly proud that he has reached a stage where he is empowered to express himself both on-and-off the pitch.
  • Blackpool striker Jake Daniels has become the first openly-gay active male player in English football.
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PM: Seeking NATO membership is historic shift for Sweden

By Radio Sweden
Ulf Kristersson (left), leader of the conservative Moderates, and Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson (right).Lyssna: PM: Seeking NATO membership ishistoric shift for SwedenAt a joint press conference in Stockholm, Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson and Ulf Kristersson, the leader of the biggest opposition party, announced that Sweden would submit an application to join NATO."The best for Sweden’s security and the security of the Swedish people is for Sweden to join NATO, and to do it with Finland," the Prime Minister said Monday.With general elections just a few months away, the government could change between now and when […]Read more >Similar articles >
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Eurovision winners sing at Polish border on way back to Ukraine

By Angela Giuffrida in Rome
  • Stefania had been among the favourites to win the Eurovision song contest in the northern Italian city of Turin, but decisive victory came from the public, with 439 points from the public vote putting the band in first place among the 25 finalists.
  • Ukraine’s Kalush Orchestra gave an impromptu rendition of their Eurovision-winning song, Stefania, at the Polish border as they made their way home on Monday.
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‘Rust’ producer: ‘We’ll be able to complete the movie’

By Reuters
  • Hutchins was killed in October when a revolver that actor Alec Baldwin was rehearsing with during filming in New Mexico fired a live round that hit her and movie director Joel Souza.
  • A producer of the movie “Rust,” whose set saw the fatal accidental shooting of cinematographer Halyna Hutchins last year, said the movie will be completed, the Hollywood Reporter reported on Monday.
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Online hate under scrutiny after Buffalo shooter streamed massacre on Twitch

By Alex Hern and Dan Milmo
  • The Buffalo shooting has focused attention on the role of Twitch, the gaming platform used by the gunman to broadcast a live stream of the massacre, amid renewed calls for tighter regulation of social media platforms.
  • In a statement issued to the New York Times, Angela Hession, Twitch’s vice-president of trust and safety, said the site’s reaction was a “very strong response time considering the challenges of live content moderation, and shows good progress”.
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Fiscal Capture at the ECB

By Willem H. Buiter
  • In this interpretation, major central banks have engaged in aggressive low-interest-rate and asset-purchase policies to support their governments’ expansionary fiscal policies, even though they knew such policies were likely to run counter to their price-stability mandates and were not necessary to preserve financial stability.
  • By using all the means at its disposal to support potentially debt-distressed member states, the European Central Bank is not merely serving as a market maker of last resort.
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Western Architecture is Making India’s Heatwaves Worse

By Ciara Nugent
  • As a more standardized international approach to building design emerged, many Indian architects abandoned the vernacular traditions that had been developed over thousands of years to cope with the weather extremes of different regions.
  • It was 1968, and the family was proud to use the material, he says, which was becoming a “status symbol” among villagers: the new home resembled the modern buildings cropping up in Indian cities, which in turn resembled those in images of Western cities.
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‘Wagatha’ is a grotesque symbol of me-me-me Britain

By Camilla Tominey
  • I get that having people hear your “truth” has been all the rage since the Duchess of Sussex produced her own unique series of “facts” in her interview with Oprah, but in what world do any of these women think anyone actually gives a toss?
  • Instead, it was the hashtag #WagathaChristie that was going viral on social media, as the wife of the footballer Wayne Rooney laid out the results of her Miss Marple-like detective work.
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Can Ukraine hold Russia accountable for environmental crimes? – Al Jazeera English

  • Ukraine’s ministry in charge of environmental protection said in a briefing last month that destroyed military equipment and ammunition, as well as exploded missiles and air bombs, pollute the soil and groundwater with chemicals, including heavy metals.
  • Nickolai Denisov, deputy director of the Geneva-based Zoï Environmental Network, is part of a team mapping incidents of war-related damage or disruption.
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Voices: Day five of Wagatha Christie – and the dark heart of the case has been laid bare

By Tom Peck
  • On her second day of cross examination, Coleen Rooney revealed that she had first written it out by hand, as she likes to do, before typing it out on WhatsApp and sending it to her brother to post on her instagram, while she did the same on Twitter.
  • They appear to expect Coleen Rooney, and the wider court, to believe that there’s no way Rebekah Vardy could have known that anyone with access to her account could have been doing anything untoward with it.
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Driver Brady Robertson sentenced to 17 years in deaths of Karolina Ciasullo, three daughters

By Canadian Press
  • But he pleaded not guilty to four counts of operation while impaired by drugs causing death, and his lawyers challenged the constitutionality of Canada’s law setting out a legal limit for THC blood concentration when driving.
  • Robertson pleaded guilty to four counts of dangerous driving causing death in connection with the June 18, 2020 crash that killed Karolina Ciasullo and her daughters Klara, Lilianna and Mila, who were between the ages of six and one.
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Turkish nuclear plant threatened by Russian sanctions – Al Jazeera English

  • The first reactor of the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant, located on the Mediterranean coast near Mersin, is due to start production next year, but potential blocks on financing and equipment from third countries have threatened to delay the $20bn project.
  • Unprecedented sanctions against Russia over its invasion of Ukraine have led to fresh concerns about Turkey’s first nuclear power plant, which is being built by Moscow’s state-owned nuclear company.
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North Korea’s Kim orders military to help curb COVID-19 outbreak

  • Kim ordered the deployment of the "powerful forces" of the army's medical corps to "stabilize the supply of medicines in Pyongyang City," North Korea's capital, state news agency KCNA reported on Monday.
  • The World Health Organization (WHO) warned on Monday the virus may spread rapidly inside the reclusive state but it had yet to receive information about the outbreak directly from local authorities.
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Chile finalises new draft constitution to replace Pinochet-era document

By John Bartlett in Santiago
  • After 10 months of fraught negotiations, Chile has finalised the draft of a new constitution that could replace the document drawn up during Gen Augusto Pinochet’s dictatorship.
  • “Whether this constitution is rejected or approved [by the plebiscite], I believe that Chile’s Indigenous peoples have already won,” said Rosa Catrileo, who represents the Mapuche, the country’s largest Indigenous group.
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Vladimir Putin’s war slams the brakes on EU recovery

By Tom Rees
  • The squeeze on households from soaring energy bills will cause eurozone GDP growth to weaken from 5.4pc last year to 2.7pc in 2022, a downgrade from the 4pc expansion predicted shortly before war rocked Europe.
  • Vladimir Putin’s war will slam the brakes on Europe’s recovery as surging energy prices risk causing the economy to grind to a halt, the EU has warned in a gloomy set of forecasts.
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Taiwan COVID-19 News Briefs: May 16

  • Taipei, May 16 (CNA) Taiwan reported 61,754 new COVID-19 cases on Monday, including 61,697 domestic and 57 infected abroad, as well as 29 deaths, according to the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC).
  • New Taipei Mayor Hou Yu-ih (侯友宜) said his city will donate 46,000 rapid tests to the 318 long-term care centers in its jurisdiction.
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England’s fast-bowling crisis deepens as Saqib Mahmood ruled out for the season

By Nick Hoult
  • Ollie Robinson only managed eight overs for Sussex, four of them bowling off spin, in the last round of championship matches and has not proved his fitness; while Matt Fisher, who made his debut alongside Mahmood in Barbados, has not played since mid-April due to a back problem.
  • With Jofra Archer and Olly Stone out for the long term and Mark Wood to miss the New Zealand series, England were already struggling for fast-bowling options.
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