Global Issues

Iran election: Votes are counted amid high turnout

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Counting is under away in Iran’s presidential elections, with official turnout said to be at about 70%. BBC Supporters of incumbent President Hassan Rouhani, who is seeking a second term, came out in force to vote. His main conservative challenger, Ebrahim Raissi, has already lodged complaints about alleged voting irregularities. Long queues were seen… Iran election: Votes… Read More »

Is the Universe a Hologram?

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Scientists Answer the Most Provocative Questions Science today is more a process of collaboration than moments of individual “eurekas.” * By Adolfo Plasencia * Foreword by Tim O’Reilly * The MIT Press Overview This book recreates that kind of synergy by offering a series of interconnected dialogues with leading scientists who are asked to reflect on key questions and concepts about the physical world, technology, and the mind. These thinkers offer both… Is the Universe… Read More »

South African men march against abuse of women and children

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Hundreds of protesters, most of them men, have marched in the South African capital, Pretoria, over rising levels of violence against women and children. BBC One of the organisers, Kholofelo Masha, said men had to take collective responsibility for the increase in beatings, sex attacks and killings. South Africa has one of the highest rates of sexual violence in the… Police figures showed… South African men… Read More »

Theresa May wants sweeping new powers to control the internet

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UK Prime Minister Theresa May wants sweeping new powers for her government to seize indiscriminate control of the internet. RT Towards the bottom of the Tory manifesto published on Thursday, there is a technology section that clearly states the party’s intent to control the online world through new… “Some people say that it is not for government to regulate when it comes to technology and the internet,” the manifesto… Theresa May wants… Read More »

As Trump Alights in Israel, Palestinians are Descending into Darkness

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President Trump plans a 22-23 May visit to Israel and Palestine in pursuit of the “ultimate deal”. Nathan Thrall ICG But behind the scenes, rising tensions between Palestinian factions may be drawing Gaza and Israel closer to a new war. President Donald Trump makes a 26-hour visit to Israel on 22 May to discuss the “ultimate deal” — a peace agreement between Israelis and Palestinians — with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in… As Trump Alights… Read More »

Flynn, Turkey, Trump: Turkey Has Infiltrated Highest Levels of U.S. Government, Kurdish Leader Reports

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Reports that President Donald Trump’s former national security adviser Michael Flynn was paid $500,000 to lobby for Turkey underscores the scale of Ankara’s influence at the highest echelons of power, according to… Callum Paton  NewsWeek Salih Muslim, co-chairman of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party, which provides political direction to the U.S.-backed Kurdish forces, says the… “[The Turkish government] is paying a… Flynn, Turkey, Trump… Read More »

Trump campaigned against Muslims, but will preach tolerance in Saudi speech

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RIYADH, Saudi Arabia — President Trump, whose dark, guttural demonization of Muslims was a trademark of his nationalist campaign, arrives here Saturday hoping the Arab world will listen to a… Philip Rucker and Abby Phillip The Washington Post Embarking on his first overseas trip as president, Trump plans to do a rhetorical pirouette with a speech Sunday in the birthplace of Islam preaching religious tolerance and inviting Muslims to join the United States in the… Never mind that as a… ... Read More »

Explainer: why we should be turning waste into fuel

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The federal government recently announced that it is giving recycling company ResourceCo a loan of A$30 million to build two waste-to-fuel plants producing “solid waste fuel”. Nick Florin Ben Madden The Conversation Waste-to-energy is an important part of the waste industry in Europe. Significant demand for heat means efficient and tightly controlled waste incinerators are common. However, Australia lacks an established… Explainer: why we… Read More »

Theresa May could waive rights to 95 per cent of British waters after Brexit, fishermen fear

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Fishermen fear Theresa May could waive the rights to almost 95 per cent of British waters after failing to make any solid promises over sovereignty of the seas in the Tory manifesto. Christopher Hope  The Telegraph A desire to take back control of Britain’s waters was a constant theme for Leave campaigners ahead of last year’s EU referendum. They believe Britain has legal rights to all fish within 200 miles of the… * Theresa May could… Read More »

The future of arts journalism is up to readers

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We’ve said it before and sadly, we’re saying it again. As tax-payer funded arts companies and organisations devote increasing marketing resources to advertising on Google, Facebook and their own websites, arts journalism is in… By Raymond Gill  Daily Review faces the same challenges as Fairfax Media and many other smaller publications trying to survive at a time when independent arts commentary and critique is… When we launched in 2013, we… The future of arts… Read More »

Rape investigation into WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange dropped

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Sweden today announced it has decided to drop its investigation in to rape allegations made against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange. NZ Herald The dramatic decision was revealed by Sweden’s Director of Public Prosecution, Marianne Ny, who said the probe had been ‘discontinued’. The 45-year-old Australian has been living inside the Ecuadorian Embassy in London for almost five years and has been granted political… Rape investigation into… Daily Mail Read More »

Anyone who thinks Westerners are flocking to Isil because of the Iraq war is a fantasist

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Isil and its jihadist ideology uniquely exploit underlying conflicts and offer the conspiracy theory solution: none of this is your fault. Dr Azeem Ibrahim The Telegraph When Islamist radicals commit some heinous act, they very often try to justify this as a legitimate response to the West’s foreign policy in the Muslim world. The West is the aggressor in “Muslim lands”, oppressing Muslims, so an equally violent response is therefore just and… Anyone who thinks… Read More »

Instruments of Pain (IV): The Food Crisis in North East Nigeria

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Five million people are hit by the humanitarian fallout of the Boko Haram insurgency. ICG Beyond ending the war, this briefing, the last of four examining famine threats in Nigeria, Yemen, South Sudan and Somalia, urges donors to fund their UN aid pledges in full and the Nigerian government to step up relief for its… Overview The humanitarian crisis in… Instruments of Pain… Read More »

Iran’s Bipolar Election

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Iranian voters have a real choice on 19 May between a president promising engagement with the West or one focused on the… Ali Vaez ICG At the same time, both leading candidates are clerical insiders who support the continuation of Iran’s nuclear deal. Who are the leading candidates in the 19 May election and what should we know about the top two? The May 2017 election is essentially a… Iran’s Bipolar… Read More »

NZ prepared to stand up and be counted says Trump’s nominee for ambassador

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New Zealand is “fiercely independent” and you can’t tell it what to do, the next US ambassador to New Zealand, Scott Brown, told the Senate foreign relations committee today. Audrey Young NZ Herald He specifically cited its opposition to China’s expansion in the South China Sea and its criticism of North Korea’s missile testing. The former US Senator is almost certainly going to get bipartisan support and… NZ prepared to… Read More »

ATO Deputy Commissioner Michael Cranston to be charged over tax fraud

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Australian Taxation Office Deputy Commissioner Michael Cranston will be charged in connection with an alleged $165 million tax fraud syndicate following what police have described as one of the biggest white collar fraud investigations in Australian history. Rachel Olding Megan Levy The Sydney Morning Herald Mr Cranston has been issued a… He is due to appear in… ATO Deputy Commissioner… Read More »