Politics

Navy: Chinese Spy Ship Monitoring RIMPAC Exercise, Again

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A Chinese surveillance ship is operating off the coast of Hawaii to keep tabs on the U.S.-led Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise, a Navy official confirmed to USNI News on Friday. Sam LaGrone USNI The People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN) auxiliary general intelligence (AGI) ship has been operating in the exclusive economic zone (EEZ) off the coast of Hawaii since July 11, U.S. Pacific Fleet spokesman Capt… “We expect the ship will remain outside the territorial seas of the U.S. ... Read More »

Italian president intervenes in migrant stand-off, angering Salvini

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President Sergio Mattarella has made a rare intervention in Italian politics to end a dispute within the ruling coalition over a migrant boat, angering right-wing Interior Minister Matteo Salvini. ROME – Reuters Hurriyet Mattarella contacted Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte late on July 12 to express his concern about the plight of 67 migrants rescued at sea and brought to a Sicilian port. Salvini had refused to allow them to disembark. The ship had been brought to the port of Trapani with the ... Read More »

Trump says immigration has been bad for Europe – May DISAGREES

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THERESA May has refused to back Donald Trump’s anti-immigration rhetoric at their fraught press conference after talks at Chequers. Simon Osborne Express The US President said immigration was a “very negative” thing for Europe and agreed when asked if it had damaged the cultural fabric of the continent. Mr Trump told the press conference the migrant crisis had been “tough for Europe”. He said: “I think it has been very bad for Europe. I think that what has happened is ... Read More »

Thanks for your concern, but my religion is not in need of protection

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The recent contribution to our national debate on religious freedom by Social Services Minister Dan Tehan is to be welcomed. Catherine McGregor Brisbane Times Delivering a named oration in honour of  English cleric Sir Thomas More, Tehan argued that the dilution of Australia’s Christian identity may undermine the nature of our society, which he conceives as deriving its unique character from Judeo-Christian foundations. As veterans affairs minister, Tehan brought genuine compassion to a dysfunctional system that was compounding, rather than ... Read More »

The Missing Peace: Colombia’s New Government and Last Guerrillas

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Talks in Havana with the ELN, Colombia’s last insurgency, are advancing at a slow pace. ICG Backed by international actors, the current government and guerrilla negotiators should aim for rapid progress in negotiations to minimise the chance of a… What’s new? Peace talks with Colombia’s last guerrilla group, the National Liberation Army (ELN), could be under threat after the election of Iván Duque as the new president. Tangible short-term results are essential to ensure negotiations continue when Duque… Why does ... Read More »

East Timor bugging: Politicians call for AFP to investigate Australian spies’ role in 2004 operation

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Intelligence whistleblower turned independent MP Andrew Wilkie has called on the Australian Federal Police (AFP) to launch an investigation into the role the nation’s intelligence services played in the… By political reporter Matthew Doran ABC The 2004 incident led to a souring of the relationship between Canberra and East Timor, as the two nations were negotiating a deal on accessing offshore oil deposits at the time. Last month, Mr Wilkie used parliamentary privilege to reveal the Commonwealth Director of Public ... Read More »

International Criminal Court’s 20th Anniversary

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New Video Highlights Tribunal’s Significance (The Hague) – Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch released a short video today in which students from universities around the world discuss the importance of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Supporters of international justice will mark the 20th anniversary of the Rome Statute, the… HRW The ICC is the first permanent international criminal court set up to provide justice for the victims of the world’s worst crimes, including genocide, war crimes, and crimes against ... Read More »

Antigua and Barbuda: Barbudans Fighting for Land Rights

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Entitled to Consultation on Communal Ownership (Washington, DC) – A draft law before the Antigua and Barbuda Senate would deprive Barbudans of communal land where they have lived for generations, Human Rights Watch said today. The Antigua and Barbuda government should consult with the people of Barbuda to determine the impact of repealing communal land ownership on their human rights, and to reach an agreement that fully respects and… Since 1834, when the British emancipated their slaves, Barbudans as a ... Read More »

The Chart That Shows the Supreme Court Will Be Out of Step With the Country

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Without a moderate like Kennedy, the middle will be missing on the Supreme Court — and the views of the American public left behind. By Stephen Jessee and Neil Malhotra The New York Times The Supreme Court is supposed to be insulated from most political pressures. In fact, one of its primary roles is to serve as a counterweight to the will of the majority in cases where policies might impinge on the… Yet it is common to hear criticism that the court ... Read More »

UK’s Brexit white paper — close on goods, less so on services

epa06882600 Britain's Prime Minister Theresa May arrives for the second day of a NATO summit in Brussels, Belgium, 12 July 2018. NATO countries' heads of states and governments gather in Brussels for a two-day meeting.  EPA-EFE/TATYANA ZENKOVICH / POOL

Theresa May’s government will ask the EU for an ‘association agreement’ including a free-trade area for goods. Charlie Cooper Politico LONDON — The U.K. will formally ask the EU for a post-Brexit “association agreement” including a “free-trade area” for goods, a looser arrangement for financial services, alongside a security partnership and… Confirming plans agreed by Theresa May’s Cabinet at a summit on Friday, which led to the resignation of Brexit Secretary David Davis and Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, the white paper proposes that the… UK’s ... Read More »

Trump says Putin is not enemy or friend but ‘competitor’

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“Is he my enemy? He is not my enemy … Hopefully someday maybe he will be a friend. I just don’t know him very well,” he said speaking at a press conference at the NATO Summit when asked if he presented a… Sevil Erkuş – BRUSSELS Hurriyet In his meeting with the Russian leader, Trump said he would raise issues of arms control, extending New START (Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty), and Russian violations of the… “We go into that meeting ... Read More »

ABC would ‘cease to exist’ if it was barred from digital platforms, chairman says

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Justin Milne says commercial media and ‘political fringe’ want to shrink ABC for ‘self-serving’ ends Amanda Meade The Guardian Restricting the ABC’s digital output in response to calls from commercial media would kill public broadcasting, the chairman of the ABC, Justin Milne, has said. “If the ABC were barred from serving audiences on digital platforms, it would wither away and cease to exist,” Milne said in response to calls from News Corp and Fairfax Media for it to abandon online news and ... Read More »

Each time Australia delays bringing a sick child from Nauru, the stakes get higher

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The government is playing a dangerous game with the lives of refugee children Ben Doherty The Guardian Last week, three children held in Australia’s offshore immigration regime on the island of Nauru were moved to Australia following court order or threat of legal action. In six months, eight cases have been brought before the Australian courts of children suffering life-threatening psychological or physical illness that cannot be properly treated on Nauru. Every one of those cases has been won. Children have been ... Read More »

It’s Time to Disrupt NATO

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But not for the reasons Trump gives. Benjamin Schwarz The Nation NATO summits customarily amount to public-relations lovefests, in which sonorous communiqués declaring the vitality of the “Atlantic community” obscure what has become the increasingly dangerous moves of the… But President Trump, no surprise, promises to make this summit uncharacteristically uncomfortable and potentially rancorous. The issue for progressives is that, mostly inadvertently and largely for the wrong reasons, Trump will be disrupting an established pattern sorely in need of disruption ... Read More »

We all suffer when government fails to intervene early

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A jury could not agree last month on whether accused Bourke Street killer Dimitrious “Jimmy” Gargasoulas was mentally fit to stand trial. Matt Tyler & Peter Willis The Age Gargasoulas has said he is the messiah, a saviour, and the illuminati are to blame for the horrific attack that saw 34 pedestrians mowed down in Melbourne in January 2017. Following the attack, police spoke about Gargasoulas’ history of illicit drug use, robbery and violence. Gargasoulas’ devastating choices were his own. While ... Read More »

Voices of Idlib

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Humanitarian Fallout of Conflict ICG The Syrian war grinds lethally on, as regime forces move to recapture rebel-held areas. In our first-ever illustrated commentary, Crisis Group explores one holdout, Idlib, where three million Syrians – many already displaced – chafe at jihadist rule but dread the coming onslaught. Voices of Idlib… Read More »