World

‘Vaccine’ created for huge cyber-attack

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Security researchers have discovered a “vaccine” for the huge cyber-attack that hit organisations across the world on Tuesday. Dave Lee BBC The creation of a single file can stop the attack from infecting a machine. However, researchers have not been able to find a so-called kill switch that would prevent the crippling ransomware from spreading to other vulnerable… Experts are still unsure about the attack’s origins or its real… ‘Vaccine’ created for… Read More »

We’re quick to label refugees as either ‘good’ or ‘bad’, but they’re all entitled to protection

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A refugee I met last year in Canada has been charged with beating his wife. The ensuing coverage has encapsulated the extremes of the immigration debate. Amos Roberts  The Guardian Man who beat wife said he didn’t know it was against the law,” read the headline. Underneath, a photo of a man I knew very well – a man I’d once sympathised with. A distinctive underbite, thick salt and pepper hair, olive skin. I read on, with mounting… We’re quick ... Read More »

The Poisoned Chalice: Breakthrough WA Study Shines A Light On Global Water Contamination

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When deep-well bore water arrived in Australian bush communities people thought the big thirst was over. Jeff McMullen New Matilda Jeff McMullen reports that a decade long study shows unsafe water is now cutting lives short. If a baby is fed unsafe water contaminated with chemical nitrates, the child turns blue. The striking colouring occurs particularly around the eyes and… The Poisoned Chalice… Read More »

Ukraine, Russia, Poland Still Grappling With Major New Ransomware Attack

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Companies across the world are still grappling with the effects of a major new ransomware cyberattack that struck their computer systems, with Ukrainian firms and government sites among the… RFE/RL With reporting by Reuters, AFP, and the BBC Ukraine initially seemed to be the target of the cyberattack, which started on June 27, affecting websites of banks and major industrial enterprises, but it also hit other countries and… The virus’s pace appeared to slow by June 28, partly because the… ... Read More »

Colombia’s Farc officially ceases to be an armed group

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Colombia’s Farc rebel group has formally ended its existence as an armed group, putting an end to half a century of violent conflict. BBC In a ceremony which ended the disarmament process, President Juan Manuel Santos said the “peace was real and irreversible”. The former guerrillas will now work on forming a political party. “Farewell to war. Farewell to arms, welcome to peace!” said Farc leader Rodrigo Londoño, known as… Colombia’s Farc officially… Read More »

Whither Japan’s Democracy?

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To some observers, retired civil servant Hiroji Yamashiro, 65, has become a symbol of modern Japan’s uneasy  attitude towards dissent Daniel Hurst Asia Times To some observers, protester Hiroji Yamashiro, 65, has become a symbol of modern Japan’s uneasy attitude towards dissent. The retired civil servant, a long-standing campaigner against the US military presence in the southern prefecture of Okinawa, was detained for five months from… Whither Japan’s… Read More »

The emerging Turkish-Iranian alliance

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Iran and Turkey, the two non-Arab Middle Eastern states, are among the largest and most populous in the… Manish Rai, Geopolitical Analyst  Asia Times The former occupies a strategic location on the Persian Gulf and the Strait of Hormuz, while the latter controls the Bosporus Strait, the Sea of Marmara, and the Dardanelles, which links the… The two nations descend from the most ancient civilizations in the world and have strong national… Turkey and Iran have been mirror images of ... Read More »

The collapse of Turkish army’s health and education system

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In late May, more than 1,000 soldiers from a land forces brigade in the western Turkish province of Manisa were hospitalized for food poisoning, and one of them lost his life. Author: Zülfikar Doğan Translator: Sibel Utku Bila AlMonitor The problem at the barracks, where 6,000 new conscripts are receiving training, was described as intestinal infection, but the detailed medical analyses of samples from affected soldiers have not… On June 17, a new bout of mass food poisonings occurred in… ... Read More »

Paris Gourtsoyannis: Offer on citizens will leave EU cold

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‘Generous’ plan on EU rights will be lost in translation, says Paris Gourtsoyannis Paris Gourtsoyannis The Scotsman On Sunday there was a reminder, if any was needed, of just how shallow the cultural understanding is between the two sides that began Brexit negotiations last week. Asked what he thought of his opposite number, Brexit Secretary David Davis offered this piercing insight on EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier: “He’s very… Paris Gourtsoyannis: Offer… Read More »

Home ownership remains strong in Australia but it masks other problems: Census data

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The great Australia dream of owning your own home is still alive despite the various problems plaguing housing affordability, new Census data shows. Wendy Stone Kath Hulse Margaret Reynolds Terry Burke The Conversation Even though the overall home ownership trend remains strong, it’s masking other issues. The latest 2016 Census data assesses what the national home ownership and rental rates are and how these vary location. It also gives us a picture of mortgage and… Home ownership remains… Read More »

Will China provide sanctuary to North Korean submarines?

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North Korea has one of the world’s largest fleets of submarines Peter J. Brown Asia Times As Washington, Seoul and Tokyo fret about North Korea’s repeated firing of ballistic missiles into the skies of Northeast Asia, another part of Pyongyang’s arsenal has gone largely unnoticed because it’s under the… Of course, submarines aren’t supposed to be noticed, which is what can make them such an effective stealth… Will China provide… Read More »

Foreign Secretary joins crucial Cyprus settlement talks in Switzerland offering full UK support

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The Foreign Secretary will fly to Switzerland later today to support the UN facilitated talks aimed at reaching a settlement to the long running Cyprus issue. Foreign & Commonwealth Office and The Rt Hon Boris Johnson MP The Conference on Cyprus will reconvene in the Swiss resort of Crans Montana with the participation of the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, and representatives of the Guarantor Powers (Greece, Turkey and UK). The Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson’s attendance demonstrates ... Read More »

The ‘Conference on Cyprus’ at Crans Montana, Switzerland, 28 June 2017:

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An Open Letter to the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary of the United Kingdom For the immediate attention of the Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, HM Government, Whitehall, London and copied to H.E. Matthew Kidd, High Commissioner of the United Kingdom, British High Commission, Alexander Pallis Street, Nicosia OPEN LETTER By email to: fcocorrespondence@fco.gov.uk  Copied to: UKinCyprus@fco.gov.uk 27 June 2017 Dear Mr Johnson Re: The ‘Conference on Cyprus’ at Crans ... Read More »

Dear Andrea Leadsom, shrinking the state is the opposite of patriotism

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The leader of the House of Commons accuses broadcasters of not being patriotic – yet the Tories have betrayed the nation through cuts to our most valued services and institutions Polly Toynbee The Guardian Patriotic? Who? Not the Tory Brexiteers who have brought this country so alarmingly low. While EU politics are rebooted with new Franco-German confidence, our government is only saved by the Democratic Unionist party. Ignominy doesn’t get much more mortifying than… Dear Andrea Leadsom… Read More »

World food security risks growing, Chatham House says

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The world’s food security is increasingly reliant on 14 “chokepoints” for trade, a think-tank report has warned. BBC UK-based Chatham House says more needs to be done to protect key transport routes such as the Panama Canal, the Suez Canal and the Turkish… Almost 25% of the world’s food is traded on international markets. This, the report says, makes food supply and prices vulnerable to unforeseen crises or climate… World food security… Read More »

Roman gladiators were war prisoners and criminals, not sporting heroes

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For centuries, the bloody gladiator conflicts that the Romans staged in amphitheatres throughout the empire have engrossed and repelled us. Alastair Blanshard The Conversation When it comes to gladiators, it is almost impossible to look away. But the arena is also the place where the Romans feel most foreign to us. The gladiator was the product of a unique environment. He can exist only within a… Roman gladiators were… Read More »