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A guide to the longest full eclipse of the moon this century, and more

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On July 27th, 2018 most of the world will be treated to an extraordinary evening of activity in the sky. Daniel Cunnama The Conversation First, there will be a total lunar eclipse and although uncommon, this one is special because it’s going to last a lot longer than usual – in fact the longest this century. But that’s not all. Mars will shine brighter than it has in 15 years. Caroline Southey asked Dr Daniel Cunnama to explain the… There’s ... Read More »

Fairfax Nine takeover: Australia’s oldest media empire ends with $4bn merger

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Combined media company will rival Murdoch’s News Corp Australia in size Amanda Meade The Guardian Australia’s oldest newspaper company Fairfax Media has been swallowed up by the national television network, Nine Entertainment, in a shock mergerthat spells the end of the 177-year-old legacy media name. While journalists at Fairfax’s two largest mastheads, the Age and the Sydney Morning Herald, furiously accused chief executive Greg Hywood of selling them out, media buyers and analysts welcomed what is the first major media consolidation since federal ... Read More »

Why Nigeria had good reasons to delay signing Africa’s free trade deal

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Much has been made of the embarrassing withdrawal by Nigeria from signing the African Continental Free Trade Agreement earlier this year having initially made the commitment to sign them. Olabisi D. Akinkugbe The Conversation Its decision was criticised by many, including myself. These reactions were justifiable given the historical poor performance of Nigeria and other African states when it comes to their commitment to regional economic integration. But, Nigeria’s decision needs to be evaluated in the light of the reason ... Read More »

Stopping Nigeria’s Spiralling Farmer-Herder Violence

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Rising conflict between herders and farmers in Nigeria is already six times deadlier in 2018 than Boko Haram’s insurgency. ICG To stop the bloodshed, the federal government should improve security; end impunity for assailants; and hasten livestock sector reform. State governments should freeze open grazing bans. What’s new?  Violence between Nigerian herders and farmers has escalated, killing more than 1,300 people since January 2018. The conflict has evolved from spontaneous reactions to provocations and now to deadlier planned attacks, particularly ... Read More »

Revisiting Nelson Mandela’s roots: a photographic exploration

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South African photographer, Bonile Bam, decided that he wanted to tell a different Nelson Mandela story by documenting the landscape and physical setting in which Mandela lived as a boy. Raymond Suttner The Conversation Like Mandela, Bam also grew up in the Eastern Cape province. The entirely black and white photographs will form part of an upcoming exhibition in Johannesburg called Mandela’s Roots (revisited). Raymond Suttner interviewed Bam on his photography and how he came to develop the Mandela exhibition, ... Read More »

Labour Members Move To Suspend Brexiteer MP Frank Field For Backing Tories

Embargoed to 0001 Monday January 29 File photo dated 08/12/14 of Labour MP Frank Field, who has issued a fresh warning about "state-sponsored destitution" amid claims of a "gaping hole" in the welfare system.

Some party members want whip withdrawn as a punishment Paul Waugh HuffPost Veteran MP Frank Field is facing a move by his local Labour activists to have him suspended from the party as a punishment for voting with Theresa May on Brexit. The former minister’s Merseyside constituency party will on Friday discuss an emergency motion to demand the “immediate” withdrawal of the Labour whip in protest at him backing the government last week. Members of Birkenhead constituency Labour party (CLP) ... Read More »

Sexual consent must be ‘actively communicated’: CLC NSW

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Community Legal Centres NSW has argued that, unless consent is explicitly given, there should be no assumption of its presence. Jerome Doraisamy LawyersWeekly In its submission to the NSW Law Reform Commission regarding the review of consent in relation to sexual assault, CLC NSW identified that, as it stands, section 61HA of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) does not stipulate a requirement for affirmative consent, and it must explicitly state as… “In most sexual assault cases, the matter being proven ... Read More »

Clueless companies create cybercrime risk for customers

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The email looked authentic: a virus-protection software provider said my subscription was overdue and about to expire; there had been a credit-card billing problem. Tony Featherstone Brisbane Times I knew that my subscription was due about then, so clicked on a payment link. Thankfully, some loose grammar in the email caught my attention and aroused suspicion that it was a phishing site designed to steal personal information. Crisis averted. Later that day, a friend complained about a phone scam doing ... Read More »

Farmers join gun control advocates in bid to mute ban on silencers for recreational shooters

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A proposal to end the ban on recreational shooters using gun silencers is set to go before Victorian Parliament. ABC Rural By Rachel Carbonell, National Regional Reporting Team The Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party is introducing a private members’ bill which would make it legal for all licensed shooters to use silencers. Silencers, or suppressors as they are also known, reduce gunshot noise and are strictly controlled throughout Australia. Usually only specialists such as professional hunters and veterinarians are granted ... Read More »

Sexual Violence by the Burmese Military Against Ethnic Minorities

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Testimony of Skye Wheeler at the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission Co-Chairmen Representatives McGovern and Hultgren and members of the commission, thank you for the opportunity to testify at today’s hearing on human rights and the use of sexual violence by the Burmese military against ethnic minorities in Burma. HRW Human Rights Watch has conducted research on the human rights situation in Burma for more than 25 years, focusing on abuses against political dissidents and media, as well as laws-of-war ... Read More »

How to reduce slavery in seafood supply chains

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Seafood is one of the most-traded foods in the world. The sector employs at least 260 million workers globally, and some 3 billion people rely on seafood as a primary source of protein. Trevor J Ward The Conversation The US State Department and other credible sources have consistently identified the seafood sector as a significant contributor to the global incidence of modern slavery. Widespread forced labour has been reported in the seafood industry in 47 countries. Part of the problem ... Read More »

Patriotic songs and self-criticism: why China is ‘re-educating’ Muslims in mass detention camps

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China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs denies their existence. But extensive reporting by international media and human rights groups indicates upwards of hundreds of thousands of Uighurs — a… The Conversation By Michael Clarke ABC The camps are not only massive, with some exceeding 10,000 square metres, but have also been likened to prison-like compounds, with, “reinforced security doors and windows, surveillance systems… The US Congressional-Executive Commission on China calls it, “The largest mass incarceration of a minority population in the ... Read More »

A short and disturbing history of Australia’s spy scandals

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Over and over, the history of intelligence services in Australia is that the only people made to suffer are those who reveal wrongdoing or incompetence. Bernard Keane Crikey We are regularly told that Australia has outstanding intelligence services and an enviable domestic security record. But, in fact, Australia’s intelligence services have long displayed incompetence and misconduct. The following list of scandals and failures of Australia’s intelligence agencies in the last 30 years illustrates an ongoing problem: the lack of adequate ... Read More »

Russia’s Nord Stream 2 natural gas link pipelay barge sets up in Germany

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Brussels — Preparatory works to lay pipes for Russia’s 55 Bcm/year Nord Stream 2 gas link at Lubmin, Germany have begun, with the offshore pipe installation barge put in its starting position. Author: Siobhan Hall Editor: Jeremy Lovell S&P Global Barge in position at Lubmin to start laying pipe NS2 plans to complete Greifswald works by end-2018 “The Nord Stream 2 project continues as planned and the implementation schedule is well within the planned timeline,” Nord Stream 2 project company ... Read More »