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Trump approves $8bn Saudi weapons sale over Iran tensions

US President Donald Trump is approving the sale of billions of dollars’ worth of weapons to Saudi Arabia, citing Iranian threats to its arch rival. BBC Mr Trump invoked a rarely used aspect of federal law to push through the $8bn (£6bn) deal – bypassing Congress. He did so by declaring that ongoing tensions with Iran amounted to a national emergency. The move has angered those who fear the weapons may be used against civilians in Yemen by Saudi-led forces. ... Read More »

Watch: Theresa May Admits Failure, Announces Resignation in Emotional Address

Theresa May announced the end of her turbulent three-year reign as U.K. prime minister, saying she would resign as leader of the Conservative Party on June 7. Brendan Cole Newsweek In a tearful speech on the steps of 10 Downing Street, May said she had done her best to honor the result of the 2016 EU referendum. She described her tenure as the U.K.’s second female premier as being “the honor of my life.” With her voice audibly cracking, she ... Read More »

Climate change: ‘We’ve created a civilisation hell bent on destroying itself – I’m terrified’, writes Earth scientist

The coffee tasted bad. Acrid and with a sweet, sickly smell. The sort of coffee that results from overfilling the filter machine and then leaving the brew to stew on the hot plate for several hours. James Dyke The Conversation The sort of coffee I would drink continually during the day to keep whatever gears left in my head turning. Odours are powerfully connected to memories. And so it’s the smell of that bad coffee which has become entwined with ... Read More »

Child migrants around the world are being denied their human rights

At 3am we were forced to leave the bus station. We were caught by the police. They asked if we had passports. We said no, we are from Afghanistan, please help us – the police drove away. Afghani refugee, 15, on meeting police in Paris Authors: The Conversation Abed – not his real name – had been in Paris after a treacherous overland journey from Afghanistan. He is one of many youngsters whose families fear the situation in their own ... Read More »

I feel free: Lawyer Nyadol Nyuon’s journey from horror to hope

Nyadol Nyuon is a commercial litigator at the prestigious Melbourne law firm, Arnold Bloch Leibler. She was born in the Itang refugee camp in Ethiopia, in 1987. Hannie Rayson WAtoday When Nyuon was four years old, there was conflict in Ethiopia. Her mother gave birth to her little sister, Nyanhial, and just two weeks later the family was forced to walk back to South Sudan. Her mother carried the baby in a bucket on her head. That journey took 40 ... Read More »

Behind the unlikely bond between two guys and the yiayia next door, lies a tragedy

Social media is in love with yiayia, the Greek grandmother who gives food across the fence to her young neighbours in Melbourne’s northern suburbs. Tom Cowie The Sydney Morning Herald But their story is more than that: it’s an amazing tale of love forged in tragedy. The videos are almost always the same. You never see the faces, or even the old woman’s hands because she’s a bit too short, just the food she has prepared for her neighbours. It ... Read More »

The Ankara Ultimatum

Subtlety and nuance are not a priority in Trump’s dealing with Turkey James Gorrie The Epoch Times Donald Trump’s approach to foreign policy is less than subtle. It has been said that wherever he—the bull—goes, he brings his own China shop with him. But in some cases, like Turkey, it has an advantage: Everybody knows where they stand. A Deteriorating Relationship It’s no secret that relations between Turkey and the United States have deteriorated over the years. U.S. interests are ... Read More »

Boris Johnson Is the EU’s Worst Nightmare

Europe’s top civil servant once described his potential leadership as a ‘horror scenario.’ Ian Wishart Bloomberg For European leaders watching Theresa May’s political death throes, a sense of inevitability has been replaced by one of fear. Rather than break the deadlock over Brexit, the departure of the British prime minister raises the prospect of what they’ve long considered their worst nightmare: a U.K. run by Boris Johnson, the… If May was predictable and her strategy clear, albeit flawed, many EU ... Read More »

US Bill introduced to deter China in South China, East China Seas

WASHINGTON – Republican Senator Marco Rubio and Democratic Party Senator Ben Cardin on Thursday (May 23) formally reintroduced the South China Sea and East China Sea Sanctions Act that would “impose… Nirmal Ghosh The Straits Times The bipartisan Bill is intended to put the brakes on China’s consolidation or expansion of its claims of jurisdiction over the sea and air space in disputed zones in the South China Sea – claimed by Taiwan and… Experts said the Bill was overdue. ... Read More »

‘Vote in your own country’: EU citizens tell of UK poll chaos

Admin errors mean people are being denied right to vote at European election polling booths Emma Graham-Harrison The Guardian EU citizens in the UK are being denied their democratic right to vote in the European elections because of administrative errors by local councils. EU nationals across the country have been reporting that they arrived at polling booths only to find their names crossed out with officials confirming they were not eligible to vote. Astrid Hampe-Nathaniel, a German and Italian citizen, who has lived in ... Read More »

2040: hope and action in the climate crisis

It was framed as “the climate election”, but last week Australia returned a government with climate policies that make the task of building a zero-emissions, safe climate Australia even harder. John Wiseman The Conversation This result comes at a time when international studies are raising the real and imminent spectre of a mass extinction crisis and many communities are already struggling with the consequences of the climate emergency now unfolding around us. Amid the growing strength of movements like Extinction ... Read More »

Cultural Diplomacy: The Missing Link in EU Foreign Policy

The EU’s principal values of democracy, human rights, and the rule of law are being challenged both internationally and within Europe itself, by populist governments. Gijs de Vries Berlin Policy Journal Faced with such threats to its cultural identity, the EU needs to respond, including by cultural diplomacy. The international system is undergoing rapid change. Power is shifting from Western states to rising powers; Russia and China are working to discredit civil and political rights; populists are eroding democracy by ... Read More »

Could a lack of humility be at the root of what ails America?

There are a lot of reasons behind the political polarization of the country and the deterioration of civic discourse. Frank T. McAndrew The Conversation I wonder if a lack of humility is one of them. In his recent book, “The Death of Expertise,” national security expert Tom Nichols described a type of person each of us probably knows: “They are young and old, rich and poor, some with education, others armed only with a laptop or a library card. But ... Read More »

Thai dissidents living in exile fear for their lives after a string of disappearances and murders

A string of mysterious murders and deportations across South-East Asia has Thai dissidents fearing for their lives and members of a controversial folk band say they may be targeted next. Liam Cochrane ABC The band Faiyen, which means “cold fire” in Thai, fled the country after the 2014 coup and has written songs criticising the military government and the monarchy. Late last week, the band posted a chilling message on Facebook. “We … fear for our lives. Many trusted people ... Read More »