EUROPE | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

EUROPE

Jan 23 08:12

I-CONSENT Fury at new app that gives men ’24-hour consent contract’ to have sex after Denmark passed controversial rape law

A NEW app that gives men a "24 hour consent contract" to have sex has sparked fury.

The launch comes in response to a new rape law, which criminalises sex without explicit consent in Denmark.

The app gives users a '24 hour consent contract' to have sex

Jan 22 08:55

Small EU Firms Hold Mountain Of Debt, Could Be Next Major Headache For Banks 

The European Union is doing the same as they did in 2008-09, extend and pretend, dishing out cheap loans to businesses and hoping for a recovery.

What's worrying today is that excessive optimism comes as European governments invest in the recovery by increasing public spending as the central bank keeps rates low and floods capital markets with liquidity.

The problem is that banks have high exposure to small business loans, which is the backbone of the continent's economy. If these businesses fail, another round of economic pain is dead ahead.

WSJ interviews Miguel Ríos, who operates four karaoke bars in Barcelona, said the pandemic and resulting government shutdown of his businesses forced him to borrow nearly $100k and put ten of his employees on a government wage-support program. He said his bars had been shuttered for almost one year as he is on the brink of financial disaster, with piles of insurmountable debt.

Jan 22 08:48

EU Set To Implement Bloc-Wide Vaccine Passport Standard

The European Union is set to recognize a standard for vaccine passports in a what is being pitched as a move to reignite travel within the bloc.

While admitting that the use of such passports at the moment would be “premature” due to low vaccination rates amongst total populations, the EU says that plans to implement a bloc wide standard will likely be picked up in the near future.

EU commission vice-president Margaritis Schinas told the Daily Mail it was “perfectly imaginable that this can open avenues for other use, including facilitating travel.”

Jan 22 08:02

Brexit Britain Refusing to Treat EU Like Sovereign State, Blocks Amb Diplomatic Status: Report

Brexit Britain is reportedly refusing to grant the European Union the rank of a sovereign state, by denying its ambassador to the UK full diplomatic rights and privileges.

The European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs, Josep Barrell, had written a letter to Britain’s Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab outlining the bloc’s frustration that the newly-independent United Kingdom would not offer statuses to its diplomats that “reflect the specific character of the EU”, which it claims it deserves because it has a currency, a court, and can make laws.

The UK, however, does not want to set a precedent by giving mission staff from the EU, considered simply another international body, the same status as diplomats from sovereign nations, according to the BBC’s report on Thursday.

Jan 22 07:46

'You Destroy the Whole of Europe': Sweden Democrat MEP Attacks EU's 'Headless' Immigration Policy

In recent years, the term "humiliation robbery" has been coined and entered Swedish media parlance to specifically denote crimes that also feature elements of moral, physical, or sexual torture. The overall spike in violent crime spurred the authorities to rethink its practice of omitting the ethnicity of the perpetrators for ethical reasons.

Sweden Democrats EU parliamentarian Charlie Weimers has unleashed a ruthless attack against what he called the EU's "headless" mass immigration policy and demanded that the bloc protect Europe's own people.

It was during a debate in the European Parliament concerning the humanitarian situation for immigrants on the EU's external borders that Charlie Weimers lashed out against the consequences of multiculturalism.

Jan 22 07:42

Britain moves towards Anglosphere federation

Jan 22 07:22

Europe 'Inevitably' Heading Towards Double-Dip Recession, PMI Survey Finds

The Purchasing Managers' index (PMI) reflects economic trends in the manufacturing and service sectors. A PMI below 50 points indicates a downturn of economic activity. The Eurozone's PMI for December sank to 49.1 amid new lockdown measures imposed to halt the spread of the coronavirus.

A double-dip recession in Europe seems an "increasingly inevitable" prospect, a PMI survey conducted by Markit Economics revealed on Friday.

According to preliminary estimates, the Eurozone's PMI tanked to 47.5 in January, down from 49.1 registered in December.

Jan 21 13:28

Former Head of Vatican Bank Guilty of Embezzlement, Money Laundering

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - A court on Thursday convicted Angelo Caloia, a former head of the Vatican bank, on charges of embezzlement and money laundering, making him the highest ranking Vatican official to be convicted of a financial crime.

Caloia, 81, was president of the bank, officially known as the Institute for Works of Religion (IOR), between 1999 and 2009.

The Vatican court also convicted Gabriele Liuzzo, 97, and his son Lamberto Liuzzo, 55, both Italian lawyers who were consultants to the bank.

The three were charged with participating in a scheme in which they embezzled money while managing the sale of buildings in Italy owned by the bank and its real estate division between 2002-2007.

Jan 21 10:46

Joe Biden Has a Europe Problem

Joe Biden begins his first full day as the 46th president of the United States today with as daunting a list of foreign-policy challenges as almost any of his predecessors. After four years of Donald Trump, the new administration must overcome skepticism about America’s ability to deal with the great tests facing the world, including the rise of China as a 21st-century superpower, the spread of nuclear weapons, and the onslaught of man-made climate change. To this list can be added a new issue: patching up the transatlantic alliance.

Jan 21 06:49

The US has a broken political system & is about to be usurped by China – what Europeans really think about America is telling

A new survey of citizens of 11 countries suggests that Joe Biden faces an almost impossible task when it comes to his goal of repairing frayed US-European relations. But it’s trite to simply blame four years of Donald Trump.

A recent survey commissioned by the European Council on Foreign Relations has found that most Europeans look to Germany rather than the United States as their most important partner, having lost faith in America’s ability to elect leaders who share their continent’s vision and values.

When seen in the context of the inauguration of Biden as the 46th American president, such a finding seemingly stands as a stark reminder of the unhealed scars that four years of an “America first” focus by Biden’s predecessor Trump have left when it comes to America’s relationship with the world. It also suggests it will be difficult for Biden’s administration to salve the underlying wounds and get America back on the track of being the global leader it aspires to be.

Jan 20 10:17

The Latest: Portugal leads in average virus cases per capita

LISBON, Portugal — Portugal has the highest seven-day average rate of new cases per capita and the second-highest rate of new deaths in the world, according to Johns Hopkins University.

The daily new cases per 100,000 population rose from 51 on Jan. 5 to 98 on Tuesday. The average daily deaths per capita rose from 0.75 to 1.63 during the same period.

Portugal is in lockdown, but the government is reluctant to close schools. Authorities have launched a program of rapid coronavirus tests at schools in the hardest-hit areas of the country. They say if schools close, some children won’t get proper meals, have computer access or help with their studies.

Some teachers are unhappy about the policy, pressing for a national school closure.

Jan 20 10:09

'U.S. political system is broken': World watches as Trump exits, Biden takes over

LONDON – Relief and skepticism in Europe. Anger in China over a parting shot. And concern in Russia over what the next four years herald for Moscow's activities on the world stage.

The whole world was watching Wednesday as President-elect Joe Biden prepared to be sworn in – and President Donald Trump departs the White House one last time for Florida, turning the page on an administration that has hurt the U.S. image abroad and exposed some of America's most glaring social, economic and racial fault lines.

"Europeans like Biden but they do not think that America will come back as a global leader. Most think the U.S. political system is broken, that China will be more powerful than the USA and that Washington will not defend them," said Mark Leonard, director of the European Council on Foreign Relations, a London-headquartered think tank.

Jan 19 07:42

Dutch Police Blast Anti-Lockdown Protestors With Water Cannon, Charge Them on Horseback and Attack Them With Dogs

Dutch police turned a water cannon on hundreds of anti-lockdown protestors who were taking part in a banned protest against the Dutch government and its tough coronavirus lockdown.

Police on horseback also moved in to break up the demonstration on a large square ringed by museums, including the Van Gogh Museum and Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam municipality said riot police took action to disperse the crowd because people weren’t adhering to social distancing measures.

Few of the protestors wore masks, which are not mandatory, and most did not respect social distancing rules.

Jan 19 06:47

Dutch government collapses. PM Mark Rutte resigns over childcare scandal

Jan 19 06:46

Dutch PM Rutte Resigns Over Childcare Subsidy Debacle

With Italian politics once again in shambles (heading for its 132nd government in 160 years), Europe is now facing yet another debacle as Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte has resigned two months before the country's election.

This has pressured the euro lower this morning.

Jan 18 14:20

The rise of La Resistenza to Covid lockdowns! Defiant Italian bar and restaurant owners choose civil disobedience and reopen

Facing fresh closure decrees lasting into March, Italian hostelry owners flout the rules just to avoid bankruptcy, while their diners prefer freedom rather than fear, and shout at interfering police, ‘Get out! you work for us!’

The lockdown resistance is rising! Nearly a year after the Italian government signalled the arrival of killer Covid-19 on European shores by suspending flights from China and declaring a national emergency when two cases of the virus were confirmed in Rome, the nation’s bars, cafes and restaurants are uniting with one voice to roar, ‘Basta!’

And if the number of 50,000 establishments currently on board is to be believed, it’s a movement growing by the day.

Jan 18 11:49

Thousands march in Vienna against coronavirus restrictions

Chanting demonstrators - many without masks - held signs including “Kurz Must Go” and “Make Influenza Great Again” during marches through the city centre.

Jan 18 08:13

Car Carrying King of Belgium Attacked During Brussels Riots

Rioters attacked the car of the King of Belgium while he was inside during protests over the death of “Ibrahima B.” in police custody.

The rioting occurred earlier this week after the death of 23-year-old Ibrahima B. in police custody after he was stopped and detained by officers on January 9th.

A demonstration took place at 3 p.m. in the afternoon on Wednesday but by 4 p.m. the situation had degenerated into violence as a mob of 100 people broke off from the demonstration and rushed into a tunnel, Sudinfo reports.

Police and rioters started to clash at the scene and a convoy passing by the area was attacked with rocks. It was later confirmed a car in the convoy belonged to Belgium’s King Philippe, and that he was inside the vehicle as it was being attacked.

Jan 18 07:44

Amsterdam riots 2021.01.17

Jan 17 10:30

10,000 Protesters In Vienna March Against Coronavirus Restrictions

At least 10,000 people marched through the streets of the Austrian capital on Saturday to protest coronavirus restrictions, calling on Chancellor Sebastian Kurz's government to resign as his administration recently spoke of extending the measures.

Demonstrators in Vienna, many without masks, held signs that said "Kurz Must Go" and "Make Influenza Great Again."

Jan 17 08:14

TEN THOUSAND protesters decry Covid-19 curbs in Vienna, face counter-protest

Some 10,000 people marched through the center of the Austrian capital Vienna on Saturday to protest against restrictions aimed at stopping the spread of Covid-19, and to demand the resignation of Chancellor Sebastian Kurz.

Coronavirus skeptics took to the streets as Kurz and his government discussed the possibility of extending the ongoing third lockdown in Austria, which includes movement restrictions and the closure of all non-essential businesses. The official announcement is expected on Sunday.

Jan 17 07:58

EU to Impose Travel Ban without Vaccine

Jan 16 19:24

“I Am Open”: 50,000 Italian Restaurant Owners Plan to Ignore Lockdown

Today – Friday 15th January – over 50,000 restaurants are planning to open, an act of mass civil disobedience against “anti-Covid” lockdown measures which have massively hurt the restaurant business, especially small family-owned businesses.

Spreading through social media under the hashtag #IoOpro (“I am opening”), the movement is largest country-wide act of civil disobedience since lockdowns began.

Italain opposition MP Vittorio Sgarbi has backed the movement, saying in an interview:

Open up, & don’t worry, in the end we will make them eat their fines”.

Jan 16 07:07

“I Am Open”: 50,000 Italian Restaurant Owners Plan to Ignore Lockdown

Today – Friday 15th January – over 50,000 restaurants are planning to open, an act of mass civil disobedience against “anti-Covid” lockdown measures which have massively hurt the restaurant business, especially small family-owned businesses.

Spreading through social media under the hashtag #IoOpro (“I am opening”), the movement is largest country-wide act of civil disobedience since lockdowns began.

Jan 15 22:17

Norway adjusts Covid vaccine advice for doctors after admitting they 'cannot rule out' side effects from the jab were behind 23 deaths in 'elderly, frail' patients

The country's medicines agency reported today that of these fatalities, 13 have been autopsied and showed signs of suffering side effects such as fever and nausea.

All of these patients had recently received the jab and were nursing home residents over the age of 80.

The Norwegian Medicines Agency stressed they were not alarmed by the deaths - they expected some - but is updating its advice to allow doctors to make a judgement whether to vaccinate their most frail patients.

Can you imagine the uproar if these 23 people had been killed by a gunman - it would be headline news across the world. But no, they were killed by an experimental vaccine, so there's no cause for alarm - deaths are to be expected.

Jan 15 06:41

Flashback: How Russian Pipelines Heat Up Tensions: From Reagan’s Battle Over Yamal To The European Row On Nord Stream 2

The Yamal pipeline, born at the height of the Cold War, was fiercely fought by President Ronald Reagan. Nord Stream 2 is heavily contested by several Eastern and Central European countries, Ukraine, the United States and-in a different tone and to a lesser extent due to institutional constraints-by the European Commission’s top level officials. Though Yamal and Nord Stream 2 affairs present several striking similarities, they might differ in their development.

The Yamal pipeline and the tit-for-tat around a project initiated in tense geopolitical context

Jan 15 06:33

Germany approves resuming Russia gas pipeline work

BERLIN -- German authorities on Friday gave immediate permission for work to resume on a subsea pipeline bringing natural gas from Russia.

The decision by the Federal Maritime and Hydrographic Agency can be appealed, meaning there could be another halt to the construction on the Nord Stream 2 project, which has drawn major criticism from the United States, some other European countries and environmental groups.

The U.S. government has argued that the Baltic Sea pipeline would make Europe more dependent on Russian gas and hurt European energy security. The Kremlin has responded by accusing Washington of trying to promote its own liquefied natural gas sales.

The pipeline project was also opposed by the administration of President Barack Obama, and German officials have said they don't expect broad changes in U.S. policy when President-elect Joe Biden takes over from President Donald Trump.

Jan 14 11:14

Belgian rioters attack the king's car with him inside in violent unrest over death in police custody of black man who was arrested for breaking coronavirus curfew

King Phillipe was travelling to the Palace of Laeken, his official residence, as protesters began to batter his BMW with projectiles. The vehicle quickly sped off guarded by the king's security detail.

More than 500 protesters, some of them holding Black Lives Matter signs, gathered in Belgium's capital on Wednesday following the death of the 23-year-old Ibrahima Barrie.

Barrie was arrested by police on Saturday in the city for breaking the limit on gatherings of more than four people outdoors. The city also has a strict 10pm curfew as part of restrictions that have brought the country's coronavirus rate under control after it soared in November.

The man was taken to a police station where officers claim he fainted, and then transferred to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead, the office said.

Jan 13 09:26

Norway becomes first country to sell more electric cars than petrol vehicles

Electric cars comprised 54% of all new vehicle sales in Norway for 2019.

This makes Norway the first country to have sold more electric cars than petrol, hybrid, and diesel engines in a year.

The Norwegian government plans to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2025, and is using tax breaks and financial incentives to encourage the purchasing of more sustainable vehicles.

Jan 13 04:52

Norway becomes first country to sell more electric cars than petrol vehicles

Electric cars comprised 54% of all new vehicle sales in Norway for 2019.

This makes Norway the first country to have sold more electric cars than petrol, hybrid, and diesel engines in a year.

The Norwegian government plans to ban the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2025, and is using tax breaks and financial incentives to encourage the purchasing of more sustainable vehicles.

Jan 11 07:34

Czechs Finish Gas Pipeline That Connects Them to Nord Stream 2

The Czech Republic has put a new gas pipeline, which is connected to the EUGAL pipeline – a terrestrial extension of Nord Stream 2, into operation. This was reported by Deutsche Welle with reference to the statement of the Praga-based operating company Net4Gas.

The 150-kilometer pipeline begins on the Czech border with German Saxony and ends in the west of the country at a gas distribution center next to the border with German Bavaria.

Its construction began back in 2017 and its overall cost was 540 million euros. The EUGAL highway runs from the Baltic coast through Germany to the Czech Republic and on to Austria.

Jan 10 00:47

Snow blizzard in Spain kills 4, breaks 50-year old record

A persistent blizzard has blanketed large parts of Spain with 50-year record levels of snow, killing at least four people and leaving thousands trapped in cars or in train stations and airports that had suspended all services as the snow kept falling on Saturday.

Jan 09 08:42

Containment Is Futile: Europe and China Seal Investment Deal as U.S. Grumbles

The European Union and China have agreed “in principle” to a deal on investment after seven long years of negotiation, pointedly ignoring the concerns of the incoming Biden administration. The economic consequences of the so-called Comprehensive Agreement on Investment (CAI) remain unclear, but the political signals are telling: the EU is following an essentially German economic agenda centered on global trade while the United States of America’s attempts to economically contain China are manifestly ineffective.

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen announced the agreement with Trumpesque hyperbole, to not say fake news, gushing that China had just sealed a deal with “the largest single market in the world.” In fact, with Brexit the EU economy is now unambiguously the second-largest in the world, with a respectable nominal GDP of $18.3 trillion (as against the United States’ $21.2 trillion and China’s fast-growing $15.2 trillion).

Jan 08 11:46

The EU Avoids Treating Guaido as 'President' of Venezuela

The European Union will maintain its engagement with all Venezuelan political actors, including "Juan Guaido and other representatives of the outgoing National Assembly elected in 2015."

The European Union avoided referring to the opposition politician Juan Guaido as Venezuela's "acting president" once the mandate of the National Assembly over which he presided expired on Tuesday.

"Venezuela urgently needs a political solution to end the current impasse through an inclusive process of dialogue and negotiation leading to credible, inclusive, and democratic processes," said Josep Borrell, High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy.

He added that the EU will maintain its engagement with all Venezuelan political and social actors, including "Juan Guaido and other representatives of the outgoing National Assembly elected in 2015."

Jan 07 05:59

Top Swedish Bureaucrat in Hot Water Over 'Necessary' Gay Fest Abroad

Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency boss Dan Eliasson's luxurious trip to the Canary Islands overshadowed previous lapses by high-ranking politicians, such as shopping tours, which defied the government's own recommendations.

Despite the Swedish Civil Contigencies Agency's (MSB) general advice against unnecessary travel, its director general Dan Eliasson travelled on a Christmas and New Year vacation to the Canary Islands, the newspaper Expressen reported.

Amid the public outrage that ensued, Eliasson fought back that the trip was “necessary”.

“I have given up a lot of trips during this pandemic, but I thought this was necessary,” Dan Eliasson told Expressen. “I have, of course, been free during the Christmas holidays and I have worked a lot from distance,” Eliasson added, somewhat enigmatically.

Jan 06 06:32

EU medicines regulator approves Moderna Covid-19 vaccination

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has approved the Covid-19 vaccine developed by US biotech company Moderna for use across the EU, making it the second jab given the green light across the 27-nation bloc so far in the pandemic.

The EU drug regulator recommended granting the vaccine a conditional marketing authorization for use in people aged 18 and over, according to a statement released by the agency on Tuesday.

Emer Cooke, Executive Director of the EMA described the vaccine as “another tool to overcome the current emergency,” adding that the regulator’s work would “always be guided by the scientific evidence.”

Jan 05 11:04

Israel and Greece to sign largest ever security deal

Israel and Greece are set to sign the largest ever security agreement between the two countries, worth up to $1.68 billion, the Times of Israel has reported.

The deal to be signed by the respective defence ministries, approves the establishment and operation of a flight school for the Hellenic Air Force by Elbit Systems, Israel's largest private arms company.

Elbit is said to have supplied 85 per cent of the drones used in the war on Gaza in 2014, when over 2,200 Palestinians – 500 of them children – were killed in only 50 days. The Israeli arms company has ten sites across Britain.

The Greek government will also purchase training aircraft from Israel, as well as simulators, training and logistic support. The agreement will cover more than 20 years, the Israeli Defence Ministry announced.

Jan 04 06:49

Hungary’s Constitution Adds Protection for Children

On Tuesday, Dec. 15, Hungary adopted amendments to its constitution aimed at protecting children from the irreversible and damaging effects of transgenderism as well as being raised without opposite-sex parents.

The change was meant to strengthen the legal standing of the natural, heterosexual family and of the innate biological reality of the two sexes. Further, it aims to emphasize the Christian basis of Hungary's culture and the government's commitment to that culture's preservation and propagation.

Jan 04 06:48

COURTS CHALLENGE ‘ILLEGITIMATE’ LOCKDOWNS

The Court of Rome has blown a hole in Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte's Wuhan virus lockdown restrictions, declaring them "illegitimate" and "unconstitutional."

Italy's constitution does not permit the government to declare a state of emergency due to the risk of public health and gives the state specific regulatory powers only in case of a declaration of war, Judge Alessio Liberati ruled Dec. 16.

The Decrees of the President of the Council of Ministers (DPCM) employed thus far to impose lockdowns are administrative acts which cannot be used to limit fundamental human rights and constitutionally guaranteed freedoms, Dr. Liberati ruled.

Italian newspaper Il Giornale described the verdict as a "bombshell" ruling by the Court of Rome quoting the judge's words dismissing the DPCMs as "vitiated by violations for lack of motivation" and "by multiple profiles of illegality."

Dec 31 14:44

Ireland Put Into Imprisonment Again!

Dec 31 07:14

EU agreed new trade deal with China in move likely to INFURIATE Joe Biden

THE EUROPEAN UNION has agreed "in principle" a major investment pact with China which risks putting the bloc on a collision course with Joe Biden's incoming administration.

On Wednesday European Commission and Council presidents Ursula von der Leyen and Charles Michel backed the agreement at a video conference with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French president Emmanuel Macron were also on the call.

Dec 31 06:52

Nearly 400,000 Italian Businesses Face Closure Due to Coronavirus

An Italian business group had predicted that nearly 400,000 businesses could close due to the economic impact of the Chinese coronavirus and lockdown restrictions.

The General Confederation of Enterprises, Professional Activities, and Self-Employment (Confcommercio) has predicted that over 390,000 businesses are at risk of closure, a figure that represents around 7.2 per cent of the total number of companies in the country.

The lockdown restrictions, combined with a 10.8 per cent drop in consumption rates in Italy, have drastically affected businesses across the country, with some industries being hit particularly hard, newspaper Il Giornale reports.

Dec 31 06:39

‘Scotland will be back in EU after independence!’ says SNP leader, as party pledges to vote AGAINST Brexit deal

The leader of the Scottish National Party in the UK Parliament has slammed Boris Johnson’s trade deal with the EU and vowed to vote against it in a complete U-turn on Brexit.

Speaking on Wednesday, Ian Blackford, SNP leader in Westminster, said that Scotland would soon be heading back into the European Union, having seen the PM’s “bad Brexit deal.”

“It’s the people of Scotland that are sovereign, and it’s the people of Scotland that will determine to take them back into the European Union with independence,” he stated during the five-hour debate on the European Union (Future Relationship) Bill in Parliament on Wednesday.

The SNP MP had already been cautioned by the speaker of the house for repeatedly interrupting Boris Johnson during his opening speech.

Dec 30 08:11

UK Parliament Gathers to Vote on Post-Brexit Trade Deal With EU

Negotiators from the UK and the EU reached a post-Brexit trade agreement just one week before the end of an 11-month transition period that came into force when the United Kingdom left the bloc on 31 January.

Sputnik goes live from London as UK lawmakers have returned to parliament to debate and vote on the country's post-Brexit trade deal with the European Union that was agreed on Christmas Eve.

The parliament previously said the agreement will be scrutinised by members of the House of Lords before a vote takes place.

Dec 30 07:14

These Are The Biggest Risks To Lasting Brexit Trade Peace

EU nations unanimously backed the deal worked out by negotiators from London and Brussels, a sign that the last-minute deal - the text of which was released on Saturday - is on track to become binding international law.

Or at least, so one might think.

Brussels bureaucrats (along with a chorus of sell-side analysts covering the pound) have pointed out in the days since the deal was struck that it isn't over yet. And as at least one top British official pointed out earlier today, UK businesses might be in for a "bumpy ride" (especially the financial services industry).

Dec 29 07:51

Spain Plans A "Registry" For Those Who Refuse COVID Vaccine

As Europe begins vaccinating the first wave of high-priority patients, a "glitch" has already emerged: many health-care workers and others have refused to take the vaccine, as skepticism and suspicion remain elevated.

A similar phenomenon has played out in the US, but to a less intense degree. But the situation, which we discussed last night, is now one of a variety of reasons, from a shortage of supplies and raw materials, to an uncooperative populace, that public-health officials are growing worried about hitting lofty vaccination targets.

And so, in Spain at least, government bureaucrats are fighting back, as Health Minister Salvador Illa warned the country would set up a "registry" for everybody who refuses the vaccine.

Dec 29 07:48

Bass Blasts "Deeply Corrupt" EU Over Imminent Landmark China Investment Deal

In contrast to the EU, the US Congress passed the Uyghur Human Rights Policy Act in June 2019, and on September 22, 2020, the US House of Representatives passed the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act.

As The Gatestone Institute's Judith Bergman notes, the US has sanctioned at least 28 Chinese officials over their actions in Xinjiang. The list includes senior Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials, such as current Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR) Party Secretary Chen Quanguo, who executes Chinese government policy in the region. He is also the current First Political Commissar of the XPCC, a role in which he has exercised control over the entity.

Dec 29 07:37

US President-elect Joe Biden calls for stronger trade coalitions against China, as EU seems close to a deal

US President-elect Joe Biden called on Monday for stronger coalitions against China on the trade and economic fronts, even as the European Union appeared close to a bilateral investment agreement with Beijing.

“As we compete with China and hold China’s government accountable for its abuses on trade, technology, human rights and other fronts, our position will be much stronger when we build coalitions of like-minded partners and allies,” said Biden, who will assume office on January 20.

“On any issue that matters to the US-China relationship – from pursuing a foreign policy for the middle class, including a trade and economic agenda that protects American workers, our intellectual property and the environment – to ensuring security and prosperity in the Indo-Pacific region, to championing human rights – we are stronger and more effective when we are flanked by nations that share our vision,” Biden said.

Dec 29 06:42

European Union Prepares Investment Pact with Communist China

EU member states gave political backing to Brussels’ planned investment pact with China on Monday, clearing the way for a deal between the world’s biggest economic blocs.

At a meeting of ambassadors, the German EU presidency noted that no member had “raised a stop sign and the way for a political endorsement was thus cleared”, a diplomat said.

The diplomats noted “recent positive developments” in negotiations, with China reportedly addressing concerns over the alleged use of forced labour on its farms.

Dec 28 09:07

Major Covid Vaccine Glitch Emerges: Most Europeans, Including Hospital Staff, Refuse To Take It

"If someone gave me 10 million euro, I wouldn’t take it."

Dec 28 07:20

Increased NATO activity near Russian borders may one day lead to a ‘serious incident’, top Moscow defense official says

Moscow has warned that increasing Western military activity near Russian borders may ultimately have dangerous consequences. This year has seen more NATO vessels and planes coming close to the country's territory.

Speaking to government newspaper Rossiyskaya Gazeta, Russia's Deputy Minister of Defense Alexander Fomin recalled some recent close calls, and accused the US and its allies of also using "aggressive rhetoric."

"In 2020, the activity of the air and naval forces [of NATO] has increased significantly, and situations that can lead to serious incidents are increasingly emerging," Fomin said, "These actions were openly provocative. The incidents were avoided only thanks to the high level of professional training of Russian pilots and sailors."

Dec 28 07:16

Russia vows retaliatory moves if US deploys missiles in Europe

Russia’s Deputy Defense Minister Alexander Fomin has criticized US refusal to extend the New START arms control treaty as well as its plans to deploy missiles in Europe, vowing to take “proportionate retaliatory measures.”

"Russia invited the United States to prolong the New START (Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms) and simultaneously get down to joint work to draft a new agreement that would take into account all factors influencing strategic stability,” Fomin said in an interview with local daily Rossiiskaya Gazeta on Sunday.

“In the light of the current political situation in the United States, we do not rule out that the US stance on this issue may change," Fomin added, while insisting that the American side has different priorities, for which reason it has shown little interest in extending the treaty that will expire on February 5, 2021.

Dec 28 07:15

Refugees freezing at burnt-out camp in Bosnia after heavy snowfall

Hundreds of refugees, including women and children, have been left without shelter in freezing conditions Bosnia-Herzegovina, days after a fire destroyed their already squalid camp.

More than a thousand refugees, trying to reach Western Europe, were stranded in burnt-out tents in the Lipa camp in northwest Bosnia on Saturday as heavy snow fell and winter temperatures suddenly dropped.

Earlier this week, a fire destroyed four large tents at the camp, and left refugees with no facilities or heat.

Bosnian authorities have so far failed to find new accommodations for the refugees.

Dec 24 07:27

EU Tech Companies Reportedly Furious at US for Shutting Them Out of China to Get Competitive Edge

The US has slapped Chinese technology companies with multiple rounds of sanctions, recently adding Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation, China’s biggest microchip maker, to its technology exports blacklist. All this while the Treasury has granted exemptions to US tech giants, allowing them to continue to do business with the PRC.

European diplomats and tech executives are becoming "increasingly frustrated" with America’s unilateral sanctions against China, and fear that the restrictions are barring the bloc’s companies from entering the Chinese market, thus giving American firms enjoying exemptions a competitive advantage, the Financial Times has reported, citing business and diplomatic sources.

“So far, US companies have been given licenses to supply Huawei, while European suppliers cannot,” one anonymous executive told the newspaper.

Dec 24 07:22

Brexit: they say a deal is still possible!

Dec 22 09:26

25 Years Later: What the Euro Has Become

Dec 22 08:15

Europe's Machiavellian Moment

It is still too early to say, but perhaps the U.S. election is the beginning of a new ‘Turning’ (in the sense of the ‘Fourth Turning’). Of course, what happens in the U.S. is most people’s primary focus now; but even as that plays out over the coming year – perhaps chaotically – the seeds sown on 3 November, and in its aftermath, take us to a pivot: Does the centralising project of progressive ‘wokedom’ in Blue America, and in Merkel’s Europe, have the ‘grit’ to persevere – or will its leaders fold in the face of the approaching crises – and concomitant public anger?

Dec 22 08:01

80,000 People Sign “Stop Clinical Trials of Corona Vaccines” Petition –European Medicines Agency (EMA) Silent

Dr. Wolfgang Wordarg, pulmonologist and former head of a public health department, and Dr. Michael Yeadon, ex-Pfizer research director for respiratory diseases, petitioned the EMA, the European Medicines Agency, on December 1, 2020, to immediately stop clinical trials of the Corona vaccines.

The petition has been supported by at least 80,000 people and can be further supported.

The flood of emails from concerned supporters was so high so that during the peaks the EMA’s server was temporarily unavailable. Nevertheless, as of December 11, 2020, there has been no response, no comment from the EMA on the petitioners’ submission.

In response to the petitioner’s email, Ms. Irene Bachmann ([email protected]), acting as Mr. Enzmann’s absentee deputy, responded, stating in substance that it was assumed that the EMA would get back to the petitioners on this matter.

Dec 21 06:38

‘Are we the baddies?’ Brits not amused as Ireland & France join EU states in locking out travel from UK over mutant Covid strain

Dublin and Paris have imposed restrictions on travel from Britain for at least 48 hours. It comes as a slew of European countries mull travel bans over the new coronavirus strain the UK government has warned Brits about.

The Irish government says the measures, banning private travel between the UK and Ireland, will take effect on Sunday night and initially stay in place for at least two days. Cargo planes and freight vessels, as well as some essential supply-chain workers, will still be allowed to cross the border.

“General travel between here and Britain is going to be restricted, and we will review it on Tuesday morning,” Transport Minister Eamon Ryan told Virgin Media News.

Dec 21 06:35

Brexit: EU fish catches to be slashed!

Dec 21 06:34

Strong explosive eruption at Etna volcano, Aviation Color Code raised to Red, Italy

A new paroxysmal eruptive episode started at Etna volcano, Italy on the morning of December 21, 2020. The Aviation Color Code has been raised to Red at 09:34 UTC.

According to the Etna Volcano Observatory, a strong intensification of strombolian activity started at Etna's Southeast Crater at 09:08 UTC.

The weather conditions don't allow continuous observation of the current phenomenon.

From a seismic perspective, the average amplitude of volcanic tremor in the Southeast Crater has high values.

Dec 20 06:35

EU humiliated as Barack Obama pinpoints 'unresolved contradictions' at heart of bloc

The EU is going through arguably its greatest crisis of confidence. Regardless of the current state of Brexit talks, Britain’s move to leave the bloc manifests itself as an unprecedentedly poor indictment of the Brussels project. Throw in the fallout regarding the EU’s coronavirus recovery fund, and subsequent in-fighting between member states, the future looks bleak at best. To make matters worse, Mr Obama ? still one of the most influential voices in global politics ? has twisted the knife with a damning assessment.

Dec 18 15:46

'A bit too transparent'? Pfizer fumes as Belgian official leaks all VACCINE PRICES for EU in 'unintended' Twitter post

The shroud of secrecy over the Covid-19 vaccines' prices was suddenly lifted, when Belgian MP Eva De Bleeker published a tweet detailing how much the EU is paying to six pharma companies for each shot.

Brussels has for months been insisting it is legally restricted from revealing any details on the price of the coronavirus vaccines, but that didn't stop the senior official from blowing the lid late on Thursday.

De Bleeker, who is Belgium's State Secretary for Budget and Consumer Protection, quickly realized her blunder and deleted the post with the price list, but it was too late, as local media outlets had already made screenshots of it.

The post listed the prices per dose of vaccines purchased by the European Union as follows: Oxford/AstraZeneca: €1.78; Johnson & Johnson: $8.50; Sanofi/GSK: €7.56; BioNTech/Pfizer: €12; CureVac: €10; and Moderna: $18.

Dec 18 08:24

Spain officially ends FORCED sterilization of people with mental disabilities – a practice still LEGAL in many US states

The Spanish government will no longer sterilize disabled people against their will. Despite the fact that eugenics is generally considered a thing of the past, forced sterilization is still permitted in multiple US states.

The Spanish government officially ended the forced sterilization of disabled people on Thursday, publishing new legislation in an official newsletter. According to the newsletter, “In the last decade, more than a thousand forced sterilizations have been practiced in Spain, most of them on women.”

“The end to this practice...brings an end to one of the most detrimental human rights violations allowed under Spanish law,” the Spanish Committee of Representatives of Persons with Disabilities (CERMI) in a statement on Thursday.

Dec 17 13:25

US Hits Chinese, UAE-Based Companies With Iran-Related Sanctions

On Wednesday, the US sanctioned companies based in China and the UAE, accusing them of helping Iran export petrochemicals, as the Trump administration continues to ramp up the pressure on Tehran.

The Treasury Department said in a statement that it blacklisted four companies for facilitating the export of petrochemicals produced by an entity in Iran that is already under US sanctions.

The US also hit a Vietnam-based company with sanctions over its alleged connection with “significant transactions for the transport of petroleum products from Iran.” The sanctions seize any US assets the companies may have and block US citizens from doing business with them.

Dec 17 13:15

Israel destroys and steals $2 million worth of EU aid

Imagine that you had neighbors who were constantly stealing your belongings or damaging your property.

How would you respond? By inviting those neighbors to a party? By celebrating how they have the same “values” as you?

Israel is an abusive neighbor for the European Union.

Through a freedom of information request, I learned that Israel has caused destruction worth more than $2 million to EU aid projects in the occupied West Bank over the past five years.

Yet rather than taking any action against Israel, EU representatives regularly sip champagne with and shower gifts on their abusive neighbor.

Dec 17 13:01

Emmanuel Macron: Positive test prompts European leaders to self-isolate

A host of European leaders are self-isolating after the French President, Emmanuel Macron, tested positive for Covid-19.

Mr Macron, 42, will self-isolate for seven days while working remotely, the Elysée Palace said in a statement.

The French president attended a number of high-profile events in recent days, including an EU summit.

Following his diagnosis several other European leaders, including the Spanish PM, said they would self-isolate.

"The President of the Republic has been diagnosed positive for Covid-19 today," the Elysée said on Thursday morning. The diagnosis was made following a "test performed at the onset of the first symptoms", the statement added.

The French president's wife Brigitte Macron, who is 67, is self-isolating but has no symptoms.

Dec 17 11:34

The Political Theology of White Guilt: Trump as a Threat to the EU’s Post-WWII Narrative

The presidential postelection period unfolding now in the US is having a big impact on the political class in Europe. Historically speaking this is nothing new. Every politician in Europe knows that any major political change in the US is bound to have, the day after, an effect on his own decision-making policy and likely determine the time span of his career. This mode of mandatory pro-American mimicry among European politicians has been playing out in full force since 1945.

Therefore, it should not come as a surprise that the mainstream media in Europe, seconded by EU high officials, with a very timid exception of Poland, Hungary and Slovenia, are piggybacking on US media outlets in a joint effort to unseat Trump and his legacy. The German political class, with Chancellor Merkel at the top of the EU System, is at the forefront of this anti-Trump pro-Biden mimicry.

Dec 16 14:38

The U.S. Treasury Department has branded Vietnam and Switzerland as currency manipulators while putting China and nine other countries on a watch list

WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Treasury Department has branded Vietnam and Switzerland as currency manipulators while putting China and nine other countries on a watch list in an annual report designed to halt countries from manipulating their currencies to gain unfair trade advantages.

It marked the first time that the United States has labeled another country as a currency manipulator since August 2019 when it called out China at a time when the world's two largest economies were locked in tense trade negotiations.

“The Treasury Department has taken a strong step today to safeguard economic growth and opportunity for American workers and businesses” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement. “Treasury will follow up on its findings with respect to Vietnam and Switzerland to work toward eliminating practices tat create unfair advantages for foreign countries.”

Dec 15 16:50

Hungary bans same-sex couples from adopting children Published4 hours ago

The Hungarian parliament has passed a law effectively banning same-sex couples from adopting children.

The legislation put forward by Prime Minister Viktor Orban's right-wing government says only married couples can adopt, with some exceptions for single relatives of the child.

Same-sex marriage is illegal in Hungary, but adoption has been possible if one partner applies on their own.

One rights group called the new laws "a dark day for human rights".

What are the new rules?
Mr Orban has made sweeping changes to the Hungarian constitution since coming to power in 2010.

An amendment also approved on Tuesday defines family as "based on marriage and the parent-child relation. The mother is a woman, the father a man".

Same-sex couples will now be unable to adopt, even if one of them applies as a single person.

Dec 15 07:48

Europe’s Anti-Russia Sanctions Result in Extensive Economic Losses and Growing Tensions with Russia

New data out this week indicates that the European Union has suffered aggregate economic losses amounting to over €120 billion due to its policy of imposing sanctions against Russia. That’s according to figures released by the Dusseldorf Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Yet European leaders at an EU summit this week again called for the extension of sanctions on Russia, which will roll on into the middle of next year and probably beyond that date. This lockstep action by the bloc is only leading to more tensions with Russia and taking a political direction to nowhere except more conflict. Those EU sanctions were first imposed in July 2014 over dubious allegations of Russia’s malign involvement in the Ukrainian conflict. Moscow has rightfully reciprocated with counter-sanctions on European exports of agriculture and other goods.

Dec 15 07:33

As Brexit Talks Enter Final 48 Hours UK Threatens to Deploy No-deal Gun Boats

The UK has fired a warning shot to Brussels over no-deal after readying Royal Navy boats to patrol its fishing waters as negotiations enter their final 48 hours.

Four 80-metre armed vessels have been placed on standby to guard British waters from EU trawlers in the event that there is no new agreement on fishing rights after December 31 when transitional arrangements end.

The confirmation of the move by the Ministry of Defence (MoD) comes as Boris Johnson and European Commission president Ursula von der Leyen warned on both sides of the Channel that a no-deal outcome looked more likely than an agreement in the trade negotiations.

Dec 15 05:46

Sweden Seeing "Unprecedented" Resignations In Healthcare Amid Second Wave Surge

Swedish healthcare workers are resigning at alarming rates.

The exodus from the industry has been so stark that the chairwoman of the Swedish Association of Health Professionals, Sineva Ribeiro, has called the situation "terrible", according to Bloomberg.

Prior to the pandemic, the country was already facing a shortage of specialists and nurses, the report notes. Now, nearly a year into the Covid crisis and with Stockholm’s intensive care capacity hitting 99%, there are fewer qualified people available to work in healthcare than there were in the Spring.

Dec 14 11:42

Anti-Semitism claims mask a reign of political and cultural terror across Europe

Jonathan Cook says Zionists and their supporters in the West are weaponising "anti-Semitism" to damage the reputation of Israel’s critics and deprive Muslims of the right to take offence at gratuitous insults of Islam while giving Jews every right to take offence at criticism of Israel.>>

Dec 14 07:59

Brexit: UK poised to lose access to security databases in event of no-deal, Raab admits

The UK is poised to lose the ability to share vital security data if there is a no-deal Brexit, Dominic Raab has admitted – but he denied that meant Britons will be “less safe”.

“There are certainly instruments that we may not have access to,” the Foreign Secretary said – ahead of a crunch decision whether to abandon the negotiations today.

Among the databases the UK could be shut out of are SIS II, recording suspected terrorists and major criminals, live passenger records and DNA, fingerprint and vehicle registration details.

Dec 14 06:10

Danish Pension Funds Caught Funneling Millions Into Foreign Arms Manufacturers

Danish pensioners' savings are indirectly involved in the supply of weapons to the UAE and Saudi Arabia – two countries heavily involved in the conflict in Yemen that the UN has designated as the worst current humanitarian crisis in the world.

Fifteen of Denmark's 16 largest pension funds have invested almost DKK 3 billion ($500 million) kroner in foreign weapons manufacturers supplying countries like Saudi Arabia and the UAE, a new report from Oxfam IBIS has revealed, accusing the pension funds of profiteering.

One of the 21 companies where Oxfam IBIS found Danish pension money is the US missile manufacturer Raytheon.

Dec 11 11:21

Europe Bares Her Teeth: Threat to Cut Britain off Unless London Agrees to Terms

The European Commission followed up an unproductive “11th-hour” dinner meeting between their president and Britain’s Boris Johnson with threats to refuse British air, road, and rail traffic unless the country agrees to submit to EU ‘contingency’ rules.

British air lines would be prevented from landing in European airports, British road hauled fright would be prevented from crossing borders, and the Eurotunnel railway that links Great Britain and France would be closed by the European Union if the UK government fails to meet Europe’s demands by January 1st 2021.

While the document presenting the no-deal scenario — characterised as a list of threats even by pro-Remain outlets in Britain — promises a way out of these penalties, it is at a cost to Britain. In order to get a six-month reprieve from Europe’s wrath, Britain has to agree to 12 months of surrendering its fishing waters and, much worse, agree to accept the EU’s competition and ‘level playing field’ demand.

Dec 11 10:01

Chinese and European Media Carry Out Multilateral Cooperation to Achieve Win-Win Results

A statement on strengthening media cooperation issued by China Media Group (CMG) and its European media partners, calling on the Chinese and European media to fulfill their responsibilities as public information disseminators and jointly help the international community to gather a strong force to overcome the pandemic.

The statement was made during the "2020 European Media Partners Cooperation Online Forum" on December 10, hosted by CMG with the theme of "Mutual Trust Dialogue for Win-Win Cooperation".

Twenty-eight delegates from 25 organizations in 16 European countries and China had in-depth discussions on how to strengthen coordination, deepen ties, unite to fight the pandemic, and bring greater confidence to the world through in-depth exchanges.

Dec 11 06:15

The end of Ostpolitik: Dream of Europe ‘whole & free’ over as Russian-German friendship fades & Moscow pivots to Asia

This Monday marked 50 years since one of the 20th century’s most iconic moments, when German Chancellor Willy Brandt fell to his knees in Warsaw, emotionally apologizing for the horrors the Nazis had unleashed on Eastern Europe.

It was one of the milestones of the Neue Ostpolitik – Bonn’s policy aimed at normalizing relations with the USSR and its East European satellites. On the day of this anniversary, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas wrote the following: “Unlike Brandt, we no longer have to go via Moscow to talk to our eastern neighbors nowadays. Many partners in Eastern and Central Europe now view Russia very critically – and German foreign policy must take our neighbors’ concerns seriously. In addition to offers of dialogue, clear German positions vis-à-vis Moscow are therefore important for maintaining trust in Eastern Europe.”

Dec 10 12:19

The UK Is Enlisting an "ELITE ARMY UNIT" to Monitor Vaccine "Disinformation"

Regardless of how you feel about the vaccine itself, how do you feel about the military deciding what information you're allowed to see, and monitoring those who are skeptical?

That's exactly what they're doing with an "elite Army unit" according to some leaked documents in the UK.

Dec 10 11:02

Why is the EU helping Israel treat its waste in the West Bank?

Three European firms are bidding for a role in a new more environmentally-friendly waste-to-energy plant in the Israeli settlement of Maaleh Adumim.

The location of the plant – in occupied territory, and therefore illegal under international law – has also not deterred the European Union, which supports the implementation of a 2030 Israeli strategic waste management plan that includes the Maaleh Adumim plant with $1.8 million.

The plant is slated to be built at the “Good Samaritan” recycling park east (and deep into occupied territory) of Maaleh Adumim and only a few hundred meters away from small Palestinian shepherd communities.

Neither the EU, nor European companies, can claim ignorance about this. The tender for the project was issued in October last year, leaving plenty of time for due diligence.

Dec 10 10:01

Britons to Face Ban From Travelling to EU Countries Starting 1 January

The ban will come into force since the pandemic safety rules that allow free travel within the bloc will stop applying to the UK following the end of the Brexit transition period.

British citizens will no longer be able to freely travel in Europe due to the bloc's COVID-19 safety rules after the UK exits the bloc on 1 January, The Financial Times reported on Wednesday.

Hungary and Croatia are not included in the list, the European Commission said, and eight non-EU countries, including Singapore, Australia and New Zealand, have been placed on the list of "safe" third nations.

Dec 10 06:51

EU split on Greece’s calls for arms embargo on Turkey. Apparently principles aren’t so important when there are PROFITS to lose

It would seem to be a straightforward proposition: two member states of the European Union – Greece and Cyprus – are protesting breaches of territorial waters by Turkey. So how about some EU solidarity?

One idea being put forward by Greece is for the 27-member bloc to impose an arms embargo on Turkey. However, as EU leaders gather for a summit this week, foreign affairs commissioner Joseph Borrell is playing down such a move for collective sanctions against Ankara.

Greece has censured Germany – which currently holds the rotating EU presidency seat – for failing to show leadership. Athens complains that the bloc has a common defense commitment and that European nations should not be supplying weapons to a country which could use those munitions against EU members.

Dec 08 07:51

Avalanche warnings, power cuts after snowfall in Austria

BERLIN -- Authorities in Austria issued avalanche warnings Tuesday for the east of the country as 4,000 homes there were without electricity and one man was injured while on a back-country skiing tour.

After several days of heavy snowfall in East Tyrol and other parts in the Austrian Alps, several roads were still closed in Tyrol and some valleys were cut off from the rest of the country. Electricity provider Tinetz said several electrical lines were snapped either by snow or by fallen trees, public broadcaster ORF reported.

A 23-year-old German man was injured Monday in the Hahnenkamm skiing region in Tyrol when he went skiing on a closed slope. He was taken by rescue plane to a hospital in Kempten in Bavaria, ORF reported.

Neighboring Switzerland and northern Italy saw massive snowfall over the weekend and snow also hit parts of Germany and Spain as well

Dec 07 12:06

Denmark abandons forced vaccination law after public protests

The Danish government abandoned a proposed “epidemic law” that would have given it broad powers to enact measures against the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19), including forced vaccinations, after nine days of public protests.

Had it been passed, the law would have allowed the government to conduct forced physical exams and mandate isolation. It was, however, the part about police-directed forced vaccinations that caused the biggest uproar resulting in the protests that eventually saw the law being dropped.

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