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Cardinal George Pell loses appeal against conviction for child sex abuse

The most senior Catholic official to be convicted of child sexual assault, Pell was sentenced in March to six years in prison, with a non-parole period of three years and eight months, for an attack described by Chief Judge Peter Kidd as “breathtakingly arrogant.”

Lawyers for the 78-year-old cardinal immediately appealed his conviction, and in June presented 13 “solid obstacles” to a guilty verdict on all five charges, including that it was “not possible” for Pell to be alone while robed after Sunday mass and for no one to notice the boys were missing at that time.

On Wednesday, the appeals court rejected that submission, accepting that it was possible for the jury to have found Pell guilty beyond reasonable doubt, based on the evidence presented at Pell’s five-week trial last December.

“There has been vigorous and sometimes emotional criticism of the Cardinal and he has been publicly vilified in some sections of the community,” said Chief Justice Anne Ferguson as she delivered a summary of the judgment. “It is fair to say that his case has divided the community.”

From the dock in court 15, Pell showed little reaction as Chief Justice Ferguson delivered Wednesday’s verdict, which followed more than two months of deliberation between three judges who returned a majority ruling, two votes for and one against. Pell listened intently during the summary, staring straight at the judge.

Pell’s accuser, who can’t be named under Australian law, said he was “relieved” by the verdict.

“After attending the funeral of my childhood friend, the other choirboy, I felt a responsibility to come forward… I had experienced something terrible as a child, something that marked my life. I wanted at least some good to come of it,” he said in a statement read by his lawyer, Viv Waller.

The father of his childhood friend, who also can’t be identified, said the ruling had taken a “weight off his shoulders.”

“I believe in forgiveness, but you can’t forgive someone who does things like that, especially to 13-year-old children,” he said.

After the hearing, Pell was taken away to continue serving his sentence on one count of sexual penetration of a child and four counts of committing an indecent act with a child.

A statement released on his behalf said the cardinal is “obviously disappointed” with the decision and “maintains his innocence.” His legal team will examine the judgment to determine whether to challenge the ruling in the High Court, it added.

In a short statement, the Holy See acknowledged the ruling and noted that Pell has the right to appeal. “The Holy See confirms its closeness to the victims of sexual abuse and its commitment to pursue, through the competent ecclesiastical authorities, those members of the clergy who commit such abuse,” the statement said.

Cardinal George Pell is seen addressing the audience during the Opening Mass of Welcome of World Youth Day Sydney 2008 at Barangaroo on July 15, 2008 in Sydney, Australia.

Cardinal’s conviction

Wednesday’s ruling marks another twist in a story that has gripped the global Catholic community since Pell’s conviction was reported in February. Before that, reporting of his trial and verdict had been suppressed to avoid prejudicing a third potential trial, relating to different charges, that was subsequently dropped.

Pell was convicted by a 12-member jury in December, largely on the testimony of one accuser, a man now in his 30s who, as an alleged sex abuse victim, can’t be identified under Australian law. The second alleged victim died several years ago having never told anyone about the alleged attack. It was Pell’s second trial on the same charges — the first trial, also held in secret, ended in a hung jury after the jurors failed to agree on a verdict.

In taped evidence played to a closed court — to only the judge and the jury — the man told how he and his friend had snuck away from the rest of the choir to drink wine in the priest’s sacristy after mass one Sunday. Both were 13 years old at the time.

The man told the court Pell had caught them drinking wine and said something like “you’re in trouble,” according to Judge Kidd’s summary of the case. Pell then started moving something under his robe, the man said, before he sexually assaulted them, one after the other, Judge Kidd’s sentencing notes said. During the ordeal, which lasted five to six minutes, the boys were “sobbing,” the man said in his testimony. At one stage, Pell told them to be quiet, “because they were crying,” Judge Kidd recounted.

Neither boy told anyone about the ordeal, until 2015 when the man approached Victoria Police to file a formal complaint. By then, he had attended the funeral of his former friend, who had died from an accidental overdose after years of drug abuse.

The appeal

At the appeal hearing in June, Pell’s lawyer Bret Walker SC presented a long list of reasons why it was “not possible” for Pell to have committed the alleged attack. He also cast doubt on the man’s account.

In Wednesday’s ruling, Chief Justice Ferguson said she and Justice Chris Maxwell disagreed, saying the victim was “clearly not a liar, was not a fantasist and was a witness of truth.” The dissenting judge, Justice Mark Weinberg, said discrepancies in the victim’s account left him with some doubt.

Pell’s lawyers also appealed the conviction on two other grounds, which would have led to a potential a re-trial. They included that the defense should have been allowed to show an animated video and that Pell should have entered a not guilty plea in front of the jury. Both grounds were refused.

The Catholic Bishops Conference of Australia released a statement, saying “all Australians must be equal under the law and accept today’s judgment accordingly.” A Vatican spokesman told CNN on Monday that the church “awaits the results of the ongoing process and the decisions of civil justice before dealing with the case.” When Pell’s guilty verdict was made public, the Vatican said it would launch its own investigation into Pell.

Pell was granted leave from the Vatican to contest the charges. In February, after his conviction became public, the Church confirmed that his position as the prefect of its secretariat for the economy had not been renewed. And, along with two other cardinals, Pell lost his place on the Pope’s small council of advisers last year, which the Vatican attributed to his advancing age.

Pell has 28 days to appeal Wednesday’s ruling in Australia’s High Court, the country’s highest-ranking court. Any ruling made there would be final and not subject to appeal.

Cardinal George Pell loses appeal against conviction for child sex abuse

Essentially the most senior Catholic official to be convicted of child sexual assault, Pell was sentenced in March to 6 years in jail, with a non-parole interval of three years and eight months, for an assault described by Chief Choose Peter Kidd as “breathtakingly boastful.”

Legal professionals for the 78-year-old cardinal instantly appealed his conviction, and in June offered 13 “stable obstacles” to a responsible verdict on all 5 fees, together with that it was “not potential” for Pell to be alone whereas robed after Sunday mass and for nobody to note the boys had been lacking at the moment.

On Wednesday, the appeals court docket rejected that submission, accepting that it was potential for the jury to have discovered Pell responsible past cheap doubt, primarily based on the proof offered at Pell’s five-week trial final December.

“There was vigorous and generally emotional criticism of the Cardinal and he has been publicly vilified in some sections of the group,” mentioned Chief Justice Anne Ferguson as she delivered a abstract of the judgment. “It’s honest to say that his case has divided the group.”

From the dock in court docket 15, Pell confirmed little response as Chief Justice Ferguson delivered Wednesday’s verdict, which adopted greater than two months of deliberation between three judges who returned a majority ruling, two votes for and one against. Pell listened intently through the abstract, staring straight on the decide.

Pell’s accuser, who cannot be named beneath Australian regulation, mentioned he was “relieved” by the decision.

“After attending the funeral of my childhood pal, the opposite choirboy, I felt a duty to come back ahead… I had skilled one thing horrible as a child, one thing that marked my life. I needed at the least some good to come back of it,” he mentioned in an announcement learn by his lawyer, Viv Waller.

The daddy of his childhood pal, who additionally cannot be recognized, mentioned the ruling had taken a “weight off his shoulders.”

“I consider in forgiveness, however you possibly can’t forgive somebody who does issues like that, particularly to 13-year-old kids,” he mentioned.

After the listening to, Pell was taken away to proceed serving his sentence on one depend of sexual penetration of a child and 4 counts of committing an indecent act with a child.

An announcement launched on his behalf mentioned the cardinal is “clearly dissatisfied” with the choice and “maintains his innocence.” His authorized group will look at the judgment to find out whether or not to problem the ruling within the Excessive Courtroom, it added.

In a brief assertion, the Holy See acknowledged the ruling and famous that Pell has the proper to appeal. “The Holy See confirms its closeness to the victims of sexual abuse and its dedication to pursue, by means of the competent ecclesiastical authorities, these members of the clergy who commit such abuse,” the assertion mentioned.

Cardinal George Pell is seen addressing the audience during the Opening Mass of Welcome of World Youth Day Sydney 2008 at Barangaroo on July 15, 2008 in Sydney, Australia.

Cardinal’s conviction

Wednesday’s ruling marks one other twist in a narrative that has gripped the worldwide Catholic group since Pell’s conviction was reported in February. Earlier than that, reporting of his trial and verdict had been suppressed to keep away from prejudicing a 3rd potential trial, referring to totally different fees, that was subsequently dropped.

Pell was convicted by a 12-member jury in December, largely on the testimony of 1 accuser, a person now in his 30s who, as an alleged sex abuse sufferer, cannot be recognized beneath Australian regulation. The second alleged sufferer died a number of years in the past having by no means instructed anybody in regards to the alleged assault. It was Pell’s second trial on the identical fees — the primary trial, additionally held in secret, resulted in a hung jury after the jurors didn’t agree on a verdict.

In taped proof performed to a closed court docket — to solely the decide and the jury — the person instructed how he and his pal had snuck away from the remainder of the choir to drink wine within the priest’s vestry after mass one Sunday. Each had been 13 years previous on the time.

The person instructed the court docket Pell had caught them consuming wine and mentioned one thing like “you are in bother,” based on Choose Kidd’s abstract of the case. Pell then began shifting one thing beneath his gown, the person mentioned, earlier than he sexually assaulted them, one after the opposite, Choose Kidd’s sentencing notes mentioned. Throughout the ordeal, which lasted 5 to 6 minutes, the boys had been “sobbing,” the person mentioned in his testimony. At one stage, Pell instructed them to be quiet, “as a result of they had been crying,” Choose Kidd recounted.

Neither boy instructed anybody in regards to the ordeal, till 2015 when the person approached Victoria Police to file a proper criticism. By then, he had attended the funeral of his former pal, who had died from an unintentional overdose after years of drug abuse.

The appeal

On the appeal listening to in June, Pell’s lawyer Bret Walker SC offered a protracted checklist of the reason why it was “not potential” for Pell to have dedicated the alleged assault. He additionally solid doubt on the person’s account.

In Wednesday’s ruling, Chief Justice Ferguson mentioned she and Justice Chris Maxwell disagreed, saying the sufferer was “clearly not a liar, was not a fantasist and was a witness of fact.” The dissenting decide, Justice Mark Weinberg, mentioned discrepancies within the sufferer’s account left him with some doubt.

Pell’s legal professionals additionally appealed the conviction on two different grounds, which might have led to a possible a re-trial. They included that the protection ought to have been allowed to point out an animated video and that Pell ought to have entered a not responsible plea in entrance of the jury. Each grounds had been refused.

The Catholic Bishops Convention of Australia launched an announcement, saying “all Australians should be equal beneath the regulation and settle for as we speak’s judgment accordingly.” A Vatican spokesman instructed CNN on Monday that the church “awaits the outcomes of the continued course of and the choices of civil justice earlier than coping with the case.” When Pell’s responsible verdict was made public, the Vatican mentioned it might launch its personal investigation into Pell.

Pell was granted depart from the Vatican to contest the fees. In February, after his conviction turned public, the Church confirmed that his place because the prefect of its secretariat for the economic system had not been renewed. And, together with two different cardinals, Pell misplaced his place on the Pope’s small council of advisers final yr, which the Vatican attributed to his advancing age.

Pell has 28 days to appeal Wednesday’s ruling in Australia’s Excessive Courtroom, the nation’s highest-ranking court docket. Any ruling made there can be closing and never topic to appeal.

Facts Source: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/20/australia/cardinal-george-pell-intl-hnk/index.html

Alibaba postpones up to $15 billion Hong Kong listing amid protests: sources

HONG KONG/NEW YORK (Reuters) – China’s biggest e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has delayed its up to $15 billion listing in Hong Kong amid growing political unrest in the Asian financial hub, two people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

FILE PHOTO: A logo of Alibaba Group is seen at an exhibition during the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Photo

Alibaba’s Hong Kong-listing plans are being closely watched by the financial community for indications on the business environment in the Chinese-controlled territory and provides a window into Beijing’s reading of the situation.

While no new timetable has been formally set, Alibaba could launch the Hong Kong deal as early as in October, seeking to raise $10-$15 billion, when political tensions ease and market conditions become favorable again, said one of the people.

The decision to postpone the deal, initially set for late August, was taken at a board meeting before Alibaba’s latest earnings release last week, the second person said.

The delay is due to the lack of financial and political stability in Hong Kong amid more than 11 weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations which have become increasingly violent and plunged the city into turmoil, the people added.

Tear gas has been used frequently by police while more than 700 people have been arrested, followed by an unprecedented airport shutdown last week. Hong Kong’s stock market fell to seven-month lows last week.

“It would be very unwise to launch the deal now or anytime soon,” the first person said. “It would certainly annoy Beijing by offering Hong Kong such a big gift given what’s going on in the city,” the source added.

Both people declined to be identified as they were not authorized to speak to media.

Alibaba declined to comment on its Hong Kong deal plans.

DEAL CRUCIAL FOR HK EXCHANGE

The deal, potentially the world’s biggest equity deal of the year and the largest follow-on share sale in seven years, would give Alibaba a war chest to keep investing in technology.

The company, however, views it as a way to “diversify its access to capital markets”, but not as core to its business, said the second source. Alibaba “does not see the postponement as a blow,” the person added.

Meanwhile, a listing by Alibaba is a big deal for the Hong Kong stock exchange, which is lagging behind its New York rivals in the annual battle to be the leading global listings venue.

Just last month, Anheuser-Busch InBev canceled a planned up to $9.8 billion Hong Kong IPO of its Asia Pacific unit.

The city loosened its rules last year specifically to lure overseas-listed Chinese tech giants to list closer to home.

Alibaba would be the first to test the new system.

Asked last week whether Hong Kong’s turmoil would affect Alibaba’s listing, Hong Kong stock exchange CEO Charles Li avoided directly acknowledging the company’s application, which is still technically confidential.

But Li added: “I am confident that companies like that ultimately will find a home here, because this is home and I think they will come. I don’t know when though.”

Reporting by Julie Zhu and Greg Roumeliotis; Editing by Himani Sarkar

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Alibaba postpones up to $15 billion Hong Kong listing amid protests: sources

HONG KONG/NEW YORK (Reuters) – China’s largest e-commerce firm Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has delayed its up to $15 billion listing in Hong Kong amid rising political unrest within the Asian monetary hub, two individuals with information of the matter instructed Reuters.

FILE PHOTO: A brand of Alibaba Group is seen at an exhibition throughout the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China Could 16, 2019. REUTERS/Jason Lee/File Picture

Alibaba’s Hong Kong-listing plans are being intently watched by the monetary neighborhood for indications on the enterprise setting within the Chinese language-controlled territory and offers a window into Beijing’s studying of the state of affairs.

Whereas no new timetable has been formally set, Alibaba might launch the Hong Kong deal as early as in October, in search of to increase $10-$15 billion, when political tensions ease and market circumstances turn into favorable once more, mentioned one of many individuals.

The choice to postpone the deal, initially set for late August, was taken at a board assembly earlier than Alibaba’s newest earnings launch final week, the second individual mentioned.

The delay is due to the dearth of monetary and political stability in Hong Kong amid greater than 11 weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations which have turn into more and more violent and plunged the town into turmoil, the individuals added.

Tear fuel has been used continuously by police whereas greater than 700 individuals have been arrested, adopted by an unprecedented airport shutdown final week. Hong Kong’s inventory market fell to seven-month lows final week.

“It could be very unwise to launch the deal now or anytime quickly,” the primary individual mentioned. “It could definitely annoy Beijing by providing Hong Kong such an enormous present given what’s happening within the metropolis,” the supply added.

Each individuals declined to be recognized as they weren’t approved to converse to media.

Alibaba declined to touch upon its Hong Kong deal plans.

DEAL CRUCIAL FOR HK EXCHANGE

The deal, probably the world’s largest fairness deal of the yr and the biggest follow-on share sale in seven years, would give Alibaba a conflict chest to maintain investing in know-how.

The corporate, nevertheless, views it as a manner to “diversify its entry to capital markets”, however not as core to its enterprise, mentioned the second supply. Alibaba “doesn’t see the postponement as a blow,” the individual added.

In the meantime, a listing by Alibaba is an enormous deal for the Hong Kong inventory trade, which is lagging behind its New York rivals within the annual battle to be the main world listings venue.

Simply final month, Anheuser-Busch InBev canceled a deliberate up to $9.8 billion Hong Kong IPO of its Asia Pacific unit.

Town loosened its guidelines final yr particularly to lure overseas-listed Chinese language tech giants to listing nearer to house.

Alibaba could be the primary to check the brand new system.

Requested final week whether or not Hong Kong’s turmoil would have an effect on Alibaba’s listing, Hong Kong inventory trade CEO Charles Li prevented instantly acknowledging the corporate’s utility, which continues to be technically confidential.

However Li added: “I’m assured that corporations like that finally will discover a house right here, as a result of that is house and I believe they may come. I don’t know when although.”

Reporting by Julie Zhu and Greg Roumeliotis; Modifying by Himani Sarkar

Our Requirements:The Thomson Reuters Belief Ideas.
Facts Source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/topNews/~3/olaKfz6Yel0/alibaba-postpones-up-to-15-billion-hong-kong-listing-amid-protests-sources-idUSKCN1VB06S

Amazon burning: Forest fires on the rise at record rate, space agency warns | World News

Wildfires in the Amazon rainforest have hit a record number this year, with 72,843 fires detected so far by Brazil’s space research centre INPE.

The surge marks an 83% increase over the same period of 2018 and is the highest since records began in 2013, raising concerns over right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro’s environmental policy.

Satellite images spotted 9,507 new forest fires in the country since Thursday, INPE said.

Most of the blazes were located in the Amazon basin – home to the world’s largest tropical forest seen as vital to countering global warming.

Images show the northernmost state of Roraima covered in dark smoke. The Amazonas capital Manaus has been on environmental alert since Friday due to the fires.

Wildfires have become more frequent in Mato Grosso and Para, two states where Brazil’s agricultural frontier has pushed into the Amazon basin and spurred deforestation.

The states of Roraima and Amazonas have been worst affected
Image:
The states of Roraima and Amazonas have been worst affected

They are common in the dry season, but are also deliberately set by farmers illegally deforesting land for cattle ranching.

The increase in wildfires has occurred since controversial president Mr Bolsonaro took office in January.

He vowed to develop the Amazon region for farming and mining, ignoring international concern over increased deforestation.

Brazil's new president Jair Bolsonaro
Image:
President Jair Bolsonaro has brushed off criticism of the uncontrolled fires

Mr Bolsonaro previously brushed off criticism about the spread of uncontrolled fires, saying it was the time of year of the “queimada” or burn, when farmers use fire to clear land.

“I used to be called Captain Chainsaw. Now I am Nero, setting the Amazon aflame. But it is the season of the queimada,” he told reporters.

However INPE said the large number of wildfires could not be attributed to the dry season or natural phenomena alone.

INPE researcher Alberto Setzer said: “There is nothing abnormal about the climate this year or the rainfall in the Amazon region, which is just a little below average”.

The sun is partially obscured by smoke from the Amazon wildfires
Image:
The sun is partially obscured by smoke from the Amazon wildfires

He said that the dry season is often blamed for the Amazon wildfires, but that is not entirely accurate.

“The dry season creates the favourable conditions for the use and spread of fire, but starting a fire is the work of humans, either deliberately or by accident,” he added.

Mr Bolsonaro recently fired the director of INPE after he criticised agency statistics showing an increase in deforestation in Brazil, saying they were “made up numbers”.

Amazon burning: Forest fires on the rise at record price, space agency warns | World News

Wildfires in the Amazon rainforest have hit a record quantity this yr, with 72,843 fires detected to date by Brazil’s space analysis centre INPE.

The surge marks an 83% improve over the similar interval of 2018 and is the highest since data started in 2013, elevating issues over right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro’s environmental coverage.

Satellite tv for pc pictures noticed 9,507 new forest fires in the nation since Thursday, INPE mentioned.

Most of the blazes have been situated in the Amazon basin – residence to the world’s largest tropical forest seen as important to countering world warming.

Pictures present the northernmost state of Roraima coated in darkish smoke. The Amazonas capital Manaus has been on environmental alert since Friday as a result of the fires.

Wildfires have turn into extra frequent in Mato Grosso and Para, two states the place Brazil’s agricultural frontier has pushed into the Amazon basin and spurred deforestation.

The states of Roraima and Amazonas have been worst affected
Picture:
The states of Roraima and Amazonas have been worst affected

They’re widespread in the dry season, however are additionally intentionally set by farmers illegally deforesting land for cattle ranching.

The rise in wildfires has occurred since controversial president Mr Bolsonaro took workplace in January.

He vowed to develop the Amazon area for farming and mining, ignoring worldwide concern over elevated deforestation.

Brazil's new president Jair Bolsonaro
Picture:
President Jair Bolsonaro has disregarded criticism of the uncontrolled fires

Mr Bolsonaro beforehand disregarded criticism about the unfold of uncontrolled fires, saying it was the time of yr of the “queimada” or burn, when farmers use hearth to clear land.

“I was referred to as Captain Chainsaw. Now I’m Nero, setting the Amazon aflame. However it’s the season of the queimada,” he advised reporters.

Nonetheless INPE mentioned the massive variety of wildfires couldn’t be attributed to the dry season or pure phenomena alone.

INPE researcher Alberto Setzer mentioned: “There’s nothing irregular about the local weather this yr or the rainfall in the Amazon area, which is just a bit under common”.

The sun is partially obscured by smoke from the Amazon wildfires
Picture:
The solar is partially obscured by smoke from the Amazon wildfires

He mentioned that the dry season is commonly blamed for the Amazon wildfires, however that isn’t solely correct.

“The dry season creates the beneficial situations for the use and unfold of fireside, however beginning a hearth is the work of people, both intentionally or accidentally,” he added.

Mr Bolsonaro lately fired the director of INPE after he criticised agency statistics exhibiting a rise in deforestation in Brazil, saying they have been “made up numbers”.

Facts Source: http://news.sky.com/story/amazon-burning-forest-fires-on-the-rise-at-record-rate-space-agency-warns-11790264

New US F-16 fighter jets for Taiwan: $8 billion sale approved

Administration officials and others familiar with the matter had previously told CNN that the administration had informally approved the deal but some officials had cautioned it could still be pulled back, citing uncertainty surrounding the US relationship with China.

The new weaponry — the largest US sale to Taiwan in years — could further erode ties with Beijing, as it views the self-governing island as part of China.

Beijing was quick to slam the proposed sale when it was first reported last week.

On Friday China’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, said the United States’ arms sales to Taiwan undermine China’s sovereignty and core interests.

China “firmly opposes this,” Hua said, demanding that the US refrain from selling the fighter jets and stop military contact with Taiwan.

“It must be stressed that the Taiwan issue concerns China’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and security interests,” Hua said and added a warning. The “US will have to bear all the consequences” if it does not stop the arms sales, she said.

US Navy sails warship through contested waterway as Beijing warns Taiwan

The deal received strong bipartisan backing from Congress, including from the Democratic chairman and the leading Republican on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

“The sale of F-16s to Taiwan sends a strong message about the US commitment to security and democracy in the Indo-Pacific,” Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel of New York and Republican Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas said in a joint statement last week.

As China “steps up its military aggression in the region, we need to do all we can to support our friends around the world,” they said, adding they “have every confidence that it will be supported on a bipartisan and bicameral basis.”

The fighter jets are seen as particularly irksome to Beijing as they would enhance Taipei’s ability to potentially conduct military operations in the Taiwan Strait, the narrow waterway that separates China from Taiwan.

While the US has long provided arms to Taiwan as part of the 40-year-old Taiwan Relations Act, Beijing has frequently chafed at those sales, protesting them as a violation of China’s sovereignty despite the Chinese Communist Party having never governed the island.
A Chinese invasion of Taiwan would be a bloody, logistical nightmare

Last month, the Trump administration approved selling 108 M1A2T Abrams tanks and portable Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Taiwan, an arms package valued at $2.2 billion.

Both types of equipment had been requested by Taiwan, which has moved to boost its defense spending as it faces increasing pressure from Beijing in the form of ramped-up military drills and efforts to strip Taipei of its remaining diplomatic allies.

A Pentagon report in May warned that Taiwan’s traditional military advantages over Beijing in the event of a cross-strait conflict were eroding in the face of China’s military modernization efforts.

Since 2010, the US has announced more than $15 billion in arms sales to Taiwan.

New US F-16 fighter jets for Taiwan: $8 billion sale approved

Administration officers and others conversant in the matter had beforehand informed CNN that the administration had informally approved the deal however some officers had cautioned it might nonetheless be pulled again, citing uncertainty surrounding the US relationship with China.

The brand new weaponry — the most important US sale to Taiwan in years — might additional erode ties with Beijing, because it views the self-governing island as a part of China.

Beijing was fast to slam the proposed sale when it was first reported final week.

On Friday China’s Overseas Ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, stated the US’ arms gross sales to Taiwan undermine China’s sovereignty and core pursuits.

China “firmly opposes this,” Hua stated, demanding that the US chorus from promoting the fighter jets and cease navy contact with Taiwan.

“It have to be burdened that the Taiwan problem considerations China’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and safety pursuits,” Hua stated and added a warning. The “US should bear all the implications” if it doesn’t cease the arms gross sales, she stated.

US Navy sails warship through contested waterway as Beijing warns Taiwan

The deal obtained robust bipartisan backing from Congress, together with from the Democratic chairman and the main Republican on the Home Overseas Affairs Committee.

“The sale of F-16s to Taiwan sends a powerful message in regards to the US dedication to safety and democracy within the Indo-Pacific,” Democratic Rep. Eliot Engel of New York and Republican Rep. Michael McCaul of Texas stated in a joint assertion final week.

As China “steps up its navy aggression within the area, we have to do all we are able to to assist our buddies all over the world,” they stated, including they “have each confidence that will probably be supported on a bipartisan and bicameral foundation.”

The fighter jets are seen as significantly irksome to Beijing as they might improve Taipei’s skill to doubtlessly conduct navy operations within the Taiwan Strait, the slender waterway that separates China from Taiwan.

Whereas the US has lengthy supplied arms to Taiwan as a part of the 40-year-old Taiwan Relations Act, Beijing has continuously chafed at these gross sales, protesting them as a violation of China’s sovereignty regardless of the Chinese language Communist Get together having by no means ruled the island.
A Chinese invasion of Taiwan would be a bloody, logistical nightmare

Final month, the Trump administration approved promoting 108 M1A2T Abrams tanks and moveable Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Taiwan, an arms package deal valued at $2.2 billion.

Each forms of tools had been requested by Taiwan, which has moved to spice up its protection spending because it faces growing strain from Beijing within the type of ramped-up navy drills and efforts to strip Taipei of its remaining diplomatic allies.

A Pentagon report in Could warned that Taiwan’s conventional navy benefits over Beijing within the occasion of a cross-strait battle have been eroding within the face of China’s navy modernization efforts.

Since 2010, the US has introduced greater than $15 billion in arms gross sales to Taiwan.

Facts Source: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/20/politics/taiwan-fighter-jet-sales/index.html

Italy president begins talks to seek way out of government crisis

ROME (Reuters) – Italian President Sergio Mattarella begins two days of talks with parties on Wednesday to seek a way out of a political crisis that will lead to formation of the country’s 67th government since World War Two or early elections.

FILE PHOTO: Italy’s President Sergio Mattarella speaks during the opening day of the International Labour Organization’s annual labour conference in Geneva, Switzerland June 10, 2019. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte resigned on Tuesday after launching a blistering attack on his own interior minister, Matteo Salvini, accusing him of sinking the coalition and endangering the economy for personal and political gain.

In a shock move on Aug. 8, Salvini, leader of the far-right League party, declared that his alliance with the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement was dead and called for elections.

Salvini had repeatedly promised the 14-month old government would last a full five-year term and appeared confident his move would trigger early elections, allowing him to cash in on the League’s surging popularity.

But the gambit could backfire and open the door to power for his rivals.

Politicians from 5-Star and the center-left Democratic Party (PD) are openly discussing forming a new coalition that would push the League into opposition and give Italy a more centrist, pro-European government.

“The interior minister has shown he is following his own interests and those of his party … his decisions pose serious risks for this country,” Conte, who does not belong to either ruling party, told the Senate on Tuesday before heading to the president’s palace to resign.

Financial markets rallied on Conte’s resignation, seemingly hopeful that a 5-Star/PD coalition can be ushered in and snap polls avoided.

Mattarella will meet with all the parties in parliament, one after the other, to see if a new coalition can be formed. Failing that, he would have to dissolve parliament, 3-1/2 years ahead of schedule, to allow for autumn elections.

He will begin with minor groups at 1400 GMT but will not hear the main parties until Thursday, concluding with 5-Star at 1500 GMT.

The PD’s leadership is also scheduled to meet on Wednesday, at 0900 GMT, to discuss the prospect of hooking up with 5-Star. The two parties have been bitter political foes for years.

Salvini said on Tuesday he would repeat to the president that he wants new elections following the March 2018 vote that led to the 5-Star/League government.

He accused the other parties of trying to cobble together a deal because they were afraid to return to the polls, but Conte said fresh political uncertainty was the last thing Italy needed as it prepares a difficult 2020 budget in the autumn.

“Getting citizens to vote is the essence of democracy. Urging them to vote every year is irresponsible,” the outgoing premier said.

Reporting by Angelo Amante and Gavin Jones; Writing by Gavin Jones; Editing by Peter Cooney

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Italy president begins talks to seek way out of government crisis

ROME (Reuters) – Italian President Sergio Mattarella begins two days of talks with events on Wednesday to seek a way out of a political crisis that may lead to formation of the nation’s 67th government since World Conflict Two or early elections.

FILE PHOTO: Italy’s President Sergio Mattarella speaks through the opening day of the Worldwide Labour Group’s annual labour convention in Geneva, Switzerland June 10, 2019. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte resigned on Tuesday after launching a blistering assault on his personal inside minister, Matteo Salvini, accusing him of sinking the coalition and endangering the financial system for private and political acquire.

In a shock transfer on Aug. 8, Salvini, chief of the far-right League social gathering, declared that his alliance with the anti-establishment 5-Star Motion was lifeless and known as for elections.

Salvini had repeatedly promised the 14-month previous government would final a full five-year time period and appeared assured his transfer would set off early elections, permitting him to money in on the League’s surging recognition.

However the gambit might backfire and open the door to energy for his rivals.

Politicians from 5-Star and the center-left Democratic Social gathering (PD) are brazenly discussing forming a brand new coalition that might push the League into opposition and provides Italy a extra centrist, pro-European government.

“The inside minister has proven he’s following his personal pursuits and people of his social gathering … his selections pose critical dangers for this nation,” Conte, who doesn’t belong to both ruling social gathering, advised the Senate on Tuesday earlier than heading to the president’s palace to resign.

Monetary markets rallied on Conte’s resignation, seemingly hopeful {that a} 5-Star/PD coalition will be ushered in and snap polls averted.

Mattarella will meet with all of the events in parliament, one after the opposite, to see if a brand new coalition will be shaped. Failing that, he would have to dissolve parliament, 3-1/2 years forward of schedule, to enable for autumn elections.

He’ll start with minor teams at 1400 GMT however is not going to hear the primary events till Thursday, concluding with 5-Star at 1500 GMT.

The PD’s management can also be scheduled to meet on Wednesday, at 0900 GMT, to focus on the prospect of hooking up with 5-Star. The 2 events have been bitter political foes for years.

Salvini mentioned on Tuesday he would repeat to the president that he needs new elections following the March 2018 vote that led to the 5-Star/League government.

He accused the opposite events of attempting to cobble collectively a deal as a result of they have been afraid to return to the polls, however Conte mentioned contemporary political uncertainty was the very last thing Italy wanted because it prepares a troublesome 2020 finances within the autumn.

“Getting residents to vote is the essence of democracy. Urging them to vote yearly is irresponsible,” the outgoing premier mentioned.

Reporting by Angelo Amante and Gavin Jones; Writing by Gavin Jones; Enhancing by Peter Cooney

Our Requirements:The Thomson Reuters Belief Rules.
Facts Source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/topNews/~3/xsEKzCaAnIM/italy-president-begins-talks-to-seek-way-out-of-government-crisis-idUSKCN1VA2D3

A group appear to attack a young Mulsim woman in the footage shared online

Police are investigating reports that a Muslim teenager had her hijab pulled off and was pelted with eggs by a group of people in Dublin.

The woman and her cousin are also said to have been thrown to the ground and kicked in the alleged attack in Dundrum village, south Dublin, on Sunday afternoon.

Somebody claiming to be a relative of the two girls posted a video of the incident on social media, which shows eggs splattered on the ground and a group of people screaming as an altercation takes place.

A group appear to attack a young Mulsim woman in the footage shared online
Image:
A group appear to attack a young Muslim woman in the footage shared online
A woman appears to be on the ground after the alleged attack
Image:
A woman appears to be on the ground after the alleged attack

A woman, who appears to be one of the victims, can be heard crying and making sounds as if she is in pain off-camera.

The social media user who shared the video online pasted text over the top which reads: “My sister and cousin were attacked yesterday evening in Dundrum village.”

They added: “I am so disgusted and angry that I was not there to protect them.

“Please help share this to find these scumbags to prosecute them and bring them to justice #dundrumvillage #dundrumshoppingcentre.

“They remove my cousin’s hijab and kick her while she is down then attack my sister and bring her to the ground to kick her!

“This should not be happening to anyone no matter who they are!

“What world do we live in?”

The video shared online has this statement posted over the top of it
Image:
The video shared online has this statement posted over the top of it

Police are investigating the alleged attack but no arrests have been made.

A spokeswoman said: “Gardai are investigating an alleged assault of a female in her teens, which occurred on Sunday 18 August 2019 at approximately 15:30 on Main Street, Dundrum.”

Fine Gael minister and the member of parliament for the area Josepha Madigan wrote on Twitter: “I condemn in the strongest possible terms the assault on a Muslim girl who had her hijab taken from her in Dundrum village yesterday.

“I hope the perpetrators are brought to justice quickly.”

Local Labour councillor Peter O’Brien said: “Disgusted and horrified to hear of the attack on a Muslim girl and her cousin in Dundrum.

“A number of fascists threw eggs and pulled her hijab off.”

Muslim teenager ‘has hijab pulled off and is pelted with eggs’ in Dublin | UK News

Police are investigating reviews {that a} Muslim teenager had her hijab pulled off and was pelted with eggs by a gaggle of individuals in Dublin.

The lady and her cousin are additionally stated to have been thrown to the bottom and kicked in the alleged assault in Dundrum village, south Dublin, on Sunday afternoon.

Any person claiming to be a relative of the 2 women posted a video of the incident on social media, which exhibits eggs splattered on the bottom and a gaggle of individuals screaming as an altercation takes place.

A group appear to attack a young Mulsim woman in the footage shared online
Picture:
A gaggle seem to assault a younger Muslim lady in the footage shared on-line
A woman appears to be on the ground after the alleged attack
Picture:
A lady seems to be on the bottom after the alleged assault

A lady, who seems to be one of many victims, will be heard crying and making sounds as if she is in ache off-camera.

The social media consumer who shared the video on-line pasted textual content excessive which reads: “My sister and cousin had been attacked yesterday night in Dundrum village.”

They added: “I’m so disgusted and indignant that I used to be not there to guard them.

“Please assist share this to seek out these scumbags to prosecute them and convey them to justice #dundrumvillage #dundrumshoppingcentre.

“They take away my cousin’s hijab and kick her whereas she is down then assault my sister and convey her to the bottom to kick her!

“This shouldn’t be taking place to anybody irrespective of who they’re!

“What world will we dwell in?”

The video shared online has this statement posted over the top of it
Picture:
The video shared on-line has this assertion posted excessive of it

Police are investigating the alleged assault however no arrests have been made.

A spokeswoman stated: “Gardai are investigating an alleged assault of a feminine in her teenagers, which occurred on Sunday 18 August 2019 at roughly 15:30 on Essential Road, Dundrum.”

Nice Gael minister and the member of parliament for the world Josepha Madigan wrote on Twitter: “I condemn in the strongest potential phrases the assault on a Muslim lady who had her hijab taken from her in Dundrum village yesterday.

“I hope the perpetrators are delivered to justice shortly.”

Native Labour councillor Peter O’Brien stated: “Disgusted and horrified to listen to of the assault on a Muslim lady and her cousin in Dundrum.

“A variety of fascists threw eggs and pulled her hijab off.”

Facts Source: http://news.sky.com/story/muslim-teenager-has-hijab-pulled-off-and-is-pelted-with-eggs-in-dublin-11790018

Italy's Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte says he'll resign, attacks Salvini as 'irresponsible'

In an hour-long speech at the Italian Senate on Tuesday afternoon, Conte launched a scathing attack on Salvini, the country’s Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister, who is thought to be vying for his job.

Earlier this month, Salvini pushed for new elections, saying that the government coalition between the hardline anti-immigrant League party and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement no longer holds a majority in parliament.

Conte said Salvini’s demand for fresh elections — a mere 18 months after the last ones were held — was “irresponsible” and accused him of putting the national interest at risk in order to advance his own personal interests.

“With a political crisis in mid-August, elections will probably be held in autumn and then this would mean a provisional government and will make us weak with our EU partners,” Conte said.

Conte also slammed Salvini, who was sitting next to him throughout his speech, for what he described as a lack of statesmanship, and said his decision could bring about institutional and financial uncertainty.

“Asking citizens to vote every year is irresponsible,” Conte added.

Investigation into a possible scheme between Russia and Italian political party

Conte said he would listen to the rest of Tuesday’s Senate debate and then submit his resignation to President Sergio Mattarella, potentially setting Italy off on a path towards the new elections Salvini has called for.

Salvini took the microphone immediately after Conte finished his speech, saying that he would “do what I did all over again,” adding: “I am a free man. I am not afraid of the judgment of Italians.”

He then said he wanted to offer Italians a “future of growth and prosperity.”

Salvini also defended his policies on Europe and immigration, which caused the coalition to fall apart. He said: “are we or are we not a sovereign country, free to protect its borders, its beaches!”

At one point during his speech, Salvini took out a rosary and asked the Virgin Mary for protection for Italians. Conte has previously criticized Salvini’s habit of showing the rosary during public speeches and rallies given his anti-immigrant policies.

A tenuous coalition

Conte, a law professor with no previous political experience, became prime minister in June 2018 after the League and Five Star Movement reached a coalition agreement.

The two populist, euroskeptic parties secured the most votes in the March 2018 election, but the coalition fell apart this month over disagreements on key policies.

Spain sends ship to collect migrants stranded off Italy for 19 days as at least 10 jump overboard

Those disputes reached fever pitch this week, as the two parties engaged in a bitter political standoff over a migrant ship that has been stranded off Italy for 19 days.

Salvini refused to allow the Open Arms to dock, despite a court ruling that said the boat should be allowed to come ashore.

Conte, on the other hand, demanded that Salvini “urgently adopt the necessary measures to ensure assistance and protection for minors present in the boat.”

Salvini eventually allowed 27 unaccompanied minors to disembark the ship — but insisted that the decision was “exclusively” Conte’s responsibility.

Earlier in August, tensions between the two parties rose after a split vote over a planned high-speed rail link between Turin in Italy and Lyon in France, a project that the League favored.

The turmoil comes at a difficult time as Italy’s parliament must approve and present its draft budget to European Union leaders in Brussels by mid-October.

Politicians are also working to finalize reforms proposed by the Five Star Movement which would slash the country’s parliament by more than 300 seats.

Monday’s rift may lead to an alternative coalition between the Five Star movement and the center-left opposition Democratic Party. Alternatively, the Five Star movement could reunite with the League for another coalition, under a different prime minister.

Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte says he’ll resign, attacks Salvini as ‘irresponsible’

In an hour-long speech on the Italian Senate on Tuesday afternoon, Conte launched a scathing assault on Salvini, the nation’s Deputy Prime Minister and Inside Minister, who’s regarded as vying for his job.

Earlier this month, Salvini pushed for brand spanking new elections, saying that the federal government coalition between the hardline anti-immigrant League occasion and the anti-establishment 5 Star Motion now not holds a majority in parliament.

Conte stated Salvini’s demand for contemporary elections — a mere 18 months after the final ones have been held — was “irresponsible” and accused him of placing the nationwide curiosity in danger to be able to advance his personal private pursuits.

“With a political disaster in mid-August, elections will most likely be held in autumn after which this may imply a provisional authorities and can make us weak with our EU companions,” Conte stated.

Conte additionally slammed Salvini, who was sitting subsequent to him all through his speech, for what he described as an absence of statesmanship, and stated his determination might result in institutional and monetary uncertainty.

“Asking residents to vote yearly is irresponsible,” Conte added.

Investigation into a possible scheme between Russia and Italian political party

Conte stated he would take heed to the remainder of Tuesday’s Senate debate after which submit his resignation to President Sergio Mattarella, probably setting Italy off on a path in the direction of the brand new elections Salvini has referred to as for.

Salvini took the microphone instantly after Conte completed his speech, saying that he would “do what I did once more,” including: “I’m a free man. I’m not afraid of the judgment of Italians.”

He then stated he wished to supply Italians a “way forward for progress and prosperity.”

Salvini additionally defended his insurance policies on Europe and immigration, which triggered the coalition to crumble. He stated: “are we or are we not a sovereign nation, free to guard its borders, its seashores!”

At one level throughout his speech, Salvini took out a rosary and requested the Virgin Mary for cover for Italians. Conte has beforehand criticized Salvini’s behavior of exhibiting the rosary throughout public speeches and rallies given his anti-immigrant insurance policies.

A tenuous coalition

Conte, a regulation professor with no earlier political expertise, grew to become prime minister in June 2018 after the League and 5 Star Motion reached a coalition settlement.

The 2 populist, euroskeptic events secured essentially the most votes within the March 2018 election, however the coalition fell aside this month over disagreements on key insurance policies.

Spain sends ship to collect migrants stranded off Italy for 19 days as at least 10 jump overboard

These disputes reached fever pitch this week, as the 2 events engaged in a bitter political standoff over a migrant ship that has been stranded off Italy for 19 days.

Salvini refused to permit the Open Arms to dock, regardless of a courtroom ruling that stated the boat needs to be allowed to return ashore.

Conte, then again, demanded that Salvini “urgently undertake the mandatory measures to make sure help and safety for minors current within the boat.”

Salvini ultimately allowed 27 unaccompanied minors to disembark the ship — however insisted that the choice was “solely” Conte’s accountability.

Earlier in August, tensions between the 2 events rose after a cut up vote over a deliberate high-speed rail hyperlink between Turin in Italy and Lyon in France, a venture that the League favored.

The turmoil comes at a tough time as Italy’s parliament should approve and current its draft finances to European Union leaders in Brussels by mid-October.

Politicians are additionally working to finalize reforms proposed by the 5 Star Motion which might slash the nation’s parliament by greater than 300 seats.

Monday’s rift could result in another coalition between the 5 Star motion and the center-left opposition Democratic Occasion. Alternatively, the 5 Star motion might reunite with the League for one more coalition, below a distinct prime minister.

Facts Source: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/20/europe/italy-prime-minister-giuseppe-conte-intl/index.html

Saudi Arabia implements end to travel restrictions for Saudi women: agency

A Saudi woman walks with her luggage as she arrives at King Fahd International Airport in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, August 5, 2019. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

RIYADH (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia has begun allowing adult women to travel without permission and to exercise more control over family matters, state news agency SPA reported on Tuesday, following a flurry of royal decrees approving the changes.

Riyadh has long faced international criticism over the status of Saudi women. Rights groups say women are often treated as second-class citizens under rules requiring them to get the consent of a male guardian for important decisions throughout their entire lives, regardless of age.

The authorities have steadily chipped away at those restrictions in recent years, including ending a ban on women driving cars last year. A series of royal decrees published earlier this month further eroded that system as the kingdom comes under increased scrutiny over its human rights record.

The regulatory changes stipulated that a Saudi passport should be issued to any citizen who applies for it and that any person above the age of 21 does not need permission to travel.

They also granted women for the first time the right to register child birth, marriage or divorce and to be issued official family documents and be eligible as a guardian to children who are minors.

“The passports and civil status departments and their branches in all regions of the kingdom have started to implement the amendments stipulated in the royal decree,” the SPA report said, citing an interior ministry source.

A Saudi newspaper reported that more than 1,000 women in the country’s Eastern Province had left Saudi Arabia on Monday without their guardian’s permission, in what appeared to be an early implementation of the new rules.

Reporting by Stephen Kalin; Editing by Gareth Jones

Our Standards:The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
Saudi Arabia implements end to travel restrictions for Saudi girls: agency

A Saudi lady walks together with her baggage as she arrives at King Fahd Worldwide Airport in Dammam, Saudi Arabia, August 5, 2019. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

RIYADH (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia has begun permitting grownup girls to travel with out permission and to train extra management over household issues, state information agency SPA reported on Tuesday, following a flurry of royal decrees approving the adjustments.

Riyadh has lengthy confronted worldwide criticism over the standing of Saudi girls. Rights teams say girls are sometimes handled as second-class residents underneath guidelines requiring them to get the consent of a male guardian for necessary selections all through their total lives, no matter age.

The authorities have steadily chipped away at these restrictions in recent times, together with ending a ban on girls driving automobiles final 12 months. A collection of royal decrees printed earlier this month additional eroded that system as the dominion comes underneath elevated scrutiny over its human rights file.

The regulatory adjustments stipulated {that a} Saudi passport must be issued to any citizen who applies for it and that any individual above the age of 21 doesn’t want permission to travel.

In addition they granted girls for the primary time the proper to register little one delivery, marriage or divorce and to be issued official household paperwork and be eligible as a guardian to youngsters who’re minors.

“The passports and civil standing departments and their branches in all areas of the dominion have began to implement the amendments stipulated within the royal decree,” the SPA report mentioned, citing an inside ministry supply.

A Saudi newspaper reported that greater than 1,000 girls within the nation’s Jap Province had left Saudi Arabia on Monday with out their guardian’s permission, in what appeared to be an early implementation of the brand new guidelines.

Reporting by Stephen Kalin; Enhancing by Gareth Jones

Our Requirements:The Thomson Reuters Belief Rules.
Facts Source: http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/reuters/topNews/~3/I0hs7d8lZNo/saudi-arabia-implements-end-to-travel-restrictions-for-saudi-women-agency-idUSKCN1VA1OI

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte (R), flanked by Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini (L), delivers a speech at the Italian Senate, in Rome, on August 20, 2019

Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has announced he will resign after his populist government lost the support of a key coalition member.

Mr Conte accused Matteo Salvini, leader of the right-wing League party, of trying to ruin the ruling coalition for personal and political gain, risking financial instability for Italy.

Mr Conte told a packed Senate: “[Salvini] has shown that he is following his own interests and those of his party.

“His decisions pose serious risks for this country.”

He described Mr Salvini’s actions as “serious institutional recklessness, above all showing disrespect to parliament and liable to tip the country into a spiral of political uncertainty and financial instability”.

Earlier this month, Mr Salvini pulled the plug on his party’s coalition with the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, accusing them of being obstructionist.

Mr Salvini wants to exploit the League’s growing popularity by forcing an election more than three years ahead of schedule.

Sitting next to Mr Conte, who does not belong to either of the coalition’s two parties, Mr Salvini shook his head and rolled his eyes as his actions were criticised.

Responding to Mr Conte’s accusations, he said his goal was to challenge the European Union’s fiscal rules, which he has blamed for making Italy poorer.

He called on Rome to spend at least €50bn (£45bn) to stimulate the economy.

Mr Salvini also said he was not afraid of an early election, adding that he would “do again everything I did… I’m a free man and I don’t fear Italians’ judgement”.

Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini delivers as speech at the Italian Senate, in Rome, on August 20, 2019
Image:
Matteo Salvini wants to exploit the League’s popularity by forcing an early election

Italy’s parliament had been recalled from its summer recess to decide on the future of the government, barely a year into its term.

Earlier in the day, Luigi Di Maio, head of the 5-Star Movement, had hinted at what might be coming, with a Facebook post thanking prime minister Mr Conte.

He wrote: “Whatever happens, I wanted to tell you that it was an honour to work together in this government.”

The next step is for Mr Conte to inform Italy’s president, Sergio Mattarella, of his decision, something he said he would do later today.

Mr Mattarella could then ask Mr Conte to stay on and try to find an alternative majority in parliament.

Or he could accept the resignation and allow another leader the chance to put together a coalition.

If these fail, Mr Mattarella could dissolve parliament and hold a new election as early as October.

More follows…

Italy’s prime minister announces resignation | World News

Italy’s Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte has introduced he’ll resign after his populist authorities misplaced the help of a key coalition member.

Mr Conte accused Matteo Salvini, chief of the right-wing League get together, of attempting to destroy the ruling coalition for private and political acquire, risking monetary instability for Italy.

Mr Conte advised a packed Senate: “[Salvini] has proven that he’s following his personal pursuits and people of his get together.

“His choices pose critical dangers for this nation.”

He described Mr Salvini’s actions as “critical institutional recklessness, above all exhibiting disrespect to parliament and liable to tip the nation right into a spiral of political uncertainty and monetary instability”.

Earlier this month, Mr Salvini pulled the plug on his get together’s coalition with the anti-establishment 5-Star Motion, accusing them of being obstructionist.

Mr Salvini desires to take advantage of the League’s rising recognition by forcing an election greater than three years forward of schedule.

Sitting subsequent to Mr Conte, who doesn’t belong to both of the coalition’s two events, Mr Salvini shook his head and rolled his eyes as his actions had been criticised.

Responding to Mr Conte’s accusations, he mentioned his purpose was to problem the European Union’s fiscal guidelines, which he has blamed for making Italy poorer.

He referred to as on Rome to spend not less than €50bn (£45bn) to stimulate the economic system.

Mr Salvini additionally mentioned he was not afraid of an early election, including that he would “do once more every little thing I did… I am a free man and I do not worry Italians’ judgement”.

Deputy Prime Minister and Interior Minister Matteo Salvini delivers as speech at the Italian Senate, in Rome, on August 20, 2019
Picture:
Matteo Salvini desires to take advantage of the League’s recognition by forcing an early election

Italy’s parliament had been recalled from its summer time recess to resolve on the way forward for the federal government, barely a 12 months into its time period.

Earlier within the day, Luigi Di Maio, head of the 5-Star Motion, had hinted at what is perhaps coming, with a Fb publish thanking prime minister Mr Conte.

He wrote: “No matter occurs, I needed to let you know that it was an honour to work collectively on this authorities.”

The subsequent step is for Mr Conte to tell Italy’s president, Sergio Mattarella, of his determination, one thing he mentioned he would do later at present.

Mr Mattarella might then ask Mr Conte to remain on and attempt to discover another majority in parliament.

Or he might settle for the resignation and permit one other chief the prospect to place collectively a coalition.

If these fail, Mr Mattarella might dissolve parliament and maintain a brand new election as early as October.

Extra follows…

Facts Source: http://news.sky.com/story/italys-prime-minister-announces-resignation-11789894

CNN Poll: 2020 democratic candidates led by Joe Biden

That’s up 7 points compared with a late June CNN survey. No other candidate has made meaningful gains over that time.

Aside from Biden’s increase, the only statistically meaningful change in the candidate standings is a 12-point decline in support for California Sen. Kamala Harris, who stood at 17% support in the June poll but now has the backing of 5% of potential Democratic voters. That’s similar to the level of support she had in the spring before a surge following her initial debate performance.
The June CNN poll was conducted in the days immediately following the first round of Democratic National Committee-sanctioned debates among the presidential candidates. Biden’s performance in that debate was widely panned, while Harris had a standout moment challenging him over his views on school busing integration. Biden’s numbers have rebounded since then in other polling as well, and Harris’s have returned to roughly where they were pre-debate.

Biden’s advantage in the poll is boosted by stronger support from self-identified Democrats (31%) than from independents (23%), older voters (34% among those age 45 and older) than younger ones (23% among those under age 45) and from moderate and conservative voters (34%) than liberals (22%).

Among liberals, in fact, the race is a near three-way tie: 23% choose Warren and 22% each back Biden and Sanders. No other candidate even hits 5% among this group.

Biden is also bolstered by those voters who say their top priority is choosing a candidate with a strong chance of beating President Donald Trump, a group that makes up 54% of Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters (35% in that group support Biden). That group has shrunk slightly since June, when 61% said defeating Trump outweighed nominating a candidate who “shares your positions on major issues.”

While Democrats do not appear sharply divided on this question by ideology (53% of liberals and 57% of moderate or conservative Democratic voters say beating Trump is more important), race (54% among whites and non-whites prioritize beating Trump) or partisanship (52% of self-identified Democrats prioritize beating Trump as do 59% of Democratic-leaning independents), there are notable divisions by age and by education among whites, which highlights the challenge facing candidates when they attempt to appeal to those on both sides of this line.

Among those under age 45, 56% say it’s more important to nominate a candidate who shares your positions on issues, while 66% of those age 45 and older say it’s more important to nominate someone who can defeat Trump. Among whites without college degrees, 49% say it’s more important to nominate someone who shares their view on issues while 45% say beating Trump is more important, but among whites with a college degree, 65% say it’s more important to beat Trump.

The poll — which is among those used by the DNC in order to determine which candidates will qualify for the debate stage in September — marks the fourth such qualifying poll in which former HUD Secretary Julián Castro has hit 2%, securing his spot on the stage in Houston next month.
Castro is the 10th candidate to qualify for a spot. Two other candidates say they have already met the fundraising threshold for appearing on stage in September, but have not yet hit the polling mark: Businessman Tom Steyer remains one poll shy of qualifying and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard now has two after landing at 2% in this poll. She needs two more to make the debate stage.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s campaign said Monday that he had hit the 130,000-donor threshold. Inslee has not hit 2% in any qualifying polls.

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has hit 2% in one qualifying poll and is the only other active candidate to have hit that mark in any qualifying poll, but she has not met the fundraising criteria.

8 Democratic presidential candidates will participate in CNN climate town hall

Asked which candidates they’d most like to hear more about, Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters are largely focused on the people who will appear on September’s debate stage.

The 10 candidates named by 5% or more of respondents have all now qualified for inclusion in the debates. Warren now tops this list, named by 20%, despite a slight decline in interest in hearing more about her compared with June. She is followed by Harris at 18%, Sanders at 16%, Biden at 15%, Buttigieg at 13%, Booker and O’Rourke at 10% each, Yang at 6% and Castro and Klobuchar each at 5%.

The CNN Poll was conducted by SSRS August 15 through 18 among a random national sample of 1,001 adults reached on landlines or cellphones by a live interviewer. Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points, for the subsample of 402 Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents who are registered to vote, it is 6.1 points.

CNN Ballot: 2020 democratic candidates led by Joe Biden

That is up 7 factors in contrast with a late June CNN survey. No different candidate has made significant features over that point.

Apart from Biden’s enhance, the one statistically significant change within the candidate standings is a 12-point decline in assist for California Sen. Kamala Harris, who stood at 17% assist within the June ballot however now has the backing of 5% of potential Democratic voters. That is just like the extent of assist she had within the spring earlier than a surge following her preliminary debate efficiency.
The June CNN ballot was performed within the days instantly following the primary spherical of Democratic Nationwide Committee-sanctioned debates among the many presidential candidates. Biden’s efficiency in that debate was broadly panned, whereas Harris had a standout second difficult him over his views on faculty busing integration. Biden’s numbers have rebounded since then in different polling as properly, and Harris’s have returned to roughly the place they have been pre-debate.

Biden’s benefit within the ballot is boosted by stronger assist from self-identified Democrats (31%) than from independents (23%), older voters (34% amongst these age 45 and older) than youthful ones (23% amongst these below age 45) and from reasonable and conservative voters (34%) than liberals (22%).

Amongst liberals, actually, the race is a close to three-way tie: 23% select Warren and 22% every again Biden and Sanders. No different candidate even hits 5% amongst this group.

Biden can also be bolstered by these voters who say their high precedence is selecting a candidate with a robust likelihood of beating President Donald Trump, a bunch that makes up 54% of Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters (35% in that group assist Biden). That group has shrunk barely since June, when 61% stated defeating Trump outweighed nominating a candidate who “shares your positions on main points.”

Whereas Democrats don’t seem sharply divided on this query by ideology (53% of liberals and 57% of reasonable or conservative Democratic voters say beating Trump is extra necessary), race (54% amongst whites and non-whites prioritize beating Trump) or partisanship (52% of self-identified Democrats prioritize beating Trump as do 59% of Democratic-leaning independents), there are notable divisions by age and by schooling amongst whites, which highlights the problem dealing with candidates after they try and attraction to these on each side of this line.

Amongst these below age 45, 56% say it is extra necessary to appoint a candidate who shares your positions on points, whereas 66% of these age 45 and older say it is extra necessary to appoint somebody who can defeat Trump. Amongst whites with out faculty levels, 49% say it is extra necessary to appoint somebody who shares their view on points whereas 45% say beating Trump is extra necessary, however amongst whites with a university diploma, 65% say it is extra necessary to beat Trump.

The ballot — which is amongst these used by the DNC with the intention to decide which candidates will qualify for the controversy stage in September — marks the fourth such qualifying ballot during which former HUD Secretary Julián Castro has hit 2%, securing his spot on the stage in Houston subsequent month.
Castro is the 10th candidate to qualify for a spot. Two different candidates say they’ve already met the fundraising threshold for showing on stage in September, however haven’t but hit the polling mark: Businessman Tom Steyer stays one ballot shy of qualifying and Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard now has two after touchdown at 2% on this ballot. She wants two extra to make the controversy stage.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee’s marketing campaign stated Monday that he had hit the 130,000-donor threshold. Inslee has not hit 2% in any qualifying polls.

New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand has hit 2% in a single qualifying ballot and is the one different energetic candidate to have hit that mark in any qualifying ballot, however she has not met the fundraising standards.

8 Democratic presidential candidates will participate in CNN climate town hall

Requested which candidates they’d most like to listen to extra about, Democratic and Democratic-leaning registered voters are largely targeted on the individuals who will seem on September’s debate stage.

The 10 candidates named by 5% or extra of respondents have all now certified for inclusion within the debates. Warren now tops this checklist, named by 20%, regardless of a slight decline in curiosity in listening to extra about her in contrast with June. She is adopted by Harris at 18%, Sanders at 16%, Biden at 15%, Buttigieg at 13%, Booker and O’Rourke at 10% every, Yang at 6% and Castro and Klobuchar every at 5%.

The CNN Ballot was performed by SSRS August 15 by means of 18 amongst a random nationwide pattern of 1,001 adults reached on landlines or cellphones by a dwell interviewer. Outcomes for the complete pattern have a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3.7 proportion factors, for the subsample of 402 Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents who’re registered to vote, it’s 6.1 factors.

Facts Source: https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/20/politics/cnn-poll-democrats-2020-biden-rebound/index.html