Атака талібів на Кундуз в Афганістані: мінімум 15 загиблих

Щонайменше 15 мешканців Кундузу загинули, ще 75 дістали поранення внаслідок атаки бойовиків ектремістського угруповання «Талібан» на це афганське місто, повідомляє місцева влада. 

За даними офісу президента Афганістану Ашрафа Гані, сили безпеки в деяких частинах міста відбили напад. Інші чиновники стверджують, що вбито понад 30 талібів.

Крім того, як повідомив інформаційному агентству AP член провінційної ради Гулам Рабані, коли співробітники сил безпеки намагалися витиснути бойовиків з центру міста, смертник підірвав себе на головному перехресті міста. За даними речника міністерства внутрішніх справ Насрата Рахімі, налідок цього вибуху загинули десятеро люде, пятеро бул поранені.

Речник президента Седік Седдікі заявив журналістам, що напад талібів «повністю суперечить мирним переговорам», які наразі тривають між США та «Талібаном».

Читайте також: США залишать своїх військових в Афганістані і після досягнення мирної угоди – Трамп​

Напад «Талібану» на одне з найбільших міст Афганістану Кундуз почався 31 серпня на тлі надії на прорив у переговорах між США й «Талібаном» про мирну угоду, яка включатиме відведення з Афганістану тисяч американських військових.

30 серпня президент США Дональд Трамп повідомив, що переговори йдуть добре.

Таліби нині контролюють або ведуть збройну боротьбу приблизно на половині території Афганістану. Вони вимагають повного виведення всіх іноземних військ.

В Афганістані перебуває близько 20 тисяч іноземних військових, більшість із них – американці. Вони беруть участь і місії НАТО з метою навчання афганських військових. Деякі американські солдати беруть участь в антитерористичних операціях.

Баскетбол 3х3: жіноча збірна вийшла до чвертьфіналу Чемпіонату Європи

Жіноча збірна України з баскетболу 3х3 пробилася у плей-оф Чемпіонату Європи, повідомляє кореспондент Радіо Свобода 31 серпня.

В угорському Дебрецені триває континентальна першість з баскетболу 3х3, де боротьбу за нагороди розпочали Ганна Ольховик, Крістіна Філевич, Євгенія Спітковська та Ганна Зарицька.

Зустріч проти збірної Данії завершилася перемогою «синьо-жовтих» – 19:9. А ось найкращих у матчі з командою Нідерландів вдалося виявити лише в овертаймі. Збірна України поступилася – 13:14.

 

Проте за результатами двох матчів «синьо-жовті» очолили групу D і вийшли до чвертьфіналу Чемпіонату Європи з першого місця.

У наступному етапі жіноча збірна України зіграє проти команди Латвії. Матч розпочнеться 1 вересня о 14:40 за київським часом.

Trump Tweets, Golfs Amid Hurricane Preparations

After canceling a trip to Poland to stay stateside to oversee the federal government’s response to an approaching hurricane, President Donald Trump took time out to golf and to send a thinly veiled warning to his ousted Oval Office gatekeeper.

The president, on Saturday morning, was flown on Marine One from Camp David in Maryland to his Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia.
 
Camp David has a driving range and a single golf hole with multiple tees, but the president, keeping to his weekend routine when the weather is fair, chose to head to the nearest of his private 18-hole courses.

Before departing the presidential retreat, which he rarely has used, Trump dispatched a blizzard of tweets – at a rate of nearly one per minute over an hour – on his personal @realDonaldTrump account.

Some of his tweets referenced Hurricane Dorian, a Category 4 storm poised to damage the southeastern U.S. coast, with Trump noting it could pose more of a threat to South Carolina and Georgia than the original forecast of landfall in Florida.

Looking like our great South Carolina could get hit MUCH harder than first thought. Georgia and North Carolina also. It’s moving around and very hard to predict, except that it is one of the biggest and strongest (and really wide) that we have seen in decades. Be safe!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 31, 2019

“He’s being briefed every hour” about the hurricane, according to White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham.

Amid continuing questions about why Trump postponed his trip to Poland for a hurricane that is not expected to hit any of the United States until after the time the president would have returned from Europe, Grisham said, “Obviously, being here domestically is better. … We’re more nimble and all his agencies are here.” 

After time at his golf course, Trump was to receive another briefing, back at Camp David, about the hurricane.

On Sunday, Trump is scheduled to return to the White House and then visit the headquarters of the Federal Emergency Management Agency in downtown Washington.

FILE – President Donald Trump’s personal secretary Madeleine Westerhout stands outside the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, April 2, 2018.

A pair of Saturday tweets by Trump focused on the abrupt departure of Oval Office gatekeeper Madeleine Westerhout, who had dished gossip to a group of reporters during an off-the-record dinner and drinking session about the president’s eating habits. She also disparaged daughter Tiffany Trump, claiming the president does not like being photographed with her because he thinks she is overweight.

Book publishers reportedly have been seeking to contact Westerhout after she was not permitted to return on Friday to her job as a personal assistant to the president.

Trump, on Twitter, said Westerhout had signed a confidentially agreement, but “I don’t think there would ever be reason to use it. She called me yesterday to apologize, had a bad night. I fully understood and forgave her! I love Tiffany, doing great!”

While Madeleine Westerhout has a fully enforceable confidentiality agreement, she is a very good person and I don’t think there would ever be reason to use it. She called me yesterday to apologize, had a bad night. I fully understood and forgave her! I love Tiffany, doing great!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 31, 2019

In a subsequent tweet, the president claimed he is “currently suing several people for violating their confidentiality agreements,” including former White House aide Omarosa Manigault Newman, who was fired after one year as the communications director in the White House Office of Public Liaison.

…Yes, I am currently suing various people for violating their confidentiality agreements. Disgusting and foul mouthed Omarosa is one. I gave her every break, despite the fact that she was despised by everyone, and she went for some cheap money from a book. Numerous others also!

— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 31, 2019

A number of former federal lawyers and private attorneys rebutted Trump on Twitter, asserting that the non-disclosure agreements are not legally enforceable unless classified information is revealed.

Trump himself is facing some criticism about revealing sensitive U.S. government information after he tweeted on Friday a detailed photograph of a launchpad explosion of an Iranian rocket that was set to put a satellite into space.  

Analysts say the public release of an image with such resolution is unprecedented and was probably taken by a KH-11 American spy satellite known as USA-224.

“We had a photo and I released it, which I have the absolute right to do,” Trump told reporters on Friday.

U.S. presidents are able to declassify information at their discretion – the most prominent example being John Kennedy’s decision in 1962 to make public pictures taken by a U-2 spy plane that revealed Soviets troops were placing missiles in Cuba aimed at the United States.

 

9 FARC Rebels Killed in Raid by Colombian Military

The Colombian military has killed nine rebels of the Revolutionary Armed Forces in Colombia (FARC), President Ivan Duque said.

A FARC commander and eight other guerrillas were killed in a bombing raid in southern Colombia on Friday, just days after the group announced it was taking up arms again to ensure their political rights under an historic peace agreement.

Duque said the attack occurred in the municipality of San Vicente del Caguan, located in the province of Caqueta, after he authorized a military operation in rural areas in the southern part of the country.

Duque said Friday’s bombing sends “a clear message” to FARC members to lay down their weapons.

Among those killed was a rebel known by his alias, Gildardo Cucho, a member of a group led by former FARC chief negotiator Luciano Marin, who was trying to recruit potential rebels for a new guerrilla movement.

On Thursday, former FARC commander Ivan Marquez announced in a video that a new offensive would be launched, three years after FARC signed a peace deal with the government, ending five decades of armed conflict in the South American country.

“This is the continuation of the rebel fight in answer to the betrayal of the state,” Marquez, in a 32-minute YouTube video. “We were never beaten or defeated ideologically, so the struggle continues.”

Marquez, a former chief rebel negotiator, appeared alongside some 20 heavily armed guerrillas when he made the announcement, which comes amid severe challenges to the complex peace agreement.

In response to the FARC announcement, Duque said “Colombia takes no threats. Not of any nature.”

Colombia’s peace tribunal also has issued arrest warrants for Marquez and the others who have pledged to take up the insurgency again.

President Duque is offering an $863,000 reward for information leading to the capture of anyone who appeared in the YouTube video, according to Reuters.

Hundreds of former rebels and human rights activists have been murdered since the accord was signed.  That, coupled with delays in funding for economic efforts by former rebels — has exacerbated deep political divisions within the country.

Marquez said the group’s objective is to ensure the installation of a government that will promote peace. Marquez said the group will fight corruption and fracking (the hydraulic fracturing crude oil extraction process) and demand payments from participants in illicit economies and from multinational corporations.

About 7,000 rebels surrendered their weapons to United Nations observers as part of the agreement that was negotiated with the support of the United States, Cuba and Norway. But smaller rebel groups and drug traffickers have filled the void, leaving many citizens frustrated with the slow pace of implementing the agreement.

Security sources estimate the force commanded by Marquez could number 2,200 fighters.

 

Thousands March in Moscow Protest Defying Authorities

Current Time TV is a Russian-language network led by RFE/RL in cooperation with VOA.

MOSCOW — Thousands of Russians defied authorities and marched in central Moscow, ignoring officials’ warnings and pressing demands to let independent candidates run in upcoming city council elections.

Police did not interfere with the August 31 protest, which was markedly smaller than previous ones.

However, camouflaged officers linked arms to keep marchers out of the road when demonstrators arrived at Pushkin Square — a symbolically important public park closer to the Kremlin. A heavy presence of detention buses and water-cannon trucks were visible on nearby side streets.

Neither police nor independent watchdogs reported any arrests or detentions from the action — in contrast to other recent protests in which thousands were detained, sometimes violently.

The August 31 action was the latest in a series of confrontations between liberal activists, and Moscow city authorities — and the Kremlin.

Demonstrators clapped and chanted “Russia Will Be Free!” and “Down With The Tsar!” (in a reference to President Vladimir Putin, who has been in power in Russia for two decades), as they walked along a leafy boulevard just a few kilometers north of the Kremlin.

A leading opposition figure and one of the organizers of the march, Lyubov Sobol, led people chanting “Freedom For Political Prisoners.”

“People of different ages have come out because everyone wants justice. They want Russia to be free and happy and to not drown in lawlessness and mayhem. We demand this and we will not back down,” she told reporters.

At Pushkin Square, the ending point for the march, participants milled around, occasionally yelling political chants. One group entered the crowd carrying a large banner citing the clause in the constitution that gives Russians the right to gather peacefully, and yelled “We Need Another Russia!”

Unofficial estimates put the crowd size in the low thousands.

Protesters also yelled “Let Them Through!” as they marched — a reference to the City Duma elections scheduled for Sept. 8.

The refusal by election officials to register some independent candidates has been the impetus for the protests that have been held weekly since mid-July.

However, they’ve also turned into a major challenge for the Kremlin and a reflection of growing impatience among Russians with President Vladimir Putin.

The weekly protests first erupted in July as election authorities blocked some independent candidates from registering to run on September 8.

The initial rallies drew tens of thousands of people in some of the largest political demonstrations seen in the country since 2012. Some, though not all, were authorized by officials ahead of time.

Police have violently dispersed several of the earlier demonstrations, some of which authorities described as “illegal mass gatherings.” More than 2,000 people have been detained, some preemptively, drawing international condemnation.

 

Аласанія прокоментував обшуки ДБР в його офісі та помешканні

Голова правління НСТУ Зураб Аласанія прокоментував обшуки в його офісі та помешканні, а також в помешканнях кількох директорів департаментів телерадіокомпанії, які проводило Державне бюро розслідувань.

«ДБР здійснюють слідчі дії, оскільки вважають, що в працівників Суспільного можуть бути знайдені документи чи флешки, які є речовими доказами в кримінальному провадженні щодо можливих протиправних дій службових осіб ПАТ «НСТУ», а саме зловживання службовим становищем із метою одержання неправомірної вигоди для себе чи інших фізичних або юридичних осіб», – мовиться в повідомленні.

За словами Аласанії, йдеться про закупівлю у 2017 році аудіовізуального обладнання, а також про земельну ділянку, що входить до статутного капіталу телерадіокомпанії та діяльності фонду «Підтримки створення та розвитку суспільного телебачення і радіомовлення в Україні».

«Я вже не кажу, що підслідність ДБР – це державні компанії, а ми такою не є. Чи є думки про політичні корені, пов‘язані зі свободою слова? І чи не пов’язано це з позовом пана Богдана (голови СБУ Андрія Богдана, – ред.) до програми Схеми і до НСТУ? Не знаю; мені поки здається, ДБР демонструє м‘язи і «ставить себе на районі», показує новій владі, що в строю правоохоронців вони теж помітні», – зазначив голова НСТУ.

Він додав, що якщо стане зрозуміло, що таким чином чиниться тиск з метою «приструнити Суспільне», то в НСТУ мовчати про це не будуть.

30 серпня Державне бюро розслідувань провело обшуки в приміщенні Національної суспільної телерадіокомпанії України. У відосмстві зазначили, що слідчі дії птривали в рамках досудового розслідування кримінального провадження щодо «зловживання службовим становищем з метою одержання неправомірної вигоди».

Національна суспільна телерадіокомпанія, зі свого боку, повідомила, що з обшуками прийшли й до голови правління НСТУ Зураба Аласанії та кількох інших співробітників компанії.

Представник ОБСЄ з питань свободи ЗМІ Арлем Дезір після повідомлень про обшуки в приміщенні Національної суспільної телерадіокомпанії України та в помешканні голови правління НСТУ Зураба Аласанії закликав владу в Україні утриматися від тиску на державні ЗМІ.

Баскетбол 3х3: збірна України вийшла до плей-оф чемпіонату Європи

В угорському Дебрецені розпочався чемпіонат Європи з баскетболу 3х3. Про це повідомляє кореспондент Радіо Свобода.

У перший день континентальної першості змагалася чоловіча збірна України, до складу якої увійшли Антон Давидюк, Дмитро Липовцев, Денис Носков та Ернесто Ткачук.

У першому матчі групового раунду «синьо-жовті» поступилися команді Іспанії з рахунком 15:17, але потім перемогли збірну Нідерландів – 16:11. Такий результат дозволив збірній України вийти з «групи» з другого місця. У чвертьфіналі «синьо-жовті» зустрінуться зі збірною Сербії. Матч відбудеться 1 вересня.

Уже завтра, 31 серпня, на чемпіонаті Європи з баскетболу 3х3 розпочне боротьбу жіноча збірна України. О 18:20 «синьо-жовті» зіграють проти Данії, а о 21:20 суперником українок стане збірна Нідерландів

30 серпня чоловіча збірна України U23 з баскетболу 3х3 стала переможцем «Ліги нації».

Alliance Seeks $7.4B to Immunize 300M Children

Gavi, the global vaccine alliance that targets developing countries, said Friday that it was appealing for $7.4 billion to immunize 300 million children in 2021-25. 

Gavi’s latest fundraising drive is its most ambitious to date. Officials said they expected huge returns from what would be the agency’s most comprehensive and cost-effective preventive health package ever. 
 
Gavi said the vaccines would protect against 18 diseases, saving up to 8 million lives. Spokeswoman Frederique Tissandier said sustainable investment was needed for the project because there still are 1.5 million people dying every year from vaccine-preventable diseases. 

“The situation is increasingly fragile because of climate change, because of wars, because of the rise of the population in the urban slums,” she said. “So you have more and more epidemics that are spreading around.” 

Tissandier said Gavi planned to introduce new vaccines to prevent deadly diseases. For instance, she said, Gavi is ready to invest up to $150 million in a new Ebola vaccine stockpile once it is prequalified by the World Health Organization. 
 
She told VOA that Gavi also would help the Democratic Republic of the Congo obtain the lifesaving vaccines it needs to immunize children against other killer diseases.  
 
“We are going to fund, for instance, starting in September, measles campaigns in DRC to cover — I think the number is close to 18 million kids — to strengthen routine immunization, because we really focus on routine immunization,” Tissandier said. “We fund the stockpile against cholera, yellow fever or meningitis to respond to outbreaks.” 
 
She said support for the global polio eradication program remained a priority. Tissandier said Gavi would invest up to $800 million to accelerate the rollout of inactivated poliovirus vaccine. This would protect against a re-emergence of the disease in areas such as Africa, which is on the cusp of becoming polio-free, and other regions that already have achieved that status. 

What’s Behind Trump’s Criticism of Obama

U.S. President Donald Trump is facing a crowded field of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates. But when the president speaks, it is Barack Obama – his predecessor – who takes the brunt of Trump’s barbs and insults.

Trump has criticized the former president on issues ranging from U.S. policy in Syria to trade negotiations with China to the amount of time Obama spent playing golf during his presidency.

Trump’s latest criticism came at the G-7 summit press conference in France this week when he claimed Russian President Vladimir Putin had “outsmarted” Obama by annexing Ukraine’s Black Sea peninsula of Crimea.

Trump mentioned Obama in 246 tweets

An analysis of the president’s tweets in the Trump Twitter Archive shows that Obama was mentioned or berated 246 times during Trump’s 951 days in office. That compares with Trump’s 313 mentions of former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Trump’s 2016 Democratic rival for president and favorite target for insults.  

Obama’s negotiation of the Iran nuclear deal — which Trump disavowed after taking office — often figures in Trump’s tweets. For example, the president wrote on June 21 that “President Obama made a desperate and terrible deal with Iran – Gave them 150 Billion Dollars plus I.8 Billion Dollars in CASH! Iran was in big trouble and he bailed them out. Gave them a free path to Nuclear Weapons, and SOON. Instead of saying thank you, Iran yelled…”

FILE – Then-President Barack Obama and President-elect Donald Trump shake hands following their meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Nov. 10, 2016.

Experts say criticism of a former commander-in-chief is damaging to the office of the presidency, particularly on matters of foreign policy.

“America is the leader of the world. Presidents need to speak on behalf of the country with one voice,” said Elaine Kamarck, a senior fellow in governance studies at the Brookings Institution. “This president doesn’t care about continuity. He has a new view of America’s role in the world, which is at odds with the views of his predecessors, including Republican presidents.”

Obama has ignored the attacks

Obama has never directly responded to Trump’s verbal attacks but has addressed the current president’s approach to politics.

In a speech two months ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, Obama said the current vitriolic political discourse “did not start with Donald Trump.”  

“He is a symptom, not the cause,” Obama said. “We are Americans. We’re supposed to stand up to bullies, not follow them.”

Trump, a billionaire New York real estate investor, rose to prominence in national politics in part by promoting the “birtherism” conspiracy theory — falsely claiming Obama was not born in the United States and therefore was not eligible for the presidency. Since taking office, Trump has worked systematically to dismantle much of Obama’s legacy, including reforms in health care, climate change and immigration.

“He sees the Obama administration as everything that was wrong with America prior to him, prior to President Trump coming into the White House,” said Jason Mollica, a lecturer at the school of communication at American University.

FILE – President Donald Trump reacts to the crowd after speaking during his re-election kickoff rally at the Amway Center, in Orlando, Florida, June 18, 2019.

Rallying Trump’s base

Mollica said Trump’s criticism of Obama helps rally the president’s conservative base of voters heading into the 2020 election.  

“He knows the people that are for him, or maybe on the fence but leaning toward President Trump… will eat this up,” said Mollica. “They’ll see this is great Twitter fodder, great social media fodder. This is wonderful for conservative outlets to continue to poke holes in the Obama business.”

By continuing to bring up Obama, Trump is invoking the successful arguments he made while running for president in 2016, said Matt Dallek, a professor at The George Washington University Graduate School of Political Management.

“It goes to some of the core critiques that he had about Washington and why they were losing out on trade deals to China,” Dallek said. “It’s another kind of deflection and distraction.”

Dallek noted that it’s not unusual for presidents – and even presidential candidates – to draw attention to the problems left behind by their predecessors.

“Usually they do it in a more elliptical way,” he said. “They’re usually less vitriolic and less explicit than Trump is.”

FILE – Former U.S. President Barack Obama smiles before game two of the 2019 NBA Finals between the Golden State Warriors and the Toronto Raptors at Scotiabank Arena, in Toronto, Canada, Jun 2, 2019. (Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports)

Republicans back Trump’s tactics

Congressional Republicans have largely supported the president’s criticism of Obama.

In a June 2019 interview, ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos asked Trump if he believed Obama was behind the investigation into allegations the Trump campaign colluded with Russia during the 2016 presidential election. Trump responded, “He certainly must have known about it because it went very high up in the chain.”

This past week, South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham echoed those concerns, telling Fox News’ Sean Hannity, “I can’t imagine an investigation of the Republican nominee for president — a counterintelligence investigation of his campaign — was not approved at the highest level.”

Trump has now served in office for more than two-and-a-half years. As the nation moves deeper into the 2020 election cycle, he will have to account for the successes and failures of his first term. He failed to repeal Obamacare – one of the former president’s signature legislative achievements and a continual target of his own attacks – even with control of both chambers of Congress in 2017 and 2018.

Past presidents have shown restraint

Mollica noted that past presidents have shown restraint in criticizing or upstaging their predecessors. For example, when Obama learned that U.S. forces had killed 9/11 mastermind Osama bin Laden May 1, 2011, the first person he called was former President George W. Bush, before the news was released.

FILE – A demonstrator holds up a sign during a rally calling for the renaming of one block of Fifth Avenue “President Barack H. Obama Avenue,” outside Trump Tower in New York City, Aug. 21, 2019.

“President Obama could have easily criticized George W. Bush, saying you did not get Osama Bin Laden, we got him,” Mollica said. “It wasn’t about that. It was about the fact that we got the person who quote unquote was responsible for 9/11.”

Instead, Bush was one of the first people to publicly congratulate Obama.

Trump is unlikely to let up on his criticism anytime soon, particularly with Obama’s former vice president, Joe Biden, leading the field of 2020 Democratic presidential candidates. If Biden secures the nomination, Trump could directly connect his attacks on Obama with the battle to secure a second term.

Experts told VOA Trump’s behavior is unique to him and unlikely to have a long-term impact on the presidency.

“This is just one more aspect of President Trump’s personality that is not at all likely to be repeated by subsequent presidents,” said Kamarck. “And for good reason. Most presidents seek to build bridges across parties to get things done. This president has never thought to do that, and to his detriment. It’s not a very successful strategy.”

 

Why Americans Don’t Wear White After Labor Day

This Monday is Labor Day in the United States — a holiday linked to workers’ rights and wearing white.

That may sound strange, but it is true. Many Americans put away their white clothes on Labor Day and do not wear them again until the following May, after Memorial Day.

One reason for the clothing custom relates to the season. In the United States, the months between June and September are summer.

The weather is usually hot, including in Northeast cities like Boston, Massachusetts and New York, New York. Many people there historically wore light-colored clothing in the summertime to keep cool.

First lady Melania Trump ignored the rule against wearing white after Labor Day by appearing in a white pantsuit at the 2018 State of the Union address in Washington, Jan. 30, 2018.

Judith Martin is an expert on manners – in other words, on how to behave politely. She spoke to Time Magazine about the history of wearing white in the summer.

She said that Americans in the 1800s and early 1900s wore formal clothes all year long. Wearing white clothes in the summertime may have felt more comfortable because “white is of a lighter weight,” Martin said.

Then, in about the 1930s, wearing white clothes in the summertime became fashionable, too. That is because some wealthy Americans in Northeast cities went on vacation for weeks or months in the summer. They stayed in costly hotels or summer houses. The white clothes they wore there became linked to ease, beauty and money.

But at the end of summer, around Labor Day, they put those white clothes away and returned to their lives in the city – as well as to their darker, heavier clothes. In time, not wearing white after Labor Day became a bit of a fashion rule. Following it showed that you were wealthy — or at least that you knew how to act like you were.

Today’s fashion magazines, however, advise readers to ignore the rule. They point to Coco Chanel, Kim Kardashian and Michelle Obama, who have appeared in white in all seasons.

But you may want to be careful about wearing white to an American-style Labor Day barbecue. 

The trouble is not fashion – it is ketchup. If it spills, the popular red tomato sauce can ruin a nice set of clothes.

Порошенко Шуфричу: «Мене не цікавить думка окупаційної платформи» – відео

П’ятий президент України, народний депутат від «Європейської солідарності» Петро Порошенко та народний депутат від «Опозиційної платформи – За життя» Нестор Шуфрич обмінялися гострими фразами після того, як депутат від партії «Слуга народу» попросив майбутнього генпрокурора України розслідувати справи, в яких фігурує прізвище Порошенка. Петро Порошенко зауважив, що без рішення суду ніхто не може бути звинуваченим.

Outgoing Italian PM Accepts Fresh Mandate to Form New Government

Outgoing prime minister Giuseppe Conte has accepted a fresh mandate from Italy’s head of state to form a new coalition government backed by the populist Five Star Movement and the center-left Democrats party. Markets reacted positively the end to the 3-week political crisis, which could have triggered a snap election. But many in Italy are wondering how long such an alliance will last.

Conte appears determined and convinced he will be capable of establishing a government backed by a new coalition made up of the Five Star Movement and the Democratic Left party. Although the two political groups have been past enemies, they have agreed to unite and work together.

The political crisis was caused by the League leader, Matteo Salvini, who announced three weeks ago he was no longer prepared to work with the Five Star Movement. 

League leader Matteo Salvini gestures as he speaks to the media after consultations with Italian President Sergio Mattarella in Rome, Italy, Aug. 28, 2019.

The decision by the Left Democrats to work with the 5SM stems not only from the desire to enter parliament but also from wanting to avoid a snap general election, which at this time would likely be won by Salvini’s League party.

Coming out of his talks with the Italian president, Conte made clear the new government would not be one “against,” but “for the good of citizens.” 

He added that he would create a government that will represent a “novelty.”

Conte also said Italy is undergoing a very delicate phase and must emerge from this political crisis as quickly as possible.

He sais “we must get down to work immediately, to draw up a budget to avert the VAT hike that will protect savers and offer solid prospects for economic growth and social development.”

The prime minister already has began to hold meetings to reach an agreement on policies and about how to divide the ministerial positions between the two parties, which will make up the new coalition government.

Conte said he expects to go back to the Italian president with a full list in approximately a week. Once the new government is sworn in, it has 10 days to win a no-confidence vote in parliament.

The new alliance and Conte’s good intentions in the name of political stability seem to have averted snap elections, for the time being, and markets reacted positively to the news. But Italians in the streets and political observers see it as an unlikely alliance and fear it is unlikely to last.

For the time being, League leader Salvini’s plans for an early poll may have been thwarted and his move certainly backfired as he now will be relegated to the opposition. But it remains to be seen whether the move will, in fact, further increase his already soaring popularity.

Venezuela’s Maduro Says Settlement Talks Could Soon Resume

Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro says his representatives could return to negotiations with the opposition in talks he abruptly halted earlier this month.

Maduro said in an interview released Thursday that “good news” could come in the next few days about settlement talks hosted by Norway. He’s under pressure to leave power from opposition leader Juan Guaidó, who has backing from the United States and more than 50 other nations.

“Contacts with Venezuelan opposition delegates have resumed,” Maduro said in an interview with the Chinese state-run Xinhua News Agency. “The next few days will bring good news about the dialogue.”

Maduro ended the talks this month when the Trump administration hit his government with a new round of punishing economic sanctions. The measures froze all Venezuela’s U.S. assets and blocks companies and individuals from doing business with Maduro’s government.

The socialist Maduro said in the interview that his representatives are in contact with the opposition as well as Norwegian officials who have overseen the talks held on the Caribbean island of Barbados.

Maduro, who often calls Guaidó a puppet of the U.S. capitalist empire, remains in power with backing from the Venezuelan military and international allies including Cuba, Russia, China and Turkey.

Venezuela’s opposition hasn’t commented, but Guaidó has said that he expected Maduro’s representatives to return to the talks because they have no other options.

The possibility of resumed dialogue comes amid a historic economic and political crisis in Venezuela that has driven more than 4 million people to flee the country in recent years.

Sanders Brings Climate Discussion to South Carolina Coast

Democratic presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders returns to South Carolina Thursday for a conversation on climate change in a popular tourist destination along the coast of the critical early-voting state.

The gathering is being held in Myrtle Beach, a focal point of South Carolina’s $20 billion tourism industry. It comes on the heels of the Vermont senator’s release last week of a $16.3 trillion climate change plan that calls for the United States to move to renewable energy across the economy by 2050 and declare climate change a national emergency.

How climate changes affect coastal communities is a major concern along the 190 miles of Atlantic coastline in South Carolina, which holds the first 2020 voting in the South. In the historic city of Charleston, even a moderate amount of rainfall has become enough to flood streets and make parts of the urban peninsula impassable.

According to a study by the Union of Concerned Scientists, by 2045, chronic flooding could inundate more than 16,000 homes along the state’s coast and low-lying areas, with about 15,000 of those in the areas surrounding Myrtle Beach. The region’s subtropical climate and extensive beaches attract more than 19 million visitors each year.

Earlier this week, Sanders told voters in coal-producing Kentucky that it’s possible to be a friend of coal miners and a believer in climate change as he pushed for cleaner energy sources to combat global warming. Sanders also vowed to help communities tied to coal and other fossil fuel industries in the transition toward renewable energy production such as solar and wind power.

Sanders says his 10-year “nationwide mobilization” would create 20 million jobs. His proposals include sourcing 100% of the country’s electricity from renewable and zero-carbon emission power and committing more than $2 trillion in grants for low- and middle-income families to weatherize and retrofit their homes and businesses, with the goal of reducing residential energy consumption.

Sanders has teamed up with Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York on climate legislation and endorsed the Green New Deal, a sweeping proposal that’s becoming a rallying point both for Democratic presidential hopefuls and liberals in the party’s base. Republicans have argued that the plan is too radical and would drive the economy off a cliff and lead to a huge tax increase.

The climate change discussion kicks off two days of campaign events for Sanders in South Carolina. On Friday, he has scheduled a town hall meeting in Florence on “Medicare for All,” the government-run single-payer approach to health care.

Зеленський у розмові з Меркель закликав негайно провести переговори у «нормандському форматі»

Президент України Володимир Зеленський провів телефонну розмову з канцлером Німеччини Анґелою Меркель. Про це повідомили в Офісі президента.

«Глави держав обговорили результати саміту «Групи семи» у Біарріці. Президент України подякував за послідовну позицію ФРН щодо неможливості повернення Росії до «Сімки» в умовах агресії проти України та окупації Криму. Володимир Зеленський поінформував про безпекову ситуацію на сході України, зокрема виконання українською стороною домовленостей щодо розведення сил і засобів у районі Станиці Луганської», – мовиться у повідомленні.

Зеленський запевнив Меркель, що Україна послідовно виконує свої зобов’язання щодо мирного врегулювання на Донбасі.

«Президент України закликав терміново провести зустріч лідерів країн Нормандської четвірки для обговорення мирного процесу та узгодження подальших кроків щодо врегулювання конфлікту», – заявили в ОП.

У представництві президента зазначили, що Меркель погодилась із необхідністю проведення зустрічі. Домовлено про підготовчу зустріч дипломатичних радників глав держав та урядів 2 вересня цього року.

Останніми тижнями точаться розмови про те, що після тривалої перерви може вже ближчим часом відбутися новий саміт у «нормандському» форматі, з участю керівників України, Франції, Німеччини і Росії. Із закликами провести такий саміт виступає президент України Володимир Зеленський. Він також пропонував розширити коло учасників за рахунок керівників Великої Британії і США, але ця пропозиція наразі не знайшла підтримки.

26 серпня президент Франції Еммануел Макрон заявив, що наступні переговори у «нормандському форматі» відбудуться у вересні, однак дати не назвав.

Президент Росії Володимир Путін, зі свого боку, вже заявляв, що може зустрітися з українським керівником тільки за умови, зокрема, прямих переговорів Києва з ватажками підтримуваних Росією незаконних збройних сепаратистських угруповань «ДНР» і «ЛНР», що визнані в Україні терористичними. Дотепер офіційний Київ відкидає таку можливість.