Category پیشگام

Fatah, Hamas agree to hold first Palestinian elections since 2006

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Gaza rulers Hamas and their rivals in the occupied West Bank, Fatah, have agreed to hold the first Palestinian elections in nearly 15 years, officials from both sides told AFP on Thursday.

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Polls will be scheduled within six months under a deal reached between Fatah leader Mahmud Abbas and Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh.

“We have agreed to first hold legislative elections, then presidential elections of the Palestinian Authority, and finally the central council of the Palestine Liberation Organization,” said Jibril Rajub, a senior Fatah official.

The last Palestinian parliamentary elections were held in 2006 when Hamas won an unexpected landslide.

Saleh al-Arouri, a top Hamas official, said the deal was reac...

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French Open takes a hit amid tight Covid-19 rules and new crowd limit

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A Bosnian competitor of this year’s French Open has threatened to sue organisers of the claycourt major following his forced withdrawal over what he claims was a “false positive Covid test”. The backlash comes as Roland Garros chiefs prepared to drastically cut crowd capacity to 1,000 fans a day.

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Having been pushed back four months to September to avoid the worst of the Covid pandemic, the French Open at Roland Garros faces a potential lawsuit from a disgruntled Bosnian competitor and a fresh tightening of its health safety rules.

The French Open was bracing Thursday to cut its crowd capacity once again to as low as 1,000 a day after the French Health minister Olivier Véran announced new measures against the de...

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Brazilian Amazon city of Manaus may have reached Covid-19 ‘herd immunity’, study says

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The Brazilian city of Manaus, which was devastated by the coronavirus pandemic, may have suffered so many infections that its population now benefits from “herd immunity,” according to a preliminary study.

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Published on the website medRxiv, the study analyzed infection data with mathematical modeling to estimate that 66 percent of the population had antibodies to the new coronavirus in Manaus, where the pandemic’s passage was as fast as it was brutal.

That may be sufficiently high to have reached the threshold of herd immunity, in which enough members of a population are immune to a disease that it can no longer spread effectively, said the study’s authors, a group of 34 Brazilian and international researchers...

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Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong arrested for ‘unlawful assembly’ over 2019 protest

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Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong was arrested on Thursday in relation to a protest at the height of the city’s pro-democracy unrest last year, his lawyer said.

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The detention of the city’s most high-profile dissident is the latest in a string of arrests of government critics and comes after China imposed a sweeping new national security law on Hong Kong in late June.

He was arrested for “unlawful assembly” over a 2019 demonstration against a government ban on face masks that was imposed before the coronavirus pandemic, his lawyer said.

The 23-year-old pro-democracy figure said on Twitter he was also being held for violating the “draconian anti-mask law”, which has since been ruled unconstitutional.

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EU refuses to acknowledge Lukashenko as Belarus’s president

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The European Union refuses to recognise Alexander Lukashenko as Belarus president after his inauguration that lacked “democratic legitimacy” and Brussels is reviewing its relations with Minsk, the EU’s diplomatic chief said Thursday.

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Lukashenko’s secret inauguration on Wednesday triggered fresh condemnation in the West and new mass demonstrations in Belarus that have erupted frequently since the disputed August 9 elections.

The elections were neither free nor fair and “the European Union does not recognise their falsified results,” EU high representative Josep Borrell said in a statement...

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Police shot during Breonna Taylor protests in Louisville

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Angry protesters demanded justice for Breonna Taylor in cities across the United States on Wednesday after charges were filed against only one policeman involved in the controversial fatal shooting of the 26-year-old black woman, whose name has become a rallying cry of the Black Lives Matter movement.

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The biggest protest was in Louisville, the largest city in Kentucky, where Taylor was killed in March, but demonstrators took to the streets across the nation — from New York and Boston to Washington to Los Angeles.

Two police officers were shot during the protests in Louisville, police said. Their conditions were not immediately known.

Detective Brett Hankison, who was fired in June, was charged by a grand jury with thr...

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North Korean troops killed missing South Korean, Seoul says

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A South Korean official who went missing from a fisheries patrol boat earlier this week was shot dead by North Korean troops who later burned his body, South Korea’s military said on Thursday.

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The military did not explain how the official ended up in North Korean waters, but Yonhap news agency cited unnamed intelligence sources in Seoul who said he had been attempting to defect to the North.

“Our military strongly condemns such an atrocity, and strongly demands North Korea provide explanations and punish those who are responsible,” General Ahn Young-ho, who is in charge of operations at the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a briefing.

The official was reported missing from a South Korean fisheries patrol boat on Monday...

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Police shot during Breonna Taylor protests in Louisville, Kentucky

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Angry protesters demanded justice for Breonna Taylor in cities across the United States on Wednesday after charges were filed against only one policeman involved in the controversial fatal shooting of the 26-year-old black woman, whose name has become a rallying cry of the Black Lives Matter movement.

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The biggest protest was in Louisville, the largest city in Kentucky, where Taylor was killed in March, but demonstrators took to the streets across the nation — from New York and Boston to Washington to Los Angeles.

Two police officers were shot during the protests in Louisville, police said. Their conditions were not immediately known.

Detective Brett Hankison, who was fired in June, was charged by a grand jury with th...

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Trump refuses to commit to peaceful transfer of power if he loses US election

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President Donald Trump on Wednesday refused to clearly guarantee a peaceful transfer of power should he lose the upcoming US election in November to Joe Biden.

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“Well, we’re going to have to see what happens,” Trump responded when asked at a White House press conference whether he is committed to the most basic tenet of democratic rule in the United States.

Trump, who is currently behind in the polls against Democratic challenger Joe Biden, then resumed his near daily complaint about the way the election is being organised.

Apparently referring to the increased use of mail-in ballots — due to the coronavirus pandemic — he said: “You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots and the ballots are a ...

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US officer charged over Breonna Taylor shooting, but not for her death

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A Kentucky grand jury on Wednesday indicted a single former police officer for shooting into neighboring apartments but did not move forward with charges against any officers for their role in Breonna Taylor’s death.

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The jury announced that fired Officer Brett Hankison was charged with three counts of wanton endangerment in connection to the police raid of Taylor’s home on the night of March 13. 

Immediately after the announcement, people were expressing frustration that the grand jury did not do more.

“Justice has NOT been served,” tweeted Linda Sarsour of Until Freedom, a group that has pushed for charges in the case. “Rise UP. All across this country. Everywhere. Rise up for #BreonnaTaylor.”

Attorney Ben...

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