April 19, 2019

5th term for Benjamin Netanyahu

Friday, 12 April 2019, State of Israel: Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu won the Israeli national election, securing a record fifth term in office despite running neck-and-neck with his challenger General (ret) Benny Gantz. The closely contested race was widely seen in Israel as a referendum on Netanyahu’s character and record in the face of corruption allegations. In power since 2009, and having led the country for a total 13 years including his first term in the 1990s, Netanyahu had been struggling for his political survival. Netanyahu highlighted his close relationship vis-à-vis President Donald Trump, who delighted Israelis and angered Palestinians by recognising Jerusalem as Israel’s…

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The U.S. warns the EU about 5G security issues

By Guido Lanfranchi. With upcoming 5G networks and the “internet of things” revolution, issues of network security will be increasingly important. For this reason, the United States is pushing for a risk-based framework, which would include serious controls on the supply chain of 5G infrastructure. “5G will be truly transformational”, as it will “really start touching all part of our lives”, including very sensitive issues such as telemedicine, autonomous transportation, and automated manufacturing. This is the basic premise laid out by Mr. Robert Strayer, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Cyber and International Communications and Information Policy at the U.S. State Department’s…

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Amélie de Montchalin for European Affairs

Sunday, 31 March 2019, Paris, French Republic: Economist and French deputy Amélie de Lombard de Montchalin (née Bommier) was appointed State Secretary in charge of European Affairs during a cabinet reshuffle following the resignation of previous office holder Nathalie Loiseau, who is heading the candidates list of President Macron’s party La République En Marche! (LREM) for the upcoming European elections. Upon the news of her appointment she Ms de Montchalin described her emotion as a “grand adventure”.  Hitherto she had served as Vice-Chair for the LREM parliamentary group at the National Assembly.  For further information:  French diplomacy: https://www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/fr/https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ministre_chargé_des_Affaires_européennesAmélie de Montchalin: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amélie_de_Montchalin Amelie de Montchalin – Picture by Bommiera,…

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Zarif responds to the comments of the U.S. Secretary of State on the flooding in Iran

By Guido Lanfranchi. In the wake of the flooding that recently affected Iran, U.S. Secretary of State Mr. Mike Pompeo blamed the Iranian government for the disaster. Following such accusations, Iranian Foreign Minister Mr. Mohammad Javad Zarif issued a statement “in response to the unprofessional, interventionist and demagogic comments” made by Mr. Pompeo – the Iranian Embassy in The Hague said. Here the full text of Mr. Zarif’s statement. Dr. M. Javad Zarif , the Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran, today stated, “Secretary Pompeo and other U.S. officials—who have with their economic terrorism endeavored to target each…

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OPCW Director-General Meets Russian Foreign Minister

Russian Foreign Minister, H.E. Mr. Sergey Lavrov. THE HAGUE, Netherlands — 5 April 2019 — The Director-General of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), H.E. Mr Fernando Arias, met the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, H.E. Mr Sergey Lavrov, in Moscow on 2 April. During his visit, he also met with the Minister of Trade and Industry, H.E. Mr Denis Manturov, and senior officials at the Ministry of Defence. The Director-General updated the Foreign Minister on progress made in the implementation of the Chemical Weapons Convention, including OPCW’s on-going work in the Syrian Arab…

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President Macky Sall wins election 2019

Tuesday, 5 March 2019, Dakar, Republic of Senegal: the country’s Constitutional Council confirmed the election results from Sunday, 24 April 2019 whereby the sitting IV President of Senegal Macky Sall is confirmed to have won the ballot during the first round with 57% of the cast votes.  President Sall is the Senegalese head of state since 2 April 2012. Previously he held the national offices of Prime Minister (2004-2007) as well as Speaker of the National Assembly (2007-2008).  For further information:Presidency of Senegal: http://www.presidence.sn/en/

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Massive arms trafficking ring dismantled by Italian and Austrian action, coordinated by Eurojust

Italian and Austrian authorities have, with the continuous and effective support of Eurojust, dismantled an international ring trafficking firearms to supply to Camorra organised crime members in Naples. A total of 22 arrests were made, and 139 firearms and 1 600 rounds of ammunition were seized. Among those arrested were two Austrian gunsmiths, who illegally sold more than 800 pistols and 50 Kalashnikovs with removed serial numbers to organised crime groups. The very complex Italian investigation – which lasted for more than one year, with the full dedication and commitment of the Carabinieri of Torre Annunziata under the leadership of the…

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Astana renamed “Nur-Sultan”

23 March 2019, Kazachstan: Kazakh interim President Kassym-Jomart Tokayev’s behest to rename his homeland’s capital from Astana to Nur-Sultan, honouring the country’s hitherto only president, was swiftly approved by parliament and is now official. Nur-Sultan had replaced Almaty as the republic’s capital back in 1997, and has boomed from a minor provincial steppe town into a futuristic city. The former appellation Astana literally means “capital” in Kazakh; there has long been speculation that it could, at some point, be renamed after the leader who shaped it. President emeritus Nursultan Nazarbayev was at the helm of the country for nearly 30 years, first when it was still part…

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IS terrorist suspect arrested in Hungary: Rapid intervention by Eurojust leads to successful outcome

22 March 2019 In a rapid intervention, coordinated by Eurojust, the Hungarian authorities have arrested a high- profile target suspected of committing terrorist activities in Syria, linked to the so-called Islamic State. Essential to the arrest was the exchange of crucial information by the Belgian judicial authorities to their Hungarian colleagues via Eurojust, the EU’s Judicial Cooperation Unit. The operation was concluded quickly by Eurojust’s Hungarian and Belgian National Members, who worked on-call arranging translation and the sharing of information within 24 hours. This quick intervention prevented the immanent return of the suspect from to Greece by the Hungarian migration…

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Cuba Rejects New Escalation

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs rejects in the strongest terms the new escalation in the US behaviour against Cuba. Statement by H.E. Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Cuba. The US State Department announced today the decision to allow, as from March 19 this year, the filing of lawsuits before US courts under Title III of the Helms-Burton Act only against Cuban companies included in the List of Restricted Entities issued by that government on November of 2017, which was updated one year later. This arbitrary and illegitimate list, intended to tighten the blockade and expand its extraterritorial…

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