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News ID: 103983
Publish Date : 22 June 2022 - 21:39
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WASHINGTON (The Hill) – Former U.S. president Donald Trump’s campaign to press GOP state officials to overturn the results of the 2020 election violated state laws, defied the constitution and led directly to violent threats that continue to this day, a number of Republicans testified on Capitol Hill Tuesday.  Appearing before the House committee investigating last year’s attack on the Capitol, the Republican election officials said Trump’s team, led by the president himself, made fantastic allegations of voter fraud — all of them false — and asked numerous state figures to break the law to keep Trump in power despite his clear defeat, The Hill reported. “The numbers are the numbers, and the numbers don’t lie,” said Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, whom Trump had pressed to “find” 11,780 votes — the number that would have made him the winner in that state. Raffensperger noted that three separate recount efforts in the Peach State all found Joe Biden to be the winner by a “remarkably” similar margin. “What I knew is we didn’t have any votes to find,” he said. Their testimony provided the latest affirmation of the select committee’s central accusation against the former president: Trump had abused the powers of the White House to promote a lie — that the election was stolen — and nullify the wishes of voters in several key states where the margins were slimmest. It was that campaign, in the committee’s telling, that led directly to the violence at the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021.
 
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MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia on Wednesday said the West was spreading lies about the causes of the global food crisis which Moscow said was being stoked by the sanctions imposed on Russia by the United States and European Union. Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told reporters in Moscow she was dismayed by repeated Western statements that Russia was to blame for the global food crisis. “It is a lie – such accusations are complete lies,” Zakharova said. “So the West can supply all these arms to Ukraine but for some reason nothing can be taken out of Ukraine?” The United States and European Union members, which are supplying arms to Ukraine, have accused Russia of stoking a food crisis by preventing grain exports from Ukraine – which accounts for about one tenth of global wheat exports. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy warned on June 9 that millions of people could starve because of a Russian blockade of Ukraine’s Black Sea ports which he said had left the world “on the brink of a terrible food crisis”. “It is illogical – on the one hand the European Union… says a threat to global food security is being created but at the same time they block the delivery routes of goods to themselves on their own continent,” Zakharova said.
 
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COLOMBO (AP) – Sri Lanka’s debt-laden economy has “collapsed” after months of shortages of food, fuel and electricity, its prime minister told lawmakers Wednesday, in comments underscoring the country’s dire situation as it seeks help from international lenders. Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe told Parliament the South Asian country is “facing a far more serious situation beyond the mere shortages of fuel, gas, electricity and food. Our economy has completely collapsed.” While Sri Lanka’s crisis is considered its worst in recent memory, Wickremesinghe’s assertion that the economy has collapsed did not cite any specific new developments. It appeared intended to emphasize to his critics and opposition lawmakers that he has inherited a difficult task that can’t be fixed quickly, as the economy founders under the weight of heavy debts, lost tourism revenue and other impacts from the pandemic, as well as surging costs for commodities. Lawmakers of the country’s two main opposition parties are boycotting Parliament this week to protest against Wickremesinghe, who became prime minister just over a month ago and is also finance minister, for not having delivered on his pledges to turn the economy around.
 
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MADRID (AP) – Extended drought conditions in several Mediterranean countries, a heat wave last week that reached northern Germany and high fuel costs for aircraft needed to fight wildfires have heightened concerns across Europe this summer. “Much of the continent is in drought,” said Cathelijne Stoof, an environmental science professor at the Netherlands’ Wageningen University, who called the wildfire outlook “very challenging across Europe.” Fires last summer blackened more than 11,000 square kilometers (4,250 square miles) of land — an area more than four times the size of Luxembourg. About half of the damage was in the European Union. And, experts say, Europe’s wildfires aren’t just a problem for the southern, hotter countries. “What scientists are warning us is that (fires) are obviously going north and in countries such as the UK, in countries such as Germany as well as in Scandinavian countries, in the future, we need to expect wildfires to happen more often,” said Catherine Gamper, a climate change adaptation specialist at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Wildfires across Spain have destroyed tens of thousands of acres of wooded land, though a recent sharp drop in temperatures is helping firefighters contain them.
 
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LONDON (The Independent) – Asylum seekers detained for removal to Rwanda weeks ago are still being held in detention despite the last-minute grounding of the flight, which legal experts say leaves the government “wide-open” to litigation and aggravated damages claims. Ministers have been accused of subjecting vulnerable people to a “cruel experiment” after it emerged that the vast majority of people who the Home Office had hoped to deport to East Africa – most of whom were not even given tickets for the flight – remain locked up. This is despite the fact that there is no further flight planned at this stage, meaning there is no “imminent prospect of removal”, which lawyers say makes their continued detention potentially unlawful.

 

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