World AM News Briefs For Monday, 22 July 2019
Good Morning Australia!! - Hong Kong's democracy movement will not back down to Beijing - There's a good reason a US governor is so unpopular he is ringed with angry mobs - Rescuers return to the high seas - And more in your CareerSpot Global News Briefs:
Hong Kong riot police fired tear gas and rubber bullets into a crowd during clashes at a pro-democracy rally overnight. Organizers claim more than 400,000 took part in the main rally and march, but a more militant contingent went past the "finish line" and stormed on to China's central government offices, spraying graffiti and throwing eggs at the building. These intense protests began a few weeks ago when Hong Kong's pro-Beijing government sought to pass an extradition bill that critics said would have eroded the city's semi-autonomous status, and allowed political dissidents to be sent to the mainland for trials. It is now evolving along the lines of the pro-democracy movement's wider demands for more voting rights.
Protesters are demanding the ouster of Puerto Rico governor Ricardo Rossello after hundreds of pages of text messages emerged showing him using foul and disgusting homophobic and sexist language. The private chats between the governor and members of his Cabinet mocked women, disabled people and even victims of Hurricane Maria (thousands died). He has been holed up in the governor's palace from 8 July when the scandal broke out, surrounded by riot cops who don't really look like they want to be there. Since Puerto Rico is a US territory, several American politicians of both major parties have called on Rossello to stand down; Puerto Rican entertainment stars such as Ricky Martin (who Rossello targeted in a homophobic text) and "Hamilton" creator Lin Manuel Miranda have joined the chorus.
1,800 firefighters are battling to contain wildfires in central Portugal that have already injured 20 people, including eight firefighters. Authorities are investigating the cause.
The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for an attack and suicide bombing at a hospital in Dera Ismail Khan that killed eight people.
The migrant rescue charity SOS Mediterranee is back out on the Mediterranean Sea to rescue immigrants in trouble. Italy refused to allow its ship Aquarius to dock last week - but now that vessel has been replaced by the Ocean Viking which flies a Norwegian flag, smoothing out customs and nationality issues. The new, improved ship has eight health care workers from Medecins Sans Frontieres.
Despite a weak economy and chronic underemployment, Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's conservative ruling LDP won upper house elections. But he again failed to get a solid majority to achieve his long-time political goal of revising the country's post-World War II pacifist constitution to allow more military adventures with his BFFs in Washington, DC. Abe said, "We've secured a mandate to steadily carry out our politics," which includes a tax hike to pay for child care.
Exit polls suggest Ukraine's new President did well in snap elections. Volodymyr Zelensky's "Servant of the People" party will have a majority in parliament - but will need a coalition partner to form a government. To that end, Zelensky - who starred in a TV sit-com about a fictional Ukrainian president - proposed coalition talks with another upstart party's leader, Svyatoslav Vakarchuk - a local rock singer.
South African President Cyril Ramaphosa is asking a court to review a report that accused him of corruption. Public Protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane's report accused Mr. Ramaphosa of concealing from parliament a AU$36,000 political donation from the CEO pf a services company with contracts with the South African government. Critics allege the anti-corruption watchdog is staffed with allies of ousted former president Jacob Zuma and is enacting his political revenge.