World News Briefs For Thursday, 13 Feb 2020
Hello Australia!! - The opposition decries America's politicized Justice Department - The politician who could pay for his treatment of immigrants - The coronavirus prompts a major trade show to cancel - And more in your CareerSpot Global News Briefs:
Organizers have given up on the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, because of fears of the Covid-19 Coronavirus that has killed more than a thousands people in China. After giant exhibitors like BT, Facebook, LG, Nokia, Sony, and Vodafone pulled out, the GSM Association (GSMA) reversed itself and said it had become "impossible" for the event to go ahead. The MWC is nornally the world's biggest mobile phone conference, attracting 100,000 visitors - 6,000 of them usually come from China. Spain's Health Minister Salvador Illa urged claim, saying people should "trust in the Spanish health system" and "take decisions based on scientific evidence".
The UN World Health Organization says there are 44,730 cases of coronavirus in China and Hong Kong, with 1,114 deaths. Outside of China, there are 441 confirmed infections and only one death in the Philippines. Of course, that'll be adjusted up a little later today.
US Congressional Democrats are demanding the resignation of Attorney General William Barr after his Justice Department (DoJ) undercut his own prosecutors in the Roger Stone sentencing scandal. "Something egregious like this demands that the inspector general investigate and demands that the chairman of the Judiciary Committee hold a hearing now," said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Of course, Republicans control the Senate, so that's not going to happen. Federal prosecutors were calling for a tough, nine-year prison term after securing the conviction of long-time Republican gadfly and associate of Donald Trump - but Barr undercut his own people and announced the DoJ wouldn't pursue that course, just hours after Trump tweeted his opposition to the prison term for his pal.
Italy's Senate voted to strip ex-Interior Minister Matteo Salvini of his immunity, freeing prosecutors to charge the far-right leader on trial over charges of illegally holding migrants at sea so they couldn't seek asylum in Italy. Salvini claims he wants to go to court to "tell the world" that his closed ports immigration policies "saved tens of thousands of lives". While Salvini was still Interior Minister last July, he refused to allow more than a hundred immigrants from Africa to get off of a migrant ship and insisted other European Union (EU) countries take them. After an outcry the prompted the EU and Vatican to intercede, Italy relented and allow the migrants to get off the boat after several days at sea.
Former soldiers of the so-called Islamic State will not be allowed to return home to Indonesia. The strong stand means that nearly 700 men, women, and children are stranded out of Indonesia's borders - most of them in Syria - and are essentially stateless. "The government and the state has to ensure that the 267 million people in Indonesia are safe from the threat of terrorism," said Law Minister Mahfud MD, "If these foreign terrorist fighters come back they can become a new virus that makes those 267 million people feel unsafe."
Pope Francis chose to hold the line and ruled against ordaining married men as priests. The proposal was meant to solve the shortage of new priests, especially in the Brazilian Amazon where evangelic rival churches have made inroads in the traditionally Roman Catholic nation. The conservative wing of the Catholic Church - particularly in Europe and North America - has spoken out against the idea of married priests.
Protesters manhandled but did not harm Venezuela's self-declared "president", opposition lawmaker Juan Guaido at the capital city's main airport. They did shove him around and tear his clothing while shouting "fascist!" and other insults. Guaido had just returned from a visit to the United States, where he was welcomed by both Donald Trump and Democratic Party leaders. Even though Guaido violating a court-ordered ban on his leaving the country, the government of democratically-elected President Nicolas Maduro did not arrest him, and Maduro himself urged people not to be "distracted by stupidities, by dummies, by traitors to the homeland".
Incidents of racist, far-right propaganda in the United States increased 120 percent in 2019 over the previous year. At the same time, racist groups held 20 percent fewer events to limit exposure to the wider public after the 2017 "United the Right" rally in Charlottesville, Virginia revealed the alt-right's true murderous objectives. The Anti-Defamation League says one Texas-based group of nazi scum is responsible for two-thirds of the propaganda, which is distributed online, in fliers, and on posters - mostly on college campuses.