Global Review – 20th May

Republicans back Capitol riot probe

CNN reports that 35 out of 211 Republicans broke ranks with their party and voted to set up an independent commission to probe the deadly attack on the Capitol by former President Trump’s supporters that left five dead, including a Capitol police officer. The House of Representatives voted 252-175 to approve the Bill which now goes to the Senate. 

Netanyahu dismisses ceasefire call, attacks Lebanon

Newsweek reports President Joe Biden on Wednesday told Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to engage in “significant de-escalation” in the conflict with Hamas, in an effort to move toward a cease-fire. But just 10 minutes after the White House announced the contents of the call, Israel conducted strikes on a “number of targets” in Lebanon. The strikes were in response to four rockets that were fired at northern Israel from Lebanon, according to the Israeli Defense Forces. One was intercepted by the Iron Dome. Meanwhile, a group of House Democrats in the US have introduced a resolution to stop the Biden-approved sale of $735 million in weapons to Israel. 

Israeli airstrikes on Gaza continue

Israel has launched another night of internse airstrikes on Gaza despite international calls for the violence to end. Al Quds TV quotes Palestinian security sources saying extensive damage has been reported. 

US and Russian diplomats spar in Iceland

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavroff has described as “constructive” his first meeting with the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Reykjavik. The Irish Examiner says the senior diplomats sparred politely in their first face-to-face encounter as they held talks on the sidelines of an Arctic Council meeting in the Icelandic capital.

Former UN chief warns of multiple crises

Former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has spoken of the multiple disasters the world is currently facing, which have only been accentuated by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Ban, who led the UN from 2007-2016, told CNBC there were still two billion people who lack safe drinking water, more than 1.5 billion who do not have electricity and more than 60 million children who do not go to school, even elementary school. “This is sad, this is really heartbreaking,” he said.

Argentina offers to rescue Copa America

Clarin says Argentina has offered to host the whole of the 2021 Copa America, replacing their current co-hosts Colombia, where a wave of civil unrest has rocked the country since late April. The tournament, scheduled to kick off in Buenos Aires on June 13, is being held in two countries for the first time in its 105-year history. Fifteen games are slated for Colombia, including the final in Barranquilla on July 10, and 13 games are scheduled for Argentina.

Europe may have air taxis by 2024

Business Europe quotes Patrick Ky, executive director of the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) saying commercial use of the first flying taxis taxis in Europe could start in 2024 or 2025.EASA quoted figures suggesting a €4.2-billion-market in Europe by 2030, creating 90,000 jobs. Some 31% of the global market for the new technology would be based in Europe.

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