EU auditor slams Frontex
The European Union’s border agency Frontex has been criticised by auditors for not being effective enough even as its funding is set to double. Euronews reports the European Court of Auditors said Frontex was not sufficiently helping the bloc to curb illegal migration and cross-border crime. It comes even as the agency is set to be given additional tasks, like playing a greater role in deporting migrants, and to see its budget increased by €440 million in the coming years. Frontex is set to grow to 10,000 officers by 2027, with an annual budget of about €900 million.
Massive world-wide arrests thanks to police app
The Australian reports hundreds of people have been arrested in different parts of the world in a massive operation against organised crime – thanks to the infiltration of the police in an app used to exchange coded messages between criminals. The Australian Federal Police said the operation was carried out in various countries of Europe, the United States, Australia and New Zealand. It managed to decode in real time thousands of encrypted communications within criminal networks. The messages specifically concerned assassination projects and drug and arms trafficking. More than three tons of drugs, a hundred weapons and tens of millions of dollars have been seized.
EU digital COVID-19 certificate on EU Parliament agenda
After almost 16 months marked by the pandemic, the plenary of the European Parliament is meeting again in Strasbourg this week. Metro says today’s session opens with the debate on the EU digital COVID-19 certificate, a tool to facilitate travel in the European Union despite the virus and contributing to economic recovery. They will also discuss the waiver of intellectual property rights for COVID-19 vaccines, assess the Recovery and Resilience plan and adopt the mandate to negotiate with the Council the creation of a reserve fund to help EU countries counter the negative consequences of the UK’s exit.
Russia out of Open Skies Treaty
Tass reports Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed the law to officially withdraw Russia from the Open Skies Treaty. The agreement was set up after the Cold War to build confidence between Russia and NATO members by allowing signatory states to conduct unarmed surveillance missions over each other’s territory. Washington left the treaty in November last year.
Man runs over Muslim family
Globe and Mail says police in Ontario have charged a 20-year-old man with murder after four members of a Muslim family were killed by a pick-up truck that mounted the pavement. The police said it was a pre-meditated attack. The oldest of the victims was 74 and the youngest 15 years old. A nine-year old boy survived.
Peru’s election result still “too close to call”
El Peruano reports that with more than 96% of votes counted in Peru’s presidemntial election, the outcome was still too close to call. The left-wing candidate, Pedro Castillo, has a narrow lead. His right-wing rival, Keiko Fujimori, has complained of voting irregularities.
FDA approves anti-Alzheimer drug
The US Food and Drug Administration has approved Biogen’s aducanumab as the first treatment to address an underlying cause of Alzheimer’s disease. It said the drug aims to remove sticky deposits of protein from the brains of patients in earlier stages of the disease.