Canada Increasingly Draws Trump’s Ire

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President Donald Trump and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross on Tuesday said they did not fear a trade war with Canada after American punitive action on lumber and milk.

“They have a tremendous surplus with the United States,” Trump said, adding “people don’t realize Canada’s been very rough on the United States. … They’ve outsmarted our politicians for many years.”

Trump added that he wanted “a very big tax” on Canadian lumber and timber.

He made the comments at a meeting with American farmers where he signed an executive order aimed at helping agriculture and rural areas.   

Trump also talked to Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Tuesday. Trudeau “refuted the baseless allegations by the U.S. Department of Commerce and the decision to impose unfair duties,” according to a summary of the call released by Trudeau’s office.

“The prime minister stressed that the government of Canada will vigorously defend the interests of the Canadian softwood industry, as we have successfully done in all past lumber disputes with the U.S.,” the statement said.

The Canadian dollar fell to a 14-month low against the greenback after the United States imposed preliminary tariffs averaging 20 percent — more than $1 billion of countervailing duties — on imported Canadian softwood.

Earlier in the day, Trump vowed moves to protect the American dairy industry.

On Tuesday morning, he tweeted: “Canada has made business for our dairy farmers in Wisconsin and other border states very difficult. We will not stand for this. Watch!”

Against NAFTA

Trump, since his time campaigning for the presidency, has voiced his strong displeasure with the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), but until now he has vented most of his ire southward, toward Mexico.

Ross, speaking to reporters on the White House podium, would not explicitly characterize the actions on lumber and dairy as the opening shots on renegotiating NAFTA, but he did say: “Everything relates to everything else when you’re trying to negotiate.”

He described Canada as “generally a good neighbor,” asserting that its allegedly unfair trade practices regarding lumber and dairy were not very neighborly.


Asked on Tuesday in Kitchener, Ontario, about the U.S. trade actions and the fate of NAFTA, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau replied, “Standing up for Canada is my job, whether it’s softwood or software.”

Trudeau added, “Any two countries are going to have issues that will be irritants to the relationship and, quite frankly, having a good, constructive, working relationship allows us to work through those irritants.”

Some other Canadians were less diplomatic in their reactions.

“In Canada, the perception is that we’re always very nice,” said Unifor President Jerry Dias, representing forestry workers across the country. “But we can’t get trampled by this guy [Trump].”

‘Ignore, do not engage’

The majority of Canadians, including the prime minister and his colleagues, “understand that President Trump is prone to making ill-informed, off-the-cuff and arbitrary comments about a host of domestic and foreign policy issues,” Donald Abelson, the chairman of the political science department at the University of Western Ontario in London, told VOA.

“Canada will likely respond to Trump’s Tuesday tweet in a manner similar to how a competent parent responds to a child’s temper tantrum — ignore, do not engage,” added Abelson, who is also director of the school’s Canada-U.S. Institute.  

Other Canadians displayed wry humor — a traditional reaction to irritations from south of the border (at least since the last U.S. invasion during the War of 1812), considering the asymmetry of power.   

The president’s messages prompted immediate puns on Canadian social media, with tweets referencing “sacred cows” and calling the American trade action on dairy “udderly stupid” and “cheesy,” Sparkle Hayter, veteran Canadian journalist and author, told VOA.

The dairy dispute goes back decades. Currently, there is an overproduction of milk, according to dairy farmers on both sides of the border.

The U.S.-Canada lumber squabble is rooted in a couple of centuries of history.



In response to the proposed tariff on softwood lumber, “Canada to strike back by charging duties on exported Cdn actors,” tweeted the account of 22 Minutes, a satirical news program on national public broadcaster CBC.

Cows are No. 1

The Twitter account also noted the U.S. president “tweeted about Canadian dairy industry first thing this morning, so on his list of priorities: 1. Canadian Cows. 2. North Korea.”  

Trump’s attention on Canada comes amid indications he is pivoting away — at least temporarily — from the southern border and his quest to quickly fund his border wall with Mexico.

“We have plenty of time” to complete the wall during his first term, Trump assured reporters Tuesday afternoon.  

The presidential desire for border protection might find a better reception to the north, considering the comments from some Canadians.


“Some [in Canada] would like to separate from the U.S., like literally,” by digging a two-mile moat at the border “and filling it with beavers and mosquitoes,” quipped Hayter from her home province of Alberta.   

But many Canadians see themselves confronting a cross-border creature bigger than a beaver.

“Sleeping with an elephant” is how the late Pierre Trudeau, the current Canadian prime minister’s father, once characterized relations with the United States, “affected by every twitch and grunt.”


Trump Set to Call for Big US Corporate Tax Cut

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U.S. President Donald Trump is set to call for a sharp reduction in the nation’s corporate tax rate, the highest among the world’s industrialized countries.

Trump is planning to unveil his tax plans Wednesday, with aides saying he will ask Congress to slash the current 35 percent rate down to 15 percent, a pledge he first made during last year’s presidential election campaign.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said the U.S. has been “uncompetitive” against other countries in attracting new businesses, “largely because of our rates.”

U.S. lawmakers have for years vowed to adopt broad tax reforms, but the efforts have foundered. Congress has been unable to reconcile competing demands to eliminate tax breaks for some corporate and individual interests and raise taxes on others.

Trump’s tax plans are likely to face months of hearings and debate in Congress, where his Republican colleagues have their own ideas on how the tax code ought to be reshaped. Some lawmakers have expressed concerns that Trump’s call for a big corporate tax cut would balloon the nearly $20 trillion in long-term debt the U.S. has accumulated if there are not corresponding measures to raise more revenue.

U.S. Treasury chief Steven Mnuchin said Monday, “The tax reform will pay for itself with economic growth” that would boost tax revenues. Mnuchin called for tax simplification as well, saying U.S. reforms ideally would let taxpayers file their annual tax returns on a “large postcard.”

The U.S. economy, the world’s largest, grew at a tepid 1.6 percent pace last year, a figure Trump is hoping to boost to 3 percent a year, which the United States has not reached since 2005.

Tax experts say the 35 percent U.S. corporate tax rate is the highest among the world’s 35 industrialized nations, although U.S. corporations rarely pay that much because they are permitted to deduct their business expenses from their revenues before paying the amount they owe.

When the 35 percent rate is added to the average state corporate tax rate, the figure reaches 38.9 percent, which ranks third in the world among 188 countries surveyed by the Washington-based Tax Foundation. The U.S. figure trails only that of the United Arab Emirates at 55 percent and the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico at 39 percent.


Jobs, Homes at Stake in US-Canada Trade Squabble

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Canadian officials say a new tariff imposed by the Trump administration will raise the cost of new homes in the United States by $1,000 each, and shut 150,000 Americans out of home ownership. Washington’s decision also puts “thousands” of U.S. homebuilding jobs at risk, according to Canada’s ministers of natural resources and foreign affairs.

The comments follow preliminary action by the U.S. Commerce Department to impose a 20 percent tariff on $5.77 billion worth of soft wood imports from Canada to the United States. The wood is a key ingredient of family homes.

U.S. officials allege that Canada unfairly subsidizes exported wood. Subsidies could make the product cheaper, making it difficult for U.S. companies to compete on price.

Canada “strongly disagrees” with the decision to impose this “unfair and punitive” tax, says Canada’s resources minister, Jim Carr. Canada’s foreign minister, Chrystia Freeland, says Canada will take the issue to court, where the United States has lost similar cases in the past. 

U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross says this has been “a bad week” in U.S.-Canadian trade relations, noting an additional dispute over Canadian milk exports.

While the dispute over wood tariffs might raise the cost of new homes in the United States, a report published Tuesday by the Census Bureau shows sales of newly-constructed homes jumped upward by 5.8 percent last month. If sales continue at that pace for a year, 621,000 homes would change hands. Prices also rose.

A separate report from a business group called the Conference Board showed consumer confidence declined in April. Economists at Wells Fargo say that despite the drop, consumer confidence remains near a 12-year high. Experts watch consumer confidence for clues about consumer spending, which drives 70 percent of U.S. economic activity.


Ляшко на допиті лаяв детективів і прокурорів нецензурними словами – САП

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Депутата від «Радикальної партії» Олега Ляшка викликали до Національного антикорупційного бюро з метою встановлення або спростування законності набутого ним майна, повідомили у Facebook представники Спеціалізованої антикорупційної прокуратури.

За їхніми словами, депутат «вів себе зухвало та зверхньо по відношенню до детективів та прокурорів, обзиваючи їх нецензурними словами».

Національне антикорупційне бюро провело допит голови фракції «Радикальної партії» Олега Ляшка у справі щодо незаконного збагачення, заявив сам депутат цього дня раніше. За його словами, допит тривав 4 години, питали «про все на світі».

Спеціалізована антикорупційна прокуратура передала до Національного антикорупційного бюро справу щодо незаконного збагачення лідера Радикальної партії Олега Ляшка, повідомив 24 квітня директор НАБУ Артем Ситник.

У березні програма «Наші гроші» повідомляла, що Олег Ляшко за останній рік нібито придбав нерухомості приблизно на 20 мільйонів гривень.

24 квітня у НАБУ повідомили, що передали до САП остаточну підозру в справі голови ЦВК Михайла Охендовського.


Voices From Around the World Rate Trump’s First 100 Days

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It was the most stunning political victory of the 21st century, one that brought shocked concern in many parts of the world and cheers in others. One uncontroversial certainty was that it would cause reverberations around the globe.


Donald Trump campaigned on an “America First” platform, but has found himself as president drawn into thorny geopolitical complexities aplenty in the first 100 days of his administration. Relations with Russia plummeted to “an all-time low,” as Trump himself described it, in the wake of the U.S. missile strikes on the Syrian government’s airfield in response to a deadly chemical attack. The administration’s Syria policy and how to handle President Bashar al-Assad seesawed.


A window of opportunity appeared with China after Trump hosted President Xi Jinping for a summit at his Florida estate, but tensions on the Korean Peninsula soared over North Korea’s nuclear program. Mexico showed consternation and agitation over the president’s planned border wall, but gave no sign it would pay for the structure as Trump had repeatedly promised voters.


Trump’s travel ban rocked refugees and asylum-seekers in several Muslim-majority nations, though it was blocked by federal courts at home. There were echoes of darker U.S.-Iran days, but nothing yet that would derail the landmark nuclear deal, as the decades-long Israeli-Palestinian conflict continued to simmer.


Associated Press journalists in North Korea, Syria, Iran, Somalia, Israel, the West Bank, Russia, Germany and Mexico have gauged the global temperature by asking people five questions:

Do you feel more secure under a Trump presidency, or in danger?


Yuliya Konyakhina, Moscow: “I have a feeling that the world became more dangerous in general, not because Trump got elected, but in general it (the world) became more dangerous. When I go down to a metro I have sort of thoughts that something bad can happen.”


Shahrzad Ebrahimi, Tehran, Iran: “[The world] is 100 percent a more dangerous place. The U.S. threats to the world had been lessened during [Barack] Obama’s presidency and policies of that country were based on moving toward peace for at least eight years. But as soon as Trump took office, demonstrations began against him and the situations in Syria, Palestine, bombings, military and war threats all got worse. The more he sticks with his current policies, the more insecure and non-peaceful the world, especially the Middle East, will become. As you can see, now he is exchanging verbal blows with North Korea. Sometimes one can assume that this situation can even trigger a third world war.”  


Kim Hyang Byol, Pyongyang, North Korea: “It’s coming to 100 days since Trump became president, but we don’t care who the president is. The problem is whether they’re going to stop their hostile policy against North Korea, and whether they will do anything to help us reunify our country.”


Rustam Magamedov, Moscow: “[Trump is] agent provocateur, but in reality, he is just a good showman, as they say in the U.S. The fact that he became a president is rather scary, because he can start a war. It seems like that he is already moving toward the Korean borders. I think it is dangerous, first of all for Russia, because as a president and politician he is a bad person, a bad politician who has little understanding of politics.


Dan Mirkin, Tel Aviv, Israel: “Yeah, well maybe a little bit more dangerous. But I think that the steps that he took should have been taken a long time ago. And if it became more dangerous, then it’s not only because of Trump. Although, he has other drawbacks.”


Is the Trump administration more bark than bite?


Diane Lallouz, Tel Aviv: “It’s true that Donald Trump has a loud bark and you can say it’s more bark than bite. But, not really. It’s enough that he takes a few actions as opposed to not doing anything. He talks a lot, sometimes way too much and right off the sleeve without actually thinking about it and that may be a problem. But, at least the world knows that Donald Trump is going to take action when required.”


Raya Sauerbrun, Tel Aviv: “If it’s barking or if it’s doing, at least it shows that it’s doing something.  If it will sustain for a long time, we don’t know.”


Mohamed Shire, Mogadishu, Somalia: “This might be a new step; this might be a new strategy. We probably have to wait and see, but I think the United States administration needs to be very careful in just getting involved in Somalia without having a clear strategy and program that they align with the current Somali government.”


Yadollah Sobhani, Tehran: “Trump comes out with a lot of hype at first but eventually backs down from some of his stances on issues such as Russia, Middle East, Syria and so on. His inconsistent actions have proven that his bark is worse than his bite and he should not be taken very seriously.”


Majed Mokheiber, Damascus, Syria: “This is why we cannot predict whether there will be stability or more military security. In addition to that, we see that there are military tension spots around the world in other areas such as North Korea … that frankly may lead to a big explosion and a world war.”


Juan Pablo Bolanos, Mexico City: “I think it’s a bit of both. On the issue of sending Mexicans back, it is being fulfilled by the guy, Trump, and on the issue of building the wall, I definitely think he will not achieve it.”

Has Trump changed your views about America?

Ra So Yon, Pyongyang, North Korea: “After Trump became president, there has been no improvement in America’s image. If America doesn’t stop its aggression against us and pressure on us, then we’ll never have any good image of America; it will only get worse. We’ll never be surprised, whatever America does. And we’re not expecting any surprises from Trump.”


Yuri (no last name given), Moscow: “Nothing actually had changed, for real. Nothing had changed in Russian-American relations. They aren’t our friends or enemies. Geopolitical enemies, maybe, that’s it.”


Margret Machner, Berlin: “My trust at the moment is a lot less than it was earlier. One had the feeling that America was a strong, safe partner and I do not believe this anymore.”


Dan Mirkin, Tel Aviv: “I think that the U.S. remains the beacon of democracy because the U.S. itself is much more than its president. The president can be less or more of a beacon. But, America is a beacon.”


Hamza Abu Maria, Hebron, West Bank: “I’m about 30 years old, and since I grew up and started to understand and follow news, I don’t think the United States up until today was a beacon of democracy. If it was truly democratic, then from a long time ago they would have done justice to the Palestinian people.”


Mohammad Ali, Damascus: “We should never bet on any American administration, either Republican or Democrat. It’s the same front, supposedly to fight terrorism, but they didn’t do any of that. Instead they carried out an aggression against a sovereign state, which is Syria. They attacked Syria and they attacked the air base of a sovereign state and a member of the Arab League.”


Deqo Salaad, Mogadishu: “The U.S. was once both the beacon of democracy and human rights, but nowadays, a big change has happened as we can see more segregation committed by President Trump, especially when he said he was going to ban Muslims coming to the U.S. And with that, he has damaged the reputation of the U.S. of being the beacon of democracy and human rights in this world that the U.S. government promoted for ages now.”


Are we now living in a “post-truth” world?


Diane Lallouz, Tel Aviv: “I don’t think that we’re existing in a post-truth world and I don’t think that the way we consume information has anything to do with Trump. Actually over the last several decades we are getting information more and more on social media, so people are getting small amounts of information. Not too much real knowledge and that’s part of the problem. People are making judgments based on tiny amounts of truth or half-truth or non-truths, and it’s impossible to know, by the social media, what is really true. Is Trump the cause of this? I don’t think so. I think Trump is just a part of the picture that we live in today.”


Dan Mirkin, Tel Aviv: “I don’t think it affects the way that I consume information but it certainly changes the way in which the information is delivered, and the fact of alternative truth, alternative facts is a new invention, so we have to apply filters more than before.”


Mahmoud Draghmeh, Nablus, West Bank: “The world is far from the truth, despite the fact the technological development helped the news to reach. But I think that there is a distance from the truth, because the media, with all my respect to the different media outlets, everyone adopts his idea and exports it to the world.”


What has surprised you about President Trump?


Ute Hubner, Berlin: “I find he is very honest – more honest than I thought in the sense that a lot isn’t pushed under the table. He says it like it is, while here in our case so much is said and talked about that “everything is fine, wonderful and all is good,” while we know that the reality is more often than not something else.”


Fatmeh (full name not given) Damascus: “Trump increased problems in the Arab world and the first proof is the strike on Syria. This has increased problems and confusion. He didn’t do anything against terrorism; he only increased it. There is nothing new. His policy has been to oppress people, especially the Arab people. We didn’t see anything new.”


Yadollah Sobhani, Tehran: “What shocked me most from Trump was a sudden shift in his policies toward Russia from a friendly position to a clash. I did not expect such instability in a politician’s behavior.”

Payam Mosleh, Tehran: “What scared me most was the classification of human beings (under Trump’s proposed Muslim ban). I think history has taught and shown us enough times that separating people from each other has never done anyone any good. Building walls either in Berlin or America has no results and is disastrous.”


Mahdieh Gharib, Tehran: “What surprised me most was preventing Iranians from entering the United States or even barring those Iranians who were U.S. residents and had temporarily left that country. Bombing Syria was the second thing that surprised me.”


Shimon Abitbol, Tel Aviv: “He’s playing too much golf. That’s the only thing I’m surprised by. I mean, how can he have so much time to play so much golf?


LVMH to Consolidate Hold on Dior in Multibillion-euro Deal

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The magnate behind LVMH is to incorporate Christian Dior into his luxury goods empire in a multibillion-dollar deal.


It’s the latest business coup for businessman Bernard Arnault, who has expanded his LVMH empire to include dozens of leading luxury brands — from high-end champagne and whiskies, to exclusive Vuitton handbags, Kenzo and Givenchy perfumes and Bulgari and TAG Heuer watches. Dior Couture, launched in 1946 and seen as the pinnacle of Paris style, would be a starring jewel in his empire.


Shares in Christian Dior and LVMH Moet Hennessy — Louis Vuitton rose after Tuesday’s long-awaited deal. The public offers values Dior at 260 euros per share. Shares in Dior spiked 12 percent to 253.95 euros by early afternoon trading Tuesday, while LVMH shares were up 4.3 percent at 223.95 euros.


According to the announcement, LVMH, which already owned Christian Dior cosmetics and perfumes, would buy Christian Dior Couture, its fashion business, for 6.5 billion euros ($7.1 billion). In addition, the Arnault Family Group is making a public offer for the Christian Dior shares it doesn’t currently hold.


The hope is that combining Dior’s entities under one roof and simplifying internal activities, savings will be generated.


The statement says the boards of both companies approved the transactions on Monday. The proposed deal will still need regulatory approval and consultations with workers. The companies also hope to issue the public offer in June, and finalize the purchase of Dior Couture in the second half of this year.


The companies laid out their hope that Dior’s fashion revenues and profit, which have risen in recent years, will be a  “source of growth” for LVMH, particularly with development in the U.S., China and Japan.



У НАЗК є питання майже до всіх міністрів щодо їхніх е-декларацій – Радецький

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Перевіряючи електронні декларації членів Кабміну за 2015 рік, Національне агентство України із запобігання корупції ще не отримало повної інформації від компетентних державних органів та пояснень від самих міністрів, повідомив в ефірі Радіо Свобода заступник голови НАЗК Руслан Радецький.

«НАЗК не отримало повний пакет інформації по даних суб’єктах перевірки і НАЗК не отримало пояснення від суб’єктів декларування по низці рухомого і нерухомого майна», – зазначив Руслан Радецький.

Він нагадав, що перевірка не здійснюється автоматично, як це передбачалося раніше, а декларації перевіряють в ручному режимі.

«Ми робимо запит до компетентних органів державної влади, просимо надати ту чи іншу інформацію, яка б підтвердила інформацію, яку вніс суб’єкт в е-декларацію. Такі запити ми зробили. Наприклад, по одному міністру не надійшло біля п’яти відповідей від компетентних органів», – розповів Руслан Радецький.

На уточнююче запитання, щодо яких міністрів ще не надійшла інформація, Радецький відповів: «По міністру Насалику не надійшло, по Авакову не надійшло, по Кутовому… У нас не тільки по цих особах, у нас фактично по всіх 23 суб’єктах перевірки декларацій є питання. І всі вони повідомлені, що нам необхідно надати пояснення. На сьогодні деякі міністри і віце-прем’єр-міністри надали в письмовій формі пояснення, деякі ще не надали».

У понеділок НАЗК продовжило на місяць термін перевірки електронних декларацій членів уряду. 

Перевірка е-декларацій за 2015 рік почався у січні цього року. Згідно з нормами, перевірка має тривати 60 днів і в разі необхідності може бути продовжена ще на 30 днів. 


Суд продовжив арешт 5 екс-«беркутівців», обвинувачених у вбивствах майданівців

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Святошинський районний суд Києва вкотре подовжив термін тримання під вартою п’ятьох колишніх бійців спецпідрозділу «Беркут», обвинувачених у вбивствах активістів Євромайдану в лютому 2014 року.

Згідно з рішенням суду від 25 квітня, екс-«беркутівці» Сергій Зінченко, Павло Аброськін, Сергій Тамтура, Олег Янішевський та Олександр Маринченко перебуватимуть під варто ще 60 діб.

Наступне засідання суду має відбутися 16 травня.

Згідно з попереднім рішенням суду, екс-«беркутівці» мали перебувати під арештом до 30 квітня.

У травні 2016 року Святошинський суд розпочав розгляд по суті справи проти п’яти колишніх беркутівців: Павла Аброськіна, Сергія Зінченка, Олександра Маринченка, Сергія Тамтури та Олега Янішевського. Їх обвинувачують у розстрілі активістів Майдану на вулиці Інститутській у Києві в лютому 2014 року. П’ятьом колишнім беркутівцям інкримінують перевищення службових повноважень, незаконне поводження зі зброєю, умисне вбивство та заподіяння тілесних ушкоджень активістам Майдану. Колишні бійці спецпідрозділу «Беркут» не визнають власної вини за жодним із пунктів.

Усього, як повідомляв прокурор Генеральної прокуратури України Яніс Сімонов, вдалось ідентифікувати 25 правоохоронців, які стріляли на Інститутській. 20 із них зараз у розшуку.

У лютому 2016 року суд об’єднав кримінальні провадження щодо колишніх працівників спецпідрозділу «Беркут» Олександра Маринченка, Сергія Тамтури, Олега Янішевського, обвинувачуваних у розстрілі 48 активістів Євромайдану, з провадженням щодо Сергія Зінченка і Павла Аброськіна, яких обвинувачували в убивстві 39 майданівців 20 лютого 2014 року на вулиці Інститутській.

За даними Генпрокуратури, всього під час Євромайдану потерпіли 2,5 тисячі людей, 104 з них загинули. Згодом загиблих учасників акцій протесту почали називати Небесною сотнею.

За даними Міністерства внутрішніх справ, від 18 лютого по 2 березня 2014 року під час виконання службових обов’язків у центрі Києва загинули також 17 силовиків.


US Senator Calls for ‘True Reciprocity’ in US-China Trade and Diplomacy

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U.S. Senator Dan Sullivan on Monday called on both the American and Chinese governments to exercise “true reciprocity” in relations, including trade and diplomacy. 


The Republican senator from Alaska, in a speech concerning Chinese outbound investment, and in an interview with VOA afterward, said China has been aggressively buying companies in key sectors such as robotics, biotech, advanced machineries, software, entertainment and media “throughout America and Western Europe. But if you’re an American firm, or a firm from Germany, and you want to go to China and buy Chinese companies in those same sectors, you would be told ‘no;’ you would be prohibited.”


Making “true reciprocity” US policy


Sullivan’s proposed “true reciprocity” is rather simple and straightforward: “If Chinese companies want to invest in America’s biotech sector, then American companies should be able to invest in China’s biotech sector. It’s simple, it’s fair, it’s what China has said it wants to do but it doesn’t do, and we need to be much more serious about implementing it.”


Should China continue to ignore Washington’s calls for equal treatment and a level playing field, Sullivan says he is prepared to introduce legislation aiming at closing what he identifies as China’s “credibility gap,” and making sure that “true reciprocity” becomes official U.S. policy.


The Alaska Republican, who serves on both the Senate’s Commerce and Armed Services Committees, called on the U.S. government to reject “Middle Kingdom diplomatic practices” that fail to grant U.S. diplomats the same level of access Chinese diplomats receive in Washington. 


“Middle kingdom” diplomatic practices


Quoting from a study done by the New York-based Asia Society, Sullivan said “for a number of years, the U.S. ambassador in Beijing was only getting deputy minister level access while we, of course, give higher access to Chinese ambassadors here in Washington.”He called the solution to such unequal diplomatic treatments “a no brainer.” 

“If our ambassador in Beijing only gets deputy minister level access, then that’s what we should provide China’s ambassador in Washington, period. Middle Kingdom diplomatic practices should be firmly and aggressively rejected by the U.S. government everywhere,” Sullivan said.


He agreed that his proposed “true reciprocity” ought to also include issues such as granting journalists visas and access in both countries.


Growing domestic consensus


Sullivan said “there’s growing domestic consensus” in the United States that America’s strategic interests, including strategic economic interests, outweigh the market price of individual transactions, while acknowledging that each individual American businessman or woman naturally want the highest return for their individual product.

“The broader strategic interest of having a strong U.S. economy, and signaling to the next biggest economy in the world, China, that you need to play by the rules we play by, is also very important; and in my view, that importance strategically overrides the interest of the ability of American firms to sell to Chinese investment funds.”

Senator Dan Sullivan: China needs to play by rules we play by




Daniel Twining, counselor and director of the Asia Program at the German Marshall Fund of the United States and an associate of the U.S. National Intelligence Council, thinks the U.S. economic power so far has not been sufficiently utilized to advance the nation’s overall strategic, political and economic interests. 


“The U.S. is used to this traditional foreign policy tool kit that involves the armed forces, the diplomatic corps and development (foreign aid), but there’s really a fourth link here, which is our economic statecraft,” he told VOA.


Twining said other major powers, including China, appear to be much more adept at what he called “geo-economics,” using trade and investment “quite actively” and “quite smartly” to advance overall national interests.“It may be smart for us to think more about our economic strategies in the world,” including acknowledging and adopting strategies accordingly based on the fact that “market forces are not working everywhere, including in an economy like China that is still somewhat closed or controlled in some respects.”

Daniel Twining: Market forces are not working everywhere


Forgoing short-term profit


A newly released report by Baker McKenzie put Chinese worldwide outbound investment at $200 billion in 2016, nearly half of which targeted assets in North America and Europe. 


According to Robert Shapiro, chairman of Sonecon and former U.S. Undersecretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs, the primary goal of China’s overseas investments does not lie in short-term profit but rather in gaining strategic advantage, and that means not necessarily in gaining immediate economic return.

Robert Shapiro: China playing the long game


Armenians Mark Remembrance Day

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Tens of thousands of Armenians rallied Monday for the annual remembrance of the massacre of more than 1 million Armenians at the hands of the Ottoman Empire.

Marchers gathered at a memorial in Yerevan to lay flowers. Some burned a Turkish flag with torches.

April 24 is the day most Armenians regard as the start of the massacre in 1915, with the first arrests of Armenians by Turkish authorities in what was then Constantinople.

Between then and 1923, 1.5 million Armenians were killed through forced deportation, torture, starvation and outright murder.



Armenian culture restored

“The Armenians’ physical, cultural and political losses are immeasurable,” Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan said Monday. “The biggest loss is the people who were members of an ancient, rich and authentic civilization.”

Sargsyan said those who survived the killings and their descendents successfully restored Armenian culture and science.

“Within this period of time, we gave the world a whole constellation of creative geniuses and the world learned what happened to us through the great Armenians.”

In Washington, President Donald Trump put out a statement calling the Armenian massacre one of the 20th century’s worst mass atrocities.

“We must remember atrocities to prevent them from occurring again. We welcome the efforts of Turks and Armenians to acknowledge and reckon with painful history, which is a critical step toward building a foundation for a more just and tolerant future.”

Turkey denies organized campaign

Armenians call the killings a genocide and urge everyone who talks about the massacre to use that word, including the United States which has yet to officially recognize the deaths as genocide.

But Turkey denies there was any organized campaign to obliterate the Armenian people.

It says the number of Armenians killed during and after World War I was far fewer than 1.5 million and said the victims died in the fighting between the Ottoman military and Russia.


Workers: GM Fires 2,700 in Venezuela After Plant Closure

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General Motors’ Venezuelan subsidiary has sent a message to almost 2,700 staff informing them that they are no longer employed by the company and had received severance pay in their bank accounts, according to two employees.

A Venezuelan court last week ordered the seizure of the company’s Valencia plant, ruling in favor of two dealers that had filed a case in 2000 against the subsidiary on grounds they had not complied with an agreed sale of 10,000 vehicles.

Workers say that before the seizure was announced, GM had been dismantling the plant, which has not produced a car since the beginning of 2016 because of shortages of parts and strict currency controls in the OPEC nation.

The seizure, which GM called “illegal,” comes amid a deepening economic and social crisis in leftist-led Venezuela that has already roiled many U.S. companies.

“We all received a payment and a text message,” said a worker who had worked for the company for more than a decade, adding that his corporate email account had been deactivated over the weekend.

“Our former bosses told us the executives left and we were all fired. There is no longer anyone in the country,” added another employee who received the same message on his personal cell phone and a payment to his account. He had been at GM for five years.


The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the layoffs or the worker allegations it had already been dismantling the plant.

GM said last week that it was halting operations and laying off workers due to the “illegal judicial seizure of its assets.”

‘Show Your Face’

The leftist government of Nicolas Maduro says it is not seeking to expropriate the plant, which has been operating for 35 years, and has called on GM to come back.

“To the current General Motors president of Venezuela, Jose Cavaileri: You come here, show your face and share with us the options to restore normality,” said Labor Minister Francisco Torrealba said Monday.

GM is not the first company to fire Venezuela employees by text message. Clorox did the same two years ago when announcing its exit from the crisis-struck country, after which workers took over the plant.

GM’s plant closure comes after Venezuela’s automobile production fell in 2016 to a record low of eight cars per day, according to a local automotive group.

Two union spokespeople said they had no official company information on the layoffs, but said that most workers received the messages along with a bank deposit.

Neither employee would reveal the amount they received but union leaders said it was too low.


Tesla’s Big Model 3 Bet Rides on Risky Assembly Line Strategy

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Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk took many risks with the technology in his company’s cars on the way to surpassing Ford Motor Co.’s market value.

Now Musk is pushing boundaries in the factory that makes them.

Most automakers test a new model’s production line by building vehicles with relatively cheap, prototype tools designed to be scrapped once they deliver doors that fit, body panels with the right shape and dashboards that don’t have gaps or seams.

Tesla, however, is skipping that preliminary step and ordering permanent, more expensive equipment as it races to launch its Model 3 sedan by a self-imposed volume production deadline of September, Musk told investors last month.

Musk’s decision underscores his high-risk tolerance and willingness to forego long-held industry norms that has helped Tesla upend the traditional auto industry.

While Tesla is not the first automaker to try to accelerate production on the factory floor, no other rival is putting this much faith in the production strategy succeeding.

Musk expects the Model 3 rollout to help Telsa deliver five times its current annual sales volume, a key target in the automaker’s efforts to stop burning cash.

“He’s pushing the envelope to see how much time and cost he can take out of the process,” said Ron Harbour, a manufacturing consultant at Oliver Wyman.

Investors are already counting on Tesla’s factory floor success, with shares soaring 39 percent since January as it makes the leap from niche producer to mass producer in far less time than rivals.

There are caution signs, however. The production equipment designed to produce millions of cars is expensive to fix or replace if it doesn’t work, industry experts say. Tesla has encountered quality problems on its existing low-volume cars, and the Model 3 is designed to sell in numbers as high as 500,000 vehicles a year, raising the potential cost of recalls or warranty repairs.

“It’s an experiment, certainly,” said Consumer Reports’ Jake Fisher, who has done extensive testing of Tesla’s previous Models S and X. Tesla could possibly fix errors quicker, speeding up the process, “or it could be they have unsuspected problems they’ll have a hard time dealing with.”

Musk discussed the decision to skip what he referred to as “beta” production testing during a call last month with an invited group of investors. Details were published on Reddit by an investor on the call.

He also said that “advanced analytical techniques” — code word for computer simulations – would help Tesla in advancing straight to production tooling.

Tesla declined to confirm details of the call or comment on its production strategy.

The auto industry’s incumbents have not been standing still.

Volkswagen AG’s Audi division launched production of a new plant in Mexico using computer simulations of production tools — and indeed the entire assembly line and factory – that Audi said it

believed to be an industry first. That process allowed the plant to launch production 30 percent faster than usual, Audi said.

An Audi executive involved in the Mexican plant launch, Peter Hochholdinger, is now Tesla’s vice president of production.

Making Tools Faster

Typically, automakers test their design with limited production using lower grade equipment that can be modified slightly to address problems. When most of the kinks are worked out, they order the final equipment.

Tesla’s decision to move directly to the final tools is in part because lower grade, disposable equipment known as “soft tooling” ended up complicating the debut of the problem-plagued Model X SUV in 2015, according to a person familiar with the decision and Tesla’s assembly line planning.

Working on a tight deadline, Tesla had no time to incorporate lessons learned from soft tooling before having to order the permanent production tooling, making the former’s value negligible, the source said.

“Soft tooling did very little for the program and arguably hurt things,” said the person.

In addition, Tesla has learned to better modify final production tools, and its 2015 purchase of a Michigan tooling company means it can make major equipment 30 percent faster than before, and more cheaply as well, the source said.

Financial pressure is partly driving Tesla’s haste. The quicker Tesla can deliver the Model 3 with its estimated $35,000 base price to the 373,000 customers who have put down a $1,000 deposit, the closer it can log $13 billion.

Tesla has labored under financial pressure since it was founded in 2003. The company has yet to turn an annual profit, and earlier this year Musk said the company was “close to the edge” as it look toward capital spending of $2-2.5 billion in the first half of 2017.

Tesla has since gotten more breathing room by raising $1.2 billion in fresh capital in March and selling a five percent stake to Chinese internet company Tencent Holdings


Musk has spoken to investors about his vision of an “alien dreadnought” factory that uses artificial intelligence and robots to build cars at speeds faster than human assembly workers could manage.

But there are limits to what technology can do in the heavily regulated car business. For example, Tesla will still have to use real cars in crash tests required by the U.S. government, because federal rules do not allow simulated crash results to substitute for data from a real car.


Spain, Brazil Want EU-Mercosur Deal, Worry About Venezuela

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The governments of Spain and Brazil on Monday reinforced their commitment to completing a trade pact between the European Union and South American trade bloc Mercosur despite protectionist sentiments.

On a two-day visit to Brazil, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy said he agreed with Brazilian President Michel Temer about the need to wrap up a trade deal that has taken more than 15 years to negotiate.

Rajoy also called for elections as the only way to reach a negotiated solution to the political crisis in Venezuela, expressing “deep concern” over the volatile situation in the neighboring country.

“We agree that given the degree of confrontation and the volatility of the situation, a negotiated solution is needed, and it must inevitably involve giving back to the Venezuelan people their voice,” he said.

Rajoy is heading a large delegation of Spanish businessmen who are looking for investment opportunities in Brazilian banking, energy, water and infrastructure sectors.

Spain backs deal

Brazil is the third-most important market for Spanish investors, who account for the second largest stock of foreign investment in the South American nation after the United States.

Spain is one of the strongest backers of an accord to lower trade barriers between the European Union and Mercosur members Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay. Negotiations have been delayed for years by the reluctance of European farmers and Mercosur manufacturers to face competition.

“Spain has always been and will continue to be a firm supporter of the agreement,” Rajoy said after meeting Temer. “In these moments in which some feel protectionist temptations, we both agree on the importance of free trade.”

US retreat favors EU  

Argentine Foreign Minister Susana Malcorra, who is hoping to clinch the EU-Mercosur deal by the end of the year, said external reasons would help advance it.

Malcorra said the retreat of the United States from trade talks had opened a window for the European Union to become a strong player in multilateral, region-to-region accords.

“Our view is that [the EU-Mercosur accord] is not only an economic agreement,” she said in Geneva on Monday. “It’s more than that, a political agreement.”


Italy, Greece Look to Macron to Help Douse Anti-EU Fires

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The Italian and Greek governments are counting on France’s likely next president Emmanuel Macron to help them see off populist parties that blame European Union-enforced austerity and open immigration policies for economic and social ills.

Greek prime minister Alexis Tsipras and Italian premier Paolo Gentiloni both called Macron on Monday to congratulate him after the independent centrist won Sunday’s first round of voting in the French election.

The former economy minister, who is seen in southern Europe as an opponent of rigid austerity, is favored to defeat far-right, anti-EU candidate Marine Le Pen in the May 7 run-off.

Five Star Movement a concern

The ruling parties in heavily indebted Italy and Greece hope his enthusiasm for the EU will help them see off challengers such as Italy’s Five Star Movement, which wants a referendum on ditching the shared euro currency.

A Greek official said Tsipras and Macron had an amicable discussion in which Macron noted his previous support for Athens in tough bailout talks with EU powers.

“I supported the need for a change of stance towards Greece,” the official quoted Macron as telling Tsipras. “It is certain that if I’m elected we will work closely together to ensure that Europe meets the needs of our generation.”

Gentiloni also spoke to Macron, an Italian official said, adding that the two would work together to ensure Europe can face its economic challenges.

Former Italian prime minister Matteo Renzi, who is plotting a path back to power at elections due next year, also welcomed Macron’s first-round victory, saying he represented a Europe that looked to the future, not “to the decimal points.”

Italian European Affairs Minister Sandro Gozi told Reuters a Macron presidency would bolster the ruling Democratic Party (DP) against populist forces like Five Star, which opinion polls show rivaling the DP with as much as a third of the vote. A path to government remains difficult, however, given its refusal to consider alliances and Italy’s electoral system.



Le Pen’s plans

Five Star and the right-wing Northern League question to varying degrees the adoption of EU open-immigration policies, the cornerstone of which is the Schengen open-borders area.

“Macron’s first round win and his likely victory in the second round will help give us a push,” Gozi said.

“Le Pen wants to get out of the eurozone, to get out of NATO, to dismantle Schengen and basically do many things that either the Northern League or Five Star want to do here. So if Macron wins, it is excellent news for us.”

The French connection

For Greece, a Le Pen victory would knock its major EU ally out of the union and weaken its defenses against a push from Germany, the bloc’s biggest creditor, for continued austerity.

Greece has debts equal to 178 percent of its economy and is struggling to conclude a progress review on reforms prescribed by its international lenders in exchange for vital loans.

Outgoing French President Francois Hollande helped fellow leftist Tsipras seal a 86 billion euro ($93 billion) bailout from the EU in July 2015, its third since 2010, which kept the crisis-hit country in the eurozone.

It expires next year, however, and Athens now needs France to lobby the rest of the EU, especially Germany, to agree to debt relief. Tsipras is counting on this support as the next election approaches in 2019.

Markets react to results

“Relations between Greece and France are strategic, they are based on mutual interests and common views on European affairs and I believe that Macron would stick to Hollande’s policy, which was supportive on Greece,” deputy foreign minister George Katrougalos told Reuters.

A senior Greek government official close to the bailout talks, which resume this week in Athens, agreed that a Macron presidency would be “sympathetic and supportive” of Greece.

Markets in Greece and Italy also welcomed the prospect of a Macron victory next month. Greek 10-year government bond yields hit a two-and-a-half-year low and Italian yields sank despite a credit rating downgrade on Friday.


РПР закликає АП утриматись від втручання у роботу системи адміністрування ПДВ

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Громадська організація «Реанімаційний пакет реформ» закликає Адміністрацію президента утриматись від втручання у роботу системи адміністрування ПДВ, а Міністерство фінансів – гарантувати незалежність та безпеку її функціонування. Про це йдеться у заяві, поширеній РПР у понеділок.

«Експерти «Реанімаційного пакету реформ наголошують: законних підстав для надання особливого доступу АПУ до реєстру та інших складових системи електронного адміністрування ПДВ немає», – йдеться у заяві.

Вони називають вимогу Адміністрації президента до Державної фіскальної служби про надання такого дозволу такою, що суперечить конституційному принципу розподілу влади у парламентсько-президентській республіці.

«Єдиний реєстр автоматичного відшкодування ПДВ запрацював 1 квітня цього року і мав стати потужним засобом детінізації економіки України. Завдяки публічності реєстру зацікавлені органи державної влади, громадськість, бізнес та ЗМІ отримали дієві інструменти аналізу та виявлення можливих зловживань у сфері відшкодування ПДВ. Проте, вже за два тижні з моменту його введення в дію, система електронного адміністрування ПДВ опинилася під серйозною загрозою її незалежному функціонуванню з боку АПУ. У результаті не передбаченого законом втручання АПУ у роботу системи електронного адміністрування ПДВ наявним на сьогодні є ризик витоку конфіденційної інформації платників податків, а отже – загроза національній безпеці», – йдеться у заяві РПР.

19 квітня 2017 року Державна фіскальна служба України на вимогу Адміністрації президента України надала співробітникам адміністрації доступ до системи повного циклу адміністрування ПДВ.

На Банковій отримання такого дозволу пояснили необхідністю отримання прозорої та оперативної інформації, а також для попередження можливих зловживань.


Штаб: у Мар’їнці під обстріл бойовиків потрапили житлові квартали і пост прикордонників

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Штаб української воєнної операції на сході України заявляє про обстріл бойовиками житлових кварталів Мар’їнки, а також однойменного контрольного посту прикордонників.

«Сьогодні вечері, 24 квітня, під час обстрілу позицій сил АТО в районі населеного пункту Мар’їнка, під вогонь противника, як і два дні тому, потрапили житлові квартали міста», – йдеться у повідомленні. За попередніми даними, обстріл здійснили зокрема з мінометів 82-міліметрового калібру.

Обстріл посту прикордонників, згідно з повідомленням штабу, здійснювався з населеного пункту Олександрівка, підконтрольного угрупованню «ДНР».

В обох випадках інформація про постраждалих не надходила.

Угруповання «ДНР» це повідомлення не коментувало. Угруповання звинуватило українську сторону в обстрілі Олександрівки у неділю.


Виконавця теракту на блокпосту в Маріуполі у 2014 році засудили заочно

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Виконавця теракту на блокпосту у Маріуполі у 2014 році, внаслідок якого загинуло двоє нацгвардійців, заочно засудили до 15 років позбавлення волі. Про це повідомляє Генеральна прокуратура України.

«В судовому засіданні доведено, що зазначений громадянин 1 листопада 2014 року, будучи учасником терористичної організації «ДНР», діючи за попередньою змовою з представниками спецслужб Російської Федерації та учасниками диверсійно-розвідувальної групи «Сват», терористичної організації «ДНР», незаконно виготовив вибуховий пристрій, розмістив його в автомобілі «ІЖ-2515» та із застосуванням якого, 2 листопада 2014 року вчинив терористичний акт у вигляді вибуху на блокпосту сил антитерористичної операції (м. Маріуполь), що спричинило загибель двох військовослужбовців Національної гвардії України та тілесні ушкодження двом особам», – йдеться у повідомленні прокуратури.

Оскільки обвинувачений переховується від органів слідства та суду, його засудили заочно до 15 років позбавлення волі з конфіскацією майна. Це рішення ухвалив Орджонікідзевський районний суд Маріуполя.


The Center Holds in France

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In the run-up to the first round of the French presidential elections comparisons were drawn invariably between ideological bedfellows Donald Trump and National Front leader Marine Le Pen. But the rise of the centrist Emmanuel Macron also shares some similarities with Trump’s capture of the White House — at least when it comes to having the skill to fire up an army of enthusiastic volunteers, many of whom had not previously been active in politics.

Macron’s rise — he topped the poll in yesterday’s first round featuring eleven candidates — is an object lesson for Europe’s centrist politicians in how to combat the populism of the right. The continent’s centrists of both left and right were quick to congratulate Macron, with even the German government throwing caution to the winds and wishing him luck in the second round of voting.

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s official spokesman Sunday wished Macron “all the best” and the German Foreign Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, also hailed the results putting Macron ahead of Le Pen. “I’m sure he will sweep away the far-right, right-wing populism and the anti-Europeans in the second round,” Gabriel said in a Tweet.

Like Trump, Macron has never been elected to anything. The 39-year-old former investment banker and briefly socialist economy minister — he was appointed to the post by outgoing French President Francois Hollande — has gone from being a rank outsider to the favorite to win the French presidency in the run-off next month against Le Pen.

Naysayers dismissed Macron’s bid when it launched as a “champagne bubble” that would quickly burst. It hasn’t. In less than a year the progressive maverick, who bills himself as “neither left nor right,” has rapidly built up his party En Marche! (Onwards!). It now boasts 250,000 members — twice the size of France’s establishment Socialist Party.


Since 1958, when the Fifth Republic was established by French wartime leader Gen. Charles de Gaulle, no independent candidate without electoral experience, has come near to securing the Élysée Palace.

Macron may be chalk to Trump’s cheese when it comes to ideology: he’s pro-globalization, pro-free trade deals, pro-EU and welcoming of immigrants. But like Trump and Europe’s populist right-wingers, Macron has benefited from rising public anger toward the establishment party machines. Macron on the campaign trail promised a “democratic revolution” to upset a hidebound French political system and has been every bit as dismissive of the old party dogmas as Le Pen.

When challenged on his government inexperience in the wake of the terrorist shooting on the Champs-Elysées last week, Macron parried that he’d prefer not to have any, judging by the ineffectiveness of experienced politicians in France in recent decades.

Much of his campaign has been built on the excitement of his followers as well as his own character. They have flocked to stadium rallies and organized thousands of small-scale gatherings at cafés and bistros around the country to debate policies and to engage doubters.

Regardless of whether the reforms they push are for more free trade and deregulation or protectionism and nationalism, those who position themselves as outsiders benefit from public disdain of the elites, as both Macron and Le Pen did on Sunday, humbling the country’s established parties of left and right. But whereas Le Pen’s challenge comes from the nationalist fringe, Macron has mounted a populist insurgency from the center of French politics.

In France, the establishment parties went to their radical wings to pick their presidential contenders, leaving Macron an opening in the middle. His supporters may be different from Trump’s — they are more white collar, metropolitan and educated — but like Trump’s followers they, too, have grown tired of the old party dogmas that have failed to provide stability and security.

“In France, Britain, the Netherlands, Austria and the U.S. the same people — blue- and white-collar workers, intermediate occupations and farmers — are joining the populist revolt,” according to Christophe Guilluy, author of The Twilight of Elite France (Le crépuscule de la France d’en haut). “The rift between the global market’s winners and losers has replaced the old right-left split,” he argues.

Macron’s electoral trick has been to persuade enough of the losers — mainly white-collar but to a greater extent than predicted blue-collar voters as well — that he has some pragmatic policies that will provide answers to the challenges facing France, from streamlining the pension system, freeing many households from housing tax and reducing government charges and fees and cutting back on regulations and bureaucratic red tape.

Now in the second round two very different stark views will be presented for voters to pick from: Macron’s more inclusive and cheerful view of a France that has the confidence to remain open to Europe and trade and welcomes new immigrants and those already in the country, and a more traditional view of France presented by Le Pen that points to rampant globalization as a danger to the country’s culture, jobs and security.

Victory will largely be determined by how France’s traditional working-class casts its vote.


Italian Journalist Home After 2 Weeks Detention in Turkey

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An Italian journalist has returned to Italy after being detained for two weeks in Turkey, apparently because he entered an area near the Syrian border without proper permission.

Gabriele Del Grande, a blogger and documentary maker who has written about refugees, was detained after entering the area of Hatay in southern Turkey. He arrived Monday at Bologna airport on a flight from Turkey. He said he had been treated well but wanted to know why he was deprived of his freedom for 14 days “for doing his job.”


Italian Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, flanking Del Grande at the airport, credited quiet diplomacy for the release.


Del Grande said he went on a hunger strike for seven days, so the first thing he wanted to do was “go eat.”



French Election Relief Sends Euro Soaring

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European shares opened sharply higher and the euro briefly vaulted to five-month peaks on Monday after the market’s favored candidate won the first round of the French election, reducing the risk of another Brexit-like shock.

The victory for pro-EU centrist Emmanuel Macron, who is now expected to beat right-wing rival Marine Le Pen in a deciding vote next month, sent the pan-European STOXX 50 index up 3 percent, France’s CAC40 almost 4 percent and bank stocks more than 6 percent.

Traders top-sliced some of the euro’s overnight gains, but it was still up more than 1 percent on the dollar, more than 2 percent against the yen and 1.3 percent on the pound as the early flurry of deals subsided.

“It (the first round result) has come out in line with the market’s expectations so you have something of a risk rally as there was a bit of a risk-premium built into all markets,” said James Binny, head of currency at State Street Global Advisors.

There was also an unwinding of safe-haven trades.

Shorter-term German bonds saw their biggest sell-off since the end of 2015 as investors piled back into French as well as Italian, Spanish, Portuguese and Greek debt.

The Japanese yen’s fall was widespread, the market’s so-called fear-guage, the VIX volatility index, plunged the most since November and gold saw its biggest tumble in more than a month.

E-mini futures for Wall Street’s S&P 500 climbed 0.9 percent in early trade, while yields on 10-year U.S. Treasury notes rose almost 8 basis points to 2.31 percent.


У ЄС вимагають покарання винних у підриві автомобіля ОБСЄ на Луганщині

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Влада, Новини, Україна

Верховний представник Євросоюзу з зовнішньої політики та політики безпеки Федеріка Моґеріні висловила співчуття з приводу загибелі спостерігача СММ ОБСЄ і та вимагає притягнути винних до відповідальності. Про це йдеться в заяві на сайті Служби зовнішніх дій.

Моґеріні наголосила, що повне виконання Мінських угод залишається основою для сталого рішення, яке поважає суверенітет і територіальну цілісність України.

«Цей інцидент необхідно ретельно розслідувати. Винні мають бути притягнуті до відповідальності. Я вже мала розмову з генеральним секретарем ОБСЄ Ламберто Дзанньєром, ми домовилися залишатися в тісному контакті», – вказала Моґеріні.

В ОБСЄ заявили про початок розслідування трагічного інциденту з підривом автомобіля Спеціальної моніторингової місії в Україні.

Зранку 23 квітня у районі села Пришиб на контрольованій угрупованням «ЛНР» частині Луганщини підірвався автомобіль Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ. Згідно з повідомленням місії, загинув американський медпрацівник, госпіталізовані двоє членів патруля місії, громадяни Німеччини та Чехії. Угруповання «ЛНР» повідомляє, що двоє поранених спостерігачів, які перебувають у лікарні Луганська, отримали травми середньої тяжкості, їх стан стабільний.

В угрупованні «ЛНР» звинуватили в підриві автомобіля ОБСЄ «підготовлену українську диверсійно-розвідувальну групу». Бойовики раніше також заявили, що автомобіль Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ, в якому загинули та поранені співробітники місії, «відхилився від основного маршруту і рухався другорядними дорогами».

У Міністерстві закордонних справ України вважають, що підрив автомобіля Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ на Донбасі є спробою Москви і підтримуваних нею бойовиків залякати спостерігачів.


Тіллерсон запевнив Порошенка в підтримці України

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Держсекретар США Рекс Тіллерсон у телефонній розмові повідомив президентові України Петру Порошенку, що дії Росії на Донбасі залишаються перешкодою для поліпшення американсько-російських відносин. Очільник зовнішньополітичного відомства також підтвердив підтримку Києва з боку Вашингтона.

Речник Держдепартаменту Марк Тонер заявив 23 квітня, що метою спілкування було інформування українського лідера про візит Тіллерсона до Москви, де він зустрівся з президентом Володимиром Путіним і міністром закордонних справ Сергієм Лавровим. Речник наголосив, що Тіллерсон передав своє «послання російському керівництву: попри те, що Сполучені Штати зацікавлені в поліпшенні відносин з Росією, дії Росії на сході України залишаються перешкодою».

Тонер підтвердив попереднє повідомлення прес-служби Порошенка про цю ж розмову, що президент України висловив свої співчуття з приводу загибелі в неділю на Донбасі громадянина США, який був співробітником Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ.

Тіллерсон і Порошенко, як наголосив речник, погодилися, що «цей трагічний інцидент робить очевидною для всіх сторін, зокрема, сепаратистських сил під проводом Росії, необхідність негайно виконати свої зобов’язання за Мінськими угодами».

ОБСЄ розгорнула мережу спостерігачів у 2014 році для контролю за припиненням вогню між підтримуваними Росією сепаратистами і українськими урядовими силами в конфлікті, жертвами якого стали щонайменше 9940 людей. Мандат місії був продовжений щонайменше до березня 2018 року.


Держдепартамент США закликав Росію сприяти в розслідуванні загибелі американця на Донбасі

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Держдепартамент США «шокований і засмучений» загибеллю американця, який входив до складу Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ. Про це йдеться в повідомленні, опублікованому на сайті відомства.

«Сполучені Штати закликають Росію використати свій вплив на сепаратистів, щоб дозволити ОБСЄ провести повне, прозоре і своєчасне розслідування», – йдеться в повідомленні.

Також американське зовнішньополітичне відомство закликало Росію вплинути на сепаратистів на Донбасі, щоб «зробити перший крок на шляху до миру на сході України».

23 квітня в розмові з держсекретарем США Рексом Тіллерсоном президент України Петро Порошенко запропонував активізувати розгляд питання про розміщення на Донбасі міжнародного миротворчого контингенту під егідою ООН.

За інформацією української сторони, в цій розмові представники України та США висловили занепокоєння через розвиток ситуації на Донбасі і відзначили важливість виконання Росією Мінських домовленостей, передовсім їх безпекових елементів.

Зранку 23 квітня у районі села Пришиб на контрольованій угрупованням «ЛНР» частині Луганщини підірвався автомобіль Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ. Згідно з повідомленням місії, загинув американський медпрацівник, госпіталізовані двоє членів патруля місії, громадяни Німеччини та Чехії. Угруповання «ЛНР» повідомляє, що двоє поранених спостерігачів, які перебувають у лікарні Луганська, отримали травми середньої тяжкості, їх стан стабільний.

В угрупованні «ЛНР» звинуватили в підриві автомобіля ОБСЄ «підготовлену українську диверсійно-розвідувальну групу». Бойовики раніше також заявили, що автомобіль Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ, в якому загинули та поранені співробітники місії, «відхилився від основного маршруту і рухався другорядними дорогами».

У Міністерстві закордонних справ України вважають, що підрив автомобіля Спеціальної моніторингової місії ОБСЄ на Донбасі є спробою Москви і підтримуваних нею бойовиків залякати спостерігачів.