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Archive for July 2016

MINUSCA mandate extended to protect democratic gains


The United Nations Security Council extended the mandate of the UN Multidimensional Integrated Stabilization Mission in the Central African Republic (MINUSCA) until the end of July, despite a sex abuse scandal that has enmeshed both French forces stationed in the country and MINUSCA. The mission will be expected to protect the recent democratic transfer of power in the former French colony.

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OPEC Secretary-General term due to end

July 31, 2016 - AUSTRIA

Abdalla Salem El-Badri’s second term as Secretary-General of the Conference of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) comes to an end and former head of Nigerian National Petroleum, Mohammed Barkindo, takes his place at the head of the Vienna-based cartel.

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Economic sanctions on Russia to end?

July 31, 2016 - RUSSIA

In June 2015, the European Council extended European Union economic sanctions on Russia until the end of January 2016, then controversially extended them again in December to the end of July. Another 6-month extension appears likely. The aim is to keep pressure on the Kremlin to push for peace in eastern Ukraine.

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New episode in Harry Potter saga opens on stage for well-heeled fans

July 30, 2016 - UNITED KINGDOM

The world premiere of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child opens on the London stage one day before Harry’s birthday. Performances are sold out until May 2017, with secondary market tickets selling for thousands of pounds. The latest chapter in the Potter saga, the play proves that J. K. Rowling is far from done with Harry.

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Pope Francis to visit Auschwitz

July 29, 2016 - POLAND

Pope Francis will visit the Nazi death camp at Auschwitz-Birkenau during his visit to Poland for an international gathering of Catholic youth.

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Democratic convention looks for healing after bruising nominating contests

July 25, 2016 - UNITED STATES

The Democratic National Convention opens in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, with a focus on unifying the party after a bruising contest for the presidential nomination. Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton is the presumed winner. For her former rival, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, unification hinges on the party adopting more liberal policies.

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Start Trek Beyond film released

July 22, 2016 - UNITED STATES

Start Trek Beyond is released on the 50th anniversary of the franchise. It is the 13th Star Trek film and third in the reboot series.

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Republicans geared to anoint unwelcome choice for presidential candidate

July 18, 2016 - UNITED STATES

Billionaire businessman Donald Trump won’t find much love at the Republican Nominating Convention (RNC) in Cleveland, Ohio, but can expect nomination as the party’s presidential candidate in the Nov 8 general election. His candidacy has roused passions and the authorities are bracing themselves for clashes between his supporters and opponents.

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Bastille Day parade reflects war footing in France

July 14, 2016 - FRANCE

The annual Bastille Day parade rolls down the Champs-Elysées in Paris in 2016 with France on a war footing and more muscle on display as a deterrent. French anti-terrorism experts see the two recent terror sprees in Paris, which killed over 150 people, as a dress rehearsal for more ambitious attacks. The assessment frames the highly symbolic Bastille Day commemorations of 2016 as a prime target for terrorists.

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