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Philippines is deadliest country for defenders of environment

Nation replaces Brazil for first time in annual list of murders compiled by Global Witness The Philippines has replaced Brazil as the most murderous country in the world for people defending their land and environment, according to research that puts a spotlight on the administration of President Rodrigo Duterte. More than three defenders were killed across the world every week in 2018, according to the annual toll by the independent watchdog Global Witness, highlighting the continued dangers facing those who stand up to miners, loggers, farmers, poachers and other extractive…

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How Hong Kong maids became caught in a humanitarian tsunami

Migrant workers who become pregnant by their employers face dismissal, homelessness and a swift return home The sun had not yet risen in Hong Kong when Sally*, a domestic worker, was woken and told she needed to leave immediately. As she lay on the sofa, confused, Sally saw her employer standing over her with a piece of paper he wanted her to sign. It was a resignation letter he had written for her. She was being let go because she was pregnant. Her employer, a German man in his 50s,…

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Philippines threatens to dump rubbish back in Canadian waters as row deepens

Two nations have been at odds over 69 containers of waste sent to the Philippines in 2013 and 2014 Philippines president Rodrigo Duterte has ordered his government to hire a private shipping company to send 69 containers of garbage back to Canada and leave them within its territorial waters if it refuses to accept the rubbish. The Philippines as an independent sovereign nation must not be treated as trash by other foreign nation, presidential spokesman Salvador Panelo told a media briefing. Canada says the waste, exported to the Philippines between…

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One Metal Will Be Transformed by the Electric Car Boom

Glencore Plc and Trafigura Group Pte are often at loggerheads, but one thing they agree on: the nickel market will be transformed by the rise of electric cars. Nickel sulphate, a key ingredient in lithium-ion batteries, will see demand increase 50 percent to 3 million metric tons by 2030, Saad Rahim, chief economist at Trafigura, said in an interview. While other battery metals like cobalt and lithium have more than doubled since the start of last year, nickel prices have been subdued because of large inventories. "When you look structurally,…

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Islamic State Claims Las Vegas Mass Shooting

Cairo (AP) — Without providing any evidence to support the claim, the Islamic State group on Monday said the gunman in the mass shooting in Las Vegas was "a soldier" from its ranks who had converted to Islam months ago. Authorities have yet to identify a motive for the shooting, and said initially there was no evidence of any connection to international terrorism. The extremist group has a history of exaggerated or false claims, including earlier this year, when it claimed an attack on a casino in the Philippines that…

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Philippines president says US, Australia have ‘toned down’ human rights criticism

Rodrigo Duterte claims issue of thousands of drug war deaths was mentioned only in passing in meetings with Rex Tillerson and Julie Bishop The US and Australia have considerably toned down criticism of a drug war in the Philippines in which thousands have been killed, according to the countrys president, Rodrigo Duterte. During meetings at the presidential palace in Manila, US secretary of state Rex Tillerson and Australian foreign minister Julie Bishop raised the issue of human rights only in passing, Duterte said. Mostly they have considerably toned down in…

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USS Fitzgerald collision: American sailors ‘probably to blame’ for fatal cargo ship crash

Unnamed defence official says the crew would be held accountable for the crash off Japan, which left seven US sailors dead The crew of a Navy destroyer that collided with a Philippine-flagged cargo ship will certainly be held accountable for the crash that US navy recovers bodies from vessel after collision off Japan They are certainly going to be held accountable in some way for their actions, the official added. This is something we take very seriously. There are seven sailors that lost their lives. Senior spokeswoman rear admiral Dawn…

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A place called ‘hope’: the tiny island on the frontline of US-China tensions

More than 100 Filipinos live 15 miles from one of Beijings most ambitious island bases in the South China Sea On the horizon, the azure sea water stops and the white, concrete structures of the Chinese military base rise up. Sometimes we get nervous because we are only civilians. If they invade the island, they can harm us. They can do whatever they want, says Romeo Malaguit, a fisherman and father of two, who lives on the nearby Philippine-claimed island Thitu. Locally known as Pag-asa, meaning hope in Filipino, Thitu…

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Panic in Manila: how the chaotic casino attack unfolded

Authorities offer competing theories on motivation after attack kills at least 36, mostly from suffocation, in Philippines capital As the room in the Manila casino filled with dense, black smoke, employees and guests frantically smashed at thick windows that would not open. Some managed to scramble out, finding themselves on a ledge several metres above the road. Those who jumped some of whom broke their legs were the lucky ones. The Philippines government said at least 36 people had died, mostly due to suffocation. We took out a ladder to…

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Philippines senator tells UN reports of drug war killings are ‘alternative facts’

Ally of Rodrigo Duterte employs Trump-speak to deny that presidents policy has resulted in more than 7,000 being killed by death squads and vigilantes There has been no new wave of killings prompted by the Philippines alternative facts, an ally of President Rodrigo Duterte has told the UN Human Rights Council. Duterte has received widespread condemnation in the west for failing to curtail the killings and address activists allegations of systematic, state-sponsored murders by police of drug users and dealers, which the authorities reject. Senator Alan Peter Cayetano said there…

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Trump tells Duterte: ‘You’re doing a great job’, Philippines claims

Despite thousands of deaths in controversial war on drugs, US president praised his counterpart in Manila, a spokesman says Donald Trump has told Rodrigo Duterte that he is doing a great job despite knowing about the Philippine presidents controversial war on drugs. The US presidentswhich has killed thousands of people over the past 10 months. The White House defended the invitation made during a phone call on Saturday, acknowledging that though human rights were an important issue, Washington needed allies in Asia to address the global threat of North Koreas…

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