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Week 4 - 05/02/2021

Published on 5 February 2021 at 09:06

Trump refuses to Testify at Impeachment hearing


Lawyers representing Former President Donald Trump for his impeachment trial said on Thursday he will not testify at the proceedings next week, dismissing demands by House Democrats for his testimony as a "public relations stunt."

 

Congressman Jamie Raskin, the lead House impeachment manager, sent a letter to Mr. Trump and his lawyers on Thursday asking him to answer questions under oath about his involvement in encouraging supporters to storm the U.S. Capitol building.

 

Raskin suggested Mr. Trump could provide his testimony, which would include cross-examination, as early as Monday, February 8, and no later than Thursday, February 11.

 

Myanmar’s Military stage a Coup


The seizure of power by Myanmar military's follows weeks of tensions with civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi and her government.



Ms. Suu Kyi and other leaders were taken into custody by the military on the same day as the first new parliamentary session was due to be held since a national election last November.



Ms Suu Kyi remains an immensely popular figure in Myanmar despite her international reputation being deeply tarnished over a crackdown on the country's stateless Rohingya minority in 2017.



Suu Kyi’s “National League for Democracy” party won in a landslide poll in last years election, winning by an even greater margin than the 2015 vote which brought the former Nobel laureate to power.



However the country's military, which has ruled the country for the majority of the last 60 years, claims that the vote had many irregularities.

Read in more detail here

Italian President nominates Draghi as PM


The governmental disarray in which Italy has recently found itself is, to say the least, disconcerting. Having to deal with the corona virus crisis was far from being the only issue at hand in the governance of Italy, in the last months.


One would think having the sixth highest death toll in the world caused by Covid would suffice, but no. Coalitions have succeeded one other as political bombshells quickly followed.

 

Over the last 20 days, the situation escalated. The ex-Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, former member of the government coalition, surprised Italy when he decided to leave the previous government, formed during Covid, after complicated elections. He therefore weakened Giuseppe Conte’s political legitimacy, the then Prime Minister, leaving him with a dodgy government, without an absolute majority in the Senate.



What happened next was fairly predictable: Conte’s government collapsed altogether. As per usual, Italian politicians had to quickly come up with an alternative. Sergio Mattarella, the President of the Italian Republic, seeing Roberto Fico, president of the Italian chamber of deputies, was struggling to provide a solution, promptly suggested Mario Draghi.

Read in more detail here 

Northern Ireland Protocol at Risk


The DUP has announced it will attempt to unite unionism to campaign against the Northern Ireland Protocol.

 

In its statement, the DUP warned that north-south relationships will not continue as normal.

 

It comes after the withdrawal of border inspection personnel at Larne and Belfast ports following concerns about their safety.

 

Inspections of goods arriving at the ports were suspended yesterday and officials withdrawn after sinister graffiti and reports of intelligence-gathering on inspectors.

 

The PSNI said this evening it had no evidence that the main loyalist paramilitary groups were behind the graffiti and they blamed individuals or small groups of people for the intimidation.

 

DUP leader Arlene Foster is to hold discussions with the British Prime Minister Boris Johnson tomorrow.

 

Mr Johnson has said Northern Ireland's place in the UK will be "protected and strengthened".

 

He also said the UK's commitment to the people of Northern Ireland is "unshakeable".


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