Thunder From Under http://thunderfromunder.com/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 17:08:07 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 http://thunderfromunder.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/thunder-from-under-icon.png Thunder From Under http://thunderfromunder.com/ 32 32 Shell pledges 7.5 MW of electricity to Rivers community to quell protests http://thunderfromunder.com/shell-pledges-7-5-mw-of-electricity-to-rivers-community-to-quell-protests/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 16:47:11 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/shell-pledges-7-5-mw-of-electricity-to-rivers-community-to-quell-protests/

By Adedapo Adesanya

On July 27, the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Mr. Godwin Emefiele, in his usual attire of black suit and lemon tie announcement that the bank will stop selling foreign exchange (FX) to exchange bureaus (BDC).

This was not without precedent, as such an action had been carried out twice during his tenure, but one thing was certain, the Naira was destined for uncharted territory.

The local currency, which stood at $ 526/1 at the end of last month, fell to $ 557/1 on the parallel market on Tuesday, September 14. This means that in two weeks it has lost 5.9% or 31 N of its value. against the US dollar.

This is particularly revealing as the forex affects everything Nigerians use with a corresponding expected increase in goods and services.

“We are concerned that the BDCs have allowed themselves to be used for corrupt purposes,” Emefiele said when announcing the decision after the two-day Monetary Policy Committee meeting ( MPC) in Abuja.

He accused BDC operators of sabotaging the financial system and refused to sell forex at a small margin other than the official Investor and Exporter (I&E) window.

Although the central bank declares that the black market is an illegal channel for the supply of foreign exchange, many Nigerians have no choice but to turn to the unregulated market to meet their needs because they have been excluded. official channels, especially importers of items in the market. List of exchange restrictions.

In addition, those who are allowed to access forex on the I&E segment via advertisements are limited to a certain amount per quarter, such as PTAs and BTAs, where the quarterly allocation is $ 4000 and $ 5000 respectively.

This situation forces many end users of forex to move to the parallel market, causing BDC traders to increase the exchange rate, further increasing the disparity between the rate of the official channels and the unofficial window.

Although Mr. Emefiele remained silent despite several calls from different quarters, asking him to take action to save the Naira from total collapse, CBN Monetary Policy Director Mr. Hassan Mahmud in a virtual investor conference last week noted the main concern of the CBN, for now, was to stimulate the supply of dollars at the market counters and not the valuation of the local currency.

He said the umbrella bank was concerned about the supply of the forex market and confidence in the system, noting that the level of the Naira had to adjust according to demand.

No indication has shown that the Naira will stop its continued downward trajectory anytime soon, with many calling for the CBN governor’s resignation.

A member of the House of Representatives, Mr. Tajudeen Adefisoye, had alleged that Mr. Emefiele ignored multiple appeals from the National Assembly to appear before it to explain its exchange rate policy and others.

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DVIDS – News – USCCC Northland returns home after 80-day patrol in Eastern Pacific and offloading drugs in Miami http://thunderfromunder.com/dvids-news-usccc-northland-returns-home-after-80-day-patrol-in-eastern-pacific-and-offloading-drugs-in-miami/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 16:43:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/dvids-news-usccc-northland-returns-home-after-80-day-patrol-in-eastern-pacific-and-offloading-drugs-in-miami/

PORTSMOUTH, Va .– USCGC Northland (WMEC 904) returned to Portsmouth on Monday, following an 80-day patrol in the Eastern Pacific Ocean in support of the Eleventh District Guard and Task Force interagency joint South.

The Northland’s crew patrolled the eastern Pacific on counter-drug operations with the support of an aviation detachment from the U.S. Coast Guard Helicopter Ban Tactical Squadron in command of an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter. In addition to the Northland HITRON Detachment, US Navy, Customs and Border Protection aircraft crews provided critical aerial surveillance and reconnaissance for the cutter throughout the patrol.

During the patrol, Northland managed to ban several ships suspected of drug trafficking. On September 8, the cutter entered the US Coast Guard base in Miami Beach and unloaded 7,833 pounds of cocaine with an estimated market value of $ 148 million. The cutter crew also transferred three suspected drug traffickers to Seventh District Coast Guard and US Drug Enforcement Administration personnel, marking the culmination of a successful interagency joint effort in the eastern Pacific.

In addition to successfully intercepting suspected drug trafficking vessels, Northland maintained a maritime assistance presence in the region throughout the patrol. On August 11, the Eleventh Coast Guard District relayed an alert from the Costa Rica Maritime Rescue Coordination Center that the fishing vessel Baula X was on fire with three trapped sailors on board. On August 18, Northland launched the crew of the Dolphin in search of the boat. After successfully locating the burning fishing boat, the helicopter crew guided the Northland small craft team to the location. They safely rescued the three fishermen and delivered them to the nearby Avra ​​GR freighter, participating in the Mutual Assistance Automated Vessel Rescue Program.

When not actively pursuing drug traffickers or rescuing fishermen, Northland maintained a regular training program for new and old crew members on navigation, engineering and nautical activities. Training for emergencies and routine operations is essential to maintaining the maximum effectiveness of the Northland mission and is in line with the Coast Guard motto, Semper Paratus – Always Ready.

“During this patrol, our crew demonstrated a tremendous ability to adapt to respond to equipment malfunctions, schedule changes, problems caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and a host of challenges. other challenges encountered. Throughout it all, the crew demonstrated extraordinary determination and teamwork, resulting in multiple mission accomplishments. I am extremely proud of the efforts of Northland, our Carrier Aviation Detachment and all the support elements that worked to ensure our safety and success throughout the process, ”said Cmdr. Patricia M. Bennett, Commander of Northland.

On April 1, 2020, the United States Southern Command stepped up its counter-narcotics operations in the Western Hemisphere to disrupt the flow of drugs. Numerous US agencies from the Departments of Defense, Justice, and Homeland Security have cooperated in the fight against transnational organized crime. Coast Guard, Navy, Customs and Border Protection, FBI, Drug Enforcement Administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and allied and international partner agencies play a role in counter-drug operations.

Tackling drug cartels in the Eastern Pacific Ocean and Caribbean Sea requires a unity of effort in all phases, from detection, surveillance and prohibitions to criminal prosecution for those bans by the offices of the United States Attorney for the Middle District of Florida, the Southern District of Florida and the Southern District of California. The law enforcement phase of anti-smuggling operations in the Eastern Pacific Ocean is conducted under the authority of the Eleventh Coast Guard District, headquartered in Alameda. The bans, including the boardings themselves, are directed and conducted by members of the US Coast Guard.

The USCGC Northland is a 270 foot Famous Class medium endurance cutter based in Portsmouth. The crew deploys regularly in support of drug control, migrant interdiction, fishing, search and rescue and homeland security missions.

-USCG-

Date taken: 09.13.2021
Date posted: 09.15.2021 12:43
Story ID: 405312
Site: PORTSMOUTH, Virginia, United States
Hometown: PORTSMOUTH, Virginia, United States

Web Views: 8
Downloads: 0

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State Senator Chris Elliott named 2021 Alabama Forestry Association Legislator of the Year http://thunderfromunder.com/state-senator-chris-elliott-named-2021-alabama-forestry-association-legislator-of-the-year/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 16:41:17 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/state-senator-chris-elliott-named-2021-alabama-forestry-association-legislator-of-the-year/

The Alabama Forestry Association (AFA) has named State Senator Chris Elliott (R-Daphne) as Lawmaker of the Year 2021.

Elliott represents Senate District 32, which covers Baldwin County and sits on the Senate Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry Committee as well as the Deputy Chairman of the Government Affairs Committee.

The AFA said Elliott was instrumental in the authorship and passage of Senate Bill 107, which limits the authority of cities outside of their traditional jurisdiction. The association worked actively to help Elliott make this bill a success.

Elliott touted AFA’s work to support the rights of landowners.

“Writing and successfully delivering hard-hitting legislation that reflects strong Conservative principles and limited government is a priority,” Elliott said. “The Alabama Forestry Association is widely regarded as the state organization that champions private property rights and it has been a pleasure working with them. It is an honor to be recognized as their legislator of the year.

Tom Bradley, chairman of the AFA’s government affairs committee and a member of the ForestPAC board of directors, praised Elliott’s legislative efforts to tackle what he calls “government overbreadth.”

“Chris Elliott passed one of the most beneficial recent pieces of legislation in Senate Bill 107,” Bradley said. “This legislation protects the private landowner from the excesses of municipal government and allows the landowner to manage their timber stands using good silvicultural practices. Without Chris’ hard work, this bill would never have passed. I can’t think of a more deserving Legislator of the Year recipient.

The AFA last month endorsed Elliott in his bid for re-election to the Alabama state Senate.

Dylan Smith is a writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL


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Real estate price inflation at its highest for three years http://thunderfromunder.com/real-estate-price-inflation-at-its-highest-for-three-years/ Wed, 15 Sep 2021 10:39:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/real-estate-price-inflation-at-its-highest-for-three-years/

PROPERTY prices soared in July as the housing crisis worsens.

he scarcity of homes to buy saw prices rise 8.6% in the year through July, according to figures from the Central Statistics Office.

This is a three-year high, with economists suggesting there is now panic buying in the market.

Prices in Dublin rose 8.1% and prices outside Dublin rose 9.1% as the market got out of hand.

The price spike in July was the fastest rate of increase in more than two years.

For the month of July, prices increased by 1.7 pc, the largest increase in four years.

Economists have warned that extreme price hikes are expected for some time until higher output from new housing starts catches up with demand.

The higher rate of price increases means that more potential first-time buyers are excluded from the market, forcing them to pay exorbitant rents.

CSO statistician Viacheslav Voronovich said price growth has been subdued for most of last year, but an accelerating trend in growth has emerged in the latter part of the year and this year.

The tendency for people to move to rural areas to work from home has pushed up prices in border counties by 16% in the past year.

At the other end of the scale, the Southwest saw an increase of 5.3 pc.

KBC Bank economist Austin Hughes said affordability constraints and working from home are increasing particularly rapidly in areas of the country where real estate is relatively cheap.

Overall, prices have now doubled from the low point reached in early 2013 and are now only 11% below the highest level reached in 2007.

Residential property prices in Dublin are 16.5% below their February 2007 high, while residential property prices in the rest of Ireland are 13% below their May 2007 high .

Mr. Hughes said price pressures continue to increase dramatically.

“Although the supply remains limited, it has not worsened in recent months. “So these numbers suggest that demand from home buyers continues to accelerate.”

He said this partly reflected the improvement in the economy and the easing of health-related restrictions.

It probably also suggests that buyers believe prices will continue to rise, Mr Hughes said.

“So there may be an element of panic buying creeping into the market. This highlights the need to build confidence. Supply will have increased significantly in order to calm demand.

Mr Hughes said the figures suggest that translating the government’s housing for all strategy into physical properties is becoming even more urgent.

The hot real estate market has seen a 50% increase in the number of homes purchased by consumers. Some 3,822 household purchases of homes at market prices were filed with Revenue in July.

The restrictions last year have kept people from buying homes.

Mr Voronovich said: “Since the end of 2020, the number of homes purchased by households has returned to pre-Covid-19 levels.

“In the first seven months of 2021, there were 24,280 homes purchased by households at market prices. This compares to 24,416 for the first seven months before the 2019 pandemic. “

The median price of a house was € 267,000, the CSO said.

In the year to July, the lowest median price for a house was € 120,000 in Longford, while the highest median price was € 560,000 in Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown.

Nationally, the prices of used homes are rising faster than those of new construction.

New home prices rose 2.2% in the three months to June. This compares to an increase of over 6.7% in the prices of existing homes over the same period.

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Customs investigate murder of officer in Ogun | The Guardian Nigeria News http://thunderfromunder.com/customs-investigate-murder-of-officer-in-ogun-the-guardian-nigeria-news/ Tue, 14 Sep 2021 03:04:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/customs-investigate-murder-of-officer-in-ogun-the-guardian-nigeria-news/

The Federal Operations Unit (FOU) of the Nigeria Customs Service (NCS) Zone A, opened an investigation into the murder of one of its agents (Customs Assistant 1) on Saturday evening in the Owode region in the ‘Ogun State by suspected smugglers.

FOU Zone A Acting Controller Hussein Ejibunu, in a statement by the unit’s customs PR manager, Theophilus Duniya, led the murder investigation.

Ejibunu, said the driver was killed during an operation after two vehicles loaded with contraband foreign parboiled rice were seized and taken to Lagos.

According to him, during the movement, one of the vehicles developed a mechanical breakdown and was being repaired when suspected smugglers mobilized in large numbers with weapons, charms, stones and other items. dangerous to kill the deceased officer.

Ejibunu said the body of the deceased was deposited in a morgue, while investigations began.

The Interim Controller reiterated his determination to crack down on smuggling and arrest the perpetrators of the criminal activity. He said the murder would not deter the FOU A zone, under his leadership, from performing their duties in the interests of national security and the economy.

The comptroller stressed that seizures of contraband goods and the arrest of suspects will continue unless the perpetrators agree to change their minds and conduct legitimate business.



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Afghanistan LIVE News: United States Suspends All Afghanistan Evacuation Flights After Limited Measles Outbreak http://thunderfromunder.com/afghanistan-live-news-united-states-suspends-all-afghanistan-evacuation-flights-after-limited-measles-outbreak/ Sat, 11 Sep 2021 12:07:13 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/afghanistan-live-news-united-states-suspends-all-afghanistan-evacuation-flights-after-limited-measles-outbreak/ Afghanistan Crisis Live News Updates: United States halted all evacuation flights from Afghanistan after discovering a limited measles outbreak among refugees arriving in the country. The decision was made on the recommendation of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention which cited “health safety concerns.”

Meanwhile, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said all countries should engage with the Taliban to deliver the message that the Afghan people should live in peace under an inclusive government that respects basic human rights. Guterres stressed that the country should no longer become a sanctuary for terrorism. The UN rights office said on Friday the Taliban’s response to peaceful marches in Afghanistan was increasingly violent, with authorities using live ammunition, batons and whips and killing at least four protesters. .

On the other hand, India called for an “inclusive waiver” on Friday in Afghanistan, representing all strata of society. Stressing that she was her “immediate neighbor and friend of her people”, New Delhi said “the current situation concerns us directly”. It was India’s first response to the Taliban government’s announcement, days after the Pakistani ISI chief reached Kabul and picked the nominations.

Meanwhile, Pakistan said on Friday it hoped the Taliban’s new interim government would bring “peace, security and stability” to the war-torn country and work to meet humanitarian and development needs. of the Afghan people.

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Police arrest four smugglers, recover wood in Kashmir http://thunderfromunder.com/police-arrest-four-smugglers-recover-wood-in-kashmir/ Sat, 11 Sep 2021 11:04:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/police-arrest-four-smugglers-recover-wood-in-kashmir/ No more news

Sep 11, 2021 | 7:02 p.m.

Baramulla, Sep 11 (UNI) Jammu and Kashmir police have arrested two drug traffickers and recovered brown sugar in the northern Kashmir district, a police spokesperson said on Saturday evening.

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Sep 11, 2021 | 6:59 p.m.

Chandigarh, Sep 11 (UNI) The government of Haryana has made the services of the Director General of Haryana Supply and Disposal, Nitin Kumar Yadav, available to the administration of Chandigarh.

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Sep 11, 2021 | 6:44 p.m.

Chandigarh, Sep 11 (UNI) Hundreds of farmers, under the leadership of Haryana BJP President Om Prakash Dhankar, arrived at City Beautiful on Saturday to express their gratitude to Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar for announcing the award highest minimum support (MSP) of sugarcane in the country and the decision of the Center to improve the MSP of six Rabi crops.

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Sep 11, 2021 | 6:19 p.m.

Chandigarh, Sep 11 (UNI) As the Punjab’s police prepared for the next stage of their mega recruitment drive, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Saturday ordered the DGP to step up crackdown on leaks from exam papers, cheating, copying, etc. six people were reportedly arrested for their alleged involvement in cheating during the written test organized for the sub-inspectors on 22 August.

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Sep 11, 2021 | 6:17 p.m.

Srinagar, Sept. 11 (UNI) Underlining the commitment of the Union government to develop and improve the global landscape to boost the tourist landscape of the Union Territory (UT), the Union Minister of State (MoS) of Defense and Tourism, Ajay Bhatt, said Prime Minister Narendra Modi is making every effort to keep the essence of Jammu and Kashmir intact by ensuring holistic development of the region.

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Air pollution from coal-fired power plants in Balkans kills around 19,000 people, study finds http://thunderfromunder.com/air-pollution-from-coal-fired-power-plants-in-balkans-kills-around-19000-people-study-finds/ Fri, 10 Sep 2021 16:02:55 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/air-pollution-from-coal-fired-power-plants-in-balkans-kills-around-19000-people-study-finds/

According to a report published on September 7 by the CEE Bankwatch Network and the Center for Research on Energy and Clean Air, around 19,000 people have died in the past three years as a result of air pollution from coal-fired power plants. of the Western Balkans. .

The report, Comply or Close, launched to mark International Clean Air Day for Blue Skies, finds that nearly 12,000 of those deaths were due to violations of legally binding pollution limits. More than half of these preventable deaths occurred in the EU, which imports 8% of the electricity produced by these heavily polluting power plants, CEE Bankwatch said in a statement.

According to the report, air pollution from coal-fired power plants in Serbia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Montenegro affects not only residents of their own countries, but also those in neighboring countries of the EU, notably in Romania, Hungary and Greece.

“This report exposes the human toll of the continuing breaches of coal-based electricity in the Western Balkans. Governments in the region must immediately begin a swift and fair transition to sustainable energy systems, with the support of the EU ”, CEE Bankwatch Network Southeast Europe Energy Advisor Pippa gallop noted.

The Large Combustion Plant Directive – an EU directive aimed at reducing emissions of hazardous substances, adapted for countries party to the Energy Community Treaty – legally obliges these countries to control air pollution in their homes. power plants since 2018, the press release says. Yet, as the report finds, in 2020 the 18 coal-fired power stations in the Western Balkans emitted two and a half times more sulfur dioxide (SO2) than the 221 coal-fired power stations in the EU combined.

The new report reveals how coal-fired power plants in the Western Balkans have not only flouted countries’ legal obligations, but have also taken a heavy toll on the lives of people in the region and beyond.

According to the analysis, 3,700 people died in the Western Balkans and 7,000 in the EU alone due to coal-fired power plants in the Western Balkans which exceeded pollution limits between 2018 and 2020. It is estimated that around a thousand more people have died in other areas from suffocation. air pollution from the same power plants.

In the three years since air pollution limits became mandatory under the Energy Community Treaty, the coal-fired power plants of Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia and Kosovo have emitted SO2 at levels at least six times above the legal limit.

In Serbia alone, coal-fired power stations subject to the national emission reduction plan emitted more SO2 in 2020 than the entire fleet of coal-fired power stations in the EU, said CEE Bankwatch.

In the same year, the Ugljevik power plant in Bosnia and Herzegovina was the region’s worst polluter, single-handedly exceeding the combined SO2 cap for the four countries. The unit, like the Serbian Kostolac B, is equipped with a desulphurization system, but it has not been put into operation. Worse yet, an additional 700 MW of new lignite capacity is still planned at the Ugljevik plant.

According to CEE Bankwatch, the four countries with national emission reduction plans – Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo and North Macedonia – are currently facing litigation for failure to meet the pollution limits of the plans in 2018. and 2019. Another dispute resolution case was opened against Montenegro in April 2021 after the Pljevlja power plant continued to operate beyond its 20,000 hour quota under the ‘lifetime exemption. limited ”of the Large Combustion Plants Directive.

“Those governments in the Western Balkans that have not yet done so must set a date for an urgent coal phase-out,” coordinator of the Balkan air pollution campaign of the CEE Bankwatch network. Davor Pehchevski said, adding: “For power plants that cannot be shut down immediately, governments must limit their hours of operation until emissions standards are met, in order to save lives.”

He argued that in parallel, investments in energy efficiency measures and renewable energies must be urgently scaled up and that plans for a just transition for coal workers and communities must be developed with all stakeholders. relevant stakeholders, especially affected communities.

According to the report, the electricity produced by these coal-fired power plants and traded with the EU in 2020 – although it represents only a tiny fraction of the EU’s electricity consumption – produced as much SO2 as half of the EU’s coal-fired power stations combined.

Lauri Myllyvirta, a senior analyst at the Energy and Clean Air Research Center, pointed out that the report shows that when the EU exchanges electricity with its neighbors in the Western Balkans, it bears both the impacts and part of the responsibility of uncontrollable air pollution resulting from it. “The EU must also help the countries of the Western Balkans to move beyond coal by taxing imports of electricity from fossil fuels and by ensuring the effective application of the Treaty establishing the Energy Community”, said she argued.

Ioana Ciuta, energy coordinator for the Western Balkans at CEE Bankwatch Network, argued that governments in the Western Balkans cannot dream of EU membership while ignoring pollution control rules. He concluded that “to avoid this kind of blatant non-compliance, the application of the Energy Community Treaty must be a priority. The European Commission and EU governments must introduce effective sanctions ”.

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Pro-Chinese disinformation operation tries to exploit U.S. divisions of Covid, report says http://thunderfromunder.com/pro-chinese-disinformation-operation-tries-to-exploit-u-s-divisions-of-covid-report-says/ Wed, 08 Sep 2021 14:52:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/pro-chinese-disinformation-operation-tries-to-exploit-u-s-divisions-of-covid-report-says/ The operation, which initially attempted to discredit pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong in 2019, has grown into a “global campaign that works in seven languages, across at least 30 social media platforms and over 40 websites and forums, ”experts from Mandiant and Google say, noting parallels with the Russian disinformation campaign around the 2016 presidential election.

US officials believe the operation is linked to the Chinese government and are monitoring its progress, according to a source familiar with the situation. In the 2020 election, U.S. officials were monitoring whether the operation could be used to spread disinformation, but ultimately felt that the Chinese government was avoiding doing so because it did not want to elicit a response, the source added.

Months later, experts observed an “explosion of activity” around the world and the decision to provoke physical protests in the United States “shows that they pose a very serious threat,” the vice told CNN. -President of Mandiant Threat Intelligence, John Hulquist.

“This direct call for physical mobilization is an important development compared to the previous activity, potentially indicative of an emerging intention to motivate real activity outside Chinese territories,” the report said. “While this attempt did not appear to be successful, we believe it is essential that observers continue to monitor such attempts in case greater degrees of organic engagement are later achieved by the network.”

In April, for example, experts saw thousands of fake accounts calling on Asian Americans to protest racial injustice in the United States and “misinformation about the origins of the virus.” Although experts have found no evidence that these messages have been successful in mobilizing protesters, the report says “it provides an early warning that the actors behind the activity may begin to explore, even in ways limited, more direct means of influencing the internal affairs of the US. ”

While there has been limited engagement with these pro-China accounts, the massive reach of the operation shows that the players responsible have “significantly expanded their online footprint and appear to be attempting to establish a presence on as many platforms as possible to reach a variety of global audiences. “, According to the experts at Mandiant.

“Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen this threat actor evolve, from the types of content he publishes to the tactics he uses to amplify it. However, the most important characteristics of this network remain its breadth and persistence, despite a low commitment. That’s why we’ve taken an aggressive approach to identifying and removing disinformation from this network, ”said Shane Huntley, director of Google’s Threat Analysis Group.

“We anticipate that they will continue to experiment to generate higher engagement and encourage other community members to continue to follow this actor, shed light on their operations and take action against them,” he said. he adds.

Cyber ​​espionage from China against the United States has increased since the start of the Covid-19 epidemic, and Beijing has always sought to shape the global narrative through overt and covert means.

For months, Chinese authorities have openly disseminated false and misleading information about the virus and its origins.

But the United States and several of its European allies have also been more careful in attributing disinformation and other malicious cyber activity to China than to other state actors, namely Russia and Iran these days. last years.

Pressed on issue In May 2020, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen denied claims that the EU watered down a report on coronavirus misinformation after coming under pressure from China.

While experts at Mandiant and Google say they haven’t seen these specific pro-China accounts delve into election-specific content so far, they have warned that the actors responsible may be bracing for a campaign of election. broader disinformation that could very well be carried out in a manner similar to Moscow’s campaign to meddle in the 2016 US election. with similar intent to what US intelligence agencies said was deployed by Moscow in the race from 2016.

Beijing is not the only American adversary linked to the sweeping online efforts to undermine trust in democratic institutions. German officials on Monday accused the Russian military intelligence agency GRU of being responsible for a hacking campaign targeting politicians ahead of Germany’s general elections in September. The same hacking group has also attacked U.S. allies such as Poland with fake NATO narratives, the researchers said.

CNN’s Sean Lyngaas contributed reporting.

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UK and France grapple with increased Channel crossings for migrants | World news http://thunderfromunder.com/uk-and-france-grapple-with-increased-channel-crossings-for-migrants-world-news/ Wed, 08 Sep 2021 14:44:00 +0000 http://thunderfromunder.com/uk-and-france-grapple-with-increased-channel-crossings-for-migrants-world-news/

By JILL LAWLESS, Associated Press

LONDON (AP) – Britain’s Home Secretary met her French counterpart on Wednesday as the UK pressured France to do more to stop a wave of migrants trying to cross the Channel in small boats.

Dozens of women, men and children, wrapped in blankets, were disembarked in the port of Dover in south-east England on Wednesday by British Border Force boats after being recovered on canoes in the English Channel.

Thousands of migrants have landed on the beaches of south-eastern England in recent days in calm summer weather, with 785 arriving on Monday alone, according to the British Home Office. More than 12,000 people have crossed the border this year, according to the British news agency Press Association. In 2020, approximately 8,500 people made the trip and several died in the attempt.

Migrants have long used the north of France as a starting point to reach Britain, either by pulling up onto trucks or ferries, or – increasingly since the coronavirus pandemic disrupted international travel – in canoes and other small boats organized by smugglers.

Political cartoons about world leaders

Political cartoons

The British and French governments worked for years to stop travel, with little success. Earlier this year, Britain agreed to give France £ 54million ($ 74million) to help fund a doubling of the number of police patrols on French beaches.

The money has yet to be paid and UK Home Secretary Priti Patel has suggested she could withhold it if France does not do more to prevent the departure of the contraband boats. She will meet with France’s Home Secretary Gerald Darmanin at a two-day meeting of G-7 home ministers in London that begins Wednesday.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said stopping the crossings largely depends on French authorities.

“We depend to a large extent on what the French are doing, but it is clear that as time goes by and this problem persists, we are going to have to make sure that we use all possible tactics at our disposal to stop what I think is vile commerce and manipulation of people’s hopes, ”he told House of Commons lawmakers.

Refugee charities said the UK government’s harsh rhetoric was unnecessary and urged the government to make it easier for asylum seekers to enter the UK safely.

Bella Sankey, director of Detention Action, said Patel should “reach an agreement with her French counterpart to develop a humanitarian visa which would give safe passage to those who are likely to be recognized as refugees in the UK”.

French lawmaker Pierre-Henri Dumont, who represents the Calais region in northern France, said authorities were doing all they could.

“The point is that we have 300 to 400 kilometers (190 to 250 miles) of shoreline to watch every day and night, and it is quite impossible to have police officers every 100 meters (330 feet) to because of the length of the shore, ”he told the BBC.

“We cannot stop all crossings,” he added. “We need to tackle the causes of migration.

Follow AP’s global migration coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/migration

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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