Amazon rainforest fire: Macron accused of ‘colonialist mindset’ over ‘crisis’ remark

Mr Bolsonaro in a series of tweets said: “I regret that president Macron seeks to make personal political gains in an internal matter for Brazil and other Amazonian countries. His sensationalist tone does nothing to solve the problem. The French President’s suggestion that Amazonian matters be discussed at the G7 without the involvement of countries of the region recalls the colonialist mindset that is unacceptable in the 21st century.”

Earlier in the day, M Macron joined a chorus of international outcry over the worsening fires, tweeting: “Our house is burning. Literally. The Amazon rainforest – the lungs which produce 20 percent of our planet’s oxygen – is on fire.”

He added: “It is an international crisis. Members of the G7 Summit, let’s discuss this emergency first order in two days!” 

Onyx Lorenzoni, Mr Bolsonaro’s chief of staff, also responded angrily to what he denounced as foreign meddling, accusing European leaders of exaggerating Brazil’s environmental issues in order to disrupt its commercial interests.

Mr Lorenzoni was quoted on the Brazilian news website as saying Thursday: “There is deforestation in Brazil, yes, but not at the rate and level that they say.”

The hashtag #PrayforAmazonas was the world’s top trending topic on Twitter on Wednesday, as indignation over the international community’s slow response to the wildfires raged through social media.

Mr Bolsonaro, a long-time sceptic of environmental concerns, sparked outrage after he openly accused non-governmental organisations of burning down the Amazon in a bid to undermine his government.

The Brazilian nationalist said on Wednesday there was a “very strong” indication that some NGOs could be starting blazes in retaliation for losing state funds under his administration.

Mr Bolsonaro said in a Facebook Live broadcast that “everything indicates” that NGOs are “setting fire” to the forest,. 

He added: “Crime exists. These people are missing the money.”

Asked if he had any evidence to support his claims, he said he had “no written plan,” adding “that’s not how it’s done”.

Relations between France and Brazil first showed signs of cooling in June, when Mr Macron warned he would not sign the draft EU-Mercosur trade agreement if Mr Bolsonaro pulled Brazil out of the Paris climate accord.

M Macron said: “If Brazil left the Paris accord, as far as we are concerned, we would not sign a trade deal with them.

“For a simple reason. We’re asking our farmers to stop using pesticides, we’re asking our companies to produce less carbon, all that has a competitiveness cost.” 

Trade talks between Brussels and the Mercosur group of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay, the world’s fourth-biggest trade bloc, have intensified in recent months, with the EU calling the treaty’s speedy ratification a “number one priority”.

France, in particular, is worried about the impact on its vast farming industry of South American imports that would not have to respect the EU’s strict environmental rules.

However, France has not blocked trade negotiations with Mercosur because the necessary majority of EU member states back the deal.

Brazil contains about 60 percent of the Amazon rainforest, and its degradation could have severe consequences for global climate and rainfall.

Mr Bolsonaro, for his part, wants to open the Amazon to more agriculture and mining and convert land for cattle pastures and soybean farms. 

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Shocking rise of YouTube animal cruelty where owners bite dogs for likes and feed booze and drugs to chimpanzees – The Sun

OUR social media feeds may be dominated by cat memes and adorable puppy videos, but beneath the surface a more disturbing animal trend is on the rise.

A worrying number of influencers have recently been exposed abusing their pets online – often in an intentional, warped quest for "likes".

The issue was thrust into the spotlight earlier this month when YouTuber Brooke Houts uploaded a video of herself taunting and hitting her Doberman, Sphinx.

In the shocking film, the 20-year-old tried to "prank" the dog by making him run through plastic wrap – but “accidentally” included scenes of her smacking, pinning down and appearing to spit on him.

Boasting more than 300,000 subscribers, the American has now been investigated by the LAPD’s animal cruelty unit and slammed by celebrities including Love Island's Doctor Alex and YouTuber Logan Paul.

The incident also sparked an urgent appeal from PETA, which called for websites including Facebook and YouTube to impose a “permanent ban on any users who post photos or videos of themselves harming animals”.


However, the uncomfortable truth is that Houts is far from the only offender.

Across the Internet, there are thousands of videos racking up millions of hits for "pranks" on pets – much to the horror of animal lovers.

Last month, Ricky Gervais tweeted he wanted to "smash the face in" of a YouTuber who filmed himself biting and battering his traumatised puppy.

Just last week, a twisted schoolgirl sparked outrage after chucking her shih tzu into a tumble dryer on Instagram Live. And yesterday, clothing brand BoohooMAN were forced to swiftly delete a video of a rat being kicked about by builders in a bizarre promo for the football season.

Meanwhile, the YouTube search "save puppy from python" reveals a number of films where dogs and cats are placed in harm’s way, with amateurishly staged scenes seeing "rescuers" only stepping in once they are attacked or even constricted by snakes.

It’s just one example of how uploaders increasingly pull the wool over social regulators’ eyes. While illegal dogfights are swiftly cracked down on, for instance, a video of a chained monkey being forced to fight a dog currently has 20million hits.

Craig Jackson, psychology professor at the University of Birmingham, explains the number of people "mentally able" to abuse animals is on the rise and shows "severe warning signs of psychological problems".

He says: "Those who abuse their partners or torture their children often begin by taking their frustrations out on family pets first.

"For the angry, who feel they can no longer take out their frustrations on those who were traditionally “fair targets” (be it racism or sexism) animals may represent the last lifeforms they feel they can pick on.

The problem is partially in the technology – seeing and sharing the videos is done so quickly that people do so without thinking about whether they should

" I certainly think that many in society are forgetting how to be kind and compassionate, and this is being replaced by the instant reward of notoriety and internet likes for uploading such cruelty.

"The problem is partially in the technology – seeing and sharing the videos is done so quickly that people do so without thinking about whether they should, or what the consequences may be.

"I am sure that both emotional immaturity and lack of any wider social responsibilities in life are key elements that allow sharers to do what they do without hesitation."

The phenomenon is deeply worrying for animal welfare charities like the RSPCA, who have seen reports of abuse on platforms like Snapchat rise as much as 300 per cent in recent years.

With a January study suggesting that one in five young children now aspires to be an influencer, there are fears that popular stars could "normalise" such behaviour among their impressionable followers.

Houts has since apologised for her actions, and the LAPD investigation concluded that she should ultimately be allowed to keep her pet. It has led to concerns from PETA that “one day of outrage isn’t enough to stop streamers from hurting animals”.


Sara McCorquodale, founder of influencer analytics company CORQ and author of upcoming book Influence, says the sheer pace of life on social media means that even the most shocking abuse can soon be yesterday’s news – and far from career-ending.

“There’s a real culture of cancellation, where an influencer does something that’s very unpopular and the Internet community says ‘you’re done’,” she explains. “But actually because digital and social media moves so quickly, that cancellation doesn’t really last.

“There’s also a really big narrative of redemption – somebody does something wrong, then they make a heartfelt apology video which tends to be very well watched.

“What Brooke did will not haunt her within the community of YouTube. If she can put up with the trolls, it won’t ruin her career.”

The stark reality of vlogging, she explains, means that only early adopters like Zoe ‘Zoella’ Sugg and Alfie Deyes can truly make their millions through YouTube alone.

While Houts, in this sense, is unlikely to be hugely profiting from her scandal, it has undoubtedly raised her profile. A month ago, her page views were in the tens of thousands – now, her newest post has clocked up over two million.


The squeaky clean image of Zoella’s generation is also giving way to a new breed of social media stars either seemingly immune to outrage or actively profiting from it. Many of them commercially far outstrip Houts too.

Last month, gamer sensation Natalia "Alinity Divine" Mogollon came under fire for viciously hurling her cat over her shoulder while broadcasting streaming service Twitch, where she boasts more than 800,000 followers.

A user with near-identical numbers revealed to fans that the service earns him a "base salary" of $20,000 a month – and that’s before even considering the advertising partnerships Alinity has enjoyed with brands like computer firm IBuyPower (the company tells Sun Online their partnership ended in May).

Despite calls for her to be banned from Twitch following a string of controversies, Alinity has continued to be allowed to stream.

More prominently, Vitaly Zdorovetskiy, who shot to fame when his girlfriend Kinsey Wolanski streaked during the Champions League final, was accused last year of animal cruelty when he filmed a "stoned" chimpanzee smoking a bong on Twitter.

Crucially, Zdorovetskiy’s fame has been built on a fanbase that actually encourages his outlandish behaviour.

Unlike Houts, whose channel is running without adverts in the wake of her ‘abuse’ backlash, the Russian prankster is still making money from his other videos.

While YouTube cuts off advertising on his more controversial videos, he can still profit from the others – according to, he can earn up to $,1700 per DAY.

Much of the coverage his stunts attract is also used to drive supporters to his website, Vitaly Uncensored, whose subscription service has helped earn him an estimated fortune of at least $3million. Its slogan is "wild pranks, t*ts, a**, no rules".

“For a lot of YouTubers, they’re so immersed in the communities they’ve built they become quite unaware of what’s socially acceptable in a wider narrative,” says McCorquodale.

“What’s acceptable in the real world and their YouTube channel are very different things.

"If you want to get millions of views getting on the homepage, the easiest way is to make content that’s outrageous and gets a lot of reaction.

"It sets a worrying precedent because it becomes less about quality and more about shock value. They’re under a huge amount of pressure to be trending and that’s why they resort to these stunts."

YouTube's shameful history exposed

This isn't the first time YouTube has been exposed for hosting shocking content.

In December last year, popular YouTube vlogger Logan Paul sparked controversy after filming the body of a suicide victim.

The clip, which was posted to YouTube, showed the recently deceased corpse of someone who had hung themselves in a forest in Japan.

Paul earned millions of views within hours, but was widely condemned. He eventually removed the video, issued an apology, and took a month-long break from YouTube.

The Sun has also uncovered a rogue steroids advert, a secret cache of porn, smut playlists designed to "lure kids", and webcam sex ads on YouTube.


The fear for welfare charities is that as we shift from the Zoella to Vitaly generation, budding influencers will pack in the make-up tutorials and instead seek out ever more extreme "pranks" to stand out from the crowd.

In 2018, the RSPCA investigated 130,700 cases of animal cruelty and says the number shared on sites such as YouTube, Facebook and Snapchat continues to rise.

The briefest of searches on YouTube alone brings up dozens of "copycat" videos that have remained online for years.

In one, a prankster replaces his goldfish’s water tank with a bowl of whiskey, to see how it copes. The comments, though attracting some criticism, are mostly supportive – with one user joking “that fish’s eyes must be burning lmfao”.

Young people could easily witness animals being beaten and even killed in graphic detail

Sickeningly, such encouraging comments are beginning to appear under more serious examples of abuse too. YouTube continues to host a 2016 video in which a visibly distressed baby monkey is tethered to a post and fed alcohol, while another uploaded in January depicts a pitbull fighting a TIGER. It has more than 900,000 views.

A RSPCA spokesman told the Sun Online: “It’s extremely concerning that animals are suffering and that this sort of content can normalise – and even make light of – animal cruelty.

“What’s even more worrying is the level of cruelty that can often be seen in these videos, particularly as many of these online platforms are so popular with young people who could easily witness animals being beaten and even killed in graphic detail.

“Celebrities, YouTubers and social media influencers have a responsibility to promote kindness and compassion towards animals, and to encourage their fans and followers to also be kind to animals.”

The debate will rage on about how to best crack down on these channels.

PETA may be calling for an outright ban for abusive users, but as McCorquodale points out, deplatforming someone on YouTube will just see them jump ship to another website – and their audience will follow.

“The only real way this could be regulated is if the law said social platforms were liable for every single person on their website,” she says.

“Maybe that could happen, but it would be an enormous shift. The only other possibility would be a cross-party treaty where platforms said we’re not going to stand for X, Y or Z anymore.”

The RSPCA is campaigning for animal welfare to be added to the National Curriculum, and education remains the most immediate form of action.

It’s time influencers like Houts realised a puppy isn’t just for YouTube, it’s for life.

Protections against animal abuse

A YouTube spokesman said: "YouTube's Community Guidelines do not allow content featuring violence and incitement to commit crime, including animal abuse.

"Educational, documentary, or scientific content such as content featuring animals fighting in the wild, such as in a nature documentary are allowed with the appropriate context and intent."

The website has a three strikes policy, in which a user’s channel will be terminated if it is found to repeatedly post videos that include:

  • Content where there is infliction of unnecessary suffering or harm deliberately causing an animal distress.
  • Content where animals are encouraged or coerced to fight by humans.
  • Pranks that lead victims to fear imminent serious physical danger, or that create serious emotional distress in minors.

In June, the government announced tough new laws that means owners who torture their pets will be locked up for up to five years – a rise on the previous maximum of six months.

Dog fight organisers, farmers who neglect horses and thugs who abuse puppies or kittens will all be hit by the lengthy jail sentence.

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Why did Houthis target military camp in Yemen?

Missile attack on military camp kills dozens, while at least 10 others die in separate suicide bombing on police station.

    The Houthi movement, which controls the capital, Sanaa, has claimed responsibility for Thursday’s attack in the southern city of Aden which targeted a military parade at a camp belonging to the Yemeni Security Belt forces. The forces are backed by the United Arab Emirates, a key partner in a military alliance assembled by Saudi Arabia to fight the rebels.

    In a separate attack in Aden, a suicide bomber also hit a police station.

    Al Jazeera’s Mohammed Alattab in Sanaa, and Mahjoob Zweiri, the director of Qatar University’s Gulf Studies Center in Doha, discuss these latest developments.

    Source: Read Full Article

    30 passengers missing after Indonesia ferry fire

    Vessel was carrying 277 people from Tanjung Perak port in East Java’s Surabaya when it caught fire late on Thursday.

      Rescuers were searching for at least 30 people feared missing after a ferry caught fire off the coast of Indonesia’s main island of Java.

      The vessel was carrying 277 people from Tanjung Perak port in East Java’s Surabaya when it caught fire late on Thursday, said Budi Prasetyo, the head of the local search and rescue agency.

      About 247 people were rescued by nearby ships and boats, and rescuers were still searching for 30 others thought to be missing, he said.

      A port official, Syahrul Nugroho, said the fire broke out about 11 hours after the ferry left Surabaya headed for East Kalimantan province’s Balikpapan city. The cause of the fire was not immediately clear.

      Syachrul Nugroho, a spokesman for Surabaya’s Tanjung Perak port, told AFP news agency it appeared the ferry’s power went down, cutting off water pumps.

      “The crew couldn’t extinguish the fire because the water pumps weren’t working so passengers started to abandon the ship,” he added.

      Ferry accidents are common in Indonesia, the world’s largest archipelago nation, with more than 17,000 islands. Many accidents are blamed on lax regulation of boat services.

      The passenger manifest for the ferry that caught fire on Thursday showed that only 111 people were registered as passengers, along with 44 crewmen, Prasetyo said.

      Source: Read Full Article

      Climate activists demonstrate outside Brazil embassies in Paris and London

      PARIS/LONDON (Reuters) – Several hundred environmental activists demonstrated on Friday outside the Brazilian embassy in Paris as a clash between the two countries’ leaders over the issue of climate change intensified, while similar protests took place in London.

      On Thursday, French President Emmanuel Macron and U.N. Secretary General António Guterres expressed concerns about wildfires that are raging in the Amazon, but Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro responded angrily to what he regarded as meddling.

      Anti-Bolsonaro protesters chanted outside the Brazil Embassy in Paris carrying placards with messages such as “Bolsonaro Out!” (‘Fora Bolsonaro’).

      Climate activist group Extinction Rebellion said protesters were also gathering at the Brazilian embassy in London calling on Bolsonaro to protect the Amazon rainforest.

      The dispute between Bolsonaro and Macron worsened on Friday, when Macron’s office said Bolsonaro was lying when Bolsnaro played down concerns about climate change at the G20 summit in Japan in June.

      Source: Read Full Article

      British boy, 12, dies while swimming at Eurocamp site in France

      A young British boy has died while swimming in a pool during a holiday in France despite witness' desperate efforts to save him.

      The 12-year-old, from East Yorkshire, is believed to have got into difficulty in a pool by a man-made beach at a Eurocamp resort in the Berny-Rivière area of northern France.

      Dozens of people rushed to help when the boy was pulled from the water at the Eurocamp La Croix du Vieux Pont holiday site on Thursday evening.

      But tragically the boy was pronounced dead after being airlifted to hospital in Paris, HullLive reports.

      Have you been affected by the incident? Email [email protected]

      The incident happened at about 6pm local time on Thursday.

      The boy was unconscious when he was pulled out of the water by a lifeguard, local media reported.

      In a statement on Friday morning, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said it was supporting the family.

      Source: Read Full Article

      Deadly storms hit Tatra Mountains range in Poland, Slovakia

      Five people killed, over 100 injured during thunderstorms.

        Five people have been killed and 100 injured, some seriously, during thunderstorms in Poland’s Tatra Mountains and the West Tatras in Slovakia.

        Piotr Cwik, governor of the province of Krakow, told reporters that the death toll from Thursday could rise.

        Lightning struck a popular hiking destination atop Mount Giewont, along the border of southern Poland and northern Slovakia.

        Tourists climbing Giewont in Poland often aim to end their trip at the top, where a 15 metre iron cross was installed in 1901.

        Rescuers believe the cross could have acted as a type of lightning rod. There are also metal chains along the trail to the summit that hikers often use to help climb to the top that could have conducted the electricity from the lightning bolt.

        Other victims were hurt in different areas of the mountain range, which spreads over 57 kilometres in southern Poland.

        Four helicopters and emergency crews were used to transport the injured off the mountain safely.

        Also on Thursday, Polish rescuers found the body of one of two cavers who became trapped in the mountains after a tunnel flooded and blocked their exit.

        “The first of the cavers has been found in the cave is dead. More information will be available tomorrow,” said the local mountain rescue service, TOPR.

        The two became trapped in the Wielka Sniezna cave, the longest and deepest in the Tatra Mountains, on Saturday, when colleagues notified the rescue services.

        In the West Tatra on the Polish Slovakia border, a man was killed when lightning knocked him into a gorge, the Slovak Mountain Rescue Service said. His companion, a Czech woman, was injured.

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        GO Transit bus driver removed from service in Toronto after allegedly failing alcohol test

        Metrolinx says an investigation is underway after a GO Transit bus driver in Toronto allegedly failed an alcohol test, causing management to remove him from duty.

        According to a statement from Metrolinx on Thursday, a customer contacted GO Transit safety personnel before 6:30 a.m. to report she was concerned about the bus operator’s ability to drive.

        The transit agency said the driver picked up customers in Brampton before the driver was “immediately removed” from duty at York Mills station, located less than 30 kilometres east of Bramalea GO Station in Brampton’s south end.

        “(The bus driver) was subject to drug and alcohol testing. The driver failed the testing and has been removed from duty pending further investigation,” the statement said, adding Toronto police were “engaged” for help with the investigation.

        There were no reports of injuries.

        When asked for an update on the Toronto police investigation Thursday night, representatives for the service weren’t able to provide an update by the time of publication.

        Metrolinx said a new fitness for duty policy was put in place in September for all employees. For employees who work in “safety-sensitive” positions, such as bus and train operators, the transit agency said employee testing may occur “where a post-incident investigation warrants testing or where there is reasonable cause to believe an employee has been using drugs or alcohol.”

        Meanwhile, Metrolinx CEO Phil Verster praised the customer for reporting the incident while saying safety is a “top priority” for the organization.

        “Our drivers are extremely dedicated, responsible and trustworthy employees. This is a rare and very disappointing occurrence, which will be fully investigated,” he wrote in the statement.

        “We want to assure our customers that every employee has a responsibility to safeguard the trust and safety of the public in attending work fit for duty — without fail.”

        The last publicly known incident of a GO Transit bus driver allegedly being impaired happened in Mississauga in 2017. In that instance, Peel Regional Police charged the driver.

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        Brute, 34, battered his ex and told her ‘today is the day you die’

        Brute, 34, who battered his ex-girlfriend and told her ‘today is the day you die’ during 24-hour orgy of violence is jailed for 14 years

        • Craig Moran, 34, from Rochdale, beat his partner with his fists and with glass beer bottles, punching her head nine time and shattering her shin bone
        • He attacked her for hour after hour as her two-year-old son looked on screaming
        • He said ‘this is the day you die’ and told her ‘you’re not leaving here alive’
        • She now struggles to walk long distances or trust her new partner 

        A brute who beat a terrified former girlfriend in a 24 hour orgy of violence after he trapped her in his home and warned: ‘Today is the day you die!’ was jailed for over 14 years today. 

        Craig Moran, 34, assaulted the mother of two with such ferocity neighbours who saw her hobbling away to hospital after she escaped her attacker said she looked as if she had done ‘three rounds with Mike Tyson.’

        During the assault, Moran, who had been on a lager binge accused the woman of sleeping with Asian men and shattered her shinbone after he repeatedly struck her about the head and legs with a beer bottle.

        Whilst the victim’s two year old son screamed in horror, father of two of Rochdale, Greater Manchester, then pelted the woman with empty beer bottles pulled her hair and punched her to the head up to nine times.

        Craig Moran, 34, told his ex-girlfriend ‘you do know I’m going to kill you’ as he beat her so badly neighbours reported she looked like she had gone ‘three rounds with Mike Tyson’

        As she begged him to stop, he ranted: ‘I can’t stop, it’s the end. I’ve been planning this for months, in fact years. It’s happening, I need to prepare.

        ‘Today is the day you die, I’m not joking, you’re going to die, you do know I’m going to kill you’.

        Whilst stamping on her head, he vowed: ‘You’re not going anywhere today. Today is the day you get what you deserve’ and then added: ‘You’re not leaving here alive.’

        The woman who cannot be named was eventually allowed out of the property went to a nearby hospital where she treated for cuts to her head bruises to her face and body and a fractured right fibula.

        She has had to undergo sessions of physiotherapy so she can walk again and it emerged Moran had sexually molested her during her ordeal.

        In a statement the victim said: ‘It’s the worst pain I have ever suffered. I was in pain for two to three weeks and unable to walk without crutches.

        ‘I have struggled to come to terms with what happened and I have been unable to get the offending out of my mind.’

        ‘I am unable to walk long distances without limping or my leg swelling and I’ve been referred for counselling. 

        ‘Sometimes I wake up in a sweat or I’m screaming, and my trust in others has been undermined. I have a new boyfriend but if he moves towards me affectionately, I find myself flinching.’

        The thug was sentenced to 14 years behind bars at Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester

        At Minshull Street Crown Court, Manchester, Moran pleaded guilty to causing grievous bodily harm with intent, making threats to kill and sexual activity without consent.

        He was jailed for 14 years and four months and will be on licence until the year 2037. The attack occurred earlier this year after Moran flew into a fit of rage after drinking at the woman’s home.

        Mr Alaric Bassano prosecuting said: ‘He told her: ‘you get f***ked by Paki’s’ and proceeded to throw himself on her, pulled her hair, and punched her to the head eight or nine times, causing great pain and distorted vision.

        ‘He then got hold of an empty glass bottle and struck her to the arms and head, causing the bottle to smash and causing wounds to her head. 

        ‘He took more drink and declared “Today is the day you die, I’m not joking, you’re going to die, you do know I’m going to kill you. At the end of the day you won’t be living, you’re going to die. You know I’m going to kill you”.

        ‘She begged him to stop, but then he threw three or four empty beer bottles, a few of which missed her, but some struck her a few times to the head. 

        Both the complainant and her son were screaming at the time. She couldn’t move due to the pain but the defendant struck her on the head eight times and told her: “You’re not going anywhere today. Today is the day you get what you deserve’.

        ‘He continued drinking and continued to be verbally abusive for some time, but there did seem to be a lull in the violence. Later that afternoon at 3pm, two hours after the first offence, he became confrontational again and raised a glass bottle over his head to attack her, and for fear at what was going to happen, she raised her right leg to protect herself.

        ‘He then struck her on the right shin and caused her immediate excruciating pain to her leg and she screamed out. – in fact this blow had fractured her shin bone. He rearmed himself with another bottle and struck her three to four times to the arm.

        ‘She asked him to go to hospital but he told her: “You’re not leaving here alive, I have been planning this for months, in fact, years”.

        She begged him to stop and he told her: “I can’t stop, it’s the end”.

        Clare’s Law: how you can ask police if your partner is an abuser

        The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) is often called ‘Clare’s Law’ after the landmark case that led to it.

        Clare’s Law gives any member of the public the right to ask the police if their partner may pose a risk to them.

        Clare Wood was murdered by a man she did not know had a history of domestic violence

        A member of the public can also make enquiries into the partner of a close friend or family member.

        To apply you must go to a police station in person, and discuss your concerns and situation with a police officer or staff member.

        Police and partner agencies will then carry out a range of checks.

        If these reveal a record of abusive offences, or suggest a risk of violence or abuse, they will consider sharing this information. The disclosure will usually be made in person, to the person at risk, at a time and place agreed in advance to be safe.

        SOURCE: MPS 

        ‘He then punched her five or six times to the head and arms and said: “It’s the end, it’s game over’. 

        She was screaming and screaming and he said: “it’s happening, I need to prepare”.

        ‘He left the room, and when he returned he threw another bottle of beer at her.’

        Eventually Moran calmed down and picked up broken glass and tried to clean the bloodstained flat but then made sexual advances towards the woman. 

        She said: ‘I obviously didn’t want this to happen. I was in a lot of pain, I didn’t feel like having sex’.

        She attended hospital the following day and neighbours offered her help as they saw her hobbling away and unable to walk unaided.

        One neighbour said in a statement: ‘She looked in a very bad state like she had gone three rounds with Mike Tyson. She had a large bubble on the side of her face and her leg looked like it was broken – she was holding her leg up.’

        Moran instructed the woman to give her sister’s name to hospital staff and say she got the injury at a party but she told police of her ordeal.

        Officers arrested Moran the following day and found blood spattered on walls in various rooms around the flat. He gave ‘no comment’ in police interview. 

        The court heard he had 51 previous offences on his record including assault and battery, possession of a knife affray and other attacks in which he kicked other former girlfriends around the head.

        His lawyer Miss Sara Haque said in mitigation: ‘These offences occurred over a period of time when a great deal of alcohol was taken and he has a hazy recollection of what happened.

        ‘He has a number of personality disorders by reason of a trauma he experienced during his childhood.

        ‘He has a desire to seek therapy in relation to anger management. When not in drink, this man is capable of being a loving and caring partner and father. If he could deal with his demons, he has a positive future and he wants that help.’

        Sentencing the judge Mr Recorder Nicholas Clarke QC told Moran: ‘This was persistent and extreme violence and what is a striking feature is the many occasion where you have chosen to kick females in the head. There are many previous convictions of violence against women.

        ‘I accept there may be some remorse, but you will have time to reflect on this during your sentence. You pose a significant risk of serious harm to others. Women you are involved with need to be protected from you, as do the public.’

        Moran was ordered to serve at least two third of his jail term and will have to sign the Sex Offenders register for an indefinite period.

        Det Con Russell Clarke, of Greater Manchester Police said after the hearing: ‘The sustained nature of this attack on the victim was sickening and included physical, sexual and psychological abuse.

        ‘If it wasn’t for the kind and selfless actions of the couple who came to her aid, the victim, who was unable to walk, would likely have been stranded at that flat.’

         The national 24-hour Domestic Violence freephone helpline number is 0808 2000 247. The service is run in partnership between Women’s Aid and Refuge.         

        Source: Read Full Article

        Budget spat puts Boeing contract for AWACS upgrades at risk: sources

        WASHINGTON (Reuters) – A dispute over budgeting processes could delay NATO’s efforts to finalize a $1 billion contract to extend the life of 14 aging Boeing E-3A surveillance aircraft, often called NATO’s “eyes in the sky,” sources familiar with the program said.

        NATO officials have invited the 16 member nations in the Airborne Warning & Control System, or AWACS, program to an extraordinary meeting on Sept. 12 to mark the program’s 40th anniversary and resolve the budget dispute, the sources said.

        Unless the issue is resolved soon, the contract will not be awarded to Boeing in time to be announced as planned at the Dec. 3-4 NATO summit in London, the sources said.

        “It’s disappointing that a one-sided interpretation of the rules is putting this much-needed upgrade program at risk,” said one of the sources.

        The upgrades would keep the 1979/1980-era airplanes, with their distinctive radar domes on the fuselage, flying until 2035. NATO needs the planes to carry out missions such as air policing, evacuations and counter-terrorism operations.

        A second source said the dispute was not expected to kill the upgrade program outright, but could well push a contract award to Boeing off until next year, marking a setback for the U.S. contractor at a time when it still is struggling to get its 737 MAX commercial airplane back in the air.

        NAPMA, the NATO agency that manages the AWACS fleet, said in June it expected to finalize by December a $750 million contract with Boeing to extend the life of the aircraft through 2035, with $250 million more earmarked for design, spare parts and testing.

        But unanimous consent of member states is needed to proceed, and Norway has raised concerns about an uneven flow of funds to the program until its completion by 2027, the sources said.

        They said Oslo wants the biggest program states – the United States, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands – to transfer the bulk of their payments at the start, but that is not possible due to budgetary rules in those countries.

        In the United States, for instance, funding for weapons programs is generally authorized and distributed on an annual basis, subject to approval by the U.S. Congress.

        Ann-Kristin Salbuvik, spokeswoman for the Norwegian defense ministry, said Norway remained committed to the AWACS Final Life Extension Program and was prepared to finance its share of the program in coming years.

        But she said a decision to launch the program was contingent on approval by all member states, and the Boeing offer had to be “compliant, affordable and feasible.”

        Boeing spokeswoman Melissa Stewart on Thursday had no comment on the dispute, saying Boeing continued to work with NATO “to assess needs and present the best options and upgrades that will keep their AWACS fleet operational for years to come.”

        Once NAPMA presented its recommendations later this fall, member nations still have to agree on technical, financial and managerial aspects of the program, she said.

        A NATO official downplayed the risk to the upgrade program but acknowledged that it still required securing final signatures on multilateral agreements, confirmation of budget arrangements and negotiation of other “last-minute details.”

        “Despite the complexity of a $1 billion multinational program being conducted by 16 Allies, these preparations are on track. The plan remains to award the contract in December,” the official said.

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