Italy to start Covid-19 ‘green pass’ rule, irrespective of protests in Rome

Italy to start Covid-19 ‘green pass’ rule, irrespective of protests in Rome

What started off as a restless but peaceful demonstration against the looming measure in Rome’s Piazza del Popolo ended up sparking a tinderbox when an offshoot of protesters stormed the headquarters of CGIL, Italy’s oldest and biggest labor union.  Thousands of protesters including members of far-right groups demonstrated in central Rome on Saturday against the extension of the Covid-19 health pass system to all workplaces. There were scuffles with police as the demonstrators took aim at the health pass, which has been a requirement to enter museums, sporting events, and…

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French EU presidency to push for worldwide end to death penalty, says Macron

French EU presidency to push for worldwide end to death penalty, says Macron

France will launch a campaign for the worldwide abolition of the death penalty as part of its upcoming presidency of the European Union, President Emmanuel Macron said on Saturday. A conference will be held in Paris gathering civil society groups from countries where the death penalty is in use or suspended, Macron said in a speech to mark the 40th anniversary of France’s abolition of the punishment. France, which will hold the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU in the first half of 2022, will also work with…

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Mass protests in Poland amid EU exit fears

Mass protests in Poland amid EU exit fears

Poles backing EU membership have taken part in protests across the country, amid fears it could leave the bloc. On Thursday Poland’s top court ruled that key articles of EU law were “incompatible” with the constitution. Organisers said protests took place in more than 100 towns and cities, with some 100,000 people turning out in the capital, Warsaw. The court’s decision effectively rejected the core principle that EU law has primacy over national legislation. Poland’s Prime Minister, Mateusz Morawiecki, has defended the ruling. “We have the same rights as other…

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Football: France win Nations League against Spain with a late goal from Mbappe

Football: France win Nations League against Spain with a late goal from Mbappe

Kylian Mbappé scored late as world champion France came from behind to win the Nations League with a 2-1 victory over Spain in the final. Mbappé netted with 10 minutes remaining as France was again forced to fight back, just as it had done in the semifinals against Belgium. There were few chances in a cagey final in Milan but the match burst into life shortly after the hour mark. Moments after France hit the woodwork, Mikel Oyarzabal fired Spain in front but its lead lasted less than two minutes…

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Boris Johnson faces criticism for taking trip to Spain

Boris Johnson faces criticism for taking trip to Spain

It is the Tory leader’s second getaway this summer. In August, he was forced to cut short a break in Somerset when the Taliban captured Kabul following the withdrawal of Western troops from Afghanistan. However, he returned to his break when the last UK troops were evacuated. In August 2020, the Conservative leader, his then fiancée Carrie Symonds and their son Wilfred visited the Applecross peninsula on Scotland’s west coast. Johnson was reportedly swept out to sea and “nearly drowned” during the holiday. Shortly after winning a landslide victory in…

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France moves to end free Covid tests to promote vaccination campaign

France moves to end free Covid tests to promote vaccination campaign

France is to end subsidised Covid testing from mid-October in a bid to encourage the country’s vaccination drive. However people who have already been vaccinated will still be allowed to get tested free of charge. From 15 October, the date on which Covid-19 screening tests will no longer be systematically free, PCR tests will cost €44 for unvaccinated adults without a prescription. The antigenic tests will be charged €22 euros if they are carried out in a laboratory, with pharmacies charging €25 euros. Self-testing kits at €5.20 will no longer…

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German election: SPD, Greens and FDP hold first 3-way talks to explore possible coalition

German election: SPD, Greens and FDP hold first 3-way talks to explore possible coalition

It’s the first time the three parties are meeting to discuss a possible coalition. While the Social Democrats are hopeful, there are still major hurdles to overcome before Angela Merkel’s successor can be crowned. Germany could be moving closer towards a new government, with the center-left Social Democrats (SPD), environmentalist Green Party, and the neoliberal Free Democrats (FDP) holding their first three-way talks to explore a possible coalition on Thursday. Until now, the parties have held two-way talks to feel out the likelihood of an alliance, with the SPD’s Olaf…

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Sweden Exempts Vaccinated UK Citizens From Entry Ban & Test Requirement

Sweden Exempts Vaccinated UK Citizens From Entry Ban & Test Requirement

Starting from next Monday, October 11, Sweden will permit entry for travellers from the United Kingdom reaching its territory for non-essential purposes, given that the same have been vaccinated against COVID-19. The decision was announced on Thursday, October 11, and will also remove the requirement to test for COVID-19 for vaccinated UK travellers. “The Government today adopted amendments to the temporary ban on entry into Sweden. The changes mean that travellers who can present a vaccine certificate issued in the UK will be exempt from the ban on entry to…

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Finland joins Sweden and Denmark in limiting Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine

Finland joins Sweden and Denmark in limiting Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine

Finland has joined other Nordic countries in suspending or discouraging the use of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine in certain age groups because of an increased risk of heart inflammation, a rare side effect associated with the shot. The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare said Thursday that authorities won’t give the shot to males under age 30. They will be offered the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine instead. The government agency said it found that young men and boys were at a slightly higher risk of developing myocarditis. The move by Finland followed similar…

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Norway raises interest rates, says another hike likely in December

Norway raises interest rates, says another hike likely in December

Norway’s central bank raised its benchmark interest rate on Thursday and said it expects to hike again in December, as it joins a short but growing list of nations moving away from emergency-level borrowing costs. Norges Bank’s monetary policy committee raised the sight deposit rate to 0.25% from a record low of zero, as forecast unanimously in a Reuters poll of analysts and in line with the central bank’s own plan. “There is a strong recovery in the Norwegian economy,” Norges Bank Governor Oeystein Olsen told a news conference. “It’s…

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