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Baltic leaders: Olympic boycott possible if Russians compete

Baltic leaders: Olympic boycott possible if Russians compete

COPENHAGEN, Denmark — The prime ministers of the three Baltic countries urged the International Olympic Committee to ban Russian athletes from next year’s Paris Games because of the war in Ukraine, saying Friday a boycott was a possibility.Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said athletes from her country could be put in a situation where they are competing against Russians, claiming many of them “are soldiers.”“I think that our efforts should be on convincing our other friends and allies that the participation of Russian and Belarusian athletes is just wrong,” Kallas said, adding in Russia’s ally in the war. “So boycotting is the next step. I think people will understand why this is necessary.”Her Latvian counterpart, Arturs Krisjanis Karins, called it “morally reprehensible” to allow Russians to compete at the Olympics.Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania border Russia and gained independence from the Soviet Union in 1991. They have been strong supporters of Ukraine, another former Soviet republic, in the war.Ukraine is steadfastly opposed to letting Russians compete.On Wednesday, the Latvian Olympic Committee threatened to boycott the Paris Games if Russian athletes are allowed and called on other countries to form a coalition to pressure international sports bodies. It was the first national Olympic body other than Ukraine to threaten to boycott rather than compete against Russia.Lithuanian President Gitanas Nauseda on Friday expressed support for the International Paralympic Committee’s decision to bar Russian and Belarusian athletes from international competitions, the Baltic News Service reported.“We support the IPC’s decisions to suspend the NPCs and to ban athletes from the countries, which started the unprovoked and unjustified war in Europe and violate international law and human rights, from competing,” Nauseda said after meeting with IPC president Andrew Parsons in Vilnius. “The international sports community cannot turn a blind eye to war crimes.”The IOC is pushing sports federations to allow any Russians or Belarusians who have not been “actively supporting the war in Ukraine” and argues it would be discriminatory to ban athletes based on their citizenship alone. The Olympic body wants to let them compete as “neutral athletes.”“Russian sportsmen will not fake it under a neutral flag because there is no neutrality in the current world,” Lithuanian Prime Minister Ingrida Simonyte said.Other national Olympic sports bodies, including the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee, back the IOC’s efforts to find a path for Russians to compete.___More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/2024-paris-olympic-games and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Bodies of 8 migrants recovered from island off the coast of Italy during operation that rescued 42 survivors

Bodies of 8 migrants recovered from island off the coast of Italy during operation that rescued 42 survivors

The bodies of eight migrants have been recovered by Italy’s coast guard during an operation overnight that also rescued 42 survivors in the central Mediterranean off the island of Lampedusa, authorities said Friday.Another two people, a newborn and a man, fell into the sea during the crossing and were presumed dead, the coast guard said in a statement, citing survivor accounts.Survivors reported that the infant died of exposure and that the distraught mother threw the newborn into the sea, according to the news agency ANSA. The man then jumped in attempting to retrieve the body, disappearing in the waves.Video of the rescue shows the survivors packed in a small open fishing boat, which was adrift with a nonfunctioning motor. Rescuers warned them to sit down and not move before throwing a line to pull them to safety.All on board were soaking wet, cold and dehydrated, and the deceased were believed to have perished from hypothermia, ANSA reported.ITALIAN MOB SUSPECT ARRESTED IN FRANCE AFTER BEING ON THE RUN FOR 16 YEARSSurvivors said they had departed the Tunisian port of Sfax before dawn on Saturday, ANSA said. They were among some 200 migrants, mostly from sub-Saharan African nations, who arrived at Lampedusa on three boats overnight.Lampedusa’s mayor, Filippo Mannino, appealed to Premier Giorgia Meloni, asking that “the government not leave us alone to manage this enormous tragedy. Help us. We are no longer able to manage.”
Italy’s coast guard recovered the bodies of eight migrants during an operation on an island off the coast of Italy. The country’s coast guard also rescued 42 survivors.
(ALBERTO PIZZOLI/AFP via Getty Images)Charity boats operating in the deadly central Mediterranean have complained that a new Italian decree forcing them to port after each rescue endangers the lives of migrants departing from North Africa by leaving the search and rescue area uncovered. That is compounded by a new practice of assigning ports in northern Italy, requiring days of navigation to reach.ITALY PLANS TO LOOSEN ITS ANTI-COVID REGULATIONS FOR TRAVELERS COMING FROM CHINAThe Council of Europe this week urged the Italian government to consider withdrawing the decree, saying it could hamper search and rescue operations by nongovernmental agencies, “depriving people in distress of life-saving assistance from NGOs on the deadliest migration route in the Mediterranean.”In a letter to Italy’s interior minister, the Council of Europe’s human rights commissioner, Dunja Mijatović, also repeated a call for Italy to suspend its cooperation with the Libyan government on interceptions at sea, because of the likelihood that migrants returned to Libya face torture, rape, slavery, exploitation and detention.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPThe latest call comes after Italy agreed over the weekend to supply Libya with five new coast guard boats to help stem the movement of migrants to Europe. The deal was announced during a visit by Meloni that secured an $8 billion gas deal.The central Mediterranean Sea is a perilous crossing that has claimed 20,285 lives since the U.N. migration office began tracking figures in 2014, compared with 5,000 in the eastern and western Mediterranean combined. Many of the victims are missing at sea and presumed dead, based on survivor accounts.

Sweden says claims that its agencies kidnap Muslim children is part of a systematized disinformation campaign

Sweden says claims that its agencies kidnap Muslim children is part of a systematized disinformation campaign

The Swedish government again sought Friday to discredit claims that Swedish social service agencies kidnap Muslim children, saying Sweden was again seeing a “systematized” and “extensive” disinformation campaign.”This campaign has now gained momentum again,” said Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson.”This is false. This is not true. Sweden does not kidnap children. The social services do not kidnap children,” Kristersson told a press conference. “Neither Muslim nor other children.”NYC BIKE PATH TERROR ATTACK: SAYFULLO SAIPOV CONVICTED ON ALL COUNTSHe said that social workers and other employees are being “exposed on social media and are being threatened.”He said the government will post guards inside social services offices and will earmark more funds to the Swedish Psychological Defense Agency, which was established to counter misinformation, to help it tackle the “systematized” campaign against Sweden.” He didn’t say how much money would be given to the agency.
Sweden’s Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson said its social service agencies do not kidnap Muslim children and that claims suggesting otherwise are false.
(Chesnot/Getty Images)The statement came at time of tensions with mostly Muslim Turkey over the applications of Sweden and Finland to become NATO members.Turkey is angry that Sweden has allowed anti-Turkish protests to take place, and particularly that it has not prevented an anti-Muslim activist from repeatedly burning the Quran, the Muslim holy book. It also thinks that Sweden is not doing enough to counter Kurdish activists that it considers terrorists. Unless its demands are met, it says it won’t approve Sweden’s NATO application, which must be accepted by all of the miliary alliance’s 30 members.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPKristersson said the disinformation campaign over child kidnappings started in 2021. The Psychological Defense Agency said last year that the allegations could be traced to an Arabic-language site whose creator expressed support for the Islamic State group.In February 2022, the Swedish Foreign Ministry said that “all children in Sweden are protected and cared for equally under Swedish legislation” and that social workers need a court order to remove children from their parents without consent.

NATO urges Russia to respect its nuclear treaty, which Russia suspended when the US supported Ukraine

NATO urges Russia to respect its nuclear treaty, which Russia suspended when the US supported Ukraine

NATO called Friday on Russia to respect the only treaty it has with the United States aimed at keeping a lid on nuclear weapons expansion and urged Moscow to allow on-the-ground inspections of military sites to resume.The so-called New START Treaty was signed by Russia and the U.S. in 2010. It caps at 1,550 the number of long-range nuclear warheads they can deploy and limits the use of missiles that can carry atomic weapons. It allows short-notice inspections of each other’s nuclear bases and support facilities.”We note with concern that Russia has failed to comply with legally-binding obligations under the New START Treaty,” NATO ambassadors said in a statement. The 30-nation U.S.-led military alliance supports the treaty and believes that it helps to limit the expansion of nuclear forces.RUSSIA-UKRAINE WAR PUSHES ‘DOOMSDAY CLOCK’ CLOSEST POINT TO MIDNIGHT IN HISTORY, SCIENTISTS SAYThe envoys said that Russia’s refusal to hold consultations or to allow U.S. inspections since last August “prevents the United States from exercising important rights under the Treaty, and undermines the United States’ ability to adequately verify Russian compliance with the Treaty’s central limits.””We call on Russia to fulfil its obligations under the Treaty by facilitating New START inspections on Russian territory, and by returning to participation in the Treaty’s implementation body,” the forum in which the two sides could consult, NATO said.
President Barack Obama, left, and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev sign the New START Treaty in Prague on April 8, 2010. NATO called on Russia on Feb. 3, 2023, to respect the treaty and urge Moscow to allow on-the-ground inspections.
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)President Vladimir Putin has repeatedly ramped up his nuclear rhetoric since he ordered Russian troops into Ukraine almost a year ago, raising concern among Western allies and the public over whether he might actually use such weapons.The U.S.-Russia committee formed under the treaty last met in October 2021, but Russia unilaterally suspended its cooperation with the pact’s inspection provisions in August 2022 to protest U.S. support for Ukraine.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPInspections of U.S. and Russian military sites under the New START treaty were paused by both sides because of the spread of the coronavirus in March 2020.The U.S. State Department warned Tuesday that “Russia’s refusal to facilitate inspection activities prevents the United States from exercising important rights under the treaty and threatens the viability of U.S.-Russian nuclear arms control.”

Israeli army kills Palestinian at checkpoint, officials say

Israeli army kills Palestinian at checkpoint, officials say

JERUSALEM — The Palestinian health ministry said Israeli forces shot and killed a Palestinian on Friday at a checkpoint in the occupied West Bank, the latest bloodshed in am Israeli-Palestinian flare-up . The Israeli military said the man, identified by Palestinians as Abdullah Qalalweh, 25, approached troops at Hawara checkpoint near the city of Nablus, refusing orders to stop. The military said soldiers fired warning shots into the air before a soldier shot the man and killed him. Violence has spiked in recent days, with an Israeli military raid on a militant stronghold in the West Bank refugee camp of Jenin last week killing 10 people, most of them militants. A Palestinian gunman in a shooting attack Saturday in an east Jerusalem Jewish settlement outside a synagogue killed seven people.The latest shooting brings to 36 the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli troops this year. Last year was the deadliest since 2004, with nearly 150 Palestinians killed in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. Israel intensified its raids in the West Bank after 19 Israelis were killed in a string of Palestinian attacks in the spring of 2022. In total, 30 people were killed in Palestinian attacks against Israelis last year.Israel says that most of those killed have been militants but others — including youths protesting the incursions and other people not involved in confrontations — have also been killed. Israel says the military raids are meant to dismantle militant networks and thwart future attacks while the Palestinians view them as further entrenchment of Israel’s open-ended, 55-year occupation.

Humanitarian volunteer, Marine vet killed in Ukraine while helping civilians

Humanitarian volunteer, Marine vet killed in Ukraine while helping civilians

close Video Zelenskyy: If Ukraine falls, it would be the start of World War 3 Ukrainian President Zelenskyy sits down with Fox News correspondent Trey Yingst to discuss the war on ‘Special Report.’American volunteer and U.S. Marine Corps veteran Pete Reed was killed in Eastern Ukraine on Thursday, according to his family.”He was the good kind of crazy,” his brother Chandler Reed told Fox News. “He put himself selflessly in danger all the time to help other people.”Reed was working for Global Outreach Doctors in the city of Bakhmut, where his ambulance was struck by incoming Russian fire, relatives said.Global Outreach Doctors listed Reed as the “Ukraine Country Director” on the organization’s website.UKRAINE WILL POTENTIALLY RECEIVE OLD LEOPARD 1 BATTLE TANKS FROM GERMAN DEFENSE INDUSTRY STOCKS

(pete.reed.medic/instagram)Reed was also the co-founder and executive director of a separate organization called Global Response Medicine, aimed at helping people in conflict zones.FOX NEWS POLL: BIPARTISAN SUPPORT FOR SENDING FUNDING, WEAPONS TO UKRAINEA decorated Marine, Reed served two tours in Afghanistan before leading a medical team for the Kurdish Peshmerga forces as they liberated Mosul, Iraq from ISIS.

(pete.reed.medic/instagram)CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

Former UK pop star Gary Glitter released from prison after serving 8 years for sexually abusing 3 young girls

Former UK pop star Gary Glitter released from prison after serving 8 years for sexually abusing 3 young girls

Former pop star Gary Glitter was released from prison in England on Friday after serving half of a 16-year prison sentence for sexually abusing three young girls in the 1970s.The 79-year-old singer, whose real name is Paul Gadd, was freed from a prison in Dorset, in southwest England. It is common for offenders in the U.K. to be freed halfway through their sentences and then be placed on probation.”Sex offenders like Paul Gadd are closely monitored by the police and Probation Service and face some of the strictest license conditions, including being fitted with a GPS tag,’’ the Ministry of Justice said in a statement. “If the offender breaches these conditions at any point, they can go back behind bars.”‘JOKER’ FEATURES MUSIC BY GARY GLITTER, A CONVICTED PEDOPHILE: ‘MONEY SHOULD GO TO THE VICTIMS’The singer was found guilty of one count of attempted rape, four counts of indecent assault and one count of sexual intercourse with a girl under the age of 13.
Former British pop star Gary Glitter arrives at Southwark Crown Court in London on Feb. 4, 2015. He was released from prison in England on Feb. 3, 2023, after serving half of a 16-year prison sentence.
(AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth, File)Glitter was arrested in October 2012 under Operation Yewtree, the national investigation launched in the wake of the child abuse scandal surrounding the late BBC entertainer Jimmy Savile.CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP Glitter is best known for the hit “Rock & Roll (Part 2),” released in 1972, but he fell into disgrace after being convicted on child abuse charges in Vietnam.