Gates of Vienna News Feed 5/12/2020

A county sheriff in Michigan announced that he will not enforce the coronavirus stay-at-home order issued by Governor Gretchen Whitmer. Meanwhile, the Michigan Militia said that it will not allow law enforcement to arrest the 77-year-old man who kept his barbershop open in defiance of the governor’s order. Also, restaurants that want to reopen in Washington State will have to keep a log of customer names and phone numbers to enable contact tracing.

In other coronanews, migrant traffic on the overland route through the Balkans is increasing, despite the lockdown.

To see the headlines and the articles, click “Continue reading” below.

Thanks to Insubria, JD, Reader from Chicago, SS, Upananda Brahmachari, and all the other tipsters who sent these in.

Notice to tipsters: Please don’t submit extensive excerpts from articles that have been posted behind a subscription firewall, or are otherwise under copyright protection.

Caveat: Articles in the news feed are posted “as is”. Gates of Vienna cannot vouch for the authenticity or accuracy of the contents of any individual item posted here. I check each entry to make sure it is relatively interesting, not patently offensive, and at least superficially plausible. The link to the original is included with each item’s title. Further research and verification are left to the reader.

Financial Crisis
» Poland’s GDP Decline Should Not Exceed 5 Pct in 2020 — Expert
» U.S. Grocery Costs Jump 2.6% in April, Largest Increase in 46 Years
 
USA
» Alaskan Rainforests Are a Global Lichen Hotspot
» Arkansas Professor Arrested for Concealing Communist Chinese Funding
» Biden Says He Was Aware of Obama Administration’s Investigation of Flynn
» California Salons File Lawsuit Against Gov. Newsom’s Coronavirus Closures Amid Reopening Plan: “it’s Injustice’
» Colorado Restaurant That Opened for Mother’s Day Remained Open Monday Despite Suspension of Business License
» Emory Prof Admits to Chinese Spy Ring Involvement
» Facebook Quietly Forms New Lobbying Group to Promote the Virtues of Big Tech in Washington
» Facebook Deletes Michigan United Facebook Group After Media Complaint
» Fauci Does Not Expect Coronavirus Vaccine or Treatment to be Available to Facilitate Schools Reopening This Fall
» Gov. Cuomo Calls Coronavirus “European Virus”
» House Dems Unveil $3 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Bill
» Illinois Attorney Who Filed Lawsuits Against Pritzker for Stay-at-Home Order Now Working With Dozens of Businesses That Have Reopened, Filing Suit for Others
» Limbaugh: Obama ‘Trashing Trump Because He Collaborated With FBI to Invent Russian Collusion Narrative’
» MI Sheriff Announces He Will Not Enforce Gov. Whitmer’s Lockdown Extension
» Militia Mobilizes to Block Arrest of 77-Year-Old Michigan Barber Who Reopened
» New Worm Species With Jewel-Like Scales Discovered in Deep Ocean Darkness
» Seattle Cop Prepares to be Fired After Refusing to Remove Viral Video Reminding Officers Not to Obey ‘Tyrannical Orders’
» The Dirty Wars Behind Obamagate
» To Reopen, Washington State Restaurants Will Have to Keep Log of Customers to Aid in Contact Tracing
» Trump Admin Approves 11-Square-Mile Solar Array, Largest in US
» U.S. Takes 1st Steps to Divest Federal Retirement Funds From China
» Video: Woman Enforces Social Distancing With 6 Meter Stick
» Whitmer: Lockdown Orders “Not a Suggestion, Not Optional, Not Helpful Hints”
 
Europe and the EU
» European Parliament Refuses to Include Hungarian Justice Minister in Debate Over Emergency Law
» French Drug Dealers Offer Free Masks and Hand Sanitiser to Lure Customers
» Furlough Extended: UK Coronavirus Job Subsidy Scheme Will Run to October
» How George Soros Tried and Failed to Punish Hungary During the Coronavirus Crisis
» Italian Aid Worker Silvia Romano Back Home After Kidnap Ordeal
» Italy: Care Home Whistleblower Sacked
» Italy: Guerini Thanks Russian Minister for Moscow’s Support
» Italy: Plasma Treatment Cuts Mortality From 15% to 6% — Trial
» Italy Accelerates Lifting of Lockdown as Protests Continue
» Justice Minister: EP to ‘Judge’ Hungary Without Hearing Its Government
» Leaked Study From Inside German Government Warns Lockdown Could Kill More People Than Coronavirus
» Most Germans Blame China for Pandemic, Poll Says
» Poland: Presidential Ballot Most Likely on June 28 or July 5 — Agreement Head
» Polish Authorities Arrest Four Tajiks Recruiting Islamic Militants
» Pope Francis Invites “Believers of Every Religion” To “Unite Themselves Spiritually” Against Coronavirus
» Salvini Slams Italian Government for Giving Publicity and Cash to Terrorist Group
» Sweden: Bombing at Block of Flats
» UK Lecturer Says Colleagues Want Lockdown to Continue So “Racist Brexit” Will be Cancelled
» UK Publishes Surprising Update on Post-Brexit Free Trade Deal With Japan During Lockdown
» UK: Former Soldier Facing Investigation for “Grandma” Insult on TV Show
» UK: Govt Tells Commuters to Turn Their Backs on Others on Crowded Public Transport as Last Resort
» UK: New Religion: Church Replaces Vatican Flag With NHS Flag
» UK: Raheem Kassam Slams Piers Morgan “You’ve Got Zero Engagement”
» UK: Two Brothers Found Guilty of Rape
» Will Italy Ditch the EU After the Pandemic?
 
Middle East
» Turkish ‘Justice’: Free Mobsters, Keep Dissidents Locked Up
 
Russia
» Coronavirus: Russia Now Has Second Highest Virus Case Total
» Putin Lifts Russia’s Shutdown, But Keeps Many Restrictions
 
South Asia
» 2 Newborns, 13 Others Killed as Gunmen Attack Maternity Hospital in Kabul
» India: Three Dazzling New Species of Filament Barb Discovered in Western Ghats
» Persecution of Hindus Increases in Islamic Bangladesh During Corona Lockdown and Ramadan
» West Bengal: Muslims Spreading Corona and Communal Violence Defying Lock-Down
 
Far East
» 5G Roll Out Brings a New Wave of Surveillance to Tibet
» Apple Reportedly Weighing Shifting Some Production From China to India
» China Bans Meat From Four Major Australian Suppliers After Threatening Revenge if Scott Morrison Continued to Push for a Coronavirus Inquiry
» Popeyes Sticks to China Expansion Plan in Spite of Virus
» Why Was Dr. Fauci Funding Wuhan Lab Research?
 
Australia — Pacific
» Boy, 15, Is Brutally Stabbed by a Gang of Kids at a Brisbane Train Station and Left in a Serious Condition — as Three Boys and a Girl Are Charged
» Opportunistic Chinese Buyers Rush to Exploit Plunging Australian House Prices During Coronavirus Pandemic — as Expert Reveals the Areas They Are Targeting
 
Latin America
» WHO Claims U.S. And Brazil Ignored Warnings About Coronavirus
 
Immigration
» Coronavirus: Lockdown for Europeans, Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants
» Eritrean Migrant, 25, Is Arrested After He Was Found in Hiding in Back of Lorry From Hungary at BP Garage on A31 in Surrey
» European Commission to Call for a Return to Open Borders During Pandemic
» Farage Warns of an Invasion as Record Numbers of Migrants Reach British Shores
» France: Migrant Arrested Over Rape of 92-Year-Old Woman in Nursing Home
» Illegals Suing the U.S. Government Because They Did Not Receive Coronavirus Stimulus Checks
» Italy: Man Arrested for Raping COVID Nurse in Naples
» Italy: Balkan Route Seeing Increasing Migrant Traffic Despite Lockdowns
 
Culture Wars
» Author of France’s New Draconian Online Hate Speech Law Accused of Racism, Sexism, And Homophobia by Staff
» Even Media Freedom Groups Push Back Against Twitter’s Coronavirus Censorship Rules
» Facebook is Training Its AI to Censor “Hateful Memes”
» Shareholders Pressure Amazon to Drop Corrupt Leftist Group Behind ‘Viewpoint Discrimination’
 

Poland’s GDP Decline Should Not Exceed 5 Pct in 2020 — Expert

Poland’s Monetary Policy Council (RPP) member Lukasz Hardt said on Tuesday that Poland’s GDP should not shrink by more that 5 percent in 2020 while the unemployment rate should not reach a two-digit value and would likely stand at 7-8 percent.

Hardt told a seminar organised by the Sobieski Institute that recession was inevitable in Poland but that the economic decline should not be bigger than 5 percent. He also added that it should not lead to a dramatic growth of unemployment.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

U.S. Grocery Costs Jump 2.6% in April, Largest Increase in 46 Years

The Labor Department announced Tuesday that U.S. grocery prices jumped 2.6% in April, the largest one-month increase since February 1974.

The spike in supermarket prices impacted a broad range of products, including meat, eggs and vegetables.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Alaskan Rainforests Are a Global Lichen Hotspot

The rainforest fjords of Southeastern Alaska harbour one of the highest concentrations of lichen diversity found anywhere on Earth, according to a new study spearheaded by University of Alberta scientists.

An international team of researchers led by Toby Spribille, assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the Faculty of Science, details the names and habitats of lichens, a symbiosis of fungi and algae in Alaska’s Glacier Bay National Park.

The researchers found more than 900 species of lichen, including 27 new, never-seen-before species “This level of novelty biodiversity is usually associated with ‘lost valleys’ in the tropics,” says Spribille, Canada Research Chair in Symbiosis. “To find this in Southeast Alaska really speaks to how little we still know about coastal rainforests. There are so many new species to science that if you know what to look for, you can average one new species to science per day of field work.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Arkansas Professor Arrested for Concealing Communist Chinese Funding

An engineering professor at the University of Arkansas has been arrested by the FBI and faces up to 20 years in prison for allegedly hiding funding that he received from the communist Chinese government.

The New York Times reports that “Simon Ang of the University of Arkansas, was arrested on Friday and charged on Monday with wire fraud.”

“He worked for and received funding from Chinese companies and from the Thousand Talents program, which awards grants to scientists to encourage relationships with the Chinese government,” the report notes, adding that “he warned an associate to keep his affiliation with the program quiet.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Biden Says He Was Aware of Obama Administration’s Investigation of Flynn

During an interview with George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s Good Morning America, former Vice President Joe Biden at first denied, then acknowledged, his familiarity with the Obama’s administration’s efforts to investigate former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

California Salons File Lawsuit Against Gov. Newsom’s Coronavirus Closures Amid Reopening Plan: “it’s Injustice’

The Center for American Liberty filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against California Gov. Gavin Newsom on behalf of the Professional Beauty Federation of California (PBFC) in an attempt to reopen hair salons statewide.

The organization, in collaboration with the Dhillon Law Group, represents more thn 500,000 hair salon owners who want salons to be reclassified from stage three in California’s reopening process, and be allowed to open now.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Colorado Restaurant That Opened for Mother’s Day Remained Open Monday Despite Suspension of Business License

The owners of C&C Breakfast and Korean Kitchen near Denver continued welcoming dine-in customers despite an order to shut down and suspension of the eatery’s business license by the local health department after the place opened for dine-in service on Mother’s Day.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Emory Prof Admits to Chinese Spy Ring Involvement

A former professor at Emory University pleaded guilty to filing false tax returns by failing to disclose $500,000 in income from Chinese sources.

The professor, Xiao-Jiang Li, worked at two Chinese universities as part of China’s Thousand Talents Program, according to the Department of Justice. Li was ordered to pay $35,089 in restitution and sentenced to one-year probation.

Court findings revealed that in 2012, while still working at Emory, Li began working for the Thousand Talents Program and continued to work for the program until 2018. During this time period, Li worked at the Chinese Academy of Sciences and at Jinan University, where he reportedly conducted animal research. Li’s tax fraud was discovered when the National Institutes of Health examined his applications for research grants.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Facebook Quietly Forms New Lobbying Group to Promote the Virtues of Big Tech in Washington

It seems like just yesterday that the FTC fined Facebook. Whether you agreed with the ruling or disagreed with the amount, it’s not an event that is easy to forget.

Mark Zuckerberg hasn’t forgotten about it either. It hasn’t even been a year and he’s already plotting his revenge from a bunker somewhere.

According to anonymous sources, Facebook has been quietly setting up a new lobby group. In the corporate world, that’s the equivalent of a new class of Navy Seals.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Facebook Deletes Michigan United Facebook Group After Media Complaint

Facebook groups — private and public — have in the past been praised by major media outlets for allowing activists to connect and organize in large numbers in many countries around the world, including in the US, such as for the “Women’s March” protest of early 2017.

Anti-quarantine activists of the current coronavirus crisis, on the other hand, are by no means viewed with the same amount of benevolence — quite the opposite.

In the US state of Michigan, those opposed to continued coronavirus lockdowns are organizing for another round of protests this coming weekend, Detroit-based Metro Times reports.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Fauci Does Not Expect Coronavirus Vaccine or Treatment to be Available to Facilitate Schools Reopening This Fall

During the Senate Coronavirus Hearing Tuesday morning, Dr. Anthony Fauci told members of the Senate Health Committee that a coronavirus vaccine or treatmentwill not be available by the time students normally return to school in the fall.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Gov. Cuomo Calls Coronavirus “European Virus”

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo described the coronavirus as the “European virus” throughout his Monday press briefing.

“When we started this, yes, we had more cases than anyone else,” Cuomo said. “Yes, we had this European virus attack us and nobody expected it.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

House Dems Unveil $3 Trillion Coronavirus Relief Bill

House Democrats unveiled their new coronavirus relief bill on Tuesday, which will provide $3 trillion of federal aid to millions of Americans severely impacted by the pandemic.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Illinois Attorney Who Filed Lawsuits Against Pritzker for Stay-at-Home Order Now Working With Dozens of Businesses That Have Reopened, Filing Suit for Others

After pouring time and money into his biker bar, Poopy’s, for 24 years, Kevin Promenschenkel faced a coronavirus reckoning: If he wasn’t able to reopen for his annual Memorial Day concert and summer kickoff, his business would not survive.

So the western Illinois bar owner hired lawyer Tom DeVore to file a lawsuit on his behalf Monday against Gov. J.B. Pritzker because of the executive order he signed, effectively shuttering some nonessential businesses starting March 21.

The St. Louis-area lawyer has become the go-to guy for businesses in the south and west parts of the state chafing at the stay-at-home rules. He also filed suits on behalf of a hairdresser and two Republican elected officials, and is representing about 80 other small businesses.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Limbaugh: Obama ‘Trashing Trump Because He Collaborated With FBI to Invent Russian Collusion Narrative’

Rush Limbaugh has a theory on why Barack Obama is suddenly in the headlines. The talk show legend reckons that Obama is slamming Trump on coronavirus as a way of ‘deflecting’ from the bogus Russia “collusion” revelations, for which Obama himself is culpable.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

MI Sheriff Announces He Will Not Enforce Gov. Whitmer’s Lockdown Extension

Sheriff Brian BeGole of Shiawassee County in Michigan has said that he will not enforce the state’s lockdown orders, becoming the latest in a series of county law enforcement officials across the country refusing to enforce stay-at-home orders issued by governors.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Militia Mobilizes to Block Arrest of 77-Year-Old Michigan Barber Who Reopened

The Michigan Militia says the police will not be allowed to arrest 77-year-old Owosso, Mich., barber, Karl Manke, who has defied Governor Whitmer’s orders that all non-essential businesses stay closed. Friday night, Michigan State Police delivered a health protection order from Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel’s office ordering that Manke close his doors.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

New Worm Species With Jewel-Like Scales Discovered in Deep Ocean Darkness

(Inside Science) — Some of the most brilliant colors in the animal kingdom belong to worms that live in the dark and have no eyes.

Researchers described four new species of deep-sea worms in a paper published today in the journal ZooKeys. They have been collecting the worms for years, but only recently teased apart their species relationships using genetics.

“Our nickname for them was Elvis worms because they look like sequins on an Elvis jumpsuit,” said Greg Rouse, a marine biologist at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego.

The new species are Peinaleopolynoe goffrediae, named for marine biologist Shana Goffredi; P. mineoi, named for the father of biotechnologist Chrysa Mineo, who helped fund the research; P. orphanae, named for geobiologist Victoria Orphan; and P. elvisi, whose name is self-explanatory. They belong to a group known as scale worms, distant relatives of earthworms that are covered in large, overlapping plates.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Seattle Cop Prepares to be Fired After Refusing to Remove Viral Video Reminding Officers Not to Obey ‘Tyrannical Orders’

A Port of Seattle Police Officer has been placed on administrative leave after refusing to delete a viral video reminding police officers that they don’t have unlimited powers.

“I have seen officers around the country enforcing tyrannical orders; I was hoping it was a minority of officers, anymore, I am not so sure,” said Officer Greg Anderson, a Special Forces veteran.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

The Dirty Wars Behind Obamagate

What happened to Flynn was truly an amazing diversion since Obama’s CIA director Brennan should never have received a security clearance. As CIA director, Brennan told a congressional forum that even voting communist, as he once did, was not a bar to employment at the agency. Brennan had voted for a Moscow-line Communist Party…

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]
 

To Reopen, Washington State Restaurants Will Have to Keep Log of Customers to Aid in Contact Tracing

With eight Washington counties now approved to move to Phase 2 under Gov. Jay Inslee’s four-phase plan to reopen the state, the governor’s office on Monday released a set of requirements restaurants will have to comply with if they want to reopen for dine-in service.

Stevens, Wahkiakum, Skamania, Ferry, Pend Oreille, Columbia, Garfield and Lincoln counties have all been cleared for Phase 2, which allows restaurants to reopen at 50% capacity, and caps table sizes at five.

Notably, the 13 criteria that restaurants will have to adhere to in order to reopen for dine-in service includes a stipulation that they “create a daily log of customers and maintain that daily log for 30 days, including telephone/email contact information, and time in.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Trump Admin Approves 11-Square-Mile Solar Array, Largest in US

The Trump administration approved a proposal Monday to construct and operate the largest solar power project in U.S. history, issuing a final permit for a massive facility just north of Las Vegas.

The $1 billion Gemini project would be the eighth-largest solar facility in the world, the Interior Department said, generating 690-megawatts of power, enough electricity for 260,000 homes in the Las Vegas area and potential markets in Southern California.

Nevada utility NV Energy, a subsidiary of billionaire Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway, is providing financial backing to the project, which will be completed as early as 2022. It will generate more than $3 million annually in federal revenues, the Interior Department said.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

U.S. Takes 1st Steps to Divest Federal Retirement Funds From China

In a move likely tied to what the Trump administration believes was China’s intentional malfeasance in dealing with the coronavirus outbreak, the United States has taken the first steps to divest the country’s federal retirement funds from Chinese equities.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Video: Woman Enforces Social Distancing With 6 Meter Stick

A video posted to Tik Tok shows a woman enforcing ‘social distancing’ by holding out a 6 meter stick as she walks past cyclists and joggers on a narrow path.

“Meet my girlfriend — she is tired of people not maintaining 6ft,” states the caption to the clip.

“There you go, tell ‘em baby,” says the man who is filming her from behind.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Whitmer: Lockdown Orders “Not a Suggestion, Not Optional, Not Helpful Hints”

During a coronavirus briefing Monday, Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer emphatically said she “expects people to follow the law” in reference to her lockdown orders, which she extended through the end of May.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

European Parliament Refuses to Include Hungarian Justice Minister in Debate Over Emergency Law

The European Parliament has rejected a proposal from Hungary for its Minister of Justice to participate in a debate scheduled for tomorrow over the country’s controversial emergency legislation in response to the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Hungary’s Parliament approved its Coronavirus Protection Law in March, which allows the government to bypass the Parliament when making decisions during the emergency period. This was justified as allowing the government to react quickly to changing circumstances as the crisis unfolds. Hungary was widely condemned for the move, with many claiming that the law gave Prime Minister Viktor Orban dictatorial powers.

The truth, however, is very different, as previously reported by Voice of Europe.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

French Drug Dealers Offer Free Masks and Hand Sanitiser to Lure Customers

French police in the department of Bas-Rhin in Alsace arrested four individuals advertising drugs on social media, and offering free hand sanitiser and medical masks with each purchase.

The four people arrested, three men aged between 27 and 28 and one woman aged 40, advertised the sale of cannabis resin, cocaine and ecstasy through the popular social media mobile app Snapchat and offered to deliver the illegal drugs to the homes of their customers.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Furlough Extended: UK Coronavirus Job Subsidy Scheme Will Run to October

UK chancellor Rishi Sunak has extended the nation’s furlough scheme, which sees employers paid by the government to not fire their staff during the coronavirus lockdown, for four more months.

The furlough scheme had already been extended once, but has now been given a further four-month extension by the government, guaranteeing a part of the salaries of employed workers until the end of October.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

How George Soros Tried and Failed to Punish Hungary During the Coronavirus Crisis

Despite billionaire financier George Soros’s network running a months-long campaign attempting to smear Hungary with claims that its leaders “clearly violate international law and threaten European citizens”, these efforts ultimately has failed due to a lack of supporting evidence, a new study the Nézopont Institute has found.

The study determined the coordinated campaign began on March 30 after the Hungarian Parliament gave a mandate to the conservative government of Viktor Orban to rule by decree for the duration and in respect to the coronavirus outbreak, which first appeared in Hungary on March 4.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Italian Aid Worker Silvia Romano Back Home After Kidnap Ordeal

Now a little respect says Foreign Minister Di Maio

(ANSA) — Rome, May 11 — Silvia Romano, an Italian aid worker kidnapped by a gang in Kenya 18 months ago, held by Islamists miltants in Somalia, and freed Saturday, returned to Italy Sunday and was greeted by relatives, Premier Giuseppe Conte and Foreign Minister Luigi Di Maio.

The Milanese Romano, 23, converted to Islam during her captivity by the Al Shabaab Islamist militant group and wore traditional Somali Muslim garb as she spoke to reporters wearing a facemask and gloves.

“Luckily I’m well, physically and mentally, I’m really happy (to be back), now I just want to be with my family,” she said, revealing that her new name was Aisha.

Quizzed by prosecutors she reportedly said “I was moved often, always with the same captors (in Somalia), there was no marriage or relationships, just respect”.

She reportedly said she converted to Islam of her own free will.

“The first month was the most terrible, I cried all the time,” she said.

Romano said she was handed over to Al Shabaab by and eight-strong armed commando that abducted her from a mall in Kenya in November 2018.

Di Maio said Monday: “Silvia is a young woman who lived 18 months of imprisonment, First in Kenya. Then in Somalia. At just 23 years of age. Thanks to the work of women and men of the State, she is now back in Italy again, in the arms of her family.

“And that is the only thing that counts. That intense, infinite, true, and moving embrace between Silvia and her father, mother and sister moved everybody.

“Silvia is alive, she is well. Now, please, a bit of respect”.

It was revealed Monday that Romano’s ‘prison diary’ had remained in her captors’ hands.

Romano travelled back to her working class district in Milan later Monday, where she got a joyful and raucous reception.

She said only three words upon getting home, when asked if she would return to Kenya: “Respect this moment”.

Lilian Sora, founder of the Africa Milele charity Romano worked for, said “I never stopped investigating all the time Silvia was abducted. I discovered that she was being watched: I suspect that some members of the command slept close to our home before the kidnapping”.

Sora added that “Silvia was not sent to (the Kenyan town of) Chakama on her own on November 5 as someone people have said, she became one of our aid workers and left with two other volunteers. And my partner was waiting for her, who is the charity’s chief in Kenya, as well as another security worker, both Masai.

“The two volunteers were supposed to return on November 19 and Silvia was supposed to go to Malindi (18 km away) with them to greet the new people who, however, put the trip back by two days because they had found a cheaper flight.

“That’s why Silvia remained in Chakama alone. On the 20th she was kidnapped”.

The president of the Italian Islamic Religious Community (COREIS), Milan imam Yahya Pallavicini, said some criticism of Romano’s conversion to Islam smacked of “an Inquisition tribunal”.

The president of the Italian Bishiops Conference, Cardinal Gualtiero Bassetti, said “we all, in this moment, feel that she is our daughter, a daughter who has run huge risks, who has had courage and strength of mind”.

Somalia’s prosecutor general opened a probe into the case on Monday.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: Care Home Whistleblower Sacked

Don Gnocchi home worker receives letter of dismissal

(ANSA) — Milan, May 7 — A worker who reported the high death toll at Milan’s Don Gnocchi care home leading to a police probe into the institute has received a dismissal letter from the cooperative that operates there, AMPAST, sources said Thursday.

Other similar workers have received letters threatening disciplinary action and transfers to other facilities, ANSA has learned. The Don Gnocchi is one of scores of care homes around Italy and especially in Lombardy under investigation for suspected negligent manslaughter during the coronavirus epidemic.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: Guerini Thanks Russian Minister for Moscow’s Support

Russian health-military contingent returns home

(ANSA) — Rome, May 7 — Defence Minister Lorenzo Guerini on Thursday phoned Russian counterpart Sergej Shoygu to thank him for the “prompt and substantive support offered to Italy from the first weeks of the (coronavirus) crisis”.

He said this support had been “professional” and had been “appreciated by local communities”.

Guerini went on to offer Russia Italy’s support, as Rome is doing with other countries also.

The minister’s phone call came after Russian health and military personnel employed in Lombardy started returning home.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: Plasma Treatment Cuts Mortality From 15% to 6% — Trial

Results of trials at San Matteo in Pavia and Mantua ASST

(ANSA) — Milan, May 11 — The mortality rate of patients treated with hyperimmune plasma fell from 15% to 6% in trials carried out on 467 patients at the Policlinico San Matteo hospital in Pavia with the Mantua ASST hospital. The results were presented Monday at the Lombardy regional government offices.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy Accelerates Lifting of Lockdown as Protests Continue

ROME — The Italian government has announced that coffee bars, restaurants, hairdressers, retail shops, and other establishments may reopen on May 18 instead of June 1 as previously stipulated.

In recent days, Italy has experienced a rise in public expression of discontent with the extended lockdown, with spontaneous protests forming in piazzas throughout the country. May 18 will also see the end of the obligation to carry the detested “autocertificazione” papers, subject to police verification at random stop-checks.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Justice Minister: EP to ‘Judge’ Hungary Without Hearing Its Government

The European Parliament will hold a debate on the state of the rule of law in Hungary without allowing the country’s government to present its standpoint, “at a time when thousands die and millions lose their jobs in Europe every day”, the justice minister said on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the EP will debate whether Hungary’s law on combatting the coronavirus epidemic lives up to democratic standards, Judit Varga said. However, Socialist EP President David Sassoli “in an official letter” refused to give speaking time to Hungary’s justice minister at the meeting, citing internal procedural regulations, she said.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Leaked Study From Inside German Government Warns Lockdown Could Kill More People Than Coronavirus

A leaked study from inside the German Ministry of the Interior has found that the impact of the country’s lockdown could end up killing more people than the coronavirus due to victims of other serious illnesses not receiving treatment.

Tichys Einblick, a magazine in Germany, issued a press release about the impact assessment which has been translated into English by Toby Young of LockdownSceptics.org.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Most Germans Blame China for Pandemic, Poll Says

Some 77 percent of Germans thought China was partly to blame for coronavirus and 34 percent thought it was significantly to blame, according to British pollster Redfield & Wilton Strategies. The findings come after US leader Donald Trump and other populists referred to it as “the Chinese virus”, despite UN appeals not to. The virus originated from natural causes in Wuhan, China, last December, according to the scientific consensus.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Poland: Presidential Ballot Most Likely on June 28 or July 5 — Agreement Head

The most likely dates for the presidential election are June 28 or July 5, after Poland’s May 10 all-mail vote was cancelled, Jaroslaw Gowin, leader of the Agreement party, a junior ruling coalition member, told a private broadcaster TVN24 on Tuesday.

Just four days before the country’s planned presidential poll Gowin and the leader of Poland’s ruling Law and Justice (PiS) Jaroslaw Kaczynski announced in a joint statement that it would not take place. They expressed expectation that it will be consequently pronounced void by the Supreme Court, which will allow the Sejm, lower house, speaker to set a new election date.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Polish Authorities Arrest Four Tajiks Recruiting Islamic Militants

Polish authorities on Monday announced the arrests of four Islamic militants from Tajikistan who are suspected of attempting to recruit Muslim converts to carry out terrorist attacks in the country.

Internal Border Guard officers detained the four men on Saturday as the attempted to re-enter Poland, based on intelligence provided by Poland’s Internal Security Agency (ABW). Stanislaw Zaryn, a spokesman for the government, told reporters from the press agency Reuters that the men were “trying to recruit people who could be used to commit some kind of terrorist crimes”.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Pope Francis Invites “Believers of Every Religion” To “Unite Themselves Spiritually” Against Coronavirus

Pope Francis on Monday tweeted an invitation to “believers of every religion” to “unite themselves spiritually in a day of prayer, fasting and works of charity, to implore God to help humanity overcome the coronavirus pandemic”:

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Salvini Slams Italian Government for Giving Publicity and Cash to Terrorist Group

Populist Senator Matteo Salvini has slammed the Italian government for handing over millions of euros and giving publicity to Somalian terrorist group al-Shabab for the return of kidnapped aid worker Silvia Romano.

Senator Salvini commented on the case saying, “Yesterday was Mother’s Day, it was the feast of joy for Silvia Romano’s family, but then some questions must certainly be answered.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Sweden: Bombing at Block of Flats

A powerful bomb explosion ripped through a block of flats in southern Helsingborg, in southern Sweden, and caused severe damage early this morning.

The bomb exploded in or near the building’s entrance just before 1:50 AM on Brunnsbäcksgatan, in the Miatorp district, according to a report by Expressen. The building’s entire entrance was destroyed and many windows were shattered. There have also been water leaks as a result of pipes being damaged. No injuries were reported.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK Lecturer Says Colleagues Want Lockdown to Continue So “Racist Brexit” Will be Cancelled

A senior lecturer at a university in the United Kingdom says that his leftist colleagues want the coronavirus lockdown to continue indefinitely so that “racist Brexit” will be cancelled.

The lecturer’s comments were posted on Toby Young’s LockDownSceptics.orgwebsite. He wanted to remain anonymous for obvious reasons.

“I’m a Senior Lecturer at a UK higher education institution currently stuck doing remote working amongst a group of typical identitarian, fair-trade, falafel-munching academics. It probably won’t surprise you to learn that my colleagues really don’t want this magic-money-tree-fuelled piss-about to end. They chirrup along quite happily to each other on Microsoft Teams about how it might bring down the “Tory Scum” Government and thus also cancel “racist Brexit”. Part of the ongoing appeal of the lockdown for them is the opportunity to spend all day safe at home baking Nordic-inspired loaf cakes, knocking out virtue signalling blogs about sustainable living (whilst simultaneously planning their next foreign holiday, of course) and angrily taking to social media to demand more white deaths from COVID-19 as a form of reparation for colonial injustices. Okay, I might have made that last one up, but you get the idea. This has become a middle-class wet dream of what the revolutionary overthrow of capitalism would look like.”

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK Publishes Surprising Update on Post-Brexit Free Trade Deal With Japan During Lockdown

THE UK will seek to strike a post-Brexit free trade deal with Japan which goes further than the existing EU agreement, the International Trade Secretary has said.

Talks will take place online due to the ongoing coronavirus crisis. Negotiation objectives have been published ahead of online talks. Secretary of State for International Trade Liz Truss has said that both sides are committed to an “ambitious timeline”.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Former Soldier Facing Investigation for “Grandma” Insult on TV Show

The star of Celebrity SAS: Who Dares Wins Ant Middleton could be investigated by Ofcom, the UK’s broadcasting regulator for calling TV presenter Anthea Turner “grandma”, The Scottish Sun reports.

The 59-year-old contestant signed up for the TV show where celebrities take part in realistic army training at the hands of a ruthless and angry veteran. Despite SAS soldier Ant Middleton being demanding and insulting towards all of those participating, calling a middle-aged woman grandma has sparked outrage on social media.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Govt Tells Commuters to Turn Their Backs on Others on Crowded Public Transport as Last Resort

Commuters should consider “all other forms of transport” before taking a train or bus, the government has said, as it concedes adhering to social distancing rules may not be possible on public transport.

As the government urges those who can to return to work this week, new guidance has been issued to both travellers and transport service providers on how best to move between the home and place of employment, under the new coronavirus regime where close contact with strangers has been officially forbidden.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK: New Religion: Church Replaces Vatican Flag With NHS Flag

A Catholic Church in England has removed its Vatican flag and replaced it with an NHS flag, illustrating once again how the National Health Service is akin to a religious institution in the United Kingdom.

“My uni parish has taken down the Vatican flag and replaced it with…the NHS flag,” remarked the Twitter user who posted the image.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Raheem Kassam Slams Piers Morgan “You’ve Got Zero Engagement”

Former Breitbart London boss Raheem Kassam tore into moaning Piers Morgan after the GMB host again attacked President Trump, yet again in an interview with The Sunday Times.

In a feature-length interview, Mr Morgan, 58 claimed that Mr Trump did not deserve to be re-elected due to his handling of the Coronavirus, showing his true turn back to his leftist roots.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

UK: Two Brothers Found Guilty of Rape

Two brothers who preyed on vulnerable women leaving nightclubs and bars around Shoreditch and Westend have been found guilty of rape by Wood Green Crown Court.

After being convicted of rape, assault by penetration, theft, fraud, and money laundering earlier this month, 26-year-old Nazmul Ahmed on May 1st was sentenced to 16 years in prison. Ahmed was also placed on a sex offender registry for the remainder of his life.

The court heard how Ahmed sexually assaulted and robbed a woman in her twenties after she had accepted a ride home from him after a night out in September of 2018.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Will Italy Ditch the EU After the Pandemic?

In opinion poll was taken in Italy in April regarding the impact of the Wuhan coronavirus pandemic on Italy and its relationship with the European Union. It found that 42% of Italians believe that the EU’s response to the crisis is undermining the bloc’s unity.

The same polls revealed that about 59% of Italians want to leave the EU and the Eurozone. These numbers are particularly significant given that Italy was one of the bloc’s main founders, and historically has been quite willing to adapt to European integration.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Turkish ‘Justice’: Free Mobsters, Keep Dissidents Locked Up

Aleaddin Çakici is a well-known Turkish mafia figure. But his militant far-right past makes him a shadier figure in Turkey’s domestic and international political scenes, not just in the criminal underworld. In the 1970s he was a leading fighter in Turkey’s near civil war between ultra-left and —right fractions. His first arrest came shortly after the military coup d’état in 1980: He was tried on charges of murdering 41 leftists.

According to leaked reports, Çakici was used as a hitman in the 1980s and 1990s by Turkish intelligence. His targets were leftists and pro-Kurdish groups. Turkish intelligence also tasked him with carrying out operations in foreign countries, including Greece and Lebanon, targeting the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and the Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia (ASALA).

In 2018 Devlet Bahçeli, a far-right politician and a staunch supporter of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, described Çakici as “brave and fearless” and as someone “who was in love with [his] homeland and ideals.” Bahçeli had said that Çakici was in prison on multiple sentences for murder, armed attack, money laundering, and leading an illegal armed group. Among other such escapades, he had contracted out the murder of his ex-wife, who in 1995 was shot dead in front of their son.

Çakici’s is certainly not the résumé of an ideal, law-abiding, peaceful citizen. But last month, at age 67, he walked free from the prison in which he had been kept.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Coronavirus: Russia Now Has Second Highest Virus Case Total

Russia has confirmed 232,000 cases of coronavirus — the second highest toll in the world after the US.

In the last 24 hours the country has reported 10,899 infections, the tenth consecutive day that number has been above 10,000.

Among the infected is President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov, local media report.

He is the latest high profile official to test positive, after Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin caught the illness.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Putin Lifts Russia’s Shutdown, But Keeps Many Restrictions

President Vladimir Putin on Monday declared an end to a partial economic shutdown across Russia due to the coronavirus pandemic, but he said that many restrictions will remain in place.

In a televised address to the nation, Putin said it will be up to regional governors in the far-flung country to determine what industrial plants could reopen starting Tuesday. He emphasized that it’s essential to preserve jobs and keep the economy running, provided that workers strictly observe sanitary norms.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

2 Newborns, 13 Others Killed as Gunmen Attack Maternity Hospital in Kabul

Two infants and 13 others were killed after gunmen disguised as police officers detonated an explosion at an entrance to one of Kabul’s busiest maternity hospitals on Tuesday, then stormed inside.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

India: Three Dazzling New Species of Filament Barb Discovered in Western Ghats

Filament barbs are a group of small freshwater fishes found in the rivers of peninsular India and Sri Lanka, of which nine species are currently known under the genus Dawkinsia. They are popular among aquarium hobbyists around the world and are both both wild-collected and captive-bred for the trade.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Persecution of Hindus Increases in Islamic Bangladesh During Corona Lockdown and Ramadan

Ananta Narayan Das | HENB | New Delhi | May 11, 2020:: Shocking tales of discrimination and persecution of minorities, especially the Hindus in Pakistan are a regular feature. But similar stories are also pouring in from India’s eastern neighbor Bangladesh of late, more so in the lockdown period and the Ramadan phase.

According to the World Hindu Federation, Bangladesh Chapter, cases of land grabbing to persecuting the Hindus have increased manifold during the lockdown period in Bangladesh, which has imposed a nationwide lockdown after the surge in coronavirus cases in the country on March 26. During the prohibited month of Ramadan, the Islamic brutality and persecution on minority Hindus in Bangladesh were seen in the rise. Ramadan started from April, 24.

The incidents conducted by the religious fanatics against the Hindu minority in Bangladesh listed by the World Hindu Federation included the looting of shops, murdering businessmen, land grabbing, demolishing temples and vandalizing idols, forcing the families to leave the country and last but not the least, abduction and rape of women and girls.

The WHF statement on Saturday said “In April 12 business shops of Hindu owners were looted, two Hindu businessmen were killed, 307 acres of land belonging to Hindus were forcibly occupied, two temples were demolished and idols were desecrated. As many as 21 Hindu families were evicted from their settlements and 14 were forced to leave the country”.

The WHF also said that during the same month, four Hindu girls were kidnapped, six other girls and women were raped, ten were attempted to being raped and three Hindu girls were forced to convert to Islam.

“The human rights situation is becoming worse day by day in Bangladesh but unfortunately no one has been arrested yet,” the WHF lamented.

It demanded exemplary punishment to the criminals for the atrocities unleashed on the minorities in the country.

The WHF listed the incidents of land grabbing, intimidation, abduction of Hindu women and girls, converting them forcibly to Islam, molesting them, demanding ransom from the Hindu businessmen, and killing them, vandalizing temples and desecrating idols that took place from April 4 to 29, 2020 as below…

           — Hat tip: Upananda Brahmachari [Return to headlines]
 

West Bengal: Muslims Spreading Corona and Communal Violence Defying Lock-Down

Muslim Families and Neighbours of Corona Positive patients attacked upon Hindus as they demanded testing and quarantine for affected families.

Saroj Roy | HENB | Chandannagar | May 12, 2020:: Jihadi mobs allegedly launched a fierce attack on Hindu houses and business establishments at Telinipara under Chandannagar Police Commissionerate in Hooghly district Sunday night.

Hooghly Lok Sabha MP Locket Chatterjee has said that the situation there is tense and Hindus fear renewed attacks since the police have not taken any action against the attackers.

According to Chatterjee, Muslims from Wardibazar entering Telinipara, a township off Grand Trunk Road near Chandannagar, were enraged over enforcement of lockdown restrictions by the police. The Muslims of the area were also reportedly angry with police’s attempts to send them to quarantine centres after some people in the densely-populated area tested Covid-19 positive.

Trouble broke out when some people from Wardibazar area tried to enter the Telinipara area Sunday evening. Wardibazar reportedly had some COVID-19 positive cases and several people in quarantine. So when 10-odd people from there headed to Telinipara, apparently to use a public toilet, locals objected and clash broke out.

Locals say that some Hindu families objected to the flouting of the lockdown restrictions by the Muslims. In the Ramadan day Muslims of the adjacent areas generally perform Ifter (Ramadan fast breaking) and taraweeh (Special Quran recitation in the evening after Ifter) violating all lockdown norms.

That, they say, triggered the attack on Hindu homes and establishments in Telinipara and Chandannagar.

The BJP leadership in Bengal squarely blamed chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s ‘appeasement politics’ for emboldening Muslims to attack Hindus in the state.

A tweet from BJP Bengal’s official handle charged the ‘vote bank patronized by the Trinamool’ with “holding the state to ransom and flouting Covid guidelines at will without any fear of law”…

           — Hat tip: Upananda Brahmachari [Return to headlines]
 

5G Roll Out Brings a New Wave of Surveillance to Tibet

Coronavirus has ushered in a new wave of surveillance in an effort to ensure that social distancing measures are followed and citizens conform. China is ramping up its surveillance and taking it to the next level — and could be a sign of what’s to come in the West as both surveillance and censorship that Chinese citizens have endured for years has been increasing in the Western world.

China, under the guise of coronavirus pandemic, has been increasing its surveillance and now putting its citizens on a tight leash — even more than usual. What’s more, reports say that China is now using tech giants and private companies to share private and confidential user data for “anti-epidemic purposes”. And rightly so — there is a widespread belief that the updated and augmented surveillance standards may become permanent too.

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Apple Reportedly Weighing Shifting Some Production From China to India

Apple is looking into shifting a significant portion of its production to India from China, a move that would make the tech behemoth India’s largest exporter, according to a report on Monday.

The iPhone maker is considering producing up to $40 billion worth of smartphones over the next five years through manufacturers Wistron and Foxconn, the Indian Economic Times reported, citing a government official.

The development comes as the coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan, China, disrupted supply lines for tech companies.

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi met with top executives of Apple, Samsung and domestic phone manufacturer Lava last December to start the process.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

China Bans Meat From Four Major Australian Suppliers After Threatening Revenge if Scott Morrison Continued to Push for a Coronavirus Inquiry

The meat suppliers — three from Queensland and one from New South Wales, make up around 35 per cent of Australia’s beef exports to China which are worth $3.5billion.

           — Hat tip: SS [Return to headlines]
 

Popeyes Sticks to China Expansion Plan in Spite of Virus

BEIJING (Reuters) — Fried chicken chain Popeyes is forging ahead with the opening of its first outlet in China despite the coronavirus outbreak and plans to set up “a few more” by the end of the year in several Chinese cities, its executives said on Tuesday.

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Why Was Dr. Fauci Funding Wuhan Lab Research?

Dr. Fauci’s organization has spent $7.4 million dollars funding dangerous bat coronavirus research, even though a moratorium on experiments that might make coronaviruses more pathogenic or easier to spread took place in 2014. What’s going on?

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]
 

Boy, 15, Is Brutally Stabbed by a Gang of Kids at a Brisbane Train Station and Left in a Serious Condition — as Three Boys and a Girl Are Charged

The 15-year-old was allegedly attacked at Ferny Grove train station, north-west of Brisbane, at 7.30pm on Monday.

           — Hat tip: SS [Return to headlines]
 

Opportunistic Chinese Buyers Rush to Exploit Plunging Australian House Prices During Coronavirus Pandemic — as Expert Reveals the Areas They Are Targeting

Australia’s handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and overall safety, as well as plunging house prices, has made it even more appealing.

           — Hat tip: SS [Return to headlines]
 

WHO Claims U.S. And Brazil Ignored Warnings About Coronavirus

Despite amplifying Chinese propaganda that there was no “human to human” transmission of coronavirus on January 14, a WHO spokesperson today claimed that the U.S. and Brazil ignored warnings about COVID-19.

World Health Organization spokeswoman Margaret Harris was asked during a press conference today about “high case loads” in Brazil and the U.S.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Coronavirus: Lockdown for Europeans, Amnesty for Illegal Immigrants

European governments are using the coronavirus pandemic to grant mass amnesties to hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants from Africa, Asia and the Middle East. While Europe is experiencing an economic shock without precedent, and tens of millions of Europeans have lost their livelihoods, migrants in Europe illegally are being showered with free housing and healthcare.

In Italy, where public debt is forecast to reach 160% of GDP this year, the left-wing coalition government has announced a plan to grant amnesty to at least 600,000 migrants in the country illegally. They would receive residency permits, initially valid for six months, that could be renewed in perpetuity.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Eritrean Migrant, 25, Is Arrested After He Was Found in Hiding in Back of Lorry From Hungary at BP Garage on A31 in Surrey

A migrant from Eritrea, East Africa, has been arrested after he was found in the back of a lorry at a Surrey petrol station.

Police received a call from the driver of a lorry at around 10am on Monday morning reporting that he could hear ‘what appeared to be clandestine migrants on board’.

A police statement adds: ‘Further enquiries established the lorry’s location and it was stopped at the BP petrol station on the A31 Farnham bypass.

‘One clandestine migrant, a male believed to be in his 20s from Eritrea, was located within the vehicle and arrested at the scene. No other persons were found during the search.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

European Commission to Call for a Return to Open Borders During Pandemic

The European Commission is set to present a plan in Brussels to remove border controls within the visa-free Schengen zone as well the introduction of Green New Deal-style stimulus package to promote so-called green businesses in the aftermath of the Chinese coronavirus pandemic.

The proposed strategy, which is set to be released on Wednesday, will see a phased opening of borders throughout the bloc, with countries that share “similar overall risk profiles” being the first to open. The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) will be tasked with determining which areas are of low risk, in order to lift the “blanket quarantine measures” that are currently set in place.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Farage Warns of an Invasion as Record Numbers of Migrants Reach British Shores

Nigel Farage, the chief architect of the Brexit campaign and former UKIP leader, has warned the British people of the “beginning of an invasion” after more than 300 illegal migrants were caught crossing the English Channel over “Victory in Europe” weekend.

In total, eight boats carrying 145 migrants were intercepted by the UK Border Force before being ferried back to Britain on Friday, marking a new daily record. Saturday saw 82 migrants intercepted on the British side of the Channel, while French authorities claimed to have prevented 77 migrants from crossing over the weekend.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

France: Migrant Arrested Over Rape of 92-Year-Old Woman in Nursing Home

A 63-year-old Congolese migrant was arrested by Paris police Sunday after allegedly raping a 92-year-old resident in the nursing home where he was employed.

The alleged sex attack took place at the Korian Les Arcades retirement home in the 12th arrondissement of Paris on Sunday evening and was reported to police by the director of the facility after a nursing assistant claimed to have caught the man shortly after the rape took place.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Illegals Suing the U.S. Government Because They Did Not Receive Coronavirus Stimulus Checks

Unfortunately, it is known worldwide how American lawmakers so foolishly ignore our own laws and Constitution in order to grant all rights and privileges to illegals, and even rights that American citizens do not posses…

           — Hat tip: JD [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: Man Arrested for Raping COVID Nurse in Naples

On bus stop bench at three in the afternoon

(ANSA) — Naples, May 7 — An irregular migrant from Senegal was arrested Sunday for allegedly raping a 48-year-old anti-COVID nurse as she was waiting for a bus home after her shift at a Naples hospital at around three o’clock in the afternoon, La Repubblica said Thursday.

The man allegedly raped the woman on the bench at the bus stop, the paper said, before police arrived after about 45 minutes.

During her ordeal in the deserted street the woman saw another woman walking past across the street and called out to her but she did not hear.

           — Hat tip: Insubria [Return to headlines]
 

Italy: Balkan Route Seeing Increasing Migrant Traffic Despite Lockdowns

The route which illegal migrants often take to enter the European Union member states through the Balkans has been seeing increased traffic as the spring weather settles in. Migrants are continuing to flow in spite of border closures and national lockdowns in response to the ongoing Wuhan coronavirus pandemic.

Ports in Italy have been forced to take in migrants for “humanitarian reasons” in recent weeks despite the country’s announcement that it would not take in any more due to the pandemic, as previously reported by Voice of Europe. But migrants are crossing into Italy by land as well.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Author of France’s New Draconian Online Hate Speech Law Accused of Racism, Sexism, And Homophobia by Staff

We may know that those who support rules that crackdown on speech are bound to have the tables turned on themselves eventually. It’s always the way. Threats to freedom of expression always backfire — yet, it seems that not everyone knows that yet.

On Wednesday of this week, France’s National Assembly will adopt a controversial new bill aimed at combating “hate speech” and “harmful content” on the internet.

The bill aims to attack “racist, sexist, and homophobic comments” online.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Even Media Freedom Groups Push Back Against Twitter’s Coronavirus Censorship Rules

Perhaps a little late to the party — but Twitter has now joined others in the Big Tech cabal in imposing tougher restrictions on coronavirus speech allowed on its platform.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Facebook is Training Its AI to Censor “Hateful Memes”

Facebook recently admitted that its censorship of the iconic photo of the Soviet flag raised over Reichstag on VE Day was a result of “algorithmic error” — a type of error that has become increasingly common across Big Tech platforms as they use artificial intelligence (AI) to moderate content.

But despite the prevalence of such errors, most big tech platforms continue ramping up their use of AI and automated systems to take down content.

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

Shareholders Pressure Amazon to Drop Corrupt Leftist Group Behind ‘Viewpoint Discrimination’

Amazon.com is riding high as Americans rely on the online retailer to purchase essential necessities amid the coronavirus crisis. Yet ahead of Amazon’s annual shareholder meeting, a rising chorus of Amazon Prime members and Amazon shareholders are raising serious concerns about viewpoint discrimination, citing the banning of some books and the exclusion of mainstream conservative and Christian nonprofits from the AmazonSmile charity program. Specifically, they point out AmazonSmile’s reliance on the discredited smear factory the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).

           — Hat tip: Reader from Chicago [Return to headlines]
 

9 thoughts on “Gates of Vienna News Feed 5/12/2020

  1. “Italian Aid Worker Silvia Romano Back Home After Kidnap Ordeal”
    I don’t believe a word she said. She was probably broken first and then made believe all of it are her decisions. The police should keep an eye on her, she’s probably going to be a fighter for islam now, like so many others such victims.

  2. Plenty of fake names to give in Washington State.

    Heywood Jablome
    352-867-5309
    come@me.bro

    And for Science Fiction fans:
    What great story be a British writer had: “Freedom; I won’t.” and “MYOB.” ? It is applicable today.

  3. This is what I found in a Muslim group on VKontakte social network.
    https://vk.com/wall-67260315_9851

    The Italian was at the center of a violent Islamophobic hate campaign after returning home this weekend from an 18-month prisoner at the Al-Shabab group in Somalia.

    In an interview with La Repubblica, a spokesman for Al-Shabab, named Ali Dehere, confirmed that a ransom was paid for Sylvia, but refused to disclose the amount.

    “Some part will be used to buy weapons, which we need more and more to fight on the path of jihad. The rest will be used to govern the country: to finance schools, to buy food and medicine that we distribute to our people, to train police officers who maintain order and ensure Sharia, ”he said.

    A spokesman for Al-Shabab said Romano voluntarily converted to Islam, “because she clearly saw with her own eyes a better world than she knew before.”

    It remains for us to congratulate Aisha Romano on her salvation from captivity and wish not to turn off her chosen salvation path never in her life, despite all the machinations of ill-wishers.

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