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Tuesday, May 24th

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Panama Papers include at least 36 Americans accused of fraud

Panama Papers exposes AmericansThe journalism organization that received 11.5 million documents exposing the way global leaders hide their assets released a giant batch of those documents to the public on Monday.

The International Consortium of Journalists did not release all the documents, which have become known as the Panama Papers and have already led to the downfall of one world leader and several financiers. Instead, the consortium conducted a "careful release" of documents that shields personal information of the people named, including bank account numbers, passport information, email addresses and telephone numbers.

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Rising sea levels: five Solomon Islands have disappeared underwater

Solomon Islands disappea due to rising sea levelsFive islands have disappeared in the Pacific's Solomon Islands due to rising sea levels and coastal erosion, according to an Australian study that scientists said Saturday could provide valuable insights for future research.

A further six reef islands have been severely eroded in the remote area of the Solomons, the study said, with one experiencing some 10 houses being swept into the sea between 2011 and 2014.

"At least 11 islands across the northern Solomon Islands have either totally disappeared over recent decades or are currently experiencing severe erosion," the study published in Environmental Research Letters said.

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UK report on Iraq war to be published on 6 July

Sir John ChilcotSir John Chilcot’s long-awaited report into the Iraq war will be published on 6 July, an inquiry spokesman has said.

Security checks on the 2.6m-word report have been completed without the need for any redactions. The date of publication was agreed by the inquiry’s head, Sir John Chilcot, and David Cameron.

In a letter to the prime minister, Chilcot said: “National security checking of the inquiry’s report has now been completed, without the need for any redactions to appear in the text. I am grateful for the speed with which it was accomplished.”

TVNL Comment: .....and the US investigation into the Iraq invasion will begin when?  Just asking.

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Rousseff impeachment vote annulled, throwing Brazil legislature into chaos

Rousseff impeachment annulledBrazil’s new lower house speaker has annulled last month’s impeachment vote against Dilma Rousseff in a twist that would stretch the credibility of a House of Cards plot.

The surprise move, which comes just days before the upper house was due to consider the motion, throws the legislature into chaos and could provide a lifeline to the embattled president.

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Donald Trump’s war on the foreign press

Trump's war on the foreign pressDonald Trump’s presidential campaign has captivated – and disconcerted – much of the world, but the journalists tasked with translating Trump for a global audience are facing an unexpected barrier: They can’t get into his rallies.

The nationalist tone of Trump’s campaign is being echoed in its press credentialing practices, with foreign media giants regularly denied press access and even blocked from general admission. Meanwhile, local outlets, down to the high school level, find there is plenty of room.

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Exxon scrambles to contain climate crusade

Exxon scramblesOn Nov. 3, ExxonMobil dispatched its top lobbyists to Capitol Hill on an urgent mission — tamping down an escalating campaign aimed at making the country’s largest oil company pay a legal and political price for its role in warming the planet.

The meeting marked a striking shift in Exxon’s handling of the controversy. The notion of holding oil companies responsible for global warming, in the same way tobacco companies had to pay billions of dollars in damages over the health effects of cigarettes, had long been seen as a quixotic quest led by scruffy, oil-hating extremists.

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Pentagon Report Reveals Confusion Among U.S. Troops Over Afghan Mission

Confusion over Afghanistan role Amid fierce fighting after the Taliban captured the northern Afghan city of Kunduz last year, U.S. special forces advisers repeatedly asked their commanders how far they were allowed to go to help local troops retake the city.

They got no answer, according to witnesses interviewed in a recently declassified, heavily redacted Pentagon report that lays bare the confusion over rules of engagement governing the mission in Afghanistan.

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NC Files Suit Against Feds Over Bathroom Law

NC files suit against fedsNorth Carolina on Monday filed a lawsuit against the federal government in response to a letter from the Justice Department that gave the state until the end of the day to scrap a controversial law regarding access to public bathrooms or risk losing hundreds of millions of dollars in federal funding.

Gov. Pat McCrory was given until Monday to notify the Justice Department that he would not enforce House Bill No. 2, which the federal government says limits protections for LGBT people. The measure has drawn a firestorm of protest from across the country.

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'Trump' candidate leading Philippines' presidential race

Trump candidate set for win in PhilippinesTough-talking political maverick Rodrigo Duterte took a commanding lead in the Philippines’ presidential election Monday with more than half the vote counted.

Duterte, 71, the mayor of the southern city of Davao who has drawn comparisons to Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, held 38.9% of the vote with 60% of precincts reporting. Grace Poe, the adopted daughter of Philippine movie stars, held 22.2% and Manuel “Mar” Roxas, backed by current president Benigno Aquino, had 21.6%.

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