Category Archives: News

worldwide news

Washington Takes in Latest Russia Probe Revelations

Washington is absorbing new revelations concerning the Russia probe revealed in court documents regarding U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign manager as well as his former personal attorney, both of whom have pleaded guilty to a variety of federal crimes and provided information to prosecutors. Trump himself continues to deny wrongdoing.

None of the prosecutorial briefs made available to the public on Friday answer the core question of the Russia investigation – whether Donald Trump colluded with Moscow to sway the 2016 presidential election. But they do contain a multitude of assertions.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller accused former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort of lying about interactions with a Russian operative as well as his contacts with Trump administration officials. The document is heavily redacted, suggesting more information will emerge.

Separately, Mueller asserts that former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen detailed Trump’s business dealings in Russia well into the 2016 campaign, as well as Cohen’s repeated lies to congressional investigators in order to shield Trump from scrutiny.

Federal prosecutors, meanwhile, said Cohen paid hush money to two women to suppress claims of sexual encounters with Trump. The brief states that Cohen acted at Trump’s behest in violation of U.S. campaign finance laws.

Trump himself did not seem troubled by the revelations.

“We are very happy with what we’re reading, because there was no collusion whatsoever. There never has been. The last thing I want is help from Russia on a campaign,” he said.

The president’s take was not echoed by lawmakers of either political party.

Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal tweeted that prosecutors “believe Trump participated in a felony that played a substantial role in his election.”

Republican Senator Marco Rubio, speaking on ABC’s This Week, said “There’s no way to spin this. This has not been a positive development for the people that are involved in this.”

Rubio added that the search for the full truth must continue.

“What we want for this country is all the facts and all the truth. I’ve always supported the Mueller investigation and continue to do so, because I think it’s in the best interest of everyone involved, including, by the way, the president in many of these issues.”

Democrats concur.

Democratic Senator Chris Murphy said the Russia probe has entered a new phase.

“I think it is important for us to get the full report from the special investigator, but let’s be clear: we have reached a new level in the investigation. The special counsel is starting to show his cards, and these are very serious allegations. This is a president who is now named as an unindicted co-conspirator, the allegation is he committed a least two felonies to try to manipulate the 2016 election,” Murphy said, also speaking on ABC’s This Week.

Murphy is backing legislation that would make it harder for Trump to fire Mueller, who has led the Russia probe since May, 2017.

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

Washington Takes in Latest Russia Probe Revelations

Washington is absorbing new revelations concerning the Russia probe revealed in court documents regarding U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign manager as well as his former personal attorney, both of whom have pleaded guilty to a variety of federal crimes and provided information to prosecutors. Trump himself continues to deny wrongdoing.

None of the prosecutorial briefs made available to the public on Friday answer the core question of the Russia investigation – whether Donald Trump colluded with Moscow to sway the 2016 presidential election. But they do contain a multitude of assertions.

Special Counsel Robert Mueller accused former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort of lying about interactions with a Russian operative as well as his contacts with Trump administration officials. The document is heavily redacted, suggesting more information will emerge.

Separately, Mueller asserts that former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen detailed Trump’s business dealings in Russia well into the 2016 campaign, as well as Cohen’s repeated lies to congressional investigators in order to shield Trump from scrutiny.

Federal prosecutors, meanwhile, said Cohen paid hush money to two women to suppress claims of sexual encounters with Trump. The brief states that Cohen acted at Trump’s behest in violation of U.S. campaign finance laws.

Trump himself did not seem troubled by the revelations.

“We are very happy with what we’re reading, because there was no collusion whatsoever. There never has been. The last thing I want is help from Russia on a campaign,” he said.

The president’s take was not echoed by lawmakers of either political party.

Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal tweeted that prosecutors “believe Trump participated in a felony that played a substantial role in his election.”

Republican Senator Marco Rubio, speaking on ABC’s This Week, said “There’s no way to spin this. This has not been a positive development for the people that are involved in this.”

Rubio added that the search for the full truth must continue.

“What we want for this country is all the facts and all the truth. I’ve always supported the Mueller investigation and continue to do so, because I think it’s in the best interest of everyone involved, including, by the way, the president in many of these issues.”

Democrats concur.

Democratic Senator Chris Murphy said the Russia probe has entered a new phase.

“I think it is important for us to get the full report from the special investigator, but let’s be clear: we have reached a new level in the investigation. The special counsel is starting to show his cards, and these are very serious allegations. This is a president who is now named as an unindicted co-conspirator, the allegation is he committed a least two felonies to try to manipulate the 2016 election,” Murphy said, also speaking on ABC’s This Week.

Murphy is backing legislation that would make it harder for Trump to fire Mueller, who has led the Russia probe since May, 2017.

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

Washington Takes in Latest Russia Probe Revelations

Washington is absorbing new revelations concerning the Russia probe revealed in court documents regarding U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign manager as well as his former personal attorney, both of whom have pleaded guilty to a variety of federal crimes and provided information to prosecutors. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Trump himself continues to deny wrongdoing.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

Washington Takes in Latest Russia Probe Revelations

Washington is absorbing new revelations concerning the Russia probe revealed in court documents regarding U.S. President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign manager as well as his former personal attorney, both of whom have pleaded guilty to a variety of federal crimes and provided information to prosecutors. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, Trump himself continues to deny wrongdoing.

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

Key House Lawmaker: Trump Impeachment Hearings Possible

A key U.S. lawmaker said Sunday that Democrats in the House of Representatives could pursue impeachment hearings against President Donald Trump, saying that the U.S. leader had “surrounded himself with crooks” and was part of a broad “conspiracy against the American people” to win the 2016 election.

Congressman Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat set to become chairman of the House Judiciary Committee when Democrats take control of the chamber next month, told CNN that lawmakers have to decide “how important” allegations are against Trump, but should pursue impeachment charges “only for serious offenses.”

Nadler offered his thoughts two days after federal prosecutors accused former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen, “in coordination with and at the direction” of Trump, of orchestrating $280,000 in hush money payments shortly before the 2016 election to two women who alleged they had affairs with Trump so they would stay silent before Election Day.

Nadler said that if proven, the allegations against Trump were “certainly impeachable offenses.” That could lead to his removal from office, if the Senate were to convict him by at least a two-thirds vote, a doubtful proposition with Republican control of the Senate continuing in the Congress that takes office in January.

Nadler said lawmakers will have “to look at all this,” along with weighing what special counsel Robert Mueller concludes about allegations that Trump and his campaign colluded with Russia to help him win and that, as president, Trump obstructed justice by trying to thwart the ongoing 19-month probe.

The U.S. Justice Department has a standing guideline against indicting sitting presidents, although they can be charged after leaving office. Nadler said, however, “There’s nothing in the Constitution that prohibits the president from being indicted. Nobody should be above the law.”

Trump has dismissed the latest allegations against him in connection with the payments to porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal and allegations of Trump campaign contacts with Russia to help him win the election.

“We’re very happy with what we’re reading,” Trump said Saturday, following a Twitter comment Friday night, “Totally clears the President. Thank you!”

Trump has called for the end to the Mueller probe, but a Republican lawmaker, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, told ABC News, “I’ve always supported the Mueller investigation and continue to do so because I think it’s in the best interest of everyone involved, including, by the way, the president.”

Aside from Cohen, who is set to be sentenced Wednesday and faces several years of imprisonment, Mueller so far has secured guilty pleas or won convictions of Trump’s first national security adviser, his former campaign manager, his former deputy campaign manager, a foreign policy adviser and other lesser figures.

On Sunday, Trump assailed former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey, whom Trump fired while he was heading the Russia investigation before Mueller was named to lead the probe.

Comey testified to a House panel on Friday about his role in 2016 election-related investigations of Trump’s campaign and that of his challenger, Democrat Hillary Clinton, a former U.S. secretary of state.

“On 245 occasions, former FBI Director James Comey told House investigators he didn’t know, didn’t recall, or couldn’t remember things when asked,” Trump claimed on Twitter.

“Leakin’ James Comey must have set a record for who lied the most to Congress in one day. His Friday testimony was so untruthful! This whole deal is a Rigged Fraud headed up by dishonest people who would do anything so that I could not become President. They are now exposed!”

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

Key House Lawmaker: Trump Impeachment Hearings Possible

A key U.S. lawmaker said Sunday that Democrats in the House of Representatives could pursue impeachment hearings against President Donald Trump, saying that the U.S. leader had “surrounded himself with crooks” and was part of a broad “conspiracy against the American people” to win the 2016 election.

Congressman Jerrold Nadler, a New York Democrat set to become chairman of the House Judiciary Committee when Democrats take control of the chamber next month, told CNN that lawmakers have to decide “how important” allegations are against Trump, but should pursue impeachment charges “only for serious offenses.”

Nadler offered his thoughts two days after federal prosecutors accused former Trump lawyer Michael Cohen, “in coordination with and at the direction” of Trump, of orchestrating $280,000 in hush money payments shortly before the 2016 election to two women who alleged they had affairs with Trump so they would stay silent before Election Day.

Nadler said that if proven, the allegations against Trump were “certainly impeachable offenses.” That could lead to his removal from office, if the Senate were to convict him by at least a two-thirds vote, a doubtful proposition with Republican control of the Senate continuing in the Congress that takes office in January.

Nadler said lawmakers will have “to look at all this,” along with weighing what special counsel Robert Mueller concludes about allegations that Trump and his campaign colluded with Russia to help him win and that, as president, Trump obstructed justice by trying to thwart the ongoing 19-month probe.

The U.S. Justice Department has a standing guideline against indicting sitting presidents, although they can be charged after leaving office. Nadler said, however, “There’s nothing in the Constitution that prohibits the president from being indicted. Nobody should be above the law.”

Trump has dismissed the latest allegations against him in connection with the payments to porn star Stormy Daniels and Playboy model Karen McDougal and allegations of Trump campaign contacts with Russia to help him win the election.

“We’re very happy with what we’re reading,” Trump said Saturday, following a Twitter comment Friday night, “Totally clears the President. Thank you!”

Trump has called for the end to the Mueller probe, but a Republican lawmaker, Senator Marco Rubio of Florida, told ABC News, “I’ve always supported the Mueller investigation and continue to do so because I think it’s in the best interest of everyone involved, including, by the way, the president.”

Aside from Cohen, who is set to be sentenced Wednesday and faces several years of imprisonment, Mueller so far has secured guilty pleas or won convictions of Trump’s first national security adviser, his former campaign manager, his former deputy campaign manager, a foreign policy adviser and other lesser figures.

On Sunday, Trump assailed former Federal Bureau of Investigation director James Comey, whom Trump fired while he was heading the Russia investigation before Mueller was named to lead the probe.

Comey testified to a House panel on Friday about his role in 2016 election-related investigations of Trump’s campaign and that of his challenger, Democrat Hillary Clinton, a former U.S. secretary of state.

“On 245 occasions, former FBI Director James Comey told House investigators he didn’t know, didn’t recall, or couldn’t remember things when asked,” Trump claimed on Twitter.

“Leakin’ James Comey must have set a record for who lied the most to Congress in one day. His Friday testimony was so untruthful! This whole deal is a Rigged Fraud headed up by dishonest people who would do anything so that I could not become President. They are now exposed!”

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

More Than Half the World’s Population is Using the Internet

The International Telecommunication Union reports that for the first time in history, half of the global population is using the internet. A new report finds by the end of the year, 3.9 billion people worldwide will be online.

The report finds access to and use of information and communication technologies around the world is trending upwards. It notes most internet users are in developed countries, with more than 80 percent of their populations online. But it says internet use is steadily growing in developing countries, increasing from 7.7 percent in 2005 to 45.3 percent this year.

The International Telecommunication Union says Africa is the region with the strongest growth, where the percentage of people using the internet has increased from just over two percent in 2005 to nearly 25 percent in 2018.

The lowest growth rates, it says, are in Europe and the Americas, with the lowest usage found in the Asia-Pacific region.

In addition to data on internet usage, newly released statistics show mobile access to basic telecommunication services is becoming more predominant. ITU Senior Statistician, Esperanza Magpantay says access to higher speed mobile and fixed broadband also is growing.

“So, there is almost 96 percent of the population who are now covered by mobile population signal of which 90 percent are covered by 3G access. So, this is a high figure, and this helps explain why we have this 51 percent of the population now using the internet,” she said.

With the growth in mobile broadband, Magpantay says there has been an upsurge in the number of people using the internet through their mobile devices.

The ITU says countries that are hooked into the digital economy do better in their overall economic well-being and competitiveness. Unfortunately, it says the cost of accessing telecommunication networks remains too high and unaffordable for many.

It says prices must be brought down to make the digital economy a reality for the half the world’s people who do not, as yet, use the internet.

 

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

More Than Half the World’s Population is Using the Internet

The International Telecommunication Union reports that for the first time in history, half of the global population is using the internet. A new report finds by the end of the year, 3.9 billion people worldwide will be online.

The report finds access to and use of information and communication technologies around the world is trending upwards. It notes most internet users are in developed countries, with more than 80 percent of their populations online. But it says internet use is steadily growing in developing countries, increasing from 7.7 percent in 2005 to 45.3 percent this year.

The International Telecommunication Union says Africa is the region with the strongest growth, where the percentage of people using the internet has increased from just over two percent in 2005 to nearly 25 percent in 2018.

The lowest growth rates, it says, are in Europe and the Americas, with the lowest usage found in the Asia-Pacific region.

In addition to data on internet usage, newly released statistics show mobile access to basic telecommunication services is becoming more predominant. ITU Senior Statistician, Esperanza Magpantay says access to higher speed mobile and fixed broadband also is growing.

“So, there is almost 96 percent of the population who are now covered by mobile population signal of which 90 percent are covered by 3G access. So, this is a high figure, and this helps explain why we have this 51 percent of the population now using the internet,” she said.

With the growth in mobile broadband, Magpantay says there has been an upsurge in the number of people using the internet through their mobile devices.

The ITU says countries that are hooked into the digital economy do better in their overall economic well-being and competitiveness. Unfortunately, it says the cost of accessing telecommunication networks remains too high and unaffordable for many.

It says prices must be brought down to make the digital economy a reality for the half the world’s people who do not, as yet, use the internet.

 

 

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

World Marks Anti-Corruption Day

Corruption costs the world economy $2.6 trillion each year, according to the United Nations, which is marking International Anti-Corruption Day on Sunday.

“Corruption is a serious crime that can undermine social and economic development in all societies. No country, region or community is immune,” the United Nations said.

The cost of $2.6 trillion represents more than 5 percent of global GDP.

The world body said that $1 trillion of the money stolen annually through corruption is in the form of bribes.

Patricia Moreira, the managing director of Transparency International, told VOA that about a quarter of the world’s population has paid a bribe when trying to access a public service over the past year, according to data from the Global Corruption Barometer.

Moreira said it is important to have such a day as International Anti-Corruption Day because it provides “a really tremendous opportunity to focus attention precisely on the challenge that is posed by corruption around the world.”

​Anti-corruption commitments

To mark the day, the United States called on all countries to implement their international anti-corruption commitments including through the U.N. Convention against Corruption.

In a statement Friday, the U.S. State Department said that corruption facilitates crime and terrorism, as well as undermines economic growth, the rule of law and democracy.

“Ultimately, it endangers our national security. That is why, as we look ahead to International Anticorruption Day on Dec. 9, we pledge to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide,” the statement said.

Moreira said that data about worldwide corruption can make the phenomena understandable but still not necessarily “close to our lives.” For that, we need to hear everyday stories about people impacted by corruption and understand that it “is about our daily lives,” she added.

She said those most impacted by corruption are “the most vulnerable people — so it’s usually women, it’s usually poor people, the most marginalized people in the world.”

The United Nations Development Program notes that in developing countries, funds lost to corruption are estimated at 10 times the amount of official development assistance.

What can be done to fight corruption?

The United Nations designated Dec. 9 as International Anti-Corruption Day in 2003, coinciding with the adoption of the United Nations Convention against Corruption by the U.N. General Assembly.

The purpose of the day is to raise awareness about corruption and put pressure on governments to take action against it.

Tackling the issue

Moreira said to fight corruption effectively it must be tackled from different angles. For example, she said that while it is important to have the right legislation in place to curb corruption, governments must also have mechanisms to enforce that legislation. She said those who engage in corruption must be held accountable.

“Fighting corruption is about providing people with a more sustainable world, with a world where social justice is something more of our reality than what it has been until today,” she said.

Moreira said change must come from a joint effort from governments, public institutions, the private sector and civil society.

The U.S. Statement Department said in its Friday statement that it pledges “to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide.”

It noted that the United States, through the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development, helps partner nations “build transparent, accountable institutions and strengthen criminal justice systems that hold the corrupt accountable.”

Moreira said that it is important for the world to see that there are results to the fight against corruption.

“Then we are showing the world with specific examples that we can fight against corruption, [that] yes there are results. And if we work together, then it is something not just that we would wish for, but actually something that can be translated into specific results and changes to the world,” she said.

VOA’s Elizabeth Cherneff contributed to this report.

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!

World Marks Anti-Corruption Day

Corruption costs the world economy $2.6 trillion each year, according to the United Nations, which is marking International Anti-Corruption Day on Sunday.

“Corruption is a serious crime that can undermine social and economic development in all societies. No country, region or community is immune,” the United Nations said.

The cost of $2.6 trillion represents more than 5 percent of global GDP.

The world body said that $1 trillion of the money stolen annually through corruption is in the form of bribes.

Patricia Moreira, the managing director of Transparency International, told VOA that about a quarter of the world’s population has paid a bribe when trying to access a public service over the past year, according to data from the Global Corruption Barometer.

Moreira said it is important to have such a day as International Anti-Corruption Day because it provides “a really tremendous opportunity to focus attention precisely on the challenge that is posed by corruption around the world.”

​Anti-corruption commitments

To mark the day, the United States called on all countries to implement their international anti-corruption commitments including through the U.N. Convention against Corruption.

In a statement Friday, the U.S. State Department said that corruption facilitates crime and terrorism, as well as undermines economic growth, the rule of law and democracy.

“Ultimately, it endangers our national security. That is why, as we look ahead to International Anticorruption Day on Dec. 9, we pledge to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide,” the statement said.

Moreira said that data about worldwide corruption can make the phenomena understandable but still not necessarily “close to our lives.” For that, we need to hear everyday stories about people impacted by corruption and understand that it “is about our daily lives,” she added.

She said those most impacted by corruption are “the most vulnerable people — so it’s usually women, it’s usually poor people, the most marginalized people in the world.”

The United Nations Development Program notes that in developing countries, funds lost to corruption are estimated at 10 times the amount of official development assistance.

What can be done to fight corruption?

The United Nations designated Dec. 9 as International Anti-Corruption Day in 2003, coinciding with the adoption of the United Nations Convention against Corruption by the U.N. General Assembly.

The purpose of the day is to raise awareness about corruption and put pressure on governments to take action against it.

Tackling the issue

Moreira said to fight corruption effectively it must be tackled from different angles. For example, she said that while it is important to have the right legislation in place to curb corruption, governments must also have mechanisms to enforce that legislation. She said those who engage in corruption must be held accountable.

“Fighting corruption is about providing people with a more sustainable world, with a world where social justice is something more of our reality than what it has been until today,” she said.

Moreira said change must come from a joint effort from governments, public institutions, the private sector and civil society.

The U.S. Statement Department said in its Friday statement that it pledges “to continue working with our partners to prevent and combat corruption worldwide.”

It noted that the United States, through the U.S. Department of State and U.S. Agency for International Development, helps partner nations “build transparent, accountable institutions and strengthen criminal justice systems that hold the corrupt accountable.”

Moreira said that it is important for the world to see that there are results to the fight against corruption.

“Then we are showing the world with specific examples that we can fight against corruption, [that] yes there are results. And if we work together, then it is something not just that we would wish for, but actually something that can be translated into specific results and changes to the world,” she said.

VOA’s Elizabeth Cherneff contributed to this report.

 

$1*/ mo hosting! Get going with us!
1 2 3 550