World News Roundup: Ukraine battles to push back Russian advance in northern Donetsk; Genoa bridge collapse trial to open four years after disaster and more

Devdiscourse News Desk | Updated: 07-07-2022 06:49 IST | Created: 07-07-2022 05:24 IST
World News Roundup: Ukraine battles to push back Russian advance in northern Donetsk; Genoa bridge collapse trial to open four years after disaster and more
Representative Image. (Photo Credit - Reuters) Image Credit: ANI

Following is a summary of current world news briefs.

Ukraine battles to push back Russian advance in northern Donetsk

Ukraine has so far staved off any major Russian advance into the north of its Donetsk region, but pressure is intensifying with heavy shelling on the city of Sloviansk and nearby populated areas, the Ukrainian military said on Wednesday. Russia and separatist proxies were already in control of the southern part of Donetsk province when they effectively completed the seizure of the neighbouring Luhansk region on Sunday with the capture of the city of Lysychansk, much of which now lies in ruins.

Argentina jails ex-military officers for crimes during dictatorship

An Argentine judge sentenced 19 former military officers to prison on Wednesday for crimes against humanity committed during the country's brutal military dictatorship in the 1970s and 1980s, including for kidnappings of auto plant workers. The latest trials in Argentina follow last week's Colombian truth commission report, following that South American country's decades-long bloody internal conflict, as pent up demands for justice yield some gains.

U.S. counterintelligence warns of China stepping up influence operations

A U.S. counterintelligence agency on Wednesday warned state and local officials that China is intensifying influence operations aimed at manipulating them into pressing the federal government to pursue more Beijing-friendly policies. China "understands that U.S. state and local leaders enjoy a degree of independence from Washington and may seek to use them as proxies to advocate for national U.S. policies Beijing desires," the National Counterintelligence and Security Center said in a bulletin sent to state and local officials.

Genoa bridge collapse trial to open four years after disaster

A trial of 59 people, including former Atlantia CEO Giovanni Castellucci, over the deadly collapse of a motorway bridge in Genoa opens on Thursday in front of relatives of the victims in the Italian port city. Likely to last more than a year, the trial will take place in the largest hall in the Genoa court, while a marquee with video screens has been set up outside to accommodate hundreds more members of the public and journalists who want to attend.

Explainer - Inflation to nuclear power: What's at stake in Japan's election

Japan will vote in upper house elections on Sunday that have implications for Prime Minister Fumio Kishida's grip on the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and his ability to push through legislation. Following are some details about why the poll matters and some main policy issues:

Boris Johnson 'up for a fight' as clamour to quit grows

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson defied pressure to quit on Wednesday from senior ministers and a mounting rebellion within his ruling Conservative Party, saying he will fight off any attempts to oust him over a series of scandals. After more than 40 resignations from within the government and with many Conservative lawmakers in open revolt, some cabinet ministers went to Downing Street to tell Johnson he needed to go, a source said.

Brazil at risk of unrest more severe than Jan 6 U.S. riots, warns elections chief

Brazil is at risk of facing a more serious incident than the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the U.S. Capitol, said the head of the country's Electoral Court, Edson Fachin, on Wednesday ahead of the presidential election in October. His remarks follow the latest polls that show Brazil's far-right President, Jair Bolsonaro, trailing behind former leader Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva ahead of the elections.

U.S. tightens sanctions on Iran, targets Chinese, Emirati firms over oil

The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on a network of Chinese, Emirati and other companies that it accused of helping to deliver and sell Iranian petroleum and petrochemical products to East Asia, pressuring Tehran as it seeks to revive the 2015 Iran nuclear deal. The U.S. Treasury Department said in a statement the network of people and entities used a web of Gulf-based front companies to facilitate the delivery and sale of hundreds of millions of dollars in products from Iranian firms to China and elsewhere in East Asia.

Japan's Kishida hopes to put stamp on premiership in upper house polls

A strong showing by Japan's ruling party in upper house elections on Sunday would give Prime Minister Fumio Kishida a firmer grip on the factious party and allow him to emerge from the shadow of a powerful predecessor and define his premiership.

If his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) does as well as polls predict, Kishida will bolster his chances of leading the party into the next election, which must be held by late 2025.

Iran TV says several foreigners, a UK diplomat, detained for alleged spying

Iran's Revolutionary Guards have detained several foreigners, including Britain's second most senior envoy in Tehran, for alleged acts of spying such as taking soil samples in restricted areas, state television reported on Wednesday. It did not elaborate on when they were arrested or whether they were still under arrest. Britain said the reports were "completely false".

(With inputs from agencies.)

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