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Updated: 9 hours 31 min ago

Turkey deports American IS suspect stuck at Greek border

15 hours 52 min ago

An American man suspected of being a member of the Islamic State group is being repatriated to the United States after spending three days in a no man's land between Turkey and Greece, Turkey’s Interior Ministry said Thursday. The United States agreed to take him in and will provide him with travel documents, the ministry said, adding that the repatriation was underway. The move comes a day after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with U.S. President Donald Trump in Washington.


Sterling steady as traders see Conservative majority after election

16 hours 11 min ago

Sterling kept within its recent trading range on Thursday but this week could prove its second best so far this month as expectations that the Conservative Party may win a majority in the Dec. 12 national election fuel investors' optimism. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's Conservatives have a 10-point lead over the main opposition Labour Party, a poll by Savanta ComRes showed on Wednesday. Elon Musk, chief executive of U.S. electric vehicle maker Tesla TSLA.O, was quoted as saying he had decided to build a new factory in Berlin, not Britain, because Brexit posed too much of a risk.


While You Weren’t Paying Attention, Iran Was Ratcheting Up Tensions in the Persian Gulf

16 hours 12 min ago

With public impeachment hearings underway, Washington has reached a much higher than normal level of self-absorption. In the age of Trumpian hyperdistraction, Iran probably penetrated most Americans’ consciousness eons ago, before attention was diverted by Ukraine and quid pro quos or Syria and the abandonment of the Kurds. Last week, however, Iran took its boldest step yet to rattle the international community over the fate of the Iran nuclear deal: Tehran announced that it had begun operating 60 advanced centrifuges, which are essential to separating out the uranium isotope used in atomic bombs, and that it was planning to install more.


Tear gas grenades kill 4 protesters in Baghdad: medics

16 hours 34 min ago

Four protesters were killed by tear gas canisters in Baghdad on Thursday, medics told AFP, the latest deaths from what rights groups have slammed as a "gruesome" misuse of the weapon. The medical sources said the protesters were hit near Tahrir (Liberation) Square, the epicentre of the weeks-long movement for sweeping political reform. The United Nations had already documented 16 deaths from the military-grade canisters, which are up to 10 times heavier than regular tear gas grenades and can pierce skulls or lungs.


Kuwait’s government resigns after grilling on infrastructure

17 hours 21 min ago

Kuwait’s Cabinet submitted its resignation on Thursday, days after the country’s minister of public works announced she would step down after being grilled by parliament. Some elected lawmakers had accused Jenan Ramadan, who is also minister of state for housing, of failing to fix infrastructure and roads that were damaged in massive floods in 2018. Ten lawmakers had filed a no-confidence motion against her, according to local media.


Iraq officials: 4 protesters killed in Baghdad clashes

17 hours 24 min ago

Clashes between Iraqi protesters and security forces in central Baghdad killed four people and wounded 62 on Thursday, Iraqi medical and security officials said. According to the officials, the casualties occurred in the Khilani area near Tahrir Square, which has been witnessing protests for weeks. The protests have mostly been taking place in Baghdad and the predominantly Shiite southern provinces.


Why Asia’s Longest-Serving Leader Is Warning About a Coup

17 hours 31 min ago

(Bloomberg) -- On his path to becoming Asia’s longest-serving leader, Hun Sen has mastered the art of fighting for power.When he first took charge of Cambodia as a 33-year-old in 1985, he battled remnants of the Khmer Rouge for control of the Southeast Asian nation. After losing the first election following a United Nations-brokered peace in 1993, he threatened to secede unless he was made co-prime minister. Four years later, a de facto coup put him solely in charge, a position he’s kept to this day.Now 67, Hun Sen is suddenly worried that a group of exiled dissidents might overthrow him by force -- a claim that looks hysterical on its face given many of his main political opponents have been locked up or abroad since he won all of the country’s parliamentary seats during a boycotted election last year.But he has lots of reason to worry.Discontent is building among the country’s 16 million people -- most of whom have never been alive under another leader -- over skyrocketing household debt, resentment at an influx of Chinese investment and a lack of jobs. The European Union is threatening to pull preferential tariffs that could upend the garment sector, the economy’s most important industry. And questions over succession are spurring rumors of internal rifts in his ruling Cambodian People’s Party.“There could easily be a popular uprising,” said Ou Virak, director of Phnom Penh-based think-tank Future Forum and former chairman of the Cambodian Center for Human Rights.‘Peaceful Uprising’Hun Sen’s opponents see an opportunity to pounce. Long-time opposition leader Sam Rainsy, who has spent the past four years in Paris, has vowed to return to Cambodia to fight for democracy along with others who fled abroad. Hun Sen’s government said the efforts amounted to a coup attempt, and he moved the military to the border while warning he’d use “weapons of all kinds” to stop them.After arriving in Malaysia, Sam Rainsy told reporters this week he and his colleagues would head to Cambodia “when there is a material, physical possibility to do so.” He said the whole world wanted democracy in Cambodia except for China, and called for a “peaceful uprising” among the masses.“I have called on the Cambodian army not to shoot at the people, not to shoot at the civilians, not to shoot at innocent people,” Sam Rainsy said. “And Mr. Hun Sen is very afraid because he is not sure of the loyalty of the army. The army will stand with the people. The army will not stand with dictators.”Phay Siphan, a Cambodian government spokesman, dismissed talk of an uprising, a mutiny in the army or any internal dissent within the ruling party.“Everything is under control,” he said by phone, while also ruling out talks with the opposition. “The government will in no shape or form negotiate with Sam Rainsy.”On Wednesday evening, the government issued a statement appealing to opposition supporters to “stop listening to Sam Rainsy” adding it had fully restored public order after defeating the exiled leader’s attempted coup, the AP reported. Sam Rainsy on Tuesday said he could still return to the country “at any time.”Still, Hun Sen has taken at least one step to ease tensions. On Sunday, the government released Kem Sokha, the founder and co-leader of the main opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party, after for more than two years. Another 85 political prisoners are still in custody, according to the UN.On Thursday, the prime minister ordered the release on bail of more than 70 opposition activists arrested in recent weeks for allegedly plotting to overthrow the government, Reuters reported.One reason for Kem Sokha’s release may be the EU’s looming decision on whether to pull Cambodia’s access to a preferential trading scheme due to its deteriorating human rights record. Such a move could decimate its $5 billion garment industry and threaten the jobs of about 750,000 Cambodians, some of whom stood with Sam Rainsy during mass rallies in 2013 calling for the prime minister’s resignation.We “expect the Cambodian authorities to reinstate the political rights of all opposition members banned from political life and to fully release all opposition members, supporters and activists recently put under detention,” the EU wrote in a statement on Monday.In a confidential report submitted this week, the EU told the Cambodian government it had not done enough on its human rights record to prevent the loss of its special trade privileges, RFA reported on Thursday.China FactorHun Sen’s move to curtail political and media freedoms over the years has coincided with closer ties with China. As President Xi Jinping’s biggest ally in Southeast Asia, the Cambodian government has garnered $7.9 billion in Chinese investment from 2016 to August 2019, representing more than a third of all foreign investment, according to the official Xinhua News Agency.The slew of Chinese property projects and tourists has led to a growing backlash both in the capital Phnom Penh and the once sleepy coastal resort town of Sihanoukville, where more than a dozen new casinos have driven up crime and prostitution. China’s stake in an investment zone encompassing 20% of Cambodia’s coastline also raised fears in the U.S. that it would become a Chinese naval base, something the government denied.“Cambodians do not feel good about the Chinese influx and it created insecurity inside the country,” said Noan Sereiboth, an influential political blogger and frequent contributor to the youth-centered media group Politikoffee.Another headache for Hun Sen is growing discontent over mounting public and personal debt. With a median of $3,370 per loan, Cambodia now has the highest average for small loans in the world, according to a report published in August by local rights groups.Mostly owed to just nine lenders, the total outstanding amount is equal to roughly a third of the country’s entire GDP for 2018, while seven largest MFIs made more than $130 million in profit in 2017. During last year’s election, Hun Sen disavowed connections to microfinance lenders.Question of SuccessionConfounding the problem is the question of succession as various factions jostle for power.Hun Sen’s three sons are seen as competing for the top spot, with his eldest Hun Manet the odds-on favorite. Educated at West Point and commander of the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces, Hun Manet was elevated last year to the ruling Cambodian People’s Party’s Standing Committee, a key decision-making body.Without specifically addressing the opposition’s calls for an uprising, Hun Manet took to Facebook on Tuesday implore citizens to enjoy the annual water festival this week.“What the people do not want is chaos, insecurity, instability and the loss of peace,” he wrote. “We must work together to fully protect the peace we have today.”For all the noise, Sam Rainsy’s move is “desperate” and has little chance of success, according to Lee Morgenbesser, author of the book “Beyond the Facade: Elections Under Authoritarianism in Southeast Asia.”“A failure to try re-enter Cambodia would raise significant questions about whether those exiled are the right leaders for Cambodia’s pro-democracy movement,” Morgenbesser said.Still, those outside the country see this as one of their final chances to act. Vanna Hay, 33-year-old CNRP supporter living Tokyo, plans to join other activists in returning to Cambodia.“No matter whether Sam Rainsy was on Cambodian soil on November 9 or later, the people will rise and people power will bring Hun Sen down,” Vanna Hay said. “They will collapse soon by their own sin they made.”(Updates with EU comment in 17th paragraph)To contact the reporter on this story: Philip J. Heijmans in Singapore at pheijmans1@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Ruth Pollard at rpollard2@bloomberg.net, Daniel Ten KateFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Powerful hard-liner: Iran should stop honoring nuclear deal

18 hours 10 min ago

A prominent member of Iran’s powerful Guardian Council has told The Associated Press that the Islamic Republic should stop honoring all terms of the collapsing 2015 nuclear deal with world powers amid tensions with the United States. The comments by Abbas Ali Kadkhodaei show an increasing willingness among Iran’s hard-liners to use the country’s atomic program to pressure Western powers. Nonproliferation experts are already concerned that steps Tehran has taken over the past months away from the accord narrow the estimated year it would need to build a nuclear bomb, if it chose to pursue one.


UPDATE 2-No more surrender for Brexit Party's Farage in British election

18 hours 18 min ago

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage on Thursday rejected demands to further help British Prime Minister Boris Johnson by pulling out of contests with the opposition Labour Party, saying his aim was to win enough parliamentary seats to hold Johnson to account. The Dec. 12 election will define the fate of Brexit: Johnson says he will get Brexit done by the end of January if he wins while Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn has promised to renegotiate the current exit deal and then hold another referendum.


Brexit Bulletin: Who Wins from Winter?

18 hours 40 min ago

Days to Brexit deadline: 78(Bloomberg) -- Sign up here to get the Brexit Bulletin in your inbox every weekday.Today in Brexit: When the history of Brexit is written, expect a chapter on one unlikely factor: the great British winter.What’s happening? With Britain bracing for its most important general election in a generation, set to determine the fate of Brexit, politicians are having to grapple with a very practical problem: campaigning while it’s cold, wet and dark. It’s the first December election in almost a century, and there are various implications for campaigning and potential turnout, write Bloomberg’s Alex Morales and Greg Ritchie. Transport could be snarled up by snow, preventing voters from reaching the polls. Some may have taken an early winter holiday and others could be out celebrating at office parties until after polling booths close at 10 p.m.These factors are likely to benefit the Conservatives, according to Philip Cowley, professor of politics at Queen Mary University of London. Cold weather could limit Labour’s campaigning advantage from its mass membership, he wrote last month in a Spectator blog. Postal votes might also have a greater sway, which tend to come from older and disproportionately Tory voters.Extreme conditions are already playing a role in this election. Prime Minister Boris Johnson had a tricky day on the campaign trail Wednesday, meeting flood victims who weren’t too pleased to see him in northern England. “What more can we do?” he asked one woman. “It’s a little bit too late now,” she replied.Johnson also suffered a setback as Nigel Farage’s Brexit Party continued to refuse to stand down candidates in Labour-held target seats, risking splitting the pro-Brexit vote. Though at the same time, a grand remain-supporting alliance between the pro-European Union Liberal Democrats and Labour has also not materialized, so tactical voting will be important. It’s shaping to be the election of cold and confusion.Today’s Must-ReadsElon Musk said Brexit is the reason why the U.K. missed out on being a location for a Tesla factory. In an interview with the Guardian, Unite’s Len McCluskey, Jeremy Corbyn’s key union backer, urged the Labour leader to take a tough line on free movement of workers to win the election. The U.K. election will still not settle the big questions of Brexit, Philip Stephens writes in the Financial Times.Brexit in BriefFree Trade 2020 | U.K. business minister Andrea Leadsom told broadcaster ITV that Britain “won’t know for sure” if a free trade deal is possible with the EU until the end of 2020, even though she’s confident the U.K. will get one.No Commissioner | The U.K. will not nominate an EU commissioner until after its December 12 election because of so-called “purdah” rules that prevent such appointments during a national vote, Britain’s ambassador to the EU Tim Barrow wrote in a letter to the bloc Wednesday night, according to Politico.Sluggish Property | Brexit uncertainty continues to weigh on the U.K. housing market, with the upcoming election also contributing to negative sentiment, according to the latest Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors report.Skeletons Exit Closet | Unwise social media posts have been destroying fledgling political candidates’ careers for almost a decade now, but the evidence in Britain is that the lesson has yet to have been learned, writes Bloomberg’s Kitty Donaldson.Lib Dem Opportunity | The pro-EU Liberal Democrats see Farage’s pact with the Conservatives as an opportunity to win over moderate voters, party leader Jo Swinson said in an interview with Bloomberg.Want to keep up with Brexit?You can follow us @Brexit on Twitter, and listen to Bloomberg Westminster every weekday. It’s live at midday on Bloomberg Radio and is available as a podcast too. Share the Brexit Bulletin: Colleagues, friends and family can sign up here. For full EU coverage, try the Brussels Edition.For even more: Subscribe to Bloomberg All Access for our unmatched global news coverage and two in-depth daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.To contact the author of this story: Joe Mayes in London at jmayes9@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Kay at ckay5@bloomberg.net, Leila TahaFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Brexit Party's Farage dismisses calls to stand down in Labour seats

18 hours 45 min ago

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage on Thursday dismissed demands to stand down candidates in Labour Party marginal seats, saying his main aim was to win seats in parliament to hold Prime Minister Boris Johnson to account over Brexit. In the most significant move of the election to date, Farage on Monday agreed to stand down 317 candidates in Conservative seats, a step that could pave the way for a majority in parliament for Johnson's Brexit deal. "The Conservatives want a Conservative majority in parliament, not a Brexit majority in parliament," Farage said.


Turkey: 17 hurt in explosions at ammunition depot

18 hours 54 min ago

Turkish officials say two explosions at an ammunition depot in southeast Turkey have injured 16 military personnel and one civilian. Gov. Abdullah Erin of Sanliurfa province has told reporters that the explosions occurred late Wednesday at the command of a mechanized brigade in the province, which borders Syria.


Leaked emails reveal Trump aide Stephen Miller's white nationalist views

19 hours 12 min ago

Exclusive: Miller’s messages with then Breitbart writer Katie McHugh attempted to steer the website’s coverageStephen Miller, a senior adviser to Donald Trump, promoted racist fears in emails revealed by the Southern Poverty Law Center this week. Photograph: Susan Walsh/Associated PressThe senior Trump adviser Stephen Miller promoted racist fears of demographic replacement of white people by non-whites, disseminated conspiracy theories positing a United Nations-inspired plan to colonize America, and implied a Mark Zuckerberg-sponsored bipartisan organization was promoting illegal voting, according to emails provided exclusively to the Guardian.Like other emails revealed by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) this week, the messages were sent in an effort to shape Breitbart News coverage with conspiratorial, white nationalist-influenced ideas during the Trump campaign.The emails were part of a correspondence with Katie McHugh, then a writer for the far-right website Breitbart. According to the SPLC, 80% of the emails in their 900-email correspondence were tightly focused on issues of race and immigration.In one email, sent on 24 July 2015, Miller forwarded McHugh an Amazon link to a book written by James Simpson: The Red-Green Axis: Refugees, Immigration and the Agenda to Erase America. The book posits that refugee resettlement is part of a plan to erase American sovereignty and culture.Simpson is a prolific conspiracy-minded author and anti-immigration activist The Red-Green Axis is one in a series of Simpson screeds that propose conspiracy theories about immigration, Islam and liberals. It argues that refugee resettlement should be understood as a part of a broad agenda of demographic replacement.“The entire refugee/asylee agenda,” Simpson writes, “must be viewed as a UN-inspired plan aimed at the West, especially America, to erase borders and dilute Western culture through mass immigration from the world’s failed nations.”Simpson claimed that then president Barack Obama was party to the conspiracy: “Its goal is to seed America and other Western countries with virulent Muslim groups who will not assimilate but instead attempt to dominate. With President Obama at the helm, that plan now has its greatest advocate.”The racist idea of demographic replacement – whereby white Americans are steadily replaced by non-whites to the detriment of the US – is present in an email sent by Miller to McHugh on 1 July 2015, with the subject heading “some articles you may find useful”.The email features several links with short comments on immigrants by Miller, who highlights aspects of the linked material that resonate with his agenda. For example, Miller links to a CityLab article about the challenges facing schools teaching English to immigrant children with the comment: “Major metro areas get most population growth from immigrants.”Miller then links to a Brookings Institution report on America’s increasing diversity with the comment: “White youth population disappearing.”According to McHugh, who was fired by Breitbart over anti-Muslim tweets and has now renounced the far right, the emails typified Miller’s attitudes and those of many in the far-right milieu he inhabited.“They viewed immigration as a plot to undermine American sovereignty,” McHugh told the Guardian. “He wanted refugee resettlement cut to zero and an end to legal immigration.“Much of the far right thinks this way.”In other emails, Miller expresses antipathy for specific non-white immigrant communities.On 8 July 2015, Miller sent McHugh a local news video alleging the involvement of Somali refugees in an underage prostitution ring, remarking: “Looks like this is from a couple years ago, but good to have on hand.”McHugh responded: “At some point it would be great to write a big round up of Somali crimes – after asking local officials the specific benefits their diversity provides us with?”Miller responded:“Exactly.”He then linked to a piece from Real Clear Politics arguing that stalled social mobility is related to “importing millions of low skill immigrants” from Latin America.Later the same day, Miller sent McHugh a report by the American Immigration Council, which showed that immigrants commit fewer serious crimes than native-born citizens. McHugh responded: “I’m guessing they lump El Salvador MS-13 gang members with Canadian neurosurgeons.”Miller replied: “Of course.”Miller also revealed a hostility towards Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg’s efforts to promote immigration reform, via the lobbying group FWD.US.McHugh told the Guardian that Facebook and other tech companies were the subject of special ire from Miller due to perceived “anti-conservative bias” and support for policies like the H-1B visa program, which allows US companies to hire foreign nationals in specialized occupations.On 2 June 2015, from a government email address identifying him as a staffer for then senator Jeff Sessions, Miller sent a long brief, pushing back on a speech by the FWD.US president, Todd Schulte.Miller sent excerpts from the speech, with key phrases bolded, highlighting Schulte’s desire for “citizenship for the undocumented” and his advocacy for “people who are unskilled to come here” along with skilled migrants.Arguing that “immigrants, as a share of national population, are set to eclipse every prior watermark in 7 years”, Miller cited research from the Harvard economist George Borjas, who has also appeared at events organized by the Center for Immigration Studies, an anti-immigrant thinktank.“Providing citizenship to illegal immigrants,” he concluded, “further increases low-wage labor flows as illegal immigrants granted green cards and citizenship can petition for their relatives to join them.”He also emailed McHugh – while a White House aide – with unfounded claims that FWD.US supported undocumented immigrants voting.The White House did not immediately respond to the Guardian’s request for comment.In response to an earlier story about Miller’s emails to McHugh, which also contained themes of white nationalism and anti-immigration fears, the White House said the SPLC was a “far-left smear organization”, adding that “they libel, slander, and defame conservatives for a living”.


Macron and Merkel Are Caught in a New Cold War

19 hours 13 min ago

(Bloomberg Opinion) -- “Technological sovereignty” is one of the European Union’s buzzwords of the moment, conjuring up an image of a safe and secure space for zettabytes of home-grown data, free from interference or capture by the U.S. and China.Both France’s Emmanuel Macron and Germany’s Angela Merkel have used the phrase to kick-start all sorts of initiatives, from artificial intelligence programs to state-backed cloud computing. The new European Commission president Ursula Von der Leyen has etched the concept into her political guidelines.It’s a noble goal, if only because it acknowledges Europe is anything but technologically sovereign right now. The internet behemoths are in America and China — Alphabet Inc., Facebook Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Alibaba Group Holding Ltd — and an estimated 92% of the Western world’s data is stored in the U.S., according to the CEPS think tank. China accounts for more than one-third of global patent applications for 5G mobile technology. Amazon boasts that 80% of blue-chip German companies on the DAX exchange use its cloud services business AWS. The trigger to do something about it is the race for supremacy between Beijing and Washington, which is spilling over into the tech sector and undercutting the EU’s ability to protect its turf. President Donald Trump’s ban on Huawei Technologies Co. and his attempts to bully allies into doing the same was a wake-up call, however valid his security concerns. The U.S. “Cloud Act,” which forces American businesses to hand over data if ordered regardless of where it’s stored, was another. Both China and the U.S. see the EU as an easy mark in the global tech tussle. And they’re right. Europe’s problem is that recapturing sovereignty is neither easy nor cheap. Take cloud computing, one area where France and Germany are eyeing the building of “sovereign” domestic infrastructure for use by national and European companies. This is a $220 billion global market dominated by U.S. suppliers with market values of close to $1 trillion, which invests tens of billions of dollars every year on infrastructure. Their power isn’t just technological: When Microsoft Corp. spends $7.5 billion on an acquisition such as GitHub, a forum for open-source coding, it’s bringing valuable developers into its own orbit. Likewise, Amazon’s AWS has the scale, cheap pricing and perks that lock in customers.France and Germany won’t win a head-on battle in this field. Paris is still smarting from a failed attempt years ago at building a sovereign cloud for the princely sum of 150 million euros ($165 million). Germany has Gaia-X, which looks like a common space for the sharing of data by the leading lights of the DAX , from SAP SE to Siemens  AG. It’s hard to see how such initiatives will lead to true digital sovereignty, though; not just because of a lack of serious investment, but because it’s hard to avoid using U.S. cloud tech.Still, it wouldn’t be a bad thing if this trend led to France and Germany collaborating more — laying the groundwork for more ambitious spending — and to Brussels doing what it does best: setting the rules of engagement for tech companies everywhere. Digital commissioner Margrethe Vestager is already demanding tougher enforcement of data protection laws and taking a consistently muscular approach to antitrust violations by the Silicon Valley and Seattle giants. It’s not sovereignty, but it’s a start.To contact the author of this story: Lionel Laurent at llaurent2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at jboxell@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Lionel Laurent is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Brussels. He previously worked at Reuters and Forbes.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Macron and Merkel Are Caught in a New Cold War

19 hours 13 min ago

(Bloomberg Opinion) -- “Technological sovereignty” is one of the European Union’s buzzwords of the moment, conjuring up an image of a safe and secure space for zettabytes of home-grown data, free from interference or capture by the U.S. and China.Both France’s Emmanuel Macron and Germany’s Angela Merkel have used the phrase to kick-start all sorts of initiatives, from artificial intelligence programs to state-backed cloud computing. The new European Commission president Ursula Von der Leyen has etched the concept into her political guidelines.It’s a noble goal, if only because it acknowledges Europe is anything but technologically sovereign right now. The internet behemoths are in America and China — Alphabet Inc., Facebook Inc., Amazon.com Inc., Alibaba Group Holding Ltd — and an estimated 92% of the Western world’s data is stored in the U.S., according to the CEPS think tank. China accounts for more than one-third of global patent applications for 5G mobile technology. Amazon boasts that 80% of blue-chip German companies on the DAX exchange use its cloud services business AWS. The trigger to do something about it is the race for supremacy between Beijing and Washington, which is spilling over into the tech sector and undercutting the EU’s ability to protect its turf. President Donald Trump’s ban on Huawei Technologies Co. and his attempts to bully allies into doing the same was a wake-up call, however valid his security concerns. The U.S. “Cloud Act,” which forces American businesses to hand over data if ordered regardless of where it’s stored, was another. Both China and the U.S. see the EU as an easy mark in the global tech tussle. And they’re right. Europe’s problem is that recapturing sovereignty is neither easy nor cheap. Take cloud computing, one area where France and Germany are eyeing the building of “sovereign” domestic infrastructure for use by national and European companies. This is a $220 billion global market dominated by U.S. suppliers with market values of close to $1 trillion, which invests tens of billions of dollars every year on infrastructure. Their power isn’t just technological: When Microsoft Corp. spends $7.5 billion on an acquisition such as GitHub, a forum for open-source coding, it’s bringing valuable developers into its own orbit. Likewise, Amazon’s AWS has the scale, cheap pricing and perks that lock in customers.France and Germany won’t win a head-on battle in this field. Paris is still smarting from a failed attempt years ago at building a sovereign cloud for the princely sum of 150 million euros ($165 million). Germany has Gaia-X, which looks like a common space for the sharing of data by the leading lights of the DAX , from SAP SE to Siemens  AG. It’s hard to see how such initiatives will lead to true digital sovereignty, though; not just because of a lack of serious investment, but because it’s hard to avoid using U.S. cloud tech.Still, it wouldn’t be a bad thing if this trend led to France and Germany collaborating more — laying the groundwork for more ambitious spending — and to Brussels doing what it does best: setting the rules of engagement for tech companies everywhere. Digital commissioner Margrethe Vestager is already demanding tougher enforcement of data protection laws and taking a consistently muscular approach to antitrust violations by the Silicon Valley and Seattle giants. It’s not sovereignty, but it’s a start.To contact the author of this story: Lionel Laurent at llaurent2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at jboxell@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Lionel Laurent is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Brussels. He previously worked at Reuters and Forbes.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Immigration Row Reopens Old Brexit Scars: U.K. Campaign Trail

November 13, 2019 - 11:54pm

(Bloomberg) -- Sign up to our Brexit Bulletin, follow us @Brexit and subscribe to our podcast.The Conservatives are trying to put immigration at the center of their campaign on Thursday. Home Secretary Priti Patel published analysis -- which Labour rejects -- saying Jeremy Corbyn’s “open borders” policy will push up net migration to 840,000 per year.After more false starts, Boris Johnson will hope the message resonates with pro-Brexit voters in the traditional Labour heartlands he wants to win.Must Read: Voting in the Dark: U.K. Politicians Fight Rare Winter ElectionELEC for more on the U.K. electionComing up:Corbyn campaigns in Scotland; Labour to announce measures to close the gender pay gap4 p.m. official deadline for nominating candidates for the electionThe Polls:Savanta ComRes poll for the Telegraph: Conservatives 40%, Labour 30%, Lib Dems 16%, Brexit Party 7%Here’s a summary of recent pollsCatching Up:Tory leader’s office pledges more money for electric car technology and offshore wind farms, but the day did not go perfectlyElon Musk blames Brexit for U.K. missing out on Tesla Inc. gigafactoryTories offered Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage an electoral pact; he turned it down, the Telegraph reportsLib Dem Leader Jo Swinson sees a chance to woo moderate ToriesPast social media gaffes haunt candidatesThe Markets:The pound was little changed on Wednesday and edged lower early on ThursdayBetfair Exchange puts the chances of a Conservative majority at about 62%, while the party has about a 52% chance of winning more than 340 seats, according to the exchange, where punters bet against each other, rather than the bookmaker itself.\--With assistance from Peter Flanagan.To contact the reporter on this story: Tim Ross in London at tross54@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Flavia Krause-Jackson at fjackson@bloomberg.net, Emma Ross-ThomasFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


Five Things You Need to Know to Start Your Day

November 13, 2019 - 11:28pm

(Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on what's moving European markets in your inbox every morning? Sign up here.Good morning. U.S-China talks hit another snag and economies are slowing due to trade tensions, but oil is bouncing back. Here’s what’s moving markets.SnagU.S.-China trade talks hit a snag over the agricultural purchases the pair have been negotiating, news that sent cyclical shares tumbling for a second day on renewed jitters about how the talks are going. Asian stocks dipped a little on this, along with Chinese data and worries about the situation in Hong Kong. Beyond those snags in the U.S.-China talks, U.S. President Donald Trump said he wants to strike a trade deal with Turkey and described Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a pariah in Washington over his country's military offensive into Syria, as a “good friend.”SlowdownIf one were looking for evidence of the impact those trade tensions are having, economic data from China and Japan lays it bare. China’s economy slowed further in October, with trade concerns and subdued domestic demand offsetting the piecemeal stimulus the government is pumping in to shore things up. Worryingly, economists say the slowdown there is yet to hit the bottom. Japan’s economy, meanwhile, slowed sharply in the third quarter with exports falling, all as its government considers the size of a stimulus package it intends to launch to counter the weakness.Bounce BackIt's been a busy week for energy traders, what with Saudi Aramco’s initial public offering and the International Energy Agency’s views on when crude demand will peak spooking parts of the market, but oil is bouncing back. Crude futures are up for a second day after a report that the OPEC cartel sees a potential reduction in supply coming from non-OPEC members along with an “upswing” in the forecast for demand growth. This as the U.S. Energy Information Administration raised its forecast for crude output in 2020, even as the pioneers of the shale boom think production growth will slow.Election LandThe parties fighting the U.K.’s election continue on with what has been an uneasy campaign thus far. Conservative leader Boris Johnson faced flood-hit communities in northern England and said Brexit is holding back the country’s economy. The Liberal Democrats, who support remaining in the European Union,  see an opportunity after the Brexit Party’s retreat from hundreds of seats. Social media pasts are haunting many of the candidates, the Netherlands is making a play to take London’s spot as the top restructuring hub and Brexit has cost the U.K. a Tesla factory. Just another day in Brexit election land.Coming Up…Investors will be digesting yesterday’s first day of public testimony in the impeachment probe into Trump. There are a large number of central bank officials speaking, beyond the Federal Reserve’s Jerome Powell testifying at a House Budget Committee meeting. Central bankers from the Fed, European Central Bank and Bank of Canada are all on the slate. Euro-area and German GDP data are due too and there will be an interest rate decision from Mexico later.What We’ve Been ReadingThis is what’s caught our eye over the past 24 hours. WeWork’s quarterly loss doubled as its IPO faltered. There’s a flaw in McDonald’s ordering kiosks. Mental health is still a “don’t ask, don’t tell” subject at work. A genetics company wants everyone to live to 99. Mongolia is a hotbed for road rage. Open-source code can survive the apocalypse. Travel hacks from the youngest person to visit every country.Like Bloomberg's Five Things? Subscribe for unlimited access to trusted, data-based journalism in 120 countries around the world and gain expert analysis from exclusive daily newsletters, The Bloomberg Open and The Bloomberg Close.Before it's here, it's on the Bloomberg Terminal. Find out more about how the Terminal delivers information and analysis that financial professionals can't find anywhere else. Learn more.To contact the author of this story: Sam Unsted in London at sunsted@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Phil Serafino at pserafino@bloomberg.netFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


The Latest: New barrage of Gaza rockets fired into Israel

November 13, 2019 - 10:39pm

Gaza militants fired a barrage of rockets into Israel hours after a cease-fire was declared to bring to an end to two days of intense fighting. Air raid sirens went off in several communities on Thursday near the Gaza Strip as at least five rockets could be seen blasting out of the territory. The rockets come after both Israel and the Islamic Jihad militant group said they were holding their fire following the heaviest bout of cross-border violence in months.


Israel, Islamic Jihad truce appears holding despite rockets

November 13, 2019 - 9:11pm

A cease-fire between Israel and Gaza’s Islamic Jihad militant group appeared to be holding Thursday despite an earlier barrage of rocket fire that briefly disrupted a truce to end two days of intense fighting that killed at least 34 Palestinians, including three women and eight children, and paralyzed parts of Israel. Before the truce was announced, a pre-dawn Israeli airstrike killed eight members of the same family in Gaza. It was the deadliest single attack since a bruising 2014 war between Israel and Hamas, the larger militant group that rules Gaza.


Islamic Jihad continues to fire rockets into Israel following commander's assassination

November 13, 2019 - 6:50pm

Islamic Jihad has fired at least 360 rockets into Israel from Gaza since Tuesday, the Israeli army said Wednesday night, in response to the assassination of one of the militant group's senior commanders.On Tuesday, the commander, Bahaa Abu al-Ata, and his wife were killed when their Gaza home was targeted by an Israeli airstrike. The army says Abu al-Ata was responsible for several rocket attacks against Israel, and was planning a massive operation against the country.After Abu al-Ata's death was reported, Islamic Jihad began firing rockets into Israel, and Israel responded by ramping up airstrikes against Islamic Jihad targets across the Gaza Strip. At least 26 Palestinians have died in the fighting, including a 7-year-old boy. Islamic Jihad is backed by Iran, and calls for the destruction of Israel.The militant group Hamas, which controls Gaza, has so far stayed out of the matter. Egyptian mediators are trying to arrange a truce, The Associated Press reports, and U.N. Mideast envoy Nickolay Mladenov said the organization is "working to urgently de-escalate the situation." On Tuesday, Syrian officials said an Israeli airstrike targeting an Islamic Jihad militant in Damascus missed him, but killed two of his relatives.More stories from theweek.com The coming death of just about every rock legend The president has already confessed to his crimes Why are 2020 Democrats so weird?


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