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Coronavirus Politics Daily: Italy snubs women, the COCAINE-19 crisis, ISIS exploits pandemic in Iraq

Italy's women snubbed in COVID response – Italy's COVID-19 commission, which was selected to advise the government on how to manage the crisis, has gathered for a televised briefing each night to update the public on the day's news. But in a country where more than half of doctors, and three-quarters of nurses, are women, Italians have noted a glaring omission: the 20-member body is made up entirely of men. Now, anger over gender inequality in the coronavirus response is gaining momentum: more than 70 women doctors and scientists have signed a petition demanding that the Italian government include females in the councils that govern the country's response to the pandemic. Female lawmakers have lodged a similar motion in the Senate. The absence of women in the policymaking process has led to some big mistakes, critics say: Prime Minister Conte's reopening plan, for example, fails to address childcare burdens, which disproportionately fall on the female population. The gender imbalance in the government's coronavirus response tracks broader inequalities in Italy, where only 53 percent of Italian women are represented in the workforce, the second lowest mark in the EU.

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Coronavirus Politics Daily: Poland's election, Iraq on the rocks, the Peruvian urban exodus

Poland's election mess: Many countries have postponed their elections fearing that in-person polls could put voters at risk of contracting COVID-19. Not Poland. The country is still set to hold its presidential election on May 10, and any decision to the contrary will now come at the 11th hour, after a contentious debate. The ruling coalition government, led by the nationalist Law and Justice Party, wants to delay the vote by just a week or two so that a vote-by-mail system can be rolled out. Critics note that a fraud-proof system of this kind usually takes months or years to get off the ground. But the government wants to capitalize on incumbent President Andrzej Duda's strong recent polling, and is even trying to bend rules which forbid any changes to elections within six months of the vote. Opposition parties, meanwhile, worry about fraud and the public health risks of holding the vote so soon, and some have called for a boycott. Parliament is set to vote on the government backed-plan this week. The crucial vote lies with the lower house, where the governing coalition has a slim majority.
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Iran's Qassim Suleimani assassinated! Ian Bremmer discusses

Who was Qassem Soleimani and why did the US target him?

Well, he's the most important military leader in Iran. The architect of their proxy warfare and terrorist network across the region, which made him one of most important antagonists of the United States. He specifically was targeted because of his involvement in ordering attacks against an American base in Iraq, led to the injury of US soldiers and the killing of one US military contractor. The fact that he was killed is a major escalation in the confrontation between the US and Iran that has been going on really since the US withdrew from the Iranian nuclear deal.

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Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak

This week Ian interviews Ehud Barak, the former Prime Minister of Israel and the most highly decorated soldier in the country’s history. Given the news out of that part of the Middle East this week, his timing could not be better.

+Gaza Deep Dive +China Trade +Iraq Elections

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