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El Salvador’s risky move to Bitcoin; future of Singapore patrol robots

Marietje Schaake, International Policy Director at Stanford's Cyber Policy Center, Eurasia Group senior advisor and former MEP, discusses trends in big tech, privacy protection and cyberspace:

El Salvador becomes the first country to adopt Bitcoin as legal tender. Is this a risky move?

Well, it is unclear who ought to benefit most of the President's move to adopt Bitcoin. Poor shopkeepers, wealthy investors, or he himself. With arguments that remittances are expensive and the future is digital, President Bukele leapt forward. But the immediate value drop of Bitcoin was a live reminder of the cryptocurrencies' volatility. One silver lining is that others can learn from the lessons that El Salvador will learn under this new spotlight.

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What We're Watching: Trump's high seas feud with Iran and Venezuela, Kosovo leader's war crimes rap, Singapore's family feud election

US sanctions Iran over Venezuela oil shipments: In a bid to scuttle growing cooperation between two of Washington's biggest bogeymen, the White House yesterday slapped sanctions on five Iranian tanker captains who had delivered oil to Venezuela. Both Venezuela and Iran are currently under crippling US sanctions, but Tehran has been sending food and fuel aid to its comrades in Caracas, as Venezuelan strongman Nicolas Maduro clings to power despite leading his country into economic ruin. If you're puzzled as to why Venezuela, with the world's largest known oil reserves, needs to import oil (and gas), it's because its own output has fallen due to low prices, US sanctions, and the incompetence of the Maduro cronies who run the state oil company. In a further snub to Caracas, a US warship yesterday took a swing through waters claimed by the Venezuelan government — earlier this year the Trump administration had threatened to deploy more Navy vessels to the region as part of a crackdown on drug trafficking, believed to be a major source of income for the Venezuelan ruling clique.

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Marietje Schaake describes the trade-off between security and freedom under COVID-19

In an interview with Ian Bremmer for GZERO World, Marietje Schaake, former member of EU Parliament and international policy director of the Cyber Policy Center at Stanford University, discusses the tradeoff between security and freedom when it comes to data surveillance. In a wide-ranging conversation about data and big tech, taped just days before cities entered lockdown in the United States, Schaake addresses early steps taken in Singapore and China to curb the spread of COVID-19 using tracking tools. The complete discussion is part of the latest episode of GZERO World which begins airing Friday, May 8, on national public television. Check local listings.

Coronavirus Politics Daily: Singapore shutdown, European strawberries stranded, Mossad's medical mission

Singapore's "circuit breaker" lockdown: The Asian financial hub of Singapore has been held up as an example of a country that had the COVID-19 outbreak under better control than most. The chief of the World Health Organization chief even singled out Singapore for praise, commending its "all-government approach" to containment and mitigation of the deadly disease. But after experiencing its largest daily rise in new cases, it will now shutter schools, workplaces, and non-essential businesses for at least a month, in a move dubbed a "circuit breaker" to stop the disease's spread. The growth of "unlinked" or untraceable community infections is part of "very worrying trends," a government minister said Friday. Come Tuesday, Singaporeans will join half of humanity under stay-at-home orders. If even the countries that have done best at fighting coronavirus still have to take more drastic measures like this, it's a grim sign for what awaits the rest of the world.

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Potential for cooperation between Singapore and Shanghai is huge: DPM Heng

May 24, 2019 2:09 PM

SHANGHAI - As open economic and trade hubs, there is huge potential for cooperation between Singapore and Shanghai, leaders from both sides said at a bilateral meeting on Friday (May 24) where five deals to further collaboration were signed.

Penang proposes joint S'pore-Malaysia Unesco hawker culture bid

May 05, 2019 5:00 AM

GEORGE TOWN • Penang's state government has proposed Singapore and Malaysia file a joint-nomination to list hawker culture under Unesco, but the idea did not go down well with critics on both sides of the Causeway.

Hong Kong court says shipping firm, captain guilty over seizure of Singapore SAF Terrexes in 2016

April 29, 2019 3:36 PM

HONG KONG - Singapore-based shipping firm APL and one of its captains were found guilty on Monday (April 29) of importing nine Singapore Armed Forces (SAF) armoured vehicles worth HK$136.6 million (S$23.7 million) into Hong Kong without a proper licence nearly three years ago, local media reported.

PM Lee Hsien Loong and Djibouti president discuss potential cooperation

April 28, 2019 10:48 AM

BEIJING - Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong met President of the Republic of Djibouti Ismail Omar Guelleh on Sunday (April 28) on the sidelines of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing.

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