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Ursula von der Leyen

Hard Numbers: Aid corridor, Starving in Sudan, Iran the executioner, Uber-vaccinated in Deutschland, Nightmarish sea lizard

230: The government of Cyprus, just 230 miles from Gaza, has proposed the establishment of a one-way maritime corridor to provide uninterrupted aid to Palestinian civilians trapped there. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen will travel to the island nation later this week to discuss the plan.

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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen delivers a speech at BusinessEurope conference in Brussels, Belgium March 5, 2020.

REUTERS/Francois Lenoir/File Photo

Hard Numbers: Von der Leyen seeks reelection, Israel GDP plummets, Ukrainian troops captured, Something’s smelly in Cape Town, Moïse’s widow indicted

5: Ursula Von der Leyen has announced she will seek a second term as president of the EU Commission. Over her first five-year term, she has seen the EU through a pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, a rise in irregular migration, and record-breaking inflation. The election will take place in June, and so far, there are no serious challengers to her reelection.
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FILE PHOTO: Donald Trump dancing during the campaign rally for the Republican primary for the 2024 American presidential election. Manchester (NH), USA, January 20, 2024.

David Himbert / Hans Lucas via Reuters Connect

For China, Russia, and Israel, patience is a virtue in 2024

In January, Taiwan elected pro-independence candidate William Lai and, despite warnings, China’s response has been restrained, possibly influenced by Beijing’s belief that the leading US presidential candidate may treat Taiwan like a “discarded chess piece.”

That’s what Chinese Taiwan Affairs Office spokesperson Chen Binhua said would happen if Donald Trump won the US election in November after the former president refused to say whether he would defend Taiwan. His comments shook US ally Japan strongly enough that senior Kishida administration officials are reportedly contacting Trump’s camp to warn against cutting any kind of deal with China.

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European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni.


Hard Numbers: Lampedusa landings soar, Aussies rally for indigenous rights, Vatican makes Holocaust admission, Brand accused of rape

8,000: European Commission President, Ursula von der Leyen traveled to the island of Lampedusa, which lies halfway between Sicily and Tunisia, after Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni called for the EU’s assistance with a wave of small boat arrivals there. Over 8,000 migrants have landed on Lampedusa since Friday. For more on how the immigration debate is dividing European governments, see our explainer here.

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EU Commision chief Ursula von der Leyen


Europe’s annual checkup

European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen takes the mic on Wednesday for her annual state of the union address.

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Jess Frampton

Macron’s Taiwan remarks are a big win for China

Emmanuel Macron is in the news again, and this time it’s not because he’s trying to get French people to work longer.

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Backlash from Macron's China visit
Backlash from Macron's China visit | Quick Take | GZERO Media

Backlash from Macron's China visit

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take: Happy Monday. It's Ian Bremmer here and a Quick Take to kick off our week. And I want to talk a little bit about French President Emmanuel Macron, who is in the news again this week and not for demonstrations at home. Not for trying to change the pension age from 62 to 64, I mean that and the backlash has been dominating international coverage of the French president for weeks now. But this time around, it's what he's saying on the international stage.

Specifically, Macron has just completed a trip to China with Ursula von der Leyen and brought a whole bunch of business leaders with him. Nothing shocking about that. Olaf Scholz did the same a few months ago when he went to Beijing. Was talking about Xi Jinping playing more of a role on the Russia, Ukraine crisis. There, that is a bit different than what we've seen from other leaders. It was in the G-20 in Bali when Macron went off-piste and basically said, "Hey, we'd love to have Xi Jinping engaged directly in leading diplomacy, responding to the Russian invasion." The Americans were skeptical, a number of other Western leaders a little concerned that Macron had made those statements without talking to them about it but didn't really go anywhere.

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U.S. President Joe Biden speaks with Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau as they meet during the Ninth Summit of the Americas in Los Angeles, California, U.S., June 9, 2022.

REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

US green subsidies pushback to dominate Biden's Canada trip

As Ottawa prepares for a two-day visit by President Joe Biden starting Thursday, Canadians have been speculating about whether he will do something to stop the northward flow of border crossings by undocumented migrants at Roxham Road, Quebec.

That problem is grabbing headlines, but it is nothing next to the border challenges the Americans face, and the Canadians likely have more important requests for Biden. Behind the scenes, the government is focused on getting Americans to help mitigate the impact of the Inflation Reduction Act, the largest climate spending package in US history, which could lead to the loss of capital and jobs from Canada.

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