Coronavirus: Macron takes part in videoconference with European leaders | AFP

Emmanuel Macron speaks with European Union leaders by videoconference about the coronavirus crisis. The meeting, organised by the French President, was attended by European Council President Charles Michel, Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen, ECB President Christine Lagarde and 27 Heads of State and Government. IMAGES

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Greenpeace projects a burning earth on EU Commission on eve of climate law | AFP

Greenpeace activists project a burning earth on the European Commission building to call on the EU to act faster on global warming on the eve of the Commission’s presentation of the climate law. IMAGES

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EU continuing ‘no deal’ Brexit preparations: spokesperson | AFP

The European Commission is continuing to prepare for a “no deal” Brexit, according to a Commission spokeswoman, as negotiations are due to open next week. SOUNDBITE

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EU Council chief meets with Macron for budget talks in Brussels | AFP

European Council chief Charles Michel and Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen meet with France’s Emmanuel Macron in Brussels during a special summit to decide on the bloc’s longterm budget. IMAGES

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Refugees evicted by police from sit-in outside UNHCR in Cape Town | AFP

Refugees who had been staging a sit-in outside the UN high Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) office in Cape Town are forcefully evicted by police. A water canon and stun grenades were used to remove those who refused to obey the court order attained by the building owners.

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EU battle lines drawn as Johnson takes UK reins

The European Commission is reiterating that the Brexit withdrawal agreement will not be reopening. The Commission tells Britain’s new PM Boris Johnson that the existing deal is “the best and only agreement possible.” (July 26)

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Today in History for July 22nd

Highlights of this day in history: Wiley Post completes first solo flight around the world; Robber John Dillinger shot dead; Saddam Hussein’s sons killed in Iraq; The September 11th Commission releases its report; Birth of the Frisbee. (July 22)

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EU finds no ‘evidence’ Kaspersky Lab software spies for Russia, despite claims by US

A recently published document reveals the European Commission has no evidence that Kaspersky Lab software spies on users on behalf of the Russian government, despite the EU and US labeling it ‘malicious.’

‘The Commission is not in possession of any evidence regarding potential issues related to the use of Kaspersky Lab products,’ reads a letter from an EC representative to a Belgian member of parliament, dated last Friday.

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WHO, stuck between politics How to reschedule cannabis within the UN

Since 1961 The United Nations looks upon cannabis as a Schedule I drug with “no accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse.” The plant is scheduled as a dangerous drug, like heroin, in the Single Convention on Narcotic and Drugs.
But things are about to change!
Earlier this year, the Expert Committee on Drug Dependence, part of the World Health Organization, released a pre-review report of cannabis that included several positive, evidentiary findings. And, cannabis has not been on the agenda of the World Health Organization since 1954.
Now in 2018, we are present at the Commission on Narcotic Drugs 61st reconvened session in Vienna to watch the recommendations, how to re-schedule cannabis, presented by the WHO!

Watch this first part of a Vienna Special.

We are due to make the second soon, The International Cannabis Policy Conference with even the best speakers ever we have not shown before. Stay tuned!

International Cannabis Policy Conference | Vienna 2018

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What You Should Know About The Supreme Court’s Wedding Cake Decision (HBO)

On Monday, the Supreme Court sided 7–2 with a Christian baker who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple in 2012.

Jack Phillips, the cake shop owner, argued that he was protected by two clauses under the Constitution — free speech and free exercise.
Decorating cakes, Phillips said, was a form of art and producing a design for the couple went against his sincere religious beliefs.

But David Mullins and Charlie Craig, the couple who wanted the cake, said Phillips’ refusal violated Colorado’s anti-discriminations laws and filed a complaint against the bakery. The Commission, along with the Colorado Court of Appeals, found that Phillips had violated the state’s anti-discrimination laws. Phillips appealed the decision and petitioned the Supreme Court to take the case on.

In the Court’s decision, the Justices found that while handling the claims against the cake shop, the Commission had shown “hostility” towards the baker’s religious beliefs and in doing so, violated his religious rights under the First Amendment.

The court, however, did not answer the larger question on whether businesses can use religious views to exempt themselves from anti-discrimination laws – a question that is likely to reappear in front of the highest court soon with at least one similar case pending.

It’s a narrow win for Phillips, in what has been one of the closest-watched cases of the term.

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Britain and EU reach deal on Brexit divorce terms

The EU Commission says that Brexit talks should move on to trade talks as “sufficient progress” had been made on the first stage covering divorce issues, following talks between British Prime Minister Theresa May and Commission chief Jean-Claude Juncker. SOUNDBITE

The Woman Behind Google’s $2.7 Billion Fine (HBO)

VICE News was given exclusive access on the day as EU Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager announced a record breaking antitrust fine against tech giant Google. It’s not the first time Vestager has taken on a large company, having previously forced Apple, Facebook and Intel to pay up.

Speaking to Aditya Chakrabortty, she told him why she feels her work at the Commission is a battle for fairness on behalf of Europe’s 500 million consumers and how she came to her decision on Google.

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