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Migrants From Aquarius Flotilla Arrive in Spain

Boats in a flotilla of vessels carrying 629 migrants docked in the Spanish port of Valencia, ending a perilous crossing of the Mediterranean that has focused attention on Europe’s response to their plight. The Dattilo, an Italian vessel, arrived at Valencia before 7 a.m. and passengers began disembarking, according to images shown by Spanish state broadcaster TVE. The Aquarius and the Orione, another Italian ship, berthed later on Sunday. Spain’s new Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez agreed to receive the migrants from the Aquarius after Italy and then Malta refused permission for the vessel to dock. The insistence of the new Italian government, led by the League and the Five Star Movement, to curb the arrival of migrants and asylum-seekers has already rocked relations with France, which on Sat...

Cohen Investigators Restore Encrypted Messages, 16 Pages From His Shredder

Federal prosecutors may soon get to review material that Michael Cohen, President Donald Trump’s former lawyer, tried to ensure no one would ever see. Investigators have restored 16 pages of documents found in Cohen’s shredder and recovered 731 pages of messages sent on encrypted platforms, including WhatsApp and Signal. The material is the most recent to be produced to Cohen’s legal team out of more than 3.7 million items seized in an FBI search of his home, hotel room and office in April. The disclosures came in a letter filed by government lawyers in Manhattan federal court Friday. Later in the day, a retired judge assisting in the document review recommended extending Friday’s deadline to give Cohen’s legal team an additional 10 days to review all the material. Barbara Jones, the retir...

Trump’s New Iran Plan Counts on Help From the Allies He Spurned

President Donald Trump’s new, more aggressive strategy toward Iran depends on getting help from U.S. partners — the very allies he spurned in withdrawing from the 2015 nuclear accord with Tehran. With a speech on Monday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo filled in details of an Iran strategy that has so far consisted of walking away from the 2015 accord that restricted the country’s nuclear program in exchange for the lifting of some economic sanctions. His 12-point list of demands called for Iran to acquiesce to the U.S. virtually across the board. The new vision is Trump-style diplomacy — a promise to “crush” Iranian operatives and impose the “strongest sanctions in history” unless the Islamic Republic abandons all nuclear development and gives up what the U.S. considers its mal...

Why the U.A.E. Is Changing Visa and Ownership Rules for Expats

The United Arab Emirates is easing rules on the foreign ownership of companies as the country seeks to attract investment and boost an economy battered by lower oil prices. Under the new rules, non-Emiratis will be able to control a company outright, and specialists in medical, scientific, research and technical fields as well as top students will be able to get a residency of up to 10 years. Officials hope that the moves will attract new businesses to the country, driving future growth, and giving a much-needed boost to its real-estate market. Still, many questions remain about how exactly the new laws will work and the benefits they will bring. Here we try to answer some: 1. What’s changing? Currently, expatriates who want to set up a business outside of a free zone have to partner with ...

First Lady Returns to White House After Kidney Treatment

Washington (AP) — Melania (meh-LAH’-nee-ah) Trump is back at the White House after an extended hospitalization for a kidney procedure. The White House says the first lady returned to the White House on Saturday morning. She had been at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center near Washington since having an embolization procedure Monday for an unspecified kidney condition that the White House said was benign. President Donald Trump visited his 48-year-old wife during several of the evenings that she was in the hospital. The first lady said Wednesday on Twitter that she was “feeling great.” She thanked the Walter Reed staff and her well-wishers, and said she was looking forward to going home. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-19/first-lady-returns-t...

Egypt’s President Announces Rafah Crossing Open for Ramadan

Cairo (AP) — Egypt has opened the Rafah border crossing with Gaza for the entire Muslim holy month of Ramadan, President Abdel-Fatah el-Sissi announced on Twitter, in what would be the longest uninterrupted period of time since 2013. The move is meant as a humanitarian gesture during the annual holiday, one of the few occasions in which Egypt allows some Gazans stranded by a 2007 Egypt-Israel blockade to leave and return to the territory ruled by the militant Islamic group Hamas. The announcement late Thursday came just days after Israeli forces shot and killed 59 Palestinians and injured more than 2,700 during mass protests along the Gaza border. El-Sissi wrote on his official Twitter account that the opening would “alleviate the burdens of the brothers in the Gaza Strip.̶...

Brexit Bulletin: A New Last Resort

316 Days to Go Today in Brexit: Cabinet ministers have discussed keeping the U.K. tied to EU customs rules for longer as a way of avoiding a hard Irish border. The EU is skeptical. Theresa May’s inner cabinet has discussed staying tied to European Union customs rules for years after Brexit as a last resort to avoid a hard border on the island of Ireland, Tim Ross reports. It’s a radical proposal – a difficult one for Brexit-backers to accept – and EU officials have already poured scorn on it. But the idea is an alternative to the EU’s proposal for the Irish backstop clause that would keep Northern Ireland aligned with the EU’s Customs Union and Single Market. May has said that no British prime minister could accept such an arrangement as it would effectively sever Northern Ireland from the...

Zuckerberg Agrees to EU Parliament Grilling Over Data Scandal

Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg has agreed to face a grilling from European Union lawmakers over how the data of as many as 2.7 million Europeans could have ended up in the hands of consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. European Parliament President Antonio Tajani on Wednesday said Zuckerberg had accepted the EU institution’s invitation to travel across the Atlantic and face lawmakers in person as soon as next week. The meeting will take place in private, the assembly’s press service said. “Our citizens deserve a full and detailed explanation,” Tajani said in a statement posted on Twitter. “I welcome Mark Zuckerberg’s decision to appear in person before the representatives of 500 million Europeans. It is a step in the right direction towards restoring confidence.” The ...

Italy Bonds Roiled as Populists Debate $300 Billion Write-Down

Italian bonds slumped as populist parties struggling to form a government discussed a potential government debt write-down worth billions of euros. League lawmaker Armando Siri told La7 television on Wednesday that the anti-immigrant League and the anti-establishment Five Star Movement are discussing a 250 billion euro ($300 billion) write-off from the European Central Bank. He was confirming an earlier report on a draft plan by the Huffington Post. The ECB is barred from directly financing governments under the Maastricht Treaty. An ECB spokesman declined to comment on the leaked draft. The yield on benchmark 10-year notes climbed above 2 percent for the first time since March on the news. “This is all fairly disruptive stuff for Italian bonds,” said Jason Simpson, a strategist at Societe...

Salvini Says Italy’s Populist Coalition Talks Are on Last Lap

The leader of the anti-migrant League Matteo Salvini said talks with the Five Star Movement on a populist government for Italy have entered their final lap. “We’re in the final stretch,” Salvini said in a Facebook video. “I’m working right until the end to see whether it will be possible.” Lawmakers from the two parties are due to continue negotiations on a policy program Wednesday morning, according to a Five Star official who declined to be named. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-05-15/salvini-says-italian-populists-have-hours-to-decide-on-coalition

Bitter Election Fight in Southern India State Goes Down to Wire

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party won the most seats in a closely-fought election in the southern state of Karnataka but may not be able to form a government after two rival parties vowed to form a coalition government. The BJP is leading in 104 seats, eight short of the majority mark in the 224-member assembly, according to the Election Commission of India. The Congress party, which has governed Karnataka for the last five years, is leading in 76 seats, it said. Regional party Janata Dal (Secular) is ahead in 39 seats. The inconclusive outcome has paved the way for the Janata Dal (Secular) party, led by former prime minister H. D. Deve Gowda, to play a kingmaker in forming the government. Traditionally, the governor calls the single-largest party first to prove its maj...

Pruitt Demanded 24/7 Armed Security on First Day, EPA Watchdog Says

Washington (AP) — An internal watchdog at the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday that Administrator Scott Pruitt demanded and received unprecedented, around-the-clock protection from armed officers on his first day — a detail that appears at odds with past claims that the stepped-up security measures came in direct response to death threats. EPA Inspector General Arthur Elkins said in letters to Democratic senators that Pruitt himself initiated the 24-hour-a day protection, which far exceeds the part-time security afforded to past EPA administrators. Elkins’ letter comes after Pruitt cited an August 2017 report by a staffer in the inspector general’s office detailing more than a dozen investigations of threats against him and his Obama administration predecessor ...