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Відбір на ЧМ-2022: збірна України зіграла внічию з чинними чемпіонами світу

Гравець збірної Франції Антуан Грізман відкрив рахунок у матчі на 19-й хвилині. На 57-й хвилині українцям вдалося зрівняти рахунок

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У штабі Навального відмовилися виправити карту з «російським» Кримом – Чубаров

«Путін, немає слів, вбивця і бандит! А ким тоді є ті, хто підтримує Путіна в його бандитському вторгненні до Криму і окупації півострова?» – написав Чубаров у фейсбуці

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Вірджинія стала 23-м штатом США, який скасував смертну кару

Вірджинія поступається тільки Техасу за кількістю проведених страт

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Virginia Becomes First Southern US State to Abolish Death Penalty 

Virginia on Wednesday became the first state in the U.S. South to abolish the death penalty.Democratic Governor Ralph Northam signed a bill outlawing capital punishment in the state, saying it was “the moral thing to do.”Virginia is the 23rd U.S. state to abolish the death penalty.Virginia has carried out more executions — nearly 1,400 — than any other state since its founding as a colony in the early 1600s.Northam signed the bill ending the death penalty at the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt, which houses the state’s execution chamber.”Signing this new law is the right thing to do,” Northam said. “It is the moral thing to do to end the death penalty in the Commonwealth of Virginia.”Virginia’s history — we have much to be proud of — but not the history of capital punishment,” he said.

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‘You Can Now Buy a Tesla With Bitcoin,’ Elon Musk Says

Tesla CEO Elon Musk said the company will now accept Bitcoin as a form of payment for a new electric car.
 
“You can now buy a Tesla with bitcoin,” CEO Elon Musk tweeted Wednesday, making good on a promise the company made in a financial filing last month.
 
Musk added that the cryptocurrency will not be converted to dollars and that paying with Bitcoin will be available outside the U.S. later this year.
 
After the news, the price of Bitcoin climbed to $56,242, around 3%, which would be enough to cover the price of the least expensive Tesla model, the Tesla Model 3, which costs under $40,000. 
If a customer decides to return a Tesla bought with bitcoins, the company said it can refund them either in U.S. dollars or bitcoins.  
 
Dan Ives, a market analyst at Wedbush Securities, told CNN that the move was a “seminal moment” for both Tesla and Bitcoin.
 
“We expect less than 5% of transactions to be through Bitcoin over the next 12 to 18 months, however, this could move higher over time as crypto acceptance starts to ramp over the coming years,” he added.
 
Musk has gone from a cryptocurrency skeptic to embracing the new asset. Recently, the company invested $1.5 billion in Bitcoin.
 
“I do at this point think Bitcoin is a good thing, and I am a supporter of Bitcoin,” Musk said January 31 during an interview on the networking app Clubhouse. “Many friends of mine have tried to convince me to get involved in Bitcoin for a long time.”  
 
“I think Bitcoin is really on the verge of getting broad acceptance by conventional finance people,” he added.  
 
Both Tesla and Bitcoin have risen sharply in value over the past 12 months, with Tesla shares surging from $100 to $600 and Bitcoin from $7,000 to over $55,000 today.
 

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Years-Long US Pressure Campaign Chokes Huawei’s Growth

When Joe Biden took office as president, the Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei Technologies saw at least a glimmer of hope that the U.S.-led campaign to shut it out of international markets might be eased somewhat. Once a global leader in smartphone sales, Huawei has seen its market share outside China plummet since the Trump administration began choking off its supply of technology key to producing modern 5G handsets. Likewise, the company’s business installing mobile telecommunications infrastructure, and especially new 5G-capable systems, has been severely damaged by a U.S. campaign against it.Biden had not signaled that he would be particularly easy on China — his appointment of China hawk Katherine Tai as U.S. Trade Representative confirmed that. But Huawei and other Chinese firms thought that, if nothing else, the two countries could step back from a Trump-era trade war footing.Huawei Executive Back in Court to Fight US ExtraditionUS wants Meng Wanzhou, daughter of Chinese telecom’s founder and chief financial officer of the company, extradited to face fraud chargesBiden tightens restrictionsEarlier this month, Huawei’s prospects for relief dimmed considerably when the Biden administration announced that it would not only continue some of the Trump administration’s export bans, but would tighten them.“The Biden administration appears to be maintaining the final Trump policy regarding which Huawei-related export licenses to approve or deny, which is more restrictive than the 2020 license policy,” said Kevin Wolf, a former assistant secretary of commerce for export administration in the Commerce Department’s Bureau of Industry and Security.Now a partner with the law firm Akin Gump in Washington, Wolf added, “In order to make the license policy consistent and level the playing field, it has amended 2020 licenses limiting their scope so that they align with the final Trump license policy. In particular, licenses for shipments for items ‘for use in or with 5G devices’ will be denied or revoked.”Contentious MeetingAdditionally, on the eve of the first high-level meeting between Biden administration officials and representatives of Beijing, the Commerce Department announced that it had issued subpoenas to a number of Chinese companies as part of an investigation into national security threats.  Beijing Slams US Blacklisting of Chinese CompaniesChina’s commerce ministry on Saturday said it ‘firmly opposes’ the move, which will affect the country’s biggest chipmaker, SMIC, and vowed to ‘take necessary measures’ to safeguard Chinese companies’ rightsThe action stemmed from a 2019 executive order by Trump allowing the executive branch to prohibit purchases of technology deemed to present a national security threat. The Commerce Department did not name the companies it is investigating, but many experts assume that Huawei was among them.The next day, in a contentious meeting with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Yang Jiechi, director of the Central Foreign Affairs Commission Office of the Chinese Communist Party, blasted the U.S, saying, “It abuses so-called notions of national security to obstruct normal trade exchanges, and incite some countries to attack China.”Origins of banBeginning in fits and starts in 2019, a broad swath of export bans eventually cut Huawei off from an array of technologies that had been essential to the company’s operations. The U.S. push began partly in response to then-President Trump’s lengthy trade battle with China, and partly in response to very real national security concerns related to allowing Huawei to become a dominant player in global 5G — the next generation technology standard for broadband cellular networks.U.S. intelligence agencies have long asserted that Huawei is closely connected to the Chinese government. That, combined with the fact that Chinese law specifically requires companies to cooperate with the country’s intelligence services in collecting data, pushed U.S. officials to warn that Huawei components could potentially be used to create “backdoor” access for Beijing into sensitive government and private sector systems.Huawei says, ‘yes’Huawei officials have repeatedly expressed their frustration at being publicly treated as an arm of the Chinese government. Last week Andy Purdy, chief security officer for Huawei Technologies USA, told Bloomberg News that if the Biden administration is concerned about the company, “we hope that the U.S. government will partner with us and not point to the Chinese government, because Huawei speaks for Huawei.” Huawei Running Out of Smartphone Chips under US Sanctions Huawei is at the center of US-Chinese tension over technology and security, and the feud has spread to TikTok and WeChat Many industry experts, though, remain very dubious about the company’s protestations of independence. “The Chinese government may not speak for Huawei,” said Jim Lewis, senior vice president and director of the Strategic Technologies Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. “But when the Chinese government speaks to Huawei, Huawei says, “‘Yes.’”Broad impactThe Trump administration’s assault on Huawei was scattershot at times, but ultimately it was brutally effective.All Huawei phones had used the Android operating system made by Google, but in May of 2019, Google announced that it would comply with the administration’s order and refuse to license its operating system to any new phones made by the Chinese firm.U.S. microchip giants Intel and Qualcomm were likewise banned from selling their most advanced technology to the company, all but eliminating its ability to produce cutting edge handsets. The export restrictions also barred contract chipmakers, including Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corp., the world’s largest, from selling advanced chips to Huawei.According to International Data Corporation, a business intelligence firm, as its chip supply dried up, Huawei’s share of the global smartphone market cratered. In the second quarter of 2020, Huawei shipped an industry leading 20.2% of handsets, but by the fourth quarter its share had dropped to just 8.6%.Other analysts predict that before 2021 is over, that number will have been halved again, to around 4% of the market.5G dominance bluntedThe pressure on allies to avoid Huawei’s 5G infrastructure offerings has also been broadly successful.  Huawei to Build First European 5G Factory in France to Soothe Western Nerves Huawei’s new French plant would create 500 jobs; Chinese firm says plans not part of ‘charm offensive’ Most major U.S. allies have barred national telecommunications firms from using Huawei-made equipment in their rollout of 5G services and some, like Britain, have committed to the expensive process of replacing existing Huawei components within their systems.Lewis, of CSIS, agreed that Huawei has been “shut out” of most major U.S. allies’ 5G systems, but said that the U.S. pressure campaign hadn’t been the only factor in making that happen.Over the years, there have been multiple charges leveled against Huawei of shady practices, and not all of them from Washington. A 2019 report revealed that British telecom firm Vodaphone had found hidden “backdoor” vulnerabilities in Huawei’s equipment. The company has also been accused of multiple instances of industrial espionage.“Some of it had to do with just telling people, hey, you need to look closely at Huawei, and it’s their own independent assessment,” Lewis said. “The Europeans have been looking at Huawei as a risk since before the Trump administration. So in some ways, Huawei is caught by its own practices.”

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Blinken Says Alliances Must be Bolstered to Meet New Global Threats

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Wednesday in Brussels that there is broad support for the Biden administration’s commitment to rebuilding and revitalizing U.S. alliances in the wake of global challenges like the COVID-19 pandemic and “an increasingly aggressive China.” He told NATO ministers that a poll by the Chicago Alliance on Global Affairs shows 90% of Americans believe that maintaining alliances is the best way for America to achieve its foreign policy objectives. “They know that the United States is much better off tackling them with partners, rather than trying to do it alone. And all our allies can say the same,” Blinken said. That has been part of his message during his first visit to the region as the top U.S. diplomat this week, a departure from four years of foreign policy under former President Donald Trump that focused on prioritizing U.S. interests. The address came on the final day of a two-day NATO ministerial meeting, during which Blinken is holding a number of sideline talks with his counterparts. Blinken said the world’s main categories of threats are military, technological, and crises like the COVID-19 pandemic and climate change. He told the ministers that new threats such as China’s and Russia’s use of technology to access markets and other “critical resources” have shaken long-standing alliances in recent years. “Across and even within our alliances, we don’t always see eye to eye on the threats we face or how to confront them,” Blinken said. “Our shared values of democracy and human rights are being challenged — not only from outside our countries, but from within. And new threats are outpacing our efforts to build the capabilities we need to contain them.”  U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, rear center, waits for the start of a round table meeting of NATO foreign ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels, March 23, 2021.The top U.S. diplomat said the U.S. and its allies are tasked with adjusting to today’s threats and renewing relationships to address them “in the economic, technological and ideological realms.” Blinken said China’s aggression undoubtedly threatens global security, but Beijing’s behavior should not deter the U.S. and its allies from engaging with the world’s second largest economy. “That doesn’t mean that countries can’t work with China where possible,” he said. “For example, on challenges like climate change and health security, we know that our allies have complex relationships with China that won’t always align perfectly with ours. But we need to navigate these challenges together. That means working with our allies to close the gaps in areas like technology and infrastructure, which China is exploiting to exert coercive pressure.” The White House said U.S. President Joe Biden plans to discuss boosting U.S.-EU relations during a videoconference with EU leaders on Thursday. Biden’s stance is a marked contrast to that of Trump, who frequently assailed other NATO countries for not meeting the alliance’s goal that each country spend the equivalent of 2% of the size of its national economy on defense.  “We recognize the significant progress many of our NATO allies have made in improving defense investments, including progress toward meeting the Wales commitment of spending 2% of GDP on defense expenditures by 2024,” Blinken said. “The full implementation of those commitments is crucial. But we also recognize the need to adopt a more holistic view of burden sharing.”  French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian welcomed Blinken’s favorable comments about NATO, which was founded in 1949 to contain a military threat from the then-Soviet Union.    Wednesday’s schedule included separate talks with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, a session with the foreign ministers of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, as well as meetings with European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen and EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell. One of the major topics for discussion during two days of meetings in Brussels is the NATO mission in Afghanistan, as a May 1 deadline approaches for the full withdrawal of all U.S. troops under a peace agreement made last year between Afghanistan’s Taliban and the Trump administration.  U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken, right, and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg wear protective masks during a meeting of NATO foreign ministers at NATO headquarters in Brussels, March 23, 2021.Blinken said the situation is under review, and that part of his work in Brussels would be conferring with NATO allies, both to listen and to share U.S. thinking. He said whatever the United States decides to do, its actions will be with the consultation of other member countries that have been a part of the military mission.    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said he welcomes the peace effort, stressing it is the “only path to a lasting political solution in Afghanistan.” But the NATO chief said that in order to achieve peace, all parties must negotiate in good faith, there needs to be a reduction of violence, and the Taliban must stop supporting international terrorists such as al-Qaida.  German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas warned against a premature pullout that would undercut security gains.  “We want a conditions-based withdrawal of all forces from Afghanistan,” Maas said. 

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