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October 20, 2017
US lawmakers move to regulate online political ads
Washington (AFP) Oct 19, 2017
US lawmakers Thursday unveiled legislation to require disclosure of the source of many online political ads, a move aimed at preventing a recurrence of Russian social media manipulation in the 2016 election. "First and foremost this is an issue of national security - Russia attacked us and will continue to use different tactics to undermine our democracy and divide our country, including by purchasing disruptive online political ads," said Senator Amy Klobuchar, who introduced the bill with fellow ... read more

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'Jack Bauer', 'Japanese Macron': Colourful candidates in Japan vote
From an opposition leader dubbed "Jack Bauer" to a gaffe-prone finance minister who referenced Adolf Hitler when talking about leaving a political legacy, Japan's election has thrown up some colourful characters. ... more
Abe on course for landslide win in Japan vote: poll
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is on track for a landslide win in Japan's upcoming election, the latest survey suggested Monday, as a new party founded by Tokyo's popular governor loses momentum. ... more
Netanyahu, Israeli police face off over graft probe
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli police faced off in a rare public dispute Sunday over an intensifying graft probe that has led to speculation over whether he will eventually be forced from office. ... more
Tennis: Heartbroken Nadal 'wants to cry' over Catalan vote
Spain's world number one Rafael Nadal said on Monday he was stunned and felt like crying following a banned independence referendum in Catalonia and a police crackdown. ... more
Facebook beefing up team to thwart election manipulation
Facebook on Monday said it will hire more than 1,000 people to thwart deceptive ads crafted to knock elections off course. ... more
Puerto Rico's new migration to Florida could turn state Democratic
Hurricane Maria's devastation in Puerto Rico looks likely to trigger a major wave of migration to Florida, which could push the politically important US state to the Democratic side, analysts said Sunday. ... more
Hong Kong democracy rally marks China national day
Thousands of people took to the streets of Hong Kong Sunday to mark China's national day with a pro-democracy rally, and voice growing fears that the city's liberties are under threat from Beijing. ... more
Social media and democracy: optimism fades as fears rise
Just a few years ago, Facebook and Twitter were hailed as tools for democracy activists, enabling movements like the Arab Spring to flourish. ... more

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Marine Le Pen's top aide quits over far-right infighting on Europe
One of the top aides to French far-right leader Marine Le Pen quit the National Front on Thursday, laying bare a split in the party over Europe following its election defeat this year. ... more
Veteran Hong Kong democracy activist cleared of misconduct
A pro-democracy Hong Kong lawmaker who was recently removed from parliament after a Beijing intervention was cleared Monday of misconduct in a case he described as politically motivated. ... more
Dark days for China's democracy dream
The death of Liu Xiaobo deprives China's dissident movement of a crucial figurehead at a time when political activism on the mainland is being forced ever deeper underground, and pro-democracy forces in Hong Kong are under threat. ... more
Mongolians vote in their first presidential runoff
Mongolians head to the polls on Friday in the country's first-ever presidential runoff after the first round elections failed to produce a clear winner following campaigns tainted by corruption scandals. ... more
Marine Le Pen charged over EU funding scandal
French far-right leader Marine Le Pen was charged Friday over claims her party illegally claimed millions of euros from the European Parliament to pay for France-based staff. ... more
Hong Kong activist Joshua Wong detained by police
Hong Kong student pro-democracy campaigner Joshua Wong was detained by police on Wednesday after an anti-China protest ahead of a visit by President Xi Jinping. ... more
Marine Le Pen to meet judges over party funding claims: AFP
French far-right leader Marine Le Pen told AFP Thursday she had arranged to meet investigating magistrates over claims her party misused European Parliament funds to pay for staff in France. ... more
Far-right leader Marine Le Pen wins seat in French parliament: party
Far-right leader Marine Le Pen on Sunday won a seat in the French parliament, but her anti-EU National Front (FN) party faced disappointment, winning only four to eight seats, polls and party figures said. ... more

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Macron party readies for parliamentary assault
The year-old centrist party of French President Emmanuel Macron prepared Saturday for the first round of parliamentary elections looking set to grab the lead in the race for a clear majority. ... more
Suu Kyi, Trudeau talk federalism for Myanmar
Myanmar's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi sat down with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Wednesday to learn about Canadian federalism, a system of government she believes could bring stability to her nation. ... more
France's left and right fear Macron landslide
France's traditional bastions of the left and right for 60 years fear they will be swept aside by President Emmanuel Macron's centrist candidates in Sunday's first round of parliamentary elections, leaving the country without an effective opposition. ... more
Philippines' Duterte faces martial law legal challenge
Philippine opposition lawmakers on Monday asked the Supreme Court to reject President Rodrigo Duterte's imposition of martial law in the south of the country, branding it unconstitutional. ... more
Suu Kyi to consult Trudeau on constitutional reform
Myanmar's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi will travel to Canada next week to consult with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on constitutional reforms, his office announced Friday. ... more
Scottish Conservative leader hopes to rein in independence
There is a running joke in Scotland that it has more pandas than Conservative members of parliament. ... more
Philippines' Duterte vows to ignore Supreme Court on martial law
Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has said he will ignore the Supreme Court and congress as he enforces martial law across the southern third of the country, even though the constitution gives them oversight. ... more
Trump meets Macron, says whole world talking about win
US President Donald Trump on Thursday held his first formal meeting with newly-elected French counterpart Emmanuel Macron, hailing his outsider campaign as a model of its kind. ... more
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