1. MIGRANTS EXIT RESCUE SHIP IN ITALY AFTER 19-DAY STANDOFF
Nearly one hundred migrants who had been stranded on the Open Arms rescue ship off the coast of Lampedusa disembarked on the Italian island on Tuesday night, ending a prolonged stand-off between the Spanish charity operating the boat and the government in Rome.
The migrants, mainly from Africa, were removed from the boat after an Italian prosecutor ordered the seizure of the ship and the evacuation of the people on board.
The Open Arms ship, run by a Spanish charity, had rescued the migrants heading for Europe off the Libyan coast. But after Italy refused to let it dock the ship had been stranded at sea for nearly three weeks, with the charity saying that the migrants were distressed and urgently needed to find shelter.
Open Arms’ founder, Oscar Camps said that the ship would be seized temporarily, adding it was a cost that Open Arms assumes to ensure that people on board can be served.
2. THOUSANDS DETAINED IN CRACKDOWN IN KASHMIR REGION
At least 2,300 people, mostly young men, have been detained in Indian-administered Kashmir during a security lockdown and communications blackout imposed to curtail unrest after New Delhi stripped the disputed region of statehood.
According to police officials, those arrested include anti-India protesters as well as pro-India Kashmiri leaders who have been held in jails and other makeshift facilities.
The crackdown began just before Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist-led government on Aug. 5th stripped Jammu and Kashmir of its semi-autonomy and its statehood, creating two federal territories.
Kashmiris have staged protests and clashed with police since the crackdown, with about 300 demonstrations against India’s tighter control over Kashmir.
3. EU REBUFFS BRITISH PM JOHNSON’S BREXIT GAMBIT
The European Union on Tuesday rebuffed Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s demand that it reopen the Brexit divorce deal, saying Britain had failed to propose any realistic alternative to an agreed insurance policy for the Irish border.
After more than three years of Brexit crisis, the United Kingdom is heading towards a showdown with the EU as Johnson has vowed to leave the bloc on Oct. 31 without a deal unless it agrees to renegotiate the divorce terms.
In his opening bid to the EU, Johnson wrote a four-page letter to European Council President Donald Tusk asking to ax the Irish border “backstop”. He proposed that the backstop to be part of the Withdrawal Agreement that then-prime minister Theresa May agreed last year to be replaced with a “commitment” to implement alternative arrangements as part of a deal on the post-Brexit relationship.