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World in brief: June 29 2018

TURKEY: Police raided the Istanbul offices of  Turkish news outlet Sendika in the early hours of yesterday morning in relation to investigations against its editor Ali Ergin Demirhan.

Mr Demirhan was arrested on April 20 2017 for “trying to make referendum results seem illegitimate,” following a controversial vote marred by accusations of electoral fraud.

The website, which covers news from the labour and progressive movements, has been blocked 61 times since it was founded in 2001.

 

UNITED STATES: The US Supreme Court has ruled that states and public-sector unions can no longer collect fees without the consent of workers.

In a blow to organised labour, the country’s top court said such collections violate first amendment rights under the constitution and force people to support ideas they may not believe.

Unions had been able to collect fees from non-members as long as the money was not spent on political campaigning.

 

VENEZUELA: President Nicolas Maduro has branded US Vice-President Mike Pence a “poisonous viper” after he met Venezuelan migrants in Brazil.

Mr Pence accused Mr Maduro of running a “devastating dictatorship,” but the Venezuelan president warned on Wednesday that the US was waging an economic war to overthrow its government and seize the country’s oil wealth.

Mr Maduro accused the EU of “kneeling to the US” after it extended sanctions on Caracas, targeting 11 individuals including Venezuela’s Vice-President Delcy Rodriguez.

 

AUSTRALIA: A former intelligence officer who exposed an Australian spy ring in East Timor faces up to two years in prison according to independent MP Andrew Wilkie.

Using parliamentary privilege Mr Wilkie revealed the former spy, known only as Witness K, had been charged along with his lawyer Bernard Collaery with conspiracy to communicate information about the Australian Secret Intelligence Service.

Witness K raised concerns over listening devices alleged to have been planted by Australian spooks in East Timor’s cabinet rooms in 2004 while the two countries were negotiating maritime borders.
 

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