The fighters now retaking parts of Ethiopia’s Tigray region

The fighters now retaking parts of Ethiopia’s Tigray region will pursue soldiers from neighbouring Eritrea back into their country and chase Ethiopian forces to Addis Ababa ”if that’s what it takes” to weaken their military powers, their spokesman said, as a conflict that has killed thousands of civilians looked certain to continue. In an interview with The Associated Press, Getachew Reda said that “we’ll stop at nothing to liberate every square inch” of the Tigray region of 6 million people, nearly eight months after fighting erupted between the Tigray forces and Ethiopian soldiers backed by Eritrea.

He rejected the unilateral cease-fire Ethiopia’s government declared this week as a “sick joke” and accused Ethiopia of long denying humanitarian aid to the Tigrayans it now “pretends to care about.” Ethiopia declared the unilateral cease-fire as its soldiers and hand-picked regional interim administration fled the Tigray regional capital following some of the fiercest fighting of the war.

 

The highest court in the US state of Pennsylvania threw out Bill Cosby’s sexual assault conviction and released him from prison in a stunning reversal of fortune for the comedian once known as “America’s Dad,” ruling that the prosecutor who brought the case was bound by his predecessor’s agreement not to charge Cosby. The 83-year-old flashed the V-for-victory sign to a helicopter overhead as he trudged into his suburban Philadelphia home after serving nearly three years of a three- to 10-year sentence for drugging and violating Temple University sports administrator Andrea Constand in 2004.

The former “Cosby Show” star — the first celebrity tried and convicted in the #MeToo era — had no comment as he arrived, and just smiled and nodded later at a news conference outside, where his lawyer Jennifer Bonjean spoke. In a statement, Constand and her lawyers called the ruling disappointing, and they, like many other advocates, expressed fear that it could discourage sexual assault victims from coming forward.

 

One of the world’s largest port operators, DP World, said it has acquired an American logistics firm in a $1.2 billion deal, the latest investment as the maritime company pushes to expand farther afield. Dubai-based DP World said its purchase of global logistics provider Syncreon Holdings is expected to close later this year. The company plans to fund the acquisition from existing resources so as not to take on more debt.

The move comes after the port operator posted a 29% drop in 2020 profits as the coronavirus pandemic froze global supply chains and upended trade flows. The company delisted from the stock exchange and returned to full state-ownership last year. Despite the challenges of the pandemic, DP World has done brisk business in recent months, striking a range of deals to grow its footprint as a vast logistics company.

 

Russian President Vladimir Putin said that last week’s incident involving a British destroyer in the Black Sea couldn’t have triggered a global conflict even if Russia had sunk the warship - because the West knows it can’t win such a war. The pointed statement indicates his resolve to raise the stakes should a similar incident happen again. Speaking at his annual marathon call-in show, Putin also revealed that he received the domestically produced Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine and urged Russians to get vaccinated.

Putin was asked about the June 23 incident in the Black Sea, in which Russia said one of its warships fired warning shots and a warplane dropped bombs in the path of Britain’s HMS Defender to force it from an area near Crimea that Moscow claims as its territorial waters. He also revealed previously unknown information that a US reconnaissance aircraft had joined what he described as a “provocation” to test Russia’s response. Navy Capt. Wendy Snyder, the chief of public affairs for the US European Command, said that “yes, we did have aircraft in operations.”

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