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Aung San Suu Kyi moved to house arrest

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Myanmar’s ousted civilian leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been moved to house arrest after the military detained her following a coup in February 2021.

Ms Suu Kyi was taken to a government building in Nay Pyi Taw on Monday, prison sources told BBC Burmese. She’d spent a year in solitary confinement.

The 78-year-old is serving a 33-year sentence, after being jailed in closed-door, military-run trials.

Almost no news has emerged about her condition in more than two years.

There has been no confirmation from the military of her transfer from jail, but the move to house arrest could be a positive sign from the authorities, who have faced numerous calls to release the country’s democratically-elected leader.

Ms Suu Kyi was rumoured to have been ill, but the military has denied the reports. Earlier this week a source from the Nay Pyi Taw prison where she was being held told BBC Burmese that she was in good health.

Thailand’s foreign minister also revealed this month that he had visited Ms Suu Kyi – however he disclosed no further detail.

The military has arranged a meeting between Ms Suu Kyi and T Khun Myat, the Speaker of the lower house of parliament, BBC Burmese reported. However the military has not confirmed these talks are taking place either.

Since the coup, Myanmar has spiralled into a civil war, which has killed thousands of people. Sanctions imposed on the military have failed to stop the violence.

The 78-year-old Nobel laureate was under house arrest until June this year, when she was moved to solitary confinement in a prison in the country’s capital.

She denies all of the accusations and rights groups have condemned the court trials as a sham.

The daughter of independence hero General Aung San, she emerged as a leader of the pro-democracy movement against the military dictatorship. She co-founded the National League for Democracy (NLD), but was put under house arrest in 1989.

Awarded the Nobel peace prize, Ms Suu Kyi was one of the world’s leading democracy icons. Her release from detention in 2010 was celebrated in Myanmar and around the world.

But she was later criticised for defending her country against allegations of genocide at the UN International Court of Justice (ICJ) after widespread claims that Myanmar had committed atrocities against Muslim Rohingya while her government was in power. Nearly a million of them have fled Myanmar in recent years, and now live as refugees in neighbouring Bangladesh.

(BBC News)

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Brawl in Italian Parliament ahead of G7 Summit 

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Lawmakers at the Italian Parliament clashed over a bill on Wednesday (12 June), as Italy began to host world leaders for the annual Group of Seven (G7) Summit in Puglia.

A video of the clash was widely shared on the internet. 

The row began when Five Star Movement (MS5) MP Leonardo Dono tried to tie an Italian flag around the neck of Regional Affairs Minister Roberto Calderoli of the pro-autonomy Northern League. 

MPs from Calderoli’s League party cornered Dono in response, turning the debate into a free-for-all fight involving about 20 men. Donno, injured in the clashes, had to be evacuated in a wheelchair and taken to hospital.

Media reports state the bill sought to grant certain regions further autonomy. Opponents of the bill state it would further deepen the north-south divide in the country and bring more hardship to the impoverished south. 

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Kuwait residential building fire kills 50

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At least 40 Indians are among 50 people killed in a fire at a residential building in the Kuwaiti city of Mangaf.

A fire broke out on Wednesday (12 June) in a building where many foreign workers resided.

Most of the casualties are from the southern Indian states of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. Around 50 Indians have also been injured.

Three Filipinos have also been killed, media reports quoted Philippines officials as saying. Filipino and Nepali workers are also among the injured.

Local media reports said the building housed 196 workers and there are suggestions that it may have been overcrowded.

Two-thirds of the Kuwaiti population is made up of foreign workers, especially in the construction and domestic sectors, and the country is highly dependent on migrant labour.

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The G7 Summit begins today

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Leaders of the Group of Seven (G7) countries are meeting for a three-day summit, starting today (13 June) to discuss global affairs in the southern region of Puglia (Apulia), Italy.  

Heads of state of the seven members – the United States, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Canada and the United Kingdom – as well as the chiefs of the European Council and the European Commission will be present at the event.

Italy, the host of this year’s event, has extended an invitation to more than 10 other countries for sideline discussions. These include UAE’s Mohamed bin Zayed, Algeria’s President Abdelmadjid Tebboune, Jordan’s King Abdullah II and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Notable absentees are Egypt and Saudi Arabia, who it  is reported, had been invited.

Support for Ukraine is top of the agenda. President Volodymyr Zelenskyy is scheduled to arrive on the summit’s first day for two sessions dedicated to the war-torn country. The G7’s most anticipated outcome is an agreement over a $50bn loan for Ukraine backed by profits accrued on Russian assets frozen in the West. 

The war on Gaza is also expected to dominate talks. 

Pope Francis will also be among the guests – the first time a pontiff has been invited to the summit – for a session dedicated to artificial intelligence (AI). Other specific sessions will be on migration, financial issues and the situation in the Asia Pacific. 

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