Friday Morning Briefing

Reading Time: 5 minutes


Good morning


Our morning briefing for today covers the latest updates and the main news that took place in the past 24 hours as reported by the media. From new migrant issues between Malta and Italy, to an emergency landing in Manila, from the Vatian’s reaction to the Pennsylvania scandal to the suicide bombing in Kabul, from daily US issues from  Washington to Genoa which is still coming to terms with the bridge collapse as Italy’s Molise region was hit by new tremor.


Have a good day.



A fresh controversy has erupted between Malta and Italy over who should assume responsibility for 171 migrants picked up by the Italian Coast Guard after they refused help by Maltese rescuers. (Times of Malta)



Screen Shot 2018-08-16 at 20.46.18No one was injured and only few damages were registered following the second earthquake in less than 48 hours, which hit the Molise region on Thursday night. (Ansa)



Genoa 11The European Union pushed back against suggestions by Italian politicians that EU budget rules may endanger lives after the collapse of a decades-old bridge in northern Italy killed at least 39 people. (Bloomberg) 


Police are reportedly leaning towards recommending an indictment against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on charges of bribery in the Bezeq corruption probe, known as Case 4000. (The Times of Israel)


Vatican Pope.pngPope Francis’ spokesperson on 16 August 2018 in response to Pennsylvania Grand Jury report on children sexual abuse said that accusations are ‘criminal and morally reprehensible and The Holy See condemns unequivocally the sexual abuse of minors’. The Pennsylvania Supreme Court has released on 14 August 2018, an 884-page two-year grand jury investigation report into child sex abuse by some 301 Catholic priests and over 1,000 victims uncovering decades of abuse of children and systematic cover up by senior church leaders in Pennsylvania and the Vatican. (EPA)



Newspaper Headlines MaltaThe Malta Independent quotes agency Infrastructure Malta which dismisses concerns that the Marsa-Qormi flyover is structurally unsafe.

The Times of Malta reports that illegal economy in Malta is estimated to run into 3% of the GDP, calculated at €320 million last year.

L-Orizzont speaks to psychologist Steffi Borg Bartolo about the terrible effects of child sexual abuse.

In-Nazzjon says that the Court decision to hear the case about the publication of the Egrant Inquiry on September 3 shows that Adrian Delia was right to request an urgent hearing. In-Nazzjon reports also that figures by the Central Bank indicate a rise in the cost of living of 2%.

In another story, L-Orizzont says that investigations are underway to find those who shot the storks on Wednesday. The two newspapers in English report Inspector Trevor Micallef’s account of how drug dealers in Paceville are changing their tactics to avoid getting caught.



Libyan Tripoli appeals court sentenced to death by firing squad 45 militiamen for killing demonstrators in Tripoli during the 2011 uprising against dictator Muammar Gaddafi, the justice ministry said. Dozens of demonstrators were killed on August 21, 2011 when pro-regime militiamen opened fire near the Abu Slim district of the capital as rebel forces closed in on the capital, eight months into a NATO-backed revolt. The ministry said in a statement that 54 other defendants were sentenced to five years in jail, 22 were acquitted, and three others had died before the verdict was reached. (Libyan Express)



BrennanFormer US Security officials issued serious rebukes to President Trump admonishing him for withdrawing the security access to former CIA director John Brennan. In an opinion piece on the New York Times Brennan said this was a desperate attempt to end Mueller’s investigation on Russia’s election interference. (New York Times)



Afghan.pngThirty-four people have been killed after a suicide bomber targeted students preparing for university exams in a Shi’ite area of the Afghan capital Kabul. The death toll was revised down from 48 as the health ministry said some bodies had been double counted.



img_3252Aretha Franklin, the undisputed “Queen of Soul” who sang with matchless style on such classics as “Think,” ‘‘I Say a Little Prayer” and her signature song, “Respect,” and stood as a cultural icon around the globe, has died at age 76 from pancreatic cancer.



Sweden’s general election is fast approaching, with party campaign posters appearing on the country’s streets and political promises making headlines. But while there are still more than three weeks to go until most Swedes head to the polls, voting began on Thursday for those living overseas. (The Local)



China has sacked a senior provincial official and is probing a former top drug regulator after a safety scandal at vaccine maker Changsheng Biotechnology Co Ltd, which again warned it could be delisted over the scandal (Reuters/Euronews)



North Korea.pngTwo women on trial for the brazen assassination of the North Korean leader’s half brother were told Thursday to make their defense after the judge found evidence of a “well-planned conspiracy,” extending their murder trial until next year.  (AP/NBC)




US Miltary.pngThe parade of U.S. military forces through the streets of Washington, D.C., ordered up by President Trump will be delayed, according to the Department of Defense. The announcement followed the latest estimate of $92 million for the cost of the display, a figure media outlets attributed to unnamed U.S. officials. (NPR)





Xiamen.pngA plane from China skidded of a runway at Manila’s airport while landing in heavy rains, with one engine and wheel getting ripped off before the 157 passengers and eight crew scrambled out through emergency slides. (AP)



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