Six In The Morning Wednesday 25 October 2023

I clearly condemned Hamas terror, says UN chief, after row with Israel

Is Hamas stockpiling fuel in Gaza?

Many aid agencies are saying the same thing – that Gaza desperately needs fuel, with hospitals already shutting down. Israel isn’t allowing fuel in and has accused Hamas of stockpiling hundreds of thousands of litres of fuel in reserve.

Yesterday, the Israeli military published an aerial image of 12 tanks near the Gaza-Egypt border, which it said are being used as fuel storage.

Dr Frank Ledwidge, a military analyst and former British intelligence officer, tells me he can’t see a military reason to store the fuel there and would “like to see a bit more evidence” of the tanks being in use before coming to a conclusion.

It is far more likely fuel dumps are stored underground in Hamas’s network of tunnels, which experts believe to be up to 500km (310 miles) in length, the University of Portsmouth expert says.

Earth close to ‘risk tipping points’ that will damage our ability to deal with climate crisis, warns UN

Analysis also warns of further tipping points on horizon such as drying up of groundwater vital for food supplies

Humanity is moving dangerously close to irreversible tipping points that would drastically damage our ability to cope with disasters, UN researchers have warned, including the withdrawal of home insurance from flood-hit areas and the drying up of the groundwater that is vital for ensuring food supplies.

These “risk tipping points” also include the loss of the mountain glaciers that are essential for water supplies in many parts of the world and accumulating space debris knocking out satellites that provide early warnings of extreme weather.

Germany: Cabinet approves plan to speed up deportations

A proposed law would see longer detention for rejected asylum seekers, stricter ID checks and expanded powers for police. The move comes as the government faces criticism from voters over inaction as arrivals increase.

Germany’s Cabinet on Wednesday approved legislation designed to make it easier for authorities to carry out the deportation of individuals who have had their asylum requests denied.

The draft, put forth by Interior Minister Nancy Faeser, who, like Chancellor Olaf Scholz, is a Social Democrat, proposes a number of changes to existing deportation rules.

The proposal must now go to the Bundestag, Germany’s parliament, for approval before it can go into effect. A vote is expected in November.

The opposition CDU/CSU has signaled approval. The Greens, a coalition partner, have voiced opposition — with some calling the proposal a massive encroachment on fundamental rights, labelling it disproportionate and too severe.

Sudan army says to resume US and Saudi-led talks on ending war

The Sudanese army said Wednesday it has accepted an invitation to resume US- and Saudi-brokered talks aimed at ending more than six months of war with the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.


The war between forces loyal to army chief Abdel Fattah al-Burhan and his former deputy, RSF commander Mohamed Hamdan Daglo, has killed more than 9,000 people and displaced over 5.6 million since it erupted in April.

Previous mediation attempts have only yielded brief truces, and even those were systematically violated.

In a statement, the army said it had accepted an invitation from Saudi Arabia and the United States to travel to the Saudi city of Jeddah “out of a belief by the armed forces that negotiations is one of the means that may end the conflict”.


Japan’s top court rules law requiring reproductive organ removal for gender change unconstitutional

By Mari Yamaguchi


Japan’s Supreme Court on Wednesday ruled that a law requiring transgender people to have their reproductive organs removed in order to officially change their gender is unconstitutional.

The decision by the top court’s 15-judge Grand Bench was its first on the constitutionality of Japan’s 2003 law requiring the removal of reproductive organs for a state-recognized gender change, a practice long criticized by international rights and medical groups.

The decision now requires the government to revise the law, which paves the way for transgender people to have their gender changed in official documents without surgery.


Mitsubishi Motors is ending production in China


Mitsubishi Motors will stop producing vehicles in China, in the latest sign of retreat by foreign automakers in the world’s biggest car market.

Following weeks of speculation, the Japanese carmaker confirmed Tuesday that it would wind down local manufacturing and exit a long-running joint venture in mainland China.

In a statement, the company said it had decided to “fundamentally” shake up its strategy for the fiercely competitive market amid a slump in sales.

“The shift to electric vehicles is accelerating faster than expected, and consumers are rapidly undergoing significant changes in their brand and segment choices,” Mitsubishi said.