South Africa Restores Free Visa for Countries Including U.S.
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South Africa has reinstated free visas for travelers from countries including the U.S. after suspending them in March as part of a strict lockdown to curb the coronavirus.
Visas will again be available to visitors from France, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Italy, South Korea, Hong Kong, Iran and the U.S., the Ministry of Home Affairs said in a statement on Sunday. International travelers will need to present a negative Covid-19 test result that’s no more than 72 hours old or face a mandatory 10-day quarantine, the government said.
The exemptions, coming just days after the reopening of borders to travelers from other African nations, represent another easing of the lockdown in a bid to reboot economic growth clobbered by the pandemic. Coronavirus infections continue to decline in South Africa even as the economy reopens.
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Veolia ‘Unconditionally’ Commits Not to Go Hostile on Suez
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Veolia Environnement SA says that after “constructive” discussions with Suez SA’s management the utility “unconditionally” commits not to file a hostile takeover bid after acquiring a stake in Suez from Engie SA.
Any public takeover bid on Suez’s remaining capital will require prior support from Suez’s board of directors, Veolia said in emailed statement on Sunday. Veolia said it’s providing the guarantee demanded by Engie’s board, “making possible the sale of the 29.9% of the capital that Engie holds in Suez.”
Veolia says it also made a commitment to Suez Chairman Philippe Varin to “respond favorably” to Suez’s request to extend the scope of the assets sold to the buyer of Suez Eau France to include international water assets for a total turnover of about 5 billion euros ($5.86 billion), including 2.2 billion euros for the French water assets.
China Investigates Former Aide to Vice President Wang Qishan
China is investigating a long-time colleague of Vice President Wang Qishan for alleged “serious violation of laws and party rules,” Chinese authoritiesannounced.
Dong Hong worked under Wang until 2017 as a senior disciplinary inspector when Wang was the chief of China’s anti-corruption agency, the Central Commission for Disciplinary Inspection or CCDI. Wang stepped down as head of the anti-graft group to become vice president during president Xi Jinping’s second term.
CCDI said in a one-line statement on Friday that Dong is under “discipline review and supervisory investigation.”
— With assistance by John Liu, and Dong Cao
Veolia says it won't launch hostile bid for Suez
French utility Veolia pledged on Sunday it would not launch a hostile bid for the remaining shares of rival Suezafter the acquisition of the 29.9% Suez stake owned by power group Engie. Veolia closed in this week on an agreement to buy Engie's stake in Suez, in a prelude to a full takeover bid and marking a breakthrough after weeks of hostilities between the parties.
Veolia "unconditionally commits not to file a hostile takeover bid following the sale of the shares held by Engie in Suez," the group said in a statement, adding that any bid on the remaining capital of Suez would require the go-ahead from Suez's board.
Trump coronavirus: Nigel Farage on US president’s COVID-19 diagnosis, and a look at UK postcode lockdowns
After US President Donald Trump gave an update on his battle against COVID-19, Sophy Ridge on Sunday speaks to his friend Nigel Farage.
Former UK Ambassador to Washington Sir Christopher Meyer says the White House isn’t being “open” about the president’s health. Plus Ridge talks to Mayor of Greater Manchester Andy Burnham and Northern Ireland Secretary Brandon Lewis about whether UK local lockdowns are working.
Police in Minsk use water cannon to disperse protesters
Belarusian police have used a water cannon mounted on an armoured police vehicle to disperse protesters who took to the streets of capital city Minsk on Sunday, Interfax news agency reported and videos posted in social media showed.
Thousands of people gathered in Minsk on Sunday to call on authorities to free political prisoners, in what have become regular opposition rallies against leader Alexander Lukashenko.
Azerbaijan will destroy sites inside Armenia from which cities are under fire: presidential aide
Azerbaijan will destroy military targets in Armenia from which Armenia is firing on Azeri cities, an aide to Azeri President Ilham Aliyev said on Sunday.
Azerbaijan said earlier that a civilian had been killed in its second city of Ganja by Armenian rocket fire. Armenia denied the attack.
Turkey condemns Armenian targeting of Azeri civilians
Turkey condemned what it called Armenian attacks on the Azeri city of Ganja on Sunday and repeated it backs Azerbaijan's right to self-defence within its internationally-recognized borders.
"The attacks of Armenia targeting the civilians in Ganja… are a new manifestation of Armenia's unlawful attitude. We condemn these attacks," the Turkish Foreign Ministry said.
Ankara supports Baku and has rejected calls made by other nations for an immediate ceasefire.
Azerbaijan said earlier that Armenian forces had shelled its second city of Ganja in an escalation of the war in the South Caucasus that began a week ago, while Armenia denied it had directed fire "of any kind" towards Azerbaijan.