By Henning Gloystein and Barbara Lewis LONDON/BRUSSELS (Reuters) - The European Union's proposed sanctions against Russia, targeting sensitive technology, take aim at Gazprom's huge South Stream gas pipeline project to Europe and Novatek's Arctic Yamal liquefied natural gas (LNG) facility. A draft proposal outlines a package of targeted measures in the areas of access to capital markets, defense, dual use goods and sensitive technologies, EU diplomats said on condition of anonymity. It makes clear any measures should not affect current energy supplies and that sanctions should be reversible. But the list, if enforced, would delay major energy projects in the pipeline sector, which Russia dominates, and the fast-growing global liquefied natural gas (LNG) market, in which Russia is so far not a big participant. The diplomats said the EU was considering restricting Russian access to piping used for building oil and natural gas pipelines, drilling pipes to extract oil and gas, floating or submersible drilling platforms, as well as floating cranes and dredging equipment. That would likely halt or delay development of Gazprom's South Stream pipeline, planned to pump 63 billion cubic meters (bcm) of natural gas a year, equivalent to 15 percent of European demand, via the Black Sea into the EU later this decade, cementing Russia's position as the region's dominant gas supplier. "If Europe's engineering partners are prevented from work on any of the big Russian oil or gas projects because of the sanctions, they are almost certainly going to be delayed," said one advisory source that works on Russian energy projects. Gazprom's main partners in South Stream are Italy's Eni, France's EDF, Austria's OMV and Germany's Wintershall [WINT.UL], which is a subsidiary of German chemical giant BASF. Already, the European Commission, the EU executive, has suspended negotiations on making South Stream conform with EU legislation. South Stream relies heavily on European know-how to be built, such as through a contract with Italy's Saipem to work on one of four parallel South Stream pipelines due to cross the Black Sea. YAMAL TOO The proposed sanctions would also likely hit Novatek's Yamal LNG export project. Novatek's main partners in the project are France's Total, a specialist in deep-sea drilling, and China's CNPC. French oil services company Technip, which won the engineering, procurement and construction contract for Yamal LNG last May warned earlier on Thursday about the risk that sanctions against Russia could interrupt income flows from the Siberian project, sending its shares down more than 8 percent. [ID: nL6N0PZ10I] EU diplomats were meeting on Thursday to debate tighter sanctions, but were expected to meet again next week before taking any final decision. Energy Commissioner Guenther Oettinger said on Wednesday that the EU should not give Russia technical help to develop Arctic oil and gas fields if Moscow failed to help to defuse the Ukraine crisis. Novatek, which has seen one of its shareholders hit by U.S. sanctions, is the main developer of the Arctic Yamal peninsula LNG export project, which plans to export 16.5 million tonnes of LNG a year. The project's gas is so far in the Arctic North that it requires the use of specialized technology, often provided by Western partners. (Additional reporting by Michel Rose in Paris, editing by David Evans and William Hardy)
- The Daily Beast
Chris Jackson/GettyThe queen has a brooch for every occasion—even the funeral of her husband, Prince Philip. The queen’s mourning clothes, though a stark contrast to her usual pastel ensembles, came accented with a special accessory that paid homage to her partner of 73 years.According to Express, the queen wore her Richmond Brooch on Saturday. It’s one of the largest in her collection, the paper reported, and was a wedding present for her grandmother Queen Mary’s nuptials in 1893. Usually the Queen wears the pin, made of diamonds, with a hanging pear-shaped pearl drop. But that feature was removed for the funeral.The sparkling accessory lit up the queen’s all-black look, and matched her face mask—also black, with white trim around the edges. The monarch sat alone through the funeral, which was pared-down due to the pandemic, like so many others.Prince Harry and Prince William Reunite After Prince Philip’s Funeral, Where the Queen Sat AloneBut the queen was not solitary in her statement jewelry. Kate Middleton also brought her own. Actually, it came from the queen: the Duchess wore a four-strand pearl necklace borrowed from Elizabeth’s collection.Today reports that it was made with pearls gifted from the Japanese government. Princess Diana wore the choker to a dinner in 1982.Kate’s matching pearl-drop earrings, which peeked out from underneath her netted black fascinator, were also from the Queen’s jewelry box. For the somber affair, the Duchess was able to sneak in a dash of glamour with her veil and Roland Mouret dress.One photographer caught Kate right before she exited her vehicle, and she stared straight into the camera’s lens. Such determined, direct eye contact isn’t something the Duchess is known for, but her look set the tone for a dignified, if very different, type of royal funeral.As had been previously reported, the royals did not wear military dress. Following their father and grandfather’s coffin, Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward, Prince William, and Prince Harry were all seen wearing medals, a compromise reached after an internal debate in the royal family about the appropriate dress for Harry and Andrew.Camilla Parker Bowles wore pearls and a brooch that also dripped with significance. As Hello noted, she showed up in the so-called Bugle brooch, which honored Philip’s tenure as Colonel-in-Chief of The Rifles, an infantry regiment of the British Army.For his final public engagement last year, the Duke of Edinburgh passed on his position to Camilla, who is his daughter-in-law. So it’s a significant and symbolic jewelry choice for the day.Princess Eugenie, a new mother who named her infant son after Philip, wore a netted veil to the ceremony. It was similar to Kate’s, though Eugenie paired hers with an oversized black headband.Unlike the other women, Eugenie did not wear much jewelry, save for a simple pair of earrings. She did, however, wear a rather trendy Gabriela Hearst trench coat, per the Daily Mail.Penny Brabourne, Countess Mountbatten, a close friend of Philip’s and fellow equestrian, was one of the 30 guests who was not a direct family member. (She is married to Philip’s godson, Norton Knatchbull.) She wore a black pillbox hat and fitted suit, along with a crystal fern brooch.Of course Meghan Markle, who is pregnant, was unable to travel from Los Angeles with Prince Harry. She might not have been there in person—the former Duchess reportedly watched from home—but Meghan ensured a part of her was present. Per The Daily Mail, Meghan left a handwritten note on a wreath left at the chapel. The royal family did not speak at the event. Emotions were expressed in other ways. Some of it was literal, like when Sophie, the Countess of Wessex wiped away tears in the chapel. Some of it was more symbolic, like the queen sitting alone while bidding goodbye to her husband. Or William and Harry chatting after the ceremony, two estranged brothers brought together through grief. And much of it was through fashion: small nods to history, and hand-me-downs representing the continuation of longstanding royal tradition. Read more at The Daily Beast.Get our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.
- The Independent
18-year-old man from Ohio with assault rifle and wearing gas mask taken into custody
Four of the eight who died at a FedEx warehouse were members of the Sikh community.
- The Telegraph
The Duchess of Sussex wrote the card attached to the wreath sent by her and Prince Harry to ensure that, in a small way, she played a part in the Duke of Edinburgh's funeral service. Meghan, who is heavily pregnant with the couple's second child, had hoped to attend the ceremony but was advised against travelling by her doctor. The 39-year-old was watching the funeral on television at home in Montecito, California. The Sussexes' tribute was among nine family wreaths laid in the Quire of St George's Chapel, propped against the stalls on each side of the Duke's coffin. Buckingham Palace aides declined to provide details of the other wreaths, saying they were private. But a source close to the Sussexes confirmed that theirs had been designed and handmade by Willow Crossley, a Cotswold florist known for her natural, rustic arrangements. The variety of locally sourced flowers, some of which were picked from the designer's garden, were chosen due to their particular significance.
- The Telegraph
The historic family ties that prompted The Queen to invite German royalty Follow live updates from Prince Philip's funeral The Duke of Edinburgh's great niece, whose brother is in Windsor for his funeral on Saturday, has remembered Prince Philip as an "idol" for the younger generation of their family. Speaking from Munich, Princess Xenia of Hohenlohe-Langenburg said the Duke was a powerful role model to her and his "selflessness, lack of ego and sense of humour" will never be forgotten. Her tribute comes as the Queen prepares to say farewell to her husband of 73 years at Windsor Castle. "To all of us, he was an idol, he was somebody to look up to, we had enormous respect for him and it was always very exciting when he came to visit, and he came often," said Princess Xenia of Hohenlohe-Langenburg. "And this has become clear to me in the week since he's died - the way he lived his life, his motto, which was an unwritten motto for us, this discipline, this selflessness, this lack of ego, but also his sense of humour always underlying all of that.
- Associated Press
Skipper Tom Slingsby and the defending SailGP champion Australian crew capsized the U.S. team’s foiling 50-foot catamaran on Bermuda’s Great Sound on Friday during its first training session for the global tour’s season opener. Slingsby said there were only minor injuries and the boat was quickly righted before being towed back to base. U.S. skipper Jimmy Spithill said there was enough damage that the high-tech boat could be out of action for a few days.
LONDON (Reuters) -Helen McCrory, the "beautiful and mighty" British actress known for playing steely female characters on stage and screen, has died of cancer at the age of 52, her husband, Damian Lewis, said on Friday. The shock announcement drew tributes from author JK Rowling, fellow actors including Michael Sheen and from the artistic director at London's National Theatre who hailed McCrory as "unquestionably one of the great actors of her generation". On screen she starred as Narcissa Malfoy in Harry Potter films, as the matriarch of a crime family in Peaky Blinders and as the wife of former prime minister Tony Blair, Cherie.
- Business Insider
Embattled Chinese billionaire Jack Ma may divest his Ant Group stake and give up control, reports say
In the wake of his public comments about financial regulations, Jack Ma may potentially exit his Ant Group empire, Reuters reported.
- The Telegraph
They became so close during the course of their nearly 30-year friendship that she was known as “and also” on account of her name always appearing on the Duke of Edinburgh’s guest list. So it was hardly a surprise when the Countess Mountbatten of Burma was included in the 30-strong congregation for Prince Philip’s funeral, handpicked by the Queen. Also known as Penny Knatchbull, later Lady Romsey and Lady Brabourne, the 68-year-old mother of three was the Duke’s carriage driving partner and one of his closest confidantes. Yet it emerged on Saturday that the Countess, pictured below, was actually representing her husband, the Earl of Mountbatten of Burma, who is unwell and therefore unable to attend.
- Associated Press
The 300-million-year-old shark’s teeth were the first sign that it might be a distinct species. “Great for grasping and crushing prey rather than piercing prey,” said discoverer John-Paul Hodnett, who was a graduate student when he unearthed the first fossils of the shark at a dig east of Albuquerque in 2013. This week, Hodnett and a slew of other researchers published their findings in a bulletin of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science identifying the shark as a separate species.
Two Russian warships transited the Bosphorus en route to the Black Sea on Saturday and 15 smaller vessels completed a transfer to the sea as Moscow beefs up its naval presence at a time of tense relations with the West and Ukraine. The reinforcement coincides with a huge build-up of Russian troops near Ukraine, something Moscow calls a temporary defensive exercise, and follows an escalation in fighting in eastern Ukraine between Russian-backed separatists and Ukrainian government forces.
- Associated Press
Germany is paying tribute Sunday to the nearly 80,000 people it has lost to the coronavirus, even as the country struggles to get a grip on another rise in infections. President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will lead a memorial event with other top officials at Berlin's Konzerthaus concert hall. Germany's confirmed death toll from COVID-19 stood at 79,914 on Sunday, an increase of 67 over the previous day.
Lebanon's Hezbollah has made preparations for an all-out collapse of the fracturing state, issuing ration cards for food, importing medicine and readying storage for fuel from its patron Iran, three sources familiar with the plans told Reuters. The steps highlight rising fears of an implosion of the Lebanese state, in which authorities can no longer import food or fuel to keep the lights on. The plan chimes with worries in Lebanon that people will have to rely on political factions for food and security, in the way many did in the militia days of the 1975-1990 civil war.
- Associated Press
Israel’s foreign minister said Friday that his country was determined to stop Iran from building a nuclear weapon, after Tehran promised to step up its uranium enrichment process. “We will do whatever it takes to prevent the extremists (in Iran) from succeeding, and definitely will prevent this regime from having a nuclear weapon,” Israeli Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi told reporters on a visit to Cyprus. Iranian officials say the country will begin enriching uranium up to 60% purity following an attack on its nuclear facility at Natanz, in central Iran, on Sunday, that it blamed on Israel.
- Business Insider
4 virus variants are spreading in the US, and studies suggest they can make people sicker, evade the immune response, or spread faster. Here's why experts are concerned.
COVID-19 "variants of concern" include the coronavirus variant first found in South Africa. These new strains differ from the original in key ways.
In London's East End, there was both adoration for the monarchy and sharp criticism of some members of Britain's royal family on the eve of the funeral of Prince Philip, who died a week ago after seven decades of service to his wife Queen Elizabeth. The queen, heir-to-the-throne Prince Charles and other senior royals will pay their last respects to Philip on Saturday at a ceremonial funeral at Windsor Castle that will be broadcast live by television stations across the world. "My TV's always off - I watch YouTube and just internet and social media stuff," said Johnathan Roach, a 33-year-old window cleaner in Whitechapel, east London.
- Miami Herald
Florida’s Department of Health on Saturday announced 6,323 new confirmed cases of COVID-19.
- The Independent
The world’s two biggest polluters have agreed to ramp up their ‘respective actions’ to combat climate change
Two senior Democratic senators will introduce legislation on Friday that would reassert Congress' oversight of international weapons deals, after President Joe Biden's administration decided to go ahead with a $23 billion sale to the United Arab Emirates that had worried lawmakers, congressional aides said. The bill, seen by Reuters, will be introduced by Senators Bob Menendez, chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Dianne Feinstein, a senior member of the intelligence committee.
- NY Daily News
Rescue divers searching the Seacor Power, a commercial vessel that capsized earlier this week off Louisiana, have pulled two more bodies from the lift boat’s engine room. The Coast Guard would not release their names but confirmed Donjon Marine commercial divers found the crew members unresponsive on Friday, the fourth straight day of search efforts. Prior to the tragic discovery, some had ...