Castle Journal - Nadeemy Haded
Facebook's currency "Libra" faces many challenges to persuade governments and relevant parties to accept, most recently the French position rejecting it, because of what Paris sees regulatory financial risks of electronic currency.
France's rejection of Facebook's currency came in the words of Finance Minister Bruno Le Meyer, where he does not see clarity on the mechanism of work, "Libra", adding that it can not work in Europe under the current circumstances.
The minister cited regulatory financial risk, sovereign risk, and the potential abuse of market dominance.
"Libra jeopardizes the sovereignty of governments," the French finance minister was quoted as saying at an OECD conference in Paris.
The French minister added: "All these concerns about Libera are serious, so I would like to say this clearly: under these circumstances, we can not give permission to develop Libera on European soil."
The French finance minister has been an outspoken opponent of Facebook since the US company unveiled the project in June.
Fears of supporting terrorism
In addition to fears that cryptocurrency could undermine the sovereignty of other countries' currencies, challenges have arisen regarding money laundering and terrorist financing issues.
For their part, representatives of the Group of Seven warned against not allowing the use of the currency of Libera unless all problems and risks related to it are resolved.
British politicians have expressed reservations about the project. "Libra suggests that Facebook is trying to transform itself into a country," said Damian Collins, a UK lawmaker.
Facebook announced its cryptocurrency project Libra earlier this year and is due to launch sometime in 2020.
The currency is designed to allow people to make payments through Facebook's suite of apps, including WhatsApp and Messenger, used by billions of people around the world.
Source Sky News
French Finance Minister Bruno Le Mer said on Friday that the European Union should develop a general set of rules to regulate virtual currencies, which are currently subject to mostly national regulations.
Le Mer, who arrived at a meeting of EU finance ministers in Helsinki, said there was a need for a "general framework" for the EU's 28 digital currencies.
He also reiterated his opposition to the development of Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency in the EU, saying, "I don't see clarity about how Libra works. It cannot operate in Europe under the current circumstances."
Facebook announced its cryptocurrency project Libra earlier this year and is due to launch sometime in 2020.
The French minister called for the establishment of a European "digital currency", without giving further details.
It is noteworthy that cryptocurrencies witnessed, late last year, a catastrophic collapse, after its value fell unexpectedly, leaving behind many victims who bet on the rapid profit.
Source Sky News
Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelinsky has stressed the need to end the war in his country and restore its territorial integrity through diplomatic means, appealing at the same time Western countries not to lift sanctions on Russia.
"We have to end the war and reclaim our territory. But I have repeatedly said that the only way to do that is diplomacy," Zelinsky said in a speech at an international seminar in Kiev on Friday.
Zelinsky stressed the need to maintain sanctions against Russia, saying that sanctions "a powerful weapon and effective in the hands of diplomacy."
"Some in the West are talking about lifting sanctions because they are losing money. But we are losing lives. As long as there is no peace, sanctions must be kept," he said.
Zilinski said that work is underway to prepare new lists of names in preparation for the next round of exchange of prisoners and detainees between Ukraine and Russia, after the completion of an exchange deal involving 35 people from each party on the 7th of this month.
Since 2014, Ukraine has been plagued by armed conflict in the southeastern Donbass region, when large parts of Donetsk and Lugansk provinces declared independence from Kiev following a coup in February of that year.
Western countries have imposed economic and financial sanctions on Russia under the pretext of its alleged military intervention in the Ukraine crisis along with "separatists", which Moscow categorically denies.
The world's first floating nuclear plant, the Academic Lomonosov, docked on Saturday at its permanent position on the shore of the Chukotka Peninsula in Pefik, Russia's far north.
The nuclear plant, built in St. Petersburg, the first of its kind in the world, has traveled about 5,000 kilometers and started its way from Murmansk to anchor in the port of Pevik, which is scheduled to provide power and electricity.
Exploitation of the floating plant is expected to start around December 30, after the necessary systems are in place and the testing and final booting is carried out.
The 144-meter, 21,000-ton ship, built by the Russian state nuclear power company Ros Atom, contains two 35-megawatt nuclear reactors, similar to those normally used to power icebreakers.
The plant will be used mainly to power oil platforms, while Russia is expanding northward to the Arctic to explore for oil and gas, making electricity needed in these remote areas.
"This may be a small step towards sustainable development in the Arctic, but it is a huge leap to remove carbon from areas far from the energy grid," Rosatom CEO Alexei Lekhachev told RT.
"This is a turning point in the development of small nuclear power plants in the world," he added.
Scientists, nuclear energy experts and environmentalists around the world have welcomed the project.
"To achieve the goal of harmony in the nuclear industry of providing at least 25% of the world's electricity by 2050, we will need to bring the benefits of nuclear energy to more people in a wide range of locations," said Ignetta Rising, Director General of the International Nuclear Association. Lomonosov is the first of a new class of small, versatile nuclear power plants that will provide reliable electricity, heat and clean water, helping to achieve the UN's sustainable development goals. "
Akademik Lomonosov is a pilot project and a "prototype" for a future fleet of floating nuclear power plants and onshore facilities on the basis of small Russian-built modular reactors.
The total cost of installing the plant in Bevik will not be disclosed until the project is completed, but a spokesman for Ross Atom said the technology is very competitive. To produce electricity cheaper than diesel, save money and prevent harmful emissions. "
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said his direct contact with Russian President Vladimir Putin has averted a "near-inevitable" clash between Israel and Russia in Syria.
Asked what he particularly valued in the Russian-Israeli partnership, Netanyahu said in an interview with the Russian network RKK on the eve of his visit to Russia scheduled for Thursday:
Netanyahu added: "This coordination is possible for one reason only, which is mutual respect between me and President Putin. We are talking to the club, openly and without any recklessness, and to frank some, and call things by the names."
Netanyahu said he had repeatedly explained to Putin the dangers posed to Israel's security by the expansion of the Iranians in Syria, where they "seek to deploy their army in our backyard, and bring the rockets, tubers and fighters (from our borders) closer".
"I consider the decision to coordinate military activity one of the most important achievements of the State of Israel. I mean in the first place the establishment of an international front against Iran's attempts to acquire nuclear weapons, against the spread of its
influence in our region, especially in Syria, and coordination with Russia, which allows us to combat Iranian expansion." These are the things that I highly appreciate, and in this context I appreciate our relationship with President Putin. "
Netanyahu is expected to meet with Putin this afternoon in Sochi, on the Black Sea shore, during which the two sides will discuss bilateral relations and developments in the Middle East, particularly in Syria.
Netanyahu's visit comes five days before the legislative elections in his country, and after announcing his intention to include the Jordan Valley if he wins the elections.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov said the situation in the area of global strategic stability continues to deteriorate, warning of the danger of nuclear war.
"The situation in the area of strategic stability continues to deteriorate, unfortunately this is an indisputable fact," Ryabkov said at a security seminar in Moscow on Thursday. "The risks are also increasing ... There is a risk of nuclear war, even if no one intends to engage in a nuclear dispute." .
"We have been seeing negative dynamics in the last year in particular ... where the actions of our colleagues in the West become more emotional and sometimes very aggressive," he said.
Ryabkov noted that "Western partners" are obstructing the work of dialogue channels and continue to undermine the structure of arms control.
The Russian diplomat stressed that the United States continues the tactic of "stalling" on the issue of the extension of the Strategic Offensive Arms Treaty (START), and is not willing to discuss the problems related to it fundamentally.
Ryabkov expressed Russia's concern over the situation surrounding the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty (CTBT), saying Moscow was aware that Washington was keeping its nuclear test sites ready for possible resumption of tests.
Russia's conditions for reducing nuclear weapons
Regarding the conditions that must be met to proceed with the reduction of nuclear weapons, Ryabkov said Russia believes that it is impossible to continue to reduce nuclear weapons without restrictions in the field of missile defense.
In addition, Ryabkov noted that "in the field of arms control, we have come close to the line, after which it becomes necessary to fully take into account the nuclear capabilities of other countries that possess these weapons."
Ryabkov noted that Russia did not conduct any tests of medium and short-range missiles after the collapse of the treaty banning these missiles, while the United States tested a missile "cruise", using a launcher of the type MK-41, only 16 days after the termination of the treaty in Last August 2.
The fighters of three volunteer battalions of the Ukrainian National Guard handed their weapons to law enforcement agencies on Wednesday, amid Kiev's preparations for a summit in the form of "Normandy Quartet" to resolve the Ukrainian crisis.
According to a statement by the Ukrainian police, the arms delivery took part in the "Sheikh Mansour Battalion", the battalion of the Ukrainian Nationalists and the 8th Battalion of the Ukrainian Volunteer Army, all of the volunteer battalions formed within the structure
of the Ministry of Defense and National Guard in 2014 to support Ukrainian forces in their military campaign against the republics of Donetsk Lugansk in the east of the country declared independence from Ukraine against the backdrop of the coup in Kiev in February
of that year.
The Sheikh Mansour battalion was the backbone of Chechen anti-Russian fighters who emigrated from their republic after the defeat of separatists there early last decade, and decided to support Ukrainian forces in the battles of Donbass in the belief that it is "war
The Ukrainian website "Strana.ua" linked the disarming of the three battalions to the "Normandy Quad" summit in the coming months, which Kiev is actively preparing for.
Western reports have long ignored the presence of Chechen militants wanted for justice, fighting alongside the Ukrainian formations in Donbass, headed by Muslim Cheberlovsky.
According to the website, the Minsk agreements, on the basis of which the "Quartet", calls on the parties to the conflict in Donbass to withdraw its military formations, which means Ukraine "separatist" factions and Russian forces alleged presence there, while Russia
refers to the Ukrainian volunteer battalions.
Disarmament of the battalions, which Moscow, Donetsk and Lugansk regards as one of the main factors that have turned the crisis into a long bloody conflict, allows Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelinsky to gain important points in preparation for a meeting with his
Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in the framework of the "Normandy Quartet".
Zelinsky has spoken days ago about his plan to separate troops in Donbass in statements, described by Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov as positive, considering that the Ukrainian president is interested in settling the crisis in Donbass.
Source: Russian and Ukrainian media