Because of the ongoing forest fires in California, dozens of people were evacuated by helicopters on Tuesday, and tens of thousands of residents of the US state had no access to electricity. According to the authorities, a total of 14,000 firefighters were involved in fighting the devastating fires. The forest fires in California have already destroyed a record area of more than 8,000 square kilometers.
Residents throughout southern California have been instructed to leave their homes and apartments and to escape the oncoming flames. In total, more than 300 people have already had to be flown out in military helicopters, as the National Guard told the AFP news agency. An unknown number of people are still waiting for rescue in some areas of the state, the authorities said.
In addition, more than 170,000 households were left without electricity, as the energy supplier PG&E switched off the power supply in large parts of the state due to the extreme risk of forest fires.
California is experiencing record heat this year, and the risk of forest fires is high. The US state had only survived a heat wave in mid-August with numerous fires that killed more than 600,000 hectares of forest.
A total of at least eight people died in the flames this year, and according to the California fire department, more than 3,000 buildings were destroyed.
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Video: Forest fires in California – earlier and more devastating than usual (Euronews)
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Agency reports: Maria Kolesnikova arrested on the border with Ukraine
Belarusian oppositionist Maria Kolesnikova appears to have appeared on the border with Ukraine. What exactly happened there is not yet completely clear. According to reports from the TASS and Interfax agencies, based, among other things, on sources in the opposition, she was arrested while crossing the border. Other sources, including the agencies dpa and Reuters, report that she is in Ukraine. According to Interfax, she was taken to the border from a remand prison. When she wanted to go to the Ukriane, she was arrested. The state agency Belta reported that Kolesnikova had tried to leave the country illegally. She was arrested. It was said that she was still able to leave the country afterwards. There was initially no confirmation of this information from her team. According to the Belarusian border guard, Kolesnikova crossed the border together with her colleague Ivan Kravzov and her spokesman Anton Rodnenkow.
For a new one: eighth round of Brexit talks in London
The EU and Great Britain are negotiating a Brexit deal again today in London. It is the eighth round, the previous seven have produced no results. On the one hand, there is trade relations from 2021. On Monday, Premier Johnson threatened again with a no-deal Brexit. The EU, on the other hand, says it wants to avoid that, but is prepared. If necessary, they will trade according to the rules of the WHO. While the British government is selling Brexit as a way to regain control of money, borders and laws, the EU is also calling for certain rules to be followed if there is a trade deal. An example would be state aid for companies: London wants to be able to subsidize companies. Brussels fears that this could give UK companies an unfair advantage over EU companies. David Henig of the European Center for International Political Economy explains: “If you give someone privileged access to a large market, as the EU would do, then you have to be sure that those given that privilege are not exporting still subsidize. That goes against the rules of the World Trade Organization, but there it always takes some time before issues are dealt with. ” Another point of the talks: the question of fisheries. From next year, the UK wants to control who fish in British waters. The EU wants to continue the current quota system. For the British, fishing is symbolic rather than economic in nature. Both sides say they are ready to make concessions. And the EU is known for last minute deals. Last year Johnson promised a ready-made trade deal in the election campaign. But then it was only a half-baked promise.
Belarus: Europe worried about missing Maria Kolesnikova
There is still no trace of Maria Kolesnikova, one of the most important leaders of the Belarusian democracy movement. The coordination council of the democracy movement assumes that the 38-year-old was kidnapped. In addition, her employee Ivan Kravzov and her spokesman Anton Rodnenkow are no longer available. Kolesnikova’s family members have filed a missing person report with the police. According to an eyewitness, the Internet portal tut.by reported that strangers put Kolesnikova in a minibus and kidnapped him on Monday morning. The German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas wrote on Twitter that they were very concerned about Maria Kolesnikowa. One wave of repression after another is rolling towards the opposition that is ready for dialogue. The EU is working on a sanctions package. British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab wrote on Twitter that the safe return of Maria Kolesnikova must now be the top priority for the Lukashenko regime. EU Foreign Affairs Representative Josep Borrell also strongly condemned the arbitrary arrests since the election in Belarus. He demands the immediate release of arrested opposition activists. Arrests and police violence increase again After new mass protests against the authoritarian head of state Alexander Lukashenko at the weekend, arrests and police violence in Belarus increased again. The authorities have started to use terrorist methods openly instead of entering into a dialogue with society, the coordination council said on Telegram. Maria Kolesnikova is one of the most important opposition activists who oppose the controversial head of state Alexander Lukashenko. Some of the committee’s colleagues had previously been arrested, left the country or forced to leave, including the presidential candidate Svetlana Tichanovaskaya. She fled to the EU country Lithuania after the election. Lithuania’s Foreign Minister Linas Linkevicius wrote on Twitter “Instead of speaking to the people of Belarus, the outgoing leadership is trying to cynically eliminate one by one”. This is reminiscent of Stalinist methods. The Belarusian authorities have denied any involvement in the disappearance of Maria Kolesnikova.