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UN says Libya rival factions fail to reach deal in election talks

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UN says Libya rival factions fail to reach deal in election talks

The final round of talks in Egypt concluded without a breakthrough, UN special adviser on Libya Stephanie Williams said.

Published On 20 Jun 2022

Rival Libyan factions have failed to reach an agreement after wrapping up a third round of UN-mediated talks in Egypt, the United Nations said on Monday, further complicating international efforts to find a way out of the country’s decade-old chaos.

According to the UN special adviser on Libya, Stephanie Williams, legislators from Libya’s east-based parliament and the High Council of State, based in the capital, Tripoli, in the country’s west, concluded their final round of negotiations on constitutional amendments for elections late on Sunday in Cairo without a breakthrough.

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The talks, which started on June 12, had sought to establish a constitutional framework for elections in Libya, but the two sides failed to agree on “the measures governing the transitional period” leading to the vote, William said in a statement accessed by The Associated Press news agency.

She called on Aguila Saleh, the influential parliament speaker, and Khaled al-Meshri, head of the Tripoli-based council to convene within 10 days to try and bridge the gaps between the two sides. She did not elaborate.

Libyan media reports claimed that the main contested topic was the criteria for a presidential candidacy.

The Tripoli-based council insisted on banning military personnel from running for the country’s top post – apparently a move directed at renegade military commander Khalifa Haftar.

Haftar had announced his bid in elections slated for last December. His forces launched an offensive in 2020 to capture Tripoli, but were defeated after Turkey supported the Tripoli-based government.

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International efforts to end chaos

Nearly three million Libyans signed up to vote, which was delayed because of myriad issues, including controversial hopefuls and disputes about election laws.

The two legislative bodies have failed to agree on a new government to replace the unity government of Prime Minister Abdel Hamid Dbeibeh, who was sworn in in March last year through a UN-brokered process.

His legitimacy has been questioned by the eastern parliament after the December elections were postponed.

The political crisis escalated after Fathi Bashagha was appointed prime minister by the east-based parliament in February. Dbeibeh has refused to hand over power.

During the talks in Cairo, the east-based legislators called for allowing military personnel to run in a subsequent vote.

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The failure to hold the vote in December was a big blow to international efforts to end a decade of chaos in Libya, where rival administrations are now claiming power after tentative steps towards unity last year.

The oil-rich Libya has been racked by conflict since a NATO-backed uprising toppled and killed longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi in 2011.

The country was then for years split between rival administrations in the east and the west, each supported by different armed groups and foreign governments.

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Mishael Morgan becomes first Black artist to win Best Actress Daytime Emmy

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Mishael Morgan becomes first Black artist to win Best Actress Daytime Emmy

Mishael Morgan becomes first Black artist to win Best Actress Daytime Emmy

Mishael Morgan won the Best Lead Actress Daytime Emmy Award on Friday. Photo courtesy of CBS

June 25 (UPI) — The Young & the Restless star Mishael Morgan became the first Black artist to win a Daytime Emmy Award in the Best Lead Actress category in Pasadena Friday night.

“I was born on a tiny island in the Caribbean, and I’m now standing on an international stage and I am being honored regardless of the color of my skin, regardless of my passport, for being the best at what I do,” Morgan said as she accepted her statuette.

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“Now there are little girls around the world and no matter what the industry, the vocation … they can strive to be the best.”

The actress also thanked viewers for their support since she joined the soap opera in 2013.

“I am so immensely proud of our generation,” she said. “We are breaking glass ceilings left right and center and I am so honored to be a vessel and to experience this moment. Everybody out there today, we can do this thing called equality and unity together.”

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BTS’ ‘Proof’ tops U.S. album chart

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BTS’ ‘Proof’ tops U.S. album chart

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BTS' 'Proof' tops U.S. album chart

BTS’ “Proof” is No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart. File Photo by Oliver Contreras/UPI | License Photo

June 25 (UPI) — K-pop group BTS’ Proof is the No. 1 album in the United States this week.

Coming in at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 chart dated Saturday is Bad Bunny’s Un Verano Sin Ti, followed by Harry Styles’ Harry’s House at No. 3, Post Malone’s Twelve Carat Toothache at No. 4 and Future’s I Never Liked You at No. 5.

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Rounding out the top tier are Morgan Wallen’s Dangerous: The Double Album at No. 6, Kendrick Lamar’s Mr. Morale & The Big Steppers at No. 7, Olivia Rodrigo’s Sour at No. 8, SZA’s Ctrl at No. 9 and Carrie Underwood’s Denim & Rhinestones at No. 10.

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Shooting at Oslo, Norway, gay bar leaves 2 dead

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Shooting at Oslo, Norway, gay bar leaves 2 dead

Shooting at Oslo, Norway, gay bar leaves 2 dead

Police investigate the scene after several shots were fired outside the London Pub in the center of Oslo, Norway, on Saturday. Photo by Javad Parsa/EPA-EFE

June 25 (UPI) — Oslo, Norway, canceled its gay pride parade and raised its terror threat to the highest level Saturday after a shooting at an LGBTQ nightclub left two people dead and 21 injured, authorities said.

The shooting took place at 1:14 a.m. Saturday at the London Pub, a second bar and a fast-food restaurant. Police arrested a suspected gunman who they believe acted alone.

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Of those injured, 10 were in serious condition.

Police haven’t identified the suspected shooter, but described him as being a 42-year-old Norwegian citizen of Iranian descent, according to Norwegian newspaper Aftenposten. CNN reported he was “known to police” and had minor previous convictions.

Authorities said they seized two weapons from him upon the arrest.

Roger Berg, the head of Norway’s domestic intelligence and security service, said the shooting was being investigated as an act of “extreme Islamist terror,” according to The Washington Post.

The suspect was being held on charges of murder, attempted murder and terrorism, police official Christian Hatlo said.

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The attack happened hours before the city’s planned gay pride parade. Organizers said pride events scheduled for Saturday have been canceled upon police advice.

Despite the cancellation, thousands of people joined an impromptu parade outside the nightclubs where the shooting took place. Many waved gay pride flags, while others shouted slogans of support for gay rights.

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