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China hits back at the U.S over Shanghai lockdowns

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China has lashed out at the U.S. for urging its consulate staff to leave Shanghai

The financial hub is currently locked down as officials deal with the spread of coronavirus, which is in line with China’s COVID-zero strategy.

But officials say the U.S. is weaponising its attempts to contain the virus entirely.

China’s Foreign Ministry says it “firmly opposes” the order.

“We express strong dissatisfaction with the politicisation and weaponisation of evacuations by the U.S.”

ministry spokesperson Zhao Lijian

On Monday. the U.S. State Department ordered all non-emergency employees and their families to leave the city of 25 million.

Meanwhile. a U.S. travel advisory is also calling for Americans to “reconsider travel” to all parts of China because of the strict COVID measures.

China’s most populous city has been under lockdown for weeks, with many residents unable to access basic essentials including medical care and food.

Locals have taken to their apartments to vent their frustration at the situation.

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‘Magic and perfection’ – French Baguette receives heritage status

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The French Baguette has been awarded heritage status by UNESCO

In the words of Emmanuel Macron, the French Baguette is “250 grams of magic and perfection.”

Soft in the centre with a crusty and crunchy exterior, there’s no wonder they’re adored by millions every year.

And now there’s a new reason to celebrate the culinary delight after UNESCO gave French Baguettes heritage status.

The UN agency granted “intangible cultural heritage status” to the tradition of making the bread stick and the lifestyle surrounding them.

Over six billion are baked annually, but the industry is currently suffering through a challenging time.

France has been losing around 400 artisanal bakeries per year since 1970, from 55,000 to 35,000 today.

The decline is due to a combination of factors including the increase of industrial bakeries and supermarkets in rural areas.

It’s hoped this new heritage status will help breathe life back into the bakers’ delight.

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Epstein estate to pay $155m for Virgin Islands sex-trafficking base

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A nine-figure settlement deal has been reached between Jeffrey Epstein’s estate and the U.S. Virgin Islands

Jeffrey Epstein’s estate will pay a $155m settlement to the U.S. Virgin Islands for using the territory for sex-trafficking.

The convicted sex offender used the region as a base for his sex-trafficking operation.

Credit: The Guardian

The settlement will be paid in cash but lawyers say this is not an admission of liability.

The estate’s executors are also denying wrongdoing.

Another fund for victims of Epstein will receive over $100m in compensation.

It follows the territory’s attorney general saying Epstein bought the island to stop people from monitoring him, and from his victims escaping.

The 66-year-old died in August 2019 while awaiting his trial on sex trafficking charges.

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Is there enough protection against racism at Buckingham Palace?

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An activist has suggested there’s a lack of racism protection at Buckingham Palace after falling victim to offensive remarks

Domestic abuse activist Ngozi Fulani was attending a royal function when she was harassed by Prince William’s godmother Lady Susan Hussey.

Ms Fulani said Hussey moved her aside and began interrogating her about her heritage. Hussey insinuated that Fulani wasn’t British, despite Fulani explaining her ethnic background.

Lady Hussey has been forced to quit the royal post, following the racist remarks against Fulani.

‘Racism has no place’

Prince William

She is one of King Charles III’s top officials, but Buckingham Palace have been quick to condemn the comments.

“We take this incident extremely seriously and have investigated immediately to establish the full details…

Unacceptable and deeply regrettable comments have been made.”

buckingham palace statement

Fulani was attending the event organised by King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla. The domestic abuse activist was invited on behalf of an organisation that provides support for women of African and Caribbean background.

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