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China limits drone exports to help protect Russia

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China has announced that it will limit the export of long-range drones over concerns that these devices are being used for military purposes in Ukraine.

Beijing stated that it will restrict the export of some high-performance civilian drones due to the “increasing risk” that they are being utilized for “non-peaceful purposes” by both Russia and Ukraine. This decision comes amidst accusations between Russia and Ukraine of targeting civilian buildings with drone strikes, with a recent attack on Moscow’s financial district drawing comparisons to the 9/11 attacks.

Chinese firm DJI Technology Co, a major competitor in the global drone industry, has also withdrawn from both Ukraine and Russia to prevent its drones from being used in combat. Reports indicate that both sides may have been employing Chinese-made drones for reconnaissance and potential attacks in Ukraine.

The Chinese Ministry of Commerce announced these new drone export limits along with plans to restrict the export of some lasers, communication equipment, and anti-drone systems. The restrictions will apply to drones capable of flying beyond the natural sight distance of operators or remaining airborne for more than 30 minutes, as well as those with attachments capable of launching objects.

China has previously faced allegations that its drones may be used for military purposes in the conflict, with reports of Chinese-made drones and components being sold to Russia. However, the Chinese government denies these claims and maintains a position of neutrality regarding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

As drone attacks continue between Russia and Ukraine, tensions escalate, and countries like China become increasingly cautious about the potential misuse of their technology for military purposes.

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Big tech caught in political drama

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Nine Google employees were escorted out of company offices in New York and Sunnyvale, California, following a sit-in protest against a cloud contract with Israel’s government.

The protest in Sunnyvale targeted Thomas Kurian’s office, CEO of Google’s cloud division, while in New York, it occupied a common area on the tenth floor.

Videos showed Google security staff and local police involved in the removal. Four workers in New York and five in Sunnyvale were reportedly detained, but details of any charges remain unverified.

 

The protest aimed to pressure Google to drop a $1.2 billion cloud computing contract known as Project Nimbus, citing concerns about its involvement with the Israel Defense Forces.

The protesters included software engineers and activists from groups opposing tech contracts with Israel. This incident reflects ongoing activism within tech companies regarding political issues, such as Israel’s actions in Gaza.

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Antitrust concerns arise for streaming sports venture

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U.S. lawmakers Jerry Nadler and Joaquin Castro expressed competition concerns regarding the planned sports streaming joint venture involving Walt Disney, Fox, and Warner Bros Discovery.

They addressed these concerns in a letter to the CEOs of the media companies, questioning the impact on access, competition, and choice in the sports streaming market.

Voicing apprehension about potential consumer price hikes and unfair licensing terms for sports leagues and distributors, they requested responses by April 30, urging the companies to also send their replies to the Department of Justice.

Despite the companies’ announcement in February of launching a joint sports streaming service in the autumn to attract younger viewers, the deal faces DOJ scrutiny and an antitrust lawsuit from FuboTV. While Disney and Warner Bros remained silent on the matter, Fox declined to comment.

The joint venture encompasses a broad range of professional and collegiate sports rights, including NFL, NBA, MLB, FIFA World Cup, and college competitions, offering non-exclusive access to sports networks such as ESPN, Fox Sports 1, and TNT via a new streaming app.

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Trump trial: will the jury selection impact the trial’s outcome?

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The Trump hush money trial has progressed with the selection of the first seven jurors, marking a significant step in the legal proceedings.

  • Seven jurors were selected

  • Defense and prosecution lawyers questioned potential jurors for impartiality

  • The judge warned lawyers he would not tolerate disruptions after he said Former US President Donald Trump audibly muttered during a prospective juror’s questioning

The selection of jurors is a crucial step in ensuring a fair trial, as they will ultimately decide Formers US President Donald Trump’s fate in this legal battle, as reported by Reuters.

The process of jury selection involves careful vetting of potential jurors to ensure impartiality and fairness.

Each juror’s background, beliefs, and potential biases are scrutinised to ensure they can render an impartial verdict based solely on the evidence presented in court.

With seven jurors already chosen, the selection process is expected to continue as both the prosecution and defence seek individuals who can objectively weigh the evidence.

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