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Police break-up women’s protest in Guinea, some 20 injured

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CONAKRY — Guinea police fired tear gas at women protesting over upcoming elections, as well as kicking and hitting them to break up the rally, leaving about 20 injured, an AFP journalist witnessed Thursday.

About 200 women from several opposition parties gathered near the headquarters of the electoral commission (CENI) in the capital Conakry, demaning a restructuring of the body ahead of legislative polls on July 8.

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“Down with CENI!”, “Viva democracy!”, the women shouted, also clamouring for the resignation of the electoral commission president Louceni Kamara, and demanding free and transparent elections.

Police prevented them from protesting directly outside the headquarters, and after ordering them to “immediately leave the premises” fired canisters of tear gas.

Some were kicked or hit with belts, AFP witnessed, counting 18 injured, some lightly while about six had blood-stained faces.

A spokesman for the protesters, Hadja Biya Diallo, said three of the women had been arrested, while a policeman speaking on condition of anonymity said there were “many arrested.”

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“These protesters were sent by their chiefs,” the leaders of the opposition, said a police official at the scene. “We will not tolerate anarchy in this country.”

Police were later deployed around the electoral commission headquarters.

The opposition has said the poll date of July 8 is “far-fetched”, saying it had been set down without proper consultations with political parties.

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The polls had already been delayed and should have been held six months after Guinea’s first democratic election in November 2010, held to fanfare after a period of turmoil under a military junta which took over in 2008.

The opposition has accused the regime of planning to hold sham polls with no safeguards against fraud, and wanted the electoral register to be audited before they take place.

The last legislative elections were in June 2002.

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Ukrainian journalist throws down gauntlet after Giuliani smear: ‘I express my readiness to testify’

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A Ukrainian journalist said on Sunday that he would be willing to testify to Congress against President Donald Trump's attorney, Rudy Giuliani.

After Giuliani unleashed a bizarre rant on CNN accusing Democrats of trying to get help from Ukraine in the 2016 election, Ukrainian journalist Serhiy Leshchenko wrote an op-ed exposing the accusation as a lie.

In his op-ed, Leshchenko explains:

Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine the Manafort revelations would become fodder for the U.S. elections in 2020. President Trump’s lawyer Rudolph W. Giuliani, the mouthpiece of this campaign, is not only attempting to rehabilitate Manafort but is also working to undermine U.S. relations with Ukraine, which has been confronting Russian aggression on its own for more than five years. Giuliani and his associates are trying to drag our newly elected president, Volodymyr Zelensky, into a conflict between two foreign political parties, drastically limiting Ukraine’s room for maneuver in respect to the United States, perhaps its most important international partner.

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Trump is openly colluding with Ukraine to smear Biden

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President Donald Trump is defending his phone call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, one that recent media reports suggest may have been made in order to dig up dirt about one of Trump's likeliest and strongest opponents in the 2020 election, former Vice President Joe Biden.

This article first appeared on Salon.

"The Fake News Media and their partner, the Democrat Party, want to stay as far away as possible from the Joe Biden demand that the Ukrainian Government fire a prosecutor who was investigating his son, or they won’t get a very large amount of U.S. money, so they fabricate a story about me and a perfectly fine and routine conversation I had with the new President of the Ukraine," Trump tweeted on Saturday. "Nothing was said that was in any way wrong, but Biden’s demand, on the other hand, was a complete and total disaster. The Fake News knows this but doesn’t want to report!"

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Democrats’ refusal to impeach Trump is a ‘bigger national scandal’ than him breaking the law: Ocasio-Cortez

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Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., criticized House Democrats on Saturday for their unwillingness to impeach President Donald Trump despite new revelations that he may have pressured Ukraine to dig up dirt on one of his potential Democratic rivals in 2020, former Vice President Joe Biden.

This article first appeared in Salon.

"At this point, the bigger national scandal isn’t the president’s lawbreaking behavior - it is the Democratic Party’s refusal to impeach him for it," Ocasio-Cortez tweeted on Saturday night.

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