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German parliament rows over UN Migration Compact Germanyʼs parliament held a rambunctious debate on Thursday about the United Nations Global Compact for Migration, after the Alternative for Germany (AfD) brought a motion calling for Germany to withdraw from the agreement, following the US and Australia among others. Furious interventions, angry accusations, and scornful laughter rang around the Bundestag chamber throughout the morning, as the various parliamentary groups argued about a pact that represents the first global attempt to set out parameters for managing migration. "Millions of people from crisisstricken regions around the world are being encouraged to get on the road," said AfD leader Alexander Gauland. "Leftist dreamers and globalist elites want to secretly turn our country from a nation state into a settlement area."

Refugee abuse trial opens in Germany The trial of 30 people accused of abusing refugees at an asylum center in Germany started on Thursday in the western town of Siegen. It has been nearly four years since shocking images of abuse against refugees in the small western town of Burbach triggered widespread outrage. The abuse was captured on cell phone photos. One of the Burbach photos showed a security guard posing with his foot on the neck of a handcuffed refugee lying on the floor, while another showed a refugee being forced to lie on a mattress stained with vomit. Security guards also took the refugees to a "problem room" where they were allegedly imprisoned, beaten and robbed. At the time the photos became public, Police Chief Frank Richter from nearby Hagen said: "These are images of the kind weʼve seen from Guantanamo Bay."

255/2018 • 9 NOVEMBER, 2018

Merkel ally Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer urges new era in German politics The battle to be the next leader of Angela Merkelʼs Christian Democrats is heating up

Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, the candidate considered closest to the chancellor personally and politically, has now made her case.

Real estate investors flee ʼoverpricedʼ Germany "Overpriced" and scarce real estate in Germanyʼs largest cities are deterring investors, according to a consultantsʼ study. Instead, theyʼre turning to Lisbon and London — despite Brexit. Eight-hundred professionals at investment houses, banks and building firms told the Urban Land Institute (ULI) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in a survey published Monday they still valued Germanyʼs stability, but were looking elsewhere in Europe for property prospects. Lisbon, Portugalʼs capital, was top-ranked in the report"Emerging Trends in Real Estate Europe 2019"because of its aboveaverage returns and high growth poten-

tial, including projects to provide office space. Despite soaring prices, the German capital Berlin came in second, with Frankfurt, Hamburg and Munich all making the top ten. However, opportunities for "really attractive investments" in the big German cities had become "increasingly rare," said PwC real estate expert Susanne EickermannRiepe. Survey respondents had described pricing in urban hubs in Germany and elsewhere in Europe as "near the peak," well advanced" and "overpriced," she said. Purchases in Germany between October 2017 and September 2018 amounted to €65 billion ($74 billion) — down 3 billion on the previous 12 months.

How the battlefield sounded as World War I guns fell silent The peace terms had been agreed six hours earlier, but the thunderous noise of heavy artillery fire — and the potential to end yet another human life — continued to the last moment. The sounds were never recorded, but we do have a visual record of the sound. And now, you can actually hear it. Even as the armistice came into effect at 11 a.m., Allied soldiers were using state-of-the-art"sound ranging"techniques to detect the location of the enemy. Rather than recording sound, the

system recorded the noise intensity at any one moment onto a rolling piece of photographic film, similar to how a seismograph records tremors in the earth. Britainʼs Imperial War Museum, which had a set of graphic records labelled "THE END OF THE WAR" among its artefacts, asked sound experts from the London acoustics firm Coda to Coda to use just such a photographic record — from the American front on the Moselle — to reproduce a soundscape of the moment of armistice.

Germany cautious as France leads European defense initiative Defense ministers from 10 European countries gathered in Paris on Wednesday to set the agenda for the European Intervention Initiative (EI2), a defense coalition spearheaded by French President Emmanuel Macron. "To face new threats, Europe needs a strong defense," the French Defense Ministry said in a tweet after the meeting. "With the European Intervention Initiative, 10 European countries are committed to its protection." EI2ʼs goal is to create a resultsbased common strategic culture that allows for rapid response joint military operations, including in humanitarian efforts. As such, it is not aimed at establishing a supranational European army. However, as an initiative outside EU and NATO frameworks, the French Defense Ministry has tried to alleviate concerns that it would undermine defense structures in the bloc and alliance.

Several dead in California bar shooting Thirteen people are dead, including a sheriffʼs deputy, and at least 10 more wounded after a shooting Wednesday night in a bar in southern California. The gunman used a handgun and smoke bombs at a country dance bar on "college night" and sending hundreds of panicking people toward the exits with some breaking windows to escape, authorities and witnesses said. Ventura County Sheriff Geoff Dean said that sheriffʼs Sgt. Ron Helus, a 29-year veteran of the sheriffʼs department, responded to the scene and was shot after he entered the building.

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255/2018 • 9 November, 2018

Migrant caravan ʼcould not be

Americaʼs first solar-powered town

larger giftʼ for Donald Trump

Building a completely solarpowered town is a challenge, even in very sunny Florida. And not just for technical reasons. Getting average buyers to go green sometimes means having to compromise.

"Remember the midterms", US President Donald Trump reminded his 55 million followers on Twitter on Tuesday in a sequence of tweets focused on the so-called migrant caravan that is making its way through Mexico towards the US border. If there was ever any doubt that Trump would forego the attention-grabbing visuals of thousands of Latin American migrants braving brutal conditions to trek tens of miles per day in hopes of reaching the US, a series of presidential tweets sent out in the past couple of days erased it. Using military jargon to describe the caravan and alleging — without offering evidence — that criminals and "unknown Middle Easterners" were part of the group, Trump faulted Democrats and US courts for standing in the way of a tougher immigration policy, and El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, the home countries of most of the migrants, for not preventing them from making the journey.

Floyd Mayweather: Retired boxer denies agreeing deal to face kickboxer Tenshin Nasukawa Floyd Mayweather says he has not agreed to face Tenshin Nasukawa in an official bout and had "never heard" of the Japanese kickboxer until this week. The former five-weight boxing world championwas said to have agreed to face Nasukawa in Japan on 31 December. Mayweather, 41, says he had only been asked to compete in a non-televised event for "wealthy spectators". "Once I arrived to the press conference, my team and I were completely derailed," said Mayweather. "We should have put a stop to it immediately.

Babcock Ranch looks like any other comfortable Floridian town. Bright homes with pitched roofs, wooden panels and large front porches form neat neighborhoods on a flat landscape. Native palms decorate manicured gardens. While the architecture looks similar to elsewhere in Florida, the townʼs homes — built to Florida Green Building Coalition standards — are high-tech and eco-friendly. The

roofs are metal to reduce heating and cooling costs and have extended eaves to create shade. The garages have charging facilities and the gardens are only 30 percent lawn, leaving the rest for less thirsty native plants. "Gray water" reclaimed from the townʼs on-site treatment plant and rainwater runoff — the streets have no drains or curbs — is used for irrigation and to top up lakes.

Ending plastic waste with big promises? Big companies including Coca-Cola and Danone have signed a new global commitment to tackle the plastic waste problem. Plastic waste is in the spotlight right now — no doubt about that. The European Commissionʼs recent decision toban the most polluting items of singleuse plasticcaptured significant attention. But regardless of bans, plastic continues flowing into our oceans, polluting the planet at an alarming rate. Meanwhile, the global community keeps working away at the problem — currently on the idyllic island of Bali,

Indonesia, where the 5th Our Ocean Conference is being held (October 29-30). There, more than 250 businesses, investors and governments Monday announced a new global commitmentto fight plastic waste. These include large transnational corporations like Coca-Cola, Danone and Unilever. Such signatories are significant not only for their economic empires, but also because they are major contributors to global plastic pollution. But do such pledges really amount to more than companies simply bragging about their efforts, or can they contribute to real action?

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Indiaʼs currency tumbles amid rising oil prices The rupee has dropped over 12 percent against the US dollar since the beginning of 2018, earning it the unfortunate distinction of Asiaʼs worst performing currency this year. Economists blame risingglobal crude prices for the slide. India imports 80 percent of its oil needs and soaring prices have blown a hole in the nationʼs finances. The country also imports huge quantities of items like gold and electronics, swelling its import bill further. Indiaʼs current account deficit (CAD) will also likely widen to 2.8 percent of GDP in financial year 2018 — up from 1.9 percent last year — according to consultancy Nomura Research Institute. CAD is a measure of the flow of goods, services and investments in and out of the country. Still, macroeconomic problems resulting from a higher CAD and depreciating rupee are not Prime Minister Narendra Modiʼs biggest concerns. His administration is more worried about growing public discontent due to the rise in petrol and diesel prices.

Vietnamʼs dog meat culture clashes with modern tastes Hoang has been eating dog meat since he was young. He canʼt imagine there will be a time that he wonʼt be eating it at least twice a month. However, Vietnamese officials announced in September that dog and cat meat should no longer be served in the inner districts of the capital city Hanoi because itʼs offensive to tourists and can spread diseases like rabies. Read more: Illegal dog meat trade raises moral questions Dog meat lovers and restaurant owners fear that the government will try to expand the ban and decide to officially forbid eating dog and cat meat entirely. "I donʼt see how they can ban it. The demand is just too high," Hoang said at a restaurant in Vietnamʼs largest metropolis, Ho Chi Minh City. In a small alley in Ho Chi Minh City, at least four restaurants serve dog meat, or Thịt chó. People gather around small tables to dine on the canine meat, complementing it with rice wine or beer. Hoang, who declined to give his full name, is sitting at a table with three good friends. "For us itʼs a tradition to eat dog meat. Itʼs just as normal as eating seafood or chicken," he told DW.