Poor administration means many people don’t show up for vaccine

Poor administration means many people don’t show up for vaccine

More than half of all care providers whose turn it is to be vaccinated do not show up in the vaccination centre in Overijse (Flemish Brabant), according to professor Dirk Devroey (VUB). The main problem is not so much that people do not want to be vaccinated, but rather the loss of emails with invitations, according to Devroey, who is a medical expert in the centre. “People receive a text message, email or letter, but many people apparently do not respond, or do not see the mail because it disappears…

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Should Israel consider joining NATO?

Should Israel consider joining NATO?

There are several questions and challenges about the role of NATO since the end of the Cold War. Some countries, which had a vital position for the Atlantic Treaty, are now following a totally different path in both their internal and foreign policy making. On the other hand, new developments in foreign policy dynamics in NATO neighbourhood could also justify new memberships. One interesting debate is the place of Turkey and Israel within the North Atlantic Alliance. One can make the following question: Why a quasi-autocratic ruled Turkey remains a…

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Johnson drafts in trade chief as Brexit enforcer

Johnson drafts in trade chief as Brexit enforcer

Boris Johnson on Wednesday (17 February) drafted his chief Brexit negotiator David Frost as a senior minister in his cabinet with a portfolio as Brexit enforcer. Frost will lead the UK’s institutional and strategic relations with the EU and police the management of the trade agreement which he brokered with the EU’s Michel Barnier last year. A former advisor to Johnson in the Foreign Office before being appointed to negotiate the post Brexit trade deal with the EU when Johnson took over as Prime Minister in July 2019, Frost’s pugnacious…

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2021’s ‘Doomsday Clock’ stuck at 100 seconds until the end of the world

2021’s ‘Doomsday Clock’ stuck at 100 seconds until the end of the world

After a year marked by the COVID-19 pandemic and continued fears over nuclear risks and climate change, the symbolic Doomsday Clock remains stuck at the same time as last year. “The hands of the Doomsday Clock remain at 100 seconds to midnight, as close to midnight as ever,” Rachel Bronson, president of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (BAS), said on Wednesday (27 January). Since 1947, the nonprofit organisation annually adjusts its symbolic annual end-of-days prediction, which “conveys how close we are to destroying our civilization with dangerous technologies of…

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Virus lockdowns caused shift to ‘private mobility’: report

Virus lockdowns caused shift to ‘private mobility’: report

The need to avoid crowded spaces led Europeans to opt for “private mobility modes”, such as cycling, walking, and private vehicles, according to the European Mobility Atlas 2021, a report analysing key facts and figures about transport in Europe. European travellers abandoned public transport for private cars during the COVID-19 pandemic, a trend that may harm efforts to drastically cut emissions in the sector, the report found. Even though sales of bicycles skyrocketed during the pandemic, the most popular means of transport for longer journeys remained the private car. Air…

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Amazon faces legal challenge over Prime cancellation policy

Amazon faces legal challenge over Prime cancellation policy

Amazon is being challenged by consumer watchdogs in Europe and the US over its use of manipulative “dark pattern” design to promote its Prime service. The Norwegian Consumer Council (NCC) found that cancelling a subscription required scrolling through six pages and making several complex choices. It has filed a legal complaint with Norway’s consumer protection authority claiming the design breaches EU law. Amazon rejected claims the process was unfair or difficult. In the US, consumer watchdog Public Citizen is also filing a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. And consumer…

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Brussels Airport boosts its coronavirus testing capacity

Brussels Airport boosts its coronavirus testing capacity

Brussels Airport will carry out four times more coronavirus tests at its testing centre from Friday, the private laboratory Eurofins announced on Thursday. The Airport is ramping up its capacity from 2,000 to 8,000 tests per day in support of new measures for taken by Belgium’s Consultative Committee. Those measures include a mandatory PCR test on day 1 and 7 after return to Belgium. The airport will be increasing its testing capacity from 125 to 300 tests per hour on Friday, and will add a testing centre in the arrivals…

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Belgium worries about expats returning after Christmas

Belgium worries about expats returning after Christmas

The likelihood of impending international travel severely impacting Belgium’s improving coronavirus numbers is giving experts cause for concern, as the vast expat workforce begins to travel home for the holiday season. As the start of December passes, and the flights home begin, the mass exodus seen every year to spend time with family and friends is posing some very real risks, virologist and interfederal Covid-19 spokesperson Steven Van Gucht told Leuropeennedebruxelles.com. “First of all, people travel to a country where the virus is circulating more. And secondly, they are going…

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Portugal refuses to reopen EU budget negotiations

Portugal refuses to reopen EU budget negotiations

Portugal refuses to reopen negotiations on the EU budget and recovery fund agreed by EU leaders in July, Portuguese Prime Minister António Costa said on Wednesday. His comments came as the European Commission is assessing options to circumvent Hungary and Poland’s veto of the budget and fund, and could come up with a proposal early next year if their blockade remains, a senior EU official confirmed to Leuropeennedebruxelles.com.

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Protesters clash with police at Paris protest against police violence

Protesters clash with police at Paris protest against police violence

Hundreds of black-clad protesters clashed with police at the end of a demonstration against police violence in Paris on Saturday (28 November) after masked protesters launched fireworks at police lines, put up barricades and threw stones. The majority of the thousands of demonstrators marched peacefully, but small groups of masked protesters dressed in black smashed shop windows and set two cars, a motorcycle and a cafe on fire. The fires were put out quickly. Police fired tear gas and stun grenades to disperse the crowds and in early evening water…

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