Snowden, Mandela and IVF–our pick of the morning's headlinesby Prospect Team / June 28, 2013 / Leave a comment
In the latest episode of the ongoing saga over the travails of NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden, Ecuador has broken a trade pact with the USA in an attempt to pre-empt any attempt by Washington to use it to pressure them to hand him over.
The Ecuadorian government yesterday told reporters that it was renouncing the Andean Trade Preference Act in order to thwart US “blackmail” attempts over Snowden’s request for asylum in the South American country.
President Rafael Correa’s officials also offered a $23m donation for what it called “human rights training” in the US, in an attempt to throw back recent US criticism over its own human rights record.
Meanwhile, supporters of Nelson Mandela held an all-night vigil outside the former South African President’s former home in Soweto, marking the 20th night that the 94-year-old has spent in hospital with a lung infection. President Jacob Zuma said that while Mr Mandela’s condition has improved slightly, it remained critical.
The UK government has backed a bold IVF technique which would allow the creation of babies using the DNA from three people. This move is designed to eliminate potentially fatal hereditary mitochondrial diseases. The government will be publishing draft regulations later this year. If all goes according to plan the pioneering procedure could be offered to the public within two years.
It has been revealed that Ireland has fallen back into recession for the first time since it’s bailout in 2010. Official figures confirm that the Irish economy has been contracting for three successive quarters, with GDP shrinking 0.6 per cent in the first three months of this year. The news comes amid the release of tape recordings by the Irish Independent newspaper in which executives at the Anglo Irish Bank can be heard joking about their multi-billion euro bailout in 2008.