The Racist Researcher Cited in the Buffalo Gunman’s Manifesto

The work of Michael Woodley, a Briton who was cited by the teenager who killed 10 Black people at a supermarket in Buffalo, included pseudoscientific theories that have been used to justify racism.

#belgium, #buffalo-ny, #buffalo-ny-shooting-may-14-2022, #colleges-and-universities, #michael-woodley, #race-and-ethnicity, #right-wing-extremism-and-alt-right, #science-and-technology, #vrije-universiteit-brussel

Nuclear Power Could Help Europe Cut Ties to Russia, but Not for Years

The projects, which some European countries are pushing to end their reliance on Russia’s energy, face delays in coming online.

#alternative-and-renewable-energy, #belgium, #energy-and-power, #europe, #european-union, #france, #nuclear-energy, #putin-vladimir-v, #scholz-olaf-1958

A Nazi Soldier Stole a Watch in 1942. It Turned Up 80 Years Later.

The watch, made as a gift in 1910, has been returned to the maker’s family in the Netherlands. It still works.

#belgium, #holocaust-and-the-nazi-era, #netherlands, #overstrijd-alfred, #robberies-and-thefts, #rotterdam-netherlands, #snijders-rob, #watches-and-clocks, #world-war-ii-1939-45

What a ‘Grief Camp’ For Kids Can Show Us About Healing

Yaren, age 10, lost her mother at 6. She felt alone in her grief — until she attended a camp for kids who have lost someone important.

#belgium, #camps-and-camping, #children-and-childhood, #documentary-films-and-programs, #grief-emotion, #loneliness

Pandemic Fears Give Way to a Rush for Bomb Shelters

Since Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, European anxiety has shifted from Covid to nuclear annihilation. Bunkers, survival guides and iodine pills are flying off the shelves.

#anxiety-and-stress, #belgium, #cold-war-era, #defense-and-military-forces, #doomsday, #europe, #finland, #france, #great-britain, #iodine, #italy, #nuclear-war, #politics-and-government, #radiation, #russia, #russian-invasion-of-ukraine-2022, #sweden, #switzerland, #ukraine, #war-and-armed-conflicts

Monique Hanotte, Savior of Allied Airmen, Dies at 101

Using her knowledge of the Belgium-France border and quick thinking, she guided dozens of downed Allied airmen to safety during World War II.

#belgium, #deaths-obituaries, #defense-and-military-forces, #france, #hanotte-monique-1920-2022, #world-war-ii-1939-45

NATO Countries Pour Weapons Into Ukraine, Risking Conflict With Russia

Brussels is proud to be providing military aid, but Moscow may see it as a dangerous intervention and could move to disrupt the flow of arms through Poland.

#baltic-region, #belarus, #belgium, #borrell-fontelles-josep, #bulgaria, #czech-republic, #defense-and-military-forces, #denmark, #estonia, #europe, #european-union, #finland, #france, #germany, #great-britain, #greece, #hungary, #italy, #latvia, #lithuania, #morawiecki-mateusz, #north-atlantic-treaty-organization, #politics-and-government, #putin-vladimir-v, #russia, #russian-invasion-of-ukraine-2022, #stoltenberg-jens, #ukraine, #von-der-leyen-ursula, #war-and-armed-conflicts

Documenting a Death by Euthanasia in Belgium

Belgium has some of the world’s most liberal euthanasia laws. A photojournalist documented a paralympian’s experience of them.

#belgium, #disabilities, #euthanasia-and-assisted-suicide, #paralympic-games, #vervoort-marieke-1979-2019

A Portrait of a Paralympian Who Died by Euthanasia

Belgium has some of the world’s most liberal euthanasia laws. A photojournalist documented one woman’s experience of them.

#belgium, #disabilities, #euthanasia-and-assisted-suicide, #paralympic-games, #vervoort-marieke-1979-2019

A ‘High Priestess of Satanic Art’? This Organist Can Only Laugh.

For more than a decade, Anna von Hausswolff has been bringing the sound of pipe organs to rock fans. But Roman Catholic extremists have tried to stop her playing shows in churches.

#belgium, #churches-buildings, #france, #music, #nantes-france, #netherlands, #organs-musical, #sweden, #von-hausswolff-anna

Belgium Convicts 18 in People-Smuggling Case Tied to U.K. Truck Deaths

A Belgian court convicted a man said to have been the leader of a human trafficking operation that resulted in the deaths of 39 Vietnamese migrants in 2019. More than a dozen others were also found guilty.

#belgium, #essex-england, #europe, #european-union, #europol, #great-britain, #human-trafficking, #illegal-immigration, #vietnam

A Divided World United to Launch the James Webb Space Telescope

“I’ve always seen space as an area where we cooperate, through all the trying times,” said a professor who oversaw mission control for the global effort to launch a $10 billion telescope into space.

#baltimore-md, #belgium, #california, #canadian-space-agency, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #europe, #european-space-agency, #european-union, #french-guiana, #germany, #great-britain, #james-webb-space-telescope, #national-aeronautics-and-space-administration, #planets, #politics-and-government, #science-and-technology, #space-and-astronomy, #stars-and-galaxies, #telescopes-and-observatories

Remembering the Racist History of ‘Human Zoos’

In exhibitions that were popular until the early 20th century, living people of color were displayed for the enjoyment of white audiences. The bigotry behind those shows lives on.

#art, #belgian-royal-museum-for-central-africa, #belgium, #black-people, #gryseels-guido, #leopold-ii, #museums, #race-and-ethnicity

Belgian Port City Grapples With a Flood of Cocaine

Antwerp has become the main port of entry into Europe for the drug, which is being blamed for a surge of violence that has prompted some Belgian officials to call for a war on drugs.

#amsterdam-netherlands, #antwerp-belgium, #belgium, #cocaine-and-crack-cocaine, #colombia, #drug-abuse-and-traffic, #europol, #gangs, #netherlands, #ships-and-shipping, #smuggling

Austria Imposes Lockdown and Mandatory Vaccination Amid Covid Surge

Austria leads in imposing tough new rules, as Europe fights resistance to vaccines and restrictions. Soon, a German official warned, almost everyone will be “vaccinated, recovered or dead.”

#austria, #belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #demonstrations-protests-and-riots, #europe, #freedom-party-of-austria, #germany, #merkel-angela, #spahn-jens, #vaccination-and-immunization, #world-health-organization

Torn From Parents in the Belgian Congo, Women Seek Reparations

Belgium has apologized for the kidnapping and deportation of thousands of mixed-race children under its colonial rule. Survivors say that reparations should be the next step.

#apologies, #belgium, #children-and-childhood, #colonization, #congo-democratic-republic-of-congo-kinshasa, #politics-and-government, #race-and-ethnicity, #reparations

Russia Breaks Diplomatic Ties with NATO

Moscow’s decision to end its diplomatic mission to the alliance will end a long post-Cold War experiment in building trust between militaries.

#belgium, #brussels-belgium, #cold-war-era, #defense-and-military-forces, #diplomatic-service-embassies-and-consulates, #moscow-russia, #north-atlantic-treaty-organization, #russia, #warsaw-pact

He Sees Migrants as ‘Modern Slaves,’ and Has Devoted His Life to Helping Them

The Rev. Daniel Alliët, for whom Jesus was a “political revolutionary,” has made it his life’s mission to fight for the rights of undocumented migrants, to the chagrin of some other clergy members.

#alliet-daniel, #belgium, #brussels-belgium, #christians-and-christianity, #content-type-personal-profile, #immigration-and-emigration, #middle-east-and-africa-migrant-crisis, #muslims-and-islam, #roman-catholic-church

Where Home Blends With Community

How co-housing in four places in the Netherlands and Belgium is helping people cope with rising costs, keep loneliness at bay and live more sustainably.

#architecture, #belgium, #cohousing-communities, #elderly, #historic-buildings-and-sites, #netherlands, #real-estate-and-housing-residential, #restoration-and-renovation

Climate Change Contributed to Europe’s Deadly Floods, Scientists Find

Warming increased the likelihood of the record downpours last month in Germany and Belgium and also made them wetter, according to a study.

#belgium, #europe, #floods, #germany, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #netherlands, #rain, #research, #rivers, #world-weather-attribution

What We Know About the Climate Connection to the European Floods

The storm that brought flooding and devastation to parts of Europe is the latest example of an extreme weather event. More are expected.

#belgium, #deaths-fatalities, #floods, #germany, #global-warming, #greenhouse-gas-emissions, #intergovernmental-panel-on-climate-change, #netherlands, #rivers, #weather, #world-weather-attribution

Flooding in Europe, in Pictures

Sinkholes that swallowed up houses. Streets disemboweled, their utility lines exposed. Cars carried away and deposited upside down. Homes emptied out, their contents mixed with mud.

#belgium, #europe, #floods, #germany, #global-warming, #netherlands, #switzerland

German Floods Raise the Bar on Extreme Weather Events

Floods like these, which have left more than 100 dead, had not been seen in perhaps a 1,000 years. For many, the warnings came too late, raising questions about lapses in Germany’s flood alert system.

#belgium, #deaths-fatalities, #floods, #germany, #laschet-armin, #merkel-angela, #netherlands, #politics-and-government, #rain, #rivers, #weather

After 35-Day Manhunt for Far-Right Soldier, Body Is Found in Belgium

Jürgen Conings, 46, disappeared after threatening the government and virologists responsible for the country’s pandemic response.

#belgium, #defense-and-military-forces, #jurgen-conings, #right-wing-extremism-and-alt-right

CJEU ruling could open big tech to more privacy litigation in Europe

A long running privacy fight between Belgium’s data protection authority and Facebook — over the latter’s use of online trackers like pixels and social plug-ins to snoop on web users — has culminated in a ruling by Europe’s top court today that could have wider significance on how cross-border cases against tech giants are enforced in the region.

The Court of Justice of the European Union has affirmed that, in certain circumstances, national DPAs can pursue action even when they are not the lead data supervisor under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)’s one-stop-shop mechanism (OSS) — opening up the possibility of litigation by watchdogs in Member States which aren’t the lead regulator for a particular company but where the local agency believes there is an urgent need to act.

The OSS was included in the GDPR with the idea of simplifying enforcement for businesses operating in more than one EU market — which would only need to deal directly with one ‘lead’ data protection authority. However the mechanism has been criticized for contributing to a bottleneck effect whereby multiple GDPR complaints are stacking up on the desks of a couple of DPAs (most notably Ireland and Luxembourg) — EU Member States which attract large numbers of multinationals (typically for tax reasons, such as Ireland’s 12.5% corporate tax rate).

Enforcement of the EU’s flagship data protection regime against tech giant has thus been hampered by a perception of ‘forum shopping’ — whereby a handful of EU DPAs have a disproportionately large number of major, cross-border cases to deal with vs the (inevitably limited) resources provided for them by their national governments. The resulting bottleneck looks convenient for those companies that face delayed GDPR enforcement.

Some EU DPAs are also considered more active in enforcement of the bloc’s privacy rules than others — and it’s fair to say that Ireland is not among them. (Albeit, it defends the pace of its investigations and enforcement record by saying that it must do due diligence to ensure decisions stand up to any legal challenges.)

Indeed, Ireland has been criticized for (among other things) the length of time it’s taken to investigate GDPR complaints; for procedural issues (how it’s gone about investigating or indeed not investigating complaints); and for its enforcement record against tech giants — which to date is limited to just one $550k penalty issued against Twitter issued at the end of last year.

The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC) had originally wanted to give Twitter an even lower fine but other EU DPAs disputed its draft decision — forcing it to increase the penalty slightly.

As it stands, scores of cases remain open on the DPC’s desk, including major complaints against Facebook and Google — which are now over three years old.

This has led to calls for the Commission to step in and take action over Ireland’s perceived inaction. Although, for now, the EU’s executive has limited its intervention to a few words urging Ireland to, essentially, hurry up and get on with the job.

Today’s CJEU ruling may alleviate a little of the blockage around GDPR enforcement — in some narrow situations — by enabling national DPAs to take up the baton to litigate over users’ rights when a lead agency isn’t acting on complaints.

However the ruling does not look set to completely unblock the OSS mechanism, per Luca Tosoni, a research fellow at the Norwegian Research Center for Computers and Law at the University of Oslo who has been following the case closely — and whose work was cited by the CJEU’s advocate general in an earlier opinion on the case.

“The Court has essentially confirmed the views that the Advocate General had expressed in his opinion: Under the GDPR’ one-stop-shop system, those data protection authorities that are not the ‘lead authority’ may start enforcement actions against big tech companies only in very limited circumstances, including in case of urgency,” he told TechCrunch.

“However, unfortunately, the Court’s ruling does not elaborate on the criteria to be followed to assess the urgency of an enforcement action. In particular, the Court has not expressly seconded the advocate general’s view that a failure to act promptly from the part of the lead authority may justify the adoption of interim urgent measures by other data protection authorities. Thus, this important point remains partially unclear, and further litigation might be necessary to clarify this issue.

“Therefore, today’s ruling is unlikely to completely settle the ‘Irish issue’.”

Article 56 of the GDPR allows for non-lead DPAs to pursue action at a national level in the case of complaints that relate to an issue that substantially affects only users under their jurisdiction, and where they believe there is a need to act urgently (as a lead authority has not). So it does seem fairly narrow.

One recent example of a non-lead DPA intervention is the Italian DPA’s emergency action against TikTok — related to child safety on the platform after the death of a local girl who had been reported to have participated in a challenge on the platform.

“An authority’s wish to adopt a ‘go-it-alone’ approach… with regard to the (judicial) enforcement of the GDPR, without cooperating with the other authorities, cannot be reconciled with either the letter or the spirit of that regulation,” runs one paragraph of today’s judgement, underlining the court’s view that the GDPR requires careful and balanced joint-working between DPAs.

The ruling does go into some detailed discussion of the “dangers” of under-enforcement of the GDPR — as the concern was raised with the CJEU — but the court takes the view that it’s too soon to say whether such a concern affects the regulation or not.

“If, however, [under-enforcement were to] be evidenced by facts and robust arguments – then I do not believe that the Court would turn a blind eye to any gap which might thereby emerge in the protection of fundamental rights guaranteed by the Charter and their effective enforcement by the competent regulators,” the CJEU goes on. “Whether that would then still be an issue for a Charter-conform interpretation of provisions of secondary law, or an issue of validity of the relevant provisions, or even sections of a secondary law instrument, is a question for another case.”

The ruling, while narrow, may at least unblock the Belgian DPA’s long-running litigation against Facebook’s tracking of non-users via cookies and social plug-ins which was the route for the referral of questions over the scope of the OSS to the CJEU.

Although the court also notes that it will be for a Belgian court to determine whether the DPA’s intervention meets the GDPR’s bar for starting such proceedings or not.

Contacted for comment on the CJEU judgement, Facebook welcomed the ruling.

“We are pleased that the CJEU has upheld the value and principles of the one-stop-shop mechanism, and highlighted its importance in ensuring the efficient and consistent application of GDPR across the EU,” said Jack Gilbert, associate general counsel at Facebook in a statement.

#belgium, #cjeu, #data-protection, #europe, #european-union, #facebook, #general-data-protection-regulation, #ireland, #luxembourg, #online-trackers, #policy, #privacy

Apple announces its 2021 Apple Design Award winners

Apple incorporated the announcement of this year’s Apple Design Award winners into its virtual Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) online event, instead of waiting until the event had wrapped, like last year. Ahead of WWDC, Apple previewed the finalists, whose apps and games showcased a combination of technical achievement, design and ingenuity. This evening, Apple announced the winners across six new award categories.

In each category, Apple selected one app and one game as the winner.

In the Inclusivity category, winners supported people from a diversity of backgrounds, abilities and languages.

This year, winners included U.S.-based Aconite’s highly accessible game, HoloVista, where users can adjust various options for motion control, text sizes, text contrast, sound, and visual effect intensity. In the game, users explore using the iPhone’s camera to find hidden objects, solve puzzles and more. (Our coverage)

Image Credits: Aconite

Another winner, Voice Dream Reader, is a text-to-speech app that support more than two dozen languages and offers adaptive features and a high level of customizable settings.

Image Credits: Voice Dream LLC

In the Delight and Fun, category, winners offer memorable and engaging experiences enhanced by Apple technologies. Belgium’s Pok Pok Playroom, a kid entertainment app that spun out of Snowman (Alto’s Adventure series), won for its thoughtful design and use of subtle haptics, sound effects and interactions. (Our coverage)

Image Credits: Pok Pok

Another winner included U.K.s’ Little Orpheus, a platformer that combines storytelling, surprises, and fun and offers a console-like experience in a casual game.

Image Credits: The Chinese Room

The Interaction category winners showcase apps that offer intuitive interfaces and effortless controls, Apple says.

The U.S.-based snarky weather app CARROT Weather won for its humorous forecasts, unique visuals, and entertaining experience, which is also available as Apple Watch faces and widgets.

Image Credits: Brian Mueller, Grailr LLC

Canada’s Bird Alone game combines gestures, haptics, parallax, and dynamic sound effects in clever ways to brings its world to life.

Image Credits: George Batchelor

A Social Impact category doled out awards to Denmark’s Be My Eyes, which enables people who are blind and low vision to identify objects by pairing them with volunteers from around the world using their camera. Today, it supports over 300K users who are assisted by over 4.5M volunteers. (Our coverage)

Image Credits: S/I Be My Eyes

U.K.’s ustwo games won in this category for Alba, a game that teaches about respecting the environment as players save wildlife, repair a bridge, clean up trash and more. The game also plants a tree for every download.

Image Credits: ustwo games

The Visuals and Graphics winners feature “stunning imagery, skillfully drawn interfaces, and high-quality animations,” Apple says.

Belarus-based Loóna offers sleepscape sessions which combine relaxing activities and atmospheric sounds with storytelling to help people wind down at night. The app was recently awarded Google’s “best app” of 2020.

Image Credits: Loóna Inc

China’s Genshin Impact won for pushing the visual frontier on gaming, as motion blur, shadow quality, and frame rate can be reconfigured on the fly. The game had previously made Apple’s Best of 2020 list and was Google’s best game of 2020.

Image Credits: miHoYo Limited

Innovation winners included India’s NaadSadhana, an all-in-one, studio-quality music app that helps artists perform and publish. The app uses A.I. and Core ML to listen and provide feedback on the accuracy of notes, and generates a backing track to match.

Image Credits: Sandeep Ranade

Riot Games’ League of Legends: Wild Rift (U.S.) won for taking a complex PC classic and delivering a full mobile experience that includes touchscreen controls, an auto-targeting system for newcomers, and a mobile-exclusive camera setting.

Image Credits: Riot Games

The winners this year will receive a prize package that includes hardware and the award itself.

A video featuring the winners is here on the Apple Developer website.

“This year’s Apple Design Award winners have redefined what we’ve come to expect from a great app experience, and we congratulate them on a well-deserved win,” said Susan Prescott, Apple’s vice president of Worldwide Developer Relations, in a statement. “The work of these developers embodies the essential role apps and games play in our everyday lives, and serve as perfect examples of our six new award categories.”

read more about Apple's WWDC 2021 on TechCrunch

#a-i, #apple, #apple-inc, #apple-watch, #apps, #awards, #belarus, #belgium, #companies, #computing, #denmark, #games, #gaming, #india, #ios, #league-of-legends, #loona, #susan-prescott, #text-to-speech, #united-states, #wwdc, #wwdc-2021

Belgian Ambassador Whose Wife Slapped a Shop Clerk Is Recalled

The Belgian embassy in South Korea said it would recall its ambassador because he could no longer work in a “serene way” after his wife slapped a shop assistant in Seoul.

#belgium, #fashion-and-apparel, #seoul-south-korea, #south-korea

Europe’s Dilemma: Take In ISIS Families, or Leave Them in Syria?

Many countries have resisted allowing the return of families of ISIS members. Security experts say that leaving the women and their children in Syria is a greater risk.

#belgium, #detainees, #france, #human-rights-and-human-rights-violations, #islamic-state-in-iraq-and-syria-isis, #women-and-girls

Cowboy launches the Cowboy 4 e-bike, with a step-through version and built-in phone charger

E-bike startup Cowboy has launched the Cowboy 4, its newest generation of urban electric bikes. The bike will come in two different frames, a traditional frame, and a step-through.
The C4 is basically an upgrade on the previous version 3, while the ‘C4 ST’ is a step-through model which the company is predicting will appeal to young people used to city bikes.

The C4 and C4 ST are both priced at £2,290/€2,490 inclusive of mudguards and are available for pre-order with a €100/£100 deposit starting from today cowboy.com, with deliveries starting in September 2021.

Cowboy has raised $46.1M in venture capital and largely extent competes with VanMoof (which raised $61.1M) and Furo Systems (£750K) to a lesser extent. The basic differences between the three are that Cowboy is moving closer to leverage the cloud and apps as its main differentiation, VanMoof tends to built things (like a screen) into the bike (and has an app), and Furo is more about ease of maintenance, and weight.

Cowboy says both bikes feature 50% more torque via their automatic transmission. There are no gears to change, with the engine kicking in as you turn the cranks. The removable battery weighs 2.4kg, giving the bike a range of up to 70km.

The heaviest version of the bikes is 19.2 kg including battery and both will hit 25 km/h (15 mph).

Adrien Roose, Cowboy Co-Founder and CEO said in a statement: “The Cowboy 4 completely redefines life in and around cities. By designing two frame types featuring our first-ever step-through model, an integrated cockpit, and a new app, we are now able to address a much larger audience and cater to many more riders to move freely in and around cities,” he added. “Our mission is to help city dwellers move in a faster, safer and more enjoyable way than any other mode of urban transportation. Be it wandering through the city or staying fit, it’s a reconnection with your senses and a rediscovery of the simple thrill of riding a bike.”

The step-through model is optimized to suit riders 160-190cm in height, while the normal C4 will accommodates riders 170-195cm tall.

Mike Butcher meets Cowboy's Adrien Roose

Mike Butcher meets Cowboy’s Adrien Roose

Doing a very quick test of the new bikes in a London basketball court and around local streets, I found both bikes to be very nippy on the off and a pleasure to ride. Cowboy is probably right – the step-through version is likely to appeal to a wide variety of riders.

Roose said the bike has been custom-designed. Only the saddle and the carbon belt are made by third-party companies Selle Royal and Gates, respectively. The brake cables are now integrated into the handlebars and stem, brakes and pedals have new angles, and the rear wheel has a ‘dropout’ design.
Cowboy will offer a custom-designed series of accessories starting with a rear rack and kickstand. The C4 and C4 ST will come in Absolute Black, Peyote Green, and Sand Dune, and are available to pre-order now, with deliveries beginning in September. Both models will feature pre-fitted mudguards.

The bikes also now feature a wireless charging mont on the stem featuring a built-in Quad Lock mount to hold the rider’s smartphone and wirelessly charge it via the bike’s internal battery.

Tanguy Goretti, Co-Founder, and VP Software added: “The new Cowboy app [will show] remaining battery range, air quality en route and a wide range of live fitness stats.”

The app also has a new navigation screen, 3D map rendering layout, turn-by-turn directions, air quality index for routes, live fitness data, leaderboard rankings; a new community feature offering the ability to join curated group rides across capital cities in Europe.

Cowboy is also offering a free repair network across Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, France, the United Kingdom, Austria and Luxembourg; 6 days a week customer support; and a subscription plan operated in partnership with Qover which includes theft detection, theft insurance throughout Europe.

#austria, #belgium, #cowboy, #electric-bicycle, #europe, #france, #germany, #luxembourg, #micromobility, #mike-butcher, #netherlands, #smartphone, #tc, #transport, #united-kingdom, #venture-capital

The Tale of a Chaotic and Failed Attempt to Explore Antarctica in 1897

Julian Sancton’s “Madhouse at the End of the Earth” details Adrien de Gerlache de Gomery’s effort to explore Antarctica, and all of the ways it went wrong.

#amundsen-roald, #antarctic-regions, #belgium, #books-and-literature, #cook-frederick-a, #de-gerlache-de-gomery-adrien, #exploration-and-explorers, #madhouse-at-the-end-of-the-earth-the-belgicas-journey-into-the-dark-antarctic-night-book, #sancton-julian, #ships-and-shipping

A Farmer Moved a 200-Year-Old Stone, and the French-Belgian Border

A marker that was moved seven feet into French territory by a farmer in Belgium might have changed the countries’ border forever if not for a sharp-eyed group of friends.

#belgium, #france, #territorial-disputes

Disqus facing $3M fine in Norway for tracking users without consent

Disqus, a commenting plugin that’s used by a number of news websites and which can share user data for ad targeting purposes, has got into hot water in Norway for tracking users without their consent.

The local data protection agency said today it has notified the U.S.-based company of an intent to fine it €2.5 million (~$3M) for failures to comply with requirements in Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on accountability, lawfulness and transparency.

Disqus’ parent, Zeta Global, has been contacted for comment.

Datatilsynet said it acted following a 2019 investigation in Norway’s national press — which found that default settings buried in the Disqus’ plug-in opted sites into sharing user data on millions of users in markets including the U.S.

And while in most of Europe the company was found to have applied an opt-in to gather consent from users to be tracked — likely in order to avoid trouble with the GDPR — it appears to have been unaware that the regulation applies in Norway.

Norway is not a member of the European Union but is in the European Economic Area — which adopted the GDPR in July 2018, slightly after it came into force elsewhere in the EU. (Norway transposed the regulation into national law also in July 2018.)

The Norwegian DPA writes that Disqus’ unlawful data-sharing has “predominantly been an issue in Norway” — and says that seven websites are affected: NRK.no/ytring, P3.no, tv.2.no/broom, khrono.no, adressa.no, rights.no and document.no.

“Disqus has argued that their practices could be based on the legitimate interest balancing test as a lawful basis, despite the company being unaware that the GDPR applied to data subjects in Norway,” the DPA’s director-general, Bjørn Erik Thon, goes on.

“Based on our investigation so far, we believe that Disqus could not rely on legitimate interest as a legal basis for tracking across websites, services or devices, profiling and disclosure of personal data for marketing purposes, and that this type of tracking would require consent.”

“Our preliminary conclusion is that Disqus has processed personal data unlawfully. However, our investigation also discovered serious issues regarding transparency and accountability,” Thon added.

The DPA said the infringements are serious and have affected “several hundred thousands of individuals”, adding that the affected personal data “are highly private and may relate to minors or reveal political opinions”.

“The tracking, profiling and disclosure of data was invasive and nontransparent,” it added.

The DPA has given Disqus until May 31 to comment on the findings ahead of issuing a fine decision.

Publishers reminded of their responsibility

Datatilsynet has also fired a warning shot at local publishers who were using the Disqus platform — pointing out that website owners “are also responsible under the GDPR for which third parties they allow on their websites”.

So, in other words, even if you didn’t know about a default data-sharing setting that’s not an excuse because it’s your legal responsibility to know what any code you put on your website is doing with user data.

The DPA adds that “in the present case” it has focused the investigation on Disqus — providing publishers with an opportunity to get their houses in order ahead of any future checks it might make.

Norway’s DPA also has some admirably plain language to explain the “serious” problem of profiling people without their consent. “Hidden tracking and profiling is very invasive,” says Thon. “Without information that someone is using our personal data, we lose the opportunity to exercise our rights to access, and to object to the use of our personal data for marketing purposes.

“An aggravating circumstance is that disclosure of personal data for programmatic advertising entails a high risk that individuals will lose control over who processes their personal data.”

Zooming out, the issue of adtech industry tracking and GDPR compliance has become a major headache for DPAs across Europe — which have been repeatedly slammed for failing to enforce the law in this area since GDPR came into application in May 2018.

In the UK, for example (which transposed the GDPR before Brexit so still has an equivalent data protection framework for now), the ICO has been investigating GDPR complaints against real-time bidding’s (RTB) use of personal data to run behavioral ads for years — yet hasn’t issued a single fine or order, despite repeatedly warning the industry that it’s acting unlawfully.

The regulator is now being sued by complainants over its inaction.

Ireland’s DPC, meanwhile — which is the lead DPA for a swathe of adtech giants which site their regional HQ in the country — has a number of open GDPR investigations into adtech (including RTB). But has also failed to issue any decisions in this area almost three years after the regulation begun being applied.

Its lack of action on adtech complaints has contributed significantly to rising domestic (and international) pressure on its GDPR enforcement record more generally, including from the European Commission. (And it’s notable that the latter’s most recent legislative proposals in the digital arena include provisions that seek to avoid the risk of similar enforcement bottlenecks.)

The story on adtech and the GDPR looks a little different in Belgium, though, where the DPA appears to be inching toward a major slap-down of current adtech practices.

A preliminary report last year by its investigatory division called into question the legal standard of the consents being gathered via a flagship industry framework, designed by the IAB Europe. This so-called ‘Transparency and Consent’ framework (TCF) was found not to comply with the GDPR’s principles of transparency, fairness and accountability, or the lawfulness of processing.

A final decision is expected on that case this year — but if the DPA upholds the division’s findings it could deal a massive blow to the behavioral ad industry’s ability to track and target Europeans.

Studies suggest Internet users in Europe would overwhelmingly choose not to be tracked if they were actually offered the GDPR standard of a specific, clear, informed and free choice, i.e. without any loopholes or manipulative dark patterns.

#advertising-tech, #belgium, #data-protection, #data-security, #disqus, #europe, #european-commission, #european-union, #gdpr, #general-data-protection-regulation, #ireland, #norway, #personal-data, #privacy, #programmatic-advertising, #united-kingdom, #zeta-global

Ioannis Lagos, Greek Neo-Nazi Lawmaker, Stripped of Immunity by European Parliament

Ioannis Lagos, sentenced to 13 years in prison by a Greek court for his part in running the fascist Golden Dawn party, had been immune from extradition as an elected member of the European Union’s legislature.

#belgium, #decisions-and-verdicts, #europe, #european-parliament, #extradition, #golden-dawn-greece, #greece, #immunity-from-prosecution, #lagos-ioannis-1972, #legislatures-and-parliaments, #neo-nazi-groups, #politics-and-government

Seif Bamporiki, Rwanda Opposition Figure, Killed in South Africa

South African authorities said that for now they were treating the case as a robbery, but the political allies of the man who was shot, Seif Bamporiki, had their suspicions of an assassination.

#assassinations-and-attempted-assassinations, #bamporiki-abdallah-seif, #belgium, #cape-town-south-africa, #kagame-paul, #murders-attempted-murders-and-homicides, #rusesabagina-paul, #rwanda, #rwanda-national-congress

Investors say Belgium’s startups are poised for international expansion

We surveyed five investors from the Brussels, Belgium ecosystem, and overall the mood was upbeat.

Investors are backing companies in smart living, life sciences (“a really promising sector for Belgium”), B2B, “industry 4.0,” fintech, mobility, health and music tech. Food tech appears “an overcrowded space.” Another says: “COVID confirmed our strategy to invest in local companies and with a sector focus on smart living life science and tech.”

Belgium has a “dynamic ecosystem of health actors, from biotech firms, universities and startups and scaleups. We follow the #BeHealth initiative, which unites the various parts of the Belgian health sector.”

Belgium is “not a market for B2C startups” as it has a “small but complex market with different regions/cultures/languages.” They are focusing on Belgium and neighboring countries for investing.

However, finding funding for startups is still a “difficult task today” said one, as it suffers from a lack of “scale capital” for later rounds.

How should investors in other cities think about the overall investment climate and opportunities in the city? “As a well-educated environment, multicultural, multilingual,” says one. “The ecosystem is very dynamic, with great opportunities. While valuations are usually lower compared to other hubs in Europe, there is quite some money available on the market,” says another.

Brussels’ geography makes it “very well-connected to Europe and international by nature.” It is multicultural and multilingual, so as a result startups position themselves for international expansion, “whether first to France or the Netherlands or beyond. For investors that are scoping opportunities in Belgium, they should recognize that Belgian startups are well-suited for international growth.”

As a small and very dense country, Belgium “already has a distributed founder geography.”

Investors have also been advising companies “to make sure that they have enough cash to last until the end of next 2021 at least.”

We spoke to the following:


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Pauline Brunel, partner, BlackFin

What trends are you most excited about investing in, generally?
Fintech, insurtech

What are you looking for in your next investment, in general?
Outstanding team, big opportunity.

Xavier de Villepin, partner, TheClubDeal

What trends are you most excited about investing in, generally?
Smart living, life sciences and tech.

What’s your latest, most exciting investment?
Univercells — Series C.

Are there startups that you wish you would see in the industry but don’t? What are some overlooked opportunities right now?
More startups needed in the smart living sector. In general, companies with international ambitions maintaining local sticky jobs.

What are you looking for in your next investment, in general?
Daring entrepreneurs within growing markets.

Which areas are either oversaturated or would be too hard to compete in at this point for a new startup? What other types of products/services are you wary or concerned about?
We are wary of blockchain and crypto currencies.

How much are you focused on investing in your local ecosystem versus other startup hubs (or everywhere) in general? More than 50%? Less?
More than 50%.

Which industries in your city and region seem well-positioned to thrive, or not, long term? What are companies you are excited about (your portfolio or not), which founders?
Life sciences, including biotech, is a really promising sector for Belgium. On the contrary, Belgium is not a market for B2C startups (small but complex market with different regions/cultures/languages).

How should investors in other cities think about the overall investment climate and opportunities in your city?
They feel Brussels is one of the main tech hubs in Belgium. Though the private equity and risk-on mentality is still not here. Finding funding for startups is still a difficult task today.

Do you expect to see a surge in more founders coming from geographies outside major cities in the years to come, with startup hubs losing people due to the pandemic and lingering concerns, plus the attraction of remote work?
I don’t think it will have a substantial impact, as many startups were already favoring remote work and flexible working hours.

Which industry segments that you invest in look weaker or more exposed to potential shifts in consumer and business behavior because of COVID-19?
Definitely travel and hospitality (part of smart living). It suffered a lot. But it’s a good time to invest. It’s an opportunity for startups to rethink their model and challenge the way they were seeing things before.

How has COVID-19 impacted your investment strategy? What are the biggest worries of the founders in your portfolio? What is your advice to startups in your portfolio right now?
COVID-19 confirmed our strategy was right … to focus on local competitiveness in the backbones of our economy: smart living, life sciences and tech. But within each sector, each company may be impacted differently. So a case-by-case analysis and in-depth due diligence is a necessity more than ever. Our advice to startups is to consider this environment will stay for another year and to plan the cash flows very carefully.

What is a moment that has given you hope in the last month or so? This can be professional, personal or a mix of the two.
The last lockdown giving much more freedom to companies to continue to operate and witness that many of them adapted their way of working to stay operational.

Frederic Convent, partner, TheClubDeal

What trends are you most excited about investing in, generally?
Smart living, life sciences, tech.

What’s your latest, most exciting investment?
Univercells Series C.

What are you looking for in your next investment, in general?
More companies active in smart living, life sciences and tech.

Which areas are either oversaturated or would be too hard to compete in at this point for a new startup? What other types of products/services are you wary or concerned about?
Blockchain and crypto.

How much are you focused on investing in your local ecosystem versus other startup hubs (or everywhere) in general? More than 50%? Less?
50%.

Which industries in your city and region seem well-positioned to thrive, or not, long term? What are companies you are excited about (your portfolio or not), which founders?
Fintech is doing well in Brussels. We like an Antwerp mortgage B2B fintech: Oper.

How should investors in other cities think about the overall investment climate and opportunities in your city?
As a well-educated multicultural, multilingual environment.

Do you expect to see a surge in more founders coming from geographies outside major cities in the years to come, with startup hubs losing people due to the pandemic and lingering concerns, plus the attraction of remote work?
Most startups are already used to working remotely so the impact for the hubs is less, as they and their clients proved able to work elsewhere.

Which industry segments that you invest in look weaker or more exposed to potential shifts in consumer and business behavior because of COVID-19?
Travel and hospitality will suffer a lot in this COVID crisis. Life sciences are well-positioned to address the crisis.

How has COVID-19 impacted your investment strategy? What are the biggest worries of the founders in your portfolio? What is your advice to startups in your portfolio right now?
COVID confirmed our strategy to invest in local companies and with a sector focus on smart living, life sciences and tech.

Are you seeing “green shoots” regarding revenue growth, retention or other momentum in your portfolio as they adapt to the pandemic?
In medtech, essential medical intervention some green shoots benefit from the crisis.

What is a moment that has given you hope in the last month or so? This can be professional, personal or a mix of the two.
The last lockdown pushed companies to adapt their business model and to focus on the new situation.

Alexandre Dutoit, partner, ScaleFund

What trends are you most excited about investing in, generally?
We aim at bridging the equity gap between seed rounds and Series A.

What’s your latest, most exciting investment?
Kaspard, a silver economy company having developed a fall-detection technology.

Are there startups that you wish you would see in the industry but don’t? What are some overlooked opportunities right now?
We like B2B. Industry 4.0 type of deals lack a bit in our opinion.

What are you looking for in your next investment, in general?
Above all, we need a great team. Then we want to see some commercial traction, being POCs, first contracts.

Which areas are either oversaturated or would be too hard to compete in at this point for a new startup? What other types of products/services are you wary or concerned about?
Food tech appears to us as an overcrowded space. A lot of B2C entrepreneurs are doing “more of the same.”

How much are you focused on investing in your local ecosystem versus other startup hubs (or everywhere) in general? More than 50%? Less?
We focus on Belgium and neighboring countries.

Which industries in your city and region seem well-positioned to thrive, or not, long term? What are companies you are excited about (your portfolio or not), which founders?
Biotech is definitely a hit in Belgium. Fintech and music tech are also growing.

How should investors in other cities think about the overall investment climate and opportunities in your city?
The ecosystem is very dynamic, with great opportunities. While valuations are usually lower compared to other hubs in Europe, there is quite some money available on the market.

Do you expect to see a surge in more founders coming from geographies outside major cities in the years to come, with startup hubs losing people due to the pandemic and lingering concerns, plus the attraction of remote work?
I don’t see that coming, especially as entrepreneurs like to network, share experiences and be in an emulative environment.

Which industry segments that you invest in look weaker or more exposed to potential shifts in consumer and business behavior because of COVID-19? What are the opportunities startups may be able to tap into during these unprecedented times?

Very few, as great teams are able to adapt. We have in our portfolio a company closely tied to events that has been able to rethink its business model and is now even more profitable compared to before the crises. Besides, companies that foster remote work or can install service at a distance will be short-term winners.

How has COVID-19 impacted your investment strategy? What are the biggest worries of the founders in your portfolio? What is your advice to startups in your portfolio right now?
COVID has not impacted our strategy. Entrepreneurs are afraid of the uncertainty and lack of perspective. We encourage them to prepare themselves for the next opened window and to work on tech and processes, while reassuring them on the financing side.

Are you seeing “green shoots” regarding revenue growth, retention or other momentum in your portfolio as they adapt to the pandemic?
Utopix, a startup linked to the event industry, has been able to rethink its business model as their sales were falling down. They have down their best month ever since then.

What is a moment that has given you hope in the last month or so? This can be professional, personal or a mix of the two.
I have seen hope after the summer period when companies were angry to do business again. Unfortunately, that hasn’t lasted very long. We try to remain positive and focus on important things.

Any other thoughts you want to share with TechCrunch readers?
Brussels is a growing scene for startups, very well-connected to Europe and international by nature.

Olivier de Duve, partner, Inventures Investment Partners

What trends are you most excited about investing in, generally?
At Inventures, we invest in a range of startups that have strong financial returns and a measurable social and environmental impact. Looking to 2021, we’re most excited about the mobility sector, HR tech, the blue economy (investing in technologies around water and ocean health) and the circular economy. These sectors started to grow rapidly in Europe, and we’re excited to source some great deals in the coming year.

What’s your latest, most exciting investment?
We just led a round in MySkillCamp, a Belgian HR tech company that equips SMEs and corporates with an adaptable platform for employee learning. MySkillCamp has been stunning us with their rapid growth, even during the pandemic, and it’s a testament to the fact that companies need solutions for upskilling and reskilling their workforce.

Are there startups that you wish you would see in the industry but don’t? What are some overlooked opportunities right now?
I’ll flip this question to be investor-centric. We’d really like to see more impact venture capital firms that are active in the Series B and beyond stage in Europe. For now, the largest impact VCs are concentrated in the US — having that source of capital here in Brussels or in neighboring ecosystems will help earlier-stage European VCs continue to scale and support their portfolio companies in later rounds. Having that access to capital is key for making a sustainable ecosystem.

What are you looking for in your next investment, in general?
Our investment thesis is to find startups that are financially strong and tackle one of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Broadly that has meant companies in health, mobility, renewable energy, climate and more. As we’re rounding out our second fund, our next investment has to hit our sweet spot of clear commercial traction, a stellar team and solid plans for scaling internationally.

Which areas are either oversaturated or would be too hard to compete in at this point for a new startup? What other types of products/services are you wary or concerned about?
Several markets are oversaturated like shared light vehicle scooters or telemedicine solutions. D2C medical devices is also a tough market to break into. Given the pandemic situation, startups active in the recreational sector like tourism and sport are struggling more than ever. All products or services that are not digital are less resilient and will need to shift as soon as possible.

How much are you focused on investing in your local ecosystem versus other startup hubs (or everywhere) in general? More than 50%? Less?
About half of our startups are coming from Belgium. We’ve historically invested in the U.K., France, the Netherlands and Luxembourg, however we’re open to investing across the EU.

Which industries in your city and region seem well-positioned to thrive, or not, long term? What are companies you are excited about (your portfolio or not), which founders?
Two sectors that come to mind are mobility and health. Belgium is a hyperconnected country, and mobility startups that address user needs for a more sustainable and efficient transportation will do well here. As for health, Belgium has a dynamic ecosystem of health actors, from biotech firms, universities, and startups and scaleups. We follow the #BeHealth initiative, which unites the various parts of the Belgian health sector. One company that we wanted to highlight is Citizen Lab — they are a digital democracy platform that helps local governments organize voting, participatory budgeting and more. They’re setting the conversation around civic tech and we’re so excited to see what the founders Wietse Van Ransbeeck and Aline Muylaert have in store for 2021.

How should investors in other cities think about the overall investment climate and opportunities in your city?
Belgium is a multicultural, multilingual country — so startups that are grown here naturally are positioning themselves for international expansion, whether first to France or the Netherlands or beyond. For investors that are scoping opportunities in Belgium, they should recognize that Belgian startups are well-suited for international growth and a role that they could play as investors is helping to introduce Belgian startups to other markets.

Do you expect to see a surge in more founders coming from geographies outside major cities in the years to come, with startup hubs losing people due to the pandemic and lingering concerns, plus the attraction of remote work?
As a small and very dense country, Belgium already has a distributed founder geography. In Brussels we have Co.Station, which is home to dozens of startups. However, we also see strong growth in innovation coming from Leuven, Ghent, Antwerp, Liege — and these cities are maximum two hours away by train. Our latest investment, MySkillCamp, for example, is based in Tournai, with an office in Brussels.

Which industry segments that you invest in look weaker or more exposed to potential shifts in consumer and business behavior because of COVID-19? What are the opportunities startups may be able to tap into during these unprecedented times?
We found out in our portfolio that companies are quite resilient to the crisis because they are addressing societal issues like health, climate and energy. SaaS companies or other digital services are also less exposed, which points out that digitalization is key to survive. Companies that are highly dependent on large governmental contracts could be more exposed to shifts in spending patterns due to COVID.

How has COVID-19 impacted your investment strategy? What are the biggest worries of the founders in your portfolio? What is your advice to startups in your portfolio right now?
COVID-19 has not impacted our investment strategy so much as our post-investment strategy. Since the pandemic started, we’ve been “all hands on deck” with helping our portfolio companies weather the storm — from organizing new fundraising to scoping out new markets and helping on strategic growth projects. We’ve been advising our companies to make sure that they have enough cash to last until the end of next 2021 at least. What we’re seeing is that contracts are taking longer to be signed, especially for our companies looking to partner with governments that are more cash strapped and limited because of the pandemic.

Are you seeing “green shoots” regarding revenue growth, retention or other momentum in your portfolio as they adapt to the pandemic?
Definitely! On the ecosystem level, we’ve seen a lot of fundraising activity in the last six months, particularly in the health and biotech sector — one example of that is Belgium-based Univercells. For our portfolio, we’ve seen that tools that serve governments and the transition to a more digital economy has created enormous opportunities for our B2B and B2G companies to thrive during this time.

What is a moment that has given you hope in the last month or so? This can be professional, personal or a mix of the two.
A few moments have given us hope during 2020. Seeing the racial reckoning in the U.S. spark conversations in Europe about justice and D&I has given me a lot of hope around the role of the venture capital and startup sector in creating a more equal society. Initiatives like Diversity VC are helping us to do that. Also, the sheer number of startups with climate benefits, from cultured meat to sustainable packaging and more, has showcased the financial viability and the demand for expanding the world’s options for sustainability — another large societal challenge.

Any other thoughts you want to share with TechCrunch readers?
Belgium is home to a vibrant, active and fast-growing startup scene!

#belgium, #ec-europe, #ec-investor-surveys, #europe, #tc

Assadollah Assadi, Iranian Envoy, Found Guilty in France Bomb Plot

A court in Belgium sentenced Assadollah Assadi, an envoy based in Vienna, to 20 years in prison for his role in a thwarted attack on a group that seeks to overthrow the Iranian leadership.

#assadi-assadollah, #belgium, #bombs-and-explosives, #decisions-and-verdicts, #diplomatic-service-embassies-and-consulates, #france, #iran, #mujahedeen-khalq, #rajavi-maryam, #targeted-killings, #terrorism

E.U. and U.K. Fight Over Covid Vaccines: ‘Solidarity Is Failing’

As vaccine production falls behind schedule, and the European Union lags in inoculating people, Brussels and London are lobbing threats and accusations at each other.

#astrazeneca-plc, #belgium, #biontech-se, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #europe, #european-union, #factories-and-manufacturing, #great-britain, #oxford-university, #pfizer-inc, #protectionism-trade, #vaccination-and-immunization

E.U. and U.K. Fight Over Coronavirus Vaccines: ‘Solidarity Is Failing’

As vaccine production falls behind schedule, and the European Union lags in inoculating people, Brussels and London are lobbing threats and accusations at each other.

#astrazeneca-plc, #belgium, #biontech-se, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #drugs-pharmaceuticals, #europe, #factories-and-manufacturing, #oxford-university, #pfizer-inc, #vaccination-and-immunization

Glastonbury Festival Canceled for a Second Year Due to Pandemic

Britain’s biggest music event won’t take place for a second year in a row. The decision has sent shock waves across Europe, where festivals have already been asking politicians for help.

#barcelona-spain, #belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #denmark, #festivals, #glastonbury-festival-of-contemporary-performing-arts, #great-britain, #music, #quarantine-life-and-culture

Airlines Gear Up to Transport Vaccines That Could Revive Travel

Planes are one part of an elaborate supply chain to move billions of doses of vaccines around the world.

#airlines-and-airplanes, #american-airlines, #belgium, #carbon-dioxide, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #delta-air-lines-inc, #drugs-pharmaceuticals, #federal-aviation-administration, #united-airlines, #united-parcel-service-inc, #united-states, #vaccination-and-immunization

He Broke Out of Quarantine for 8 Seconds, and Got a $3,550 Fine

Around the world, flouting coronavirus regulations can have expensive consequences.

#australia, #belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #fines-penalties, #italy, #quarantines, #spain, #taiwan, #united-states

Why the U.K. Approved the Pfizer Covid Vaccine First

When early results from the final trials began to roll in, scientists were well prepared. Now, they face the logistical challenge of putting the vaccine to work.

#belgium, #biontech-se, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #european-medicines-agency, #great-britain, #national-health-service, #nursing-homes, #pfizer-inc, #vaccination-and-immunization

Iranian Diplomat Goes on Trial in Belgium Over Alleged Bombing Plot

Prosecutors say the diplomat, Assadollah Assadi, was carrying out a plan organized by Iran’s intelligence services against an overseas opposition group.

#assadollah-assadi, #belgium, #espionage-and-intelligence-services, #france, #iran, #mujahedeen-khalq, #terrorism

‘You Could Compare It to a Picasso’: Pigeon Sells for $1.9 Million

New Kim, a Belgian racing bird, set an auction record after a bidding war between two Chinese buyers.

#auctions, #belgium, #china, #pigeons

For the Arts in Europe, Lockdown Feels Different This Time

Many of the continent’s museums, theaters, concert halls and bookshops have been forced to close again, and now, people’s reactions have changed.

#belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #dancing, #england, #europe, #france, #germany, #italy, #museums, #music, #opera, #quarantine-life-and-culture, #switzerland, #theater

Belgium’s Princess Delphine Meets With Her Father, King Albert II

Delphine Boel, an artist who recently was given the right to be called princess, met with King Albert II and his wife over the weekend. The princess had fought for years to be publicly acknowledged.

#albert-ii-king-of-belgium, #belgium, #boel-delphine, #royal-families

Belgium Arrests 3 Men Suspected of Involvement in Rwandan Genocide

The men, whose identities were not made public, are charged with serious abuse of human rights.

#belgium, #hutu-tribe, #rwanda, #tutsi-tribe, #war-crimes-genocide-and-crimes-against-humanity

As Virus Cases Surge in Europe, Hospitalizations Lag. But for How Long?

For now, countries are betting they can suppress hospital admissions and deaths without imposing more lockdowns, even as case numbers approach peak levels from last spring.

#belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #disease-rates, #epidemics, #europe, #france, #germany, #great-britain, #hospitals, #italy, #quarantines, #spain

When Covid-19 Hit, Many Elderly Were Left to Die

Warnings had piled up for years that nursing homes were vulnerable. The pandemic sent them to the back of the line for equipment and care.

#belgium, #brussels-belgium, #coronavirus-2019-ncov, #elderly, #hospitals, #nursing-and-nurses, #nursing-homes, #protective-clothing-and-gear

Colonialism Made the Modern World. Let’s Remake It.

This is what real “decolonization” should look like.

#africa, #arts-and-antiquities-looting, #belgium, #black-lives-matter-movement, #black-people, #colonization, #england, #politics-and-government, #reparations, #slavery-historical