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- Matilda Boseley

Acoustic remix of Miel Pops Russian cereal jingle becomes a strange anthem for a stranger time

There are only two types of people in this world. Those who are obsessed with a CGI llama dancing to an acoustic remix of a 2010 Russian cereal commercial jingle, and those over the age of 23.

Related: What is Elite TikTok and what has it got to do with Donald Trump?

Idk what’s going on but this song kinda slaps

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- Dan Sabbagh Defence and security editor

Opposition MPs and former civilian servants demand to know exactly how UK-US trade dossier appeared online

Liam Fox is facing questions from opposition politicians, former civil servants and campaigners about how Russian hackers were apparently able to obtain government documents marked “official sensitive [UK eyes only]” from his personal email last year.

The former minister’s account is believed to have been accessed repeatedly between July and October, and 451 pages of emails and policy documents were subsequently posted on Reddit, prompting questions as to whether the dossier had come directly from Fox’s personal email.

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- Martin Belam in London and Joanna Walters in New York

President again says he is doing ‘incredible job’ fighting pandemic and casts doubt on Jeffrey Epstein’s cause of death

Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverage

Donald Trump visibly floundered in an interview when pressed on a range of issues, including the number of coronavirus cases and deaths in the US, his claims that mail-in voting is fraudulent, and his inaction over the “Russian bounty” scandal.

The US president also repeatedly cast doubt on the cause of death of Jeffrey Epstein, and said of Ghislaine Maxwell, the British socialite who has pleaded not guilty to participating in the sex-trafficking of girls by Epstein, that he wished her well.

Related: Why Trump cannot delay the election – plus the truth about mail-in voting

Trump again wishes Ghislaine Maxwell well

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- Jon Henley

Experts say Germany is already in second wave as UN warns of global education catastrophe

Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverage

France’s top scientific body has said the country risks losing control of its Covid-19 outbreak and the head of the doctors’ union in Germany has said it is already facing a second wave, as the number of infections rises across Europe.

The French government’s scientific council said a second wave was highly likely this autumn or winter, and that the situation was “under control, but precarious. We could at any moment tip into a scenario that is less under control.”

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- Staff and agencies

Rare find includes skin, tendon and excrement of what is thought to be an adult male

Russian scientists are poring over the uniquely well-preserved bones of a 10,000-year-old woolly mammoth after completing the operation to pull them from the bottom of a Siberian lake.

Experts spent five days scouring the silt of Lake Pechenelava-To in the remote Yamal peninsula for the remains, which include tendons, skin and even excrement, after they were spotted by local residents. About 90% of the animal has been retrieved during two expeditions.

Related: Bark to the future: Ice Age puppies may reveal canine evolution

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- Dan Sabbagh Defence and security editor

Labour queries why MP used unsecured account for classified government business

A personal email account belonging to Liam Fox, the former trade minister, was repeatedly hacked into by Russians who stole classified documents relating to US-UK trade talks, the Guardian understands.

The security breaches last year, which are subject to an ongoing police investigation, pose serious questions for the Conservative MP who is currently the UK’s nominee to become director general of the World Trade Organization.

Related: Liam Fox is the latest in a long line of victims duped by Russia's GRU

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- Patrick Wintour

Labour hoped the leak would damage the Tories, but Russian involvement became the focus

As Jeremy Corbyn took to the stage on a Wednesday in November brandishing secret documents 15 days out from the 2019 election campaign, it was potentially the Hail Mary moment to salvage the Labour leader’s campaign. Labour had discovered the explosives that would blow up Johnson’s seemingly bomb-proof three-word election campaign: “Get Brexit Done.”

The documents Corbyn held up to the cameras brought together two of Labour’s most deadly attack lines: Brexit meant desperate free trade deals with the avaricious Americans, and the UK trade negotiators were secretly preparing to expose the NHS to the chill wind of the US private pharmaceutical industry. The beloved NHS was about to be sold to Donald Trump’s friends.

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- Luke Harding

Over the past 20 years, the military intelligence agency has stolen information from targets around the world

Liam Fox, the former UK trade secretary, is merely the latest in a long line of victims apparently duped by the GRU, Russia’s military intelligence agency.

Over the past two decades GRU spies have stolen classified information from numerous targets around the world. According to Reuters, last summer they broke into Fox’s email account. They made off with secret US-UK trade documents later dumped out before the 2019 election.

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- Editorial

A remarkable election campaign by the wife of a jailed blogger is causing major problems for ‘Europe’s last dictator’

It takes unusual courage to take on Alexander Lukashenko in an election. In 2010, for example, when the president of Belarus was seeking a fourth term of office, a number of his opponents were arrested and charged with organising mass disorder on polling day. But if your spouse has been jailed and your family threatened, the stakes of standing against the man often described as “Europe’s last dictator” must seem unbearably high.

This is the challenge that 37-year-old Svetlana Tikhanovskaya has accepted, ahead of Belarus’s latest exercise in pseudo-democracy this Sunday. With no previous political experience, Ms Tikhanovskaya took over the presidential candidacy of her husband, Sergei, a well-known blogger, in May, after he was ruled out of the race and imprisoned on trumped-up charges. So far, she is knocking it out of the park.

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- Peter Beaumont

Moscow says it will start production next month and mass immunisation by October

Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverage

The Russian government claims to have stolen a march on dozens of global rivals – including the US and UK – in the race to produce a viable coronavirus vaccine, saying it would start production of a vaccine next month and begin mass immunisation by October.

The announcement came amid controversy over how Russia has rushed its two vaccine candidates through safety testing, in which researchers dosed themselves as part of truncated human trials.

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- Luke Harding

Grigory Rodchenkov was head of Russia’s ‘anti-doping’ centre but, in 2015, he fled to the US. He talks to the Observer’s former Moscow correspondent about the lies, the truth and life on the run

The man in front of me is wearing a disguise. We are talking on Skype. I’m at my home near London and Dr Grigory Rodchenkov is at an undisclosed location somewhere in America, guarded 24/7 by armed FBI agents. How is he? “My life is good. My mood is very good,” he says. He’s grinning, I think. Since he’s wearing a black scarf over his face and dark glasses, it’s hard to tell.

The cloak-and-dagger atmospherics surrounding our interview might seem a little overblown. Until, that is, you remember, Vladimir Putin’s roving assassins are trying to establish Rodchenkov’s secret location so they can snuff him out, a traitor to the state. Russia’s president has a long list of enemies. But Rodchenkov – the most significant sports whistleblower of the 21st century – is probably at the top.

Cheating, lying and denying are fundamental to political life in Russia.

Related: Russian doping mastermind benefited from London 2012 drugs ‘preview’

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- Simon Tisdall

As the world marks the 75th anniversary of the dropping of the atom bomb on Japan, it must wake up to the new rearmament

Russia’s apparent test-firing of an anti-satellite weapon in outer space on 15 July, as alleged by the US and Britain, could be dismissed as another of Vladimir Putin’s annoying provocations. That would be a mistake. The alleged new space weapon should be seen in the broader context of a rapidly evolving, hi-tech, high-risk international arms race involving all the major nuclear powers that, largely undiscussed, is spinning out of control.

This week sees the 75th anniversary of the atomic bomb attacks on Hiroshima and Nagasaki that killed over 200,000 people, but the absence of public debate or a sense of alarm about the grim advent of sophisticated new nuclear, hypersonic, cyber and space weapons is striking. In the decades after Hiroshima, noisy anti-nuclear “ban the bomb” protests by CND and others spanned the globe. Today, by comparison, an eerie silence reigns.

Trump looks set to scupper New Start on the spurious ground that it does not reduce China’s much smaller arsenal.

Related: Sabotage, sanctions and the bullying of Iran by Trump and Israel is bound to backfire on the west

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- Andrew Roth

Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus faces threats from all sides as the country decides whether to give him a sixth term as president

Alexander Lukashenko is under pressure like never before. The past week has brought astonishing scenes in Belarus: an opposition rally hailed as the largest since the fall of the Soviet Union; the arrest of 33 Russian mercenaries allegedly sent to destabilise the country; and an admission from Lukashenko that after months of minimising the coronavirus epidemic, he had tested positive for the virus.

It is likely that the president, who has held power for 25 years, will claim victory in the 9 August elections and remain the country’s leader. But he is on the defensive, facing an energised opposition amid bitter spats with Russia over economic integration, and with the west over human rights. It is the most precarious moment of his career.

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- Guardian Staff

The mounting evidence of interference suggests that, even now, we should challenge the referendum result

Luke Harding and Mark Townsend report that “from Moscow, Brexit is seen as a wild success, diminishing the UK and estranging London from its European partners… And MI6 failed to ask its secret agents what exactly the Kremlin was up to” (“Timid, incompetent… how our spies missed Russia’s bid to sway Brexit”, News). You do not require a degree in geopolitics to understand why a weakened Russia, believing itself threatened by Nato and the west generally, needs, and works for, a weakened west.

Carole Cadwalladr (“The Russia report shows we have a national security problem. He lives in No 10”, Comment) observes: “The Russians stand accused of exploiting with disinformation and lies the same platform that Johnson’s chief aide, Dominic Cummings, exploited with disinformation and lies.” Is anyone asking what Cummings was up to in his three years in Russia? Given that your opinion poll (News) indicates that almost half of the people interviewed believe the Russian government interfered with the referendum, is it out of the question to challenge, even at this late date, the validity of the 2016 result? This is not to challenge democracy. It could be to challenge possible treason.John AirsLiverpool

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- Dan Sabbagh Defence and security editor

‘Ghostwriter’ campaign said to involve replacing true stories with false ones on news sites in Poland and Lithuania

Hackers “aligned with Russian security interests” have been engaged in a sustained campaign to compromise news websites in Poland and Lithuania to plant false stories aimed at discrediting Nato, according to a new report.

Part of the campaign – labelled “Ghostwriter” – involved gaining access to news sites publishing systems, deleting stories and replacing them with false news that sought to delegitimise the transatlantic alliance.

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- Andrew Roth in Moscow

Conviction of Trevor Reed for drunken incident suspected to be part of prisoner swap plan

A Russian court has sentenced a former US marine to nine years in prison on charges of assaulting a police officer while drunk, in a controversial case that he has claimed is political.

Trevor Reed, 29, was convicted of endangering the lives of police officers during an incident last August that he says he cannot remember.

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- Andrew Roth in Moscow

President Lukashenko accuses Russia of interference in country’s imminent elections

Belarus has accused 33 Russian mercenaries detained near Minsk of preparing a terrorist attack to destabilise the country ahead of its presidential elections in a sharp escalation of tensions with Moscow.

Belarus has claimed that the men are mercenaries employed by the Russian private military company Wagner, which has been tied to an ally of Vladimir Putin and has fought in armed conflict in Ukraine, Syria and countries in Africa. Several of the men, who were arrested at a sanatorium outside Minsk on Wednesday, fought against the government in east Ukraine, Russian media have reported.

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- Richard Partington Economics correspondent

Party warns minister not to shrug off damning intelligence and security committee report

Labour has stepped up pressure on the government to launch a tougher crackdown on money laundering after the Russia report warned that the City of London was being used as a “laundromat” for illicit funds.

Issuing a warning to Boris Johnson’s government that it could not shrug off the damning intelligence and security committee report, the party called for urgent steps to be taken to clean up business practices and to prevent dirty funds from being recycled in the “London laundromat”.

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- Julian Borger in Washington

Pentagon insists move is about long-term strategy but Trump says: ‘We’re reducing the force because they’re not paying their bills’

The US is planning to pull nearly 12,000 troops out of Germany in a move the Pentagon insisted was about long-term strategy but which Donald Trump said was to punish Berlin for low defence spending.

Of a total of 11,900 personnel that will be leaving Germany under the proposal, 6,400 will be returning to the US, from where they could be used for rotational deployments in eastern Europe and around the world, while 5,600 will be repositioned within other Nato countries, particularly Belgium and Italy.

Related: German ministers hit back at Trump plan to withdraw US troops

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- Associated Press in Minsk

Authorities were tipped off that militants planned to destabilise country, according to state news

Belarusian authorities said they have detained dozens of Russian private military contractors days before Belarus’s presidential vote, in a sign of escalating tensions between the two neighbours.

Belarus’s authoritarian president, Alexander Lukashenko, 65, who is seeking a sixth term in office in the 9 August vote, has repeatedly accused Russia of trying to force Belarus to abandon its post-Soviet independence. Throughout his 26-year rule, Lukashenko has relied on Russian subsidies and political support but has fiercely resisted Moscow’s efforts to gain control over the country’s economic assets.

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Nezavisimaya Gazeta

Всемирное антидопинговое агентство (WADA) выразило обеспокоенность тем, что наблюдательный совет Российского антидопингового агентства (РУСАДА) рекомендовал совету учредителей уволить генерального директора организации Юрия Гануса. Об этом говорится в заявлении WADA, опубликованном на официальном

Власти Армении ограничили вещание иностранных телеканалов, в том числе российских. Документ подписал президент Армен Саркисян, инициатива была одобрена парламентом еще в середине июля. Согласно принятому закону, зарубежные программы могут ретранслироваться без лицензий через обычную антенну

Из Амстердама в Россию отправилось судно, на борту которого около шестисот тонн ядерных отходов. Судно «Михаил Дудин» с урановыми хвостами – токсичными радиоактивными отходами процесса обогащения урана – на борту отправилось из Амстердама в Россию. Об этом сообщил в эфире радиостанции «Эхо

Истребитель Су-27 поднимали на перехват самолета-разведчика RC-135 ВВС США и самолета базовой патрульной авиации Р-8А Poseidon ВМС США над Черным морем. Об этом сообщили журналистам в Национальном центре управления обороной (НЦУО) РФ. По данным центра, сегодня российскими средствами

Мужчина до смерти забил своего 6-летнего сына в подмосковном Талдоме из-за плохого поведения. Об этом ТАСС сообщила представитель Главного следственного управления СК по Московской области Ольга Врадий. 3 августа мужчина сообщил о смерти ребенка, который со слов отца упал в подъезде с

Немецкий неонацист Штефан Эрнст признался в суде в том, что это он убил политика Вальтера Любке. В ФРГ правый экстремист признался в убийстве главы администрации района Кассель консервативного политика Вальтера Любке. Преступление было совершено в июне 2019 года. Обвиняемый в упор

Власти Ливана не считают необходимым участие международных экспертов в расследовании взрыва в порту Бейрута. Об этом, как передает телеканал "Ливан-24", заявил в среду глава МВД Мухаммед Фахми. "Мы не нуждаемся в участии международных экспертов в расследовании взрыва в Бейруте, наши

Муэдзин Осман Аслан внезапно скончался от сердечного приступа в соборе Святой Софии в Стамбуле, сообщило в среду греческое интернет-издание Оrthodox Times. Смерть наступила в минувшее воскресенье, однако журналистам стало известно о ней только сегодня. Издание отмечает, что муэдзин

Наблюдательный совет Российского антидопингового агентства (РУСАДА) рекомендовал учредителям рассмотреть вопрос увольнения генерального директора организации Юрия Гануса. Об этом ТАСС сообщил член наблюдательного совета РУСАДА. "Наблюдательный совет рекомендовал рассмотреть вопрос

Зампред ЦК КПРФ Юрий Афонин предлагает приравнять фальсификации на выборах к государственной измене. По его словам, это необходимо, чтобы люди не отделывались условными сроками. Главная проблема, как говорит Афонин, в том, что люди не верят в чистоту и прозрачность избирательной системы и потому

Проректор МГУ Алексей Гришин задержан в Москве по подозрению в преднамеренном банкротстве. Об этом ТАСС сообщил источник в правоохранительных органах. "Проректор МГУ Алексей Гришин задержан в рамках уголовного дела, возбужденного по статье 196 УК РФ ("Преднамеренное банкротство"), -

Швейцарские власти исключили Россию из списка государств, представляющих повышенный риск заражения коронавирусом. С 8 августа отменяется требование прохождения обязательного 10-дневного карантина для прибывающих из РФ пассажиров, сообщило в среду Федеральное управление здравоохранения

Условия труда для иностранных мигрантов не могут быть лучше, чем для россиян, уверен председатель "Единой России" Дмитрий Медведев. Такое мнение он высказал в среду на встрече с участниками проекта "ПолитСтартап". "Нельзя сказать: давайте мы решим все наши проблемы по организации

Президент Белоруссии Александр Лукашенко заявил, что правоохранительные органы будут сотрудничать по вопросу задержанных в республике россиян в рамках подписанных с Москвой и Киевом международных соглашений. Об этом сообщила в среду пресс- служба белорусского лидера по итогам его телефонного

Минфин РФ предложил Нидерландам пересмотреть действующее налоговое соглашение, подняв ставку налога на дивиденды до 15%, сообщили ТАСС в министерстве. В среду аудиторско-консалтинговая компания KPMG сообщила, что Минфин Нидерландов получил письмо от коллег из РФ с предложением

Финляндия утверждает, что у нее есть доказательства нарушения воздушных границ российскими истребителями. По данным финской погранслужбы, 28 июля два российских самолета СУ-27 вторглись в воздушное пространство Финляндии в районе города Порвоо. По версии пограничников, истребители заходили

SpaceX провела первые лётные испытания прототипа ракеты Starship. Пятый серийный испытательный аппарат поднялся на 150 метров с полигона Бока-Чика в Техасе и вертикально приземлился на ту же площадку. Трансляция велась на YouTube-канале NASA. Starship оснащён одним двигателем

Американец Пол Уилан, осужденный в РФ на 16 лет за шпионаж, прибыл в колонию в Мордовию для отбытия наказания, подтвердил агентству "Интерфакс-Поволжье" председатель ОНК республики Валерий Крутов. "Уилан прибыл в колонию N18", - сказал собеседник агентства. Он отметил, что там

В Сочи медведи загрызли ребёнка. ЧП произошло в посёлке Дагомыс Лазаревского района. По данным следствия, накануне 11-летний мальчик подошёл к вольеру, в котором находились 2 медведя. Клетку на Армавирской улице установила коммерческая фирма. Как уточнили в прокуратуре, один медведь,

Минфин РФ в августе ожидает 92,5 млрд руб. недополученных нефтегазовых доходов из-за превышения базовой цены нефти над фактической. Об этом говорится в материалах Минфина, размещенных на официальном сайте министерства. Ожидаемый объем дополнительных нефтегазовых доходов федерального

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