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Westlake Legal Group > fnc/world (Page 82)

Anger rises after yet another wave of Brazil prison violence

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a1bf6514107449cab34dbb0d182f8784-1 Anger rises after yet another wave of Brazil prison violence fox-news/world/world-regions/americas fox-news/world fnc/world fnc DIANE JEANTET and VICTOR CAIVANO Associated Press article 5b138700-dae0-5219-909d-68aa955e6420

Fury was rising among the relatives of dozens of inmates killed in prison riots as they demanded the release of the bodies for burial, more than two days after prisoners attacked each other in several facilities in the northern Brazilian state of Amazonas.

Fifty-five inmates were killed Sunday and Monday at four prisons in the city of Manaus, most of them choked or stabbed to death in the latest outburst of violence in Brazil’s notoriously overcrowded and gang-plagued prison system. Little is known about what exactly provoked the clashes, but officials said the killings were the result of infighting inside one fractured criminal group.

Outside the Manaus forensic institute Wednesday, victims’ relatives were left waiting for hours in sizzling heat, with no water, food or information about when they might retrieve the bodies for burial. One woman fainted and had to be carried to a nearby car.

When voices started rising inside the building, two police officers intervened and asked relatives to leave and wait outside.

“It’s humiliating to be waiting here,” an agitated Martinete Lira said while waiting for the corpse of her nephew. “This massacre happened once, it happened twice and it will happen again!”

The killings have led to renewed calls for new and better prisons, and the anger is providing another challenge to the administration of far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, which has pledged to clean up Brazil’s festering jails amid a broader crime-fighting agenda.

Later Wednesday afternoon, 22 corpses were eventually freed on top of 15 that were released a few days ago. The rest were still stacked in a temporary refrigerated unit lent to the institute to help it deal with all the bodies.

Adding to the anger, Amazonas Gov. Wilson Lima said the state would pay no indemnity to families of victims. “The government has no money for that,” Lima told reporters at a press conference Tuesday.

For Father Joao Poli, who has been visiting inmates inside the state’s prisons for nearly a decade, the government’s lack of consideration for family members is a reflection of how prisoners are treated inside the penitentiaries.

“The exploitation of prisoners is dramatic,” Poli, an Italian native, told The Associated Press. Poli was among a handful of religious workers who came to the forensic institute to distribute sandwiches and offer car rides from one agency to another.

The priest criticized privatizations in the Amazonas prison system.

All four prisons where killings happened Sunday and Monday were run under a public-private partnership with the same company, Umanizzare, according to the state prison secretary.

“More prisoners, more money,” Poli said. He said that once at a prison in the remote interior of the state, he saw over 30 people packed in a cell with eight mattresses.

Umanizzare, which runs six prisons in Amazonas, said the state remains responsible for public security inside the facilities. The company is in charge of nearly everything else, from food to maintenance, medical attention and utilities.

In many of Brazil’s prisons, badly outnumbered guards scramble to retain power over an ever-growing population of inmates and a strong gang presence.

With roughly 726,000 people incarcerated, the country’s penitentiary system has an official capacity of only about half that number, or 368,000, according to official data from 2016. In Amazons state, 11,390 inmates occupy prisons built to hold 2,354.

“It is absolutely necessary to build new prisons,” said Claudio Lamachia, who was chairman of Brazil’s bar association until the end of last year. “It’s a way of investing in public security.”

Lamachia, who has regularly visited prisons across Brazil, said it is not uncommon for prisoners to spend several days in police cars, waiting for a space to become available.

The dire state of Brazil’s prison system is well known and massacres have happened before.

In January 2017, more than 120 inmates died when Brazil’s most powerful criminal gang, First Capital Command, and the rival Family of the North gang clashed over control of drug-trafficking routes in northern states. The violence lasted several weeks, spreading to various states.

The Anisio Jobim Prison Complex, the jail in Manaus where 15 inmates died Sunday, was the scene of gruesome fighting two years ago that left 56 prisoners dead, many with their heads cut off or their hearts and intestines ripped out.

Public security experts say that until Brazil builds new prisons and invests in existing ones, it will struggle to fully regain control of its inmates, many of whom depend on prison gangs for food, money or survival.

Telling about a tour of a prison in another Brazilian state, Lamachia said the guards were only allowed into cellblocks by inmates to deliver food, which would then be distributed by the gangs.

“Prisons today are a time bomb. Tragedies waiting to happen,” the lawyer said.

For years, officials in Brazil have placed their hopes on the privatization of prisons. But experts pointed to the early 2017 killings, many of which occurred in prisons run in partnership with private companies, and to this week’s events as a sign that it is not a solution.

“They can’t hand the prisons over to a private entity and then wash their hands,” Lamachia said.

___

AP video journalist Victor Caivano reported this story in Manaus, and AP writer Diane Jeantet reported from Rio de Janeiro.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a1bf6514107449cab34dbb0d182f8784-1 Anger rises after yet another wave of Brazil prison violence fox-news/world/world-regions/americas fox-news/world fnc/world fnc DIANE JEANTET and VICTOR CAIVANO Associated Press article 5b138700-dae0-5219-909d-68aa955e6420   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a1bf6514107449cab34dbb0d182f8784-1 Anger rises after yet another wave of Brazil prison violence fox-news/world/world-regions/americas fox-news/world fnc/world fnc DIANE JEANTET and VICTOR CAIVANO Associated Press article 5b138700-dae0-5219-909d-68aa955e6420

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NASA scientist jailed in Turkey for almost 3 years is released

A Turkish-American scientist imprisoned in Turkey for nearly three years has been released, his wife told Fox News.

NASA physicist and Houston resident Serkan Golge, a dual citizen, had been convicted over allegations of an association with the organization of Fetullah Gulen, a former political ally of Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan.

US SUSPENDS ALL PASSENGER, CARGO FLIGHTS TO VENEZUELA

Golge has denied links to Gulen’s network. The charges were widely derided as trumped-up.

The Turkish government claimed the Gulen Organization, which it has deemed a terrorist group (FETO), was behind an aborted 2016 coup. In the crackdown that followed, tens of thousands of Turks were rounded up over their alleged membership in or support for FETO.

Golge, who was also accused of being a CIA operative, was sentenced in February 2018 to seven and a half years behind bars. He has steadfastly denied being involved in any terrorist activity or working for the CIA.

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His wife, Kubra, confirmed with Fox News that she spoke with him upon his release. She said he was quite happy about the turn of events.

Her husband was on a family visit in southern Turkey when he was arrested.

Morgan Ortagus, a State Department spokeswoman, welcomed the decision to cut Golge loose, but declined to elaborate on why he was released.

Fox News’ Hollie McKay and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group professor-Clydepsd NASA scientist jailed in Turkey for almost 3 years is released Frank Miles fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox news fnc/world fnc article ab2f3e4d-723c-5b3a-a6be-ea246740bcb0   Westlake Legal Group professor-Clydepsd NASA scientist jailed in Turkey for almost 3 years is released Frank Miles fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox news fnc/world fnc article ab2f3e4d-723c-5b3a-a6be-ea246740bcb0

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Nearly 50 Palestinians injured in protests along Gaza-Israeli border: officials

Nearly 50 Palestinians were injured Wednesday by Israeli troops as they protested across the West Bank and Gaza to mark the 71st anniversary of their mass displacement during the 1948 war, officials said.

Thousands of people congregated at the Gaza border with Israel for demonstrations known as the “nabka” — or “catastrophe” — in which hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled or were forced out of their homes during the war that surrounded the creation of Israel.

ISRAEL ARMY LIFTS RESTRICTIONS, SIGNALS CEASE-FIRE WITH GAZA

More than 60 Palestinians were killed during last year’s demonstrations, which coincided with the opening of the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem after it had been relocated from Tel Aviv.

Westlake Legal Group Gaza-AP-2 Nearly 50 Palestinians injured in protests along Gaza-Israeli border: officials Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world/conflicts fox news fnc/world fnc d86d6c97-963e-57ca-9aa3-7f88f712374b article

Smoke rises from fires on Israeli farmland caused by arson balloons launched from Gaza City, Wednesday, May 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Hatem Moussa)

The Gaza Health Ministry told Reuters on Wednesday that at least 47 people were wounded after witnesses said Israeli troops fired tear gas, rubber bullets at them and live ammunition at them.

Roughly 10,000 protesters gathered along the Gaza Strip, the Israeli military said.

POLISH AMBASSADOR TO ISRAEL ASSAULTED IN TEL AVIV AMID DIPLOMATIC ROW OVER HOLOCAUST REPARATIONS

“The rioters are setting tires on fire and hurling rocks. A number of explosive devices have been hurled within the Gaza Strip, as well, and a number of attempts have been made to approach the security fence. IDF troops are responding with riot dispersal means.”

Westlake Legal Group Gaza-AP-1 Nearly 50 Palestinians injured in protests along Gaza-Israeli border: officials Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world/conflicts fox news fnc/world fnc d86d6c97-963e-57ca-9aa3-7f88f712374b article

Palestinians attend a protest by the Israeli border with Gaza Strip, Wednesday, May 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Muhammed Dahman)

The demonstration comes two weeks after a cease-fire was reached to end two fierce days of fighting. A Qatari envoy, who has been helping mediate the cease-fire, has urged Hamas to keep Wednesday’s demonstration restrained.

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

There are an estimated 5 million Palestinian refugees across the Middle East. Their fate is one of the core issues of dispute between Israel and the Palestinians. Israel rejects demands for a mass return of refugees to long-lost homes, saying it would threaten the country’s Jewish character.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Westlake Legal Group Gaza-AP-1 Nearly 50 Palestinians injured in protests along Gaza-Israeli border: officials Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world/conflicts fox news fnc/world fnc d86d6c97-963e-57ca-9aa3-7f88f712374b article   Westlake Legal Group Gaza-AP-1 Nearly 50 Palestinians injured in protests along Gaza-Israeli border: officials Nicole Darrah fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/israel fox-news/world/conflicts fox news fnc/world fnc d86d6c97-963e-57ca-9aa3-7f88f712374b article

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Man in China detained after giving dogs ‘illegal’ names

What’s in a name? Apparently, jail time if you’re in China.

A dog breeder in eastern China was detained by police on Monday after giving his two dogs “illegal” names that refer to government and civil service workers.

The man in his 30’s named Ban was summoned by police on Monday after posting information about the dogs, named Chengguan and Xieguan, to friends on popular Chinese messaging app WeChat, according to the Xiangyang City Council.

The dog’s names ended up attracting controversy because “Chengguan” are officials employed in urban areas to tackle low-level crime, while “Xieguan” are informal community workers such as traffic assistants, according to the BBC.

CHINA DEVELOPS APP TO MONITOR ‘DEADBEAT DEBTORS’

Zhangzhou Police said on Chinese social media site Weibo the information was “insulting law enforcement personnel,” and prompted an investigation to be launched.

Westlake Legal Group Mr-Ban-Yingzhou-Police Man in China detained after giving dogs 'illegal' names Travis Fedschun fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/world fnc article 47f4a251-ab3c-52d2-b496-b328e3c9703e

A man in eastern China was detained by police after giving his dogs “illegal” names after government officials. (Yingzhou Police)

Authorities added that “in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Law of the People’s Republic of China on Public Security Administration Punishment,” the man must spend 10 days in an administrative detention center.

CHINA IS FIGHTING TO ‘PROTECT ITS LEGITIMATE RIGHTS AND INTERESTS’ IN TRADE WAR WITH US, STATE MEDIA SAYS

A police officer told the newspaper Beijing News that Ban had been increasingly provocative on his WeChat account, and his actions had “caused great harm to the nation and the city’s urban management, in terms of their feelings,” according to the BBC.

CLICK HERE FOR THE FOX NEWS APP

Ban, who local media outlets reported as being remorseful over his actions, said he had just given the dogs the names “for fun.”

“I don’t know the law, I don’t know if it is illegal,” he told Fuyang News.

China in recent years has been patrolling and cracking down on social media users as the country gears up to launch a social credit system in 2020, which would monitor the behavior of China’s 1.4 billion citizens. Over 1 billion people are current on WeChat.

Westlake Legal Group Mr-Ban-Yingzhou-Police Man in China detained after giving dogs 'illegal' names Travis Fedschun fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/world fnc article 47f4a251-ab3c-52d2-b496-b328e3c9703e   Westlake Legal Group Mr-Ban-Yingzhou-Police Man in China detained after giving dogs 'illegal' names Travis Fedschun fox-news/world/world-regions/china fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/odd-news fox news fnc/world fnc article 47f4a251-ab3c-52d2-b496-b328e3c9703e

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Skier Lindsey Vonn wins prestigious Spanish prize

Westlake Legal Group og-fox-news Skier Lindsey Vonn wins prestigious Spanish prize MADRID fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Associated Press article 2949b903-286b-51e7-a27b-5af18c4a1d65

Retired American Alpine skier Lindsey Vonn has won Spain’s Princess of Asturias award for sports.

The judges said on announcing the prize Wednesday that Vonn “has throughout her career made extraordinary contributions to the world of sports.”

Vonn’s achievements include a women’s record of 82 World Cup wins and three Olympic medals. She was forced to retire in February at age 34 after suffering multiple injuries.

The 50,000-euro ($55,000) award is one of eight Asturias prizes handed out yearly by a foundation named after Crown Princess Leonor. Other categories include art, social sciences and scientific research.

Mountain climbers Reinhold Messner and Krzysztof Wielicki won last year’s prize. Other former winners include Michael Schumacher, Carl Lewis, and Sergey Bubka.

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The Latest: Iran’s leader says weapons-grade enrichment easy

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-0275d030abd94196b0926d1f90bcf43a The Latest: Iran's leader says weapons-grade enrichment easy fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Dubai (United Arab Emirates) Associated Press article 824434fb-35c5-52e9-887c-2f9d5b70ea9b

The Latest on developments in the Persian Gulf region and elsewhere in Mideast amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran (all times local):

10:30 a.m.

Iran’s supreme leader claims that enriching uranium to weapons-grade levels would not be a difficult task for the country — the latest threats from Tehran as tensions roil the region amid the unraveling of the nuclear deal.

State-owned IRAN daily quoted Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as telling a group of officials during a meeting on Tuesday night that “achieving 20 percent enrichment is the most difficult part. The next steps are easier than this step.”

Iran recently threatened to resume higher enrichment in 60 days if no new nuclear deal is in place, beyond the 3.67% permitted by the current deal between Tehran and world powers. The Trump administration pulled America out of the deal last year.

Iranian officials have said that they could reach 20% enrichment within four days. Though Iran maintains its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes, scientists say the time needed to reach the 90% threshold for weapons-grade uranium is halved once uranium is enriched to around 20%.

___

10:10 a.m.

A satellite image obtained by The Associated Press shows one of the two pumping stations attacked by drones in Saudi Arabia apparently intact.

The image from San Francisco-based Planet Labs Inc. that the AP examined on Wednesday shows Saudi Aramco’s Pumping Station No. 8 outside of the town of al-Duadmi. It’s 330 kilometers, or 205 miles, west of the capital, Riyadh.

The photo, taken Tuesday after the attack claimed by Yemen’s Houthi rebels, shows two black marks near where Saudi Arabia’s East-West Pipeline passes by the facility. Those marks weren’t there in images taken Monday.

The facility otherwise appears intact.

The attack came as regional tensions flared, just days after what the kingdom called an attack on two of its oil tankers off the coast of the United Arab Emirates.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-0275d030abd94196b0926d1f90bcf43a The Latest: Iran's leader says weapons-grade enrichment easy fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Dubai (United Arab Emirates) Associated Press article 824434fb-35c5-52e9-887c-2f9d5b70ea9b   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-0275d030abd94196b0926d1f90bcf43a The Latest: Iran's leader says weapons-grade enrichment easy fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Dubai (United Arab Emirates) Associated Press article 824434fb-35c5-52e9-887c-2f9d5b70ea9b

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Turkey detains 2 militants trying to enter parliament

Westlake Legal Group og-fox-news Turkey detains 2 militants trying to enter parliament fox-news/world/world-regions/middle-east fox-news/world/world-regions/europe fox-news/world fnc/world fnc df8cfb48-ad8e-5e1f-bf0b-e722aba62f70 Associated Press article ANKARA, Turkey

Turkish officials say police have detained two suspected left-wing militants who tried to enter the country’s parliament with sharp objects and a hoax explosive device.

Fahrettin Altun, the presidential communications director, said in a tweet early Wednesday that the suspects were members of the banned Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party-Front, also known as DHKP-C.

He called their attempt a “terrorist act against the will and the peace of the nation.”

The state-run Anadolu Agency said the suspects — a woman and a man — arrived at the parliament building on Tuesday and tried to take a security official hostage before they were subdued.

The DHKP-C is considered a terror organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the European Union.

Altun said their “internal and external connections will be revealed and accounted for.”

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Sherpa climber scales Mount Everest for record 23rd time

Westlake Legal Group og-fox-news Sherpa climber scales Mount Everest for record 23rd time KATHMANDU, Nepal fox-news/world/world-regions/asia fox-news/world/environment fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Associated Press article 8062093a-7471-51a9-a45e-12c71f6bbed8

Sherpa guide Kami Rita has scaled Mount Everest for a 23rd time, breaking his own record for the most successful ascents of the world’s highest peak.

Government official Gyanendra Shrestha says Rita reached the summit with other climbers Wednesday morning and all of them were reported to be safe.

Rita’s two closest peers have climbed the 8,850-meter (29,035-foot) peak 21 times each, but both of them have retired from mountain climbing.

There are 41 different teams with a total of 378 climbers who have been permitted to scale Everest during this year’s spring climbing season. There are an equal number of Nepalese guides helping them to get to the summit.

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AP Explains: Brazil’s environmental changes under Bolsonaro

The administration of Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro has canceled a United Nations climate change workshop to be held in the city of Salvador in August, reaffirming its lack of interest in participating in international efforts to fight global warming. This is not the first time the far-right Bolsonaro has made clear he intends to make major changes to Brazil’s environmental policy, including opening the globally vital Amazon rainforest to development and agribusiness. His environment minister has called climate change a “secondary issue.” Here’s a look at some of the key measures taken by Bolsonaro’s administration, which took office Jan. 1.

___

INDIGENOUS LANDS

During the campaign, then-presidential candidate Bolsonaro vowed that if elected, “not a centimeter” more of land would be demarcated for indigenous reserves. Within hours of taking office, he issued a series of decrees that critics said would benefit his allies in Brazil’s powerful pro-development “rural caucus.” On Jan. 2, Bolsonaro transferred responsibility for delineating indigenous territories from the Justice Ministry to the Agriculture Ministry, which one lawmaker described as “letting the fox take over the chicken coop.” The decree also transferred the agency for indigenous affairs, known as FUNAI, from the Justice Ministry to a newly created Ministry for Family, Women and Human Rights that is headed by an ultraconservative evangelical pastor. FUNAI oversees health care, housing and language preservation for indigenous groups.

___

CABINET APPOINTMENTS

Bolsonaro’s ministerial appointments are in line with his campaign promise to help businesses expand operations in Brazil, including into its protected areas. His agriculture minister is Tereza Cristina, who was part of the powerful agribusiness caucus in Congress’ lower house and has opposed requests from indigenous communities. The environment minister is Ricardo Salles, a lawyer and former environment secretary for São Paulo state. Much like the president, Salles believes talks around climate change are too ideologically charged. He wrote in 2018 in the online publication Medium that agribusiness in Brazil was “under threat.” Climate change-sceptic Ernesto Araujo was named foreign minister. On his blog, Araujo described climate change as a “dogma” used by the left to foster China’s growth, and said he wanted to “help Brazil and the world liberate itself from the globalist ideology.”

___

U.N. 2019 CLIMATE CHANGE SUMMIT

In November 2018, after the new administration was elected but before it was sworn in, Brazil’s foreign ministry decided to withdraw its offer to host the 2019 United Nations conference on climate change. The ministry cited “current fiscal and budget constraints,” but activists and environmental groups considered it a nod to then President-elect Bolsonaro, who had already mentioned the possibility of withdrawing Brazil from the Paris Agreement on climate change.

___

PARIS CLIMATE AGREEMENT

During the campaign, Bolsonaro said he would follow the footsteps of U.S. President Donald Trump and leave the Paris climate accord. But just before the election, he backpedaled and said he would remain as long as Brazil’s sovereignty in the Amazon was not threatened or challenged. The South American nation holds about 60% of the Amazon rainforest, the preservation of which is seen by scientists as crucial in the campaign to slow climate change. Efforts by Brazilian authorities to reduce deforestation rates received world recognition a few years ago. But recently, groups monitoring illicit harvesting have reported a double-digit increase in deforestation in the Amazon region. Brazil’s commitment to other aspects of the Paris accord is unclear but environmental groups say either way, Bolsonaro’s plans to open the Amazon to greater development would make it impossible for Brazil to meet its reduced emissions targets in the coming years.

___

OIL EXPLORATION

Bolsonaro’s government is planning to auction several offshore fields in the country’s northeast, which had been earmarked as “highly sensitive areas” by Brazil’s environment institute, IBAMA. An IBAMA study said oil spills in these blocks could lead to the destruction of the Abrolhos islands, an area of 353 square miles (913 square kilometers) that is home to a marine national park. Critics say the government’s decision to ignore the recommendation and include the fields in the auction shows the new administration is determined to bring investors to Brazil despite environmental costs.

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a250957b5e3d4972a015086e6e417eb8 AP Explains: Brazil's environmental changes under Bolsonaro fox-news/world/world-regions/americas fox-news/world/environment fox-news/world fnc/world fnc DIANE JEANTET Associated Press article 13e53454-acce-53f3-999a-86ae8144e647   Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-a250957b5e3d4972a015086e6e417eb8 AP Explains: Brazil's environmental changes under Bolsonaro fox-news/world/world-regions/americas fox-news/world/environment fox-news/world fnc/world fnc DIANE JEANTET Associated Press article 13e53454-acce-53f3-999a-86ae8144e647

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Candidates vow next Australian prime minister will last

Westlake Legal Group ContentBroker_contentid-70898800fb184412803dc9fbb048ebcb Candidates vow next Australian prime minister will last ROD McGUIRK fox-news/world/world-regions/pacific fox-news/world/world-regions/australia fox-news/world fnc/world fnc Associated Press article 7e3a4ec0-3c1f-579f-a78b-d953e21dd168

Both candidates vying to become Australia’s prime minister in elections on Saturday are promising to stay in the job for the entire three-year term, shut the revolving door to high office and put the choice of the nation’s leader back in voters’ hands.

Lasting the distance between elections was once a prime minister’s pledge that Australian voters didn’t need to question. But since an extraordinary period of political instability began a decade ago, four prime ministers have been dumped by their own parties and only one has been ousted by voters.

As a result, both the ruling conservative Liberal Party and the opposition center-left Labor Party have tightened their rules to make their leader’s ejector seat more difficult to activate. The changes acknowledge growing anger over voters’ loss of control over who runs the country. Foreign governments have also become wary of striking bilateral deals with Australian prime ministers who can be replaced without warning.

But both parties are also warning voters against trusting that the rival candidate could maintain his government’s support and end the chaos of Australia’s recent political history.

If the winner in the race between incumbent Prime Minister Scott Morrison and opposition leader Bill Shorten keeps his promise to last three years, he will become the first to survive a single term since Prime Minister John Howard lost his Sydney seat in 2007 elections.

It was an ignoble end to the political career of Australia’s second-longest serving prime minister. Howard lasted at the helm for more than 11 years, having led the Liberals to four consecutive election victories.

Since then, six prime ministers have been sworn in, including Kevin Rudd, who had the job twice. He was dubbed “Recycled Rudd” in his second incarnation before he became the only prime minister in the past decade to lose power at the will of voters, expressed in 2013 elections. The rest have been dumped by their own parties in the face of poor opinion polling.

Polls suggest Morrison will have one of the shortest tenures of the 30 prime ministers in the 118-year history of the Australian federation, having served in the job for only nine months by election day.

But both the ruling Liberals and Labor have acknowledged that the Australian public is sick of the revolving door to the prime minister’s office and have changed their rules to make the job more secure.

Labor became the first party to increase the level of difficulty to dump a prime minister in a reform pushed by Rudd in 2013.

Rudd had been ambushed in 2010 in a plot conceived and executed over a few hours by Labor lawmakers who decided to switch support to his deputy Julia Gillard.

It was a shock to many Australians, who went to bed with Rudd in charge of the government and woke in the morning to find Gillard had taken over as prime minister.

Australian federal elections are presidential in the sense that the campaigns focus on the party leaders, who contend to be elected prime minister. But in fact, voters don’t directly elect the prime minister. They vote for local candidates running for 151 seats in the House of Representatives, and the party with a majority of seats in that lower chamber forms a government.

The majority party’s leader then becomes prime minister. Many Australians were surprised to learn in 2010 that a government can change the prime minister without first consulting voters. An elected prime minister had only been torn down by his own party twice before since World War II.

The process for Labor to remove its next prime minister endorsed by voters in an election would now take a month and involve tens of thousands grass-roots members of the party having their say.

Now a 75% majority of Labor lawmakers have to sign a petition to force a leadership ballot instead of a simple majority. The leadership decision is no longer the lawmakers’ alone. In a major democratization of the party’s process, more than 30,000 members of the party nationwide who pay an annual fee but are not elected have a 50% stake in the decision through postal ballots.

Australian National University political historian Frank Bongiorno said the chances of Labor replacing a prime minister between elections had become “close to impossible.”

“In the case of the Labor Party, it would be immensely difficult to get rid of a leader between elections if they’re determined not to go,” Bongiorno said.

Morrison initially rejected his own party adopting similar rules. “Regulating for culture is never effective,” he said two days after he became prime minister in August.

In December, however, Morrison made a surprise announcement that his fellow Liberal lawmakers had decided that a minimum of two-thirds of them would need to agree before a prime minister’s leadership could be put to a ballot. A single-vote majority had led to the leadership ballot that installed Morrison as the latest prime minister.

But the Liberals’ rules only have the endorsement of Liberals who were in Parliament in December. The party’s lawmakers will change after the election and the new Liberal lawmakers won’t be bound by a decision made by lawmakers in the last Parliament, some of whom have retired or lost their seats.

Labor’s rules are more concrete, having been endorsed by the party’s national conference of lawmakers and other party members.

But Bongiorno said both parties are similarly deterred from changing leaders. He suspected that the voter backlash for the Liberals by ousting another prime minister against the spirt of the December agreement would be too great for lawmakers to contemplate the option.

“The Liberal Party hasn’t gone down the road of rank-and-file selection, but I don’t think it actually makes a great deal of difference,” Bongiorno said. “The transactional costs of a contest under those kinds of rules would be just huge.”

Shorten, as a party factional leader, played a key role in overthrowing both Rudd and Gillard as Labor prime ministers when the party was last in power from 2007 to 2013. He argues that his party had demonstrated reform by uniting under his leadership for the past six years while the Liberals had three prime ministers.

“I think we need one more change of prime minister, then we can finish it for a while,” Shorten said in a debate against Morrison last week.

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