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Norway saw a 19% drop in marriages in 2020 compared to the previous year, which had already seen the lowest figure since 1927. Norway’s statistics agency on Monday said that the pandemic and measures to counter it led to the fall. In 2020, 16,200 weddings were performed. On top of that, “the decline of 3,000 marriages from 2019 to 2020 is unparalleled and is the largest decline from one year to another since 1919", said Ane Margrete Toemmeraas of Statistics Norway, reports the Associated Press. For more updates, here’s Mint Lite.

EU looks at Myanmar military

EU looks at Myanmar military
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EU looks at Myanmar military

The European Union (EU) is preparing to widen its sanctions on Myanmar’s armed forces to target businesses they run, in protest at the 1 February military coup, according to diplomats and two internal documents seen by Reuters. The measures, which diplomats said could be agreed by EU foreign ministers on 22 March, would target companies “generating revenue for, or providing financial support to, the Myanmar Armed Forces", said one of the documents dated 5 March. While the bloc has an arms embargo on Myanmar, and has targeted some senior military officials since 2018, the measures would be its most significant response so far since the coup. EU diplomats told Reuters that parts of the military’s conglomerates, Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd and Myanmar Economic Corp., were likely to be targeted, barring EU investors and banks from doing business with them.

China to upgrade legal tool kit

China to upgrade legal tool kit
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China to upgrade legal tool kit

China will upgrade its “legal tool kit" in order to oppose foreign sanctions, interference and long arm jurisdiction, Li Zhanshu, chairman of the National People’s Congress, said in a work report on the fourth day of the annual session of the top legislative body. Among other highlights on Monday, Hong Kong chief executive Carrie Lam said she is unsure if upcoming legislative elections will be delayed again, as Chinese lawmakers work behind closed doors in Beijing to curb opposition candidates’ influence over future votes. The election overhaul announced Friday by the NPC will require Hong Kong to enact “more than 20 pieces of principle and subsidiary legislation," Lam said Monday after returning from Beijing. The delegate representing Hong Kong said public actions and statements can be used to evaluate patriots. Chinese lawmakers are set to approve an election overhaul this week at the NPC.

The cost of child abuse

The cost of child abuse
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The cost of child abuse

Every day four child victims of sexual offences are denied justice due to closure of their cases by police because of insufficient evidence, according to a new study. The ‘Police case disposal pattern: An enquiry into the cases filed under POCSO Act, 2012’ by Kailash Satyarthi Children’s Foundation, is an analysis of pattern of disposal of POCSO cases by police from 2017 to 2019 and is based on the data and information published by the NCRB. It shows, sexual crimes are increasing in the country over the years. While the government recognised the need for a special law and introduced a special legislation to deal with crimes against children viz., Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, it is disappointing to see its poor implementation on the ground.

Palestinian workers get vaccinated

Palestinian workers get vaccinated
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Palestinian workers get vaccinated

Israel on Monday launched a campaign to vaccinate some 100,000 Palestinians in the West Bank who hold permits to work in Jewish settlements in the occupied territory and inside the Jewish state. A pilot programme involving 700 Palestinian West Bank residents began on Thursday. The Israeli military branch responsible for civil affairs in Palestinian territories, COGAT, said the main campaign involving an estimated 100,000 Palestinians would begin this week. Israel’s emergency medical service, the Magen David Adom, said it was administering shots on Monday of the Moderna vaccine at spots set up at select checkpoints linking the West Bank and Israel. Vaccinations were also taking place at centres within industrial areas connected to Jewish settlements in the West Bank. About 475,000 Jews live in West Bank settlements, communities considered illegal by much of the international community.

A new equality pledge for athletics

A new equality pledge for athletics
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A new equality pledge for athletics

World athletics marked International Women’s Day with a series of pledges to “further advance the role of girls and women" in the sport under the campaign “WeGrowAthletics". The world governing body says it is focusing on three core areas of the sport—empowering women in leadership positions, breaking with traditions and shining a spotlight on women’s stories across its platforms. World Athletics appointed its first female vice president in 2019 and increased female Council representation to 30%. Stephanie Hightower, chairwoman of the World Athletics gender leadership taskforce, said the organisation has become a leader in gender equality through changes in its structure. The Monaco-based organization has also said it is reviewing traditions around the presentation of women’s performances and achievements where there is currently often an unconscious bias.

Curated by Sohini Sen. Have something to share with us? Write to us at feedback@livemint or tweet to @shohinisen

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