The Northern Territory news Sat 28 Nov 2020
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42 WORLD SATURDAY NOVEMBER 28 2020 NTNE01Z01MA - V1 Trump raises the white flag on poll WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump on Friday (AEDT) said for the first time that he would leave the White House if Joe Biden was officially confirmed the winner of the US election, even as he railed against a rigged vote. Mr Trump has made an unprecedented attempt to defy the results of the election by refusing to concede, spreading wild theories about stolen ballots and launching legal challenges that have been thrown out by courts. Answering his first questions from reporters since the November 3 vote, the President moved closer to accept ing that he would serve only one term before Mr Biden is inaugurated on January 20. When asked if he would leave the White House if the Electoral College confirmed Mr Bidens victory, Mr Trump said: Certainly I will. And you know that. He added, however, that a Biden win would be a mistake. Its going to be a very hard thing to concede, he said. I think that there will be a lot of things happening between now and (January) 20. The Electoral College, which determines the White House winner, will meet on December 14 to certify Mr Bidens victory, with Mr Biden receiving 306 votes to Mr Trumps 232. This election was a fraud, Mr Trump said, again without providing any evidence during his remarks to reporters at the White House after he spoke to military personnel via video-link on the Thanksgiving holiday. He described the US voting infrastructure as like a third-world country. Earlier in the day he tweeted that this was a 100% RIGGED ELECTION, while on Thursday (AEDT) he called on his Republican sup porters to turn the election over. Mr Biden has said that Americans wont stand for attempts to derail the vote outcome, and urged for Americans to unite to fight the worsening pandemic. More than 260,000 people have died in the US from COVID-19, with daily death tolls surging to 2000 on recent days. Mr Trumps refusal to concede the election has added to the countless norms he has torn up during his four years in power. Supporters suggest he is already eyeing a run for presi dent in 2024. Mr Trump, 74, is alleging among other conspiracy theories that voting machines deliberately deleted millions of his votes, although the government election security agency declared it the most secure election in US history. Under pressure from senior Republicans, Mr Trump this week ended his blockade of government assistance to ease Mr Bidens preparation for assuming the presidency. Mr Trump plans to soon travel to Georgia to campaign ahead of two key run-off elections that will decide which party controls the Senate. US President Donald Trump plays golf at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia, on a day when he for the first time said he would vacate the White House if the Electoral College deems Joe Biden (above) the winner of the US election. Pictures: Getty Images, AFP ADDIS ABABA: Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has ordered his army to launch a final offensive against Tigrays dissident leaders in their regional capital Mekele, saying the deadline for their surrender had expired. Mr Abiy, the winner of last years Nobel Peace Prize, had given the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front 72 hours to lay down their arms. The ultimatum was rejected by the leaders of the region, whose forces have been fighting federal troops in the countrys north for three weeks. The violence has claimed hundreds of lives and displaced more than 40,000, with some refugees claiming that Ethiopias army has blocked a main road to Sudan, preventing those fleeing the conflict from crossing the border. Ethiopias army has been directed to conclude the third and final phase against the TPLF. In this final phase, great care will be given to protect innocent civilians from harm. All efforts will be made to ensure that the city of Mekele, which was built through the hard work of our people, will not be severely damaged, Mr Abiy promised. He said thousands of TPLF militia and special forces had surrendered to federal forces before the deadline lapsed. It was not immediately clear how close the army was to the city. The threatened assault and fears for Mekeles half a million inhabitants accelerated diplomatic efforts to mediate, with the UN Security Council holding its first meeting on the crisis. Rights groups have warned bombarding Mekele could constitute a war crime. Despite the Ethiopian militarys warnings to residents, warnings alone do not absolve the government of its obligation to protect its civilians, Human Rights Watch said. Ethiopia troops in final offensive COP FILMING BACKTRACK PARIS: French Prime Minister Jean Castex said the government would review a controversial draft law that would place restrictions on citizens filming the police and publishing the images. In the wake of a new scandal over police brutality, Mr Castex announced an independent commission with responsibility for proposing a new wording for Article 24. Article 24 would criminalise the publication of images of on-duty police officers, a moved designed to protect them from terrorist attacks. Mobile phone footage of police brutality has played a key role in recent scandals in France. On Friday (AEDT), video images of three police officers beating a black music producer inside his studio in Paris caused an outcry. EMPHATIC ELECTION WIN OUAGADOUGOU: Burkina Faso President Roch Marc Christian Kabore secured a landslide victory after a campaign dominated by his record on fighting a jihadist offensive. Mr Kabore gained a large outright majority in the first round of Sundays presidential election, obviating the need for a run-off ballot. Mr Kabore offered an olive branch to the opposition, which has criticised the election as flawed. I will deploy all my efforts so that through continuous consultation, through dialogue we can work together for peace and development, he said. Mr Kabore, 63, has been under for what some critics say has been a lacklustre response to a five-year-old jihadist insurgency. JAIL FOR BLOODY COUP ANKARA: A Turkish court has jailed more than 300 former pilots and other suspects for life in a mass trial stemming from a bloody 2016 coup attempt against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Fethullah Gulen, a USbased Muslim preacher who was once an Erdogan ally, is accused of ordering the failed putsch. A total of 251 people died and more than 2000 were injured in the chaotic attempt, which was swiftly followed by a fierce government crackdown. Turkeys largest courtroom was packed with security as the presiding judge issued multiple life sentences to 27 disgruntled air force pilots who bombed the capital Ankara, and to civilians who orchestrated the coup attempt.
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