Уряд пропонує цьогоріч святкувати День незалежності 4 дні

Кабінет міністрів України рекомендував роботодавцям перенести робочий день з п’ятниці, 25 серпня, на суботу, 19 серпня, таким чином влаштувавши безперервне святкування Дня незалежності упродовж чотирьох днів – з 24 до 27 серпня.

Як йдеться у відповідному розпорядженні уряду, таке рішення для керівників підприємств та організацій пропонується «з метою створення сприятливих умов для святкування Дня незалежності України, а також забезпечення раціонального використання робочого часу».

Рекомендація однак не поширюється на органи Пенсійного фонду, «Укрпошти», Держказначейства та банківських установ.

24 серпня – державне свято. Цьогоріч Україна відзначатиме 26-ту річницю Незалежності.

Уряд пропонує цього року святкувати День Незалежності 4 дні

Кабінет міністрів України рекомендував роботодавцям перенести робочий день з п’ятниці, 25 серпня, на суботу, 19 серпня, таким чином влаштувавши безперервне святкування Дня Незалежності упродовж чотирьох днів – з 24 до 27 серпня.

Як ідеться у відповідному розпорядженні уряду, таке рішення для керівників підприємств та організацій пропонується «з метою створення сприятливих умов для святкування Дня Незалежності України, а також забезпечення раціонального використання робочого часу».

Рекомендація, однак, не поширюється на органи Пенсійного фонду, «Укрпошти», Держказначейства та банківських установ.

24 серпня – державне свято. Цього року Україна відзначатиме 26-ту річницю Незалежності.

Is Washington Sending Signal of Renewed Commitment to Balkans?

As Vice President Mike Pence prepares to visit Montenegro and hold talks with Western Balkan leaders this week, a senior State Department official says U.S. engagement in the region remains strong. This is being welcomed by those countries’ leaders amid concerns that deep cuts in the proposed budget for the State Department could diminish Washington’s role in these fragile democracies exposed to Russian interference. VOA’s Keida Kostreci reports.

Jeanne Moreau Dies at 89

Husky-voiced, French actress Jeanne Moreau has died. She was 89.

The French president’s office announced her death Monday in a statement.

American director Orson Welles once described Moreau as “the best actress in the world.”

Moreau is perhaps best known, in her long, prolific career, for her role in Francois Truffaut’s 1962 film “Jules and Jim.”

Her international career found her acting in films with a host of directors, including Welles, Michelangelo Antonioni, Tony Richardson and Luis Bunel.

She turned down the role of Mrs. Robinson in Mike Nichols “The Graduate.”

She received a number of awards for her work, including a best actress prize at Cannes, a BAFTA, and a honorary Oscar.

French President Macron said Moreau “embodied cinema” and was a free spirit who “always rebelled against the established order.” He praised her range that extended beyond her early roles as a femme fatale.

Moreau, who worked into her 80s, was found dead at her home in Paris Monday morning, the French news agency, AFP, reported.

У ДСНС попередили про пожежну небезпеку на півдні й сході України

У Державній службі з надзвичайних ситуацій попередили про пожежну небезпеку, яка зберігається у південних та східних областях України.

«31 липня у Запорізькій, Одеській, Херсонській, Миколаївській, Харківській, Донецькій, Луганській, Дніпропетровській, Кіровоградській, Полтавській областях надзвичайна (5 класу) пожежна небезпека», – йдеться в повідомленні.

Рятувальники звернулися до громадян з проханням дотримуватися правил пожежної безпеки під час перебування в лісах, парках, на відкритих територіях тощо.

За даними Укргідрометцентру, сьогодні в Україні переважно без опадів, денна температура повітря 25-30 градусів тепла, у західних областях – 31-33.


У ДСНС попередили про пожежну небезпеку на півдні і сході України

У Державній службі з надзвичайних ситуацій попередили про пожежну небезпеку, яка зберігається у південних та східних областях України.

«31 липня у Запорізькій, Одеській, Херсонській, Миколаївській, Харківській, Донецькій, Луганській, Дніпропетровській, Кіровоградській, Полтавській областях надзвичайна (5 класу) пожежна небезпека», – йдеться у повідомленні.

Рятувальники звернулися до громадян з проханням дотримуватися правил пожежної безпеки під час перебування у лісах, парках, на відкритих територіях тощо.

За даними Укргідрометцентру, сьогодні в Україні переважно без опадів, денна температура повітря 25-30 градусів тепла, у західних областях – 31-33.


Thousands Rally in Istanbul Against Israel’s Al-Aqsa Mosque Measures

Thousands of people rallied in Turkey’s largest city on Sunday against security measures Israel has imposed at the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, shortly after Israel removed other measures that led to two weeks of violent Palestinian protests.

The rally in Istanbul, called “The Big Jerusalem Meeting” and organized by Turkey’s Saadet Party, drew some five thousand people to the Yenikapi parade ground on the southern edge of Istanbul.

Protesters were brought in by buses and ferries from across the city, waved Turkish and Palestinian flags, and held up posters in front of a giant stage where the chairman of the Saadet party and representatives from NGOs addressed the crowd.

“The Al-Aqsa mosque is our honor,” read a poster.

“You should know that not only Gaza, but Tel Aviv also has their eyes on this parade ground. Netanyahu does as well, and he is scared”, said Saadet Party Chairman Temel Karamollaoglu, referring to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

Turkey has opposed the security measures installed at the entry points of the mosque compound, with President Tayyip Erdogan warning Israel that it would suffer most from the dispute.

Erdogan accused Israel of inflicting damage on Jerusalem’s “Islamic character”, in comments that Israel’s foreign ministry called “absurd”.

The dispute over security at the mosque compound – where Israel installed metal detectors at entry points after two police guards were shot dead this month – has touched off the bloodiest clashes between Israelis and Palestinians in years.

On Friday however, the main prayer session at the Al-Aqsa mosque ended relatively calmly after Israel removed the tougher security measures, though it barred entrance to men under age 50.

Israel captured East Jerusalem, including the Old City and the holy compound, in the 1967 Middle East war. It annexed the area in a move that has never been recognized internationally.

Al-Aqsa mosque, Islam’s third holiest shrine, sits in the heart of the Old City. It is also the holiest place in Judaism – the venue of two ancient temples, the last destroyed by the Romans. Jews pray under heavy security at the Western Wall at the foot of the elevated plaza.

Egypt Officials Say Resort Knife Attacker Tasked by IS

Security officials said on Sunday that the Egyptian man who stabbed to death three tourists and wounded three others earlier this month in the Red Sea resort of Hurghada was tasked by the Islamic State group to carry out an attack against foreigners.

The officials said that investigations revealed 29-year old Abdel-Rahman Shaaban had communicated with two IS leaders on social media after they recruited him online.

One of them gave Shaaban daily lessons for a month after which he got in touch with the other, who asked him carry out an attack against tourists in either the resort city of Sharm al-Sheikh or Hurghada, to prove his allegiance to the group, the officials said, speaking on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to brief the media.

Shaaban rode a bus from the Nile Delta province of Kafr el-Sheikh to Hurghada on July 14 and headed to a beach hotel where he killed two German women and wounded two Armenians, a Ukrainian and a Czech woman, using a knife that he bought earlier from a store, the officials added. Shaaban was arrested shortly after he was chased by hotel workers and security guards who handed him over to the police.

The Czech woman, who was hospitalized with back and leg injuries after the attack, died last week.

Shaaban is a resident of Kafr el-Sheikh where he attended the business school of the local branch of Al-Azhar University – the world’s foremost seat of learning of Sunni Islam and the target of mounting criticism in recent months over its alleged radical teachings and doctrinal rigidity.

The resort attack took place just hours after five policemen were killed in a shooting near some of Egypt’s most famous pyramids in the greater Cairo area. The Interior Ministry said last week that its forces killed four suspects and arrested two others who were behind the killing of the policemen.

Egypt’s government has been struggling to contain an insurgency by Islamic militants led by an Islamic State affiliate that is centered in the northern region of the Sinai peninsula, though attacks on the mainland have recently increased.

The extremist group has been mainly targeting security personnel and Egypt’s Coptic Christian minority.

Trump Expected to Sign New Russia Sanctions

U.S. President Donald Trump is expected to sign into law new sanctions against Russia, Iran, and North Korea. While Washington awaits the president’s signature, Russia is promising retaliation if punitive measures are implemented. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington

Russian Official Threatens Retaliation Over US Sanctions

The Kremlin vowed Sunday to retaliate against the United States for approving new sanctions against Russia for its meddling in last year’s presidential election to help President Donald Trump win the White House.

Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov told ABC News’ “This Week” show, “I think this retaliation is long, long overdue.”

He said Moscow has “a very rich toolbox at our disposal. It would be ridiculous on my part to start speculating on what may or may not happen. But I can assure you that different options are on the table and consideration is being given to all sorts of things.”

The White House says that Trump will sign legislation overwhelmingly approved by Congress that imposes new sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea.

Trump aides had objected to the measure because of inclusion of a provision that gives Congress 30 days to review and block any Trump effort to ease sanctions against Russia, including those imposed by former President Barack Obama for Russia’s interference in the election. But the lopsided congressional approval of the sanctions left Trump with the prospect that if he vetoed the legislation, Congress would likely have overridden it.

Ryabkov said the U.S. Senate’s 98-2 vote for the sanctions was “the last drop” on what he described as “a completely weird and unacceptable piece of legislation.”

Obama closed two Russian compounds in the U.S. and expelled 35 diplomats in late December, less than a month before leaving office. But Moscow did not retaliate in kind until last week, when it shut two U.S. facilities in Russia and ordered 745 American diplomats out of the country by September 1.

Political analysts in the U.S. had thought that Trump, in an attempt to ease tensions with Russian President Vladimir Putin, might overturn the Obama sanctions when he assumed power, but he did not.

Since then, the early months of Trump’s presidency have been consumed by numerous investigations of Russian meddling in the election, including whether Trump aides colluded with Moscow to help him win and whether Trump obstructed justice by firing James Comey, the Federal Bureau of Investigation director leading the agency’s Russia investigation. Subsequently, another former FBI director, Robert Mueller, was named to take over the criminal investigation.

Moscow has rejected the conclusion of the U.S. intelligence community that Putin personally directed Moscow’s interference in the election, while Trump has been dismissive of the investigations, describing them as a “witch hunt” and an excuse by Democrats to explain his upset win over the Democratic candidate, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

Ryabkov told ABC, “If the U.S. side decides to move further towards further deterioration, we will answer, we will respond in kind. We will mirror this. We will retaliate. But my whole point is don’t do this, it is to the detriment of the interests of the U.S.”

The Russian diplomat said, “I believe there are several areas where the U.S. and Russia can and should work together cooperatively. Nonproliferation of weapons of mass destruction, countering terrorism, illicit immigration, trafficking in people, climate change, you name it.

“We are ready, we are stretching our hand forward, we are hopeful that someone on the other side, President Trump included, but also others may see here a chance for a somewhat different way,” he added.

Українці не постраждали через стрілянину у Бодрумі – МЗС

Українців немає серед постраждалих під час стрілянини у турецькому Бодрумі, повідомляють у Департаменті консульської служби МЗС України.

«Консул повідомляє, що українців немає серед постраждалих під час стрілянини у Бодрумі», – мовиться у повідомленні.

У ніч 30 липня у готелі неподалік Бодрума сталася перестрілка, у результаті якої загинув хлопець, ще троє людей були поранені.

Україна здобула ще три «золота» і «срібло» на Всесвітніх іграх

Таким чином, на цьогорічних Всесвітніх іграх Україна має 10 золотих, 7 срібних і 8 бронзових медалей і обійняла п’яте місце в неофіційному командному заліку

Celebrated Photo Editor John Morris Dies at 100 in Paris

John Morris, a celebrated American photo editor who brought some of the most iconic photographs of World War II and the Vietnam War to the world’s attention, has died at 100.

His longtime friend, Robert Pledge, president and editorial director of the Contact Press Images photo agency, told The Associated Press that Morris died Friday at a hospital in Paris, the city where he had been living for decades.

Among his proudest achievements, Morris edited the historic pictures of the D-Day invasion in Normandy taken by famed war photographer Robert Capa in 1944 for Life magazine. In addition, as picture editor for The New York Times, he helped grant front-page display to two of the most striking pictures of Vietnam War by Associated Press photographers Nick Ut Cong Huynh and Eddie Adams.

During a career spanning more than half a century, Morris played a crucial role in helping to craft a noble role for photojournalism. He also worked for The Washington Post, National Geographic and the renowned Magnum photo agency.

His job as a photo editor included sending photographers to war zones or other reporting sites, advising them on the angles of their photographs, choosing the best shots in the stream of images transmitted and staging the selected images for the news outlets.

Describing himself as a Quaker and a pacifist, Morris was also known for his political commitment, backing the Democratic Party and being an early support for Barack Obama. Even at his advanced age, Morris had closely followed the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign and had been “appalled” by the election of Donald Trump, his friend Pledge said.

Morris felt his fierce anti-war convictions did not contradict his work with photographers covering war zones.

“He believed that photography could change things,” Pledge said in a phone interview from his New York office. “Morris was convinced that images of horrors, devastations, damage to minds and bodies could prompt a movement of hostility to war in the public and eventually help make the world wiser.”

Born in New Jersey in 1916 and raised in Chicago, John Godfrey Morris described himself as a journalist. His first major assignment in 1943, as picture editor for Life magazine in London, made him responsible for getting to the world the 11 famous, grainy black-and-white photos of the Allied invasion taken by Capa on Omaha Beach, June 6, 1944.

In a 2014 interview with The Associated Press for D-Day’s 70th anniversary, Morris recalled that Capa sent four rolls of negatives via couriers to his editors in London. But, because of an alleged mistake by a young dark-room assistant, three of the rolls were ruined.

“The first three, there was nothing just pea soup, but on the fourth there were eleven frames, which had discernible images, so I ordered prints of all of those,” he recounted.

For years, Morris blamed himself.

“I used to go around with a sad face saying I am the guy who lost Capa’s D-Day coverage. Now I say I am the one who saved it! It was, needless to say, an awkward moment,” he told the AP.

Years later during the Vietnam War, as a photo editor for The New York Times, Morris insisted that difficult pictures be published because they showed the horrors of the war.

On at least two memorable occasions, he got disturbing pictures published on the front page of the renowned paper.

The first one, by AP photographer Eddie Adams, showed a Saigon police chief executing a Vietcong prisoner at point-blank range in 1968 during the opening stages of the Tet Offensive. The second one, by AP photographer Nick Ut Cong Huynh, depicted a naked 9-year-old girl and other children fleeing a napalm bombing in 1972. Both photographs won Pulitzer Prizes.

Morris, who was married three times, is survived by his partner, Patricia Trocme, four children and four grandchildren, Pledge said. He was awarded the Legion of Honor, France’s highest award, in 2009.

Pope’s Choir Tours US as It Recaptures Its Glory

The Vatican’s Sistine Chapel Choir is embarking on its first U.S. tour in 30 years, hoping to show audiences in New York, Washington and Detroit that it has abandoned the habits that earned it a reputation as the “Sistine Screamers.” 


The group of 20 adults and 30 boys, colloquially known as the “Pope’s Choir,” is the world’s oldest choir. It started singing for pontiffs about 500 years ago. Today, the choir performs regularly in the Sistine Chapel below Michelangelo’s masterpieces, at Masses the pope celebrates in St. Peter’s Basilica and for international concert appearances.

Return to early glory


Hearing the singers’ dulcet tones today, it’s hard to imagine they earned the nickname the “Sistine Screamers” a few years ago for their habit of belting out their numbers operatically, relying on volume instead of technique.

“Truly, they were singing in a manner that had no relation to the old music,” choir master Monsignor Massimo Palombella said.


To return the choir to its early glory in the 16th century, when the group attracted the best singers in Europe, Palombella did extensive research. He sifted through the Vatican archives, studying music manuscripts and analyzing the handwriting of Renaissance composers. 

Members from many countries


These days, the choir once again is drawing talent. Its current members include singers from Poland, Britain, Brazil and Argentina. Diegogaston Zamediom says being the first Argentine singer in the choir of the first Argentine pope is the “maximum of the maximum.”


Palombella, who was named choir master in 2010 and was recently reconfirmed, hopes the concerts in the U.S. will effectively “communicate the image of God and spirituality that this music brings with it.”


Enrico Torre, a 27-year-old alto, said he is looking forward to visiting New York so he can catch a Broadway musical.

Seven Turkish Journalists Released From Prison

Seven Turkish journalists were freed Saturday after spending nine months in prison, but they expressed sorrow that four of their colleagues were still being detained on charges of having aided terror groups.

The staff members from Cumhuriyet, a Turkish opposition newspaper, were released from Silivri jail on the outskirts of Istanbul. They must still stand trial, with the next hearing scheduled for September 11. If convicted, they face terms of up to 43 years in prison.

The journalists are charged with using their news coverage to support three groups Turkey considers terrorist organizations: the Kurkistan Workers’ Party, or PKK; the leftist Revolutionary People’s Liberation Party; and the followers of a U.S.-based spiritual leader, Fethullah Gulen, who is accused of backing last year’s coup attempt.

“To be honest, I thought I would be very happy the moment I was released,” said cartoonist Musa Kart in a statement. “But I cannot say that I am very happy today. Unfortunately, four of our friends are still incarcerated in Silivri Prison. I do not think that the image of journalists in prison is one that becomes this country.”

An Istanbul court ruled Friday that the seven journalists should be freed, but it kept the most prominent of the Cumhuriyet journalists behind bars: commentator Kadri Gursel, investigative journalist Ahmet Sik, editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu and chief executive Akin Atalay.

Sik, who was jailed in 2011-12 over a book he’d authored, was jailed again in December over the content of his Twitter feed. Prosecutors said they planned to charge him additionally for a statement in court Wednesday that was fiercely critical of Turkey’s ruling party.

Indictment called ‘trash’

In what was expected to be a defense statement, Sik lashed out with a tirade about press freedom. He called the indictment against him and his colleagues “trash” and referred to the judiciary as a “lynch mob.” He said the purpose of the charges against him and his colleagues was to scare and silence people who would speak out against the government.

Following last year’s coup attempt, Turkey instituted a crackdown on journalists that resulted in the closure of more than 100 media outlets.

The independent watchdog Committee to Protect Journalists, which tracks press freedom issues, says Turkey jails more journalists than any other country, due to broadly worded laws on supporting terrorism and “insulting Turkishness.” As of December 2016, at least 81 journalists were being held in Turkish jails, all of them facing charges that they were working against the state, CPJ said.

Putin Pardons 2 Women Given Prison Terms for Text Messages

Russian President Vladimir Putin on Saturday pardoned two women who were sentenced to prison terms for sending text messages to Georgian acquaintances about the movement of Russian military equipment on the eve of a war in 2008.

Two orders published by the Kremlin said Annik Kesyan and Marina Dzhandzhgava would not have to complete the rest of their sentences. It cited humanitarian principles for the decision.

Kesyan and Dzhandzhgava were found guilty of treason for sending text messages about the movement of Russian military hardware near the border with Georgia’s breakaway region of Abkhazia not long before a war broke out in 2008.

Kesyan was sentenced to eight years in prison, while Dzhandzhgava was given a prison term of 12 years, according to Team 29, an association of lawyers based in St. Petersburg.

Putin in March pardoned a third woman, Oksana Sevastidi, who was also convicted of treason for sending a text message to a Georgian acquaintance about a train carrying Russian military equipment.

Rights groups had criticized the sentences given to the women.

Team 29 said in an article on its website that in April 2008 Kesyan had sent a text message to a friend saying “Yes, they are moving”, in response to a question about whether Russian tanks were moving in Sochi.

Dzhandzhgava was accused of treason for sending a text message to a Georgian acquaintance about the movement of a train carrying Russian troops, Team 29 said.

EU Launches Legal Action Over Poland’s Court Reforms

The European Union has launched an infringement procedure against Poland over reforms the country made to its judiciary, which the EU fears will affect the impartiality of Poland’s courts.

EU commissioners decided to start the legal action Wednesday, prior to the publication of the new Polish law, with the main concern that the justice minister now can extend the mandates of judges, and dismiss and appoint court presidents.

“The new rules allow the minister of justice to exert influence on individual ordinary judges through, in particular, the vague criteria for the prolongation of their mandates thereby undermining the principle of irremovability of judges,” the European Commission said in a statement on Saturday.

Also of concern to commissioners is that female judges are required to retire five years earlier than their male counterparts.

Poland’s ruling Law and Justice Party wants to push forward with the court reforms because it says the courts are too slow and bogged down with communist-era thinking.

According to the EU statement, the Polish ruling party has a month to respond to the notice, which informed the country it is infringing on EU laws.

The Polish government has called the court reforms an internal matter. Poland’s deputy foreign minister for European affairs, Konrad Szymanski, told the PAP news agency that the EU decision was “unfounded,” and he said the new law met legal requirements.

Jessica Williams Says It’s a Great Time to Be Actor of Color

Jessica Williams says it’s a great time to be an actress of color, and applauds Netflix for leading the way in promoting diversity.


Williams, who cut her teeth as a correspondent on “The Daily Show,” takes on her first starring role in the streaming network’s original film, “The Incredible Jessica James.”


The actress feels Netflix helped shape stories about people of color, citing original programming like “Master of None” and “Orange is the New Black” that are able to “showcase people of color in an amazing way.”


While inclusion continues to improve, especially on Netflix, Williams says the struggle for racial equality is far from over.


“I think it’s a difficult time in some ways to be a person of color, and I think the same for actors of color, but I also think it’s a great a time. Because I think now … there’s so much more room, I think, for us to be seen, and there’s room for us to create our own stories,” Williams said.


Williams feels great pride that she’s part of movement toward greater diversity on screen, calling it something that makes her heart warm and sing. She said she remains mindful of the actresses who paved the way.


“It’s like so many black actresses that came before me and my generation. They came before and they did not necessarily have this opportunity that I feel like I have now, and so I’m really grateful for that, and I really do think it’s a really great time to be an actress that is black, in a way,” she said.


But that doesn’t make shifting gears from a comedy news show to a feature film an easy choice. Williams certainly felt some trepidation with the move.


“I was really nervous because this movie does have comedy in it. It also has a lot of heart, and some sweet moments. So I was worried whether I would be able to portray that or not. But I had a lot of fun doing it, and I found out that I could,” she said.


Written and directed by Jim Strouse – who previously directed Williams in his 2015 film, “People Places Things” – the story was written with Williams in mind. Her desire was to correctly depict the “life of a modern, young black woman,” and took it a step further by also taking on the role as an executive producer.


“Just in case I had things to say creatively,” Williams said.


Strouse called Williams a comedy ninja and the right actress to portray the ever-changing nature of romantic relationships.


“I remember when a relationship goes astray or whatever, you break up, you don’t talk and in like maybe months down the road you have coffee,” he said. “Now it’s like, you ghost and maybe a couple months down the road you start liking each other’s photos again. It’s a weird time.”


He called the dynamic interesting, then with a knowing smile said, “I don’t know if it’s healthy.”


As for her previous gig, Williams has the distinction of being the youngest correspondent hired for “The Daily Show.” Now she’s hoping to join the list of the show’s alumni who have moved on to bigger and better things.


“To be mentioned among people like Samantha Bee or Hassan Minaj and Steve Carrell and Steve Colbert is insane,” she said. “It’s, it’s very surreal and I think – I packed up everything to move and be on the ‘Daily Show’ and I was nervous because I was 22. I was, umm, I had a lot of big shoes to fill working with Jon Stewart. I felt like in the beginning I had a lot to prove, and it’s really an honor to be among those people.”