Mariya Gabriel pictured at an informal meeting of competitiveness and telecommunications ministers during the Estonian EU presidency last year.
Photo: Aron Urb/EU2017EE Estonian Presidency
EU blockchain partnership to create opportunities, fatal shooting in Bonnevoie, Russia responds to Trump tweets, and regulations on fried food. Delano’s breakfast briefing.
Lux among signatories of Blockchain partnership
22 European countries including Luxembourg on Wednesday signed a declaration on the establishment of a European Blockchain Partnership. The partnership will serve as a vehicle for members to “exchange experience and expertise in technical and regulatory fields” says a release from the European Commission. Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for the digital economy and society, said blockchain could “help create new business opportunities”. The announcement came after European Commission vice president, Andrus Ansip delivered a keynote speech to launch Digital Day in Brussels. He said that although the EU recognises AI and blockchain as the areas where Europe is best positioned to play a leading role, “it is no secret that we have to invest--both politically and financially. There is quite some ground to catch up.”
Driver shot dead by police not yet named
The driver of a car that allegedly tried to run over a police officer and was subsequently shot dead has not yet been named. The incident occurred in Bonnevoie at around 4 p.m. on Wednesday afternoon when a police patrol noticed the car was driving erratically. One of the officers stepped out of the patrol car to signal for the driver to stop, but when the vehicle appeared to accelerate towards the officer he drew his serve weapon and opened fire. One bullet is reported to have hit the driver, who died later in hospital.
Russia responds to Trump tweet
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov has said that Russia does “not participate in Twitter diplomacy” in response to a tweet by US president Donald Trump claiming that “nice and new and ‘smart!’” missiles were heading towards Syria. Peskov, quoted by Interfax, said that Russia supports serious dialogue. “We continue to believe that it is important not to take steps that could harm an already fragile situation.” The Guardian reports that Trump later appeared to soften his tone, saying that there was “no reason” for the bad relationship with Russia. “Russia needs us to help with their economy, something that would be very easy to do, and we need all nations to work together. Stop the arms race?”
Fried food loses its crisp
EU legislation on Acrylamide, a carcinogen that occurs when foods with a high starch content, are fried or roasted at high temperatures, went into effect on Wednesday. According to Commissioner for health and food safety, Vytenis Andriukaitis, the new regulation will not only “help to reduce the presence of this carcinogenic substance but also will help raise awareness on how to avoid the exposure to it that oftentimes comes from home-cooking.” But the rules have not left everyone happy. One Greek commentator lamented that the new rules will mean the disappearance of many favourite foods, such as rusks to accompany a tomato-feta-salad. “Our French fries will be blonde and bland, our French toast pale.”