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The Maastricht Diplomat

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Catch Me If You Can

China is experiencing panic across the nation, as the spread of the coronavirus becomes increasingly prevalent. So far, 41 people have died from the virus with more than 1000 people affected. This has led to China being in lockdown across 13 cities with more than 35 million people being affected by these emergency provisions. This coming at a time of one China’s most important holidays, Chinese New Year. The virus has been reported in various nations such as US, Singapore, South Korea, Japan, Thailand and Vietnam. It has even started to spread to Europe with two cases reported in France. Despite this, the WHO has not called it a public health emergency just yet. Instead, calling for a global response and urging concern. It is important to note that it is rare for the WHO to issue warnings of a viral pandemic. What exactly is the virus? It is a virus very common in animals and, so far, it is unknown whether it transfers from one person to another. This has led to uncertainty from officials about how easy it is to catch the virus. Symptoms start from a cold, flu or general respiratory discomfort. This can, in serious cases, develop to pneumonia or kidney failure. Officials around the world are taking provisions but it still clear how bad the situation is, particularly with China’s failure to publish all those affected in the 2002-2003 SARS incident, which led to over 800 people dying.

On another note, President Trump’s impeachment trial is fully underway from the beginning of next week. So far it has been a debate between in the Senate between the majority-holding Republican’s and the Democrats. Mitch McConnell called for a rather tight two-day limit for opening arguments and delayed Democrats call for introduction into new witnesses. However, Democrats rebuffed this, as they claimed that the “founding fathers were looking at us” saying that the impeachment trial was “a remedy as powerful as the evil it was meant to combat”. Therefore, they needed more time to establish the rule for the trial. McConnell eventually settled on three days. However, the Republicans were not convinced by the Democrat’s wishes for the addition of new witnesses to the trial and gave the opposition 24 hours to lay out their case-arguments. President Trump’s lawyers claim that the Democrats are undoing the election this year and that the people should decide.

Finally, the King is back. Last Sunday, Conor McGregor returned to the Octagon to face Donald ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone, in one of the biggest fights of the year. McGregor’s long-awaited return came after around 15 months away from the sport. This is fairly rare for fighters in the UFC. However, when you are the ‘Notorious’ and the largest active entertainer in combat sports at the moment, you can afford to take some time off. Many questions surrounded McGregor after his sound defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov in 2018, with many people said he had lost the drive. However, McGregor returned to the octagon and beat Cerrone in just forty seconds, with lethal shoulder strikes breaking ‘Cowboy’s’ nose almost instantly and a sublime head kick. The performance was one of dominance and has led to McGregor’s name being thrown in the hat for the big fights in the UFC, where arguably it should be. He found his drive and established himself as a great athlete once more. The throne awaits Conor…


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