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Archaeological artifacts from the Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages have been exposed by a landslide near the Troyan Monastery meaning that Bulgaria’s third largest monastery might have been founded long before 1600, as presently thought.

Learn more HERE!

*Content provided by ArchaeologyinBulgaria.com.

The Council for Electronic Media will make monitoring and find out whether there is pluralism in BNT, bnr.bg reported.

The decision was taken at today's meeting. For this purpose, a review of the month-to-month discussions will take place to see if there is a balance in the guests' invitation and themes.

Yesterday, the hosts and producers of "The Day Starts With Culture" complained about the pressure from the program director Emil Koshlukov as to who they are inviting and what questions they ask. He explained that he had made them work more for higher ratings and met resistance.

CEM Chairman Vladimir Vladimir explained: Up to now, there has not been a complaint or a signal from the broadcasting team to the CEM.

The Director General of BNT Konstantin Kamenarov said it was a communication problem.

Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and Russian Ambassador Anatoly Makarov held a work meeting to discuss the development of bilateral relations. Energy and tourism have been identified as areas of mutual interest, the government's press center reported.

The Russian diplomat congratulated the Prime Minister for the start of the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union and the strong defense of his priorities before the European Parliament. He expressed hope that Bulgaria will work to improve the dialogue between member states and Russia.

At least 19 athletes will be included in the Bulgarian delegation at the XXIII Winter Olympics in PyongChang '18 (9-25 February). The composition was endorsed by the General Assembly of the Bulgarian Olympic Committee, and it could additionally include athletes who eventually manage to meet the norm by the end of the month.

Teodora Pencheva, who expects a confirmation of a winning quota in alpine snowboarding disciplines, will almost certainly enter the group. Surely the number of Bulgarian athletes in PyongChang will be bigger than the Sochi '14 games when our country was represented by 18 athletes.

Athletes in the present composition are divided into 6 types of Alpine skiing, cross-country skiing, ski jumping, snowboarding, biathlon and sleighs. The most experienced in the team of Bulgaria are the snowboarder Alexandra Zhekova and the skier Maria Kirkova, who will participate in fourth Olympics.

The leader of the Bulgarian delegation will be BOC president Stefka Kostadinova, and Olympic attache will be the only Olympic champion of Bulgaria in winter games and the president of the Biathlon Federation - the gold medalist from Nagano 98 Ekaterina Dafovska.


Albert Popov, Maria Kirkova (ski alpine disciplines); Veselin Tsinzov, Yordan Chuchiganov, Antonia Grigorova (cross-country skiing); Vladimir Zografski (ski jump); Alexandra Zhekova, Radoslav Yankov (snowboarding); Pavel Angelov (sleds); Krasimir Anev, Vladimir Iliev, Anton Sinapov, Dimitar Gerdjikov, Mihail Klecherov, Emilia Yordanova, Desislava Stoyanova, Stefani Popova, Daniela Kadeva and Milena Todorova (biathlon).

Hundreds of cars have been blocked on Monday night on Tuesday in the Yamate Tokyo Tunnel due to heavy snowfall. Some passengers were forced to walk to get to the escape stairs and get out, news agencies reported. The 18-kilometer-long tunnel underground in downtown Tokyo is considered the longest in Japan. On Monday night, due to the snow, the traffic on many stretches of the city's highways was stopped. As CNH TV reported on one of the Yamate Tunnel exits because of the snow cars they could not climb the steepest canvas. Within a few hours there was a traffic jam, about ten kilometers long. The city offices cleaned the roads, but the cars in the tunnel stayed for about ten hours. After some time some passengers decided to drop the cars and walk to the escape stairs to get out. The movement was resumed at 6am local time.

Over the past twenty-four hours in Tokyo there has been over 20 centimeters of snow, the temperatures are low and the roads are slippery. In the Japanese capital, is often snowing, but it rarely stays for long, according to Reuters.

The snow has stopped and the city services continue to clear the streets, while local residents, shop owners and restaurants are cleaning up the sidewalks. However, the movement is still difficult, some trains are delayed. Thousands were forced to spend the night at Narita Airport, because the snow had closed the slopes and canceled about 150 flights. After midnight the airport gradually resumed work. About 70 people have been injured in Tokyo because of the snow, mostly from falling. About 740 crashes have been reported.

A Japanese soldier died on Tuesday and others were wounded after a volcano erupted causing an avalanche near a ski station northwest of Tokyo, the France press reported. A serviceman of Japanese defense forces was killed by an avalanche while practicing, a spokesman for the Defense Ministry told AFP. Five other soldiers were injured.

A little earlier, a rescue officer said a 49-year-old man died without adding details. According to rescuers, after the eruption of the Kusatsu-Shiring volcano, another 10 people were injured in the center of the main Japanese island of Honshu, five of them had severe injuries. Among them are four were wounded from the scattered glass in a lift booth struck by volcanic stone. The lift has stopped due to a power outage, and according to local authorities, there are 78 people were stuck, and TVNH reported that 8 of them received help.

Vermont became the ninth US state to legalize the use of marijuana for entertainment, Reuters reported.

State Governor Republican Phil Scott signed the law passed this month by the US parliament. From July 1, he allowed people over 21 to own up to one ounce (28.3 g) of the drug and grow up to six plants. The marketing of marijuana is not legalized. The neighboring state of Massachusetts, nearby Maine and six other states have legalized marijuana use.

Fountains of lava, similar to fireworks, are thrown up to a height of 700 meters over Mayon, the most active volcano in the Philippines.

More than 40,000 people have already evacuated after the mountain began to shed ash and smoke, and scientists warned of the danger of a possible powerful eruption, which is why the authorities urged the population to evacuate.

Meanwhile, it threw a pile of ash at a height of 5 km, while clouds of fine particles brought darkness in the day in some areas, volcanologists and local authorities said.

"Children did not understand what was going on, and then it suddenly became dark and no one could see anything," Dani Garcia, a spokesman for the province of Albei, told AFP reporter.

The top of the mountain is surrounded by a thick column of steam and hot rocks creating a fantastic scenery.

"The explosion is like cauliflower or octopus," says Ed Laguert, living near Mayon, a volcanologist at the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology.

Mayon, an almost ideal cone, is located about 330 kilometers southeast of Manila, and is considered to be the most dangerous of the 22 active volcanoes of the Philippines.

A Mountain Rescue Service team helped a man lost in Vitosha. This was announced by the BRC office.

The Mountain Service of Sofia has made a rescue opertation on Monday night. Going down from Cherni Vrah, the man lost himself because of the bad weather and fog. At 18.30, he managed to alert the rescuers.

At 21.00 h. The man is found in the Boyanska river region in good physical and mental state.

Four people died in a collision of a light aircraft and a helicopter near the German town of Phillipsburg.

The helicopter is probably from the rescue service, DPA reported.

Police in Cherven Bryag have solved a brutal murder in a matter of hours on Monday. A 52-year-old man was stabbed to his feet and died of blood loss at a local pharmacy. The 31-year-old attacker is arrested.

At 8:20 am yesterday, 112 received a signal that a man with a stab wound was looking for help at a pharmacy in Cherven Bryag. The policemen who answered the signal found the man's lifeless body in the pharmacy lobby. An ambulance arrived, and the medics reported the death of the 52-year-old man. He was found to have died from blood loss because he was pierced in the thigh and the artery was affected.

Police officers have begun an investigation by making surveys and questioning witnesses. This made it clear that the man was injured on a street in the small town minutes before the emergency telephone alert was issued.

Continuing the investigation, the police arrived at the perpetrator. He is detained on a bus on his way to the capital. The 31-year-old man from Cherven Bryag is arrested for 72 hours and the investigation continues.

An 8.2-magnitude earthquake hit 256 km southeast of Chiniak in Alaska, at a depth of 10 km, at 9 am and 31 min Greenwich time, said the Geophysical Institute of the United States, quoted by Reuters.

A tsunami warning of parts of Alaska and Canada has been issued after the quake, as well as a tidal wave across the western coast of the United States, the US Tsunami Observatory reports.

Turks and Kurds took part in a mass fight at a German airport, Nova TV reported. The cause of the riots was Ankara's offensive against the Kurdish detachments in Syria.

Kurds made a demonstration against Turkey's military campaign that began last week. At Hanover airport they carried banners of Kurdistan and northern Syria.

They chanted that Recep Erdogan was a fascist and wanted to stop the fighting. A group of dozens of Turks attacked them. The police intervened quickly, but two people were already injured. Several are arrested.

The authorities in Hanover reacted quickly. They used a tear spray to break the fight.

Following the launch of the "Olive Branch" operation against the Kurdish fighters in northern Syria and after entering the weekend of the Aphrodite, the Turkish armed forces expanded their campaign to the city of Azaz, east of Afrin.

Prime Minister Boyko Borissov met with Turkish Ambassador Hassan Ulusoy, reports MS. During the talk, Ulusoy congratulated the Bulgarian Prime Minister on assuming the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU and expressed his expectation that this would be a successful period not only for our country but also for the whole of Europe.

The two were unanimous that dialogue between EU Member States and Turkey should be normalized in a context of understanding and rational solutions. Prime Minister Borissov and Ambassador Ulusoy discussed the preparation and organization of the forthcoming meeting between the leaders of the leading European institutions and Turkey.

The meeting also discussed the ongoing cooperation and partnership between Bulgaria and Turkey in the field of culture. The rebuilding of spiritual buildings on the territory of the two countries was also declared at Prime Minister Borisov's meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on January 7 in Istanbul when they opened the restored Bulgarian church "St. Stephen".

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borissov and Turkey's Ambassador summarized at their meeting that Bulgaria and Turkey will continue to actively cooperate bilaterally because, apart from our immediate neighbor, the Turkish state is also an important partner in the field of migration, the fight against terrorism, agriculture and energy, the government's press office added.

Katerina Manou, Regional General Manager at Regus for Greece, Bulgaria and Cyprus is answering to a few questions for Novinite.com


1. Globally, the Flexible Office Space model is becoming more and more popular. Tell us more about it and about Regus, which is the world leader in this sector?

Regus is the world’s largest provider of flexible workspace solutions, with a network of 3,000 locations in over 1,000 towns and cities, across more than 100 countries, serving 2.3 million members.

We offer companies and individuals everything they need in the modern workplace. Our products and services include many different options so that every client can choose the perfect space for their bussiness. Our options include office spaces, virtual offices, meeting rooms, co-working spaces, business lounges, a space called “Businessworld”, which provides access to over 2000 business lounge locations around the world, as well as a space called “workplace recovery” which is dedicated fixed and virtual office space set up to customer’s exact needs, including telephone and IT connectivity. Every one of our clients can choose their membership based on how many days they need each month and what type of workspace they use most. 

2. What are the benefits of flexible office solutions? 

Flexible working demand is growing everywhere and network expansion is a key part of our strategy – the larger our network and the more innovative we are, the more attractive our customer proposition. Having a network in places where companies want to trade is important to us, as it is what our customers expect.

With the costs linked to workspace representing between 5 and 10% of a company's turnover, corporations of all sizes are increasingly looking at office space needs as a strategic component of their business plan. This is a major evolution in the way companies’ think, as confirmed by our recent survey stating that globally, 81% of companies intend to cut or freeze their property/premises costs this year. Outsourcing offices provide companies with greater financial flexibility. Regus enables its customers to acquire, grow or maintain workplace flexibility by helping them minimize their second largest cost of doing business - the expenses associated with leasing, equipping and staffing their office space.

At Regus we go beyond the logistics of just creating a working environment for our clients. We enable companies to rapidly seize new market opportunities, providing immediate and flexible office infrastructures already in place, which is particularly important for businesses setting up offices in emerging markets. Our aim is to build a community of interesting people who are doing exciting things and to take care of the talented and forward-thinking businesses of the world.


3. What are the plans of Regus worldwide and for Bulgaria?

We continue to see significant opportunities in the market for flexible working. Our expansion program is decidedly demand-driven. Network expansion is a key part of our strategy – the larger our network and the more innovative we are, the more attractive our customer proposition.

Our strategy is to continually expand our global network and diversify the type of location we offer, making it even more convenient for business people to work flexibly and productively, when and where it suits them.

Particularly, Bulgaria’s economy is growing rapidly and the business environment is changing to accommodate an increasing appetite for new ventures and expansion both internally and from external investors. Regus plays a key role in facilitating businesses growth by offering agility and flexibility in work space. Our third Regus office is one more proof that more and more companies need this kind of flexible places and we are happy to be able to answer our clients’ needs. Regus Sofia Airport has the advantages of all Regus centers around the world, including a very communicative location with easy access to Sofia center and the highway to Plovdiv and Varna.

Furthermore, we are proud to announce that in the next few months we will open our first Regus center in Plovdiv and we are extremely excited to announce the center is to be launched very soon, in early 2018.

4. How do you assess the investment environment in Bulgaria?

The investment environment in Bulgaria is quite promising. Furthermore, given the ongoing Presidency of the EU Council, Bulgaria is expected to attract lots of European visitors and entrepreneurs this year. That’s why we are really excited to expand our network in Bulgaria and especially to the bustling city of Sofia, where more and more businesses will be able to grasp the benefits and opportunities offered by flexible working. All sizes of business are clamoring for greater flexibility, agility and choice of location. We are delighted to bring to these businesses and workers in Sofia the opportunity to experience workplace flexibility and to work from where they want.





Netflix's market value has already passed the $ 100 billion mark since the leading streaming service added more new subscribers than expected. The last quarter of 2017 has brought the company two million new customers more than Wall Street's forecasts and revenues have tripled. As a result of this success, for the first time in its history Netflix costs more than 100 billion dollars.

Shares of the company jumped 9 percent among the announcement of financial results. At present, more than half of US households with broadband internet access are Netflix subscribers, and worldwide the company is present in 190 countries. From October to December 2017, 6.36 million new subscribers have joined it worldwide. This was the period when Netflix released another original content such as Stranger Things and The Crown, as well as Will Smith's Bright.

"Netflix pours more and more money into creating content, and it's becoming more direct to more subscribers," commented analyst Richard Greenfield of BTIG.

US high-tech VMware will rent more than 20,000 square meters in two of the buildings built in the Garitage Park complex. The announced rental area is the biggest office deal on the Bulgarian market.

Buildings will be put into use in mid-2019. VMware will provide more than 1,600 jobs, meeting rooms, leisure facilities, and employee entertainment.

"We aim to turn the office here into an even more attractive location for Bulgarian and foreign specialists to work and live in Sofia," said Diana Stefanova, Managing Director of VMware Development Centers for Bulgaria and EMEA.

Colliers International Bulgaria was the consultant for the deal.

Garitage Park is a residential and business complex located on 165,000 m2. The project will be realized in stages and fully finished will include:

• 95,000 m2 of offices
• 60,000 m2 of dwellings
• 90,000 m2 of parkland with lake, children's and sports grounds
• Primary school for 500 children
• 4 500 parking spaces
• Sports center with pool
• Supermarket, restaurants, cafes and more.

Garitage Park is the first multifunctional complex in Central and Eastern Europe to receive a BREEAM Community intermediate certificate for social, economic and environmental sustainability. The complex is located in an area with well-developed infrastructure and direct access from the Ring Road, which provides fast and convenient transportation to the center, airport and various parts of the capital.

Amazon has officially launched the world's first automated supermarket where neither cashiers nor sellers are available, the BBC said.

The store is located in Seattle. To enter it, you need a free Amazon mobile application that is recognized by a scanner at the entrance. The buyer enters the store, takes everything he wants, and leaves.

With scanners on shelves, the value of each purchase is automatically written to the user's account in the app.

If the buyer changes his mind about anything, it is enough just to put it back on its place.

The same technology is used in the supermarket as in non-motorized cars: computer vision, combination and data processing with various sensors and in-depth training.

An automated Amazon store was probed in December 2016 and could only be used by company employees. Then there were some problems in the system - for example blocking when shopping for more than 20 people, which forced the official opening to be postponed until the errors were cleared.

The World Economic Forum in the Swiss resort of Davos begins today, January 23rd and it will last until Friday.

In the last day  a statement by US President Donald Trump is also scheduled.

A large-scale protest was planned against his participation today, but the authorities banned any demonstrations due to a heavy snowfalls.

Long before his arrival, non-governmental organizations launched a campaign to cancel the invitation to him.

In addition to today's protest, nearly 5,000 policemen are ready for new anti-globalization and anti-environmental actions expected Friday.

The Internet giant "Amazon" has opened an ultramodern shop without staff. By using their smartphone, customers enter a minimarket in Seattle.

A system of thousands of cameras and sensors monitors everything taken from the shelves and charges the amount for the merchandise on an internet bill. If the customer reconsiders and returns the goods, the amount is deducted from the bill.

At the end of the shopping there are no crates or tails. Customers take what they need and just get out of the store.

"Amazon" believes that such a store will be more efficient than traditional and will attract customers for easier and quicker service. Not everyone is enthusiastic about the potential automation of the sector. Three and a half million cashiers are currently working in the United States. Such complete automation threatens their jobs, says Nova TV.

The ironic thing is that there is currently a line to shop at the grocery store whose entire premise is that you won’t have to wait in line.

Household electricity may rise between 15% and 30% in the summer. This was forecasted by employers' organizations.

According to them, if the price of electricity on the free market continues to rise, it will also affect household prices.

"We will discuss this on Thursday, then we will finally decide whether we will go to a protest, but I suppose we will make a positive decision because our members are calling for a protest'', said Bozhidar Danev, chairman of the Bulgarian Industrial Association.

However, it became clear that trade unions would not be included in the protest, as was the original information. 

Manchester United and Arsenal announced the deal with which Alexis Sanchez landed at Old Trafford, and Henrikh Mkhitaryan went in the opposite direction. This is an exchange without any extra payment from any side. The two clubs do not disclose how many years the contracts are and what wages the players will take.

This deal came after the Chilean refused to renew his contract with the Gunners which expired at the end of the season. For a long time, he thought he had a deal with Manchester City, but Jose Mourinho intervened, and according to the British media he had offered £ 35m for transfer right away. Later, however, conditions changed and eventually a simple exchange took place.

It is not possible to carry out a nuclear project, including the Belene NPP, without the participation of the state. This is the main conclusion of the Risk Analysis for Variants of the Belene NPP project, prepared by the Vienna International Center for Nuclear Competence on the recommendation of the Bulgarian Atomic Forum (BULATOM).

"A key recommendation to the Bulgarian government to seriously reconsider their" position of non-participation "regarding the future of the project" Belene ". Globally, there is no precedent in which nuclear projects are implemented without state involvement. Different shapes, elements and rates of participation are possible, including those ranging from direct sponsorship, loan guarantees, tax credits, long-term energy purchase agreements and price differences, "the analysis notes.

We recall that at least until now the state, in the face of energy minister Temenuzhka Petkova, maintains the thesis that a private investor should take the basic burden of the project and the state to be responsible only for the nuclear risk.

With regard to so-called political and social factors, the authors of the report say that their risk can be reduced "by public debate and hearing, receiving inter-party political support, highlighting the environmental benefits of nuclear power, or developing a waste management policy with the government."

The atmospheric pressure will continue to increase and will significantly exceed the average for January. Today it will be mostly sunny with temporarily increasing cloudiness.

There will be light to moderate northeastern wind. The maximum temperatures will range between zero and 5°C,  the National Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology (NIMH) told FOCUS News Agency.

174 people spent the night at the crisis centre for homeless people in the Zaharna Fabrika district in Sofia, head of the centre Pepi Dzhurenov told Focus Radio. 16 of them were examined by a doctor, some were referred to hospitals.

Dzhurenov assured that the crisis centre is prepared to provide shelter for anyone in need given the forecast for cold weather.

“The number of people seeking shelter at the centre is pretty constant, from 150 to 200 people depending on the temperatures outside. If the temperatures are low, of course, the number increases. The centre has 172 beds, but we have extra camp beds, no one has ever been turned down,” Dzhurenov said, adding that recently the number of homeless people in the capital has been increasing.

A U.S. delegation is having talks in Ankara on Jan. 23, after Turkey launched “Operation Olive Branch” into Syria’s Afrin province, Hurriyet reported.

The U.S. delegation, led by Deputy Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Jonathan Cohen and officials from the Department of Defense, are in Ankara for talks as part of a joint working group that meets periodically.

They are meeting in the Foreign Ministry with their Turkish partners headed by Ahmet Muhtar Gün, deputy secretary of the ministry.
The working group’s agenda includes a number of issues that have led to tension in bilateral relations in recent months including the visa crisis and ongoing investigations of U.S. consular staff.

In another meeting in the afternoon, U.S. Department of Defense officials, headed by Cohen, will discuss the “struggle against terrorism” at the General Staff, where the Turkish side will brief them about the ongoing “Operation Olive Branch.”

Ankara has reacted angrily to a recent announcement that the U.S.-led coalition forces will establish a local “border force” composed of Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) fighters and Arab forces in Syria along the border with Turkey and Iraq. In Ankara, the U.S. delegation is expected to make a detailed presentation on their military plans for Syria.

Eurozone finance ministers allocated € 6.7 billion to Greece, France's press quoted the BNR as saying. The deal was approved in response to the next reforms taken on creditors' recommendation.

One of them, the limitation of the right to strike, prompted a mass protest in Athens a week ago.

The amount approved today will be used to pay off part of the huge government debt and as a financial buffer to Greece. The country received three multi-billion-dollar bailouts over the last seven years. The government of Alexis Tsipras hopes to return to the free credit market in August, reminds the National Radio.

Prime Minister Boyko Borissov met with Turkish Ambassador Hasan Ulusoy, according to BGNES. 

During the talk, Hasan Ulusoy congratulated the Bulgarian Prime Minister on assuming the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU and expressed his expectation that this would be a successful period not only for our country but also for the whole of Europe.

The two are convinced that the dialogue between the EU Member States and Turkey must be normalized in the context of understanding and prudent decisions. Prime Minister Borissov and Ambassador Hasan Ulusoy  discussed the preparation and organization of the forthcoming meeting between the leaders of the leading European institutions and Turkey.

During the meeting they also discussed the ongoing cooperation and partnership between Bulgaria and Turkey in the field of culture.

The rebuilding of spiritual buildings on the territory of the two countries was also declared at Prime Minister Borisov's meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on January 7 in Istanbul when they opened the restored Bulgarian temple "St. Stephen".

Bulgarian Prime Minister Boyko Borisov and Turkey's Ambassador summarized during their meeting that Bulgaria and Turkey will continue to actively support bilateral cooperation because, apart from our immediate neighbor, the Turkish state is also an important partner in the field of migration, the fight against terrorism, agriculture and energy.

The film "Aga" by director Milko Lazarov was selected in the main program of the 68th edition of the "Berlinale" cinema festival.

Aga is co-produced with the Bulgarian National Television and is the first Bulgarian film in the main official program of the Berlin Film Festival since 29 years after the film Ivan and Alexandra directed by Ivan Nichev.

Aga will close the main contest of Berlinale. For the first time, a Bulgarian director's film covers a major program at a big festival. In Bulgaria in March, Aga will open the 22nd Sofia Film Fest.

The film tells a story about the clash of civilizations through the prism of love and human relationships. The two main characters are Eskimos and dream of reuniting their family.

"With this film I explore how the modern world threatens the fundamental human values. I admire people who live in conditions unbearable to modern man and manage to preserve their delicate relationships and to accept life humbly and compassionately, "director Milko Lazarov explains.

Producer of the film is Veselka Kiriakova, producer of "Alienation" and co-producer of "Glory". Cameraman is Kaloyan Bozhilov, also known from "Alienation".

Aga was co-produced with France and Germany and filmed in the Republic of Yakutia in the Russian Federation.

Today, the constituent meeting of the new Catalan Parliament will be held in Barcelona. In the early elections on 21 December, the nationalists received the most votes and again wanted to choose Carles Puigdemont as Prime Minister of the province.

It is expected today to make a formal statement. Yesterday, Carles Puigdemont  was in Denmark to attend a conference on the future of Catalonia. From Copenhagen, the exiled leader said he would form a new government despite a ban on the Spanish authorities.

The Spanish Justice accuses Puchdemon of attempted rebellion, subversion and financial abuse of public funds to organize a referendum on independence.

Yesterday, however, the prosecution in Madrid failed to obtain a judge's permission for a new international arrest warrant for the former prime minister.

South Korea will ban the use of anonymous bank accounts in cryptocurrency trading from Jan. 30, regulators said on Tuesday in a widely telegraphed move designed to stop virtual coins from being used for money laundering and other crimes, according to Reuters.

The measure comes on top of stepped up efforts by Seoul to temper South Koreans’ obsession with cryptocurrencies. Everyone from housewives to college students and office workers have rushed to trade the market despite warnings from global policymakers about investing in an asset that lacks broad regulatory oversight.

The bitcoin price in South Korea extended loss following the latest regulatory announcement, down 3.34 percent at $12,699 as of 0409 GMT, according to Bithumb, the country’s second-largest virtual currency exchange.

Bitcoin BTC=BTSP slumped nearly 20 percent last week to a four-week low on the Luxembourg-based Bitstamp exchange, pressured by worries over a possible ban on trading the virtual asset in South Korean exchanges. In Tuesday afternoon trade, it was up 5.4 percent at $10,925.

Policy makers around the world are calling for tougher, coordinated regulation of cryptocurrency trading. South Korea’s chief financial regulator last week said the government may consider shutting down domestic virtual currency exchanges.

South Korea’s Presidential office has clarified that an outright ban on trading on the virtual currency exchanges is only one of the steps being considered, and not a measure that has been finalized.

“The government is still discussing whether an outright ban is needed or not, internally,” a government official who declined to be named said after Tuesday’s briefing.

Over the past month, government statements have underscored differences between the Justice Ministry, which has pushed for a more hardline approach, and regulators who have shown a reluctance to enforce an outright ban.

Starting Jan. 30, cryptocurrency traders in South Korea will not be allowed to make deposits into their virtual currency exchange wallets unless the names on their bank accounts matches the account name in cryptocurrency exchanges, Kim Yong-beom, vice chairman of the Financial Services Commission told a news conference in Seoul.

“Everyone knew this was coming, as the government already said they will enforce the real-name system before. Rather, I can see this as a chance to go in, not out. I don’t see any reason to take my money out,” said a local bitcoin investor who only agreed to be identified by his family name Ahn.

The regulator has previously said it will come up with detailed guidelines for local banks to properly identify its clients by their real names in cryptocurrency transactions.

To make deposits into virtual coin wallets, cryptocurrency traders will need to identify themselves with their real names at the exchange and have those matched with information at local banks by Jan. 30.

The player in the tournament under №3 Grigor Diimtrov lost to Kyle Edmund (GBR) 4:6, 6:3, 3:6, 4:6 and was eliminated in quarter-finals of the Australian Open - the first tournament of Grand Slam tennis for the season. The Bulgarian had two wins from two games against his opponent from the United Kingdom, but in today's match Englishman showed new confidence and for the first time in his career reached the penultimate stage of the race of the most prestigious circuit.

So Dimitrov could not defend his points from last year reaching 1/2-finals in Melbourne, but has a chance to retain his third place in the world rankings. This will happen if Marin Cilic does not reach the Australian Open final. Later on, Croatian is coming out in a 1/4-final against Rafael Nadal (ESP), that will determine Edmund's next rival.

A major gas leak in central London forced the closure of Charing Cross train station and the evacuation of hundreds of people from nearby nightclubs and hotels on Tuesday, quoted by Reuters. 

Police closed the Strand, a major road artery that leads into Trafalgar Square - the very heart of the capital city - and advised people to avoid the area.

The fire brigade said it was called at 2 a.m. (0200 GMT) and was dealing with a ruptured gas main emitting “high levels of natural gas”. Some 20 firefighters were at the scene.

The emergency prompted police to evacuate 1,450 people from hotels and the Heaven nightclub.

“Please avoid the area and find alternate travel routes,” the London Fire Brigade said.

The railway operator said Charing Cross and Waterloo East stations would remain closed, with some services diverted to other stations and others likely to be canceled. Services were expected to resume by noon, operator Southeastern said.

RZI - Gabrovo announces a flu epidemic in the municipalities of Tryavna and Dryanovo from today, the Ministry of Health announced. The days until January 26 are reported to be without school attendance.

A flu epidemic is announced today in the municipality of Dimitrovgrad.

Until a second order in the municipalities, with a declared flu epidemic, the children's and females consultations, the visits to the medical institutions for hospital care and the prophylactic immunizations are suspended.

The Ruse region is in a pre-epidemic period.

From January 23, 2018, the flu epidemic was abolished on the territory of Pernik district.

The picture is dynamic, with regional health inspections monitoring epidemic data and take immediate measures.

A public discussion on the ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on the Prevention and Combating of Violence against Women and Domestic Violence is organized by National Assembly President Tsveta Karayancheva.

MPs, representatives of the executive, non-governmental organizations, experts will participate in the forum. The text of the Convention was also published on the site of the National Assembly.

Yesterday the Holy Synod declared itself against the Istanbul Convention. It opens wide doors to moral decay is the position of the synod, which called on the National Assembly not to ratify the document.

Nearly 200 non-governmental organizations, supported by academics and citizens, are uniting in support of the ratification of the Istanbul Convention.

Today, at 11 am in the garden between the National Assembly and the Sofia University, they also organize a demonstration in support of ratification.

A motion of no confidence in the Borisov 3 Cabinet enters the National Assembly today. It was submitted by BSP and is about corruption.

The vote is expected to be supported only by MPs of the BSP and the Movemenet For Rights and Freedoms (DPS) and to collect a maximum of 105 votes from the two parliamentary groups. Against them are GERB, United Patriots and Volya (''Will'').

But at the end of last week, the leader of one of the parties in the nationalist coalition, Volen Siderov, from Ataka, said he did not know how to vote on the issue. The reason - the district governor of Sofia-district Ilian Todorov is responsible for one of the most dangerous dams - Beli Iskar, and only the repair of his wall would cost BGN 80 million.

Yesterday, however, it became clear that after talks with Prime Minister Borisov, the government will give money for the dam.

Syria's armed opposition launched an operation Monday against Assad regime controlled regions around Turkmen Mountain in Latakia governorate, said its commander, Anadolu Agency reports.

Speaking to Anadolu Agency, Jabal al-Islam Commander Zahir Abu Usama said Russia is “intensely attacking Idlib”.

“In order to alleviate these attacks, we have launched an operation around Turkmen Mountain in regime controlled Sarraf town and around the region," he said.

Usama said they had seized the villages of Villa and Kapikaya in Sarraf which where under the regime’s control.

It was also reported that a large number of regime soldiers were killed during the sudden attacks by the armed opposition.

According to information gathered from local sources, Russian and regime warplanes attacked Turkmen Mountain after the opposition’s operation.

Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since March 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.

While UN officials say hundreds of thousands of people have been killed in the conflict, Syrian regime officials say the death toll is closer to 10,000.

The federal government will be open for business Tuesday after President Trump signed a bill funding the government until Feb. 8, Fox News reports.

Trump signed the measure Monday evening, hours after the House and Senate approved the package by wide margins as Senate Democrats backed off their opposition. 

Democrats agreed to re-open the government after Republicans assured them the Senate would soon consider legislation that would protect illegal immigrants brought to the United States as children. It was a stark contrast from the Senate Democratic position just a few days ago.

“In a few hours, the government will reopen,” Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, said on the Senate floor on Monday.

The Senate then voted 81-18 to break a Democratic filibuster on the stalled government spending bill. Several hours later, the Senate approved the bill by the same margin and the House followed suit, 266-150.

"I am pleased that Democrats in Congress have come to their senses and are now willing to fund our great military, border patrol, first responders and insurance for vulnerable children,” Trump said in a written statement.

Office workers were forced to flee-high rise buildings in the capital while hundreds of people ran down the streets of downtown Jakarta when the quake struck.

Local TV showed patients being evacuated from a hospital in the capital. 

Rudy Togatorop, 35, who works at the Chilean embassy, said: "We felt the earthquake for three to five minutes.

"I was just sitting down, then I felt the building swaying. The emergency stairs were very narrow. I was worried if something would happen."

The quake struck around 65 miles west of the city of Sukabumi on the island of Java, at a depth of 21 miles. 

People took to Twitter to give their account of the quake that “lasted around 20 seconds”.

Kate Walton wrote on Twitter: “Strong earthquake in Jakarta just now. At least 20 seconds.”

Another user posted: An earthquake in Jakarta just now. It’s quite strong. We’re all outside now.”

A third stated: “Woa! Earthquake in Jakarta. The building is still swaying.”

Just last month, Java was struck by a 6.5-magnitude earthquake which left four people dead and 36 injured.

Indonesia is regularly rocked by earthquakes - the country located on the Ring of Fire, a huge area in the basin of the Pacific Ocean where earthquakes and volcanic eruptions frequently occur.

In 2004, the Indian Ocean tsunami killed 226,000 people in 13 countries, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.

Today, in most of the country, rainfall will continue,  at noon and on the Black Sea coast rain will transform into snow. The rainfall in North and East Bulgaria will be significant. It will be windy, in the Danube Plain and East Bulgaria, a temporary and stormy northwest wind that will cause snow blizzards and the formation of droughts and winds. Throughout the country, a warning is given of heavy snow rains accompanied by strong winds and low temperatures.

Cyclone Albena, which brings snow, wind and cold, however, is already pulling east and the time will gradually improve, rainfall will stop at the latest in the eastern regions, as over the Southwestern Bulgaria and the western regions later in the day the cloud will rupture and decrease, according to the short-term weather forecast.

By the end of the month, the weather is expected to be calm.
In nights with negative temperatures almost in the whole country to be -8 and -10 degrees, and during the day with temperatures around 0 and over 0 to 3-4 degrees.

This calm weather will last until the beginning of February.

44-year-old actress Dafina Katsarska is the younger woman found dead in her apartment in Trakia district in Plovdiv, "Darik said. Her death is most likely due to an epileptic seizure that occurred when she found her deceased mother. The older woman has died of a heart attack.
As Darik reported, the mother and daughter's bodies were found in an apartment in Trakia district in Plovdiv. The signal was filed on January 19 at 112 at about 18.30 by a man, a relative of the deceased women, who discovered the lifeless bodies of the two women, police said.

A check-up was carried out by a forensic doctor, no traces of violence were found. Both mother and daughter were in poor health. There is no evidence of suicide.
The bodies are taken to an autopsy in Forensic Medicine. Pre-trial proceedings have been initiated in this case. Also notified District Prosecutor's Office.
Dafina Katsarska graduated from the National Academy of Theater and Film Arts "Krastyo Sarafov". She is known among the Plovdiv theaters. She was part of the notorious school in the Dramatic Theater "Gulubarnika", led by the late director Hristo Tserovski. She has participated in performances performed on the stage of the Plovdiv Drama Theater "N. O. Masalitinov ". She was also an actress in the Pazardzhik Theater, as well as part of Sofia's productions. She has worked for a short while abroad. She is nominated for the Askeer Prize.

Pope Francis, in an extremely rare act of self-criticism, apologized to victims of clerical sexual abuse on Sunday, acknowledging that he had “wounded many” in comments defending a Chilean bishop who is under scrutiny./Reuters

But while the contrite pope regretted his choice of words and tone of voice when he testily answered a reporter’s question last Thursday in Chile, he also said he was certain that the prelate in question, Juan Barros, was innocent and would keep his job.

Only 34% of companies in Bulgaria use at least one social media to develop their marketing strategies and receive feedback from customers. This is reported by Eurostat.

According to their data, our country is at one of the last places in the EU, with only Latvia (30%) and Poland (27%) are after us.

The leader in social media use in business is Malta with 74%. Denmark, Ireland, the Netherlands and Cyprus are ranked behind. The average for the European Union is 47%.

Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter are the most socially-used social networks.

Eurostat highlights that the share of social media companies for their development has risen dramatically by nearly 20 percent over the last four years.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said the "demands" placed on Europeans by US President Donald Trump in connection with the nuclear deal with Iran "are sometimes resembling ultimatums," the France press reported.

"We noticed with interest that President Trump did not break the agreement, though he puts demands that sometimes resemble ultimatums," said Le Drian, who arrived in Brussels for an EU summit, and will visit Iran on March 5th. On January 12, Trump urged Europeans to help redress the "terrible defects" of the Iranian nuclear agreement of 2015 and said otherwise the United States would once again impose sanctions on the Iranian nuclear program and thus de facto are withdrawing from the agreement concluded in Vienna by the other great powers - China, Russia, France, Germany, the United Kingdom - with Iran.

So far, the three European countries that signed the deal and the first EU diplomat, Federica Mogherini, charged with monitoring its due diligence, have not revealed how they will respond to Trump, who insists on an additional agreement by May 12 and a ban on Iran to develop ballistic missiles. The existing agreement is an important element of the fight against non-proliferation and must be preserved. At the same time, "Iran does not respect" the UN resolution limiting its capabilities to produce ballistic missiles, the French minister noted. At the EU summit, "we will have the opportunity to reiterate our concern about today's attempts by Iran to destabilize the region, whether Yemen, Lebanon or Syria," said Le Drian.

42 people have as much money as 50% of the world's poorest population, according to a study by Oxfam.

The organization has called for more active action to overcome the huge gap between super-rich and everyone else. It turns out that about 82% of the money generated in 2017 went to the accounts of the richest 1% of the population. And the poorest did not feel any growth in their income.

The figures also indicate that the Earth's billionaires have risen by 13% a year between 2006 and 2015. Only last year they have risen richer by $ 762 billion - enough to overcome extreme poverty seven times.

A curious fact is that there are 2043 billionaires in the world, with 9 out of 10 men.

"The concentration of such a great wealth at the top is not a sign of a thriving economy, but a symbol of a system that has failed millions of hardworking people on minimum wages that raise our food and sew our clothes," said Oxfam Executive Director Mark Goldring.

British geneticists have estimated that after a few million years Y chromosome will disappear and male sex with it, writes Science Syndicate.

The male chromosome contains genes that do not seem necessary for life. In particular, the SRY gene, defining the development of the male organism.

Y chromosomal DNA for the entire history of life on Earth has degenerated, and this process will last for at least 4.6 million years.

Researchers estimate that this process will inevitably occur with deterioration of fertility. But Y-chromosome degeneration does not mean that men will completely disappear.

The SRY gene can be moved to another chromosome.

The U.S. embassy in Israel will move to Jerusalem by the end of 2019, U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said on Monday, according to Reuters. 

“In the weeks ahead, our administration will advance its plan to open the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem – and that United States Embassy will open before the end of next year,” Pence said in a speech to the Israeli parliament in Jerusalem.

“Jerusalem is Israel’s capital – and, as such, President Trump has directed the State Department to begin initial preparations to move our embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” said Pence, explaining the decision. He did not give an exact date.

Ombudsman Maya Manolova and the leaders of CITUB and Podkrepa submit to Parliament a proposal for amendments to the Labor Code that would repeal the employer's right to pay only 60% of the salary earned or limit this right to certain circumstances and times of the year.
The legislative proposal provides for the repeal of Article 245 of the Labor Code or its change in order for the employer to be entitled to pay incomplete wages for only one month of the year or in certain circumstances to be declared to the General Labor Inspectorate .
CITUB has announced that it will continue to work to criminalize non-payment of wages.

EUR 12.2 million will be invested in the border region between Bulgaria and Serbia. This is reported by the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works. The funds are earmarked to finance projects under the second call for proposals under the Interreg - IPA Program for cross-border cooperation between the two countries, with a managing authority, the Ministry of Regional Development and Public Works.

Projects are being selected under the three priority axes of the program - Sustainable Tourism, Youth and Environment, applying entirely through the bp.ipacbc-bgrs.eu/beneficiary_reg/registration/add system. The deadline is April 23, 2018.

Eligible for funding will be projects to increase the tourist attractiveness of the region or create a cross-border tourist product, nature conservation or joint risk management. Projects for acquiring new skills and entrepreneurship in the cross-border area will also be funded. It includes the provinces of Vidin, Montana, Vratsa, Sofia, Pernik and Kyustendil in Bulgaria and the districts of Bor, Zaychar, Toplitsa, Nishava, Pirot, Yablanica and Pchinja in Serbia.

Calls for proposals may be submitted by regional tourism associations, non-governmental organizations, foundations, chambers of commerce, business associations or clusters, educational or training centers, universities and research institutes, regional and branch development agencies, central and regional offices and structures, state institutions or administrations, museums, libraries, community centers and others.

The complete application package, including the Guidelines, is available on the following websites: www.ipacbc-bgrs.eu; www.mrrb.government.bg; www.mei.gov.rs; www.evropa.gov.rs; www.eufunds.bg.

Information events under the program are forthcoming. Dates and locations will be announced further.

Mother and daughter's bodies were found in an apartment in a block of flats in Trakia district in Plovdiv, Darik reported from the police. The signal was filed on January 19 at 112 around 18.30 by a man, a relative of the deceased women.
A check-up was carried out by a forensic doctor, no traces of violence were found. It is likely that both women died of natural death. Both mother and daughter were in poor health. There is no evidence of suicide.
The bodies are taken to an autopsy in Forensic Medicine. Pre-trial proceedings have been initiated in the case, the District Prosecutor's Office has been informed.

The Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence opens the door to moral decay. This is the position of the Holy Synod, who urged the National Assembly not to ratify the document.

"The Istanbul Convention raises concerns about the future of the European Christian civilization because it contains a new understanding of man - man as a аabsolute master, the man without God who follows his desires and passions to such an extent that he can even determine his gender" the hierarchs in a declaration.

According to them, the Convention opposes the basic beliefs of the Bulgarian people about faith, nationality, morality, honor, dignity, education and family: "it is a tool that instills a value system that is foreign to us in order to allow society to be governed by a new model the interests of a small part of it ".

The basic "weapon" of the document, according to the Synod, is the so-called ''gender'': "According to this ideology, the biological gender of a man as a man or a woman does not matter to his identity but represents the" dictatorship of nature "over the free self- dictatorship from which one has to be released. "

The text also contains a warning: "The consequences of denying biblical truths are tragic and we are witnessing them in many societies where" gender "ideology has long been a state policy."

A meeting of the heads of the Parliamentary Committees for Union Affairs of Parliaments of the European Union (COSAC) is held in Sofia on 22nd of January.

The forum was opened by Bulgarian National Assembly Chairperson Tsveta Karayancheva.

Expressing the fundamental values of the EU, equality and freedom, COSAC is also a guarantor of the participation of the citizens of the Union in the democratic control over the European institutions regarding the principles of subsidiarity and proportionality, she said.

European Commission Vice President Frans Timmermans said that the EU must respond to global challenges and solve the problem of the unfulfilled promise of convergence.

Migration is one of the most serious problems we will have to deal with. I do not agree with the allegations that the resettlement mechanism has failed. There are still at least 3000 people in Italy and Greece to be moved elsewhere. Many Member States have taken their share of the burden of the migrant crisis, so it is not right to talk about failure. It is detrimental to pretend that resettlement is the most important thing to do with regard to migration. This is a small element of a much larger strateg, but is a key element in the event of a crisis. I would not want to see that the Member States will not be able to rely on the solidarity of the rest of the Union in the event of a new wave of migration, he said.

Chair of the European Affairs Committee in the Bulgarian Parliament Kristian Vigenin highlighted the role of the parliamentary dimension in the rotating presidency:

We are aware of the responsibility and importance of the parliamentary dimension of the Bulgarian Presidency when, at times of overwhelming crises and challenges, national parliaments and their representatives, as directly elected by European citizens, have a key role to play in ensuring greater accountability and legitimacy in the actions of the Union. Our joint efforts and results will be proof to EU citizens that the EU is adaptable, confident and accountable. The contribution of the Bulgarian Parliament to the programme of the Bulgarian presidency was made In this spirit, Vigenin said.

Vice President Iliana Yotova stressed that the Bulgarian Presidency is at the end of a very important mandate of the European institutions and the success of all the Member States will depend on its successs as a whole. And the successful end of Brexit is the criterion for the return of Europe as leader of the international scene.

Source: the Bulgarian National Television 


After a year, full of exciting and remarkable films, as we are anticipating the Academy Awards, a whole new plethora of cinematic works is coming our way.


Do you Like Superhero Movies? We do! 

This year won’t be an exception to the floods of big budget superhero movies that have been dominating the movie theaters in the last few years. The Marvel Cinematic Universe and the DC Extended Universe will once again be competing for viewership and box office with titles such as Black Panther, Aquaman, Ant-Man and the Wasp and X-Men: Dark Phoenix.


Some of the more noteworthy releases from both studio companies are the long awaited Avengers: Infinity War, a crossover between Marvel’s Avengers and another popular series in the Marvel Cinematic Universe - Guardians of the Galaxy, and although it’s not a part of that same universe, Marvel’s Deadpool, which made remarkable success in 2016, is getting a sequel this year.


More Sequels and Remakes is no Surprise

Another tendency for major studios in recent years that won’t be excluded from 2018 is remakes and sequels. The sequels largely outnumber the remakes, with remakes and reboots being only Ocean’s 8, a retelling of Ocean’s 11 with an all-female cast, and a remake of the all-time classic Scarface with the Coen brothers attached as writers to this movie.

The sequels vary from continuing consistently existing film series to furthering plotlines from film series that haven’t been in theaters for a while. The list includes Maze Runner: the Death Cure, Pacific Rim: Uprising, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, Mamma Mia: Here we go again and Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. The Star Wars franchise continues its streak of movies with an independent story about the character of Han Solo in Solo: A Star Wars Story, directed by Ron Howard.

And the tendency of sequels isn’t exclusive to the live action form of entertainment- in the field of animation 2018 contains sequels to popular big studio animated movies such as: The Incredibles 2, Hotel Transylvania 3 and Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-it Ralph 2. But as far as animated movies go one of the most exciting releases for film in 2018 overall is Wes Anderson’s stop motion Isle of Dogs, which the director has been teasing for since 2016.


And along with Anderson being one of the more remarkable names in directing for 2018, some other critically acclaimed directors will be leaving their footprint in the upcoming year. Despite the fact that their recent works have received lukewarm responses - Clint Eastwood and Steven Spielberg are still big names in film and their contributions to 2018- The 15:17 to Paris and Ready Player One, respectively, will definitely attract interest and provoke discussion.


In case you are a more of a "Festivalist" Looking for Hidden Gems and Arthouse here is Something for you Too

 The Danish auteur Lars von Trier will come through with another psychologically dense horror-thriller about a serial killer named Jack in The House That Jack Built. Following his success from 2016 with the romantic musical La La Land, Damien Chazelle is working on a biopic about Neil Armstrong called First Man. Acclaimed Canadian film director Xavier Dolan will have his English language debut this year with The Death and Life of John F. Donovan, centering around the correspondences of an American TV star with an 11-year old British boy.

Hopefully Paul Thomas Anderson’s Phantom Thread, which had a late release last year, will make it into theaters here - it’s a stunning romance between a 50’s London dressmaker and a strong-willed disrupted woman. It also supposedly marks the last role in renowned actor Daniel Day-Lewis’s filmography.

Known for his surreal comedy in Monty Python, director Terry Gilliam will be delivering his passion project from 17 years ago - an adventure comedy about a 21st man stuck in 17th century La Mancha, where Don Quixote mistakes him for Sancho Panza in The Man Who Killed Don Quixote.

Critically acclaimed director Terrence Malick, who has released a new movie every year in the past few years, will not miss out on this year as well, choosing a World War II setting for his new movie Radegund.


What About Bulgarian Films? 

Two Bulgarian releases will be coming soon to theaters as well-as romantic comedy Attraction starring Yana Marinova and Bashar Rahal, both of whom are producing, writing and acting with a release date set to February 23rd and All she wrote a love story set in New York by Bulgarian producer and director Niki Iliev. Recent titles that deserve attention and one might still find playing at independent cinemas are Heights and Omnipresent

Another highly anticipated release is Stephan Komandarev's Directions. Here you can see the trailer:

This article was prepared by film reviewer and critic Eli Pironkova.


Spanish tax authorities urged Colombian singer Shakira to be prosecuted for unpaid taxes during the 2011-2014 period, AFP reported, citing the Vanguardia newspaper.

The tax authorities believe that Shakira, who has Spanish citizenship, has not paid several tens of millions of euros in taxes. Judicial authorities must decide whether or not the singer should be prosecuted. If she is found guilty, she may be sentenced to two years. "It's about different criteria, not tax frauds," said sources from Shakira's environment but that there are "technical issues" that the singer was willing to solve.

The International Monetary Fund is concerned about the excessive volatility of the bitcoin, as well as its popularity among criminals and terrorists. Representatives of the organization are calling for an international talk on encrypted data to be launched as soon as possible.

An event of this kind could be the G20 meeting in March. Last year bitcoin rose by 1500%, but dropped sharply earlier this year. According to IMF representative Gerry Rice, such jumps are unfavorable to investors in the crypto market. The IMF recognizes that cryptocells can benefit, for example, as a more efficient means of payment. But at the same time, they are often used for money laundering, terrorist financing and fraud. According to Rice, regulators of all countries need to unite and stop ignoring the crypto market.

Everything should be done internationally. Germany and France are ready for such a discussion and both countries intend to initiate the G20 debate in Argentina. At the end of last year, Christine Lagarde, head of the IMF, said the emergence of the cryptocurrency is a sign of global financial market changes that can no longer be ignored.

The Chinese quantum satellite was orbited two years ago. Since then, a number of experiments have been carried out with it, and in the summer of last year the satellite has been able to transmit information to three ground stations a thousand kilometers apart.

These days, Chinese physicists set a new record by exchanging data on a protected channel between the Austrian city of Graz and the Chinese Sino. The distance between cities is over 7000 kilometers. Developers reported that the goal of the experiment was to demonstrate the viability of this network. Initially, the information was transferred in one direction, and then back. This means that Chinese specialists will soon create an intercontinental quantum network to exchange over-protected information. The satellite is used to implement the quantum allocation of keys between stations.

The equipment installed on the satellite through the principles of quantum mechanics creates the key to exchange information for each of the ground stations. When exchanging data, the satellite is an intermediate unit that performs the necessary logical data transformations in accordance with the secret key. A 4.43-KB image of a Chinese philosopher with a 4.9 KB photo of a German physicist was broadcast. The speed is about 80 KB / s.

The World Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development analyzes for the concession of Sofia Airport are expected to close by a month.

This was announced by the Minister of Transport in front of BNT.

According to Ivaylo Moskovski after the analyzes, the concession procedure for the Sofia Airport will be restarted. By the end of the year, most of BDZ's debts are expected to be repaid, Ivaylo Moskovski added.

"Such a company can not have any obligations. But for the most part, the company's overdue obligations will be paid. At the same time, we also start the procedure for delivering new rolling stock. Preliminary studies made by colleagues at three universities showed a level of rolling stock to be purchased as a first step. They are distributed - regional, intercity, suburban trains, "Ivaylo Moskovski said.

Respecting the British vote for Brexit, Emmanuel Macron would gladly welcome the UK back to the European Union.

The French president said in an interview with the BBC that the vote to leave the community was a "mistake". Macron expressed his conviction that the last decades have not brought the expected benefits to the British middle class and workers, citing the effects of globalization and the role of the EU itself.

"If you ask me yes or no to the vote for Brexit, I would say it was a mistake. My understanding is that the average and working class, and especially the elderly population of the UK, have decided that the last decades have not brought the benefits they need, "said French president, quoted by TV Europe.

Macron added that Europe has given too much liberty without cohesiveness to free markets without clear division of roles.

"I think that one of the reasons to get here is precisely the EU organization that has probably gone too far - in terms of freedom without cohesiveness on the way to free markets, without getting closer to the real problems of people. I respect the vote for Brexit, I'm sorry about it and I would welcome you back to the Union if you wish, "said Macron.

The French president also said that the exclusion of London from the European financial structure makes no sense, because the city brings many benefits to the EU. Asked by lead Andrew Mar how he would comment on the exchange of sharp and dangerous speeches between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un about the size of their nuclear buttons, Macron said that work should be done very seriously to bring North Korea back to the table. negotiations and to implement UN sanctions against the Communist state, with China playing a key role in this process.

The seamstesses who work in a shoe factory in Dupnitsa made a protest against unpaid wages. They have not received their monthly wages for December and January.

Such a wage delays in the enterprise happen for the second time. The owner is an Italian and, in the words of the workers, is now hiding in Italy.

They are now expecting Ombudsman Maya Manolova to come to Dupnitsa and help them solve the problem of unpaid salaries. They expect the intervention of the Labor Inspectorate.

The precipitation will continue in most of the country, more substantial in Northern and Eastern Bulgaria. On the Black Sea coast, the rain will transform into snow around noon. In the southwestern regions, already before noon the precipitation will stop and the clouds will be scattered,  the National Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology (NIMH) told FOCUS News Agency.

It will remain windy, with strong, on the coast sometimes to stormy wind from northwest that will cause blizzards, snowdrifts and accumulations. The maximum temperatures will range between minus 1°C and 4°C, on the coast to 8°C.

In the night to Tuesday, the snowfall will stop in the whole country and the clouds over many regions will be scattered.

Nearly one-seventh of the population of Sofia is actively interested in the property market. 7.8% of people intend to get involved in it within two years.

A quarter of the market purchases will be made for investment, according to a study by the Antre agency, among 1625 users.

This fact should also lead to a possible increase in the number of rental properties offered in the future. 44% of investors are looking for a one-bedroom apartment in the regions Mladost, Iztok, Lozenets, Vitosha and Center. At the same time, a fifth of consumers have made an investment, they would like to get out of their investment after the first year.

The survey also shows that 40% of consumers with an interest in the property market are waiting for a moment to get involved. One of the main reasons is the discrepancy in expectations about price levels. This is visible from the active buyer's budgets to those of the pending customers. The first group is ready to divide by about 20,000 euros more than the second one, ranging from 50,000 to 110,000 euros and from 30,000 to 90,000 euros respectively. For buyers of a home for private use, the Geo Milev, Mladost, East, Gotse Delchev and Dianabad districts are most attractive.

In the coming years, the secondary market sellers are expected to be active mainly in properties in the districts of Druzhba, Mladost and the central regions of Sofia.

Rental rents are expected to be in the range of 300-400 euros for housing up to 80 sq.m.

The projections are to keep the dynamics of the market at least by 2020, even achieving a growth of about 15% if the trend of population growth, drop in unemployment, employment growth and retention of loan interest rates are maintained, data show .

Facebook said on Monday it will open three new centers in Europe to train people in digital skills and is committed to training one million people over the next two years, part of the social media giant’s drive to show its contribution to the bloc./ TIME

The U.S. company – which has faced regulatory pressure in Europe over issues ranging from privacy to antitrust – said it would open three “community skills hubs” in Spain, Poland and Italy as well as investing 10 million euros ($12.2 million) in France through its artificial intelligence research facility.

“People are worried that the digital revolution is leaving people behind and we want to make sure that we’re investing in digital skills to get people the skills they need to fully participate in the digital economy,” Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook’s chief operating officer, told Reuters.

The community hubs will offer training in digital skills, media literacy and online safety to groups with limited access to technology, including old people, the young and refugees.

Facebook also committed to having trained one million people and business owners by 2020.

“Absolutely we want to make sure that people see that we are investing locally, we’re investing in technology, we’re investing in humans,” Sandberg said.

Facebook’s move comes as EU states discuss proposals to raise the tax bill of tech multinationals after pressure from large states that accuse firms like Amazon, Google , Apple and Facebook of slashing their tax bills by re-routing their EU profits to low-tax countries such as Luxembourg and Ireland.

Smaller EU countries, like Luxembourg or Malta, argue that a solo EU move on corporate tax reform would damage its economy and favor competitors.

European Union states could have lost 5.4 billion euros ($6.6 billion) in tax revenues from Google and Facebook between 2013 and 2015, according to a report by an EU lawmaker last year.

Facebook executives are fanning out across Europe this week to address the social media giant’s slow response to abuses on its platform, seeking to avoid further legislation along the lines of a new hate speech law in Germany it says goes too far.

Through its Community Boost EU program, Facebook will work with small businesses and start-ups to help them grow and hire.

It said it would conduct in-person training for 100,000 small- and medium-sized businesses by 2020 and online training for 250,000 businesses.

“What we’re finding is when small businesses use technology, when small businesses use Facebook, they hire,” Sandberg said.

The European Union’s executive has stressed the need to boost Europeans’ digital skills to help bring down unemployment and enable Europe to create its own digital giant.

Facebook has opened similar centers in countries such as Nigeria and Brazil.

Many people are afraid of traveling by air, even though it is proven that even by car is more dangerous. Aircraft incidents are progressively decreasing, and 2017 has been declared the safest year in aviation history, which is impressive, considering it was the busiest one.

If you do not feel comfortable on an airplane, you may have to choose the airlines that have proven themselves in the security sphere.

Australian airline analysis site AirlineRatings.com publishes its annual ranking of the safest airlines in the world.

The site has decided to put all airlines in the top 20 in alphabetical order. These are: Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines, All Nippon Airways, British Airways, Cathay Pacific Airways, Emirates, Etihad Airways, EVA Air, Finnair, Hawaiian Airlines , Japan Airlines, KLM, Lufthansa, Qantas, Royal Jordanian Airlines, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Swiss, Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia.

The cheapest holiday destination for 2018? According to the Post Office’s annual survey of on-the-ground costs, it’s offbeat Bulgaria.

After comparing prices in 42 destinations, for typical travel purchases such as drinks in local bars and restaurant meals, the Black Sea resort of Sunny Beach supplanted the Algarve as the top option for budget breaks.

The total cost of the items came to just under £38, on average, in the Bulgarian summer favourite, around £5 less than its nearest rival, Tokyo. The Algarve, where the bill came to a little over £44, slipped to third overall, while Prague and Cape Town completed the top five.

Propping up the table was Singapore, where the items were found to cost almost £154, on average, followed by Dubai, Oman, Barbados and Rio de Janeiro.

The Post Office’s Worldwide Holiday Costs Barometer, released every January, doesn’t take into account hotel and flight prices – and, of course, it is possible to find costly meals in Bulgaria and budget ones in Singapore. But it does offer some guidance to where British travellers will find their pound stretching furthest.

At a Glance/The cheapest and costliest destinations for 2018

DestinationCost of eight essential holiday purchases*
Bulgaria (Sunny Beach) £37.92
Japan (Tokyo) £43.14
Portugal (Algarve) £44.25
Czech Republic (Prague) £53.40
South Africa (Cape Town) £54.95
Spain (Costa del Sol) £55.20
Turkey (Marmaris) £55.65
Cyprus (Paphos) £57.72
Hungary (Budapest) £65.39
Vietnam (Hoi An) £65.85
Indonesia (Bali) £66.61
Kenya (Mombasa) £66.77
Dominican Republic (Punta Cana) £67.46
USA (Orlando) £71.82
Sri Lanka (Colombo) £72.12
Malaysia (Penang) £76.21
Greece (Corfu) £77.83
Malta (Sliema) £78.46
Mexico (Cancun) £80.70
Costa Rica (Tamarindo) £81.48
Thailand (Phuket) £86.27
Italy (Sorrento) £91.47
USA (New York) £95.88
Mauritius (Grand Baie) £96.03
St Lucia (Rodney Bay) £99.61
South Korea (Seoul) £103.11
New Zealand (Auckland) £104.80
Jamaica (Montego Bay) £105.53
France (Nice) £106.45
Canada (Vancouver) £106.46
Peru (Lima) £109.81
Tobago £111.54
Antigua (Jolly Beach) £114.18
Australia (Darwin) £120.30
China (Beijing) £126.38
Chile (Santiago) £137.28
Brazil (Rio de Janeiro) £138.59
Barbados (St Lawrence Gap) £139.29
Oman (Muscat) £141
Dubai (Jumeirah) £141.23
Singapore (China Town) £153.72

*Items are a coffee from a local cafe, a beer, a soft drink and a glass of wine from a local bar, a large bottle of mineral water, suncream and insect repellent from a local supermarket, and a three-course evening meal, including wine, at a local restaurant. Source: Post Office.

Overall, the picture is fairly positive for UK travellers in 2018 – compared with last year, at least. Sterling has strengthened against 70 per cent of the Post Office’s 40 best selling foreign currencies since January 2017, when it was still in the post-referendum doldrums, helping to decrease holiday costs in many destinations.

The biggest falls were found in long-haul locations such as Dubai, where prices are down 36 per cent, and New Zealand (down 27 per cent). The Caribbean is offering far better value too, with a drop in prices reported in St Lucia, Antigua (both down 31 per cent), Jamaica (down 27 per cent) and the Dominican Republic (down 26 per cent).

Hoi An in Vietnam (down 21 per cent) and Cape Town (down 16 per cent) are among the other places where the pound is going further in 2018.

While eight of the 10 cheapest destinations are found in Europe, budget travellers might consider steering clear of Italy, 23rd overall, and France, 30th overall. China, Chile and Australia also appear towards the lower end of the ranking.

Why go to Sunny Beach?

A fair question. Besides low prices, what can one expect from the Bulgarian Riviera? Is it worth the potential savings?

“It’s cheap and cheerful, with some fairly rough-and-ready communist-era concrete constructions,” said Telegraph Travel’s Adrian Bridge, following a visit to the resort of Varna, just north of Sunny Beach. “But there are some nice cafés and restaurants. We drank a couple of beers (£1.30 for the two) and ordered fish fresh from the Black Sea. Over a shopska salad (tomatoes, cucumbers, olives and feta-style cheese), I was introduced to the pleasures of rakia, a fruit-based schnapps.”

Varna’s other attractions include the beautiful Sea Gardens, modelled on the Baroque palace gardens of Schönbrunn and Belvedere in Vienna, the lavish Cathedral of the Assumption, an open-air theatre, an aquarium, a planetarium, a “bizarre” little naval museum, a well-preserved old town, and, of course, the sea itself: “I took a dip and experienced the strange sweetness of the Black Sea,” recalled Bridge. “It has barely any salt.”

He adds: “It’s still a working port and in addition to a sea of cranes I spot cargo ships. It lends the beach itself a certain hardness that may not appeal to all holidaymakers (most of whom anyway head further north to the purpose-built resorts of Sunny Beach and Albena). But for an afternoon – or a day or two – it's fun.”

Robert Nurnden, meanwhile, a former resident of Bulgaria, recommends another Black Sea resort: Sozopol. “It manages to cater for the young, party-going set from Sofia as well as those seeking something more sedate,” he says. “The classy old town offers shoreline restaurants and bars where you can watch the sun slide down over Asia. To the south, miles of sandy beaches stretch as far as Turkey. To the north, Sunny Beach pulsates to the beat of 24-hour parties.”

How reliable is the study?

As mentioned above, there are drawbacks to the Post Office study. It does not take into account the cost of travel, only a handful of on-the-ground purchases, while cheap food is easy to find in just about any city on Earth (Singapore, for instance, the most expensive destination to feature, is renowned for its street food stalls, which will leave you satisfied for a few quid). 

However, it offers a fair guide as to the destinations to avoid if you want to keep costs down (Australia, Dubai and Antigua, for example), and those to consider (like Portugal, Turkey and Prague).  

The biennial World Economic Forum Travel and Tourism Competitiveness Report, released last summer, takes into account a far greater number of countries and assigns each a “price competitiveness” score, based on typical costs. It too highlights Sri Lanka, Thailand and Indonesia as good options for cheap breaks (the cost of flights notwithstanding). 



Source: telegraph.co.uk

Ivan Sirakov, Bulgaria’s ambassador to Austria, put the nation on a collision course with the EU as he said stopping the talks is “not in the EU’s interest” but Turkey “must be open and honest” .

Mr Sirakov used his speech in Vienna to assure Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Macedonia, Albania and Kosovo that “Europe would not be complete without them”. 

He said: “The Western Balkans are very important for the security and wellbeing of Europe.” 

Mr Sirakov added “we need Turkey for this process”.

Talks between the EU and Turkey are expected to pick up momentum this year following months of little progress amid the migrant crisis, attempted military coup and clashes over Ankara's human rights record. 

Farouk Kaymakci, Turkey’s permanent representative to the EU, said: “A summit between the EU and Turkey in June ahead of the EU summit is under consideration.

“There are expectations in this direction.”

The talks would come despite Turkey’s President Recep Erdogan restricting free speech by jailing respected journalists who have criticised him

His policy extends to the internet with thousands of Twitter accounts and websites having been shut down by the government.

Mr Erdogan has also cracked down on the leaders and MPs of the pro-Kurdish opposition People’s Democratic Party (HDP).

The Turkish government has jailed elected HDP members of parliament. 

Relations between Turkey and the bloc soured further last year, when German Chancellor Angela Merkel said she would encourage EU leaders to reconsider the accession talks if re-elected.

Mr Erdogan said in response: “What happened is Nazism. What happened is fascism.

“I’m not saying you are a Nazi, you are fascist. I am only defining what happened.”

EU leaders are expected to meet on June 28 - 29 and expanding the bloc will be one of the main items on the agenda.

Senior officials and ministers from candidate countries will be coming together in Bulgaria as it holds the bloc’s six-month rotating presidency.

Bulgaria’s foreign minister Ekaterina Zakharieva has expressed hope that relations between Turkey and the EU will improve.

She said: “Neither the successful protection of the EU’s external borders nor the fight against terrorism can be succeeded without a close partnership with Turkey.”/express.co.uk

The Bulgarian Special Prosecutor's Office is involved in a wide-ranging, international investigation into companies and persons behind the digital currency investment scheme OneCoin, which has been widely accused of constituting a pyramid scheme.

In a Jan. 19 statement, the office said that it was collaborating with officials in Germany as well as those from international groups Eurojust and Europol to investigate OneCoin. Germany has been conducting an investigation into OneCoin since as early as last year, a move that came after it effectively banned OneCoin and its promoters from the country.

The Bulgarian prosecutor's office said that, in the past two days, corporate offices tied to a company connected to OneCoin were raided. Dozens of witnesses have also been interviewed, according to the government.

The statement explained:

 "On 17 and 18 January 2017, in the presence of representatives of Europol and the German investigative bodies, the offices of Wan Network Services and 14 other companies were searched. A lot of material evidence has been seized, including servers, so far, 50 witnesses have been questioned."

The statement also highlighted the international nature of the investigation, pointing to a number of countries that have launched inquiries of their own in recent months. In July, for example, reports indicated that OneCoin founder Ruja Ignatova was being charged by Indian authorities in connection with the alleged pyramid scheme.

"At present, companies associated with OneCoin Ltd. are being investigated in England, Ireland, Italy, the United States, Canada, Ukraine, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia and many other countries," the prosecutor's office said.

Editor's Note: Some of the statements in this report have been translated from Bulgarian./ Source: Coindesk.com

82% of the world's wealth is owned by 1% of the planet's population, BNT reported. This shows the latest data from the Oxfam NGO. The report was made public before the start of the World Economic Forum, which kicks off in Davos tomorrow.

Four out of five dollars earned in 2017 are in the pocket of the richest people in the world. At the same time, the poorest half of humanity has nothing, according to the latest report by the British non-governmental organization Oxfam. It was announced hours before the start of the World Economic Forum in Davos. One of the main conclusions is that the past year saw a historic increase in the billionaire, making the gap between the rich and the poor even more insurmountable.

According to an Oxfam study, conducted among 70,000 people in 10 countries, two-thirds of respondents believe that the gap between the poor and the rich should be reduced urgently. The NGO message before the economic forum in Switzerland is to restrict shareholders 'and business leaders' dividends, to close the pay gap between women and men and to continue the fight with tax havens.

At 7:30 am a minibus and a tram hit each other at the intersection of the metropolitan boulevards "Nikola Petkov" and "Tsar Boris III", BNT reported referring to the Ministry of Interior. According to initial data, 9 people have been injured, confirmed by "Police in the world and in our country".

Two of the victims were men aged 40 and 49 and were taken to the MMA for examination, the press center of the hospital reported. The other 7 are in Pirogov and are also being examined. The traffic in the area of the junction is temporarily hampered and regulated by a patrol.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that "the rusophobia of the West" is even worse than it was even during the Cold War and warned that Moscow had "red lines" to be respected.

"Rusophobia is unprecedented. We have not seen such a thing during the Cold War. Then there were some rules, observance of decency ... Now such decency does not exist, "Lavrov said in an interview with the Russian daily Kommersant, a few days after his visit to New York.

Speaking to the media, Lavrov also warned that "Russia has its" red lines "and that some important Western politicians must understand that these lines should not be crossed but respected, as in the Cold War. The US and EU sanctions against the country have been defined by the minister as "absurd and unfounded".

A jewelry shop in the center of Bourgas exploded, bTV announced.

A signal of loud noise and crackling on Ferdinandova Street was filed at 3:30 am at First District Ministry of the Interior, but the police press at this stage refused to confirm that it was a bombing.

The windows of the jewelry shop, the nearby pizzeria, the office of a fast loan company, nearby cars and dwellings are broken.
According to the initial inspection no theft was committed.

Those living nearby think the goal was intimidation.

The tension between the United States and Turkey has been getting higher, Nova TV reported.

Washington urged Ankara to restrain after Turkish troops entered Northwest Syria. Purpose of the operation in the area of ​​Afrin is the Kurdish militia "Forces for the Protection of the People".

Ankara considers them a terrorist group. But it is an important part of the United States-backed coalition against IDIL.

Various sources report more than 10 civilian casualties during Turkish air strikes, but Ankara stresses that all victims are terrorists. At least one killed and dozens injured in a shelling out of Syrian territory against the Turkish border town of Reykhanli

Successful completion of the rescue operation in the Balkans. The people in trouble in their cars in Stara Planina - between Shipka peak and Buzludzha peak, are saved. They turned out to be 6 young people from the town of Radnevo who came to Buzludzha Peak to have fun with their cars in the snow.

Despite the explicit prohibition of passing along the panoramic road Shipka - Buzludzha, they have entered and have got stuck. One of the young people called their parents to ask for help. The mother and father of the boy left, but they also found themselves blocked in the nightlife. Thus, the total number of people in the region between Shipka peak and Buzludzha peak is 8 people. The parents send a signal to 112.

In the early hours of the day, the special equipment campaign was organized. Initially, a fire car headed for Shipka, but snagged in the snow. Another managed to reach people through Buzludzha. "Fortunately, everything was completed successfully, there were no injuries among the young people, but the recklessness of these young people cost a lot of financial and human resources of several institutions," said Stara Zagora District Director Iliya Zlatev, quoted by BGNES.

In the United States, government work is still blocked after over weekend lawmakers in the Senate failed to reach an agreement to vote on a temporary funding measure, the BNR said. The main controversy is related to the insistence of Democrats to protect  against the deportation of hundreds of thousands of immigrants.

Republicans assure that the issue of immigrants will be debated in the Senate if Democrats agree on a temporary measure to allow the government to open its doors by February 8th.

In the Capitol at night, a group of about twenty lawmakers from both parties worked hard on an agreement. The talks, though not at the moment, are in contrast to the expression of resignation and hostility over the past few days and give hope for a breakthrough.

The Democrats bind their support to resolving the future of immigrant youths who have come as children in the country and who are threatened with deportation after President Donald Trump stopped the program protecting them. The termination of the program will come into force as of March, until then Congress has the possibility to accept changes, the National Radio reports.

Now the Republicans in the Senate are looking for Democrats to vote on temporary government funding. The so-called "Super majority" of 60 votes.

Republicans have 51 votes. Earlier Sunday, President Donald Trump proposed moving to the final option for Republicans to change Senate rules and make the vote a simple majority. To such a solution, they stepped in when the Supreme Court Judge's nomination Neil Gorsach had to vote, but now on the left, the mood for such a measure is negative.

At noon local time (about 8pm Bulgarian) on Monday, senators will meet for a new vote.

The last time the government was forced to stop work was in 2013. Then the shutdown was 16 days, the BNR recalls.

Grigor Dimitrov will go out for the quarterfinals at the Australian Open against Kyle Edmund on Tuesday afternoon.

The meeting of the Bulgarian is the last of the daily session of the central court  and will begin not before 5:30 am Bulgarian time.

Immediately after the match Dimitrov - Edmund is the match between world number 1 Rafael Nadal and Croatian Marin Cilic. This meeting will determine the eventual next rival of our first rocket.

Sixteen people have been taken to hospital after a train hit a rail buffer at Richmond in Sydney’s north-western outskirts, with witnesses describing the scene as “chaotic”./ The Guardian

New South Wales police said on Monday that the train had crashed into a buffer at the end of the train line while “slowing to stop at the station”.

A number of passengers and two Sydney Trains employees, including the driver, were treated at the scene.

Police said 11 people were treated at a nearby oval after the accident, and although five people remained on the train to be treated no one was trapped.

The injuries of those taken to hospital included broken bones, but none were considered life-threatening.

An ambulance spokesman said one 31-year-old woman suffered a fractured clavicle. Another 77-year-old woman also suffered a fractured clavicle and was being treated for spinal injuries as a precaution.

A New South Wales Ambulance spokesman said 17 ambulance crews and three rescue helicopters responded to the accident, which happened just before 10am on Monday.

On social media witnesses described a “horrifying train crash”, with “people injured everywhere”.

One caller to Sydney’s 2GB radio who saw the crash said there was an “almighty bang”.

The caller said the train came in at speed and hit the buffer and rebounded. “There was a huge amount of dust,” he said.

The cause of the accident is still unknown. Sydney Trains boss Howard Collins said the train had “hit the buffers pretty hard”.

“It is very concerning [and our] first concern is for those involved in the incidents,” he said.

Collins said negotiations in the heated pay dispute between the rail union and the government would be delayed until lunchtime as a result of the accident.

The NSW transport minister, Andrew Constance, said investigators from the Office of Transport Safety Investigations, the Office of National Rail Safety Regulator and Safe Work NSW would work to determine the cause of the accident.

“My thoughts are with Sydney Trains passengers and crew who have been injured after a Waratah train struck a safety barrier at Richmond station,” he said.

“Safety is our number one priority and we will now work to determine what caused the incident.

“I anticipate the current industrial negotiations between Sydney Trains and union delegates are likely to resume later today after being temporarily suspended following the incident to ensure passenger and staff safety were prioritised.”

Blagoevgrad municipality is from today in a flu epidemic, according to BGNES.

Students will not be in school from today, January 22 to January 24, inclusive.

In Blagoevgrad, the morbidity is over 380 people per 10,000.

In Brezovo, Plovdiv, students will also not go to school because of the flu. Last week, a flu epidemic was announced in the Pernik District, but later it was canceled. On Thursday it was announced flu epidemic in Pazardjik. It is in force until tomorrow, January 23 inclusive. There is a pre-epidemic situation in the Stara Zagora region.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ekaterina Zaharieva will take part in the Foreign Affairs Council, which will be held in Brussels.

The meeting will begin today with a working breakfast with the President of the European Investment Bank (EIB), the main topic of which will be the creation of a Development Bank as a subordinate structure within the EIB.

The workshop will continue with an exchange of views on topical issues on the international agenda.

Foreign ministers will discuss the future of the EU's partnership with the countries of Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific. The Cotonou Agreement, which sets the framework for relations, expires in 2020.

The focus of the debate will be the EC's negotiating mandate for a new agreement, which will also be discussed at the informal Foreign Affairs Council in February 2018. The Council will reviewed the current situation in Libya, including in the context of the EU-UN-African Union trilogue held on 14 December 2017.

The new week starts with heavy rains, snow and strong winds. In 19 regions of the country is declared orange code.

This night the snowfall will increase. The wind will be stormy and there may be snow blizzards.

Orange code for snow is for Vidin, Montana, Vratsa, Pleven, Lovech, Gabrovo, Rousse, Veliko Tarnovo, Targovishte, Razgrad, Silistra and Shumen. There will be snow and a snow cover will form. The orange code is valid for all of Northern and Eastern Bulgaria, and the rest is yellow.

The Statue of Liberty will reopen on Monday even if the U.S. government shutdown extends into the work week, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said on Sunday, vowing to use state funds to keep the landmark monument in operation, Reuters reported. 

Dozens of other national parks and monuments were expected to remain partially or entirely closed after Congress failed to agree on a spending plan to keep the government running past a Friday midnight deadline.

In the hours leading up to the shutdown, the Trump administration worked on ways to keep hundreds of parks open without staff in an effort to avoid public anger, although it was unclear which ones would close.

“Not all parks are fully open but we are all working hard to make as many areas as accessible to the public as possible,” U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke said on Twitter on Saturday.

The hit-or-miss closures forced tourists and residents alike to alter their plans. In lower Manhattan, where ferries normally embark for the Statue of Liberty in New York Harbor, out-of-town visitors expressed frustration that the site was closed.

And San Diego Police Chief Shelley Zimmerman posted a photo of a “closed” sign outside Cabrillo National Monument on Twitter.

“I had planned to do some tide pool repeats to get some hill work in on my bicycle ride this morning,” she wrote, referring to a local bike route. “Change of plans.”

The National Parks Conservation Association, an advocacy group, estimated that one-third of the 417 national park sites were shuttered, “including places like the Statue of Liberty, presidential homes, and other historic and cultural sites primarily made up of buildings that can be locked.”

Yellowstone National Park, a 3,500-square-mile (9,065 square km) wilderness located mostly in Montana, remained open but offered limited services, with visitor centers closed and park rangers absent. The association warned that the lack of staff could pose dangers to visitors.

Xanterra Parks & Resorts, a private company that manages lodges, concessions and restaurants in numerous national parks including Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Mount Rushmore, Rocky Mountain and Zion, said they will remain open during the shutdown.

In Washington, the Smithsonian museums and the National Zoo will remain open through Monday, using prior-year funds. In a tweet, the Smithsonian said it will update its status beyond Monday “as soon as we know.” But in Philadelphia, visitors were turned away at the Liberty Bell.

During the last shutdown in 2013, a number of governors used state funds to keep parks open, including the Statue of Liberty, which at the time cost ,600 per day to reopen.

At a news conference at the Statue of Liberty, Cuomo said the site generates tourism revenue, adding that the monument serves as a welcoming beacon to immigrants arriving in the United States.

“We don’t want to lose the income,” he said. “And symbolically, you can shut down the government, but you can’t shut down the Statue of Liberty.”

In Arizona, Republican Governor Doug Ducey committed state funds to keep the Grand Canyon open, including trash removal, snow plowing and public restrooms, according to Ducey spokesman Patrick Ptak.

“We recognize it’s a huge economic attractor and has a big impact not just on rural areas around the Grand Canyon but the state as a whole,” Ptak said, adding that the expected cost is around 0,000 per week.

But in South Dakota, home of Mount Rushmore, Republican Governor Dennis Daugaard has said he would not take any action to keep the monument open during a shutdown.

 THE UK’S ability to defend itself “will be eroded” if desperately needed funding is not secured and harrowingly threats we face “are not thousands of miles away but on Europe’s doorstep”, the head of the British army will warn, Daily Express writes. 

General Sir Nicholas Carter, Chief of the General Staff, will issue the worrying warning that the UK is in real trouble of not being able to respond to threats having neglected skills and equipment to counter hi-tech, capable armies.

In a speech at the Royal United Service Institute today, he will say: “State-based competition is now being employed in more novel and increasingly integrated ways and we must be ready to deal with them.

“The threats we face are not thousands of miles away but are now on Europe’s doorstep – we have seen how cyber warfare can be both waged on the battlefield and to disrupt normal people’s lives – we in the UK are not immune from that.”

The UK currently spends more on defence than any other European nation, paying out £36billion last year compared to France’s £32billion.

It pales in comparison to Russian spending that is believed to be about £50billion a year and army chiefs are worried about Russian dominance in areas including artillery, electronic warfare and cyber skills.

Sir Nick will continue: “The time to address these threats is now – we cannot afford to sit back.”

The Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson, along with a cross-party group of backbench MPS, has argued that any further cuts to the Army or Royal Navy would prove to be disastrous to Britain’s military might.

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