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Portugal

In Portugal, Criminals Who Target Seniors Face Extra Time

With Europe's lowest fertility rate, and some 20% of its 10.6 million inhabitants over the age of 65, Portugal is aging fast. Bad news for the country, but apparently a boon to criminals, who see the elderly as prime targets. Crime against senior citizens, financial scams in particular, has registered a sharp rise since the beginning of the economic crisis, in 2008.

But now, as national elections approach, lawmakers have decided to grant extra protection to those with a few extra years. A new law taking effect this week will consider as an aggravating factor if the victim of a crime is older than 65, the Lisbon daily Diário de Notícias reports.

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Old and worried in Lisbon. Photo: Pedrosimoes7

For robbery, criminals now risk a maximum prison sentence of 10 years if their victim is old, up from the three-year maximum otherwise.

To illustrate the situation faced by the elderly in Portugal, the newspaper reports on a case earlier this year, in which a mother and her daughter, aged 52 and 30, scammed an 81-year-old man. The two took advantage of the victim's "extremely poor condition" to steal 5.3 million euros ($5.9 million), using a falsified proxy statement to transfer money out of his bank account and insurance policies.

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Geopolitics

How Ukraine Keeps Getting The West To Flip On Arms Supplies

The open debate on weapon deliveries to Ukraine is highly unusual, but Kyiv has figured out how to use the public moral suasion — and patience — to repeatedly shift the question in its favor. But will it work now for fighter jets?

Photo of a sunset over the USS Nimitz with a man guiding fighter jets ready for takeoff

U.S fighter jets ready for takeoff on the USS Nimitz

Pierre Haski

-Analysis-

PARIS — In what other war have arms deliveries been negotiated so openly in the public sphere?

On Monday, a journalist asked Joe Biden if he plans on supplying F-16 fighter jets to Ukraine. He answered “No”. A few hours later, the same question was asked to Emmanuel Macron, about French fighter jets. Macron did not rule it out.

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Visiting Paris on Tuesday, Ukrainian Defense Minister Oleksïï Reznikov recalled that a year ago, the United States had refused him ground-air Stinger missiles deliveries. Eleven months later, Washington is delivering heavy tanks, in addition to everything else. The 'no' of yesterday is the green light of tomorrow: this is the lesson that the very pragmatic minister seemed to learn.

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