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Harry’s subtle snub to royal family? Prince doesn’t wear Coronation medal given to him by King Charles to present ‘Soldier of the Year’ award – after previously dropping it in message to US veterans last year

Prince Harry appeared to forego wearing the medal marking his father’s coronation as he handed out an award to a top-performing American soldier, according to eagle-eyed royal observers. The Duke of Sussex wore an assortment of medals on his jacket as he named combat medic Sergeant First Class Elizabeth Marks the Military Times Soldier of the Year, including three marking his grandmother’s various Jubilees this century. Notably absent from the 39-year-old’s lapels, however, was the Coronation medal given to him and others who were involved in King Charles’ formal ascension to the throne last May – which was also absent from a video filmed late last year. Royal experts believe the absence of the honour could be a snub to his father. The medals also match those Harry chose to wear as he attended the Coronation. Harry was not allowed to attend last May’s festivities in military dress after stepping back from royal duties; that privilege is reserved for working members of the family. But he is thought to have been one of the 400,000 recipients of the Coronation medal, which was coined for those who actively contributed to the Coronation ceremonies in Westminster Abbey and other processions. The emblems were also given to serving members of the armed forces, frontline emergency service personnel and public employed prison service personnel in recognition of their public service. Living recipients of the George Cross and Victoria Cross were also given the ceremonial honour. The absence of the medal on Harry’s chest, reported by Newsweek and The Sun, suggested to royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams that he was deliberately seeking to distance himself from his old life as he makes the US his permanent home. Commentator Mr Fitzwilliams told Newsweek: ‘Those eligible who were involved in the coronation were given a medal. ‘The Sussexes do nothing by chance and this clearly emphasises or is intended to emphasise his distance from the royal family.’ And he added to The Sun: ‘The Sussexes are well aware that every single thing they do, everything they wear, everything they say, is all going to be examined. ‘The problem is that if he chooses not to wear the coronation medal, it will certainly be seen as a snub to King Charles.’ Representatives for the Duke of Sussex have been contacted for comment. The Coronation medal bears an effigy of King Charles and Queen Camilla looking to the side on its front, and the King’s cypher, CIIIR (Charles III Rex), on its rear. In the video Harry wore his Operational Service medal given to him for his time in the armed forces in Helmand province. He also wore the three jubilee medals cast to celebrate his grandmother Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden, Diamond and Platinum Jubilees. He is thought to have worn the medals to show his affinity for the military, which played a key part in his early life as a senior working royal, when he was deployed to Afghanistan in 2007 and again in 2012. Like other recent appearances by the Duke, his presentation of the Soldier of the Year award appeared to be heavily stage managed – with Harry delivering a pre-recorded message from the back door of his Montecito mansion. He paid tribute to Sergeant First Class Elizabeth Marks – who he described as a ‘friend’ and a ‘beacon of inspiration’ – as he congratulated her on the prize. Four-time Invictus Games gold medalist and five-time Paralympic medalist SFC Marks, 33, suffered bilateral hip injuries while deployed in Iraq in 2010, after joining up aged just 17. Harry told the ceremony: ‘I first met Sergeant First Class Elizabeth Marks at the Invictus Games in Orlando 2016, where I presented her with not one, but four gold medals that she’d won in swimming. ‘To me, she epitomises the courage, resilience and determination represented across our service community. And this is not just because of her swimming abilities. ‘Ellie has courageously overcome every obstacle to cross her path. She has turned her pain into purpose and led through compassion and willpower, showing others that the impossible is indeed possible. ‘Despite the injuries she endured during her deployment as a medical assistant in Iraq – along with numerous surgeries and setbacks that would have deterred many – she has persevered tirelessly, becoming the first woman in the Army’s world-class athlete program as well as the first swimmer the program had ever seen. ‘She’s also taken her recovery a step further, using her experiences and achievements to inspire and assist others in their mental and physical journey into sport, ensuring those who can’t see a way out or through are introduced to the medicine of sport that saved her too.’ SFC Marks used her speech to issue a plea for better mental health support for military veterans after they have finished their service. She said: ‘I wanna say thank you to the people that failed me. I wanna say thank you to the individuals in leadership positions who showed me what not to become. ‘Without you I wouldn’t have the perspective and empathy to see service members as they deserve. ‘Too often we treat those who ask for help as villains. We forget our promises made, and because of those things suicide is the leading cause of death within our ranks. ‘Suicide isn’t killing our people. Neglect is. There will never be a rank, a medal or an accolade that means more to me than the lives I couldn’t save.’ She added: ‘We’re failing each other, before and after service. We have to do better.’ Harry did not wear the Coronation medal last year as he filmed a gag-filled monologue for the Stand Up for Heroes show in November – an annual variety show held in support of US veterans. Harry was in good spirits as he poked fun at himself during the clip show and joked about people with ginger hair like himself being an ‘endangered species’. The speech, which also appeared to be filmed from his Montecito mansion, saw him make gags about keeping him on script and roll out a quip about his new life with his family in California not being scrutinised. Harry now officially considers the US his primary residence, as first revealed by the Mail earlier this month. The change was declared in a change of address filed with Companies House for his eco travel venture Travalyst.

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BBC Strictly Come Dancing’s Giovanni Pernice called ‘love of girlfriend’s life’ as he shares first loved-up snap after ‘denial

Giovanni Pernice’s girlfriend has branded him the ‘love of her life’ as he shared his first loved-up snap of the pair on social media. Molly Brown went ‘Instagram official’ with the Strictly Come Dancing star last month. At the time, the model shared a picture alongside the pro dancer which he then shared to his own Instagram Story. The pair appeared to be enjoying dinner together and looked loved-up as they gave their post poses for the camera while Giovanni had his arm wrapped firmly around 24-year-old Molly’s waist. Molly, who is on the books of Scout Model Management, captioned the post: “Amore Mio,” which translated to ‘My love’ and the professional dancer reposted it on his Instagram stories. He also responded in the comments with the same two-word message. READ MORE: Gemma Atkinson issues ‘not long’ countdown as she tells fans ‘I wanted to be real’ Join our WhatsApp Top Stories and Breaking News group by clicking this link But now, Giovanni has declared his love for his new girlfriend in his own gush post in front of his 1.1 million followers. The dancer, 33, and Molly, 25, could be seen on an evening out with their arms around each other as Giovanni looked lovingly at her. Giovanni made his feelings for Molly clear as he wished her a happy birthday in a sweet message alongside the photo. He wrote in the caption: “Happy bday to my beautiful!! TMABWAW I love you!” Molly was quick to respond, writing: “Love of my life. Thank you baby, TMABW.” And Giovanni’s fans were quick to comment on what a beautiful couple they made while also sharing birthday wishes for Molly. @misssarah_louise said: “What a beautiful couple you make!” @fatcinders_ commented: “Beautiful photo! Happy Birthday.” @jaynemayauthor wrote: “Happy birthday! What a stunning couple.” @mollybrownxoxfp replied: “Cutest in the world. Happy birthday.” @woodgatehelen shared: “The smile on your face makes my heart sing. Happy Birthday Molly. Wish you both every happiness.” @pixie_giirrl added: “Awh! Love this photo happy birthday to your special lady.” It comes just days after Giovanni denied he had got engaged to Molly, as she appeared to have been photographed wearing an engagement ring over the weekend. Molly was seen supporting him at the biggest show of his currently solo tour as they were pictured leaving the London Palladium last weekend. Giovanni looked smart in a white shirt which he wore under a teal suit before finishing off his look with a black overcoat and shiny dark shoes. Molly, meanwhile, looked glamorouous in a slinky black mini dress that was slightly covered by her striking long-line red cast. She finished off her look with a pair of black heels while a gold band was spotted on what is traditionally classed as the ‘engagement ring finger’.However, Giovanni’s management told OK!: “This is definitely not true,” when asked if the Italian star had popped the question.

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Usain Bolt spotted eating at Bolton restaurant with ex-Premier League star

It’s not every day that the world’s fastest man walks into the same restaurant as you. Diners enjoying a meal at Ewe in Westhoughton, Bolton, were shocked when they spotted Usain Bolt tucking into some jerk chicken on Thursday evening (April 25). The eight-time Olympic champion had made a surprise visit to the restaurant with a group of friends, including former Bolton Wanderers footballer Ricardo Gardner. “We got the call to say he was coming down and the owner asked if we could do some special jerk chicken for him,” explained Nathan Baxter, Ewe’s operations and marketing manager. “It’s not on our menu so it was the owner doing something special for him.” READ MORE: Madness as people queue up for 17 hours at Popeyes first drive-thru in Greater Manchester Despite the improvised nature of his meal, Mr Baxter said the former Jamaican sprinter “really enjoyed” his food, which he jokingly rated as a 7.5 out of 10. After he had finished eating, Usain then took the time to pose for pictures with star-struck staff and diners. “When he walked in, the other guests were a little bit shocked to see him,” said Mr Baxter. “He had a nice secluded meal in the restaurant then he took the time to greet loads of guests and all of the staff and took loads of photos. “It’s nice to have such a big celebrity come to a suburban area. Normally they go to big city centre restaurants.” In a post on Instagram today, the restaurant said: “When the fastest man in the world slows down for dinner @ewe_restaurant and spends time with all the staff & guests! Thanks for dropping by.” It’s not the first time that Usain has ventured out to Greater Manchester’s suburbs for a meal. Two years ago, customers at La Casa in Astley were left amazed when he pitched up for dinner and drinks with friends. Bolt is famously a huge United supporter, and has spent a lot of time in Manchester over the years. As well as La Casa, among his favourite places to eat is veteran Caribbean takeaway Kool Runnings in Old Trafford. Ewe, which is based in Chorley Road, opened in 2022, promising to bring the ‘flamboyance’ of Manchester city centre to the suburbs of Bolton. The restaurant’s menu is described as modern British cuisine with signature dishes inspired by the elements of earth, water and air. There are also pizzas, pasta dishes and steaks, along with a selection of small plates and salads.

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Man who raped girl in park after plying her with alcohol is jailed for five and a half years

A man who raped a teenage girl in a park after plying her with alcohol and telling her “age is just a number” has been jailed for five and a half years. Nicolas Horvath (28), formerly of Stonecourt, Roscommon, Co Roscommon, pleaded guilty to one count of rape on December 11th, 2020. He has been in custody since he was extradited from Slovakia in 2022. The victim was 16 at the time and was socialising and drinking alcohol in a park with her friends when the man and his friend joined them. They were unknown to each other prior to this, the Central Criminal Court heard. Horvath and his friend got more alcohol, and the group continued to drink. He started talking to the girl, who told him she was 16. He replied, “Age is just a number”, and encouraged her to drink more alcohol. A local garda told Gerard Clarke SC, prosecuting, that the conversation became sexual. Horvath took the girl to a more secluded area of the park, where he raped her. The victim said no to the man and tried to push him away. One of her female friends found them, and Horvath got up when she shone the torch of her phone at them. The victim later told her mother, and a complaint was made to gardaí who searched Horvath’s home a few days later, seizing items of clothing which matched CCTV images. Horvath left the jurisdiction shortly afterwards, and has been in custody since he was extradited back to Ireland in December 2022 on a European Arrest Warrant. Imposing sentence on Friday, Ms Justice Melanie Greally said there were a number of aggravating factors in the case, including the fact the man was aware of the youth of the girl, there was an element of sexual exploitation involved in the crime, and he used alcohol to impair her judgment. Ms Justice Greally noted Horvath engaged in “sexually aggressive, graphic, vulgar and age-inappropriate” language with the child, plied her with alcohol to the point where she felt she could not refuse, and then took her to a secluded spot where he raped her. Ms Justice Greally handed down a sentence of six and a half years and suspended the final year on a number of conditions, including that he leave the jurisdiction within seven days of his release and not return for 15 years. In a victim impact statement read to the court at a previous hearing, the teenager said she had been left with a feeling of “shame, sadness, anger and disgust all in one” after the rape. She said she felt her body “did not belong to me”, and attends therapy to deal with panic attacks. She said the rape was “degrading” and “fundamentally changes a person to their core”, describing it as the “most dehumanising and humiliating thing” that can happen. The man has five previous convictions for minor road traffic offences. Kenneth Fogarty SC, defending, told the court his instructions were that his client had left the jurisdiction due to his child’s health issue. He has two young children who are living abroad with his partner. A letter of apology from Horvath was read to the court. He took the stand and told the court he accepted responsibility for his actions and understood the hurt he had caused the victim. He said he wishes to return to his family and provide for his young children once he has served his sentence. Sign up for push alerts and have the best news, analysis and comment delivered directly to your phoneFind The Irish Times on WhatsApp and stay up to dateListen to our Inside Politics podcast for the best political chat and analysis

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KP appoints Sonia as first woman AIG police – The Frontier Post

F.P. Report PESHAWAR: Sonia Shamroz, known for being the only Muslim woman to win the International Association of Women Police Award, has made history again. She has been appointed as the Assistant Inspector General of Police (AIG) Establishment in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, becoming the first woman to hold this position. Originally from Abbottabad district, Sonia Shamroz has worked in different roles, including as DPO Chitral and DPO Battagram. She joined the police service in 2013 and has served as ASP and DPO in various districts. Sharing her thoughts on this achievement, Sonia Shamroz talked about the important responsibilities that female officers now have in the province. She mentioned how women are being given equal rights compared to men in the police force. She also emphasised the importance of choosing people for positions based on their skills and qualifications rather than personal recommendations.

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Govt extends stay of registered Afghan refugees until June 30 – The Frontier Post

F.P. Report ISLAMABAD: The government has extended the validity of the Afghan refugees’ Proof of Registration Cards (PoRs) that expired on April 1, 2024, to June 30, 2024, to facilitate those who have yet not left Pakistan voluntarily as it presses ahead with its push to boot out illegal foreigners, a statement said on Friday. A decision to this effect was taken in the federal cabinet meeting held at the PM House under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif. The cabinet was told that this extension would enable the PoR cardholders to have access to schools, bank accounts, and other facilities during their stay in Pakistan. It must be noted that these PoR cardholders will be forcibly sent back to their country in the third phase of the programme of repatriation of illegal foreign nationals living in Pakistan for ages. Pakistan has expelled over half a million undocumented refugees in the repatriation programme’s first phase from November 1 till date. The second phase was aimed at driving out refugees holding Afghan Citizen Cards (ACC). The ACCs were provided by the Pakistan government to Afghan refugees in 2017, after processing and registering them with Pakistan’s National Database and Regulation Authority (NADRA). On the advice of the Ministry of Law and Justice, the federal cabinet approved the establishment of an additional special court in Makran Division to deal with anti-narcotics cases in Balochistan province. The jurisdiction of this special court will be extended to the districts of Panjgur, Kech, Gwadar, Hub and Lasbela. The cabinet also directed the authorities to appoint the best judge in the special court and ensure effective prosecution. Moreover, during the meeting, the Federal Secretary for the Interior briefed the cabinet on the progress of the Federal Investigation Agency’s (FIA) operations. The Secretary of Aviation, filled in the meeting on the recent measures taken to improve the facilities at Pakistan’s airports, particularly Lahore and Karachi. The meeting was informed that the service counters at the airports had been increased and the facilities were being upgraded. The meeting was told that the advertisements inviting expressions of interest were published in national and international newspapers on April 2, with the last date being May 3, and so far several companies had expressed keen interest in PIA. The meeting also gave the go-ahead to the appointments of four ex-officio members of the Institute of Cost and Management Accountants (ICMA) and approved the decisions taken by the Cabinet Committee on Legislative Cases on April 18, 2024.

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IPL 2024: ‘Save the bowlers’ – Reactions as Punjab chase down record total against Kolkata

The Punjab Kings on Friday broke the record for the highest chase in Indian Premier League history after beating the Kolkata Knight Riders by eight wickets at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Having being put to bat first, the Knight Riders posted 261/6 — a T20 record total at the Eden Gardens — thanks to openers Sunil Narine (75) and Phil Salt’s (71) 138-run stand. However, led by Jonny Bairstow’s unbeaten 107 and fifties by Prabhsimran Singh (54) and Shashank Singh (60) the Punjab Kings chased down the target with eight wickets in hand and eight balls to spare as they broke the record for the highest chase in T20 history. The two teams also broke the record for most sixes hit in a T20 match with 42 sixes hit at Eden Gardens.

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IPL 2024: Jonny Bairtsow shines as Punjab Kings beat Kolkata Knight Riders in record-breaking match

Records were smashed in the Indian Premier League on Friday as the Punjab Kings chased down a mammoth 262 against the Kolkata Knight Riders at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata. The Kolkata Knight Riders rode on Sunil Narine (71) and Phil Salt’s (75) opening stand of 138 runs to post 261/6 in their 20 overs — a T20 record total at the Eden Gardens. However, the Punjab Kings snatched that record as well the record for the highest successful chase in a T20 match as they secured an eight-wicket win with eight balls to spare. In the process, the two teams also hit a T20 record 42 sixes in the match. Jonny Bairstow carried his bat through the Punjab innings as he smashed a 48-ball 108 to lead the Punjab chase. The Kings got off to a good start in their chase thanks to Impact Player Prabhsimran Singh’s 20-ball 54. However, the opener perished on the final ball of the power play as Narine caught him short with a direct hit while going for a risky single. Rilee Roussow played a handy cameo before Shashank Singh hammered a 28-ball 68 to help the Kings to a memorable win. Turning point of the match It is not often that a team losing their batter in a big chase ends up helping them in the long run. However, the Kings losing Roussow in the 13th over was the unlikely turning point of the match. Punjab still needed 83 runs from 42 balls and a couple of good overs from Narine and Harshit Rana looked to have halted the scoring. However, Shashank Singh hammered eight sixes on his way to helping Punjab secure a scarcely believable win. The Field’s player of the match Jonny Bairstow finally arrived in the 2024 IPL with a stunning century littered with nine sixes and eight fours. However, as controversial as it may sound, Sunil Narine is The Field’s pick for the player of the match for his all round performance, albeit in a losing cause. Narine hit nine fours and four sixes as he slammed a 32-ball 71 to help Kolkata post 261/6 in their 20 overs. But it was with the ball that Narine showed his quality. He had a hand in both the Punjab wickets to fall; running out Prabhsimran Singh with a direct hit and picking up the wicket of Roussow. Crucially, Narine only gave away 24 runs in his four overs, the best performance by a bowler on the night. Every bowler apart from Punjab’s Rahul Chahar (1/33) ended the match with an economy rate of over 10 runs. ‘Whack it as far as possible’ Jonny Bairstow returned to form in the IPL with a stunning century — his second in the tournament — and it couldn’t have come at a better time for Punjab. The English batter attacked the Kolkata bowlers from the get go and never took his foot of the gas as Punjab clinched a superb win. When you are chasing down targets of upwards of 200 runs, you have to take risks in the power play. Some days it’s your day and some days it’s not. [On his mindset while trying to chase down 260] Try and whack it as far as possible! (Laughs) I’ve never been in a game where 260 has been scored. It was a case of look, if it’s in your area you have to go (after it). — Jonny Bairstow after the match

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A ban in Kansas on gender-affirming care also would bar advocacy for kids’ social transitions

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — A proposed ban in Kansas on gender-affirming care for minors also would bar state employees from promoting it — or even children’s social transitioning. Teachers and social workers who support LGBTQ+ rights worry about they will be disciplined or fired for helping kids who are exploring their gender identities. Democratic Gov. Laura Kelly vetoed the proposed ban, and top Republicans anticipated Friday that the GOP-controlled Legislature will attempt to override her action before lawmakers adjourn for the year Tuesday. Their bill appeared to have the two-thirds majorities needed in both chambers to override a veto when it passed last month, but that could depend on all Republicans being present and none of them switching. Supporters of the bill said the provision now being singled out for criticism is designed to ensure that the banned care — puberty blockers, hormone treatments and surgery — isn’t still promoted with tax dollars or other state resources. But compared to the restrictions or bans on gender-affirming care in two dozen other states, the Kansas proposal appears more sweeping because of its broad language against the promotion of social transitioning that applies to state employees “whose official duties include the care of children,” LGBTQ+ rights advocates said. “That is not something that we have seen before,” said Omar Gonzalez-Pagan, an attorney for the LGBTQ+ rights group Lambda Legal. “It really allows us to look behind the curtain at what is the true motivation behind this bill, which has nothing to do with protecting the health and safety of youth and everything to do with attacking transgender people and erasing transgender identity.” About 300,000 youths ages 13 to 17 identify as transgender in the U.S., according to estimates by the Williams Institute, an LGBTQ+ research center at UCLA Law. It estimates that in Kansas, about 2,100 youths in that age group identify as transgender. Other provisions of the proposed ban would prevent gender-affirming care from occurring on state property and prohibit groups receiving state funds from advocating medications or surgery to treat a child whose gender identity differs from their sex assigned at birth. Brittany Jones, an attorney and policy director for the conservative Kansas Family Voice, said courts have consistently ruled that a state “has the right to direct what is being done with its funds.” “This does not block any child from socially transitioning, but it cannot be at the behest of a government entity,” she said in an email. In statehouses across the U.S., Republicans have promoted restrictions on gender-affirming care by portraying it as experimental and the potential source of long-term medical problems. Backers of the Kansas proposal have repeatedly pointed to the National Health Service of England’s recent decision to stop prescribing puberty blockers as a routine treatment for minors seeking gender transitions. “Obviously, we believe in our heart of hearts that they shouldn’t be steering students toward that sort of thing, that they should be looking at all alternative counseling and things of that nature,” said state Sen. Mike Thompson, a conservative Kansas City-area Republican. Such bans are opposed by major American medical groups, which have firmly endorsed gender-affirming care for minors. At least 200 Kansas medical and mental health professionals signed a letter to lawmakers opposing the proposed ban. Young transgender Kansas residents have repeatedly said their transitions improved their lives dramatically. Parents of transgender kids have described gender-affirming care as vital to combatting severe depression and suicidal tendencies. But as troubling as they and others find the loss of access for kids to gender-affirming care, they have focused in recent weeks on the provision against promoting social transitioning as especially scary to them. “I was taught to uplift students and make them know that I will support them 100 percent, no matter who they are,” Riley Long, a transgender special education teacher, said during a news conference in the Kansas City area. “This bill makes it seem like it is only OK to listen to my cisgender students, and that my transgender students are automatically incorrect.” Under the bill, social transitioning includes “the changing of an individual’s preferred pronouns or manner of dress.” The measure doesn’t spell out what constitutes promoting it. The Kansas State Department of Education says public school teachers and administrators aren’t legally considered state employees. However, educators who support transgender rights aren’t confident that they wouldn’t fall under the ban — or that opponents of transgender rights wouldn’t attack their jobs regardless. Isaac Johnson, who is completing a social work degree and just finished an internship in Topeka’s public schools, said problems could arise from interactions like one he had with a girl who told him, “I don’t really feel like a girl. I only feel like a boy.” “All I said back in response is, ‘Well, what does that mean? What does it mean to be a girl?’ ” Johnson, who is transgender, told reporters during a Statehouse news conference Thursday. “My fear is that, per the law, because I didn’t come out explicitly and say, ‘No, you’re a girl. You’ll always be a girl,’ that will be seen as promoting social transition.” Transgender Kansas residents and parents of transgender kids also believe they have even more cause to be nervous after Republican lawmakers last year overrode Kelly’s veto of a measure that ended the state’s legal recognition of transgender people’s gender identities. The law’s most visible consequence has been to keep transgender people from changing their driver’s licenses and birth certificates to reflect their gender identities — something that wasn’t the focus of last year’s debate. Aaron Roberts, the pastor of a United Church of Christ congregation in the Kansas City area, said support from social workers was crucial to his transgender daughter before she joined his family out of foster care. She is now a college student. “All the support that she got from those wonderful social workers who went above and beyond to help her navigate her gender identity — this bill wipes them out,” he said. “Gone.” John Hanna, The Associated Press

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Journalists sign manifesto in defense of Spanish PM and wife, criticize right-wing media, parties

MADRID (AP) — Thousands of Spanish journalists came out Friday in support of Socialist Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez and his wife following Sánchez’s announcement that he was considering his future as premier after a court opened preliminary proceedings against his wife on corruption allegations. Sánchez, who is to announce his future Monday, blamed the judicial probe on “spurious” attacks by right and far-right opponents in the media and political parties. In support, several thousand journalists and writers signed an online manifesto saying, “the attack by the media and judicial extreme right against the wife of the President of the Government is a new attempt to subvert the popular will expressed at the polls through illicit means.” It criticized what it called a “campaign of hoaxes, falsehoods and harassment” against members of the last two leftist coalition governments, saying they were coordinated and financed by right-wing political parties, aligned media, businesses and judiciary members. The legal complaint against Sánchez’s wife, Begoña Gómez, was filed by a far-right legal platform that says Gómez used her position to influence business deals. The group, Manos Limpias, or “Clean Hands,” acknowledged that the complaint was based on newspaper articles. Spanish prosecutors say it should be thrown out. “The undersigned journalists invite civil society to join this manifesto and to mobilize on social networks and in the streets against this anti-democratic outrage,” Friday’s manifesto read. “Governments are chosen and changed at the polls and in Parliament,” it continued, before ending with the call of “No to the judicial and media coup. No to the mud machine.” The right-of center opposition Popular Party, however, said Sánchez’s behavior was a pathetic ploy to try to win support in upcoming regional and European elections. Sánchez’s supporters plan a demonstration in support of Sánchez in Madrid on Saturday. The Associated Press

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