While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, May 31

An aerial view shows oil tank cars and railroad freight wagons in Omsk, Russia, on May 24, 2022. PHOTO: REUTERS

Zelensky chides EU for failing to agree on Russian oil import ban

EU leaders on Monday made clear they would fail to agree on a Russian oil import ban at a summit in Brussels, prompting swift criticism from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky who chastised them for being too soft on Moscow.

The European Union has rolled out five packages of sanctions since Russia invaded Ukraine more than three months ago, demonstrating uncharacteristic speed and unity given the complexity of the measures.

But the lack of agreement on a sixth package - and in particular on an oil ban - exposed a struggle to widen sanctions as the economic risk for Europe grows, because so many countries depend on Russian crude.

The leaders of the 27 EU countries are set to agree at the two-day summit on the principle of an eventual oil embargo, a draft of their summit conclusions showed. But they will leave the hard decisions for later.


Biden vows to keep up pressure for gun regulation in wake of mass shootings

US President Joe Biden vowed on Monday to push for a "more rational" approach to gun regulation in the wake of the country's latest mass shootings.

"I've been pretty motivated all along" to act on guns, Biden told reporters in Washington. "I'm going to continue to push."

He added: "I think things have gotten so bad that everybody is getting more rational about it. That's my hope."


Britain says people infected with monkeypox can isolate at home

People infected with monkeypox can isolate at home if they remain well enough, whilst following measures to limit close contact with others, the UK's health security agency said on Monday, as part of fresh guidance designed to curb the rise in cases of the viral illness in the country.

There have been 71 additional cases of monkeypox identified in England, the agency said on Monday, taking the total number of confirmed cases in the United Kingdom as a whole since May 7 to 179.

More than 300 suspected and confirmed cases of monkeypox - a usually mild illness that spreads through close contact and can cause flu-like symptoms and pus-filled skin lesions - have been reported in May, outside of Africa where the virus is endemic.


Italy scraps Covid-19 entry rules

Italy said Monday it was dropping the requirement to show proof of coronavirus vaccination, recent recovery or a negative test before entering the country.

The health ministry announced that the requirement to show a so-called "Green Pass" to enter Italy "will not be extended" when it expires on May 31.

Italy was the first European country hit by coronavirus in early 2020 and has had some of the toughest restrictions, including requiring all workers to show a Green Pass.


Football: Valencia sack president and ex-S'pore diplomat Anil Murthy after audio leaks

Former Singapore diplomat Anil Murthy has been sacked as president of Valencia, the La Liga side announced on Monday.

Murthy was axed following an audio clip published by Spanish newspaper Super Deporte of the Valencia boss speaking at a work dinner, where he allegedly spoke disparagingly of the club's billionaire owner Peter Lim and described Liverpool and Newcastle - home to two of the Premier League's clubs - as "s***" cities.

He had also threatened to "kill" Valencia's big-name players in the media if they forced an exit.


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