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World breaking news today (September 4): Russia to practice near the 'hot spot' between Greece and Turkey

10:41 | 04/09/2020

World breaking news today (September 4): Two exercises to the east of the Mediterranean Navy will take place on September 8-22 and September 17-25. Meanwhile, high-flying drone drops weed over Tel Aviv, China to resume direct passenger flights to Beijing from 8 countries and oil price alos make headlines today.

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world breaking news today september 4 russia to practice near the hot spot between greece and turkey
Two exercises to the east of the Mediterranean Navy will take place on September 8-22 and September 17-25 (Photo: Stream News)

Russia to practice near the "hot spot" between Greece and Turkey

Two exercises to the east of the Mediterranean Navy will take place on September 8-22 and September 17-25, Turkey's navy September 3 announcement on its website.

Igor Korotchenko, director of the Center for Analysis of Global Arms Trade in Moscow, said that Russia wants to show off its strength against NATO in upcoming exercises, rather than show support for Turkey.

"Russia has strong economic and defense ties with Turkey, but it is our policy to avoid backing any of the parties in this dispute," Korotchenko said.

Turkey and NATO are disagreeing over the purchase of the Russian S-400 air defense missile system.

"Those who came thousands of kilometers ago are trying to bully, claim rights and play the role of guardian angel," Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar wrote on Twitter on September 3, referring to France.

Turkey's oil and gas exploration in the eastern Mediterranean caused tension with Greece and Cyprus, stemming from a conflict of interpretation of maritime boundaries.

Tensions escalated this week after the US eased its decades-long arms embargo against Cyprus.

Turkish forces occupied one-third of the area of Cyprus in 1974 after a coup sought to unify the island with Greece.

The Aegean Sea lies between Greece and Turkey, Stream News reported.

High-flying drone drops weed over Tel Aviv

As reported by Reuters, a drone dropped packets of what looked like cannabis over a main square in Tel Aviv on Thursday after activists seeking to legalize the drug in Israel promised free weed from the air on social media.

Police said they arrested two men who operated the quadcopter that flew over Rabin Square, a site often used for street protests and political rallies.

The time has come,” the Green Drone pro-legalization group said on its Telegram web messaging channel. “Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it’s the Green Drone sending you free cannabis from the skies.”

In a statement, police said they suspected the baggies were filled with “a dangerous drug” and that officers managed to recover dozens of them. Photos distributed by the police showed what appeared to be cannabis inside.

The Maariv news website, which carried photos of the drone dropping the packets, said passersby took some of them before police arrived. Footage showed people walking through busy traffic to pick up packets that had fallen on a road.

Currently, medical use of cannabis is permitted in Israel while recreational use is illegal but largely decriminalized.

(Video: Reuters)

China to resume direct passenger flights to Beijing from 8 countries

China is poised to resume direct international flights to Beijing from several countries with low rates of the deadly coronavirus, aviation authorities said on Wednesday, after a freeze of more than five months.

The new rules will apply from Thursday to flights from Pakistan, Thailand, Cambodia, Greece, Denmark, Austria, Sweden, and Canada, all with low numbers of imported cases of the virus which has hammered global travel.

But travelers would be subject to centralized quarantine on arrival for 14 days and have to take two Covid-19 tests, a Beijing city official told reporters.

But travelers would be subject to centralized quarantine on arrival for 14 days and have to take two Covid-19 tests, a Beijing city official told reporters.

Since late March, Beijing-bound international flights have been diverted to other Chinese cities where passengers are screened for the coronavirus before being allowed to travel on to Beijing, the political heart of the country. They would then be sent to quarantine facilities.

As of Tuesday, the CAAC said 511 international flights had undergone diversion, according to CPEC.

world breaking news today september 4 russia to practice near the hot spot between greece and turkey
China is poised to resume direct international flights to Beijing from several countries with low rates of the deadly coronavirus (Photo: Nikkei Asian Review)

Canadian oil prices rise on pipeline shutdown

The Canadian heavy oil benchmark rose on Wednesday after a pipeline carrying diluent necessary for oil sands production was shut down following a leak over the weekend, affecting production at a project operated by an Exxon subsidiary, Oil Price reported.

The discount of Western Canadian Select (WCS) – the benchmark price of oil from Canada’s oil sands delivered at Hardisty, Alberta – relative to the U.S. benchmark WTI Crude narrowed to below $10 a barrel for the first time since August 17, according to Bloomberg estimates of NE2 Group data. On Wednesday, the October contract of Western Canadian Select closed at $31.86, while WTI Crude settled at $41.51.

world breaking news today september 4 russia to practice near the hot spot between greece and turkey
(Photo: Oil Price)

The shutdown of the pipeline carrying diluent has affected production at the Kearl oil sands project of Imperial Oil, which is majority-owned by ExxonMobil.

Inter Pipeline, the operator of the diluent pipeline, said on Saturday that it had detected a leak along its pipeline systems east of the Fort McMurray Airport. Inter Pipeline shut down and isolated its Polaris and Corridor pipeline systems. On Monday, the company confirmed that a segment of the Polaris pipeline would remain shut down until further notice, while the Corridor pipeline system was not impacted and safely restarted earlier that day.

The partial shutdown of the Polaris pipeline affected production at Imperial’s Kearl facility, which has ceased all production.

At this point, it is not clear when diluent supply will be restored, a spokeswoman for Inter Pipeline told The Canadian Press.

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Jasmine Le