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Europe briefing: 8 stories you need to know about today

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Europe briefing: 8 stories you need to know about today

Europe briefing: 8 stories you need to know about today
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Reuters
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1. French actor Gerard Depardieu accused of rape and sexual assault

French actor Gerard Depardieu is being investigated by a Paris prosecutor over accusations of rape and sexual assault, said a judicial source to Reuters.

The 69-year-old French actor denies any wrongdoing, his lawyer told the AFP.

The alleged crimes took place this month in one of Depardieu's Paris residences, said French media.

The accusations were made by a young actress to police on Monday.

2. Australian filmmaker sentenced to six years in prison for 'espionage' by Cambodian court

A Cambodian court sentenced an Australian filmmaker to six years in prison on Friday on espionage charges.

James Ricketson, 69, was arrested last June after he was photographed flying the drone above the rally organised by the now-dissolved opposition Cambodia National Rescue Party (CNRP). It remains unclear for who he was spying.

The filmmaker has already spent more than a year behind bars after his bail was denied.

"James is almost 70 and is not in good health, our family is very scared about what will happen to him in there if things take a turn for the worst," Ricketson's family said in a statement following the verdict, referring to Phnom Penh's Prey Sar prison where Ricketson has been jailed.

3. US, Canada in late-night for NAFTA; no deal yet

Top NAFTA negotiators from Canada and the US wrapped up a third day of talks on Thursday — agreeing to meet to resolve final differences before a deadline. Mexican counterparts are on standby to rejoin negotiations.

"Canada's going to make a deal at some point. It may be by Friday or it may be within a period of time," US President Donald Trump told Bloomberg Television. "I think we're close to a deal."

The new NAFTA deal taking shape is likely to strengthen North America as a manufacturing stronghold by making it more costly to import vehicle parts from outside.

4. New Zealand allows Chelsea Manning entry for speaking tour

New Zealand authorities announced that Chelsea Manning could enter the country for a speaking tour, a day after Australian authorities said she couldn't enter their country.

Manning was convicted and sentenced to 35 years in prison for leaking US government secrets and would normally not qualify for entry into New Zealand under its good-character provisions.

Immigration New Zealand General Manager Steve Stuart said Manning's sentence was commuted by former President Barack Obama in 2017 and said that she hadn't reoffended since being released and that the chances of her offending in New Zealand were low.

Manning, 30, acknowledged leaking more than 700,000 military and State Department documents to anti-secrecy site WikiLeaks in 2010.

5. EU will respond in kind if US imposes car tariffs, says Juncker

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he hoped a July "ceasefire agreement" with U.S. President Donald Trump to refrain from imposing car tariffs would prevail, but the EU would impose its own tariffs if the U.S. changed course.

Juncker told German TV on Friday that the EU would not let anyone dictate its trade policies.

"If Washington violated the deal and imposed auto tariffs, he said, "then we will also do that."

6. Euronews' exclusive interview with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri

Lebanese PM Hariri addressed his resignation, Syria, and his relationship with Hezbollah in an exclusive interview with Euronews' Anelise Borges. Read more here.

7. EU will end switch between summer and winter time: Juncker

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said on Friday the bloc would look into ending the practice of switching between summer and winter time after a survey found most EU citizens against the practice.

More than 80% of EU citizens want to abolish the EU's summer/winter time change and favoured using the summer time the entire year, he said on German TV, adding he would put the plan to debate among EU commissioners.

Any change would still need approval from national governments and European Parliament to become law.

EU law requires that citizens in all 28 EU countries move their clocks an hour forward on the last Sunday in March and switch back to winter time on the final Sunday in October.