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'I’m concerned about Russians buying their way into Britain'



Labour peer Lord Judd warned the UK’s immigration system of manipulations in “buying citizenship”. Lord Judd, a former government minister, voiced his worry about Great Britain’s reputation as “a bastion of fairness” is under threat if foreign individuals are effectively given automatic residency because of their extreme wealth. Earlier he had filed a request to the House of Lords about the citizenship application of controversial Russian banker Georgy Bedzhamov (pictured), writes Louis Auge.

According to media reports, Bedzhamov is now hiding in London and filed an application for a British citizenship to guarantee his safety from Russian justice. According to sources close to the UK Home Office he is unlikely to succeed.

“We have got an information that he is currently applying for the citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda”, the EU Reporter’s source said. The High Commissioner of Antigua and Barbuda in London hasn’t responded to EU Reporter’s requests.

Russian authorities pursue Bedzhamov since 2016 over the collapse of Vneshprombank blaming him in fraud amounted around a £2.5 billion. His sister Larisa Markus was sentenced to nine years in prison in 2017 after admitting the theft of £1.4bn.

Lord Judd (pictured) asked the British Government “what assessment they have made of the fraud and corruption charges against Georgy Bedzhamov in the context of his application for British citizenship”.

“The point is that yes I am concerned about Russians buying their way into Britain and that seems to me to be very unfortunate at the very time we are being so hostile and difficult about so many people with so many issues.”

“As someone who is deeply committed to justice and an enlightened and fair immigration policy, I believe that becoming a British citizen is not something you buy. It is something you need to be worthy of. There needs to be more transparency.”, he said.

In Britain Bedzhamov is also limited in his financial rights. Various courts have restricted his movement between London and Wales. He is banned from spending more than £10,000 per week, while he is renting a penthouse in London’s luxury district Mayfair for £35,000.

“I am concerned about the whole operation of immigration and asylum in this country. It seems to me that it must be open and transparent, fair and honest and it must be free of any overwhelming financial bias.

“I do think that it (rich individuals being given citizenship without due checks) calls into question the whole objectivity, fairness and transparency of what we are doing with other people. We are in a very bad phase in our history.

“But now we really are becoming, to put it honestly, a very insular, defensive and money-orientated society of the wrong kind.

Last December a mobile billboard featuring a photo of the pair drove outside Harrods in Knightsbridge, London. It also offered a "reward for information”.

The High Court in London reportedly granted a £1.34bn freezing order on his assets last April.

The ruling is said to have given claimants the ability to search a townhouse Bedzhamov had used as an office.

Bedzhamov is said to have denied the criminal charges against him in Russia.

He reportedly still lives in homes in both London and Monaco.


Will mobile gaming continue to thrive in 2021?



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Mobile phone gaming has never been so good. The games now on offer are more advanced than ever before, as are the phones we’re able to play them on. As a result, a large part of the world’s population is putting more energy into gaming on their mobile phone devices than ever before.

Many experts and gaming fans didn’t think mobile gaming would stand the test of time, particularly with the newly released Playstation 5 coming out. Surely the more sophisticated and graphically advanced games that a console of that type can host appeals more than playing a smartphone game with clear and obvious limitations? Apparently not. In fact, mobile gaming looks like it is very much here to not only survive but also thrive in 2021 and beyond.

Of course, for some, mobile gaming is simply incomparable to console gaming of any kind. In contrast, for others, the realisation that mobile phone gaming is here to stay is becoming a very real one. But why is this? Why is mobile gaming expected to kick on further in 2021? Here are a few reasons as to why.

Gaming on the go

Virtually everyone on the planet has a mobile phone these days, therefore opening up an array of entertainment possibilities in the process. Gaming on a phone is one of them as you have access to a comprehensive selection of games within a matter of seconds. The games on offer are diverse too, from the likes of blackjack online at to brain teaser creations, coupled with more graphically advanced games like Fortnite PUBG Mobile. Then there’s augmented reality releases like Pokemon Go, too. These are the type of games which can be picked up and put down with ease. Console gaming, on the other hand, requires much more of a commitment. The games are generally a lot tougher, which, as a result, could put casual gamers off. Mobile games can be enjoyed on the go, while on the bus or on your lunch break. There’s a mobile phone game for an array of audiences too, opening gaming on a phone up to the masses.

Console-quality titles

Thanks to the continued advancements made with our mobile phone devices, the games we now have at our disposal are better than ever. Gaming options of old used to be with the likes of Tetris and Snake; now we’re inundated with releases on a weekly basis as games developers look to crack what is a humongous market. So much so, in fact, that many games companies make sure they release the mobile version of games simultaneously with the PC and console versions of games, once again highlighting the influence mobile phone gaming has had on the overall gaming landscape. On top of this, the gaming experience on a mobile device has improved dramatically also, with joysticks and VR headsets being used to help get the best out of specific mobile creations.

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Cheap and free games

Console gaming isn’t cheap. When you factor in the cost of a console before even adding up the cost of purchasing a few games to go with it, it could be argued that it’s extortionate. In fact, many people have strayed away from console gaming for this very reason, especially when they realise they can get their gaming fix from their smartphone. All you need is access to Appstore or Google Play, and you’re good to go, with the option of trying out a whole host of creations without spending any money at all. Most mobile games are either cheap or completely free, therefore making them accessible to all.

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London businesses call for swift action to safeguard Eurostar's future



London’s business leaders have written to the government asking it to ensure that the green gateway to Europe is safeguarded. A copy of the letter is published below.


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The best of 5G is yet to come  



Executives from leading mobile operators have urged consumers to be patient with 5G, explaining more advanced capabilities and use cases will become available as the technology evolves.

Speaking at the recent industry conference CES 2021, Drew Blackard, VP of product management at Samsung Electronics America (SEA), told a panel that many current services including video streaming are merely “better on 5G”.

But he added more advanced “only-on-5G experiences” will become mainstream “more and more as the infrastructure develops” and the technology becomes more widely used.

Blackard noted SEA had “done a lot of development with partners to build out what these can look like”, pointing to a collaboration with AT&T to offer AR experiences for sports fans.

Ice Mobility chairman and co-founder Denise Gibson added “there is an element of patience” to realising 5G’s potential.

She said 5G “is a platform that will evolve”, explaining “it’s not solely about” geographic reach, but also provision of advanced capabilities and services on networks and devices.

Blackard added “partnerships are obviously essential”, noting 5G required “a group, an industry to bring that forward. It’s not a single player that can do that”.

Commenting on the issue Abraham Lui, Huawei's Chief Representative to the EU Institutions,  said  "In Europe, the best of 5G is yet to come. As 5G deployment gathers pace across the continent, users will appreciate the benefits of this game-changing technology in the near future".

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