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AlxeyPnferov/iStock(WASHINGTON) -- Just before taking off on Air Force One for the G20 summit in Osaka, President Donald Trump complained about the longstanding U.S. defense pact with Japan, America's closest ally in Asia, and bashed some member countries for using the United States as a "piggy bank."

The president accused member countries of the G20 -- specifically close allies -- including Japan, Germany, and Canada -- of abusing the United States in trade and defense. The president said he took particular issue with a historic postwar U.S.-Japan defense treaty that states the United States will come to defense of Japan if it is attacked and allows the United States to have a military presence on the island nation.

“If Japan is attacked, we will fight World War III. We will go in and protect them with our lives and with our treasure,” Trump said during an interview on Fox Business Network with anchor Maria Bartiromo. “But if we are attacked, Japan doesn’t have to help us at all. They can watch on a Sony television, the attack."

Bloomberg News reported earlier this week that president has considered pulling out of the defense pact in private, but the crumbling of the agreement would have a significant impact on the United States' influence in Asia and leave the island nation of Japan, surrounded by nuclear threats on all sides, to fend for itself.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

The president's comments come just a month after he was treated as a special state guest in Japan where the red carpet was rolled out for a meeting with the new emperor, lavish dinners and a VIP seat at Japan's sumo wrestling tournament. While at the G20, he is expected to again meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and discuss trade and regional geopolitical concerns like North Korea.

But Japan wasn't the only country the president called out ahead of his G20 trip. He also said European countries were abusing the United States.

The president said Europe treats the United States "worse than China," and then went on to suggest an EU leader "hates the United States."

"There's a woman in Europe -- I won't mention her name -- she's actually considered to take Jean Claude's place -- she hates the United States perhaps worse than any person I've ever met. What she does to our country. She is suing all of our companies."

He went on to say the United States is propping NATO up and claimed that NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has said: "If it wasn't for President Trump we won't have NATO."

Trump said that Canada has also taken advantage of the United States, too: "We were being taken advantage of by Canada nobody knows that -- 'O Canada,' beautiful song -- they charge 300% tariff for a little thing called agricultural products," he said.

While in Osaka, Trump will also be meeting with China’s Xi Jinping, Russia’s Vladimir Putin, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and later South Korean President Moon Jae-in when he makes a visit to Seoul, South Korea.

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ABC News(SEOUL) -- Eileen Lee, 41, ditched her well-paying job at one of the top conglomerates in South Korea to become a YouTuber.

Lee, who now runs her own firm, believes that a YouTube channel about successful consulting strategies will help expand her business. Even with her busy work schedule, twice a week she drives three hours from her home to People YouTube, a YouTuber training agency, to take classes on becoming a YouTube star.

Being a YouTuber is one of the top dream jobs among South Korean elementary school students, according to 2018 figures from the Ministry of Education. Like Lee, a significant number of adults are also interested in quitting their stable jobs to become a professional YouTuber.

“Although it takes more than three hours from here to home and back, I come to take classes here hoping to establish a personal concept for my YouTube channel, ” Lee told ABC News.

All told, there are more than 60 YouTube-specialized programs across South Korea.

Students ranging from teenagers to 60-year-olds take so-called ‘YouTuber Master’ courses to learn YouTube tools including Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and Premiere Pro. Along with the technical instruction, students take classes on copyright law, personal branding, copywriting and channel analysis.

The agency provides students with a personal brand manager who helps them establish their channel's identity, and a comedian who give tips on how to be witty. As visual appearance is one of the significant factors for a successful YouTuber, there's even a Miss Bikini champion who comes to class to train students on how to keep up their body shape.

Popular institutes like People YouTube require students to take a series of tests when applying for admission. Only students who make it through all of the camera tests, interviews, and personality tests qualify for the program.

“Because we teach in small groups, around 160 students apply every month, but only 10 of them get the shot,” Lee Dong Gyu, head of teaching and learning at People YouTube, told ABC News.

Seventy students have completed the program since last November. More than half of them have begun their career as a YouTuber, and others will be starting their channel soon.

“YouTuber schools gave me the courage to make my own YouTube videos,” said Bae Soon-deok, a 64-year-old painter who took classes at People YouTube in order to start her own channel featuring memories of her mother, who has suffered from Alzheimer’s for ten years.

Even governmental organizations are offering training programs for potential YouTubers.

Gyeonggi province’s Content Agency offers a complimentary seven-week YouTube training course that teaches basic video editing plus provides mentoring opportunities and YouTuber networking activities. The agency even has in-depth courses for full-time YouTubers specializing in the beauty and game industries.

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stevanovicigor/iStock(NEW YORK) -- One of the world’s largest cities is grappling with a water crisis that, at least in the short term, can only be fixed by rain.

Chennai, the fourth-largest city in India with an estimated population in excess of 10 million, is facing a water crisis that's prompting people to scavenge for whatever water they can find.

"The situation is dire," Virginia Newton-Lewis, a senior policy analyst at Water Aid, an international organization addressing water-related concerns, told ABC News.

She said that in addition to unusually high temperatures, the seasonal summer storm known as the southwest monsoon is running late this year.

On top of that, Newton-Lewis said the monsoon that comes at the end of the year, called the northeast monsoon, was "not as good" this past year as it had been in previous years, leaving residents with less of a reservoir to fall back on.

"Every year is a bit of a gamble on the rains," Newton-Lewis said, calling the monsoons "phenomenally important."

"The monsoon, in good years, can bring almost a city’s worth of water," she said. "Because India is an agricultural country, the level to which agriculture is successful depends on the amount of water that comes in the monsoon."

The extent of the drought is so dire that it appears visible even from space, with a recent satellite image showing how the Puzhal Lake reservoir looks much smaller and appears to have dried up significantly from the year before.

Chennai is the capital city in the state of Tamil Nadu. According to The Week magazine, local officials are performing "yagnas" or expressions of faith, in the hope that divine intervention will lead to rain.

Newton-Lewis said that many residents are being forced to line up with plastic containers to get water from tanker trucks that bring in water from outside the city.

"Water Aid’s concern is for poor and marginalized groups [who] are often the least able to cope and the most impacted when cities run out of water and the situation is dire," she said.

While the lack of monsoon rain and rising temperatures are clearly factors in the immediate crisis, there are other issues that are contributing to this situation, Newton-Lewis said, pointing to the "rapid rate of urbanization" and "a lot of unplanned, haphazard development."

"You have a water supply network which is leaking. You’ve got old infrastructure, and then you couple that with some of the city’s natural wetlands -- where water can be stored -- have been built over," she said of the longer-term issues confronting Chennai.

Those infrastructure issues can also be a problem when the monsoons finally bring rain to the area, since excessive rains could cause poorly designed buildings to flood, Newton-Lewis said.

As for what can be done about the current crisis, Newton-Lewis said that it’s largely out of man’s control.

"There are medium and long term solutions," Newton-Lewis said. "In the short term, I think we're reliant on the rain."

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Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, are heading to Africa.

The royals and new parents to son Archie will visit South Africa this fall.

Nigel Casey, the British High Commissioner to South Africa, confirmed Harry and Meghan's visit Wednesday while delivering remarks at a reception in Pretoria, South Africa, for Queen Elizabeth II's birthday.

"That's great news for us," Casey said. "I predict it's also good news for the South African economy because I predict a hat and frock-buying frenzy ... which could well restore economic growth all on its own."

Casey's comments are the first details revealed publicly about Harry and Meghan's long-rumored plan to return to Africa on an official visit.

Buckingham Palace has not released any details of the future trip. Meghan gave birth to the couple's first child on May 6 and has been on maternity leave since then.

Royah Nikkhah, royal correspondent for The Sunday Times, told Good Morning America in April that the couple was planning to take Archie with them to Africa.

"As it stands the plan is that Harry and Meghan and their newborn baby, in probably about six months, will take a trip to Africa and tour several countries in Africa, and around October time probably visit two or three different Commonwealth nations, which are of course the nations in Africa that have a close relationship with the U.K.," Nikkhah said in April.

"The countries that they will be going to haven't been decided yet. That’s a discussion that is ongoing between the government and some of the host nations who want to have Harry and Meghan," she added. "The tour will be on behalf of the government but very likely to be some countries that Harry and Meghan have a close connection with."

If Archie comes with Harry and Meghan, he will be one of the youngest royals to travel on an official trip overseas.

Meghan, 37, was named in March as vice president of the Queen's Commonwealth Trust, an organization that supports and connects young leaders in the Commonwealth, which includes countries in Africa. Harry, 34, was named Commonwealth Youth Ambassador last year by Queen Elizabeth.

Africa is also close to both Harry and Meghan's hearts.

It's where Harry whisked Meghan away a few weeks after the couple's first date in 2017.

"I managed to persuade her to come and join me in Botswana and we camped out with each other under the stars," Harry said in a post-engagement interview last year. "She came and joined me for five days out there, which was absolutely fantastic, so then we were really by ourselves, which I think was crucial to me to make sure we had a chance to get to know each other."

Harry, who established his charity, Sentebale, in the African country of Lesotho in 2006, also included a piece of Botswana in Meghan's engagement ring. The main stone in Meghan's ring is sourced from Botswana, while the diamonds surrounding it are from the jewelry collection of Harry's mother, the late Princess Diana.

Harry has also said in previous interviews that Botswana will always have sentimental value to him because Africa is where he and Prince Charles and Prince William went to "get away from it all" after Diana's death in 1997.

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FourOaks/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Authorities are searching for a pair of tourists from New Jersey who vanished while jet skiing in Barbados, police said Tuesday.

Oscar Suarez, 32, and Magdalena Devil, 25, disappeared Monday at around 2:30 p.m. after renting a jet ski at Holetown Beach on the island’s western coast, according to police. They were both wearing life jackets at the time.

The jet ski operator became concerned about 30 minutes later and asked other operators to be on the lookout for them, the Royal Barbados Police Force said in a statement Tuesday. They notified police later, telling officers that the couple appeared to be lost at sea.

“The operator became worried and contacted other operators in the area to carry out a search but they were not sighted,” the force said. “The Police Marine Unit and the Barbados Coast Guard conducted a search of the area extending as far as the Bridgetown Port but were unable to locate either the couple or the jet ski.”

"I've been calling; I call and call the police, the U.S. Embassy in Barbados, they can't provide me with any answers," Suarez's mother, Ninfa Urrutia, told ABC News. "They haven’t called me back to let me know what I need to do or find out what’s going on with my son. They're just not calling back."

A State Department spokesman offered few details, but said they were aware of two missing citizens in Barbados and said they could not comment further due to privacy concerns.

Suarez has two children, 10-year-old Elias and 5-year-old Tatiana, from a previous marriage. Suarez and Devil had been dating for about a year, his mother said.

Rescue operators found no trace of the pair or the rented jet ski. Investigators also checked with the Discovery Bay Hotel in St. James, where they were staying, which confirmed that they never returned.

Suarez and Devil checked into their shared room on June 22 and were scheduled to depart on Saturday, according to the hotel.

Inspector Rodney Inniss of the Royal Barbados Police Force told ABC News that there hadn’t been any reported sightings of Suarez or Devil as of late Tuesday evening.

"We have family members calling hospitals," Suarez's sister, Susanna Cruz, told ABC News. "No one's answering the phone. Dead-end calls. We just know nothing."

He said vessels in the area had been alerted to stay on the lookout, and Regional Security System airplanes were also assisting in the search.

"Please don't stop looking," Cruz said. "He has a daughter and son to come home to – if he’s out there it's not like him to contact us. Just speak out if you saw anything."

Investigators said anyone with information about the pair's whereabouts should contact police immediately.

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KeithBinns/iStock(WASHINGTON) -- Two U.S. service members were killed in Afghanistan on Wednesday local time, according to military officials.

Circumstances surrounding the deaths have not been released.

The names of the two service members will not be released until 24 hours after the families are notified, as is Department of Defense policy.

The deaths are the 10th and 11th in Afghanistan in 2019.

Spc. Miguel Holmes, 22, was the most recent death of a service member in the country. The Georgia native died in a non-combat incident.

The most recent combat deaths came on April 8, when three Marines were killed by an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan's northern Parwan province.

Cpl. Robert A. Hendriks, 25, of Locust Valley, New York; Sgt. Benjamin S. Hines, 31, of York, Pennsylvania; and Staff Sgt. Christopher K.A. Slutman, 43, of Newark, Delaware, were killed in the biggest single-day loss of life by U.S. service members in Afghanistan since Nov. 27, 2018.

Three service members died in that November IED attack, while a fourth soldier died five days later from injuries suffered in the attack.

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Oleksii Liskonih/iStock(LONDON) -- Legal teams from India and Pakistan are awaiting a historic court judgment on the fate of $45 million that has been hidden away in a London bank since the partition of the two countries in 1947.

The case, which may finally be resolved in the U.K. High Court after decades of rivalry and diplomatic grandstanding, involves a $1.3 million transaction made by the Nizam Osman Ali Khan, the last monarch of the princely state of Hyderabad, to the Pakistan High Commissioner in London in 1947.

The royal Nizams of Hyderabad were among the richest dynasties in colonial-era India, known for their grand Chowmahalla Palace residence and lavish displays of wealth. The seventh and final Nizam, who in the 1940s was one of the wealthiest men in the world, gave Queen Elizabeth II a diamond tiara and a diamond necklace made by Cartier as a wedding gift when she married Prince Philip.

But in 1947, when the British Empire collapsed and the modern, independent India was preparing to take back Hyderabad from princely rule, Nizam feared for his financial interests and sent money to London for safe keeping. When Nizam asked for it back a few years later the Pakistani authorities refused.

The money has been tied up in a National Westminster bank account to this day. After 70 years of steadily growing interest, the account is now worth $45 million.

Nizam's grandsons could stand to inherit the money. However, the case is by the fact that Pakistan was helping to smuggle arms into Hyderabad before the Indian invasion of 1948, and the money could be construed as a payment for services.

When Nizam Osman Ali Khan tried to recover the funds from the bank account in the 1950s, Pakistan refused. The case then went to the House of Lords, then the highest court in the land, and Pakistan successfully argued that as a sovereign nation it could not be sued, meaning the money would be locked away, with neither party able to access it for the foreseeable future.

But in 2013, Pakistan launched a legal challenge to try and unlock the funds in order to claim full ownership of the $45 million. This, in the judge's view, waived Pakistan's right to not be sued, the current Indian legal team, led by Paul Hewitt, a partner at Withers LLP, told ABC News. An opportunity then opened up for two of the Nizam's grandsons, the eighth Nizam, 84, and Prince Muffakham, 80, to reclaim the money.

But the legal team representing Pakistan argues that "international, military and political context" makes the case more complicated.

"Pakistan had assisted Hyderabad in her attempts at self-defense against Indian aggression by arranging the supply and transportation of arms to Hyderabad," Khawar Qureshi, QC, a barrister at Serle Court Chambers representing the Pakistan government, told The Times newspaper. "[The] fog of war and the clandestine operations which it entails inevitably loom large."

A judgment in the case is expected in about six weeks.

The judge could rule in favor of the eighth Nizam or the state of Pakistan. The funds could also remain frozen in the London bank account. But after the 2013 judgment, it is far more likely the $45 million will be freed up to whomever the British High Court finally decides is the rightful owner.

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Ghader Daemi Aghdam, an Iranian doctor and head of a pharmacy in the capital, Tehran, sat in his office, avoiding the chaos at the reception desk where patients were complaining that their prescriptions for medicine were not being filled.

"Out of every 20 people, we have to tell at least to ten that we have run out of medications they need," Daemi Aghdam told ABC News.

Since pulling out of a deal reached under the Obama administration, the U.S. government under President Donald Trump has reinstated a series of tough sanctions on Iran, with the latest, targeting Iran's supreme leader and other top officials in the the Iranian regime, being announced on Monday.

While humanitarian supplies, including medicine, is technically exempt, Iranians are already facing severe shortages and inflated prices for what is in stock.

"The main problem with importing medication is the restrictions in international transactions," said Bashir Khaleqi, member of the Healthcare Commission of Iran's parliament, in an interview about the medication condition in the country with the semi-official Tasnim News Agency, on Tuesday.

"The artificial tear drop that my son has to use for his eye condition" has doubled in price, from the equivalent of about $2.50 to $5, said Maryam, 45, a housewife and mother of two who asked that her last name not to be used to protect the honor of her family. Another drop went from $1.50 to $8 in a year, she said.

Maryam's husband, who works full time, and her daughter, a part-time secretary, bring in a combined $75 a month.

"We have to cut many expenses out to afford medication for my son and for myself," Maryam said, who suffers from lung problem after years of weaving carpets.

Some people have begin asking doctors to avoid prescribing foreign medications, and to instead prescribe medicines that were produced in Iran and might be more widely available. But others have voiced concerns about how sanctions have impacted the quality of medications produced domestically.

Daemi Aghdam believes that the sanctions might have impacted quality control in Iran's pharmaceutical companies.

"I can name companies that even the quality of their simple cold tablets has suffered after the sanctions" he said.

"People understand the difference. When they see the domestic medication does not work on them, they ask for its foreign sample," he added.

 It is not just the long lines of complaining patients at pharmacies that have revealed the problem. In the past few months, Iranians have taken to social media to post the names of drugs they need but cannot find in pharmacies.

In some cases, people have posted that they have a surplus of a given medicine and are willing to share the medication with others who need it.

"Friends, this is what remained from my mother's inflation medication after her recovered. Please let me know if you need this medication, or if you know anyone who does. Please retweet so anyone who needs it can get it. Thanks," said one post.

As for Maryam, she said she hopes that leaders can work out a solution.

"I know absolutely nothing about politics," she said. "But I do hope politicians care more about people. All I want is my son not to lose his sight and I can breath."

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Brian Ach/Getty Images for TIME(WASHINGTON) -- A U.S.-backed Palestinian economic workshop began in Bahrain Tuesday evening with no Palestinian or Israeli participation, facing rejection or indifference across much of the Middle East.

Palestinian leadership had decided against participating in the Peace to Prosperity workshop in Bahrain's capital, Manama, where Jared Kushner, President Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, is scheduled to present an economic proposal to help solve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

The Trump administration is proposing a $50 billion investment fund to be spent in the next decade in Palestinian territories and neighboring Arab countries as part of its Middle East peace plan.

The proposal has been spearheaded by Kushner, and the White House calls the plan the "most ambitious and comprehensive international effort for the Palestinian people to date," although it has not made clear where the money would come from.

Although the workshop in Manama deals with one possible solution to a conflict, neither the Palestinians nor Israeli leaders are attending.

Palestinian leadership has decided against participating in the conference because it does not accept the principle that solutions to economic hardship should precede goals that Palestinians consider to me more pressing: the end of the 52-year-long Israeli occupation of the West Bank, the creation of a Palestinian state and help for Palestinian refugees.

"The potential of our people lies in their ability to live in a sovereign and free Palestine," Palestinian diplomat Saeb Erekat said in a statement Tuesday. "Our right to self-determination, freedom, and independence should be honored through the implementation of UN resolutions and international law. This is the only way to peace and prosperity."

Another leading Palestinian figure, Hanan Ashrawi, echoed the same view, convinced that a free Palestinian people in its own sovereign country will be able to build a vibrant and prosperous economy.

"First lift the siege of Gaza, stop the Israeli theft of our land, resources &funds, give us our freedom of movement & control over our borders, airspace, territorial waters etc." Ashrawi tweeted. "Then watch us build a vibrant prosperous economy as a free & sovereign people."

Palestinians in the West Bank rallied Tuesday to protest both the Trump administration’s Peace for Prosperity plan and the meeting in Bahrain. Demonstrations reportedly took place in Hebron, Bethlehem and Ramallah. In Gaza, a general strike was observed. Other protests reportedly took place in Jordan, Lebanon and Syria.

 In Israel, the Peace to Prosperity initiative -- pitched by a U.S. administration friendly to Israel's leadership -- has been tacitly accepted. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the initiative will be examined fairly and openly.

Israel's minister of regional cooperation, Tzachi Hanegbi, criticized Palestinians' refusal to participate, tweeting that their lack of participation was "astonishing."

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Courtesy Carilion Clinic(NEW YORK) -- An American doctor was murdered in Belize in what local authorities are saying was a shooting involving a member of a gang.

Dr. Gary Swank was found dead Sunday alongside a local tour guide, identified by local authorities as Mario Graniel.

Chester Williams, the commissioner of police in Belize, said that Swank was a victim of circumstance.

Williams said the tour guide "had a misunderstanding with one of the notorious gang figures in San Pedro" and that his home was shot at before the murders.

"Police detained the persons who we suspected did the shooting, waited for Mr. Graniel to give the report," Williams said. "He never showed up to give the report. We maintain police presence in the area to protect him and the community from further shootings but we can’t follow the man everywhere he goes. He decided to go out with a tourist. We don’t have a boat to follow him and we can’t put police on every tour guide boat."

He went on, "We did what we could have done in terms of detaining those who we believe were responsible and maintaining presence in the area where he lived. I don’t see what else we could have done."

Superintendent Hilberto Romero, the acting head of the National Crimes Investigation Branch, said both Swank and Graniel had "multiple" gunshot injuries.

"One of the decreased was on board the vessel while the other was in the water. Both were taken out and taken to the San Pedro Polyclinic where they were pronounced dead on arrival," Romero said.

"We are working on several leads. We know that they were fishing in that particular area and thereafter the report came in that there had been a shooting," he said.

Word of the murders traveled to the U.S., prompting Swank's hospital to release a statement about the "tragic news."

"We are heartbroken at his loss. Dr. Swank was a well-respected and well-loved colleague who, each and every day, embodied the values that we hold dear," said Chris Turnbull, the director of corporate communications at the Carilion Clinic in Virginia. "His absence leaves a void in our team and in our community. Our thoughts, prayers and attention are now focused on helping his family navigate this difficult time."

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Paula Lobo/ABC(NEW YORK) -- The European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France, announced Tuesday that a closed court hearing reaffirmed the court's January decision that Amanda Knox's defense rights had been violated in 2007 during police questioning about the murder of her British roommate Meredith Kercher.

The court had ruled this January that Italy had to pay approximately $20,000 in damages and legal costs to Knox for failing to provide her with a lawyer or proper translator during hours of police questioning on Nov. 6, 2007, during the initial stages of the investigation into Kercher's murder in Perugia, Italy.

In rejecting the request, the court made the ruling final, and the Italian state will have to pay Knox damages. The judgment will be transmitted to the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, which supervises the enforcement of European Court judgments. This should end Knox's legal proceedings in Italy.

Knox was a 20-year-old college student studying abroad in Italy when she and Raffale Sollecito, her boyfriend at the time, were accused of murdering Kercher in November 2007. They spent close to four years in an Italian jail while the court proceedings unfolded.

Knox, along with Sollecito, were definitively acquitted of Kercher's murder in 2015 after a long judicial ordeal, which involved two appeal court trials and two Italian Supreme Court decisions.

Rudy Guede, a young man from the Ivory Coast who had grown up in Perugia, was convicted of Kercher's murder in a separate trial in 2008 and is serving a 16-year sentence.

Knox left Italy in 2011 immediately after her first acquittal and had not returned to the country until earlier this month, when she took part in a conference on wrongful convictions and spoke on a panel about the media's role in criminal trials.

Knox's lawyers had originally presented her case to the EU court in Strasbourg in 2013 to request damages from the state of Italy for her treatment during her questioning at the start of her legal proceedings when she was quickly put under investigation – along with Sollecito – for Kercher's murder.

Tuesday's court press release states: "The Court took the view that the Italian Government had not succeeded in showing that the restriction of Ms Knox's access to a lawyer, at the police interview of 6 November 2007 at 5.45 a.m. - when there was a criminal charge against her - had not irreparably undermined the fairness of the proceedings as a whole."

While ruling that her defense rights were violated, the court also ruled that "it did not have any evidence to show that Ms Knox had been subjected to the inhuman or degrading treatment of which she had complained [about]".

Lawyer Carlo della Vedova told ABC News Knox was informed of the EU court's decision Tuesday via email, to which she replied, "Amazing. Thank you Carlo."

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JACQUELYN MARTIN/AFP/Getty Images(KABUL, Afghanistan) -- Secretary of State Mike Pompeo made a surprise visit to Afghanistan on Tuesday, just days before the latest round of U.S. talks with the Taliban are set to begin.

Pompeo said "real progress" has already been made, and he hopes to have an agreement by Sept. 1. But the security situation in the country is still so tenuous he had to travel in and out of the country in secret, and the Afghan government of President Ashraf Ghani has grown increasingly concerned about so far being excluded. The Taliban, which now controls more territory than at any time since 2001, has refused to meet representatives of the Afghan government, which it calls illegitimate and a U.S. puppet.

Beyond the Taliban, there are also growing fears that ISIS is gaining ground in the country, while civilian casualties in 2018 reached their highest recorded number since the United Nations started tracking data in 2009.

"The hour has come for peace," Pompeo said in Kabul, praising the agreement in principle reached by U.S. chief negotiator Zalmay Khalilzad and his Taliban counterparts in January on four pillars: U.S. troop withdrawal, Afghan national peace talks, a nationwide ceasefire, and preventing Afghanistan from becoming a safe haven for terror groups.

It's that last issue that brought the U.S. to Afghanistan nearly 18 years ago after al Qaeda plotted the September 11th terror attacks from Afghanistan.

But it's also the issue where the most progress has been made, according to Pompeo, who said the two sides "are nearly ready to conclude a draft text outlining the Taliban's commitments to join fellow Afghans in ensuring that Afghans soil never again becomes a safe haven for terrorists." He declined to say what those commitments would look like, but said the U.S. understands even with certain promises, "the terror threat will remain." The U.S. will ensure that Americans and American interests are protect, he added, although he deferred questions of how to accomplish that to the defense department.

Despite any progress at the negotiating table, the situation on the ground seems to be quite different. The U.N. reported two weeks ago that al Qaeda "has grown stronger operating under the Taliban umbrella across Afghanistan and is more active than in recent years."

"The Taliban continues to enjoy support and endorsement from Al-Qaida in Afghanistan and it remains to be seen whether they will be willing to give this up in favour of progressing peace talks," according to the report -- which also found that "Afghanistan remains [ISIS's] largest and most threatening manifestation outside" Iraq and Syria.

In exchange for the Taliban commitment, Khalilzad, a former U.S. ambassador to Afghanistan, and his team have opened the door to withdrawing U.S. troops. But the U.S. has not given the Taliban a firm timeline, Pompeo said, denying claims from the Taliban that it has.

The two sides will meet again on June 29 in Doha, Qatar, for their seventh round of talks. Khalilzad has expressed optimism because "I believe all sides want rapid progress," but he warned in a tweet last week, "Nothing is agreed until everything is agreed."

During his visit, Pompeo met with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah and former President Hamid Karzai. He also met with senior defense officials and the top U.S. and NATO commander, Gen. Austin Miller, as well as civil society leaders, including women's rights activists, and opposition politicians.

The U.S. has held successive rounds of talks with Taliban leaders since last summer.

Left out of talks, Afghan government officials have grown increasingly angry and concerned the U.S. will abandon them. That anger exploded into public view in March when Ghani's National Security Adviser Hambdullah Mohib condemned the U.S. talks as the "wrong approach" and "delegitimizing the Afghan government and weakening it and at the same time elevating the Taliban."

The U.S. dismissed Mohib's concerns at the time, and on Tuesday, Pompeo again defended the strategy, saying U.S. diplomats have had "detailed discussions" with the Afghan government "in parallel" with Taliban talks and the two partners are "fully aligned in our approach." Ghani told reporters he is "always" optimistic about peace talks and "dedicated to achieving" them.

A U.S.-Taliban agreement on terror safe havens and U.S. withdrawal would "open the door to intra-Afghan dialogue and negotiation," Pompeo added -- the kind of negotiations Afghan officials have been seeking.

But he seemed to wash American hands of the outcome: "The objective of those negotiations is for Afghans to agree on a timeline and a political road map for reaching a comprehensive peace agreement. It's not America's role to dictate the outcome of those negotiations," he said, although he added later, "The United States will help Afghans preserve the gains of the past 18 years."

Among those gains are the improvements in women's rights and opportunity, especially education, that many Afghan women are concerned could disappear.

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Chris Jackson/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, has picked up a new patronage that focuses on one of her favorite hobbies: photography.

On Tuesday, the Royal Photographic Society announced that Kate, 37, was a patron. Queen Elizabeth II had previously held the role for 67 years.

The Duchess of Cambridge is well-known for taking photos of her three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis. The photos are released by Kensington Palace to mark special occasions like their birthdays.

Recent photos include shots of 1-year-old Prince Louis and 4-year-old Princess Charlotte.

Kate also snapped an adorable photo last year of Charlotte holding and kissing her then-newborn brother Louis.

As patron of the Royal Photographic Society, Kate will highlight the work of a society that has over 11,000 members and runs more than 500 events in the U.K. and around the world. The society was founded in 1853.

Kate combined the work of two of her patronages Tuesday. She joined kids from Action for Children, of which she is a patron, in sessions led by Royal Photographic Society Honorary Fellows Jillian Edelstein and Harry Borden.

The duchess joined the kids in learning about elements of photography including portraits, light and color, according to Kensington Palace.

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BravissimoS/iStock(BERLIN) — An alcohol ban in the East German village of Ostritz ensured that Neo-Nazis attending the Schild und Schwert (Sword and Shield) festival would be starved of a favorite German concert-going beverage.

A court near Dresden called for a ban on booze at the music event, saying the festival had an “aggressive character” and that alcohol would make violence more likely, according to Saxony police. The event is well-known for a genre called “Rechtsrock,” which has promoted far-right nationalism.

The arrival of several hundred far-right extremists was unwelcome by many in the 2,300 person village near the Polish border, which prompted locals to take matters into their own hands.

Knowing that concertgoers would make a beeline to local grocery stores to stock up on alcohol, locals beat them to it, purchasing vast quantities of alcohol on their own dime.

Local activist Georg Salditt told German daily paper Bild that “the plan was devised a week in advance. We wanted to dry the Nazis out. We thought, if an alcohol ban is coming, we'll empty the shelves.”

He said they purchased 100 cases of beer.

According to Saxony police, 4,400 liters of alcohol were confiscated.

Around 1,400 police officers were deployed around the area, including some from German states outside of Saxony, and the atmosphere remained largely relaxed, Saxony police tweeted.

Around 500-600 far-right concertgoers attended, according to police, while 2,000 people took part in anti-festival demonstrations, according to German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung.

The state of Saxony has garnered a reputation for far-right extremism. Last year, the city of Chemnitz, located in the region, was the site of xenophobic violence and far-right demonstrations.

Still, 30 years after the fall of the Berlin wall, East German states still suffer from higher levels of unemployment and have lower living standards than states in the West, according to recent research, such as that of Duesseldorf’s Institute of Economic and Social Research (WSI). As a consequence, anti-immigrant party Alternative for Germany (AfD) has gained popularity in the region, where many are unhappy with Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and particularly her decision to welcome refugees primarily from the Middle East into the country in 2015.

In the European Union Elections this May, far-right anti-immigrant party Alternative for Germany (AfD) beat Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) in the polls to become the most popular party in the region.

Yet, as the weekend’s action showed, many Ostritz residents are eager to distance themselves from the far-right movement.

"We are glad that we were able to set an example for civic engagement," activist Michael Schlitt told German press agency DPA on Sunday.

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Samir Hussein/Samir Hussein/WireImage(LONDON) -- The renovations undertaken by Prince Harry and Meghan to turn Frogmore Cottage into their family home came at a price of 2.4 million pounds, or about $3 million, for British taxpayers, according to new figures released by the Royal Household.

Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, moved into the home on the grounds of Windsor Castle estate earlier this year, ahead of the birth in May of their first child, Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor.

Frogmore Cottage was given to the couple by Harry's grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II, last year as their official residence. The 18th century home was previously five separate residences used by royal staff and had not been fully inhabited in for several years.

The complete overhaul of Frogmore Cottage to become the Sussex's family home included installing new ceiling beams and floor joists, total internal rewiring, the establishment of new gas and water mains and the installation of a new environmentally-friendly heating system.

The total cost of the renovation project could be even more than the $3 million bill footed by taxpayers. Anything done inside the house, like furniture and decorations, would have been paid for by Harry and Meghan.

The couple relied on the expertise of interior designers Vicky Charles and Julia Corden, a guest at Harry and Meghan's wedding, who own their own firm, Charles & Co., headquartered in New York City, according to ABC News royal contributor Omid Scobie.

The public renovation costs for Frogmore Cottage were detailed in the Sovereign Grant Report, the annual financial statement published by the Royal Household. The report, released Tuesday, covers the financial year 2018-2019.

Here are the biggest takeaways:

How much does the British royal family cost?

The queen is funded, in part, by the British public through a sum of money allocated annually by the British government known as the Sovereign Grant.

Each British tax payer is paying £1.24, or $1.58, to keep the queen in the style to which she has become accustomed, according to this year's Sovereign Grant Report. That means that the British government handed over £82.2 million ($104 million) to the Royal Household.

What is the Sovereign Grant and what is it used for?

The Sovereign Grant supports Queen Elizabeth as she carries out her official duties as the Head of State and the Head of the Nation.

This money is used by the Royal Household to cover the costs of their communications teams (now including the newly-formed Sussex team), official travel for the royal family and the maintenance of occupied royal palaces like Buckingham Palace, St James’s Palace, Clarence House, Marlborough House Mews, the residential and office areas of Kensington Palace, Windsor Castle and the buildings in the Home and Great Parks at Windsor, and Hampton Court Mews and Paddocks.

It is managed by the financial secretary to the queen, also known as the Keeper of the Privy Purse, who is currently Sir Michael Stevens.

What are the big spends?

The Sovereign Grants for 2018-2019 and 2017-2018 are substantially higher than previous years as they contain a contribution for the refurbishment of Buckingham Palace -- £32.9 million, nearly $42 million, has been set aside for this year.

A government-sponsored report from 2016 found that “the Palace's electrical cabling, plumbing and heating have not been updated since the 1950s. The building's infrastructure is in urgent need of a complete overhaul to prevent long-term damage to the building and its contents.”

Therefore, a certain amount of money has been allocated to these much-needed renovations that will take at least a decade to complete. This re-servicing is being done in phases with certain areas of the palace off limits while the repairs are taking place. This was apparently why President Donald Trump and his family couldn’t stay in Buckingham Palace during their recent state visit.

Another figure in the Sovereign Grant Report that may cause some controversy is the cost of the royal train, £109,684, or approximately $140,000, for five journeys inside the United Kingdom.

Advisers to the royal family justify the expense, saying the train also acts as a secure form of accommodation for members of the royal family when they’re travelling.

Where else does the queen’s money come from?

The Sovereign Grant only pays for a portion of maintaining the monarch. The queen has two other sources of revenue: the Duchy of Lancaster and her own personal income.

"The Duchy of Lancaster is a portfolio of land, property and assets held in trust for the Sovereign in his/her role as Sovereign," according to the royal family's website. "Its main purpose is to provide an independent source of income, and is used mainly to pay for official expenditure not met by the Sovereign Grant (primarily to meet expenses incurred by other members of the Royal Family).”

The queen also personally owns the Balmoral and Sandringham Estates, which were both inherited from her father. Any revenue coming from them will be used for personal expenses.

Similarly, she has a personal investment portfolio that she can use as she sees fit.

Queen Elizabeth has a net worth of £370 million, roughly $470 million, according to the Sunday Times Rich List, which ranks the fortunes of Britain’s wealthy.

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