Monday, July 24, 2017
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White House indicates Trump would sign Russia sanctions BillThe sanctions targeting Russia, however, have drawn the most attention due to Trump’s persistent push for warmer relations with President Vladimir Putin (L). AFP file

White House indicates Trump would sign Russia sanctions Bill

24 Jul 2017 | 11:38 AM

WASHINGTON: The White House has indicated that Sunday President Donald Trump would sign a sweeping Russia sanctions measure, which the House could take up this week, that requires him to get Congress’ permission before lifting or easing the economic penalties against Moscow.

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Washington, July 24

The White House has indicated that Sunday President Donald Trump would sign a sweeping Russia sanctions measure, which the House could take up this week, that requires him to get Congress’ permission before lifting or easing the economic penalties against Moscow.

Lawmakers are scheduled to consider the sanctions package as early as tomorrow, and the Bill could be sent to Trump before Congress breaks for the August recess.

The legislation is aimed at punishing Moscow for meddling in the Presidential election and its military aggression in Ukraine and Syria.

Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the newly appointed White House press secretary, said the administration is supportive of being tough on Russia and “particularly putting these sanctions in place.”

“We support where the legislation is now, and will continue to work with the House and Senate to put those tough sanctions in place on Russia until the situation in Ukraine is fully resolved,” Sanders said on ABC’s “This Week.”

Congressional Republicans and Democrats announced on Saturday that they’d settled lingering issues with the Bill, which also includes stiff economic penalties against Iran and North Korea.

The sanctions targeting Russia, however, have drawn the most attention due to Trump’s persistent push for warmer relations with President Vladimir Putin and ongoing investigations into Russia’s interference in the 2016 campaign.

“North Korea, Iran and Russia have in different ways all threatened their neighbors and actively sought to undermine American interests,” according to a joint statement by California Republicans Kevin McCarthy, the House majority leader, and Ed Royce of California, the Foreign Affairs Committee chairman.

The Bill the House will vote, they said, “will now exclusively focus on these nations and hold them accountable for their dangerous actions.”   

The White House had objected to a key section of the Bill that would mandate a congressional review if Trump attempts to terminate the sanctions against Moscow.

Top administration officials said the provisions infringed on the president’s executive authority and tied his hands as he explores avenues of cooperation between the two former Cold War foes. But Sanders said the White House was able to work with the House and Senate to “make those changes that were necessary.”

She didn’t specify what those changes were, however. The congressional review section wasn’t altered substantially and Democrats were satisfied with the results.

Lawmakers included the review because of wariness in both parties over Trump’s affinity for Putin. Rep. Eliot Engel of New York, the top ranking Democrat on the Foreign Affairs Committee, said Trump has been unwilling to respond seriously to Russia’s belligerence, “leaving Congress with the urgent responsibility to hold Vladimir Putin accountable.”

McCarthy had pushed to add the North Korea sanctions to the package. The House had overwhelmingly passed legislation in May to hit Pyongyang with additional economic penalties, but the Senate had yet to take up the bill.

The Senate last month passed sanctions legislation that targeted only Russia and Iran. Congressional aides said Senate Republicans may resist adding the North Korea penalties, but it remained unclear whether those concerns would derail the legislation.

The aides were not authorised to speak publicly and requested anonymity to discuss internal deliberations.

Although the legislation has widespread support, the bill stalled after clearing the Senate more than five weeks ago due to constitutional questions and bickering over technical details. — AFP

China, Russia conduct simulation exercise for joint naval drills

China, Russia conduct simulation exercise for joint naval drills

24 Jul 2017 | 12:31 PM

MOSCOW: Chinese and Russian commanders conducted a simulation exercise in Kaliningrad province for the ongoing joint military drills code-named “Joint Sea 2017” in the Baltic Sea.

‘I just want to go home’, says German girl who joined IS

‘I just want to go home’, says German girl who joined IS

24 Jul 2017 | 1:11 PM

BERLIN: A German teenager who joined Islamic State is now being held in detention in Iraq and says she regrets joining the jihadist group and just wants to come home to her family, media reported on Sunday.

Erdogan, Saudi King discuss Qatari crisis amid mediation efforts

Erdogan, Saudi King discuss Qatari crisis amid mediation efforts

24 Jul 2017 | 12:45 PM

RIYADH: As part of Turkey’s renewed mediation efforts, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with Saudi Arabian King Salman bin Abdulaziz to discuss the diplomatic crisis between Qatar and the Saudi-led quartet.

Venezuela Oppn calls for boycott of vote to overhaul Constitution

Venezuela Oppn calls for boycott of vote to overhaul Constitution

24 Jul 2017 | 12:49 PM

CARACAS: Venezuela’s angry Opposition called for a boycott of an upcoming vote that it dismisses as a ploy by President Nicolas Maduro to cling to power.

Australian regulator investigating Takata airbag recall after death

Australian regulator investigating Takata airbag recall after death

24 Jul 2017 | 12:52 PM

SYDNEY: Australia’s consumer watchdog said on Monday it was investigating the recall of Takata Corp vehicle airbags, a day after the police said a man’s death in a Sydney car crash could be linked to the faulty safety equipment.

1 dead as car ploughs into people in China

24 Jul 2017 | 12:01 PM

BEIJING: A man in China stabbed five persons before driving into nine others, killing one of them, state media reported on Monday.

Russia delivers Mi-171E non-combat copter to Pak

Russia delivers Mi-171E non-combat copter to Pak

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

MOSCOW:Pakistan has received a Russian-made Mi-171E non-combat helicopter, the second such chopper delivered to the country this year, indicating growing ties between Islamabad and Moscow, a media report has said.

Moroccan peacekeeper killed in Central African Republic: UN

Moroccan peacekeeper killed in Central African Republic: UN

24 Jul 2017 | 12:43 PM

BANGUI: An ambush killed a Moroccan peacekeeper and wounded three others on in the Central African Republic, the United Nations has said, blaming pro-Christian militias for the violence.

Donald Trump Jr adds Washington lawyer to legal team

Donald Trump Jr adds Washington lawyer to legal team

24 Jul 2017 | 12:41 PM

WASHINGTON: The President’s oldest son, Donald Trump Jr., has added a lawyer with congressional experience to his legal team, the lawyer told Reuters on Sunday.

Jerusalem mosque metal detectors to stay: Israel

Jerusalem mosque metal detectors to stay: Israel

24 Jul 2017 | 12:37 PM

JERUSALEM: Israel said on Sunday it would not remove metal detectors whose installation outside a major Jerusalem mosque has triggered the bloodiest clashes with the Palestinians in years, but could eventually reduce their use.

Japan PM denies favours for friend amid falling support

Japan PM denies favours for friend amid falling support

24 Jul 2017 | 12:33 PM

TOKYO: TOKYO: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, his ratings sinking over a suspected cronyism scandal, said on Monday he had never instructed that preferential treatment be given to a long-time friend and that his friend had never lobbied for favours.

Princes William and Harry recall their final call with Princess Diana

Princes William and Harry recall their final call with Princess Diana

24 Jul 2017 | 10:27 AM

WASHINGTON DC: Prince William and Prince Harry have spoken out about the regret over their last conversation with their mother Princess Diana, who died 20 years ago in a car crash in Paris.

5 Boko Haram suspects arrested after gunfight: Nigeria Police

5 Boko Haram suspects arrested after gunfight: Nigeria Police

24 Jul 2017 | 12:24 PM

KANO: Police in the northern Nigerian city of Kano said they arrested five suspected Boko Haram militants after a gunfight, marking a flare-up of jihadist violence in the city.

California crews hold wildfire in check, let more residents go home

California crews hold wildfire in check, let more residents go home

24 Jul 2017 | 12:04 PM

WASHINGTON: California authorities battling a massive wildfire near Yosemite National Park lifted evacuation orders on Sunday for more residents but said firefighters may need almost two more weeks to fully contain the blaze.

Trump expresses frustration with Republicans, health care

Trump expresses frustration with Republicans, health care

24 Jul 2017 | 11:42 AM

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump has expressed his frustration with Republicans, saying they “do very little to protect their President.”

Syrian warplanes strike near Damascus despite ceasefire

Syrian warplanes strike near Damascus despite ceasefire

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

BEIRUT:Syria’s regime carried out air raids on one of the last rebel strongholds near Damascus today, a monitor said, a day after it declared a ceasefire in parts of the besieged enclave.

Nallur shooting: Lankan Prez orders tighter security for judges

24 Jul 2017 | 11:24 AM

COLOMBO: Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena ordered tighter security for all judges following a shooting incident that threatened the life of a high court judge in Jaffna.

40 Pak teachers leave for Beijing to receive Chinese language training

24 Jul 2017 | 10:57 AM

ISLAMABAD: A group of 40 Pakistani teachers left for Beijing to receive Chinese language training. A special see-off ceremony for the teachers was held on Sunday at the Chinese embassy here

15 UK MPs ‘agree’ to sign no-confidence motion against May

15 UK MPs ‘agree’ to sign no-confidence motion against May

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

LONDON:Around 15 Conservative party MPs have agreed to sign a no-confidence motion against British PM Theresa May as part of a plot to oust her, according to a media report.

Scaramucci deletes old tweets Trump would not love

Scaramucci deletes old tweets Trump would not love

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

WASHINGTON:Donald Trump’s new communications chief has deleted tweets in which he shared views contrary to the US President’s own, saying they were a distraction.

Trudeau at temple

Trudeau at temple

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau greets people as he visits the BAPS Shri Swaminarayan Mandir to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the temple in Mississauga, Ontario,

Sharif rejects JIT charge of hiding UAE employment

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

ISLAMABAD:Pakistan’s PM Nawaz Sharif has admitted before the Supreme Court, hearing a money laundering case against him, that he had obtained a permit to work in a company in the UAE while rejecting the allegation that he had concealed his employment.

‘Husband storage pods’ in Chinese mall

‘Husband storage pods’ in Chinese mall

24 Jul 2017 | 2:00 AM

Beijing: A Chinese shopping mall in Shanghai has launched “husband storage pods” to entertain the bored men while their spouses shop.

Trafficked, beaten, abused: Life of a Nigerian house girl

24 Jul 2017 | 12:55 PM

ABUJA: Handed over by her mother to an agent at the age of 10, Titi was crammed into a truck in the tiny West African nation of Benin and driven across the border into southwest Nigeria.

William, Harry regret last rushed phone call with Diana

William, Harry regret last rushed phone call with Diana

23 Jul 2017 | 6:38 PM

LONDON: Britain's Princes William and Harry have spoken for the first time of their regret of having a rushed telephonic conversation with their mother Princess Diana before her fatal car crash in Paris in 1997.

Syrian army, allies advance against Islamic State east of Raqqa

23 Jul 2017 | 4:10 PM

BEIRUT: Syrian government forces and their allies have recaptured territory from Islamic State in countryside southeast of its stronghold Raqqa after air strikes in the area, a pro-Damascus military media unit and war monitors reported.

Lankan cop injured in Tamil judge’s assassination bid dies

23 Jul 2017 | 2:57 PM

COLOMBO: A personal protection officer of a prominent Sri Lankan Tamil high court judge died today after being shot by an unidentified man during a failed assassination bid on the judge, police said.

Marawi standoff enters third month, underlining crisis in Philippines

Marawi standoff enters third month, underlining crisis in Philippines

23 Jul 2017 | 2:50 PM

MANILA: Two months after Islamist militants launched an assault on one of the biggest southern cities in the Philippines, the fighting is dragging on, and President Rodrigo Duterte says he is prepared to wait for a year for it to end.

China opens cinema theatre in disputed South China Sea island

China opens cinema theatre in disputed South China Sea island

23 Jul 2017 | 2:55 PM

BEIJING: China has opened a modern cinema theatre on Yongxing Island in the disputed South China Sea as part of its plan to establish authority over the area, the state media reported on Sunday.

Muslim woman assaulted, hijab pulled off in UK

Muslim woman assaulted, hijab pulled off in UK

23 Jul 2017 | 2:56 PM

LONDON: A Muslim woman's hijab was pulled off allegedly by a man in a vicious assault in London, amid a spike in hate crime incidents following a series of terror attacks by Islamists in the UK.

New WH communications boss deletes tweets Trump would not love

23 Jul 2017 | 2:27 PM

WASHINGTON: Donald Trump's new communications chief has deleted tweets in which he shared views contrary to the US president's own, saying they were a distraction.

Shoot drug traffickers if resist arrest: Indonesian President

23 Jul 2017 | 2:16 PM

JAKARTA: Indonesia’s President Joko Widodo has ordered the police to shoot drug traffickers who resist arrest in the latest effort to eradicate drug use in the country.

Chinese govt official sues exiled tycoon Guo for defamation

Chinese govt official sues exiled tycoon Guo for defamation

23 Jul 2017 | 12:47 PM

BEIJING: A Chinese government housing vice-minister has lodged a $10 million defamation lawsuit against controversial billionaire Guo Wengui in New York over claims made by the exiled tycoon that she had engaged in corruption and provided sexual favours.

Senior Australian minister calls for postal vote on same-sex marriage

Senior Australian minister calls for postal vote on same-sex marriage

23 Jul 2017 | 11:36 AM

MELBOURNE: One of Australia’s most senior ministers on Sunday reignited debate on whether same-sex marriage should be legalised, proposing a national postal vote on the issue.

Palestinians die in new clashes over Jerusalem holy site

23 Jul 2017 | 11:20 AM

JERUSALEM: Two Palestinians have died in clashes with Israeli forces as the army moved in to seal off an attacker's home after violence over security measures at an ultra-sensitive holy site.

12 suspected IS militants, 13 mosque imams detained in Iraq

12 suspected IS militants, 13 mosque imams detained in Iraq

23 Jul 2017 | 11:02 AM

BAGHDAD: The police arrested 12 persons suspected of belonging to the Islamic State terror organisation and 13 imams of mosques in the northern Iraqi province of Nineveh, officials said.

Trump Jr-Russian lawyer meeting was inappropriate: US voters

Trump Jr-Russian lawyer meeting was inappropriate: US voters

23 Jul 2017 | 10:59 AM

WASHINGTON: A majority of US voters say that it was not appropriate for one of US President Donald Trump’s sons to accept an offer to meet with a Russian lawyer who promised “damaging information” about Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election.

UN Security Council to hold urgent meeting on Jerusalem violence

UN Security Council to hold urgent meeting on Jerusalem violence

23 Jul 2017 | 10:56 AM

UNITED NATIONS: The UN Security Council will hold an urgent meeting on Monday morning to discuss the violence unfolding in Jerusalem, diplomats said.

Venezuelan’s Oppn to hold two-day strike against Prez Maduro

Venezuelan’s Oppn to hold two-day strike against Prez Maduro

23 Jul 2017 | 10:55 AM

CARACAS: Venezuela’s Opposition called a two-day national strike against President Nicolas Maduro after another day of violent clashes on Saturday where the injured included a violinist famous for his musical protests.

New Zealand braces for more rain after severe storms lash south island

23 Jul 2017 | 10:46 AM

Residents in the two largest cities on New Zealand’s south island began returning to their homes on Sunday, despite state of emergencies still in place, after a severe storm caused flooding and forced hundreds of homes to be evacuated.

Crane collapse kills 7, injures 2 in southern Chinese city

23 Jul 2017 | 10:43 AM

BEIJING: Authorities say seven persons have been killed and two more injured when a crane leaned and collapsed on a construction site in the southern Chinese city of Guangzhou.

Scaramucci apologises for Trump jibe

Scaramucci apologises for Trump jibe

23 Jul 2017 | 1:28 AM

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump’s new communications director Anthony Scaramucci, who once described him as a ‘hack politician’ during the presidential campaign, has apologised and admitted it as one of his biggest mistakes.

IS chief Baghdadi alive: US Defence Secy

IS chief Baghdadi alive: US Defence Secy

23 Jul 2017 | 1:28 AM

WASHINGTON: US Defence Secretary James Mattis said he believes the elusive Islamic State leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is still alive, shooting down claims he was killed in a Russian air strike in war-torn Syria.

16 Afghan cops killed in US strike

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23 Jul 2017 | 1:28 AM

KANDAHAR:A US airstrike killed 16 Afghan policemen and wounded two others in Helmand province, officials said today.

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