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  • Syrian troops enter northeastern town after deal with Kurdish forces - state media
    October 14, 2019

    Syrian troops enter northeastern town after deal with Kurdish forces - state mediaBEIRUT/ANKARA, Oct 14 (Reuters) - Syria's troops have entered a northeastern town, Syrian state media said on Monday, after Washington announced it was abruptly pulling out its forces, and its former Kurdish allies reached a deal with Damascus to help resist a Turkish attack. The abrupt U.S. withdrawal from the eight-year Syrian war, and the potential return of the Syrian army to the Kurdish-controlled northeast, are major victories for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and his allies Russia and Iran.


  • Son of sheriff who called immigrants ???drunks??? at White House event arrested for public intoxication
    October 14, 2019

    Son of sheriff who called immigrants ???drunks??? at White House event arrested for public intoxicationThe son of a Texas sheriff who used a White House press conference to describe immigrant offenders as ???drunks??? likely to repeatedly break the law has been arrested for public intoxication.Sergei Waybourn, 24, faces a count of indecent exposure as well as public drunkenness just days after his father, Tarrant County Sheriff Bill Waybourn, was criticised for the comments.


  • Hong Kong police say homemade bomb targeted officers
    October 14, 2019

    Hong Kong police say homemade bomb targeted officersA homemade, remote-controlled bomb intended to "kill or to harm" riot control officers was detonated as they deployed against renewed violence in Hong Kong over the weekend, police said Monday, in a further escalation of destructive street battles gripping the business hub. The "loud thud" Sunday night close to riot officers who had been clearing away a protester-built road block marked the first known use of an explosive device during protests that started in June over a contested extradition bill and have snowballed into an anti-government, anti-police and anti-China movement. "It exploded less than 2 meters (yards) away from a police vehicle.


  • France 'worried' after nearly 800 IS relatives escape Syrian camp
    October 13, 2019

    France 'worried' after nearly 800 IS relatives escape Syrian campFrance said Sunday it was "worried" after Kurdish authorities reported that hundreds of relatives of foreign jihadists had escaped from a displacement camp in northern Syria in an area under Turkish assault. France has been hit by a wave of jihadist attacks since 2015, many claimed or inspired by the Islamic State group, and has expressed concerns that a Turkish assault on Kurdish forces at the helm of the fight against IS in Syria would bolster the radicals. "Of course we are worried about what could happen and that is why we want Turkey... to end" the assault "as quickly as possible", government spokeswoman Sibeth Ndiaye told France 3 television.


  • Can The U.S. Army's Latest Air Defense System Handle 21st Century Warfare?
    October 13, 2019

    Can The U.S. Army's Latest Air Defense System Handle 21st Century Warfare?A demonstration might give us hints.


  • Climate change group recommends banning all frequent flyer reward programs to cut carbon emissions by targeting jet-setters
    October 14, 2019

    Climate change group recommends banning all frequent flyer reward programs to cut carbon emissions by targeting jet-settersThe Committee on Climate Change says that just 15% of the entire British population take 70% of all flights from the country.


  • Norwegian Cruise Line passengers demand refunds after ship skips several scheduled stops
    October 12, 2019

    Norwegian Cruise Line passengers demand refunds after ship skips several scheduled stopsNorwegian Cruise Line passengers voiced their anger after disembarking from the ship Friday after several??port stops were canceled due to weather.


  • Violent parody video shown at Trump resort, New York Times reports
    October 14, 2019

    Violent parody video shown at Trump resort, New York Times reportsA graphically violent parody video, shown at a meeting of President Trump's supporters at his Miami resort, depicted a likeness of the president shooting and stabbing his opponents and members of the news media in a church, the New York Times reported Sunday.


  • German police investigate bitcoin transfer to synagogue killer
    October 13, 2019

    German police investigate bitcoin transfer to synagogue killerGerman police are investigating a bitcoin transfer made to the far-Right extremist behind??Wednesday???s terror attack in Halle to determine if the man possessed a broader support network. German media outlet Spiegel reports that a transfer of 0.1 bitcoin ??? approximately ???750 (??660) ??? was made to alleged attacker Stephan??Balliet in the lead up to the attack. Police said the transfer came from an unknown source. Balliet told police interrogators that he had received the money from someone whom he had communicated with on the internet, but that he did not know who they were. Questions were raised as to how Balliet, who had been unemployed for a significant period of time in the lead up to the attack, was able to fund the attack, including buying the materials for his home-made weapons. As reported by Spiegel, the man told investigators that the weapons were cheap to manufacture, primarily as he constructed them from basic raw materials. He told police he bought steel worth ???50, cartridge cases for ???25 and a telescope for ???20 to manufacture the weapons, which he based on designs released online by British pro-gun activist Philip Luty "The further investigations will deal in particular with the question of whether other persons were involved in the act or its preparation alongside Stephan Balliet", said a spokesman for the Federal Criminal Police Office. The 27-year-old Balliet was active in far-Right chatrooms, with police suspecting he was radicalised online. Balliet uploaded a manifesto outlining his motives, details of his weapons and indications as to the nature of his plans in the lead up to the attack.


  • Deadly Los Angeles wildfire burns with subdued fury after change in weather
    October 13, 2019

    Deadly Los Angeles wildfire burns with subdued fury after change in weatherFirefighters have tightened their grip on a deadly Los Angeles wildfire burning with subdued fury on Sunday after extremely dry desert winds that had stoked the flames gave way to moister, gentler breezes blowing in from the Pacific. The so-called Saddleridge fire, which erupted Thursday night and raced across the northern edge of L.A.'s San Fernando Valley, had scorched nearly 8,000 acres (3,237 hectares) by Sunday but was mostly confined to foothills and canyons away from populated areas, fire officials said. As of Sunday morning, firefighters had managed to carve containment lines around 41% of the fire's perimeter, more than double the containment level reported a day earlier as authorities lifted all remaining evacuation notices.


  • Mattis: Trump's troop pullout will lead to 'disarray' in Syria and Isis resurgence
    October 13, 2019

    Mattis: Trump's troop pullout will lead to 'disarray' in Syria and Isis resurgence* Ex-defense secretary calls resurgence of Isis ???a given??? * Kurds say 785 Isis affiliates escape camp after Turkish shellingJames Mattis declined the opportunity to directly criticise his former boss, Donald Trump. Photograph: Leah Millis/ReutersThe former defense secretary James Mattis has said Donald Trump???s abrupt withdrawal of US troops from the Syria-Turkey border has increased the chances of a resurgence of Islamic State. But the retired general passed up an opportunity to directly criticise the president.???If we don???t keep the pressure on,??? Mattis told NBC???s Meet the Press, ???then Isis will resurge. It???s absolutely a given that they will come back.???After Mattis???s remarks were released, the Kurdish-led administration in northern Syria said 785 foreign individuals affiliated with Isis had escaped the camp where they were being held, following heavy Turkish shelling.Trump announced the US withdrawal on Monday after a call with Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdo??an. The surprise announcement prompted widespread accusations of a betrayal of Kurds allied to the US in war-torn Syria. Turkey, which regards some Kurdish groups as terrorists, swiftly attacked. The president also said Erdo??an would visit the White House.Trump faced stringent attacks from both sides of the aisle. In Washington on Saturday night he held his ground, telling the conservative Values Voter Summit he was ???an island of one???.???We have to bring our great heroes, our great soldiers, we have to bring them home,??? he insisted. ???It???s time. It???s time.???> If we don???t keep the pressure on, then Isis will resurge. It???s absolutely a given that they will come back> > James MattisOn Sunday morning, Trump warmed to his theme. The president said it was ???very smart not to be involved in the intense fighting along the Turkish border, for a change???, amid a stream of tweets that included a startling statement: ???Others may want to come in and fight for one side or the other. Let them!???In more measured tones, defense secretary Mike Esper told CBS??? Face the Nation ???it???s a very terrible situation over there??? but insisted roughly 1,000 US troops would be evacuated in a ???deliberate withdrawal???.US forces are not yet out of harm???s way. The Washington Post reported that Turkish forces which shelled an area where US special forces troops remained on Friday had known for months they were there.Brett McGurk, the former US envoy to the global coalition against Isis who resigned over Trump???s attempts to withdraw from Syria, told the Post: ???Turkey wants us off the entire border region to a depth of 30km [20 miles]. Based on all the facts available, these were warning fires on a known location, not inadvertent rounds.???Turkey is facing threats of US sanctions ??? reiterated by Trump in his speech on Saturday night ??? unless it calls off the incursion. Two of its Nato allies, Germany and France, have said they are halting weapons exports and the Arab League has denounced the operation.But airstrikes and shelling continue in Kurdish areas and harrowing scenes among panicked and grieving refugees are being reported worldwide. More than 130,000 people have been displaced from rural areas around Tel Abyad and Ras al Ain as a result of the fighting, the United Nations said. Turkish forces and their Syrian allies seized large parts of the town of Suluk, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said on Sunday, the fifth day of the offensive.On Saturday, CNN reported that earlier this week Gen Mazloum Kobani Abdi, head of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, told a senior US diplomat: ???You have given up on us. You are leaving us to be slaughtered.???Also on Saturday, another SDF commander told a press conference: ???The protection of Isis prisons will not remain our priority. The defence of our soil will be prioritised if [the] Turkish military continues its attacks.???On Sunday, the Kurds said some Isis prisoners had escaped. In an apparent reference to Turkish-backed Syrian insurgents, the Kurds said mercenaries attacked a camp where Isis ???elements??? attacked guards and opened the gates.???The brutal military assault led by Turkey and its mercenaries is now taking place near a camp in Ain Issa, where there are thousands from families of Isis,??? the Kurds said, adding ???some were able to escape after bombardments that targeted??? the camp.Mattis discussed the threat of an Isis resurgence on NBC???s Meet the Press with Chuck Todd, in an interview to be broadcast in full on Sunday.???It???s in a situation of disarray right now,??? he said in excerpts released by the broadcaster. ???Obviously, the Kurds are adapting to the Turkish attacks. And we???ll have to see if they???re able to maintain the fight against Isis. It???s going to have an impact. The question is, how much????Asked if the US would regret Trump???s decision, Mattis said: ???We have got to keep the pressure on Isis so they don???t recover.???We may want a war over. We may even declare it over. You can pull your troops out as President Obama learned the hard way out of Iraq, but the ???enemy gets the vote???, we say in the military. And in this case, if we don???t keep the pressure on, then Isis will resurge. It???s absolutely a given that they will come back.???Trump said this week any militant prisoners escaping from camps guarded by Kurds ???will be escaping to Europe???. He also said the Kurds ???didn???t help us in the second world war, they didn???t help us in Normandy, for example???.Mattis???s apparent disinclination to directly criticise the president, even as Syria spirals into ever worse chaos as a result of US actions, is in keeping with his approach since resigning in December 2018.The retired US Marine Corps general has said he has a ???duty of silence??? regarding the president he served. That commitment has held despite Mattis having resigned, like McGurk, in response to an earlier attempt by Trump to pull US troops from Syria and in protest at his treatment of America???s allies.In September, Mattis published a memoir, Call Sign Chaos. The book skirted his service to Trump, focusing instead on his career in the US armed forces.


  • In or out? Court case on job bias casts pall on LGBT fests
    October 13, 2019

    In or out? Court case on job bias casts pall on LGBT festsNational Coming Out Day festivities were tempered this year by anxiety that some LGBT folk may have to go back into the closet so they can make a living, depending on what the Supreme Court decides about workplace discrimination law. "I want all members of our community to feel supported by the government, and often for a lot of us and a lot of friends of mine, it's the first time that they feel represented," said Jessica Goldberg, a bisexual senior at the University of Colorado Denver.


  • Mobile phones back in Indian Kashmir, but internet still down
    October 14, 2019

    Mobile phones back in Indian Kashmir, but internet still downMobile phone networks were restored in Indian Kashmir on Monday after a 72-day blackout, authorities said, but the internet remains off-limits to the region's seven million-plus people. India cut access to mobile networks in the restive Kashmir Valley in early August citing security concerns as it scrapped the region's semi-autonomous status and imposed a lockdown. The easing on Monday covers around four million post-paid mobile phone contracts, but only for calls and text messages.


  • A Real Threat: Why Russia's Air Force Should Be Taken Seriously
    October 13, 2019

    A Real Threat: Why Russia's Air Force Should Be Taken SeriouslyAnd why countries love to buy them.


  • Hong Kong Police Officer Slashed in Neck as Violence Continues
    October 14, 2019

    Hong Kong Police Officer Slashed in Neck as Violence Continues(Bloomberg) -- A Hong Kong police officer was slashed in the neck by a protester as clashes continued following an escalation of violence earlier this month in demonstrations that began in June.Demonstrators spread out across 18 districts on Sunday in scattered, pop-up protests to pressure the government to meet their remaining demands, including the right to choose and elect their own leaders. Police said the officer suffered a neck wound after being attacked with a ???sharp-edged??? object in a subway station. On Monday, police said the officer remained in hospital but was in stable condition.Due to ???serious vandalism,??? the city???s rail operator MTR Corp. said on Monday all main subway lines, MTR buses and light rail would shut down early at 10 p.m. The Airport Express route was not affected, the company said, adding that it made the decision after reviewing ongoing repairs and conducting a ???joint risk assessment??? with the government.Overall the disruption wasn???t as bad as earlier this month, when the subway system was completely shut down due to widespread violence after leader Carrie Lam invoked emergency powers last used more than half a century ago to impose a ban face masks. Prior to this weekend, some activists had urged others to scale back the vandalism that has shut shops, banks and train stations over concerns it could sap support for the movement.Several events later this week could add fuel to the protests: Lam is due to give her annual economic-policy address, and U.S. lawmakers in the House of Representatives may vote on a bill that would require annual reviews of Hong Kong???s special trading status and potentially sanction some Chinese officials. Protesters plan to hold a rally in support of the bill in Central starting at 7 p.m. on Monday.???The protesters and the people in Hong Kong certainly would like to have more international attention, would like to secure international sympathy,??? Joseph Cheng, a retired political science professor and pro-democracy activist, said Sunday. ???The concern obviously is that violent activities may lose international support. There is a definite awareness.???Protesters are also concerned that violence may give the government an excuse to delay local elections next month, particularly as demonstrators are still enjoying popular support. Lam???s approval rating has been stuck near record lows for months.U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday appeared to endorse the notion that the protests were waning in a meeting in Washington with Chinese Vice Premier Liu He. The two sides agreed to ???phase one??? of a trade deal that reduced tensions between the world???s biggest economies, even as thorny issues remain.???We discussed Hong Kong and I think great progress has been made by China in Hong Kong,??? Trump said. ???And I???ve been watching and I actually told the vice premier it really has toned down a lot from the initial days of a number of months ago when I saw a lot of people, and I see far fewer now.???The issue jumped into the forefront of debate in the U.S. over the past week after the general manager of the Houston Rockets basketball team tweeted support for the anti-Beijing protesters. The tweet was quickly deleted, but it triggered a backlash from Chinese companies and fans, leading to an exhibition game on Thursday in Shanghai not being aired or streamed in China.While he didn???t refer directly to Hong Kong, China President Xi Jinping told Nepal Prime Minister K.P. Sharma Oli that those attempting to split China will be crushed, the official Xinhua News Agency reported Sunday. Xi said any external force backing the split of China will be considered as delusional by the Chinese people, the report said.The ongoing unrest was sparked by the Hong Kong government???s plan to introduce now-withdrawn legislation that would???ve allowed extradition to mainland China. Protester demands have since broadened to include an independent commission of inquiry into police brutality and greater democracy. Lam???s use of the emergency law raised the ire of protesters and paralyzed large parts of the city.About 100 restaurants have closed because of the unrest, Financial Secretary Paul Chan said in a blog post Sunday. Around 2,000 employees have been affected as a result of the closures, Chan said, citing the catering industry.Since protests erupted on China???s National Day on Oct. 1, police have arrested about 500 people, including 77 for violating the mask ban, and fired almost 2,000 rounds of tear gas. Dozens of people have have been injured, including two teenage protesters who were shot during fights with police.Lam has refused to rule out further emergency measures, or even requesting Chinese military intervention to halt the unrest. ???If the situation becomes so bad, then no option should be ruled out, if we want Hong Kong to at least have another chance,??? she told reporters Tuesday.(Updates with police officer???s condition in second paragrah)\--With assistance from Stanley James and Iain Marlow.To contact the reporters on this story: Aaron Mc Nicholas in Hong Kong at amcnicholas2@bloomberg.net;Eric Lam in Hong Kong at elam87@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Scott at bscott66@bloomberg.net, Daniel Ten KateFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com??2019 Bloomberg L.P.


  • Harry Dunn: US woman allegedly involved in crash does not have diplomatic immunity, says Foreign Office
    October 12, 2019

    Harry Dunn: US woman allegedly involved in crash does not have diplomatic immunity, says Foreign OfficeThe US diplomat???s wife allegedly involved in a crash which killed a teenager does not have diplomatic immunity, the Foreign Office has said.A letter, that appears to have been sent by foreign secretary Dominic Raab to Harry Dunn???s parents, Charlotte Charles and Tim Dunn, says: ???The question remains when such immunity comes to an end, regardless of any waiver.


  • Canadian Snowbird plane crashes during Atlanta air show
    October 13, 2019

    Canadian Snowbird plane crashes during Atlanta air showThe remaining festivities associated with the annual air show were cancelled following the crash


  • View Photos of Our Sports Sedan Battle Between the Dodge Charger and Kia Stinger GT
    October 14, 2019

    View Photos of Our Sports Sedan Battle Between the Dodge Charger and Kia Stinger GT


  • Scientists endorse mass civil disobedience to force climate action
    October 12, 2019

    Scientists endorse mass civil disobedience to force climate actionIn a joint declaration, climate scientists, physicists, biologists, engineers and others from at least 20 countries broke with the caution traditionally associated with academia to side with peaceful protesters courting arrest from Amsterdam to Melbourne. Wearing white laboratory coats to symbolise their research credentials, a group of about 20 of the signatories gathered on Saturday to read out the text outside London's century-old Science Museum in the city's upmarket Kensington district. "We believe that the continued governmental inaction over the climate and ecological crisis now justifies peaceful and non-violent protest and direct action, even if this goes beyond the bounds of the current law," said Emily Grossman, a science broadcaster with a PhD in molecular biology, who read the declaration on behalf of the group.


  • Kurds agree to Russian-brokered plan to allow Assad into their territory
    October 13, 2019

    Kurds agree to Russian-brokered plan to allow Assad into their territoryThe West???s Kurdish allies on Sunday night announced they had agreed to a Russian-brokered deal to allow the Assad regime into their territory in??a bid to spare their cities from a Turkish assault after they were abandoned by Donald Trump.?? Hours after the US said it was withdrawing all of its troops from northern Syria, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) said it had reached an agreement to allow Bashar al-Assad???s troops into their territory.?? ???If we have to choose between compromises and the genocide of our people, we will surely choose life for our people,??? said Mazloum Kobani Abdi, the commander of the SDF.?? It was not immediately clear if the agreement with Assad would bring a halt to the Turkish offensive or if the Turkish military and its Syrian rebel allies would continue to advance.?? But the deal appeared to strike a death knell for Kurdish hopes of maintaining autonomy from Damascus in their own semi-state in northeast Syria.?? Read more | Syria crisis The announcement marked a stunning fall for the SDF, who just a week ago could count on the support of the US military in deterring Turkey from taking action.?? That security came to an end last Sunday night when Mr Trump told Recep Tayyip Erdo??an, Turkey???s president, the US would not interfere in a Turkish attack on northeast Syria. ???The betrayal process is officially completed," an SDF official said of the US withdrawal. ???? Turkish warplanes thundered into Syrian airspace while Turkish-backed rebel forces advanced against the SDF on the ground and on Sunday night Kurdish commanders decided they had to strike a deal to prevent annihilation.?? While the formal details of the agreement were not announced, Syrian regime forces appeared poised to enter many of the key Kurdish-held cities along the Turkish-Syrian border, including Kobani, Manbij and Qamishli.?? Many of the areas hold vast symbolic importance for the Kurds, who have lost 11,000 men fighting against the Islamic State (Isil) in the last five years to free those cities from jihadist rule. ?? A woman sits in the back of a truck as they flee Ras-al-Ain The announcement came after Mark Esper, the US defence secretary, said he and Mr Trump had decided to withdraw all 1,000 US troops from northern Syria because the Turks ???likely intend to expand their attack further south than originally planned???.?? ???We have American forces likely caught between two opposing advancing armies and it's a very untenable situation,??? he said on Sunday morning.???? While Mr Trump said last week he was removing around 50 US commandos from a 120km section of the Turkey-Syria border, hundreds of other??American soldiers remained near Kurdish key cities like Kobani and Qamishli.?? News of the US retreat sparked panic across northern Syria as civilians, who believed their towns might be spared from Turkish onslaught by the presence of American forces, started fleeing their homes. At least 200,000 people have been displaced so far, aid groups said, and the number is likely to rise. The town of Ras-al-Ain in flames The decision came as civilian casualties mounted and Islamic State prisoners took advantage of the chaos to mount a mass escape. Kurdish authorities said early on Sunday around 785 women and children escaped from a camp in Ain Issa when it came under attack from Turkish shelling. Isil inmates ???attacked the camp guard and opened the gates??? while Kurdish forces were under fire, authorities said.?? Tooba Gondal, a notorious British Isil recruiter from Walthamstow, and her two children, may have been among those who fled and her whereabouts were unknown on Sunday night. Ms Gondal travelled to Syria to join Isil in 2015 and has been accused of grooming other young British women, including Shamima Begum, to follow her. There were unconfirmed reports last night that Ms Gondal had contacted family back in Britain to tell them she had escaped the camp.???? The Telegraph understands at least three other British women, and reportedly three British orphans, were held in Ain Issa camp before the break-out. British Isil recruiter Tooba Gondal pictured inside Ain Issa camp The SDF warned the West the breakout may be the first of many and that the resurgent jihadists ???will come knocking on your doors??? if the Turkish offensive is not stopped. Mr Trump said??on Sunday night??that Turkey and the Kurds must not allow Isil prisoners to escape and blamed the terror risk on Europe for not taking them back. "The US??has the worst of the ISIS prisoners. Turkey and the Kurds must not let them escape," he tweeted. "Europe should have taken them back after numerous requests. They should do it now. They will never come to, or be allowed in, the United States!" The SDF said Turkish-backed rebel fighters intercepted a car carrying Hevrin Khalaf, a Kurdish political leader with the Future Syria Party, and shot her to death along with her driver and an aide on Saturday. Video footage showed her black SUV riddled with bullet holes while Arabic-speaking Syrian fighters cheered. Turkey has said such fighters, known as the National Army, would be at the forefront of anti-Isil operations once the Kurds were defeated.?? While US officials insisted America was opposed to the Turkish invasion, Mr Trump struck a laissez-faire note in a series of Sunday morning tweets. Plight of the Kurds | Timeline of Western involvement ???The Kurds and Turkey have been fighting for many years,??? he noted. ???Others may want to come in and fight for one side or the other. Let them!??? The US has yet to slap any sanctions on Turkey for the assault, despite White House warnings that it would target the Turkish economy if the offensive led to a humanitarian crisis or disrupted anti-Isil operations.?? Both outcomes have already happened. At least 60 civilians have been killed in northern Syria and 18 civilians have died from Kurdish shelling in southern Turkey since last Wednesday, according to the Syrian Observatory.?? France and Germany both announced they were halting arms sales to Turkey but the UK did not match their announcements. Britain approved military export licenses worth ??583m to Turkey in 2017, including licenses for attack aircraft and helicopters.


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