LIVE WORLD NEWS

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

23 April ND: Supreme Court orders Rs 50 lakh, job, house for Gujarat gangrape survivor Bilkis Bano/ LIVE : 61.62% voter turnout till 6 pm; Assam sees 74.05%, polling in Maharashtra at 55.71%/ Voters complain about faulty EVMs in third phase polls

NEWS DIGEST, EVENING 
23 April 2019: 17 Shaban 1440:Vol: 11, No:183
INDIA
Give Rs 50 lakh compensation to 2002 riots gangrape victim Bilkis Bano: SC to Gujarat govt
New Delhi: The Supreme Court Tuesday directed the Gujarat government to give Rs 50 lakh compensation to Bilkis Bano, who was gangraped during the 2002 riots, within two weeks. In addition, the apex court has asked the state government to provide her government job and government accommodation.A pregnant Bilkis Bano was gangraped on March 3, 2002, in Randhikpur village, while fleeing the violence in the aftermath of the Godhra train burning in Gujarat. Fourteen members of her family were killed.On May 4, 2017, the Bombay High Court had upheld the conviction and life imprisonment of 12 people in the gangrape case, while setting aside the acquittal of seven people, including policemen and doctors.The trial court, while sentencing 11 people to life imprisonment on Jan.21, 2008, had acquitted 5 police officers and 2 government doctors, giving them the benefit of doubt. Last month, the SC asked the state govt to complete disciplinary action against police officials convicted by the HC.Bano had earlier refused to accept compensation of Rs 5 lakh offered by Gujarat govt.indian express
Supreme Court orders Rs 50 lakh, job, house for Gujarat gangrape survivor Bilkis Bano
SC Notice To Lawyer Who Claimed Conspiracy To Frame CJI
New Delhi: A lawyer's affidavit claiming that the allegations of sexual harassment against CJI Ranjan Gogoi are a conspiracy to frame him will be taken up by the SC on Wednesday. CJI Gogoi has strongly denied the allegations of a former SC employee and said the independence of the judiciary is "under threat" and it "cannot be made a scapegoat".The SC, in a hearing today, served notice to the lawyer Utsav Bains and asked him to explain his affidavit tomorrow and clarify his claim that he knew the chain of events and would submit names of those involved in a sealed cover. A special bench called an emergency hearing on Saturday after the former employee, in an affidavit to several Supreme Court judges, alleged she was sexually harassed by the chief justice."This is unbelievable. I don't think I should stoop low even to deny these allegations," the CJI said in the hearing and added he would not pass any orders, that the senior most judge Arun Mishra would dictate the order.Today, Justices Arun Mishra, RF Nariman and Deepak Gupta heard Utsav Bains's affidavit claiming there was a conspiracy to frame the CJI in a "false case of sexual harassment" that would force him to resign. Utsav Bains claims he was offered Rs. 1.5 crore to represent the woman and arrange a presser against CJI Gogoi.All 26 judges of the top court have rallied behind the CJI, sources say.ndtv
Sexual harassment allegations: Was offered ₹1.5 crore to frame CJI, says SC lawyer
SC issues notice to Centre, J-K govt on plea challenging highway curbs
New Delhi :The Supreme Court has issued a notice to the Centre and Jammu and Kashmir government on a petition challenging restrictions imposed on civilian movement along the National Highway between Srinagar and Baramulla.“Issue notice on the writ petition, as also on the prayer for interim relief, returnable within two weeks,” ordered a bench of CJI Ranjan Gogoi and Justices Deepak Gupta and Sanjiv Khanna, hearing the plea by Muzzafar Shah, Awami National Conference senior vice president, and social worker Yasmeen Sonaullah. Terming it an “absurd and draconian decision”, the petition contended that the restrictions affect the lives of several lakhs of people and “its indirect economic and social impact is interminable”.“The impugned order means a virtual lock down of the Valley two days every week, which will directly affect 10,000 vehicles plying every hour, which includes vehicles carrying patients, students, tourists, businessmen and government officials,” it said.indianexpress
Inmate branded with Om: Court pulls up Tihar Jail
New Delhi :A Delhi court Monday pulled up Tihar Jail authorities for failing to respond to charges levelled by an undertrial that an ‘Om’ symbol was branded on his back with hot metal, allegedly by a jail superintendent. The undertrial, Nabbir, had also alleged that the superintendent denied him food for two days during Navratri and said he would convert him to Hinduism. Metropolitan Magistrate Richa Parihar expressed displeasure over the jail official’s inability to produce documents proving that he was authorised by the Director General of Tihar Jail to respond to charges made by the undertrial, Nabbir.Asked if he has received the court’s notice in the matter, the Deputy Superintendent of Police, who was present in court, was unable to produce it and sought two weeks to respond to Nabbir’s allegations.Irked by the conduct of Tihar Jail authorities, the judge ordered that an authority letter be filed by the official concerned before filing any reply to the allegations levelled against the superintendent. Tihar jail officials have also been asked to respond to Nabbir’s accusations that, during his custody, the superintendent allegedly denied him food for two days and said he would convert him to Hinduism.It sought a report in the matter by April 30. Meanwhile, the officer informed the court that they have shifted Nabbir to another cell following the court’s previous order. But Nabbir claimed that jail authorities had not given him any medicine since the court’s April 17 order. indianexpress
Foreign Secy shared all evidence on Masood Azhar with China: MEA
Beijing : Ministry of External Affairs said that India has shared with China “all evidence” of terrorist activities by Jaish-e-Mohammad and its leader Masood Azhar, after Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale met Chinese State Councillor and Foreign minister Wang Yi in Beijing. Asked if listing Azhar under UN 1267 Committee was raised during Gokhale’s visit to Beijing, MEA spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said,“It is now for 1267 Sanctions Committee and other authorised bodies of the UN to take a decision on the listing of Azhar. India will continue to pursue all available avenues to ensure that terrorist leaders who are involved in heinous attacks on our citizens are brought to justice.”Responding to a question on whether Azhar’s listing or India’s participation in the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing later this week was Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said, “As to the specific issues, I already said that the two sides have far more common interests than conflicts. I hope the two sides will step up coordination and cooperation, and sustain the sound momentum in bilateral relations.China is ready and would like to work together with India to this end.” indian express
Probe will determine if British national will be questioned: NIA
Chandigarh :NIA has said in a special NIA court at Mohali that whether British national Jagtar Singh Jaggi Johal and two other accused arrested in cases of targeted killings in Punjab were wanted in RSS Punjab vice president Jagdish Gagneja murder case would be known “sooner the role of applicants is surfaced” as the “matter is under investigation”.Gagneja was shot by unknown motorcycle-borne assailants on Aug.6, 2016. Punjab government had handed over the case to CBI.Jaggi Johal was arrested in Nov.2017 when he was in Punjab to get married. He was alleged to be involved in spate of targeted killings in Punjab, the murders of leaders and activists belonging to right wing organisation, Dera Sacha Sauda and the Christian community, which as per police showed a pattern to disturb communal harmony.indianexpress
India says it is prepared to deal with US decision to end waivers on oil imports from Iran
India on Tuesday said it was prepared to deal with the impact of the US’ decision not to renew waivers that allowed eight countries to buy oil from Iran without facing sanctions. Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said Centre will continue to work with partner countries to secure India’s energy and economic security interests.scroll.in
Jamia Faculty Gets Swiss Award For 'Smart Solar Inverter' Model
New Delhi: In-charge of the Advance Power Electronics Research Laboratory,Dept.of Electrical Engineering, Jamia Millia Islamia,Dr. Ahteshamul Haque and his research group has won an award worth Rs. 20 Lakhs from Switzerland based world reputed company Typhoon HIL.The research group comprising of students from B.Tech, M.Tech and PhD headed by Dr. Haque has developed a model for Smart Solar Inverters with its control and submitted it for evaluation in a competition organised by Typhoon HIL. NDTV
ELECTIONS
LIVE: 61.05% voter turnout in phase 3 of Lok Sabha elections till 5 pm
A total of 117 seats in 13 states and 2 Union Territories are going to polls in the third phase of the Lok Sabha elections on Tuesday.Voting is taking place for all 26 constituencies in Gujarat, all 20 seats in Kerala, 14 each in Maharashtra and Karnataka, 10 in Uttar Pradesh, seven in Chhattisgarh, 6 in Odisha, five each in Bihar and West Bengal, four in Assam, two in Goa, one each in Jammu and Kashmir, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu and Tripura.HT
LIVE : 61.62% voter turnout till 6 pm; Assam sees 74.05%, polling in Maharashtra at 55.71%
Voters complain about faulty EVMs in Kerala, UP in third phase of polls
Complaints of electronic voting machine malfunctioning were reported from some polling booths across Kerala and UP as 117 constituencies went to polls in the third phase on Tuesday, reports said.In Kerala, faulty electronic voting machines interrupted polling at seven booths in Alathur, 11 booths in Palakkad, seven booths in Kasaragod and 10 booths in Pathanamthitta, according to Manorama. Snags in EVMs were also reported from Cherthala in Alappuzha district and Kovalam in Thiruvananthapuram.However, District Collector K Vasuki dismissed reports of glitches in the machine in Kovalam, reported PTI. Senior Congress leader and sitting MP Shashi Tharoor is contesting against BJP’s Kummanam Rajasekaran and LDF’s C Divakaran in this seat. Tharoor alleged that EVMs were registering only votes polled for BJP, reported News18. He asked the Election Commission to take note of the matter.scroll.in
Goa AAP leader Elvis Gomes claims faulty EVMs registering extra BJP votes
New Delhi: Congress and the AAP on Tuesday alleged that EVMs in some polling booths in North and South Goa malfunctioned and that extra votes were recorded for the BJP during a mock drill. Leaders from the 2 opposition parties, who are facing the BJP in the 2 Lok Sabha seats in the coastal state, said that EVMs in Cuncolim, Quepem and St Cruz segments had developed faults.Elvis Gomes, AAP’s South Goa Lok Sabha seat nominee, claimed that 17 votes went to the BJP after a mock drill at a booth in Cuncolim in which a total of only 8 votes were cast. Thus the votes registered were more than those polled.“Total 8 votes were polled during the mock drill, but the result showed 17 in name of BJP, 8 for AAP and 7 for Congress. How is this possible? This seems to be trend across India,” he told reporters, adding that the election officer halted the polling process after he raised the matter. the statesman
LS polls: Cong, AAP raise concern over faulty EVMs in Goa
Lok Sabha elections: ‘EVMs voting for BJP’, alleges Akhilesh
New Delhi:Samajwadi party leader Akhilesh Yadav on Tuesday alleged that EVMs in many areas were recording votes in favour the BJP amid reports of glitches from various states during the third phase of polling.“EVMs across India malfunctioning or voting for the BJP. DMs say poll officials untrained to operate EVMs. 350+ being replaced. This is criminal negligence for a polling exercise that costs 50,000 crs,” he tweeted. Malfunction EVM malfunction was reported from polling booths in Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Goa.HT
Mamata : Central forces at polling booths asking people to vote for BJP
New Delhi :With 350 companies of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) posted in the state to oversee the election process, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday alleged that Central forces were asking voters to cast their franchise for BJP. Banerjee said TMC had apprised the Election Commission of the matter, which has been mainly reported from Malda Dakshin and Balurghat constituencies.“I have got information that the central forces are sitting inside booths in Englishbazar in Malda Dakshin and asking voters to vote for BJP.They do not have the right to do such a thing. We have informed the Election Commission about our reservations regarding this,”PTI quoted Mamata as saying.indianexpress
LS election : BJP Lawmaker Udit Raj, Ignored For Delhi Contest, Says Decided To Quit
New Delhi:BJP leader Udit Raj, who was not named as the party's candidate for North West Delhi seat, today said he has decided to leave the party after it fielded singer Hans Raj Hans from the seat. He has also attacked the party, saying ticket distribution was based "on some inscrutable internal standards". BJP has announced the candidates for all the seven Lok Sabha constituencies in the national capital."In 2014, I trusted the leadership of Honorable PM Narendra Modi and merged my 'Indian Justice Party' with BJP. I now realize many smaller regional parties have benefited more by remaining independent," Udit Raj said in a statement. "Is it my fault to be known as a 'Tall' Dalit Leader. Doesn't the grand party BJP want a leader who has been chosen by Dalits themselves?" he added.Raj claimed that he was denied the ticket despite topping the party's internal surveys."All BJP workers know that party had engaged four agencies to do a performance survey on MPs, I ranked on top in all of them," he said."In reality the decision making of weather to give ticket or deny ticket is based on some inscrutable internal standards," he added.This morning, in a pinned tweet, Raj threatened to say "goodbye to the party" if he was not picked as a candidate for the national election. Later, he told NDTV: "Rahul Gandhi and Arvind Kejriwal had warned me." The party later announced Punjabi singer Hans Raj Hans as the candidate from North West Delhi seat."BJP didn't give me a ticket. I have decided to leave the party," Raj told NDTV.
BJP denies ticket to Udit Raj, names singer Hans Raj Hans as North West Delhi candidate
Over 30 seats out of 117 have large number of Muslim voters in 3rd phase
New Delhi: Out of the 117 Lok Sabha seats going to polls in the third phase of elections on April 23, over 30 constituencies spread across Assam, Kerala, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat and West Bengal have substantial Muslim population while Christians have large population in the 2 seats of Goa and several Kerala constituencies. The highest concentration of Muslims is in Assam's Dhubri (67.4 per cent) and Malappuram (68 per cent) in Kerala. From Dhubri, AIDUF chief Badruddin Ajmal is seeking re-election. Mallapuram is considered a bastion of IUML.Assam's Barpeta has Muslim population of 52 per cent, Gauhati has 25 per cent and Kokrajhar 21 per cent -- all these seats will see polling on Tuesday.In Bihar, two out of five seats going to polls have Muslim population -- Araria (41 per cent) and Supaul (18 per cent). Supaul is witnessing a contest between Dileshwar Kamat of JDU and Ranjit Ranjan of the Congress who will be banking on 'MY' (Muslim-Yadav) factor. In Araria, BJP's Pradip Kumar Singh is taking on RJD Sarfaraz Alam.Karnataka's Bidar (20 per cent) and Dharwad (19 per cent) also have a substantial Muslim population. Kerala and Gujarat are the two states where elections are being held for all the seats in one go in the third phase.IANS
‘Chowkidar chor hai’ remark: SC issues formal contempt notice against Rahul Gandhi
NEW DELHI:The Supreme Court on Tuesday issued a formal criminal contempt notice against Congress president Rahul Gandhi for attributing the comment “chowkidar chor hai” to the court judgement of April 10, upholding the maintainability of the Rafale fighter aircraft deal case review petitions.A Bench, led by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi, also ordered that the review petitions be listed along with the criminal contempt petition filed by BJP lawmaker Meenakshi Lekhi for Tuesday next (April 30).The issuance of the formal contempt notice seems to be triggered by a brief exchange among Ms. Lekhi's lawyer, senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi; the CJI; and senior advocate A.M. Singhvi for Mr. Gandhi.
Gujarat: Scarred by 2002 riots, Muslims lament Congress' indifference
Godhra:If there is one common refrain in Godhra, Ahmedabad and Mehsana, which saw violence during the Gujarat carnage of 2002, it is that people have moved on and made — read bought — peace in an essentially mercantile society. Only difference is in the interpretation of “moved on”’. Though Godhra continues to suffer the economic blowback of the international uproar over the carnage with big names in business unwilling to set up shop in the area in Panchmahal district, the right wing within the majority community justifies the violence as a means to lasting “peace”. A common refrain is:“There has been no large-scale riots since 2002; the minorities have been silenced. They go about their businesses and the 2 communities live in peace.” Needless to say, mostly in separate areas with interdependent businesses.The minority community does not contest this while silently mourning their political isolation as the Congress — despite its claim to secular credentials — distanced itself from the Muslims here till a couple of years ago.“Before 2017 Assembly polls, Congress would tell their candidates to keep ‘daadi-topi walas’ (bearded men with caps) at a distance during their public meetings,” Kalim Siddiqui of Dalit Muslim Ekta Manch said.According to him, the Patidar and post-Una Dalit movement of the past couple of years gave Muslims a chance to join the mainstream. Another organisation that has come up in recent years is the Minority Coordination Committee; again to draw the Muslims, in particular, out of political isolation and make them part of the conversation.The Telegraph
Ahmedabad: Slips not distributed in Muslim areas, says Congress
One day before the state votes, Congress complained to the chief electoral officer that voter slips have not been distributed in minority-dominated and poor localities of Ahmedabad. The district collector claimed that these slips had been distributed by Monday evening. Balubhai Patel, election co-ordination committee chairman of the Gujarat Congress, in a letter to the chief electoral officer, complained that a number of voters in Juhapura, Vejalpur, Maktampura and certain societies in Makarba like Harivas, Rehamani Society, Monal Society, Mere Garib Nawaj Society and Mehboob Society had not received their voter slips. The letter stated that although residents of these localities filed complaints with the office of the district election officer, no action was taken and they had not received their slips until 2pm on Monday. All 26 LS seats in Gujarat will votetoday. Gujarat chief electoral officer S Murali Krishna said, "I have asked Ahmedabad DEO to inquire into the complaint and have instructed that all possible action be taken." Timesofindia
Polarised politics: how two teenagers will vote after surviving 2002 Gujarat riots
AHMEDABAD:On the night of February 28, 2002, two toddlers living in adjacent alleys were dragged out of a slum district in Ahmedabad in Gujarat that had been set ablaze by a mob in one of India’s worst ever Hindu-Muslim riots.    The attack in the Naroda Patiya area of the state’s biggest city was among scores of clashes in which more than 800 Muslims and 255 Hindus were killed in the month-long violence in the home state of Narendra Modi. He had just become its chief minister and would rule there until becoming India’s prime minister in 2014.The toddlers who survived, a Muslim boy and a Hindu girl, were both one-year-olds at the time of the riots. Now, 17 years later, they are among an estimated 15 million first-time voters in a general election in which Modi and his Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are seeking a second term on a platform that, critics say, marginalises Muslims in favour of the nation’s majority Hindus.Reuters
Bhopal: Muslim board files complaint against Sadhvi Pragya
All India Ulama Board on Monday filed a complaint to lodge an FIR against BJP Lok Sabha candidate from Bhopal, Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur for hurting sentiments of the Muslim community through her Babri Masjid demolition remark.The complaint has been filed at Aishbagh Police Station.District Election Officer and Collector Sudam Khade had on Monday directed the police to file an FIR against Thakur for her remark on the demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya.The Election Officer found her statement in violation of the Model Code of Conduct which is in force during polling.ANI
FIR Filed Against Pragya Thakur Over 'Babri' Remarks, MP Poll Body Orders Investigation
Muslims vote remark: Poll panel bars Sidhu from campaigning for 72 hours
New Delhi :Election Commission has barred Congress leader and Punjab minister Navjot Singh Sidhu from campaigning for 72 hours, effective from 10 am Tuesday, for appealing to Muslims “to vote unitedly”. Sidhu made the remark last week at a public meeting in Bihar’s Katihar district which went to the polls on April 18.indianexpress
SRI lANKA BLASTS
Pompeo vows fight on 'Islamic radical terrorism' after Sri Lanka attacks
Washington :Secretary of State Mike Pompeo vowed Monday that the United States will keep fighting "radical Islamic terror" after devastating attacks in Sri Lanka that targeted churches on Easter and hotels."Radical Islamic terror remains a threat. We are continuing to do real work against these evil human beings," Pompeo told reporters."This is America's fight, too," added Pompeo, who said he had spoken by telephone with Prime Minister Ranil Wickremesinghe.AFP
Sri Lanka Attacks a Retribution For New Zealand Mosque Shooting: Ex Indian Diplomat G Parthsarathy
New Delhi: As 8 powerful blasts ripped across Sri Lanka on Easter Day, killing 290 people on Sunday, former diplomat G Parthasarathy said that the attacks were, as per his view, a retribution for the killing of the devotees at the mosque in New Zealand. “There is no evidence to suggest that Sri Lankans are going to Syria or Iraq in large numbers to join the ISIS or are getting involved in their training programme. But since the primary targets were Christians and the timing was on one of the holiest days for Christianity, this appears as a retribution for the killing of devotees at the mosque in New Zealand,” he said.Shedding some light on the Buddhist organisations becoming more and more anti-Islamic, Parthasarathy added that the phenomenon also existed in other Buddhist countries like Myanmar and Thailand. news18
Lashkar has fanned radicalism in Sri Lanka:Indian agencies
NEW DELHI: India had tipped off Sri Lanka several times over the possibility of a jihadi attack and Indian agencies also pointed to National Thawheed Jamaat (NTJ) having a number of associates and followers in Pakistan. Indian intelligence has been tracking the influence of Wahabism, with its hardline Islamic beliefs, in eastern Sri Lanka and warned that the region could develop into an operational zone for Lashkar-e-Taiba and like-minded jihadi groups. The Pakistan link to violent groups in Sri Lanka was underlined by Lashkar's charity front Falah-i-Insaniyat advertising in 2016 its presence in the island nation apart from its activities in Syria, Afghanistan, Myanmar and Somalia. NTJ has been seeking to harness a growing radicalisation, the seeds of which were sown by Lashkar and its 'charity' wing Idara Khidmat-e-Khalq. The latter was actively engaged in disaster relief activities in Sri Lanka and Maldives after a tsunami struck in 2004. According to Indian agencies, NTJ has been associated with Al Qaeda that has been radicalizing and recruiting young Sri Lankans for global jihad. That Indian intelligence agencies had warned about an attack by the NTJ has been corroborated by New York Times which said Indian security agencies had shared "specific intelligence" about a plot by the jihadi group as early as April 4. But the daily suggested that the warning may have gone unheeded. TOI
Sri Lanka Serial blasts: To join the dots, NIA wants to send team to Colombo
New Delhi :NIA is keen on sending a team to Colombo to study the series of blasts in churches and hotels across Sri Lanka on Sunday that claimed 290 lives, official sources said. The agency is likely to request the Union Home Ministry to take a call on the visit since an attack so close to India’s shores could have implications for the country, sources said.“We would like to visit Sri Lanka and study this terror attack. An attack of such scale and proportion has not happened in the sub-continent in recent memory. After the fall of LTTE, Sri Lanka has hardly seen any big attacks. This points to the emergence of a new force that may also be inimical to India’s interests,” an NIA official said. indian express
Sri Lankans Slam Indian Media for ‘Politicising’ Easter Blasts
Sri Lankan Twitter has been quick to call out Indian media and politicians, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, for using the series of blasts in the island nation as “election fodder.”Pointing to PM Modi’s election rally later the same day, Sri Lanka’s Twitter users called it “political opportunism.” Soon after condoling the deaths, PM appealed to people to vote for BJP’s lotus in order to fight terrorism.Sri Lankan government has not named a suspect, nor identified any of them by religion as till 22 April noon. However, a section of Indian media was quick to identify some of the terror groups,on 21 April itself.Indian journalist Shreya Dhoundial pointed that Sri Lankan media refraining from speculating did not deter the Indian media.thequint
Sri Lanka attacks bring together Muslims, Christians
Muslim parliamentarians and members of a Muslim group in Sri Lanka have paid a condolence visit to the Archbishop Cardinal Malcolm Ranjith, following the terror attacks in the country that claimed 310 lives. According to a press release issued by Mufti M.I.M Rizwe, President of All Ceylon Jamiyyathul Ulama, Ranjith said preserving peace and religious harmony between the communities is important especially at difficult times.“Both parties emphasized on further strengthening of the good relationship that exists among the communities, for the betterment of our Motherland,” the press release said.“They also pledged to offer the fullest support in carrying out the necessary actions to be meted out on the perpetrators and terrorists,” it added. On Easter Sunday, at least 310 people were killed and 500 others injured when a total of eight explosions targeted eight different locations in and outside Colombo, the capital of Sri Lanka.Anadolu Agency
WORLD
Egypt’s Sisi to recruit Arab states in support of ‘deal of the century’
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi is recruiting Arab leaders to support the peace plan being laid down by the US administration, dubbed the “deal of the century”.Writing for Ynet News, Smadar Perry, said that what is clear about the “deal of the century” is “the extent of Egyptian President Abdel Fatah Al-Sisi’s involvement in the agreement.”He noted that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman was initially believed to be recruiting supporters for the deal, but, according to Perry, Trump’s “excellent friend” Al-Sisi recently found himself in the driving seat.Perry argued that the Israeli government believes that Al-Sisi “is a neighbour and a partner who watches over the Sinai Peninsula – where thousands of Israelis are spending their Passover holidays – along with Israel.”middleeastmonitor
Outgoing France ambassador to US: Israel already ‘apartheid state’
The outgoing French ambassador to the US has said that Israel is an “apartheid state” and that the status quo provides no incentive for its government to make concessions in peace negotiations.Gerard Araud – who ended his five year term as France’s ambassador to the US this weekend – gave an interview to US magazine the Atlantic in which he discussed a number of topics pertaining to the Israel-Palestine conflict and the so-called “deal of the century”, the long-awaited peace plan touted by US President Donald Trump’s administration. Discussing the “deal of the century” and its chief architect, special advisor to the President and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, Araud told the Atlantic: “Everywhere in the history of mankind, when there is a negotiation between two sides, the more powerful [party] is imposing terms on the weaker party. That’s the basis of Jared Kushner’s [peace plan] – it will be a proposal very close to what the Israelis want.”middleeastmonitor
Sudan’s Umma Party refuses to take part in transitional government
Sudanese National Umma Party (NUP), headed by Sadiq Al-Mahdi, announced yesterday that it will not participate in the transitional government, calling on the military council to hand over power to a civilian government, the Anadolu Agency reported.The party said in a statement that the Sudanese people will always be the source of all authority, adding that the party will not give up until the people’s demands are met.The statement accused the Transitional Military Council (MTC) of trying to replace one military rule with another.The party explained that partisan and civil forces have taken steps to form a civil authority whose members will be announced this week. “Efforts to nominate candidates for the transitional civil authority have reached an advanced stage and their members will be announced within the next few days,” it said.Anadolu
Mueller report raises questions on role of Abu Dhabi Crown Prince
Towards the end of the 448-page Mueller report to investigate possible Russian meddling in the 2016 US presidential election is a reference to Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan.The reference appears to suggest that the UAE might have acted to bring together the Trump campaign and Russians representing Vladimir Putin.The report refers to Kirill Dmitriev, "a Russian national who heads Russia's sovereign wealth fund and is closely connected to Putin". He was appointed CEO of Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) when it was founded in 2011. Muller report says that he "reported directly to Putin and frequently referred to Putin as his 'boss.'"Dmitriev regularly interacted with George Nader, a senior adviser to the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince. The report also refers to Nader as a business associate of Dmitriev. It says he leaned on Nader to introduce him to Trump transition officials. "Dmitriev told Nader that Putin would be very grateful to Nader and that a meeting would make history," the report said.A meeting was arranged in Seychelles between Dmitriev and Eric Prince, a Trump campaign supporter and an associate of Steve Bannon, head of Breitbart news who joined the White House but was later eased out.The report says the UAE national security adviser also introduced Dmitriev to Rick Gerson, a hedge fund manager and friend of Trump's son-in-law Jared Kushner. That meeting took place in late November 2016.Suggestions on the mysterious role of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed come across when the Muller report says, "Nader considered Dmitriev to be Putin's interlocutor in the Gulf region, and would relay Dmitriev’s views directly to Crown Prince Mohammed". It continued: "Nader developed contacts with both U.S. presidential campaigns during the 2016 election, and kept Dmitriev abreast of his efforts to do so. According to Nader, Dmitriev said that his and the government of Russia's preference was for candidate Trump to win, and asked Nader to assist him in meeting members of the Trump campaign."IANS
Iranian parliament labels entire US military as terrorist
Tehran :Iranian media say the parliament has approved a bill that labels all US military forces as terrorist.The legislation is a step further after Iranian lawmakers last week approved a bill labelling US troops in the Mideast as terrorist, a day after the US terrorism designation for Iran’s Revolutionary Guard came into effect.AP
Myanmar’s top court rejects final appeal by jailed Reuters journalists
NAYPYITAW:Myanmar’s Supreme Court on Tuesday rejected the final appeal of two Reuters journalists and upheld seven-year prison sentences for their reporting on the military’s brutal crackdown on Rohingya Muslims.Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo earlier this month shared with their colleagues the Pulitzer Prize for international reporting, one of journalism’s highest honors.The court did not given a reason for its decision. Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo, who are being held in a prison in Yangon, were not present for the ruling, but their wives were. Kyaw Soe Oo’s wife broke down in tears when the ruling was read.The reporters were arrested in December 2017 and sentenced last September after being accused of illegally possessing official documents, a violation of a colonial-era law.They denied the allegation and contended they were framed by police. International rights groups, media freedom organizations, UN experts and several governments have condemned their conviction as an injustice and an attack on freedom of the press.AP
More than 50 feared dead after landslide at Myanmar jade mine
More than 50 people are feared dead after a landslide hit a major jade mining area in Myanmar's northern Kachin state, an official has said.The accident took place near Maw Wun Kalay village in Hpakant Township around 11:30pm local time (17:00 GMT) on Monday when a mud-filter pond, situated in an old mining site, collapsed.A total of 54 staff from two private companies were buried under a mound of mining waste along with 40 machines and vehicles, Tin Soe, a local politician told the Reuters.aljazeera
Flash: views & NEWS
Communal Propaganda and Vigilante Violence is Fracturing the Idea of India:Harsh Mande
Karkare does not need a certificate from Sadhvi who cursed him: S S Virk
India’s response to China’s BRI is linked to its territorial concerns: Sana Hashmi
Mahagathbandan hopes to repair strained ties between Jats and Muslims after 2013 riots: Sudha Pai
The story of India is the story of evolution: Sohail Hashmi
10 private airlines collapsing in 3 decades point to poverty of policy & ‘loot’ by promoters:Nantoo Banerjee
‘Unforgivable Crime Against Humanity’: Indian Muslim Leaders Condemn Sri Lanka Attacks

Compiled and edited by Anwarulhaq (Released at: 7:09 PM)

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