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Iran tanker row: Detained ship sets sail from Gibraltar

An Iranian ship held by Gibraltar since July on suspicion of transporting oil to Syria has left port. Marine tracking shows the tanker moving east into the Mediterranean and lists Kalamata in Greece as the destination. Gibraltar earlier rejected a request by the US to again seize the ship, which has changed its name from…

South Korea says North Korea fired missiles

South Korea’s military said North Korea fired two more unidentified projectiles into East Sea, Yonhap reported. North Korea has launched short-range missiles at least four other times since July 25 as the U.S. and South Korea prepare joint military exercises. South Korea’s Yonhap news agency reported Saturday that Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said the projectiles were launched from an area near the North’s east coast. It didn’t immediately identify the projectiles or how far they flew, but North Korea has unleashed a series of test firings of short-range ballistic missiles in recent weeks. The North Korean missile tests, which Donald Trump has repeatedly played down, come amid stalled diplomatic talks with the U.S. on the North’s nuclear program. So far, North Korea has stuck by its unilateral suspension of nuclear and long-range missile tests, which came during a diplomatic outreach to Washington last year. The North described recent test-firings as a new rocket artillery system and short-range ballistic missile launches. It previously called them a “solemn warning” to South Korea over its plans to continue military drills with the U.S. Experts say the North’s weapons display could intensify in the coming…

AIPAC, other Israel-backers rebuke Israeli decision to bar Omar,Tlaib

The Israeli government’s decision to bar two American congresswomen from entering Israel sparked widespread outrage and condemnation in the US Thursday morning, with pro-Israel advocates, liberal activists, former diplomats and Jewish organizations warning that the move would be deeply damaging to Israel’s global standing. In July, the government had announced it would allow Democratic representatives…

India needs to step back in Kashmir

It is now one week since the Indian parliament voted to revoke the special autonomous status provided to Jammu and Kashmir under India’s constitution, and to split the province into two separate federally governed territories. Kashmiris remain mostly under lockdown, their leaders under arrest. Phones, even land lines, are still severed. The internet is shut…

North Korea ends talks with South Korea, amid fresh missile tests

North Korea has rejected any further talks with South Korea, calling its decision “completely the fault of South Korea’s actions”. It issued a statement in response to a speech by South Korea President Moon Jae-in on Thursday. Meanwhile, early on Friday North Korea test-fired two missiles into the sea off its eastern coast, the South…

Strength of British military falls for ninth year

The size of Britain’s armed forces has fallen for the ninth consecutive year, new Ministry of Defence figures show. The Army, the RAF and the Royal Navy have all seen a decline in the number of fully-trained personnel – with the Army experiencing the biggest fall. Labour said the government was “running down” the UK…

Deputy FM confirms Israel will bar US lawmakers Omar, Tlaib

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely confirms that Israel has made a decision to deny entry to US congresswomen Ilhan Omar and Rashida Tlaib over their BDS support. “Israel has decided — we won’t enable the members of Congress to enter the country,” she tells the Kan public broadcaster. “We won’t allow those who deny our…

Epstein accuser files civil suit

A woman in New York who claims she was raped by financier Jeffrey Epstein is suing his estate and four women. Jennifer Araoz also alleges the women knew or helped recruit girls for the accused sex trafficker, who died of an apparent suicide over the weekend. One of the women has denied the allegation.

Geospatial information crucial for Africa’s economic development, says ECA’s Chinganya

The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) views geospatial technology as a significant component that will help push Africa’s transformative development agenda even further, says Oliver Chinganya, Director of the Commission’s African Centre for Statistics (ACS). In a keynote address at an event marking Digital Earth Africa Day, Mr. Chinganya said the ECA understands that it…

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