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France's Macron pledges to 'do better' to honour terror victims

21 hours ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
French President Emmanuel Macron on Wednesday pledged to "do better" and act "more" to pay tribute to the victims of the terrorist assaults that had rocked one of Europe's leading powerhouse. "To do better is to recognize that the victims of terrorism are not victims among others but are at the heart of our national fraternity and our memory," Macron told a gathering at the military museum Les Invalides, Xinhua reported. "France has to know how to conduct a memorial, scientific, educational work allowing everyone to understand all the implications and resonances of what regularly strikes us," the president added, noting the necessity "to understand without putting at a distance, to grasp without relativizing and to resist and struggle with a clearer awareness." Furthermore, Macron announced the creation of "a memorial museum of terrorism" and an official commemoration to be celebrated every year. Adding to memorial acts, the head of state stressed that "the concrete actions that the ..
                 

Britain, EU clash over who should give ground on Brexit

21 hours ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
British Prime Minister Theresa May clashed with EU leaders on Thursday over who should make the next move to break the Brexit logjam, as time runs out to get a deal. EU Council President Donald Tusk opened a crucial summit in the Austrian city of Salzburg with a stark warning that Britain's position on key issues must be "reworked". He said negotiations on Britain's withdrawal from the European Union, due to take place in March, were reaching a "decisive phase" but said the outcome still remained open. While welcoming the "positive evolution" of Britain's position on security ties, Tusk said that on the Irish border and post-Brexit trading relations, "the UK's proposals will need to be reworked and further negotiated". Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz, who hosted the Salzburg summit, added that the EU was "ready to compromise but we also expect that from the UK", calling for May to offer a "step forward". But May said that after she presented her so-called Chequers plan on post-Bre..
                 

Surgeon, his GF, arrested for drugging, raping women

21 hours ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
An orthopaedic surgeon in California who once appeared on a dating reality show and his girlfriend have been charged with drugging and sexually assaulting two women, in a case prosecutors suspect might involve hundreds of other victims. The surgeon, Grant William Robicheaux, 38, and his girlfriend, Cerissa Laura Riley, 31, were charged on September 11 with rape as well as drug and weapons-related offenses in connection with two alleged assaults. Robicheaux and Riley are due to be arraigned on October 25. Investigators found hundreds of videos on Robicheaux's phone after he was arrested, "in various states of undress, consciousness and being assaulted," Van Der Linden said. Orange County district attorney Tony Rackauckas said Robicheaux and Riley had worked in tandem at restaurants and bars to identify their victims and make them feel comfortable. "We believe the defendants used their good looks and charm to lower the inhibitions of their potential prey," Rackauckas said. The pair wo..
                 

Mike Pompeo: United States ready to negotiate with North Korea 'immedia

21 hours ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo welcomed Pyongyang's "important commitments" made by Pyongyang during Wednesday's inter-Korean summit, adding Washington was ready to begin negotiating immediately to achieve the denuclearisation of North Korea "by January 2021". In a statement, Pompeo said he spoke with his North Korean counterpart Wednesday morning and invited him to meet in New York next week on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly. The statement came after the North's leader Kim Jong Un agreed to make a historic visit to Seoul soon and close a missile testing site in front of international inspectors in a meeting with the South's President Moon Jae-in. Progress on the key issue of the North's nuclear arsenal was limited, but the two signed a document to strengthen ties between the two halves of the divided peninsula. Building on a growing rapprochement, they agreed to create a facility to hold family reunions at any time, work towards joining up road and rail links..
                 

Donald Trump: China hitched USD 500 bn 'piggy bank' ride

23 hours ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
China has taken out USD 500 billion and more a year from the US to rebuild itself, President Donald Trump said, as he referred to US as a the world's 'piggy bank,' and defended his controversial trade policies, including the latest move to slap duties on USD 200 billion worth of Chinese imports. He said China rebuilt itself with the "tremendous amount" of money pouring out of the US. "Over the last number of years, China has taken out of this country USD 500 billion and more a year. That would go a long way for Poland, wouldn't it? You could rebuild your whole country. And that's what China did," he said while addressing a joint news conference with the visiting Polish President Andrzej Duda at the White House. Trump said he keeps a close watch on trade deficits as it was "very important". Trump has repeatedly pointed to the large US trade deficit as one of the primary reasons his administration has embarked on trade fights with China, the European Union, Canada and Mexico. "When a ..
                 

Imran Khan reaches UAE to discuss bilateral ties with Prince

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Wednesday arrived in Abu Dhabi, the capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), for the last leg of his two-nation tour. Upon his arrival, he was received by Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan at the Abu Dhabi airport. Khan is expected to hold talks with the Emirati leaders on Thursday. Earlier in the day, the cricketer-turned-politician, who is undertaking his maiden foreign visit as the Prime Minister, met Saudi King Salman and Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman in Riyadh. During the meetings, Khan held discussions on matters of regional and bilateral interest, including economic relations between Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, The Dawn reported. Khan had also visited Jeddah, where he was accorded a ceremonial reception and King Salman hosted a banquet in honour of the former. The 65-year-old leader and his delegation also undertook a pilgrimage visit to Mecca. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman hosted a dinner for Khan and the..
                 

Former Malaysian PM Najib Razak arrested, to face fresh charges

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Former Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak was arrested on Wednesday to face fresh corruption charges related to scandal-hit state investment fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad, the Malaysia's anti-graft body said. The Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) said in a statement that Najib will be held overnight and charged on Thursday in connection with a 2.6 billion Malaysian Ringgit ($628 million) sum deposited into his bank account from the 1MDB investment fund, the New Strait Times reported. The MACC will assist the police to record Najib's statement in the money laundering investigation before the former Prime Minister is brought to Kuala Lumpur Sessions court on Thursday, the statement added. On September 10, Najib released documents to support his claim that the controversial 2.6 billion Ringgit deposited into his bank account was a donation from Saudi royalty. The former Prime Minister is facing seven criminal charges over funds belonging to SRC International, a former un..
                 

Hafiz Saeed to approach court to retrieve frozen assets of JuD, FIF

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed plans to launch next phase of legal battle to retrieve the assets of Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and its subsidiary Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) after Pakistan's Supreme Court allowed the two outfits to continue their activities in the country, the JuD's spokesman said on Wednesday. The government took over around 184 buildings, schools, hospitals and dispensaries, belonging to the JuD and FIF after the promulgation of the presidential ordinance last year and subsequently administrators were appointed there. The government had also frozen all bank accounts of both organisations and stopped them from collecting funds. Last week, a two-member bench of the Supreme Court rejected an appeal by the government against an interim order of the Lahore High Court on April 5 which had allowed the two groups to continue their "welfare work". The high court had restrained the government from interfering with the social work of the two groups and also allowed the..
                 

Moon Jae-in says North Korea to shut down missile site

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has agreed to shut down one of his main missile testing and launch sites, said South Korea's President Moon Jae-in on Wednesday. Kim agreed to take additional steps for denuclearisation, in an apparent gesture to restart the stalled talks with the US, Yonhap news agency reported. The agreement came in a historic summit between Kim and Moon held at the state guesthouse Paekhwawon here. The two leaders "agreed on a way to achieve denuclearisation" said Moon, the BBC reported. The agreement was described by Kim as a "leap forward" towards military peace on the Korean Peninsula. He also hoped to "visit Seoul in the near future". He would be then the first North Korean leader to do so. "The North has agreed to permanently shut down its Dongchang-ri missile engine testing facility and missile launch pad under the participation of experts from related countries," Moon said in a joint press conference with Kim after the summit, broadcast live in Seoul. The No..
                 

Venkaiah Naidu arrives in Romania on last leg of 3-nation tour

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Vice President Venkaiah Naidu on Tuesday arrived in Romania on the last leg of his three-nation visit to boost India's ties with the southeastern European country. Naidu landed here from Malta where he held comprehensive discussions with President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca on ways to bolster bilateral relations. The two countries signed three MoUs for collaboration between the foreign services institutes and cooperation in maritime and tourism. Upon his arrival in Bucharest, the vice president received a warm welcome from Vice Prime Minister of Romania Ana Birchall, External Affairs Ministry (MEA) Spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said in a tweet. In the last leg, Naidu will be in Romania from September 18 to September 20. The visit coincides with 70th year of Indo-Romanian ties and the centenary year of Romania. During the visit, Naidu will meet Romanian President Klaus Iohannis, the president of Romanian Senate and the prime minister. He will also address a session of Chamber of Deputies..
                 

Trump slaps tariffs on $200 bn of Chinese goods, Beijing hits back

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
US President Donald Trump has stepped up his trade battle with China by slapping 10 per cent tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese imports, prompting Beijing to retaliate by imposing duties on American products worth $60 billion. The Chinese Commerce Ministry said the new wave of tariffs would go into effect on September 24 -- the date when the US duties will also come into effect. Beijing's tariff rates on US products will be levied at 5 per cent and 10 per cent. On the other hand, the Trump administration on Monday said that duties on Chinese imports would rise to 25 per cent on January 1, 2019. These will apply to almost 6,000 items, marking the biggest round of US tariffs so far, the New York Times reported. Earlier, the list slated for tariffs originally included more than 6,000 items, but US officials later removed about 300 types of items, including smartwatches, bicycle helmets, playpens, high chairs and baby car seats. Trump said the latest round of tariffs was in respo..
                 

Imran Khan embarks on first overseas visit after becoming PM

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Tuesday left on a visit to Saudi Arabia and the UAE, his first overseas trip after taking office during which he will hold talks with the Gulf nations' top leaders to enhance bilateral cooperation with them. Khan is being accompanied by Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Finance Minister Asad Umar, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhry and Adviser for Commerce Abdul Razak Dawood. Khan is visiting the Kingdom on the invitation of King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince His Royal Highness Mohammad Bin Salman, a statement released by the Foreign Office said. The Prime Minister will call on His Majesty King Salman and hold a bilateral meeting with the Crown Prince. The King will also host a state banquet for the premier at the Royal Court. Accompanying ministers will also meet their counterparts to discuss bilateral cooperation. Pakistan is Saudi Arabia's closest Muslim ally. The Secretary-General of Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Y..
                 

Donald Trump to slap tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Washington, Sep 18 (IANS) US President Donald Trump has escalated his trade war with China, saying his administration would impose tariffs on $200 billion worth of goods and was also prepared to tax all imports. Trump, in a statement released late Monday, showed no sign of backing down from the type of full-blown trade war between the world's two largest economies that has rattled financial markets, saying he was prepared to "immediately" place tariffs on another $267 billion worth of imports "if China takes retaliatory action against our farmers or other industries", The New York Times reported. The tariffs on $200 billion worth of products come on top of the $50 billion worth already taxed earlier this year, meaning nearly half of all Chinese imports into the US will soon face levies. The next wave of tariffs, which are scheduled to go into effect on September 24, will start at 10 per cent before climbing to 25 per cent on January 1, 2019. The timing of the staggered increase will ..
                 

Theresa May fights back against opponents for Brexit

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
British Prime Minister Theresa May is fighting back against opponents of her blueprint for Brexit, saying Parliament will have to choose between her proposal and crashing out of the European Union without a deal. May said Monday on the BBC that if rebel lawmakers shoot down a deal between her government and the EU, "the alternative to that will be having no deal." With just over six months until Britain is due to leave the 28-nation EU on March 29, May's Conservative government remains divided over how close an economic relationship to seek with the bloc. Former Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who says Britain should make a clean break with the EU, wrote in Monday's Daily Telegraph that May's Brexit negotiations were heading for a "spectacular political car crash. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agen..
                 

Pakistan Army chief in China for talks with top leadership

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan Army chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa is in China for talks with the top Chinese leadership and defence officials amid reports that the new government led by Prime Minister Imran Khan wants to renegotiate some of the projects under the multi-billion CPEC. His visit comes days after Chinese foreign minister Wang Yi's trip to Islamabad during which he held a comprehensive round of talks with Khan and Gen. Bajwa among others. Pakistan Army's media wing Inter Services Public Relations said Sunday that the Chief Of Army Staff arrived at Beijing on a three-day official visit. During the visit, Bajwa will interact with various Chinese leaders including his counterpart, it said. After Wang's visit, both China and Pakistan denied any differences over the projects related to the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) after Pakistan's Commerce, Textile, Industry and Investment Minister Abdul Razak Dawood was quoted as saying in a media report that Islamabad "should put everything on hold ..
                 

Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks

3 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Coca-Cola said Monday it is studying the use of a key ingredient in marijuana in "wellness beverages," as a growing number of mainstream companies develop cannabis-infused drinks. "We have no interest in marijuana or cannabis," Coca-Cola said in a statement. But iconic soft drink producer is "closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD (cannabidiol) as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world." Cannabidiol is a chemical in marijuana that does not have the intoxicating effects of THC, the major active ingredient that causes the "high." It has been used to treat epilepsy and other maladies. "The space is evolving quickly," Coca-Cola said. "No decisions have been made at this time." Coca-Cola's statement comes amid reports the company has held talks with Canada's Aurora Cannabis to develop beverages. Some of Coca-Cola's trademark cola products have struggled to grow sales in recent years due to health concerns. Canada is set to legalize cannabis on October ..
                 

After killing 49 in Phillipines, Mangkhut batters south China

3 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
China has relocated over 2.45 million people and cancelled over 400 flights as super Typhoon Mangkhut made landfall in southern Guangdong province on Sunday after battering Hong Kong and killing 49 people in the Philippines. The typhoon slammed the coast of Jiangmen city in southern China's Guangdong province on Sunday evening packing winds up to 162 km per hour. More than 2.45 million people have been relocated, and over 48,000 fishing boats called back to port in the province on Sunday, state-run Xinhua news agency reported. Work has been suspended at more than 29,000 construction sites and 632 tourist spots have been closed. People walk through a flooded shopping mall in Heng Fa Chuen district during Super Typhoon Mangkhut in Hong Kong on Sunday. Pics/AFP Earlier, more than 400 flights at two airports in China's southernmost island Province of Hainan with all coastal resorts and schools closed as Typhoon Mangkhut approached. South China regions including Guangdong, Hainan and Gua..
                 

'Florence death toll at 15, including 2 from Carbon Monoxide'

3 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The death toll attributed to Florence stands at 15, including 10 in North Carolina and five in South Carolina. 42-year-old Jeffrey B Youngren of Elgin, South Carolina, died Sunday when a pickup truck hit a bridge piling in Kershaw County, said Coroner David West, who added that weather "played a big part" in the death. 23-year-old Michael Dalton Prince died Sunday after the truck he was riding in lost control on a flooded two-lane road in Georgetown County, South Carolina, said Coroner Kenny Johnson. The driver and another passenger escaped after the truck landed upside down in a flooded ditch. 63-year-old Mark Carter King and 61-year-old Debra Collins Rion of Loris, South Carolina, died of Carbon Monoxide poisoning from running a generator indoors, authorities said. A husband and wife died in a Fayetteville, North Carolina, house fire Friday. A mother and her 8-month-old child were killed when a massive tree crushed their brick house Friday in Wilmington, North Carolina. An 81-year-..
                 

Emmanuel Macron draws fire with career advice to young job-seeker

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
President Emmanuel Macron was facing fresh criticism Sunday after telling an aspiring gardener that he could easily find a job if he would simply start looking in high-demand sectors like restaurants or construction. In a video doing the rounds on social media, Macron is seen talking with the young man during a public open house at the Elysee Palace on Saturday, part of the country's Heritage Days. "I'm 25 years old, I send resumes and cover letters, they don't lead to anything," he tells the president. "If you're willing and motivated, in hotels, cafes and restaurants, construction, there's not a single place I go where they don't say they're looking for people. Not one -- it's true!" Macron replies. He suggests going to the Montparnasse neighbourhood, an area chock full of cafes and restaurants, assuring him he would easily find work. "If I crossed the street I'd find you one," he says. "So go ahead," he adds, to which the man replies, "Understood, thank you" as they shake hands. I..
                 

London Mayor calls Sadiq Khan for second Brexit vote

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
London Mayor Sadiq Khan has called for a second Brexit vote, criticising the government's handling of Brexit negotiations with the 28-member European Union. Writing in the Observer daily on Sunday, the Labour politician said that with the UK due to leave the EU in six months, it now faced either a "bad deal" or "no deal", the BBC reported. The debate had also become "more about (former Foreign Secretary) Boris Johnson's political ambitions" than what was good for the UK, he said. Khan said that although he campaigned to remain in the bloc, he had accepted "the will of the British people was to leave the EU". He said he had never expected to back calls for a second referendum but had become "increasingly alarmed as the chaotic approach to the negotiations had become mired in confusion and deadlock. "I don't believe (Prime Minister) Theresa May has the mandate to gamble so flagrantly with the British economy and people's livelihoods." Earlier this month, May said the government would ..
                 

Death toll rises to 8 as Florence pours on the rain

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The Marines, the Coast Guard, civilian crews and volunteers used helicopters, boats and heavy-duty vehicles Saturday to rescue scores of people trapped by Florence's shoreline onslaught, even as North Carolina braced for what could be the next stage of the disaster: widespread, catastrophic flooding inland. The death toll from the hurricane-turned-tropical storm climbed to eight. A day after blowing ashore with 145 kph winds, Florence practically parked itself over land all day long and poured on the rain. With rivers rising toward record levels, thousands of people were ordered evacuated for fear the next few days could bring the most destructive round of flooding in North Carolina history. More than 2 feet of rain had fallen in places, and the drenching went on and on, with forecasters saying there could be an additional 1½ feet by the end of the weekend. "I cannot overstate it: Floodwaters are rising, and if you aren't watching for them you are risking your life," Gov Roy C..
                 

British government proposing to introduce "no-fault" divorces

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The British government is proposing to introduce "no-fault" divorces and make other changes to make it much easier for couples to divorce. Justice Secretary David Gauke began a consultation process to revise laws he said were "out of touch with modern life." If adopted after a 12-week consultation period, spouses would no longer be able to challenge a divorce application made by their partner. The changes would apply to heterosexual and same-sex marriages, and civil partnerships. The proposed new laws would mean it would no longer be necessary to prove misconduct or to live apart for a certain number of years before a couple could divorce. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mi..
                 

Hurricane Florence turns deadly, triggers flash flood emergencies

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
A woman and her baby were killed when a tree fell on their house and several more storm-related deaths were reported on Friday as Hurricane Florence slammed into the Carolinas, dousing the eastern US states with torrential rain and causing rivers to burst their banks. Five deaths were confirmed by officials as US media reported another. Hundreds of people needed to be rescued after becoming trapped in their homes by a storm surge of up to 10 feet in New Bern, a town in North Carolina at the confluence of the Trent and Neuse rivers. As of 8 pm (0000 GMT), Florence was downgraded to a tropical storm by the National Hurricane Center (NHC), but authorities warned the danger was far from over, predicting "life-threatening storm surges and strong winds" would persist through the night. Donald Trump has declared a disaster in North Carolina. Pics/AFP "We are expecting several more days of rain," North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper said, describing the amount of rainfall from the hurricane a..
                 

Shah Mehmood Qureshi embarks on maiden visit to Afghanistan

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi on Saturday embarked on his maiden visit to Afghanistan where he will hold talks with President Ashraf Ghani and other top Afghan leadership on security and other bilateral issues between the two countries.It is the first foreign visit of Qureshi since assuming the office of the foreign minister. "FM Qureshi left for Kabul on his first foreign visit abroad underlining the importance government attaches to work closely with Afghanistan for regional peace and stability," Foreign Office spokesman Mohammad Faisal said. Qureshi will meet his Afghan counterpart as well as Afghan President Ghani and Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah during the one-day visit. The two sides will also discuss the re-opening of Consulate General in Jalalabad which was closed due to security reasons last month.Faisal said successful outcome of the visit will lead future efforts to enhance bilateral cooperation under bilateral frameworks of cooperation including Afgh..
                 

Australian PM Morrison apologizes for using explicit song in video

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has apologized for using an explicit rap song in a video posted to his social media accounts. Morrison had posted on Thursday a 11-second clip of the song, 1999's "Be Faithful", by rapper Fatman Scoop, over quick edits of his parliamentary allies raising their hands in response to a question asked by him. The video was accompanied by a comment saying "QT (Question Time, an Australian parliamentary session) was on fire today... Good work team." The comment was followed by a flame emoji. The song has explicit language and sexual references. However, the section posted on Morrison's social media accounts was not explicit: "You got a hundred dollar bill, get your hands up! You got a 50 dollar bill, put your hands up!" Australian Twitter rejoiced in the poorly chosen song, with trade unionist John Setka tweeting: "Hey Scott. I hear you might have mucked up on one of your tweets? Don't let it get you down, it happens to the best of us." The tweet -..
                 

Dutch expelled Russian spies over alleged novichok lab hacking plot

6 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The Dutch government expelled two alleged Russian spies this year after they were accused of planning to hack into a Swiss chemicals laboratory where novichok nerve agent samples from the Salisbury attack were analysed, it has emerged. The men were arrested in The Hague as part of an operation involving British, Swiss and Dutch intelligence agencies. The Swiss daily newspaper Tages-Anzeiger reported that the men were carrying equipment that could be used to break into the Spiez laboratory's IT network when they were seized. Isabelle Graber, the head of communications at the Swiss intelligence service, the FIS, said in a statement issued to the Guardian: "The Swiss authorities are aware of the case of Russian spies discovered in The Hague and expelled from the same place. "The Swiss Federal Intelligence Service [FIS] participated actively in this operation together with its Dutch and British partners. The FIS has thus contributed to the prevention of illegal actions against a critical..
                 

Hurricane Florence makes landfall in United States with winds, rains

6 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Hurricane Florence smashed into the US East Coast with howling winds, torrential rains and life-threatening storm surges as emergency crews scrambled to rescue hundreds of people stranded in their homes by flood waters. Forecasters warned of catastrophic flooding and other mayhem from the monster storm, which is only Category 1 but physically sprawling and dangerous. The port city of Wilmington woke to the sound of exploding electrical transformers with strong gusts throwing street signs and other debris as well as water in all directions. Philippines raises typoon alertTuguegarao: The Philippines raised its storm warning on Friday and warned of major destruction, hours before Super Typhoon Mangkhut was due to make landfall with fierce winds and drenching rain. Trump rejects Puerto Rico storm tollUS President Donald Trump on Thursday rejected the official death toll from last year's Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico, saying it had been inflated to almost 3,000 as part of a ploy to ma..
                 

Pope meets with US church leaders over clergy sex abuse

7 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pope Francis was set to host US bishops and cardinals on Thursday to discuss the Vatican's response to a new wave of devastating claims of sexual abuse by clergy. The pope was scheduled to meet Cardinal Daniel DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, who leads the US Conference of Bishops, and Cardinal Sean O'Malley of Boston, who advises the pope on sex abuse issues. The US Catholic Church has been shaken by the publication of a report on sexual abuse by clergy in Pennsylvania and by the resignation in July of US Cardinal Theodore McCarrick. He was accused of sexually abusing a teenager while working as a priest in New York in the early 1970s. No statement was scheduled to be released following the meeting at the Vatican, said a spokeswoman for the Holy See. According to the results of a new poll published by the US news channel CNN on Wednesday, Pope Francis's popularity has nosedived in the US recently. The poll showed that only 48 per cent of Americans in general supported the Argentinian ..
                 

Vladimir Putin: Russia is peace-loving state

7 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that his country was peace-loving and that the ongoing Vostok-2018 exercises deemed as the largest military drills since the Cold War, were aimed at developing its defence capabilities. Speaking at Tsugol, situated close to the borders of China and Mongolia, Putin said the drills would help boost the country's internal security capabilities and to extend a helping hand to allies, reports Efe news. "Russia is a peace-loving state, we do not have and cannot have any aggressive plans, Our foreign policy is aimed at (development of) the constructive cooperation with all the countries interested in that," Putin said while attending the exercises. He said that 87 observers from 57 countries have been invited to watch the drills. "Today, the most active stage of the exercises is completed at the Tsugol training ground in Trans-Baikal territory. You held it at high level: all units and formations fulfilled their assigned tasks," said Putin...
                 

Japan PM Shinzo Abe to visit China in October

8 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Wednesday that he will be visiting China in October to mark the 40th anniversary of the signing of peace and friendship treaty between the two countries and improve bilateral ties, which have been strained of late. Abe comments came as he met Chinese President Xi Jinping at the Eastern Economic Forum that is underway at Vladivostok, Russia. "The horizon is broadening on cooperation between Japan and China. Relations between our two countries are now on a normal track," Abe was cited as saying by Japanese public broadcaster NHK. The Japanese leader said that he was determined to take bilateral ties to the next level with the help of top-level interactions. Although Abe has previously travelled to China to attend international summits, this would be the first bilateral trip by a Japanese leader since 2011. The two countries have been sparring over the sovereignty of the resource-rich Diaoyu Islands (Senkaku in Japanese), situated in the East ..
                 

Putin urges 'security guarantees' for North Korea denuclearisation

8 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday said North Korea must be given security guarantees in exchange for steps towards denuclearisation. "North Korea, in return for its denuclearisation, was after all promised security guarantees. Clearly it is waiting for some sort of signal in response," Putin told an economic forum in the far eastern city of Vladivostok. "It seems to me counterproductive if we demand everything from the North Korean side and in response they are given nothing," he said at an event with China's Xi Jinping and Japan's Shinzo Abe. He said international guarantees would be "appropriate" along with US offers, following a summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in June. Then, Trump and Kim signed a vaguely worded agreement on denuclearisation but little progress has been made since then. The latest round of diplomatic efforts to curb the North Korean nuclear programme has been high on the agenda in Vladivostok. On Monday, Japan..
                 

Journalist killed in Pakistan

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
A senior journalist was shot dead by two unidentified gunmen in Pakistan's Multan, police said on Tuesday, adding three suspects, including a woman, were arrested in this case. Police said Saeed Butt, 48, was sitting at a shop on Monday evening in the main market of Khanewal district, when two masked men, suspected to be robbers, barged into the shop and demanded money from the deceased, Express News reported. Police quoting witnesses said, Butt handed over his wallet but dacoits demanded more money and on his refusal opened fire at him. The suspects fled after the killing. Police said the suspects were arrested from Multan with the help of CCTV footage after an FIR was lodged. They further claimed that weapons used in the murder were also recovered and the suspects have confessed to their crime. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also, download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from..
                 

French President Emmanuel Macron's popularity declines to 29%

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The popularity of French President Emmanuel Macron has declined to 29 per cent, his lowest approval rating since he took office in May 2017, according to a poll. Macron's popularity fell by 12 percentage points since June, said the survey, reported public radio station France Inter on Tuesday. The poll connected the fall to the several controversies that have followed Macron since June, including a case of violence against his security officer and deputy chief of staff Alexandre Benalla, his decision to build a swimming pool in the presidential summer residence in Bregancon on the Mediterranean coast and the resignation in the last two weeks of two of his most popular ministers Nicolas Hulot and Laura Flessel, reports Efe news. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibilit..
                 

WHO Report: Eight lakh people commit suicide every year in the world

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Nearly 800,000 people commit suicide every year in the world, the second leading cause of death amongst people aged 15-29 in 2016, according to the WHO. A toolkit to help communities prevent suicides was released by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Mental Health Commission of Canada on the World Suicide Prevention Day on Monday. Suicides happen in all the countries and regions, whether rich or poor. However, most of them occur in low and middle-income countries, which accounted for almost four-fifths of the global suicides in 2016, the document said. "Suicides take a high toll. Over 800,000 people die by suicide every year and it is the second leading cause of death in 15-29-year-olds," it said.There are indications that for each adult who dies of suicide there may be more than 20 others attempting suicide, it warned. "The impact on families, friends, and communities is devastating and far-reaching, even long after persons dear to them have taken their own lives," the doc..
                 

Arrest warrants against former Pakistan PM Shahid Khaqan Abbasi

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
A Pakistan court on Monday issued bailable arrest warrants against former Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi for skipping proceedings in a case seeking action against him for disclosing the minutes of a high-profile security meeting to his party leader Nawaz Sharif. The petition also seeks action against Sharif under treason charges for claiming that those involved in the deadly 2008 Mumbai terror attack belonged to Pakistan. A Lahore High Court's three-member bench headed by Justice Syed Mazahar Ali Akbar Naqvi issued notices to Sharif and a journalist who had interviewed the PML-N supremo. The bench was annoyed when no one appeared before the court on behalf of the three respondents — Sharif, Abbasi and the reporter. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility ..
                 

Pakistan Army chief confirms death sentence to 13 terrorists

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan's Army chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa on Monday confirmed death sentences to 13 "hardcore terrorists" who were handed the capital punishment by a military court for committing offences related to terrorism. The military courts were set up in Pakistan after a a Taliban attack on an army school in Peshawar in 2014 which killed more than 150 people, mostly students. The military said the 13 convicted militants sentenced Monday were involved in attacks on the armed forces, destruction of schools, and killing of innocent civilians. "Chief of Army Staff confirmed death sentences awarded to 13 hardcore terrorists, who were involved in heinous offences related to terrorism," the Army said. "They were involved in killing of 202 persons including 151 civilians, 51 Armed Forces/Frontier Constabulary/ Police Officials and injuring 249 others," it said. Arms and explosives were also recovered from their possession. The date and venue of trial was not shared due to security reasons. The ..
                 

US NSA John Bolton calls ICC 'dangerous'

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
White House National Security Advisor John Bolton branded the International Criminal Court dangerous and unaccountable Monday, saying it constitutes an assault on US sovereignty. "In theory, the ICC holds perpetrators of the most egregious atrocities accountable for their crimes, provides justice to the victims, and deters future abuses," Bolton said. "In practice, however, the court has been ineffective, unaccountable, and indeed, outright dangerous," he said. Bolton said the United States rejects any move by the court to prosecute American servicemembers and intelligence officials over alleged detainee abuse in Afghanistan - allegations the court is currently reviewing. He called it "an utterly unfounded, unjustifiable investigation." "The United States will use any means necessary to protect our citizens and those of our allies from unjust prosecution by this illegitimate court," he said. Bolton's speech comes as the Trump administration is shuttering the Palestine Liberation Org..
                 

31 Troops, 81 insurgents killed in fresh offensives in Afghanistan

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
At least 31 members of the security forces and 81 Taliban rebels were killed, while dozens of others were wounded in three offensives by the insurgents earlier in the day in the northern and central Afghanistan, an official told the media on Monday. In the northern Kunduz province, the Taliban had launched an overnight attack on a security check post in Dasht-e-Archi district, killing 13 people and wounding 15 others, according to Provincial Council head Yusuf Ayubi. Kunduz police spokesperson Inamuddin Rahmani confirmed the attack but claimed that only two policemen were killed and four were wounded in the attack, adding that all 11 insurgents were killed by the forces, Efe news agency reported. Dozens of the Taliban militants had also carried out an attack at the centre of Khamaab district, in northern Jawzjan, and laid siege on government buildings and security outposts, according to provincial security chief Hafiz Khashi. "Eight of our security forces were killed and three inju..
                 

Japan earthquake death toll climbs to 44

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The death toll in Japan's 6.7-magnitude earthquake, that struck the Hokkaido island last week, has climbed to 44, officials said on Monday. Rescue teams on Monday recovered the dead body of a 77-year-old man, the last person missing, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said in a press conference. Most of the deaths were recorded in the town of Atsuma, near the epicentre of the tremor, which had struck the island last Thursday, Efe news reported. Public broadcaster NHK reported that according to the police and local authorities in Hokkaido, 660 people were injured in the quake. The earthquake also caused landslides that buried dozens of houses and at least 70 buildings were destroyed. Around 2,600 people remained in temporary shelters on Sunday. The public transport system was being gradually restored and work was in progress to normalize operations at the Chitose international airport, which suspended operations after the quake left almost the whole island without power. Power..
                 

Imran Khan says friendship with China cornerstone of foreign policy

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The 'all-weather' friendship with China was a cornerstone of Pakistan's foreign policy, Prime Minister Imran Khan has said as he pledged to implement the controversy-hit USD 50 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor. Pakistan and China pledged on Sunday to complete the USD 50 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) as Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi called on Khan and expressed desire to further enhance the bilateral strategic partnership. Wang, who arrived here on a three-day visit on Friday, met Khan in Islamabad with a high-level delegation. "Foreign Minister underscored the significance of the CPEC for the mutual benefit of the people of both countries," the Prime Minister's Office said in a statement. Wang conveyed the desire of Chinese leadership to work with the new government for further enhancing the strategic partnership between Pakistan and China. He underscored the significance of China-Pakistan relationship which served as a model of friendship in interstate r..
                 

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un says he wants to meet Chinese Prez Xi Jinping

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has expressed a desire to meet Chinese President Xi Jinping soon in order to consolidate ties with the neighbouring country, state media reported on Monday. Kim expressed his wish to Li Zhanshu, the number-three of the Chinese regime, who he met on Sunday in Pyongyang during a ceremony to mark the 70th anniversary of the establishment of North Korea, according to the state run Korean Central News Agency (KCNA). Kim told Li that another meeting with Xi would help in further solidifying and deepening the special relation between the two countries, Efe news quoted KCNA as saying. Li, who handed over a letter signed by Xi during the meeting, stressed Beijing's desire to cement sustainable and stable ties regardless of the international situation. The meeting underscores the recent improvement in the relations between the two countries after years of estrangement due to advances in the nuclear programme of North Korea, which heavily relies on its main ally ..
                 

Imran Khan's close ally Arif Alvi sworn in as Pakistan President

10 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Arif Alvi, a close ally of Prime Minister Imran Khan and one of the founding members of the ruling Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party (PTI), was sworn in as Pakistan's new President on Sunday. The 69-year-old dentist was administered the oath of office as Pakistan's 13th President by Chief Justice Saqib Nisar at a simple ceremony held at the Aiwan-e-Sadr (the President House). Dr Alvi had defeated Pakistan People's Party candidate Aitzaz Ahsan and the Pakistan Muslim League-N nominee Maulana Fazlur Rehman in a three-way presidential contest. Alvi belongs to Karachi and comes from a family that migrated to Pakistan after partition. Alvi contested his first election for the PTI in 1997 but lost. His affiliation with the party continued and he steadily rose in its ranks. Alvi's India connectHe shares an interesting connection with India as his father Dr Habib ur Rehman Elahi Alvi was a dentist to India's first prime minister Jawaharlal Nehru, according to the PTI. Catch up on all the late..
                 

Despite Donald Trump tweet, Ford says it won't make hatchback in US

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Ford won't be moving production of a hatchback wagon to the United States from China despite President Donald Trump's claim Sunday that his taxes on Chinese imports mean the Focus Active can be built in America. Citing Trump's new tariffs, Ford on August 31 said it was dropping plans to ship the Focus Active from China to America. Trump took to Twitter Sunday to declare victory and write: "This is just the beginning. This car can now be BUILT IN THE U.S.A. and Ford will pay no tariffs!" But in a statement Sunday, Ford said "it would not be profitable to build the Focus Active in the US" given forecast yearly sales below 50,000. For now, that means Ford simply won't sell the vehicle in the United States. Kristin Dziczek of the Center for Automotive Research said that Ford can make Focuses "in many other plants around the world, so if they decided to continue to sell a Focus variant in the U.S. market, there are several options other than building it in the United States." In April, Fo..
                 

Fears of 'second Chemnitz' as Afghans held over German man's death

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Around 2,500 people marched in a far-right demonstration in eastern Germany Sunday after a German man died following a fight with two Afghans, as officials pleaded for calm to avoid the anti-foreigner unrest that has shaken Chemnitz. Local police and prosecutors said the 22-year-old deceased had suffered acute heart failure after coming to blows with the suspects during a dispute on a playground in the town of Koethen late Saturday. The German man's death was "not directly" linked to the injuries suffered in the brawl, authorities said in a statement. Local media reported that he died in hospital and that he had a pre-existing heart condition. Prosecutors said one of the Afghan suspects, aged 18, stands accused of causing grievous bodily harm. The other, aged 20, faces charges of causing bodily harm with fatal consequences. The incident was expected to inflame anti-migrant tensions, coming just two weeks after the fatal stabbing of a 35-year-old German man in the city of Chemnitz, all..
                 

Seven killed in suicide attack at Kabul rally

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
At least seven people were killed and 25 wounded on Sunday in the Afghan capital Kabul, when a suicide bomber on a motorcycle detonated explosives near a rally marking the 17th death anniversary of a prominent anti-Taliban leader, official told the media. The attack took place at 3 p.m. in Taimani square in northeast Kabul and targeted a procession of mourners honouring Ahmad Shah Massoud, a guerrilla commander who spent years fighting the Soviet Union and the Taliban but was assassinated two days before the September 11 attacks, Efe news agency reported. Afghan interior ministry spokesperson Najib Danish said that the attacker set off the explosive device "near the convoy of supporters for the national hero Massoud." On September 9, 2001, Massoud was killed by two suicide bombers of Arab origin posing as journalists, who detonated explosives hidden in a camera during a fake interview at the guerrilla leader's headquarters in the Panjshir Valley in north-central Afghanistan. The as..
                 

Ninteen killed in South Sudan plane crash

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
At least 19 people have died after a commercial aircraft crashed into a river on Sunday while attempting to land at an airport in central South Sudan, an official told the media. Three people reportedly survived. The plane, which had taken off from the African nation's capital, Juba, with 22 people on board, plunged into a river next to a landing strip at Yirol airport - located 300 km to the north of Juba - due to lack of visibility, according to the county's information officer, Taban Abel, Efe news agency reported. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also, download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Except for the change in the headline, the story has been provided "AS-IS," "AS AVAILABLE, without any verification or editing from our side. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and..
                 

Boris Johnson compares UK PM Theresa May's Brexit plan to 'suicide vest'

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Boris Johnson, the former UK Foreign Secretary, attacked Prime Minister Theresa May's Brexit plan, saying she had "wrapped a suicide vest" around the British constitution and "handed the detonator" to Brussels. Writing in the Mail on Sunday, Johnson said the plan had opened the UK to "perpetual political blackmail", reports the BBC. Johnson resigned from his post in July after the plan was agreed by the cabinet. In his article, Johnson accused the European Union (EU) of "bullying" the UK. He said that rather than getting a "generous free trade deal", Britain is saying, "yes sir, no sir, three bags full sir", to Brussels. "At every stage of the talks so far, Brussels gets what Brussels wants... It is a humiliation. We look like a seven-stone weakling being comically bent out of shape by a 500lb (pounds) gorilla." This is Johnson's second attack on the May's Brexit strategy inside a week. Last week, he used his Daily Telegraph column to say the deal "means disaster" for Britain. Johnso..
                 

US President Donald Trump again asks Apple to start manufacturing in US

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
After Apple hinted at increasing the price of its products owing to tariffs on China, US President Donald Trump has once again asked the iPhone maker to shift manufacturing from Beijing to Washington. Apple has written a letter to the Trump administration, saying the proposed $200 billion tariffs on China-made products will make the Apple Watch, AirPods headphones, HomePod smart speaker, Macs and key computer parts more expensive. "Apple prices may increase because of the massive Tariffs we may be imposing on China - but there is an easy solution where there would be ZERO tax, and indeed a tax incentive," Trump tweeted on Saturday. "Make your products in the United States instead of China. Start building new plants now. Exciting! MAGA." In January 2017, Trump said he spoke to Apple CEO Tim Cook over the phone and he promised to build "three big plants" in the US. But Cook never directly responded to that claim. What Apple actually announced in January was to contribute $350 billion t..
                 

Tanzania road crash leaves 15 dead, 13 injured

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Fifteen people died and 13 were injured when a truck carrying potatoes crashed into five vehicles in the southern Tanzanian town of Mbeya, a hospital official said Saturday. The truck was driving down a steep hill when the accident happened on Friday night, according to a statement from the presidency. Petro Seme, a doctor and supervisor at the Mbeya hospital, said 13 bodies had arrived at the morgue on Friday night, and two of the injured had later died. "We regret that in total fifteen people have died," he told AFP, adding that of 13 other injured, two were in a critical condition. The presidency had earlier put the death toll at 11. "Yet again we have lost fellow citizens in a road accident, while others are injured. I am deeply saddened," President John Magufuli was quoted as saying in the statement. Road accidents in Tanzania are common, often due to speeding, overloading of vehicles, poor road and vehicle conditions, but also lax road safety enforcement by police. In March, 2..
                 

Arif Alvi to take oath as Pakistan's president on Sunday

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Arif Alvi will take oath as the 13th president of Pakistan on Sunday. Alvi, a close ally of Prime Minister Imran Khan and one of the founding members of the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party, was elected as the president on September 4. His predecessor President Mamnoon Hussain on Saturday left the President House at completion of his five-year term. Hussain said Pakistan's development and prosperity lie in rule of law and supremacy of the Constitution. He said was satisfied at the completion of his term. "I left no stone unturned in fulfilling the responsibilities given to me by the people of Pakistan," he said. Alvi, the 69-year-old former dentist, had defeated Pakistan Peoples Party candidate Aitzaz Ahsan and the Pakistan Muslim League-N nominee Maulana Fazl ur Rehman. He served as PTI secretary general from 2006 to 2013. He won the National Assembly elections from NA-247 (Karachi) during the July 25 polls. He was also elected member of the National Assembly in the 2013 general elec..
                 

Mike Pompeo has received North Korean letter that Donald Trump was expecting

11 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (pahm-PAY'-oh) has received the letter that President Donald Trump has said he was expecting from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (kim jawng oon). A State Department official is confirming that Pompeo has the letter. It's not immediately clear whether it's been delivered to Trump. Pompeo returned early Friday from India. Trump was in Montana and the Dakotas on Friday before a late return to the White House. The official wasn't authorized to comment publicly on the sensitive diplomacy between the US and North Korea and spoke on condition of anonymity. Trump has said Kim's recent statement that he wants to denuclearize North Korea during Trump's tenure as president was "a very positive statement." Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility o..
                 

Six killed in Nepal helicopter crash

12 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
At least six persons were killed after an Altitude Air airline helicopter crashed in a dense forest area on Saturday, leaving only a woman passenger alive, officials said. According to Nima Nuru Sherpa, Managing Director at Altitude Air Pvt Ltd, the chopper crash-landed in a dense forest area at Meghang Rural Municipality in Dhading district. Rescuers recovered six bodies from the crash site, the Himalayan Times reported. The chopper lost contact with air traffic control at around 8 a.m. after it took off from Samagaun in Gorkha district for Kathmandu with a patient and five other passengers on board. "The chopper piloted by senior captain Nischal KC was supposed to land in Kathmandu at 8.18 a.m," said Tribhuvan International Airport General Manager Rajkumar Chhetri. The deceased were identified as senior captain Nischal KC, Hiromi Komatsu from Japan, Dilli Bahadur Gurung of Ramechhap, Hira Sherpa of Dolakha, Sunil Tamang of Sindhupalchowk and Chhowang Nurbu of Gorkha. Lho Ani Dol..
                 

Donald Trump's China tariffs will hit our products hard: Apple

12 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
US President Donald Trump's proposed $200 billion tariffs on China-make products will make Apple Watch, AirPods headphones, HomePod smart speaker, Macs and key computer parts more expensive, the company has said. In a letter written to the US Trade Representative on Friday, Apple some of its popular products will get hit by the 25 per cent increase in import tax. Other products are Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, Apple Pencil, Apple adapters, chargers, cables and cords, Apple main logic boards with microprocessing units, memory modules, video graphic/audio cards and PCBAs, Apple computer parts (e.g., housings and internal components) and printed circuit boards, among others "Because all tariffs ultimately show up as a tax on US consumers, they will increase the cost of Apple products that our customers have come to rely on in their daily lives," Apple wrote in the letter to Trump administration. According to a report in The Verge, Apple asked that the US revise its proposal and declin..
                 

Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma to retire

12 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Jack Ma, Alibabas co-founder and executive chairman, has said that he plans to step down from the Chinese e-commerce giant on Monday to pursue philanthropy in education, a changing of the guard for the $420 billion internet company. In an exclusive New York Times interview, the Chinese billionaire said on Friday that his retirement was not the end of an era but "the beginning of an era". "I love education," the Chinese billionaire said, adding that he would be spending more of his time and fortune focused on education. A former English teacher, Ma co-founded Alibaba with 17 others out of his apartment in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, in 1999. He built it into one of the world's most consequential e-commerce and digital payments companies, transforming how Chinese people shop and pay for things which fueled his net worth to more than $40 billion, making him China's richest man. Ma is revered by many Chinese, some of whom have put his portrait in their homes to worship in the same way t..
                 

Brazil presidential candidate 'fine' after knife attack at rally

13 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Right-wing presidential frontrunner Jair Bolsonaro was attacked with a knife while campaigning in Brazil - but escaped with just minor injuries, his son said. Bolsonaro underwent surgery for multiple wounds to his mid-section. The attacker was arrested immediately and identified as Adelio Bispo de Oliveira - said to have been a member of the PSOL party. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day.com reserves the sole right to alter, delete or remove (without notice) the content in its absolute discretion for any reason whatsoever..
                 

Tehran summit debates to decide the fate of Syria’s Idlib province

13 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The presidents of Iran, Russia and Turkey meet Friday in Tehran for a summit set to decide the future of Idlib province amid fears of a humanitarian disaster in Syria's last major rebel bastion. Hundreds of civilians fled the northwestern province as government forces and their allies readied for what could be the last - and bloodiest - major battle of Syria's devastating seven-year civil war. Seized from government forces in 2015, Idlib and adjacent areas form the final major chunk of Syrian territory still under opposition control. Turkey, which has long backed Syrian rebels, fears the assault could prompt an influx of Syrians attempting to find safety on its territory. But regime backers Russia and Iran have sworn to wipe out "terrorists" and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has declared his determination to retake control of the entire country. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to ge..
                 

Kabul twin blasts: Death toll rises to 26, at least 91 injured

13 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Afghanistan's Ministry of Interior (MoI) on Thursday confirmed that the death toll in the twin blasts in Kabul has climbed to 26. Two blasts rocked Afghanistan's capital on Wednesday. The first explosion, which was a suicide bombing occurred around 6 PM (local time) at the Moalem wrestling club in Kabul's Qala-e-Nazer while the second blast, a car bombing took place about an hour later in the same area. Deputy spokesperson for the MoI, Nusrat Rahimi, stated that at least 91 others were left wounded in the suicide blast and the consequent car bombing. The responsibility for the deadly attack in the capital city was claimed by the terror outfit -Islamic State of Iraq and Syria Khurasan (ISIS-K), the Afghanistan branch of the Islamic State. In a statement, ISIS-K stated that the suicide blast was carried out by one Sabir al-Khurasani, while the second was executed with an improvised explosive device (IED) inside a vehicle. The group stated that the second attack was targeted at a gath..
                 

Pakistan militants continue terror attacks in India: US report

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The Trump administration on Wednesday praised India for its significant counter terrorism actions and said Pakistan-based militant groups continued their terror attacks in the country. In its annual 'Country Report on Terrorism', as mandated by the Congress, the State Department said the Indian leadership expressed resolve to prevent terrorist attacks domestically and to bring to justice the perpetrators of terrorism, in cooperation with the US and other like-minded countries. The parts of India seriously impacted by terrorism in 2017 included Jammu and Kashmir, the northeast Indian states, and parts of central India in which Maoists remain active, it said. "India continued to experience attacks, including by Pakistan-based terrorist organisations as well as tribal and Maoist insurgents. Indian authorities blamed Pakistan for cross-border attacks in the state of Jammu and Kashmir," the report said. India, the report said, continued to apply sustained pressure to detect, disrupt and d..
                 

Hate crime: Indian-origin family targeted in UK aron attack

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
An Indian-origin family was forced to flee their home in the UK after it was targeted in an arson attack which the police on Wednesday treated as a "hate crime". Mayour Karlekar, 43, said his wife and two kids suffered a "near death experience" when they woke up to a fire roaring outside the front door of their house in southeast London's Borkwood Park area of Orpington during the weekend, News Shopper daily reported. Karlekar said they were woken up by the neighbours who spotted the flames outside their home early on Sunday, the report said. "I heard some noise under my bedroom window but ignored it. I thought... some folks must be having drinks and partying. But 20 minutes later I heard bells ringing and people were hammering my door to wake us up. I looked at the porch and saw our hedges on fire," he told News Shopper. He said the next few minutes were the scariest he had ever experienced as the hedge fire spread perilously close to his son's window. CCTV footage of the area la..
                 

Pakistan court orders Nawaz Sharif's release

yesterday  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
In a huge relief to former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, his daughter Maryam Nawaz and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar, the Islamabad High Court on Wednesday suspended their prison sentences in a corruption case and ordered their release. A two-judge bench comprising Justice Athar Minallah and Justice Miangul Hassan Aurangzeb gave the judgment on petitions filed by three challenging the July verdict against them in the Avenfield case, Geo News reported. The reference pertained to the Sharifs' purchase of four upmarket flats in Avenfield House, London. The three were convicted by an anti-corruption court in Pakistan of not being able to prove the source of assets used to purchase the properties. Sharif, Maryam and Safdar had been sentenced to 11 years, eight years and one year respectively. "We accept the petitioners' pleas seeking a suspension in their sentences," Justice Minallah said, adding that the National Accountability Bureau, Pakistan's anti-corruption watchdog, was unable to prove..
                 

Angela Merkel removes spy chief to defuse row over far-right

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Angela Merkel's government on Tuesday removed domestic spy chief Hans-Georg Maassen from office, transferring him to a different post to defuse an explosive row over immigration and the far right that once more rocked the German chancellor's fragile coalition. "Mr Maassen will become state secretary in the interior ministry," Merkel and the leaders of her coalition parties announced in a statement after crisis talks. The face-saving compromise lets Merkel's fourth-term government live to see another day, after her Social Democratic coalition partners had insisted on Maassen's departure as head of the BfV intelligence service, against the wishes of Interior Minister Horst Seehofer from her Bavarian CSU sister party. Maassen, 55, was at the centre of a heated controversy after he raised doubts about the veracity of reports of far-right hooligans and neo-Nazis randomly attacking immigrants in the eastern city of Chemnitz in late August. In his senior new role, essentially a promotion, ..
                 

Vatican delegation to visit China this month

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The Vatican could send a delegation to China by the end of the month, Beijing's state-run media said Tuesday, with the visit potentially paving the way for a historic agreement on the appointment of bishops. Beijing and the Vatican severed ties in 1951, two years after the Communist party seized power in China. The decades-long standoff has split China's roughly 12 million Catholics between those who follow government-approved prelates and those in "underground" pro-Rome churches. Negotiations have been underway for several years between the two sides on the thorny question of the appointment of bishops, some of whom have been appointed by the Chinese authorities without being recognised by Rome. But the Global Times tabloid reported there are no longer "disputes over issues of principle" between Beijing and the Holy See. The Vatican delegation will visit in late September, it added, citing an unidentified source. "If the meeting goes well, an agreement could be signed", the newspaper..
                 

Elon Musk's SpaceX will fly Japanese billionaire to the Moon

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Elon Musk-founded SpaceX has announced that the company's first private passenger to the Moon will be Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa. Maezawa's journey to the Moon -- scheduled to start in 2023 -- is likely to last for about a week. "The first private passenger to fly around the Moon aboard BFR (Big Falcon Rocket) is fashion innovator and globally recognised art curator Yusaku Maezawa," SpaceX tweeted on Monday. Maezawa, 42, is the founder and CEO of Zozo, the largest online fashion retailer in Japan. The Japanese billionaire is also known as a contemporary art collector and curator with a large collection at his Contemporary Art Foundation in Tokyo, which features works of various renowned painters like Pablo Picasso, Andy Warhol, Alexander Calder and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Maezawa announced on his Twitter and Instagram accounts that he plans to take a select group of artists with him on his trip around the Moon saying: "I choose to go to the Moon, with artists," adding then "..
                 

Moon Jae-in, Kim Jong-un hold first round of talks in Pyongyang

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un held their first round of talks here on Tuesday in a historic summit largely aimed at restarting a Washington-Pyongyang dialogue on denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Moon arrived in Pyongyang earlier on Tuesday for a three-day visit, becoming the third South Korean leader in history to have visited the North Korean capital, reports Yonhap News Agency. The third Moon-Kim meeting was held at the headquarters of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea. This is also the first time the North Korean leader has hosted any foreign leader at the headquarters. The two leaders first met in the border village of Panmunjom on April 27 and then again on May 26. Also on the agenda is the further reduction of military tension between the divided Koreas and improvement in their bilateral relations, which Moon says will help promote and even accelerate the North's denuclearization process. Moon and Kim will mee..
                 

Imran Khan chooses Saudi Arabia for first foreign visit as Pakistan PM

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will visit Saudi Arabia on Tuesday for his first foreign visit since assuming power, officials said Monday. His two-day state visit to the kingdom will begin from September 18 on the invitation of King Salman bin Abdulaziz and Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, the Foreign Office (FO) said. The cricketer-turned-politician will call on King Salman and hold bilateral talks with the Crown Prince in Riyadh, it said. The Prime Minister will be accompanied by Foreign Minister, Minister for Finance and Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce. The Ministers will also meet their Saudi counterparts to discuss bilateral cooperation, the FO said. During the visit, the Secretary General of Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen will call on Khan, it said, adding that the Prime Minister will also do Ziarat at Madinah and perform Umra. Khan and his delegation will go to the UAE from Saudi Arabia. He will arrive in Abu Dhabi on Sep..
                 

Mangkhut fixes gaze on mainland China

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Typhoon Mangkhut, the world's strongest storm this year, continued its path of destruction across Southeast Asia, reaching mainland China after pummeling Hong Kong and killing dozens in the Philippines, authorities said on Monday. Mangkhut is now expected to move inland of China's western Guangdong on Monday. While the storm has weakened, a T8 warning was still in place into Sunday evening - meaning that winds with speeds of about 63 kph were expected. The storm has carved a deadly trail across the region, killing two people in southern China and at least 54 people in the Philippines, with more than 2,50,000 people affected. As Mangkhut moved toward the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong was also buffeted by fierce winds that tore off roofs, downed trees and caused cranes perched atop half-built skyscrapers to swing ominously. Hong Kong's weather observatory issued its highest storm warning alert - a signal T10 - and the normally bustling city was all but shut down as transport was suspende..
                 

Clinical psychology professor recalls sexual misconduct in school

2 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
President Donald Trump's nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court was thrust into turmoil Sunday after the woman accusing him of high school-era sexual misconduct told her story publicly for the first time. The woman, Christine Blasey Ford, told The Washington Post in her first interview that Kavanaugh pinned her to a bed at a Maryland party they attended in the early 1980s, clumsily tried to remove her clothing and put his hand over her mouth when she tried to scream. "I thought he might inadvertently kill me," Ford said. "He was trying to attack me and remove my clothing." Ford, 51, and a clinical psychology professor at Palo Alto University in California, says she was able to get away after a friend of Kavanaugh's who was in the room jumped on top of them and everyone tumbled. Republicans say the allegations have already cast a shadow over Kavanaugh but that it does not appear to be enough to change the votes in the narrowly divided 51-49 Senate. Woody Allen and Soon-Yi..
                 

Donald Trump has 'insecurity of a teenage girl': John Kerry

3 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Former US secretary of state John Kerry has torn into Donald Trump for accusing him of holding "illegal" meetings with Iran, saying the American President has the maturity of an "eight-year-old boy with the insecurity of a teenage girl". Kerry's attack came in response to Trump's tweet accusing the former secretary of state of holding "illegal meetings" with the Iranian government that were "to the detriment of the American people". "He told them to wait out the Trump Administration! Was he registered under the Foreign Agents Registration Act? BAD!" Trump tweeted. Reacting to the accusation on a late-night talk show on Friday to promote his new memoir 'Every Day is Extra', Kerry said, "He's the first President who spends more time reading his Twitter likes than his briefing books or the Constitution of the United States". "Unfortunately, we have a president, literally, for whom 'the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth' is three different things. And you don't even know w..
                 

Pramila Jayapal: Americans recognising that they don't trust Trump

3 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Indian-American Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal on Sunday said people are increasingly recognising that they do not trust US President Donald Trump as how it could possibly be the case he knew nothing about what was going on in his campaign. Her comments came days after Paul Manafort, who once headed Trump's campaign, pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges and agreed to cooperate with special counsel Robert Mueller's ongoing investigations of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election. Jayapal, the first Indian-American woman to be elected to the US House of Representatives, told CNN: "When you think about this, it isn't just the individual pieces that we're seeing, but what we're seeing is top advisers, people who ran the campaign, the campaign manager, the deputy campaign manager, the president's personal lawyer who have all pleaded guilty". "You have to begin to wonder how it could possibly be the case that the president knew nothing about what was going on. "We obviously ..
                 

Pair taken ill in UK town linked with Russian spy poisoning

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Roads around an Italian restaurant in Salisbury have been cordoned off by police after a pair of diners were taken ill Sunday. The town in south-west England where former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia had suffered a Novichok nerve agent poisoning earlier this year, is on alert amid ongoing investigations by Wiltshire Police. 'Police were called by the ambulance service to Prezzo, High Street, Salisbury at 6.45 pm (local time) today following a medical incident involving two people,' a Wiltshire Police statement said. 'As a precautionary measure, the restaurant and surrounding roads have been cordoned off while officers attend the scene and establish the circumstances surrounding what has led them to fall ill,' it added. The restaurant on the High Street in Salisbury is a short walk from Queen Elizabeth Gardens, which was closed off for investigation after 44-year-old Dawn Sturgess was fatally poisoned by Novichok, the same deadly nerve agent used against ..
                 

Syrians in government areas vote in first local polls since 2011

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Syrians in government-controlled areas cast their ballots on Sunday in the first local elections there since 2011, when the country's ill-fated uprising erupted against President Bashar al-Assad's rule. Seven years since the last vote, the conflict has killed more than 360,000 people, forced millions more to flee, and left the economy in tatters. Now, Syrian troops are back in control of around two-thirds of the country after a string of victories, most recently around Damascus and in southern Syria. Polling booths opened at 7:00 am (local time) across government-held parts of the country and will be open for 12 hours, with a potential five-hour extension depending on turnout, reported state news agency SANA. It said more than 40,000 candidates would compete for 18,478 seats on local administrative councils. In Damascus, election posters mostly featuring incumbents were plastered across public squares, including in the Old City. Mohammad Kabbadi, a 42-year-old government employee, cas..
                 

Israeli missiles target Damascus airport: state media

4 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
An Israeli missile attack targeted the Syrian capital's airport late Saturday, activating air defences which shot down a number of the projectiles, state news agency SANA reported. "Our air defences responded to an Israeli missile attack on Damascus international airport and shot down a number of hostile missiles," a military source said, quoted by SANA. The agency, without giving any information on casualties or damage, posted footage and images of the air defences being activated. In a shaky video, a small, bright explosion is seen in the night sky, with city lights in the distance. AFP's correspondent in Damascus heard a loud blast late Saturday, followed by several smaller explosions. The Israeli military declined to comment on the incident. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based war monitor, said Saturday's strikes hit a weapons depot outside the airport. "The missiles, suspected to be Israeli, destroyed an arms warehouse near the Damascus international airport..
                 

Turkish court jails British ex-soldier over 'terror' links

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
A Turkish court has sentenced a former British soldier to seven-and-a-half years in jail for alleged links to a Kurdish militia that Ankara considers a "terrorist" group. Joe Robinson was arrested in July 2017 while holidaying in Turkey after he posted photos of himself in camouflage and posing next to fighters from the People's Protection Units (YPG) in Syria. A court in the western city of Aydin sentenced him for "membership of a terrorist organisation," the private DHA news agency said. The YPG is an ally of the United States in the fight against the Islamic State in Syria. But Ankara is hostile to the YPG because of its links with the Kurdistan Workers' Party, which is fighting for Kurdish autonomy in Turkey. Robinson did not attend the trial for health reasons, DHA said. He is currently on bail and planning an appeal. His Bulgarian fiancee, arrested along with him, was also sentenced to nearly two years in jail for "terrorist propaganda," but she is currently in Britain, DHA sai..
                 

Donald Trump slams John Kerry for 'illegal' Iran talks

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo unloaded on Friday on his Obama-era predecessor John Kerry for "actively undermining" US policy on Iran by meeting several times recently with the Iranian foreign minister, who was his main interlocutor in the Iran nuclear deal negotiations. In unusually blunt and caustic language, Pompeo said Kerry's meetings with Mohammad Javad Zarif were "unseemly and unprecedented" and "beyond inappropriate." President Donald Trump had late on Thursday accused Kerry of holding "illegal meetings with the very hostile Iranian Regime, which can only serve to undercut our great work to the detriment of the American people." Pompeo said he would leave "legal determinations to others" but slammed Kerry as a former secretary of state for engaging with "the world's largest state-sponsor of terror" and telling Iran to "wait out this administration." "You can't find precedent for this in US history, and Secretary Kerry ought not to engage in that kind of behaviour," an agitat..
                 

Seven killed as hurricane Florence pummels Carolinas

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
At least seven people were killed as hurricane Florence made landfall in the US state of North Carolina, battering the state with a powerful combination of wind and rain. Warnings were issued about the risk of life-threatening flash flooding in parts of North and South Carolina as well as in Virginia. It was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm on Friday, but continued to soak the East Coast area with rain, downing trees and damaging homes. Some areas grappled with intense flooding, while hundreds in the city of New Bern and North Carolina required rescue in the early hours of Saturday. Parts of New Bern and North Carolina were 10 feet underwater after local rivers overflowed their banks. Thousands of people were staying in emergency shelters. Evacuation warnings were issued for 1.7 million people in the region, the US media reported. Florence was slowly grinding over the eastern states, with winds of 65mph (105km/h). It was expected to keep lashing parts of North and Sou..
                 

John Kerry slams Trump's decision to pull out of Paris climate pact

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Former US Secretary of State John Kerry on Friday slammed US President Donald Trump's decision to pull out of the landmark Paris Climate Change Agreement. Calling Trump's withdrawal from the Paris deal the "single greatest act of irresponsibility of any President of the United States at any time", he said, "Trump has pulled out of the Paris agreement, the American people have not." He was addressing the two-day closing plenary of the Global Climate Action Summit (GCAS) in this California city. It was co-chaired by California Governor Edmund G. Brown and UN Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Climate Action Michael R. Bloomberg. Kerry, who signed the Paris agreement on behalf of the US, said: "If we don't hold people accountable, we're not being responsible citizens. We have to actually vote." The 2015 Paris Climate Change Agreement, the first-ever legally binding treaty adopted by 197 countries that came in force on November 4, 2016, has been ratified by 180 parties till date. The..
                 

Donald Trump tells aides to move ahead with $200 billion China tariffs

5 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
US President Donald Trump is urging his administration to move ahead with slapping tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods, according to an official. However, the timing of an announcement remains unclear, CNN quoted spokeswoman Lindsay Walters as saying on Friday. Trump met top aides earlier this week on the tariff issue and directed aides to proceed with plan. "The President has been clear that he and his administration will continue to take action to address China's unfair trade practices," said Walters. "We encourage China to address the long standing concerns raised by the US." The President took to Twitter on Thursday saying he had the upper hand in the trade war with China. "We are under no pressure to make a deal with China, they are under pressure to make a deal with us," Trump tweeted. The threat came as Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin has been working to break a stalemate between the two countries in the hopes of ending the escalating trade war between the world's bigge..
                 

China is educating, not mistreating Muslims, says Chinese official

6 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
China is not mistreating Muslims in Xinjiang province but is putting some people through training courses to avoid extremism spreading, unlike Europe, which had failed to deal with the problem, a Chinese official said on Thursday. Reports of mass detentions of ethnic Uighurs and other ethnic Muslims in China's far western region have sparked a growing international outcry, prompting the US to consider sanctions against officials linked to allegations of human rights abuses. "It is not mistreatment," said Li Xiaojun, director for publicity at the Bureau of Human Rights Affairs of the State Council Information Office. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party syndicated feed, agencies. Mid-day accepts no responsibility or liability for its dependability, trustworthiness, reliability and data of the text. Mid-day management/mid-day..
                 

Volkswagen to end production of the iconic 'Beetle' cars in 2019

6 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Volkswagen announced on Thursday that it would end the production of its iconic "Beetle" cars in 2019 after adding a pair of final editions of the insect-inspired vehicles. The curvy-topped sedans, which shook off Nazi origins to become a global auto phenomenon, are being sidelined as Volkswagen emphasizes electric cars and larger family-oriented vehicles.But company officials, still trying to completely turn the page after 2015's costly "dieselgate" scandal, opened the door to reviving the model at some point, alluding to the company's 2017 decision to unveil a revamped Volkswagen Bus as a possible template."As we move to being a full-line, family-focused automaker in the US and ramp up our electrification strategy...there are no immediate plans to replace it," Hinrich Woebcken, chief executive of Volkswagen Group of America said in a statement."But, I would also say, never say never," he added. "The loss of the Beetle after three generations, over nearly seven decades, will evoke a h..
                 

World leaders bid farewell to former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan

7 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
World leaders bid farewell to former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan at his funeral in his home country of Ghana on Thursday. On Monday, Annan's body was transferred to the West African nation from Switzerland, where he died on August 18 at the age of 80. However, it wasn't immediately clear why the process took so long. Among those who attended the state funeral of the Nobel Peace Prize laureate at the International Conference Centre in the Ghanaian capital were UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Ghana's President Nana Akufo-Addo, senior government and military officials as well as dignitaries from across the world, Efe news reported. "Kofi Annan brought considerable renown to Ghana as UN Secretary-General and by his conduct and comportment in the global arena," Akufo-Addo posted to Twitter. "He gave his life to making peace where there was conflict, to defending the voiceless who were powerless, to promoting virtue where there was evil." Speaking at the funeral, Guterres sai..
                 

Imran Khan visits ISI headquarters

8 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Prime Minister Imran Khan Wednesday visited for the first time the headquarters of the Pakistan's spy agency Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) where he was briefed on various strategic intelligence and national security matters. Khan paid his first visit to the ISI Headquarters in Islamabad after becoming the prime minister, the army said in a statement. He was briefed in details on various strategic intelligence and national security matters by the senior security officials, it added. Khan said that government and people of Pakistan firmly stand behind their armed forces and intelligence agencies. Khan's cabinet ministers were also with him during the visit. Earlier, Army Chief General Qamar Javed Bajwa and ISI Director General Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar received Khan on his arrival. Catch up on all the latest Crime, National, International and Hatke news here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updates This story has been sourced from a third party s..
                 

Putin says suspects in Skripal poisoning civilians, not criminals

8 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday said that the two suspects in the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter are "civilians, not criminals". Putin said that his government had found the pair and he hoped they would appear soon and tell their story. "We know who they are, we have found them," he told the plenary session of the Eastern Economic Forum (EEF) in Vladivostok city. "I hope they will turn up themselves and tell everything. This would be best for everyone. There is nothing special there, nothing criminal, I assure you. We'll see in the near future," he was quoted as saying by Sputnik news agency. Skripal, 66, and Yulia, 33, were poisoned in the UK in March. The incident caused tensions between Russia and the UK, as London and its allies accused Moscow of orchestrating the attack, which it refutes. The UK government named the two as Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov and said they were from Russia's military intelligence service, the GRU, a..
                 

Key Woodward sources criticize Donald Trump depiction in book 'Fear'

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Washington, Sep 12 (AFP) Two apparent key sources for Bob Woodward's devastating new book on Donald Trump criticized the author's depiction of the president Tuesday, suggesting he distorted their accounts. Gary Cohn and Rob Porter both issued statements taking some issue with Woodward's description of Trump's White House in "Fear," which was released Tuesday, as a "Crazytown" where aides plot to thwart Trump's orders and keep him contained. Cohn, the former White House chief economic advisor, and ex-staff secretary Porter are portrayed as having worked together to prevent a poorly informed Trump from making unsound and potentially disastrous decisions involving national security and the economy. "This book does not accurately portray my experience at the White House," Cohn said in a statement he sent to the political news site Axios. "I am proud of my service in the Trump administration, and I continue to support the president and his economic agenda." Porter said he was "struck by th..
                 

Former Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif's wife Kulsoom Nawaz dies in London

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Begum Kulsoom Nawaz, wife of former and now jailed Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif, passed away in a hospital here on Tuesday after months of battle with cancer, the family said. She is survived by her husband and four children, Hassan, Hussain, Maryam and Asma. Kulsoom was placed on life support earlier in the day as her health deteriorated, Geo News reported. The three-time former first lady was diagnosed with early-stage lymphoma in August last year and had been since then in London where she underwent multiple surgeries. She was elected from Lahore's NA-120 constituency in a by-election after her husband was disqualified from the seat by the Supreme Court last year but left for Britain even before she could start campaigning. In her absence, Maryam ran her campaign. Due to her illness, Kulsoom was unable to return and formally take oath as a member of the National Assembly. Born in 1950 in Lahore to a Kashmiri family, Kulsoom attended Islamia College and graduated from the ..
                 

White House says talks underway for second Trump-Kim Jong-un meeting

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has written a "very warm" letter to US President Donald Trump requesting him for a second meeting, the White House has said, asserting that it is open to the idea and is already in the process of preparing ground for the high-profile summit. The first meeting between the two leaders was held in Singapore in June. Talks between the US and North Korea have stalled since the leaders shook hands at the summit hailed as "historic". "President has received a letter from Kim Jong-un. It was a very warm, very positive letter. We won't release the full letter unless the North Korean leader agrees that we should," White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters on Monday. "The primary purpose of the letter was to request and look to schedule another meeting with the President, which we are open to and are already in the process of coordinating that," she said. Last month, Trump directed his secretary of state Mike Pompeo to delay a planned trip to North..
                 

New UN rights chief decries abuses of minorities, migrants

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
The new UN rights chief decried Monday crackdowns on minorities in countries like Myanmar and China and urged Western countries to respect migrant rights, warning that erecting walls only caused chaos and suffering. In her first address, Michelle Bachelet opened the UN Human Rights Council's 39th session stressing her "commitment to bridging the differences between communities and promoting respect, well-being and freedom." Diplomats and activists from around the world gathered in Geneva to hear her maiden speech, seeking clues as to whether she will mimic the abrasive style of predecessor Zeid Ra'ad Al Hussein. Bachelet, a former Chilean president, hailed Zeid but seemed to stake out a softer approach, only briefly mentioning a few concrete rights situations and refraining from full-blown criticism. "I am convinced that this council must strive for consensus," she said. Bachelet did however voice particular concern about the situation in Myanmar, where UN investigators say there is ..
                 

Sweden faces government deadlock as far right gains

9 days ago  
News / Mid-Day/ International  
Sweden faced political deadlock yesterday after the far-right made gains in legislative elections that left the question of who will form the next government up in the air. The prime minister is usually the leader of the party with the most votes, but Sweden's fragmented political landscape after Sunday's election makes it impossible to predict who will form the next government. As expected, neither the centre-left nor the centre-right bloc obtained a majority. The far-right Sweden Democrats solidified their position as third-biggest party and kingmaker, albeit with a lower score than they had expected. Far-right parties have gained strength in elections in recent years in several European countries, including Germany and Italy. Politicians in Sweden will now "need a lot of imagination" to form a government, daily Svenska Dagbladet wrote. "However the dramatic bloc battle plays out, it looks like it will be difficult for Sweden to have a functioning government," paper of reference D..