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Not Sure If 39 Missing Indians are Alive, Says Iraq's Foreign Minister
New Delhi, July 24: Iraq's Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari on Monday said here that he was not sure whether the 39 Indians missing in the city of Mosul since 2014 are alive."I am not 100 per cent sure if the 39 Indians missing in Mosul are alive," al-Jaafari told the media. "We are trying our best (to trace them)."Most of the 39 Indian construction workers who went missing in 2014 are from Punjab.Al-Jaafari's comments came after Indian Minister of State for External Affairs V.K. Singh visited Iraq after Iraqi forces aided by an international coalition liberated Mosul from the Islamic State on July 9.Al-Jaafari also held talks with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj here on Monday.Sushma Swaraj had earlier said that with the freeing of Mosul, the process to trace and rescue the missing Indians would be taken forward.She said they had information that the Indians were in a jail in Badush, which lies in ruins now.Singh was earlier sent to Erbil in Iraq to purs...




Dozens Killed in Kabul Suicide Blast
Kabul, July 24: At least 24 people were killed and 42 others injured on Monday in a suicide blast here, the Afghan Interior Ministry confirmed.The blast occurred at around 6.40 a.m., when a Toyota Corolla exploded in the city's Police District 3, Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danish told CNN.In a statement to local media, the Taliban claimed responsibility for the attack.The group was targeting a bus carrying Afghan intelligence staff, Taliban spokesman Zabiullah Mujahid said.  The explosion took place near the residence of Mohammad Mohaqiq, second deputy of Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, the ministry added.Afghanistan's Chief Executive, Abdullah Abdullah, "strongly condemned" the attack."I strongly condemn the terrorist attack on civil servants in Kabul today," he tweeted.According to Tolo News, three vehicles and 15 shops were also damaged in the attack. (IANS) 




Iran rejects Trump's demand for imprisoned Americans' release
Tehran, July 23: Iran has rejected US President Trump's demand for release of detained Americans, describing it as an "interference and unacceptable stand", local media reported on Sunday."The meddlesome and threatening statements by the US would not affect the Iranian Judiciary's determination to prosecute and punish the violators of Iran's law and national security," Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi was quoted as saying by Tasnim news agency.Qasemi stressed the independence of Iranian Judiciary, adding that it is responsible to deal with the actions and moves that threaten the national security.He also said that the US administration is pursuing an incorrect and illegal approach of threatening other countries and interfering in their internal affairs.The spokesman asked Washington to immediately release the Iranian nationals who have been jailed in the US on "false" charges.On Friday, Trump warned Iran of "new and serious consequences" ...




UN Chief Deplores Deaths of Palestinians in Jerusalem, Wants Thorough Probe
United Nations, July 22: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres has expressed concern over the situation in the Old City of Jerusalem, where three Palestinians were killed and 400 wounded in clashes following the Friday prayers.There has been scene of escalating violence between Israelis and Palestinians in the Old City area with protests over security measures and restriction on access to the Temple Mount in East Jerusalem.Guterres has "deeply deplored" the three deaths in the clashes on Friday with the Israeli security forces, Xinhua news agency reported.He has called for "these incidents to be fully investigated", Guterres' spokesperson said in a statement.The Secretary General has urged the Israeli and Palestinian leaders to refrain from actions that could further escalate the situation.In the statement, Guterres also called all political, religious and community leaders to help reduce tension."The Secretary General reiterates that the sanctity of religious ...




Israel Bans Muslim Men Under 50 From Prayer at Al-Aqsa Mosque
Jerusalem, July 21: Israel on Friday barred access of Muslim men under 50 to Al-Aqsa mosque compound and deployed about 3,000 policemen near the site amidst expected protests over security measures.The move came after Israel's cabinet decided not to remove the metal detectors installed at the entrances to the Haram al-Sharif compound, known to Jews as the Temple Mount, following a shooting attack nearby a week ago that killed two policemen.The site is open for women of all ages and for men over the age of 50, Xinhua news agency quoted a police spokesperson as saying.The spokesperson said that following assessments, "heightened security measures will take place in and around the Old City (of East Jerusalem)."Police and border police units mobilized in all areas and neighbourhoods and will respond to any incidents or disturbances throughout the day."Police are coordinating to enable Friday prayers to take place and at the same time secure measures are taking place," a...




Jordan Urges Israel to Stop Violations in Al-Aqsa
Amman, July 21: Palestine parliamentary committee at Jordan's Lower House on Thursday expressed its rejection of Israeli violations in al-Aqsa Mosque following a gun attack that resulted in the death of two Israeli policemen.At a meeting with Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, the committee said the Jordanians reject any violation in the holy mosque, Xinhua reported.The comittee also called on the international community to shoulder its responsibilities and pressure Israel to stop its violations in Jerusalem.Safadi pointed out that Jordan was exerting efforts to restore stability and end the tension to prevent any escalation.Jordan, which oversees the holy Islamic and Christian sites in East Jerusalem including al-Aqsa Mosque, will continue its efforts to ensure the mosque is open to all Palestinians, the minister noted.Israel needs to respect the status quo in East Jerusalem and refrain from any attempts to alter the status quo in the city, Safadi added.Last Friday, three Israeli Palestin...




Rising Hindu Nationalism Can Lead to War: Chinese Daily
"In diplomacy, New Delhi is demanded to act tougher in foreign relations, especially toward countries like Pakistan and China. The border row this time is an action targeted at China that caters to the demand of India's religious nationalists," the article by Yu Ning said.Gaurav Sharma,Beijing, July 20: The Sino-Indian border row is an offshoot of rising Hindu nationalism in India which has hijacked New Delhi's China policy and can lead to war between both countries, a Chinese daily warned on Thursday."Nationalist fervour that demands revenge against China has taken root in India since the border war. The election of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has fuelled the country's nationalist sentiments," said a commentary by the Global Times."In diplomacy, New Delhi is demanded to act tougher in foreign relations, especially toward countries like Pakistan and China. The border row this time is an action targeted at China that caters to the demand of India's re...




Israel has No Sovereignty Over Al-Aqsa: Palestinian PM
Jerusalem, July 19: The Palestinian Prime Minister Rami Hamdallah on Tuesday said that Israel has no sovereignty over al-Aqsa Mosque.Hamdallah called on the international community and Islamic countries to intervene to halt violations made by the government of the Israeli occupation against the revered place, Efe reported."The entire world should know that Israel, as the occupying power, does not have any lawful authority over Jerusalem and its Muslim and Christian holy places," the prime minister said.The Palestinian authorities and the international community do not recognise Israeli sovereignty over East Jerusalem, occupied in 1967, and later annexed by Israel.Hamdallah called for securing international protection for the Palestinians, referring to Israeli security measures taken around Jerusalem's Temple Mount since Friday's attack, when three Israeli Arabs killed two Israeli policemen.The Temple Mount, which contains al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock, was closed fo...




80,000 Children 'Wasting' from Hunger in Myanmar: UN
Yangon, July 17: Over 80,000 children under the age of five living in Muslim-majority areas of western Myanmar are "wasting" and will need treatment for acute malnutrition over the next year, the World Food Programme (WFP) warned in a report on Monday.The report from the UN agency was based on an assessment of villages in Rakhine state, where some 75,000 stateless Muslim Rohingya people have fled a bloody army crackdown, reports the Guardian.Those who remain are now reeling from a food crisis, with WFP finding one-third of homes are experiencing extreme food deprivation in Maungdaw, one district particularly affected by the violence. This includes episodes of no food in the house or not eating for 24 hours.No children under the age of two met minimum adequate diet requirements, the assessment found, while 225,000 people need humanitarian assistance."It is estimated that 80,500 children under the age of five are expected to be in need of treatment for acute malnutrition o...




UN Stresses on Engagement, Dialogue Between India, Pakistan on Kashmir
United Nations, July 14: UN chief Antonio Guterres has reiterated the need for engagement and dialogue between India and Pakistan for peaceful resolution of the Kashmir issue.The remarks were made by Guterres' spokesman Stephane Dujarric during a press briefing on Thursday.When asked: "Was the Secretary-General going to pay any attention to what is happening over there (Kashmir)?" or "we are just waiting for some sort of big tragedy to occur for the Secretary-General to take attention", the spokesperson replied: "... We reiterate the need for the parties to find a peaceful solution through engagement and dialogue.""...in terms of paying attention, I think the Secretary-General answered in his own words that question during the press conference," the spokesman said referring to the Secretary General's first ever press conference on June 20.When asked by a reporter at the June conference at the UN headquarters if Guterres was involved in bringing a...




Pakistan Considering Giving Jadhav's Mother Visa
Islamabad, July 13: Pakistan on Thursday said it was considering India's request to grant a visa to the mother of alleged Indian spy Kulbhushan Jadhav, but New Delhi said it had no knowledge about this.Pakistan Foreign Affairs Ministry spokesperson Nafees Zakaria, however, regretted that India had imposed strict restrictions on the grant of visas to Pakistanis seeking medical treatment in India, the Nation daily reported.The Indian government said it had no information on Pakistan's move."We have no information diplomatically from Pakistan on the issue," External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Gopal Baglay said in New Delhi.Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday complained that Pakistan was yet to give a visa to Jadhav's mother.She said she had personally written to Pakistan Foreign Affairs Advisor Sartaj Aziz regarding a visa to Avantika Jadhav, who wanted to meet her son reportedly languishing in an unknown military prison in Pakistan.Pakistan says Jadhav w...




US Judge Halts Deportation of 1,400 Iraqis
Washington, July 12: A federal judge in the US has halted deportation of more than 1,400 Iraqis, many of them Christians, who argued they would face persecution if expelled from the country.Some of the 1,400 Iraqis have faced deportation orders for years, even decades, but Iraq's refusal to accept them allowed them to remain in the US, Efe news reported.Their situation, however, changed in March when Iraq agreed to receive them following a deal sealed by President Donald Trump.Although most of the 1,400 remain at large, immigration officials arrested 199 of them in June, largely in Detroit (Michigan) and Nashville (Tennessee), with the intention of deporting them immediately.According to the US authorities, they committed serious crimes, ranging from homicides to crimes related to drugs or weapons.Those arrested, however, filed a joint lawsuit with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), the country's leading civil rights organisation, to halt their deportation.They claimed that bec...




Qatar Threatens to Withdraw from GCC
Cairo, July 11: Qatar has threatened to withdraw from Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC), by setting conditions for the Saudi-led bloc.Qatari Minister of Foreign Affairs Mohammed bin Abdulrahman al Thani on Monday sent a letter to Secretary General of the GCC Abdul Latif Bin Rashid Al Zayani, setting his country's conditions so as not to withdraw from the GCC, Xinhua reported citing MENA news agency.Al Thani said Qatar is committed to international laws and conventions, especially with regard to fighting terrorism and its financing, adding that Qatar will not negotiate on its sovereignty.He added that his country would give a three-day notice to the Gulf countries to lift the "siege" imposed on Qatar and compensate it for the political and economic losses. Following the deadline, Qatar will officially announce its withdrawal from the GCC, according to the letter.Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt issued a list of 13 demands to Qatar later last month, ...




UN Adopts Global Treaty to Ban Nuclear Weapons; India, Pakistan, China didn't Participate
India, Pakistan and China didn't participate in the final talks for treaty IndiaTomorrow.net, New York, July 8: The United Nations on Friday adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons with 122 votes in favour and one against (Netherlands), with one abstention (Singapore).   The treaty prohibits a full range of nuclear-weapon-related activities, such as undertaking to develop, test, produce, manufacture, acquire, possess or stockpile nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, as well as the use or threat of use of these weapons, the UN said in a statement.   "The treaty represents an important step and contribution towards the common aspirations of a world without nuclear weapons," the spokesperson for Secretary-General António Guterres said following its adoption.   "We feel emotional because we are responding to the hopes and dreams of the present and future generations," said Ambassador Elayne Whyte Gómez...




Google Grants UK News Agency $805,000 to Automate Writing Local News
San Francisco/London, July 8: In what could put automation in full swing in the field of journalism, Google is providing Press Association, the British news agency, $805,000 to build a software that will gather, automate and write nearly 30,000 local stories a month.Dubbed as 'Radar' (Reporters And Data And Robots), the software project will "automate local reporting with large public databases from government agencies or local law enforcement," Re/Code reported late on Friday.'Radar' will see journalists identifying national open databases from government departments, local authorities, NHS Trusts and more, and creating detailed story templates across a range of topics including crime, health and employment.The software project, scheduled for launch in early 2018, will hire five journalists who will help identify datasets, curate and edit news articles generated from Radar.The Natural Language Generation (NLG) software will be applied to produce multiple versions of stories,...




India Must Not Betray People of Palestine: Civil Leaders
Mahatma Gandhi had said before independence that Palestine is for the Palestinian just as England is for the English and France is for the French: Dr Zafarul Islam Khan  Ghazanfar Abbas, IndiaTomorrow.net, New Delhi, July 5: Prime Minister Narendra Modi's decision not to visit Palestine during his trip to Israel - first by any Indian prime minister to the Jewish nation since its creation in 1940s - is not being appreciated by the civil leaders in the country who term his move as betrayal to Palestinians.   "We had hoped that if Mr. Modi would not take up the issue (of Palestine) with Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu (Prime Minister of Israel), at least he would also talk to the government and the people of Palestine so that there was a sense of equilibrium, equity and equality that India is not just with the regime of Israel but also with the government of the Palestinian people and the Palestinian people themselves who have suffered so much since 1948," said civil righ...




Friendship between India, Israel Natural, Says Netanyahu Welcoming Modi
Tel Aviv, July 4: Welcoming Prime Minister Narendra Modi on his arrival here, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Tuesday termed the friendship between their two countries as "natural".Making a statement soon after Prime Minister Modi landed in Tel Aviv on a three-day visit, the first by an Indian Prime Minister, Netanyahu also announced that a $40 million innovation fund was being set up for cooperation between India and Israel.In his comments, Prime Minister Modi said India counts Israel as an important partner in its path to development and a strong resilient partnership with it will be his focus.Modi said he was "honoured" to be the first Indian Prime Minister to be visiting Israel, though the two nations set up formal diplomatic relations 25 years ago.After according a red carpet welcome to Modi at the airport, Netanyahu said that in their first meeting three years ago Modi had said 'sky is the limit' for India-Israel relationship."You said when i...




Qatar Crisis: India Muslim Leaders Express Concern, Urge Peaceful Resolution
Mumtaz Alam, IndiaTomorrow.net, New Delhi, July 4: While expressing grave concern on some Arab countries snapping ties with Qatar, eminent Indian Muslim leaders have urged the Arab nations to resolve their dispute through dialogues. Meanwhile, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Egypt on Monday extended the deadline for Qatar to meet their 11-point demands for two days. They had snapped their diplomatic ties with Qatar during the month of Ramadan in early June.   "We express our deep concern and grief over the dispute among Arab and gulf countries," said Maulana Syed Jalaluddin Umari, national president of Jamaat-e-Islami Hind.   "We believe and are hopeful that the misunderstandings prevailing among Saudi Arab, Qatar and other Muslim countries would be immediately removed through dialogue and talks in the light of Islamic teachings and the environment of friendship and mutual respect would be restored like before," Maulana Umari said....




Qatar Responds to Demands from Saudi Arabia-led Alliance
Kuwait City, July 4: Qatar has responded to a list of demands from Saudi Arabia-led Arab alliance, which gave Doha an extra 48 hours to decide, officials confirmed on Tuesday.The decision was made after Qatari Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani arrived in Kuwait late Monday, reports Xinhua news agency.The minister was carrying a handwritten letter from Qatar's Emir Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani to Kuwait's Emir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, Kuwait's official KUNA news agency said.The details of Qatari response were unknown yet.Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Bahrain and Egypt, which accused Qatar of supporting terrorism, agreed on Monday to a proposal by Kuwait to extend the deadline for Qatar's response to the demand list by 48 hours.On June 23, the four Arab states issued a list of 13 demands to end the rift with Doha, including closing of the Al-Jazeera news network and cutting diplomatic ties with Iran.They severed ties with Qatar o...




Iran opens airspace to Qatar planes amid Saudi-led ban
Tehran, July 2: Iran has opened its airspace to the passenger planes of Qatar over the past days, media report said on Saturday.Iran's Supreme National Security Council (SNSC) has issued the permission for the flights over the Islamic republic space as they are banned from Saudi, Egyptian and UAE airspaces after a diplomatic row between Qatar and the Arab countries, Xinhua cited Tasnim news agency as saying.Qoliollah Qolizadeh, a member of the presiding board of the parliament's civil commission said that the Qatari authorities coordinated the issue with Iran's Foreign Ministry and got the required permissions from the SNSC.Some Arab allies of Saudi Arabia recently closed their airspace to the Qatari planes after they cut diplomatic ties with the country, accusing the latter of supporting terrorism. (IANS)




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