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Human Rights Observatory
Friday, October 19, 2018
The United States and South Korea have suspended another major military exercise in a continued push for diplomacy, the Pentagon said Friday. Chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana White said the two militaries would suspend their joint air exercise, dubbed Vigilant Ace, in order to “give the diplomatic process every opportunity to continue.” The decision was announced following trilateral talks among U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and his South Korean and Japanese counterparts. The... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
U.S. prosecutors on Friday agreed to drop criminal charges against Paul Manafort that a jury deadlocked on earlier this year, as a federal judge set a Feb. 8 date for Manafort's sentencing on charges of bank fraud and filing false tax returns. Prosecutors had favored waiting until Manafort finished cooperating with Special Counsel Robert Mueller before addressing the remaining charges, but U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis rejected the timetable so he could move forward with sentencing... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
The U.S. government on Friday charged a Russian national with playing a key financial role in a Kremlin-backed plan to conduct "information warfare" against the United States, including to influence next month's congressional elections. The criminal complaint unsealed on Friday makes Elena Alekseevna Khusyaynova, 44, the first individual to be indicted for attempting to interfere in the 2018 U.S. elections, according to a government official with knowledge of the... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
President Donald Trump came under criticism on Friday from U.S. lawmakers and press organizations after praising a Montana congressman who body-slammed a reporter last year. Trump's praise for Greg Gianforte, a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives who pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor assault charge for the incident involving the reporter, coincides with an international outcry over the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi. "Any guy that can do a... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has filed a lawsuit in Ecuador against new terms of asylum in the Andean country's London embassy that require him to pay for medical bills and phone calls and clean up after his pet cat, his lawyer said on Friday. Ecuador this month created the new protocol governing his stay at the embassy. Lawyer Baltasar Garzon told a press conference in Quito that the rules were drawn up without consulting the Australian national, who has sued Foreign Minister... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
Speaking to VOA contributor Greta Van Susteren, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said about the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi: “I think the important thing to do is that the facts come out. When I traveled to Saudi Arabia I met with the King, I met with the Crowned Prince at great length... I made very clear to them that the United States takes this matter very seriously. " (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
VOA contributor Greta Van Susteren interviewed U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo Friday in Mexico City, where Pompeo is traveling. Greta Van Susteren: “Mr. Secretary, nice to see you sir.” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo: “Greta, it’s great to be with you.” Q: “This is your second trip to Mexico but why are you here now in Mexico?” Pompeo: “So as the new government makes this transition, beginning on December 1st, we’re working diligent to make sure we have a solid foreign... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
A fact-checking site has verified claims circulating on the Internet that the United States has fallen in a ranking of world's strongest democracies. Snopes.com issued the verification Friday, supporting an internet claim by a group called The Christian Left that "the USA has dropped off the list of the 20 most democratic countries in the world." It cited an annual ranking by The Economist magazine, which has been evaluating the world's governments on type and strength... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
A new United Nations report is urging the release of hundreds of people who were abducted in South Sudan amid the conflict between rebel and government forces. The report — released recently by the U.N. Human Rights Commission — accused the Sudan People's Liberation Army-in Opposition, or SPLA-IO rebels, of abducting 900 people and forcing 24,000 others to flee their homes in Western Equatoria state between April and August. At the time, South Sudan's warring parties were... (Full Story)
Friday, October 19, 2018
Expand A small scale model built by 14-year-old Syrian Mohamed Qutaish, representing the way he imagines the reconstruction of Aleppo, Aleppo, Syria, August 31, 2015.  © 2015 Reuters On October 18, a high-level UN official reported that Syria’s notorious Law 10 – which allows authorities to seize property without due process or adequate compensation – has been withdrawn by the Syrian government. Neither the Syrian government nor the Russians – which the UN cited as its source – have made an official announcement about a change in the status of the law and no word of it on the Syrian parliament’s… (Full Story)
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