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Human Rights Observatory
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Despite recent inter-Korean engagement at the Winter Olympics that has created a thaw for diplomacy between the United States and North Korea, the resumption of talks between the two sides remains elusive, former U.S. officials and analysts say. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said this week the U.S. is interested in having “a preliminary chat” aimed at setting an agenda for more substantive talks over denuclearization of the North. The willingness to “chat” is seen by... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Three suicide bombers killed 18 people in the northeast Nigerian city of Maiduguri, capital of the state worst hit by the Boko Haram insurgency, its police commissioner said Saturday. Nobody has claimed responsibility for the attack, but the use of suicide bombers in crowded areas is a hallmark of the Islamist militant group, which has killed more that 20,000 people since 2009 and forced more than 2 million to flee their homes. Damian Chukwu, police commissioner for Borno state, said... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Nine people have died in a fire at a waste processing facility in southern China that is suspected of being sparked by fireworks residue, state news agency Xinhua said Saturday. The fire broke out in the early hours of the morning in Qingyuan city in the southern province of Guangdong, Xinhua said, citing the local government. The fire has been extinguished and a survivor with serious burns was sent to a hospital, the report said. Police have detained several suspects in connection... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
The Commerce Department is urging President Donald Trump to impose tariffs or quotas on aluminum and steel imports from China and other countries. Unveiling the recommendations Friday, Secretary Wilbur Ross said in the case of both industries “the imports threaten to impair our national security.” As an example, Ross said only one U.S. company now produces a high-quality aluminum alloy needed for military aircraft. Raise US capacity The measures are intended to raise U.S.... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appointed a former British diplomat as special envoy to war-torn Yemen. A U.N. spokesman announced the appointment of Martin Griffiths on Friday, saying he will replace Ismail Ould Cheikh Ahmed. Ahmed had been in the post for three years. His contract expires at the end of the month. Griffiths is the executive director of the European Institute of Peace and has served in multiple U.N. roles. The U.N. spokesman says Griffiths brings... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Six civilians suffered breathing difficulties and other symptoms indicative of poison gas inhalation after an attack launched by Turkey on the Kurdish-controlled enclave of Afrin, Syrian Kurdish news outlets and Syria’s state-run news agency reported Saturday. The news outlets quoted local doctors in Afrin as saying the hospital treated six cases of people who suffered shortness of breath, vomiting and skin rashes. The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitoring group also quoted local... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
U.S. officials will have another opportunity to persuade their European counterparts to accept changes to the Iran nuclear deal when they meet at the Munich Security Conference this weekend. The deal, aimed at preventing Tehran from building a nuclear bomb, is considered dangerously flawed by the Trump administration. With Israel backing Trump's goal of fixing the deal, VOA's Michael Lipin asked former Israeli officials whether they think those efforts will succeed. (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
The head of NATO has said the alliance is determined to avoid a new arms race with Russia, but he warned that Moscow is developing new nuclear weapons that pose a threat to the West. Jens Stoltenberg spoke at the three-day Munich Security Conference in Germany, where political and military leaders from around the world are gathered to discuss defense issues amid growing doubts over the future of the current global order. Henry Ridgwell reports from the conference. (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
The head of NATO has said the alliance is determined to avoid a new arms race with Russia, but he warned that Moscow is developing new nuclear weapons that pose a threat to the West. “Russia is modernizing its nuclear capabilities, developing new nuclear systems, and increasing the role of nuclear weapons in its military strategy. This is a cause for real concern,” NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg told delegates Friday at the three-day Munich Security Conference. Political and... (Full Story)
Saturday, February 17, 2018
Germany is welcoming home a journalist who spent a year awaiting charges in a Turkish prison, while the very same court on Friday sentenced six other journalists to life in prison. Deniz Yucel, who holds dual citizenship in Germany and Turkey, made his return home to Germany Friday, where he writes for the German newspaper Die Welt and other publications. “We are infinitely happy and grateful that Deniz is free again after a year behind bars,” the Axel Springer company, which publishes... (Full Story)
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