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Found 19,338 results

  1. Photo: Reuters SINGAPORE: Oil prices rose by around one per cent on Friday, pushed up by Saudi plans for OPEC and Russian-led production curbs introduced in 2017 to be extended into 2019 in order to tighten the market. The rise in oil prices defied global stock markets, which slumped on the back of worries about a trade stand-off between the United States and China. But gold XAU, seen as a safehaven in times of economic turmoil, rallied to a two-week high on Friday. US President Donald Trump signed a memorandum on Thursday that could impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of imports from China, while China unveiled plans on Friday to impose tariffs on up to $3 billion of US imports. US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude future were at $64.97 a barrel at 0549 GMT, up 67 cents, or one per cent, from their previous close. Brent crude futures were at $69.52 per barrel, up 61 cents, or 0.9 per cent. For the week, Brent was set for a gain of about five per cent, its strongest showing since July last year, while WTI was up about 4.2 per cent. The driver for crude futures was a statement by Saudi Arabian Energy Minister Khalid al-Falih, who said on Thursday that OPEC members will need to continue coordinating with Russia and other non-OPEC oil-producing countries on supply curbs in 2019 to reduce global oil inventories. ?Crude oil prices surged today as Saudi Arabia?s energy minister seeks to extend output curbs into 2019,? Singapore-based brokerage Phillip Futures said in a note. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), of which Saudi Arabia is the de-facto leader, as well as a group of non-OPEC countries led by Russia, struck an agreement in January 2017 to remove 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) from markets to end oversupply. ?We still have some time to go before we bring inventories down to the level we consider normal,? Falih told Reuters in Washington. ?We will hopefully by year-end identify the mechanism by which we will work in 2019.? Although analysts said the stand-off between the United States and China could hit oil markets, for now most said demand looked healthy. Morgan Stanley also cited a pick-up in seasonal demand in the coming month and geopolitical risk as potential supports for oil prices, ?We are only 3-4 weeks away from peak refinery maintenance, after which crude and product demand should accelerate ... Global inventories are already at the bottom end of the five-year range. With the inventory cushion largely gone, oil prices will likely be more sensitive to geopolitical risk factors,? the US bank said. ?There are sufficient reasons to expect oil prices to strengthen further from here, and we stick with our (Brent) $75 per barrel call for Q3,? Morgan Stanley said.
  2. Photo: AFP Some 600 people have been invited to the wedding of Britain's Prince Harry and his fiancée Meghan Markle, Kensington Palace announced on Thursday. The invitations were posted earlier this week, Harry's official residence said - without revealing who had made the guest list. Harry and his US actress fiancée are set to tie the knot at Windsor Castle, west of London, on May 19. The 600 invitees will attend the service in the castle's St George's Chapel, followed by the lunchtime reception hosted by Harry's grandmother Queen Elizabeth II at St George's Hall. Prince Harry, Meghan Markle's royal wedding invitations. Photo: AFP Later, around 200 guests are being invited to a private reception at Frogmore House given by Harry's father Prince Charles, the heir to the throne. The venue for the evening party, in the park outside Windsor Castle, is where Harry and Markle posed for their official engagement photos. The invitations, issued in Charles's name, were on thick white card gilded along the edge, which were die-stamped in gold and then burnished. The invitations read: "His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales ... requests the pleasure of the company of ... at the marriage of His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales with Meghan Markle at St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle on Saturday 19th May, 2018 at 12 Noon followed by a reception at Windsor Castle." The names of the invited guests were added in later by a calligraphy printer. Uniforms and elderflower cake The invites indicated that the dress code is uniform, morning coat or lounge suit, or day dress with a hat. Harry, a former soldier who also holds ceremonial military roles, is therefore likely to be wearing his highest-ranking uniform for the wedding. The prince and his bride-to-be have been increasingly busy this month in the build-up to the big day. On Tuesday, the couple announced they had chosen London-based US pastry chef Claire Ptak to make a lemon elderflower wedding cake, to be covered with buttercream and decorated with flowers. Queen Elizabeth published her formal consent to the marriage on Mar 15. By law, the monarch must give consent for the marriage of the first six people in line to inherit the throne. Harry, 33, is fifth in line after his father Charles, brother Prince William and William's children Prince George and Princess Charlotte. He will be bumped down to sixth place when William's wife Kate gives birth next month. On Mar 12, Markle took part in her first official event with Queen Elizabeth, accompanying Harry to a Commonwealth Day service at London's Westminster Abbey. Markle, 36, was baptised by the leader of the Church of England earlier this month out of respect for the sovereign's role as head of the denomination.
  3. Photo: AFP Instagram has heard user complaints regarding its algorithm-based feed and is making changes to display more photos and videos in a chronological order. In a blog post released on Thursday, the photo sharing app announced that it will be ?introducing changes to give you more control over your feed and ensure the posts you see are timely?. The move comes after users complained about the news feed which switched to an algorithm-based formula. The app which was bought in 2012 by Facebook, remains the only social media app free of controversy after Facebook and Snapchat both saw their shares drop. However, Instagram does not plan on returning the feed to a purely chronological manner. The new changes will appear in a number of forms. According to Kevin Weil, VP of product at Instagram, the change is ?focused on making the feed fresher?. At the moment, Instagram is testing a 'new post' button which will let you choose when you want to refresh the feed. Tapping the button will let users see brand new posts at the top of the feed, and if not, you will stay where you are. Instagram said it will be adding more improvements to its feed over the next few months.
  4. CJP addressing the ceremony today. Photo: Geo News ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar said on Friday that there is no space in the country's Constitution for a judicial martial law. ?There?s no question of judicial martial law in the Constitution,? Chief Justice Nisar asserted while addressing a Pakistan Day event in Lahore. ?There?s no martial law from the inside or outside,? he added, without elaborating. The comments come after calls from political leaders for judicial intervention with regards to the caretaker government setup prior to general elections. Veteran politician Javed Hashmi said on Thursday that Awami Muslim League chief Sheikh Rasheed, in his media talk, confirmed what he [Hashmi] has been saying since the 2014 sit-in about a plan to impose ?judicial martial law? in the country. Speaking to the media, Hashmi said as per his earlier warnings, a ?judicial martial law? was under way. He had also said that the judiciary had never been independent in the country. However, the chief justice stressed today, ?Anything considered above the Constitution will not be tolerated.? ?We will not allow democracy to be derailed in Pakistan,? he vowed. Upholding that there ?will be justice without bias?, the chief justice assured, ?Accountability will not be held on the basis of a person?s status.? He also highlighted the need to unite as a nation and said it?s the only way independence and freedom can be safeguarded. ?We are fortunate we were born in an independent country,? Chief Justice Nisar said. He added, ?The most important aspects for a country to progress are leadership, supremacy of law, independent judiciary and impartial provision of justice.? Further, the chief justice said, ?The country should be run in accordance with law and Constitution.? ?In Pakistan, only law will prevail,? the chief justice asserted.
  5. Mark Zuckerberg. Photo: AFP Mark Zuckerberg rose to wealth and fame with a mission of connecting everyone through Facebook, but now faces the wrath of users outraged he isn´t doing more to defend their data. The latest crisis laying siege to the leading online social network has raised the spectre that he has lost control of his creation and been naive about the unintended consequences of people sharing so much about themselves. "If Facebook was a typical company, and Zuckerberg was the founder, he would probably be gone," said tech industry analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group. "He looks like a guy who really doesn´t know what he is doing. He is not the hero that a lot of people had viewed him as; his reputation and image are badly damaged." Facebook has prospered on digital advertising that benefits from being able to use what people share about themselves to target ads. If Facebook was betting on people´s better natures when it came to truthfully sharing, respecting others, and being able to connect with anyone, it wasn´t always a winning wager. The California-based social network has been a flashpoint for controversies about bullying, harassment, free speech, extremist propaganda, election meddling, privacy, and more. "They don´t put enough effort into making sure the user is protected and the experience is assured," analyst Enderle said. "They only care about the advertisers, and the user is basically a digital slave." Dropout to billionaire A public apology by Zuckerberg failed to quell outrage over the hijacking of personal data from millions of people, as critics demanded that the social media giant go much further to protect user privacy. Belatedly speaking out about the harvesting of Facebook user data by a British firm linked to President Donald Trump´s 2016 election campaign, Zuckerberg admitted Wednesday to betraying the trust of its more than two billion users, and promised to "step up." Vowing to stop data leaking to application makers and to give users more control over their information, he also said he was ready to testify before US lawmakers following -- which a powerful congressional committee promptly asked him to do. Zuckerberg has grown from a Harvard dropout who changed what it means to be social into a billionaire philanthropist bent on shaping a better world for his daughters. Zuckerberg and his doctor wife, Priscilla Chan, have pledged to give away their Facebook fortune to make the world a healthier, happier place for children. "Having kids changes a lot," Zuckerberg said this week in an interview with CNN. "I used to think that the most important thing to me by far was having the greatest impact across the world as I can; now I just really care about building something my girls are going to grow up and be proud of me for." Zuckerberg cemented his fortune, and a place in Silicon Valley history, by leading Facebook to a historic Wall Street debut in 2012. The $16 billion IPO was structured to keep control of Facebook in the hands of Zuckerberg, who has been Time´s "Person of the Year" and cracked the Forbes list of 20 richest people in the world. The hoodie-wearing 33-year-old, depicted in the Hollywood drama "The Social Network" as a socially challenged computer geek, has evolved into a confident chief executive. Zuckerberg still favors t-shirts, jeans and sneakers, topped off by his trademark hooded sweatshirt and a mop of curly hair. He is known for setting annual goals, which have included wearing ties every day; only eating meat of animals he kills himself; and learning to speak Chinese. His personal goal this year is to fix Facebook, making sure it fosters real-world community. ´Thefacebook´ Born on May 14, 1984, Zuckerberg was raised in Dobbs Ferry outside New York, one of four children of a dentist father and a psychiatrist mother. He began writing computer programs at the age of 11, including one said to resemble Pandora´s musical taste program which reportedly drew the interest of AOL and Microsoft. He went to high school at the prestigious Phillips Exeter Academy, where he was captain of the fencing team, before entering elite Harvard University. Zuckerberg launched Thefacebook.com, as it was then known, from his dorm room on February 4, 2004 with some of his roommates and classmates. Facebook´s early years were not without controversy, however. In 2008, a $65 million settlement was reached with three Harvard classmates -- twins Tyler and Cameron Winklevoss, and Divya Narendra -- over their charges that Zuckerberg had stolen the idea for Facebook from them. The conflict was at the heart of "The Social Network," the Oscar-winning film written by Aaron Sorkin and directed by David Fincher. Zuckerberg left Harvard in May 2004 for Silicon Valley, where he received his first major funding -- $500,000 -- from PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel. He has been referred to by some as being struck in the mold of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. Zuckerberg has praised Jobs as a friend and a role model.
  6. President Mamnoon Hussain speaks at Pakistan Day event in Parade Ground, Islamabad. Photo: Geo News ISLAMABAD: The Indian forces have put regional peace at stake by violating human rights in occupied Kashmir and killing innocent civilians across the Line of Control and Working Boundary, said President Mamnoon Hussain. While addressing the Pakistan Day event at Parade Ground in the federal capital on Friday, the president warned India to stop its atrocities along the border. The president spoke about the situation in Pakistan, saying peace was destroyed in the country in the last three decades. But military operations, including Zarb-e-Azb and Radd-ul-Fasaad, combated anti-social elements in the country, he added. Hussain paid tribute to the martyrs of the country and advised the officers to fulfil their duties with courage and honesty. At the beginning of his speech, the president welcomed Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena as the guest of honour, who has flown to Pakistan especially for the occasion. The president also greeted the forces from Turkey, Jordan and United Arab Emirates that are taking part in the parade, saying Pakistan?s friendship with its allies will prosper in the coming days. But cooperation from Pakistan?s side for the sake of peace should not be taken as a weakness, he added. On the occasion, the president also announced a new medal, Tamgha-e-Azm, to laud the efforts of people because of which the country is prospering and the economy has started to flourish.
  7. The Air India flight lands in Israel. Photo: Reuters BEN GURION AIRPORT: Saudi Arabia opened its airspace for the first time to a commercial flight to Israel with the inauguration on Thursday of an Air India route between New Delhi and Tel Aviv. Air India 139 landed at Tel Aviv?s Ben Gurion Airport after a flight of over 7-1/2 hours, marking a diplomatic shift for Riyadh that Israel says was fueled by shared concern over Iranian influence in the region. ?This is a really historic day that follows two years of very, very intensive work,? Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin said in a radio interview, adding that using Saudi airspace cut travel time to India by around two hours and would reduce ticket prices. Saudi Arabia ? the birthplace of Islam and home to its holiest shrines ? does not recognise Israel. Riyadh has not formally confirmed granting the Air India plane overflight rights. While the move ended a 70-year-old ban on planes flying to or from Israel through Saudi airspace, there is as yet no indication that it will be applied for any Israeli airline. Saudi gives Air India overflight rights for its Israel routes: Netanyahu Saudi Arabia does not recognise Israel and lifting the 70-year-old airspace ban would reflect what appears to be thawing ties between Israel and the kingdom The Air India Boeing 787-8 Dreamliner entered Saudi airspace at around 1645 GMT and overflew the kingdom at 40,000 feet for about three hours, coming within 60 km (37 miles) of the capital Riyadh, according to the Flightradar monitoring app. It then crossed over Jordan and the occupied West Bank into Israel. The airliner had earlier flown over Oman, according to Flightradar. Officials from Oman, which also does not recognise Israel, could not be reached for comment. Israel?s flag carrier El Al, excluded from the Saudi route, says its Indian competitor now has an unfair advantage. El Al currently flies four times a week to the Indian city of Mumbai. Those flights take around 7 hours and 40 minutes, following a Red Sea route that swings toward Ethiopia to avoid Saudi airspace. If El Al planes were to fly on to New Delhi, a destination El Al has said it might be interested in, they would require another two hours ? and significantly more fuel. Interviewed on Israel?s Army Radio, Levin voiced confidence that El Al would eventually be allowed to use Saudi airspace. ?You know, they said the Saudis wouldn?t let any flight pass. So here, the Saudis are permitting it. It is a process, I think. Ultimately this (El Al overflights) will happen too,? he said. Air India asks to fly over Saudi Arabia on planned Israel route Saudi airspace has so far been off-limits to Israel-bound commercial planes Asked if any other foreign airlines might follow Air India by opening routes to Tel Aviv over Saudi Arabia, Levin said he has been in negotiations with Singapore Airlines and a carrier from the Philippines, which he did not name. ?They are certainly showing readiness and desire to fly to Israel, and I don?t know if they will also receive permission like the Indian airline,? he said. Singapore Airlines did not immediately reply to a request for comment. Saudi officials could not immediately be reached.
  8. Photo: Netflix A vast corruption investigation in Brazil that has toppled businessmen and lawmakers, haunted two presidencies and captivated the media, debuts as a Netflix series this week, long before anyone can predict how the real-life probe will end. With ?The Mechanism,? director Jose Padilha, best known for ?Narcos? and ?Elite Squad?, hopes to remind viewers that corruption in his native Brazil is not the fault of any particular politician or party. ?Brazil, and even the foreign press, has fallen prey to an ideological battle that doesn?t have much to do with the real world,? Padilha said in a phone interview. Brazil president says 'truth won' after escaping corruption trial 'The economy has returned to growth after the worst recession in our history. That will be the biggest achievement of my government,' he claimed ?There really is a mechanism that creates the logical structure of politics here,? he said. ?The series is trying to take a position that is non ideological.? ?The Mechanism,? opens a decade before so-called Operation Car Wash with federal police in southern Brazil investigating money laundering in 2003 and failing to catch a key suspect. They eventually unveil a kickback scheme between politicians, construction companies and Brazil?s state-run oil company ? called Petrobras in real life and Petrobrasil in the series. While prosecutors and judges have gained global fame for their assault on impunity, Padilha?s series focuses on the lesser-known police work. Padilha said one of the main characters, police agent Verena Cardoni, is modeled on agent Erika Marena, whose work led to the first arrest of a Petrobras executive. She told Reuters in 2015 that ?Car Wash? would be Brazil?s biggest-ever money laundering probe with global consequences, which proved true. Former Brazil leader Lula gets nearly 10 years in jail for graft Lula, who ruled Brazil from 2003-2010, was convicted and handed a 9.5-year prison term for accepting bribes Brazilians have grown fatigued of the investigation, with its daily headlines igniting endless political bickering on social media and elsewhere. ?We can?t blame the messenger,? Padilha said. ?The problem is Brazilians are reacting in the worst possible way to the truth ? they are splitting in the middle, they are becoming radical from the right or left,? he said. The investigation is likely to loom large over Brazil?s October presidential election, which could see an unorthodox candidate, like the right-wing Congressman Jair Bolsonaro, win. Padilha said he was holding out hope a moderate, honest, non-traditional candidate would come forward. ?The Mechanism,? set for release on Friday, was written by screenwriter Elena Soarez and based on a book by Vladimir Netto. Asked how many seasons were planned, Padilha said ?My intention is to finish this when corruption ends, so it?s gonna go a pretty long time if it?s up to me.?
  9. President Mamnoon Hussain receives Maithripala Sirisena, the president of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, at the Nur Khan Airbase in Rawalpindi, Pakistan, March 22, 2018. APP/APP63-22 ISLAMABAD: Maithripala Sirisena, the president of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka, was accorded a warm reception as he arrived here on Thursday for a three-day visit. A 21-gun salute heralded the arrival of the dignitary as he landed at Nur Khan Airbase along with his delegation. President Mamnoon Hussain received his Sri Lankan counterpart, which followed the presentation of a bouquet to the guest by a child clad in the country's traditional dress. Sri Lankan president to visit Pakistan today During his visit, the Sri Lankan president will meet Pakistan's president and prime minister to review matters of mutual importance During his stay, Sirisena will be the Guest of Honor on Pakistan Day parade. His participation in the parade will demonstrate the close ties between the two countries and the respect Pakistani people and leadership have for him, a statement released by the Foreign Office said. The Sri Lankan president will also meet President Hussain and Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi to discuss matters of mutual importance. A signing of Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) pertaining to youth development as well as cooperation in the training of civil servants and diplomats are also on his agenda, the statement added.
  10. Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi (L) reacts during an interview with Reuters in Islamabad, Pakistan, January 22, 2018, and President Mamnoon Hussain, the then-presidential candidate, (R) reacts at the High Court, Islamabad, Pakistan, July 24, 2013. REUTERS/Caren Firouz and Faisal Mahmood/Files ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi said Thursday Pakistan came into being after a democratic struggle and its security, solidarity, and prosperity were, therefore, directly linked to the concept of democracy. In his Pakistan Day message to the nation, the prime minister urged his fellow countrymen to follow the teachings of founder Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Muhammad Iqbal for the stability and supremacy of the homeland and to be known as a lively and determined nation. Abbasi said March 23 commemorates the great moment from 78 years ago when Muslims of the sub-continent made a commitment to creating an independent state by breaking away from the shackles of oppression. The premier said the Pakistan Muslim League had adopted a historic resolution on this day, back in 1940, during a Jinnah-chaired meeting in Lahore that later came to be known as the Resolution of Pakistan. Abbasi commented that the resolution had created awareness, among Muslims of that time, of their destination and, within seven years of the resolution, Pakistan finally came into being. "This was the destination Allama Iqbal had dreamt of," he said, before adding that while observing the special day, Pakistanis should have a deep insight into their past besides pondering the path the country has taken as well as its future. "We will have to review our successes as well as the shortcomings," the prime minister added. President's message On the other hand, President Mamnoon Hussain, in his message on the Pakistan Resolution Day, said the country and its people must uphold the promise of following in the footsteps of their elders. Hussain also paid tributes to Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah and Allama Iqbal.
  11. LAHORE: The Pakistan Resolution Day is being celebrated throughout the nation with traditional zeal and enthusiasm today (Friday), a public holiday. The day dawned with a 21-gun salute while the national flag was hoisted atop government buildings and departments. Special prayers will be offered in the mosques after Fajr prayers for the solidarity, integrity, and the prosperity of the motherland. All offices, autonomous and semi-autonomous bodies, corporations, and local councils, which come under the provincial government, would remain closed except for essential services. Seminars, rallies, and ceremonies have been arranged by the government and private organizations. Several buildings, including the Lahore Railway Station, WAPDA House, and the Provincial Assembly building, would be decorated with lights and colourful buntings to mark the day. Elaborate security arrangements have been made to ensure security on the Pakistan Day, according to Amin Vaince, the City Chief Police Officer (CCPO). Besides district police, the special branch, Elite Force, and the Dolphin Force personnel would also perform their security duties on the Pakistan Day. Police officials have been deployed at all entry and exit points of the city, he said, adding that the city has been divided into various sectors that were being covered by setting up a number of check posts.
  12. Inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) arrive to begin work at the scene ? of the nerve agent attack on former Russian agent Sergei Skripal ? in Salisbury, Britain, March 21, 2018. REUTERS/Peter Nicholls/Files LONDON/BRUSSELS: A military-grade nerve toxin attack on former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter may have left them with compromised mental capacity and it is unclear whether they will recover, a British judge said on Thursday. Britain has said Russia used a Soviet-era chemical weapon called Novichok to attack Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the first known offensive use of such a weapon on European soil since World War Two. Russia has denied any involvement. In a boost to Prime Minister Theresa May, European Union leaders agreed with Britain?s assessment ?that it is highly likely that the Russian Federation is responsible and that there is no plausible alternative explanation?. A London court gave permission for blood samples to be taken from the Skripals for examination by chemical weapons inspectors to confirm the conclusion of Britain?s Porton Down military research laboratory. An unidentified doctor who is treating the Skripals said they were both heavily sedated and unable to communicate, and that it was not possible to assess when or to what extent either may regain mental capacity, according to the court?s ruling. ?The precise effect of their exposure on their long-term health remains unclear, albeit medical tests indicate that their mental capacity might be compromised to an unknown and so far unascertained degree,? Judge David Williams said in his ruling. Skripal, once a colonel in Russia?s GRU military intelligence service, and his 33-year-old daughter were found slumped unconscious on a bench outside a shopping centre in the southern English city of Salisbury on March 4. They were both in a physically stable condition and were being treated ?on the basis they would wish to be kept alive?, the doctor said, according to Williams?s ruling at the London?s Court of Protection, which makes decisions about the welfare of people who are unable to do so themselves. Williams said the application to take the samples had been made urgently on Tuesday. Both Skripal and his daughter were critical but stable, although he added: ?It is not inconceivable that their condition could rapidly deteriorate? Judge Williams said an unidentified analyst from Porton Down had given evidence that blood samples taken from the Skripals indicated exposure to a nerve agent. ?The samples tested positive for the presence of a Novichok class nerve agent or closely related agent,? his ruling said. A policeman who fell ill after helping the Skripals was released from the hospital on Thursday after more than two weeks of treatment, officials said. EU help Britain won a show of support from other European states, potentially opening the way for further action against Russia after May used an EU summit to urge the region to show a united front against the challenge Moscow presented. ?We stand in unqualified solidarity with the United Kingdom in the face of this grave challenge to our shared security,? the EU leaders said in a joint statement. In the worst crisis between London and Moscow since the Cold War, May has expelled 23 Russian diplomats whom she says were spies. Russia has ordered out 23 British diplomats. Lithuanian President Dalia Grybauskaite said she was already considering expelling Russian spies from her territory. But Russia was defiant. Its ambassador to London, Vladimir Yakovenko, said on Thursday that, had Novichok been used, the Skripals would have died. Yakovenko rebuked British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson for comparing Russia?s hosting of the soccer World Cup this summer with Nazi Germany?s hosting of the Olympics in 1936. In Moscow, President Vladimir Putin discussed Britain?s ?unfriendly and provocative? policy at a session of the national security council, RIA news agency quoted the Kremlin as saying.
  13. The then-National Security Adviser H.R. McMaster in Washington, US, March 15, 2018. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/Files SAN FRANCISCO: S&P 500 e-mini futures fell 0.33 percent late Thursday after US President Donald Trump tweeted that he was replacing his national security advisor. Trump ousts McMaster, taps Bolton as national security adviser The 69-year-old Bolton, long a polarising figure in Washington foreign policy circles, becomes Trump?s third national security adviser in 14 months Trump tweeted that he was replacing National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster with John Bolton, a hawk who has advocated using military force against Iran and North Korea, and a hard line against Russia. Bolton will effectively take up his new role on April 9, 2018.
  14. John Bolton, the former US Ambassador to the United Nations, (L) speaks at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Oxon Hill, Maryland, US, February 24, 2017. National Security Adviser Army Lieutenant General H.R. McMaster (R) at US President Donald Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida, US February 20, 2017. REUTERS/Joshua Roberts and Kevin Lamarque/Files WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump on Thursday chose as his new national security adviser John Bolton, a hawk who has advocated using military force against Iran and North Korea and has taken a hard line against Russia. Trump said in a tweet that Bolton would replace H.R. McMaster, his current national security adviser, "effective 4/9/18". "I am very thankful for the service of General H.R. McMaster who has done an outstanding job & will always remain my friend. "There will be an official contact handover on 4/9," he added. Bolton, 69, who has long been a polarising figure in Washington foreign policy circles, becomes Trump?s third national security adviser in 14 months. Bolton joins a Trump national security team that, with the planned replacement of Secretary of State Rex Tillerson by CIA chief Mike Pompeo, is increasingly populated by figures who share Trump?s penchant for exercising US power unilaterally. As the State Department?s top arms control official under President George W. Bush, Bolton was a leading advocate of the 2003 invasion of Iraq ? which was later found to have been based on bogus and exaggerated intelligence about President Saddam Hussein?s weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and ties to terrorism. In recent years, as a conservative media commentator, Bolton has advocated hardline positions on stopping Pyongyang from getting nuclear weapons that could threaten the US. He has also advocated getting rid of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal, a pact Trump has also heavily criticised.
  15. Cambridge Analytica CEO Alexander Nix (L) speaks during the Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal, November 9, 2017. Mark Zuckerberg, the president, founder, and CEO of Facebook, (R) speaks during an interview with Reuters at the University of Bogota, Bogota, Colombia, January 14, 2015. REUTERS/Pedro Nunes and Jose Miguel Gomez/Files Cambridge Analytica, which is at the centre of a controversy over harvested personal data about Facebook users, on Thursday, released a timeline highlighting its relationship with Global Science Research (GSR) and whistleblower Christopher Wylie. Aleksandr Kogan, who runs GSR, designed a personality quiz that was taken by a few hundred thousand people but the app on which it ran also collected details about all of their Facebook 'friends' without their knowledge or consent. That data was then used in a targeted digital ad campaign in support of Donald Trump's successful run for the US presidency, Cambridge Analytica's CEO Alexander Nix told an undercover reporter from Britain's Channel Four news. Cambridge Analytica's timeline also revealed contractual and legal agreements made in the name of its associated entity, SCL Elections. August 2013 Christopher Wylie begins part-time at SCL Elections. May 2014 Starts a research project with GSR. July 2014 Wylie stops working with the company. Late 2014 Legal action against Wylie for breach of contract and potential intellectual property theft. August 2015 Wylie signs legal document to say he holds no company material. December 2015 - The Guardian reports GSR data was in breach of Facebook's terms of service, and potentially the Data Protection Act. - Facebook contacts companies to understand the data and asks to delete it. July 2016 GSR seeks to verify company has deleted all of their data. August 2016 Takes legal action against GSR for licensing illegally acquired data. November 2016 Reaches a settlement with GSR. March 2017 - Completes an internal audit to confirm all GSR data (including all derivatives and backups) have been deleted. Certifies to Facebook that company holds no data from GSR. - Britain's Information Commission (ICO) officials visit company's London office. September 2017 ICO writes to Cambridge Analytica about processing data on U.S. nationals in the UK. October 2017 ICO writes to Cambridge Analytica about alleged work on the Brexit campaign. 2018 - ICO requests access to company's systems, says a whistleblower informed company still holds GSR data. Reiterates company deleted all GSR data and certified it to Facebook; offers to share all information on interactions with GSR. - Facebook suspends Cambridge Analytica and SCL's accounts, pending further investigation.
  16. File Photo PESHAWAR: A top food inspection body in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa arrested two persons and issued notices to multiple retailers during an operation conducted Thursday night here in the provincial capital's Saddar area, its spokesperson said. As many as 14 shopping malls and popular food spots in the city were issued warnings by the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Food Safety and Halal Food Authority late night after officials of the food regulatory authority observed worsening conditions during their check. Further, two retailers were also arrested for violating health standards and stocking expired goods. The arrestees ? both butchers ? were arrested for selling meat without a doctor's seal, the spokesperson said, adding that dirt and cockroaches were discovered in their unhygienic meat storage facilities and freezers. Both retailers have previously disregarded notices and were, therefore, arrested during the latest round of inspection. They could be fined, their business sealed off or both, the spokesperson noted.
  17. Darren Sammy poses with airport staff in Lahore before departure to Karachi KARACHI: Peshawar Zalmi players reached Karachi on Thursday night after the team beat Quetta Gladiators and Karachi Kings in the knockout games to qualify for the final of Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2018. The squad, comprising of both local and foreign players led by Darren Sammy, departed from Lahore's Allama Iqbal International Airport for Karachi. Speaking to Geo News, Zalmi skipper Darren Sammy requested the people of Karachi to express their support to his team by wearing yellow shirts. "We want to win the PSL final," Sammy said. "We will defend the title." Ibitisam Sheikh, Taimur Sultan, Umaid Asif and Khalid Usman will arrive in Karachi on the next flight. English spinner Liam Dawson, West Indian opener Andre Fletcher at Lahore airport Earlier, the players shared pictures on social media ahead of their departure. Pacer Chris Jordan and right-arm medium Umaid Asif at Lahore airport Wahab Riaz posted a group selfie on Twitter. Peshawar Zalmi will play Islamabad United in the final at National Stadium, Karachi on Sunday, March 25.
  18. A three-member bench of the Supreme Court on March 21, 2018 had taken a suo motu notice of the uprooting of a portion of a park for the construction of a road leading to Senator Ishaq Dar's residence. Photo: Geo News file ISLAMABAD: Former finance minister Ishaq Dar on Thursday alleged that Lahore Development Authority (LDA) Director General Zahid Akhtar Zaman had misrepresented facts in the Supreme Court regarding a case pertaining to the uprooting of a park for construction of a road leading to his residence. A three-member bench of the Supreme Court, headed by Chief Justice Nisar, had summoned the LDA chief at the Lahore Registry today after taking suo motu notice of the case a day before. "DG LDA said he wanted to widen the road in front of my house," Dar said in an interview to a private television channel. "He asked for my permission to widen road and I said I had no objections but suggested that he ask other residents." The senator also denied placing a call to Zaman. "Zaman's statement about me talking to him over the phone is incorrect," Dar said. "The court should collect all the facts." The senator denied having issued any verbal orders to the incumbent DG LDA. "Is the LDA operating on phone calls," Dar lashed out. "I never gave any such instructions to anyone." CJP reprimands DG LDA for uprooting park on Ishaq Dar?s directions DG LDA said Dar had directed him over the phone to make the road Chief Justice of Pakistan Justice Saqib Nisar had earlier today reprimanded Zaman for allowing a portion of the said park to be uprooted for the construction of a road leading to Dar's residence and ordered the DG LDA to restore the park within 10 days. The apex court had also issued directives to recover the cost of the park's restoration from the senator.
  19. KARACHI: The Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (Fazl) leader Maulana Fazlur Rehman said on Thursday that his party would restore peace in the metropolis. Speaking at his party rally at the Bagh-e-Jinnah ground, Rehman said that Karachi is Pakistan's economic jugular vein, and his party won't allow anyone to cut it as it has always stood for ethnic harmony in the city and has always rejected militancy. Rehman said that his party has adopted a democratic struggle under the constitution of Pakistan. The JUI-F leader told his party supporters that they have to politically win Sindh from its oppressors in the coming elections. He added that the religious seminaries must not be looked with suspicion, adding that the religious people are being prevented from acquiring state power. Rehman said that a few apologists want to interpret Islam according to the whims of West so that they can be accepted there. He requested the clergy to shun the sectarianism as it is hurting the image of Islam. The JUI-F leader said that Afghanistan has shifted towards US and India, and has maintained a distance with Pakistan.
  20. WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump signed a presidential memorandum on Thursday that could impose tariffs on up to $60 billion of imports from China, although his action was far removed from threats that could have ignited a global trade war. Under the terms of the memorandum, Trump will target the Chinese imports only after a consultation period, a measure that will give industry lobbyists and legislators a chance to water down a proposed target list which runs to 1,300 products. China will also have space to respond to Trump´s actions, reducing the risk of immediate dramatic retaliation from Beijing, and Trump struck an emollient tone as he started speaking, saying "I view them as a friend." "We have spoken to China and we are in the middle of negotiations," Trump said, adding that loss of American jobs from unfair trade was one of the main reasons he had been elected in 2016.The United States runs a $375 billion goods trade deficit with China. Washington will also pursue alleged breaches of intellectual property law by China through the World Trade Organization, a body that has repeatedly drawn the ire of the administration but which could provide a resolution that avoids a trade war. Global stocks had sold off on Thursday on the expectation of tough action from Trump, with US markets down as much as 2 percent, but recovered somewhat after the announcement. Following Trump´s announcement on Thursday, the US Trade Representative´s office will present a list of products that could be targeted, primarily from the high-tech sector. There will then be a 60-day consultation period before definitive action will be put into force. Chinese investments White House officials told a briefing ahead of the trade announcement that the administration was eyeing tariffs on $50 billion in Chinese goods. They said the figure was based on a calculation of the impact on the profits of US companies that had been forced to hand over their intellectual property as the price of doing business in China. There was no explanation of the difference between the numbers provided by White House officials in the briefing and Trump´s $60 billion. "Many of these areas are those where China has sought to acquire advantage through the unfair acquisition and forced technology transfer from US companies establishing its own competitive advantage in an unfair manner," Everett Eissenstat, deputy director of the National Economic Council, told reporters. In addition, Trump will also direct the US Treasury to propose measures that could restrict Chinese investments in the United States, Eissenstat said. The tariffs and investment restrictions will be imposed under the US Trade Representative´s "Section 301" The investigation into alleged misappropriation of US intellectual property by China Eissenstat said the investigation clearly demonstrates unfair practices by China, which forces US investors to turn over key technologies to Chinese firms.
  21. A dejected Sikandar Raza walks back after holing out, Zimbabwe v UAE, World Cup qualifier, Super Sixes, Harare, March 22, 2018/IDI via Getty Images HARARE: Zimbabwe lost a World Cup qualifying thriller by just three runs to the United Arab Emirates on Thursday, allowing Afghanistan and Ireland to clash in a winner-takes-all tie for a place in the 2019 finals. Chasing a rain-affected target of 230 off 40 overs, Zimbabwe needed six off the last ball to win the Super Six match and join already-qualified West Indies in the 2019 showpiece. But Craig Ervine was only able to take two off man-of-the-match Mohammad Naveed and the home side´s hopes were dashed. The UAE, who had no chance of qualifying for the finals, made 235-7 off 47.5 overs with Rameez Shazhad hitting a top score of 59. After a delay for rain at the Harare Sports Club, Zimbabwe were set a DLS target of 230 off 40 overs but despite a run-a-ball 80 from Sean Williams, the home side never recovered from a poor start which saw them slip to 45-3 at one stage. On Friday, Afghanistan and Ireland will meet at the same venue with the winner guaranteed a place in the 2019 finals in England and Wales.
  22. BCCI had withheld Shami´s contract after a series of allegations made by his wife, including corruption and even attempted murder NEW DELHI: India´s cricket board said Thursday that it will renew the contract of fast bowler Mohammed Shami, who has been accused of corruption, after it was initially put on hold. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) had withheld Shami´s contract pending a review into a series of allegations made by his wife, including corruption and even attempted murder. An anti-graft committee, which looks into the BCCI´s matters, was appointed to investigate a corruption charge that Shami accepted money sent to him by a UK businessman through a Pakistani woman in Dubai. On Thursday, the cricket board said that "no further actions/ proceedings under the BCCI anti-corruption code are warranted in the matter". "For this reason, the BCCI shall proceed with offering a Grade ´B´ annual retainership contract to Mohd. Shami," it said in a statement late Thursday. A grade "B" contract means he will receive an annual salary of 30 million rupees ($460,200), and he will be able to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL) for his Delhi Daredevils team that starts April 7. The BCCI had dropped Shami from a list of contracted players unveiled earlier this month, which saw skipper Virat Kohli and other top Test players awarded salaries just over $1 million. The cricketer´s wife Hasin Jahan, a former model, also accused him of having numerous affairs and went public in early March with a series of messages that Shami allegedly sent to women during their four-year marriage. Indian bowler Shami charged with violence after affairs claim Controversy has cost Shami as India's cricket board has put the bowler's annual contract with the national team on hold The 27-year-old has dismissed the accusations of infidelity as a campaign to defame him. Indian police are investigating the allegation of attempted murder. BCCI had stated earlier that it would be looking only into particular allegations within its code of conduct and not all of them. "We are only concerned with what the Anti Corruption Unit is investigating, not his personal life," Rajiv Shukla, IPL chairman, had said on Wednesday.
  23. Darren Sammy poses with airport staff in Lahore before departure to Karachi KARACHI: Peshawar Zalmi players will fly into Karachi tonight from Lahore, after the team beat Quetta Gladiators and Karachi Kings in the knockout games to qualify for the final of Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2018. The squad, comprising of both local and foreign players led by Darren Sammy, departed from Lahore's Allama Iqbal International Airport for Karachi. English spinner Liam Dawson, West Indian opener Andre Fletcher at Lahore airport The players shared pictures on social media ahead of their departure. Pacer Chris Jordan and right-arm medium Umaid Asif at Lahore airport Wahab Riaz posted a group selfie on Twitter. Peshawar Zalmi will play Islamabad United in the final at National Stadium, Karachi on Sunday, March 25.
  24. The two have had a chequered history, with Pietersen admitting to sending 'provocative' texts to South Africa players about Strauss during 2012 series LONDON: Andrew Strauss has paid a glowing tribute to retired batsman Kevin Pietersen, revealing any animosity he felt towards his former England team-mate has dissipated. The pair have had a chequered history, with Pietersen admitting to sending "provocative" texts to South Africa players about then England captain Strauss during a series between the two teams in 2012. Following his elevation to director of England cricket three years ago, Strauss blamed a "massive trust issue" between himself and Pietersen for refusing to countenance an international recall for the South African-born batsman. Pietersen, who last played for England in 2014, embarked on a nomadic Twenty20 career before announcing his retirement last week. He is England´s second-highest run scorer of all-time across all three formats of the game, while he won four Ashes series and amassed 8,181 runs in 104 Tests, prompting praise from Strauss. "I think the first thing to say is we´ve had our differences over time and they´ve been well-documented," Strauss told BBC radio. "But thankfully they are very much in the past now. "It is definitely the time for us to appreciate what he did in an England shirt. He was a magnificent player and for me, he was the best England player that I played with. "(He was an) unbelievable talent and he deserves for us to remember those special days he had in an England shirt and he can go off into retirement feeling pretty happy and comfortable with what he´s achieved in the game." It?s goodbye from Kevin Pietersen Kevin Pietersen's appearance for Quetta Gladiators Thursday night was his last as a cricketer The 37-year-old batsman hinted at his retirement with a Tweet on Friday that simply read "Boots Up! Thank you" before he expanded on his situation on Saturday, saying he would work hard to try to save rhinos from extinction. Pietersen, who had a brief and ill-fated spell as England captain, will be best remembered for his sublime innings of 158 in the fifth Test against Australia at The Oval in 2005.