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  1. Liquidity crisis, sales tax refunds, and other issues to be discussed in the meeting, officials say
  2. US President Donald Trump. Photo: FileWASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump threatened "major retaliation" on Sunday if Iran avenges the killing of a key military commander and he warned of massive economic sanctions against ally Iraq if the country expels US troops based there. The twin threats came as Iran announced it was further reducing compliance with a tattered international nuclear accord, ending limitations on numbers of centrifuges used to enrich uranium. The latest blow to the accord, which was meant to ensure Iran did not develop a nuclear weapon under cover of its nuclear industry, deepened the regional crisis set off by Friday's killing of Iranian general Qasem Soleimani in Baghdad. Also read: Iraq mourns Iran's military chief Qassem Soleimani Trump ordered a US drone to fire a missile at Soleimani, one of the most influential people in Iran's government, when he was near the Iraqi capital's international airport. Angry, black-clad mourners thronged the streets of Iran's second city Mashhad on Sunday to pay last respects to the remains of Soleimani and chant "death to America." Trump bluntly warned Iran against taking vengeance, repeating his insistence that US bombing targets could include Iran's cultural heritage sites. Critics say that would qualify as a war crime under international law. "If they do anything there will be major retaliation," Trump told reporters on Air Force One, as he flew back to Washington — and a looming Senate impeachment trial — from vacation in Florida. Trump had already threatened bombing of 52 unspecified targets in Iran if Tehran attacks US troops and interests in the region. In his latest comments, he was adamant that targets could include places of cultural significance in a country boasting an ancient heritage and two dozen UNESCO-listed sites. "They're allowed to kill our people," a defiant Trump said. "They're allowed to torture and maim our people. They're allowed to use roadside bombs and blow up our people. And we're not allowed to touch their cultural site? It doesn't work that way." Iraq tensions also soarThe situation in neighboring Iraq, a US ally, also deteriorated, with the future of some 5,200 American soldiers there in doubt. Many Iraqis have expressed outrage over the killing of Soleimani, who masterminded deep Iranian influence in the country. A top Iraqi military figure Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis was killed in the same US strike. In Baghdad, unidentified attackers launched a pair of rockets on Sunday, hitting near the US embassy in the high-security Green Zone for the second night in a row. That was just hours after Iraq's foreign ministry summoned the American ambassador over the drone strike. Also read: Two rockets target Iraqi air base housing US troops And Iraq's parliament voted to request the government end an agreement with a US-led international coalition to fight the hardline group Daesh in the region. If the government agreed, that would effectively require the departure of US soldiers supporting the local troops in the anti-Daesh fight. Caretaker prime minister Adel Abdel Mahdi, who called the US drone strike a "political assassination," indicated he would back the troops' ouster. He said the choices were immediate expulsion or withdrawal under a timeframe. Trump told reporters that a forced departure of US troops would prompt sanctions even worse than those already imposed, to devastating effect, on Iran's economy. "If they do ask us to leave — if we don't do it in a very friendly basis — we will charge them sanctions like they've never seen before," Trump said. "It'll make Iranian sanctions look somewhat tame." Also read: Iraq could 'pay price' for US strike on Iran commander: analysts Trump said the main US base in Iraq was "very extraordinarily expensive." "We're not leaving unless they pay us back for it," he said. Earlier, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo sounded a softer note, saying "the Iraqi people want the United States to continue to be there to fight the counterterror campaign." Threats and revenge callsSoleimani was one of Iran's most popular public figures, seen as a hero of the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war. He was also the key figure behind Iran's effective network of proxy militias and alliances across a region where Iran is in often deadly rivalry with US allies Israel and Saudi Arabia. Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has vowed "severe revenge." What that will look like is the subject of heated speculation in the Pentagon and the White House. Analysts say Iran may be limited in its room for maneuver if it wants to avoid full war with the far more powerful United States. Also read: Iran and 'free nations of region' to avenge general's killing: Rouhani But a former head of Iran's Revolutionary Guards threatened on Sunday to turn the Israeli cities of Haifa and Tel Aviv "to dust" if the US attacks targets in Iran. And Khamenei's military adviser, Brigadier General Hossein Dehghan, told CNN that Iran's response to the assassination "for sure will be military and against military sites." The crisis comes as Trump is embroiled in his own domestic political turmoil. He was impeached by the House of Representatives for abuse of office and obstruction of Congress. The Senate, where his Republican party has a commanding majority, is wrangling over when and how a trial will take place, as the clock ticks down on the November presidential elections.
  3. We've reached this point now, that politicians are openly threatening individuals online for just voicing their opinions. So, basically, freedom of speech is not a thing? Mohit Bharatiya, General Secretary of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Mumbai, appeared to have gotten offended by a tweet posted by comedian Kunal Kamra following which the politician made a direct threat to him on Twitter. It all started with a picture shared by BJP's Amit Malviya. I support Prime Minister Modi. #NewProfilePic pic.twitter.com/cIEPSnsOmt — Amit Malviya (@amitmalviya) December 18, 2019 While there is so much going on this picture, I really want to ask him why did he start off with the opposition? They will, obviously, not be in favour of PM Modi. That's what the word 'opposition' means, sir. Since it is clearly a problematic picture, Kunal Kamra decided to fix it, and well, here it is. *FIXED IT* pic.twitter.com/psY3Kiyw4O — Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) December 18, 2019 Keeping just the 'media and Bollywood is against you' from the original one, he had some extra additions about who is supporting PM Modi. He added '352 MPs, all the Indian bigots, corrupt criminals and rapists, RSS, NRI Dhokla Mafia'. He conveyed the message that 'common men and women are against him' as 'the nation doesn't need him'. Well, that wouldn't sit well with some BJP people, of course, because freedom of speech only applies to trolls who are always supporting BJP, right? One person who Kunal seemed to have irked the most, was Mohit Bharatiya, General Secretary of BJP Mumbai, who decided to use his huge platform to openly issue threats. Take my Words U will also be Fixed Soon @kunalkamra88 https://t.co/sjwySc3bsg — Mohit Bharatiya (@mohitbharatiya_) December 18, 2019 Kunal Kamra, on the other hand, had a suggestion for something that needs to be fixed first. Economy fix kardo bhai ððð https://t.co/TicMjdduYp — Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) December 18, 2019 The Twitter fight continued. I am a true patriot and will keep voicing my opinion against you and your so-called liberal but actually Urban Naxal gang who is misleading & trying to destabilize the country. https://t.co/YAdGt0ZeKQ — Mohit Bharatiya (@mohitbharatiya_) December 19, 2019 “Mark my words one day you'll be fixed” is not voicing an opinion it's giving a threat... If I'm 'destabilising' the country & misleading people with my 'content' take me to court not kangaroo court... Also when people holding a political office make threats like these 1/N https://t.co/lFGLD72udU — Kunal Kamra (@kunalkamra88) December 19, 2019 Even Swara Bhaskar came to his defence while calling out the government. So is that the General Secretary of @BJP4India Mumbai openly threatening @kunalkamra88 on social media??? Seems like that to me! What wonderful and responsible conduct for an office bearing member of the ruling party! Makes us citizens feel so safe! ðð½ðð½ðð½ðð½ @MumbaiPolice pic.twitter.com/Nbo4fRW88r — Swara Bhasker (@ReallySwara) December 18, 2019 Sigh. When will our beloved politicians learn to weight and measure their words before putting them out, especially on social media? View the full article
  4. ISLAMABAD: Balochistan National Party- Mengal (BNP-M) threatened to leave the PTI-led coalition government on Thursday, after party chief Sardar Akhtar Mengal held a sit-in protest at the speaker's dais in the parliament.Mengal led a sit-in protest...
  5. [embed_video1 url=http://stream.jeem.tv/vod/b9850ca300fad13e3e879c8a3df15e49.mp4/playlist.m3u8?wmsAuthSign=c2VydmVyX3RpbWU9MTEvMTcvMjAxOSA2OjU4OjQzIFBNJmhhc2hfdmFsdWU9SlVCVEw2aDFsdTB5TFQ2NTRxbGJZUT09JnZhbGlkbWludXRlcz02MCZpZD0x...
  6. ISLAMABAD: Jamiat Ulema-e-Islam (JUI-F) chief Maulana Fazlur Rehman threatened to shut down the entire country, on Sunday. The JUI-F chief was speaking to the Azadi March protesters at the H-9 venue when he said that the time was up for Prime...
  7. Following a heart-breaking exit from the ICC World Cup in England & Wales, there seems to be no looking back for the Indian cricket team which is going past one opponent after another in the recent outings. A successful overseas tour of the West Indies was followed by a brilliant outing against the South Africans at home where they whitewashed the Proteas 3-0 in Tests after a 1-1 draw in T20I series. After a starry performance against the touring South African party which also saw them consolidating their spot at the top in the ongoing World Test Championship, the Indian cricket team is set to host Bangladesh for three T20Is and a two-match Test series, slated to begin from 3rd November. © Reuters The recent turn of events including the appointment of Sourav Ganguly as the new president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has surely been good for Indian cricket, but the reports of a possible attack on Virat Kohli & co in Delhi ahead of their first T20I at the Arun Jaitley Stadium on Sunday has got everyone in a spot of bother. According to media reports, the Indian cricket team is facing a potential threat of a deadly attack in the national capital. An anonymous letter received by the National Intelligence Agency (NIA) threatens of a possible attack on the star-studded Indian team as they gear up for the first T20I against the touring Bangladesh side. © Reuters The letter promising threat has been forwarded by the security agency to the Indian cricket board and the Delhi Police has been asked to beef up security ahead of the arrival of the two teams at the stadium. The anonymous letter claims that 'All India Lashkar', based out of Kozhikode, is planning an attack on Indian cricket team and prominent politicians who'll be present at the Arun Jaitley stadium for the first T20I in Delhi. With Kohli rested for the T20I series, Mumbai Indians captain Rohit Sharma will be seen leading India's charge in the shortest format. While the anonymous letter could very well be just a hoax, the Delhi Police and security agency are taking no chances as they've already initiated security review of the match venue and individual players to neutralise any potential threat. View the full article
  8. On May 24th, people working in and around sector 18 of Cyber City got the shock of their lives, when they saw a woman standing on the edge of a five-storey building's terrace. According to reports and the videos and pictures people clicked, the woman was threatening to jump off the building. © for representation Turns out, it was the woman's office building, and she took this extreme step because she was upset that she was fired. Reportedly, she works at a private consultancy firm and was upset and sad that she wasn't confirmed after her probation period got over. When her colleagues heard about it, they rushed to the terrace and tried persuading her to come down. She threatened that she will jump off if the office management didn't hire her back as a permanent employee. In some pictures and video, there's a man who carefully approaches her and convinces her to come off the edge. © Twitter Inspector Vivek Kundu, SHO of Sector 18 police station told The Times Of India, "On May 24, when she got to know that the company was not hiring her as a permanent employee, following the end of her probation period, she threatened to kill herself." The woman came down only after the company assured to hire her back. According to the company manager, she wasn't hired after her probation because her performance wasn't satisfactory. However, according to the woman she was being punished for standing up against the management since "they did not have the proper environment for women empowerment." To all those people reading this story, threatening to kill oneself is not a solution to any problem. If someone is unhappy with your performance, prove them wrong with your hard work, instead of taking such extreme measures to get your job back. Please do not try to recreate what this woman did, this is not cool at all.
  9. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang speaks at the China-EU Business Roundtable held at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, Monday, July 16, 2018. Photo: Reuters SHANGHAI: A vaccine scandal in China, which has hit a nerve in the country and...
  10. The Amazon logo is seen at the Young Entrepreneurs fair in Paris, France, February 7, 2018. REUTERS/Charles Platiau/Files SAN FRANCISCO: Amazon.com?s stock market value reached $900 billion on Wednesday for the first time, marking a major...
  11. A giant iceberg is seen behind an Innaarsuit settlement, Greenland, July 12, 2018. Ritzau Scanpix/Karl Petersen/via REUTERS An iceberg the size of a hill has drifted close to a tiny village on the western coast of Greenland, causing fear that it...
  12. Rain and storm wind blowing trees. Image: Time via Blend/REB/GettyA third named Atlantic storm that formed off the North Carolina coast early on Sunday was forecast to become a hurricane on Monday, the US National Hurricane Center said, while...
  13. British cave divers found the emaciated and dishevelled group on Monday, huddled on a muddy shelf with flood waters lapping ominously below, after nine days missing. Photo: AFPMAE SAI, THAILAND: Thai rescuers on Thursday said they may be prodded...
  14. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani delivers a statement after a two-day visit in Bern, Switzerland, July 3, 2018. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse/Files LONDON: Iran could reduce its co-operation with the UN nuclear watchdog, President Hassan Rouhani told...
  15. It's almost surprising that some pundits considered Belgium as the “dark horses” for the World Cup, given the wealth of talent they have in their squad. However, Belgium made a mockery of that statement as they rolled past a hapless Tunisia beating them 5-2 in Nizhny Novgorod on Sunday. Their attacking talent was in full display as Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku contributed two goals each, with Michy Batshuayi adding another right at the death. Tunisia came into the game needing a win to have a realistic chance of qualification. Therefore, they created plenty of chances throughout the game and as a result, had 16 shots on goal. However, an attacking intent by the Tunisians, allowed Belgian midfielders and attackers to have acres of space and hence, played some of the most delightful football we've seen so far. Source: Reuters Kevin De Bruyne danced and dazzled past the Tunisian midfield and ran the show. Dries Mertens and Eden Hazard made crucial interceptions in the final third and gave the Tunisian defenders all sorts of troubles. However, despite the whole squad proving their mettle as genuine World Cup contenders, one man really stood out. Romelu Lukaku is striker who divides opinions like no other. His first touch is almost laughable at times, and he's often accused of being lazy and immobile. In fact, even in the game against Tunisia, he missed some glaring chances. However, for all his missed chances against Tunisia, he provided the onlookers with moments of world class genius. Source: Reuters Throughout the game, Lukaku was a constant menace to the Tunisian defence, as he used his big frame to hold up the ball and bring Mertens and Hazard into the game. However, it was his off the ball movement which caused all the trouble. His first goal came in the 16th minute. As Mertens pounced on a loose ball in midfield, Lukaku immediately ran into space and finished the Mertens' pass with a first time shot. This was Romelu Lukaku at his ruthless best. He provided the icing on the cake in the dying moments of the first half, as he displayed imperious skill, to latch on to Thomas Meunier's through pass and provide a deft touch with his right foot to chip the ball over the keeper. These were the kind of finishes you best associate with the stars of yesteryear like Ronaldo and Francesco Totti. Source: Reuters Far too often, pundits have been guilty of judging Lukaku by his frame and judging him as a flat track bully. His display on Saturday showed that he's capable of shining in extremely different footballing circumstances. Lukaku's two goals meant that he's now level with Cristiano Ronaldo in the race for the Golden Boot. At 25, he's scored, 23 goals in his 20 games for Belgium and is their record goal-scorer by some distance. With the support of some world class teammates, Lukaku has the stage set to guide Belgium to memorable run at this World Cup.
  16. WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump threatened on Monday to impose a 10 percent tariff on $200 billion of Chinese goods, escalating a tit-for-tat trade war with Beijing.In a statement, Trump said he had asked the US trade representative to...
  17. Lahiru Kumara (C) of Sri Lanka appeals to the umpire during day 3 of the 2nd Test between West Indies and Sri Lanka at Daren Sammy Cricket Ground, Gros Islet, St. Lucia, on June 16, 2018. ? AFPGROS-ISLET, Saint Lucia: An apparent ball-tampering...
  18. US President Donald Trump gives a news briefing at the G7 Summit in the Charlevoix city of La Malbaie, Quebec, Canada, June 9, 2018. REUTERS/Leah Millis LA MALBAIE: US President Donald Trump on Saturday accused other countries of ?robbing? the...
  19. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo delivers remarks on the Trump administration's Iran policy at the Heritage Foundation in Washington, US May 21, 2018. Photo: Reuters WASHINGTON: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Monday threatened to impose the...
  20. Lava erupts on the outskirts of Pahoa during ongoing eruptions of the Kilauea Volcano in Hawaii, US. Photo: Reuters PAHOA, HAWAII: A stream of lava threatened to block a key Hawaii highway on Saturday that serves as an escape route for coastal...
  21. U.S. President Donald Trump speaks at a Make America Great Again Rally in Washington, Michigan April 28, 2018.Photo: Reuters//Joshua Roberts WASHINGTON, MICHIGAN: US President Donald Trump on Saturday threatened to shut down the federal government...
  22. Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah has a remarkable 43 goals in all competitions this seasonLIVERPOOL: Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah´s virtuoso display in the 5-2 win over AS Roma on Tuesday brought his side to the brink of the Champions League...
  23. Photo: Herald Nigeria BEIJING: An Air China flight bound for Beijing made an unscheduled landing in the central Chinese city of Zhengzhou on Sunday after a passenger threatened a flight attendant with a fountain pen, the country?s civil aviation...
  24. North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un inspects artillery launchers ahead of a military drill marking the 85th anniversary of the establishment of the Korean People's Army (KPA), April 25, 2017. KCNA via REUTERS/Files SEOUL: North Korea threatened on Saturday to ?counter the US? if the United States holds joint military exercises with South Korea, and said it would not beg for talks with Washington. The United States is due to start joint exercises in early April, a South Korean presidential security adviser said this week according to Yonhap news agency ? the latest in a series of drills that the north has regularly described as a threat. ?If the US finally holds joint military exercises while keeping sanctions on the DPRK, the DPRK will counter the US by its own mode of counteraction and the US will be made to own all responsibilities for the ensuing consequences,? North Korea?s official KCNA news agency said in its commentary, saying the drills would harm reconciliation efforts on the peninsula. The DPRK is the acronym of the country?s official name, the Democratic People?s Republic of Korea. On February 23, the US said it was imposing its largest package of sanctions to pressure North Korea to give up its nuclear and missile programs. President Donald Trump warned of a ?phase two? that could be ?very, very unfortunate for the world? if the steps did not work. North Korea has slammed Trump?s unilateral sanctions against it, but it said it was open to talks with the United States during senior North Korean officials? visit to South Korea for the Olympics last month. The White House said any talks with North Korea must lead to an end of its nuclear program. North Korea reiterated on Saturday that it was willing to talk to the US but said it would never sit with any precondition. A North Korean foreign ministry spokesman was quoted by state media KCNA news agency as saying ?we will neither beg for dialogue nor evade the military option claimed by the US?. ?Whether peace desired by our nation and the rest of the world settles on the Korean peninsula or a situation that no one desires is developed in the vicious cycle of confrontation depends entirely on the attitude of the US,? the spokesman said, according to KCNA. South Korea plans to send a special envoy to North Korea in response to an invitation from leader Kim Jong Un, South Korean President Moon Jae-in told Trump in a phone call on Thursday. The Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang last month gave a boost to recent engagement between the two Koreas after sharply rising tensions over the North?s missile program.
  25. ANKARA: President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday threatened to expand Turkey's offensive in Syria against a Kurdish militia despite calls for restraint from its Western allies. On the seventh day of the operation against the Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia, Erdogan vowed to "clean up" the Syrian city of Manbij. The United States has raised concerns over the deadly offensive, and analysts say a military confrontation between the two NATO powers is possible since the US has a military presence in Manbij. Turkey launched operation "Olive Branch" against the YPG on Saturday, supporting Syrian rebels with ground troops, air strikes and artillery fire. While the YPG is still working closely with Washington against Daesh extremist group in Syria, Ankara views the YPG as a terror organisation allied to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) inside Turkey. The PKK is blacklisted by Ankara and its Western allies as a terror outfit. Erdogan vowed in a speech in Ankara that Turkey would "continue our fight until there is no terrorist on our border", but did not elaborate. He said the operation would last until "we reach our goals," adding: "Afterwards we will, as promised, clean up Manbij of terrorists." US ties 'teetering on brink' Tensions between Ankara and Washington are already high but the offensive added further strain to their relationship. The two sides disagreed about the content of telephone talks between Erdogan and US President Donald Trump on Wednesday. Washington said Trump had urged Turkey to "limit its military actions" but a Turkish official said the US statement did "not accurately reflect the content" of the call. Erdogan criticised Turkey's allies, including the United States, which he said called for the operation to be "short" and "limited" in scope, referring to previous interventions. "How long has Afghanistan lasted? Nearly 20 years. How long has it lasted in Iraq? Nearly 18 years!" he thundered. Washington has more than 2,000 special forces and support troops inside Syria, mainly east of the Euphrates in an area also controlled by the YPG but separate from Afrin, which is west of the river. According to Anthony Skinner, director of MENA at global risk consultancy Verisk Maplecroft, "direct military conflict" between Turkish and US forces is possible because of Erdogan´s threats to expand the campaign to Manbij. "Turkish-US relations are teetering on the brink of a precipice," Skinner added. "The current bilateral crisis could, in the worst case, fully eclipse that of the 1970s," he warned, when Washington imposed an arms embargo on Turkey in 1975 after the Turkish army invaded and occupied the northern third of Cyprus the year before. The European Union has also expressed concern over the Turkish intervention in Syria, which is further complicating the war that has claimed more than 340,000 lives since 2011. Afrin urges Syria to intervene Turkey continued shelling YPG positions in Afrin on Friday, state-run news agency Anadolu reported. Erdogan said "343 terrorists have been neutralised" during the operation so far. It was not possible to independently verify the toll. Three Turkish soldiers have been killed since the start of the offensive, while the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights has said 58 Ankara-backed Syrian rebels and 53 US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces and YPG fighters had been killed. The SDF is an umbrella grouping composed mainly of YPG fighters. The Observatory has said 38 civilians have been killed mainly as a result of Turkish shelling but Ankara strongly rejects such claims, saying it is doing everything possible to avoid civilian casualties. Othman Al-Sheikh Issa, co-chair of Afrin´s executive council, on Thursday called on Syria to "say that it will not allow Turkish planes to fly in Syrian airspace". Syrian Kurdish groups, long marginalised in Syria, took advantage of the withdrawal of regime forces from the north at the beginning of the conflict to assert their autonomy from 2012. Kurdish fighters and government troops have largely stayed away from each other since then, albeit short-lived clashes in the cities of Hasakeh and Qamishli. The broadly neutral stance has sparked accusations by Syria´s mainstream opposition that Kurdish forces are still cooperating with the regime.
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