Category Archives: World

Former US Prez Ronald Reagan shooter to secure unconditional release

REgan-2WASHINGTON:   John Hinckley, the man who tried to assassinate US president Ronald Reagan 40 years ago, looks set to be granted his unconditional release from next June. Lawyers for John Hinckley Jr., the man who tried to assassinate President Ronald Reagan, are scheduled to argue in court Monday that the 66-year-old should be freed from restrictions placed on him after he moved out of a Washington hospital in 2016.

Since Hinckley’s move to Williamsburg, Virginia, a federal judge has made him live under various conditions that dictate much of his life. For instance, doctors and therapists must oversee his psychiatric medication and decide how often he attends individual and group therapy sessions.

Hinckley has monthly appointments — now virtual — with Washington’s Department of Behavioral Health, which files progress notes with a federal court. And he must give three days’ notice if he wants to travel more than 75 miles (120 kilometers) from home. Hinckley also has to turn over passwords for computers, phones and online accounts such as email. He can’t have a gun. And he can’t contact Reagan’s children, other victims or their families or actress Jodie Foster —- with whom he was obsessed with at the time of the 1981 shooting.

Hinckley’s attorney, Barry Levine, has said that Hinckley should get what’s called “unconditional release” because he no longer poses a threat. “He has adhered to every requirement of law,” Levine told The Associated Press last month. “And based on the views of a variety of mental health professionals … he no longer suffers from a mental disease, and he hasn’t suffered from a mental disease for decades.”
A status conference is scheduled for Monday before U.S. District Judge Paul L. Friedman in Washington. In a May court filing, the U.S. government had said it opposed ending the restrictions. It also retained an expert to examine Hinckley and determine “whether or not he would pose a danger to himself or others if unconditionally released.”
Meanwhile, The Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute issued a statement opposing the move, saying it was “saddened to hear of the decision.””Contrary to the judge’s decision, we believe John Hinckley is still a threat to others and we strongly oppose his release,” it said. “Our hope is that the Justice Department will file a motion with the court leading to a reversal of this decision.”Reagan, his press secretary James Brady, a police officer and a Secret Service agent were wounded when Hinckley opened fire outside the Hilton Hotel in Washington.
The conditions included remaining within 50 miles (80 kilometers) of his mother’s home in Williamsburg, Virginia, and not traveling to any area where a current or former president, vice president or member of Congress is known to be. According to court documents, a federal judge on Monday approved an agreement between the Justice Department and Hinckley’s lawyers that would lift the conditions in June 2022.
Findings from such an examination have not been filed in court. But a 2020 “violence risk assessment” conducted on behalf of Washington’s Department of Behavioral Health said Hinckley would not pose a danger. Timothy McCarthy, a Secret Service agent who was shot during the assassination attempt, told the AP that he doesn’t “have a lot of good Christian thoughts” about Hinckley.

“But in any case, I hope they’re right,” McCarthy, 72, said of mental health professionals and the court. “Because the actions of this man could have changed the course of history.” Hinckley was 25 when he shot and wounded the 40th U.S. president outside a Washington hotel. The shooting paralyzed Reagan press secretary James Brady, who died in 2014. It also injured McCarthy and Washington police officer Thomas Delahanty.
Hinckley was suffering from acute psychosis. When jurors found him not guilty by reason of insanity, they said he needed treatment and not a lifetime in confinement. He was ordered to live at St. Elizabeths Hospital in Washington.
In the 2000s, Hinckley began making visits to his parents’ home in a gated Williamsburg community. A 2016 court order granted him permission to live with his mom full-time, albeit under various restrictions, after experts said his mental illness had been in remission for decades.

Stephen J. Morse, a University of Pennsylvania professor of law and psychiatry, said Hinckley’s acquittal by reason of insanity means “he is not to blame for those terrible things that happened and he cannot be punished.” Most people in Hinckley’s situation are released from a psychiatric hospital if they’re no longer considered mentally ill or dangerous, he said. And if they follow court-ordered rules, unconditional release virtually always follows after a period of time.
In recent years, Hinckley has sold items from a booth at an antique mall that he’s found at estate sales, flea markets and consignment shops. He’s shared his music on YouTube and had been in a relationship with a woman he met in group therapy. Friedman, the federal judge, has also loosened Hinckley’s restrictions from about 30 conditions in 2018 to 17 conditions last year. For instance, Hinckley was granted the right to publicly display his artwork and allowed to move out of his mother’s house. But he still can’t travel to places where he knows there will be someone who is protected by the Secret Service.
Hinckley’s mother died in July. By then he had already moved out, according to his attorney. Levine did not say where Hinckley now lives, but he would have been required to inform his treatment team of where he was moving. Hinckley’s 2020 risk assessment said he planned to stay in the Williamsburg area after his mother’s death and that his brother Scott expressed interest in living with him.

Last year’s risk assessment recommended that he be considered for unconditional release. The report said there’s no indication he’s sought access to weapons. And it said he’s unlikely to reach out to people he’s been barred from contacting. He hasn’t tried to contact Foster, the actress, since the 1980s, the report said. Hinckley is quoted as saying that he’d continue to take his psychiatric medication and attend group therapy. “Not a whole lot would change,” Hinckley said.
(With Inputs from Media Reports).





Pakistan Is Completely Isolated Ahead Of UNGA Summit 2021

imran-khan_1628134312NEW DELHI : Ahead of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s 3-day visit to the United States on September 22 for the Quad Leaders’ Summit and the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
He will be hosted at the White House by US President Joe Biden for their first in-person bilateral meeting ahead of the sessions.
Pakistan found itself isolated on the global stage this week after an attempt to generate support for the Taliban – which seized power in Afghanistan last month – and allow the group a seat at Saturday’s meeting of Foreign Ministers from SAARC nations was rejected.

Also rejected was Pakistan’s demand Nepal – the SAARC chair – provide written assurances Ghulam Isaczai, who represents Afghanistan’s ousted government at the United Nations, would not be allowed to attend.
India gears up to attend the highly-anticipated events at the global forum, Pakistan, which has been snubbed by the world over its collusion with the Taliban, will send its address virtually. As per sources, PM Imran Khan is expected to harp over the ‘Kashmir issue’ once again, and ironically also call for the need for ‘peace’ in Afghanistan. This, even as the country gets cornered internationally for being a ‘safe haven’ for terrorists of the Taliban and Haqqani network.
Severe pressure mounted on Pakistan after the US asserted that it would have to ‘reassess’ ties with the country based on its open involvement in the fall of Panjshir Valley. In his first major address after the Afghanistan takeover, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken had openly highlighted Pakistan’s involvement in harbouring members of the Taliban and militants.
Interestingly, the biggest snub by the US was disclosed by PM Imran Khan himself. In a recent interview with CNN, he expressed his disappointment saying that Biden had not spoken to him ever since he took over the Oval Office in January. Joe Biden is a “busy man,” he had said succinctly. The leader also attempted to extend an olive branch saying that Biden’s withdrawal was the “most sensible thing” that could have been done.

Pressure against Pakistan has not only limited to the US. The European Parliament last week passed a resolution and blamed Pakistan for assisting the Taliban in fighting the Ahmad Massoud-led National Resistance Front of Afghanistan (NRF) in the Panjshir Valley. Moreover, the European Council MEPs tabled a motion for a resolution inviting Ahmad Massoud to address the European Parliament.

Sources said SAARC members could not reach a consensus on Pakistan’s request or give the Taliban guarantees it could attend the meet scheduled to take place on the sidelines of the ongoing United Nations General Assembly.As a result, the meeting of Foreign Ministers from eight South Asian countries was cancelled. The SAARC nations are Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Afghanistan.

According to a senior government functionary Pakistan insisted the Taliban attend the meeting, but no other country had agreed to this demand. The Taliban is not recognised by India as the representative of the Afghan people. The groups is also not recognised by other countries, with senior members of its new cabinet still blacklisted by the United Nations and on ‘wanted’ lists by American agencies. Russia and China also do not, as yet, recognise the Taliban.
The new Taliban regime has “no authority”, the Indian government functionary told  TV Channel NDTV and stressed the group could not, therefore, stake claim to speak on global platforms. Pakistan’s “mid-wife” role in support of the Taliban had left it exposed, the functionary declared. The Taliban has also written to the UN Secretary-General asking for permission to address the 76th General Assembly in New York this week and have nominated Doha-based spokesperson Suhail Shaheen as Afghanistan’s UN ambassador.
News agency Reuters reports the move sets up a showdown with Ghulam Isaczai, and it is doubtful permission will be given. UN acceptance of the Taliban will be an important step in the group’s bid for international recognition, which could help unlock funds needed by the cash strapped Afghan economy.
(With inputs from Media Reports)


US Clears Pfizer Covid Vaccine to prevent the disease

FDA-USWASHINGTON: The U.S. Food and Drug Administration(FDA) on Friday night authorized the first vaccine to prevent the disease.The vaccine, developed by Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech, appears to be extremely safe and highly effective.

US government advisory panel endorsed widespread use of Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine Thursday, putting the country just one step away from launching an epic vaccination campaign against the outbreak that has killed close to 300,000 Americans.
The US is now the sixth country to approve the two-dose regimen, after Britain, Bahrain, Canada, Saudi Arabia and Mexico.

President Donald Trump immediately released a video on Twitter, where he hailed the news as a “medical miracle” and said the first immunizations would take place “in less than 24 hours.”It comes as infections across America soar as never before, with the grim milestone of 300,000 confirmed deaths fast approaching.

It was developed faster than any previously approved vaccine in the United States – not by compromising safety or accepting a mediocre vaccine as some feared – but by spending billions of taxpayer dollars and taking advantage of recent scientific advances.

Data from Pfizer’s trial of 44,000 people, half of whom received the active vaccine and half a placebo, found no major safety concerns. The vaccine was 95% effective across the board, with various groups predisposed to a severe case of COVID-19 – such as people over 70, those with certain medical conditions including diabetes and lung disease, and people who are Black and/or Hispanic – seeing nearly equal protection.
The vaccine could start to be delivered into people’s arms as soon as Monday, if not earlier. About 2.9 million front line health care workers and nursing home residents are expected to receive the vaccine in the first few days.
More vaccine will be rolled out in the weeks and months to come, with both of two front runners expected to deliver a combined 300 million doses of their vaccines by the middle of next year, enough to vaccinate nearly half the population of the U.S.
“Today is truly a historic event for humanity as a whole,” said Moncef Slaoui, an immunologist and retired pharmaceutical executive who helped lead the government’s vaccine development effort.
“Eleven months almost to the day after a pandemic virus sequence was identified and devastated lives and livelihoods across the globe, science, industry and government working together were able to discover develop and manufacture in a record time the first of a series of potent vaccines that undoubtedly will be pivotal to ridding us of this plague.”
Moncef Slaoui, co-head of Operation Warp Speed “Today is truly a historic event for humanity as a whole. … No better demonstration could be made that we as humans hold our future in our hands.” The FDA’s emergency use authorization for the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine BNT162b2 in people ages 16 and up comes as the nation’s COVID-19 death toll tops the number of Americans who died on the battlefield in World War II.
President Donald Trump, who announced the decision in a 3-minute video on Twitter, said he was extremely proud of his administration’s accomplishment in collaboration with scientists and the private sector.
“The governors decide where the vaccines go and stay and who gets them first. We want our senior citizens, healthcare workers and first respondents to be the first in line,” Trump said.
“It is nothing short of a medical miracle to have FDA authorization of a vaccine for COVID-19 just over 11 months since the virus was made known to the world,” said Alex Azar, head of the department of Health and Human Services in an emailed statement.

Dr. Stephen Hahn, the FDA commissioner, called the authorization “a significant milestone in battling this devastating pandemic that has affected so many families in the United States and around the world.
“Next week, a second candidate COVID-19 vaccine, developed by the Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Moderna, will go through the same review process and is expected to be swiftly cleared for use.

The FDA will stop short of fully approving either vaccine. The agency has received all the standard short-term safety and effectiveness data, but the vaccines have not been tested for the two years typical of an approved vaccine so it is not yet clear how long protection will last.
“I think it’s remarkable,” said Dr. Paul Offit, a pediatric infectious disease expert and director of the Vaccine Education Center at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “I don’t think you would have found a scientist on this planet who would have predicted this 11 months ago,” he said.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases agreed that the speed of vaccine development was almost unbelievable.
“Now it’s our challenge to convince people that it wasn’t rushed in a reckless way, that it was an expression of the extraordinary scientific advances made with vaccine platform technology and the investment that was made,” Fauci added.
Both China and Russia have been vaccinating their residents for several months with home-grown vaccines but they have not been fully vetted. Both countries began distribution before completing large-scale trials designed to confirm safety and determine effectiveness.
Younger, healthier people in low-risk professions will likely get access to vaccination in April or May, depending on demand and how many vaccines receive FDA authorization.
Around the world more than 1.58 million lives have been lost to Covid-19 since it emerged in China a year ago, according to an AFP tally from official sources.
Brazil on Friday crossed 180,000 deaths, despite President Jair Bolsonaro’s insistence the crisis was at the “tail end.”
(With Media Reports)

‘India Stands With France In Fight Against Terrorism’: PM Modi Reacts To Nice Attack

France AttackNEW DELHI : Prime Minister Narendra Modi reacted on the horrific knife attack in a French church on Thursday expressing his condolences to the families of the victims and the citizens of France. Strongly condemning the heinous attack, PM Modi declared that India stood by France in the fight against terrorism.

PM Modi’s support to France comes hours after three people lost their lives in a brutal knife attack inside a church in the Southern French city of Nice.
In yet another shocking and brutal attack in France, a knife-wielding man shouting “Allahu Akbar” beheaded a woman and killed two other people in a suspected terrorist attack at a church in Nice on Thursday, police and officials said.
PM Modi tweeted, “I strongly condemn the recent terrorist attacks in France, including today’s heinous attack in Nice inside a church. Our deepest and heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and the people of France. India stands with France in the fight against terrorism.”
The attack comes while France is still reeling from the beheading earlier in October of French middle school teacher Samuel Paty by a man of Chechen origin in a suburb of Paris after he had shown caricatures of Prophet Mohammad. The 47-year-old Paty was beheaded by an 18-year-old Chechen Muslim.
The attacker had said he wanted to punish Paty for showing pupils cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad in a civics lesson. It was not immediately clear if Thursday`s attack was connected to the cartoons, which Muslims consider to be blasphemous.

Since Paty`s killing, French officials – backed by many ordinary citizens – have re-asserted the right to display the cartoons, and the images have been widely displayed at marches in solidarity with the killed teacher.
That has prompted an outpouring of anger in parts of the Muslim world, with some governments accusing French leader Emmanuel Macron of pursuing an anti-Islam agenda. The French media has reported that one of the three victims was brutally beheaded by the attacker, who has now been arrested. Apart from the three deceased, several others have been injured in the incident.
Christian Estrosi, the Mayor of Nice has come forward to reveal that the attacker, shouted “Allahu Akbar” while he was being restrained by the French Police. Taking to Twitter, Estrosi termed the incident as “a terrorist attack”, calling for an end to “fascism” in the country.
The attack comes days after a French teacher was brutally decapitated in a similar manner by a man who allegedly shouted “Allahu Akbar”, outraged after the teacher showed cartoons of Prophet Muhammad in class. French President Emmanuel Macron said that the teacher, Samuel Paty, “was killed because Islamists want their future” strongly declaring that France would “not give up its cartoons”.
Even before PM Modi’s expression of support, the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) had condemned the personal attacks launched at Macron, owing to his recent tough recent on terrorism calling them a “violation of the most basic standards of international discourse”.
The MEA  has also condemned the brutal killing of the French teacher, saying that there is ‘no justification’ for terrorism for any reason or under any circumstance.
The row between France and Islamic nations has escalated over Macron’s strong clampdown on terrorism in the nation. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had earlier alleged that Macron “needed treatment” for his mental condition over his crackdown on terrorism, which he said was a crackdown on Islam and Muslims.

Attacker kept saying ‘Allahu Akbar’: Nice`s mayor, Christian Estrosi, who described the attack as terrorism, said on Twitter it had happened in or near the city`s Notre Dame church and that police had detained the attacker.
Estrosi said the attacker had shouted the phrase “Allahu Akbar”, or God is greatest. One of the people killed inside the church was believed to be the churchwarden, Estrosi said. “The attacker kept shouting “Allahu Akbar” even after he had been detained, Estrosi said.
“The suspected knife attacker was shot by police while being detained, he is on his way to the hospital, he is alive,” Estrosi told reporters.
Estrosi said a woman had tried to escape from inside the church and had fled into a bar opposite the building. The French anti-terrorism prosecutor`s department said it had been asked to investigate the attack.
Reuters journalists at the scene said police armed with automatic weapons had put up a security cordon around the church, which is on Nice`s Jean Medecin Avenue, the city`s main shopping thoroughfare. Ambulances and fire service vehicles were also at the scene.
The Ministry of External Affairs in a statement on October 28 had said, “We strongly deplore the personal attacks in unacceptable language on President Emmanuel Macron in violation of the most basic standards of international discourse.”
The MEA “condemned” the “brutal terrorist attack” that took the life of a French teacher in a “gruesome manner that has shocked the world” and offered”condolences to his family and the people of France”.
“We also condemn the brutal terrorist attack that took the life of a French teacher in a gruesome manner that has shocked the world. We offer our condolences to his family and the people of France.

There is no justification for terrorism for any reason or under any circumstance,” the statement added. The French envoy to India, Emmanuel Lenain, thanked MEA for the support tweeting, “France and India can always count on each other in the fight against terrorism”.
(with inputs from Reuters).

Proxy Outfits To Cost Pak At Watchdog Meet

imran-khan-NEW DELHI : As the global terror financing watchdog meets virtually for the second day on Thursday, India hopes that the international body would be able to exert pressure on Pakistan which, it says, has clearly failed to crack down on terror financing and money laundering.
From a 27-point action list handed over by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), India believes that Pakistan has failed at least six conditions including the lack of action against charitable organisations or NPOs (non-profit organisations) connected to terror groups banned by the UN Security Council, and delays in the prosecution of banned individuals and entities like Lashkar-e-Taiba chief Hafiz Saeed and operations chief Zaki Ur Rehman Lakhvi, as well as Jaish-e- Mohammad chief Masood Azhar.
“Even though Hafiz Saeed was sentenced in February this year to 11 years in prison in a terror-financing case, he is not in jail and others also remain ‘untraceable’ as far as Pakistan is concerned. Queries have been raised on each of the missing terrorists, but no efforts have been made to trace them by Pakistan,” a senior official in the Home Ministry told.
The FATF had placed Pakistan on the grey list in June 2018 and asked Islamabad to implement a plan of action to curb money laundering and terror financing by the end of 2019, but the deadline was extended later on due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The country will succeed in exiting the FATF’s grey list by June next year,” The Express Tribune reported, quoting diplomatic sources. With 6 key tasks pending on anti-terror to-do list, Pak likely to remain in FATF grey list next week.
The report said Pakistan is unlikely to exit the FATF grey list, but the country has managed to avert being blacklisted. It said that the country had completed its legal formalities and informed the watchdog that it had managed to comply with 21 of the points in the action plan.
The International Cooperation Review Group of the FATF has acknowledged that Pakistan had complied with 21 points of the action plan, the report said. Seeking to wriggle out of the FATF’s grey list, debt-ridden Pakistan in August imposed financial sanctions on 88 banned terror groups and their leaders, including 26/11 Mumbai attack mastermind and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar and underworld don Dawood Ibrahim.
Why FATF kept Pakistan on Enhanced Follow-up In February, the FATF gave Pakistan, which missed 13 targets, a four-month grace period to complete its 27-point action plan against money laundering and terror financing committed with the international community.
In its third plenary held virtually in June, the FATF decided to keep Pakistan in the grey list as Islamabad failed to check flow of money to terror groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM).
With Pakistan’s continuation in the ‘grey list’, it is increasingly becoming difficult for the country to get financial aid from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the European Union, thus further enhancing problems for the nation which is in a precarious financial situation.
In July, Pakistan’s Senate unanimously approved two bills related to the tough conditions set by the FATF. In August, Parliament’s lower house passed four FATF-related bills as part of the efforts by Pakistan to move from the FATF’s grey list to the white list.

FATF all set to decide on Pakistan’s grey list status in virtual meeting In August, Prime Minister Imran Khan had warned that if blacklisted at the FATF, Pakistan’s entire economy will be destroyed due to inflation and a massive fall in Pakistani Rupee.

The FATF is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system. It currently has 39 members including two regional organisations – the European Commission and Gulf Cooperation Council. India is a member of the FATF consultations and its Asia Pacific Group.
(With Inputs from Agency Reports)




India’s relationship with China ‘profoundly disturbed’: Jaishankar

s-jaishankar-pti-1585761172NEW DELHI : Foreign Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Saturday called for peace and tranquility in border areas along the LAC and said if these are “deeply disturbed”  and this is obviously impacting the overall relationship between India and China.
“There must be peace and tranquillity along the Line of Actual Control in the border areas… If these are deeply disturbed then obviously there be will an impact on the relationship and that is what we are seeing,” said Jaishankar during an event.
India and China have been locked in a bitter standoff along the LAC since April-May over the transgressions by the Chinese Army in multiple areas in eastern Ladakh.
The Sino-India boundary question is a very “complicated” and difficult issue, he said at a webinar on his book “The India Way”, giving a historical perspective to development of the relationship between the two neighboring countries in the last three decades.

Earlier this week, Jaishankar had refused to divulge the progress of talks being held at the military and diplomatic levels between India and China to de-escalate the ongoing border standoff in Ladakh.

“What is going on is something confidential between us and the Chinese. (The) first rule of my business is do not predict what is still going on,” he had said, adding “it is work in progress”. The tension between the two countries escalated following the June 15-16 Galwan Valley clash in which 20 Indian Army soldiers including a Colonel were killed.
Last month, Jaishankar and his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi had agreed upon the five-point consensus to defuse the border tensions that included measures like quick disengagement of troops, avoiding action that could escalate tensions, adherence to all agreements restore “peace and tranquillity” along the LAC.

In a recent war of words between the two sides, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson had, a few weeks back, insisted that China abides by the LAC as proposed by then Premier Zhou Enlai to Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru in a letter dated November 7, 1959 and does not recognise “illegally established union territory of Ladakh”.

Reacting sharply to the statement, India had categorically rejected China’s “so-called unilaterally defined” LAC of 1959, and asked the neighbouring country to refrain from advancing an “untenable and unilateral interpretation” of the de-facto border.
Jaishankar made the comments against the backdrop of the over five-month-long border stand-off between India and China in eastern Ladakh where each side has deployed over 50,000 troops.

The Foreign Affairs minister said the relationship between India and China, which was “very difficult”, was normalised since late 1980s through a plethora of initiatives like trade, travel, tourism, and societal activities on the premise of peace and tranquillity along the border.
“It is not our position that we should solve the boundary question. We understand that it is a very complicated and difficult issue. There have been many negotiations at different levels… That is a very high bar for a relationship,” Jaishankar said.
(With Inputs from media Reports).





Climate Activist Greta Thunberg Urges US To Pick Joe Biden

greataSTOCKHOLM: Swedish environmental campaigner Greta Thunberg on Saturday asked US voters to choose Joe Biden, saying the outcome of the US presidential election was crucial for fighting climate change.The 17-year-old founder of the “Fridays for Future” climate protests said on Twitter: “I never engage in party politics. But the upcoming US elections is above and beyond all that.

“From a climate perspective it’s very far from enough and many of you of course supported other candidates,” Thunberg acknowledged. “But, I mean…you know…damn! Just get organized and get everyone to vote #Biden,” she added.
Biden is challenging US President Donald Trump, who dismisses climate change warnings and who has been dismissive of Thunberg.”Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend! Chill Greta, Chill!” Trump once tweeted.
“She seems like a very happy young girl looking forward to a bright and wonderful future,” Trump tweeted again after Thunberg addressed the United Nations with a furious challenge contained in the simple question “How dare you?”Biden on the other hand has reached out to Thunberg and hailed her commitment to the fight against climate change.
Last month, the respected magazine Scientific American also urged readers to vote for Biden on November 3, the first time in almost 200 years that it has taken a political stance.”Think about voting to protect science instead of destroying it,” editors said in comments relayed by Thunberg along with her endorsement.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)


Prez Trump condition worrying with the next 48 hours

trump4-1WASHINGTON: Donald Trump is doing “very well” in his hospital treatment for Covid-19, his medics said Saturday, but a source with knowledge of the US president’s condition said his vital signs had been worrying, with the next 48 hours critical.
US President Donald Trump, who was hospitalised after testing positive for coronavirus, on Saturday clarified about his health saying that he is feeling very well after reports quoting sources claimed his condition being ‘very concerning’ over the last 24 hours.
“Doctors, Nurses and ALL at the GREAT Walter Reed Medical Center, and others from likewise incredible institutions who have joined them, are AMAZING!!! Tremendous progress has been made over the last 6 months in fighting this PLAGUE. With their help, I am feeling well! (sic),” President Trump tweeted.
The clarification came after a source familiar with President Trump’s health said his condition has been “very concerning” over the last 24 hours contradicting US President’s medical team who informed that the US President is doing really well in the hospital and he didn’t have a fever for the last 24 hours.

Trump is up and walking, has been fever free for 24 hours and his cough, nasal congestion and fatigue are improving, physician Sean Conley said during the first medical update on his status since the president was admitted to Walter Reed military medical center Friday.
Members of Trump’s medical team at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center said the president is fever-free and that they are “extremely happy” with the progress he has made. But the team refused to answer key questions about when the president was first diagnosed and first symptomatic, and whether he had received supplemental oxygen.

“We have monitored his cardiac function, his kidney function, liver function. All of those are normal,” another member of the medical team, Sean Dooley said. But a source familiar with the president’s health gave a much more worrying assessment.

“The president’s vitals over the last 24 hours were very concerning and the next 48 hours will be critical in terms of his care,” the source said. “We’re still not on a clear path to a full recovery.”The White House has not commented on the assessment.
Conley was evasive when asked whether Trump had received supplementary oxygen at any point since falling ill, only confirming that he hadn’t received any at the hospital or on Thursday — the day he had his test.
This leaves the possibility that he was on oxygen at the White House on Friday before being admitted to Walter Reed, and there were reports in US media, unconfirmed by AFP, that this was the case.
Soon after Trump arrived at hospital, Conley said in a memo that the president was starting a course of therapeutic drug remdesivir and had received an eight-gram dose of an experimental polyclonal antibody cocktail.
Conley would not put a “hard date” on Trump’s discharge from hospital or disclose the president’s temperature. The latest is campaign advisor Chris Christie, who was among several aides that helped Trump prepare for the first presidential debate that have since announced positive tests.
Three senators as well as Trump’s campaign manager and other senior aides are among a growing list from the president’s orbit to have contracted the virus, with at least seven confirmed cases tied to an event in the White House Rose Garden last weekend.
With Trump, who is trailing in the polls, knocked off the campaign trail for treatment Walter Reed army medical center outside Washington — and possibly for many days after — his campaign plans were in disarray ahead of a potentially messy election on November 3.
Among the unknowns were the prospects for two remaining presidential debates and whether the president will have to yield power temporarily to Vice President Mike Pence if his condition worsens.
(With Inputs from Media reports).




Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghe is scheduled to meet Rajnath Singh in Moscow tonight

rajnath-singhNEW DELHI : Amid heightened tensions along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh, Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghe is scheduled to meet Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in the Russian capital of Moscow on Friday night, according to top sources. The meeting is scheduled at 9.30 pm (IST) on Friday.
Chinese Defence Minister Wei Fenghi is believed to have asked for the meeting on the sidelines of a Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet in the Russian capital. The Chinese side reached out to the Indian mission for the meeting, said sources.
In the Russian capital of Moscow on Friday night, according to top sources. The meeting is scheduled at 9.30 pm (IST) on Friday. The talks will be held on the sidelines of a ministerial meet of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO).

It will be the first high-level meeting between the two sides after the border row escalated in eastern Ladakh in early May. Earlier, Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had held telephonic talks with his Chinese counterpart Wang Yi on the row.
Singh and Wei are in Moscow to attend a meeting of the SCO defence ministers on Friday. India, Pakistan, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan are part of the SCO grouping.
Indian and Chinese troops are engaged in a tense border row in eastern Ladakh since May. In June, 20 soldiers laid down their lives for India in a clash with Chinese troops at Galwan valley. Over 40 Chinese soldiers were killed or injured.

Tension flared up again after Chinese troops tried to occupy territory in the south bank of Pangong Lake last Saturday and again on Monday. Indian forces were prepared and prevented these attempts to “unilaterally alter the status quo” at the Line of Actual Control (LAC), the government said.

India has now taken control of a number of strategic heights in the region and has also rushed in additional troops and weapons following the Chinese attempts. The attempts were made even as the two nations were engaged in diplomatic and military talks to resolve the border row.
India had received a request from China for a meet with Rajnath Singh when he was in Moscow for victory day celebrations earlier this year. At that time no meeting had happened.
On August 31, the Indian Army had said the Chinese military carried out “provocative military movements” to “unilaterally” change the status quo on the southern bank of Pangong lake in eastern Ladakh on the intervening night of August 29 and 30 but the attempt was thwarted by the Indian troops.

Earlier, in an address at a meeting of the SCO, Singh asserted that a climate of trust, non-aggression, sensitivity towards each other and peaceful resolution of differences are among key aspects to ensuring regional peace and stability. Singh also referred to the Second World War, adding that its memories teach the globe the “folies of aggression” of one state upon another which brings “destruction” to all.

His comments came in the midst of a fierce border row between India and China, both members of the SCO, an eight-nation regional grouping which primarily focuses on issues relating to security and defence. Singh made the comments in the presence of Chinese Defence Minister Gen. Wei Fenghe.

The Defence Minister is on an official visit to Moscow from September 3-5 at the invitation of Defence Minister of Russian Federation General Sergei Shoigu.
(With Agency Inputs ).

China tried to occupy areas on Pangong Lake’s southern bank, no physical clashes took place: sources

Galwan 31NEW DELHI : Amid the ongoing border tension with India along the Line of Actual Control (LAC), China had tried to occupy areas on the southern bank of the Pangong Lake in eastern Ladakh but no physical clashes took place, asserted the government sources on Monday. In a major provocative move, the Chinese Army had tried to encroach and unilaterally change the status quo on the southern bank of the lake.

The movement of the Chinese troops started around midnight on August 29 and they had planned to occupy areas on the southern bank by the morning, said the sources. It added that India was able to deter the move of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA).
The Chinese were in sufficient strength as more than 100 Chinese forces tried to occupy the area. The Indian side was on a higher altitude and was able to deter the occupation, added the sources.
However, the government sources added that the future possibility of Chinese trying to occupy can’t be ruled out. It asserted that not an inch of India’s territory will be ceded to the Chinese Army.
Sources also added that the talks between India and China, in the aftermath of Chinese provocative military movement, got over at 4.30 pm (IST). The talks had started at 11 am, added the sources.
At least 500 Chinese soldiers gathered in Thakung area of Pangong with tanks. However, the Indian Army was already ready and China had to kneel before the might of the Indian soldiers. 500 Chinese soldiers were forced to retreat with their tanks. The attempt was thwarted by the Indian troops, the Army said on Monday. This comes more than two and a half months after the Galwan Valley clashes.
Intelligence agencies believe that China does not intend to retreat from Pangong area. Therefore, it is trying to strengthen his military preparedness while pretending to have talks. In view of this, the Indian Army and Air Force have also stepped up their preparations. But it seems that not by dialogue, China will improve by war and it is important to teach China a bigger lesson than Galwan.
The Army spokesperson said troops from China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) violated the previous consensus arrived at during military and diplomatic engagements on the ongoing standoff in eastern Ladakh and carried out provocative military movements to change the status quo on the night of August 29-30.
“On the night of 29/30 August 2020, PLA troops violated the previous consensus arrived at during military and diplomatic engagements during the ongoing standoff in Eastern Ladakh and carried out provocative military movements to change the status quo,” Col Anand said in a statement.
“Indian troops pre-empted this PLA activity on the Southern Bank of Pangong Tso Lake, undertook measures to strengthen our positions and thwart Chinese intentions to unilaterally change facts on the ground,” the Army spokesperson said. He said the Indian Army is committed to maintaining peace and tranquillity through dialogue but is also equally determined to protect India’s territorial integrity.
The Chinese Army had infiltrated the western bank of Pangang Lake in May and captured the area up to Finger 4. From here goes the way of Chushul which is very important for the Indian Army. Chushul leads the way to villages like Demchauk, Koil, Hanley, where the Chinese army often tries to infiltrate. Chushul has an airstrip of the Indian Air Force and is an important headquarters of the Army.
The importance of the eastern shore is also more because there are many wide routes to get to Tibet from where tanks or armoured vehicles can also be taken.
In Galwan, the brave Indian soldiers thwarted the plot of China to which the entire world was a witness yet China is not ready to improve. After the bitter defeat in Galwan, now China tried to infiltrate into the Pangong Lake area, but Indian troops are wary of every move of China.
Therefore, China’s attempt to infiltrate into Pangong failed. On the one hand, the trickster is holding a flag meeting of brigade commander level in Chushul on China border dispute.

It is the first major incident involving the troops of the two countries after the Galwan Valley clashes on June 15 in which 20 Indian Army personnel were killed. China also suffered casualties but it is yet to make the details public but according to an American intelligence report it was 35.

India and China have held several rounds of military and diplomatic talks in the last two-and-half months but no significant headway has been made for a resolution to the border row in eastern Ladakh.
The two sides began a process of disengagement on July 6, a day after a telephonic conversation between National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on ways to bring down tensions in eastern Ladakh. However, the process has not moved forward since mid-July.
The PLA has pulled back from Galwan Valley and certain other friction points but the withdrawal of troops has not moved forward in Pangong Tso, Depsang and a couple of other areas.

At the five rounds of Corps commander-level talks, the Indian side has been insisting on complete disengagement of Chinese troops at the earliest, and immediate restoration of status quo ante in all areas of eastern Ladakh prior to April.

The face-off began on May 5 following violent clashes between the two armies in the Pangong lake area. The incident in Pangong Tso was followed by a similar incident in North Sikkim on May 9.
The India-China border dispute covers the 3,488-km-long LAC. It is to be noted that the government has given the armed forces ‘full freedom’ to give a ‘befitting’ response to any Chinese misadventure along the LAC.
The Army sent thousands of additional troops to forward locations along the border following the deadly clashes. The IAF has also moved air defence systems as well as a sizeable number of its frontline combat jets and attack helicopters to several key airbases.