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World News >> U.K.

Parkland students slam Trump for tying shooting to Russia probe: 'He has already made it about himself'

Parkland students slam Trump for tying shooting to Russia probe: 'He has already made it about himself'Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students Aly Sheehy and Giuliana Matamoros were astounded that Donald Trump would use their tragedy to push back against U.S. special counsel Robert Mueller's probe into possible collusion between Moscow and his 2016 campaign.



02/18/2018 - 02:01 PM

 

Scott Pruitt Cancels Israel Trip Amid Backlash Over Travel Expenses

Scott Pruitt Cancels Israel Trip Amid Backlash Over Travel ExpensesEnvironmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt has scrapped plans for a business trip to Israel previously scheduled for this week, an agency official said.



02/19/2018 - 11:48 AM

 

Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif on Israel: ‘We Will Act if Necessary’

Iranian Foreign Minister Zarif on Israel: ‘We Will Act if Necessary’In an exclusive interview with NBC News, Iran’s foreign minister commented on its tenuous relationship with Israel as well as on the fate of the Iran nuclear deal.



02/18/2018 - 10:53 AM

 

Full Lankford: 'No issues with more extensive background checks'

Full Lankford: 'No issues with more extensive background checks'In an exclusive interview with Meet the Press, Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) says that he would like to see the background check system improved.



02/18/2018 - 01:48 AM

 

US postal worker found fatally shot in mail truck

US postal worker found fatally shot in mail truckDallas police say a U.S. Postal Service worker has been found shot to death inside a mail truck along a busy highway.



02/19/2018 - 02:17 PM

 

Woman Filmed Berating Flight Attendant on Plane Gets Suspended From Job

Woman Filmed Berating Flight Attendant on Plane Gets Suspended From JobSusan Peirez started shouting after being seated near a baby.



02/19/2018 - 02:56 PM

 

Farting Passenger Forces Plane To Make Emergency Landing

Farting Passenger Forces Plane To Make Emergency LandingA flight from Dubai to Amsterdam had to make an emergency landing in Vienna after a fight broke out because one of the passengers wouldn’t stop breaking wind.



02/19/2018 - 01:52 PM

 

All 65 passengers, crew feared dead in Iranian plane crash

All 65 passengers, crew feared dead in Iranian plane crashAll 65 passengers and crew were feared dead in a plane crash in central Iran on Sunday after the domestic flight came down in bad weather in a mountainous region. A spokesman for Iranian carrier Aseman Airlines had told state television everyone was killed, but the airline then issued a statement saying it could not reach the crash site and could not "accurately and definitely confirm" everyone died. The airline had also initially said 60 passengers and six crew were on board the twin-engined turboprop ATR 72 that was flying to the southwestern city of Yasuj.



02/18/2018 - 10:37 AM

 

Indonesia's Mt. Sinabung spews massive smoke-and-ash column

Indonesia's Mt. Sinabung spews massive smoke-and-ash columnAn Indonesian volcano erupted Monday, sending a massive column of ash and smoke some 5,000 metres (16,400 feet)into the air, leaving local villages coated in debris and officials scrambling to hand out face masks to residents. Mount Sinabung on Sumatra island, which has been rumbling since 2010 and saw a deadly eruption in 2016, spewed the thick plume after activity picked up recent days. "This was the biggest eruption for Sinabung this year," said volcanology agency chief Kasbani, who like many Indonesians goes by one name.



02/19/2018 - 03:30 AM

 

I Lost My Little Brother At Sandy Hook. Here's What's Different About The Florida Shooting.

I Lost My Little Brother At Sandy Hook. Here's What's Different About The Florida Shooting.Last week on Valentine’s Day, a 19-year-old gunman entered Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, where he had been expelled.



02/19/2018 - 12:11 PM

 

Bernie Sanders: 'Maybe [Obama] should have done more' on Russia

Bernie Sanders: 'Maybe [Obama] should have done more' on RussiaIn an exclusive interview with Meet the Press, Independent Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders says that President Obama was in a difficult position when it came to Russian meddling in the 2016 election.



02/18/2018 - 02:13 AM

 

Former Trump Aide Rick Gates Will Plead Guilty To Mueller Probe Charges: Report

Former Trump Aide Rick Gates Will Plead Guilty To Mueller Probe Charges: ReportRick Gates, a former campaign aide to President Donald Trump, will plead guilty to charges related to fraud and is willing to testify against his longtime business partner, Paul Manafort, The Los Angeles Times reported on Sunday.



02/18/2018 - 08:07 PM

 

Orrin Hatch Reportedly Apologizes To Rob Porter's Ex-Wives

Orrin Hatch Reportedly Apologizes To Rob Porter's Ex-WivesSen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) has reportedly apologized for defending his former chief of staff Rob Porter, who recently resigned from President Donald Trump’s administration following allegations that he abused his two ex-wives.



02/19/2018 - 06:48 AM

 

Court video shows kidnapped model revisiting scenes of crime

Court video shows kidnapped model revisiting scenes of crimeMILAN (AP) — Video of a British model retracing her movements from a city studio where she was allegedly grabbed to a farmhouse where she was held for six days was played Monday at the trial in Italy of a Polish man charged in her kidnapping for ransom.



02/19/2018 - 12:13 PM

 

Where is Joshua Thiede? Uber and Lyft Driver Dialed 911 Day He Disappeared, Family Says

Where is Joshua Thiede? Uber and Lyft Driver Dialed 911 Day He Disappeared, Family SaysJoshua Thiede was last seen driving for either Uber or Lyft on Wilshire Boulevard just north of the 110 Freeway in Los Angeles, Calif. last Monday.



02/19/2018 - 11:28 AM

 

Carnival probes security personnel's response to brawl in South Pacific cruise

Carnival probes security personnel's response to brawl in South Pacific cruiseBy Jonathan Barrett SYDNEY (Reuters) - Carnival Corp , the world's largest cruise operator, said on Monday it was investigating the response of its security personnel to a brawl that broke out on one of its South Pacific cruises that resulted in 23 passengers being removed. The American-British company said in a statement that it was investigating "all aspects including the security response" of the incident, which was captured on video and posted on social media. The 10-day cruise to the South Pacific returned to the Australian southern city of Melbourne on Saturday, a day after 23 people were removed in the New South Wales (NSW) town of Eden for what the company described as "disruptive and violent acts".



02/19/2018 - 01:18 AM

 

Slain Teacher Told His Fiancee What To Say If He Died In A School Shooting

Slain Teacher Told His Fiancee What To Say If He Died In A School ShootingA high school teacher shot to death while protecting students in last week’s school shooting in Parkland, Florida, once considered that he could die in such violence, and gave his fiancee instructions on what to say if it happened.



02/19/2018 - 01:58 PM

 

In photos: Take a tour of chef René Redzepi's Noma 2.0

In photos: Take a tour of chef René Redzepi's Noma 2.0



02/19/2018 - 08:47 AM

 

LeBron James Speaks Out on Laura Ingraham's 'Shut Up and Dribble' Comments

LeBron James Speaks Out on Laura Ingraham's 'Shut Up and Dribble' CommentsMSNBC's David Gura and panel discuss the LeBron James/Laura Ingraham feud.



02/18/2018 - 07:17 AM

 

Turkey warns against Syria regime support for Kurd militia

Turkey warns against Syria regime support for Kurd militiaTurkey's foreign minister on Monday warned against any intervention by Syrian pro-government forces to support Kurdish militias in northern Syria, saying it would not prevent Ankara from pressing on with its month-old offensive. Mevlut Cavusoglu was reacting to a report from Syrian state news agency SANA saying pro-government forces were expected in the Afrin region to counter the Turkish offensive against the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia. Turkey views the YPG as a terrorist offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), blacklisted by Ankara, the United States and the European Union.



02/19/2018 - 11:34 AM

 

Trump Joins Mar-a-Lago Disco Party After Visiting Survivors Of School Shooting

Trump Joins Mar-a-Lago Disco Party After Visiting Survivors Of School ShootingPresident Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump attended a party at Mar-a-Lago on Friday just hours after visiting first responders and wounded survivors of the Parkland, Florida, school shooting that killed 17 people.



02/17/2018 - 10:44 PM

 

Richard Branson Wants To Build A High-Speed Hyperloop In India

Richard Branson Wants To Build A High-Speed Hyperloop In IndiaBritish billionaire Richard Branson has announced plans to build a high-speed shuttle in India that could potentially revolutionize travel in the country.



02/19/2018 - 07:35 PM

 

Five killed in attack on church in Russia's Dagestan

Five killed in attack on church in Russia's DagestanA man in Russia's southern province of Dagestan shot into a crowd of people leaving a church on Sunday, killing five and injuring at least five others, Russian news agencies reported, citing the local health ministry. The attack occurred in the village of Kizlyar in the Muslim-majority republic of Dagestan, agencies said. The small republic in the Caucasus mountains borders Chechnya, where Moscow has led two wars against separatists and radical religious groups since the 1991 Soviet collapse and which has seen a large number of people join Islamic State. Russian news agencies said the attack occurred as churchgoers celebrated Maslenitsa, a Christian holiday marking the last day before Lent according to the eastern Orthodox calendar. The assailant was identified as a 22-year-old man local to the region, the TASS news agency said, citing the investigative committee. He was shot and killed by security services who were on duty nearby, TASS said, adding that a hunting rifle, bullets and a knife were discovered on his person. Initial reports suggested all five victims were women, TASS said, citing the local branch of the interior ministry. The injured include two members of local security services and two civilians, also women, the Interfax news agency said.  Islamic State claimed responsibility for a the shooting, according to the militant group's news agency Amaq, although it did not provide immediate evidence for the claim.



02/18/2018 - 02:04 PM

 

Feathers fly as chicken shortage shuts KFCs across Britain

Feathers fly as chicken shortage shuts KFCs across BritainLONDON (AP) — Fast-food fans were in a flutter Monday after most of the 900 KFC outlets in the U.K. and Ireland were forced to close because of a shortage of chicken.



02/19/2018 - 12:51 PM

 

Kuwait invites Philippine president to visit amid workers row

Kuwait invites Philippine president to visit amid workers rowKuwait has invited Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte to visit, state news agency KUNA said on Monday, as the countries seek to settle their differences over allegations of extreme abuse of migrant workers in the wealthy Gulf state. After the body of a Filipino was discovered in a freezer in a Kuwait apartment, Duterte arranged free flights for workers wishing to leave - an evacuation that Kuwait said was an unnecessary escalation of a diplomatic rift. The Philippines suspended sending workers to Kuwait in January after reports that abuse by employers had driven several to suicide.



02/19/2018 - 08:53 AM

 

Thirteen killed in Mexican quake zone helicopter crash

Thirteen killed in Mexican quake zone helicopter crashThirteen people were killed in southern Mexico when a minister's helicopter crash-landed on its way to the epicenter of a powerful earthquake that rattled the region, officials said Saturday. The 7.2 magnitude quake caused only material damage when it struck late Friday, but it triggered a tragedy in the town of Santiago Jamiltepec in Oaxaca state, where the chopper landed on its side, crushing a van. On board the UH-60 Black Hawk military helicopter were Interior Minister Alfonso Navarrete and Oaxaca state Governor Alejandro Murat, who were unharmed.



02/17/2018 - 10:21 PM

 

Woman falls out window to her death while violating protective order

Woman falls out window to her death while violating protective orderPolice say a woman is dead after falling five stories from the window of an apartment where she wasn't supposed to be.



02/19/2018 - 11:17 AM

 

Olympic Skier Ted Ligety’s Son 'Could Give 2 S***s That Daddy Sucked At Work'

Olympic Skier Ted Ligety’s Son 'Could Give 2 S***s That Daddy Sucked At Work'U.S. alpine skier Ted Ligety may have had a tough time on the slopes at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea, on Sunday.



02/18/2018 - 06:45 AM

 

Bill Gates says he and other rich people should pay 'significantly higher' taxes

Bill Gates says he and other rich people should pay 'significantly higher' taxesMicrosoft founder and philanthropist Bill Gates has said wealthy individuals such as himself should be made to pay substantially higher taxes. Mr Gates, who is worth over $90bn (£64bn), said despite the fact he has "paid more taxes...than anyone else" he should be required to fork out more by the government. Speaking to CNN in an interview on Sunday, he said: “I need to pay higher taxes.



02/19/2018 - 06:12 AM

 

US manufacturer recalls dog food after execution drug found in tins

US manufacturer recalls dog food after execution drug found in tinsA drug used to execute American prisoners and to put animals to sleep has been discovered in canned dog food in the US, triggering an emergency recall. The Food and Drug Administration said it found low levels of pentobarbital in tins of Gravy Train dog food produced by JM Smucker. The drug is most commonly used by vets as a sedative or anaesthetic and to euthanise pets. At high doses in humans it cause respiratory arrest and has been used to carry out executions often as the first step – inducing unconsciousness - in a three-drug protocol. It was one of the drugs used by Marilyn Monroe when she took her own life. The brand affected Credit: JM Smucker The recall followed an investigation by WJLA, a TV station in Washington, which found pentobarbital in almost two thirds of cans it tested. The FDA said: "Pets that eat pet food containing pentobarbital can experience drowsiness, dizziness, excitement, loss of balance, nausea, nystagmus (eyes moving back and forth in a jerky manner) and inability to stand. Consuming high levels of pentobarbital can cause coma and death.” It concluded that the small amounts detected posed little risk to dogs. "However, any detection of pentobarbital in pet food is a violation of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act—simply put, pentobarbital should not be in pet food," it said. The FDA said the low levels presented little risk Smucker said it had identified the problem at a single supplier, from a single, minor ingredient, used at one manufacturing facility. “We take this very seriously and are extremely disappointed that pentobarbital was introduced to our supply chain. We will continue to work closely with our suppliers and veterinarians to ensure the ingredients used in our products meet or exceed regulatory safety standards and our high-quality standards,” said Barry Dunaway, president of the companies pet foods division. “Above all, we are a company that loves pets and understand the responsibility we have in providing high quality food for the pets our consumers love.”



02/19/2018 - 07:22 PM

 

The Duchess Of Cambridge Faces Criticism For Not Wearing Black To The BAFTAs

The Duchess Of Cambridge Faces Criticism For Not Wearing Black To The BAFTAsStars at the British Academy Film Awards on Sunday night wore all-black in support of the Time’s Up initiative, much like they did at January’s Golden Globe awards.



02/19/2018 - 12:35 PM

 

Lebanon: Russia's New Outpost in the Middle East?

Lebanon: Russia's New Outpost in the Middle East?How would Israel or America respond?  Lebanon: Russia's New Outpost in the Middle East? After gaining naval and air bases in Syria, Russia may now be setting its sights on Lebanon. Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev has ordered Russia's Defense Ministry to seek a military cooperation agreement with Lebanon.



02/18/2018 - 09:01 PM

 

NYC rape case prompts calls to close police sex loophole

NYC rape case prompts calls to close police sex loopholeALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The 18-year-old woman was driving with two friends near Coney Island in September when the two plainclothes detectives pulled her over and found marijuana. The officers released the two male passengers, handcuffed the woman and told her she was under arrest, prosecutors say.



02/19/2018 - 10:30 AM

 

5 Buildings That Show the Power of Modernist Architecture

5 Buildings That Show the Power of Modernist Architecture



02/19/2018 - 09:00 AM

 

Relief turns to horror in Mexico helicopter crash

Relief turns to horror in Mexico helicopter crashSantiago Jamiltepec (México) (AFP) - They thought the worst was over. The 7.2-magnitude earthquake that shook Mexico on Friday evening hit right near their hometown, the southern city of Santiago Jamiltepec, but the damage was minor. Unlike previous earthquakes that killed hundreds or thousands of people in Mexico, this one claimed no lives and left minimal destruction.



02/19/2018 - 01:42 AM

 

14 Indoor Swimming Pools with Incredible Designs

14 Indoor Swimming Pools with Incredible Designs



02/19/2018 - 09:00 AM

 

Olympic Analyst Laments Hockey Player's 'Unfortunate' Domestic Abuse Incident

Olympic Analyst Laments Hockey Player's 'Unfortunate' Domestic Abuse IncidentNHL analyst Mike Milbury referred to one hockey player’s domestic abuse conviction as an “unfortunate incident,” as he offered commentary for NBC’s coverage of the men’s match between Team USA and the Olympics Athletes from Russia on Saturday.



02/18/2018 - 11:03 AM

 

Exclusive: For now, U.S. wants Europeans just to commit to improve Iran deal

Exclusive: For now, U.S. wants Europeans just to commit to improve Iran dealBy Arshad Mohammed, John Irish and Robin Emmott WASHINGTON/PARIS/MUNICH (Reuters) - The United States has sketched out a path under which three key European allies would simply commit to try to improve the Iran nuclear deal over time in return for U.S. President Donald Trump keeping the pact alive by renewing U.S. sanctions relief in May. The approach, outlined in a State Department cable obtained by Reuters and an interview with a senior department official this week, still faces obstacles. The European allies are uncertain what will satisfy Trump and are reluctant to make such a commitment only to find that he asks them for more, two European officials and two former U.S. officials said.



02/18/2018 - 10:15 AM

 

Fire at sacred Tibetan Buddhist temple sparks suspicion about censorship

Fire at sacred Tibetan Buddhist temple sparks suspicion about censorshipA fire broke out at one of the most sacred temples in Tibetan Buddhism, prompting concern and suspicion that information on the incident is being controlled by authorities. Chinese State media said the fire at "part of" Jokhang Temple in Lhasa, the capital of the south-western Chinese region of Tibet, "was soon put out" after it began at 6.40pm on Saturday. Images posted online showed flames billowing from a pagoda at the sacred building, which was built in the seventh century. Some of the clips showed flames appearing to engulf the Unesco World Heritage Site when it was dark, suggesting that the fire might have continued for longer than an hour. Jokhang houses the Jowo Shakyamuni, a glittering statue believed to have been blessed by Shakyamuni Buddha, the founder of the religion. It is said to be just one of just three to be crafted during his actual lifetime. Devastating news from Lhasa of the Jokhang temple on fire. pic.twitter.com/LXiIlvc7V5— Robert Barnett (@RobbieBarnett) February 17, 2018 Observers on Twitter - which is blocked in China - claimed that information relating the fire was being censored online. Robert Barnett, a British expert on Tibet, Tweeted: "Sources in Lhasa claim police have threatened anyone distributing pictures or unofficial news about the fire. "Locals afraid to talk. Official information extremely limited, raising concern about extent of damage. Access to area round temple said to be restricted." #Jokhang fire: sources in Lhasa claim police have threatened anyone distributing pictures or unofficial news about the fire; locals afraid to talk. Official information extremely limited, raising concern about extent of damage. Access to area round temple said to be restricted.— Robert Barnett (@RobbieBarnett) February 17, 2018 China has ruled Tibet since the 1950s, and Beijing claims that it has helped improve the lives of ordinary Tibetans by bringing economic growth to a traditionally poor region. However, many accuse China of suppressing rights in the region and stifling the local Buddhist culture. Tibet has seen outbreaks of ethic tension, including riots in 2008 and a wave of self-immolations carried out in protest of Beijing's tightening grip. State media reports on the fire have contained few details. China is deleting posts about the alleged fire in the Jokhang Temple. The topic has been one of the hottest topics and most searched topic today on Chinese social media. Yet there is no single personal post and was removed in the cyberspace immediately. pic.twitter.com/KDlF87oX2t— Tseringkyi (@dreamlhasa) February 17, 2018 Tibetans began celebrating traditional Tibetan New Year that last Friday. The temple would have been expecting thousands of visitors  over the next few days. Tsering Woeser, a Tibetan writer in Beijing told The New York Times: “I pray that the fire isn’t serious and that the old buildings haven’t suffered too much damage. “For Tibetans, the Jokhang is the holiest of holy sites.”



02/18/2018 - 04:43 AM

 

Now juice stores are giving out Bitcoin as a competition prize

Now juice stores are giving out Bitcoin as a competition prizeIt's not just cashed-up dads jumping on cryptocurrencies, juice companies are doing the same too. Australian juice chain Boost have launched a competition where customers can win one Bitcoin, if they can correctly guess the price of the cryptocurrency at 12 p.m. the following Monday.  SEE ALSO: Say hello to Buttcoin and the community celebrating Bitcoin's fall Only one person can choose a certain price, to ensure there's no splitting of the prize. At the time of writing, one BTC is equal to $10,569 (A$13,387.76), but as we've seen lately BTC's price has been fluctuating a lot in recent weeks. Boost will have one BTC a week to win over four weeks. Like any in-store competition you'll need to buy a juice to get an entry code, which you can enter in the chain's app and guess BTC's prospective price. As for people who might not be following the cryptocurrency rollercoaster, you can also get the app to pick a price for you. Boost's effort is the latest in a string of cryptocurrency-aligned competitions: There's a puzzle game which lets you win one BTC if you can successfully crack it.  Surely investing in cryptocurrencies is already enough of a game? [h/t CNET ] WATCH: It's so easy to save money and eat healthy with zero-waste cooking



02/19/2018 - 05:55 AM

 

Putin’s shock troops - how Russia's secret mercenary army came up against the US in Syria

Putin’s shock troops - how Russia's secret mercenary army came up against the US in SyriaIt was one of Isil’s biggest cash cows, a strategic prize crucial to the Kremlin and Bashar Assad’s plans to re-establish his rule over Syria. But the assault on Conoco oilfield near Deir Ezzor earlier this month ended in disaster, sparking the first deadly combat between Americans and Russians since the Vietnam War and embarrassing Vladimir Putin just weeks before an election.  It also cast an unwelcome light on one of the worst kept secrets of Russia’s war in Syria - its increasing reliance on unacknowledged and illegal mercenaries. “These were shock troops, and they would take any position, fulfil any task,” said Alexander Averin, a veteran of the pro-Russian militias in east Ukraine and friend of one of the Russians who was killed. Mr Averin said Kirill Ananyev, 33, was a fellow member of the radical “national Bolshevik” political party Other Russia and had also fought in eastern Ukraine.  He said that Ananyev, whom he had known since 2001, had been working for a private military company when he was killed. He would not name the company, but other casualties have been linked to the secretive Wagner group. Kirill Ananyev, a Russian private military contractor in Syria who was killed in US airstrikes on 7 February Credit: Twitter Russian media have published the names of nine Russian fighters who were killed in the assault on February 7, and the foreign ministry finally admitted on Thursday that five Russian citizens had died.  Some media reports have put the number of Russian casualties in the hundreds, however, and relatives and a former member of parliament have called for answers.  “I want everyone to know about my husband, and not just about my husband, but about all the guys who died there so stupidly,” Yelena Matveyeva, whose husband Stanislav was killed, told the regional news site Znak.com. “They sent them like pigs to the slaughter!” The debacle unfolded on the evening of 7 February, when hundreds of mysterious fighters began charging toward a Syrian Democratic Forces position near the oilfield under cover of artillery, tank and rocket fire, according to the US military. In response, US special forces embedded with the mostly Kurdish SDF called in artillery fire and strikes from fighter jets and B-52 bombers that effectively destroyed the “battalion sized force” they were facing. Mr Averin told the Telegraph that 500 Russians were in Deir Ezzor at the time, and that many of them were now dead and wounded. After Stanislav Matveyev, who was believed to work for the Wagner group, was killed, his wife spoke out against the Kremlin denials of Russian casualties Credit: Twitter It is not entirely clear whether the Russian high command authorised the attack, and some believe that Wagner mercenaries were working for local pro-Assad businessman to take the lucrative site. According to a Syrian government contract seen by Fontanka and AP, a Russian company linked to the Wagner group was to receive 25 percent of profits from oil and gas fields its contractors could capture. Others have suggested the Kremlin allowed the preventable defeat, which also saw Syrian troops killed, to happen as a warning to an increasingly independent Mr Assad as well as Iran, his other major backer.  “You need to be in line with our policies in Syria or you'll get bombed,” was Moscow's message to them, said Yury Barmin of the Russian International Affairs Council, a think-tank close to the Kremlin.  A US drone destroys a pro-regime tank near Deir Ezzor days after the airstrikes that killed numerous Russians Credit: CNN Ostensibly designed to support a long-time ally and defeat the Islamic State, Mr Putin's bombing campaign in Syria was supposed to be a television war, providing footage of impressive Russian airstrikes without any body bags to ruin the mood.  To assuage fears of a repeat of the disastrous Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, Mr Putin said it would be solely an air operation lasting no longer than Mr Assad's counter-offensive But Syrian forces reportedly proved ineffective even with the help of Russian advisors and special forces. Kremlin-linked contractors allowed Moscow to run a covert land operation while denying it had boots on the ground. “The big battles, the intense battles with casualties, that's all Russian mercenaries,” said Ruslan Leviev of the Conflict Intelligence Team, a research group who track Russian military activity abroad.  A Russian Tupolev Tu-22M3 bombs targets in the Deir Ezzor region in November Credit: TASS via Getty Images Some 3,000 Russians have fought for the Wagner group, the biggest of the private military companies, in Syria since 2015, according to documents seen by the independent news outlet Fontanka.  It said 73 of them had died before 7 February, exceeding the 46 official Russian military casualties. The US airstrikes against the Russian contractors have raised an alarming risk of direct great-power confrontation in Syria as external players vie to consolidate their interests following the defeat of Islamic State.  Within the last two weeks, al-Qaeda-affiliated rebels shot down a Russian jet, Kurdish fighters have downed a Turkish helicopter, Israel downed an Iranian drone and the Syrian army shot down an Israeli F-16. “Now that the fighting with ISIS is more or less over, every global player in the war is attempting to draw its own sphere of influence in Syria,” Sami Nadir, of the Levant Institute for Strategic Affairs, told the Telegraph. “They used to fight each other through their proxies, now they’re just going head-to-head.” Benjamin Netanyahu holds up what he said was a piece of an Iranian drone shot down in Israeli airspace at the Munich Security Conference on Sunday Credit: AFP PHOTO / MSC Munich Security Conference / LENNART PREISS America wants to limit Iran and keep the Kurds - its greatest ally against Isil - on side, while not agitating its Nato ally Turkey. Russia has been trying to keep a balance between its allies Turkey, Israel and Iran, to little avail. “The new phase in the Syrian conflict makes the anti-ISIS war look like a stroll in the park,” said Bilal Saab, an expert at the Washington-based Middle East Institute. “This has the potential to turn into a regional war.” Yet news of the contractors' deaths has remained largely unknown in Russia under a state television blackout: The website of the main state news programme published a report, only to delete it the same day. A Syrian pro-regime fighter wounded in the 7 February battle in Deir Ezzor Credit: AFP Photo/Getty Images “It's like the story with the Pskov paratroopers who died in Ukraine,” said Lev Gudkov, head of the independent Levada survey centre. “The information was blocked for a long time, then denied, and it spread only in close-knit circles, it didn't become a fact of public opinion, and I fear it will be the same picture here.” Nonetheless, Mr Putin, whose withdrawal announcement was welcomed by most Russians, finds himself in a bind: The Syria peace talks he sponsored in Sochi last month devolved into infighting and the conflict is edging toward what Mr Nadir called a “full-blown international crisis”. “The era of cooperation is over,” he said. “It’s a Cold War scenario.” The Wagner group | Russia's secret mercenaries in Syria



02/18/2018 - 12:58 PM

 

Zimbabwe president sees deceased opposition leader's family

Zimbabwe president sees deceased opposition leader's familyHARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) — Zimbabwe's president Sunday visited the home of deceased opposition leader Morgan Tsvangirai to pay condolences to his family and to urge unity as power struggles within the opposition have heightened tensions.



02/18/2018 - 08:27 AM

 

Carnival investigates "cruise from hell"

Carnival investigates "cruise from hell"Carnival has launched an investigation into a wild brawl off the Australian coast, that saw 23 passengers kicked off a cruise. Some on board accuse security of being heavy handed. Joel Labi reports.



02/19/2018 - 08:30 AM

 

Israeli police arrest more executives from Bezeq Telecom

Israeli police arrest more executives from Bezeq TelecomIsraeli police made arrests on Sunday that included senior executives from Bezeq, the country's largest telecom group, after the markets watchdog uncovered new information during its investigation into the company. The Israel Securities Authority (ISA) has been investigating Bezeq over possible fraud and financial reporting offences and company officials, including its former chairman, were arrested in 2017. Israeli media reported investigators were looking into allegations that Bezeq received benefits in return for enabling favourable media coverage of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.



02/18/2018 - 04:44 AM

 

France to let wolf packs grow despite angry farmers

France to let wolf packs grow despite angry farmersThe French government announced Monday it will allow the wolf population to grow 40 percent despite pressure from farmers in mountain regions who are worried about their sheep flocks. A new strategy unveiled by the centrist government of President Emmanuel Macron will enable the number of wolves to increase from an estimated 360 now to 500 by 2023. Hunting wiped out the grey wolf in France during the 1930s and they only returned in 1992 via Italy -- currently home to around 2,000 wolves -- before spreading into Switzerland and Germany.



02/19/2018 - 11:59 AM

 

Gay Olympian Feels Bad Adam Rippon Is Dealing With Anti-LGBTQ Politics

Gay Olympian Feels Bad Adam Rippon Is Dealing With Anti-LGBTQ PoliticsAs the first two publicly out gay men to win medals at the Winter Olympics, figure skaters Eric Radford and Adam Rippon have broken barriers and established legacies that will extend beyond the ice rink.



02/19/2018 - 02:11 PM

 

Biden, in public and private, tiptoes toward a 2020 run

Biden, in public and private, tiptoes toward a 2020 runWASHINGTON (AP) — Former Vice President Joe Biden is tiptoeing toward a potential presidential run in 2020, even broaching the possibility during a recent gathering of longtime foreign policy aides.



02/18/2018 - 06:01 AM

 

U.S. Women’s Ice Hockey Team Crushes Finland, Heads To Olympic Finals

U.S. Women’s Ice Hockey Team Crushes Finland, Heads To Olympic FinalsThe U.S. women’s ice hockey team dominated on Monday, beating Finland 5-0 in the Winter Olympics semi-final in South Korea.



02/19/2018 - 02:55 AM

 

This thread about women saying 'I think' will make you re-think your work communication

This thread about women saying 'I think' will make you re-think your work communicationWomen have a lot to contend with in the workplace.  If they're not getting mansplained, hepeated, or harassed, they're being told they need to think, talk, and act like men.  But, this Twitter thread by a software engineer has turned on its head the notion that men's workplace communication style is the example to follow. In fact, after reading this Twitter thread, men might consider communicating a bit more like women. SEE ALSO: 'Hepeating' is the new 'mansplaining' and it's definitely happened to you April Wensel—founder of software development company Compassionate Coding—wrote that women are "often told to avoid 'weak' language like 'I think,'" but that she found that, in reality, saying "I think" is "often more accurate."  "I find it more troubling when people state their opinion as if it's an undisputed fact," wrote Wensel. "We don't need to fix women; we need to appreciate what they're doing already." Women are often told to avoid "weak" language like "I think," but the truth is it's often more accurate. I find it more troubling when people state their opinion as if it's an undisputed fact.We don't need to fix women; we need to appreciate what they're already doing. — April Wensel (@aprilwensel) February 16, 2018 She wrote that she's heard countless male (and even female) engineers make declarative statements like "That won't work" or "That won't break," which were subsequently proved wrong.   "Honest, accurate communication is not weak; it's more effective!" she added.  I can't tell you how many times I've heard male engineers (and women who follow the aforementioned problematic advice) say, "That won't work" or "That won't break," and sure enough…Honest, accurate communication is not weak; it's more effective! — April Wensel (@aprilwensel) February 16, 2018 She said she had "a running bit of banter" with a male engineer she worked with, who loved to say "I'm 100% sure." "Let's just say his accuracy rate was not the same as his confidence level," she wrote.  I had a running bit of banter with one male engineer coworker because he loved saying, "I'm 100% sure," and let's just say his accuracy rate was not the same as his confidence level. — April Wensel (@aprilwensel) February 16, 2018 Honesty is always the best policy.  WATCH: It's so easy to save money and eat healthy with zero-waste cooking



02/19/2018 - 06:21 AM

 

Saudi Arabia welcomes push for U.N. action against Iran on missiles

Saudi Arabia welcomes push for U.N. action against Iran on missilesBy Andrea Shalal MUNICH (Reuters) - Saudi Arabia on Sunday welcomed a draft United Nations resolution offered by Britain, the United States and France that would condemn Iran for failing to stop its ballistic missiles from falling into the hands of Yemen’s Houthi group. Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told Reuters the measure, if passed, would help hold Iran accountable for what he described as its "exports of ballistic missiles" to the Iran-backed Houthi rebels, and "radical and aggressive" behavior in the region, including support for terrorist groups.



02/18/2018 - 08:02 AM

 

 

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