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Iran denies ties to Houthi drone attack on Saudi oil installations

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Iran denies ties to Houthi drone attack on Saudi oil installations

U.S.-ally Riyadh made the accusation amid growing tension between Iran and its arch-foe, the U.S., which has built up its military presence in the region, alleging threats from Iran to its troops and interests.

The Houthis, who have been battling a Saudi-led military coalition for four years, said they carried out Tuesday’s drone strikes against the East-West pipeline, which caused a fire.

However,  Riyadh said the incident did not disrupt output or exports.

“You’re still deluded after 1,500 days, isn’t that enough?” Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi said on his Twitter account, referring to the length of the Yemen war.

Mousavi was responding to Saudi Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Adel al-Jubeir, who tweeted on Thursday: “The Houthis are an indivisible part of #Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps and subject to the IRGC’s orders.

“This is confirmed by the #Houthis targeting facilities in the Kingdom.”

Mousavi added: “It’s time for you to stop your crimes against #Yemeni people. You can’t hide your weakness behind such claims.”

A military coalition led by neighbouring Saudi Arabia, which receives weapons from the West, intervened in Yemen in March 2015 after the Houthis ousted Yemen’s internationally recognised government from Sanaa.

The conflict is seen as a proxy war between Sunni Saudi Arabia and Shi’ite Iran.

“Separately, Mousavi condemned air strikes on Thursday by the Saudi-led coalition on Sanaa.

“He also called on international and human rights bodies to act according to their responsibility to prevent the repetition of these crimes,’’ state news agency IRNA said.

The Houthi group denied being a puppet of Tehran or receiving arms from Iran, and said its revolution is against corruption.

Foreign

Police hose G7 protesters in south France as summit begins

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Protesters

A few hundred people, many of whom have covered their faces with masks and scarves, have been marching though the city, screaming anti-police slogans.

The march is occurring in the part of the city surrounded by rivers from both sides, with bridges blocked by the police.

At one of the bridges protesters began provoking the police, who hosed them four times in response and then fired teargas at the crowd.

The procession is currently repeating its previous route.

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Star chef serves G7 leaders endangered bluefin tuna for dinner 

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Dinner

Star chef Cedric Bechade’s first course was a piperade, a typical dish of peppers, onions and tomatoes, and then a “marmitako,” a traditional fish stew made with fresh bluefin tuna that was caught by fishermen in the town of Saint-Jean-de-Luz, south of Biarritz.

The Atlantic bluefin tuna is an increasingly endangered species due to overfishing and is on the IUCN Red List of Endangered Species.

YEE

(Edited by Emmanuel Yashim)

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35,000 join rally against racism in eastern German city rally

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Rally

The demonstration is organised by the group Unteilbar (Indivisible), which staged a similar protest in the capital, Berlin, last year, drawing 250,000 people.

”Tens of thousands of people from Dresden … as well as from many parts of Germany have shown their unmistakeable support for solidarity instead of exclusion,” said Ana-Cara Methmann, a spokeswoman for the organisers.

Among the attendees were Finance Minister Olaf Scholz and the leaders of the far-left Die Linke party, Bernd Riexinger and Katja Kipping.

“Racism and discrimination have no place in our society, and neither do cuts to social services or the restriction of fundamental rights,” organiser Ario Mirzaie said.

The Unteilbar demonstration was taking place one week before state elections in Saxony and Brandenburg, in which the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party is expected to make significant gains.

The AfD is campaigning on an anti-immigration platform.

“Unteilbar … stands against any form of group-based misanthropy and anti-feminism, against limiting basic free rights, against social decline and poverty – for a society in which all people can live free from fear,” the organizers said a day before the rally.

YEE

(Exited by Emmanuel Yashim)

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20,000 join rally against racism in eastern German city of Dresden

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Rally

The demonstration is organised by the group Unteilbar (Indivisible), which staged a similar protest in the capital Berlin last year, drawing 250,000 people.

The group was due to give a more exact estimate of turnout later in the afternoon.

Among the attendees were Finance Minister, Olaf Scholz, and the leaders of the far-left Die Linke party, Bernd Riexinger and Katja Kipping.

The Unteilbar demonstration was taking place, one week before state elections in Saxony and Brandenburg, in which the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) party is expected to make significant gains.

The AfD is campaigning on an anti-immigration platform.

“Unteilbar stands for an open and free society.

AIB

Edited by Abdulfatah Babatunde

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EU’s Tusk sees more reasons to keep Russia out of G7

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The President of the European Council on Saturday rebuffed Donald Trump’s suggestion that Russia is readmitted to the Group of Seven (G7) advanced economies, saying there were even more reasons than before for keeping Moscow out.

The U.S. president has said it would be “appropriate” to have Russia re-join what used to be the G8, which Russia was excluded from in 2014 after it annexed Ukraine’s Crimea and then backed an anti-Kiev rebellion in the industrial region of Donbas in eastern Ukraine.

“One year ago, in Canada, President Trump suggested re-inviting Russia to G7, stating openly that Crimea’s annexation by Russia was partially justified.

“And that we should accept this fact,’’ said Donald Tusk who, as president of the European Council, represents the EU’s 28 member states.

“Under no condition can we agree with this logic,’’ he added.

Earlier this week Germany, France and Britain also rejected the idea of inviting Russia back into the group.

The EU and the U.S. have imposed sanctions on Russia over its role in the Ukraine conflict, in which some 13,000 people have been killed to date, according to UN data.

Fighting continues in Donbas, albeit at a low intensity, and a peace process brokered by Berlin and Paris has stalled.

Tusk said the reasons for Moscow’s ejection from the group remain valid and there have been new reasons since then for its continued exclusion, including “the Russian provocation on the Azov Sea’’, an apparent reference to the detention of Ukrainian sailors last year.

“Second: when Russia was invited to G7 for the first time, it was believed that it would pursue the path of liberal democracy, rule of law and human rights.

“Is there anyone among us, who can say with full conviction, not out of business calculation, that Russia is on that path?’’ Tusk asked.

He said he would try to convince leaders at the G7 summit that it would be better to invite Ukraine’s president to the next G7 meeting rather than bring Russia back into their fold.

Trump has praised Russian President Vladimir Putin despite Western criticism of his record and discord over the group’s relationship with Moscow is just one of several areas of tension in trans-Atlantic ties that will be on display at the summit.

AIB

Edited by Abdulfatah Babatunde

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