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New India Navy Chief pledges closer ties with Nigerian Navy

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The Nigerian Navy says newly appointed Chief of Naval Staff of Indian Navy, Adm. Karambir Singh, has expressed readiness to strengthen existing levels of bilateral cooperation with the Nigerian counterpart.

Navy’s Director of Information, Commodore Suleman Dahun, said in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja that Singh’s pledge of fellowship was conveyed in a letter to Chief of Naval Staff, Vice Adm. Ibok-Ete Ibas.

He said that Singh acknowledged the work of his predecessors which had helped to establish strong bonds of friendship between the two navies as well as maritime partnership between Nigeria and India.

Dahun said that Singh also pledged to explore new avenues for closer ties between the two navies.

“He affirmed that the Indian Navy greatly value the relationship with the Nigerian Navy and pledged that the Indian Navy would continue to work closely with the Force in the collective pursuit of maritime security.’’

According to the statement, Singh assumed command of the Indian Navy on May 31 as the 24th Chief of the Naval Staff.

“Singh is an alumnus of National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla. He was commissioned into the Indian Navy in July, 1980.

“Singh is a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College, Wellington; College of Naval Warfare, Mumbai and has served as Directing Staff in both institutions.

“In his career spanning over 39 years, he has commanded Indian Coast Guard Ship Chandbibi, Missile Corvette INS Vijaydurg, as well as two guided missile destroyers, INS Rana and INS Delhi,” Dahun said.

Sport

`No Knelling’: Trump renews criticism of protests during United States anthem

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President Donald Trump on Friday lobbed barbs at protesters who kneel during the national anthem, after NFL quarterback Drew Brees apologised for remarks he made about the practice.

Brees said this week he would “never agree with anybody disrespecting the flag,” referring to the possibility of players kneeling during the “Star-Spangled Banner” in the upcoming NFL season.

Brees apologised on Thursday, saying his words “lacked awareness and any type of compassion or empathy.”

The kneeling pose, popularised by NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, has become a symbol of the fight for racial justice in the United States.

Trump tweeted on Friday that Brees “should not have taken back his original stance.

“We should be standing up straight and tall, ideally with a salute or a hand on heart,” Trump wrote. “There are other things you can protest but not our Great American Flag – NO KNEELING!”

The kneeling pose has been seen at protests in cities across the country in the wake of the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, while in police custody in Minneapolis.

Brees’ initial remarks angered top athletes, who objected to the equating of the protest with disrespecting the American flag.

The New Orleans Saints player responded to Trump Friday night in a lengthy social media post in which he said “we can no longer use the flag to turn people away.

“We must stop talking about the flag and shift our attention to the real issues of systemic racial injustice, economic oppression, police brutality and judicial & prison reform,” Brees wrote on Instagram.

Kaepernick popularised the move in 2016, appearing on NFL sidelines first sitting and later kneeling during the customary pre-game airing of the United States national anthem.

Trump was an early critic of the protest and in 2017, Vice-President Mike Pence walked out of an NFL game when some of the players knelt on the sidelines during the anthem.


Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Silas Nwoha (NAN)

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Foreign

India’s Western Coalfields opens three new coal mines

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Coal India subsidiary Western Coalfields Limited on Saturday opened three new coal mines.

The mines were opened in Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh.

According to India’s federal ministry of coal, these mines will have combined annual production capacity of 2.9 million tonnes (MT).

The company will generate direct employment for 647 people with these projects.

WCL has to produce 75 MT of coal by financial year 2023-24. Opening of these mines will certainly add in the efforts of the company reaching this milestone and also help Coal India achieve 1 billion tonnes (BT) coal production target by financial year 2023-24,” federal minister of Coal Pralhad Joshi said.

According to officials, the three mines are Adasa Mine, an underground to open cast mine, in Nagpur Area of Maharashtra, Sharda underground Mine in Kanhan Area (Maharashtra) and Dhankasa underground mine in Pench Area of Madhya Pradesh.

“The annual coal production capacity of Adasa mine is 1.5 MT whereas Sharda and Dhankasa mines are having annual coal production capacities of 0.4 MT and 1 MT respectively,” the ministry said.

Joshi said the opening of these three mines is a part of WCL‘s future plan to start 20 new projects by financial year 2023-24 including 14 in Maharashtra and six in Madhya Pradesh.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

New ultrathin nanosheets set to transform dirtiest water into lifesaving resource: Aussie-led study

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Australian-led researchers on Saturday said they have developed a new ultrathin porous membrane that completely separates potentially harmful ions such as lead and mercury from water, pointing to crucial clean drinking supplies for people globally through purification and desalination processes.

The researchers, led by Monash University and Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organization, developed the molecular sieve membrane using 2D nanosheets and “demonstrated their near perfection as building materials for membranes in ion separation from water”, according to a university statement.

The nanosheets “can help remove harmful carcinogens from the atmosphere by creating highly porous membranes to facilitate the separation processes of gases and organic solvents, such as paint.”

“In this world-first study, we were able to … create a membrane that is permeable to water while achieving maximum porosity with nearly 100 percent rejection of ions. This study shows promise for the future application of this membrane to other filtration processes, such as gas separation,” research study leader Xiwang Zhang said. The latest findings were published in academic journal Science Advances.

One in three people globally still did not have access to safe drinking water and about 2.2 billion people around the world did not have safely managed drinking water services as of June 2019, according to a report by UNICEF and the World Health Organization.

The membrane innovation “could enhance the desalination process and transform the dirtiest water into something potable for millions of people across the world,” according to Monash university.

“The membrane performed steadily for more than 750 hours using limited energy. It could also be manufactured on a global scale, pending further testing.”

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Bangladesh reports 2,635 new COVID-19 cases, 35 new deaths

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Bangladesh reported 2,635 more positive COVID-19 cases on Saturday, bringing the total to over 63,000.

“A total of 35 deaths including 28 men and seven women were reported in the last 24 hours, taking the death toll to 846,” Nasima Sultana, a senior Health Ministry official, told an online media briefing in Dhaka.

The official said “the number of confirmed infections in the country totaled 63,026 on Saturday.”

Bangladesh recorded the highest 2,911 cases in a 24-hour period on June 2.

According to the official, 12,486 samples were tested in the last 24 hours in the labs across Bangladesh.

Also during the last 24 hours, Sultana said 521 more patients were released from hospitals and clinics, bringing the number of recovered patients in the country to 13,325.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Malaysia reports 37 new COVID-19 cases, 8,303 in total

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Malaysia reported 37 new COVID-19 cases, pushing the national total to 8,303, the Health Ministry said on Saturday.

Health Ministry Director-General Noor Hisham Abdullah told a press briefing that eight of the new cases were imported, with the remaining 29 being local transmissions, 10 of which involved Malaysian nationals.

One new death was reported, with the patient having suffered from other health conditions before being infected, pushing the national total to 117 deaths.

Another 25 cases have been released, bring the total cured and discharged to 6,635, or 79.9 percent of all cases.

Of the remaining 1,552 active cases, five are being held in intensive care and none are in need of assisted breathing.

Meanwhile Defense Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob, who coordinates the enforcement of restricting measures, said barbers, hairdressers and beauty salons would be allowed to reopen from June 10, and restrictions on night markets would also be lifted.

The government has implemented a movement control order since March 18 but has eased on restrictions starting May 4 to stimulate economic activity.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Iran reports 2,269 new COVID-19 cases, 169,425 in total

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Iran reported 2,269 new cases over the past 24 hours, taking the total confirmed novel coronavirus cases to 169,425 on Saturday, according to official IRNA news agency.

Kianush Jahanpur, head of Public Relations and Information Center of the Health Ministry, said during his daily update on Saturday that 75 people died overnight, taking the total fatalities over the virus to 8,209.

So far, 132,038 have recovered and 2,578 remain in critical condition, said Jahanpur.

According to the health spokesman, 1,060,126 lab tests for COVID-19 have been carried out in Iran as of Saturday.

Iran announced its first cases of COVID-19 on Feb. 19.

In mid-February, at the early stage of the coronavirus outbreak in China, Iran lit up the Tehran Azadi (Liberty) Tower to show its solidarity with China, and donated 3 million masks to China. In return, China has delivered several shipments of medical supplies to Iran.

(XINHUA)

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General news

Osun records 2 new COVID-19 cases

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The Osun Government says it has recorded two new cases of Coronavirus COVID-19, bringing the total number of infections in the state to 49, with four deaths.

Dr Rafiu Isamotu, the state Commissioner for Health, said in a statement in Osogbo on Saturday that the two new cases were relatives of an earlier confirmed COVID-19 patient in Ikire area of the state.

Isamotu said that the two new cases of the virus had increased the total number of confirmed cases in the state to 49.

He said the state had successfully treated and discharged 36 patients, while four deaths had been recorded since the outbreak of the pandemic in the state.

“We have recorded two new cases bringing the number of active cases in the state to nine.

“The two patients are relatives of a patient from Ikire, Irewole Local Government Area of the state.

“As of today, we have recorded a total of 49 confirmed cases out of which 36 patients had been successful treated and subsequently discharged from our facilities, leaving us with nine active cases,” Isamotu said.


Edited By: Tayo Ikujuni/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

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Foreign

Philippines reports 714 new COVID-19 cases, total surge to 21,340

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The number of coronavirus cases in the Philippines rose to 21,340 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 714 more infections on Saturday.

The DOH said in a daily bulletin that the number of recoveries further climbed to 4,441 after 111 more patients have survived the disease.

The death toll also increased to 994 after seven more patients have succumbed to the viral disease, the DOH added.

According to the DOH, 244 of the daily reported cases were in Metro Manila, 171 cases in the Central Visayas region in the central Philippines and 299 cases were reported in other parts of the country.

(XINHUA)

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Foreign

Libya’s UN-backed gov’t reports new advances against rivals

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Forces allied with Libya’s internationally recognised government said they had captured a major city from their rivals on Friday, a day after they regained control of the capital Tripoli.

In recent weeks, forces from the UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) based in Tripoli have made swift territorial gains against the rival self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA) led by Khalifa Haftar.

The GNA’s military spokesman, Mohammed Gnounou, said on Friday that government forces were in complete control of the city of Tarhouna, about 90 kilometres south-east of Tripoli, and Haftar’s last stronghold in western Libya.

“Our heroic forces have taught Haftar’s terrorist militias an unforgettable lesson,” Gnounou added on Twitter.

Mostafa al-Majai, another GNA military spokesman, said the government forces had entered Tarhouna without any fighting after LNA forces had pulled out of the city into the desert.

“No reprisal acts have taken place inside the city. A large number of residents left the city days ago.

“This has made it easy to establish security there,” he told dpa.

A source in Haftar’s forces confirmed on Friday that LNA forces and their allies had left Tarhouna.

Haftar’s loyalists seized Tarhouna following the start of their campaign in April last year to capture Tripoli from the GNA.

Later on Friday, the GNA military said its forces had also taken full control of al-Urban, a town about 130 kilometres south-west of Tripoli.

GNA Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj has vowed to bring all Libyan territory under his government’s control, according to the official Twitter account of the GNA forces.

“There is no concession in applying justice and law to bring to account everyone involved in perpetrating crimes against Libyans,” he was quoted as saying.

The GNA government has repeatedly accused Haftar and his forces of committing war crimes.

Libya has been in turmoil since a 2011 revolt toppled long-time dictator Muammer Gaddafi.

The oil-wealthy country is divided between two rival factions that are supported by different regional powers.

Turkey, along with Qatar, backs the GNA against Haftar, who is supported by Egypt, Russia, and the United Arab Emirates.

Also on Friday, the UN Security Council extended an arms embargo against Libya for 12 more months in a unanimous vote.

Germany’s deputy UN ambassador Juergen Schulz said strict adherence to the embargo is extremely important, adding that the resolution passed is a meaningful tool to ensure compliance.

The embargo has been in place since 2011, but is largely ineffective, as other countries continue to deliver arms and military equipment or send troops to join the conflict.

The European Union’s Operation Irini began monitoring activities in the Mediterranean Sea to uphold the embargo in May.

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

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Contact US: editor @nnn.com.ng, nnnnews247 @gmail.com

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