Connect with us

Foreign

United States envoy in Israel calls for extension of UN arms embargo on Iran

Published

on

United States Special Representative for Iran Brian Hook on Tuesday urged the international community to extend a Untied Nations arms embargo on the Islamic republic.

“In four short months Iran will be able to freely import fighter jets, attack helicopters, submarines, large-caliber artillery systems, and missiles of certain ranges,” Hook said during joint remarks alongside Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu in the PM‘s office in Jerusalem.

Hook added that Iran will then could export these weapons and technologies to its proxies, including Hezbollah, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hamas, Shia militia groups in Iraq and Syria, militant networks in Bahrain, and the Houthis in Yemen.

“The last thing that this region needs is more Iranian weapons,” he said, calling on the UN Security Council to continue the embargo.

Hook said that also Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Bahrain, which he visited before arriving in Israel, are worried over the expiration of the embargo.

He added that the United States and Israel are working together to “ensure in one way or the another that the arms embargo will not expire.”

Netanyahu called for more sanctions against Iran. “I believe it’s time to implement snapback sanctions,” he said. “I don’t think we can afford to wait. We should not wait for Iran to start its breakout to a nuclear weapon, because then it will be too late for sanctions.”

Israel considers Iran its arch-foe.

(XINHUA)

Nnn: :is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng

Foreign

Former nurse admits killing 7 United States military retirees

Published

on

A former nursing assistant on Tuesday pleaded guilty to murdering seven military retirees in the United States, according to the Department of Justice.

The accused, identified as Reta Mays, was employed at the Veterans Affairs Medical Centre (VAMC) in West Virginia where she committed the crime.

Mays, 46, admitted in federal court that she deliberately injected eight elderly patients with lethal doses of the insulin, which led to the death of seven of them.

She also pleaded guilty to one count of assault with intent to commit murder involving the death of the eighth veteran.

The justice department said in a statement that Mays was working the night shift during the same period of time the veterans died in her care while on admission there.

“Nursing assistants at the VAMC are not qualified or authorised to administer any medication to patients, including insulin.

“Mays admitted to administering insulin to several patients with the intent to cause their deaths,” the statement read in part.

It stated that Mays faced up to life in prison for each count of second-degree murder, and up to 20 years in prison for assault with intent to commit murder.

Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

 

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

United States bows to pressure, rescinds policy targeting foreign students

Published

on

The United States has rescinded its recent immigration policy requiring foreign students to leave the country if all their classes were to be taught online.

United States District Judge in Massachusetts, Allison Burroughs, announced this on Tuesday at a court hearing on a suit filed by two higher institutions against the policy.

Burroughs said the government had reached a settlement with the plaintiffs, Harvard University and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), to revert back to status quo.

The policy reversal comes exactly a week after it was announced and a day before the government’s deadline for universities to submit a change of plans by Wednesday.

On July 7 United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) announced that it would begin enforcement of in-person requirements on F-1 and M-1 visas.

It stated that foreign students would not be allowed to remain in the country if their institutions moved classes fully online.

The department said affected students would face “immigration consequences”, including deportation, if they failed to comply.

The rule, according to the agency, applied to holders of F-1 and M-1 visas, which are issued to academic and vocational students, respectively.

The announcement triggered a wave of opposition across the country, with Harvard and MIT being among the first critics to challenge it in court.

Many other lawsuits followed, including from a group of 18 states led by Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey.

New York, California and Washington filed separate suits in addition to Johns Hopkins University and the University of California public school network.

Edited By: Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

United States judge orders delay of first federal executions in 17 years

Published

on

A United States judge on Monday ordered a delay in federal executions, hours before one was to be carried out for the first time in 17 years, hampering the Trump administration’s plan to revive capital punishment by the federal government.

Washington district Judge Tanya Chutkan issued a preliminary injunction to allow the continuation of legal challenges of four death row inmates against the government’s new lethal injection protocol announced last year.

“The public is not served by short-circuiting legitimate judicial process,” she wrote in an order.

The Department of Justice immediately appealed the ruling.

The department planned to carry out the first executions at a federal level since 2003 over the next few weeks, starting with Daniel Lewis Lee, who is convicted of murder, in the US state of Indiana on Monday.

The move has been mired in legal battles. Chutkan’s order came just hours after a federal appeals court had overturned a lower court’s ruling halting Monday’s execution over coronavirus concerns.

Attorney General William Barr last summer announced he was bringing back the death penalty, of which President Donald Trump has been a long-time vocal advocate.

United States states individually decide whether to use capital punishment in their criminal justice systems. The federal system is separate to those of the 50 states and other jurisdictions.

Some 20 states have banned the death penalty, while others have not carried out executions in decades.

Part of the legal challenge to the use of the death penalty at the federal level relates to appeals over the protocol of execution, which is lethal injection.

IAA

Edited By: Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)

Continue Reading

General news

United States-based fertiliser coy to establish African branch in Kebbi

Published

on

A United State-based organic fertiliser company, Biowish-Crop, on Monday, said it would establish an African branch in Kebbi.

Biowish’s Chief Marketing Officer in Nigeria, Mrs Bill Stevens, gave the hint at a meeting with the state’s branch of the All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) in Birnin Kebbi.

Stevens said that the company, when completed, would employ over 1,000 workers.

She said that the company had earlier planned to establish the branch in South Africa but later opted for Nigeria.

“We don’t want to be importing fertilisers from the United States into Nigeria; rather, we want to have a factory here in this country.

“We have chosen Kebbi because the state has stable electricity for the industrial sector.

“Kebbi also has a lot of farmers and a lot of opportunities for the state to have a fertiliser company of pyre organics.

“So, we want to have such a company in Kebbi,’’ she said.

According to her, both the Federal Government and NAFDAC are aware of their presence of the company in Nigeria since 2014.

She pointed out that the company’s fertilisers have been experimented in Kwara, Zamfara, Sokoto, Kaduna and Kebbi, and were adjudged to be best for crops output increment.

“Once the consumers patronise our product and they appreciate it, we can now start producing in Kebbi.

“So, there is no need to be importing any more.

“We can just be importing the inputs and be manufacturing here in Kebbi.

“If we start the factory, within the first year to five years, we can employ from 250 to 1,000, as we are expanding.

“This is because we are not only going to be producing fertilisers for Nigeria alone but for other African countries,” Stevens said.

She hinted that the company has reduced the price of the 250g organic fertiliser from N5,500 per bag to N5,000, as approved by the government.

The reduction, she said, came after vigorous deliberations with the farmers’ association.

Earlier, the state Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Alhaji Abdullahi Shehu, said that the ministry had received a lot of complaints from farmers on alleged adulterated fertilisers in circulation.

“They bought the fertilisers at exorbitant prices without improved outputs.

“Now, the cost of the fertiliser is about N10,000 plus; and the suppliers told us that that is the cost of bringing it from Port Harcourt, in Rivers to Kebbi.

“We have received many complaints from the farmers that they used the adulterated fertilisers and no results,’’ Shehu said.

In his remarks, the Chairman of AFAN in the state, Alhaji Usman Dan-Gwandu, welcomed the company to the state and appealed for a reduction in the price of the commodity, to enable farmers to buy at an affordable rate.

Edited By: Folorunso Poroye/Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

Japan, United States discuss jump in Coronavirus cases at United States military bases

Published

on

Japan and the United States are sharing information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) infections at United States military bases after an outbreak provoked ire in the southernmost prefecture of Okinawa, a top Japanese official said on Monday.

Of the 62 individuals Okinawa confirmed had tested positive from Tuesday to Sunday, 39 were at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma, 22 at Camp Hansen and one at Camp Kinser.

Later on Monday, TV Asahi said 32 more cases were confirmed at Futenma.

“We will cooperate appropriately on this matter,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a regular news briefing.

“Japan and the United States are sharing information about the activity history of the infected military individuals.”

Okinawa hosts the bulk of United States military forces in Japan, whose alliance with Washington is central to its security.

But many Okinawans associate the bases with problems from crime to accidents, and want the Marines to reduce their presence there or leave altogether.

At the weekend, Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki said it was “extremely regrettable” that a large number of infections had occurred in a short time, adding that Okinawans were “shocked” by the news.

“I can’t help but have strong doubts about the United States military’s measures to prevent infections,” he said, adding that there are reports of personnel leaving base for beach parties and visits to night life districts around Independence Day on July 4.

On its Facebook page for Pacific bases, the Marine Corps said it was prohibiting off-base activity for all installations across Okinawa, except essential needs such as medical appointments approved by a commanding officer.

“We are trying to limit as much contact (with local people) as we can, as we look to contact tracing of infected personnel,” a United States military spokesman said.

Excluding the bases, Okinawa’s infections stand at 148, with seven deaths, the prefecture’s website shows.

Nationwide, Japan has recorded nearly 22,000 cases and 1,000 deaths.

Edited By: Emmanuel Okara/Muhammad Suleiman Tola (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

United States breaks own daily record, more than 66,000 new virus infections

Published

on

The United States again broke its own record for new coronavirus cases in a single day, with over 66,600 fresh infections documented on Friday, according to latest data from Johns Hopkins University.

The United States has broken its own record in three out of the last four days, according to the university’s tracker.

Florida, one of the states seeing the sharpest spike, reported more than 10,000 daily cases and 93 new deaths.

Disney resorts in the state are starting to reopen, beginning with the Magic Kingdom and the Animal Kingdom.

Governor Ron De Santis rejected the idea that he had pushed his state to reopen too quickly before the virus spread was under control.

This contradicts what Anthony Fauci, the government’s infectious disease expert has said.

Fauci warned that states, seeing surges of new cases, moved too swiftly in recent weeks and did not follow guidelines.

During a press conference on Saturday, De Santis said he would not be imposing a mandatory mask requirement state-wide.

Disney has enforced one at its locations, as part of its reopening, which comes about four months after the pandemic forced the parks to shut down.

Georgia, also a hotspot, shattered its own record, with more than 4,000 new cases.

However, a fight is brewing between the mayor of the state’s main city, Atlanta, a Democrat, who is trying to roll back re-openings, and the governor, a Republican, who is refusing.

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms warned of “alarming” spike in new cases.

The White House has downplayed the severity of the new outbreaks across multiple states, insisting, despite the evidence that the rising caseloads are only due to expanded testing and focusing on death rates.

While mortality figures have been in sharp decline, they are starting to tick back up, with places like Texas and Florida seeing sustained high levels, far surpassing their peaks earlier in the pandemic.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott, has been urging citizens to wear masks, despite resistance and warned he may have to impose new rules if cases and hospitalisations continue to climb.

President Donald Trump, who generally does not wear a mask, is due to visit a military hospital and has said he likely would wear a face covering while spending time with injured soldiers.

AIB

Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

German students in United States turn to their govt for help

Published

on

German students studying in the United States have appealed to their government for help after being threatened with expulsion from the country under new pandemic-era rules.

“We are counting on your support,” reads an open letter addressed to German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas and signed by almost 100 current, future and former German students in the US.

On July 6, United States immigration authorities announced foreign students attending universities offering online-only teaching due to the pandemic must transfer to another institution or leave the country.

Foreign students with a place at a university exclusively teaching online from next semester will not be allowed to enter the country.

The letter, published on Friday, slammed the United States for “an increasingly xenophobic immigration policy.”

It also asked Germany to “resolutely oppose the latest visa regulations in the interests of the European and international student body in the USA.”

“The move not only threatened students’ futures, but was “a serious attack on international academic exchange and knowledge transfer, as well as the freedom of teaching and research,’’ the letter stated.

Signatories to the letter voiced concern that Trump was trying to pressure universities into holding classes in person, even if this was not safe during the pandemic.

The German Foreign Ministry issued a response, noting the United States rule change and acknowledging the prerogative of all states to “take appropriate measures according to their particular situation” in the pandemic.

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Felix Ajide (NAN)

 

 

Continue Reading

Foreign

UN arms embargo extension: Iran warns Europe against succumbing to United States pressures

Published

on

Iran on Saturday vowed retaliatory measures if Europe were to give in to the United States pressures for extending a UN arms embargo on Iran, Tasnim news agency reported.

“We have warned the European countries that if they give in to the political and diplomatic pressures from the United States, Iran has effective measures in response,’’ Abbas Mousavi, spokesman of the foreign ministry, told Tasnim.

According to Mousavi, Washington wants to portray Tehran as a threat to security in the region when the United States forces are the real threat to regional peace, stability and security.

The United States has recently pressed the UN Security Council for the extension of the UN arms embargo on Iran that will expire in October.

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

Continue Reading

Foreign

United States warns citizens of heightened detention risks in China

Published

on

The United States State Department on Saturday warned American citizens to “exercise increased caution” in China due to heightened risk of arbitrary law enforcement, including detention and a ban from exiting the country.

“United States citizens may be detained without access to United States consular services or information about their alleged crime,” the State Department said in a security alert issued to its citizens in China.

It added that United States citizens could face “prolonged interrogations and extended detention” for reasons related to state security.

“Security personnel may detain or deport United States citizens for sending private electronic messages critical of the Chinese government,” it added, without citing specific examples.

The state department also did not say what prompted the security alert.

The security alert came as bilateral tensions intensify over issues ranging from the coronavirus pandemic, trade, the new Hong Kong security law and allegations of human rights violations against Uighurs in the Xinjiang region.

Washington and Beijing recently exchanged visa bans against each other’s officials, underscoring the deteriorating relations.

The Chinese foreign ministry could not be immediately reached for comment outside of business hours on Saturday.

On Wednesday, Beijing called a similar warning issued by Australia about the risk of arbitrary detention in China “completely ridiculous and disinformation.”

Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

Continue Reading

Manchester City aren’t the only big spenders  —- Guardiola Wigan thrash struggling Hull 8-0, West Brom draw with Fulham Atalanta whip Brescia 6-2 to go second in Serie A No roars as Tiger makes return to sounds of silence Chelsea win to boost UEFA Champions League chances 7 persons suspected to operate illegal employment agencies arrested Former nurse admits killing 7 United States military retirees Abia doctors lament poor infrastructure, exposure to diseases WASCE: Nigeria’s non-participation will cause irreparable damage – Afe Babalola Illegal refining: NSCDC arrests 6 suspects as facility catches fire in Oregun, Lagos Delta Govt to begin property enumeration to raise IGR — Commissioner Lawyers back Supreme Court judgment on virtual court proceedings Sports Minister congratulates UFC Champion, Usman OPEC launches Annual Statistics Bulletin CBN unveils non-interest guidelines for AGSMEIS, MSMEDF, others  Retirees’ benefits: NLC commends FG’s decision to release N7.45 billion Oyo SWAN mourns ex-3SC boss Buhari won’t fail Nigerians on anti-graft war, says Presidency United States bows to pressure, rescinds policy targeting foreign students Police recover 2 anti-aircraft guns, others in Borno Election: APC ‘ll reclaim Edo, says Sylva Lagos SWAN mourns former Vice Chairman, Ukaigwe Rape: Don urges states to domesticate sexual, gender-based violence laws Tambuwal urges Northern stakeholders to inject more resources, capacity to rescue education Illicit oil storage causes fire outbreak at Oregun – LASEMA boss Enugu airport runway for completion Aug. 30 – aviation minister 2020 MSMEs awards hold virtually on July 16 – Presidency Coronavirus: FRSC cautions commercial drivers in Nasarawa against non-use of passengers’ manifest Trump to hold news conference on Tuesday: White House Supreme Court judgment: Gov. Diri dedicates victory to God FG evacuates 590 Nigerians from UK, 305 from Dubai Coronavirus: NCD Alliance gets grants to help non-communicable disease patients Google hit with 600,000 Euro Belgian privacy fine Okowa congratulates Diri on Supreme Court victory Enugu airport reopens Aug. 30 – Sirika FirstBank rewards its Verve Card holders with free fuel Pompeo hails UK ban of Huawei from 5G networks APC youths leaders laud Gov Akeredolu’s feat in Ondo Strike: NMA warns LASG against escalating impasse with medical doctors Lagos gov’t pays N8.7bn to retirees in 6 months China’s Wanda Film warn a loss 2 executed in Iran after bomb attack Masks, cameras, action! Film production restarts in Californiaho Imbibe spirit of engagement, negotiation for uninterrupted healthcare delivery- Doctors DR Congo police fire tear gas to disperse protests over election chief Kogi Govt. approves construction, reticulation of Osara Water Scheme Ogun assesses business outfits ahead of post Coronavirus operations NiMet predicts cloudiness, rains Wednesday to Friday Death toll rises in Azerbaijan-Armenia border clashes Pastor, 59, allegedly defiles girl, 10 in Ogun