Trump signs proclamation restricting travel from 8 countries

admin   •   September 25, 2017   •   4752

US President Donald Trump on Sunday signed the new rules, which will impact the citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen and will take effect on October 18.

The restrictions range from full travel bans on nationals from countries like Syria to more targeted restrictions.

A suspension of non-immigrant visas to citizens for Venezuela, for instance, applies only to senior government officials and their immediate families.

The announcement comes the same day as trump’s temporary ban on visitors from six Muslim-majority countries – Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen – is set to expire, 90 days after it went into effect.

Officials stressed that valid visas would not be revoked as a result of the proclamation.

The order also permits but does not guarantee, case-by-case waivers.

The restrictions are targeted at countries that Department of Homeland Security officials said they refuse to share information with the U.S. or haven’t taken necessary security precautions.

The new policy could complicate the Supreme Court’s review of the order, which is scheduled for argument next month. — Reuters

US accuses Iran of more than 1,000 deaths during protests

Jeck Deocampo   •   December 6, 2019

US Special Representative for Iran and Senior Advisor to the Secretary of State Brian Hook responds to a question from the news media during a press conference at the US State Department in Washington, DC, USA, 4 September 2019. EPA-EFE FILE/SHAWN THEW

Washington DC – The United States government on Thursday held Iran responsible for the death of more than 1,000 people in the recent protests that shook the country.

“It appears the regime could have murdered over 1,000 Iranian citizens since the protests began,” said State Department Special Representative for Iran, Brian Hook.

Hook, however, said he was not certain of that figure because “the regime blocks information.”

According to the US official, in one single protest in the southwestern city of Mahshahr, more than a hundred people died and when it was over, the bodies were loaded in trucks.

“We do not yet know where these bodies were taken, but we are learning more and more about how the Iranian regime treats its own people,” he added.

According to Washington, the number of deaths that occurred during the protests may have been five times the number estimated by Amnesty International, which in its latest report said 208 people lost their lives adding that the number was likely to be more.

Iran, on its part, said that the number reported by AI was not correct and claimed that the actual death toll was lower.

“The numbers and figures that are being given by hostile groups are utter lies and the statistics have serious differences with what they announced,” Iran’s judicial spokesperson Gholamhossein Esmaili said.

Protests broke out in Iran on Nov. 15 over rising oil prices and its rationing and led to criticism of the country’s theocratic system.

US President Donald Trump also mentioned the protests in Iran on Thursday.

The Iranian regime “has killed hundreds and hundreds of people in a very short period of time. They’re killing protesters. They turned down their internet system. People aren’t hearing what’s going,” said the president.

Days earlier, Trump accused Iran of killing “thousands and thousands” of people. EFE-EPA

23 dead in explosion at ceramic factory in Sudan

UNTV News   •   December 4, 2019

Flames rise from a tile manufacturing unit after an explosion in an industrial zone, north Khartoum, Sudan, 03 December 2019. EPA-EFE/MARWAN ALI

KHARTOUM —At least 23 people died and 130 others were injured in an explosion and fire at a ceramic factory in the Sudanese capital Khartoum, authorities said on Tuesday.

The blast hit Salomi ceramic factory when a fuel tanker was unloading gas at the tile manufacturing facility, according to the government.

The Central Committee of Sudan Doctors urged health workers on social media to help the victims.

Khartoum State Police said the injured have been taken to five hospitals in the cities of Khartoum, North Khartoum and Omdurman.

Workers in adjacent factories were evacuated as black smoke and flames rose into the sky, causing panic in the industrial zone, according to the police.

Firefighters rushed to the scene of the blaze, with emergency services battling to stop the fire spreading to nearby factories.

Industry and Trade Minister Madani Abbas and Khartoum governor Mohamed Abdel-Rahmin and other officials have visited the scene.

The government statement said an investigation has been launched into the blast to avoid such incidents in the future and sent condolences to the families of the victims.

In March, a fire broke out due to a short circuit in offices at the old Republican Palace in Khartoum.

The palace was the official office of the Sudanese government before ousted President Omar al-Bashir switched to another in recent years.

Al-Bashir, who took power after he led a coup in the oil-rich country in 1989, was deposed and arrested in a military coup in April that came after months of anti-government demonstrations. EFE

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Death of Al-Baghdadi, not the end of ISIS — Malacañang

Marje Pelayo   •   October 28, 2019

People walk amound the rubble of destroyed buildings at the site that was hit by helicopter gunfire which reportedly killed nine people, including Abu Baker al-Baghdadi, the leader of IS or so-called Islamic State, near the village of Barisha, Idlib province, Syria, 27 October 2019 (issued 28 October 2019). EPA-EFE/YAHYA NEMAH

MANILA, Philippines – Malacañang expressed relief in the recent demise of Islamic State leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi in Syria.

The Palace, however, acknowledged that such report couldn’t do much to resolve global terrorism involving the militant group ISIS.

“The death of a leader does not mean the extinction of that group,” noted Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.

“Then again, it may also cause discouragement the on the part of the terrorist group. But as far as we are concerned, whether the leader dies or not, we will secure that part of our country from them,” he added.

Al-Baghdadi was reportedly killed in an operation initiated by the United States Special Forces in Syria.

No less than U.S President Donald Trump broke the news on Sunday (October 27) saying Al-Baghdadi detonated his suicide vest when US troops cornered him in a dead-end tunnel in Northwest Syria, in defiance to his impending arrest.

“Last night the United States brought the world’s number one terrorist leader to justice. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi is dead,” Trump said in a televised speech.

“He reached the end of the tunnel as our dogs chased him down. He ignited his vest killing himself and the three children. His body was mutilated by the blast, the tunnel had caved in on it,” Trump added.

The terrorist leader’s identity was confirmed through a DNA test from the human specimen recovered in the blast site.

“The United States has been searching for Baghdadi for many years,” Trump continued.

“Capturing or killing Baghdadi has been the top national security priority of my administration. U.S special operations forces executed a dangerous and daring night-time raid in north-western Syria and accomplished their mission in grand style,” he added.

Trump expressed gratitude to the governments of Turkey, Russia, Syria and Iraq for their support to the success of the operation.

It was in 2010 when Al-Baghdadi started to lead the Islamic State carrying US$25M bounty on his head. — MNP (with inputs from Rosalie Coz)

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