Erdoğan brands Dutch ‘Nazi remnants’ for barring Turkish MP
Rotterdam officials withdraw permission for foreign minister to land in city amid row over cancelled rally
The Turkish president has branded the Netherlands “Nazi remnants” and “fascists” after one of his ministers was barred from entering the country in an escalating row over a cancelled rally in Rotterdam.
Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made his comments on Saturday after the Dutch government withdrew permission for his foreign minister to land there for a planned visit.
Rotterdam city authorities withdrew permission on Friday for Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu to attend a meeting of the Turkish community to rally support for Erdoğan’s plans to extend his powers. The plans are to be voted on in a referendum in Turkey next month.
Several other European cities have banned Turkish officials from attending such meetings aimed at expats who are allowed to vote in the referendum.
DAMASCUS, Syria (AFP) — Twin bombs targeting Shiite pilgrims on Saturday killed 46 people in Damascus, most of them Iraqis, a monitoring group said, in one of the bloodiest attacks in the Syrian capital.
There have been periodic bomb attacks in Damascus, but the stronghold of the regime of President Bashar Assad has been largely spared the destruction faced by other major cities in six years of civil war.
A roadside bomb detonated as a bus passed and a suicide bomber blew himself up in the Bab al-Saghir area, which houses several Shiite mausoleums that draw pilgrims from around the world, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
“There are also dozens of people wounded, some of them in a serious condition,” Observatory chief Rami Abdel Rahman told AFP.
State television said there were 40 dead and 120 wounded after “terrorists detonated two bombs.”
It broadcast footage of several white buses with their windows shattered, some of them heavily charred.
Shoes, glasses and wheelchairs laid scattered on the ground covered in blood.
Syrian Interior Minister Mohammad Shaar said the attack targeted “pilgrims of various Arab nationalities.”
“The sole aim was to kill,” he said.
The Iraqi foreign ministry said around 40 of its nationals were among the dead and 120 among the wounded.
Iran’s ambassador to the United Nation’s atomic agency claimed that “Israel-hired terrorists” were behind the assassinations of several nuclear scientists in recent years.
Speaking with the IAEA Board of Governors, Reza Najafi on Thursday also criticized Israel for not adhering to international nuclear treaties, and the international community for ignoring it.
“While nuclear scientists across the entire Middle East have been assassinated by Israeli-hired terrorists, the regime’s nuclear experts are allowed access to some countries’ nuclear facilities,” he said, according to reports in Iranian media.
“Unfortunately, the Zionist Regime has ignored the rightful requests of the international community in the last years, and having the blind support of some western countries and with infringing all international laws and regulations, has pushed its dangerous military nuclear program forward.”
At least 4 Iranian scientists were assassinated between 2010-2012, and Iran has long claimed Israel’s spy agency was behind the killings as part of a campaign to sabotage its rogue nuclear program.
Suspect In House IT Security Probe Also Had Access To DNC Emails
Imran Awan — the lead suspect in a criminal probe into breaches of House of Representatives information security systems — possessed the password to an iPad used by then-Democratic National Committee Chairperson Debbie Wasserman Schultz when DNC emails were given to WikiLeaks, The Daily Caller News Foundation Investigative Group has learned.
Wasserman Schultz resigned the DNC post in the wake of WikiLeaks posting damaging internal emails, blaming the scandal on hacking by Russians.
Imran and his family members, all of whom worked as IT professionals for members of Congress, were banned from the House network Feb. 2, 2017, by the House Sergeant at Arms, but Wasserman Schultz has declined to fire him and circumvented the ban by having him “advise” her office.
WikiLeaks emails show that although Imran was employed by her taxpayer-funded House office, the Florida Democrat’s world — and iPad — mixed DNC, House and campaign business, and that Imran was on call for, and on a first-name basis with, top DNC staff.
Iran is on the verge of reaching a deal with the regime of Syrian President Bashar Assad to build a military base at the port of Latakia on the Mediterranean coast, an Israeli diplomatic official told the Hebrew news site Walla on Friday.
According to the report, this would be Assad’s way of paying Iran back for the extensive military and financial support it has provided to the Assad regime since the outbreak of the ongoing war in Syria six years ago.
The Jewish state, the report said, views the establishment of an Iranian military presence on the Mediterranean Sea as an “extreme step” that would “foster instability in the region and promote terrorism against Israel.” Among other things, according to Walla, it would bolster Iran-backed Hezbollah and increase the threat to the Israeli home front. Latakia is located less than 200 miles up the coast from Israel’s northern port of Haifa.
India test-fires BrahMos supersonic cruise missile
ODISHA: India today successfully test-fired the BrahMos supersonic cruise missile, which is capable of carrying a warhead of 300 kg, from a test range along the Odisha coast.
Fresh evidence of graft found against Rheinmetall, middleman allegedly hired to secure contract
By Manu Pubby, ET Bureau | Mar 11, 2017, 06.15 AM IST
NEW DELHI: In a new twist to a corruption case involving arms giant Rheinmetall, the investigative agencies have got fresh evidence alleging that the company entered into a commission contract with a well-known arms dealer to sell air defence guns in India in violation of rules that bar middlemen.
The contract covered a two-year period that ended 2007 during which the company signed a deal with Ordnance Factory Board (OFB). A letter confirming this from the arms company, previously ..
Germany bans over 30 Kurdish symbols, incl. flag of US-backed Syrian militia fighting ISIS – report
Berlin has reportedly banned a total of 33 symbols used by Kurdish political and military groups, including the flag of a US ally in Syria, YPG militia, and a portrait of an outlawed Kurdish party leader. The move comes amid Germany’s tensions with Turkey.
In a letter, seen by German Spiegel newspaper on Friday, German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere allegedly ordered a wide range of symbols associated with Kurdish politics to be banned from public display in Germany. The five-page document with respective instructions and the attached list of prohibited images was forwarded by the minister to regional authorities and federal law enforcement on March 2, according to the outlet.
Among the images is the portrait of Kurdistan’s Workers’ Party (PKK) founder Abdullah Öcalan who is serving a life sentence for forming an armed organization in Turkey. Justifying the necessity of the move, De Maiziere allegedly argued that banners with Öcalan’s portraits against yellow and yellow-green background have “a significant emotional impact” and therefore should be forbidden as they are “especially suited to promote cohesion of PKK which is banned in Germany.”
German nuclear plants shuttered, jets scrambled after passenger plane scare
Five nuclear power plants in Germany were briefly shut down after a commercial plane lost radio contact while flying over German airspace.
The Air India jet, with 231 passengers and 18 crew members on board, was traveling from Ahmedabad to London when it went missing from air traffic control radio frequencies for 22 minutes from 10:27am GMT Friday morning.
The communications blackout resulted in two German Luftwaffe fighter jets being scrambled to escort the plane, Spiegel reported.
As part of “pre-alarm” measures in Germany, fighter jets are on standby to assess any wayward aircraft traveling in the nation’s airspace that could pose a threat.
What was meant to be a closely choreographed display of unity instead took on an increasingly chaotic air as Warsaw filled what has traditionally been Britain’s role as the black sheep of the European family.In a bombshell ultimatum the country’s prime minister said she would block any attempts to move the project forward by allowing some member states to integrate at a faster pace than others.
Things then reportedly took an ugly turn at dinner as the move led to a blazing row erupting between Poland and France which has threatened to sour the EU’s upcoming birthday celebrations.
A visibly furious French president Francois Hollande apparently made a threat to pull the plug on funding to the Eastern European state unless it stepped into line, prompting Warsaw to run to the press crying blackmail.
The idea of a two-speed Europe, which has previously been floated by Jean-Claude Juncker, was given the seal of approval by the bloc’s four big beasts of France, Germany, Italy and Spain at their own private summit earlier this week.
March 9 (UPI) —North Korea may have sold lithium-6, a type of lithium metal, to an overseas buyer, according to United Nations investigators.
Members of the U.N.’s Panel of Experts have issued a report that includes information on North Korea’s weapons sales and the North Korea front company Green Pine Association Corp. that has been selling lithium online, The Wall Street Journal reported.
U.S. lawmakers briefed the State Department and intelligence agencies on the details of the report after being apprised of the information.
Green Pine makes missile systems, submarines and maritime military equipment, according to the report.
Japan, U.S. conduct Navy drills in East China Sea: report
The Japanese and U.S. navies are conducting joint exercises in the East China Sea as tension intensifies in the region following North Korea’s missile tests, local media reported on Friday.
The two sides launched the drill earlier this week, involving Japanese destroyers and a U.S. Navy carrier strike group, the Sankei Shimbun daily and Kyodo News said, quoting unnamed Japanese and U.S. government sources.
The Sankei said the drill was aimed at issuing a warning against nuclear-armed North Korea.
But is added the exercise was also meant to display the joint Japan-U.S. military presence in the East China Sea, where Japan and China are locked in a long-running dispute over uninhabited islets.
In Japan they are known as the Senkakus, while China claims then as the Diaoyus.