Friday, January 28News That Matters

World

‘Didn’t need to happen’: Pentagon seeks answers for deadly attack

‘Didn’t need to happen’: Pentagon seeks answers for deadly attack

World
Washington, August 28 By Wednesday night, US intelligence agencies were near certain that an attack was imminent outside Kabul airport, triggering a State Department warning to American citizens to leave the area immediately. Just over 12 hours later, a suicide bomber walked through the large crowds to a gate manned by US troops and detonated explosives, killing at least 13 US service members and 79 Afghans. It was a tragic coda to America's 20-year war in Afghanistan, the largest loss of life for the US military there in a decade, on the cusp of the full withdrawal of troops by August 31 ordered by President Joe Biden. Among the most pressing questions as the US military launches its investigation: How did the bomber make it through Taliban checkpoints? Why were US troops in such a co...
US warship transits Taiwan Strait after Chinese assault drills

US warship transits Taiwan Strait after Chinese assault drills

World
Washington, August 28 A US warship and a US Coast Guard cutter sailed through the Taiwan Strait on Friday, the latest in what Washington calls routine operations through the sensitive waterway that separates Taiwan from China, which claims the self-ruled island. The passage comes amid a spike in military tensions in the past two years between Taiwan and China, and follows Chinese assault drills last week, with warships and fighter jets exercising off the island's southwest and southeast. The Kidd, an Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, accompanied by the Coast Guard cutter Munro, transited "through international waters in accordance with international law," the US Navy said in a statement. "The ships' lawful transit through the Taiwan Strait demonstrates the US commitment to ...
Anger, grief for family members of 13 US troops killed in Afghanistan

Anger, grief for family members of 13 US troops killed in Afghanistan

World
August 28 Steve Nikoui had been glued to TV reports on Thursday, desperate for hints his son, Lance Corporal Kareem Nikoui, survived the deadly airport suicide bombing in Afghanistan when three Marines arrived at his door with the worst news possible. ALso read: Kabul airport suicide blasts kill, injure over 100, including US marines US strikes Islamic State in Afghanistan after deadly Kabul attack US says it wants 'deeds, not words' from Taliban to recognise it diplomatically The 20-year-old Marine, who the previous day had sent home a video of himself giving candy to Afghan children, was among 13 US service members killed in the bombing. Others included an expectant father from Wyoming, the son of a California police officer and a medic from Ohio. "He was born the same year it ...
US sticks to August 31 deadline to complete Afghan mission

US sticks to August 31 deadline to complete Afghan mission

World
Washington, August 28 The US has said it will go ahead with its plan to conclude its Afghanistan mission by August 31, even as the evacuation effort, which is now in its "retrograde period", is facing an "ongoing and acute threat" from ISIS-K. August 31 is the deadline set by both the US and the Taliban for America's pullout from war-torn Afghanistan. "The threat is ongoing and it is active. Our troops are still in danger. That continues to be the case every day that they are there. This is the most dangerous part of the mission," White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters at her daily news conference on Friday. "This is the retrograde period of the mission. What that means is that this is the period of time when the military commanders on the ground and forces begin to move ...
US says it wants ‘deeds, not words’ from Taliban to recognise it diplomatically

US says it wants ‘deeds, not words’ from Taliban to recognise it diplomatically

World
Washington, August 28 The US has said it expects "deeds, not words" and "follow-through" on pledges by the Taliban to recognise the group diplomatically. Addressing a press conference on Friday, State Department spokesperson Ned Price said the Taliban had made clear that "they would like to see an American diplomatic presence remain" in Afghanistan. They "have been quite clear and quite open in the fact that they would like other countries to retain their diplomatic missions", he said, adding that a Taliban spokesperson had said the other day that "we appreciate the embassies that remain open and didn't close. We assure them of their safety and protection". Price said the US is yet to take a call on the issue, but "it is something we are actively discussing, both with our partners and ...
Tom Cruise’s BMW stolen while shooting in UK

Tom Cruise’s BMW stolen while shooting in UK

World
London, August 28 Hollywood star Tom Cruise is currently in the UK filming the latest 'Mission: Impossible' movie, and his luxury car got stolen by thieves. "Tom had been driven around in the car while in Birmingham and some of his luggage and belongings were inside it when it was taken," a source told The Sun newspaper, reports femalefirst.co.uk. The source added: "It's since been recovered by police because it was equipped with an electronic tracking device but everything inside it had gone. It's a huge embarrassment for the security team and the guy who had been driving it was hopping mad -- but not as mad as Tom!" The thieves used cutting-edge technology to clone the signal from the car's keyless ignition fob, before they stole the vehicle from the security team. However, luxury ca...
Don’t let ISIS-K spread, US warns Taliban

Don’t let ISIS-K spread, US warns Taliban

World
Washington, August 27 US President Joe Biden has warned that it is in the interest of the Taliban, which is now the de facto ruler of Afghanistan, that the ISIS-K does not "metastasize" beyond what it is. The US has held ISIS-K, the regional affiliate of the Islamic State terror outfit, responsible for Thursday's Kabul airport attack. During his interaction with reporters in the East Room of the White House, the president also referred to the apparent ideological differences between the Taliban and the ISIS-K. Biden said there is no evidence so far to suggest a collusion between the Taliban and the ISIS in carrying out the airport attack. US forces helping to evacuate Afghans desperate to flee new Taliban rule were on alert for more attacks on Friday. General Frank McKenzie, head of US ...
Modi, Draghi discuss Afghanistan

Modi, Draghi discuss Afghanistan

World
Tribune News Service New Delhi, August 27 Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday spoke on the phone with his counterpart from Italy Mario Draghi to discuss the situation in Afghanistan and its implications for the region and the world. Italy is among a handful of nations still carrying out evacuation flights from Kabul. In fact, there was firing at an Italian aircraft flying out of Kabul around the time of the bomb blasts. Strongly condemning the Kabul terror attack, the two Prime Ministers stressed on the need for international cooperation, including at the level of G20, in addressing the humanitarian crisis and long-term security concerns due to the developments in Afghanistan, according to an official statement. The two leaders discussed other important issues on the G20 agenda, su...
Covid poses bigger blood clot threat than vaccines, finds British study

Covid poses bigger blood clot threat than vaccines, finds British study

World
London, August 27 A Covid infection presents a much higher risk of developing a blood clot than the first dose of either the Oxford/AstraZeneca or the Pfizer/BioNTech jab, a large study led by the University of Oxford said on Friday. The research used findings from more than 29 million people who were vaccinated with the first doses of either vaccine between December 2020 and April 2021. The findings showed although there was an increased risk of having a blood clot after having the first doses of either vaccine, it was much greater in someone who had tested positive for Covid caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. "People should be aware of these increased risks after vaccination," said Julia Hippisley-Cox, Professor at the University of Oxford and lead author of the paper. — PTI
Vietnam urged to free dissidents

Vietnam urged to free dissidents

World
Hanoi, August 27 US Vice President Kamala Harris has said she raised issues of human rights abuses and restrictions on political activism in her conversations with Vietnamese leaders this week, but offered no indication those talks bore fruit. "We're not going to shy away from difficult conversations. Difficult conversations often must be had with the people that you otherwise may have a partnership with," she said in Hanoi. — AP