Tag Archives: Start

Michelle Obama Is Challenging People To Start Voting Squads As Midterms Near

Michelle Obama Is Challenging People To Start Voting Squads As Midterms NearMichelle Obama is continuing her efforts to increase voter turnout in the



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Erdogan demands Germany seize 'terrorists' as state visit gets off to icy start amid street protests

Erdogan demands Germany seize 'terrorists' as state visit gets off to icy start amid street protestsRecep Tayyip Erdogan, the Turkish president, was greeted with protests and controversy in Germany on Friday as a state visit that was supposed to repair relations between the two Nato allies appeared only to highlight their stark divisions. Thousands of demonstrators marched through the streets of Berlin under a banner of “Erdogan not welcome”, while a Kurdish activist burnt himself to death in an apparent suicide protest. Angela Merkel appeared to throw Mr Erdogan a lifeline by offering him a full state visit at a time when Turkey is struggling under the weight of US economic sanctions. But there was little sign of common ground after the two held face-to-face talks. “It is important to continue the dialogue with Turkey, because we can only work out our differences by talking,” Mrs Merkel told a joint press conference. "There is much that unites us: Nato membership, the migrant issue, and the fight against terror." But she added: “There are still profound differences between us over press freedom and the rule of law.” As if to underline the point, Mr Erdogan used the press conference to demand the extradition of a prominent Turkish journalist living in self-imposed exile in Germany. A woman shows Kurdish symbols and a sticker with a portrait of Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers' Party Credit: AP Photo/Markus Schreiber And Mrs Merkel’s words were undercut when another journalist was thrown out of the press conference for wearing a T-shirt that called for “Freedom for journalists in Turkey”. Ties between the allies have been strained by the crackdown on opponents of the regime in Turkey, and Mrs Merkel urged Mr Erdogan to free five German citizens who are being held in Turkey on what Germany maintains are “political charges”. But Mr Erdogan rebuffed the request and responded by demanding Germany do more to help Turkey in its crackdown on opponents of his regime. "I can not interfere in the German justice system or criticise them, nor can you interfere with the Turkish judiciary or criticize them,” he said. “Germany must be more determined in the fight against terror.” He claimed supporters of the militant Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and Fethullah Gülen, the cleric Turkey alleges was behind a failed coup in 2016, are living in Germany. The Turkish foreign ministry reportedly handed over a list of 69 people it wants Germany to extradite as he arrived. Profile | Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Earlier, there were frosty scenes as Mr Erdogan was received with full military honours. The German president, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, appeared at pains to show he was only welcoming his Turkish counterpart on sufferance, and remained stony-faced throughout. More than 200 guests refused invitations to a state banquet in Mr Erdogan’s honour, among them prominent figures from across the German political spectrum. An estimated 4,000 protestors marched through central Berlin to the Bellevue palace where the official banquet was held. The march was led by a homemade cardboard tank. One man held aloft a banner that read "No deals with the devil". But the protestors' numbers were smaller than expected, and the march was peaceful under a heavy police presence. Nevertheless, the visit was fraught from the start. The German press published pictures of Mr Erdogan appearing to give the four-fingered salute of the Muslim Brotherhood as he arrived on Thursday. Bild, Germany’s biggest-selling newspaper, described it as a “provocation against Western values and democracy”. The charred body of a 26-year-old Kurdish activist was found in Bavaria after he set himself alight. German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier (L) and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan arrive for a state dinner at Bellevue presidential palace Credit: ADAM BERRY/AFP/Getty Images In a video message left behind, Umit Acar reportedly said his death was a protest against Turkish military operations against Kurds in Turkey and Syria. “I chose today especially, because Erdogan is coming here,” he said. “In all the massacres that the Turks have committed against the Kurds, the Germans delivered them weapons.” The joint press conference with Mrs Merkel almost didn’t take place after Mr Erdogan threatened to boycott it if Can Dündar , a prominent former Turkish newspaper editor living in Germany, was allowed to attend. He later used the press conference to demand Mr Dündar’s extradition to Turkey. “This is our natural right,” he said, claiming Mr Dündar was a “spy” who had published “state secrets” over a report which alleged Turkish intelligence armed Islamist factions in Syria. There was no question of Germany agreeing to extradite Mr Dundar, Heiko Maas, the foreign minister, said. "I look forward to seeing more of Mr Dündar in Germany in future," he added. The only real progress appeared to be when Mrs Merkel announced a joint summit over Syria next month with Mr Erdogan, France’s Emmanel Macron and Vladimir Putin of Russia. Mr Erdogan has been pushing for such a meeting, but one name conspicupous by its absence was that of Donald Trump. The US president has taken a different approach to freeing prisoners held in Turkey, imposing economic sanctions over Mr Erdogan’s refusal to release an American pastor. Mrs Merkel made clear in the run-up to yesterday’s talks that her priority was to preserve relations between Turkey and the West amid fears the US sanctions are pushing Mr Erdogan into Russia’s embrace.



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Japan space robots start asteroid survey

Japan space robots start asteroid surveyA pair of robot rovers have landed on an asteroid and begun a survey, Japan’s space agency said Saturday, as it conducts a mission aiming to shed light on the origins of the solar system. The rover mission marks the world’s first moving, robotic observation of an asteroid surface, according to the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA). The round, cookie tin-shaped robots successfully reached the Ryugu asteroid a day after they were released from the Hayabusa2 probe, the agency said.



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EU executive head backs start of punitive action versus Hungary over rule of law

EU executive head backs start of punitive action versus Hungary over rule of lawEuropean Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he supported the European Parliament’s decision on Wednesday to open a punitive procedure against Hungary for persistently flaunting democratic rules. The procedure, called Article 7, can theoretically go as far as suspending of Hungary’s voting rights in the EU. “If I was a member of the European Parliament, I would have voted in favor of Article 7,” Juncker said in a tweet.



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Leon Panetta Says Trump's 'Failed' North Korea Summit Was 'Doomed' From The Start

Leon Panetta Says Trump's 'Failed' North Korea Summit Was 'Doomed' From The StartFormer Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on Sunday bashed President Donald



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Trump says he's 'prepared to start a new history' with Kim, but offers few details about their future

Trump says he's 'prepared to start a new history' with Kim, but offers few details about their futureWhile President Trump and Korean leader Kim Jong Un's joint statement praised their meeting as “an epochal event of great significance,” some experts on the volatile region had clear misgivings the summit didn’t yield more substantive results. North Korea’s promise to eliminate its nuclear arsenal did not include a commitment to verifiable, irreversible denuclearization nor any explicit agreements on exactly what would be destroyed and how the process could be monitored.



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Trump says June 12 summit with North Korea is start of ‘process’

Trump says June 12 summit with North Korea is start of ‘process’The President said the summit with Kim Jong Un could be the first of multiple meetings as the two countries work towards a deal.



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Tom Cruise Shares Photo To Tease Start of Production on 'Top Gun 2'

Tom Cruise Shares Photo To Tease Start of Production on 'Top Gun 2'Tom Cruise is officially back in the cockpit.



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China vs. America: 3 Ways a War in the South China Sea Could Start

China vs. America: 3 Ways a War in the South China Sea Could StartMany analysts are arguing that the PLAN needs to push its submarines past the first island chain in order to seriously threaten U.S. access to China’s littoral.  Preparing for this would require increasing the tempo of the PLAN’s submarine operations, which would more often put China’s boats in proximity with Japanese and American subs.  To be sure, Chinese submarines are loud enough that U.S. boats should have plenty of time to get out of their way, but the same could be said of Soviet boats for much of the Cold War. It’s easy to imagine an even more serious confrontation in the SCS.  Another accidental collision would be bad enough, but if a scenario developed similar to that of the downing of KAL 007, with a Chinese fighter jock actually opening fire on an American plane, the situation could get ugly very quickly.  And if an American pilot fired upon a Chinese plane, the reaction of the Chinese public could become too much for Beijing to reasonably handle.



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Ethiopian govt and opposition start talks on amending anti-terrorism law

Ethiopian govt and opposition start talks on amending anti-terrorism lawBy Aaron Maasho ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia’s ruling coalition started talks with opposition groups on Wednesday on amending provisions of an anti-terrorism law that critics say has criminalised dissent, state-affiliated media said. Watchdog groups say the 2009 law’s broad definitions have been used indiscriminately against anyone who opposes government policy. The discussions follow the release on Tuesday of opposition leader Andargachew Tsige, who was sentenced to death under the law in 2009 over his role in the opposition group Ginbot 7, which the government has labelled a terrorist organisation.



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