Tag Archives: western

Kremlin brushes off Western calls to release Navalny


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Iran has Western hostages locked up at all times in case it wants leverage for a deal with their country


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Iran President Suggests Western Troops ‘Could Be in Danger’ over Threats to Nuclear Deal

Iran President Suggests Western Troops ‘Could Be in Danger’ over Threats to Nuclear DealIranian President Hassan Rouhani said that U.S. and European troops are in “danger” after Germany, France, and the United Kingdom triggered a dispute mechanism in the Obama-led Iran nuclear deal.“Today, the American soldier is in danger, tomorrow the European soldier could be in danger,” Rouhani said in a televised cabinet meeting. “We want you to leave this region but not with war. We want you to go wisely. It is to your own benefit.”Rouhani also angrily reiterated that Iran does not seek a nuclear weapon.The three European powers announced their decision to invoke the conflict resolution mechanism on Monday in a joint statement, saying that had been “left with no choice, given Iran’s actions.”Following a U.S. airstrike that killed general Qasem Soleimani, the head of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard’s elite Quds Force, Iran announced it was ending “its final limitations” under the nuclear deal.The dispute mechanism allows for a disputation process that will last 15 days. If no solution is agreed upon, Iran could face reimposed sanctions from the international community.President Trump took the U.S. out of the nuclear deal in May 2018, despite the protestations of European leaders, after calling the deal “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into.”“It is clear to me we cannot prevent an Iranian nuclear bomb, under the decaying and rotten structure of the current agreement,” the President said at the time.Iran first made public a major breach of the deal in July when it exceeded the allotted 3.67 percent maximum uranium enrichment, while remaining far short of the 90 percent required to construct a nuclear weapon.



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Protesters hit Hong Kong commute as western powers urge restraint

Protesters hit Hong Kong commute as western powers urge restraintHong Kong protesters struck the city’s transport network for a second day running on Tuesday as western powers voiced concern over spiralling violence after police shot a young demonstrator and another man was set on fire. The flare-up is the latest in the 24 straight weeks of increasingly violent rallies in Hong Kong, aimed at securing greater democratic freedoms from China. Small bands of masked protesters blocked roads, threw objects onto rail tracks and held up subway trains, sparking cat-and-mouse clashes with riot police and renewed chaos throughout the day.



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Defense chief: US troops leaving Syria to go to western Iraq

Defense chief: US troops leaving Syria to go to western IraqDefense Secretary Mark Esper says that under current plans all U.S. troops leaving Syria will go to western Iraq and the military will continue to conduct operations against the Islamic State group to prevent its resurgence. Speaking to reporters traveling with him to the Middle East, Esper did not rule out the idea that U.S. forces would conduct counterterrorism missions from Iraq into Syria. Esper said he has spoken to his Iraqi counterpart about the plan to shift the more than 700 troops leaving Syria into western Iraq.



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UPDATE 1-All U.S. troops withdrawing from Syria expected to go to western Iraq- Pentagon chief

UPDATE 1-All U.S. troops withdrawing from Syria expected to go to western Iraq- Pentagon chiefOn Thursday, Turkey agreed in talks with U.S. Vice President Mike Pence to a five-day pause in an offensive into northeastern Syria to allow time for the Kurdish fighters to withdraw from a “safe zone” Ankara aims to establish near the Turkish border with Syria. The truce also aimed to ease a crisis triggered by President Donald Trump’s abrupt decision earlier this month to withdraw all 1,000 U.S. troops from northern Syria, a move criticized in Washington and elsewhere as a betrayal of loyal Kurdish allies who had fought for years alongside U.S. troops against Islamic State.



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With military parade, Iran warns U.S. and other Western forces to leave the Persian Gulf

With military parade, Iran warns U.S. and other Western forces to leave the Persian GulfAs Iran paraded its troops and its arsenal of various weapons Sunday, the country's president demanded the U.S. and other Western nations leave the Persian Gulf.



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Russia’s Military Admits It Needs Western Technology

Russia’s Military Admits It Needs Western TechnologyWhen Western nations imposed economic sanctions after Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2014, Moscow had an answer: Russia would substitute domestic products for foreign imports.But Russia’s defense industry is still using imported parts despite the government ban, according to Russia’s top prosecutor.“Import substitution in the defense industry remains a problem," warned Prosecutor-General Yuri Chaika. "Instances of non-compliance with the ban to purchase foreign equipment whose counterparts are manufactured in Russia continue to be revealed."“In the framework of import substitution in the defense industry, it is vital to ensure compliance with the deadlines for replacing components,” said First Deputy Prosecutor General Alexander Buksman. “Raw and [other] materials produced by NATO countries and Ukraine, used to manufacture machines, arms, military and special equipment, prevent non-compliance with the ban on the budget-funded purchase of foreign equipment, analogues of which are produced in Russia.”Unfortunately, the problem is that equivalents to Western goods are often not produced in Russia. “Russia produces few high value goods that can compete with imports,” noted a 2017 Moscow Times article. “Thanks to oil inflating the value of the ruble it has always been cheaper and easier to import finished goods than go through the process of investing money into expensive production and development lines that produce goods that are, at the end of the day, inferior to the imports.”



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China defends Hong Kong police, blames Western forces

China defends Hong Kong police, blames Western forces



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Iran Seizes British Oil Tanker, Escalating Tensions With Western Powers

Iran Seizes British Oil Tanker, Escalating Tensions With Western PowersGIUSEPPE CACACEIran’s military seized a British tanker in the Persian Gulf on Friday, further ratcheting up the tensions between Tehran and Western powers in the Persian Gulf. Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps announced via state-run news outlets that it had seized the British tanker Stena Impero “for failing to respect international maritime rules.”The seizure comes as an apparent response to Britain’s detention of an Iranian tanker off the coast of Gibraltar in early July and comes on the heels of a series of alleged Iranian attacks on Japanese, European, and Middle Eastern tankers in the Gulf of Oman. British officials told reporters that they are “urgently seeking further information and assessing the situation.” A British official told The Daily Beast that the incident is currently being discussed at the highest levels of the British government. Separately, Defense Department officials confirmed to CNN that Iran had captured a second tanker on Friday, the MV Mesdar, a Liberian-flagged vessel. As Iran-U.S. Tensions Rise, Hezbollah Readies for War With IsraelBefore Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) announced the seizure on Friday, vessel tracking data showed the Stena Impero diverting off course and towards the Iranian island of Qeshm, home to a number of IRGC-N facilities. A statement posted to the website of Stena Bulk and Northern Marine Management, the ship’s owner, said the Stena Impero “was approached by unidentified small crafts and a helicopter during transit of the Strait of Hormuz while the vessel was in international waters.” The company said there are 23 crew members aboard the ship at present.Earlier this week, Iran announced that it had seized another tanker, the MT Riah, after it disappeared and was last seen heading towards Qeshm. The Riah had been owned by a United Arab Emirates company but Emirati officials denied that the Riah was owned or operated by Emirati entities. Iranian officials claimed to have seized the vessel after it allegedly engaged in oil smuggling. The British tanker incident follows a series of Iranian threats to retaliate against the U.K. for the seizure of an Iranian oil tanker off the coast of Gibraltar in early July. Royal Marines boarded the Grace 1 tanker on the grounds that it was allegedly delivering oil to the Assad regime in violation of European Union sanctions. Iran denied that the tanker was headed for Syria and demanded its release. A Gibraltar court ruled on Friday that the ship must stay detained for at least another month. In the wake of the seizure, senior Iranian military and political officials vowed retaliation against the U.K. for taking the Grace 1. Iran’s top military officer, Armed Forces Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Mohammad Bagheri said the British seizure “will not go unanswered” and that Iran would respond “at an appropriate time and place.” President Hassan Rouhani also threatened that the U.K. “will realize the consequences later” for its actions. On Wednesday, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei renewed the threats and said Iran “will not leave such evil deeds unanswered.”Iran appeared to try and make good on those threats in early July when IRGC Navy (IRGC-N) vessels harassed a BP tanker, British Heritage, as it sailed by the Iranian island of Abu Musa. IRGC-N boats tried to stop the tanker before a British Navy frigate, HMS Montrose, trained its guns on the boats and ordered them to move away. Before the incident, the British Heritage had anchored off the coast of Saudi Arabia, wary of sailing the Gulf in light of Iranian threats to British shipping. Those anxieties are shared among British shippers who have watched the escalating tensions between the U.K. and Iran with concern. Britain’s department of transport raised its threat level for vessels in the Gulf to “critical” while maritime organizations have urged shippers not to escalate the threat by hiring armed private security contractors to guard their ships. The U.K. announced earlier this week that it would send an additional warship to the Gulf, the HMS Duncan, a guided missile destroyer, to provide security for its vessels.In May, following the announcement of an expedited deployment of U.S. warships and bombers to the Gulf, six tankers were attacked by apparent limpet mines in two separate incidents off the coast of the United Arab Emirates Fujairah port and in the Gulf of Oman. The U.S. blamed Iran naval commandos for both attacks and released footage of Iranian troops removing a device from the hull of a ship that had recently been attacked. Read more at The Daily Beast.Got a tip? Send it to The Daily Beast hereGet our top stories in your inbox every day. Sign up now!Daily Beast Membership: Beast Inside goes deeper on the stories that matter to you. Learn more.



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