Castle Journal - Nadeemy Haded

Castle Journal - Nadeemy Haded

 

ROME (Reuters) - Major European Union states on Saturday ignored Italy's call for reform of EU budget rules, an early setback for the pro-European government in Rome.

The ministers of finance and the bloc's economy discussed at an informal meeting in Helsinki a proposed amendment to the EU regulations on public spending, but the main countries Germany, France and the Netherlands were represented by assistant ministers,

according to "Agence France Presse".

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte this week called for "improvement" and simplification of the European Union's Stability and Growth Pact, which states that the budget deficit of member states should not exceed 3 percent of GDP.

The treaty has been at the center of considerable tension between the European Commission and the former populist government in Italy, which is heavily indebted and demanding a balanced budget for Brussels in the coming weeks.

The new Italian government was formed in late August, after disagreements between the coalition government, and to avoid early elections.

The rules include debt not exceeding 60 percent of GDP.

Source Sky News

 

Saudi and US experts are investigating the possibility of using cruise missiles fired from Iraq or Iran in attacks on Saudi Aramco oil facilities in Abqaiq yesterday

The Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday that officials were skeptical about the Houthis' allegations of targeting Aramco facilities on Saturday, noting that the attack was from Iraq or Iran, which supports a group of militias in Iraq.

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a tweet: "There is no evidence that the attacks came from Yemen," and accused Tehran of launching "an unprecedented attack on energy supplies in the world."

The newspaper said that the attack on Saudi installations from Iraq is not new, US officials have already concluded, that the attack by a drone on 14 May last on a pipeline in Saudi Arabia started from Iraq, not from Yemen, and at that time, The US Secretary of State

has urged Iraq's prime minister to contain the threat posed by Iranian-backed forces in the country.

If Tehran carried out the attack directly, it would pose a new national security challenge to the United States and President Trump, who could be pressed to retaliate by striking Iran. In June, he canceled an attack on Tehran and indicated he was ready to speak.

The newspaper also predicted that Saturday's attack on Saudi Arabia would set back another US attempt to open direct talks, either with Houthi leaders to end the war in Yemen, or with the Iranian leadership to ease tensions between Tehran and Washington.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

The Turkish Defense Ministry announced on Sunday the completion of the arrival of parts and equipment of the second battery of the Russian "S-400" air defense system to the "Murtad" air base in Ankara.

The ministry said in a statement that the delivery of the first battery under the contract between Moscow and Ankara in April 2017, took place between 12 and 25 July last, and then begin delivery of the second battery on 27 August.

The ministry pointed out that the training of Turkish military on the installation and operation of the advanced Russian defense system is continuing, and is planned to be activated in April.

Turkey has not backed away from its intention to acquire the "S-400", which is one of the most advanced air defense systems in the world despite the severe pressure from the United States.

Source: Anatolia

 

The CIA has declassified documents revealing the use of animals, including dolphins, birds and even cats, to spy on the Soviet Union and its allies during the Cold War.

The fact that the United States and the Soviet Union conducted experiments on the use of animals in intelligence activities was previously known. But documents published on the CIA website reveal some previously unknown details. In particular, a picture of a pigeon

with a camera mounted on her neck from the closed CIA Museum was posted to the public. The camera weighs 35 grams, while only 5 grams weighs the tape that has been attached to the bird's body.

An animal use program has been developed at the CIA since 1960, and is used in addition to pigeons, cats, dogs, birds and dolphins.

Birds, including pigeons and crows, were used in experiments to deliver small goods, including listening and listening devices. The possibility of using migratory birds for reconnaissance in the Soviet Union or for the delivery of sensory equipment was also considered.

US intelligence also tried to use dolphins to send goods. At the Florida military base, they tried to use these animals to attack conventional enemy ships. They also tried to load recording equipment to detect Soviet submarines or traces of radiation, but the program

encountered many problems, such as the dolphins that were learned by army trainers did not return to teams. Of CIA agents in the field

The pigeons that were supposed to move between specific targets in the Soviet Union were tested in Washington, but the CIA's results were not impressive. A number of birds disappeared with expensive cameras. One pigeon survived the hawk attack, but lost a

camera she was carrying, and several other good baths managed to capture enough photos, out of 140 scenes in the video, half of which turned out to be good. At a military facility in Washington.

According to a 1976 document, the CIA developed an experimental spy operation in the Soviet Union. A bird was supposed to be launched in Leningrad in the shipyard area and then fly to a base outside the Soviet Union.

It follows from the document that the “field test” in 1976 was ultimately deemed inappropriate. The documents do not say whether there were similar attempts at a later date, however, plans to get the pigeons to the US embassy in Moscow were examined and

released from there in secret. For example, ways of firing birds through new openings at the bottom of cars were considered, however, another 1978 document shows that the problems of this program seem to the CIA leadership to be very important for the effective practical use of birds in spy fields.

Source: RIA Novosti

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said there was "tremendous progress" in reaching an agreement on Brexit, while his predecessor, David Cameron, accused him of political selfishness.

"There is a lot of work to be done until October 17," Johnson said in an interview published in the Mail on Sunday newspaper.

"But I am going to this summit and I will get an agreement, and I am very optimistic," he said at the same time, stressing that "if we do not reach an agreement, we will come out on October 31."

Johnson's comments came ahead of talks in Luxembourg on Monday with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker and EU negotiator in charge of Brexit Michel Barnier, although the British government played down the possibility of any significant

breakthrough.

"We will get out (of the EU) on October 31 and we will accomplish it (Brexit), believe me," Johnson said during the interview.

But the scale of opposition in parliament to Johnson's approach became apparent on Saturday when a lawmaker split from his conservative party to join the pro-European Liberal Democratic Party.

Former university minister Sam Gemah has strongly criticized Johnson's threats to pull out of the bloc without agreement and called for a new referendum on Brexit, after a 2016 vote.

Johnson is seeking to renegotiate the terms of the agreement reached by former Prime Minister Theresa May with the bloc and rejected by parliament, but the bloc's leaders insist they will not make any new concessions.

The so-called "safety net" plan is a major controversy between the two sides. The plan aims to keep the border open between Britain and Ireland, which would keep London tied to EU trade rules for a long period of Brexit completion.

For his part, former British Prime Minister David Cameron, 52, attacked Johnson in excerpts of his memoirs published on Sunday and accused him of "populism" and support for Brexit to support his political career.

Cameron revealed that he tried to prevent Johnson from joining the Brexit camp by offering him the post of defense minister. In his memoirs, to be published in full on Thursday, Johnson said, however, he continued his pro-Brexit campaign "and risked an outcome he

didn't believe in just because he thought it would support his political career."

Source: "AFP"

 

The French team ended their participation in the World Cup in basketball, which concludes Sunday in China, by taking the bronze medal at the expense of his Australian rival, defeating him 67-59 in the match for third place in Beijing.

The French team, which achieved a big surprise in the quarter-finals by eliminating the American team champion of the last two versions, to beat the Australian rival, who lost in the semi-final against Spain, despite the delay by the end of the first half by a difference

of nine points (21-30).

But the French, who lost in the semi-finals to Argentina, managed to turn the score in the second half, especially thanks to Nando de Colo, the best scorer in the game with 19 points and Nicolas Batum of the American Charlotte Hornets (nine points and three

rebounds and six assists), to win the bronze for the time Second consecutive.

In Australia, Utah's Jazz player Joe Inglis was the best with 17 points, five rebounds and three assists, leaving his country in fourth place, the best in his World Cup participation.

 

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern on Thursday introduced a new bill that would impose tighter gun control, as the country commemorates the six-month anniversary of the Christchurch mosque massacre.

This is the second tightening of gun possession in New Zealand, after the weak gun laws were cited as one of the main reasons why the attacker, who believes in the white race, was able to acquire semi-automatic weapons he used to kill worshipers on Friday 15

March.

Australian Brenton Tarrant was charged with carrying out the attack that killed 51 Muslims, but the defendant pleaded not guilty.

The government won near-unanimous support in parliament in introducing a law banning the acquisition of automatic weapons similar to those used by the military, in the first reforms that took place weeks after the attack, which was the worst indiscriminate

shooting in New Zealand in peacetime.

"The possession of a firearm is a virtue, not a right," Ardern said in a statement on Friday.

"That attack exposed weaknesses in legislation and we have the power to reform it. We will not be a responsible government unless we address it."

Details of the new bill have already been announced and include the establishment of a registration and documentation process to track and trace every licensed weapon in New Zealand.

The draft law also tightens rules for arms dealers and individuals with respect to obtaining or maintaining a weapons license. It reduces the period for renewal of the license for individuals from nine to five years.

New Zealand's steps to tighten gun laws have received worldwide acclaim, particularly in the United States, where activists and lawmakers in favor of tightening gun laws are seeking to tackle the use of firearms in violence.

Ardern is visiting Christchurch to mark the six-month anniversary of the attack. It also announced increased funding to meet the mental health needs of those affected.

Source: Reuters

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