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Middle East

Iran moving forward on key aspect of developing a nuclear bomb, claims US

Iran is talking more about getting a nuclear bomb and has made strides in developing a key aspect of a weapon since about April, when Israel and its allies overpowered a barrage of Iranian airstrikes targeting Israel, two top Biden administration officials said Friday. Secretary of State Antony Blinken and national security adviser Jake Sullivan, speaking at separate panels during a security forum in Colorado, said the United States was watching closely for any signs that Iran had made a decision to pursue actual weaponization of its nuclear program. However, Sullivan said, I have not seen a decision by Iran to move in a way that signals it has decided to actually develop a nuclear bomb right now. "If they start moving down that road, they'll find a real problem with the United States," Sullivan said at the Aspen Security Forum, which draws U.S. policymakers, journalists and others. Iran resumed progress on its nuclear program after the Trump administration ended US cooperation wit

Iran moving forward on key aspect of developing a nuclear bomb, claims US
Updated On : 20 Jul 2024 | 7:51 AM IST

Houthi militants strike, damage Singapore-flagged vessel in Gulf of Aden

A Singapore-flagged vessel was damaged in an attack allegedly by Houthi militants southeast of Yemen on Friday, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) said in a statement. The MPA said it was informed that container vessel the LOBIVIA was hit by "unidentified projectiles" while transiting the Gulf of Aden, resulting in a fire onboard that was subsequently extinguished by the crew. There are no Singaporeans among the crew, Channel News Asia reported, citing the authority and adding that all crew are accounted for and safe. Despite being hit, the vessel was able to set sail and arrived at Somalia's Berbera Port. Damage assessment and repairs, if needed, will be carried out, it said. MPA said it is in contact with the vessel manager to provide any assistance that might be needed. The Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) has also alerted its security partners in the Gulf of Aden region to provide help, it added. In a televised speech, Houthi military spokesperson Yahya Sarea s

Houthi militants strike, damage Singapore-flagged vessel in Gulf of Aden
Updated On : 20 Jul 2024 | 7:32 AM IST

Argentina's show of support to Israel, designates Hamas a terrorist group

Argentina designated Hamas a terrorist organisation on Friday and ordered a freeze on the financial assets of the Palestinian group, a largely symbolic move as President Javier Milei seeks to align Argentina strongly with the US and Israel. Announcing the decision, Milei's office cited the militant Palestinian group's cross-border attack on Israel last October 7 that killed some 1,200 people and took 250 others hostage, in the deadliest assault in Israel's 76-year history. The statement also mentioned Hamas' close ties to Iran, which Argentina blames for two deadly militant attacks on Jewish sites in the country. The move comes just days before the 30th anniversary of one of those attacks, the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires. It killed 85 people and wounded hundreds more in the worst such attack in Argentina's modern history. The other attack on the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires, in 1992, killed more than 20 people. Argentina's judiciary has accused memb

Argentina's show of support to Israel, designates Hamas a terrorist group
Updated On : 13 Jul 2024 | 10:27 AM IST

Palestinians return to rubble in Gaza City after Israeli withdrawal

Palestinians returned to breathtaking scenes of destruction in the Gaza City district of Shijaiyah after Israeli troops withdrew, ending a two-week offensive there. Civil defense workers said Thursday that so far, they had found the bodies of 60 people in the rubble. Families who fled the assault ventured back into Shijaiyah to see the condition of their homes or salvage whatever they could. Nearly every building was flattened to rubble for block after block, leaving giant piles of concrete and twisted rebar. Here and there, grey gutted concrete frames still stood a few stories high. The ever-present buzzing sound of Israeli military drones hung in the hot summer air as people on bicycles or horse-drawn carts made their way over dirt paths where the streets had apparently been bulldozed away. Sharif Abu Shanab found his family's four-story building collapsed. I can't enter it. I can't take anything out of it, not even a can of tuna. We have nothing, no food or drink, he said. Since

Palestinians return to rubble in Gaza City after Israeli withdrawal
Updated On : 12 Jul 2024 | 7:48 AM IST

Reformist Pezeshkian wins Iran elections, promises to reach out to west

Reformist candidate Masoud Pezeshkian won Iran's runoff presidential election Saturday, besting hard-liner Saeed Jalili by promising to reach out to the West and ease enforcement on the country's mandatory headscarf law after years of sanctions and protests squeezing the Islamic Republic. Pezeshkian promised no radical changes to Iran's Shiite theocracy in his campaign and long has held Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as the final arbiter of all matters of state in the country. But even Pezeshkian's modest aims will be challenged by an Iranian government still largely held by hard-liners, the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in the Gaza Strip, and Western fears over Tehran enriching uranium to near-weapons-grade levels with enough of a stockpile to produce several nuclear weapons if it chose. A vote count offered by authorities put Pezeshkian as the winner with 16.3 million votes to Jalili's 13.5 million in Friday's election. Overall, Iran's Interior Ministry said 30 million people ...

Reformist Pezeshkian wins Iran elections, promises to reach out to west
Updated On : 06 Jul 2024 | 10:38 PM IST

Reformist Pezeshkian wins Iran's presidential runoff election, beats Jalili

Reformist candidate Masoud Pezeshkian won Iran's runoff presidential election Saturday, besting hard-liner Saeed Jalili by promising to reach out to the West and ease enforcement on the country's mandatory headscarf law after years of sanctions and protests squeezing the Islamic Republic. Pezeshkian promised no radical changes to Iran's Shiite theocracy in his campaign and long has held Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei as the final arbiter of all matters of state in the country. But even Pezeshkian's modest aims will be challenged by an Iranian government still largely held by hard-liners, the ongoing Israel-Hamas war in the Gaza Strip, and Western fears over Tehran enriching uranium to near-weapons-grade levels. A vote count offered by authorities put Pezeshkian as the winner with 16.3 million votes to Jalili's 13.5 million in Friday's election.

Reformist Pezeshkian wins Iran's presidential runoff election, beats Jalili
Updated On : 06 Jul 2024 | 10:00 AM IST

Israel conducts military operation in West Bank city; 7 Palestinians killed

The Israeli military said on Friday it was conducting counterterrorism activity that included an airstrike in the area of the West Bank city of Jenin. Palestinian authorities said four people were killed. The military said Israeli soldiers had encircled a building where terrorists have barricaded themselves in and the soldiers were exchanging fire, while an airstrike had struck several armed terrorists in the area. The Palestinian Health Ministry said four people died but did not provide any information on their identities. No further details were immediately available from either side. The clashes in Jenin, a known militant stronghold where the army frequently operates, came a day after an Israeli anti-settlement monitoring group said the government plans to build nearly 5,300 new homes in settlements in the occupied West Bank. The construction plans revealed by the Peace Now group are part of the hard-line government's efforts to beef up settlements as part of a strategy of ...

Israel conducts military operation in West Bank city; 7 Palestinians killed
Updated On : 05 Jul 2024 | 7:35 PM IST

India-based crypto exchange CoinDCX acquires full stake in Dubai's BitOasis

The firms did not disclose the transaction value, but BitOasis said in a separate statement that CoinDCX, now owns the full share capital of the Dubai-based company

India-based crypto exchange CoinDCX acquires full stake in Dubai's BitOasis
Updated On : 03 Jul 2024 | 5:05 PM IST

Iran goes to runoff polls between reformist Masoud Pezeshkian, Saeed Jalili

Iran will hold a runoff presidential election to replace the late hard-line President Ebrahim Raisi, an official said Saturday, after an initial vote saw the top candidates not secure an outright win. The election this coming Friday will pit reformist candidate Masoud Pezeshkian against the hard-line former nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili. Mohsen Eslami, an election spokesman, announced the result in a news conference carried by Iranian state television. He said of 24.5 million votes cast, Pezeshkian got 10.4 million while Jalili received 9.4 million. Parliament speaker Mohammad Bagher Qalibaf got 3.3 million. Shiite cleric Mostafa Pourmohammadi had over 206,000 votes. Raisi, a 63-year-old protege of Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, died in a helicopter crash in May.

Iran goes to runoff polls between reformist Masoud Pezeshkian, Saeed Jalili
Updated On : 29 Jun 2024 | 2:27 PM IST

Israel-Hezbollah conflict: Abandoned houses, scorched forests hint at war

A steady, if ugly, tit-for-tat between Israel and Hezbollah since the October outbreak of the Gaza war has been shifting into something more alarming

Israel-Hezbollah conflict: Abandoned houses, scorched forests hint at war
Updated On : 28 Jun 2024 | 11:10 AM IST

Iran's presidential race: Candidates debate foreign policy ahead of vote

Iran's presidential candidates discussed the country's foreign policy Monday in a three-hour live debate, promising to seek better relations with other nations and work to have sanctions on their country lifted. The televised debate was the fourth in a series of five ahead of Friday's election, which follows a helicopter crash last month that killed Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi and seven others. The final debate will be Tuesday. All the candidates pledged to try to have Western sanctions on Iran lifted, but they expressed different attitudes about the issue. "We will definitely negotiate and reach an agreement to revive a nuclear deal with world powers that President Donald Trump pulled the U.S. out of in 2018, said Mohamad Bagher Qalibaf, the hardline pragmatic parliament speaker, who is seen as a prominent candidate. However, he said that under his presidency Iran would choose a gradual policy, taking step in return to step that the other side would take in lifting ...

Iran's presidential race: Candidates debate foreign policy ahead of vote
Updated On : 25 Jun 2024 | 7:43 AM IST

Hamas' key weapons operative Muhammad Salah killed in Israeli airstrike

The operation by Israeli Air Force came following IDF intelligence. Salah was part of a project to develop strategic weaponry for the Hamas terrorist organisation

Hamas' key weapons operative Muhammad Salah killed in Israeli airstrike
Updated On : 25 Jun 2024 | 7:13 AM IST

Houthi forces strike vessel in Red sea using drone, officials say

The drone attack happened around dawn off the coast of the rebel-held port city of Hodeida, the British military's United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations centre said

Houthi forces strike vessel in Red sea using drone, officials say
Updated On : 24 Jun 2024 | 9:39 AM IST

Ship attacked by Houthis in assault sinks in Red Sea in second such sinking

A bulk carrier sank days after an attack by Yemen's Houthi rebels believed to have killed one mariner on board, authorities said early Wednesday, the second such ship to be sunk in the rebel campaign. The Tutor sank in the Red Sea, the British military's United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations centre said in a warning to sailors in the region. "Military authorities report maritime debris and oil sighted in the last reported location," the UKMTO said. "The vessel is believed to have sunk." The Houthis did not immediately acknowledge the sinking. The Tutor came under attack a week ago by a bomb-carrying Houthi drone boat in the Red Sea. John Kirby, a White House national security spokesman, said Monday that the attack killed "a crew member who hailed from the Philippines".

Ship attacked by Houthis in assault sinks in Red Sea in second such sinking
Updated On : 19 Jun 2024 | 1:27 PM IST

Kuwaiti govt to give $15,000 compensation to kin of Mangaf fire victims

The Kuwaiti government will give USD 15,000 each to the families of the victims of the devastating fire that killed 50 people, including 46 Indians, in the southern Ahmadi Governorate, according to a media report on Tuesday. The massive fire which occurred at a seven-storey building in the city of Mangaf on July 12 was caused by an electrical short circuit in the guard's room on the structure's ground floor, according to Kuwaiti authorities. The building was home to 196 migrant workers, mostly Indians. On the orders of the Emir of Kuwait, Sheikh Meshal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah, the victims' families will receive compensation amounting to USD 15,000 each, the Arab Times newspaper reported. Citing government sources, the newspaper said the compensation payments will be processed and delivered to the victims' embassies. Three other deceased were Filipinos, and the identity of one of the victims has not been established. The concerned embassies will then ensure that the funds are .

Kuwaiti govt to give $15,000 compensation to kin of Mangaf fire victims
Updated On : 19 Jun 2024 | 10:43 AM IST

Sudan accuses UAE of fuelling war with weapons to paramilitary rivals

The Sudanese government has accused the United Arab Emirates of fuelling the 14-month war in the African country by providing weapons to a rival paramilitary force. The UAE dismissed the allegation as "ludicrous," calling "a shameful abuse by one of the warring parties". The clash came during a UN Security Council meeting at which Assistant Secretary-General Martha Pobee warned that atrocities are being committed along ethnic lines in Sudan's western Darfur region. She urged an immediate cease-fire in the North Darfur capital, El Fasher, which is besieged by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, "to prevent further atrocities, protect critical infrastructure, and alleviate civilian suffering". Sudanese Ambassador Al-Harith Mohamed accused the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces of "destructively launching" its war with the Sudanese military and attacking civilians, aided by weapons from the UAE. He said that Sudan has evidence of the UAE supplying weapons and that the government wil

Sudan accuses UAE of fuelling war with weapons to paramilitary rivals
Updated On : 19 Jun 2024 | 10:39 AM IST

Iran's presidential candidates debate economic policies ahead of voting

Six presidential candidates discussed Iran's economic problems in a four-hour live debate on state TV, ahead of the June 28 presidential election following a helicopter crash last month that killed President Ebrahim Raisi and seven others. The debate on Monday was the first of five planned in the 10 days remaining before the vote in a shortened campaign to replace Raisi, a hard-line protg of Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei once floated as a possible successor to the 85-year-old cleric. The candidates were to discuss their proposals and plans for Iran's spiralling economy, struggling under sanctions from the United States and other Western nations. They all promised they would try and get the sanctions lifted and introduce reforms but none offered any details. The candidates also discussed inflation, the budget deficit, Iran's housing problem and ways to fight corruption. The June 28 election comes at a time of heightened tensions between Iran and the West over Tehran's rapidl

Iran's presidential candidates debate economic policies ahead of voting
Updated On : 18 Jun 2024 | 8:32 AM IST

G7 nations pledge support to specific infra projects like IMEC Corridor

Key projects include coordinating and financing efforts for corridors like the Lobito, Luzon, Middle, and India-Middle East-Europe

G7 nations pledge support to specific infra projects like IMEC Corridor
Updated On : 16 Jun 2024 | 8:08 AM IST

Israel accused of killing own citizens in 'Hannibal Directive'. What is it?

Israeli forces allegedly applied the so-called 'Hannibal Directive' and killed at least 14 Israeli civilians during the October 7 Hamas attack, claims a recent UN-backed inquiry

Israel accused of killing own citizens in 'Hannibal Directive'. What is it?
Updated On : 15 Jun 2024 | 3:17 PM IST

G7 nations commit to promoting India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor

The Group of Seven industrialised nations have committed to promoting concrete infrastructure initiatives such as the India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor (IMEC) in the G7 Summit Communique issued at the end of the three-day G7 Summit, attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The Communique was issued on Friday evening after the customary family photo at the luxury resort of Borgo Egnazia, where the G7 also reiterated a commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific based on the rule of law. Prime Minister Modi attended the G7 Summit at the invitation of Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, the host. We will further promote concrete G7 PGII (Partnership for Global Infrastructure and Investment) initiatives, flagship projects, and complementary initiatives to develop transformative economic corridors for quality infrastructure and investment, such as the deepening of our coordination and financing for the Lobito Corridor, the Luzon Corridor, the Middle Corridor, and the ...

G7 nations commit to promoting India-Middle East-Europe Economic Corridor
Updated On : 15 Jun 2024 | 10:19 AM IST