US issues travel warning for visiting South Asian countries

travel warning

MNA International Desk: The United States has issued a travel warning for its citizens visiting Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh citing that terrorist groups in South Asia could be planning attacks in the region, possibly against American facilities, citizens and interests.  “The US government assesses terrorist groups in South Asia may be planning attacks in the region, possibly against US facilities, citizens, and interests,” the State Department said as part of its ‘Worldwide Caution’ issued on Monday. “Terrorists have hit a wide variety of targets and institutions in Bangladesh,” it continued, leaving in place the ‘ Bangladesh Travel Warning ‘ it ...

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60-year-old Indian detained for raping 15-year-old girl


MNA International Desk: A 60-year-old man was arrested and another detained for raping a 15-year-old girl in New Delhi, Delhi Police said on Tuesday. The accused, Mijhawan, was arrested on Monday night after a police complaint was lodged by the minor’s family, while his accomplice in the case has been detained. The incident occurred when the 9 grader student, a resident of Shakarpur in Netaji Subhash Place, left for home after her tuition classes on 4 March, police said. The victim, a student of government school, said the accused persons again molested her on Monday while she was returning from ...

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North Korea launched 4 ballistic missiles into Japan waters


MNA International Desk: North Korea launched four ballistic missiles on Monday in another challenge to President Donald Trump, with three landing close to America’s ally Japan. Seoul and Washington began annual joint military exercises last week that always infuriate Pyongyang, with the North’s military warning of ‘merciless nuclear counter-action’. Under leader Kim Jong-Un, Pyongyang has ambitions to develop an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) capable of reaching the US mainland—which Trump has vowed will not happen. The missiles travelled around 1,000 kilometres (620 miles) and reached an altitude of 260 kilometres, said a spokesman for South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff, ...

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Malaysia cancelled N.Korea visa-free travel deal after Kim murder

travel deal

MNA International Desk: Malaysia has cancelled a visa-free travel deal with Pyongyang as a diplomatic spat deepens over the assassination of the half-brother of North Korea’s leader, news agency reported on Thursday. The government implemented the change on the grounds of national security; the Malaysian news agency quoted the country’s deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi as saying. The cancellation will take effect on March 6, after which North Koreans entering Malaysia will be required to obtain a visa, the report added. Before the murder of Kim Jong-Nam at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on February 13, the two countries enjoyed ...

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China, Russia veto UN resolution over Syria sanctions


MNA International Desk: Russia and China on Tuesday vetoed a Western-backed UN resolution that would have imposed sanctions on Syria over chemical weapons use; in the first clash at the Security Council since US President Donald Trump took office. The twin vetoes came as peace talks in Geneva showed no signs of progress on ending the nearly six-year war in Syria. It was the seventh time that Russia, Syria’s top military ally, has used its veto power to shield the Damascus regime. China has backed Moscow by using its veto six times on Syria. Russian President Vladimir Putin warned ahead ...

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Water crisis in Chile as deadly floods contaminate river


MNA International Desk: Rainstorms and landslides in Chile killed four and contaminated a major river, forcing authorities to cut off drinking water to 4 million people in the capital. The torrential rain that started Saturday prompted mudslides and rubble to surge into the Maipo river, which supplies most homes in the capital. “We are talking about 1.45 million homes that are going to be affected by the cutting off of the water supply, which will be total or partial in 30 districts” of Santiago, the region’s governor, Claudio Orrego, told a news conference. He said the cut would therefore affect ...

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Truck plowed into crowd in US Mardi Gras parade

Mardi Gras

MNA International Desk: A pickup truck driven by a man who appeared to be highly intoxicated plowed into a crowd of spectators watching the main Mardi Gras parade in New Orleans on Saturday, sending more than 20 people to the hospital, police said. The truck, traveling along the side of the street open to traffic along the Mid-City parade route, struck three other vehicles, including a dump truck, before veering onto the median where a crowd of people stood watching the procession, according to New Orleans police. Five people were being treated at hospital trauma centers, and an investigation is ...

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$2m export deal signed between PRAN and Netherlands


MNA Business Desk: PRAN, a leading food processor in Bangladesh, will export $2 million worth of products to the Netherlands. An agreement was signed between PRAN and Engel Foreign Food Group in this connection at PRAN-RFL Center on Wednesday, said a press release sent by the company. Under the deal, PRAN will export its noodles, juice and confectionery items to the European country. Eleash Mridha, Managing Director of PRAN and Wim Engel, CEO of Engel Foreign Food Group signed the deal on behalf of their respective organizations for a year. Eleash Mridha said the demand of PRAN’s products is gradually ...

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Mexican border wall ‘way ahead of schedule’: Trump


MNA International Desk: The US President Donald Trump has pledged to begin work on a wall on the Mexican border ‘way, way, way ahead of schedule’ as well as a massive increase in military spending. In a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in National Harbor, Maryland, just outside of Washington, Trump said on February 24 that immigration officers and border police were already at work finding criminals, drug dealers, and criminal immigrants and ‘throwing them the hell out of our country.’ President Donald Trump said he would make a massive budget request for one of the ‘greatest ...

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Five dead in blast in Pakistan’s Lahore


MNA International Desk: At least five people were killed and 15 injured after a blast ripped through a building in an upscale shopping area of Pakistan’s Lahore Thursday, officials said, the latest in a surge in Islamist violence. ‘It was a bomb attack,’ Nayab Haider, a spokesman for the provincial Punjab police said. Rescue services spokeswoman Deeba Shehnaz provided the casualty toll. The explosion took place in the particularly affluent Defence Housing Authority suburb of the city, replete with upscale boutiques and cafes as well as an academy for the international hair salon Toni & Guy. It came a day ...

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H.R. McMaster as new national security adviser of Trump


MNA International Desk: President Trump appointed Lt. Gen. H. R. McMaster as his new national security adviser on Monday, picking a widely respected military strategist known for challenging conventional thinking and helping to turn around the Iraq war in its darkest days. Mr. Trump made the announcement at his Mar-a-Lago resort, where he interviewed candidates over the holiday weekend to replace Michael T. Flynn, who was forced out after withholding information from Vice President Mike Pence about a call with Russia’s ambassador. Unlike Mr. Flynn, who served as a campaign adviser last year, General McMaster has no links to Mr. ...

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‘Trump is friend to everybody’: Saudi foreign minister


MNA International Desk: Saudi Arabia’s foreign minister Adel al-Jubeir has said US President Donald Trump can be “a friend to everybody.” Although Mr Trump signed an executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority nations, of which Saudi Arabia was not included, Adel al-Jubeir said he believed the US president could be a friend to the Arab world. “I believe Donald Trump is a friend to everybody potentially,” he told at the Munich Security Conference last weekend. Speaking four days after US President Donald Trump and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke at a White House press conference about the possibilities ...

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Explosion kills 34 in Mogadishu marketplace


MNA International Desk: Somalia’s new president visited victims wounded by the Mogadishu car bomb that on Sunday killed 34. President Mohamed Abdulahi Mohamed offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of those who planned the blast. The explosion hit a busy marketplace in the western part of the capital. The blast from a car parked near a restaurant went off when shoppers and traders were gathered inside the market. Women sobbed and screamed outside the market as rescue workers moved bloodied bodies and wounded victims into ambulances. The powerful explosion was the first major attack since Somalia’s ...

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25 civilians decapitated in DR Congo ethnic attack


MNA International Desk: Militiamen from the Democratic Republic of Congo Nande ethnic group have killed 25 civilians in the country’s violence-torn east, almost all of them hacked to death with machetes, local officials and activists said Saturday. ‘In total 25 people were killed, decapitated by machete by the Mai-Mai Mazembe in and around the village of Kyaghala,’ Francis Bakundakabo, the local representative of the governor of North Kivu province said. ‘All of these people were Hutu civilians,’ he said, adding that the killings took place between 4:00am and 8:00am on Saturday morning. Tensions between the Nande and Hutu communities have ...

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Pakistan killed 100 militants after Sufi shrine attack


MNA International Desk: Pakistan says it has killed more than 100 militants in a security crackdown following Thursday’s attack on a shrine that left at least 80 people dead, reported news agency. A suicide bomber blew himself up among devotees at the Sufi shrine in the town of Sehwan. Pakistan has reacted with raids across the country and by lashing out at Afghanistan which it accuses of tolerating militant sanctuaries. Islamic State said it had carried out the attack. In response, some 18 militants were killed in southern Sindh province, where the Sufi shrine is located, and another 13 in ...

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Police detained second woman in Kim Jong Nam murder

Kim Jong Nam

MNA International Desk: Malaysian police detained a second woman on Thursday suspected of involvement in the apparent assassination of Kim Jong Nam, the estranged half-brother of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, reported news agency. She has been remanded in custody for seven days along with a woman who was caught at Kuala Lumpur International Airport on Wednesday, two days after Kim Jong Nam was assaulted there with what was believed to be a fast acting poison. The woman was carrying an Indonesian passport, unlike the first suspect who held Vietnamese travel papers. Lawmakers in South Korea earlier cited their ...

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8 killed in knife attack in China’s Xinjiang region

Xinjiang region

MNA International Desk: Eight people were killed in China’s far western Xinjiang region, including three knife-wielding assailants, in the latest outbreak of violence in the volatile territory, authorities said Wednesday. Ten other people were injured in the attack Tuesday evening in Pishan county, according to an announcement issued by the government of the nearby city of Hotan. Police sped to the scene within a minute of the attack, which remains under investigation, the announcement said, calling the attackers “rioters”. The far-western region is the homeland of the Uighurs — a traditionally Muslim group, many of whom complain of cultural and ...

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Next leader of India’s Tamil Nadu gets jail


MNA International Desk: India’s Supreme Court handed down a four-year prison sentence Tuesday to the incoming chief minister of Tamil Nadu for corruption in a ruling that prevents her from taking up her post, reported news agency. VK Sasikala was found guilty of possessing ‘disproportionate assets’ in a long-running case that also involved her mentor Jayalalithaa Jayaram, the state’s former chief minister who died in December. Sasikala was not present at the hearing in New Delhi but the court ordered that she immediately surrender to police to begin serving her sentence. The panel also sentenced her nephew and niece to ...

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World Press Photo Award goes to ‘hatred of our times’

World Press Photo Award

MNA International Desk: Brandishing a gun, his face contorted with rage, the shocking image of a Turkish policeman assassinating the Russian envoy to Turkey on Monday won the prestigious World Press Photo Award. Judges praised the courage and bravery of Burhan Ozbilici, a photographer for Associated Press, who stood his ground as 22-year-old policeman Mevlut Mert Altintas pumped nine bullets into ambassador Andrei Karlov at the opening of an Ankara exhibition. ‘From the moment I heard the shots I knew this was a historic moment, very serious,’ Ozbilici told news agency. The vivid photo was to go viral around the ...

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North Korea fired ballistic missile into the sea


MNA International Desk: North Korea fired a ballistic missile into the sea off its east coast early on Sunday, South Korea’s military said, the first time the isolated state has tested such a device since the election of US President Donald Trump. US and South Korean military sources said the missile did not appear to be an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) given its flight range. Trump had been briefed on the missile launch, and the White House is continuing to monitor the situation, a White House official said on Saturday. Trump did not respond to a shouted question from a ...

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Six Red Cross aid employees killed in Afghanistan

Red Cross

MNA International Desk: ISIL fighters killed at least six Afghan employees of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) who were carrying supplies to areas hit by deadly snow storms, according to government officials. Another two employees were unaccounted for after Wednesday’s attack in the northern Jowzjan province, said ICRC spokesperson Thomas Glass, adding that the group did not know who was responsible for the attack. “Devastated by this news out of #Afghanistan,” Peter Maurer, ICRC president, said on Twitter. “My deepest condolences to the families of those killed – and those still unaccounted for.” ICRC put its activities ...

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Live cockroach from woman’s head in Indian


MNA Editorial Desk: A cockroach crawls up your nose in the middle of the night, burrows in and drives you mad with scratching behind your eyes. But for one Indian woman, this horror story proved all too real. The 42-year-old had a painful crawling sensation behind her eyes when she woke up, so rushed to a local clinic where her nose was flushed and she was sent home. But the sensation didn’t subside, and it wasn’t until a specialist explored her nasal passages with an endoscope that she learned the awful truth. ‘I saw some tiny legs moving inside,’ M.N. ...

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US army approves Dakota Access Pipeline


MNA International Desk: The Army approved the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline on Tuesday, paving the way for an infrastructure project that has been surrounded by protest and controversy. Robert Speer, the acting secretary of the Army, announced the decision to Congress, saying he was ready to offer the pipeline’s owner a 30-year easement on a disputed patch of land. The move drew outrage from opponents, including the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, whose reservation in North Dakota sits less than a mile from the proposed pipeline route. And it drew cheers from supporters, who said the planning process for ...

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Buddhist monk held with four million yaba

Buddhist monk

MNA International Desk: A Buddhist monk in Myanmar has been caught hiding more than four million methamphetamine pills in his monastery, police said on Monday, following a record haul of stimulant seizures last year. The monk, named Arsara, is in custody after police discovered hundreds of thousands of the tablets in his car as he was driving from Shwe Baho village in the town of Maungdaw in Rakhine state bordering Bangladesh. “First the police found 400,000 drug pills” when they searched his vehicle on Sunday evening, local police chief Kyaw Mya Win told news agency. “The police then went to ...

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13,000 hanged at notorious prison in Syria


MNA International Desk: As many as 13,000 people were hanged in five years at a notorious Syrian government prison near Damascus, Amnesty International said Tuesday, accusing the regime of a ‘policy of extermination.’ Titled ‘Human Slaughterhouse: Mass hanging and extermination at Saydnaya prison,’ Amnesty’s damning report is based on interviews with 84 witnesses, including guards, detainees, and judges. It found that at least once a week between 2011 and 2015, groups of up to 50 people were taken out of their prison cells for arbitrary trials, beaten, then hanged ‘in the middle of the night and in total secrecy.’ ‘Throughout ...

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Afghan diplomat shot dead inside Karachi consulate


MNA International Desk: An Afghan diplomat has been shot dead by a security guard at the country’s consulate in the southern Pakistani city of Karachi. According to police official, Zaki Adu, the third secretary at the Consulate was shot by the consulate guard Hayatullah, who is also an Afghan national. A statement from the Afghan embassy in Islamabad did not confirm the diplomat’s identity but said the private security guard was Afghan. No motive for the attack was given. Police have deployed in the Clifton district area around the consulate. Deputy Inspector General (DIG) South Karachi, Azad Khan said that ...

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Mass protest force Romania government climb-down


MNA International Desk: Romania premier announced Saturday a dramatic climb-down on legislation that had been seen as a retreat on corruption, after the biggest protests since dictator Nicolae Ceausescu was toppled and executed in 1989. Demonstrators vowed to keep up the pressure on the government, however, after five days of protests culminating in an estimated 330,000 people taking to the streets nationwide on Saturday, reported news agency. Prime Minister Sorin Grindeanu said in a televised statement that the government would meet on Sunday to repeal an emergency decree that could have seen some corrupt officials escape prosecution. “I do not ...

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