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Privacy Policy

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US president said a deal with China was getting closer just a day after he railed against Chinese “abuses” at the UNGA summit.

US president said a deal with China was getting closer just a day after he railed against Chinese “abuses” at the UNGA summit. Trump also said Washington and Tokyo had taken a major step towards sealing a comprehensive new trade deal.

Asian markets advanced Thursday after upbeat comments from US President Donald Trump that a trade deal with China could come sooner than expected and steps towards a new agreement with Japan.

In an appearance at the UN, Trump said a deal with China was getting closer, sending Wall Street higher despite concerns over the launch of an impeachment inquiry against the mercurial leader.

The remarks came just a day after Trump railed against Chinese “abuses” at the UN summit, comments that had been seen as among the factors causing stocks to fall Tuesday.

Trump on Wednesday also said Washington and Tokyo had taken a major step towards sealing a comprehensive new trade deal, which will see Japan cut tariffs on $7 billion in US farm exports, while the US would cut tariffs on some Japanese agricultural goods.

“Investors have been ‘trade war’ bearish for so long that any sliver of optimism is cheered,” Stephen Innes, Asia Pacific market strategist at AxiTrader, said in a note.

The Japanese deal also “suggests the president is open to an ‘interim’ trade deal, possibly signalling he is willing to negotiate one with China”, Innes said.

Asian markets largely cheered Trump’s positive comments on trade.

“Markets have been swayed by the president’s remarks every day … in the latest move, sentiment got a boost from the president’s positive remarks” on trade, said Makoto Sengoku, market analyst at Tokai Tokyo Research Institute.

“It eased worries for now that the spat would weigh on the global economy,” the analyst said.

Asia markets

Tokyo closed up 0.1 percent, with steelmakers and auto manufacturers climbing on the brighter outlook for US trade deals.

Nippon Steel gained 2.5 percent, while JFE Holdings was up 3.8 percent. Among automakers, Toyota climbed 1.1 percent and Nissan added 0.9 percent.

Hong Kong closed 0.4 percent higher in a late surge after Beijing said China had bought a “considerable” amount of US pork and soybeans, the latest sign of easing tensions between the world’s two biggest economies.

China Resources and Tencent lead the gains, rising 2.3 percent and 1.2 percent respectively.

The announcement came too late for Shanghai, which ended down 0.9 percent with traders cautious ahead of a weeklong holiday.

Elsewhere, Sydney slipped 0.5 percent, while Seoul ended marginally higher and Singapore was flat. Jakarta was up more than one percent and Mumbai was 0.9 percent higher.

European markets were steady at the open, with London up 0.1 percent, Frankfurt flat and Paris down 0.1 percent.

Crude prices slip

Crude prices slipped after an unexpected rise in US inventory and a swift recovery in Saudi Arabia’s output following the September 14 attacks on its oil infrastructure.

Brent was 0.2 percent lower and WTI was off 0.3 percent.

On forex markets, the pound was little changed. The British currency had pulled back after it rallied on Tuesday on the belief that the odds of a no-deal Brexit had fallen.

“With the political outlook ahead of Brexit murkier than ever and an election seemingly inevitable, any good news is well and truly baked into GBP now,” said Jeffrey Halley, senior market analyst at OANDA.

“It will probably take a Brexit agreement signed and sealed to give it new upside momentum.”

Next Sunday, millions of Austrian voters will head to the ballot box for legislative elections

The country is currently being governed by a coalition of technocrats that took over in June following one of the country’s worst political crises since World War Two.

Next Sunday, millions of Austrian voters will head to the ballot box for legislative elections, a vote that will decide who governs the country after the collapse of a coalition between the ruling conservative party and the far-right party earlier this year.

With a population of an estimated 8.76 million people, Austria enjoys a generally high voter turnout. According to the Election Guide watchdog, an average of 74 percent of voters cast their ballot during elections.

The country is currently being governed by a coalition of technocrats that took over in June following one of the country’s worst political crises since World War Two.

That crisis—which saw the collapse of the coalition between the rightwing Austrian People’s Party (OVP) and the far-right Freedom Party of Austria (FPO)—stemmed from a controversial incident now known as the “Ibiza scandal”.

What was the Ibiza scandal?

During the October 2017 legislative elections, Austria endured a far-right surge, which saw the FPO clench around 26 percent of the vote.

The rightwing OVP garnered 31.5 percent of the vote and banded together with the controversial far-right FPO to keep out the Social Democrats, who had taken the second largest share of the vote.

From the time the new OVP-led government was sworn in, in December 2017, its junior coalition partner, the FPO, was embroiled in controversy.

A spate of highly-criticised incidents prompted backlash against the FPO. Among those were a series of scandals surrounding FPO members’ use of anti-Semitic language and praise of the German Nazis as well as the FPO member and interior minister’s comments about “concentrating” refugees in a single area, a turn of phrase that prompted critics to liken his comments to Holocaust-era rhetoric.

But those scandals paled in comparison to the Ibiza affair.

In May, German media outlets published a video that shows the Austrian deputy chancellor and FPO leader Heinz-Christian Strache in an Ibiza resort, speaking to a woman who claimed to be the niece of a Russian oligarch.

The woman said she would like to gain control of Kronen Zeitung, one of the country’s largest tabloids, and Strache offered public contracts in exchange for electoral campaign support.

The video turned out to be part of a sting operation, and it was leaked to journalists, prompting outcry and condemnation in Austria.

Strache was subsequently pushed to resign, but he described the sting operation as “a honey trap stage-managed by intelligence agencies”.

On May 18, the governing coalition collapsed and an early election was called. On May 27, Chancellor Sebastien Kurz was ousted by a vote of no confidence.

At the time of publication, the FPO had not replied to TRT World’s request for a comment.

Caretaker government

Following the Ibiza affair, President Alexander Van der Bellen appointed a transitional caretaker government to run the country until the September 29 elections.

The president picked Brigitte Bierlein, the country’s chief public prosecutor, to serve as chancellor, as well as a slew of civil servants to fill in the slots for most of the ministries.

A recent poll found that 42 percent of Austrians support Bierlein, while only 32 support former chancellor Kurz.

In July, a poll found that 56 percent of respondents believed the interim government was “good for Austria”.

Possible far-right return to coalition

As the elections approach, the OVP is polling in the lead, although the party has seen its support numbers dip in recent weeks.

The FPO—which is currently polling at around 20 percent—replaced Strache in a recent vote, which saw a reported 98.25 percent of its members choose Norbert Hofer as the party’s new leader.

“We extend a sincere hand to the conservatives [OVP] to continue the work begun together to reform Austria,” Hofer told reporters last month.

Many observers expect that, if the polls prove accurate, the OVP and the FPO will strike up another coalition government.

Founded by former Nazi functionaries after World War Two, the FPO also maintains a cooperation agreement with Russian leader Vladimir Putin’s United Russia Party.

Kurz previously stated that any coalition with the FPO would depend on the party not bringing former firebrand interior minister Herbert Kickl back to government.

NEOS – The New Austria and Liberal Forum is also polling at roughly eight percent, while the Green Party stands at around 12 percent backing.

Farid Hafez, a senior research fellow at Georgetown University’s Bridge Initiative, described an alternative coalition to the OVP-FPO alliance as “quite unrealistic”.

“For me, this is the most realistic option to have a second coalition led by Kurz and this time Hofer,” he told TRT World.

“Why? Both parties still declare their commonalities and argue that the last coalition was a good one going into the right direction.”

“The second option would be a coalition between the OVP and NEOS, which would only work if NEOS receives up to 20 percent of the votes,” he said, adding that the possibility seemed distant owing to the comparably low support for NEOS in polls.

With conflicts raging around the world the UN is finding it increasingly hard to remain relevant.

With conflicts raging around the world the UN is finding it increasingly hard to remain relevant.

World leaders gathered at the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) this week for their annual meeting.

There is much scepticism about whether the UN can still be a forum for change or whether it has become a talking shop.

Conflicts in Yemen, Syria and South Sudan show no sign of stopping, while tensions in the Persian Gulf continue to increase with the US unilaterally abandoning the Iran nuclear deal. US President Donald Trump’s trade wars are also creating a drag on the global economy. And with ongoing climate crises, the UN is seen as increasingly irrelevant in bringing nations together to resolve the most pressing issues of the day.

As the UNGA was preparing to convene, Russia for the 13th time vetoed a resolution on Syria.

Alongside China, Russia blocked a demand by the rest of the Security Council to end the bloodshed in Idlib, which has seen the Assad regime, supported by Moscow and Iran, kill more than 500 civilians since April.

So what will UN member states discuss?

Iran vs the US

The stage was set for a showdown between the Iranian President Hassan Rouhani and Trump at the UNGA.

Both leaders were expected to take the stage and put their version of events forward on who is causing insecurity in the Persian Gulf.

Trump took the podium at the UNGA to announce that “one of the greatest security threats facing peace-loving nations today is the repressive regime in Iran”, words that have pleased Israel and Saudi Arabia.

This month’s attack on oil facilities in Saudi Arabia resulted in the country losing more than half its oil output.

The Houthi rebels in Yemen, which Saudi Arabia has been bombing, claimed credit for the attack; however, Saudi Arabia, the US, Germany, the UK and France have claimed that Iran is behind the attack.

Concrete evidence linking Iran to the attack has not been made public.

Rouhani and Trump were expected to meet at the sidelines of the UNGA; however, it is not yet clear whether this will be possible with both sides aiming to project strength before any future nuclear deal negotiation.

“Nothing is ever off the table completely, but I have no intention of meeting with Iran, and that doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen,” Trump recently said.

Iranian officials for their part have argued that a meeting will only be possible if Trump is ready to exchange sanctions relief for “permanent monitoring of Iranian nuclear facilities”.

French President Emmanual Macron has been shuttling back and forth between Trump and Rouhani in an attempt to broker a possible meeting between the two sides. As yet those efforts appear to have been in vain.

Who won’t be at UNGA?

The UNGA will this year not be graced by embattled Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, currently fighting for his political life. Neither will Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro, another leader fighting for internal and international legitimacy, attend the meeting. Russian President Vladimir Putin and Chinese President Xi Jinping will also not be in attendance.

Other developments

The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani and Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan both spoke out against the continuing occupation by Israel of Palestinian land.

Erdogan also spoke about the continuing humanitarian toll the Syrian war has taken on civilians and the pressure it has placed on neighbouring states.

The embattled UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson took the stage at the UNGA to deliver his speech which failed to mention Brexit, instead focusing on the dangers and opportunities offered by Artificial Intelligence and Iran.

Hours before Johnson was about to deliver his speech, the UK Supreme Court delivered a scathing judgment on his decision to suspend parliament for five weeks calling his actions “unlawful”.

Climate crises

Climate activist Greta Thunberg’s rebuke to world leaders at the UN has once again brought much-needed attention to one of the most pressing challenges facing the world that of climate change.

While outside the UN building, there will be protests throughout the week, many will be watching Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Trump and what they say or don’t say.

Bolsonaro has already announced that his speech will be different from the ones delivered in the past, while indigenous Brazilian leaders have called out his “colonialist and ethnocidal” policies.

The court in the Russian capital found Denis Chuprikov guilty of theft of valuable items.

A Russian court on Wednesday sentenced a man who snatched a 19th-century painting off the wall in a busy Moscow gallery earlier this year to three years in a maximum security prison.

The court in the Russian capital found Denis Chuprikov guilty of theft of valuable items.

In January, Chuprikov took the painting off the wall in Moscow’s Tretyakov gallery — home to some of Russia’s most storied art — and strolled out past visitors and security.

He took a Crimean landscape by Russian artist Arkhip Kuindzhi and carried it through a room filled with visitors, CCTV cameras showed.

He then drove off with the oil painting but was arrested the next morning in a village outside Moscow.

Chuprikov admitted hiding the art work at a construction site from where it was recovered. He denied any wrongdoing at the time.

The painting, depicting the Ai-Petri mountain in Crimea, was completed between 1898 and 1908.

The security incident was the second to hit the gallery within a year, when a man slashed a painting by Ilya Repin depicting Tsar Ivan the Terrible after he killed his son.

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince said he bears responsibility for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year by Saudi operatives

Saudi Arabia’s crown prince said he bears responsibility for the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi last year by Saudi operatives “because it happened under my watch”, according to a PBS documentary to be broadcast next week.

Mohammed bin Salman, or MBS as the kingdom’s de facto ruler is known, has not spoken publicly about the killing inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul. The CIA and some Western governments have said he ordered it, but Saudi officials say he had no role.

Did Salman know?

Asked how the killing could happen without him knowing about it, Smith quotes Prince Mohammed as saying: “We have 20 million people. We have 3 million government employees.”

Smith asked whether the killers could have taken private government jets, to which the crown prince responded: “I have officials, ministers to follow things, and they’re responsible. They have the authority to do that.”

Smith describes the December exchange, which apparently took place off-camera, in the preview of the documentary.

A senior US administration official said in June the Trump administration was pressing Riyadh for “tangible progress” toward holding to account those behind the killing ahead.

 

His body was reportedly dismembered and removed from the building and his remains have not been found.

‘I get all the responsibility’

The death sparked global uproar, tarnishing the crown prince’s image and imperilling ambitious plans to diversify the economy of the world’s top oil exporter and open up cloistered Saudi society. He has not since visited the US or Europe.

 

The public prosecutor said the then-deputy intelligence chief ordered the repatriation of Khashoggi, a royal insider who became an outspoken critic, but the lead negotiator ordered him killed after discussions for his return failed.

 

A man who was still working as a barber when he was 108 years old has died in New York.

NEW WINDSOR, N.Y. — A man who was still working as a barber when he was 108 years old has died in New York.

Brooks Funeral Home says Anthony Mancinelli died Thursday.

The Italian immigrant worked as a barber from age 12 until this past July in and around Newburgh, 50 miles (80 kilometers) north of New York City.

Guinness World Records credited him with being the oldest working barber.

He opened Anthony’s Barbershop of Newburgh in 1930 and owned it for 40 years. He later worked at other shops.

An obituary published by the funeral home says he outlived his wife of 69 years, seven siblings and one of his two sons.

A Wisconsin woman allegedly stashed her mother’s corpse in a plastic tub in the basement

A Wisconsin woman allegedly stashed her mother’s corpse in a plastic tub in the basement while living off the mom’s Social Security checks, authorities said.

The woman, 60-year-old Paula Bergold, hatched the plan months ago when her mother, Ruby, died and she didn’t have a steady income to support herself, local police said.

A neighbor called police and told them she hadn’t seen Ruby since May and was concerned that Paula was “being evasive to where Ruby might be.”

Police responded to the home last week and found a note taped to the door that said, “Ruby has gone out of town to visit some friends of ours. Paula.”

Cops noticed a stench of a decaying body while standing at the door and saw mothballs near the entrance.

Paula eventually came clean, telling cops her mother died in a chair and she couldn’t bring herself to alert authorities.

When the corpse started to smell, she said she put her it in a plastic container and stashed it in the basement.

She was arrested and charged with hiding a corpse, failing to report a death and obstruction.

Attorney information was not immediately available.

Jon Cryer doesn’t want Demi Moore to feel bad about taking his virginity 

Jon Cryer doesn’t want Demi Moore to feel bad about taking his virginity — because she didn’t.

In her new memoir, “Inside Out,” Moore writes that she felt bad taking his virginity while filming their 1984 movie, “No Small Affair.”

However, it turns out Moore, 56, was not Cryer’s first.

“Well, the good thing about this is she doesn’t have to feel bad about it anymore, because while I’m sure she was totally justified making that assumption based on my skill level (and the stunned look on my face at the time), I had actually lost my virginity in high school,” Cryer, 54, tweeted in response on Tuesday afternoon.

“It pains me to think of how callous I was with his feelings — that I stole what could have been such an important and beautiful moment from him,” she writes.

He added, “But she’s right the other part, I was over the moon for her during a very troubled time in her life. I have nothing but affection for her and not a regret in the world.”

“Inside Out” went on sale Tuesday.

Moore, who was around 21 years old at the time, revealed she was dependent on cocaine during that time in her life and did some “self-destructive things during that period.”

The Philippines coast guard said seven rowers drowned

KALIBO, Philippines — The Philippines coast guard said seven rowers drowned and 14 others were rescued when their dragon boat overturned Wednesday after being lashed by strong waves during a practice run off a popular resort island.

Friends, supporters and fellow rowers expressed shock and offered prayers for the sudden deaths in the team’s Facebook account.

Survivors of the accident, including a Chinese and a Russian, were brought by coast guard personnel and authorities to a hospital, Balilo said. The boat capsized less than half a kilometer (a third of a mile) from the nearest beach.

There was no storm battering the region and government forecasters said light to moderate winds were expected Wednesday with generally calm seas, but weather in the region has been known to suddenly shift.

Dragon boat rowing using Chinese-style canoes adorned with dragon designs and manned by a team of paddlers and a drum beater on board have long been popular in the Philippines, with teams competing in domestic and Asian competitions.

Last month, 31 people died when their two ferries capsized in the Iloilo Strait after being suddenly buffeted by fierce waves and winds off Guimaras and Iloilo provinces, not far from Boracay.