Rafale deal, BJP hits back

Bofors was Congress downhill, will Rafel deal unexplained shall be of BJP downturn? Defence deal of national importance need public explanation which can be utterted in few words but the saffron is adamant not to speak on the issue, so was Former PM Rajiv Gandhi and had to pay bitterly with charges leveled by Mr VP Singh former PM.
BJP has hit back at Congress’ allegations against the Rafale deal accusing Rahul Gandhi of misleading the Parliament and the nation. It said the UPA’s Defence Ministers had also termed the deal as confidential and accused Rahul of not doing his homework on foreign policy and security issues.
The Congress on Monday showed no signs of relenting despite being cornered in every way over its baseless allegations over the Rafale deal. During the discussion on the no confidence motion, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had quashed Rahul Gandhi’s allegations and PM Modi had clearly stated that the deal was transparent and clean.
In a press Confeerence on Monday the Congress stated that the govt had misled parliamentarians regarding the deal. The BJP retaliated with a press conference saying that Rahul Gandhi had misled the house regarding the deal.
Union Minister Ravishankar Prasad said that since the deal was confidential its details could not be shared. He said that Congress Chief had dragged the French govt too into the issue causing the latter to issue a rebuttal. He questioned how the Congress could make such statements when UPA Defence ministers AK Anthony and Pranab Mukherjee had both refused to divulge details of the deal in the house during their tenure.
It is to be noted that after Rahul Gandhi’s claims alleging discrepancies in the Rafale deal, France had issued a statement refuting his allegations and stressed on its confidentiality. Despite this the Congress continues to politicise such a confidential matter.
Meanwhile, the delivery of 36 Rafale aircrafts in a fly way condition along with associated equipment and weapons will commence from September next year, Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman informs Parliament. Indian Air force will not have to wait for long for the Rafale. The political allegations notwithstanding, Centre has said that the Rafale deal is on track and the delivery of the advanced planes will start in September 2019.
Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has stated that the fighter jet deal with France will be completed by April 2022. Rafale will be the most modern fighter to augment the firepower capabilities of Indian Air Force and will prove to be a game changer and a force multiplier. Will her statement of Defense Minister can satisfy the Opposition parties?

North Korea begins dismantling nuclear and ballistic missile facilities

North Korea has begun dismantling key facilities at a site used to develop engines for ballistic missiles, according to an analysis of satellite imagery of the location, the first significant step towards denuclearisation following last month’s historic summit between Kim Jong-un and United States President Donald Trump.
The Sohae Satellite Launching Station has been the main site for North Korean satellite launches since 2012.
The testing facilities at the site are thought to play a role in the development of liquid-fuel engines that can also be used in North Korea’s ballistic missile programme.
The images published by 38 North, a US-based website focused on North Korea that is affiliated with the Stimson Center in Washington, were taken on July 20 and July 22, respectively.
New commercial satellite imagery of the Sohae station indicates that the North has begun dismantling key facilities, the 38 North said in a report.

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Iran FM to US, ‘Be cautious’

The barbs  on Twitter between Iran and United States President Donald Trump  unending, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on Monday hit back at the latter, asking him to ‘be cautious’.
“COLOR US UNIMPRESSED: The world heard even harsher bluster a few months ago. And Iranians have heard them -albeit more civilized ones-for 40 yrs. We’ve been around for millennia & seen fall of empires, incl our own, which lasted more than the life of some countries. BE CAUTIOUS!” Zarif tweeted.
According to Iran’s state-run news agency IRNA, while addressing diplomats in Tehran on Sunday, Rouhani said, “Americans must understand that war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” reported CNN.
He, however, did not rule out the possibility of a peace agreement and said that “peace with Iran is the mother of all peace”.”Do not play with the lion’s tail, because you will regret it eternally,” Rouhani added.These comments came after Trump in May announced the US’ withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) or the Iran nuclear deal, which limited the country’s uranium enrichment in exchange for sanctions relief. — ANI

Jean-Claude Juncker will not arrive in the US

European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker will not arrive in the US for talks with President Donald Trump with a specific trade offer, the Commission said on Monday. Juncker is expected to travel to Washington on Wednesday. The talks will focus on trade tensions after the US imposition of tariffs on EU steel and aluminum and Trump’s threats to extend those measures to European cars, Reuters said.
Trump’s top economic adviser, Larry Kudlow, had expected Juncker to come with a “significant” trade offer, but the Commission warned on Monday that would not happen.
Last week, European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker said Monday that he sees “no perspective in the short term” for EU-China talks on a free trade agreement. At an EU-China summit in Beijing, he said that “if China wishes to open up it can do so.” Juncker, with European Council president Donald Tusk, met Chinese prime minister Li Keqiang. They said they hope to conclude soon a bilateral investment agreement.

EU: How migrants can be distributed

Italy has agreed to allow 450 migrants, who were picked up from an overcrowded boat Saturday, to disembark in Sicily. The migrants were rescued by two vessels from the European Union’s (EU) Frontex mission. Only 57 women and children have been allowed to land in the Sicilian port of Pozzallo. Following an appeal, Italian authorities have said that France, Germany, Malta, Portugal and Spain all agreed to take 50 migrants each.
“In this context which always sees Italy in the frontline of saving lives at sea, I ask you for a clear sign on sharing the responsibility of managing the migrant issue,” Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte said in letters sent to the governments of the 27 other EU member countries.
“This is the solidarity and responsibility that we have always asked of Europe and now, after the results obtained at the last European Council, they are beginning to become reality,” Conte posted to social media. “Let’s continue on this path with firmness and respect for human rights.”
“Germany and Italy have agreed that, in view of the ongoing talks on closer bilateral cooperation on asylum, Germany is ready to accept 50 people in this case,” a German Government spokeswoman said Sunday.
Italy’s Foreign Ministry has said Rome will allow migrants rescued by a European Union naval operation to land over the coming weeks while EU member states figure out how to divide up new arrivals, AP reported. Italy is seeking to renegotiate Operation Sophia’s mandate to prevent rescued migrants from being brought exclusively to Italy. German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas said on Monday that, over the next five weeks, EU countries will discuss how rescued migrants can be distributed in Europe. Sophia’s commander recently ordered participating ships to return to port. However, German officials said on Monday that a German ship participating in the operation had set out to sea again.
Media agencies

Tzipi Livni opposition leader of labor party

Zionist Union leader Avi Gabbay and Tzipi Livni announced Monday they have agreed for her to be appointed head of the opposition. Zionist Union is an alliance between Labor Party, headed by Gabbay, and Hatnua, led by Livni. As part of the deal, Livni promised to run jointly with Gabay in the next elections, though the terms of their alliance remain in murk. Gabbay cannot serve as opposition leader since he is not a lawmaker.
Israeli lawmaker and former minister Tzipi Livni was named leader of the opposition on Monday, according to a joint statement by her and the head of the Labor party. Once a member of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud, Livni quit the party in 2005. The 59-year-old politician will replaces as opposition leader former Labor chief Isaac Herzog, who resigned his seat in parliament, AFP reported. Herzog will become head of the Jewish Agency, the quasi-governmental body that deals with Jewish immigration to Israel. Labor is the largest single opposition party in the Knesset, the parliament. However, its chairman Avi Gabbay is barred from serving as opposition leader as he is not a lawmaker. Livni has served as foreign minister, justice minister, deputy premier and immigration minister.

Two Moroccan men arrested on plan to attack Rotterdam & Paris

At around 16:15 yesterday, Royal Gibraltar Police officers arrested two persons, believed to be Moroccan nationals, for immigration offences.
They had been seen landing off a vessel at the reclamation area between Eastern Beach and Catalan Bay by HM Customs officers and were initially detained by HM Customs officers at the southern end of Eastern Beach.
The two individuals, aged 26 and 22, were charged with the offence of being a non-Gibraltarian found in Gibraltar without a valid permit or certificate and appeared at the Magistrates’ Court this morning.
They both pleaded guilty to the offence, for which they were conditionally discharged. They were then remanded in custody pending their removal from Gibraltar.
Two Moroccan men have been arrested in the Netherlands after digital messages revealed their plans to carry out attacks in two cities, Rotterdam and Paris. The men were arrested on June 17 based on information provided by the Dutch General Intelligence and Security Service. The conversations between the two suspects revealed a potential plot against security services in the Netherlands and an attack in Paris following Ramadan. Police found no weapons or explosives while arresting the suspects.
Two men arrested for planning terror attacks in #Rotterdam #Netherlands – The suspects are 22 and 27 years old, and both of Moroccan nationality – One of the suspects wanted to commit an attack in #Paris after Ramadan – Police station in Rotterdam also targeted.

Athens fires kills twenty injure 100

Greece fire  20 people have been killed by raging wildfires in Greece, government spokesman Dimitris Tzanakopoulos said, as cited by AP. He added at least 100 people have been taken to the hospital with injuries, many of them in serious condition.
The three huge fires fueled by powerful winds burned near the Greek capital, Athens.
Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras earlier said the country’s firefighting services were not able to control the disaster. Greece has requested international assistance to deal with the calamity.


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