Home » Archives by category » World (Page 2)

US ambassador to Ukraine tells Fox: Russia guilty of war crimes

US ambassador to Ukraine tells Fox: Russia guilty of war crimes

KYIV, Ukraine – U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink on the hot seat. In the biggest diplomatic assignment of her career, she’s in the middle of a war with flak coming at her from all sides.  Fox News caught up with her when she was doing a tour, at Kyiv’s main train station, which is now doubling as a massive charging and heating hub for city residents caught without power amid the massive Russian missile barrage on the power grid here. Millions have been left in the cold. “It’s horrific, it’s unconscionable,” she told Fox News. “What is happening in our judgment is war crimes.”
FILE – Bridget Brink, shown here in her role as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs, speaks during a press conference in Azerbaijan in 2018.
(Aziz Karimov/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images)Brink’s specialty in her 25-year career has been Europe, where there have been a lot of “gray area” disputes. For the ambassador, this one is black and white. EUROPEAN OFFICIALS SAY US PROFITING FROM UKRAINE WAR, CALL INFLATION REDUCTION ACT ‘VERY WORRYING’”This is about freedom, about the fight between good and evil,” she said. “We think it’s absolutely essential that Russia faces strategic defeat and that Ukraine prevails.”There has been a flurry of reports in recent weeks that Washington is trying to nudge Kyiv toward at least considering talking with Moscow. Brink isn’t buying it.”It will be up to the Ukrainians to decide when and how they wish to negotiate,” she told Fox News. 
U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink.
(Fox News)STRIKES ON UKRAINE HOSPITAL KILL 2-DAY-OLD BABY, OFFICIALS SAYPrompted by politicians’ comments, there has also been thinking that as the Republicans assume control in the House, there could be some cutback of aid to Ukraine. Brink remains positive.”I have felt full and total support,” she commented, “not only, obviously, from the president, but from bipartisan members of Congress.” She did note that “accountability” would be an ongoing feature of fund disbursements.
U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Bridget Brink.
(Fox News)CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPAs complex as this nine-month-old war is getting, Brink still thinks its resolution is fairly straightforward.  “I think Russia can stop this war tomorrow,” she summed up. “Russia can stop the war and pull its troops out, and the war will end.” That is more easily said than done, but America’s top diplomat in Kyiv is trying. 

Belarus' top diplomat, ally to president, dies at 64

Belarus' top diplomat, ally to president, dies at 64

TALLINN, Estonia — Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei, a close ally of authoritarian President Alexander Lukashenko, has died at age 64, the state news agency Belta reported Saturday.No cause of death was given.Prior to becoming foreign minister in 2012, Makei was Lukashenko’s chief of staff.During his tenure, Belarus came under repeated criticism from the West for an increasingly harsh suppression of the opposition, for dubious elections and for allowing Russian troops to be based there during the war in Ukraine.In September, he defended Belarus’ position to the United Nations Security Council.“Belarus is referred to as an ‘accomplice of the aggressor’ or even a party to the conflict. We have said and continue to say: Belarus has never advocated the war. But we are not traitors either! We have allied commitments, and we are strictly following and will follow the spirit and letter of international treaties to which we are parties,” he said.

Iran protests: UN Human Rights Council votes to investigate regime's violent response

Iran protests: UN Human Rights Council votes to investigate regime's violent response

The U.N. voted to commence an investigation into Iran’s crackdown on nationwide protests over the past two months. The Human Rights Council will appoint an independent investigator to complete a fact-finding mission on Tehran’s response to the protests after the council passed the motion on Thursday. The council’s chief, Volker Turk, said that Iran was in a “full-fledged” crisis and called the government’s actions “unacceptable” and “disproportionate” in his opening address. Volker noted that at least 300 people have died, and more than 14,000 have been arrested, since the protests started in mid-September. Some estimates put the number as high as 350 dead and over 15,000 arrested. “Iranian officials will not be able to perpetrate this violent crackdown anonymously,” U.S. ambassador to the HRC Michele Taylor said of the vote, according to The Guardian. “The international community is watching.”STUDY: MAJORITY OF IRANIANS WANT REGIME CHANGE AS COUNTRY’S PROTESTS CONTINUE TO GROWBut Iran’s representative at the meeting, Khadijeh Karimi, accused the West of using the council to target her country in an “appalling and disgraceful” move. 
Iranians protest a 22-year-old woman Mahsa Amini’s death after she was detained by the morality police in Tehran, Sept. 20, 2022.
(AP Photo/Middle East Images, File.)The protests started in response to the death of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, who died in a hospital after slipping into a coma after an alleged beating by the country’s morality police. Officers had arrested Amini for breaching the country’s hijab (headscarf) laws. IRAN REPORTEDLY ENRICHING URANIUM AT 60% PURITY AT UNDERGROUND FORDOW FACILITYWhat started as demonstrations in the capital spread to over 140 cities and towns across the country, growing into the most significant challenges to the regime since its establishment following the 1979 revolution.
Iran is facing international criticism following the brutal beating of a protester at the hands of anti-riot police. (The Foreign Desk.)
(The Foreign Desk)Protesters have even gone so far as attacking historic institutions, such as burning a museum dedicated to the regime’s founder, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini. IRANIAN SOCCER PLAYER ARRESTED FOR ‘PROPAGANDIZING AGAINST THE GOVERNMENT’U.S. State Secretary Antony Blinken hailed the vote for leaving “no doubt” that the council “recognizes the gravity of the situation in Iran,” and he argued that the fact-finding mission will “ensure that those engaged in the ongoing violent suppression of Iranian people are identified and their actions documented.” 
Iranian police arrive to disperse a protest to mark 40 days since the death in custody of 22-year-old Mahsa Amini, whose tragedy sparked Iran’s biggest antigovernment movement in over a decade, in Tehran, Iran, Wednesday, Oct. 26, 2022.
(AP)The mission will collect evidence of the regime’s actions, which can then be used in legal proceedings at the International Court of Justice. CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPThe council has faced a number of challenges to its validity and authority in recent years after the U.S. initially withdrew over concerns that the council had lost its purpose. It also failed to pass a motion to investigate China over its treatment of its Uyghur population.  Reuters contributed to this report. 

Wildlife conference boosts protection for sharks, turtles

Wildlife conference boosts protection for sharks, turtles

PANAMA CITY — An international wildlife conference moved to enact some of the most significant protection for shark species targeted in the fin trade and scores of turtles, lizards and frogs whose numbers are being decimated by the pet trade.The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, known by its initials as CITES, ended Friday in Panama. Along with protections for over 500 species, delegates at the United Nations wildlife conference rejected a proposal to reopen the ivory trade. An ivory ban was enacted in 1989.“Good news from CITES is good news for wildlife as this treaty is one of the pillars of international conservation, imperative at ensuring countries unite at combatting the global interrelated crises of biodiversity collapse, climate change, and pandemics,” said Susan Lieberman, the vice president of international policy at Wildlife Conservation Society.“Many of the proposals adopted here reflect there is ongoing over-exploitation and unsustainable trade, and escalating illegal trade, and some are due to complex interactions of other threats reducing species populations in the wild, including climate change, disease, infrastructure development, and habitat loss,” she added.The international wildlife trade treaty, which was adopted 49 years ago in Washington, D.C., has been praised for helping stem the illegal and unsustainable trade in ivory and rhino horns as well as in whales and sea turtles. But it has come under fire for its limitations, including its reliance on cash-strapped developing countries to combat illegal trade that’s become a lucrative $10 billion-a-year business. One of the biggest achievement this year was increasing or providing protection for more than 90 shark species, including 54 species of requiem sharks, the bonnethead shark, three species of hammerhead shark and 37 species of guitarfish. Many had never before had trade protection and now, under Appendix II, the commercial trade will be regulated.Global shark populations are declining, with annual deaths due to fisheries reaching about 100 million. The sharks are sought mostly for their fins, which are used in shark fin soup, a popular delicacy in China and elsewhere in Asia.“These species are threatened by the unsustainable and unregulated fisheries that supply the international trade in their meat and fins, which has driven extensive population declines,” Rebecca Regnery, senior director for wildlife at Humane Society International, said in a statement. “With Appendix II listing, CITES Parties can allow trade only if it is not detrimental to the survival of the species in the wild, giving these species help they need to recover from over-exploitation.”The conference also enacted protections for dozens of species of turtle, lizard and frogs including glass frogs whose translucent skin made them a favorite in the pet trade. Several species of song birds also got trade protection.“Already under immense ecological pressure resulting from habitat loss, climate change and disease, the unmanaged and growing trade in glass frogs is exacerbating the already existing threats to the species,” Danielle Kessler, the U.S. country director for the International Fund for Animal Welfare, said in a statement. “This trade must be regulated and limited to sustainable levels to avoid compounding the multiple threats they already face.”But some of the more controversial proposals weren’t approved. Some African countries and conservation groups had hoped to ban the trade in hippos. But it was opposed by the European Union, some African countries and several conservation groups, who argue many countries have healthy hippo populations and that trade isn’t a factor in their decline.“Globally cherished mammals such as rhinos, hippos, elephants and leopards didn’t receive increased protections at this meeting while a bunch of wonderful weirdos won conservation victories,” Tanya Sanerib, international legal director at the Center for Biological Diversity, said in a statement. “In the midst of a heart-wrenching extinction crisis, we need global agreement to fight for all species, even when it’s contentious.”

Noted Russian nationalist says army has too few doctors

Noted Russian nationalist says army has too few doctors

MOSCOW — One of Russia’s most prominent nationalist politicians said the Russian military does not have an adequate number of doctors among other problems, a message he delivered in a meeting Saturday with the mothers of soldiers mobilized for the fight in Ukraine.The comments by Leonid Slutsky, leader of the populist Liberal Democratic Party and chairman of the foreign relations committee in the lower house of parliament, was an unusually public admission of problems within the military as Russian forces suffer a series of battlefield setbacks.“There are not enough doctors in the military units; everyone says this. I cannot say they do not exist at all, but they are practically not seen there,” Slutsky said at the meeting in St. Petersburg.Olga Suyetina, foster mother of a soldier mobilized for the Ukraine conflict said she has heard from her son that the troops are underequipped.“There are no gunsights, nothing, we have to buy them by crowdfunding,” she said, referring to a device on a gun that helps to aim it. “There is nothing; they left Kharkiv, there was zero, there was not even polyethylene to cover the dugouts.”Slutsky, a strong supporter of Russia’s fight in Ukraine, said he would address the Defense Ministry about problems that troops face in Ukraine.“We must understand that the whole world is watching us. We are the largest state and when we do not have socks, shorts, doctors, intelligence, communications, or simply care for our children, questions arise that will be very difficult to answer,” he said.The meeting came a day after President Vladimir Putin met with another group of soldiers’ mothers. At that meeting Friday he hit out at what he said were skewed media portrayals of Moscow’s military campaign.“Life is more difficult and diverse that what is shown on TV screens or even on the internet. There are many fakes, cheating, lies there,” Putin said.Putin said that he sometimes speaks with troops directly by telephone, according to a Kremlin transcript and photos of the meeting. “I’ve spoken to (troops) who surprised me with their mood, their attitude to the matter. They didn’t expect these calls from me,” Putin said.He added that the calls “give me every reason to say that they are heroes.”

Military says its forces killed 9 insurgents in SW Pakistan

Military says its forces killed 9 insurgents in SW Pakistan

ISLAMABAD — Pakistani security forces shot and killed nine alleged insurgents Saturday during a raid on their hideout in southwestern Baluchistan province, the military said. A military statement said security forces conducted a raid on members of the separatist Baluchistan Liberation Army in the province’s Kohlu district. They had received information that militants involved in a recent attack on security forces in Baluchistan and a bombing in Kohlu Bazaar that killed two civilians and wounded 19 in September were hiding and planning more attacks.There was no immediate statement from the BLA and an attempt to reach its spokesman was not immediately successful.The military said that as security forces surrounded them, the militants opened fire starting an hourslong shootout that ended in the deaths of nine insurgents and the arrest of three wounded suspects. A search operation was underway in the area to eliminate any other militant hideout, it said.The military provided no further details.Baluchistan has long been the scene of a low-level insurgency by the Baluchistan Liberation Army and other small separatist groups demanding independence from the central government in Islamabad. Although Pakistan claims it has quelled the insurgency, violence in the province has persisted.

European officials say US profiting from Ukraine war, call Inflation Reduction Act 'very worrying'

European officials say US profiting from Ukraine war, call Inflation Reduction Act 'very worrying'

Top European officials have attacked President Biden’s actions amid the ongoing war in Ukraine and have even questioned whether the United States remains an ally as gas prices soar and U.S. green energy policies have put Europeans into “full-blown panic mode,” according to a report.European officials, speaking anonymously to Politico, accused the U.S. of “profiting” off of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and complained that green subsidies and taxes included in the Inflation Reduction Act have deteriorated relationships between the U.S. and European allies and partners. “The fact is, if you look at it soberly, the country that is most profiting from this war is the U.S. because they are selling more gas and at higher prices, and because they are selling more weapons,” a senior official told Politico. “We are really at a historic juncture,” the official added, arguing that U.S. policies have disrupted trade and that high gas prices are turning public opinion against aid for Ukraine. “America needs to realize that public opinion is shifting in many EU countries.”LITHUANIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: ‘NO GREATER THREAT’ THAN RUSSIA, SEEKS TO PRESERVE ‘GLOBAL RULES-BASED ORDER’ 
President Biden speaks about the situation in Poland following a meeting with G7 and European leaders on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Nusa Dua on the Indonesian resort island of Bali on Nov. 16, 2022. 
(SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)Among Europe’s complaints is that the electric vehicle tax credit included in the Inflation Reduction Act, a $369 billion spending and tax law signed by Biden, is “protectionist” and “discriminatory” because it imposes unfair competition on foreign manufacturers.”The Inflation Reduction Act is very worrying,” Dutch Trade Minister Liesje Schreinemacher said. “The potential impact on the European economy is very big.” At the same time, Putin has cut off energy exports to the rest of Europe, which has led EU countries to buy fuel from the U.S. at nearly four times the cost. These factors, combined with record high inflation, the threat of recession, and increased demand for energy as winter approaches have led European leaders to question whether Biden’s administration is aware of the harm the president’s policies have inflicted. RUSSIAN GAS PIPELINE EXPLODES NEAR ST. PETERSBURG, VIDEO SHOWS
Flags of the European Union. 
(Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)”Americans — our friends — take decisions which have an economic impact on us,” the EU’s chief diplomat Josep Borrell emphasized to Politico. U.S. officials have deflected blame to Russia. “The rise in gas prices in Europe is caused by Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and Putin’s energy war against Europe, period,” a spokesperson for the White House National Security Council told Politico. The White House has also said that American energy exports are helping Europe, taking credit for shoring up energy supplies ahead of winter.   UKRAINE CAPITAL IN SURVIVAL MODE FOLLOWING LATEST RUSSIAN MISSILE BARRAGE: RESIDENTS WITHOUT WATER, POWER
People gather their belongings from a damaged house after Russian shelling in the town of Vyshgorod, outside the capital Kyiv, Ukraine, Thursday, Nov. 24, 2022.
(AP Photo/Efrem Lukatsky)”The increase in global LNG supplies, led by the United States, helped European allies and partners get storage levels to an encouraging place ahead of this winter, and we will continue to work with the EU, its members and other European countries to ensure sufficient supplies will be available for winter and beyond,” an NSC official told Fox News. The White House insisted to Fox News that U.S. policies have not undermined or contradicted President Biden’s promise to Europe that “America is back” as a reliable ally, CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APPBut European officials are not so sure. “The Inflation Reduction Act has changed everything,” one EU diplomat told Politico. “Is Washington still our ally or not?”