BreezPro Fidget Spinner Goes on Sale for Mother’s Day

The recently launched BreezPro Fidget Spinner will go on a special sale starting on May 11, 2017, in line with this year’s celebration of Mother’s Day.

The recently launched BreezPro Fidget Spinner will go on a special sale starting on May 11, 2017, in line with this year's celebration of Mother's Day.

Trump warns sacked FBI chief not to ‘leak’ conversations

President Donald Trump warned sacked FBI chief James Comey Friday not to “leak” details of their conversations to the media, suggesting they may have been taped.In a series of early morning tweets, Trump assailed critics and the media over their respon…

President Donald Trump warned sacked FBI chief James Comey Friday not to "leak" details of their conversations to the media, suggesting they may have been taped.

In a series of early morning tweets, Trump assailed critics and the media over their response to Comey's ouster, and threatened to cancel daily news briefings at the White House.

"James Comey better hope that there are no 'tapes' of our conversations before he starts leaking to the press!" fumed the president, whose dismissal of the FBI director on Tuesday has triggered days of turmoil in Washington.

Trump has revealed he asked Comey on three occasions whether he was a target in a probe into alleged Russian election meddling, stoking allegations of presidential interference.

In an interview Thursday, he insisted he always intended to fire the FBI director, undercutting the initial explanation that he acted on the recommendation of top officials who criticized Comey's handling of a probe into Hillary Clinton's emails.

Apparently stung by media scrutiny over shifting accounts of how and why Comey was fired, Trump suggested he may call off daily media briefings at the White House.

"As a very active President with lots of things happening, it is not possible for my surrogates to stand at podium with perfect accuracy!" he tweeted.

"Maybe the best thing to do would be to cancel all future "press briefings" and hand out written responses for the sake of accuracy???"

Opponents have claimed that Comey's shock sacking was a bid to stall an FBI investigation into alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 election, which is also looking into possible collusion between the Kremlin and Trump's team.

The Keys-Things to Do in Key West

Per Fred Mullins, Top Producing Member of Team Mullins at Coldwell BankerSchmitt in Key West and owner of www.lowerkeys-homes.com,”Located just ninety miles from Cuba, Key West is best known for its tropical climate, great parties, and it’s natural…

Per Fred Mullins, Top Producing Member of Team Mullins at Coldwell BankerSchmitt in Key West and owner of www.lowerkeys-homes.com,"Located just ninety miles from Cuba, Key West is best known for its tropical climate, great parties, and it's natural...

Things to Do in Islamorada in The Florida Keys

Per Jan Keller, Top Producing Real Estate Agent for Coldwell Banker Schmitt Real estate and owner of Kellerporterteam.com-Everything about Real Estate in Islamorada and the Upper Keys,”Although only 20 miles in length and amazingly a small and narrow as..

Per Jan Keller, Top Producing Real Estate Agent for Coldwell Banker Schmitt Real estate and owner of Kellerporterteam.com-Everything about Real Estate in Islamorada and the Upper Keys,"Although only 20 miles in length and amazingly a small and narrow as..

Judge seeks criminal review of Uber-Alphabet dispute

A federal judge has asked for a criminal justice review in the case brought by Alphabet self-driving car unit Waymo accusing Uber of stealing its technology.Judge William Alsup, in an order posted late Thursday, said he was referring the case to the Ju…

A federal judge has asked for a criminal justice review in the case brought by Alphabet self-driving car unit Waymo accusing Uber of stealing its technology.

Judge William Alsup, in an order posted late Thursday, said he was referring the case to the Justice Department "for investigation of possible theft of trade secrets."

Alsup said he made the recommendation "based on the evidentiary record," but "takes no position on whether a prosecution is warranted."

The case stems from the lawsuit filed in February by Waymo, formerly known as the Google self-driving car unit, which claimed a former manager took technical data with him when he left to launch a competing venture that went on to become Otto and was later acquired by Uber.

Alsup also ordered the civil trial to proceed and granted Waymo's request for a partial injunction -- filed under seal -- which could prevent Uber from deploying the technology.

Uber said in a statement to AFP that it would not comment on the injunction, adding that "the order is currently under seal so we can't speculate about what it says."

The company also said it was disappointed that the judge rejected the ridesharing group's request to settle the case through arbitration instead of trial.

"It is unfortunate that Waymo will be permitted to avoid abiding by the arbitration promise it requires its employees to make," the statement said.

"We remain confident in our case and welcome the chance to talk about our independently developed technology any forum."

Alphabet did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Waymo argued in the lawsuit that a "calculated theft" of its technology netted Otto a buyout of more than $500 million and enabled Uber to revive a stalled self-driving car program.

California-based ride-sharing service Uber acquired commercial transport-focused tech startup Otto late last year as the company pressed ahead with its pursuit of self-driving technology.

Anthony Levandowski, a co-founder of 90-person startup Otto, was put in charge of Uber's efforts to develop self-driving technology for personal driving, delivery and trucking.

Waymo's lawsuit contended that Levandowski in December 2015 downloaded more than 14,000 proprietary files from a highly confidential design server to a laptop.

Latvian daredevil in ‘drone-diving’ world first

A Latvian tech company is claiming a world first after successfully test-flying a super-powered drone which lifted a daredevil skydiver aloft, from where he parachuted safely back down to earth.Manufacturer Aerones performed the feat this week in a sec…

A Latvian tech company is claiming a world first after successfully test-flying a super-powered drone which lifted a daredevil skydiver aloft, from where he parachuted safely back down to earth.

Manufacturer Aerones performed the feat this week in a secret "drone-diving" operation in a wild, isolated central region of the Baltic state to which AFP had exclusive access.

The powerful drone measuring 3.2 square metres sports 16 rotors. Weighing 70 kilogrammes (154 pounds), it can lift up to 200 kilos.

The same drone was used in January to debut "drone-boarding" by towing snowboarders at high speed across a frozen Latvian lake.

But this week's operation was even more perilous with the drone collecting a man from the top of a tower and then lifting him some 330 metres (360 yards) into the air.

After testing the drone by lifting and dropping a dead weight of 90 kilogrammes, it was the turn of daredevil skydiver Ingus Augstkalns to literally take the plunge as what is believed to be the world's first "drone-diver".

"It was so much fun -? like being in a playground in childhood," Augstkalns told AFP.

"Of course there were still risks in doing it the first time.

"Being lifted the first five meters was probably the most nervous moment, but the drone lifted me... and two seconds later I was under the (parachute) canopy."

- 'No helicopter' -

Aerones CEO Janis Putrams, who was in charge of the drone controls, told AFP "You no longer need a helicopter" to skydive.

"Today we did the first drone jump, a completely new way of base jumping. It makes it possible to base jump from any place -- in cities, in desert, in mountains," he added.

But as well as the extreme sports potential of drone-diving, the company hopes to exploit the drone's abilities to perform rescue operations, for instance of people trapped on the roof of a burning building or other difficult-to-reach locations.

"We're aiming at using it for human rescue, so today was a good test," Putrams said.

He and his team of engineers first came up with the idea of building the heavy-duty drone two years ago.

It cost 35,000 euros ($37,000) to build and for now, flight times are restricted to around 10 minutes using on-board batteries.

In theory the top speed is around 150 kilometres per hour (95 miles per hour), but piloting becomes difficult at that velocity, so drone-boarding and drone-diving daredevils have to make do with speeds of around 60 kph.

US inflation edges higher in April

US inflation edged higher in April, reversing the previous month’s surprise drop, the Labor Department reported on Friday.The Consumer Price Index, which tracks changes in the costs of goods and services purchased by households, rose 0.2 percent in Apr…

US inflation edged higher in April, reversing the previous month's surprise drop, the Labor Department reported on Friday.

The Consumer Price Index, which tracks changes in the costs of goods and services purchased by households, rose 0.2 percent in April after March's 0.3 percent decline, matching analyst expectations.

Data showed that retail sales in the world's biggest economy rebounded strongly last month, with consumers buying cars and driving up sales at gas stations.

The CPI showed rising prices for shelter, tobacco, energy and food, according to the Labor Department. Excluding the more volatile categories of food and fuel, the "core" index rose a more modest 0.1 percent.

Meanwhile, online retailers continued to see soaring business, according to separate figures released on Friday by the Commerce Department.

The sector once again was among the healthiest in the economy, with sales seeing their biggest gain in five months at 1.4 percent, up nearly 12 percent over the same month last year.

The new economic data suggested that weak figures in the first quarter and a sluggish start to the year may have been only blips on the radar -- buttressing plans by the Federal Reserve to continue raising interest rates in 2017.

On a yearly basis, signs of increased pressures were more muted, with inflation measures trending downward since the start of the year.

The CPI rose 2.2 percent for the 12 months ending in April, down from the 2.4 recorded in March. The 12-month gain in the core index was also 1.9 percent, falling a tenth of below the Fed's two percent target.

Meanwhile, retail spending was again on the rise.

American consumers plunked down a total of $474.9 billion, up 0.4 percent, after March's upward revised figure of 0.1 percent -- putting April a solid 4.5 percent above the same month last year.

The result was two tenths of a point below what analysts had been expecting after a sluggish start to the year, when delayed income tax refunds and warmer weather helped constrain spending in some areas.

Excluding the more volatile categories of food and cars, sales rose 0.3 percent, the same as March.

Health and personal care stores saw their biggest gain in 14 months, adding 0.8 percent. Auto sales rose 0.7 percent and electronics and appliance retailers rose by 1.3 percent.

Gas station sales grew at a more modest 0.2 percent but were nevertheless up 12.3 percent over April of 2016.

Palestinian shot dead in West Bank clash with Israelis: ministry

A Palestinian youth was shot dead during clashes with Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank on Friday, the Palestinian health ministry said.The man was shot during the protests which are held weekly near the village of Nabi Saleh, north of Ramallah,…

A Palestinian youth was shot dead during clashes with Israeli forces in the occupied West Bank on Friday, the Palestinian health ministry said.

The man was shot during the protests which are held weekly near the village of Nabi Saleh, north of Ramallah, and later died in a nearby hospital, the ministry said in a statement.

The dead man was named as Saba' Nidal Obaid, 20.

The Israeli army said in a statement to AFP it was "aware of reports" that a protester had been killed but could not confirm it.

"A violent riot involving dozens of Palestinians hurling rocks at (Israeli army) forces broke out earlier today," a spokeswoman said.

"Dispersal means," including firing live ammunition, were used "in response to that imminent threat".

A wave of unrest which erupted in October 2015 has claimed the lives of 263 Palestinians, 41 Israelis, two Americans, one Jordanian, an Eritrean, a Sudanese and a Briton, according to an AFP count.

Most of the Palestinians killed were carrying out knife, gun or car-ramming attacks, Israeli authorities say.

Others were shot dead during protests or clashes, while some were killed in Israeli air strikes on the Gaza Strip.

Myanmar nationalists sent to jail over US embassy protest

Four Myanmar nationalists were held on Friday for inciting violence during anti-Rohingya protests in Yangon last year, after a week that saw scuffles between Buddhist hardliners and minority Muslims in the city.Dozens of police kept back crowds of prot…

Four Myanmar nationalists were held on Friday for inciting violence during anti-Rohingya protests in Yangon last year, after a week that saw scuffles between Buddhist hardliners and minority Muslims in the city.

Dozens of police kept back crowds of protesters as the men were escorted out of court on their way to prison, where they will be remanded in custody until a hearing next week.

The men are charged over holding protests outside the US embassy in April last year denouncing the Americans' use of the word 'Rohingya' to describe more than a million Muslims who live in Rakhine State.

Myanmar's outspoken Buddhist nationalists have long railed against the Rohingya, who they denounce as illegal immigrants from Bangladesh.

But their rhetoric has crescendoed since Rohingya militants attacked police posts on the border with Bangladesh last year, sparking a bloody, months-long army crackdown.

Friday's hearing came days after a violent confrontation between nationalists and Muslims in downtown Yangon left at least one man injured.

Police have arrested two people and issued warrants for five more, including two monks, in connection with the incident.

A crowd of hardliners had stormed into the mainly Muslim Mingalar Taung Nyunt township on Tuesday night hunting for "illegal" Rohingya Muslims they said were hiding out in a local house.

Wary residents in the township told AFP they were tired of the violence and feared becoming targets.

"We want to live peacefully here. I'm sick of this kind of thing happening," said a local Muslim man, who used to own a teashop several years ago before it was destroyed by nationalist monks.

In recent months hardliners have also shut down religious events across the country and forced two Yangon schools accused of illegally doubling up as mosques to close their doors.

Britain blocking EU military HQ: sources

Brexit-bound Britain is blocking the launch of an EU military headquarters because it opposes any suggestion that the unit would have an active operational role, EU diplomatic sources said Friday.After months of tough negotiations, all 28 member states…

Brexit-bound Britain is blocking the launch of an EU military headquarters because it opposes any suggestion that the unit would have an active operational role, EU diplomatic sources said Friday.

After months of tough negotiations, all 28 member states approved plans in March for a small grouping in Brussels to coordinate three of the bloc's overseas training operations.

Turning the agreement into a legal text however has run into trouble, with proposals to call it an "Operational Headquarters" being a "red flag" for Britain ahead of its June 8 election and the start of the Brexit talks, the diplomatic sources said.

"We are still trying to find a compromise with our British friends on the legal position so that this structure can be set up," said one of sources who asked not to be named.

"They are extremely sensitive to the elections and how it might be seen back in the UK," the source added.

British officials in Brussels declined to comment.

EU foreign ministers meet Monday in Brussels to review progress on the March accord, with defence ministers due to approve their findings on Thursday.

EU foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini, who chairs Monday's meeting, has pushed hard for the EU to take on an increased military role after President Donald Trump cast doubt on the US security commitment to Europe.

Britain's departure will deprive the bloc of both a nuclear-armed power which wields a UN Security Council veto and a member state which has consistently opposed EU defence integration as a risk to NATO.

Mogherini, top officials and member states led by France and Germany believe that against this backdrop, the European Union must now do much more on defence.

The March agreement set up what is known as the Military Planning Conduct and Capability (MPCC) facility to oversee the EU's "non-executive military missions".

These are currently civil-military training operations in Mali, the Central African Republic and Somalia which do not involve the use of force.

The EU has also mounted Operation Sophia in the central Mediterranean, which can use force to stop migrant smugglers, and the Operation Atalanta anti-piracy mission off the Horn of Africa.

These two executive operations have their own command centres which will remain separate from the MPCC.

Trump adviser’s family business scraps China sales pitch

The real estate company owned by the family of US President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and adviser withdrew Friday from a sales pitch to Chinese investors after it sparked an uproar.White House aide Jared Kushner’s sister headlined events in Beijing and…

The real estate company owned by the family of US President Donald Trump's son-in-law and adviser withdrew Friday from a sales pitch to Chinese investors after it sparked an uproar.

White House aide Jared Kushner's sister headlined events in Beijing and Shanghai last weekend to seek more than $150 million in investment in a US luxury apartment complex.

Nicole Kushner Meyer urged wealthy Chinese to buy stakes through the EB-5 visa program that offers US residency in exchange for at least $500,000 investment in a US business that must also create at least 10 American jobs.

The presentation raised concern over potential conflicts of interest and set off a media firestorm in the United States. Kushner is married to Trump's daughter, Ivanka, who also works for the White House.

On Monday, the Kushner Company apologised after it emerged that Meyer had mentioned her brother's name during the sales pitch.

The names of Meyer and Kushner Company president Laurent Morali were on advertisements for the five-city tour that included the southern cities of Shenzhen and Guangzhou this weekend.

But a company spokesman told AFP in a brief statement on Friday: "No one from Kushner Companies will be in China this weekend."

While the Kushner Company is not sending anyone, the weekend's presentations were not cancelled by the host, the Chinese government-approved immigration agency QWOS.

Journalists had been asked to leave the hotel ballroom where Meyer had made her presentation in Beijing last Saturday. In Shanghai last Sunday, they were told they could not attend the "private event" even though it was publicly advertised.

Jared Kushner, 36, stepped down from the family business in January to join the US administration, in which he has far-reaching influence over both domestic and foreign policy.

The EB-5 programme was created in 1990 to help stimulate the US economy through job creation and capital investment from foreign nationals, but detractors say it puts citizenship up for sale.

Nearly 90 percent of EB-5 visas were issued to Chinese nationals in 2014, when the programme reached its quota of 10,000 visas.

Manchester United’s Mourinho says Europa League final is make-or-break

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho accepts the club’s season will be judged a failure if they do not beat Ajax in the Europa League final on May 24.Mourinho says he has worked “harder than ever” during his maiden United campaign, which has already…

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho accepts the club's season will be judged a failure if they do not beat Ajax in the Europa League final on May 24.

Mourinho says he has worked "harder than ever" during his maiden United campaign, which has already featured a League Cup triumph and victory over Leicester City in the Community Shield

But with United needing to beat Ajax to secure a place in next season's Champions League, he knows he will not be spared by the media if his side succumb to defeat at Stockholm's Friends Arena.

"I think you, the media, have the right to say (that) and I think it makes sense to say," he told reporters after United completed a 2-1 aggregate win over Celta Vigo in the semi-finals on Thursday.

"But I don't feel like that. I don't want the players to feel like that. I don't think the board feels like that. Because we work very hard. I probably worked this season harder than ever.

"In my personal analysis, I don't think that way. But if I was on your side, in your chair, I think it is (fair)."

He added: "We won a League Cup. We won the Community Shield. Until the injuries arrived, we fought for the Premier League top four. We had a fantastic record of 25 matches (unbeaten).

"We did things that nobody did in this club in the first season, like winning a trophy, like having the Manchester United record in the Premier League for unbeaten games, like reaching a European final. We had good things.

"But if I was on your side and you are always looking for this kind of capital-letters big headlines, I accept if you say that."

Mourinho said trying to restore United to former glories, after three largely disappointing seasons following the retirement of Alex Ferguson, had involved significant unseen work behind the scenes.

Asked what had made it such a tough season, he replied: "The players and the club.

"Sometimes you get into big clubs in difficult moments and the work is harder than when you get a smaller club in a moment of positive explosion.

"Very hard season. Some invisible work to your eyes. But when I analyse my work, I analyse it in the globality because better than anyone, I know what I did. I know what I had to do.

"But again, I accept that to your eyes are the football results that make that decision and I'm ready for that."

- Romero to start final -

United centre-back Eric Bailly was sent off during Thursday's 1-1 draw with Celta and Mourinho said the unlikelihood of lauching a successful appeal meant he was resigned to being without the Ivorian for the final.

One player guaranteed to start in Stockholm, if fit, is Argentine goalkeeper Sergio Romero.

Romero has deputised for usual number one David de Gea in the Europa League, playing 11 games to the Spaniard's three, and Mourinho said there was "no dilemma" about who will start between the posts against Ajax.

"They are two fantastic goalkeepers. I never saw in all my career two goalkeepers to be such friends," said Mourinho, whose sixth-place side visit Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League on Sunday.

"Because it's a position where you have always a little bit of rivalry, especially if you are both the same kind of level.

"We are speaking about Argentina's national goalkeeper and Spain's national goalkeeper.

"They are so friends and they support each other all the time. I never saw a bad face. I always saw them supporting each other.

"I think it's fair that Sergio is going to play the final and David accepts that, especially because he's already played Europa League matches and if we win the trophy, David wins the trophy.

"If everything goes normal and we have no problems, Sergio plays the final."

JDC Group Announces New Corporate Office Location

JDC Group is pleased to announce the move of its corporate office to a newly-designed office space at Two Lakeside Commons.

JDC Group is pleased to announce the move of its corporate office to a newly-designed office space at Two Lakeside Commons.

Gritty Lions tough it out in Brumbies win

South Africa’s Golden Lions won their third Australian tour game with a resilient 13-6 Super Rugby win over the ACT Brumbies in Canberra on Friday.The Lions scored the only try of the dour contest through Springbok Sevens star Kwagga Smith early in the…

South Africa's Golden Lions won their third Australian tour game with a resilient 13-6 Super Rugby win over the ACT Brumbies in Canberra on Friday.

The Lions scored the only try of the dour contest through Springbok Sevens star Kwagga Smith early in the second half after trailing the Australian conference leaders 3-0 at half-time.

It was only the Johannesburg-based Lions' second win in Canberra, but a victory based on an outstanding defensive effort and a battle of wills.

It was the Lions' biggest scalp on their Australian tour following a 24-15 win over the Western Force and 47-10 triumph over the Melbourne Rebels.

"It was a grind. Gee, it was a tough battle, the conditions were tough, the ball was slippery and we had to keep it tight, so I am extremely proud of the boys," Lions' skipper Warren Whiteley said.

"Credit to the Brumbies, they put us under pressure, they tested us at the set piece, it was a tough battle.

"We have got three wins on tour, it's a first for us and we're really proud of the team's performances over the last three weeks."

The stats bear out the Lions' stoic performance. They had just 40 percent possession, 44 percent territory and made 136 tackles.

The turning point came in the 54th minute when the Lions swooped on a loose pass inside their own half by Brumbies fullback Aidan Toua and Smith out-paced the defence in a 65-metre dash to the try-line.

Elton Jantjies kicked a conversion and a penalty while Andries Coetzee landed a penalty goal after the full-time siren.

The hard-fought four competition points protected the Lions' lead at the top of the South Africa 2 conference from the Coastal Sharks and strengthens their chances of hosting a home quarter-final.

It was the Brumbies' fourth straight defeat and yet somehow they still lead the mediocre Australian conference, with the NSW Waratahs having a bye this weekend.

The Brumbies were their own worst enemy, conceding 17 turnovers, missing 11 tackles and making 10 handling errors.

"We just didn't capitalise on our opportunities," Brumbies' captain Sam Carter said.

"We had plenty of line breaks and plenty of territory, but when it mattered we couldn't get the result, so you do that against quality opposition like the Lions and you're going to lose."

The Lions return home and will host the Northern Bulls next weekend, while the Brumbies go on the road and face the Southern Kings in Port Elizabeth.

Pentagon says $2bn sale of missiles to UAE will ‘contribute to US national security’

Preview The US State Department has approved a $2 billion sale of missiles to the United Arab Emirates. The Pentagon says the sale will “contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the US” and won’t alter the “basic military balance in the region.”
Read Full Article at RT.com

Preview The US State Department has approved a $2 billion sale of missiles to the United Arab Emirates. The Pentagon says the sale will “contribute to the foreign policy and national security of the US” and won’t alter the “basic military balance in the region.”
Read Full Article at RT.com

Congressional Seafood Names Berrie as Food Safety Director

Congressional Seafood Company has named Matthew Berrie as director of food safety at the company’s new state-of-the-art plant in Jessup, Md.

Congressional Seafood Company has named Matthew Berrie as director of food safety at the company's new state-of-the-art plant in Jessup, Md.

US Justice Dept orders prosecutors to seek toughest sentences

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered prosecutors Friday to seek the toughest possible charges against criminal suspects, in a move widely seen as reversing the Obama administration’s policy to ease punishments for drug offenses.In a two-page memo,…

US Attorney General Jeff Sessions ordered prosecutors Friday to seek the toughest possible charges against criminal suspects, in a move widely seen as reversing the Obama administration's policy to ease punishments for drug offenses.

In a two-page memo, Sessions told Justice Department attorneys around the country that, when prosecuting a case, they should apply the most serious charge possible that can be proven in court.

"By definition, the most serious offenses are those that carry the most substantial guidelines sentence, including mandatory minimum sentences," the memo said.

Sessions said the new stance "advances public policy and promotes respect for our legal system."

It comes as the new administration of President Donald Trump has promised a crackdown on violent crime, illegal immigration and drug trafficking.

It could reverse the directives of former president Barack Obama's attorney general Eric Holder, who -- addressing a three-decade old swelling of the prison population with largely black men -- sought to end the widespread application of harsh "mandatory minimum" sentences for relatively small and non-violent crimes.

Sessions' order said prosecutors in most cases should stick to recommending sentences within the statutory rules, following the mandatory minimums.

Prosecutors wanting to recommend lighter punishment than the official standard, Sessions said, will have to get permission from their superiors, in addition to providing written justification.

Under Holder, US attorneys were allowed to negotiate lesser charges and lighter sentences to avoid, for example, a second or third-time non-violent drug offender from being jailed for decades under mandatory minimum sentencing laws.

Myanmar army chief compares Rohingya crackdown to Northern Ireland

Myanmar’s army chief defended his military’s violent crackdown on Rohingya Muslims by comparing it to Britain’s campaign to tackle sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland, according to a statement released by his office Friday.UN investigators believe M…

Myanmar's army chief defended his military's violent crackdown on Rohingya Muslims by comparing it to Britain's campaign to tackle sectarian conflict in Northern Ireland, according to a statement released by his office Friday.

UN investigators believe Myanmar's security forces may have carried out ethnic cleansing of the persecuted minority during a months-long operation in the north of Rakhine State.

The military campaign has left hundreds of Rohingya dead and forced some 75,000 to flee across the border to Bangladesh, bringing harrowing accounts of rape, torture and mass killings by soldiers.

Myanmar has repeatedly rebuffed the allegations, saying troops were carrying out necessary counter-insurgency operations after Rohingya militants attacked police border posts in October.

On Thursday Myanmar's army chief Min Aung Hlaing compared the crackdown to Britain's operations in Northern Ireland in a meeting with Jonathan Powell, a former top British negotiator in the peace process.

Powell, who was chief of staff to former British prime minister Tony Blair, helped broker the Good Friday agreement in 1998 that ended decades of violence between Catholic Irish nationalists and Protestant British unionists in Northern Ireland.

After the "terrorist attack... the Tatmadaw (Myanmar military) helped the police take security measures," the army commander said, according to a statement released on Friday.

"Such occurrence was similar to that of Northern Ireland."

He also used the meeting to denounce any claim to citizenship by the more than one million Rohingya Muslims who live in Rakhine.

Stripped of citizenship by Myanmar's former military leaders in 1982, the Rohingya, who have lived in Rakhine for generations, are loathed by many in the Buddhist-majority country who claim they are illegal immigrants from Bangladesh and refer to them as "Bengalis".

Deadly communal violence in 2012 forced more than 120,000 Rohingya into squalid displacement camps where they live in apartheid-like conditions with little access to food, healthcare or education.

"First, they must accept themselves Bengalis, not Rohingya," Min Aung Hlaing said.

"Then, those who reside in that region need to accept enumeration, registration, and citizenship scrutiny under the law."

Powell was Britain's chief government negotiator on Northern Ireland from 1997 to 2007 and now heads conflict resolution NGO Inter Mediate.

Wounded author Kuki Gallmann vows return to Kenyan ranch

Blood was already pooling in the seat of her car when a second bullet tore through the driver’s door and thumped into Kuki Gallmann’s abdomen.”It felt like a punch,” the 73-year-old author and conservationist said this week, speaking for the first time…

Blood was already pooling in the seat of her car when a second bullet tore through the driver's door and thumped into Kuki Gallmann's abdomen.

"It felt like a punch," the 73-year-old author and conservationist said this week, speaking for the first time since being wounded a fortnight ago by suspected illegal herders on her 88,000-acre (36,000 hectare) ranch in Kenya's central highlands.

Chronic issues of climate change, population growth and inept law enforcement are being compounded by drought and ethnic politics, creating an unusually violent and dangerous situation in Laikipia.

Already dozens of people have been killed or wounded by illegal herders who have brought tens of thousands of livestock onto private land, grazing illegally, killing wildlife, rustling cattle, burning property and intimidating residents.

Gallmann, who wrote the best-selling "I Dreamed of Africa" which was made into a Hollywood film, simply has the highest profile of Laikipia's many victims.

- Ashes in the air -

Early one Sunday in late April, Gallmann visited Mukutan Retreat, her tourist lodge and the scene of the most recent arson. The last of three cottages ?- stone-walled, cedar-floored with thatched papyrus roofs -? had been set alight the day before.

She found blackened stone, smouldering wood and flurries of ash floating in the morning air.

She also found three sets of footprints in the dry red earth, leading away from the burned building.

Gallmann, followed by a pick-up carrying Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) rangers deployed to protect her, got back into her Land Cruiser with one of her wildlife scouts and drove up the escarpment.

Reaching the plains Gallmann found a tree trunk dragged across the track. This has become a common enough occurrence and Gallmann thought little of it. "We have seen trees across roads every single day of our lives for the last two years. I'm quite blase about this, only I can't move the bloody things," she said.

While three rangers rolled the tree aside, Gallman's scout, sitting next to her, shouted "Mama, mama!" and pointed to the right.

"Iko watu tatu," he called out: there are three people.

Before she could turn to look the first shot was fired, punching through the car door and into Gallman's abdomen. "The first bullet hit me. I knew it had gone through my guts."

She slumped sideways then tried to sit up but another volley hit the car, and she was struck a second time. One of the bullets tore through her intestines and blasted a ragged hole out the other side.

The rangers shot back and the gunmen disappeared. The car had been hit five times, three shots striking the driver's door. Gallmann was the only one wounded. The rangers lifted her, bleeding, into their vehicle and drove the short distance back to her home along the rough, bumpy track.

As waves of pain washed over her, Gallmann refused to contemplate death. She first called the local police chief -? "This is Kuki Gallmann. I would like to officially report that I've been shot in the gut," she told him -? then called a neighbour and asked him to send help.

"Will you please get a helicopter to pick me up," she told him. "I will be at the graves."

- Tragic connection to the land -

Gallmann arrived in Kenya from Italy in 1972 with her husband Paolo and son Emanuele. When she was pregnant with their daughter, Sveva, in 1980 Gallman's husband was killed in a car crash. Three years later her 17-year-old son also died, bitten by a puff adder.

Those tragedies fuel her determination to stay at Ol Ari Nyiro, the former cattle ranch she turned into a wildlife conservancy.

Her land has suffered poaching, illegal logging and encroachments for decades, and she has seen troubles escalate in lockstep with Kenya's election cycles when politicians use ethnicity in lieu of a political agenda.

"Illegal grazing has always happened one way or another, but it was small scale," she said. "Prior to every election I've seen there has been a similar build-up of violence."

Both husband and son are buried in the garden at her house, an acacia tree marking each grave. Gallmann intends to be buried between them and that is where she asked the rangers to lie her down.

"They took me from the car and put me on the grass. It was a clear day with birds. It was a good place to be," she said.

- Bloodied, but unbowed -

As Gallmann drifted in and out of consciousness a helicopter arrived. She was flown first to Nanyuki, the regional town, where British army medics at a military training base gave her a blood transfusion, then to Nairobi for surgery.

Recovering in hospital, Gallman speaks more quietly and hesitantly than usual, but the voice remains melodic with extravagantly rolled 'Rs' still with a strong Italian accent. Several times while speaking she inhales sharply, wincing with pain, her hand involuntarily jerking towards her stomach.

Having lived so much of her life outdoors, being confined to a bed is torture. "Inertia and inaction is the worst punishment," she said.

And so she intends to go home to the ranch and to rebuild. "I'm not beaten, I'm simply wounded. As soon as I am fit to return I will," she said. "I am here to stay, Ol Ari Nyiro is here to stay."

Water leak delays historic 200th spacewalk

NASA discovered a water leak Friday at the International Space Station, delaying the start of the milestone 200th spacewalk at the global space lab.The glitch affected equipment known as the servicing and cooling umbilical (SCU), which supplies power a…

NASA discovered a water leak Friday at the International Space Station, delaying the start of the milestone 200th spacewalk at the global space lab.

The glitch affected equipment known as the servicing and cooling umbilical (SCU), which supplies power and oxygen to the spacesuits worn by veteran US astronaut Peggy Whitson and her rookie counterpart, Jack Fischer.

The problem involved "a small leak of water at the connection point of the service and cooling umbilical (SCU) as it was hooked up to Jack Fischer's spacesuit in the equipment lock section of the Quest airlock," said NASA commentator Rob Navias.

It was discovered as the astronauts were seated in the airlock inside the space station, before they ventured into the vacuum of space.

"This is not the suit itself. Fischer's suit itself is perfectly fine. The crew is perfectly fine," said Navias.

"This is the connection point of the component in the airlock itself that provides power, oxygen, cooling water and communications lines to the two crew members while they are in the process of biding their time, pre-breathing pure oxygen, in the airlock itself."

According to NASA procedures, the spacewalk can go ahead with just one functioning SCU.

The rescheduled start time of the spacewalk was unclear, as French astronaut Thomas Pesquet took extra steps to stow the equipment and prepare for the use of just one SCU, following the orders of mission control in Houston.

The outing was initially set to begin around 7:00 am (1100 GMT).

Once the spacewalk begins, the astronauts will take turns using the SCU, and will alternate using battery power in their suits.

The astronauts' key task during Friday's spacewalk is to replace what is known as an express carrier avionic box.

The box weighs 200 pounds (91 kilograms) on Earth, and routes data and commands to experiments inside the space station, Navias said.

"It has been exhibiting some thermal issues of late, so it is being replaced," explained Navias.

The first spacewalk ever conducted at the station was on December 7, 1998.

Thomas Tuchel leaves Dortmund future open after spat

Thomas Tuchel on Friday threw open his future as Borussia Dortmund’s head coach in the aftermath of his public disagreement with the Bundesliga side’s CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.When asked in a press conference if he will stay on next season, Tuchel repli…

Thomas Tuchel on Friday threw open his future as Borussia Dortmund's head coach in the aftermath of his public disagreement with the Bundesliga side's CEO Hans-Joachim Watzke.

When asked in a press conference if he will stay on next season, Tuchel replied: "I am the wrong person to talk to about this. It would be naive from me, after a week like this, to say 'we'll keep going as things are.'

"I feel strong enough to put this aside and feel compelled to concentrate on the sport.

"If you had asked me a few weeks ago, I would have told you: 'I'm quite sure that I will be the coach here next season'.

"There have been so many untruths and false quotes this week which dramatically over-stepped the mark for me.

"I have had to put my feelings aside, even if that's been difficult."

Dortmund are third in the Bundesliga and need a win at Augsburg on Saturday to stay on course for an automatic Champions League spot, but the off-field focus is on the rift between Tuchel and Watzke.

Tuchel, 43, replaced Jurgen Klopp as Dortmund's coach for the 2015-16 season and has a year left on his contract.

However last Saturday, chief executive Watzke admitted his relationship with Tuchel was strained by the decision to play their Champions League quarter-final first-leg a day after last month's bomb attack on their team bus.

Tuchel complained bitterly in the aftermath of the 3-2 defeat by Monaco that he had not been involved in the decision, but Watzke says that is not true.

Contract extension talks would normally take place at the end of this season, but Tuchel was cool on the subject.

"A contract extension is not a certificate or a medal you simply get hung around your neck," he said.

"There are conversations at eye-level and agreements to keep working together.

"I am an employee and I do everything I can to achieve the goals we have.

"For everything else, we need a little patience and a little distance."

Bahrain bars HRW official from FIFA meeting over Israeli settlement football teams

A Human Rights Watch (HRW) official who was barred from entering Bahrain over his support for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement has accused the Gulf state of infringing on free speech. Read Full Article at RT.com

Preview A Human Rights Watch (HRW) official who was barred from entering Bahrain over his support for the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) movement has accused the Gulf state of infringing on free speech.
Read Full Article at RT.com

Shop Machine Moving Skates from Bishop Lifting Services for Easy Transport

Machine moving skates are the popular mechanical handling equipment which has the major use in heavy machinery transport at your workplace. They work best in smooth and flat surfaces, away from dirt and any other type of hindrances.

Machine moving skates are the popular mechanical handling equipment which has the major use in heavy machinery transport at your workplace. They work best in smooth and flat surfaces, away from dirt and any other type of hindrances.

Former British PM Tony Blair writes open letter to Macron in Le Monde

Former British prime minister Tony Blair has penned a letter to President-elect Emmanuel Macron delineating the lessons he learned from his so-called Third Way program in the UK and outlining what he believes is the best path forward.

Former British prime minister Tony Blair has penned a letter to President-elect Emmanuel Macron delineating the lessons he learned from his so-called Third Way program in the UK and outlining what he believes is the best path forward.

Jamaican sprinters brace for life after Bolt

Usain Bolt’s imminent retirement is a blow for athletics, but a new generation of Jamaican sprinters is ready to try to fill his golden shoes, Olympic champions Elaine Thompson and Omar McLeod said Friday.Thompson, the Olympic women’s 100m and 200m cha…

Usain Bolt's imminent retirement is a blow for athletics, but a new generation of Jamaican sprinters is ready to try to fill his golden shoes, Olympic champions Elaine Thompson and Omar McLeod said Friday.

Thompson, the Olympic women's 100m and 200m champion, and 110m hurdles gold medallist McLeod will be among the marquee performers in Saturday's Shanghai Diamond League competition, which will feature rematches of key Rio Games battles.

Bolt, the greatest sprinter in history with eight Olympic golds, 11 world titles and three world records, will retire from international competition after the world championships in August.

"It's saddening that he's retiring, but there is nothing we can do to change his mind," McLeod said wistfully in Shanghai.

"But what we can do, as young emerging Jamaican athletes, is shine our own lights and try our very best to keep the flag flying high."

Thompson added: "He's a legend. He's done so much for the country. We can't be like him, but we can follow in his footsteps and motivate each other to continue to raise the flag higher."

In Shanghai, Thompson will face off in the 100m with America's Tori Bowie for the first time since they went one-two in Rio, where Thompson became the first woman since Florence Griffith-Joyner in 1988 to win the 100m-200m double.

Jamaica's new sprint queen has been in good form this year but feels there is still "room for improvement" as she gears up for the world championships in London.

"This is preparation for me to compete for the world championship. So I just have to stay focused," she said.

The women's 100m also will feature Olympic and world long jump champion Tianna Bartoletta of the United States, and Jamaican two-time Olympic 200m champion Veronica Campbell-Brown.

- Rio reprise -

McLeod also has run well lately, clocking the fastest 110m-metre hurdles of the year two weeks ago -- a 13.04sec -- at the Drake Relays.

He will line up alongside Spain's Orlando Ortega, who took Olympic silver last year, and a handful of others who have previously run sub-13 times including past world champion Aries Merritt of the United States.

In yet another Rio rematch, Brazilian Thiago Braz will vie with world record-holder Renaud Lavillenie of France in the pole vault.

Braz stunned the Frenchman, the defending champion and hot favourite, last August to take gold with an Olympic record 6.03m in a memorable battle in which Lavillenie was mercilessly jeered by the home crowd.

Speaking at a press conference in Shanghai, the 23-year-old Braz lavished praise on the older Frenchman as an inspiration for his own career.

"I have a dream in my life. It is to be like him. He is the world record-holder," Braz said.

Sam Kendricks of the United States -- last year's Olympic bronze medallist -- will round out the Rio pole vault podium, in one of the stronger event fields in Shanghai.

Two-time Olympic champion David Rudisha, however, will be the clear favourite in the 800m, with no other Olympic medallists in the field.

A number of top men's sprinters, including Rio 100m silver medallist Justin Gatlin of the United States, are skipping Shanghai, leaving a depleted field for the race.

Gatlin finished a disappointing fourth at the season-opening Doha Diamond League last week, where unheralded South African Akani Simbine surprisingly outsprinted a world-class field for the win.

Islamic State claims responsibility for Pakistan suicide blast that left 25 dead

Preview A suicide blast in Mastung, in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Balochistan, has left 25 people dead and 35 injured, including Deputy Senate Leader Abdul Ghafoor Haideri. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Read Full Article at RT.com

Preview A suicide blast in Mastung, in Pakistan’s southwestern province of Balochistan, has left 25 people dead and 35 injured, including Deputy Senate Leader Abdul Ghafoor Haideri. Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) has claimed responsibility for the attack.
Read Full Article at RT.com

Startup’s challenge to Deutsche Bahn hits the buffers

Berlin rail startup Locomore has been placed into administration just months after it launched a challenge to state-owned monolith Deutsche Bahn, which dominates long-distance train travel in Germany.The Berlin-Charlottenburg court on Friday confirmed …

Berlin rail startup Locomore has been placed into administration just months after it launched a challenge to state-owned monolith Deutsche Bahn, which dominates long-distance train travel in Germany.

The Berlin-Charlottenburg court on Friday confirmed the firm had triggered the proceedings the day before.

"We will know in the course of the day what happens with the operation" of the train linking the capital with Stuttgart in southwest Germany, Locomore financial director Katrin Seiler told AFP.

A service had been set to depart Berlin in the early afternoon Friday, but the company was still in talks with the court-appointed administrator over whether it could leave.

Launched in mid-December with modernised 1970s carriages and lower prices than Deutsche Bahn, Locomore offered one return trip per day between Berlin and Stuttgart, and had plans to expand to other lines.

The firm pointed to successful crowdfunding drives as evidence of demand for an alternative to the state-owned service.

But low bookings and maintenance problems meant it had to cut service to four days a week.

By early April, the firm said it had transported some 70,000 passengers and was already planning higher capacity and more frequent services for the future.

Deutsche Bahn still operates 99 percent of long-distance services in Germany, despite the sector being liberalised in 1994.

Competition in regional markets is more intense, with the state-owned firm's share falling to 72 percent against numerous local alternatives according to specialist consultancy BSL.

US-backed forces prepare for final push on IS-held Raqa

US-backed fighters said Friday they were preparing for a final assault on the Islamic State group’s Syrian bastion Raqa, likely next month, after seizing a key city to the west.The Syrian Democratic Forces earlier this week captured Tabqa and an adjace…

US-backed fighters said Friday they were preparing for a final assault on the Islamic State group's Syrian bastion Raqa, likely next month, after seizing a key city to the west.

The Syrian Democratic Forces earlier this week captured Tabqa and an adjacent dam, a major prize in the offensive for Raqa, the Syrian heart of IS's self-proclaimed "caliphate".

"The attack on Raqa will take place in the beginning of the summer," Syrian Democratic Forces commander Rojda Felat told AFP.

She later specified that it would likely start in June based on "military and tactical considerations."

Felat spoke at a press conference in Tabqa, which the SDF captured from IS on Wednesday along with its nearby dam in one of its most important victories yet.

Tabqa lies on the banks of the Euphrates River, about 55 kilometres (34 miles) west of Raqa.

On Friday, an AFP team entered Tabqa and the adjacent dam -- Syria's largest -- and saw rows of sandbags, mangled cars and craters from heavy bombardment dotting the structure.

The battle for Tabqa was marked by fears that the dam would be severely damaged and collapse, leading to massive flooding downstream.

The body of an alleged IS fighter was seen on Friday floating in the artificial reservoir created by the dam.

- US arms to arrive 'soon' -

The SDF's fight for Raqa -- dubbed Operation Wrath of the Euphrates -- has already seen the alliance capture large swathes of the surrounding province with help from the US-led coalition bombing IS in Iraq and Syria.

The SDF are working to tighten the noose around Raqa before a final assault. At their closest point, the US-backed forces are just eight kilometres (five miles) from the city.

The joint Arab-Kurdish forces have received significant support from the US-led coalition in the form of air strikes and special forces advisers.

SDF deputy head Qahraman Hassan said: "In the beginning of the summer, we will storm and liberate (Raqa) city."

His forces would receive "special weapons and armoured vehicles" to enter the city, Hassan said, after President Donald Trump changed US policy to allow arms deliveries to the SDF's Kurdish component.

No newly authorised aid had been delivered yet, Hassan said, but he added that "I believe this support will arrive soon."

The SDF is dominated by the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), seen by the US as an indispensable ally in the fight against IS but considered a "terrorist group" by Turkey.

The US change in policy has reignited a dispute with Ankara, with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan calling for an "immediate" reversal.

Austria’s unhappy coalition on the brink

Austria’s squabbling centrist coalition looked increasingly on the brink Friday as Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz made clear he would pull his centre-right People’s Party (OeVP) out of the government if he becomes its new chief.The 30-year-old politic…

Austria's squabbling centrist coalition looked increasingly on the brink Friday as Foreign Minister Sebastian Kurz made clear he would pull his centre-right People's Party (OeVP) out of the government if he becomes its new chief.

The 30-year-old political rising star is tipped to take over the OeVP following Wednesday's shock resignation of current chief Reinhold Mitterlehner after months of internal power struggles.

Snap parliamentary elections could herald the return to power of the far-right Freedom Party (FPOe), which is riding high in opinion polls.

"I think early elections are the right way," Kurz told a press conference in Vienna.

"There's an offer on the table for me to continue in the current government, swap a few heads and act as if nothing had happened," he said.

"But I think we'd end up in the same situation we've been stuck in for a long time. Small compromises would be struck which wouldn't lead to any changes."

Deep rifts have plagued the "grand coalition" between the OeVP and the Social Democrats (SPOe) led by Chancellor Christian Kern, spurring speculation that the unhappy union would dissolve long before the next scheduled election in autumn 2018.

Kern, who became chancellor just a year ago, has repeatedly insisted he did not want an early ballot.

"I don't see a single problem that would be solved with snap elections," he said on Thursday.

Like other centrist factions in Europe, the OeVP and SPOe have suffered the wrath of disillusioned voters over rising unemployment and a huge influx of migrants.

The parties, which have dominated Austrian politics since 1945, were dealt a disastrous blow in the 2016 presidential ballot when both their candidates failed to make it into the run-off.

Kurz has been hailed as the ideal candidate to boost the popularity of the OeVP, which is lagging behind the SPOe and the FPOe in opinion polls.

The centre-right bloc will meet on Sunday to choose its new leader.

France’s Emmanuel Macron backs Paris Olympic bid

French president-elect Emmanuel Macron reaffirmed his backing for the Paris bid to host the 2024 Olympic Games in talks with International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach, Paris bid officials said Friday.Senior IOC inspectors are due to arrive in P…

French president-elect Emmanuel Macron reaffirmed his backing for the Paris bid to host the 2024 Olympic Games in talks with International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach, Paris bid officials said Friday.

Senior IOC inspectors are due to arrive in Paris over the weekend to conduct a tour of proposed venues as Paris squares off against rival bidder Los Angeles for the right to host the Games.

Macron, elected on Sunday, spoke to Bach by phone and expressed his "attachment to the Paris 2024 project and emphasised France's longstanding commitment to the Olympic movement," the bid committee said in a statement.

"We are delighted that even before his inauguration as new president of France he has already found time to speak to the IOC president to reaffirm his full and complete support for Paris 2024," the co-chairman of the committee Tony Estanguet said in the statement.

The IOC's Evaluation Committee made up of senior Olympic officials will visit Paris for three days from Sunday, arriving directly from a similar inspection tour of Los Angeles.

The commission will release its finding later this year ahead of the September 13 vote in Lima which will determine the winner,

"Mr. Macron has also confirmed that he will be meeting with the IOC Evaluation Commission while they are in Paris and that he will be active in backing the bid all the way to Lima," said Estanguet.

"The whole of France is coming together to support Paris 2024 and is ready to welcome the world to our country for a unique celebration of sport, inclusion and friendship.?

World Food India 2017- GoI initiative to Boost Food Processing Industry

It is a brilliant initiative by the GoI, under the aegis of PM Shri Narendra Modi and the Minister of Food Processing Smt. Harsimrat Kaur Badal to facilitate partnerships between Indian and foreign businesses/investors.

It is a brilliant initiative by the GoI, under the aegis of PM Shri Narendra Modi and the Minister of Food Processing Smt. Harsimrat Kaur Badal to facilitate partnerships between Indian and foreign businesses/investors.

CDI’s ‘Forty Nights’ Wins ‘Most Inspirational’ At World’s Largest Christian Film Festival

Every film by Collective Development Incorporated, a feature-film production company based in Lansing, Mich., is, in its own unique way, a direct reflection on the organization’s name and the artists in front of and behind the camera on each project.

Every film by Collective Development Incorporated, a feature-film production company based in Lansing, Mich., is, in its own unique way, a direct reflection on the organization's name and the artists in front of and behind the camera on each project.

Dutch court rules boy, 12, can refuse chemo

A Dutch court ruled Friday that a 12-year-old boy suffering from a brain tumour had the right to refuse chemotherapy, rejecting his father’s plea to order him to have the treatment.Known only as David, the boy was diagnosed with the tumour in November …

A Dutch court ruled Friday that a 12-year-old boy suffering from a brain tumour had the right to refuse chemotherapy, rejecting his father's plea to order him to have the treatment.

Known only as David, the boy was diagnosed with the tumour in November which was operated on and removed. He was given radiation treatment and declared "clear," the court said in a statement.

Doctors then recommended he should also have chemotherapy "but David did not want any follow-up treatment... and was supported in this by his mother."

Dutch media reported that the boy, whose parents are divorced, wanted instead to try alternative medicine.

His father lodged a case with the court in northern Alkmaar against the local child services, arguing his son should be forced to have further treatment.

The boy has been assessed by child psychologists since he was going against medical advice.

They found that David was mentally competent and in good spirits with "a strong will to live," but was concerned the side-effects of the chemotherapy would affect his current quality of life.

While the judge said he understood the father's concerns, he "found there was no reason not to respect David's wishes," the court said.

"David can reasonably appreciate what he believes is in his best interests, and understands the consequences of his actions, including the negative ones," the court added.

"He has the right to self-determination, even if that is hard for the parents."

The judge also referred to Dutch law on euthanasia, which allows terminally-ill minors aged between 12 to 18 the right to opt to ask for help to end their lives.

The law clearly allows children of 12 and older "to make decisions about their treatment in life-threatening situations".

The father's lawyer told the Dutch news agency ANP they would study the ruling before deciding whether to appeal.

Indian Super League set to expand, invites new bids

The Indian Super League (ISL) is seeking to expand its reach with organisers inviting new bids for the fourth edition of the popular football tournament.The ISL has taken off since launching in 2013, attracting higher broadcast ratings and stadium numb…

The Indian Super League (ISL) is seeking to expand its reach with organisers inviting new bids for the fourth edition of the popular football tournament.

The ISL has taken off since launching in 2013, attracting higher broadcast ratings and stadium numbers than India's top-tier I-League competition.

The franchise-based, eight-team competition, which has attracted former stars like Alessandro Del Piero and Nicolas Anelka, is seeking up to three new teams and is gauging interest from 10 Indian cities, including major centres like Bangalore, Hyderabad and Kolkata.

"One to three new winning bidders shall be enrolled and awarded the right to participate in the Indian Super League," ISL said in a statement.

Any potential bid from Kolkata -- which already has an ISL franchise, current champions Atletico de Kolkata -- would need to find a different home base, the statement added.

Suggestions that the ISL has usurped the I-League as India's top competition have been rejected by the All India Football Federation.

But the ISL -- which is modelled on India's hugely popular Indian Premier League cricket tournament -- is expected to attract more foreign players and interest if it expands to a 10 or 11 team format.

India recently climbed to the 100th spot in the latest FIFA rankings but remains a football minnow, despite having a population of well over one billion.

EU demands talks with US over possible airline laptop ban

The EU is seeking urgent talks with Washington over a possible US ban on carry-on computers on European flights to the United States, an EU source said Friday.The European Union has not yet received a response from Washington to its request, the source…

The EU is seeking urgent talks with Washington over a possible US ban on carry-on computers on European flights to the United States, an EU source said Friday.

The European Union has not yet received a response from Washington to its request, the source said.

The US Department of Homeland Security said on Tuesday it was close to a decision on extending to Europe an existing ban imposed on eight countries, as the busy summer transatlantic travel season looms.

Airlines flying to the United States from European airports that would be involved in implementing the policy have been given a warning that it is under consideration, the department said.

A spokesman for the European Commission said that "the United States and the European Union have a long-standing and fruitful cooperation on security" and the commission had approached the US "to continue to pursue that cooperation".

In March, Washington banned passengers on direct flights to the United States from 10 airports in eight countries from carrying on board laptop computers, tablets and other electronic devices larger than cellphones.

The affected airports are in Turkey, North Africa and the Middle East.

Britain followed with a similar ban applying to incoming flights from six Middle East and North African countries.

The move, which forces passengers to put their devices into checked baggage, came as counter-terror officials developed concerns that jihadist groups were devising bombs disguised as batteries in consumer electronics.

A bomb that blew a hole in the fuselage of a Somalian airline in February 2016, killing one person, is believed to have been built into a laptop computer carried into the passenger cabin.

Brexit means changing N.Ireland peace deal: Blair

Former British prime minister Tony Blair said Friday that the landmark 1998 peace agreement for Northern Ireland — which he helped to negotiate — would have to be changed because of Brexit.”The Good Friday or Belfast Agreement was formulated on the a…

Former British prime minister Tony Blair said Friday that the landmark 1998 peace agreement for Northern Ireland -- which he helped to negotiate -- would have to be changed because of Brexit.

"The Good Friday or Belfast Agreement was formulated on the assumption that both countries were part of the EU," he said at a meeting of the European People's Party in County Wicklow, south of Dublin.

"This was not only for economic but also for political reasons, to take account particularly of nationalist aspirations," he said.

"Some of the language will therefore require amendment because of Brexit," he added.

He said this should be achievable with a "minimum of difficulty" if there was a willingness to do so on all sides.

Blair was one of the architects of the agreement, which ended three decades of bloody conflict that claimed more than 3,500 lives.

He said it was important that both Britain and the EU formed a consensus on avoiding a "hard" border but that "some disruption is inevitable and indeed is already happening".

"If the UK and the Republic were able to agree a way forward on the border, then we would have the best chance of limiting the damage. It is in the interests of us all, including our European partners, for this to happen," he said.

But Manfred Weber, a German MEP who leads the European People's Party, warned at the conference that despite the rhetoric from London "this cannot be a win-win situation".

"From our point of view we see no chance for a win-win situation -- this will create damage. I hate to say this but this is the reality," he said.

"We have tried to do this with a constructive approach but in the end this is a mistake, it is a mistake to go out of the European Union and that is what the British people will experience in the next years," he added.

France’s Macron angers ally with parliament picks

Tensions over French president-elect Emmanuel Macron’s bid to redraw France’s political map burst into the open Friday as a key ally was left furious ahead of crucial parliamentary elections next month.Macron angered fellow centrist Francois Bayrou and…

Tensions over French president-elect Emmanuel Macron's bid to redraw France's political map burst into the open Friday as a key ally was left furious ahead of crucial parliamentary elections next month.

Macron angered fellow centrist Francois Bayrou and faced mockery from his opponents after his La Republique En Marche (REM, The Republic on the Move) party unveiled more than 400 candidates for crucial parliamentary elections in June.

"It's a big recycling operation for the Socialist party," Bayrou told L'Obs magazine, adding bitterly that candidates from his MoDem party had been offered only 35 constituencies instead of the 120 he expected.

Bayrou, a veteran centrist and presidential candidate, threw his and MoDem's support behind Macron at the end of February at a crucial time when the 39-year-old president-elect's campaign needed new momentum.

"When I offered him my support, he was at 18 percent," Bayrou added.

Macron, who will be inaugurated on Sunday, has promised to refresh France's parliament and his party unveiled 428 out of 577 candidates on Thursday.

Half of them have never held elected office, including a retired female bullfighter and a star mathematician, and half of them are women.

The initial reaction from three out of four voters was positive, a survey published Friday by the Harris Interactive polling group suggested.

"Probably the biggest success of Emmanuel Macron is having motivated so many people who were outside of politics to have committed themselves to try to renew things," his spokesman Benjamin Griveaux said on Friday.

But as well as angering Bayrou, REM was forced to correct its list after around 10 people said they had not agreed to stand for the party or had never applied to be a candidate.

One was Mourad Boudjellal, the wealthy president of Toulon rugby club, who said that while he was flattered about being approached, "it is not my ambition" to enter politics.

The vice-president of the far-right National Front, Florian Philippot, accused Macron of "amateurism."

- PM pick to come -

The parliamentary selection process is seen as a tricky and risky balancing act for Macron, who will take over from widely unpopular Socialist Francois Hollande.

Without his own parliamentary majority, the former investment banker will find it hard to push through his planned reforms of the labour market, pensions, unemployment benefits or education.

Macron, a former economy minister in Hollande's government, has so far failed to attract centrist members of the rightwing Republicans party, but still believes some will cross over before next Wednesday.

Before then, he faces other crucial decisions on his staff at the Elysee Palace and his first government.

The most important will be his choice for prime minister, who will head the government until at least the parliamentary elections on June 11 and 18 and perhaps beyond.

Amid feverish speculation in the French media -- will he pick a loyal supporter or someone from the rightwing Republicans? -- nothing has leaked from his small group of aides.

The choice will send a strong signal about Macron's intentions, and he has promised to pick someone with past experience of parliament and capable of managing a majority. His declared preference is for a woman.

Immediately after his swearing-in, Macron will head to Berlin to meet German Chancellor Angela Merkel to start discussions about his ambitious plans for reforming the European Union.

Macron wants to deepen integration in the 19-country eurozone, giving the zone its own budget, and wants to toughen the EU's response to "unfair" industrial competition from countries such as China.