‘The US has deployed troops to Syria’s northeast border with Turkey in an attempt to prevent an escalation of fighting between the Turkish forces and Kurdish militia units that followed Turkish airstrikes hitting two Kurdish-held areas in Syria and Iraq.
“Coalition forces are conducting joint patrols along the northeastern Syria-Turkey border to assess reports from both the [Kurdish] SDF and Turkey regarding skirmishes and cross-border fires between their respective security forces,” an official from the Combined Joint Task Force – Operation Inherent Resolve (CJTF-OIR) Public Affairs Office told RT via email, confirming the deployment.’
‘The US kicked off joint naval exercises with South Korea as the US aircraft carrier group led by the USS Carl Vinson entered the Sea of Japan through the Tsusima Strait. The war games got underway on the heels of North Korea’s unsuccessful missile launch.
“South Korea and US strike forces began a drill in the East Sea from 6pm (09:00 GMT) today against the backdrop of the current security situation,” South Korean Navy officials announced, referring to the Sea of Japan, as cited by Yonhap news agency.
Apart from the USS Carl Vinson, the group also includes the USS Lake Champlain, a guided-missile cruiser, as well as two destroyers, the USS Michael Murphy and the USS Wayne E. Meyer.
The drill, which is expected to last through next week, will focus on monitoring, tracing, and intercepting any intercontinental ballistic missiles that could be potentially launched by North Korea, Yonhap reports.’
‘North Korea has accused Israel of being the “only illegal possessor” of nukes and threat to peace in the Middle East, and threatened Tel Aviv with a “thousand-fold punishment” after Israeli Defense Minister called Pyongyang’s leadership a “crazy and radical group.”
In an interview with Hebrew news site Walla this week, Avigdor Lieberman stated that North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un is a “madman” in charge of a “crazy and radical group” which is “undermining global stability.”
Pyongyang “seems to have crossed the red line with its recent nuclear tests,” the Israeli defense minister said, according to the Times of Israel.’
‘The United States has approved a proposal to sell Israel more weapons, including naval guns and technical support worth an estimated $440 million.
The Defense Security Cooperation Agency said in a statement on Friday that the State Department agreed to allow the possible sale of 13 76mm naval guns to Tel Aviv.
The Pentagon agency said it had notified the Congress about the State Department’s decision
“The United States is committed to the security of Israel, and it is vital to US national interests to assist Israel to develop and maintain a strong and ready self-defense capability,” said the agency.’
‘The United States security umbrella for Saudi Arabia amounts to defense of terrorism by Washington, suggests a former US diplomat in the Middle Eastern country.
Michael Springmann made the comments in an interview with Press TV this week, while commenting on President Donald Trump’s recent criticism of the long time US ally.
In an interview with Reuters on Wednesday, the new president asserted his campaign stance that Washington is “losing a tremendous amount of money in defending” the monarchy.
“There is absolutely no need for a security umbrella for Saudi Arabia unless you consider the countries that Saudi Arabia and Saudi Arabia-financed terrorists have destroyed,” said Springmann, referencing the kingdom’s victims, including Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, “and now Yemen.”
The two countries’ claims that “Iran is trying to destabilize the region” is “a straight Israeli propaganda line,” he added.’
‘Labour has signalled it is looking at new measures to ensure British-built weapons and military technology are not bought by repressive regimes around the world.
It comes as the party plans its general election manifesto and following uproar at the Government’s backing for billions of pounds worth of arms sales to Saudi Arabia.
Jeremy Corbyn’s push for a more ethical exports policy comes just days after Sir Michael Fallon, the Defence Secretary, praised a UK firm that sold missiles to Colonel Gaddafi as a “role model” for post-Brexit trade.’
‘Donald Tusk today demanded a ‘serious’ offer from Britain on guaranteeing the rights of European citizens before Brexit trade talks can begin as the EU agreed its opening gambit for the negotiations.
Mr Tusk hailed the ‘unity’ of the remaining 27 EU members after they adopted negotiating guidelines in just four minutes, saying it was a ‘firm and fair political mandate’ for the Brexit negotiations, and set out their demands on migrants, Gibraltar and border controls in Northern Ireland.
The EU Council President warned Theresa May there was a detailed list of rights that must be guaranteed to EU citizens and warned any EU state could veto the start of talks about the future relationship if they were unhappy.
At a joint press conference, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said he had a document ready on 25 citizens’ rights but warned if Britain haggles, it will take up a ‘huge amount of time’ in the two-year Brexit process.’
‘A group representing 40 native Alaskan tribes has severely criticized US President Donald Trump’s new executive order that paves the way for oil drilling in the Arctic.
On Friday, Trump signed an executive order aimed at reducing restrictions on oil drilling in the Arctic and Atlantic. Trump said it would create “thousands and thousands” of jobs and “unleash American energy.”
The order, called the ‘America-First Offshore Energy Strategy’, would reverse drilling bans put in place by Barack Obama last year.’
‘A sea of protesters swarmed in front of the White House on Saturday to voice displeasure with President Donald Trump’s stance on the environment and demand that he rethink plans to reverse the climate change policies backed by his predecessor.
The Peoples Climate March, the culmination of a string of Earth Week protests that began with last Saturday’s March for Science, coincides with Trump’s 100th day in office, the end of the traditional “honeymoon” period for a new president.
As temperatures rose above 90 degrees Fahrenheit under hazy skies in the nation’s capital, tens of thousands of people marched from the grounds of the U.S. Capitol and passed the White House en route to the Washington Monument for a rally.
Many of the protesters carried signs with slogans such as “The seas are rising and so are we” and “Don’t be a fossil fool.” As the procession passed the Trump International Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue, marchers booed and chanted “shame.”‘