US reimposes tough, unilateral sanctions against Iran

US reimposes tough, unilateral sanctions against IranThe United States re-imposed a wave of tough, unilateral sanctions against Iran on Tuesday, bringing back into effect harsh penalties that had been lifted under a historic, multi-party nuclear agreement that President Donald Trump abandoned in May. The first of two rounds of US sanctions kicked in at 12:01 am (0431 GMT), targeting Iran’s access to US banknotes and key industries, including cars and carpets. Iranians are already seeing the effects of the sanctions, with Iran’s rial currency losing around half its value since Trump announced the US would withdraw from the 2015 nuclear accord.

Source: Yahoo! News

North Korea criticises US insistence on tough sanctions despite nuclear deal

North Korea criticises US insistence on tough sanctions despite nuclear dealNorth Korea on Saturday said the US was acting with “alarming” impatience on the issue of denuclearisation, after Mike Pompeo, US Secretary of State, stressed the need to maintain full sanctions pressure on Pyongyang. The contrasting comments at a security forum in Singapore came after a UN report showed Pyongyang was continuing with its nuclear and missile programmes and evading sanctions through ship-to-ship oil transfers. At historic talks with Donald Trump, the US President, in June, Kim Jong-un, the North Korean dictator, signed up to a vague commitment to “denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula” – a far cry from long-standing US demands for complete, verifiable and irreversible disarmament. While US officials have publicly been optimistic about the agreement, Pyongyang appears to have made little substantial progress and Washington has become concerned that some UN member states are easing sanctions. At the ASEAN Regional Forum, Ri Yong Ho, North Korea’s Foreign Minister, criticised US impatience on denuclearisation. “What is alarming, however, is the insistent moves manifested within the US to go back to the old, far from its leader’s intention,” he said, according to a statement. Hidden trillions: What if North Korea’s economy opened up? Since the June agreement, Pyongyang had taken “goodwill measures”, including a halt on nuclear and missile tests and “dismantling a nuclear test ground”, he said. “However, the United States, instead of responding to these measures, is raising its voice louder for maintaining the sanctions against the DPRK,” he said, using the initials of the North’s official name. “As long as the US does not show in practice its strong will to remove our concerns, there will be no case whereby we will move forward first unilaterally,” Mr Ri added. Earlier at the same forum, Mr Pompeo said he was emphasizing “the importance of maintaining diplomatic and economic pressure on North Korea” but also said that he was “optimistic” about the prospects for progress when it came to North Korean denuclearisation. At Saturday’s meeting, the US delegation also delivered a letter from Mr Trump intended for Mr Kim, by passing it to Mr Ri, said the State Department. On sanctions, Mr Pompeo singled out Russia after reports suggested Moscow breached sanctions by granting work permits to North Korean workers. During meetings with other foreign ministers in Singapore, Mr Pompeo said he had called specifically for sanctions to be enforced through halting ship-to-ship oil transfers. Cutting off oil and fuel to the North would require enforcement primarily by China, which supplies most of North Korea’s energy needs, but also by Russia, which delivers some oil to Pyongyang.

Source: Yahoo! News

'Tough Little Horn Shark,' Stolen in a Baby Stroller, Is Returned to Her Aquarium

  1. ‘Tough Little Horn Shark,’ Stolen in a Baby Stroller, Is Returned to Her Aquarium  New York Times
  2. Shark-In-A-Stroller Heist Ends With Animal’s Safe Return To San Antonio Aquarium  NPR
  3. Man who stole shark from San Antonio Aquarium wanted it for his own aquarium, police say  Dallas News
  4. Mugshot released for man accused of stealing shark from San Antonio Aquarium  KSAT San Antonio
  5. Shark Week heist: Thieves captured after making off with aquarium shark in baby stroller  Los Angeles Times
  6. Full coverage

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RPT-Pakistan's Imran Khan faces tough test in looming economic crisis

  1. RPT-Pakistan’s Imran Khan faces tough test in looming economic crisis  Reuters
  2. As Pakistan Nears End of Vote Count, Imran Khan Is Poised to Be Next Prime Minister  New York Times
  3. Can Imran Khan Create a New Pakistan?  Bloomberg
  4. OPINION: Imran Khan Has Declared Victory In Pakistan’s Election. But The Military Won  NPR
  5. Full coverage

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New York Excelsior's Pine Reflects on Becoming "The Big Boss" and Tough Times in the Overwatch League

  1. New York Excelsior’s Pine Reflects on Becoming “The Big Boss” and Tough Times in the Overwatch League
  2. Shades of LWBlue, The Fall of New York Excelsior  VPEsports (press release)
  3. Philly’s esports team hopes to bring home another championship
  4. Full coverage

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