'My nose is bleeding and pain’: Attorney alleges officials force-feeding Indian immigrant on hunger strike


'My nose is bleeding and pain’: Attorney alleges officials force-feeding Indian immigrant on hunger strike



Nepal mandates mountaineering experience to scale Mount Everest


Nepal mandates mountaineering experience to scale Mount Everest

Kathmandu: All climbers seeking a permit to scale Mt Everest should have prior high altitude mountaineering experience, said a high-level committee in its report on Wednesday.

The committee probed into various issues including reasons behind the death of 11 climbers this season at Mount Everest alone.

"In order to make the summit safer and to acclimatize climbers vying for Everest Summit or peaks above 8,000 meters they must be made to climb any peak in Nepal that are above 6,500 meters," the committee has suggested as a means of a reformation in its report.

The committee also has suggested the government should make one Nepali guide with basic or advanced knowledge on an expedition to go along with climber for the summit.

As per the report submitted the helper also would require to have a basic and advance training from an institution along with a record of successful ascend of at least one peak inside Nepal above 7000 meters.

But the guide who will be going along with the Mt. Everest ascenders must climb one summit above 8,000 meters in order to be fitted to perform the role.

Nepal on spring climbing season of 2019 had issued permits to 381 climbers to scale the world's tallest mountain in the world the Mount Everest, the highest in the record.

With photo of Traffic Jam at world's highest peak surfacing around which is credited for casualties this year Nepal's Tourism Minister Yogesh Bhattarai said he will assure security and other concerning aspects.

 
 
 



Letter From Pakistan: UNSC President refuses to comment on the letter


Letter From Pakistan: UNSC President refuses to comment on the letter

UN Security Council President Joanna Wronecka has refused to comment on the letter from Pakistan's Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on the situation in Kashmir. Asked about it by reporters, she shook her and murmured "No," before walking away from a media briefing by seven Western countries on Thursday.

Qureshi's letter written on August 1, before India scaled back the special status of Kashmir, was circulated to the members of the Security Council and released by the UN on Thursday. Wronecka was one of the diplomats who stood by at the briefing where Belgium's Deputy Permanent Representative Karen Van Vlierberge read a statement expressing support for Georgia and criticizing Russia for "intensification" of the border situation there. None of them entertained media questions and walked away.

Pakistan's Permanent Representative Maleeha Lodhi, who is on lobbying mission on Kashmir, had met Wronecka on Wednesday. In his letter, Qureshi had expressed concern about what he said were then "widespread concerns that India is preparing ground to abolish Article 35-A of its Constitution as a first step, followed by the revocation of Article 370".

He also asked Guterres to appoint a special representative for Kashmir and to send a fact-finding team to the area. Asked about the request, Guterres's spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said at his daily briefing on Thursday: "We're studying it. The Secretary-General is following the situation very closely. The Secretariat is following the situation very closely, but I have nothing to announce or to hint at towards the issue of a special envoy."

In answer to another question if Guterres planned to bring the Kashmir developments to the Council or to brief it, he said: "We've not. I'm not aware of any plans to brief."

With Guterres and General Assembly President Maria Fernanda Espinosa away from the headquarters, Lodhi met Rosemary DiCarlo, the Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, on Thursday. She had met Guterres's Chief of State Maria Louisa Ribeiro Viotti on Wednesday.

 
 
 



Sri Lankan navy detains 4 Indian fishermen near Delft island


Sri Lankan navy detains 4 Indian fishermen near Delft island

Rameswaram: Sri Lankan Navy detained four Indian fishermen near Delft Island on Tuesday morning.The Lankan Navy also seized one country made boat which was allegedly used for poaching in the Sri Lankan territorial waters.

All the fishermen have been taken to Kangesanthurai Naval Camp and are likely to produce Jaffna fisheries later in the day. Straying of Indian and Sri Lankan fishermen into each others' waters is a recurrent problem as territories on the sea are not clearly demarcated.

 
 
 



Smartphone charging cable can steal your data too


Smartphone charging cable can steal your data too

San Francisco: Next time when you borrow a charging cable for your smartphone or iPad, think twice. A hacker has shown that an iPhone charging cable can steal your data.

Dubbed the O.MG cable, the Apple USB lightning cable looks normal from the outside like any other charging cable.

Once plugged into your device, from a nearby device and within Wi-Fi range, a hacker can wirelessly transmit malicious payloads on your computer, reports Motherboard.

"The cable comes with various payloads, or scripts and commands that an attacker can run on the victim's machine. A hacker can also remotely 'kill' the USB implant, hopefully hiding some evidence of its use or existence," the report said late Monday.

Once plugged in, an attacker can remotely lock a computer screen to collect the user's password when they log back in.

"This specific Lightning cable allows for cross-platform attack payloads, and the implant I have created is easily adapted to other USB cable types," the hacker known as MG was quoted as saying.

"Most people know not to plug in random flash drives these days, but they aren't expecting a cable to be a threat," he added. MG made the cables himself, modifying real Apple cables to include the implant. He now wants to get the cables produced as a legitimate security tool.

 
 
 



Amid protests, hundreds of flights cancelled from Hong Kong airport


Amid protests, hundreds of flights cancelled from Hong Kong airport

Hong Kong: Almost 200 flights out of the Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) were cancelled on Tuesday, a day after thousands of anti-government protesters swarmed into one of the terminals of the airport, one of the world's busiest, causing massive disruption and flight cancellations.

At least 180 outbound flights have been cancelled, the airport said in a statement on its website. "Hong Kong International Airport will implement flight rescheduling today (Tuesday) with flight movements expected to be affected," Efe news quoted the statement as saying.

"Please confirm the flights before heading to the airport," it added. Airlines including Cathay Pacific have asked passengers to postpone non-essential travel from Hong Kong and not proceed to the airport unless they have a confirmed booking.

Meanwhile, scenes of long lines and crowds continued to be seen on Tuesday morning at the airport, which struggled to recover from the protests a day earlier, during which demonstrators sought to draw attention to what they consider police brutality while trying to disperse protests in the city.

However, by Tuesday morning, only a few protesters could be seen remaining inside the airport's terminals.This development comes after the city witnessed the 10th consecutive weekend of demonstrations sparked off by the government's controversial extradition bill that was later shelved by Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam after coming under intense popular pressure.

The controversy surrounding the now-defunct extradition bill, which would have enabled fugitives to be transferred from Hong Kong to mainland China to stand trial under the latter's opaque legal system, has morphed into a broader movement seeking to reverse a decline in freedoms in the ex-British colony.

However, violence between the police and some of the demonstrators has been on the rise with the succession of protest marches. On Sunday, an unknown number of police officers were injured after protesters threw Molotov cocktails at them.

A former British colony, Hong Kong passed to Chinese sovereignty in 1997, although it still retains a degree of independence from Beijing.

According to the handover deal between London and Beijing, this political system - which includes certain legal freedoms not recognized in mainland China - must be preserved until 2047.

But many protesters viewed the controversial extradition bill - which was declared "dead" by the Hong Kong government in early July - as an attempt by China to meddle in Hong Kong's affairs.

 
 
 



Kashmir: China voices concern


Kashmir: China voices concern

Beijing: Voicing serious concern over the situation in Kashmir, China on Tuesday asked India and Pakistan to exercise restraint and avoid actions that "unilaterally" change the status quo and exacerbate tensions between the two countries.

"China is seriously concerned about the current situation in Kashmir," Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said in a written response to media queries about the militaries of India and Pakistan exchanging fire along the Line of Control and the Indian government's move to revoke Article 370 which gave special status to Jammu and Kashmir.

"China's position on the Kashmir issue is clear and consistent. This issue is a legacy of history between India and Pakistan, which is also the consensus of the international community," Hua said, without directly referring to revocation of Article 370 by India.

"The parties concerned should exercise restraint and act with caution, especially to avoid actions that unilaterally change the status quo and exacerbate the tension," she said.

By K J M Varma

 
 
 



Racism exists but improving in Singapore


Racism exists but improving in Singapore

Singapore: Racism exists in Singapore but the situation is “much better than before” and improving over the years, Home Affairs Minister K Shanmugam said on Sunday, in the wake of a controversial video by two Indian-origin YouTubers in response to a recent "discriminatory" advertisement by an e-payment website.

Shanmugam's comments on Sunday came after Preetipls, whose name is Preeti Nair, and her brother Subhas Nair apologised "unconditionally" over a video they created and starred in to call out a NETS E-Pay advertisement for being discriminatory.

The Nair siblings have been in the spotlight over the video, which featured vulgar language and questioned the use of "brownface" in the ad.

By Gurdip Singh




Pakistan will respond to any ‘misadventure or aggression’ by Indian forces: Imran Khan


Pakistan will respond to any ‘misadventure or aggression’ by Indian forces: Imran Khan

Islamabad: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan on Sunday said that Pakistan will respond to any "misadventure or aggression" by Indian forces against it.

Chairing the National Security Committee meeting in Islamabad, Imran Khan alleged that India has used "cluster bombs" on civilians along the Line of Control and called on the UN Security Council to take note of the "international threat to peace and security". He said that Pakistan "will always stand with Kashmiris and will not be deterred from its just stance based on United Nations Security Council's resolutions and aspirations of Kashmiri people".

Imran Khan's move comes in the wake of US President Donald Trump renewing his offer to mediate in the Kashmir issue, which India has firmly rejected. India has firmly stated that any discussion on Kashmir, if warranted, will be only with Pakistan, and only bilaterally. Imran Khan urged the world leaders and international bodies to take notice of the "irresponsible, unilateral and irrational behaviour of Indian leadership".

The meeting was briefed on India's "deplorable suppression" of people of Jammu and Kashmir, plans to use the "bogey of terrorism for political ends", use of "cluster munitions against civilians to provoke Pakistan and "use of disinformation to confuse the real intent which is changing the demographic structure and the internationally recognized disputed status" of Indian Jammu and Kashmir.

Defence Minister Pervez Khattak, Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, Army Chief, Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa, CJSC, Naval Chief, Air Chief, head of the Inter-Services Intelligence and others were present in the meeting. Foreign Minister Qureshi on Sunday contacted the Organisation for Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Secretary General Dr Yousef bin Ahmed Al Othaimeen and discussed "increasing Indian aggression in Kashmir" with him, reported Radio Pakistan.

Earlier, Qureshi chaired an emergency consultative meeting at the Foreign Office in Islamabad, and urged the international community and world human rights watchdogs to take immediate notice of the situation. Earlier, Inter-Services Public Relations (ISPR) Director General, Maj. Gen. Asif Ghafoor released a statement, claiming that Indian Army had used "cluster ammunition" to target the civilian population across the Line of Control (LoC) in Pakistani Jammu and Kashmir in violation of the Geneva Convention and international law, Pakistani media reported.

It said the Indian military, on the intervening night of July 30 and 31, targeted citizens including women and children in Neelum Valley through artillery using cluster ammunition - resulting in the killing of two civilians, including a boy and injuries to 11 other people, according to the ISPR statement. Maj. Gen. Ghafoor termed as "blatant lies and staged dramas" the Indian Army's claim that it has foiled an infiltration attempt by a Pakistani BAT (Border Action Team) squad in Keran Sector where 5-7 Pakistani army regulars were eliminated and their bodies are lying on the LoC.

Later, Foreign Office Spokesperson Muhammad Faisal said curtailing of the Amarnath Yatra and deployment of additional troops in Jammu and Kashmir on "baseless pretexts" were "designed to divert the world's attention from attempts to change the demographic structure of Indian Jammu and Kashmir and unabating state-led oppression and egregious human rights violations".

 
 
 



US: 2 days, 2 shootings, 30 dead, First attack in shopping mall, second in a pub


US: 2 days, 2 shootings, 30 dead, First attack in shopping mall, second in a pub

Houston/Washington: Two separate mass shootings within 24 hours left 30 dead and several others injured in the US states of Texas and Ohio, including one thought to be a hate crime, the latest in a string of such incidents in America that have shocked the nation.

The first shooting took place in the southern border town of El Paso in Texas, where a 21-year-old gunman opened fire at a crowded Walmart store, killing 20 people and wounding 26 others on Saturday.

Less than 20 minutes before the shooting, Patrick Crusius allegedly uploaded a twisted and seething anti-immigrant manifesto on an online forum outlining his sickening motives. 

The 2,300 word post titled 'The Inconvenient Truth' speaks of a perceived 'Hispanic invasion of Texas' and a belief that white people will soon be 'ethnically replaced' 

Crusius writes that he will target Hispanics in the shooting because they 'will take control of the local and state government of my beloved Texas' in a 'political coup which will hasten the destruction of our country.'

Hours later, a man killed nine people before being shot dead by police in Oregon district, a historic neighbourhood known for its nightclubs, bars, art galleries and shops.

The gunman was dressed all in black and wearing body armour; he opened fire on patrons at a small bar. The assailant was shot to death by officers within less than a minute. 

The first shooting that tore through a Walmart jammed with back-to-school shoppers in El Paso marked another bleak milestone in a nation pocked by gun violence: the 250th mass shooting of 2019.

And the rampage notched an even darker statistic: It occurred on the 215th day of the year, meaning there have been more mass shootings than days so far this year.

Texas authorities are investigating the El Paso shooting as a possible hate crime, Allen said. For several minutes on Saturday morning, the packed Walmart store, where shoppers were busy buying back to school stuff for their kids, filled with gun smoke and the echo of gunfire.

Footage shot on mobiles appeared to show multiple bodies lying on the ground in the store's parking lot. "On a day that would have been a normal day for someone to leisurely go shopping, turned into one of the most deadly days in the history of Texas."

El Paso has long been both a cultural and political symbol of Hispanic Texas. The city has had a binational feel because of its proximity and ties to its sister city in Mexico, Ciudad Juárez, and has been in the national spotlight for months. Thousands of Central American families have flooded the city and surrounding areas seeking asylum.

By Seema Hakhu Kachru

 
 
 



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