Thousands dressed in black rally to demand Hong Kong leader steps down

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Thousands of people took to the streets in Hong Kong on Sunday dressed in black to demand the city’s embattled leader steps down, a day after she suspended an extradition bill in a dramatic retreat following the most violent protests in decades. A person stands on a scaffolding surrounding the Pacific Place complex next to a banner related to the protests against the proposed extradition bill, in Hong Kong, China, June 15, 2019. REUTERS/Athit Perawongmetha Activists set up gazebos as protesters, some carrying white flowers, started…

State sponsor behind May tanker attacks, says UAE minister

NICOSIA (Reuters) – The UAE’s foreign minister said on Saturday a “state sponsor” was involved in a May 12 attack on oil tankers in the Gulf, but did not name any particular country. He did not mention attacks on two other tankers this week in the same area. The United States has said Iran was involved in both the May and the June incidents – accusations dismissed by Tehran. “Our conclusion is this has only been possible by a state-sponsored attack,” Al Nahyan told reporters after meeting his Cypriot counterpart…

For U.S.-bound Central American migrants, better to stay in Mexico than be sent home

TAPACHULA, Mexico (Reuters) – Many of the Central Americans who lined up for papers at an asylum office in southern Mexico said they could abandon plans to reach the United States and remain in Mexico if U.S. President Donald Trump clamps down further on migration. Central American migrants wait outside the Mexican Commission for Refugee Assistance (COMAR) in Tapachula, Mexico, June 14, 2019. REUTERS/Jose CabezasMexico is ramping up security on its southern border with Guatemala as part of an agreement with Washington after Trump threatened to impose tariffs on Mexican…

India to impose retaliatory tariffs on 28 U.S. goods from Sunday

NEW DELHI (Reuters) – India will impose higher retaliatory tariffs on 28 U.S. products including almonds, apples and walnuts from Sunday, following Washington’s withdrawal of key trade privileges for New Delhi. FILE PHOTO: A man holds the flags of India and the U.S. while people take part in the 35th India Day Parade in New York August 16, 2015. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz/File PhotoThe new duties take effect from Sunday, a government notification said, in the latest trade row since U.S. President Donald Trump took office in 2017 vowing to act against…

Saudi seeks oil supply protection as U.S and Iran face off

DUBAI (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia called for swift action to secure Gulf energy supplies, after the United States blamed Iran for attacks on two oil tankers in a vital oil shipping route that have raised fears of broader confrontation in the region. FILE PHOTO: An oil tanker is seen after it was attacked at the Gulf of Oman, in waters between Gulf Arab states and Iran, June 13, 2019. ISNA/Handout via REUTERSThursday’s tanker attacks in the Gulf of Oman exacerbated the antagonistic fallout from similar blasts in May that crippled…

Iran summons UK envoy over ‘unfounded’ tanker accusations

DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran on Saturday summoned the British ambassador to Tehran after London blamed it for attacks on oil tankers in the Gulf of Oman, the semi-official Students News Agency ISNA reported. “During the meeting with Iran’s foreign ministry official, Iran strongly condemned the unfounded allegations and criticized Britain’s unacceptable stance regarding the attacks in the Gulf of Oman,” it said. The ambassador was asked for an explanation and correction after Britain was the only nation to echo U.S. accusations, ISNA reported. British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt issued a…

Amanda Knox breaks down in Italy as she relives murder trial

ROME (Reuters) – Amanda Knox, back in Italy for the first time since her 2015 murder acquittal, broke down in tears on Saturday as she relived her eight-year ordeal of trials and imprisonment, and the media frenzy surrounding it. Speaking at a conference on criminal justice in the northern Italian city of Modena, Knox said she had considered suicide while in jail, and she blamed the media for its treatment of her and her trial, which was closely followed around the world. “To the world, I wasn’t a suspect innocent…

Exclusive: U.N. chief calls on EU to raise 2030 climate goal to 55%

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has called on the European Union to aim for a 55% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030, far more than the bloc’s current target for a 40% reduction. U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres speaks at the R20 Austrian World Summit in Vienna, Austria, May 28, 2019. REUTERS/Lisi NiesnerIn a letter to European Council President Donald Tusk, seen by Reuters, ahead of a summit of EU leaders, Guterres said the world’s largest economic bloc should lead by example to avert the worst effects of…

Franco Zeffirelli, Italian film and opera director, dies at 96

ROME (Reuters) – Franco Zeffirelli, who directed the world’s greatest opera singers and brought Shakespeare to the cinema-going masses, has died. He was 96. In a statement, his foundation said he died in Rome on Saturday. “Ciao Maestro,” said the announcement. Often appreciated more by the public than critics, Zeffirelli was the last of a generation of Italian film giants who came of age after World War Two, including Federico Fellini, Luchino Visconti and Vittorio De Sica. He directed more than two dozen films, working with stars including Elizabeth Taylor,…

Italian film and opera director Franco Zeffirelli dies at 96

(Reuters) – – Franco Zeffirelli, the film and opera director acclaimed for movies such as “Romeo and Juliet” and opulent lyrical productions on the world’s major stages, died on Saturday at the age of 96. Often appreciated more by the public than critics, Zeffirelli was the last of a generation of Italian film giants who came of age after World War Two and included Federico Fellini, Luchino Visconti and Vittorio De Sica. He directed more than two dozen films, working with stars including Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, Laurence Olivier, Alec…

Director Franco Zeffirelli dies at 96 – Italy media

Italian film director Franco Zeffirelli has died aged 96, Italian media report. The Florence native directed stars including Elizabeth Taylor in the 1967 film Taming of the Shrew and Dame Judi Dench on stage in Romeo and Juliet. Italian media said Zeffirelli died after a long illness which had grown worse in recent months. Source: BBC

Iran renews nuclear pact ultimatum amid tensions with U.S.

DUSHANBE (Reuters) – Iran will continue scaling back compliance with a nuclear deal unless other signatories to the pact show “positive signals”, the Iranian president said on Saturday as tensions with the United States escalated over tanker attacks in the Gulf region. Participants listen to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, who is seen on screens, during the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA) in Dushanbe, Tajikistan June 15, 2019. REUTERS/Mukhtar KholdorbekovIran stopped complying in May with some commitments in the 2015 nuclear deal that was agreed with global…

Explainer: Why proposed changes to Hong Kong’s extradition law are fuelling protests

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Cracks have appeared in the support base for a proposed Hong Kong law to allow extraditions to China, with local media reporting the city’s government will suspend the bill after widespread anger and violent protests. Protesters hold signs following a day of violence over a proposed extradition bill, outside the Legislative Council building in Hong Kong, China, June 14, 2019. REUTERS/Athit PerawongmethaThe extradition bill, which would cover Hong Kong’s 7 million residents and foreign and Chinese nationals living or traveling in the city, has many concerned…

Hong Kong media say controversial extradition bill may be suspended

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong media reported on Saturday the city’s government would suspend a proposed law on extradition to mainland China that sparked widespread anger and violent protests, with leader Carrie Lam planning to address reporters later in the day. Cracks began to appear on Friday in the support base for the extradition bill with several pro-Beijing politicians and a senior advisor to Lam saying discussion of the bill should be shelved for the time being. The extradition bill, which will cover Hong Kong’s 7 million residents and…

VW’s Tennessee workers vote against union representation

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (Reuters) – Workers at Volkswagen AG’s assembly plant in the state of Tennessee narrowly voted against union representation, dealing a fresh blow to the United Auto Workers’ (UAW) efforts to unionize a foreign automaker’s plant in the U.S. South. FILE PHOTO: Cars are seen at the Volkswagen Chattanooga Assembly Plant in Chattanooga, Tennessee November 4, 2015. REUTERS/Tami ChappellThe German automaker and the UAW said on Friday that workers at the Chattanooga plant voted 833 to 776 against union representation, the second time in five years they have rejected…

UK court sets Assange U.S. extradition hearing for February 2020

LONDON (Reuters) – The full extradition hearing to decide whether Wikileaks founder Julian Assange should be sent to the United States to face accusations including spying charges will take place in February next year, a London court ruled on Friday. A demonstrator holding a placard protests outside of Westminster Magistrates Court, where a case hearing for U.S. extradition of Wikileaks founder Julian Assange is held, in London, Britain, June 14, 2019. REUTERS/Hannah Mckay – RC17C61BCDA0Assange, 47, faces 18 counts in the U.S. including conspiring to hack government computers and violating…

Four candidates at top of Trump’s list to replace Sarah Sanders: source

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Donald Trump has four leading candidates under consideration to replace outgoing White House press secretary Sarah Sanders, a Trump confidant said on Friday. U.S. President Donald Trump brings White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders onto the stage after it was announced she will leave her job at the end of the month during a second chance hiring prisoner reentry event in the East Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., June 13, 2019. REUTERS/Kevin LamarqueThe four are deputy White House press secretary Hogan Gidley,…

Trump says ‘Iran did do it,’ as U.S. seeks support on Gulf oil tanker attacks

DUBAI/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Friday blamed Iran for attacks on two oil tankers at the entrance to the Gulf and said it was seeking international consensus about the threat to shipping, despite Tehran denying involvement in the explosions at sea. Thursday’s attacks raised fears of a confrontation in the vital oil shipping route at a time of increased tension between Iran and the United States over U.S. sanctions and military moves in the Middle East, Tehran’s proxy groups in the region and its nuclear program. “Iran did…

Global stocks edge lower on data, oil rises on geopolitical fears

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Equity markets lost ground on Friday as weak Chinese data stoked investor anxieties over a global growth slowdown and mounting fears of a U.S.-Iran confrontation added to geopolitical uncertainty, sending oil prices higher. FILE PHOTO: A man is seen in front of an electronic board showing stock information on the first day of trading in the Year of the Pig, following the Chinese Lunar New Year holiday, at a brokerage house in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, China February 11, 2019. REUTERS/Stringer However, positive U.S. retail sales data…

Trump defends adviser Conway, won’t fire her over political comments

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – President Donald Trump said on Friday he would not fire White House adviser Kellyanne Conway, a day after a federal watchdog accused her of breaking U.S. law by making political statements in her official role and called for her ouster. White House senior adviser Kellyanne Conway looks toward U.S. President Donald Trump during a working lunch with governors on workforce freedom and mobility in the Cabinet Room of the White House in Washington, U.S., June 13, 2019. REUTERS/Leah Millis – RC142C0BC4B0“No, I’m not going to fire her.…

Japanese oil tanker owner disagrees with US military that a mine caused blast near Iran

An oil tanker is seen after it was attacked at the Gulf of Oman, June 13, 2019. ISNA | Reuters WASHINGTON – The Japanese owner of one of the oil tankers attacked near Iran on Thursday said that the vessel was struck by a projectile and not by a mine, which is what U.S. officials assessed as the source of the blast. « We received reports that something flew towards the ship, » Yutaka Katada, president of Kokuka Sangyo said at a press conference Friday. « I do not think…

EU’s Malmstrom hopes Trump, Xi can meet and reduce trade tensions

GENEVA (Reuters) – European Union Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom is hoping U.S. President Donald Trump meets his Chinese counterpart, Xi Jinping, at the G20 summit in Japan later this month to try to reduce trade tensions between the two countries. European Trade Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom attends an interview with Reuters in Geneva, Switzerland June 14, 2019. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse “If they are meeting, I think the whole world thinks that is a good idea,” Malmstrom said in an interview on Friday. “The fact that there is at least a possibility that…

Wall Street drops as Broadcom warning pushes chip stocks lower

(Reuters) – U.S. stocks dropped on Friday, as shares of chipmakers sank on a warning from sector major Broadcom of a broad weakening in global demand and Chinese data pointed to the worst slowdown in industrial growth in 17 years. FILE PHOTO: Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York, U.S., June 3, 2019. REUTERS/Brendan McDermidShares of Broadcom Inc fell 6.53% after it cut its full-year revenue forecast by $2 billion, blaming the U.S.-China trade conflict and export curbs on Huawei Technologies Co…

Trump: If Iran blocks the Strait of Hormuz, ‘it’s not going to be closed for long’

President Donald Trump said Friday that if Iran were to block the Strait of Hormuz, « it’s not going to be closed for long, » but he did not elaborate on whether the United States had an obligation to keep open the international shipping gateway, which is critical to the oil industry. « They’re not going to be closing [the strait], » Trump said in response to a hypothetical question during a telephone interview on « Fox and Friends. » « They know it, and they’ve been told in very strong…

An AEI scholar breaks down the military history between Iran and the US

31 Mins Ago The Trump administration is accusing Iran for the attacks on the shipping tankers in the Gulf of Oman. The attacks are the latest in a series in the region that the U.S. blames on Iran, despite the Iranian government’s denials. Michael Rubin, American Enterprise Institute resident scholar, joins ‘Squawk Box’ to discuss. Source: CNBC

The Trump Administration has conflicting goals in the Middle East, expert says

1 Hour Ago Two tankers were attacked in the Gulf of Oman just south of Iran on Wednesday. The Trump Administration has announced they hold Iran responsible for the attack. Karim Sadjadpour, senior fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, joins ‘Squawk Box’ to discuss the rising tensions with Iran and the implications for American businesses. Source: CNBC

Calm prevails in Memphis neighborhood two days after fatal shooting, amid police patrols

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (Reuters) – Police helicopters and squad cars patrolled the Memphis neighborhood overnight into Friday morning where a young black man was fatally shot by federal agents, with residents appearing to heed calls for calm a day after sometimes violent street demonstrations. Two men pass a police patrol car a day after Brandon Webber was shot dead by law enforcement officers, sparking violent clashes between police and protesters, in the community of Frayser on the north side of Memphis, Tennessee, U.S., June 13, 2019. REUTERS/Ricardo Arduengo – RC1839ADC2A0The man…

U.S. blames Iran for attack on oil tankers, Tehran calls accusation alarming

DUBAI (Reuters) – Iran said on Friday it was alarming and wrong of the United States to blame Tehran for attacks on two oil tankers at the entrance to the Gulf, after an incident that has raised concerns about a new confrontation in the vital oil shipping route. Washington released a video that it said showed Iran’s Revolutionary Guards were behind Thursday’s attacks on the Norwegian-owned Front Altair and the Japanese-owned Kokuka Courageous near the Strait of Hormuz shipping chokepoint. A Dutch firm said it had been appointed to salvage…

‘The Dead Don’t Die’ stars on the environment

(Reuters) – Flesh-eating zombies terrorize a small town in Jim Jarmusch’s “The Dead Don’t Die”, a comedy horror in which polar fracking sets off strange reactions and raises the dead. 72nd Cannes Film Festival – Photocall for the film « The Dead Don’t Die » in competition – Cannes, France, May 15, 2019. Cast members Bill Murray, Chloe Sevigny, Selena Gomez and Tilda Swinton pose. REUTERS/Stephane MaheReuters spoke with Bill Murray and Chloe Sevigny, who portray police, and Tilda Swinton, who plays a mysterious funeral parlor worker, about the film’s…

Middle East analysts see Iran’s fingerprints on tanker attacks — but slim chance of war

An Iranian woman walks past a mural on the wall of the former US embassy in the Iranian capital Tehran on May 8, 2018. Atta Kenare | AFP | Getty Images The attacks on a pair of tankers in the Gulf of Oman are likely the work of Iran, according to several analysts. The view among some Middle East watchers aligns with the conclusion presented by the Trump administration, which on Thursday blamed Iran for the suspected strikes. « This assessment is based on intelligence, the weapons used, the level of…