Status Quo Not Altered At Doklam: India

Status Quo Not Altered At Doklam: India

Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar

Indian and Chinese troops had been locked in a stand-off for over two months last year in the Doklam area near Sikkim before "disengaging" on August 28.

India said today that the status quo has not been altered at Doklam, where Indian and Chinese troops were locked in a stand-off for over two


Fragment of flag Nelson flew at Trafalgar sells for almost 300,000 pounds

  • Published in World

A piece of the Union Jack flag believed to have been flown from the flagship of Britain's Lord Horatio Nelson's ship during the Battle of Trafalgar sold for 297,000 pounds at an auction in London on Thursday.

The item was part of a collection of Nelson memorabilia that went up for sale at auctioneers Sotheby's and included weapons, his "grog chest" and personal letters.

Another item, a portrait of Nelson's mistress Emma Hamilton, sold for 369,000 pounds, significantly more than the estimate price of between 150,000 and 200,000 pounds.

The 86 cm by 92 cm flag fragment (34 inches by 36 inches), dubbed "The Victory Jack", had an estimated price of between 80,000 and 100,000 pounds.

The flag has a wonderful story," Gabriel Heaton, specialist for books and manuscripts at Sotheby's told Reuters.

It was used as part of the great ceremonial funeral of Nelson after his death at the battle. And pieces of it were broken up and kept by the loyal sailors who had lost their very, very deeply loved commander.

The last surviving complete Union Jack flag flown at the battle fetched 384,000 pounds in 2009, more than twenty times its estimated price.

The battle of Trafalgar was a naval clash that took place in 1805, and saw the British defeat a numerically superior French and Spanish fleet. Nelson was fatally wounded during the battle, which cemented his status as a national hero in Britain.


Dense fog in Delhi leads to 21 trains delayed, 13 cancelled

Dense fog has made a comeback in Delhi after days of relief for the national capital's residents. Train schedules were also affected, with 21 trains running late, four trains rescheduled and 13 trains getting cancelled on Tuesday due to low visibility in the city. The minimum temperature in the national capital for today has been registered as 5 degrees, while the maximum temperature was registered as 23 degress, according to the India Meteorological Department's forecast. The India Met Department has also predicted dense fog for today.

The Air Quality Index for New Delhi was recorded at 318.

A forecast of minimum night temperatures by 2-3 degrees over the plains of northwest has also been predicted. Thus, it will get colder at night as well.

Dense fog, cold wave and ground frost is expected to cover all of North India.

The Met department has also said in its seven day forecast that dense fog shall continue till at least tomorrow. From Friday onwards till Sunday, the forecast has predicted shallow fog in the city. The forecast also predicts partly cloudy weather with the possibility of rain or thunderstorm in Tuesday, next week.

Due to low visibility and operational reasons as well, 21 trains were running late on Tuesday, while four trains were rescheduled and 13 were cancelled.

Since the railways have been impacted due to the fog, people have been adversely affected and are facing discomfort. Railbeeps. com is fastest mobile friendly website which provides answers to enquirers related to Indian Railways like PNR status, live train running status, trains between two stations and more.


Trump questions taking immigrants from 'shithole countries'

Trump questions taking immigrants from 'shithole countries'

President Donald Trump on Thursday questioned why the United States would want to have immigrants from Haiti and African nations, referring to some as “shithole countries,” according to two sources familiar with the comments.

Trump’s remarks, made in the White House, came as Democratic Senator Dick Durbin and Republican Senator Lindsey Graham briefed the president on a newly drafted immigration bill being touted by a bipartisan group of senators, according to the sources, who asked not to be identified.

Other government officials were present during the conversation, the sources said.

The lawmakers were describing how certain immigration programs operate, including one to give safe haven in the United States to people from countries suffering from natural disasters or civil strife.

One of the sources who was briefed on the conversation said that Trump said, “Why do we want all these people from Africa here? They’re shithole countries . We should have more people from Norway.

The second source familiar with the conversation, said Trump, who has vowed to clamp down on illegal immigration, also questioned the need for Haitians in the United States.

Many Democrats and some Republican lawmakers slammed the president for his remarks.

Republican US Representative Mia Love, a daughter of Haitian immigrants, said the comments were “unkind, divisive, elitist, and fly in the face of our nation’s values” and called on Trump to apologize to the American people and to the countries he denigrated.

Another Republican Representative, Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, who was born in Cuba and whose south Florida district includes many Haitian immigrants, said: “Language like that shouldn’t be heard in locker rooms and it shouldn’t be heard in the White House.

Democratic Senator Richard Blumenthal, a frequent Trump critic, said the president’s comment “smacks of blatant racism, the most odious and insidious racism masquerading poorly as immigration policy.

In an apparent response to his critics, Trump took to Twitter late on Thursday night.

The Democrats seem intent on having people and drugs pour into our country from the Southern Border, risking thousands of lives in the process,” he tweeted.

It is my duty to protect the lives and safety of all Americans. We must build a Great Wall, think Merit and end Lottery & Chain. USA!

The program that was being discussed at the White House is called Temporary Protected Status.

In November, the Trump administration decided to end the status for immigrants from Haiti and Nicaragua. It gave the approximately 59,000 Haitian immigrants who had been granted the status until July 2019 to return home or legalize their presence in the United States. Nicaraguans were given until January 2019.

This week, Trump moved to end the status for immigrants from El Salvador, which could result in 200,000 Salvadorans legally in the United States being deported, beginning in September of next year.

The bipartisan Senate plan would attempt to maintain TPS in return for ending or changing a “diversity” lottery program that has been aimed at allowing up to 50,000 people a year from countries with few emigres to the United States.

Asked about Trump’s comments, White House spokesman Raj Shah said: “Certain Washington politicians choose to fight for foreign countries, but President Trump will always fight for the American people.

Like other nations that have merit-based immigration, President Trump is fighting for permanent solutions that make our country stronger by welcoming those who can contribute to our society, grow our economy and assimilate into our great nation,” Shah said.

Another source familiar with the meeting said Trump was questioning why the United States should take in unskilled laborers from the countries under discussion and should instead welcome immigrants from nations that can offer skilled workers.


Ecuador grants nationality to WikiLeaks founder

Ecuador has granted citizenship to WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange after more than five years of living in asylum at the nation's embassy in London, officials announced Thursday.

Foreign Minister Maria Fernanda Espinosa said officials accepted Assange's request for naturalization in December, and they continue to look for a long-term resolution to a situation that has vexed officials since 2012.

What naturalization does is provide the asylum seeker another layer of protection," Espinosa said.

Ecuador gave Assange asylum after he sought refuge in the embassy to avoid extradition to Sweden for investigation of sex-related claims. Sweden dropped the case, but Assange has remained in the embassy because he is still subject to arrest in Britain for jumping bail.

He also fears a possible U. S. extradition request based on his leaking of classified State Department documents.

The Australian-born Assange posted a photograph of himself wearing a yellow Ecuadorean national soccer team jersey on Instagram Wednesday and his name now appears in the Andean country's national registry.

The new citizenship status, however, appears to change little for Assange in the immediate future. He would still need to alert British authorities of any movement outside the embassy.

Even if he has two or three nationalities, the United Kingdom will continue in its efforts against him," said Fredy Rivera, an expert in foreign affairs at the Latin American Faculty of Social Sciences in Ecuador.

Espinosa said Ecuador is trying to make Assange a member of its diplomatic team, which would grant him additional rights under the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, including special legal immunity and safe passage.

Britain's Foreign Office said earlier Thursday it has rejected Ecuador's request to grant him diplomatic status in the U. K.

Ecuador knows that the way to resolve this issue is for Julian Assange to leave the embassy to face justice," the office said.

Though protected by Ecuador, the relationship between Assange and nation's leaders has at times been dicey. Ecuador has repeatedly urged Assange not to interfere in the affairs of other countries following his frequent online comments on international issues.

The biggest crisis came in October 2016, when the embassy cut his internet service after WikiLeaks published a trove of emails from then-U. S. presidential candidate Hillary Clinton's campaign.

He was also a point of contention in Ecuador's 2017 presidential election. Conservative candidate Guillermo Lasso pledged to evict the Australian within 30 days of taking office, while current President Lenin Moreno said he would allow him to stay. Assange later taunted after Lasso's loss that he would "cordially invite Lasso to leave Ecuador within 30 days.

Moreno issued a warning reminding Assange not to meddle in politics. He has also called Assange a hacker.


Fog in Delhi leads to 30 trains delayed, 22 cancelled

New Delhi: Decreased visibility due to fog affected train services in Delhi for the fifth consecutive day with 30 trains expected to arrive late, nine trains rescheduled and 22 trains cancelled. Thursday morning saw shallow fog engulf Delhi, with temperatures staying low. The minimum temperature in the national capital is 9 degrees while the maximum temperature is 23 degrees according to the India Meteorological Department forecast. The air quality remained "very poor" in most parts of the city.

The Air Quality Index of Delhi's Siri Fort area was at 369 while the ITO area recorded an AQI of 321.

On Wednesday, 49 trains arrived late while 22 were cancelled and three rescheduled due to fog and operational reasons. On Tuesday, as many as 45 trains arrived late while 22 were again cancelled and four rescheduled. Mercury has plummeted down for a while with January 4 witnessing the season's coldest day in Delhi with a minimum temperature of 4. 2 degree Celsius, three notches below the season's average.

Among the trains cancelled are the Agra Cantonment Intercity Express travelling from Agra to Delhi, the Sealdah-Delhi express travelling from Kolkata to the Anand Vihar terminal in the capital, and the Kaifiat Express which was going from Azamgarh in Uttar Pradesh to New Delhi.

With the railways being affected heavily for the past few days, passengers are facing grave discomfort. Railbeeps. com is fastest mobile friendly website which provides answers to enquiries related to Indian Railways like PNR status, live train running status, trains between two stations and more.

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