Saudi Arabia's King Salman approved hosting U.S. forces in the country to boost regional security and stability, the state news agency (SPA) reported on Friday. The U.S. Defense Department confirmed the move in a statement, saying it would deploy troops and resources to Saudi Arabia to "provide an additional deterrent" in the face of "emergent, credible threats." The gesture comes amid rising tensions between Washington and Tehran in the Gulf that have impacted global oil markets.
ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) A businessman who served as a key witness in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation now faces a charge of child sex trafficking in addition to transporting child pornography. An indictment made public Friday in federal court in Alexandria charges Lebanese-American businessman George Nader, 60, with transporting a 14-year-old boy from Europe to Washington, D.C., in February 2000 and engaging in sex acts with him. It details his efforts to serve as liaison between a Russian banker close to Russian President Vladimir Putin and members of President Donald Trump's transition team.
An American citizen who allegedly served as a sniper for ISIS and became a leader for the terrorist group is expected to appear in federal court on Friday after being returned to the United States by the Defense Department, officials said. Ruslan Maratovich Asainov, who was born in Kazakhstan and became a naturalized U.S. citizen, is charged with providing and attempting to provide material support to ISIS, the Justice Department announced on Friday. A U.S. official confirmed to Task & Purpose that the Defense Department had transported Asainov from Syria to the United States.
Ramush Haradinaj, who resigned as Kosovo's prime minister on Friday, is hailed as a hero at home -- where he is nicknamed "Rambo" -- but considered a war criminal by Belgrade, which has long sought to see him behind bars. The controversial 51-year-old, who was a wartime commander of the Kosovo Liberation Army (KLA), stepped down after being summoned as a suspect by a war crimes court in the Hague. It is the second time he has resigned after being called before a war crimes court over crimes allegedly committed by the ethnic Albanian KLA separatists during the 1998-99 war.
Former first lady Michelle Obama countered President Trump's attacks on four Democratic congresswomen of color by emphasizing the importance of America's diversity. “What truly makes our country great is its diversity,” wrote Obama in a tweet Friday afternoon. Trump has spent the week attacking Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., a Somali refugee who became a U.S. citizen at age 17.
In a new filing against the National Rifle Association, lawyers for ad agency Ackerman McQueen suggest that longtime NRA executive Wayne LaPierre is lying about a critical moment in the gun rights group's recent leadership shake up. At issue is multi-million-dollar litigation between the NRA and its ex-ad firm. In court filings of its own, the NRA has alleged that Oliver North, the groups's former president, was ousted in part because he withheld information from the NRA about payments he took from Ackerman McQueen, which had served as the gun rights group's primary ad contractor until just months ago.
Our spy photographers caught two different versions of the C8 out on the road with no camouflage for the first time. From Car and Driver
Scherie Murray, Republican challenger to Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, weighs in on an exchange between former acting ICE Director Tom Homan and AOC.
The man suspected of killing 34 people in an arson attack in Japan lived alone, hundreds of kilometres from the torched Kyoto Animation studio, where he played video games non-stop and had "terrified" his neighbour just days earlier. Police late on Saturday issued an arrest warrant for 41-year-old Shinji Aoba, suspected of causing Japan's worst mass killing in two decades on Thursday when he went to the studio in western Japan, poured fuel around the entrance and shouted "Die" as he set the building ablaze, according to public broadcaster NHK. They plan to arrest Aoba, who suffered serious burns and on Saturday was airlifted to a university hospital for treatment, once he recovers, NHK said.
Allahu akbar”, or God is great, the Iranian Revolutionary Guard marine was heard shouting off camera as the group took control of the British-flagged Stena Impero. Scaling down ropes onto its bow, the balaclava-wearing hijackers made a daring - and seemingly well-rehearsed - raid of the oil tanker, as seen in alleged footage released by Fars news agency last night. The wind was choppy, the skies overcast.
The Mexican president has described Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman's life sentence as “inhumane” after the notorious drug lord was sent to live out his remaining years in a supermax prison in Colorado. Guzman was sentenced to life behind bars in the US plus 30 years after being found guilty of running a murderous criminal enterprise, having already escaped Mexican prisons twice. In his home country, President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador referred to sentences like the one handed to Guzman to be served in a “hostile jail” as "hard” and “inhumane", adding that it made life no longer worth living.
A genetics expert retained by the family of a girl who went missing in 1983 said Saturday that a cavernous underground space near a Vatican cemetery holds thousands of bones that appear to be from dozens of individuals, both "adult and non-adult." The expert, Giorgio Portera, said the "enormous" size of the collection under the Teutonic College was revealed when Vatican-appointed experts began cataloguing the remains, which were discovered last week . "We didn't expect such an enormous number" of bones and other remains which "had been thrown into a cavity," Portera said.
Iraqi Kurdish authorities announced Saturday they had arrested two suspects involved in the murder of three people, including a Turkish diplomat, in the regional capital Arbil this week. The autonomous region's security council first said its counterterrorism unit had arrested "the main perpetrator" Mazloum Dag, a 27-year-old from Turkey's Diyarbakir region. The council had put out a wanted notice for Dag a day earlier in connection to Wednesday's killing of Turkish Vice Consul Osman Kose and two Iraqi nationals.
U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders defended his campaign's compensation package Friday after a Washington Post story highlighted concerns among staffers that they were not receiving the $15-an-hour wages Sanders champions on the campaign trail. "I'm very proud to be the first presidential candidate to recognize a union and negotiate a union contract," the Vermont senator and presidential candidate told the Des Moines Register in an interview Friday. "And that contract was ratified by the employees of the campaign, and it not only provides pay of at least $15 an hour, it also provides, I think, the best health care benefits that any employer can provide for our field organizers."
An unruly passenger has been billed $105,000 after her “extremely disruptive behavior” caused a flight to be diverted with a military escort. British budget carrier Jet2 accused passenger Chloe Haines of “a catalogue of aggressive, abusive and dangerous behavior,” including trying to open the aircraft door, during a flight from the U.K. to Turkey. The airline said in a statement Haines was restrained by crew with the help of other passengers as two military fighter jets escorted the aircraft back to London Stansted.
The San Francisco Board of Education unanimously voted last month in favor of painting over a George Washington mural series on a school wall depicting Washington standing over a Native American's corpse and another in the company of slaves on his Mount Vernon estate. “This is reparations,” Education Board Commissioner Mark Sanchez said in a KQED report when asked about the estimated $600,000 price tag for its removal. The 1,600-square-foot mural series titled “Life of Washington” was painted on San Francisco's George Washington High School in 1936 by a Russian-American artist and Stanford University art professor Victor Arnautoff.
Defending Donald Trump's repeated racist taunts at Democratic congresswomen of color, Fox News host Pete Hegseth told correspondent-at-large Geraldo Rivera on Friday morning that it would be perfectly fine for him to utilize the president's “go back to where you came from” message on him. A day after Trump sorta disavowed the racist “send her back!” chant his rally crowd launched at Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Rivera appeared on Fox & Friends and said he was “glad the president has said” he didn't like the chants. At the same time, Rivera noted that the president's original tweets targeting the “Squad” tapped into an “old racist trope,” something the longtime Trump pal had criticized the president for days earlier.
Ahead of Boris Johnson's likely election next week as Britain's prime minister, EU countries are secretly wooing him in a bid to thrash out a new Brexit plan that would avoid a no-deal disaster, the Sunday Times newspaper reported. Senior Irish politicians and diplomats have held talks with two of Johnson's cabinet allies in recent days, it said. German and French figures as well as the Dutch and Belgian governments have also established contact with Johnson's team and signaled an intention to do a deal, it added.
The goal of Operation Sentinel is to promote maritime stability, ensure safe passage, and de-escalate tensions in international waters throughout the Arabian Gulf, Strait of Hormuz, the Bab el-Mandeb Strait (BAM) and the Gulf of Oman. "This maritime security framework will enable nations to provide escort to their flagged vessels while taking advantage of the cooperation of participating nations for coordination and enhanced maritime domain awareness and surveillance." The US had the day before been forced to down an Iranian drone that had flown too close to one of its navy ships.
Marvin Oswaldo Escobar-Orellana, 31, was arrested after he allegedly shotthe family with which he lived in Des Moines, Iowa, and called 911 on himself. Orellana is the suspect in the murder of 29-year-old Rossibeth Flores-Rodriguez and her two children, Grecia Daniela Alvarado-Flores, 11, and Ever Jose Mejia-Flores, 5, according an Associated Press report. Orellana was deported in both 2010 and 2011, and convicted of illegal entry.
Police in Hong Kong discovered a stash of a powerful homemade explosive as the semi-autonomous Chinese city readied for another major pro-democracy protest on Sunday following a pro-Beijing rally that attracted thousands. Materials voicing opposition to an extradition bill that has sparked more than a month of demonstrations in Hong Kong were found at the site, local media said, but a police spokesman said no concrete link has been established and that the investigation is continuing. In a rally that aimed to counter the pro-democracy movement, thousands of people filled a park in central Hong Kong on Saturday to support the police, who have been accused of using rough tactics on protesters.
Philippine police have recommended sedition charges against the vice president and other opposition figures, a move slammed Friday as an attempt to stifle dissent under President Rodrigo Duterte. Police allege Vice President Leni Robredo, Catholic Church leaders and opposition politicians plotted to destabilise the Duterte government by implicating him in the narcotics trade. Duterte launched a war against the drug trade when he came into power three years ago.
WASHINGTON – Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, D-Hawaii, has joined a growing chorus of lawmakers including Sen. Rick Scott, R-Fla., and Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., in calling for the resignation of Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rosselló over a corruption scandal involving leaked text messages between the governor and top aides. In a Twitter video sent from San Juan, Puerto Rico, on Friday, Gabbard called "on all Democrats running for President to come here to Puerto Rico and show support for our fellow Americans" against corruption, and called for Rosselló's resignation.
The Philadelphia Police Department is suspending 17 officers over a series of “vile” Facebook posts which featured racism, Islamophobia and homophobia, the force announced. Police Commissioner Richard Ross said there was an intent to fire 13 of the suspended employees after a watchdog group uncovered comments made on the social media platform from officers in Philadelphia and seven other US police departments. The team of researchers found officers bashing immigrants and Muslims, promoting racist stereotypes, identifying with right-wing militia groups and glorifying police brutality in public posts.