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U.S., Russia say cannot support a U.N. call for Libya truce: diplomats

A Libyan man walks near a house damaged by an overnight shelling in Abu Salim district in Tripoli
A Libyan man walks near a house damaged by an overnight shelling in Abu Salim district in Tripoli, Libya April 17, 2019. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

April 18, 2019

By Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – The United States and Russia both said on Thursday they could not support a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire in Libya at this time, diplomats said, as mortar bombs crashed down on a suburb of the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

Russia objects to the British-drafted resolution blaming eastern Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar for the latest flare-up in violence when his Libyan National Army (LNA) advanced to the outskirts of Tripoli earlier this month, diplomats said.

The United States gave no reason for its position on the draft resolution, which would also call on countries with influence over the warring parties to ensure compliance and for unconditional humanitarian aid access in Libya, which has been gripped by anarchy since Muammar Gaddafi was toppled in 2011.

The United States’ U.N. mission declined to comment and the Russian U.N. mission did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A resolution needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by the United States, Britain, France, Russia or China – the so-called permanent five – to pass. It was not immediately clear if Britain would persist with negotiations on a draft next week.

The United States and Russia made their positions clear during a closed-door council briefing by U.N. Libya envoy Ghassan Salame, who diplomats said appealed for a ceasefire, warning that weapons were pouring into the country and it was heading toward a serious humanitarian situation.

The U.S. reluctance to support Security Council action is in contrast to Washington’s earlier public opposition to Haftar’s offensive, which began while U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was visiting Tripoli.

Some U.N. diplomats have suggested the United States might be trying to buy time as President Donald Trump’s administration works out how to deal with the latest developments in Libya.

“I think there are a range of views in Washington on the policy side and they haven’t reconciled them and they’re not entirely certain where the president is on it,” said a senior U.N. diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“The American system is trying to evaluate all the scenarios and work out which one is in America’s best interest and just hasn’t done that yet,” the diplomat said.

CONCERN

Haftar’s forces predicted victory within days, but Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj’s internationally recognized government has bogged them down in southern suburbs with help from armed groups from various western Libyan factions.

A united Security Council informally expressed concern on April 5, calling on all forces to de-escalate and halt military activity and specifically calling out the LNA.

In the following days, the council was unable, however, to issue a more formal statement, diplomats said, as Russia objected to a reference to the LNA, while the United States said it could not agree to a text that did not mention Haftar’s forces.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo then said in a statement on April 7 that “we have made clear that we oppose the military offensive by Khalifa Haftar’s forces and urge the immediate halt to these military operations against the Libyan capital.”

Haftar enjoys the backing of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, which view him as an anchor to restore stability and combat Islamist militants, while most Western powers have supported Serraj.

Trump met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on April 9.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian spoke with Pompeo about Libya on Thursday and both agreed on the need for a “rapid” ceasefire and return to the U.N-led political process, the French foreign ministry said in a statement. Paris has given Haftar support in the past.

(Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Additional reporting by John Irish in Paris; Editing by Peter Cooney)

Source: OANN

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Mortar bombs land on Tripoli suburb as two-week battle rages on

Members of Libyan internationally recognised government forces react during the fighting with Eastern forces at Al-Swani area in Tripoli
Members of Libyan internationally recognised government forces react during the fighting with Eastern forces at Al-Swani area in Tripoli, Libya April 18, 2019. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

April 18, 2019

By Hani Amara and Ulf Laessing

AL-SUANI, Libya/TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Mortar bombs crashed down on a suburb of Tripoli on Thursday, almost hitting a clinic and adding to people’s suffering after two weeks of an offensive by eastern troops on the Libyan capital, which is held by an internationally recognized government.

Shelling could be also heard late at night in parts of Tripoli where a battle was raging in two southern suburbs, residents and an eastern military official said.

The shelling came a day after seven people were killed when Grad rockets hit a densely populated district of Tripoli, which the eastern Libyan forces of commander Khalifa Haftar have been trying to take, deepening the chaos that has plagued the oil-producing nation since 2011.

The Libyan National Army (LNA) of Benghazi-based Haftar has become bogged down in the southern suburbs of the capital.

In al-Suani, a southwestern suburb, Reuters reporters saw two mortar bombs almost hitting a clinic. The fighting has killed 205 people, including 18 civilians, and wounded 913 since the start of the campaign, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Thursday.

Locals blamed Haftar’s forces for the shelling, saying the rockets had been fired from the direction of his positions south of the capital.

“We say to the United Nations and the Security Council: listen. Listen to the bombing… Rockets are coming down on us. For this reason, please find a solution for us,” said Youssef Salem, a displaced man from al-Suani.

The LNA has denied shelling residential areas.

The Tripoli government issued arrest warrants for Haftar and other top eastern officials, blaming them for Wednesday’s shelling.

Eastern officials have already issued arrest warrants for Tripoli premier Fayez al-Serraj and other western officials as there is no sign of a political solution or even of a ceasefire.

Foreign powers are worried but unable to present a united front over the latest flare-up in the cycle of anarchy and warfare that has gripped Libya since dictator Muammar Gaddafi was toppled in 2011.

The internationally recognized interior ministry accused France of supporting Haftar and said it would halt security cooperation with Paris.

“Any dealings with the French side in bilateral security agreements” will halt, the Tripoli-based interior ministry said in a statement.

A French presidential source said in response to the accusation that France supported the internationally recognized government in Tripoli and that Emmanuel Macron’s legitimate interlocutor was Serraj, with whom he spoke on Monday and reaffirmed that.

The French government was not immediately available for comment.

France has helped train Serraj’s presidential guard and in October 2013 signed a deal between a consultancy of the French interior ministry and the Libyan interior ministry to train 1,000 police.

Most recently in February, France provided the Tripoli government with six patrol boats for its coastline.

Paris has given Haftar support in the past, however, viewing him as the best bet to end the chaos that has reigned since a NATO-backed rebellion to end Gaddafi’s murderous four-decade rule.

Italy, with considerable oil interests in the OPEC member, supports the Tripoli government of Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj and was furious with French reluctance to back a recent European Union resolution urging Haftar to halt his advance.

The conflict threatens to disrupt oil flows, foment migration across the Mediterranean Sea to Europe, and allow jihadists to exploit the chaos.

Haftar enjoys the backing of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, who view him as an anchor to restore stability and combat Islamist militants.

His forces came under attack on Thursday by an armed group at the Tamanhint base near the main southern city of Sabha.

The LNA managed to expel the attack, which killed two of its soldiers, an eastern official said. But it exposed a vulnerability as Haftar has moved much of its forces north.

The identity of the attackers was not immediately clear.

The LNA force seized earlier this year the south and its two oilfields, although tribesmen with flexible loyalties remain strong in the sparsely populated desert region.

On the weekend, the LNA dispatched a unit to the eastern oil ports of Ras Lanuf and Es Sider to prepare for a possible attack there.

(Reporting by Ayman al-Warfalli, Ahmed Elumami, Ulf Laessing, John Irish and Stephanie Nebehay; editing by Mark Heinrich, Hugh Lawson and Diane Craft)

Source: OANN

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Japan March core CPI rises 0.8 percent year-on-year

A woman looks at items outside an outlet store at a shopping district in Tokyo
FILE PHOTO - A woman looks at items outside an outlet store at a shopping district in Tokyo, Japan, February 25, 2016. REUTERS/Yuya Shino

April 18, 2019

TOKYO, (Reuters) – Japan’s core consumer prices rose 0.8 percent in March from a year earlier, government data showed on Friday.

The core consumer price index, which includes oil products but excludes fresh food prices, compared with economists’ median estimate for a 0.7 percent annual gain.

Stripping away the effect of fresh food and energy, consumer prices rose 0.4 percent in March from a year ago.

Source: OANN

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Mueller finds no conspiracy, but extensive Trump-Russia contacts

U.S. President Donald Trump travels to Mar-a-Lago
FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump walks to board Air Force One as they travel to Florida for Easter weekend, at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, U.S., April 18, 2019. REUTERS/Al Drago

April 18, 2019

By Nathan Layne and Mark Hosenball

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Special Counsel Robert Mueller may not have found evidence of a criminal conspiracy between Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign and Russia, but his report details extensive contacts between the campaign and Russian operatives who sought to influence the election.  

Mueller said in his report released on Thursday that he found “numerous links” and that the Trump campaign “expected it would benefit” from Russia’s effort to tilt the ballot in Trump’s favor.

Ultimately, Mueller determined the various contacts either didn’t amount to criminal behavior or would be difficult to prove in court, even if people in Trump’s orbit sometimes displayed a willingness to accept Russian help, the report showed.

Trump and his allies, who derided the Mueller probe as a political “witch hunt”, portrayed the report as vindication. “No collusion. No obstruction. For all the haters and the radical left Democrats, game over,” Trump tweeted on Thursday.

“The bottom line is the president is exonerated and the campaign is exonerated of collusion,” said Michael Caputo, a former adviser to Trump’s campaign.

Some legal experts and political strategists were more circumspect, saying the report confirmed the Russian government was attempting to help Trump with the election.

“I think that’s a pretty extraordinary finding of historical significance, whether or not there’s a crime,” said Matthew Jacobs, a former federal prosecutor who is now a San Francisco-based lawyer.

Many of the contacts in the report were already known. They included former national security adviser Michael Flynn’s conversations in late 2016 with Sergei Kislyak, Russia ambassador at the time, and former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort’s interactions with Konstantin Kilimnik, a political consultant who the FBI has determined has ties to Russian intelligence.

But the report contained fresh details on the range of official and unofficial dealings Trump campaign advisers and supporters had with Russians before and after the 2016 election.

For example, the report says that Manafort, shortly after he joined the campaign in the spring of 2016, directed his deputy to share internal polling data with Kilimnik with the understanding it would be passed on to Oleg Deripaska, a Russian oligarch known to have close ties to the Kremlin.

Lawyers for Manafort did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Kilimnik did not reply to an email seeking comment.

A Washington-based attorney for Deripsaka said he could not comment. In a statement to Reuters in January, representatives for Deripaska said he has never had any communication with Kilimnik.

The report also says that Manafort told Kilimnik in August 2017 about the campaign’s efforts to win the battleground states of Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Minnesota. Trump ended up winning three of those states in the November election.

Mueller’s investigation did not find a connection between Manafort’s sharing of polling data and Russia’s meddling in the U.S. election or that he otherwise coordinated with Russia.

Frank Montoya, a former senior FBI official, said he was nonetheless bothered by the interactions between Manafort and Kilimnik, especially their talking about battleground states.

“As a longtime counterintelligence investigator it makes the hair stand on the back of my neck,” Montoya said.

The report detailed a meeting in December 2016 between Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and Sergei Gorkov, the head of a Russian state-owned bank under U.S. sanctions. Gorkov gave Kushner a painting and a bag of soil from the town in Belarus where Kushner’s family is from, the report says.

Mueller’s team said it could not resolve a conflict in the accounts of Kushner, who said the meeting was diplomatic in nature, and Gorkov, who said it was business related.

Kushner has said neither sanctions nor his business activities were discussed at the meeting. Kushner’s lawyer did not respond to a request for comment on Mueller’s report.

The report also provided new details about a meeting that campaign advisers Donald Trump Jr., the president’s oldest son, Kushner and Manafort held with a Russian lawyer at New York’s Trump Tower in June 2016. The meeting was set up after the advisers were promised “dirt” on Hillary Clinton, Trump’s Democratic challenger for president.

Mueller’s team considered whether the advisers violated laws barring election contributions from foreigners. But, the report says, they ultimately decided there was not enough evidence to show they “wilfully” broke the law and they might have had problems proving the information offered on Clinton was really valuable.

When news of the Trump Tower meeting broke in July 2017, Trump Jr. issued a statement saying the meeting was set up to discuss adoption policy, not politics, before later admitting he had been expecting intelligence on Clinton.

Such interactions have broadly been referred to by Democratic congressional investigators as examples of possible “collusion”. But because collusion is not a legal term, Mueller’s team examined the Trump Tower meeting and other contacts through the lens of federal conspiracy law.

Mueller said his investigation was unable to establish that such contacts with Russians met the bar of criminality which required that the contacts “amounted to an agreement to commit any substantive violation” of U.S. laws, including those governing campaign finance and foreign agent registration.

Therefore, Mueller said his office “did not charge any individual associated with the Trump Campaign with conspiracy to commit a federal offense arising from Russia contacts.”

(Reporting by Mark Hosenball, Nathan Layne, Sarah N. Lynch, Karen Freifeld and Andy Sullivan in Washington; Editing by Ross Colvin and Paul Thomasch)

Source: OANN

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Judge Upholds New York City’s Mandatory Measles Vaccination Order

A Brooklyn judge on Thursday ruled against a group of parents who challenged New York City's recently imposed mandatory measles vaccination order, rejecting their arguments that the city's public health authority exceeded its authority.

In a six-page decision rendered hours after a hearing on the matter, Judge Lawrence Knipel denied the parents' petition seeking to lift the vaccination order, imposed last week to stem the worst measles outbreak to hit the city since 1991.

The judge sided with municipal health officials who defended the order as a rare but necessary step to contain a surge in the highly contagious disease that has infected at least 329 people so far, most of them children from Orthodox Jewish communities in the borough of Brooklyn.

Another 222 cases have been diagnosed elsewhere in New York state, mostly in a predominantly ultra-Orthodox Jewish neighborhood of Rockland County, northwest of Manhattan.

The New York outbreaks are part of a larger resurgence of measles across the country, with at least 555 cases confirmed in 20 states, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Health experts say the virus, which can cause severe complications and even death, has spread mostly among school-age children whose parents declined to get them vaccinated. Most profess philosophical or religious reasons, or cite concerns - debunked by medical science - that the three-way measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine may cause autism.

The judge rejected the parents' contention that the vaccination order was excessive or coercive, noting it does not call for forcibly administering the vaccine to those who refuse it.

He also dismissed assertions in the petition disputing the "clear and present danger" of the outbreak. "Vaccination is known to extinguish the fire of contagion," the judge said.

SECRET IDENTITIES

The vaccination order, which was extended this week, requires residents of certain affected Brooklyn neighborhoods to obtain the MMR vaccine unless they can otherwise demonstrate immunity to measles, or face a fine.

The court challenge was brought in Brooklyn's Supreme Court by five people identified only as parents living in the affected neighborhoods. Their identities were kept confidential to protect their children's' privacy, their lawyers said.

In court on Thursday, they told Knipel the city had overstepped its authority and that quarantining the infected would be a preferable approach.

Robert Krakow, an attorney for the parents, estimated that just 0.0006 percent of the population of Brooklyn and Queens had measles. "That's not an epidemic," he said. "It's not Ebola. It's not smallpox."

The health department's lawyers argued that quarantining was ineffective because people carrying the virus can be contagious before symptoms appear.

The judge cited 39 cases diagnosed in Michigan that have been traced to an individual traveling from the Williamsburg community at the epicenter of Brooklyn's outbreak. The surge in measles there originated with an unvaccinated child who became infected on a visit to Israel, where the highly contagious virus is also running rampant.

The number of measles cases worldwide nearly quadrupled in the first quarter of 2019 to 112,163 compared with the same period last year, the World Health Organization said this week.

Source: NewsMax America

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Mali government resigns after massacre, insecurity

Boubeye Maiga, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mali speaks to media next to Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of France at U.N. headquarters in New York
FILE PHOTO: Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga, Prime Minister of the Republic of Mali (L) speaks to media next to Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs of France at U.N. headquarters in New York, U.S., March 29, 2019. REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz

April 18, 2019

BAMAKO (Reuters) – Mali’s prime minister and his whole government resigned on Thursday, four weeks after a massacre of some 160 Fulani herders by an ethnic vigilante group shocked the nation.

“The President accepts the resignation of the prime minister and that of the members of government,” a statement from President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita’s office said.

It gave no reason for the departure of Prime Minister Soumeylou Boubeye Maiga, but legislators had discussed on Wednesday a possible motion of no confidence in the government because of the massacre and failure to disarm militias or beat back Islamist militants.

The March 23 killings by suspected hunters from the Dogon community on Ogossagou, a village in central Mali populated by rival Fulani herders, were bloody even by the recent standards of Mali’s ever-worsening violence.

They followed a deadly assault by jihadists on an army post that killed at least 23 soldiers, also in Mali’s central region, which was claimed by an al Qaeda affiliate that counts many Fulani herders in its ranks.

Malian authorities have detained five people suspected of taking part in the massacre. But they have not yet succeeded in disarming the militia that many believe organized it, despite pledges by Maiga and Keita to do so.

The largely Saharan nation has been in turmoil since a rebellion by Tuaregs and allied jihadists took over half the country in 2012, prompting the French to intervene to push them back the following year.

(Reporting by Maimouna Moro; Writing by Tim Cocks; Editing by Sandra Maler and Peter Cooney)

Source: OANN

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Politico: No Comfort in Mueller Report for Hillary Allies

The release to the public of special counsel Robert Mueller's report on Russian interference in the 2016 election was no comfort to veterans of Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign.

"Apparently it's not criminal to help foreign agents carry out their plans to disrupt an election," Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook told Politico. "I wish instead of just relitigating the past, we would spend some time crafting laws to prevent this in the future."

One of the revelations in the report was President Donald Trump's obsessive interest in Clinton's deleted emails, according to Politico. The Trump campaign, however, never found them.

"After candidate Trump stated on July 27, 2016, that he hoped Russia would 'find the 30,000 emails that are missing,' Trump asked individuals affiliated with his campaign to find the deleted Clinton emails," the report stated, the news outlet noted.

"Michael Flynn — who would later serve as national security adviser in the Trump administration — recalled that Trump made this request repeatedly, and Flynn subsequently contacted multiple people in an effort to obtain the emails."

Jesse Ferguson, a senior spokesperson on the Clinton campaign, told Politico that "aside from Trump's scandal, corruption, and potential criminality in the Mueller report, it also confirms that Trump got elected thanks to an extensive Russian infiltration and operation."

Clinton spokespeople Jennifer Palmieri and Brian Fallon both called for impeachment hearings.

"This should be a reminder to all 2020 opponents that you aren't dealing with a normal candidate. They are playing incredibly dirty," Adrienne Elrod, the campaign's director of strategic communications and surrogates, told Politico, adding the report should be used to to guide congressional probes. "This is far from over."

Source: NewsMax America

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FILE PHOTO: The financial district with the headquarters of Germany's largest business bank, Deutsche Bank , is photographed on early evening in Frankfurt
FILE PHOTO: The financial district with the headquarters of Germany’s largest business bank, Deutsche Bank , is photographed on early evening in Frankfurt, Germany, January 29, 2019. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach/File Photo

April 15, 2019

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Two U.S. House of Representatives committees have issued subpoenas to multiple financial institutions, including Deutsche Bank AG, for information on U.S. President Donald Trump’s finances, the panels’ Democratic leaders said on Monday.

“The potential use of the U.S. financial system for illicit purposes is a very serious concern. The Financial Services Committee is exploring these matters, including as they may involve the president and his associates, as thoroughly as possible,” the committee’s chair, Maxine Waters, said in a statement.

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff said in a statement the subpoenas issued included a “friendly subpoena to Deutsche Bank.”

(Reporting by Mark Hosenball; Writing by Mohammad Zargham; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)

Source: OANN

A Libyan man walks near a house damaged by an overnight shelling in Abu Salim district in Tripoli
A Libyan man walks near a house damaged by an overnight shelling in Abu Salim district in Tripoli, Libya April 17, 2019. REUTERS/Ahmed Jadallah

April 18, 2019

By Michelle Nichols

UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) – The United States and Russia both said on Thursday they could not support a United Nations Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire in Libya at this time, diplomats said, as mortar bombs crashed down on a suburb of the Libyan capital, Tripoli.

Russia objects to the British-drafted resolution blaming eastern Libyan commander Khalifa Haftar for the latest flare-up in violence when his Libyan National Army (LNA) advanced to the outskirts of Tripoli earlier this month, diplomats said.

The United States gave no reason for its position on the draft resolution, which would also call on countries with influence over the warring parties to ensure compliance and for unconditional humanitarian aid access in Libya, which has been gripped by anarchy since Muammar Gaddafi was toppled in 2011.

The United States’ U.N. mission declined to comment and the Russian U.N. mission did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A resolution needs nine votes in favor and no vetoes by the United States, Britain, France, Russia or China – the so-called permanent five – to pass. It was not immediately clear if Britain would persist with negotiations on a draft next week.

The United States and Russia made their positions clear during a closed-door council briefing by U.N. Libya envoy Ghassan Salame, who diplomats said appealed for a ceasefire, warning that weapons were pouring into the country and it was heading toward a serious humanitarian situation.

The U.S. reluctance to support Security Council action is in contrast to Washington’s earlier public opposition to Haftar’s offensive, which began while U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was visiting Tripoli.

Some U.N. diplomats have suggested the United States might be trying to buy time as President Donald Trump’s administration works out how to deal with the latest developments in Libya.

“I think there are a range of views in Washington on the policy side and they haven’t reconciled them and they’re not entirely certain where the president is on it,” said a senior U.N. diplomat, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“The American system is trying to evaluate all the scenarios and work out which one is in America’s best interest and just hasn’t done that yet,” the diplomat said.

CONCERN

Haftar’s forces predicted victory within days, but Prime Minister Fayez al-Serraj’s internationally recognized government has bogged them down in southern suburbs with help from armed groups from various western Libyan factions.

A united Security Council informally expressed concern on April 5, calling on all forces to de-escalate and halt military activity and specifically calling out the LNA.

In the following days, the council was unable, however, to issue a more formal statement, diplomats said, as Russia objected to a reference to the LNA, while the United States said it could not agree to a text that did not mention Haftar’s forces.

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo then said in a statement on April 7 that “we have made clear that we oppose the military offensive by Khalifa Haftar’s forces and urge the immediate halt to these military operations against the Libyan capital.”

Haftar enjoys the backing of Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia, which view him as an anchor to restore stability and combat Islamist militants, while most Western powers have supported Serraj.

Trump met with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi on April 9.

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian spoke with Pompeo about Libya on Thursday and both agreed on the need for a “rapid” ceasefire and return to the U.N-led political process, the French foreign ministry said in a statement. Paris has given Haftar support in the past.

(Reporting by Michelle Nichols; Additional reporting by John Irish in Paris; Editing by Peter Cooney)

Source: OANN

The Bank of New York Mellon Corp. building at 1 Wall St. is seen in New York's financial district
FILE PHOTO: The Bank of New York Mellon Corp. building at 1 Wall St. is seen in New York’s financial district March 11, 2015. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

April 17, 2019

(Reuters) – Bank of New York Mellon Corp missed analysts’ estimates for quarterly profit on Wednesday, as lower client activity and a fall in assets under management pressured fee revenue.

A 9 percent drop in fee revenue to $3.03 billion pulled down overall revenue by 6.7 percent to $3.90 billion.

Asset servicing revenue fell 7.4 percent to $1.41 billion, while asset management revenue plummeted 17 percent to $637 million, the company said.

BNY blamed asset under management outflows and lower client activity for a decline in its fee revenue.

The bank said net income applicable to common shareholders fell to $910 million, or 94 cents per share, in the first quarter ended March 31, from $1.14 billion, or $1.10 per share, a year earlier. (https://reut.rs/2ZlhuuP)

Analysts were expecting earnings of 96 cents per share, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

“While the current expectations for the yield curve will likely negatively impact our revenue growth for the next several quarters, we will remain disciplined on expenses..,” said Chief Executive Officer Charlie Scharf.

The New York-based custodian bank said it incurred provisions for credit losses of $7 million due to the bankruptcy of a California utility.

(Reporting by Bharath Manjesh in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Shailesh Kuber)

Source: OANN

An American airstrike has killed the No. 2 leader of ISIS-Somalia, Air Force Times reported Monday.

The U.S. Africa Command announced Abdulhakim Dhuqub was killed Sunday in northeastern Somalia. A second man with Dhuqub was killed but has not been identified, Voice of America reported.

ISIS-Somalia is led by Sheikh Abdulkadir Mumin, a former scholar for al-Shabab. In October 2015 he defected from the group and pledged his allegiance to ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, VOA reported.

Dhoqob was Mumin’s right-hand-man and has appeared in videos produced by the group; Mumin himself survived another airstrike in his mountainous hideout in Bari region in November 2017.

“Killing one of their top leaders will speed up their eradication,” regional minister Abdisamad Mohamed Gallan told VOA.

ISIS-Somalia is a splinter group of al-Shabab, a group aligned with al-Qaida and also active in Somalia.

According to Air Force Times, the United States has conducted airstrikes to kill militants in Somalia since 2007, but the number of strikes per year was never more than three. Beginning in 2016, airstrikes in Somalia spiked to 15. In 2018, the Foundation for Defense of Democracies’ Long War Journal cataloged 47 strikes in-country.

Source: NewsMax America

Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., on Sunday said White House aide Stephen Miller, “who seems to be the boss of everybody on immigration,” should appear in front of Congress and try to explain recent developments in policy, including the idea to send migrants from the border to sanctuary cities.

Nadler told CNN that he learned from “whistle-blowers” that Miller was behind the idea to place the illegal immigrants in these cities.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders confirmed to “Fox News Sunday” that President Trump’s prospective plan to send illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities is undergoing a “complete and thorough review,” days after Democrats who have fought to protect illegal immigrants from federal authorities characterized the possible move as a dangerous stunt.

Trump has grown increasingly frustrated over the situation at the border, where tens of thousands of immigrant families are crossing each month, many to claim asylum. His administration has attempted several efforts to stop the flow and he recently shook up the top ranks of the Department of Homeland Security.

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The idea to ship immigrants to Democratic strongholds was considered twice in recent months, but the White House and Department of Homeland Security said the plan had been rejected.

Fox News’ Gregg Re and the Associated Press contributed to this report 

Source: Fox News Politics



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