Daily: 19/02/2018

Trump Blasts Oprah Over 60 Minutes Episode

U.S. President Donald Trump blasted media mogul Oprah Winfrey on Twitter on Sunday night over a segment on CBS’s 60 Minutes program and again said he hoped she would face him as an opponent in the 2020 presidential race.

Actress and television host Winfrey, now a contributor to the CBS program, led a panel of 14 Republican, Democrat and Independent voters from Grand Rapids, Michigan in a wide ranging discussion about Trump’s first year in office.

Trump tweeted: “Just watched a very insecure Oprah Winfrey, who at one point I knew very well, interview a panel of people on 60 Minutes. The questions were biased and slanted, the facts incorrect. Hope Oprah runs so she can be exposed and defeated just like all of the others!”

Winfrey has told various media outlets, including Entertainment Weekly, that she is not running for president, but has considered it, after there was much recent media speculation.

The panelists ranged from voters who said “I love him more and more every day,” to others questioning Trump’s stability, saying, “All he does is bully people.”

Winfrey made no declarative statements for or against the president in the program. But she did ask questions ranging from whether the country is better off economically to whether respect for the country is eroding around the world.

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Trump Stays Quiet on Shooting Victims, Fumes Over Russia

President Donald Trump spent the holiday weekend hunkered down at his Florida estate, watching cable television news, grousing to club members and advisers and fuming over the investigation of Russian election meddling.

 

In a marathon series of furious tweets from Mar-a-Lago, Trump vented about Russia, raging at the FBI for what he perceived to be a fixation on the Russia investigation at the cost of failing to deter the attack on a Florida high school. He made little mention of the nearby school shooting victims and the escalating gun control debate.

The president has grown increasingly frustrated since the indictment from special counsel Robert Mueller on Friday charged 13 Russians with a plot to interfere in the U.S. presidential election.

Trump viewed Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein’s declaration that the indictment doesn’t show that any American knowingly participated as proof of his innocence and is deeply frustrated that the media are still suggesting that his campaign may have colluded with Russian officials, according to a person who has spoken to the president in the last 24 hours but is not authorized to publicly discuss private conversations.

 

Trump was last seen publicly Friday night when he visited the nearby Florida community reeling from a school shooting that left 17 dead and gave rise to a student-led push for more gun control. White House aides advised the president against golfing so soon after the tragedy. Instead, he fired off tweets Saturday and Sunday and met with House Speaker Paul Ryan Sunday afternoon.

Trump fumed to associates at Mar-a-Lago that the media “won’t let it go” and will do everything to delegitimize his presidency. He made those complaints to members who stopped by his table Saturday as he dined with his two adult sons and TV personality Geraldo Rivera.

 

Initially pleased with the Justice Department’s statement, Trump has since griped that Rosenstein did not go far enough in declaring that he was cleared of wrongdoing, and grew angry when his national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, gave credence to the notion that Russia’s meddling affected the election, the person said.

 

Amid a growing call for action on guns, the White House said Sunday the president will host a “listening session” with students and teachers this week, but offered no details on who would attend or what would be discussed.

 

On Monday, 17 Washington students plan a “lie-in” by the White House to advocate for tougher gun laws. Students who survived the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland are planning a march on Washington next month to pressure politicians to take action on gun violence.

 

On Twitter, Trump stressed that the Russian effort began before he declared his candidacy and asserted that the Obama administration bears some blame for it. He also insisted he never denied that the Kremlin interfered in the 2016 U.S. campaign, although in fact he has frequently challenged the veracity of the evidence.

The president declared “they are laughing their asses off in Moscow”at the lingering fallout from the Kremlin’s election interference.

James Clapper, a former director of national intelligence, said on CNN’s “State of the Union” that the president was not focusing on the bigger threat.

 

“Above all this rhetoric here, again, we’re losing sight of, what is it we’re going to do about the threat posed by the Russians? And he never – he never talks about that,” said Clapper. “It’s all about himself, collusion or not.”

 

Trump tweeted about the nation’s “heavy heart” in the wake of the shooting in Parkland and noted the “ncredible people” he met on his visit to the community. But he also sought to use the shooting to criticize the nation’s leading law enforcement agency.

Trump said late Saturday that the FBI “missed all of the many signals” sent by the suspect and argued that agents are “spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign.”

 

The FBI received a tip last month that the man now charged in the school shooting had a “desire to kill” and access to guns and could be plotting an attack. But the agency said Friday that agents failed to investigate.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican and frequent Trump critic, called that tweet about the FBI an “absurd statement” on CNN’s “State of the Union,” adding that the “FBI apparently made a terrible mistake, and people should be held accountable. But we need leadership out of the executive.”

 

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After US Indictments, Russia Denies Election Meddling

The Kremlin on Monday denied Russian government involvement in interfering with the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters the allegations are baseless.

The comments come days after the U.S. special counsel charged 13 Russian nationals and three Russian entities with conducting an illegal “information warfare” campaign to disrupt the election to the benefit of President Donald Trump.

Former FBI Director Robert Mueller’s indictment of the Russian interests contended that the Internet Research Agency, a St. Petersburg-based social media company with Kremlin ties, 12 of its employees, and its financial backer orchestrated the effort.

The 37-page charging document alleges that the Russian conspirators sought to coordinate their effort with Trump campaign associates, but it does not accuse anyone on the Trump campaign of colluding with the Russians.

Trump has long insisted that his campaign did not collude with Russia, even as the U.S. intelligence community and now Mueller have concluded that Russia conducted a wide campaign to meddle in the election to help Trump win.

The indictment marks the first time Mueller’s office has brought charges against Russians and Russian entities for meddling in the 2016 election. 

Trump used a series of Twitter comments Sunday to assail the various investigations by Mueller and congressional committees.

“If it was the GOAL of Russia to create discord, disruption and chaos within the U.S. then, with all of the Committee Hearings, Investigations and (Republican) Party hatred, they have succeeded beyond their wildest dreams,” Trump said.  “They are laughing their asses off in Moscow. Get smart America!”

Trump was also critical of H.R. McMaster, his national security adviser, who said Saturday there was “incontrovertible” evidence of Russian interference in the election.

“I never said Russia did not meddle in the election, I said ‘it may be Russia, or China or another country or group, or it may be a 400 pound genius sitting in bed and playing with his computer,’ Trump tweeted. “The Russian ‘hoax’ was that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia – it never did!”

Trump said McMaster “forgot to say that the results of the 2016 election were not impacted or changed by the Russians and that the only Collusion was between Russia” and his Democratic opponent, former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and other Democrats. Trump said McMaster overlooked Democratic funding of political opposition research in a controversial dossier alleging shady Trump links to Russian operatives.

Trump sarcastically praised one of his political opponents, Congressman Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, for saying that the administration of former President Barack Obama could have done more to thwart overseas cyberattacks after the 2014 hack into the files of the entertainment company Sony Pictures.  

“I think that others around the world watched that and determined that cyber is a cost-free intervention,” Schiff said in an interview on NBC.

Trump tweeted, “Finally, Liddle’ Adam Schiff, the leakin’ monster of no control, is now blaming the Obama Administration for Russian meddling in the 2016 Election. He is finally right about something. Obama was President, knew of the threat, and did nothing. Thank you Adam!”

Trump added, “Now that Adam Schiff is starting to blame President Obama for Russian meddling in the election, he is probably doing so as yet another excuse that the Democrats, led by their fearless leader, Crooked Hillary Clinton, lost the 2016 election. But wasn’t  a great candidate?

“I’ve always said Obama should’ve acted sooner,” Schiff responded in his own tweet.  “But you won’t recognize the truth, impose sanctions or act at all. If McMaster can stand up to Putin, why can’t you?”

Mueller’s sprawling investigation has led to the indictments of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and associate Rick Gates on money laundering charges in connection with their lobbying efforts in Ukraine that predates Trump’s 2016 campaign. 

Former Trump National Security Adviser Michael Flynn and former campaign foreign policy adviser George Papadopoulos have pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about their contacts with Russian officials and are cooperating with Mueller’s probe.

In addition to investigating the Russian meddling in the election, Mueller is probing whether Trump has in several ways obstructed justice to undermine the investigation, including his firing of former FBI Director James Comey, who was leading the agency’s Russia probe at the time Trump ousted him. Mueller, over Trump’s objections, was then appointed to take over the Russia probe.

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Іран відмовляється від зовнішнього контролю за ракетною програмою – глава МЗС

Тегеран не буде піддавати свою ракетну програму міжнародному контролю, заявив 19 лютого в Москві міністр закордонних справ Ірану Мохаммад Джавад Заріф.

Президент США Дональд Трамп погрожує, що Сполучені Штати вийдуть із ядерної угоди Ірану зі світовими державами, якщо ці домовленості не будуть змінені, серед змін, – чітка заборона розробки балістичних ракет. 

«Чому ми повинні це робити?» – сказав Заріф сказав, коли його запитали, чи готовий Іран на зовнішній моніторинг своєї ракетної програми.

Ця угода, що отримала назву Спільний комплексний план дій (JCPOA), спрямована на припинення ядерної програми Тегерана в обмін на полегшення міжнародних санкцій.

«Президент США має великі амбіції, але вони ніколи не реалізуються», – сказав Заріф, який перебуває у Москві на зустрічі дискусійного клубу «Валдай» – з’їзду російських та міжнародних експертів з питань зовнішньої політики на Близькому Сході.

Під час зустрічі Заріф також критикував підтримку США сирійських курдських сил, які виступають проти уряду президента Башара Асада, звинувачуючи Вашингтон в «недалекоглядних» кроках. 

 

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Oxfam Reports Staff Intimidated Witnesses in Haiti Scandal

Oxfam’s report on sexual misconduct allegations in Haiti shows that three staff members intimidated and physically threatened witnesses as the charity investigated the original claims.

The organization released the findings of its investigation Monday, following reports suggesting Oxfam tried to cover up allegations that seven employees used prostitutes on the charity’s property while working in Haiti after the 2010 earthquake that devastated the country.

The report says that while Oxfam couldn’t substantiate allegations of sex with minors, it also couldn’t rule out that some of the prostitutes were underage.

Publication of the report comes as Oxfam seeks to draw a line under the scandal. The British government on Friday suspended new funding to the aid agency. Oxfam’s British affiliate received 31.7 million pounds ($43.8 million) from the government for 2016-2017.

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Суд відпустив особу, яка стріляла в поліцейського – Аваков

Звернувся до прем’єра, щоб скликати позачергове засідання уряду – керівник МВС. Аваков також вимагає «від Вищої ради правосуддя негайної реакції на такі дії судді»

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В Ірані пошукові команди досягли місця аварії літака ATR-72

Іранські пошуково-рятувальні команди досягли місця катастрофи літака ATR-72, в результаті якої 18 лютого загинули 65 пасажирів та членів екіпажу. Державне телебачення поінформувало, що вертольоти беруть участь в пошуку літака авіакомпанії Aseman EP3704 після поліпшення погодних умов.

Заметіль, яка тривала 18 лютого, ускладнила пошуки. Пошукові команди досягли місця катастрофи до світанку 19 лютого. Рятувальна операція вночі не проводилася, оскільки сильний сніг та дощ унеможливлювали пошукові роботи.

Турбогвинтовий літак ATR-72 вилетів з Тегерана 18 лютого вранці в місто Ясуй, розташоване приблизно за 500 кілометрів на південь від столиці Ірану. Літак, який перебував в експлуатації 25 років, розбився на горі Дена в південно-західному районі Ірану.

За даними українських дипломатів, громадян України на борту літака не було.

Агентство авіаційної безпеки Франції BEA заявило, що візьме участь в розслідуванні, яке проводиться під керівництвом британської службою авіаційних подій. Літаки ATR-72 були розроблені й випущені у Франції та Італії.

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НСЖУ: сотні побитих в часи Євромайдану журналістів лишаються «жертвами безкарності»

Національна спілка журналістів України 19 лютого оприлюднила заяву, в якій відзначає, що «журналісти, які постраждали у часи Євромайдану, наголошують на нерозслідуваності нападів та непокараності злочинців».

В НСЖУ констатують, що і на четверту річницю найбільших жертв у часи Революції гідності відсутні прецеденти покарання за жорстокі побиття журналістів. При тому, що у період з листопада 2013-го року по лютий 2014-го року трапився 271 такий інцидент. 

«Показові справи, якими звітувала Генпрокуратура та Адміністрація президента, розсипаються, а свідчення постраждалих журналістів ігноруються. Маємо ганебні вироки причетному до вбивства В’ячеслава Веремія Крисіну, виправдання міліціонерів, що жорстоко побили черкаського фотокора Ігоря Єфімова та нові обіцянки про пріоритетність майданівських «справ честі», – заявив голова НСЖУ Сергій Томіленко. 

У НСЖУ звертають увагу на те, що рік тому було підготовлено спеціальний звіт «Жертви безкарності», присвячений журналістам, які постраждали на Майдані та у регіонах під час виконання професійного обов’язку. Та жоден із понад 20 журналістів, чиї детальні історії були оприлюднені у звіті, не відзначає зрушень у розслідуванні справ.

За даними аналітичного звіту НСЖУ, за час Революції гідності найбільше нападів, крім Києва, було у Харкові, Черкасах, Дніпрі, Запоріжжі, Одесі та в Криму. Крім того, за цей період зафіксовано 14 нападів на редакції медіа, 9 арештів та затримань, 31 випадок погроз працівникам медіа фізичною розправою.

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Anti-Corruption Police Arrest Latvian Central Bank Chief

Latvian Prime Minister Maris Kucinskis assured the country and Europe “there is no sign of danger,” after anti-corruption police arrested the head of the Latvian central bank Saturday.

“For now, neither I, nor any other official, has any reason to interfere with the work of the Corruption Prevention Bureau,” Kucinskis said.

Neither Kucinskis nor the police gave any reason why central bank governor Ilmars Rimsevics was arrested. But a police spokeswoman said there will be an announcement “as soon as possible.”

The Latvian government plans an emergency meeting Monday.

Along with heading the Baltic nation’s central bank, Rimsevics is also one of 19 governors on the European Central Bank.

The U.S. Treasury Department has proposed sanctions against a major Latvian bank for alleged money laundering linked to North Korea’s weapons program.

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