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Sat03252017

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World News

Much awaited Glass Bridge to open in China.

This weekend, the much heralded "world's highest and longest" glass-bottomed bridge will open to visitors in central China. It connects two mountain cliffs in what are known as the Avatar Mountains in Zhangjiajie, Hunan province. Completed in December, the 430 meter-long bridge cost 3.4 million dollars to build and stands 300 meters above ground. State news agency Xinhua reported, it has been paved with 99 panes of three-layered transparent glass. According to the officials, the 6 meter-wide bridge, designed by Israeli architect Haim Dotan, has already set world records for its architecture and construction.

US: Iran cash linked to prisoner release.

The State Department has said a 400 million dollars cash payment to Iran was used as "leverage" in the release of five US prisoners. Spokesman John Kirby maintained the payment was negotiated separately from the release, but said it was withheld until the Americans had left Iran.

Five Americans held in Iran were released in January in exchange for seven detained Iranians. The US airlifted 400 million dollars worth of cash to Iran on the same day. The exchange came as the US lifted international sanctions against Iran as part of the country's historic nuclear deal.

Ferocious US fires evict thousands.

Firefighters are continuing to tackle a huge blaze in southern California, with several of them describing it as the most ferocious they have ever seen. An evacuation order has been issued for an area home to more than 82,000 people, just east of Los Angeles.

The Blue Cut fire, as it has been named, has destroyed homes and disrupted transport links between California and Nevada. Some people have been running for their lives just ahead of the flames. The blaze first ignited on Tuesday in a drought-ravaged mountain pass and a day later it had spread across 12,200 hectares.

Oil tanker 'hijacked off Malaysia'.

A Malaysian oil tanker carrying 900 thousand litres of diesel has been hijacked and taken to Indonesian waters. The MT Vier Harmoni was reportedly sailing from Tanjung Pelepas port in Malaysia on Monday when it was seized. The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency said that the ship was now believed to be off the Indonesian island of Batam.
Its cargo is reportedly worth about 392 thousand 795 dollars. The identity of the hijackers is not yet known.

Russian bombers use Iran base for air strikes.


A statement said Russia's defence ministry says it has used a base in western Iran to carry out air strikes in Syria. Tupolev-22M3 long-range bombers and Sukhoi-34 strike fighters took off from Hamedan on Wednesday.

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US announces major Guantanamo transfer.

The US says it has sent 15 Guantanamo Bay detainees to the United Arab Emirates, the largest single transfer during President Barack Obama's administration.

The Pentagon says the transfer of 12 Yemeni nationals and three Afghans brings the total number of prisoners down to 61 at the US facility in Cuba. The released inmates had been held without charge, some for over 14 years. President Obama wants to close the prison before he leaves office.

Pakistan invites India for talks on Kashmir.

Pakistan has invited India for talks on Kashmir, saying it is the “international obligation” of both the countries to resolve the issue.  Foreign Office spokesman Nafees Zakaria said in a statement that Indian High Commissioner Gautam Bambawale was called to hand over a letter of invitation for talks.

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US election: Trump team 'must disclose pro-Russia ties'

Hillary Clinton's manager has said that Donald Trump's campaign team must disclose all pro-Russia links, following new allegations in the New York Times. The paper said ledgers earmarked 12.7 million US dollars in undisclosed cash payments from a pro-Russia political party in Ukraine to Mr Trump's campaign head Paul Manafort between 2007 and 2012. His lawyer said Mr Manafort had not received any such payments.

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Indian Premier vows his country will not bow down to terrorism.

 

 

Dressed in a white kurta and a turban streaked in shades of orange, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in his speech to mark the 70th Independence Day, has underlined the government's mantra of "reform, perform and transform".
He also sent out a message that India will not tolerate or bow down to terrorism. In his 90-minute address from the ramparts of the Red Fort, Modi made no reference to the situation

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Boko Haram video shows captives

The Nigerian Islamist group Boko Haram has released a video showing some of the schoolgirls they abducted from the northern town of Chibok.Some 50 girls are shown with a gunman who demands the release of fighters in return for the girls, and says some girls died in air strikes.

The government says it is in touch with the militants behind the video. A journalist who had contact with Boko Haram has been declared a wanted man by the Nigerian army. The group is said to be holding more than 200 of the 276 final-year girls it seized from a school in April 2014.

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