Britain’s May to Talk With Saudi Crown Prince About Khashoggi Killing

The British prime minister says she intends to talk about the killing of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the G-20 meeting in Argentina.

Theresa May said on the airplane to Buenos Aires that the British government “wants to see a full and transparent investigation in relation to what happened and obviously those responsible being held to account.”

The Guardian, a British newspaper, said Downing Street sources have not officially confirmed a bilateral meeting but have suggested that May and the crown prince would be “engaging.”

Khashoggi, a Saudi national and critic of the crown prince, was killed last month after entering the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul, where he had gone to obtain documents needed for his upcoming wedding.

Saudi Arabia has denied allegations that Salman played a role in Khashoggi’s death, blaming the killing on rogue agents. U.S. President Donald Trump has echoed Riyadh’s denials and said the matter remains an open question.

South Carolina Republican Sen. Lindsey Graham, a frequent defender of Trump has joined other U.S. lawmakers in demanding a briefing by the CIA on Khashoggi’s death and has threatened to withhold votes on urgent legislation if it does not occur.

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Trump, South Korea’s Moon to Meet at G-20 with North Korea Talks Stalled

U.S. President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet with South Korean President Moon Jae-in during the Group of 20 summit, where they are likely to discuss stalled nuclear negotiations with North Korea.

Experts said the meeting on the sidelines of the two-day gathering that begins Friday in Buenos Aires is unlikely to resolve the differences between Washington and Pyongyang over the North’s nuclear weapons program.

The impasse began when North Korea abruptly canceled a planned meeting with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in early November. 

During his meeting with Trump, Moon is expected to push for a second summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, according to South Korean news media reports.

Pressure and dialogue

Washington has been pursuing a dual policy of employing both pressure and dialogue simultaneously, as its differences with Pyongyang have been growing, while Seoul has been prioritizing improving ties with Pyongyang.

“I doubt the meeting between President Trump and President Moon at the G-20 meeting will break the stalemate in U.S.-North Korea talks,” said Gary Samore, the White House coordinator for arms control and weapons of mass destruction during the Obama administration.

“Washington and Pyongyang remain very far apart on the scope and pace of denuclearization and sanctions relief, and neither side seems prepared to make major concessions at this time,” he said.

Bruce Klingner, a former CIA division chief for the Koreas who is now a senior research fellow at the Heritage Foundation, also believes the deadlock will not end, because “Pyongyang refuses to engage” in high-level talks with Washington and is reluctant to give up its nuclear weapons program.

“The stalemate is due, as was the case of every previous failed attempt at diplomacy with North Korea, to the regime’s unwillingness to abandon its nuclear arsenal,” Klingner said.

Christopher Hill, a chief negotiator with North Korea during the George W. Bush administration, agrees.

“I think the major challenge is North Korea has not expressed any interest in denuclearization,” he said.

Can Seoul move Pyongyang?

Hill suggested Trump should tell Moon that North Korea needs to take concrete steps toward denuclearization. 

However, Dennis Wilder, the National Security Council’s former senior director for East Asian affairs during the George W. Bush administration, questioned whether Seoul has the leverage to push Pyongyang toward that end.

“The only way that it will break the deadlock is if you believe somehow the South Koreans could convince the North Koreans to do the right thing,” Wilder said. “I’m not sure that they have that power.”

Some experts warn that Washington and Pyongyang could lose the momentum for dialogue if the current standoff persists.

Klinger said the upcoming summit could “underscore the growing divergence between Washington and Seoul over how to achieve North Korean denuclearization.”

US still hopeful

Despite the stalemate, the U.S. insists that it remains hopeful that talks will resume.

Pompeo told reporters Wednesday that he was “very hopeful” that the U.S. will have “senior-level meetings before too long.”

During Tuesday’s press briefing, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said, “We are in frequent contact with North Korean officials. That’s not changed. We have our special representative, Stephen Biegun, who is leading those conversations.”

North Korea accused the U.S. this week of using human rights issues — and a U.N. resolution condemning the country’s human rights violations — as a tool to pressure Pyongyang.

According to North Korea’s state-run newspaper Rodong Sinmun, “The reason that the Americans are so obsessed with this absurdity is that they want to sully the image of our republic in order to justify their racket for sanctions and pressure, and to extract our concessions in their negotiations with us.” 

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Голова МЗС Словаччини йде у відставку після того, як парламент відхилив пакт ООН щодо мігрантів

Міністр закордонних справ Словаччини Мирослав Лайчак заявив про свою відставку. Своє рішення він пояснив небажанням парламенту країни приєднатися до міграційного пакту ООН.

Рішення щодо пакту словацький парламент ухвалив 29 листопада.

Найближчим часом Лайчак зустрінеться з прем’єр-міністром і президентом Словаччини. Після цього буде офіційне оголошення про відставку міністра з посади.

Читайте також: Меркель підтримала міграційний пакт ООН

ООН планує ухвалити «Всесвітній пакт за регульовану міграцію» в грудні 2018 року на конференції в Марокко. Документ містить низку заходів, необов’язкових до виконання. Зокрема, він пропонує видавати біженцям документи в разі їх відсутності, а також забезпечувати доступ мігрантів до соціальної допомоги.

У грудні минулого року від участі в міграційному угоді ООН відмовилися США. У липні за прикладом США пішли, зокрема, Угорщина, Австрія, Австралія, Чехія, Ізраїль і Польща. Влада Швейцарії відклала ухвалення рішення.

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Rains, Flash Floods Hit Fire-Ravaged Northern California

Heavy rains and flash flooding hit Northern California Thursday, forcing evacuations and road closures in the area devastated by recent wildfires, including the Camp Fire and the Ferguson Fire.

Officials sent swift-water rescue teams to evacuate people trapped in vehicles and in homes after a downpour near Paradise, the town of 27,000 that was destroyed by the Camp Fire earlier this month.

Butte County Sheriff’s Sgt. Brad Meyer told KHSL/KNVN television stations in Chico that about a dozen homes were affected and rafts were being used to rescue people from water that was more than 60 centimeters (23 inches) deep.

“It is serious. The water is coming up, so we want to make sure we get everybody out that we can,’’ Meyer told the station.

The National Weather Service also issued flash-flood warnings for other areas hit hard by the wildfires, including the Carr, Delta and Hirz fires in Shasta and Trinity counties.

Rain was also creating misery for Californians displaced by the fires, some of whom are still living in tents in parking lot encampments.

The weather service forecast heavy rains over the next few days with significant snowfall in the Sierra Nevada mountains into Friday morning. It warned travelers and residents to be “alert for possible road problems due to flooding, rock and debris flows. This could quickly become a dangerous situation.”

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Trump Abruptly Cancels G-20 Meeting with Putin 

U.S. President Donald Trump begins two days of meetings with world leaders Friday in the Argentinian capital, which is hosting the G-20 summit of the world’s leading economies. But one counterpart he will apparently not be sitting down with is Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Trump tweeted his decision from Air Force One on his way to Buenos Aires on Thursday.

Trump had been scheduled to hold a two hour meeting here with Putin despite intense criticism in the United States and among NATO allies following Moscow’s seizure Sunday of the three Ukrainian vessels and their crews in the Kerch Strait as they tried to make their way to the Ukrainian port of Mariupol, in the Sea of Azov.

White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters on Air Force One that the decision to cancel the meeting was “made on the plane” after Trump received an in-flight briefing by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly about the tensions between Russia and Ukraine.

​Hours earlier, meeting on

Just two hours earlier as he departed the White House, Trump had told reporters he looked forward to meeting with Putin during the G-20 leaders’ meeting.

“I think it’s a very good time to have the meeting,” Trump had told reporters on the South Lawn.

The reversal came on the same day as the president’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to lying to Congress about a proposed Trump skyscraper in Moscow.

Trump told reporters Cohen is a “liar” and a “weak person.”

Russians surprised

Russian officials are expressing surprise about Trump’s cancellation of the meeting with Putin, with whom the U.S. president has enjoyed a warm relationship despite significant geo-political differences between the two countries.

“A cancellation means that the discussion on key international issues is being postponed indefinitely,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the RIA news agency.

​Ukraine seeks NATO’s help

Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko asked NATO countries to send naval ships to the Sea of Azov to aid his country and “provide security” amid tensions with Russia. Ukraine, once a Soviet satellite state, is not a NATO member.

Poroshenko’s comments were published Thursday in the German newspaper Bild.

NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu responded to Poroshenko’s request by saying the military alliance already has a strong presence in the Black Sea region.

She said NATO ships routinely patrol the area and several NATO allies conduct reconnaissance flights over the region. 

“We will continue to assess our presence in the region,” Lungescu added.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also rejected Poroshenko’s request, urging Kyiv to adopt a “sensible” approach “because there is no military solution to these disputes.”

Also Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he could play a mediator role between Ukraine and Russia.

Erdogan has held phone talks with leaders on both sides, and said he would continue discussing the issue with Putin and Trump at a G-20 summit.

​What happened in Kerch Strait

Ukraine said Russia used a tanker to block access to the Kerch Strait, which under a treaty is shared territory. Russia said the vessels illegally entered its waters.

Putin on Wednesday blamed Poroshenko for the incident, alleging it is an attempt by Poroshenko to boost his re-election chances next year.

Ukraine has imposed martial law in some of its border regions in response to the incident, and with a growing number of other European countries, urged Western allies to impose additional sanctions on Moscow.

Poroshenko said martial law will help “strengthen Ukraine’s defense capabilities amid increasing aggression and according to international law, a cold act of aggression by the Russian Federation.” He demanded Russia release the Ukrainian sailors and vessels.

Poroshenko wrote on Twitter Thursday that his country will impose unspecified restrictions on Russian citizens in response to Russia’s actions. Ukraine has already denied Russians entry into the country since last week’s incident.

VOA’s Chris Hannas and Wayne Lee contributed to this report.

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Меркель спізниться на саміт G20 через поломку літака

Канцлер Німеччини Анґела Меркель пропустить відкриття саміту «Групи 20» в Аргентині після того, як урядовий літак, яким вона летіла до Буенос-Айреса, здійснив аварійну посадку в Кельні.

При цьому ніхто не постраждав. Меркель і міністр фінансів Німеччини Олаф Шольц продовжать поїздку до вранці 30 листопада, але прибудуть на саміт вже коли інші світові лідери почнуть дискусії, пише агенція Reuters.

«Це була серйозна поломка. На щастя, у нас чудовий екіпаж і досвідчений пілот», – сказала канцлер невдовзі в готелі в Бонні.

Агентство dpa цитує речника Меркель Штеффена Зайберта, який уточнив, що Меркель і її делегація вранці 30 листопада планують поїхати в Мадрид, де сядуть на комерційний рейс до Буенос-Айреса.

Саміт G20 – двадцяти найбільших економік світу – відбуватиметься в Аргентині з 30 листопада по 1 грудня. Меркель напередодні заявила, що в кулуарах саміту говоритиме з російським президентом Володимиром Путіним про нещодавню агресію Росії проти українських кораблів і їхніх екіпажів біля Керченської протоки.

 

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Кремль прокоментував інформацію про скасування зустрічі Трампа і Путіна

Кремль поки не отримував офіційної інформації про рішення президента США Дональда Трампа скасувати зустріч із президентом Росії Володимиром Путіним, заявив речник російського лідера Дмитро Пєсков у коментарі ТАСС.

«Ми летимо в Аргентину. Поки бачили лише твіт і ЗМІ», – зазначив Пєсков.

Він додав, що якщо переговори президентів дійсно скасовані, Путін отримає додатковий час для інших зустрічей.

29 листопада Трамп заявив, що скасував зустріч із Путіним на полях саміту «Групи 20» в Аргентині, який відбудеться 30 листопада і 1 грудня. Американський президент пояснив своє рішення захопленням українських моряків російськими прикордонниками.

Востаннє Трамп і Путін зустрічалися в липніу Фінляндії. Після тривалих консультацій сторони вирішили відкластинаступний повноформатний американсько-російський саміт до наступного року.

25 листопада російські прикордонники у Керченській протоці відкрили вогонь по трьох українських кораблях і захопили їх. За даними української влади, шестеро українських моряків були поранені, зокрема двоє – у тяжкому стані. Росія заявила, що надала медичну допомогу трьом пораненим, про інших трьох не згадувала.

Підконтрольні Кремлю суди у Криму арештували всіх 24 моряків на два місяці. Українська влада визнає їх військовополоненими.

Після нападу на кораблі Верховна Рада проголосувала за введення воєнного стану терміном на 30 діб з 26 листопада у внутрішніх водах Азово-Керченської акваторії та в 10 областях. Це Вінницька, Луганська, Донецька, Запорізька, Миколаївська, Одеська, Сумська, Харківська, Чернігівська, Херсонська.

 

 

 

НА ЦЮ Ж ТЕМУ:

(Радіоперехоплення переговорів російського командування з екіпажами кораблів Росії щодо атаки на човни ВМС України)

(Відео моменту, коли корабель Росії цілеспрямовано таранить український човен у Керченській протоці)

Порошенко назвав «прямим актом агресії» напад російських прикордонників на українські кораблі

Полонений моряк ВМС у кримському «суді» попросив перекладача з російської – адвокат

Захоплені Росією українські моряки: хто вони і що з ними

США: ЄС варто посилити санкції проти Росії і відмовитися від «Північного потоку-2»

Потрібно зупинити Путіна, щоб він не пішов далі – у Європарламенті закликають до нових санкцій

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Trump Cancels Putin Meeting Over Moscow Seizure of Ukrainian Ships

U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday abruptly canceled a planned two-hour meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in response to Moscow’s seizure of Ukrainian ships in the Black Sea region.

“Based on the fact that the ships and sailors have not been returned to Ukraine from Russia, I have decided it would be best for all parties concerned to cancel my previously scheduled meeting in Argentina,” Trump said on Twitter as he left Washington for Buenos Aires and the weekend G-20 summit of heads of the world’s leading economies.

“I look forward to a meaningful Summit again as soon as this situation is resolved!” Trump added.

Trump tweeted about canceling the talks with Putin not long after telling reporters at the White House that the meeting would likely proceed as planned.

“I probably will be meeting with President Putin,” he had said. “They would like to have it. I think it’s a very good time to have the meeting.”

But he said he would get a final report during his flight concerning the Russian seizure Sunday of the three vessels and their crews in the Kerch Strait as they tried to make their way to the Ukrainian port of Mariupol, in the Sea of Azov.

“I’m getting a full report on the plane as to what happened with respect to that and that will determine what I’m going to be doing,” he said.

The White House said Trump made the decision on board Air Force One after conferring with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, National Security Adviser John Bolton and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly.

Russian news agencies reported the Kremlin had not been notified in advance of Trump’s decision. The Russian embassy in Washington said that if Trump and Putin aren’t going to meet, then the Russian leader “will have a couple of additional hours on the program for useful meetings.”

Request for NATO aid

Meanwhile, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko asked NATO countries to send naval ships to the Sea of Azov to aid his country and “provide security” amid tensions with Russia. Ukraine, once a Soviet satellite state, is not a NATO member.

Poroshenko’s comments were published Thursday in the German newspaper Bild.

NATO spokeswoman Oana Lungescu responded to Poroshenko’s request by saying the military alliance already has a strong presence in the Black Sea region.

She said NATO ships routinely patrol the area and several NATO allies conduct reconnaissance flights over the region. “We will continue to assess our presence in the region,” Lungescu added.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also rejected Poroshenko’s request, urging Kyiv to adopt a “sensible” approach “because there is no military solution to these disputes.”

Also Thursday, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said he could play a mediator role between Ukraine and Russia.

Erdogan has held phone talks with leaders on both sides, and said he would continue discussing the issue with Putin and Trump at a G-20 summit.

Conflicting accounts

Ukraine said Russia used a tanker to block access to the Kerch Strait, which under a treaty is shared territory. Russia said the vessels illegally entered its waters.

Putin on Wednesday blamed Poroshenko for the incident, alleging it is an attempt by Poroshenko to boost his re-election chances next year.

Ukraine has imposed martial law in some of its border regions in response to the incident, and with a growing number of other European countries, urged Western allies to impose additional sanctions on Moscow.

Poroshenko said martial law will help “strengthen Ukraine’s defense capabilities amid increasing aggression and according to international law, a cold act of aggression by the Russian Federation.” He demanded Russia release the Ukrainian sailors and vessels.

The U.S. special envoy for Ukraine, Kurt Volker, told reporters Wednesday in Berlin he believes Kyiv’s account that its ships were operating within global maritime rules.

Volker said the Ukrainian vessels were returning to Odessa “when the Russian vessels then pursued them and attacked them.”

Ukrainian officials have released what they maintain is the precise location where its ships were fired upon.

Volker said he has not received independent U.S. verification of Ukraine’s information, but believed “the data the Ukrainians have provided is quite clear.”

Poroshenko wrote Thursday on Twitter that his country will impose unspecified restrictions on Russian citizens in response to Russia’s actions. Ukraine has already denied Russians entry into the country since last week’s incident.

Russia annexed the Crimean Peninsula in March 2014, saying its ethnic Russian majority was under threat from the Ukrainian government. A month later, it fomented a pro-Russia separatist rebellion in eastern Ukraine in an ongoing conflict that to date has claimed more than 10,000 lives.

Ukraine and the West repeatedly have accused Russia of fueling the conflict by providing rebel forces with weapons and other support, a charge Moscow has denied despite strong evidence to the contrary.

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