Philippines’ Duterte looks to strengthen ties with trip to Moscow

May 22, 2017

(CNN)Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte will depart on an official five-day visit to Moscow Monday, as part of an effort to realign his country’s foreign policy away from longtime ally the United States. Under Duterte, who took office in June 2016, the Philippines has made overtures toward Beijing and Moscow — seeing the countries as a source of much-needed investment — and away from the US, which, despite a mutual defense treaty, Duterte regards as unreliable and …

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First on CNN: Comey now believes Trump was trying to influence him, source says

May 21, 2017

Washington (CNN)Former FBI Director James Comey now believes that President Donald Trump was trying to influence his judgment about the Russia probe, a person familiar with his thinking says, but whether that influence amounts to obstruction of justice remains an open question. Comey will testify publicly before the Senate intelligence committee after Memorial Day, the panel’s leaders announced Friday. The central question at that blockbuster hearing will be whether Comey believed the …

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Here’s who Trump has called a ‘nut job’

May 20, 2017

Washington (CNN)“Nut job” seems to be one of President Donald Trump’s favorite insults for his political foes. The President — who The New York Times reported Friday bragged to two Russian officials that firing “nut job” FBI Director James Comey eased “great pressure” on him in regard to the Russia probe — has a history of slapping the label on people he disagrees with. By definition, nut job means a “mentally unbalanced person,” …

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Besieged at home, Trump sets off for ‘do-or-die’ foreign trip

May 19, 2017

… election hacking effort capped a stunning rush of events unleashed by the President’s firing of FBI Director James Comey, who declined Trump’s request to shield former national security adviser Michael Flynn in the Russia probe, The New York Times first reported and CNN confirmed. Trump says his staff can’t keep up Trump still threatening to quit NATO Pres. Carter hopes Trump pushes Mid-East peace …

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Ferry between Russia and North Korea starts regular service

May 19, 2017

(CNN)A cargo-passenger ferry service linking Russia and North Korea completed its first trip Thursday. The Man Gyong Bong ferry left the North Korean port city of Rason Wednesday and arrived in Russia’s Far Eastern city of Vladivostok at 8:00 am local time Thursday, according to Russian state news agency TASS. The trip marked the beginning of a once-weekly regular cargo-passenger service, according to TASS. …

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Now it’s up to the special counsel

May 18, 2017

Washington (CNN)A bad day for the White House could turn out to be a good day for justice and democratic accountability and institutions. Robert Mueller’s appointment Wednesday as special counsel to probe Russian election meddling and any collusion by Trump campaign aides elevates the investigation clear of partisanship and the threat of White House interference. It therefore may offer the best chance for a politically bulletproof accounting of the guilt or innocence of members of the …

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Congress exasperated as White House in ‘downward spiral’

May 16, 2017

(CNN)Republicans in Congress barely had time to get their footing Monday, as another wild development, this time reports that President Donald Trump had revealed sensitive intelligence to Russia’s foreign minister and US ambassador, swept the Capitol. Senators mulled over the latest stunning news, first reported by The Washington Post, as they met inside the chamber. Tennessee Republican Sen. Bob Corker said the wave of negative stories related to Trump and intelligence meant the White …

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James Clapper: Defending democracy from Trump

May 16, 2017

(CNN)Last week, when he testified before the Senate Judiciary subcommittee, James Clapper, former director of national intelligence, had the disposition of someone who looked like he had retired for a reason and planned to go straight back. He made his points, answered many questions and perhaps hoped that would be the end of his contribution on the Trump/Russia story. There should be little doubt that the extraordinary days that followed his original testimony — most notably, almost …

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Trump on Russia allegations: ‘There is no collusion’

May 14, 2017

(CNN)President Donald Trump denied allegations of collusion between his campaign and Russian operatives in an interview Saturday night on Fox News, adding that he wants “to get to the bottom” of the questions about Russian influence in the election. “Everybody’s convinced: They say there is no collusion,” Trump said. “There is no collusion. We had nothing to do with Russia.” But the President said it is “very important” to him that the …

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FBI agents concerned about future of Russia probe

May 14, 2017

(CNN)Some FBI investigators are worried the Trump administration could try to interfere with probes, including on Russia, by shifting resources and priorities away from counterintelligence investigations, FBI sources tell CNN. There is a “general fear that the White House will try to interfere with the investigation” into Russian election meddling, one FBI source said. “The first target will be the leak investigation, and then, long term, if Donald Trump appoints some crony, …

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24 hours of craziness in Trump’s Washington

May 11, 2017

Washington (CNN)You couldn’t make it up. In the confusing hours when up seemed down and down seemed up, the White House appeared to be defending Hillary Clinton, the FBI chief was among the last to know he was gone, and there was a cameo performance by Russian President Vladimir Putin in his ice skates. It all started with a bolt from nowhere late Tuesday afternoon. President Donald Trump canned Comey. No one had thought it would come to this, since the FBI director was overseeing an …

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After Yates, more questions for the Trump White House

May 10, 2017

Washington (CNN)Sally Yates didn’t bring a smoking gun to the latest episode of the long-running political melodrama entwining the White House and Russia. In her long-awaited first public accounting of her dealings with the Trump administration, Yates testified that she explicitly warned White House counsel Donald McGahn in January that former national security adviser Michael Flynn had been compromised and could be a target for Russian blackmail. Her intervention provoked an awkward …

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Golf writer: Eric Trump said father’s golf courses were funded by Russians

May 9, 2017

… station, in an interview that aired Friday. Later, Dodson, who wrote a biography of Ben Hogan, among other golf books, said he asked Eric the same question as they rode in a golf cart. Dodson said Eric Trump replied: Well, we dont rely on American banks. We have all the funding we need out of Russia. Eric continued: Oh, yeah. Weve got some guys that really, really love golf, and theyre really invested in our programs. We just go there all the time. Reached Sunday, Eric told The Post that Dodsons …

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France election: Media warned not to publish hacked Macron emails

May 8, 2017

… Recent opinion polls have forecast that Mr Macron will win the second round with 62% of the vote. In the days prior to the cyberattack, the front runner’s campaign had made repeated complaints that unsuccessful attempts were being made to compromise its email accounts. Mr Macron’s team had suggested that Russia may have had an interest in orchestrating the cyberattacks, but the Kremlin has denied any involvement. Click for more from Sky News. More From this publisher : HERE …

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UK drawing up post-Brexit sanctions plan – BBC News

April 29, 2017

The EU has imposed trade restrictions on Russia’s financial, energy and defence sectors in response to its annexation of Crimea and military intervention in Ukraine. Rushed through The official consultation over the new laws began last Friday only hours before the pre-election ban on announcing new legislation – known as purdah – came into force. It will be rushed through in just nine weeks so a new bill can be put to Parliament as soon as possible after the general …

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Future of cash: Can a ‘bank in a box’ replace a branch? – BBC News

April 28, 2017

… has just started marketing its latest “self-service” machine. It claims users will never look at an ATM in the same way again – mainly owing to the fact that they think they are looking at a tablet computer. Image copyright NCR Image caption The first newly-designed ATM by NCR has just been installed in Switzerland As of 2014, Russia had the highest number of cash machines per one million inhabitants than any European country In Western Europe, Portugal had 1,516 ATMs …

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French presidential candidate Macron targeted by hackers, cyber firm says

April 25, 2017

… that Russia used against the US — of getting hold of embarrassing information and releasing it — I’d say the French are very open to such things.” Russian President Vladimir Putin has denied any interest in interfering with the elections in France. But analysts say Putin would have good reason to favor conservative nationalist Marine Le Pen over centrist Macron in the upcoming runoff election. “Le Pen has been very open about her desire to have better relations with …

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Will Trump follow his heart or his head on French election?

April 24, 2017

Washington (CNN)Sunday’s French election result sets up a battle between the heart and the head of the Trump White House. In the latest blow to establishment party politics in the Western world, two outsider candidates — centrist Emmanuel Macron and far-right leader Marine Le Pen — advanced from a crowded field to a run-off for the Elysee Palace on May 7. Le Pen has risen on the same populist politics, rooted in anger over immigration policies, globalization and middle class …

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Bashar al-Assad and Kim Jong Un: A tale of two dictators

April 20, 2017

… Super power patrons In addition to benefiting from support for each other, Syria and North Korea alsodepend heavily on the patronage of much larger allies. Syria gets weapons and direct military support from Russia, while North Korea depends on China for more than 80% of its international trade. But both are …

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Assad said to be holding Syrian boy in heart-breaking photo under house arrest

April 19, 2017

… interview with Swiss media, President Assad asserted that it was a “forged picture and not a real one.” However, an interview with Russia Today, his wife Asma acknowledged the little boy by name and questioned why children in the Alawite village of Zara, which was assaulted by Al-Qaeda linked groups last May, were not afforded the same media attention. Nonetheless, the sudden attention on the now iconic photograph last year also fast became fodder for theories that the anti-Assad …

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Donald Trump’s on-the-job training

April 12, 2017

Washington (CNN)The Trump White House is finding out that running the world is even more complicated than trying to pass health care reform. The administration is struggling to frame and explain a coherent foreign policy response to two related crises — the fallout from chemical weapons attacks in Syria and rapidly deteriorating relations with Russia. The intractable problems would challenge any new White House. But the Trump team seems to be exacerbating its learning curve by failing to …

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FBI monitored former Trump campaign adviser Carter Page on Russia

April 12, 2017

… investigation into possible ties between Trump’s campaign and Russia, the newspaper says, citing unnamed law enforcement and other US officials. The FBI and Justice Department obtained the warrant after convincing a FISA judge there was probable cause to believe Page was acting as an agent of a foreign government (Russia), the report says. The warrant presents the strongest information to date that the FBI had reason to believe a Trump adviser was in touch with Moscow and met with foreign …

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CNN 10 – April 10, 2017

April 10, 2017

… time the U.S. struck a Syrian government position since the country’s civil war broke out six years. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) DAVID PETRAEUS, FORMER CIA DIRECTOR: It certainly sends a message to friends and foe alike that this president will take action when lines are crossed and that is again potentially very significant. (END VIDEO CLIP) AZUZ: Syria denied carrying out the chemical attack last week and Russia and Iran, two countries that support Syria’s government say the U.S. strike …

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