Obama affirms US-India ties
Even as he watched events unfold in Egypt and recalibrated US strategy accordingly, President Barack Obama took out time to join a meeting his NSA Tom Donilon was having with his Indian counterpart Shivshankar Menon Friday morning.
“The President joined the meeting and reaffirmed his commitment to building a true global, strategic partnership with India,” said the White House, adding, “(and) relayed his priorities for the coming year, including advancing our bilateral economic relationship and making progress on nuclear security efforts.”
The two NSAs were meeting to review progress on the initiatives announced by India and the US during Obama's November visit, a major element of it — lifting of US export controls — came through this week.
It could not be ascertained if the two also discussed the US endorsement of India's claim to a permanent seat at the US Security Council and whether there is a need to speed up the process as part of the larger reform of the world body.
UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet and the United States both called Tuesday for a swift investigation into the deadly clashes at mass protests in Uzbekistan. Authorities in Uzbekistan said Monday that 18 people had died in clashes in the autonomous Karakalpakstan region on Friday after demonstrations erupted over planned constitutional changes affecting the territory's status. The United States separately voiced concern and urged all sides to seek a "peaceful resolution" to the tensions.
British Prime Minister Boris Johnson late Tuesday named his Iraqi-born education secretary, Nadhim Zahawi, as finance minister after the shock resignation of Rishi Sunak. Downing Street said Queen Elizabeth II had approved the appointment of Zahawi, who came to Britain as a child with his Kurdish family not speaking any English, before forging a lucrative business career. The prime minister named another loyalist, Michelle Donelan, to take Zahawi's place at the education ministry.
The gunman who attacked an Independence Day parade in suburban Chicago fired more than 70 rounds with an AR-15-style gun that killed at least seven people, then evaded initial capture by dressing as a woman and blending into the fleeing crowd, police said Tuesday. More than 30 people were wounded in the attack, including one who died Tuesday, task force spokesman Christopher Covelli said. Robert Crimo spent several weeks planning the assault, Covelli said.
Scandinavian Airlines on Tuesday filed for bankruptcy in the United States, warning a walkout by 1,000 pilots a day earlier had put the future of the carrier at risk. The Stockholm-based SAS airline group said it had “voluntarily filed for Chapter 11 in the U.S., a legal process for financial restructuring conducted under U.S. federal court supervision.” Filing for Chapter 11 in New York puts civil litigation on hold while the business reorganizes its finances.
UK cabinet ministers Sajid Javid and Rishi Sunak on Tuesday resigned from their positions saying that have they lost confidence in Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Treasury chief Rishi Sunak and Health Secretary Sajid Javid resigned within minutes of each other. Javid also posted the same on Twitter. Johnson has been hit by allegations he failed to come clean about a lawmaker who was appointed to a senior position despite claims of sexual misconduct.