HT Image
HT Image

US welcomes Syria-Lebanon breakthrough

The US welcomes the decision by the both sides to open diplomatic relations but says Damascus needs to take "concrete actions to end its destabilizing tactics in the region."
By HT Correspondent | AFP, Washington
UPDATED ON JUL 13, 2008 02:58 AM IST

The United States welcomed the decision on Saturday by Lebanon and Syria to open diplomatic relations but said Damascus needs to take "concrete actions to end its destabilizing tactics in the region."

"We continue to support the establishment of good relations between Lebanon and Syria on the basis of mutual respect (and) we join with France in reiterating the commitment to a sovereign and independent Lebanon," Rob McInturff, a State Department spokesman, told AFP.

But he added that Washington will "continue to limit our diplomatic engagement unless Syria takes concrete actions to end its destabilizing tactics in the region."

Lebanon and Syria said Saturday that they had agreed to establish diplomatic relations, opening embassies in each others' capitals for the first time since their independence from colonial rule.

The State Department said Syria was "showing it is eager to engage with the international community."

McInturff said the United States and other Lebanon watchers "were waiting for a signal that the Syrians are ready to renounce their sponsorship of terrorism, to do more to end the flow of foreign fighters into Iraq, to expel the leadership of Palestinian terrorist groups, and to end human rights violations."

Washington continues to blacklist Syria as a state sponsor of terrorism.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy announced the landmark decision following talks with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Lebanese President Michel Sleiman, whose election in May ended a drawn-out political crisis in Lebanon.

Presidents Assad and Sleiman confirmed the news at a joint press conference later on Saturday.

Lebanon announced a 30-member national unity government on Friday tasked with resolving the country's worst political crisis since a 1975-1990 civil war.

Syria, the former powerbroker in Lebanon, withdrew its troops in 2005 in the aftermath of the assassination of former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri, ending a military presence of nearly three decades.

Syria was widely blamed for the killing but denies involvement.

SHARE THIS ARTICLE ON
app
Close
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny faces three and a half years in prison at a hearing set for January 29 on charges of violating the terms of a suspended sentence.(AFP)
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny faces three and a half years in prison at a hearing set for January 29 on charges of violating the terms of a suspended sentence.(AFP)

Russia ignores appeals, sends Alexei Navalny to prison

Agencies, Moscow
PUBLISHED ON JAN 19, 2021 03:16 AM IST
Alexei Navalny was stopped by police on Sunday night at passport control as he landed in Moscow from Berlin, where he’d gone for treatment after falling ill in August that he and western governments believe resulted from poisoning carried out by the Kremlin.
Close
Chinese President Xi Jinping, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are expected a virtual gathering next week — after Covid-19 canceled the annual in-person event of Davos, Switzerland.(ANI Photo)
Chinese President Xi Jinping, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi are expected a virtual gathering next week — after Covid-19 canceled the annual in-person event of Davos, Switzerland.(ANI Photo)

Xi Jinping, PM Modi expected for 'virtual' Davos in era of pandemic

AP, Geneva
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 11:49 PM IST
Borge Brende, the forum president, said Xi and Modi will be joined also by Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga and South Korean President Moon Jae-in for the event, and such leaders will consider “the role that Asia will play in the recovery.”
Close
Indian-American Rohit Chopra, who has been named as the head of a federal agency tasked with protecting the interests of consumers. (PTI)
Indian-American Rohit Chopra, who has been named as the head of a federal agency tasked with protecting the interests of consumers. (PTI)

Biden names Rohit Chopra as director of consumer protection bureau

By HT Correspondent, edited by Vinod Janardhanan
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:58 PM IST
Chopra is currently serving as a commissioner at the Federal Trade commission, which protects consumers from unfair trade and business practices in the marketplace.
Close
The noted Pakistani lawmakers whose names feature in the list are Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination (IPC) Fehmida Mirza, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry, Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi and Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui. (Representative Image)(Reuters)
The noted Pakistani lawmakers whose names feature in the list are Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination (IPC) Fehmida Mirza, Minister for Science and Technology Fawad Chaudhry, Minister for Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi and Khalid Maqbool Siddiqui. (Representative Image)(Reuters)

Pak EC suspends membership of 154 lawmakers over failure to submit asset details

ANI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:48 PM IST
As per the country's laws, lawmakers are required to submit their financial statements, along with those of their spouses and children, by December end each year.
Close
Nancy Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff had earlier confirmed that a laptop was stolen from a conference room.(AP)
Nancy Pelosi’s deputy chief of staff had earlier confirmed that a laptop was stolen from a conference room.(AP)

FBI probes tip that woman stole laptop from Pelosi’s office to sell to Russia

By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Kunal Gaurav
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:41 PM IST
A witness, described as a former romantic partner of the woman, dialled FBI’s telephone tip line, claiming that he spotted her in video footage taken from inside the US Capitol building.
Close
Covid-19 was first detected in the central city of Wuhan in late 2019, before seeping beyond China's borders to wreak global havoc, costing more than two million lives and eviscerating economies.(REUTERS)
Covid-19 was first detected in the central city of Wuhan in late 2019, before seeping beyond China's borders to wreak global havoc, costing more than two million lives and eviscerating economies.(REUTERS)

Pandemic response probe team says WHO, China could have acted faster

AFP, Geneva
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:33 PM IST
  • The panel also criticised WHO for dragging its feet at the start of the crisis, pointing out that the UN health agency had not convened its emergency committee until January 22, 2020.
Close
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks at the National Press Club in Washington. (REUTERS)
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo speaks at the National Press Club in Washington. (REUTERS)

China calls Pompeo 'Mr. Liar'; dismisses charge against Wuhan’s bio-lab

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:26 PM IST
The state department document also alleged that "for many years the United States has publicly raised concerns about China’s past biological weapons work, which Beijing has neither documented nor demonstrably eliminated.
Close
Members of the military wait inside the Capitol after an "external security threat" prior to a dress rehearsal for the 59th inaugural ceremony for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, at the US Capitol. ( AFP)
Members of the military wait inside the Capitol after an "external security threat" prior to a dress rehearsal for the 59th inaugural ceremony for President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, at the US Capitol. ( AFP)

US Capitol lockdown lifted after fire in homeless camp brought under control

Reuters
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:41 PM IST
  • The Capitol Police in a statement said the lockdown was lifted and the fire nearby was contained.
Close
In a major break from tradition, Donald Trump will not attend the inauguration of his successor President-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday(Reuters)
In a major break from tradition, Donald Trump will not attend the inauguration of his successor President-elect Joe Biden on Wednesday(Reuters)

Donald Trump to issue 100 pardons, to leave for Florida before inauguration

By Yashwant Raj, Washington
UPDATED ON JAN 19, 2021 03:22 AM IST
Trump reviewed the pardons with his son-in-law Jared Kushner, daughter Ivanka Trump, both senior White House aides, and other officials for most of the day on Sunday, the Washington Post reported citing sources. Announcements are expected on Monday or Tuesday.
Close
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan(AP)
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan(AP)

Pak PM Imran pitches for border markets with Afghanistan, Iran

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:08 PM IST
Khan chaired a review meeting here to discuss the establishment of such markets to provide job opportunities to local people and to control smuggling, according to his office.
Close
US President-elect Joe Biden delivers remarks as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris looks on during a televised speech on the current economic and health crises,(REUTERS)
US President-elect Joe Biden delivers remarks as Vice President-elect Kamala Harris looks on during a televised speech on the current economic and health crises,(REUTERS)

Biden aims for unifying speech at daunting moment for US

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:41 PM IST
With the coronavirus raging, unemployment claims soaring and partisan divisions sharpening, Biden faces a fraught moment as he prepares to deliver a speech that aides say he wants to use to “call Americans to unity.”
Close
A vial and syringe are seen in front of a displayed AstraZeneca logo.(Reuters)
A vial and syringe are seen in front of a displayed AstraZeneca logo.(Reuters)

Bhutan to receive Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine from India

ANI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:41 PM IST
This comes after the Nepal Government approved the emergency use of the 'Covishield' vaccine last week, which is being manufactured by the Serum Institute of India (SII).
Close
High-level security officials make a survey of the East Front of the Capitol after an announcement of security problems during inauguration rehearsal.(AP)
High-level security officials make a survey of the East Front of the Capitol after an announcement of security problems during inauguration rehearsal.(AP)

US Capitol lockdown lifted after fire in homeless camp prompts security concerns

AP
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:45 PM IST
Four law enforcement officials said that there had been a blaze several blocks over and the rehearsal was evacuated in an abundance of caution.
Close
The evacuation of some participants and the lockdown were ordered by the acting chief of Capitol Police in an abundance of caution, officials said.(REUTERS)
The evacuation of some participants and the lockdown were ordered by the acting chief of Capitol Police in an abundance of caution, officials said.(REUTERS)

Inauguration rehearsal evacuated after fire in homeless camp

AP
UPDATED ON JAN 18, 2021 10:01 PM IST
  • Law enforcement officials said there was no threat to the public and the fire was not believed to be a threat to the inauguration.
Close
A Sri Lankan Christian family grieves as municipal cemetery workers carry the body of their family member who died of Covid-19 for cremation in Colombo, Sri Lanka.(AP)
A Sri Lankan Christian family grieves as municipal cemetery workers carry the body of their family member who died of Covid-19 for cremation in Colombo, Sri Lanka.(AP)

Fear of Covid-19 spread forces Sri Lanka to reduce its Parliament sessions

PTI
PUBLISHED ON JAN 18, 2021 09:36 PM IST
The Committee on Parliamentary Business has decided that Parliament will meet on Tuesday and Wednesday only, following the Covid-19 cases reported last week, the official said.
Close
SHARE
Story Saved
OPEN APP