Trump threatens broadcaster NBC after nuclear report

US President Donald Trump delivers a speech during an event at the White House in Washington DCImage copyrightAFP

US President Donald Trump has raised the prospect of challenging media licences for NBC News and other news networks after unfavourable reports.

He took aim at NBC, which made him a star on The Apprentice, after it reported he wanted to boost America’s nuclear arsenal almost tenfold.

Mr Trump labelled the report “fake news” and “pure fiction”.

NBC also angered the White House last week when it reported the secretary of state had called Mr Trump “a moron”.

The US president tweeted on Wednesday: “Fake @NBCNews made up a story that I wanted a ‘tenfold’ increase in our US nuclear arsenal. Pure fiction, made up to demean. NBC = CNN! With all of the Fake News coming out of NBC and the Networks, at what point is it appropriate to challenge their License? Bad for country!”

Walter Shaub, who headed the US Office of Government Ethics under Barack Obama, responded on Twitter: “At what point? At the point when we cease to be a democracy.”

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Not again, Weiner! Convicted.

Former US Congressman Anthony Weiner departs US Federal Court in New York City following his sentencing.

Ex-New York congressman Anthony Weiner burst into tears as he was sentenced to 21 months in jail for sending sexually explicit messages to an underage girl.

He pleaded guilty in May to transferring obscene material to a minor and agreed not to appeal against a prison sentence of 27 months or less.

Weiner, 53, quit Congress in 2011 over a sex scandal and was again exposed in his 2013 run for New York mayor.

His lawyers had asked a US District Judge for probation instead of jail.

But in sentencing Weiner, Judge Cote said: “This is a serious crime that deserves serious punishment.”

“Anthony Weiner, a former Congressman and candidate for Mayor, asked a girl who he knew to be 15 years old to display her naked body and engage in sexually explicit behaviour for him online,” Acting Manhattan US Attorney Joon H Kim said in a statement on Monday.

“Justice demands that this type of conduct be prosecuted and punished with time in prison.”

In addition to jail time, Weiner was sentenced to three years of supervised release, according to a statement from the US Attorney’s Office.

Weiner’s attorneys contended the former politician had acted out of the “depths of an uncontrolled sickness” and was now seeking treatment.

In a letter to US District Judge Denise Cote, Weiner said he felt “profound” regret for his crimes and his “continued acting out over years crushed the aspirations” of his wife, Huma Abedin, and ruined their marriage.

Ms Abedin filed for divorce on the same day her husband was found guilty in May

North Korea’s foreign minister has accused US President Donald Trump of declaring war on his country. Where’s Rodman when you need him?

Just heard Foreign Minister of North Korea speak at U.N. If he echoes thoughts of Little Rocket Man, they won’t be around much longer!

 

Ri Yong-ho told reporters in New York that North Korea reserved the right to shoot down US bombers.

This applied even when they were not in North Korean airspace, the minister added. The world “should clearly remember” it was the US that first declared war, Mr Ri said.

The two sides have been engaged in an increasingly angry war of words.

Despite weeks of tension, experts have played down the risk of direct conflict between the two.

After Mr Ri addressed the United Nations on Saturday, the US president responded by tweeting that Mr Ri and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un “won’t be around much longer” if they continued their rhetoric.

Mr Ri’s response came as he was leaving New York, following the UN General Assembly.

“In light of the declaration of war by Trump, all options will be on the operations table of the supreme leadership of the DPRK [North Korea],” he added.

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New surge in migrants crossing US-Canada border

A cab drops off a couple of asylum seekers at the US/Canada border near Champlain, New York cabs regularly drop off asylum seekers on the US side of the border

More than 5,700 asylum seekers crossed illegally from the US into Canada last month, a rise of almost 80 percent on July, government figures show.

Canada has seen a surge of refugee claimants in recent months, especially into the province of Quebec.

Crossings have increased relatively steadily since January.

There were 5,712 people intercepted by the Mounties last month at the Canada-US border, bringing this year’s total to 13,211.

In Manitoba, 80 people were intercepted after crossing the border. In British Columbia, 102 people were stopped.

But the vast majority – 5,530 – crossed into Quebec in the first part of the month, where people can easily cross a ditch at the end of a rural New York state road into Canada.

The influx into the predominantly French-speaking province was led by Haitians who had been living legally in the US, protected by a programme that extended temporary protection from deportation to Haitian citizens after the devastating 2010 earthquake.

The Trump administration has hinted it will not extend that protection when it expires in January 2018.

Trump: “Rocket Man is on a suicide mission.”

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US President Donald Trump has told the UN General Assembly that America would destroy North Korea if forced to defend itself or its allies.

In his debut speech, he mocked North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, saying: “Rocket man is on a suicide mission.”

North Korea has tested nuclear bombs and missiles in defiance of the UN.

Just before Mr Trump spoke, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres had urged statesmanship, saying: “We must not sleepwalk our way into war.”

The American leader also attacked Iran, saying it was a “corrupt dictatorship” which was intent on destabilising the Middle East.

He called on the government in Tehran to cease supporting terrorism and again criticised the Obama-era international agreement over Iran’s nuclear programme, which he called an embarrassment.

US sends 3,000 more troops to Afghanistan

In August President Trump said: “We are not nation building again. We are killing terrorists”

US Defence Secretary Jim Mattis says the US will send 3,000 extra troops to Afghanistan as the Taliban gain ground and security deteriorates.

American combat operations against the Taliban officially ended in 2014, but over 8,000 US special forces remain in the country backing Afghan troops.

US President Donald Trump last month signalled he would keep US boots on the ground indefinitely.

The Taliban pledged to turn Afghanistan into a “graveyard” for foreign forces.

 

During the Obama administration, he repeatedly called for the US to withdraw from Afghanistan.

But once he became a frontrunner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, Mr Trump modified his stance.

US policy is ‘not to defend Canada’ in any N Korea attack. Sorry!

A missile is seen taking off from a grassy field in a burst of burning fuel and smoke

A top general has told Canadian MPs they cannot count on US support if North Korea launches a nuclear attack on their country.

Lt Gen Pierre St-Amand told the national defence committee in Ottawa there is no policy that requires the US to aid Canada in any nuclear attack.

But on the upside, the committee also heard North Korea views Canada as a “peaceful” and “friendly” country.

Pyongyang’s missile launch over Japan on Friday has put the region on edge.

Gen St-Amand told MPs: “The extent of the US policy is not to defend Canada. “That’s the fact I can bring to the table.”

Canada has long avoided joining the US ballistic missile defence programme, under the assumption that the US would shoot down a nuclear missile heading for its northern neighbour anyway.

But Lt Gen St-Amand’s testimony suggested otherwise.

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