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Norway’s $1 trillion wealth fund to remain invested in Big Oil stocks

Oslo has said the oil fund will only shed its stakes in oil and gas explorers and producers. It was widely expected that the world's biggest sovereign fund would dump all of its oil and gas investments for good. The Norwegian government said on Friday its $1 trillion asset manager— the world's biggest sovereign fund — will sell its stake in oil and gas explorers and producers but will continue to invest in energy companies that have refineries and are engaged in distribution and retail sales of oil and gas products. The announcement means the fund will remain invested in Big Oil companies such as Shell, BP, Total and ExxonMobil, in which it owns significant stakes. Oslo said the move is based solely on financial considerations and that it does not reflect any particular view of the oil industry's future prospects. Return on the fund's investment in oil and gas stocks fell 9.5 percent last year. Norway's central bank, which manages the mammoth fund, has long maintained that the divestment was aimed at reducing the country's exposure to the energy sector. The fund is used to invest the proceeds of the country's oil and gas industry, amounting to more than 20 percent of Norway's revenue. "The Government is proposing to exclude companies classified as exploration and production companies within the energy sector from the Government Pension Fund Global," the finance ministry said in a statement. "The objective is to reduce the vulnerability of our common wealth to a permanent oil price decline." It was widely expected that the fund would dump all of its oil and gas investments for good. Norges Bank, the central bank, had in 2017 proposed a total divestment of oil and gas stocks. The fund had holdings worth around $37 billion — 5.9 percent of its total equity investments — in the oil sector at the end of last year. But a bulk of that amount is invested in integrated oil companies that are engaged in everything from exploration to selling fuel at the roadside. 'Missed opportunity' Norway's decision evoked mixed feelings among climate activists, who were expecting Oslo to go the whole hog. "It's a lost opportunity," Martin Norman of Greenpeace's Norwegian chapter told DW. "We are running against time and Norway had a chance to move fast but instead decided to move slowly." Norman, however, said the Norwegian government's announcement was a "step in the right direction" that would prompt other investors to back away from fossil fuels. "The government has acknowledged the problem of over exposure to oil," he said. "But I disagree with the medicine they are prescribing."

Oslo has said the oil fund will only shed its stakes in oil and gas explorers and producers. It was widely expected that the world’s biggest sovereign fund would dump all of its oil and gas investments for good. The Norwegian government said on Friday its $1 trillion asset manager— the world’s biggest sovereign fund — will sell its stake ... Read More »

Algerians rally against ailing president as opposition activist arrested in Switzerland

Masses of Algerians have protested demanding hospitalized President Abdelaziz Bouteflika drop his bid for a fifth term. One opposition member went to great lengths to obtain details on the president's current condition. Tens of thousands of Algerians marched through the streets of Algiers and other cities across the country on Friday, protesting 82-year-old Abdelaziz Bouteflika's candidacy for a fifth term as the country's president. Read more: As Algeria protests grow, France keeps a silent, watchful eye Bouteflika, who has not been seen since he checked into a Swiss hospital for "routine medical tests" on February 24, issued a warning to protestors, calling on them to be vigilant and cautious, "in case this peaceful expression is infiltrated by some insidious party … which could cause chaos." Warnings of civil war and terrorism Bouteflika, who is rarely seen in public, has been confined to a wheelchair since suffering a stroke in 2013. In his message to protesters, he warned of a return to civil war — which gripped the country in the 1990s — as well as the "crises and tragedies caused by terrorism" across North Africa. Despite being officially banned since 2001, demonstrations have been growing in size across the country for the past two weeks. Still, organizers have been extremely clear about the fact that their protests are peaceful, going so far as to organize first-aid stations and clean streets after protests end. Friday's protests were the biggest the country has seen since citizens began taking to the streets in large numbers on February 22. State news agency APS reported that protesters were demanding "regime change" as demonstrations grew Friday afternoon. As darkness fell Friday, the celebratory mood of the day's demonstrations shifted, as smaller groups of young men faced off with police, who fired tear gas to disperse them. Meanwhile in Geneva Away from the mass protests in Algeria, Swiss police confirmed they had arrested businessman and opposition activist Rachid Nekkaz for trespassing at the Geneva University Hospitals (HUG) where Bouteflika is being treated. Nekkaz, who sought to run against Bouteflika but has been barred due to the fact that he once possessed French citizenship, told onlookers outside the HUG, "40 million Algerians want to know where the president is." Bouteflika, who has been Algeria's president since April 27, 1999, announced his intention to run for a fifth term on February 10. The country's Constitutional Council now has until March 13 to approve candidates for the April 18 election.

Masses of Algerians have protested demanding hospitalized President Abdelaziz Bouteflika drop his bid for a fifth term. One opposition member went to great lengths to obtain details on the president’s current condition. Tens of thousands of Algerians marched through the streets of Algiers and other cities across the country on Friday, protesting 82-year-old Abdelaziz Bouteflika’s candidacy for a fifth term ... Read More »

German forest reveals clues to Nazi-murdered victims

German forest reveals clues to Nazi-murdered victims

Shoes, a comb and buttons of mostly female Polish and Russians captives massacred by Nazi troops have been excavated in central Germany. Forensic teams have identified only 14 of the 208 people murdered there in 1945. Historians and archeologists in Germany’s Westphalia-Lippe (LWL) region on Friday presented 400 artifacts excavated in recent months at three rural sites where in March ... Read More »

Prime Minister Imran Khan to address in World government Summit in Dubai.

Karachi: By Rizwan Aftab PM Khan leaves for World Government Summit in Dubai on a one day visit, Where he will participate in the World Government Summit, the Foreign Office spokesman. Imran khan visiting Dubai on invitation of United Arab Emirates Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, According to the Foreign Office. Khan is expected to meet International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde on the sidelines of the summit to discuss the conditionalities that have held up the accession to fund's bailout programme. He is also expected to meet UAE leadership. Along with the prime minister Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi and Finance Minister Asad Umar, Information Minister Fawad Chaudhary also visiting World government Summit.

Karachi: By Rizwan Aftab PM Khan leaves for World Government Summit in Dubai on a one day visit, Where he will participate in the World Government Summit, the Foreign Office spokesman. Imran khan visiting Dubai on invitation of United Arab Emirates Prime Minister Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, According to the Foreign Office. Khan is expected to meet International Monetary ... Read More »

Going to met Kim Jong in Hanoni, Trump.

WASHINGTON: By Rizwan Aftab Donald Trump and Kim Jong are going to meet for the second time in Summit in Hanoni. Trump announce the meeting location on Twitter،“It will take place in Hanoi, Vietnam, on February 27 & 28. I look forward to seeing Chairman Kim & advancing the cause of peace! He Added “My representatives have just left North Korea after a very productive meeting and an agreed upon time and date for the second Summit with Kim Jong Un,”

WASHINGTON: By Rizwan Aftab Donald Trump and Kim Jong are going to meet for the second time in Summit in Hanoni. Trump announce the meeting location on Twitter،“It will take place in Hanoi, Vietnam, on February 27 & 28. I look forward to seeing Chairman Kim & advancing the cause of peace! He Added “My representatives have just left North ... Read More »

Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund throw three-goal lead

Borussia Dortmund were made to pay for their defense errors, and although it wasn't the first time that was the case this season it was an early wobble for a side hoping to claim the title come May. Lucien Favre will have watched from his sickbed in horror as his Dortmund side threw a three-goal lead in 20 second-half minutes to draw with Hoffenheim. Favre had a cold and couldn't be on the sidelines, but that didn't seem to be a problem for Dortmund in the first half. Jadon Sancho bamboozled Hoffenheim's defense to score a fantastic opener before Mario Götze tucked in a rebound from another effort from the English teenager to double Dortmund's lead. After a fruitless first half, Julian Nagelsmann made two key changes at the break and his side were inspired. At first though, that inspiration was denied by a handful of superb saves by Roman Bürki. When Raphael Guerreiro finished off another fine move by Sancho and Götze, it looked to be all over for the visitors. Then, Ishak Belfodil (one of the halftime subs) squeezed an effort past Bürki and Hoffenheim were in with a chance. When Achraf Hakimi failed to see Pavel Kaderabek sneak in for a header, suddenly that chance looked very real. With three minutes left, Sancho gave away a silly free kick and Belfodil's diving header made sure the comeback was complete. If Lucien Favre was looking for some respite, he probably didn't find any in Dortmund on Saturday afternoon. What might make matters worse for Dortmund is that Bayern can close the gap to five points with a win over Schalke later. FULL TIME! The corner comes to nothing and that is it. What a game! 90+3' Final minute. Free kick is cleared, but Dortmund have a corner... Last chance... 90+2' Sancho nearly gets into the box, but Posch makes a big tackle. Witsel keeps it alive and wins a free kick. Wolf is on for Guerreiro. 90' Belfodil fouls Sancho with a similarly needless foul. Free kick is swung in, Diallo gets to it but guides it past the far post. Close. Three minutes of added time. Surely this won't be Augsburg all over again? 87' GOAL! 3-3 Hoffenheim (Belfodil) Sancho gives away a needless free kick with a push. Geiger whips in the cross and Belfodil times his run and his diving header (don't see enough of those) perfectly. Goal! What a turnaround. Just 20 minutes ago, Dortmund were 3-0 up! Remarkable. 86' Dortmund have stirred from their 3-0 slumber and now look like scoring again. Just one goal in it - incredible! 83' GOAL! Hoffenheim (Kaderabek) There it is! Toprak has no chance to get into the game. A deep ball into the box is met by Kaderabek, who sneaks in behind the unaware Hakimi, to head it across goal into the far corner. Bürki no chance, Dortmund's defense asleep - game on! 82' That has changed things quite a bit. Hoffenheim pushing for a second and in all honestly, they look like they might. Dortmund get the call from Favre (we presume) and Götze is brought off for Toprak. Keen to sure things up at the back in the final 10 minutes or so. 76' GOAL! Hoffenheim (Belfodil) Moments after Bürki makes another great save to deny Kaderabek, he can't quite keep out Belfodil's effort at the back post and Hoffenheim have a goal. He was clawing at it and had a hold of it, but only behind the line and so there's the goal Hoffenheim deserve but probably needed 15 minutes ago. Bürki won't be happy about that. 70' It hasn't been easy for Maxi Philipp, and his face suggests as much when he comes off. Paco Alcacer comes on (Hoffenheim look away now). Reiss Nelson is on for Bittencourt, which means friends Nelson and Sancho are now playing against one another in the Bundesliga. Life eh? 67' GOAL! 3-0 Dortmund (Guerreiro) That is a sign of how confident this team is. Götze and Sancho combine superbly down the right, and after a flick through Posch's legs Götze gets to the byline and threads a perfect pass for Guerreiro to hit first time. He does and it's 3-0 and that is probably that. It could be a rout. 61' CHANCE! That's three chances and no goals for Hoffenheim now, who have clearly improved on their first-half performance. Belfodil turns and fires in the box but Bürki is there again with a smart save. It's only 2-0... 56' CHANCE! It is worth noting that Roman Bürki has been in the form of his life this season. Joelinton bursts through and smashes a bouncing ball towards the top corner, but Bürki saves superbly. Worth remembering, at the end of it all. 52' CHANCE! Nico Schulz drives a low shot towards the far corner but it nicks the post! It should have been a corner too as it clipped someone's heel along the way too. No corner, and no goal for Hoffenheim who just look out of luck - and not for the first time this season. 49' Hoffenheim start the second half the livelier of the two, but it's Dortmund who nearly score. Sancho (who else?) somehow finds his way into the box and tries to get the pass across but takes one little touch too many and Hoffenheim clear. 46' Dortmund gets us restarted. Nagelsmann makes two changes: Geiger has come on for Demirbay (sure up the midfield a bit), and Belfodil for Kramaric (change the attack). HALFTIME After a slow start, Dortmund grew into it but it's Jadon Sancho who is making the difference here. The teenager has scored one, assisted another and has shown so much quality in one-on-one situations it's almost not fair on the opposition. Game-changer - and all that at just 18. What fun he is to watch. Oh and he's now the youngest player in Bundesliga history to score eight goals. Talented eh? 43' GOAL! 2-0 Dortmund (Götze) A textbook counterattack. Hakimi pulls it down inside his own half perfectly, finds Witsel striding forward. He sends Sancho down the left (where there's lots of space). He cuts in and goes for the far corner, Baumann parries but only into the path of Götze who tucks it away. Lovely stuff, and Hoffenheim have no answer (who does to be fair?). 40' Sancho is having so much fun. Quick passing sends him down the right, he dances his way through and past defenders and just when it looks like he might lose the ball he finds space again. Already a very special talent. Pivotally, he passes at the right time too. Demirbay tackles him (gets booked for it later) but the corner comes to nothing. Dortmund dancing towards halftime. 36' Have Hoffenheim got a response? Joelinton heading over doesn't count, or at least isn't much of one. Bürki takes a few risks with his service though, and nearly invites the visitors back in but Dortmund deal with it. Not as much scrappy play as at the start, but some elements of such play lingers. 32' GOAL! 1-0 Dortmund (Sancho) Who needs Lucien when you have Jadon? Well, perhaps that's not all true but this goal from Jadon Sancho is very much about him. The teenager plays a tricky ball through traffic to Piszczek, he plays it straight back to him as he bursts into the box. His speed allows him to take a touch and then, just as it looks as though he's gone too wide, he drills a perfect shot into the far corner. Brilliant - and it all started from a throw in. Julian Nagelsmann is not happy. 31' Think it's time to give Lucien a call. Even through the sniffles and the sneezes, he must have a plan to decongest Dortmund. 28' Again, the game falls into a spell of back and forth. The game is drifting a bit, like the fourth and fifth songs on an album. Grillitsch gets booked for stopping Philipp from starting a counterattack. Dortmund can't use it, and the cycle continues. Patience is a virtue, remember. 22' CHANCE! There it is - a sign of life. Piszczek finds Philipp on the edge of the box, he whips an effort goalwards but it flies past the far post. If anyone could do with a goal in yellow and black... 20' This fixture has provided some real classics over the year. Remember that year Hoffenheim needed to win to stay up and scored two penalties against Kevin Großkreutz in Dortmund's goal? Those were the days. This one looked like it might be bubbling over, but now has returned to a simmer. The rain is back too. 15' Dortmund growing into this one now. A strong tackle by Piszczek keeps Dortmund on the edge of the box, Dahoud thinks about shooting but tees up Witsel instead. Sadly, his pass isn't perfect (too fast and ends up with the ball under Witsel's feet) which leaves Witsel firing over. 11' What a strange chance! Jadon Sancho plays a one-two, eventually the shot comes to Achraf Hakimi. It's blocked, but the rebound falls to Hakimi. He gets another effort in, which trickles towards Baumann. Götze, who is offside, doesn't touch it but sort of impedes Posch, whose clearance deflects off Sancho and in. Cue celebrations, but VAR comes a calling and Götze, despite his protests, was deemed to have been involved in the play. No goal. On we go. 9' Stop me if you've seen this one before. Dortmund are taking their time to get into this one, patiently waiting to strike. Hoffenheim have a couple of corners they waste. Chance coming? 5' All a bit sloppy so far. Both sides unable to keep the ball under control, and when they do the passing has been poor. Lots of exchange of possession. 1' Hoffenheim get us underway, just as the rain arrives to join the wind. - There's a minute's silence for Rudi Assauer, a Bundesliga legend who passed away on Wednesday. The silence turns into polite applause. - Before the game, Thomas Delaney was asked who Dortmund would miss the most today, Reus, Delaney or Favre? Probably Reus, the midfielder said with a smile. Hard to disagree. Can Dortmund win without him? - TEAMS! Nagelsman hopes to keep it tight in the middle and congest Dortmund's play, whereas Dortmund hope that Mahmoud Dahoud (replacing the suspended Delaney) and Maximilian Philipp (in for the injured Marco Reus) don't cause a drop. More surprisingly, Lucien Favre is ill (cold) and won't be on the sidelines today. He gave the pre-game talk in the hotel (but from a distance so as not to spread the germs) and will have communication with his assistants during the game. No Reus, no Favre, no problem? Dortmund XI: Bürki - Hakimi, Diallo, Weigl, Piszczek - Dahoud, Witsel - Guerreiro, Philipp, Sancho - Götze Hoffenheim XI: Baumann - Schulz, Hübner, Posch, Bicakcic - Kaderabek - Grillitsch - Bittencourt, Demirbay - Joelinton, Kramaric - Afternoon. Can Julian Nagelsmann get his team as dangerous as they were last season? They have conceded a number of sloppy goals this season, have thrown the most leads but also hit the woodwork the most. Some misfortune, but also some mistakes too. They are 8th at the moment, three points of Frankfurt (6th). The Champions League is all but gone (not for Nagelsmann though, if Leipzig make it)

Borussia Dortmund were made to pay for their defense errors, and although it wasn’t the first time that was the case this season it was an early wobble for a side hoping to claim the title come May. Lucien Favre will have watched from his sickbed in horror as his Dortmund side threw a three-goal lead in 20 second-half minutes ... Read More »

UK’s Brexit bubble spells domestic gridlock

The UK government has spent the past two-and-a-half years in a bubble that has left it paralytic and unable to tackle the domestic problems that haven't magically disappeared into the Brexit vortex. Rob Mudge reports. Given the government's fixation on Brexit, it's almost a surprise the country hasn't come to a standstill. But how long can the government get away with this form of escapism? Emily Andrews, associate director at the Institute for Government in London, a think tank that explores the key challenges facing the government, says the lack of progress is and isn't because of Brexit. "I think we've reached the point where a lot of this is now directly Brexit related. And since the general election [in 2017] the domestic agenda has been really stymied by the fact that the Conservatives are only in a minority government and by the fact that the Cabinet is very divided. Theresa May hasn't had the authority to push forward a united vision for domestic policy." But as Brexit reaches its potential endgame, it's not just the focus that has shifted. "In terms of civil servants we've got loads more people being moved across to think about a no deal [Brexit]," Andrews told DW. And those personnel gaps mean that very often other important policy issues are being dealt with in a cursory manner at best. What's happened to social care? One of the key areas that has ended up on the back burner is social care. A so-called green paper was originally due to be published in autumn 2017. Since then it's been put off repeatedly. Regardless of Brexit, there is no ideal time to deal with such a crucial issue, said Andrews. "Politically, it's a toxic question of how to fund social care in a sustainable manner. Whereas there's been a rise in National Health Service spending, funding for social care has fallen." Indeed, the issue caused problems for the Conservatives at the last election when the opposition accused them of proposing a "dementia tax." The Conservative Party's manifesto at the time set out plans for more pensioners to contribute to the cost of their care. The elderly would have to pay for their own care if their combined savings and property amounted to more than £100,000 (€114,000, $130,000). Under the proposal, people would be forced to sell their homes to pay. The plans were dubbed a "dementia tax" because people with dementia living at home would be forced to pay while people with cancer in hospital would not. Since then there's been little movement. While that can be put down partly to standard political prevarication, the focus on Brexit has stalled any meaningful progress. "Now Brexit is totally in the way and I've got no idea when are we going to have this national conversation about how we fund social care and what that means is that we're probably going to keep seeing this emergency cash being pumped in," said Andrews. Neglecting public services Trying to make public services efficient and cost-effective is difficult at the best of times. In 2010 the coalition government of the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats presented a plan to cut costs, spend frugally and provide public services that actually work. And for a while, this less-is-more approach paid off, albeit with a caveat. "They didn't do that by making the services cheaper to run. They held down public sector wages through a freeze and then a pay cut. And they cut staff numbers and asked existing staff to do more," said Andrews Now, with Brexit casting its long shadow, neglect to tackle those areas could backfire badly. "It means that public services are going to limp forward and people will notice that. People want better employment, better access to housing, better access to public services. And people are looking for answers to those questions." No progress on 'burning injustices' And they've been looking for a good while. When Theresa May became prime minister in 2016, she stood outside 10 Downing Street and pledged to tackle the country's "burning injustices." But her track record does not reflect her holistic approach. Reductions in public health spending have made access to addiction services much harder, not to mention mental health service reductions. Homelessness has gone up which means more and more people are forced to sleep rough. Another major disappointment is the lack of tangible progress on one her key promises. "One of her big things was a pledge to draw up new legislation to support survivors and victims of domestic abuse. There is now a draft bill, but it hasn't actually been introduced in parliament. And we know of other bills that are just sitting there. There's one that's sat there for two years," said Andrews. Inertia coupled with a lack of transparency are proving to be a major predicament for the government and the country. Getting anything other than Brexit onto the legislative timetable is proving difficult, if not impossible. "And so actually passing any new laws is going to be difficult. And in reality, we don't know what the civil servants who have been moved on to no-deal preparations have been doing beforehand. We don't know what programs have been paused or cancelled precisely in order for the people who are working on them to go and do other things. The government hasn't been transparent about it," said Andrews.

The UK government has spent the past two-and-a-half years in a bubble that has left it paralytic and unable to tackle the domestic problems that haven’t magically disappeared into the Brexit vortex. Rob Mudge reports. Given the government’s fixation on Brexit, it’s almost a surprise the country hasn’t come to a standstill. But how long can the government get away ... Read More »

Yellow vests look to capitalize on protest momentum

As President Macron's approval bounces back, yellow vest protesters hope to convert notoriety into electoral success. The movement has brought hundreds of thousands of people out into the streets across France. At least one demonstrator was injured as France's yellow vest protests entered their 13th week on Saturday. At least 10 protesters were arrested after scuffles broke out with police near the Palais Bourbon, where the National Assembly meets. While many demonstrators marched peacefully, some masked activists tried to break down barriers outside the parliament. Others threw projectiles at police, who responded with tear gas and stun grenades to disperse crowds Others vandalized bus shelters and set fire to garbage cans and vehicles, mostly luxury cars. Interior Minister Christophe Castaner expressed his "indignation and disgust," considering at least one vehicle belonged to France's anti-terrorism police. The protests have brought hundreds of thousands of people out onto the streets all over France. Initially voicing opposition to President Emmanuel Macron's planned tax hikes on fuel, protesters temporarily suspended action on roads, businesses, and even the government. Scores of people have been injured and hundreds arrested since the protests began in November. Paris police said a demonstrator lost four fingers when riot officers stopped protesters from storming the National Assembly. Witnesses told the French AFP news agency that the man's hand had been torn apart when a flash-ball grenade exploded. Another man, who was reportedly seen in front of a line of riot police, had blood streaming down his face. Thousands of protesters also turned out in the French cities of Marseille and Montpellier, as well as in Bordeaux, Toulouse, and several cities in France's north and west. Interior Ministry figures released at 2:00 p.m. local time put the turnout across France at 12,100, of whom 4,000 marched in Paris, down on the previous week's figures. Macron bounces back The demonstrations appeared to be losing steam as Macron acquiesced to some demands and has embarked on a nationwide town hall tour to learn more about people's grievances. Recent polls have suggested that his approval rating is back on the rise. At the same time, some yellow vest participants have been looking to capitalize on the movement's momentum and turn it into electoral success, which could prove tricky as they are very loosely organized and have no specific leadership. To that end, some yellow vest demonstrators met with Italy's populist Deputy Prime Minister Luigi Di Maio, who said he offered them advice on turning a citizen's movement into a political party. The meeting touched off a row between France and Italy, marking a low point in relations between the two founding EU nations. On Friday, Di Maio refused to apologize and accused Macron of playing "political games."

As President Macron’s approval bounces back, yellow vest protesters hope to convert notoriety into electoral success. The movement has brought hundreds of thousands of people out into the streets across France. At least one demonstrator was injured as France’s yellow vest protests entered their 13th week on Saturday. At least 10 protesters were arrested after scuffles broke out with police ... Read More »

Germany ‘not spending enough’ on defense, US ambassador says

Richard Grenell has accused Berlin of failing to meet its defense spending commitments under the alliance. While the German government has backed plans to gradually increase spending, some see it as a waste. US ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell on Sunday criticized Germany's pledge to incrementally raise its defense spending to 1.5 percent until 2024 in an interview with German Sunday newspaperWelt am Sonntag. "Germany's NATO promise to raise defense spending to 1.5 percent is not enough," Grenell said. "Again, it is not US standards that have to be met here, but NATO commitments that Berlin has already agreed to. The US is simply reminding its great German ally that now is not the time to undercut or weaken NATO." Defense spending is a contentious subject that has strained relations between Washington and Berlinsince Donald Trump assumed the US presidency in 2016. Trump has repeatedly accused the German government of failing to meet its defense spending commitments. Read more: How does Germany contribute to NATO? Polarizing debate In 2014, NATO member states agreed to meet the alliance's defense spending target of 2 percent by 2024. The German government has pledged to follow through with its commitment. But some German politicians are increasingly against it in its current form, saying other factors should be added to the calculation, including humanitarian aid and stabilization programs in conflict zones. Others have suggested alternative routes for Germany. "I fully understand that the German public wants more domestic spending instead of increasing their military budget," Grenell said in the interview. "The US taxpayer would like to spend more domestically as well. But the US taxpayer is paying for 33,000 US troops in Germany. This debate of domestic spending versus defense is happening in the US too." Under Trump, the White House has warned NATO allies that it would "moderate" its commitment to the alliance if member states failed to spend more for defense. "The US is totally committed to NATO," Grenell said. "Donald Trump has made that clear, but he also seeks to improve it. And what is wrong about wanting to fix something that you believe in?

Richard Grenell has accused Berlin of failing to meet its defense spending commitments under the alliance. While the German government has backed plans to gradually increase spending, some see it as a waste. US ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell on Sunday criticized Germany’s pledge to incrementally raise its defense spending to 1.5 percent until 2024 in an interview with German ... Read More »

Trump Address in State of Union

WASHINGTON — BY –RIZWAN AFTAB President Trump address second time the State of the Union address Tuesday night, the address delayed two weeks because of shut down in US. He urges to be united in his speech. He said to reject the politics of revenge, confrontation to his nation. He also added to embrace the boundless potential of cooperation, compromise, and the common well,” Trump told Congress and nation Regarding to build a wall on the Mexican border he states "I will get it built," vowed Trump, promising a "smart, strategic, see-through steel barrier." In his speech another high lightened part was Economy, he states he added jobs to boost economy. He also states “The only thing that can stop it are foolish wars, politics or ridiculous one-sided investigations,” he said, in an apparent swipe at the special counsel investigation into ties between Russia and Trump's 2016 campaign, as well as the upcoming congressional investigations.

WASHINGTON — BY –RIZWAN AFTAB President Trump address second time the State of the Union address Tuesday night, the address delayed two weeks because of shut down in US. He urges to be united in his speech. He said to reject the politics of revenge, confrontation to his nation. He also added to embrace the boundless potential of cooperation, compromise, ... Read More »

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