"I wouldn't be surprised if they do have some trade between those two countries — but chemical weapons? I'm very skeptical of that," Sterling told Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear on Tuesday. "Just because something comes from the United Nations doesn't mean it's objective or neutral." "Unfortunately, when we hear references to the United Nations it has a nice, neutral ring to it. But sadly, the United Nations is failing in a lot of areas. And that can be seen by the country that is heading the human rights council independent panel that appoints the experts — that country is Saudi Arabia," Sterling, also an investigative journalist, told Sputnik. US President Donald Trump has tried to show the world he takes the issue of chemical weapons very seriously. Last April, the commander in chief ordered a volley of 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles launched at a Syrian air force base the US … [Read more...] about ‘Very Skeptical of That’: UN Claims North Korea, Syria Trade in Chemical Weapons
"Turkey didn't use and will not use any ammunition or chemical weapons prohibited by international law and agreements", Akar told the parliament, as quoted by Turkey's state-owned Anadolu news agency. The statement comes after a representative of the Syrian Democratic Council, which is the political wing of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces, in October said in an address to the US Congress that Turkey had used phosphorus during its offensive. Ankara launched its offensive in northeastern Syria on 9 October to create a safe zone free of the Kurdish militants that it viewed as terrorists. In the first days, it took control of the border towns of Tal Abiad and Ras al-Ain. Just over a week later, the United States and Turkey agreed to a 120-hour ceasefire in the area to allow the withdrawal of the Kurdish fighters. As the ceasefire came to an end, Turkey and Russia signed a 22 October memorandum in Sochi stipulating that, within 150 hours, the Kurdish forces would be withdrawn … [Read more...] about Turkey Never Used Banned Weapons in Syria During Operation Peace Spring – Defence Minister
Compared to all the electronics that power the tiny computer in your pocket; battery technology is downright disappointing. Not only does your smartphone need charging every day, but in a few years, its battery will be barely able to hold a charge at all. So how long will your device last? Researchers at Standford University and MIT have created an AI that can predict a battery’s potential lifespan after just a handful of charges. Compared to the rechargeable battery technology that existed even just 20 years ago, the lithium-ion battery inside your phone, tablet, and almost any mobile device is a marked improvement. They’re now relatively cheap to manufacture, and they tend to provide solid performance right up until the end of their life cycle. But knowing when that end is coming has typically been very hard to predict, which has also made the research and development of new battery technology very time-consuming. Advertisement Will a different combination of … [Read more...] about AI Is the New Secret Weapon in the Quest for Better Batteries
The world faces cold-war-era threat levels, Sir John Sawers, the former head of MI6, has said, due to the west vacating the stage in Syria and failing to recognise that the growth of Russian military power over the past 15 years required the development of a new strategic relationship with Moscow. “We are moving into an era that is as dangerous, if not more dangerous, as the cold war because we do not have that focus on a strategic relationship between Moscow and Washington,” Sawers told the BBC on Wednesday. He said the west needed to recognise that the balance of power had changed in the world because of an increase in Russian military power, and its willingness to use that power. He also chided the UK foreign secretary, Boris Johnson, for calling for demonstrations outside the Russian embassy in London, saying it was necessary to be mindful of the welfare of diplomatic staff in Britain’s Moscow embassy. “We all recall what happened to our embassy in … [Read more...] about World faces cold-war-era threat levels, says former MI6 chief
Alison McGovern: A no-bombing zone must not be off the table What the Syrian regime and their Russian allies are doing in Syria is the greatest crime of our century. Faced with the horror they are unleashing, it is no longer possible to pretend that the international community can stand by. Inaction has consequences and the UK does have the capacity to make a difference in Syria if we show the will to act. What is needed is a strategy with two objectives. First, we must prioritise the protection of civilians and do everything possible to stop the barrel bombs and chemical weapons that are devastating Aleppo. Second, it is imperative that the jurisdiction of international law is restored to the lawless vacuum in which Assad has been able to commit war crimes with impunity. Failure to do this will have far-reaching consequences for future conflicts and for the integrity of the UN itself. There are a number of actions the UK could take and I believe that the measured use of military … [Read more...] about How should the UK respond to the crisis in Syria?