30 Sept 2020
JOE BIDEN-TRUMP EXCHANGE ATTACKS AT US PRESIDENTIAL DEBATE
The first presidential debate between President Trump and Joe Biden featured
a chaotic series of bitter exchanges and name-calling, with the president
repeatedly speaking over his Democratic rival and the moderator struggling
to maintain control of the 90-minute affair.
"Will you shut up, man?" an exasperated Biden said in a comment that was
emblematic of the tumultuous nature of the debate, which was held in
Cleveland, Ohio. "It's hard to get any word in with this clown."
Moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News struggled to maintain control as he
peppered the candidates with questions about the Supreme Court, the economy,
the coronavirus pandemic and more. He repeatedly admonished the president
for speaking over Biden and disregarding the rules both sides had agreed to.
The president leveled barrages of unfounded accusations against his
Democratic rival and his family, invoking his son Hunter Biden's work in
Ukraine and bringing up the younger Biden's history of drug abuse. Mr. Trump
declined to condemn white supremacist groups and defended his response to
the coronavirus pandemic that has claimed more than 200,000 American lives,
trying to portray Biden as a socialist who isn't equipped to occupy the Oval
"Did you use the word smart?" the president asked Biden at one point. "You
graduated either the lowest or almost the lowest in your class. Don't ever
use the word smart with me, Joe."
Biden, though, not only gave as good as he got -- he launched the kind of
attack on Trump that the billionaire president has rarely had to endure to
his face. "Liar," "racist" and "clown" were just some of the missiles
launched from Biden, who also branded Trump the "puppy" of Russian President
Biden, for his part, tried to direct his answers to the audience watching at
home. He called Mr. Trump "the worst president America has ever had,"
blaming him for bungling the response to the pandemic and fueling racial
divisions amid recent protests against police brutality.
"This is a president who has used everything as a dog whistle to try to
generate racist hatred, racist division," Biden said.
The two candidates are scheduled to meet next in two weeks, on October 15,
for the second debate in Salt Lake City, Utah.
AZERBAIJAN AND ARMENIA REJECT PEACE TALKS AS KARABAKH CONFLICT ZONE WIDENS
Armenia and Azerbaijan accused each other on Tuesday of firing straight into
one another's territory and rejected strain to carry peace talks as their
battle over the enclave of Nagorno-Karabakh threatened to spill over into
Each reported firing from the opposite facet throughout their shared border,
nicely to the west of the breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh area over which fierce
combating broke out between Azeri and ethnic Armenian forces on Sunday.
The incidents signalled an extra escalation of the battle regardless of
pressing appeals from Russia, the US and others to halt it.
Azerbaijan's President Ilham Aliyev, talking to Russian state TV, flatly
dominated out any risk of talks.
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan informed the identical channel that
talks couldn't happen whereas combating continued.
Additional fuelling tensions between the 2 former Soviet republics, Armenia
stated an F-16 fighter jet belonging to Azerbaijan's shut ally Turkey had
shot down considered one of its warplanes over Armenian airspace, killing
It offered no proof of the incident. Turkey and Azerbaijan known as the
declare "completely unfaithful".
Dozens of individuals have been reported killed and a whole bunch wounded
since clashes between Azerbaijan and its ethnic Armenian mountain enclave of
Nagorno-Karabakh broke out on Sunday.
AFGHANISTAN PEACE NEGOTIATOR URGES NEW ERA IN TIES WITH PAKISTAN
The chief of Afghanistan's peace negotiating team said on Tuesday on a visit
to Pakistan that the time has come for the two neighbouring countries to
shun the suspicion, stale rhetoric and tired conspiracy theories that have
dogged past relations.
Abdullah Abdullah is in Pakistan on a bridge-building mission meant to mend
deep-rooted mistrust between the two countries. It was his first visit in 12
Mr. Abdullah told the Institute of Strategic Studies in the federal capital
of Islamabad that the two neighbours are on the threshold of a new
relationship characterised by mutual respect, sincere cooperation and shared
I am a firm believer that after many troubling years, we now need to go
beyond the usual stale rhetoric and shadowy conspiracy theories that have
held us back, Mr. Abdullah said. We cannot afford to pursue business as
usual. We need fresh approaches and our people demand it. It is more urgent
than ever to look to our region as one region.
His statements come ahead of meetings later Tuesday with Pakistan's powerful
army chief and prime minister. His visit also comes at a crucial time in
Afghanistan's troubled history as a government-appointed negotiation team is
in the Gulf state of Qatar brokering an end to war with its Taliban foes.
RULER OF KUWAIT, SHEIKH SABAH AL-SABAH, DIES AGED 91
Kuwait's emir, Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Sabah, the architect of the nation's
modern foreign policy and one of the region's most influential voices, has
died at the age of 91.
The monarch died on Tuesday at the Mayo clinic in Rochester, Minnesota,
where he had been recovering after surgery in July. His body was being flown
to Kuwait for burial.
His half-brother, Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf al-Ahmad al-Sabah, will be sworn
in as his successor late on Wednesday.
Sabah had ruled the since 2006 and steered its foreign policy for more than
"With the utmost sadness and grief for the Kuwaiti people, the Islamic and
Arab world and people of friendly nations, the Amiri Diwan [the royal
palace] mourns the death of Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmad al-Jaber al-Sabah, the
emir of Kuwait," his office said.
CYBERATTACK HOBBLES MAJOR U.S., U.K. HOSPITAL CHAIN
Computer systems across a major hospital chain operating in the U.S. and
Britain were down Monday due to what the company termed an unspecified
technology "security issue."
Universal Health Services Inc., which operates more than 400 hospitals and
other clinical care facilities, said in a short statement posted to its
website Monday that its network was offline and doctors and nurses were
resorting to "back-up processes" including paper records.
The Fortune 500 company, with 90,000 employees said "patient care continues
to be delivered safely and effectively" and no patient or employee data
appeared to have been "accessed, copied or misused."
UHS provided no details, but people posting to an online Reddit forum who
identified themselves as employees said the chain's network was hit by
ransomware overnight Sunday. The posts echoed the alarm of a clinician at a
UHS facility in Washington, D.C., who described to a mad scramble, including
anxiety over determining which patients might be infected with the virus
that causes COVID-19.
John Riggi, senior cybersecurity adviser to the American Hospital
Association, called it a "suspected ransomware attack," adding that
criminals have been increasingly targeting the networks of health care
institutions during the coronavirus pandemic.
Ransomware is a growing scourge in which hackers infect networks with
malicious code that scrambles data and then demand payment to restore