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Trump faces criticism for his decision to end birthright citizenship

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Washington: President Donald Trump’s decision to bring an executive order to end the right to the US citizenship for children born in the US to non-citizens has invited widespread criticism, even from his own party.

In his latest hardline immigration rhetoric ahead of the midterm congressional elections, Trump, in an interview with Axios, has said birthright citizenship “has to end” and that it would “with an executive order.”

“You cannot end the birthright citizenship with an executive order,” said Congressman Paul Ryan, Speaker of the US House of Representatives. “We didn’t like it when (former President) Obama tried changing immigration laws via executive action, and obviously as conservatives, we believe in the Constitution,” Ryan told a local radio station in Lexington, Kentucky.

Under the current laws, anyone born in the US irrespective of the nationality of parents, automatically becomes an American citizen.

“It was always told to me that you needed a constitutional amendment, one amendment. You don’t have to do it. Number one. Number two, you can definitely do it with an act of Congress. But now they are saying, I can do it just with an executive order,” Trump told Axios in an interview. A portion of the interview was released.

The full interview “Axios on HBO” is scheduled to be aired on Sunday. Such a practice to give citizenship to anyone born in the US is “ridiculous”, Trump said.

He said that we are the only country in the world where a person comes in and has a baby, and the baby is essentially a citizen of the US for 85 years with all of those benefits.

“It’s ridiculous. It’s ridiculous. And it has to end”. Trump said that the effort to end this practice was in the process. “We are in the process. It’ll happen with an executive order. That’s what you’re talking about.” According to Axios, Trump said that he has run the idea of ending birthright citizenship by his counsel and plans to proceed with the highly-controversial move, which certainly will face legal challenges. Republican Senator Chuck Grassley, Chairman of the powerful Senate Judiciary Committee, said it would require a constitutional amendment to make necessary changes on who all can acquire citizenship.

“I am not a lawyer, but it seems to me it would take a constitutional amendment to change that as opposed to an executive order,” Grassley told a local news channel in Iowa.


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149 people killed in 24 hrs in clashes in Yemen’s Hodeida: medics, military

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Hodeida?: At least 149 people including civilians have been killed in 24 hours of clashes between government loyalists and rebels in Yemen’s flashpoint city of Hodeida, medics and military sources said.

A military official in Hodeida confirmed seven civilians had died, without giving further details.

The Red Sea port city, controlled by Yemen’s Houthi rebels since 2014, is a vital entry point for aid into the impoverished country.

A source in Yemen’s pro-government military coalition, which is backed by a Saudi-led military alliance, said the Houthis had pushed back a large-scale offensive aimed at moving towards Hodeida port.

Medics in hospitals across the city reported 110 rebels and 32 loyalist fighters killed overnight.

Sources at the Al-Alfi military hospital, seized by the rebels during their 2014 takeover, said charred body parts had been delivered there overnight.

Military sources confirmed that the Saudi-led alliance had targeted the rebels with multiple air strikes.

Nearly 600 people have been killed since clashes erupted on November 1 in Hodeida, one of Yemen’s most densely populated cities.

Saudi Arabia and its allies intervened in the Yemeni government’s fight against the Iran-backed Houthis in 2015, triggering what the UN now calls the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

The Hodeida port is a vital lifeline for aid deliveries to Yemenis across the war-torn country, where 14 million people face imminent famine.

The port has been under blockade by the Saudi-led coalition for a year.

The alliance accuses Iran of smuggling arms to the Houthis through the Hodeida port.

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Amnesty International strips Aung San Suu Kyi of highest honour

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London: Amnesty International stripped Aung San Suu Kyi of its highest honour over the de facto Myanmar leader’s “indifference” to the atrocities committed by the military against Rohingya Muslims.

It was the latest in a string of awards the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize winner lost since Myanmar’s military drove 720,000 Rohingya out of the Buddhist majority country in what the United Nations has called an act of genocide.

The London-based global human rights organisation said it was revoking the Ambassador of Conscience Award it gave Suu Kyi in 2009 while she was still under house arrest.

“Today, we are profoundly dismayed that you no longer represent a symbol of hope, courage, and the undying defence of human rights,” Amnesty International chief Kumi Naidoo said in a letter to Suu Kyi released by the group.

“Amnesty International cannot justify your continued status as a recipient of the Ambassador of Conscience award and so with great sadness we are hereby withdrawing it from you.”

Amnesty said it informed the 73-year-old of the decision on Sunday. She has so far issued no public response.

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Tehran had ‘credible information’ about Saudi plot to assassinate : Zarif

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Tehran : Iran knew about Saudi Arabia’s plans to assassinate senior Iranian officials, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tells London-based al-Araby al-Jadeed.

“Tehran had credible information on this,” Zarif said in an interview, which will be published in full.

His comments came after a Sunday report by The New York Times, revealing a March 2017 meeting in Riyadh to assassinate Iranian officials, namely Iran’s Major General Qassem Soleimani.

The meeting brought together businessmen that also “pitched a $2 billion plan to use private intelligence operatives to sabotage the Iranian economy,” read the Times report released.

As the meeting came at a time that Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was consolidating his power in the kingdom, the report concluded that planning for assassinations, like that of dissident journalist Jamal Khashoggi in Istanbul, started “since the beginning of Prince Mohammed’s ascent.”

Zarif further exemplified other atrocities by the Saudi government, including support for terrorism, attacking Yemen as well as blockading Qatar and kidnapping Lebanese Prime minister Saad Hariri.

“All the world has opened its eyes to what Riyadh is doing such as blockading Qatar, bombing Yemen, detaining the prime minister of Lebanon and the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi,” Zarif said.

This is while the US has emerged as a passionate supporter of the monarchy ever since President Donald Trump appeared in office.

Trump has also withdrawn Washington from the internationally backed nuclear deal with Tehran and re-imposed illegal sanctions on Tehran.

The Trump administration announced the sanctions on November 5 to target Iran’s banking and energy sectors with the aim of cutting off its oil sales and crucial exports.

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