Venezuela to strip immunity

Portuguese football has come together this week to support Iker Casillas.

The goalkeeper was hospitalised after suffering a heart attack during Porto’s training session on Wednesday and is now recovering well.

Benfica and Porto are involved in an intense battle for the Liga NOS title and, despite this rivalry, Lage took the time out to offer his support to Casillas.

Casillas lifts Portuguese football,” said Benfica coach Bruno Lage. “I hope he recovers quickly.”

“We all want the best for Iker,” Sporting CP boss Marcel Keizer noted. “We all hope he recovers fully.

Portuguese football has come together this week to support Iker Casillas.

The goalkeeper was hospitalised after suffering a heart attack during Porto’s training session on Wednesday and is now recovering well.

Benfica and Porto are involved in an intense battle for the Liga NOS title and, despite this rivalry, Lage took the time out to offer his support to Casillas.

Casillas lifts Portuguese football,” said Benfica coach Bruno Lage. “I hope he recovers quickly.”

“We all want the best for Iker,” Sporting CP boss Marcel Keizer noted. “We all hope he recovers fully.

The US military said two of its warships sailed near islands claimed by China in the South China Sea on Monday, a move that could anger Beijing at a time of tense relations between the world’s two biggest economies.

The South China Sea is one of a growing number of flashpoints in the US-China relationship, which also include a trade war, US sanctions and Taiwan.

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The US guided-missile destroyers Preble and Chung Hoon traveled within 12 nautical miles of Gaven and Johnson Reefs in the Spratly Islands, a US military spokesman told Reuters

Peace talks between the US and the Taliban were suspended for the beginning of Ramadan on Monday, with the two sides at apparent loggerheads over the key issue of when foreign forces might leave Afghanistan.

The foes have spent much of the past week in a sixth round of talks in Doha aimed at ending America’s longest war, but the Taliban say negotiations have become bogged down.

In a tweet, Taliban political spokesman Suhail Shaheen said the talks were pausing for the first day of the holy month of Ramadan — when Muslims fast during the day — but would be resumed Tuesday.

Sultan Barakat, the director of the Center for Conflict and Humanitarian Studies in Doha, also said the talks would resume Tuesday, and that they had made “good progress”.

But Shaheen told AFP late Sunday negotiations were stumbling over the fundamental question of when foreign forces would depart Afghanistan.

Before the US agrees to any withdrawal, it is demanding the Taliban put in place security guarantees, a ceasefire and other commitments including an “intra-Afghan” dialogue with the Kabul government and other Afghan representatives.

The insurgents insist they won’t do any of these things until the US announces a withdrawal timeline.

At the end of a large peace summit in Kabul last week, President Ashraf Ghani offered the Taliban a ceasefire to begin on the first day of Ramadan, but the insurgents refused

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Ghani on Monday reiterated his call for the Taliban to respect demands from last week’s “loya jirga” summit that saw thousands of tribal elders and Afghans meet in Kabul.

“Ramadan is a month of peace and reconciliation,” Ghani said.

“I once again call on the Taliban to pay respect to this month and the demands of the people for peace and reconciliation reflected (in the Loya Jirga).”

On Sunday, at least 13 people were killed and dozens more wounded after a Taliban suicide bomber and several gunmen attacked a police headquarters in northern Afghanistan.

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Commander Clay Doss, a spokesman for the Seventh Fleet, said that the “innocent passage” was “to challenge excessive maritime claims and preserve access to the waterways as governed by international law.

Venezuela’s Constituent Assembly, which rules the South American country with absolute powers, plans to strip parliamentary immunity from opposition lawmakers who backed a failed uprising this week, leader Diosdado Cabello said Sunday.

“The prosecutor’s office opened its file, all the requests to lift parliamentary immunity are coming to the Constituent Assembly, as it should be, and… we will certainly raise our hands to remove parliamentary immunity from all those who actively participated in that act,” Cabello said.

On Tuesday, around 30 soldiers carried out a failed uprising against President Nicolas Maduro near La Carlota Air Base in Caracas in a move backed by opposition leader Juan Guaido, recognized as interim president by more than 50 countries.

Several deputies of the National Assembly, the only Venezuelan organ of power held by the opposition, backed Guaido, who presides over the body.

Guaido called Tuesday’s ultimately failed uprising the beginning of a “freedom operation” seeking to remove Maduro from power.

“Justice is going to come, there’s no doubt about that… let us not despair,” Cabello, considered Maduro’s right-hand man, said during a speech with activists of the ruling PSUV party in Caracas.

After the failed uprising, denounced by Maduro as a “coup-style skirmish,” some 25 soldiers took refuge at embassies, along with top opposition figure Leopoldo Lopez, freed from house arrest by Guaido supporters.

Lopez, who is under an arrest warrant, is staying at the Spanish embassy.

The Venezuelan prosecutor’s office requested 18 arrest warrants for civilians and soldiers who participated in the insurrection, chief prosecutor Tarek William Saab said Friday.

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