17 November 2020 Military News
- Acting Secretary Miller Announces Troop Levels in Afghanistan and Iraq DoD 17 Nov 2020 -- Acting Secretary Of Defense Christopher C. Miller
- Acting Secretary Miller Announcement on Afghanistan and Iraq Troop Levels DoD 17 Nov 2020 -- Good afternoon. I'm Chris Miller, Acting Secretary of Defense, and I am here today to update you on President Trump's plan to bring the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to a successful and responsible conclusion, and to bring our brave Service members home.
- Defense Secretary Says U.S. Will Drawdown Forces in Afghanistan, Iraq DoD News 17 Nov 2020 -- The United States will draw down forces in Afghanistan and Iraq by Jan. 15, 2021, Acting Defense Secretary Christopher C. Miller said today at the Pentagon.
- US Cutting Troop Numbers in Afghanistan, Iraq by Mid-January VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- The Pentagon is bringing home more American service members in the coming weeks, following President Donald Trump's order to remove about 2,000 troops from Afghanistan and 500 troops from Iraq before next year's U.S. presidential inauguration.
- U.S. To Sharply Cut Troop Levels In Afghanistan By Mid-January RFE/RL Gandhara 17 Nov 2020 -- The United States will cut its troop presence in Afghanistan from 4,500 to 2,500 by January 15, just days before President Donald Trump leaves office.
- Pentagon to pull 2,500 US troops from Afghanistan, Iraq before Trump leaves Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The US Defense Department has reportedly been ordered to cut the number of troops in Afghanistan from 4,500 to 2,500 and the number of forces in Iraq from 3,000 to 2,500 by January 15, days before outgoing President Donald Trump leaves office.
- 'Premature' US Military Exit From Afghanistan Would Have Disastrous Consequences, McConnell Warns Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- A premature US military exit from Afghanistan could have disastrous consequences, US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said in a statement on Monday.
- Trump administration planning to draw down troops in Afghanistan and Iraq Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The outgoing administration of US President Donald Trump is planning to cut the number of American troops deployed to Afghanistan and Iraq, according to a report.
- Acting US Def Sec Miller Formally Announces Plans to Cut Troops in Afghanistan, Iraq to 2,500 Each Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- Earlier on Monday, CNN reported, citing two US officials, that Pentagon anticipated President Donald Trump to issue an order this week regarding troop withdrawal from Iraq and Afghanistan by 15 January.
- NATO Chief Warns Of High Price If U.S. Pulls Troops From Afghanistan RFE/RL Gandhara 17 Nov 2020 -- NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg warned on November 17 that the military bloc could pay a heavy price for leaving Afghanistan too early, after reports said President Donald Trump would soon withdraw a large number of U.S. troops from the war-wracked country.
- NATO's Stoltenberg Warns of Risks Posed by US Military's Early Withdrawal From Afghanistan Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The early or uncoordinated withdrawal of US troops poses a serious risk to Afghanistan's stability and could lead to the resurgence of terrorist groups, such as Daesh*, Jens Stoltenberg, NATO's secretary general, said in a statement to the CNN broadcaster on Tuesday.
- Taliban Mistakenly Believes Attacks Can Bring Concessions, Afghan Deputy Defence Minister Says Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- Intra-Afghan Talks Go Slow Because of Mistrust
- 81st FS graduates final Afghan air force class US Air Force 17 Nov 2020 -- The 81st Fighter Squadron, a geographically separated unit assigned to the 14th Flying Training Wing at Columbus Air Force Base, Mississippi, graduated its last class of Afghan A-29 Super Tucano student pilots on Nov. 13 at Moody AFB.
- Trump Mulling Near-Total Withdrawal of US Forces From Somalia Amid Global Pullback, Report Suggests Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- Following to removal of US Defense Secretary Mark Esper, the Pentagon and acting Defense Secretary Christopher Miller have announced a withdrawal of thousands of troops from Afghanistan and Iraq, leaving around 2,500 residual personnel in both countries.
- DOD Works With Partner Nations to Avoid Civilian Casualties During War DoD News 17 Nov 2020 -- The United States works with partner nations to mitigate civilian casualties as much as possible during military operations, adhering to the Law of Armed Conflict, also known as International Humanitarian Law.
- N.C. Guard helps out at food banks, COVID-19 test sites Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- Many states are still responding to problems brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, including an increased need for testing and assistance from food banks.
- Michigan National Guard fills vital need for food delivery Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- Soldiers and Airmen from the Michigan National Guard have worked with food pantries and other charities to help distribute more than 3.5 million pounds of food to those in need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Defense Policy / Programs
- Biden Holds His Own Security Briefing VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Blocked by the administration of President Donald Trump from receiving official national security briefings, President-elect Joe Biden on Tuesday convened his own meeting of outside diplomatic, intelligence and defense experts.
- Readout for Acting U.S. Secretary of Defense Miller's Phone Call With Republic of Korea Minister of National Defense Suh DoD 17 Nov 2020
- Air Force update for COVID-19 US Air Force 17 Nov 2020
- The Army Reserve's return to collective training in a COVID world Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- While the threat of the pandemic is not over, neither are the threats to our Nation.
- DOD Announces Rare Earth Element Awards to Strengthen Domestic Industrial Base DoD 17 Nov 2020 -- As part of the U.S. government's strategy to ensure secure and reliable supplies of critical minerals under Executive Order 13817, today the Department of Defense is announcing contracts and agreements with several rare earth element producers which will strengthen the domestic rare earths supply chain. Three of the awards were made under the authorities of Title III of the Defense Production Act (DPA).
- DOD-Wide Audit Improves Efficiencies to Benefit Warfighter DoD News 17 Nov 2020 -- With the exception of a couple of organizations, the Defense Department has completed most of its third annual comprehensive financial statement audit covering the entire enterprise, worth about $2.9 trillion, a DOD official said, adding that there have been improvements resulting from the audit that will directly benefit the warfighter.
- The Army Reserve's return to collective training in a COVID world Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- While the threat of the pandemic is not over, neither are the threats to our Nation. To remain ready, the Army Reserve must resume collective training while maintaining the critical balance between risk to mission and risk to force, said Command Sgt. Maj. Andrew J. Lombardo, Command Sergeant Major of the U.S. Army Reserve.
- 28th Infantry Division completes warfighter exercise Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- Leaders with the 28th Infantry Division, Pennsylvania Army National Guard, completed a computer-based force-on-force exercise to train commanders, staff officers and their sections on a variety of warfighting functions.
- 2nd Cavalry First to Fire Army News 17 Nov 2020 -- U.S. Army cavalrymen from 2nd Cavalry Regiment's Fox and Eagle Troops were the first U.S. Forces ever to fire the coveted MK 310 programmable air burst munitions here Nov. 12, 2020.
- Ellsworth AFB, Dyess AFB participate in Indo-Pacific joint exercise US Air Force 17 Nov 2020 -- A B-1B Lancer assigned to the 34th Bomb Squadron, Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota, participated in a joint interoperability exercise to test long-range force packaging and demonstrate global reach capabilities in the Indo-Pacific region Nov. 12.
- USS William P. Lawrence, Helo Maritime Strike Squadron 37 Save Lives in Honduras US Navy 17 Nov 2020 -- The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110) and the embarked "Easyriders" of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 37 Detachment 7 completed search and rescue (SAR) operations in the areas affected by Hurricane Eta, Nov. 15.
- U.S. Successfully Conducts SM-3 Block IIA Intercept Test Against an Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Target DoD 17 Nov 2020 -- The U.S. Missile Defense Agency (MDA), and U.S. Navy sailors aboard the USS John Finn (DDG-113), an Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD) System-equipped destroyer, intercepted and destroyed a threat-representative Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) target with a Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) Block IIA missile during a flight test demonstration in the broad ocean area northeast of Hawaii, Nov. 16.
- Missile Launched from US Warship Destroys Mock Long-Range Missile VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- The U.S. Department of Defense said Tuesday an American warship "intercepted and destroyed" an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) target in a test conducted Monday northeast of Hawaii.
- Defense Minister: Germany, Europe Must Still Rely on US, NATO for Security VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Germany's defense minister said Tuesday that while Germany and Europe must do more to ensure their own security, she believes they will not be able to provide for their own security without the help of the United States and NATO for decades to come.
- Russia's Putin approves establishment of naval base in Sudan Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Russian President Vladimir Putin has approved the establishment of a major naval base in Sudan, which will improve Moscow's ability to operate in the Indian Ocean and expand its influence in Africa.
- Military-civilian mobilization exercise shows China can quick switch industrial output Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- A city in China recently held a military-civilian mobilization exercise, during which civilian firms temporarily shifted production to make combat vehicles and modified trailers to transport tanks. The move demonstrated China's industrial potential in wartime, analysts said.
- China's Y-20 tanker variant spotted conducting aerial refueling for J-20 fighter jet: report Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- The development of the aerial tanker variant of China's domestically developed Y-20 large cargo plane is apparently entering the final stages, as a recent photo captured what seems to be a Y-20 tanker variant conducting aerial refueling for a J-20 stealth fighter jet, media reports said.
- Night stay at new mobile insulated cabin in alpine area PLA Daily 17 Nov 2020 -- Recently, the correspondent walks into a new-type self-powered thermal insulation cabin in a border defense company under the PLA Xinjiang Military Command. Developed by the PLA Army Engineering University, the thermal insulation device is mainly designed for troops stationed in plateau and alpine regions with inconvenient transportation and insufficient logistics support.
- Photos Emerge of China's J-15 Fighter Sporting Gear for New Carrier's Catapult Launch System Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The electromagnetic launch system (EMALS) on China's Type 002 aircraft carrier presently under construction could give the heavy J-15 fighter a second life in naval aviation.
- F-16 disappears from radar at altitude of 6,000 feet: Air Force CNA 17 Nov 2020 -- An F-16 fighter jet which went missing over waters off eastern Taiwan Tuesday night disappeared from radar screens at an altitude of more than 6,000 feet, a Taiwanese Air Force official said during a press conference.
- F-16 goes missing off eastern Taiwan CNA 17 Nov 2020 -- An F-16 fighter jet went missing over waters off eastern Taiwan Tuesday night, with search and recovery operations ongoing as of press time, according to the Ministry of National Defense. (MND).
- Second Successful Flight Test of QRSAM System India PIB 17 Nov 2020 -- In yet another flight test, the Quick Reaction Surface to Air Missile (QRSAM) System tracked the target accurately and successfully neutralised the airborne target. The flight test, second in the series was conducted today at around 1542 hrs from the Integrated Test Range, Chandipur, off the coast of Odisha. The test was carried out once again, against the high performance Jet Unmanned Aerial Target called Banshee, which simulates an aircraft.
- Navies of India, US, Australia, Japan to Kick Off Second Phase of Malabar Exercise Today Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The Malabar series was first conducted as a bilateral India-US exercise in 1992. Japan joined the drills in 2015. Meanwhile, Australia has participated only once, back in 2007.
- Japan, Australia eye defense pact; a potential 'Indo-Pacific NATO' could be formed against China Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- Japan and Australia have reached a broad consensus on their bilateral defense pact as a prelude to forming an "Indo-Pacific NATO" against China, amid Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison's two-day visit to Japan.
- Australia, Japan Reach Deal on Defence Treaty to Counter 'Increasing Tensions' in South China Sea Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- Australia and Japan have reached an agreement in principle on a defence treaty that is expected to strengthen their security ties and facilitate cooperation between defence forces, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Tuesday.
- Why Is Iran Talking About Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles Now? Radio Farda 17 Nov 2020 -- In recent years, barely a week has passed without a media appearance of Amirali Hajizadeh, the media-savvy commander of the IRGC Aerospace Force. Charming, gregarious and always wearing a smile, Hajizadeh doesn't miss any opportunity to talk about drones, domestic car production and the rapid growth of Iran's missile force while carefully ignoring more inconvenient topics such as the downing of Flight 752.
- Iran Air Defense Force says ready to train Iraqi servicemen Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The Islamic Republic of Iran Air Defense Force (IRIADF) expresses readiness to start training the Iraqi Army's servicemen as means of expanding military cooperation between the friendly and neighboring countries.
- Iran, Iraq Air Force commanders assess plans for closer bilateral cooperation ISNA 17 Nov 2020 -- Iranian Air Force Commander Brigadier General Aziz Nasirzadeh and his Iraqi counterpart Lt. Gen Shahab Jahid Ali Al Shakarachi held a meeting in Tehran on Tuesday to assess plans for closer bilateral cooperation.
- Royal Navy warship sails into Arctic Circle for High North operation UK MOD 17 Nov 2020 -- HMS Lancaster has completed three days of operations in the High North, marking the second time the Royal Navy has sailed into the Arctic Circle in two months.
- Greece Reportedly Requests to Purchase Two Dozen F-35 Jets From US Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The request comes as Greece, Cyprus and Turkey remain locked in a dispute over the borders of exclusive economic zones near the shores of Cyprus. Ankara recently asked for talks "based on two states", while adding it will not tolerate what it characterized as "diplomatic games".
- Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom Samuel D. Brownback On the 2020 Ministerial to Advance Freedom of Religion or Belief and the International Religious Freedom or Belief Alliance Ministers' Forum US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020
- Contracts For Nov. 17, 2020
- Former CEO Charged in Schemes to Defraud U.S. Government Related to the Conflict in Afghanistan US Dept. of Justice 17 Nov 2020 -- The former chief executive officer of a U.S. government contractor was charged today in connection with schemes to defraud the U.S. Department of Defense regarding contracts related to U.S. military efforts in Afghanistan.
- 17 November 2020 - Daily Press Briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General United Nations 17 Nov 2020
- UN releases $100 million to guard against famine UN News 17 Nov 2020 -- The United Nations released $100 million of emergency funding on Tuesday to stave off the risk of famine in seven countries most at risk from a hunger epidemic fueled by conflict, economic decline, climate change and the COVID-19 pandemic.
- UN Releases $100M in Bid to Prevent Famine in 7 Countries VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- The United Nations released $100 million from an emergency fund Tuesday in a bid to avert famine in seven at-risk countries.
- Netherlands Unveils Asia Strategy, Urges EU to Speak Out on South China Sea Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- The Netherlands is calling on the European Union to speak out more strongly on violations of international law in the South China Sea.
- Yemen's Ansarullah urges halt to arms sales to 'child-killer' Saudi Arabia Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Yemen's Houthi Ansarullah movement has praised countries that have adopted measures to halt arms sales to the "child-killer" regime in Saudi Arabia, calling on other world states to follow suit.
- Trump Administration Reportedly Intends to Designate Yemen's Houthis as Terrorists Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The Trump administration intends to designate Yemen's Iran-backed Ansar Allah (Houthi) movement as a terrorist organisation, Foreign Policy reported citing diplomatic sources.
- Iraqi army jets target Daesh remnants in eastern Diyala Province Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The Iraqi Army F-16 aircraft have targeted the positions of remaining Daesh terrorists in the eastern province of Diyala.
- New Armenia corridor will not affect transit through Iran: Transportation ministry Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Iran says transit through its northern roads and railways will remain unaffected by a new corridor planned to be opened in Armenia following a peace treaty between the country and its neighbor Azerbaijan.
- Armenia president urges PM to resign amid discontent at truce deal Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Armenian President Armen Sarkissian has called for the resignation of the prime minister and his administration, amid deepening outrage across the South Caucasus country at a truce deal with Azerbaijan.
- Armenian President Calls For Snap Elections As Government Faces Mounting Pressure Over Karabakh Deal RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- President Armen Sarkisian has called for holding early parliamentary elections in Armenia, saying that they are needed to resolve a political crisis sparked by the war in the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh.
- The United States Welcomes Cessation of Hostilities Between Armenia and Azerbaijan and Announces New Assistance to Respond to the Nagorno-Karabakh Humanitarian Emergency US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020 -- "The United States welcomes the cessation of active hostilities between Armenia and Azerbaijan."
- Turkey Approves Sending Troops To Joint Russian Monitoring Center In Azerbaijan RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- The Turkish parliament has passed a resolution to send troops to monitor a Russia-brokered peace accord between Azerbaijan and Armenia.
- Iran Denies Borders Change After Karabakh Peace Deal Radio Farda 17 Nov 2020 -- The spokesman for the Iranian Ministry, Saeed Khatibzadeh, has dismissed recent reports that Iran has lost its border with Armenia.
- Israel's new settlement plan for occupied Quds draws more intl. condemnation Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Israel's plans to build more than 1,200 new settler units in occupied Palestinian territories have drawn further international condemnation, with the Arab League calling it a "dangerous" move that needs to be addressed properly.
- Palestinian Authority to Revive Coordination With Israel After a Six Month Halt Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- In May, following a commitment by Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to extend sovereignty over parts of the West Bank in July, in accordance with the US President Trump's peace plan, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas announced that he now considered all agreements with Israel and the US to be void until the Trump plan is abandoned.
- Exclusive: Sudan minister reveals US pressured Sudan to normalize with Israel Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- US President Donald Trump placed Sudan under "heavy pressure" to normalize relations with the occupying regime of Israel and sought to use the normalization deal as a card in his favor during the US presidential election on November 3, a Sudanese government minister has told Press TV.
- Myanmar Pours Cold Water on Fresh Rohingya Repatriation Talks Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- Myanmar is not ready to join Bangladesh and China in talks on the repatriation of some 740,000 Rohingya refugees from Bangladeshi camps, a senior Naypyidaw diplomat said Tuesday, after Dhaka expressed hope for movement on the dispute following Myanmar's elections.
- The United States Condemns the Attack on Eritrea by the Tigray People's Liberation Front US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020 -- "The United States strongly condemns the attack carried out by the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) on the airport in Asmara, Eritrea, on November 14."
- Ethiopia Prepares 'Final and Crucial' Military Push in Tigray VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Ethiopia's prime minister said Tuesday that a "final and crucial" military push in the rebellious region of Tigray will take place in the coming weeks.
- UN: Ethiopia-Tigray Fighting Triggers Biggest Refugee Flight in Decades VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- An average of 4,000 women, children and men are crossing the Ethiopian border into eastern Sudan every day. The United Nations refugee agency reports those fleeing the fighting continue to arrive exhausted from the long trek to safety, frightened by their experience.
- Pompeo: US Condemns Attack by Tigray People's Liberation Front, Urges De-Escalation Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- The United States has denounced the attack by the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) on an airport in Eritrea and is calling on all parties to de-escalate, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement on Tuesday.
- 'Full scale' humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ethiopia's Tigray: UNHCR UN News 17 Nov 2020 -- A "full-scale humanitarian crisis" is unfolding as thousands of refugees flee ongoing fighting in Ethiopia's Tigray region each day to seek safety in eastern Sudan, the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) reported on Tuesday.
- Full-scale humanitarian crisis unfolding in Ethiopia: UNHCR Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) says a full-scale humanitarian crisis is unfolding in Ethiopia as thousands of people flee the country's northern, conflict-torn Tigray region and the border area with Sudan.
- Ethiopian PM declares deadline given to rebels in north over Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed says the three-day deadline given to rebel forces in the northern region of Tigray to lay down their arms has ended, warning of a final push to retake the regional capital, Mekelle.
- Sudan Offers Amnesty to Armed Groups VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Sudanese authorities who offered amnesty to the leaders of armed rebel groups last week held a peace ceremony to welcome them back to Khartoum.
- China ready to help bring long-term peace to Sahel region: envoy People's Daily 17 Nov 2020 -- China is ready to continue working with the international community towards long-term peace, stability and prosperity in the Sahel region, said a Chinese envoy to the United Nations (UN) on Monday.
- State Department Designates Two Senior Al-Shabaab Leaders as Terrorists US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020 -- Today, the Department of State has designated Abdullahi Osman Mohamed and Maalim Ayman, senior leaders of al-Shabaab, the Somalia-based al-Qa'ida affiliate, as Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs) under section 1(a)(ii)(B) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224.
- Briefing With Coordinator for Counterterrorism Ambassador Nathan A. Sales On Terrorist Designations of Al-Shabaab Leaders US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020
- 5 Killed in Mogadishu Bombing After Report That US Will Pull Troops from Somali VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- At least five people were killed, and eight others were injured following a suicide bombing near the main Somalia police academy in Mogadishu on Tuesday, officials said.
- China Bans Smoke Offerings Outside Lhasa's Jokhang Temple Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- China is now banning offerings of burnt juniper boughs and other fragrant smoke outside the iconic Jokhang temple in Tibet's regional capital Lhasa, with authorities citing concerns over air pollution, sources in the city say.
- Telephone conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and His Excellency Joseph R. Biden, President-elect of the United States of America India PIB 17 Nov 2020 -- Prime Minister Narendra Modi had a telephone conversation today with His Excellency Joseph R. Biden, President-elect of the United States of America.
- Trump Fires Cybersecurity Official VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- President Donald Trump announced Tuesday on Twitter that he had fired Chris Krebs, director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, for a recent statement Krebs made regarding election security.
- Al-Qaida 'On the Ropes' After 2 Decades of War VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Key U.S. officials are not backing down from their assessment that core al-Qaida, while still a threat, is in decline, brushing aside intelligence suggesting the terror organization remains entrenched in Afghanistan and may be growing stronger.
- Joint Statement by Attorney General of the United States William P. Barr and Fiscalía General of Mexico Alejandro Gertz Manero US Dept. of Justice 17 Nov 2020 -- Attorney General of the United States William P. Barr and Fiscalía General of Mexico Alejandro Gertz Manero issued today the following statement:
- The United States Leads the Fight Against Foreign Bribery and Transnational Corruption US Dept. of State 17 Nov 2020 -- The United States has long been a global leader in combatting foreign bribery, and our efforts are a key pillar of U.S. anti-corruption efforts. Bribery hinders the clean and competitive functioning of the global economy, distorts markets, and raises the cost of doing business around the world.
- Russian Bill To Grant Ex-Presidents Lifetime Immunity Passes First Reading RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- Russia's lower house of parliament, the State Duma, has approved the first reading of a draft bill that would grant sweeping lifetime immunity to former presidents.
- U.S. Senate Passes Anti-Doping Bill Named After Russian Whistle-Blower RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- The U.S. Senate on November 16 passed legislation granting U.S. officials the power to prosecute individuals responsible for doping at international sporting competitions involving U.S. athletes, sponsors, or broadcasters.
- US Reports 'Substantial Progress' in Countering Chinese Security Threat VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- The Justice Department is touting the success of its "China Initiative," saying it has achieved "substantial progress" in disrupting and deterring Chinese efforts to subvert U.S. economic and national security.
- Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Zhao Lijian's Regular Press Conference on November 17, 2020 PRC MofA 17 Nov 2020
- World expects Biden to 'fix ties with China' Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- Expectations around the world on Joe Biden to fix China-US ties from the damage caused by the Trump administration have risen, as Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong and former US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger urged Biden to restore lines of communication with China.
- China Says Changes Coming to Hong Kong Charter VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- A Chinese official says Beijing is considering changes to Hong Kong's mini-constitution after imposing a series of moves tightening its control on the semi-autonomous city.
- 'Right and proper' to allow only patriots govern Hong Kong: deputy director of HKMAO Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- It is "only right and proper" to demand that those who govern Hong Kong must be patriots, Deputy Director of the Hong Kong and Macao Affairs Office (HKMAO) Zhang Xiaoming said in a speech delivered at a forum, while defending the national security law for Hong Kong and the recent decision to disqualify a number of unpatriotic Hong Kong lawmakers.
- China Signals Judicial 'Reform,' Crackdown on Peaceful Dissent in Hong Kong Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- The ruling Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has signaled a further clampdown on dissent in Hong Kong, with a public denunciation of a pro-democracy group and apparent plans to make changes to the city's judiciary.
- Chinese embassy slams Czech criticism of disqualifying Hong Kong lawmakers Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- The Chinese Embassy in the Czech Republic said Tuesday that China expressed strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition to the statement from the Czech Republic's Ministry of Foreign Affairs concerning China's Hong Kong and criticizing China's decision to disqualify four local Legislative Council members.
- Xi stresses sticking to socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- President Xi Jinping has called for staying on the path of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics, and promoting the modernization of China's governance system and capacity along the path of the rule of law.
- China removes 41,700 bully-like village cadres: anti-mafia authority Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- China is stepping up its efforts to promote social stability and order at the grass-roots level by investigating and dealing with malign forces in villages across the country. As of October, China has cracked down on 1,175 mafia-like organizations and 13,422 criminal gangs in rural areas, removing 41,700 village cadres who were subjected to criminal punishment or involved in evildoings while in positions of powers at the grass-roots level, according to recent statistics released by the national anti-mafia authority.
- US, International Lawmakers Urge UN to Launch Probe of Rights Abuses in Xinjiang Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- Four U.S. Congressmen have led a group of international lawmakers in calling on the head of the United Nations to appoint an expert to investigate rights abuses against ethnic Uyghurs in northwest China's Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region (XUAR).
- China operates first deep-space antenna array system in Xinjiang region Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- China has completed building the country's first deep space antenna array system at a ground station in Kashi, Northwest China's Xinjiang, which will be directly used for spacecraft tracking and monitoring missions, including the Tianwen-1 Mars probe and the upcoming Chang'e-5 lunar sample return mission, the Xi'an Satellite Control Center, the Kashi station's operator, announced on Tuesday.
- BeiDou system passes verification standard of ICAO Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- China's domestically developed BeiDou satellite navigation system, or BDS, has passed an assessment of critical standardization work at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), state broadcaster China Central Television (CCTV) reported Tuesday, citing the Chinese civil aviation authority and China Satellite Navigation Office.
- China's Tianwen-1 Mars probe travels over 300 million kilometers PLA Daily 17 Nov 2020 -- As of the early morning of November 17, 2020, China's first Mars probe Tianwen-1 has been in orbit flight for 116 days, with a flight mileage of over 300 million kilometers and a distance of about 63.8 million kilometers from the earth, according to the China National Space Administration (CNSA). The probe is in stable condition with normal energy balance. Some sub-systems have completed self-checks, and all systems are working well.
- Leaders of separatist forces 'should be blacklisted' as report says Chinese mainland to sanction Taiwan secessionists: analysts Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- After a Hong Kong newspaper reported on Sunday that the Chinese mainland will formulate a blacklist of "stubborn Taiwan secessionists," both sides of the Taiwan Straits wondered who will make the list, as mainland experts said the blacklist should include the leaders, influential personnel of the secessionist forces, and the head of Taiwan's executive body.
- Landmine on Chinese Border Kills North Korean Special Forces Officer Radio Free Asia 17 Nov 2020 -- An exploding landmine killed a North Korean officer and maimed another soldier, the latest of dozens of casualties caused by mines laid to deter citizens from illegally crossing the country's border with China, sources told RFA.
- Trump Reportedly Asked Aides About Options For Striking Iranian Nuclear Site Radio Farda 17 Nov 2020 -- With two months left in office, U.S. President Donald Trump asked top aides about options to strike Iran's nuclear facilities, media reports say.
- Trump Reportedly Asked Aides About Options For Striking Iranian Nuclear Site RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- With two months left in office, U.S. President Donald Trump asked top aides about options to strike Iran's nuclear facilities, media reports say.
- Iran Vows 'Crushing' Response to US Attack as Trump Reportedly Mulled Striking Tehran's Nuclear Site Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- Media reports previously suggested that the Trump administration is struggling to create conditions that would prevent the US from returning to the nuclear deal with Iran, as POTUS is projected to lose the presidential race to Democrat Joe Biden.
- Iran will respond to any sort of adventurism by means of its legitimate military might: Diplomat Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Iran will respond to any act of 'adventurism' from its aggressors by means of its military prowess, says an Iranian diplomat, playing down reports about US President Donald Trump's intention to attack Iranian nuclear sites.
- Iran Government Spokesman Vows "Crushing Response" To Any U.S. Attack Radio Farda 17 Nov 2020 -- Reacting to a New York Times report about President Donald Trump's "possible moves" in the region, particularly against Iran, a spokesman for the Islamic Republic government said the likelihood of such actions was "low," but "any action" would face a "crushing response."
- Iran ready for full JCPOA commitment, but wary of US behavior: Khatibzadeh says in exclusive Press TV interview Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Speaking in an exclusive interview with Press TV, Iran's Foreign Ministry spokesman has said the Islamic Republic is prepared to return to full implementation of its nuclear agreement with world countries, but is wary of how the next US administration will act.
- Top Iran, UK diplomats discuss bilateral cooperation within JCPOA framework Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The top Iranian and British diplomats have exchanged views on bilateral cooperation within the framework of the 2015 nuclear agreement between Tehran and world powers.
- Iranian Politicians Trade Barbs As Economy Continues To Suffer Radio Farda 17 Nov 2020 -- Iran's Vice President, Eshaq Jahangiri, has accused the Speaker of Iran's Majlis parliament of having the "least possible knowledge of the economy."
- HRW: Iran Lax on Holding Accountable Those Responsible for Crackdown VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Iranian authorities have done little to hold accountable those responsible for the brutal clampdown on nationwide protests that erupted a year ago, according to Human Rights Watch.
- Trump Sought Ways to Attack Iran's 'Main Nuclear Site' in 'Coming Weeks', Report Claims Sputnik 17 Nov 2020 -- President Trump's advisors have apparently dissuaded him from ordering a military strike, warning that it would escalate the ongoing conflict between the United States and Iran "in the last weeks of Trump's presidency", according to a report by The New York Times.
- Pakistani Islamists End Protest Against France After Government Promise RFE/RL Gandhara 17 Nov 2020 -- An Islamist group on November 17 ended the blockade of an entrance into Pakistan's capital after the government promised to discuss the expulsion of the French ambassador.
- Pakistan govt. agrees to boycott French products after protests: Party Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- A Pakistani party says it has called off anti-France protests because the government has agreed to boycott French products over French President Emmanuel Macron's defense of offensive cartoons of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
- Former South African President Zuma Makes First Appearance Before Judicial Commission VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Former South African president Jacob Zuma appeared Monday before a commission investigating corruption allegations during his presidency.
- EU fully "determined" to reach agreement with UK: spokesperson Global Times 17 Nov 2020 -- The European Union (EU) is "100 percent determined to reach an agreement" with the United Kingdom on their future relations, despite a presumed deadline drawing closer, an EU spokesperson said on Monday.
- Welsh Tory leader contradicts Boris Johnson on devolution Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- The leader of the Welsh Tories has hit out at Boris Johnson's description of devolution as a "disaster".
- Boris Johnson under fire for incendiary comments on Scottish devolution Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has been widely criticized for his chauvinistic and insensitive comments on Scottish devolution.
- British PM Johnson: Giving Scotland Self-Governance Was 'Disaster' VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- British Prime Minister Boris Johnson triggered anger Monday in Scotland when he called the decision to grant Scotland governing powers "a disaster," and said he did not support granting the nation any additional powers. The reported comments come as surveys show rising support for a second independence referendum.
- Thai police use water cannon against protest outside parliament Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Riot police in Thailand have used water cannon to disperse protesters trying to cut their way through razor wire hurdles outside the parliament in Bangkok as legislators debated a possible revision of the constitution.
- Peru's Congress appoints third president in one week Press TV 17 Nov 2020 -- Peru's Congress has named centrist legislator Francisco Sagasti as caretaker president, amid a political crisis that has gripped the Andean country since its leader, who maintained an anti-corruption stance, was impeached last week.
- Pompeo Due In Georgia For High-Level Talks Focused On Security RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is scheduled to arrive in Georgia on November 17 ahead of talks with leaders of the South Caucasus country on the prospect of further deepening cooperation in the areas of defense and security.
- Bulgaria Blocks Start Of North Macedonia's EU Accession Talks RFE/RL 17 Nov 2020 -- Bulgaria has blocked the start of accession talks between North Macedonia and the European Union over a history and language dispute with its neighbor.
- Security Tops Concerns as Burkina Faso Prepares to Vote VOA 17 Nov 2020 -- Worsening security dominates the list of concerns in Burkina Faso, where voters will go to the polls Sunday to elect a president and national legislators.
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