DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The latest on developments in the Persian Gulf region and elsewhere in the Mideast amid heightened tensions between the U.S. and Iran
The U.S. military command that oversees the Mideast has confirmed an explosion outside the U.S. Embassy compound in Baghdad and says there are no U.S. or coalition casualties.
A spokesman for U.S. Central Command, Bill Urban, says in a statement that Iraqi Security Forces are investigating Sunday’s incident.
A State Department spokesman says that “a low-grade rocket” landed within the International Zone near the U.S. Embassy and that there was no significant damage or impact on any U.S.-inhabited facility. Continue reading IRAN CRISIS: Saudi Arabia won’t hesitate to defend itself
President Trump warned Sunday that threats from Iran against the United States would mark that nation’s “official end” — taking a sharply more aggressive tone after a rocket landed inside Baghdad’s fortified Green Zone near the U.S. Embassy amid increasing tensions in the region. Continue reading US President Spells ‘official end’ of Iran and warned;“Never threaten the United States again!”
War With Iran? Count Us Out, Europe Says//Crimson Tazvinzwa
BRUSSELS — With strong memories of the last catastrophic war in Iraq, Europeans are united in opposing what many consider the United States’ effort to provoke Iran into a shooting war. Yet, despite the strains in trans-Atlantic relations in the Trump years, flat-out opposition to Washington remains an uncomfortable place for European nations.
Initially, not even pro-American Britain would go along with the Trump administration, with officials defending a senior British general in the coalition fighting the Islamic State who said that there was no enhanced threat from Iran in Iraq and Syria.
But that brought an American rebuttal, and soon the Europeans, reluctant to confront Washington directly, softened the criticism. Britain officially rowed back, saying that it now agreed with the Americans, while Germany and the Netherlands suspended their troop training in Iraq, citing the American warnings. (Germany subsequently said it was planning to resume the training exercises.) Continue reading US National Security Adviser John Bolton: “To Stop Iran’s BOMB, BOMB Iran”
Women in Iran had long assumed that they could bicycle in public if they respected the country’s strict dress code
Isfahan is known as the city of bicycles, a reputation forged by its many cycling lanes, a bike-sharing system, and a government that actively promotes biking — that is, unless you are a woman.
The prosecutor in Iran’s third largest city announced on May 14 that women have been banned from cycling in public, saying it was “haram,” or prohibited under Islam.
Women had long assumed that they could bicycle in public if they respected Iran’s strict dress code, which requires women to cover their hair and body in public.
In 2016, Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei appeared to crush the notion with a fatwa explicitly banning women from cycling in public, but it was not strictly enforced.
Now, Isfahan’s announcement is being taken as a sign that authorities are enforcing Khamenei’s fatwa, adding to the long list of activities that Iranian women are deprived of taking part in. Continue reading Iranian Women Banned From Cycling In Bike-Friendly Isfahan City
The flow of news continues from the Persian Gulf at a rapid pace. On Tuesday, sites connected to the oil industries of Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates were reportedly hit for the second time this week. And according to a New York Times report, the White House is considering military plans against Iran, one of which includes the dispatch to the region of a huge taskforce of 120,000 soldiers. (U.S. President Donald Trump denied the report on Tuesday.) Iran’s choice of targets is already causing unusual volatility in the oil market and is of concern to the Trump administration. Continue reading Analysis Iran Threatens the Saudi-U.S. Axis Without Taking Direct Responsibility