Knives, nooses and show trials: Anonymous Tory MPs attack Theresa May using violent language

A number of Tory MPs have been quoted using violent language such as “bring her own noose,” to attack British PM Theresa May, claiming she is on course to face a vote of no confidence this week from all wings of the party.

On Wednesday, May will be summoned before the Tory backbench 1922 committee, in what has been described as a last ditch attempt for the PM to save her job – a process dubbed “a show trial” by one Conservative MP, the Sunday Times reports.

Ahead of the critical meeting, a series of Conservative MPs launched an unprecedented attack on May, with language more befitting of a trailer for a blockbuster war or action movie. The paper quotes one unnamed Tory MP as saying: “The moment is coming when the knife gets heated, stuck in her front and twisted. She’ll be dead soon.”

READ MORE: ‘I won’t let us go down without a serious s**t fight,’ says Tory MP in foul-mouthed anti-May rant

An ally of former Brexit secretary David Davis, who is being tipped as an interim leader said May was now entering “the killing zone”, and a third remarked: “Assassination is in the air.” The Mail on Sunday quotes one senior Brexiteer: “She should bring her own noose to the ’22. Short of an uncharacteristically powerful, persuasive and coherent performance, then I think her time will be up.”

The use of violent language against the PM has been widely condemned across the political spectrum. Labour’s Yvette Cooper, the head of the House of Commons home affairs select committee, told BBC 4’s Today programme such language was unacceptable, especially in light of the murder of Jo Cox MP in 2016.

“This is vile and dehumanising language towards a woman MP, towards a prime minister who, no matter how much you might disagree with her, is someone who is doing a job in public life,” she said.

First Minister of Scotland, the SNP’s Nicola Sturgeon, has taken to social media to say that in spite of their political differences “language like this debases politics.”

Times columnist Iain Martin insisted any MP identified as using such politically violent language should have the whip removed followed by deselection. Others questioned whether such language would have been aimed at a male PM and raised the issue of MPs who have either been murdered or have had threats on their lives.

Asked to comment on the use of such language, the PM’s official spokesman said: “I don’t intend to dignify those specific anonymous comments with a response.

“The prime minister has always been very clear that we must set a tone in public discourse that is neither dehumanising nor derogatory. Personal vitriol has no place in our politics.”

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Saudi operative wore Khashoggi’s clothes, acted as decoy to fool Turkish police – report

An unnamed senior Turkish official has told CNN that one of the 15-man hit squad that allegedly murdered Jamal Khashoggi was a doppelgänger who left the Saudi Consulate in the slain reporters’ clothes moments after the killing.

“You don’t need a body double for a rendition or an interrogation,” the official reportedly told CNN. “Our assessment has not changed since October 6. This was a premeditated murder and the body was moved out of the consulate.”

Surveillance footage allegedly provided by Turkish authorities to CNN purports to show Khashoggi’s lookalike, named as Mustafa al-Madani, leaving the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul via the rear entrance, wearing the journalist’s own clothes that he wore on October 2. Madani also dons a fake beard and glasses to appear more like his alleged victim.

Four hours before the killing, al-Madani was seen entering the consulate building beardless, wearing a blue and white checked shirt and dark blue trousers but, moments after the incident, al-Madani can be seen wearing what appears to be Khashoggi’s own dark blazer, open-collared grey shirt and trousers.  

“Khashoggi’s clothes were probably still warm when Madani put them on,” the senior Turkish official told CNN.

Madani, 57, is of similar age and build to Khashoggi, 59, and was reportedly brought in as a decoy to throw Turkish investigators off the killers’ trail.

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Activists protest the disappearance of Jamal Khashoggi during demonstration outside the White House in Washington © Reuters / Leah Millis

However, in the footage, Madani is wearing the same sneakers he had on prior to entering the consulate that do not match Khashoggi’s outfit. He then later appears at the city’s famous Blue Mosque, a popular tourist destination where he could blend in with the crowd, before changing back into his own clothes.

Additional surveillance footage allegedly shows Madani’s accomplices dumping Khashoggi’s clothes in a dumpster elsewhere in the city.

So far, the Saudis’ explanation for what fate befell Khashoggi has changed multiple times, having initially claimed his death was the result of a fistfight at the consulate, before claiming he had been placed in a chokehold and died accidentally, and later admitting that the journalist’s death was indeed murder and a “tremendous mistake.”

Khashoggi’s remains have yet to be found as pressure mounts on the Saudi government to clarify the circumstances of the dissident, vocal al-Saud critic and Washington Post journalist’s death.

Turkish officials have repeatedly leaked to the media throughout the ongoing investigation which has drawn global media attention and political uproar among the international community.

Authorities in Turkey have yet to confirm or deny the existence of a rumored audio recording of the killing from inside the consulate.

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Eat like Khabib! – The Dagestani food that fuels the UFC champ (VIDEO)

RT Sport travels to Dagestan, Russia, to explore the food that fueled UFC champ Khabib Nurmagomedov to the lightweight crown. Danny Armstrong tries some traditional Dagestani delicacies – and they aren’t your everyday sports diet.

READ MORE: The crazy life of Khabib Nurmagomedov: From brawls & bans to 50 Cent & Floyd (VIDEO)

Dagestan is more famous for its fighters rather than its food, but a good chunk of athletes from there have been fueled by the cuisine from the Southern Russian region in the North Caucasus. 

We teach you the difference from your ‘khinkal’ and your ‘kurze’, and explore the rich local dishes of UFC champ Khabib Nurmagomedov, to find out how to eat like a true Dagestani warrior.

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Saudi Arabia says scandal over Khashoggi killing won't trigger another oil crisis

There will not be a repeat of the 1973 oil embargo despite the crisis over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, the Saudi energy minister reportedly said on Monday.

On Friday, Saudi Arabia admitted for the first time that Khashoggi — a critic of Saudi leaders and former Washington Post journalist — had been killed by Saudi agents. Over the weekend, the US increased pressure on Riyadh with talk of possible sanctions. Some have accused Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman of ordering the killing, a charge he has denied.

Speculation about possible sanctions against Riyadh have raised questions about the repeat of the 1973 oil crisis, when OPEC proclaimed an oil embargo against countries supporting Israel during the Yom Kippur War. The United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, Japan and the Netherlands were among the first sanctioned countries.

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Saudi Deputy Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman © REUTERS/File Photo provided by a third party.

The embargo was later extended to South Africa, Rhodesia and Portugal. The embargo caused a sharp spike in oil and gasoline prices with long-term negative effects on the global economy.

“There is no intention,” Saudi Arabia’s Minister of Energy Khalid al-Falih told TASS news agency when asked whether the kingdom could impose the 1973-style oil embargo.

“This incident will pass. But Saudi Arabia is a very responsible country, for decades we used our oil policy as (a) responsible economic tool and isolated it from politics,” al-Falih said.

“My role as the energy minister is to implement my government’s constructive and responsible role and stabilizing the world’s energy markets accordingly, contributing to global economic development.”

With US sanctions against Iran coming up and possible sanctions against Saudi Arabia, analysts have said that oil could rise above $ 100 per barrel. “I cannot give you a guarantee, because I cannot predict what will happen to other suppliers,” al-Falih said, when asked if the market could avoid crude trading at triple-digits again.

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Centrist saviour or hypocrite? David Miliband reminded of his Saudi dealings as he decries Yemen War

Did David Miliband forget Britain’s selling of Typhoon fighter jets to Saudi Arabia while he was Foreign Secretary? The ex-MP was labelled a hypocrite after he decries the kingdom over their war in Yemen.

Tweets derided the former MP and his apparent aboutface. One read: “Typhoon jets anyone,” while another asked: “Didn’t you approve the sale of fighter jets now bombing them [Yemenis] when [you were] foreign secretary?”

One tweet from the anti-War on Terror group Cage UK read: “David Miliband when Foreign Sec used to sell the same bombs that kill the people he now wants to help…”

Miliband was made the UK’s Foreign Secretary in June 2007, the day after Gordon Brown became PM. On September 17, that year, Saudi Arabia confirmed that they had ordered 72 Eurofighter Typhoon warplanes from the UK at a cost of £4.43 billion, then $ 8.86 billion.

READ MORE: Beyond Orwellian: Myth of UK’s ‘non-intervention’ in Syria

Most famous in the UK for losing the Labour leadership race to his brother Ed, Miliband left frontline politics in 2010, he is now the President of the partly-US funded International Rescue Committee, who have boasted Henry Kissinger and Madeline Albright on their ‘Board of Directors and Overseers.’

As well as his questionable dealings with the Saudis, Miliband has a host of other allegations stemming from his time heading up the Foreign Office. Historian Mark Curtis, writing in the Middle East Eye, detailed how Julian Assange’s Wikileaks exposed Miliband’s foreign office for “helping the US to sidestep a ban on cluster bombs and keep the weapons at US bases on UK soil,” among other allegations.

Miliband is one of a plethora of establishment figures who have denounced Saudi Arabia over the killing of Jamal Khashoggi, despite past or current dealings with the country, including liberal publications in both the UK and US.

In his tweet, Miliband linked to a slick New York Times piece, published on Saturday headlined: “This is the front line of Saudi Arabia’s invisible war.”

The UN warned of widespread famine that could affect 13 million people three years ago, and their warnings haven’t ceased.

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Streets turned icy rivers: Rome battered by hailstorm & heavy rain (PHOTO, VIDEO)

Chilling pictures and videos of a heavy rainstorm battering Rome have emerged online. Nature’s rage got to the point where people were trapped in their half-submerged cars.

Images of cars being almost completely submerged by the floods and pieces of ice floating right through the streets have been circulating on social media. People who shared the videos and photos said they’ve never seen anything like it before.

Firefighters appeared to be quite busy on Sunday night, having received over 100 emergency calls. Local media report people left stranded on the roofs of their cars after they climbed onto them to avoid getting trapped as torrents swept through.

Rainfall reached almost a meter in some areas of the city. At least six tube stations have closed across the city.

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India offloading US Treasuries to support national currency & buy gold

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) is cutting down on its holding of US Treasuries, joining a number of countries which have been dumping US debt to bolster domestic economies.

The country’s share of US sovereign debt saw a gradual decline from $ 157 billion in March to $ 140 billion as of the end of August, according to the latest US Treasury report. RBI needed US dollars to sell in the market to stop the steep slide of its currency, the rupee. The bank has sold foreign currencies worth $ 18.6 billion in the spot market since April to rein the value of the rupee.

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© Sputnik / Natalia Seliverstova

Foreign portfolio investors (FPI) have pulled out more than $ 10 billion of their investments in the Indian markets since April. That has resulted in rupee losing more than 10 percent in value against the dollar.

“If FPI flows do not revive amid an US-China trade war, the RBI may need to sell another $ 10-15 billion by March,” said Bank of America Merrill Lynch. According to its report, there could be more pressure on India’s central bank to sell US bond holdings in order to meet the dollar demand.

Experts say the RBI may be using part of the sales proceeds of the US bonds to buy gold. Statistics showed that the bank’s gold reserves grew to 18.64 million troy ounces in August from 18.01 million troy ounces in March 2018.

Liquidating US sovereign bonds has recently become a trend among major holders. The latest data showed that Russia has dumped nearly all of its holdings of US debt, trimming 84 percent of them during 2018. Turkey’s share of US Treasuries fell by 42 percent in the first half of the current year.

READ MORE: Warning shot? China sells US Treasury bonds amid trade war

Japan and China, the biggest holders of the US securities, have also reduced their shares in August. Tokyo cut its holdings to $ 1.029 trillion, the lowest since October 2011. Beijing’s holdings are down to $ 1.165 trillion, from $ 1.171 trillion in July, marking the third consecutive month of declines.

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'Absolutely disgraceful!’ Calls for Ryanair boycott in wake of passenger’s racist rant (VIDEO)

People are calling for a boycott of Ryanair after the airline failed to apologize for its handling of an incident in which one of its passengers was subjected to a racist verbal attack by another.

The airline responded to public outrage on Sunday to say they had made Essex Police aware of the incident and that it was no longer their matter. However, the absence of a public apology to the passenger subjected to the rant and allowing her aggressor to remain on board has people vowing to never fly with the airline again.

The backlash began after footage was posted online Friday showing a woman being racially abused by a fellow passenger aboard a Ryanair flight from Barcelona to London. In the video, Ryanair staff failed to put a stop the racist tirade in which the woman was threatened and called an “ugly, black b*****d.

READ MORE: ‘Ugly, black b******’: Passenger launches racist rant at woman on Ryanair flight (VIDEO)

Furthermore, the abusive passenger was allowed to remain on the flight, and in his seat, while the victim was relocated elsewhere on board.

On Sunday, a spokesperson for Ryanair told RT that the incident has been reported to Essex Police, but did not comment on the airline’s policy for protecting passengers from racism or verbal abuse. In a statement to RT.com, Essex Police said they were only “made aware” of the incident at a Spanish airport on Sunday morning, and confirmed they are looking into it.

In a statement to the BBC, Ryanair said they “operate strict guideline for disruptive passengers” and claimed they will not tolerate “unruly behavior”:

We will be taking this matter further and disruptive or abusive behaviour like this will result in passengers being banned from travel,” read the statement. It’s unclear whether this is a new policy for passengers or if it was simply not implemented on this occasion.

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NASA’s sea ice survey captures bizarre, perfectly rectangular iceberg (PHOTO)

NASA’s ongoing, decades-long survey of polar ice has yielded some truly incredible photographs over the years, but one recent still captured what appears to be a perfectly, almost impossibly rectangular iceberg.

Snapped by NASA’s ICE mission, as part of Operation IceBridge, the giant tabular iceberg borne of the Larsen C ice shelf looks as though it was neatly cut from the wider ice shelf using a giant band saw.

As with regular icebergs, just 10 percent of its mass is visible in the picture, though the subsurface mass is would look similar to what’s visible above.  

We tend to think of icebergs as jagged and pointy, with the bulk beneath the surface, and with a penchant for ruining DiCaprio romances.

However, tabular icebergs are immense slabs of ice with a flat top and vertical sides that form by ‘calving’ or splintering off a much larger ice shelf. They can take more geometrically pleasing shapes than their more rugged, non-tabular counterparts.

These particular icebergs can be truly immense, measuring hundreds and occasionally thousands of square kilometers across, such as the 11,000 square kilometer (4,200 square mile) B-15, the world’s largest free-floating object ever recorded.

NASA boffins have yet to measure this latest contender, but early estimates indicate it’s unlikely to topple B-15 off the top spot for world’s biggest iceberg, at a paltry (though still impressive, let’s be honest) 1.6km wide.

READ MORE: Build that wall: Climate scientists propose walling off Antarctic ice sheets to protect them

The incredibly clean edges indicate how new this iceberg is, as the wind and the sea have yet to erode its flanks.

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US pressures SWIFT to cut off Iran from global banking transactions to enforce sanctions

The US aims to disconnect Iran from the SWIFT global payment network as part of new economic sanctions against the Islamic Republic in November. Disconnection from network would make it difficult for Iran to get paid for exports.

“I can assure you our objective is to make sure that sanctioned transactions do not occur whether it’s through SWIFT or any other mechanism,” US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin told Reuters on Sunday. “Our focus is to make sure that the sanctions are enforced.”

After tearing up the 2015 Iran nuclear deal (JCPOA) in May to introduce sanctions against the Islamic Republic, the first round of American punitive measures targeting metals trading, coal, industrial software, and the auto sector took effect in August.

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Russian ruble pictured in front of the Kremlin in Moscow © Sputnik / Iliya Pitalev

A second round, scheduled to take effect on November 4, will target Iran’s oil sales and the central bank.

While the Trump administration is pressuring its allies to cut Iranian oil imports to “zero” next month, the White House also seeks to hit Tehran hard by cutting the country off from SWIFT, a Belgian-based financial messaging service. In doing so, Iran would lose its ability to be paid for its exports and to pay for imports.

In 2012, the EU imposed sanctions on Iranian banks, forcing SWIFT, which is subject to EU laws, to cut financial transactions with at least 30 of Iran’s financial institutions, including the central bank.

Iranian banks were reconnected to the network in 2016 after the Iran nuclear deal came into force, allowing much needed foreign cash to flow into Tehran’s coffers.

Now Washington is once again exerting pressure on its European allies to force SWIFT to cut off Iranian banks from financial transactions, allowing only transactions that deal with humanitarian aid to the country. “We want to get to the right outcome, which is cutting off transactions,” Mnuchin said.

As President Donald Trump tries to tighten the noose on Iran, cutting Tehran off from SWIFT might be a far-fetched idea – as long as Germany, France, and the UK remain parties to the Iran nuclear deal.

READ MORE: Iran considers SWIFT payment system alternative to bypass US sanctions

In fact, the other two members of the nuclear agreement – Russia and China – are both pursuing their own payment systems to bypass the SWIFT network. Germany has also recently suggested creating a rival European payment system based on the euro in order to bypass US sanctions.

SWIFT is a financial network that provides high-value cross-border transfers for members across the world. It is based in Belgium, but its board includes executives from US banks with US federal law allowing the administration to act against banks and regulators across the globe. It supports most interbank messages, connecting over 11,000 financial institutions in more than 200 countries and territories.

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