Iran foreign minister ridicules Trump ‘blunder’ at UN

Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif attends a meeting of Foreign Ministers during the Organization of Islamic Cooperation Extraordinary Summit in Istanbul, Turkey. (AP)
Updated 06 January 2018
0

Iran foreign minister ridicules Trump ‘blunder’ at UN

TEHRAN: Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif ridiculed US President Donald Trump on Saturday over what he called the foreign policy “blunder” of trying to raise its recent protests at the UN Security Council.
The Security Council “rebuffed the US’ naked attempt to hijack its mandate,” wrote Zarif on Twitter.
“Majority emphasised the need to fully implement the JCPOA (nuclear deal) and to refrain from interfering in internal affairs of others. Another FP (foreign policy) blunder for the Trump administration.”
The United States had pushed for the UN meeting on Friday to discuss the five days of protests that hit Iran last week, leading to the deaths of 21 people and hundreds of arrests.
US Ambassador Nikki Haley argued the unrest could escalate into full-blown conflict and drew a comparison with Syria.
“The Iranian regime is now on notice: the world will be watching what you do,” Haley warned.
But Russia’s envoy shot back that if the US view holds, the council should have also discussed the 2014 unrest in the US suburb of Ferguson, Missouri over the police shooting of a black teenager or the US crackdown on the Occupy Wall Street movement.
Britain and France reiterated that Iran must respect the rights of protesters, but French Ambassador Francois Delattre said the “events of the past days do not constitute a threat to peace and international security.”
China also described the meeting as meddling in Iran’s affairs, while Ethiopia, Kuwait and Sweden expressed reservations about the discussion.
Iran’s Ambassador Gholamali Khoshroo slammed the meeting as a “farce” and a “waste of time” and said the council should instead focus on addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict or the war in Yemen.
Iranian authorities have declared the unrest over, and held three days of large pro-government rallies across the country between Wednesday and Friday.
Iran signed a nuclear deal with the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Russia and China in 2015, easing sanctions in exchange for curbs to the country’s nuclear program.
US President Donald Trump has fiercely opposed the deal, but the other signatories remain firmly behind it.
Trump must decide every few months whether to continue waiving nuclear sanctions, with the next deadline due on Friday.
Analysts say there is a chance he may use the latest unrest as a pretext to reimpose sanctions.


Wife of former Malaysian PM Najib to be questioned by anti-corruption agency

Updated 25 September 2018
0

Wife of former Malaysian PM Najib to be questioned by anti-corruption agency

  • Rosmah was first questioned in June in connection with the investigation
  • A source familiar with the investigation said Rosmah would be questioned in connection with the 1MDB probe

KUALA LUMPUR: Rosmah Mansor, the wife of former Malaysian prime minister Najib Razak, was summoned on Tuesday for questioning by the anti-graft agency in its multi-billion dollar corruption probe at state fund 1MDB.
It was the second time Rosmah, 66, has been called in by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) since the shock defeat of Najib in the May general election.
Rosmah was first questioned in June in connection with the investigation, which is looking into allegations of corruption and misappropriation in state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Her husband has pleaded not guilty to charges of money laundering, abuse of power and criminal breach of trust.
The former first lady was served with a notice on Tuesday afternoon to appear before MACC the next day, her lawyer K.Kumaraendran said, adding that she was asked to assist with investigations under the anti-money laundering act.
A source familiar with the investigation said Rosmah would be questioned in connection with the 1MDB probe.
After filing fresh charges against Najib last week, Azam Baki, the deputy commissioner of the anti-graft agency, said more charges could be brought against individuals over 1MDB.
When asked if Rosmah could face charges, he said: “I’m not denying that.”
Rosmah’s penchant for designer handbags, watches and jewelry raised eyebrows in Malaysia, with opponents asking how she was able to afford the luxury items on her husband’s government salary.
She has drawn comparisons to Imelda Marcos, who left behind more than 1,200 pairs of shoes when her husband Ferdinand Marcos was ousted as president of the Philippines in 1986.
Najib and Rosmah have both been barred from leaving the country since the former’s election defeat, and their home and other properties linked to them have been searched by the police as part of the 1MDB investigations.
The haul seized from the properties included 567 handbags, 423 watches and 12,000 pieces of jewelry.
Najib has said most of the seized items were gifts given to his wife and daughter and had nothing to do with 1MDB.
The US Department of Justice has alleged more than $4.5 billion was misappropriated from 1MDB and that about $680 million ended up in Najib’s personal bank account. Najib has denied any wrongdoing.