Trump’s U-turn telling mil­i­tary to shoot stone-throw­ing mi­grants

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WASH­ING­TON: Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump on Fri­day back­tracked from his sug­ges­tion a day ear­lier that Amer­i­can troops sent to the US bor­der with Mex­ico would be free to fire on mi­grants who throw rocks at them, say­ing that rock-throw­ers would only be ar­rested.

“They won’t have to fire. What I don’t want is I don’t want these peo­ple throw­ing rocks,” Trump told re­porters out­side the White House.

“If they do that with us, they’re go­ing to be ar­rested for a long time.”

Trump’s rhetoric on shoot­ing mi­grants drew crit­i­cism from hu­man rights groups which said he was stok­ing fear ahead of this week’s con­gres­sional elec­tions.

Call­ing mi­grants a na­tional se­cu­rity threat “is as ab­surd as it is cruel”, ad­vo­cacy group Hu­man Rights First said.

In his com­ments, Trump sug­gested the mil­i­tary could fire on mi­grants who crossed the bor­der il­le­gally if they threw rocks at troops.

“They want to throw rocks at our mil­i­tary, our mil­i­tary fights back… I told them to con­sider it a ri­fle.

“When they throw rocks like they did at the Mex­ico mil­i­tary po­lice, I say: Con­sider it a ri­fle,” Trump said.

‘ED­U­CA­TION VI­TAL’

BAR­RAN­QUILLA: Colom­bia must in­vest more in ed­u­ca­tion if there is to be peace, pop star Shakira said on Fri­day, dur­ing a visit to her coun­try to close her El Do­rado tour and break ground at two schools to be built by her char­i­ta­ble foun­da­tion.

The singer at­tended cer­e­monies in Carta­gena and her home­town, Bar­ran­quilla, at the sites of the fu­ture schools. “… ed­u­ca­tion is what equalises us,” Shakira told jour­nal­ists. |

The Nige­rian army on Fri­day used Trump’s re­marks to jus­tify open­ing fire on Shi’ite Mus­lim pro­test­ers ear­lier in the week. Au­thor­i­ties have re­ported only a few killed, but a Shi’ite group said the toll was more than 40.

Af­ter Trump’s re­marks on Thurs­day say­ing stone-throw­ers should be treated as if they were car­ry­ing ri­fles, the Nige­rian Army posted a note on Twit­ter with a video of Trump’s re­marks, adding: “Please Watch and Make your De­duc­tions.”

The US pres­i­dent has hard­ened his stance on im­mi­gra­tion in a bid to rouse his po­lit­i­cal base ahead of the elec­tions. His Repub­li­can Party is in an up­hill fight to main­tain con­trol of the House of Rep­re­sen­ta­tives on Tues­day, although it is ex­pected to pick up seats in the Se­nate.

The Pen­tagon said on Mon­day last week it was de­ploy­ing more than 5 200 troops to the bor­der at Trump’s di­rec­tion to con­front a car­a­van of men, women and chil­dren trav­el­ling through Mex­ico as they flee vi­o­lence and poverty in Cen­tral Amer­ica.

Trump has char­ac­terised it as an “in­va­sion” of mi­grants.

Mex­ico has said 2 800 to 3 000 peo­ple are in the car­a­van, which left MANILA: An Aus­tralian nun whose mis­sion­ary visa was re­voked by the Philip­pines was leav­ing the coun­try yes­ter­day, but vowed to con­tinue help­ing im­pov­er­ished Filipinos fight for so­cial jus­tice.

Pa­tri­cia Fox, 71, from the Con­gre­ga­tion of Our Lady of Sion, said she was leav­ing “un­der duress” as she was still ap­peal­ing a de­por­ta­tion case. Her or­deal be­gan in April when she was de­tained af­ter Pres­i­dent Ro­drigo Duterte ordered an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into her ac­tiv­i­ties. | Hon­duras in mid-Oc­to­ber, although many are ex­pected to drop off be­fore reach­ing the US bor­der.

Trump also said on Thurs­day his ad­min­is­tra­tion was fi­nal­is­ing a plan to block im­mi­grants who do not come into the US at a le­gal port of en­try from ap­ply­ing for asy­lum, although fed­eral law al­lows any im­mi­grant in the US to do so.

Still, the mi­grant car­a­vans have pressed on.

On Fri­day, a smaller car­a­van from El Sal­vador crossed through a river to en­ter the Mex­ico’s south­ern state of Chi­a­pas. | NEW DELHI: A man-eat­ing tiger be­lieved to be re­spon­si­ble for the deaths of 13 peo­ple in western In­dia was shot dead af­ter an elab­o­rate hunt in­volv­ing for­est guards and sharp­shoot­ers, of­fi­cials and news re­ports said yes­ter­day.

The 6-year-old cat, nick­named Avni, had claimed the lives of vil­lagers near the Rale­gaon for­est in Ma­ha­rash­tra state’s Ya­vat­mal district since June 2016.

The tiger was killed in the re­gion late on Fri­day af­ter a three-month search, se­nior po­lice of­fi­cials said.

The state for­est de­part­ment had hired an ex­pert hunter and sharp­shooter and mounted an op­er­a­tion in­volv­ing nearly 200 per­son­nel, trap cam­eras, drones, a pack of trained snif­fer dogs and a hang-glider to trace her, broad­caster NDTV re­ported.

In Septem­ber, the Supreme Court re­fused to sus­pend shoot-on­sight or­ders for Avni, mother to two 10-month-old cubs, prompt­ing a flurry of on­line pe­ti­tions. Wildlife ac­tivists went on­line to protest Avni’s killing, say­ing the for­est de­part­ment could have cap­tured her in­stead of killing her, which or­phaned her cubs.

TV footage showed lo­cals c el­e­brat­ing and dis­tribut­ing sweets, say­ing they were re­lieved.

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