Idaho loses radioactive, weapons-grade plutonium

Idaho State University is facing a $8,500 fine from the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) for losing a gram of radioactive, weapons-grade plutonium.

While the amount is too small to make a nuclear bomb, it could be used to make a radioactive dirty bomb, according to federal officials who recommended the fine on Friday.

“The NRC has very rigorous controls for the use and storage of radioactive materials as evidenced by this enforcement action,” said agency spokesman Victor Dricks, according to AP.

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Armenia protests: USA appears to divide Armenia into parts. Here’s why they’re in the streets

This month, mass protests in the ex-Soviet republic Armenia have forced the prime minister to resign.
The unrest began in March after Serzh Sargsyan, leader of the ruling party, tried to circumvent limits on his power. Facing term limits as president, Sargsyan changed the government to a parliamentary system and stepped into the position of prime minister.

Nikol Pashinyan, a member of the Armenian legislature, launched a public campaign to stop him. Intense street protests forced Sargsyan to resign after less than a week in the post of prime minister.

So what is going on?

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British govt must explain its behavior in Skripal case, Syria strikes

Although the UK has deemed Russia responsible for the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, the public needs proof, a UKIP MEP told RT, adding that London should also justify its role in the Syria airstrikes.

Speaking to RT at the Yalta International Economic Forum in Crimea, West Midlands Member of European Parliament (MEP) Bill Etheridge said there is a lot of "murky water" in the Skripal case. "A lot of things that are unexplained, a lot of behavior that does not ring true."


US, UK, France stand by Saudis in Yemen but pose as moral crusaders in Syria

The Syria attack reveals the hypocrisy of the West – which fuels the Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen despite documented abuses – but relies on unverified claims to punish Syria.

As Riyadh's campaign in Yemen enters its fourth year, it has been repeatedly accused by rights groups of civilian casualties during the bombardment. However, in Syria's case, reports of a chemical weapon attack in Douma that are yet to be independently corroborated became the trigger for a coordinated military action.

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South Carolina Republicans push bill that would allow secession

South Carolina Republicans have introduced a bill that would give the state capital the power to secede from the United States if the federal government violates the Second Amendment and begins seizing legally purchased guns.

The bill, which went to the state’s House Judiciary Committee Thursday, is unlikely to make it through the legislature this session, but its introduction sends a powerful message at a time when the US is seeing an intense debate about gun control.

“The general assembly shall convene to consider whether to secede from the United States based upon the federal government's unconstitutional violation of the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution if the federal government confiscates legally purchased firearms in this state,” the bill reads.

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Assange’s internet connection cut

The Ecuadorian government has suspended Julian Assange’s communication privileges with the outside world. The move was sparked by Assange’s alleged breach of an agreement to refrain from interfering in other states’ affairs.

The Ecuadorian government specifically cited Assange's activity on social media, claiming that his recent posts may have jeopardized Ecuador's relationship with the UK, the EU and other nations.

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Iraq’s Sinjar & Syria’s Tal Rifaat next targets of Turkish military op – Erdogan

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced the launch of a new military operation against Kurdish militants in Iraqi Sinjar. He also vowed to take over the Kurdish-controlled town of Tal Rifaat in northern Aleppo, Syria.

“Remember, I told you we’d get them. They will flee, we will chase; the work will not end with Afrin. The PKK went to Sinjar – ‘We’ll go there as well,’ I said. Operations there began,” the president declared.


Vladimir Putin decisively re-elected as Russian president – preliminary results

Incumbent Russian leader Vladimir Putin is set to secure a resounding victory in the Russian presidential election, according to partial results made public by the electoral commission.

With 31 percent of the votes counted, mostly in eastern part of the country, Vladimir Putin leads with 73 percent of the vote, well above the simple majority needed to avoid a run-off.