Near New York City, New York
1884 08 10 19:07 UTC
This severe earthquake affected an area roughly extending along the Atlantic Coast from southern Maine to central Virginia and westward to Cleveland, Ohio. Chimneys were knocked down and walls were cracked in several States, including Connecticut, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. Many towns from Hartford, Connecticut, to West Chester,Pennsylvania.
Property damage was severe at Amityville and Jamaica, New York, where several chimneys were “overturned” and large cracks formed in walls. Two chimneys were thrown down and bricks were shaken from other chimneys at Stratford (Fairfield County), Conn.; water in the Housatonic River was agitated violently. At Bloomfield, N.J., and Chester, Pa., several chimneys were downed and crockery was broken. Chimneys also were damaged at Mount Vernon, N.Y., and Allentown, Easton, and Philadelphia, Pa. Three shocks occurred, the second of which was most violent. This earthquake also was reported felt in Vermont, Virginia, and Washington, D.C. Several slight aftershocks were reported on August 11.
By Aaron Boxerman13 Jun 2021, 9:41 pm
Palestinian factions in the West Bank and Gaza say they see little difference between the exiting government of Benjamin Netanyahu and the new “change government” led by Prime Minister Naftali Bennett.
Hamas, a terror group that rules the Gaza Strip, says Netanyahu’s departure will not end their attempts to destroy the Jewish state.
“No matter the form of the Israeli government, it will not change the nature of our dealings with [Israel]. It is a settlement occupation entity that must be resisted and from which our rights must be wrested by any and all forms of resistance, foremost of which is armed struggle,” says Hamas spokesperson Fawzi Barhum.
In Ramallah, the Palestinian Authority Foreign Ministry says in a statement that they expect to see few changes in Israeli policy towards the Palestinians under Bennett’s fragile eight-party coalition.
“This time, a government without Netanyahu was formed in Israel. However, it is inaccurate to call it a ‘government of change,’ unless one means to say that Netanyahu is no longer there. As for [the new government’s] policies, we estimate that will see no difference, or perhaps even worse ones, ” the Foreign Ministry says.
There are signs that a decline in nuclear arsenals witnessed since the end of the Cold War has stalled, a top research institute said, warning that both Russia and the United States appear to have attached greater importance to nuclear weapons in their defense policies.
The nine nuclear-armed states — the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom, France, China, India, Pakistan, Israel, and North Korea — held an estimated 13,080 nuclear weapons at the start of 2021, The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) said in its annual reportreleased on June 14.
That number represents a slight decrease from an estimated 13,400 weapons in possession of these states at the beginning of 2020.
However, the figure includes retired warheads waiting to be dismantled, and without them the combined military stockpile of nuclear arms rose from 9,380 to 9,620.
“The overall number of warheads in global military stockpiles now appears to be increasing, a worrisome sign that the declining trend that has characterized global nuclear arsenals since the end of the cold war has stalled,” said Hans Kristensen, a nuclear arms expert at SIPRI.
The United States and Russia still had more than 90 percent of all nuclear weapons, enough to destroy life on Earth many times over.
Despite the marginal overall decrease in nuclear weapons, the number of operationally deployed nuclear weapons increased from 3,720 to 3,825, SIPRI said.
Of these, around 2,000 were kept in “a state of high operational alert” and nearly all of them belonged to Russia or the United States.
While the United States and Russia continue to dismantle retired warheads, both were estimated to have had around 50 more nuclear warheads in operational deployment at the start of 2021 than a year earlier. Britain and France also have deployable warheads.
SIPRI did not provide estimates of the number of deployed warheads by the other nuclear states.
Meanwhile, both the United States and Russia are carrying out “extensive and expensive” programs to replace and modernize their nuclear arsenals, according to SIPRI.
“Both Russia and the United States appear to be increasing the importance they attribute to nuclear weapons in their national security strategies,” said Kristensen.
Earlier this year, the United States and Russia extended the New START nuclear arms reduction treaty for another five years. The treaty limits the number of deployed strategic nuclear forces but does not limit total nuclear warhead stockpiles.
“The last-minute extension of New START by Russia and the United States in February this year was a relief, but the prospects for additional bilateral nuclear arms control between the nuclear superpowers remain poor,” Kristensen said.
The report said the other seven nuclear powers are also developing or deploying new weapons systems or have announced their intension to do so.
“China is in the middle of a significant modernization and expansion of its nuclear weapon inventory, and India and Pakistan also appear to be expanding their nuclear arsenals,” SIPRI said.
RFE/RL journalists report the news in 27 languages in 23 countries where a free press is banned by the government or not fully established. We provide what many people cannot get locally: uncensored news, responsible discussion, and open debate.
No nuclear deal before presidential vote, says Iran negotiator
Vienna talks not expected to yield major breakthrough before June 18 Iranian elections
By AFPToday, 1:48 am
Iran’s Governor to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Kazem Gharib Abadi, Political deputy at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Iran, Abbas Araghchi, and Deputy Secretary General and Political Director of the European External Action Service (EEAS), Enrique Mora leave the ‚Grand Hotel Vienna where closed-door nuclear talks take place in Vienna, Austria, Wednesday, June 2, 2021. (AP/Lisa Leutner)
Iran’s chief negotiator at international talks on its nuclear program said late Saturday he did not think they could conclude this week, ahead of the country’s June 18 presidential election.
Russia’s representative at the talks made a similar point after emerging from talks in the Austrian capital Vienna, saying a few more weeks were required to finalize the existing text, according to a statement on Twitter.
“Personally, I don’t think that we can manage to reach a conclusion this week,” Iran’s Abbas Aragchi told the Iranian state broadcaster after the sixth round of talks resumed in Vienna.
Iranians will vote on June 18 to elect a successor to President Hassan Rouhani, who has served the maximum two consecutive four-year terms allowed by the constitution.
Several analysts have already said it was unlikely any deal would be concluded before the election was over.
Get The Times of Israel’s Daily Edition by email and never miss our top stories Free Sign Up
Representatives from Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and Iran are meeting in Vienna to bring the US back to the Iran nuclear deal and Tehran back into compliance with it.
The 2015 landmark accord has been hanging by a thread since US President Donald Trump took the United States out of the deal in 2018 and re-imposed sanctions. That led Tehran to step up its nuclear activities, long curtailed by the deal.
US President Joe Biden has indicated a willingness to rejoin the agreement once it is sure Iran is willing to respect its commitments.
Negotiators from the US are taking part indirectly in the EU-chaired discussions in Vienna.
A NUCLEAR ARMS race could erupt in the Asia Pacific region, according to leading experts, who warn that Japan, South Korea and Taiwan could all develop their own nuclear weapons to counter the threat of China and North Korea.
By Oli Smith 13:17, Sun, Jun 13, 2021 | UPDATED: 13:17, Sun, Jun 13, 2021
China: Expert discusses ‘fears of regional arms race’
Japan, South Korea and Taiwan could all push for nuclear weapons amid growing panic over the threat from China and North Korea. The rivalry in the Asia Pacific between major powers and their allies is fuelling a new arms race, according to Al Jazeera’s Rob McBride. A special advisor to the South Korean President told Al Jazeera that a “nightmare scenario” was developing.
Moon Chung-in: said: “If we fail to denuclearized North Korea, then there will be growing voice for the nuclearization in South Korea
“Then that will trigger pronuclear forces in Japan. Even Taiwan will be in the pushing for that idea.
“That would be the really nightmarish scenario.”
Mr McBride pointed to China’s “ballooning defense spending and its expansionist push in the region” as a point of concern for many countries.
Japan, South Korea and Taiwan could all push for nuclear weapons amid growing panic over China (Image: GETTY)
The rivalry in the Asia Pacific between major powers and their allies is fuelling a new arms race (Image: AL JAZEERA)
There remains the prospect that China could invade Taiwan, over which it claims sovereignty.
China sees Taiwan as a breakaway province and has threatened to create a conflict in order to unify it with their mainland.
Last month, Taiwan’s foreign minister also said China is “preparing for war” as the island country prepared for a potential clash.
Joseph Wu said Beijing has been trying to “cut off” Taiwan from the world with military moves and international pressure.
Mr McBride said: “Asia-Pacific is increasingly the arena for global rivalries to play out.
“In one camp, the United States and its allies, confronting an ever more assertive China and Russia, in what’s starting to feel like a new type of Cold War.
“And let’s not forget, of course, the North Korea factor.”
ROBERT BURNSJune 13, 2021 at 4:51 am Updated June 13, 2021 at 10:17 am
The Associated Press
WASHINGTON (AP) — At a low point in U.S.-Russian relations, President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin appear to agree broadly on at least one thing — their first face-to-face meeting Wednesday is a chance to set the stage for a new era in arms control.
Whether that leads to actual arms negotiations is another matter, complicated by the soured relationship and accusations by each country that the other has cheated on past arms treaties. The fabric of arms control has been fraying, notably with the abandonment in 2019 — first by Washington, then by Moscow — of the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, which had governed a whole class of missiles for more than three decades.
The Trump administration also pulled the United States out of the Open Skies Treaty, which had allowed surveillance flights over military facilities in both countries. Last month the Biden administration informed the Russians that it would not reenter the treaty, and last week Putin confirmed Russia’s exit.
Biden and Putin now face choices about how and when to restart a dialogue over arms control priorities, even as Biden faces pressure from Congress on China’s growing military might and North Korea’s nuclear ambitions.
Despite its importance, the arms control issue may get overshadowed at the Biden-Putin summit, given heightened U.S. focus on ransomware attacks, alleged Russian interference in U.S. elections, Russia’s military buildup on Ukraine’s border and allegations that the Kremlin was behind the SolarWinds hacking campaign.
International arms control groups are pressing the Russian and American leaders to start a push for new arms control by holding “strategic stability” talks — a series of government-to-government discussions meant to sort through the many areas of disagreement and tension on the national security front. There also are calls for such consultations to include Europe because the talks could cover a wide range of issues including cyberthreats, space operations and missile defenses, in addition to nuclear weapons.
Officials in Moscow and Washington have indicated they see value in strategic stability talks, which probably would not be an arms control negotiation but rather a series of discussions at lower levels aimed at deciding how to organize and prioritize an eventual arms control agenda.
“What we are looking to do is for the two presidents to be able to send a clear signal to their teams on questions of strategic stability so that we can make progress on arms control and other nuclear areas to reduce tension and instability in that aspect of the relationship,” Biden’s national security adviser, Jake Sullivan, said last week.
Washington broke off strategic stability talks with Moscow in 2014 in response to Russia’s annexation of Crimea and its military intervention in support of separatists in eastern Ukraine. Talks resumed in 2017 but gained little traction and failed during the Trump administration’s final weeks to produce an agreement on extending the New START treaty limiting nuclear weapons. Shortly after Biden took office in January, the two sides agreed to a five-year extension but with no road map for future talks.
Biden wrote in The Washington Post, previewing his trip to Europe, that he already has made clear to Putin that the United States wants to avoid conflict. Biden will attend a NATO summit meeting and consult with European Union officials before the Geneva session with Putin.
“We want a stable and predictable relationship where we can work with Russia on issues like strategic stability and arms control,” Biden wrote.
Putin said he, too, is ready for such talks.
“Strategic stability is extremely important,” Putin said June 3 in remarks to heads of international news agencies. “We don’t want to scare anyone with our new weapons systems. Yes, we are developing them, and we have achieved certain results and successes. But all leading countries and leading military powers are doing this, and we are just one step ahead.”
“We realize that other high-tech powers, such as the United States and other countries, will achieve similar results sooner or later,” Putin added. “Therefore, I believe that it is better to reach agreement in advance on how we will live together in a changing world. We are ready for this.”
Putin appeared to be alluding to what some call Russia’s exotic strategic weapons such as the Poseidon nuclear-armed, nuclear-powered torpedo and the experimental Burevestnik nuclear-powered cruise missile. Putin has said these can be discussed as part of a strategic stability dialogue. But the Americans must be prepared to include for discussion their work on strategic missile defenses, which Moscow has long called an impediment to arms control.
International arms control experts want to ensure that Europe has a place at the table. Some favor a restart of direct consultations between NATO and Russia, which were cut off after Russia seized Crimea, not as an arms control forum but as a means of discussing tensions and reducing risks of war.
In the past, the U.S., Europe and Russia shared a mutual understanding of the ways to avoid accidents and miscalculations leading to conflict.
“Today, however, clashing national interests, insufficient dialogue, eroding arms control agreements, advanced missile systems, and new cyber and hypersonic weapons have destabilized the old equilibrium and are increasing the risk of nuclear conflict,” U.S., European and Russian members of the Euro-Atlantic Security Leadership Group wrote in a statement last Monday urging more attention to arms control.
In a separate appeal to Putin and Biden, a group of Russian and American organizations, nuclear policy experts and former senior government officials called for resuming a strategic dialogue “that is regular, frequent, comprehensive and result oriented leading to further reduction of the nuclear risk hanging over the world and to the rediscovery of the road to a world free of nuclear weapons.”
Associated Press writer Vladimir Isachenkov in Moscow contributed to this report.
Thousands of people have attended a pro-Palestine solidarity march in London, calling on the Group of Seven (G7) leaders currently meeting in southwest England to support Palestinian rights.
As part of the “Resist G7: Day of Action for International Justice” rally, demonstrators on Saturday marched towards Prime Minister Borris Johnson’s official residence in Downing Street, chanting and holding placards to protest Israel’s policies in the occupied Palestinian territory.
The protesters demanded an end to what they said is complicity in Israel’s war crimes against the Palestinians by the United Kingdom and other G7 governments.
Former Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn attended the march and addressed the crowd.
“At today’s Justice For Palestine demonstration in London, I also called for a halt to arms sales,” Corbyn wrote on Twitter.
“UK-made weapons are killing civilians – including children – in conflicts abroad. This must stop,” he said.
The rally came as the informal club of seven leading economies – Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States – were meeting in Cornwall face-to-face for the first time in two years to tackle the global health crisis and climate change.
Al Jazeera’s Paul Brennan, reporting from London, said the focus of the demonstrators was “changing” and “evolving” ever since a fragile ceasefire was announced between Israel and Hamas, the group that governs the besieged Gaza Strip.
Israel’s 11-day bombardment of Gaza killed 253 Palestinians, including at least 66 children, leaving behind many buildings, homes and infrastructure destroyed in the besieged enclave.null
“What they’ve been talking about predominantly is BDS to try to force Israel to treat the Palestinian people better,” Brennan said, referring to the Palestinian-led Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement.
“The call from the protesters here to those G7 leaders is to actually pay some attention to this and take the issue seriously,” he said.
Protesters want to keep the pressure on so that action becomes “necessary and inevitable”, he added.
At the march, Raghad al-Takriti, president of the Muslim Association of Britain, said the message to the G7 leaders is “clear”.
“It is to uphold international law. It is adherence to international law,” al-Takriti told Al Jazeera.
“It’s time for these leaders to talk about enforcement, to end the siege on Gaza … and to stop their complicity, their arms deals with Israel,” she said.
Among the groups taking part were Friends of Al-Aqsa and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign (PSC), which estimated that some 8,000 people showed up outside Downing Street demanding justice for Palestinians.
In a statement, PSC said: “All governments have an obligation to end their complicity and help dismantle apartheid. Instead of aiding and abetting Israel’s racist rule over the Palestinian people, the G7 must end all military-security cooperation with Israel, and employ targeted sanctions until Israel complies with international law.”null
The protest was the latest in a series of pro-Palestine rallies which have taken place in London since tensions escalated in occupied East Jerusalem over Israel’s planned forced displacement of Palestinian families from Sheikh Jarrah, attacks on the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound, and Israel’s military assault on Gaza.
In recent weeks, hundreds of Palestinians have been arrested in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory for protesting Israel’s policies. Dozens have been wounded in confrontations with armed Israeli police.
At least four Palestinians – including a child – have been shot and killed since Thursday in the occupied West Bank alone.