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India ready to share advanced defence equipment with Sri Lanka: Envoy

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Colombo, April 10 (IANS) Indian High Commissioner in Colombo Santosh Jha on Wednesday said that India is prepared to share the advanced defence equipment with Sri Lanka.

“We are not only producing our national requirements but we are also willing to make these capabilities available to our friendly partner countries like Sri Lanka,” the High Commissioner said.

He said that India’s defence exports stand at nearly 2.6 billion US Dollars a year.

He said that following the vision of Atmanirbhar Bharat or ‘self-reliant India’, there is a significant capability development within the Indian defence industry.

“Our government has promoted this vision through enabling policies and frameworks, initiatives such as the establishment of defence industry corridors, and supporting and handholding different stakeholders,” the High Commissioner said adding that the defence industry has been promoted to collaborations between private and government-owned enterprises.

He said that India has invested in research and development and promoted the use of innovation and new-age technologies to build the capabilities that are future-ready.

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He said that the Indian defence industry today rolls out state-of-the-art systems, advanced technologies and world-class equipment which ranges from fighter aircraft and helicopters to naval vessels, from electronic warfare systems to cyber security solutions and from small arms to large-calibre precision long-range artillery systems.

The High Commissioner said that over the last five-year there has been a ten-fold increase in defence exports. “India has exported defence hardware and software to more than 85 countries while more than 100 indigenous firms are active in the field,” he said.

The Envoy also explained the support extended to Sri Lanka, during the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic crisis.

“We are driven by the sense of responsibility and obligation for closest friend and neighbour. We stood shoulder-to-shoulder with our civilisational twins when it was needed most, and without any hesitation,” he said.

The High Commissioner reiterated that India’s approach to Sri Lanka was guided by the neighborhood-first policy and SAGAR vision.

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“For us, as close and proximate neighbours, cooperation is the only option. It is not driven by choice and opportunity alone,” he added.

–IANS

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Trump authorises fundraising page for victims of shooting at his Pennsylvania rally

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New Delhi, July 14 (IANS) Former US President Donald Trump, on Sunday, authorised a GoFundMe fundraising page for donations to the supporters and families of the spectators who fell victim to the shooting at his Pennsylvania rally.

Trump’s Presidential campaign’s call for action has raised $213,193 just within a few hours after it was set up.

The National Finance Director and Senior Advisor of the Trump campaign, Meredith ORourke, organised the fundraising campaign and wrote: “President Donald Trump has authorised this account as a place for donations to the supporters and families wounded or killed in today’s brutal and horrific assassination attempt.”

“All donations will be directed to these proud Americans as they grieve and recover. May God bless and unite our nation,” the organiser added.

Trump, who is due to be anointed the Republican Party’s Presidential candidate, had a narrow escape on Saturday when shots aimed at him at a campaign rally grazed his right ear and killed two people at the event.

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The FBI has identified the shooter as Thomas Matthew Crooks (20) of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania. Crooks was killed on the spot by the security officials after he fired shots at the former US President during a campaign rally in western Pennsylvania.

–IANS

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Afghanistan's central bank puts on auction $15 million

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Kabul, July 14 (IANS) Afghanistan’s central bank put on auction $15 million on Sunday in a bid to maintain the stability of the national currency afghani.

“The bidders including moneychangers and private banks should deposit the necessary money in cash in the form of afghani in the central bank, Da Afghanistan Bank,” a statement by the bank said on Saturday, reported Xinhua news agency.

According to the statement, the bank has requested all eligible banks and foreign exchange and monetary service providers to participate in the auction.

The bank auctioned $15 million last week.

Since assuming power in August 2021, the Afghan caretaker government has taken a series of measures to maintain the stability of afghani against foreign currencies.

–IANS

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Man found dead alongside his vessel in Australia

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Sydney, July 14 (IANS) A man was found dead alongside his vessel on a lake in Queensland state on Sunday, the second fatal boating incident in Australia.

The boat was reported missing in the morning. A search and rescue operation then kicked off at Lake Somerset, about 70 km northwest of Queensland state’s capital Brisbane, involving joint efforts by water police, specialist officers, aerial assets, and multiple other agencies, reported Xinhua news agency.

At 4.00 p.m. local time, police located the vessel in the water and the body of the 45-year-old man. Investigations into the circumstances of the incident are ongoing by Queensland Police.

The Somerset Lake incident occurred only a day after one man died and another survived while crossing the Tweed River bar in New South Wales’ far north.

At around 6.00 a.m. on Saturday, police attended the scene at the north wall of the Tweed River, where two people were seen clinging to the upturned hull of a 6.5-meter half-cabin runabout boat.

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One of them was taken to a nearby hospital for a precautionary examination, while the other could not be revived and was declared dead at Duranbah Beach.

–IANS

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One dead, two missing in floods in Philippines

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Manila, July 14 (IANS) At least one person died and two others were missing after floods hit parts of the southern Philippines over the weekend, a government agency monitoring disasters said on Sunday.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said that the lone fatality was due to drowning, reported in Davao Occidental province on Friday.

The two missing people were reportedly swept away by a strong current while crossing a river in Bukidnon province, reported Xinhua news agency.

The agency said the flooding affected nearly 39,000 people in four regions. Around 10,000 displaced villagers of the affected population have stayed in evacuation centres while waiting for the flood to subside.

The agency recorded at least eight landslides triggered by incessant rains in the Davao region and Zamboanga Peninsula.

The floods have damaged at least 47 houses in two regions, 40 roads, and two bridges in four regions of the Southeast Asian country.

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–IANS

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Trump's shooter identified as Thomas Matthew Crooks

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New Delhi, July 14 (IANS) Thomas Matthew Crooks (20) has been identified as the person suspected of shooting former US President Donald Trump in an attempted assassination, the FBI said in a statement.

“The suspected shooter was Thomas Matthew Crooks (20) of Bethel Park, Pennsylvania, as the subject involved in the assassination attempt of former President Donald Trump on July 13, in Butler, Pennsylvania,” said the FBI.

Crooks was killed on the spot by the security officials after he fired shots at the former US President, piercing through his ear, during a campaign rally in western Pennsylvania.

The FBI had earlier said that the shooting was being investigated as “an assassination attempt” on Trump.

The motive behind the assassination attempt, however, is yet to be revealed.

Trump, who is due to be anointed the Republican Party’s Presidential candidate, had a narrow escape on Saturday when shots aimed at him at a campaign rally grazed his right ear and killed two people at the event.

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–IANS

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