British Ambassador to Russia Laurie Bristow addresses the media while leaving the Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow, Russia March 17, 2018. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich
British Ambassador to Russia Laurie Bristow addresses the media while leaving the Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow, Russia March 17, 2018. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

Russia retaliates by expelling 23 British diplomats


The National

Russia announced on Saturday it would expel 23 British diplomats and halt the activities of the British Council in response to London's measures over the poisoning of a former Russian double agent and his daughter.

"Twenty three diplomatic staff at the British embassy in Moscow are declared persona non grata and are to be expelled within a week," the foreign ministry said in a statement after summoning British ambassador Laurie Bristow.

Moscow said the move was a response to Britain's "provocative actions" and "baseless accusations over the incident in Salisbury on March 4," referring to the poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal with a nerve agent developed in the Soviet Union, which Britain has blamed on Russia.

Russia also said it was halting the activities of the British Council, Britain's international organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities, across the country.

"Due to the unregulated status of the British Council in Russia, its activity is halted," the foreign ministry said.

And the ministry had also warned Britain that "if further unfriendly actions are taken towards Russia, the Russian side retains the right to take other answering measures."

Britain said that it "anticipated a response of this kind" and officials would meet next week to consider the next steps.

“Russia’s response doesn’t change the facts of the matter - the attempted assassination of two people on British soil, for which there is no alternative conclusion other than that the Russian State was culpable," the UK's foreign office said in a statement.

The foreign secretary Boris Johnson said on Friday it was "overwhelmingly likely" that Vladimir Putin directed the use of the nerve agent on Britain's streets.

The Foreign Secretary's comments prompted a rebuke form Mr Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov. He said: "Any reference or mentioning of our president is nothing else but shocking and unpardonable diplomatic misconduct."

Moscow’s response to the expulsions came after UK police announced they were treating the death of another Russian exile as murder.

Nikolai Glushkov was found dead at his south London home on Monday, eight days after the attack on Mr Skripal. He died from ‘compression to the neck’, according to police. Mr Glushkov was a close friend of Vladimir Putin’s arch-enemy Boris Berezovsky who died in exile in 2013 at his mansion near London.

Detectives said that there was nothing to suggest a link between Mr Glushkov's death and that of Mr Skripal and there was no suggestion that he was poisoned.

Police have started to contact other Russian exiles to discuss their safety following a reassessment by security services, according to the BBC.

Sustainable Development Goals

1. End poverty in all its forms everywhere

2. End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture

3. Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages

4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all

5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

6. Ensure availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all

7. Ensure access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy for all

8. Promote sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth, full and productive employment and decent work for all

9. Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation and foster innovation

10. Reduce inequality within and among countries

11. Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable

12. Ensure sustainable consumption and production patterns

13. Take urgent action to combat climate change and its effects

14. Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development

15. Protect, restore and promote sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems, sustainably manage forests, combat desertification, and halt and reverse land degradation and halt biodiversity loss

16. Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels

17. Strengthen the means of implementation and revitalise the global partnership for sustainable development

What went into the film

25 visual effects (VFX) studios

2,150 VFX shots in a film with 2,500 shots

1,000 VFX artists

3,000 technicians

10 Concept artists, 25 3D designers

New sound technology, named 4D SRL

 

COMPANY PROFILE

Name: SmartCrowd
Started: 2018
Founder: Siddiq Farid and Musfique Ahmed
Based: Dubai
Sector: FinTech / PropTech
Initial investment: $650,000
Current number of staff: 35
Investment stage: Series A
Investors: Various institutional investors and notable angel investors (500 MENA, Shurooq, Mada, Seedstar, Tricap)

SPECS

Engine: 4-litre V8 twin-turbo
Power: 630hp
Torque: 850Nm
Transmission: 8-speed Tiptronic automatic
Price: From Dh599,000
On sale: Now

The Boy and the Heron

Director: Hayao Miyazaki

Starring: Soma Santoki, Masaki Suda, Ko Shibasaki

Rating: 5/5

The Pope's itinerary

Sunday, February 3, 2019 - Rome to Abu Dhabi
1pm: departure by plane from Rome / Fiumicino to Abu Dhabi
10pm: arrival at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport


Monday, February 4
12pm: welcome ceremony at the main entrance of the Presidential Palace
12.20pm: visit Abu Dhabi Crown Prince at Presidential Palace
5pm: private meeting with Muslim Council of Elders at Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque
6.10pm: Inter-religious in the Founder's Memorial


Tuesday, February 5 - Abu Dhabi to Rome
9.15am: private visit to undisclosed cathedral
10.30am: public mass at Zayed Sports City – with a homily by Pope Francis
12.40pm: farewell at Abu Dhabi Presidential Airport
1pm: departure by plane to Rome
5pm: arrival at the Rome / Ciampino International Airport

THE DRAFT

The final phase of player recruitment for the T10 League has taken place, with UAE and Indian players being drafted to each of the eight teams.

Bengal Tigers
UAE players: Chirag Suri, Mohammed Usman
Indian: Zaheer Khan

Karachians
UAE players: Ahmed Raza, Ghulam Shabber
Indian: Pravin Tambe

Kerala Kings
UAE players: Mohammed Naveed, Abdul Shakoor
Indian: RS Sodhi

Maratha Arabians
UAE players: Zahoor Khan, Amir Hayat
Indian: S Badrinath

Northern Warriors
UAE players: Imran Haider, Rahul Bhatia
Indian: Amitoze Singh

Pakhtoons
UAE players: Hafiz Kaleem, Sheer Walli
Indian: RP Singh

Punjabi Legends
UAE players: Shaiman Anwar, Sandy Singh
Indian: Praveen Kumar

Rajputs
UAE players: Rohan Mustafa, Ashfaq Ahmed
Indian: Munaf Patel

Confirmed bouts (more to be added)

Cory Sandhagen v Umar Nurmagomedov
Nick Diaz v Vicente Luque
Michael Chiesa v Tony Ferguson
Deiveson Figueiredo v Marlon Vera
Mackenzie Dern v Loopy Godinez

Tickets for the August 3 Fight Night, held in partnership with the Department of Culture and Tourism Abu Dhabi, went on sale earlier this month, through www.etihadarena.ae and www.ticketmaster.ae.

CREW

Director: Rajesh A Krishnan

Starring: Tabu, Kareena Kapoor Khan, Kriti Sanon

Rating: 3.5/5

Company Fact Box

Company name/date started: Abwaab Technologies / September 2019

Founders: Hamdi Tabbaa, co-founder and CEO. Hussein Alsarabi, co-founder and CTO

Based: Amman, Jordan

Sector: Education Technology

Size (employees/revenue): Total team size: 65. Full-time employees: 25. Revenue undisclosed

Stage: early-stage startup 

Investors: Adam Tech Ventures, Endure Capital, Equitrust, the World Bank-backed Innovative Startups SMEs Fund, a London investment fund, a number of former and current executives from Uber and Netflix, among others.

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I/O: Thunderbolt 3 (2), 3.5mm audio; Touch Bar with Touch ID

Connectivity: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.0

Battery: 58.2Wh lithium-polymer, up to 20 hours

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MATCH INFO

Uefa Champions League, Group B
Barcelona v Inter Milan
Camp Nou, Barcelona
Wednesday, 11pm (UAE)

Tips for taking the metro

- set out well ahead of time

- make sure you have at least Dh15 on you Nol card, as there could be big queues for top-up machines

- enter the right cabin. The train may be too busy to move between carriages once you're on

- don't carry too much luggage and tuck it under a seat to make room for fellow passengers

Remaining Fixtures

Wednesday: West Indies v Scotland
Thursday: UAE v Zimbabwe
Friday: Afghanistan v Ireland
Sunday: Final

Visit Abu Dhabi culinary team's top Emirati restaurants in Abu Dhabi

Yadoo’s House Restaurant+& Cafe

For the karak and Yoodo's house platter with includes eggs, balaleet, khamir and chebab bread.

Golden Dallah

For the cappuccino, luqaimat and aseeda.

Al Mrzab Restaurant

For the shrimp murabian and Kuwaiti options including Kuwaiti machboos with kebab and spicy sauce.

Al Derwaza

For the fish hubul, regag bread, biryani and special seafood soup. 

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Engine 3.6L V6

Transmission: Six-speed automatic

Power 275hp @ 6,000rpm

Torque 350Nm @ 3,700rpm

Fuel economy combined 12.2L / 100km

Aayan’s records

Youngest UAE men’s cricketer
When he debuted against Bangladesh aged 16 years and 314 days, he became the youngest ever to play for the men’s senior team. He broke the record set by his World Cup squad-mate, Alishan Sharafu, of 17 years and 44 days.

Youngest wicket-taker
After taking the wicket of Bangladesh’s Litton Das on debut in Dubai, Aayan became the youngest male cricketer to take a wicket against a Full Member nation in a T20 international.

Youngest in T20 World Cup history?
Aayan does not turn 17 until November 15 – which is two days after the T20 World Cup final at the MCG. If he does play in the competition, he will be its youngest ever player. Pakistan’s Mohammed Amir, who was 17 years and 55 days when he played in 2009, currently holds the record.