Thursday, February 23, 2017

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  • Reports of clashes between rival groups in Rae Bareli Sadar and Mahoba seats in 4th phase of polling in UP

Trump admin withdraws Obama's order on transgender studentsFormer US President Barack Obama.

Trump admin withdraws Obama's order on transgender students

23 Feb 2017 | 9:30 AM

WASHINGTON: The Trump administration has revoked the Obama-era regulations that extended certain protections to transgender students, allowing them to use bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identities.

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Washington, February 23

The Trump administration has revoked the Obama-era regulations that extended certain protections to transgender students, allowing them to use bathrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identities.

The roll-back announced on Wednesday by the Department of Justice and Education Department resulted in a furious reaction from the opposition Democratic party leaders.

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The Trump administration cited too many lawsuits and legal loopholes in the Obama-era regulation, which required public schools to allow students to use the bathrooms corresponding to their gender identities, as one of the reasons for its roll back.

It informed the Supreme Court that they are revoking guidance from the Departments of Education and Justice that clarified that transgender students are protected from sex discrimination by Title IX, the federal law that bars gender discrimination.

The guidance, which was issued last May by the Obama administration, reiterated the rights of transgender students to use restrooms and facilities consistent with their gender identity.

"The guidance issued by the previous administration has given rise to several legal questions. As a result, a federal court in August 2016 issued a nationwide injunction barring the Department from enforcing a portion of its application," said US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos.

"Since that time, the Department has not enforced that part of the guidance, thus there is no immediate impact to students by rescinding this guidance. This is an issue best solved at the state and local level. Schools, communities, and families can find – and in many cases have found – solutions that protect all students," DeVos said.

The US Attorney General Jeff Sessions said the prior guidance documents did not contain sufficient legal analysis or explain how the interpretation was consistent with the language of Title IX. The Department of Education and the Department of Justice therefore have withdrawn the guidance, he said.

"Congress, state legislatures, and local governments are in a position to adopt appropriate policies or laws addressing this issue. The Department of Justice remains committed to the proper interpretation and enforcement of Title IX and to its protections for all students, including LGBTQ students, from discrimination, bullying, and harassment," Sessions said.

A furious Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said withdrawing "the historic guidance from" the Obama administration to protect transgender students is "a cruel blow" to an already vulnerable group of young people.

"This move shows that President Trump cannot be trusted to defend the rights of LGBT Americans.  This is not a state issue. This is an issue of equality for all. The administration's wanton disregard of protecting the civil rights of the LGBT community is harmful to our communities and our schools," she said.

Senator Ben Cardin wished that the Trump administration would have considered the mental and physical wellbeing of the transgender students being targeted by this action rather than appeasing his political base.

"Today's withdrawal of civil rights protections afforded to transgender students under Title IX by the Departments of Education and Justice is a tragic step backward for these children. It is alarming that the primary enforcers of federal civil rights protections for students have chosen to turn their back on some of the most vulnerable children in our classrooms," he said.

"Regardless of a student's zip code, they deserve a safe learning environment where they are able to reach their full academic potential," Cardin said in a statement.

American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) LGBT Project director James Esseks said revoking the guidance shows that Trump's promise to protect LGBT rights was just empty rhetoric. ACLU said it would challenge the revocation in court.

ACLU Senior Staff Attorney Joshua Block, who is lead counsel for Gavin Grimm at the Supreme Court in March in the case Gloucester County School Board v. GG, said while it's disappointing to see the Trump administration revoke the guidance, the administration cannot change what Title IX means.

"When it decided to hear Gavin Grimm's case, the Supreme Court said it would decide which interpretation of Title IX is correct, without taking any administration's guidance into consideration. We're confident that that the law is on Gavin's side and he will prevail just as he did in the Fourth Circuit," Block said. —PTI

Trump spares ‘dreamer’ immigrants

Trump spares ‘dreamer’ immigrants

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

Nearly 3 lakh Indian-Americans are likely to be impacted by the Trump administration’s plans that put the nation’s 11 million undocumented immigrants at risk of deportation

Scotland Yard gets 1st  woman chief  in 187 yrs

Scotland Yard gets 1st woman chief in 187 yrs

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

LONDON:Senior British officer Cressida Dick has been appointed as the commissioner of London's Metropolitan Police, becoming the first woman to lead Scotland Yard in its 187-year history.

UK top court okay with income test for non-EUs

UK top court okay with income test for non-EUs

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

LONDON:Britain’s top court backed a government attempt to limit immigration by ruling on Wednesday that an income test for those who want to bring their non-European spouses to the UK is acceptable and does not infringe human rights.

WH: Gitmo healthy for national security

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

WASHINGTON:The Trump administration has indicated that it is unlikely to close the controversial Guantanamo Bay prison for dangerous terror suspects, saying it is serving a “healthy purpose” towards the national security.

Pak rule of Balochistan ‘an occupation’: Khan of Kalat

Pak rule of Balochistan ‘an occupation’: Khan of Kalat

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

The present Khan of Kalat, Mir Suleman Khan Ahmedzai, whose ancestors once ruled much of Balochistan, is expected to tell a seminar in London on Thursday that Balochistan’s accession to Pakistan in 1948 was an “occupation of Balochistan”.

By the way...

Prince Harry to shift to US after marriage?

23 Feb 2017 | 1:46 AM

Los Angeles: Prince Harry, the grandson of Queen Elizabeth II, is reportedly planning to move to the US following his wedding to Hollywood actress Meghan Markle.

7 Earth-sized exoplanets spotted

7 Earth-sized exoplanets spotted

23 Feb 2017 | 2:02 AM

HOUSTON:For the first time, seven Earth-sized exoplanets that may be able to sustain life have been discovered orbiting a star 39 light years away, astronomers said today.

Pak Army launches nationwide military ops 'Radd-ul-Fasaad'

Pak Army launches nationwide military ops 'Radd-ul-Fasaad'

22 Feb 2017 | 9:05 PM

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Army on Wednesday launched nationwide military operation 'Radd-ul-Fasaad' to eliminate terrorists and consolidate gains of counter-terrorism operations made so far, days after a suicide bomber killed 88 people at the Sufi shrine of Lal Shahbaz Qalandar in Sindh.

UK appoints 1st female Scotland Yard chief in 188 years

UK appoints 1st female Scotland Yard chief in 188 years

22 Feb 2017 | 8:53 PM

LONDON: The British government says senior officer Cressida Dick will be the next commissioner of London’s Metropolitan Police the first woman to lead Scotland Yard in its 188-year history.

Turkey to allow female soldiers to wear headscarves

Turkey to allow female soldiers to wear headscarves

22 Feb 2017 | 8:55 PM

ANKARA: Turkey will allow female soldiers to wear a headscarf with their uniforms, defence ministry officials said on Wednesday, marking a symbolic shift for a military that has traditionally seen itself as a guardian of state secularism.

Muslim-Americans raise $55,000 to repair Jewish cemetery

22 Feb 2017 | 8:47 PM

WASHINGTON:In a demonstration of solidarity, an online donation drive by Muslim Americans to help repair a vandalised Jewish cemetery has raised more than $55,000 — almost three times its target.

Pakistan orders unspecified number of helicopters from Italy

22 Feb 2017 | 8:40 PM

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has ordered an undisclosed number of AgustaWestland intermediate helicopters from Italy to perform utility and transport operations.

Islamic court legalises ‘test tube babies’ in Pakistan

Islamic court legalises ‘test tube babies’ in Pakistan

22 Feb 2017 | 6:29 PM

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan’s top Shariat court has validated the option of using ‘test tube baby’ method for conceiving for the married couples having some medical complications.

Shooting scare at Houston hospital turns out to be hoax

22 Feb 2017 | 1:07 PM

HOUSTON: Panic gripped a hospital in the US state of Texas following a false alarm of gunfire, leading to evacuation of patients.

Missouri man charged with trying to plan terrorist attack

22 Feb 2017 | 11:44 AM

KANSAS CITY: A Missouri native who said he wanted to participate in a terrorist attack that would cause many deaths and injuries is charged with helping plan a Presidents Day attack on buses, trains and a train station in Kansas City, federal officials have said.

British IS bomber was ex-Guantanamo Bay detainee: Report

22 Feb 2017 | 11:41 AM

LONDON: A suicide bomber from the Islamic State group was a British citizen detained at Guantanamo Bay, a family member told The Times newspaper on Wednesday.

Israeli PM blasts UN 'hypocrisy'

Israeli PM blasts UN 'hypocrisy'

22 Feb 2017 | 9:06 PM

SYDNEY: Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull offered a staunch defence of Israel on Wednesday, criticising the United Nations and vowing never to support “one-sided resolutions” calling for an end to Israeli settlement building on occupied land.

Guantanamo Bay prison healthy for national security: White House

Guantanamo Bay prison healthy for national security: White House

22 Feb 2017 | 11:30 AM

WASHINGTON: US President Donald Trump believes that the Guantanamo Bay prison is serving a healthy purpose towards the national security, the White House has said, indicating that its closure is unlikely.

Malaysia identifies N Korean embassy official among suspects

Malaysia identifies N Korean embassy official among suspects

22 Feb 2017 | 4:51 PM

KUALA LUMPUR: The Malaysian police identified a senior official in the North Korean embassy on Wednesday as a suspect in the murder of Kim Jong Nam, and said another was linked to North Korea’s state airline.

China defends deportation of Taiwan citizens

22 Feb 2017 | 11:07 AM

BEIJING: China on Wednesday defended the deportation of Taiwan citizens involved in overseas telecom fraud cases to China as having won widespread international approval, after Taiwan protested against Spain’s decision to deport around 200.

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