22 August 2019


Is Neymar coming back? Will there be a Real Madrid revival? La Liga's big questions

Neymar scored 68 goals in 112 appearances during his four-year spell with Barcelona between 2013 and 2017


KONFRONTASI -  Can Barcelona balance domestic demands with the chase for Champions League success? Can Zinedine Zidane plot Real Madrid's path out of the doldrums? And will either of them sign Neymar?

US 'deeply concerned' by reports of Chinese paramilitary at Hong Kong border

KONFRONTASI -  The United States expressed concerns on Wednesday (Aug 14) over Chinese security force movements on the border with Hong Kong and urged Beijing to honour the territory's autonomy as protests continued.

A day after President Donald Trump appeared to take a hands-off position on the protests, a State Department spokesperson voiced concerns about the "continued erosion" of Hong Kong's autonomy and expressed "staunch" support for freedom of expression and peaceful assembly in the territory.

Cryptocurrency campaign seeks to help Iran flood victims

KONFRONTASI-An independent campaign has been launched in Iran in order to attract international aid in cryptocurrency for flood victims in the face of US sanctions which have choked off foreign funds.

The campaign is hoped to provide an alternative route after US sanctions prevented the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS) from obtaining any foreign financial aid to assist victims of the flooding that started in early March and carried through April.

Israeli minister to be indicted on corruption charges

KONFRONTASI - Israel's attorney general says he intends to indict the regime’s welfare minister, Haim Katz, over corruption charges, the latest in a series of graft cases facing Israeli officials.

Avichai Mandelblit informed Katz on Wednesday that he had decided to indict him on charges of fraud and breach of trust.

The 71-year-old minister is accused of advancing decisions benefiting a financial consultant to major Israeli firms.

Trump sees Fed rather than trade war as source of market turmoil

KONFRONTASI - With global markets flashing concern about the fallout from the US-China trade war and the near-term strength of the American economy, US President Donald Trump on Wednesday targeted Federal Reserve policy as the culprit for recent market turmoil.

In raising interest rates four times last year "the Federal Reserve acted far too quickly, and now is very, very late," in reversing itself and cutting borrowing costs, Trump tweeted.

"Too bad, so much to gain on the upside!"

China says Hong Kong protests 'near terrorism' as airport reopens

KONFRONTASI-China said Hong Kong’s protest movement had reached “near terrorism” on Wednesday, after a night of ugly clashes at the city’s airport where demonstrators set upon and detained two men they suspected of being government sympathizers.

Flights out of the financial hub resumed after two days of disruptions caused by unrest as thousands of protesters swarmed the terminal at one of the world’s busiest airports, forcing the cancellation of hundreds of departures.

China’s Hong Kong and Macau Affairs Office in Beijing called the behavior at the airport no different to terrorism and said it must be severely punished.

Ten weeks of increasingly violent clashes between police and protesters have plunged the city into its worst crisis since it reverted from British to Chinese rule in 1997.

pened yesterday,” read a banner held up by a group of a few dozen demonstrators in the airport arrivals hall.

“We were desperate and we made imperfect decisions. Please accept our apologies,” the banner said.

In chaotic scenes that would once have been unthinkable for Hong Kongers, a peaceful sit-in at the airport turned violent late on Tuesday as protesters confronted and held a man they believed was an undercover Chinese agent.

Busloads of riot police arrived in response, clashing with furious demonstrators before withdrawing once the man was removed and leaving the terminal briefly in control of activists who then detained a Chinese reporter for a short time.

Protesters, who occupied the airport for five days - disrupting flights on Monday and Tuesday - mostly withdrew by daybreak, with several groups issuing statements blending contrition for the chaos with defiance of the authorities.

It’s not clear whether the ugly scenes have eroded the broad support the movement has attracted in Hong Kong, while the city’s faltering economy has also taken a hit in recent months.

“We promise to reflect and to improve,” protesters said in one message distributed on social-media app Telegram.

“Sorry we were too reckless ... we are only afraid of losing your support to the whole movement due to our mistake, and that you give up on fighting.”

The unrest began in opposition to a now-suspended bill that would have allowed the extradition of suspects for trial in mainland China, but have swelled into wider calls for democracy.

The seizure by protesters of a reporter from China’s Global Times newspaper, a nationalistic tabloid run by the ruling Communist Party’s official People’s Daily, and their harassment of the man they believed to be a mainland agent drew China’s strongest language yet.

In addition to Beijing’s condemnation, the People’s Daily called for “using the sword of the law” to restore order, and mainland social media users lauded the detained reporter as a hero.

On Tuesday, U.S. President Donald Trump described the volatile situation as “tricky”, and said China’s government had moved troops near the border with Hong Kong.

“I think it will work out and I hope it works out, for liberty. I hope it works out for everybody, including China,” he told reporters during a visit to Morristown, New Jersey.

Chinese police have assembled in the neighboring city of Shenzhen for what appeared to be exercises, the Global Times reported this week.

China also denied a request for two U.S. Navy warships to visit Hong Kong in the coming weeks, U.S. officials said, as a prominent U.S. senator warned the territory could lose its special trade status if Beijing intervenes.

Syrian government closes in on town that was bombed with sarin

KONFRONTASI- Syrian government forces on Wednesday closed in on a rebel-held town in Idlib that was bombed with sarin in 2017, sources on both sides said, building on their Russian-backed gains since the collapse of a ceasefire this month.

The advance toward Khan Sheikhoun threatens to encircle the last remaining pocket of rebel-held territory in neighboring Hama province, including the towns of Morek, Kafr Zeita and Latamneh.

Hong Kong protests: Flights suspended, tear gas fired

KONFRONTASI-All flights in and out of Hong Kong were cancelled on Monday after thousands of pro-democracy protesters flooded the city's airport to denounce police violence.

Violent protests gripped the city over the weekend as demonstrators destroyed barricades across the city and police fired tear gas into crowded underground train stations - the first occurance of this nature.

British paedophile jailed over indecent acts with boys

KONFRONTASI -  Phnom Penh Municipal Court on Friday convicted and sentenced a British paedophile to a year and three months in jail for indecent acts against minors in Chbar Ampov district last year.


Bun Chan Heng, the defence lawyer for Stephen John Loryman, 57, yesterday noted that the court suspended three months of his client’s sentence.

If Tommy Robinson is jailed, so should Theresa May be

KONFRONTASI - Once upon a time, in June 2012 to be exact, Home Secretary Theresa May, was held in contempt of court over the prolonged imprisonment of a foreign migrant, making her only the second home secretary ever to be charged with contempt of court.

At the time of the events, judge Barry Cotter, QC, accused Mrs May of ‘unacceptable and regrettable behaviour‘ after ignoring a legal agreement to release Algerian national Aziz Lamari when it became clear that there was no reasonable likelihood of deportation.