OAN Newsroom

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FILE PHOTO: Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido takes part in a meeting in Caracas
FILE PHOTO: Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, who many nations have recognised as the country’s rightful interim ruler, speaks at a meeting at the Andres Bello Catholic University in Caracas, Venezuela May 24, 2019. REUTERS/Manaure Quintero

May 25, 2019

CARACAS (Reuters) – Norway said on Saturday that representatives of Venezuela’s government and opposition will return to Oslo next week following an initial round of preliminary talks about how to address the country’s political crisis.

“We announce that the representatives of the main political actors in Venezuela have decided to return to Oslo next week to continue a process facilitated by Norway,” the Scandinavian country’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

“We reiterate our commitment to continue supporting the search for an agreed-upon solution between the parties in Venezuela,” it said.

Venezuela has been plunged into political turmoil this year as opposition leader Juan Guaido invoked the constitution to assume an interim presidency, dismissing President Nicolas Maduro’s 2018 re-election as a fraud. More than 50 countries, including the United States and many members of the European Union, now see Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate leader.

Maduro, who maintains control over state institutions amid a hyperinflationary economic meltdown and humanitarian crisis, calls Guaido a puppet of Washington.

The Venezuelan information ministry did not immediately reply to a request for comment on the announcement. Guaido’s press team said it would comment shortly.

The ruling Socialist Party has endorsed the talks, but opposition sympathizers remain skeptical, arguing that Maduro has previously used dialogue as a stalling tactic to maintain his grip on power while living standards steadily declined in the oil-rich nation.

Last week, opposition lawmaker Stalin Gonzalez and two advisors represented Guaido’s side, while Information Minister Jorge Rodriguez and Miranda state governor Hector Rodriguez went to Oslo on behalf of the government.

Each side met separately with Norwegian mediators, but there was no face-to-face meeting between government and opposition representatives, Gonzalez told local media.

(Reporting by Brian Ellsworth, editing by G Crosse)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido takes part in a meeting in Caracas
FILE PHOTO: Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaido, who many nations have recognised as the country’s rightful interim ruler, speaks at a meeting at the Andres Bello Catholic University in Caracas, Venezuela May 24, 2019. REUTERS/Manaure Quintero

May 25, 2019

CARACAS (Reuters) – Norway said on Saturday that representatives of Venezuela’s government and opposition will return to Oslo next week following an initial round of preliminary talks about how to address the country’s political crisis.

“We announce that the representatives of the main political actors in Venezuela have decided to return to Oslo next week to continue a process facilitated by Norway,” the Scandinavian country’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

“We reiterate our commitment to continue supporting the search for an agreed-upon solution between the parties in Venezuela,” it said.

Venezuela has been plunged into political turmoil this year as opposition leader Juan Guaido invoked the constitution to assume an interim presidency, dismissing President Nicolas Maduro’s 2018 re-election as a fraud. More than 50 countries, including the United States and many members of the European Union, now see Guaido as Venezuela’s legitimate leader.

Maduro, who maintains control over state institutions amid a hyperinflationary economic meltdown and humanitarian crisis, calls Guaido a puppet of Washington.

The Venezuelan information ministry did not immediately reply to a request for comment on the announcement. Guaido’s press team said it would comment shortly.

The ruling Socialist Party has endorsed the talks, but opposition sympathizers remain skeptical, arguing that Maduro has previously used dialogue as a stalling tactic to maintain his grip on power while living standards steadily declined in the oil-rich nation.

Last week, opposition lawmaker Stalin Gonzalez and two advisors represented Guaido’s side, while Information Minister Jorge Rodriguez and Miranda state governor Hector Rodriguez went to Oslo on behalf of the government.

Each side met separately with Norwegian mediators, but there was no face-to-face meeting between government and opposition representatives, Gonzalez told local media.

(Reporting by Brian Ellsworth, editing by G Crosse)

Source: OANN

IndyCar: 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500-Drivers Meeting
May 25, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; The 1969 Indy 500 winner Mario Andretti drives a golf cart after attending the drivers meeting for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

May 25, 2019

By Steve Keating

INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) – In the run-up to the Indianapolis 500 the spotlight has been on Mario Andretti but come Sunday it is grandson Marco in the crosshairs as he attempts to lift a family curse by returning a member of the clan to Victory Lane at the famed Brickyard.

As usual there are no shortage of high-octane storylines at the sprawling 2.5-mile oval but Marco Andretti’s bid to end a 50-year Brickyard barren stretch for American motor racing’s first family has dominated conversation.

In over a century of racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS), it is doubtful there has ever been a more popular winner of what is unapologetically billed as “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” than Mario Andretti.

On that Memorial Day holiday weekend in 1969 a dashing Andretti powered across the finish line to deliver a victory that still resonates today.

It wasn’t supposed to be that way.

The win was expected to be just the first of many at the famed Brickyard but a half-century later it stands alone.

Mario would never again reach Victory Lane and chug from the winner’s quart of milk.

Neither would his sons Michael or Jeff. Nor has his nephew John or grandson Marco, who will again carry the Andretti colours into Sunday’s race.

“Pressure? This is the biggest race in the world, with or without what’s going on,” said Marco, who qualified 10th and will start on the inside of Row Four. “I can’t even imagine if we were to book end it 50 years, it would be incredible.

“I think pressure is a good thing. I think you should be honored to carry pressure. It means you’re playing for something awesome.

“It’s almost 80 tries, we’re all still here and we’re able come back and keep trying to win it.”

Fernando Alonso’s attempt to complete motor racing’s Triple Crown of wins at Monaco, Le Mans and Indianapolis had taken some of the focus and pressure off of Andretti until the Spaniard’s qualifying flop last Sunday left the twice Formula One champion out of the race.

EXCLUSIVE CLUB

Charismatic Brazilian Helio Castroneves’s bid to claim a record-equalling fourth Indy 500 victory that would gain him entry in the Brickyard’s most exclusive club has been swept aside by a wave of Andretti nostalgia.

The possibility of Roger Penske adding an 18th win to his collection has also taken a back seat despite the captain rolling out an all-star stable including Castroneves, 2017 IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden, reigning Indy 500 winner Will Power and Simon Pagenaud, who will start Sunday’s race from pole position.

Such has been their cruel misfortune that the thinking is there could be no other explanation for the Andretti heartbreak than a curse (there is an entire Wikipedia page dedicated to the jinx).

Exactly what it is that so angered the racing gods is uncertain but the entire Andretti clan rejects the idea that there are malevolent forces at work.

Scoffing at any idea of a curse, Andretti, whose best Indy 500 finish came in his rookie year crossing second in 2006, will pay tribute to his grandfather by driving a car with the same day-glow red livery he used when winning in 1969.

Michael Andretti, winless at the Brickyard in 16 attempts as driver but five-times winner as a team owner, will put five cars on the grid including Marco and two former Indy 500 champions in Alexander Rossi and Ryan Hunter-Reay.

“I’ve had good shots to win the biggest race in the world and its eluded me numerous times,” said Marco, who has also had three third-place results. “I’m not going to change too much on the driver’s side for this race.

“Hopefully, our number is picked this year.”

(Editing by Ed Osmond)

Source: OANN

IndyCar: 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500-Drivers Meeting
May 25, 2019; Indianapolis, IN, USA; The 1969 Indy 500 winner Mario Andretti drives a golf cart after attending the drivers meeting for the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

May 25, 2019

By Steve Keating

INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) – In the run-up to the Indianapolis 500 the spotlight has been on Mario Andretti but come Sunday it is grandson Marco in the crosshairs as he attempts to lift a family curse by returning a member of the clan to Victory Lane at the famed Brickyard.

As usual there are no shortage of high-octane storylines at the sprawling 2.5-mile oval but Marco Andretti’s bid to end a 50-year Brickyard barren stretch for American motor racing’s first family has dominated conversation.

In over a century of racing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS), it is doubtful there has ever been a more popular winner of what is unapologetically billed as “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” than Mario Andretti.

On that Memorial Day holiday weekend in 1969 a dashing Andretti powered across the finish line to deliver a victory that still resonates today.

It wasn’t supposed to be that way.

The win was expected to be just the first of many at the famed Brickyard but a half-century later it stands alone.

Mario would never again reach Victory Lane and chug from the winner’s quart of milk.

Neither would his sons Michael or Jeff. Nor has his nephew John or grandson Marco, who will again carry the Andretti colours into Sunday’s race.

“Pressure? This is the biggest race in the world, with or without what’s going on,” said Marco, who qualified 10th and will start on the inside of Row Four. “I can’t even imagine if we were to book end it 50 years, it would be incredible.

“I think pressure is a good thing. I think you should be honored to carry pressure. It means you’re playing for something awesome.

“It’s almost 80 tries, we’re all still here and we’re able come back and keep trying to win it.”

Fernando Alonso’s attempt to complete motor racing’s Triple Crown of wins at Monaco, Le Mans and Indianapolis had taken some of the focus and pressure off of Andretti until the Spaniard’s qualifying flop last Sunday left the twice Formula One champion out of the race.

EXCLUSIVE CLUB

Charismatic Brazilian Helio Castroneves’s bid to claim a record-equalling fourth Indy 500 victory that would gain him entry in the Brickyard’s most exclusive club has been swept aside by a wave of Andretti nostalgia.

The possibility of Roger Penske adding an 18th win to his collection has also taken a back seat despite the captain rolling out an all-star stable including Castroneves, 2017 IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden, reigning Indy 500 winner Will Power and Simon Pagenaud, who will start Sunday’s race from pole position.

Such has been their cruel misfortune that the thinking is there could be no other explanation for the Andretti heartbreak than a curse (there is an entire Wikipedia page dedicated to the jinx).

Exactly what it is that so angered the racing gods is uncertain but the entire Andretti clan rejects the idea that there are malevolent forces at work.

Scoffing at any idea of a curse, Andretti, whose best Indy 500 finish came in his rookie year crossing second in 2006, will pay tribute to his grandfather by driving a car with the same day-glow red livery he used when winning in 1969.

Michael Andretti, winless at the Brickyard in 16 attempts as driver but five-times winner as a team owner, will put five cars on the grid including Marco and two former Indy 500 champions in Alexander Rossi and Ryan Hunter-Reay.

“I’ve had good shots to win the biggest race in the world and its eluded me numerous times,” said Marco, who has also had three third-place results. “I’m not going to change too much on the driver’s side for this race.

“Hopefully, our number is picked this year.”

(Editing by Ed Osmond)

Source: OANN

Supporters of the opposition party attend an anti-government protest in Tirana
Supporters of the opposition party attend an anti-government protest in front of Prime Minister Edi Rama’s office in Tirana, Albania, May 25, 2019. REUTERS/Florion Goga

May 25, 2019

By Benet Koleka

TIRANA (Reuters) – Albanian opposition supporters took to the streets again on Saturday in a mostly peaceful protest, the sixth national one in three months, calling on Prime Minister Edi Rama to step down to pave the way for early elections.

Waving posters and releasing paper lanterns marked “Quit”, some in the crowd of several thousand threw a dozen paint bombs at Rama’s office. Some also hurled firecrackers at riot police near the parliament building.

But there was less unrest than in the last protest two weeks ago, when some demonstrators hurled petrol bombs, firecrackers and paint at the government building and parliament.

Rejecting allegations of fraud at the 2017 elections that gave his Socialist Party victory and him a second term in office, Rama told opposition Democratic Party leader Lulzim Basha he would not resign and urged him in a public letter to settle the crisis with talks.

“He is asking me, asking us to capitulate? Answer to him!” Basha told the crowd, who chanted back in unison: “Rama quit”.

“Pave the way to the political solution,” Basha added.

Hours before the rally, the EU delegation, its member states’ embassies and the United States embassy had urged protesters to demonstrate peacefully.

“We call on all sides to build upon the existing offer for a Dialogue, with the view to finding a way out of the current political situation as a matter of urgency,” the EU office said.

(Reporting by Benet Koleka; Editing by Frances Kerry)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: ATP 1000 - Monte Carlo Masters
FILE PHOTO: Tennis – ATP 1000 – Monte Carlo Masters – Monte-Carlo Country Club, Roquebrune-Cap-Martin, France – April 18, 2019 Germany’s Alexander Zverev celebrates during his third round match against Italy’s Fabio Fognini REUTERS/Eric Gaillard/File Photo

May 25, 2019

(Reuters) – Germany’s Alexander Zverev did his French Open preparations a world of good by beating Chile’s Nicolas Jarry 6-3 3-6 7-6(8) in a grueling, rain-hit final at the Geneva Open on Sunday.

Top seed Zverev, looking for his first title win on clay since clinching the Italian Open last year, had endured a disappointing season so far and had not won a title since the ATP Finals in London in November.

The 22-year-old did not have it easy, taking two hours and 35 minutes to eventually get the better of his unseeded opponent in a match where both players had numerous match points. Two rain delays added to the drama.

Zverev was not as his best with eight double faults punctuating his victory, five of which came in the final set, and he converted only one of 12 break points over the course of the match.

Jarry, who beat Zverev in Barcelona on the same surface in a three-setter last month, fired six aces to Zverev’s three but there was nothing to separate the two players until the third-set tie-break.

With Zverev leading 6-5 in the final set, Jarry battled hard to ensure it went to a tie-breaker. The German then won two points off Jarry’s serve to take a 4-0 lead before Jarry saved three match points.

Zverev double-faulted at 6-6 to nearly hand his Chilean opponent the title but he kept his nerve to eventually win an exciting tie-breaker 10-8.

Zverev, the fifth seed at Roland Garros, takes on Australia’s John Millman in the first round of the French Open on Monday while Jarry starts the tournament against eighth seed and fellow South American Juan Martin del Potro of Argentina.

(Reporting by Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; editing by Clare Fallon)

Source: OANN

A fighter loyal to Libya's U.N.-backed government (GNA) gestures during clashes with forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar on the outskirts of Tripoli
A fighter loyal to Libya’s U.N.-backed government (GNA) gestures during clashes with forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar on the outskirts of Tripoli, Libya May 25, 2019. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic

May 25, 2019

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Heavy fighting raged in the Libyan capital on Saturday as eastern forces made a new push to advance inside the city controlled by the internationally recognized government.

The Libya National Army (LNA) force of Khalifa Haftar, who is allied to a parallel government in the east, started an offensive to take Tripoli almost two months ago but has not breached the city’s southern defenses.

The LNA made a new push on Saturday morning, trying to advance on a road from the former airport – located in a southern suburb – towards the center but there was no sign of progress, residents said.

Fighting had slowed in recent weeks during the holy Muslim month of Ramadan when most people fast during the day until sunset.

The battle for Tripoli has killed at least 510 people, forced 75,000 out of their homes, trapped thousands of migrants in detention centers, and flattened some southern suburbs. It has also forced closures of schools, split families on different sides of the front line, and brought power cuts.

Two ambulance workers were killed and three wounded on Thursday when their ambulance cars were hit, the World Health Organization said. It did not say who was responsible.

The United Nations has been unable to negotiate a ceasefire. France has, like other European countries, called for a ceasefire but also supported Haftar as a way to fight Islamist militants in the country.

On Wednesday, Haftar, meeting French President Emmanuel Macron, ruled out a ceasefire and said he wanted to rid the capital of militias that had “infested” the U.N.-backed government of Premier Fayez al-Serraj, a French presidential official said.

(Reporting by Ahmed Elumami, Ayman al-Warfalli and Ulf Laessing)

Source: OANN

A fighter loyal to Libya's U.N.-backed government (GNA) gestures during clashes with forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar on the outskirts of Tripoli
A fighter loyal to Libya’s U.N.-backed government (GNA) gestures during clashes with forces loyal to Khalifa Haftar on the outskirts of Tripoli, Libya May 25, 2019. REUTERS/Goran Tomasevic

May 25, 2019

TRIPOLI (Reuters) – Heavy fighting raged in the Libyan capital on Saturday as eastern forces made a new push to advance inside the city controlled by the internationally recognized government.

The Libya National Army (LNA) force of Khalifa Haftar, who is allied to a parallel government in the east, started an offensive to take Tripoli almost two months ago but has not breached the city’s southern defenses.

The LNA made a new push on Saturday morning, trying to advance on a road from the former airport – located in a southern suburb – towards the center but there was no sign of progress, residents said.

Fighting had slowed in recent weeks during the holy Muslim month of Ramadan when most people fast during the day until sunset.

The battle for Tripoli has killed at least 510 people, forced 75,000 out of their homes, trapped thousands of migrants in detention centers, and flattened some southern suburbs. It has also forced closures of schools, split families on different sides of the front line, and brought power cuts.

Two ambulance workers were killed and three wounded on Thursday when their ambulance cars were hit, the World Health Organization said. It did not say who was responsible.

The United Nations has been unable to negotiate a ceasefire. France has, like other European countries, called for a ceasefire but also supported Haftar as a way to fight Islamist militants in the country.

On Wednesday, Haftar, meeting French President Emmanuel Macron, ruled out a ceasefire and said he wanted to rid the capital of militias that had “infested” the U.N.-backed government of Premier Fayez al-Serraj, a French presidential official said.

(Reporting by Ahmed Elumami, Ayman al-Warfalli and Ulf Laessing)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris, France, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Inti Landauro

PARIS (Reuters) – Yellow vest protesters clashed with riot police in Paris and the northern city of Amiens on Saturday as the French anti-government movement waned on its 28th straight weekend.

Police in Amiens, hometown of President Emmanuel Macron, fired teargas at about 1,200 demonstrators after a group pelted stones at police, attacked local bank branches and set fire to rubbish cans, the local police chief’s office said.

Police detained 27 people in the city.

A few hundred protesters also clashed with police in downtown Paris, in and around the Place de la Republique.

After more than six months, the grassroots movement protesting over the cost of living and Macron’s perceived indifference seems to be losing steam.

Around the country only 12,500 demonstrators took to the streets during the latest day of protests, the lowest turnout since the movement started, the French interior ministry said. At the peak in November more than 300,000 were taking part nationally.

The prolonged protests, named after the high-visibility jackets worn by participants and which began in opposition to fuel tax increases, have hampered Macron’s efforts to push his reform timetable and forced him into costly concessions.

Despite Macron’s swift reversal of the tax hikes and introduction of other measures worth more than 10 billion euros ($11 billion) to boost the purchasing power of lower-income voters, protests and riots continued all over the country.

As he was celebrating his second anniversary in power, Macron last month offered more tax cuts worth 5 billion euros, along with other measures.

The protests also battered Macron’s party in its campaign for European elections to be held on Sunday. La Republique en Marche is polling neck-and-neck with the far-right National Rally.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by David Holmes)

Source: OANN

FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris
FILE PHOTO: French police apprehend protesters during the May Day march involving French unions and yellow vest protesters in Paris, France, May 1, 2019. REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer/File Photo

May 25, 2019

By Inti Landauro

PARIS (Reuters) – Yellow vest protesters clashed with riot police in Paris and the northern city of Amiens on Saturday as the French anti-government movement waned on its 28th straight weekend.

Police in Amiens, hometown of President Emmanuel Macron, fired teargas at about 1,200 demonstrators after a group pelted stones at police, attacked local bank branches and set fire to rubbish cans, the local police chief’s office said.

Police detained 27 people in the city.

A few hundred protesters also clashed with police in downtown Paris, in and around the Place de la Republique.

After more than six months, the grassroots movement protesting over the cost of living and Macron’s perceived indifference seems to be losing steam.

Around the country only 12,500 demonstrators took to the streets during the latest day of protests, the lowest turnout since the movement started, the French interior ministry said. At the peak in November more than 300,000 were taking part nationally.

The prolonged protests, named after the high-visibility jackets worn by participants and which began in opposition to fuel tax increases, have hampered Macron’s efforts to push his reform timetable and forced him into costly concessions.

Despite Macron’s swift reversal of the tax hikes and introduction of other measures worth more than 10 billion euros ($11 billion) to boost the purchasing power of lower-income voters, protests and riots continued all over the country.

As he was celebrating his second anniversary in power, Macron last month offered more tax cuts worth 5 billion euros, along with other measures.

The protests also battered Macron’s party in its campaign for European elections to be held on Sunday. La Republique en Marche is polling neck-and-neck with the far-right National Rally.

(Reporting by Inti Landauro; Editing by David Holmes)

Source: OANN


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