A senior Iranian Revolutionary Guards commander said on Sunday the U.S. military presence in the Gulf used to be a serious threat but now represents a target, the Iranian Students’ News Agency (ISNA) reported. The U.S. military has sent forces, including an aircraft carrier and B-52 bombers, to the Middle East in a move that U.S. officials said was made to counter “clear indications” of threats from Iran to American forces in the region.
A pilot in Myanmar is being hailed as a hero after landing a plane Sunday on only its rear wheels, after the passenger jet’s landing gear failed. In a statement, the airline said pilot Captain Myat Moe Aung “followed emergency procedures and did the fuel burn out to reduce the landing weight,” before bringing the jet down onto its rear wheels, lowering the nose carefully onto the runway on which it skidded for about 25 seconds before stopping. There were no casualties or injuries from the incident, the airline confirmed.
Two Saudi oil tankers were the targets of a “sabotage attack” off the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Sunday, Saudi Arabia’s energy minister says. The incident near Fujairah port, in the Gulf just outside the Strait of Hormuz, caused “significant damage” to the ships, according to Khalid al-Falih. The UAE said four ships were targeted, but that there were no casualties. Iran, which borders the strait, called the incident “worrisome and dreadful” and called for a full investigation. Tensions are high in the region, through which about a fifth of oil that is consumed globally passes.
Gunmen have stormed a five-star hotel in Pakistan’s port city of Gwadar, killing at least five people, officials said. The military said four hotel employees and a Pakistan Navy soldier were killed. According to the military, all guests at the hotel, which has 114 rooms, were safely evacuated. The Baloch Liberation Army (BLA), an ethnic Baloch separatist group fighting for independence for Balochistan province, claimed responsibility for the attack, saying that four fighters were involved.
The first step in a long-delayed plan for a withdrawal of rebel forces from Yemen’s embattled Hodeida port has gone to plan, according to U.N. officials. The withdrawal process is crucial in allowing desperately needed humanitarian aid through the strategic port of Hodeida, which serves about 70% of Yemen’s population. Hodeida city has been under the control of the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels, who overran Yemen’s internationally-recognized government in early 2015. The city was the target of a major Saudi and Emirati assault in mid-2018, an escalation of which the cease-fire agreement aimed to prevent.
A rape case against WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange will be reopened, Swedish authorities announced Monday. The Australian national is currently in jail in the U.K., where he is serving a 12-month sentence for skipping bail in 2012, when he was fighting extradition to Sweden in connection with the same case. Assange was arrested by police and carried out of the Ecuadorian Embassy in London, where he sheltered for almost seven years, on April 11. The announcement leaves Britain facing a decision on whether to extradite him to the Scandinavian country or the U.S.
Police in Germany are investigating the mysterious deaths of three hotel guests who were found impaled with crossbow bolts in their hotel room in Bavaria on Saturday. Employees at the hotel found two crossbows next to the bodies in a guesthouse on the hotel property, which is located on the Ilz River in the southeastern town of Passau near the Austrian border. Police say the victims were a 53-year old man, and two women, ages 33 and 30. All are German citizens, according to German news agency dpa.