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The topic of Ukraine was raised during a visit to Moscow by the head of the US Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) William Burns. This was announced on Saturday, November 6, by the Deputy Foreign Minister of the Russian Federation Sergei Ryabkov.
xe2x80x9cAs for the discussion of Ukraine during the recent visit of the CIA director in Moscow, yes, this topic was heard. But it is constantly heard in the course of contacts with American representatives who are responsible for the Russian direction, for the situation in the so-called Greater Eurasia, xe2x80x9che said in an interview with Interfax.
As the deputy minister noted, this topic should not be given special importance.
xe2x80x9cWe have heard this kind of signals from Americans many times before,xe2x80x9d he said.
Ryabkov also commented on the statement of the head of the joint committee, the chief of staff of the US Armed Forces, Mark Milli, that the US does not regard the actions of the Russian military near the borders with Ukraine as aggressive.
xe2x80x9cI donxe2x80x99t know how much the tonality changes. Perhaps it depends on who exactly gives the comments, the style can be different, the content is the same. I would not perceive this in terms of some kind of signal to us, xe2x80x9dsaid the deputy head of the department.
On November 5, CNN wrote that Burns arrived in Moscow due to the alleged movement of Russian troops near the borders of Ukraine, which seriously worries the United States. As noted by journalists, the administration of US President Joe Biden has stepped up efforts in recent days to de-escalate tensions between Moscow and Kiev.
After talks in Moscow, the head of the CIA spoke by phone with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in an attempt to defuse the situation, the channelxe2x80x99s sources said. A senior State Department official was also dispatched to Kiev to support these efforts.
William Burns arrived in Moscow on November 2 on behalf of US President Joe Biden. The CIA director managed to meet with the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Sergei Naryshkin, and the director of the Federal Security Service, Nikolai Patrushev.
The Kremlin called the visit of the CIA director to Russia important, and clarified that President Vladimir Putin was in Sochi, but was informed about the results of negotiations with Burns.
American political scientist Bruce Marks, in an interview with Izvestia, noted that Burns is the best candidate for improving relations between the United States and Russia. The expert explained that Burns became the head of the American delegation in Moscow for a reason, since such visits are not part of the responsibilities of the head of the CIA. He is confident that the United States is seeking to establish a dialogue with Russia and overcome difficulties, including through Burnsxe2x80x99 knowledge of Russia.
On November 1, the American publication Politico presented satellite images of Russiaxe2x80x99s xe2x80x9cpower buildupxe2x80x9d near Ukrainexe2x80x99s borders, taken by technology company Maxar Technologies. The concentration of ground troops was recorded near the Russian city of Yelnya, located in the Smolensk region, which borders Belarus.
These media were denied, including in Kiev. The secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of the country, Aleksey Danilov, pointed out that reports of the pulling together of Russian tanks near the border with Ukraine are disinformation. Chief of the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine) Serhiy Shaptala on November 5 confirmed the information that there is no build-up of Russian forces near the borders of Ukraine, the situation is under control.
Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that Western media reports that Russia is allegedly pulling troops to the border with Ukraine do not correspond to reality, and called them a xe2x80x9cfake salvo.xe2x80x9d
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HOUSTON, Nov 7 (Reuters) – At least two investigations, one of them criminal, were underway on Sunday into the deadly stampede during rap star Travis Scott’s Astroworld music festival that killed at least eight people and injured dozens in Houston.
Officials in Houston said autopsies on Frriday’s victims were being performed as soon as possible so their bodies could be returned to family members, with the identities of some of the dead expected to be released on Sunday.
The dead were young, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner told reporters on Saturday: two were aged 14 and 16, two were 21, another two were 23, with a seventh aged 27.
An eighth victim has yet to be identified, he added.
Harris County Judge Lina Hildago called for an “objective, independent” investigation into the tragedy, as she spoke about the rap festival being attended by 50,000 fans when the stampede took place.
The main stage of NRG Park is seen the morning after a deadly crush of fans took place during an Astroworld Festival performance by rapper Travis Scott in Houston, Texas, U.S. November 6, 2021 in a still image from video. KPRC/Click2Houston.Com via REUTERS
“Perhaps the plans were inadequate. Perhaps the plans were good but they weren’t followed,” Hildago said. “The families of those who died, everybody affected, deserves answers.”
In a 90-second video released on Twitter on Saturday, Scott said that, while on stage, “I could just not imagine the severity of the situation.” He described himself as “absolutely devastated” by the incident.
Houston city police chief Troy Finner said his department had opened a criminal investigation by homicide and narcotics detectives, following reports that somebody in the audience had been injecting people with drugs.
The city’s fire chief, Samuel Pena, said several concert goers had to be revived with the anti-drug overdose medicine Narcan, including a security officer who appeared to have been injected in the neck with a substance by a concert goer.
The rest of the two-day festival has been cancelled after the disaster unfolded at NRG Park at about 9.30 p.m. during the headline performance by Scott, a Grammy nominated singer and producer, at the climax of the opening day.
The deaths happened near the stage when the crowd surged towards it, with some suffering cardiac arrests and other medical trauma, officials said.
Reporting by Tim Reid; Editing by Clarence Fernandez
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