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Trump dismisses rape allegation as ‘fiction’

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Washington, June 22 (IANS) US President Donald Trump has dismissed allegations that he raped a woman in a dressing room of an upscale Manhattan department store in the mid-1990s, terming it “fiction”.

E. Jean Carroll, 75, a television show host and magazine columnist, made the accusation in an essay published on Friday in New York magazine, the local media reported. She said she did not report the alleged attack as a friend of her advised her at the time that she had no chance of winning.

However, the US President said he never met the woman and accused her of making up the allegation “to sell a new book”.

More than a dozen women have previously made sexual misconduct allegations against Trump, which he has denied.

In the article, Carroll described meeting Trump in late 1995 or early 1996, in Bergdorf Goodman department store. She said she recognized him as the “real estate tycoon” and that he told her he was buying a present for “a girl”.

She said that Trump knew she was a TV agony aunt and the two joked around, encouraging each other to try on some lingerie. Carroll alleged that they then went to a dressing room, where she accused him of raping her.

Trump was around 50 at the time and was married to Marla Maples.

Carroll said she told two friends about the alleged incident, one of whom advised her to go to the police. But according to her, the other advised her against telling anyone saying: “Forget it! He has 200 lawyers. He’ll bury you.”

The accusation is one of six alleged attacks by “awful men” that Carroll detailed in her article.

Responding to the claim, Trump said in a statement: “I’ve never met this person in my life. She is trying to sell a new book-that should indicate her motivation. It should be sold in the fiction section.”

Trump encouraged anyone with “information that the Democratic Party is working with Carroll or New York magazine” to notify the White House, the BBC reported.

He accused the publication of “peddling fake news”.

“Shame on those who make up false stories of assault to try to get publicity for themselves, or sell a book, or carry out a political agenda. It’s just as bad for people to believe it, particularly when there is zero evidence,” he added.

In his statement, Trump thanked Bergdorf Goodman for “confirming they have no video footage of any such incident”.

America

US unemployment rate falls to 50-year low

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The U.S. unemployment rate fell in September to a new five-decade low of 3.5%, while employers added a modest 136,000 jobs.

The Labor Department says that despite the ultra-low unemployment rate, which was down from 3.7% in August, average hourly wages slipped by a penny. Hourly pay rose just 2.9% from a year earlier, lower than 3.4% at the beginning of the year.

Hiring has slowed this year as the U.S.-China trade war has intensified, global growth has slowed, and businesses have cut back on their investment spending. Still, hiring has averaged 157,000 in the past three months, enough to lower the unemployment rate over time.

The unemployment rate for Latinos fell to 3.9%, the lowest on records dating from 1973.

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Trump embarrassed by TV channel

As Trump was speaking to the media after meeting Zelensky to clarify his position, MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace cut into it, saying: “We hate to do this but the President isn’t telling the truth.”

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New York, Sep 26 : US President Donald Trump was subjected to an embarrassment when the MSNBC news channel cut away from his press conference while he was speaking on the controversy surrounding him over the Ukrainian probe against former Vice President Joe Biden.

Trump on Wednesday was addressing the press conference against the backdrop of impeachment proceedings announced against him by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi following allegations that he put pressure on the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to order a probe against Biden whose family has business interests there.

The allegation against Trump came to light because of a whistleblower and a transcript of the conversation between him and Zelensky in July, which has become public.

As Trump was speaking to the media after meeting Zelensky to clarify his position, MSNBC host Nicolle Wallace cut into it, saying: “We hate to do this but the President isn’t telling the truth.”

She added that Trump was trying to do it to deflect the attention from his impeachment.

According to the transcript of the telephonic conversation that has gone public, Trump is heard asking Zelensky to “do us a favour”, after the latter expresses gratitude for the military aid the US provided to his country.

Trump’s words of “do us a favour” is seen as a quid pro quo for the American military aid, because of which the impeachment proceedings have been announced.

After Wallace cut the press conference, her guest on the programme, justice and security analyst Matthew Miller, rebuked Trump for saying that Biden and his son had done wrong.

“This story has been looked at and thoroughly debunked by everyone involved,” Miller said, adding the real issue was whether Trump’s conduct is “impeachable”.

Trump is facing problem at a time when he is in New York to attend the UN General Assembly.

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Kim Jong-un receives ‘excellent’ letter from Trump

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Pyongyang, June 23 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has received a personal letter with “excellent” and “interesting” content from US President Donald Trump, Pyongyang’s state media said on Sunday.

“After reading the letter, the Supreme Leader of the Party, the state and the armed forces said with satisfaction that the letter is of excellent content,” the Korean Central News Agency said, referring to its leader.

“Appreciating the political judging faculty and extraordinary courage of President Trump, Kim Jong-un said that he would seriously contemplate the interesting content,” it added.

The KCNA did not disclose when and how the letter was delivered to Kim, reports Yonhap News Agency.

The letter appears to be in response to the one Kim sent to Trump recently in time for the anniversary of their first-ever summit in Singapore last June.

Trump had described Kim’s letter as “beautiful” and “very warm”. He also emphasized that the relationship between them remains strong and that “something will happen that’s going to be very positive”.

The exchange of correspondence between the leaders renewed hopes for a resumption of denuclearization talks which have stalled since the breakdown of their second summit in February.

The summit collapsed as Pyongyang wanted sanctions relief as a corresponding measure in exchange for dismantling its Yongbyon nuclear complex, while Washington insisted that sanctions should remain in place until the North completely gives up its nuclear weapons programme.

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