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Iran’s supreme leader uses #BlackLivesMatter in tweet blasting US race relations

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Iran’s supreme leader has stepped into the debate over police violence and race in America, likening police shootings of black people in Ferguson and elsewhere to the Palestinian struggle in Gaza in a series of tweets using the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter .

In a stream of comments on his English-language Twitter feed, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei on Sunday returned to a theme he has repeatedly struck since Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager, was shot dead by police officer Darren Wilson in Missouri on 9 August. In his latest outpouring, Khamenei seeks to highlight what he sees as the hypocrisy of the US at Christmastime by suggesting a link between Jesus suffering for the oppressed and official oppression of protesters in Ferguson.

“#Jesus endured sufferings to oppose tyrants who had put humans in hell in this world& the hereafter while he backed the oppressed. #Ferguson” he tweeted .

In another post , from Christmas Eve, the ayatollah wrote: “If #Jesus were among us today he wouldn’t spare a second to fight the arrogants&support the oppressed. #Ferguson #Gaza ”

When it comes to domestic US affairs, Khamenei is quite the regular commentator. In 2011, when Occupy protests were erupting across America, he predicted the movement would bring down the entire capitalist system .

After protests exploded in Ferguson after Brown’s death, he seized on the events to criticise race relations generally in the US. He wrote: “Today like previous years, African-Americans are still under pressure, oppressed and subjected to discrimination. #Ferguson”

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When a grand jury decision sparing Wilson of any charges in Brown’s shooting was announced on 24 November, sparking disorder in Ferguson and further protests across the US, Khamenei returned to the theme. He accused the US government of being dishonest with its citizens, tweeting : “At events in #Ferguson US is fighting w its ppl. #BlackLivesMatter”

Khamenei’s English-language Twitter feed is unverified by the social media company. It is widely understood that the account is managed by the supreme leader’s personal office, though they too will neither confirm or deny it.

Its existence casts a sliver of light into the thinking of the man who has wielded ultimate power in Iran for the past 25 years, a time of ongoing tension with the US over the country’s nuclear programme . The Twitter feed also acts as a megaphone for official Iranian policy, with regular denunciations of the Israeli government and Zionism.

guardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media 2014

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Soccer star slams Trump for attacking her teammate: He hates women he ‘cannot control or grope’

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On Wednesday, U.S. Women's Soccer champion Ali Krieger rebuked President Donald Trump for his attacks on her teammate Megan Rapinoe, saying that the president feels threatened by women that he "cannot control or grope":

In regards to the “President’s” tweet today, I know women who you cannot control or grope anger you, but I stand by @mPinoe & will sit this one out as well. I don’t support this administration nor their fight against LGBTQ+ citizens, immigrants & our most vulnerable.

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2020 Election

Bernie Sanders: ‘I intend to be the Democratic nominee’

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Bernie Sanders intends to be the 2020 Democratic nominee - and he's not planning to back down anytime soon. Not even with 23 other Democratic presidential hopefuls in the running alongside him.

MSNBC's Kasie Hunt spoke with Sanders for an interview prior to the first Democratic debate night where he plainly said, "I intend to be the Democratic nominee."

In the interview, Sanders also discussed his plan to end student loan debt and Medicare for all. But before that, he said there was another pressing issue.

"Our goal right now is to win it," Sanders said. "And by the way, as you you may know, poll after poll shows what against Trump? Shows me beating Trump by 8, 9 or 10 points. We're going to beat Trump, we're going to win the Democratic nomination."

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Justice Department sues Omarosa Manigault Newman over financial disclosures

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The Justice Department on Tuesday sued Omarosa Manigault Newman, a former contestant on "The Apprentice" who campaigned for President Donald Trump and later worked for him in the White House, alleging she failed to file a required public disclosure report after she left 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington, claims Manigault Newman "knowingly and willingly" failed to file the financial disclosure report after corresponding multiple times with attorneys for the White House. It accuses her of violating the Ethics in Government Act (EIGA) by not filing the report, which was required because her salary exceeded $124,406, despite several oral and written reminders from White House ethics lawyers.

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