Washington, Oct 6 - US President Barack Obama said Saturday that Iran is still "a year or more" away from building a nuclear weapon.
Obama made the remarks citing US intelligence assessments in an interview released by the Associated Press Saturday, Xinhua reported.
He admitted that these assessments are "more conservative" than the Israelis, who claim Iran is just months away from acquiring nuclear capability.
Obama added that the world must test whether Iranian President Hassan Rouhani is sincere about seeking a diplomatic solution to the nuclear standoff.
Washington, Oct 6 - US Republican-controlled House of Representatives Saturday unanimously approved a bill to pay back about 800,000 furloughed government workers once the current partial government shutdown ends.
The 407-0 vote in the lower chamber was bipartisan despite the ongoing fiscal wrangle between Democrats and Republicans. The bill now goes to the Democratic-led Senate for approval, Xinhua reported.
The White House has voiced its support for this measure, saying President Barack Obama will sign it into law.
Washington, Oct 5 - As the political stalemate over the US federal government shutdown over President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law headed into its fifth day, his Democrats and opposition Republicans slammed each other, saying it was no game.
With both sides digging in, Obama cancelled a trip to Asia to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Bali, Indonesia and a separate Asia security summit in Brunei to fight the ongoing shutdown battle and the looming crisis over US debt-limit.
Washington, Oct 5 - US President Barack Obama has named yet another Indian American, Kerala University physics graduate Arun M. Kumar, to lead the trade promotion arm of the US Commerce Department charged with helping US companies succeed in markets around the world.
Kumar, who has been nominated Assistant Secretary and Director General of the US and Foreign Commercial Service, International Trade Administration, Department of Commerce, would on Senate confirmation succeed another Indian American, Secunderabad-born Suresh Kumar.
Washington, Oct 5 - The second round of negotiations in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) was cancelled due to the US federal government shutdown, said the Obama Administration Friday in a statement.
According to the statement, US Trade Representative Michael Froman called European Union Trade Commissioner Karel De Gucht Friday, saying regrettably the ongoing government shutdown will prevent him from proceeding with the negotiations for the TTIP in Brussels, Belgium next week, Xinhua reported.
Washington, Oct 4 - As US President Barack Obama launched a blistering attack on Republicans for their "reckless" refusal to pass a "clean" spending bill to end the government shutdown, a ray of hope emerged on the looming debt limit crisis.
House Speaker John Boehner, whom Obama Thursday challenged to quickly hold a vote on a "clean" spending bill with no conditions to dump or delay his signature healthcare law, was reported to have told fellow Republicans he won't let the nation default on its debt.
Washington, Oct 4 - Several gunshots were fired outside the US Capitol Thursday afternoon, triggering a security lockdown of the complex, police said.
The US Capitol Police confirmed the shooting on Capitol Hill in a bulletin, and required staff in all Senate Office buildings to immediately shelter in place and stay away from external doors and windows, Xinhua reported.
The pedestrian walkway before the White House was also quickly locked down after the incident was reported.
Later, the Senate Sergeant at Arms announced via its Twitter account that the lockdown of the area has been lifted and people may exit shelter locations and resume normal activities.
Washington, Oct 3 - As the US government shutdown headed towards a third day, President Barack Obama met four top congressional leaders seeking passage of a stopgap spending measure and a debt-ceiling increase, but failed to get a deal.
Obama's first meeting Wednesday with John Boehner, speaker of the Republican controlled House, House majority leader Eric Cantor and Democrat Senate majority leader Harry Reid and House minority leader Nancy Pelosi yielded no breakthrough on the budget crisis.
Washington, Oct 3 - US President Barack Obama met congressional leaders for the first time since a budget impasse forced the federal government to a partial shutdown, but little progress was made towards ending the standoff.
After a closed-door meeting at the White House, US House Speaker John Boehner said in a very brief statement that Obama refused to negotiate and they are still divided, Xinhua reported.
"The president said one more time that he will not negotiate," Boehner told reporters. "All we're asking for here is a discussion and fairness for the American people under Obamacare."
Washington, Oct 3 - US President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he is "exasperated" by the lack of agreement that led to the paralysis of the federal government and warned that Wall Street "should be concerned" about the economic consequences.
"And am I exasperated? Absolutely, I'm exasperated, because this is entirely unnecessary," said Obama in an interview with CNBC.
"I am exasperated with the idea that unless I say to 20 million people, 'You can't have health insurance,' these folks will not reopen the government. That is irresponsible," he said.
Washington, Oct 2 : US President Barack Obama has cancelled planned stops in the Philippines and Malaysia in his upcoming trip to Asia, due to the government shutdown at home, the White House said Wednesday.
Obama spoke by phone Tuesday night with the Philippines' President Benigno S. Aquino III and Malaysia's Prime Minister Najib Razak about having to cancel his visits to the two southeast Asian countries during his planned trip to Asia, citing the ongoing government shutdown, the White House said in a statement.
Washington, Oct 2 - As US lawmakers went home after playing their political games without finding a way to end a historic government shutdown over President Barack Obama's signature healthcare law, Americans braced themselves for a prolonged closure.
The Republican-led House of Representatives which had linked passage of a spending bill or a continuing resolution to keep the government running to defunding Obamacare as the healthcare law is nicknamed, instead offered to keep a few popular programmes funded.
Washington, Oct 2 - US President Barack Obama Tuesday blamed Republicans in Congress for the federal government shutdown, and defended his signature health care law.
In a televised speech delivered in the White House Rose Garden on the first day of the first government shutdown in 17 years, Obama said Republicans in the Congress "chose" the government shutdown that " did not have to happen".
"They've shut down the government over an ideological crusade to deny affordable health insurance to millions of Americans."
Washington, Oct 1 - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged US President Barack Obama to keep economic sanctions on Iran in place to ease Israeli concerns about Washington's diplomatic engagement with Tehran over its disputed nuclear programme.
Netanyahu will deliver a speech Tuesday at the UN general assembly.
"If diplomacy is to work, those pressures must be kept in place, " reported Xinhua citing Netanyahu after a meeting with Obama at the White House.
Washington, Oct 1 - President Barack Obama said Monday that a potential US government shutdown was "entirely avoidable" as only a few hours remained to avert it.
Obama criticised Republicans for trying to refight the last election as they seek to link the budget to delaying his health care law. If no agreement is reached by midnight (04.00 GMT), the government will close all non-essential federal services, BBC reported.
A shutdown would have "a very real economic impact on real people, right away," Obama said Monday afternoon, as just under seven hours remained until the deadline, adding it would "throw a wrench" into the US recovery.