23:08 34 freed TN fishermen arrive at Rameswaram:
A day after a Sri Lankan court ordered their release, 34 Tamil Nadu fishermen, who were taken into custody by the Island Navy for trespassing into their waters, arrived in Rameswaram tonight.
The fishermen along with their five boats were earlier handed over to the Indian Coast Guard at the International Maritime Boundary Line by the Lankan Navy, officials said. After India lodged a protest against detention of its fishermen, a court in the island nation had yesterday ordered their release.
22:10 Bitti's father identifies Raghav Rajan's photograph:
PTI: Retired Odisha DGP B B Mahanti has identified the photograph of Raghav Rajan as that of his rape convict son Biti Mohanty, Kerala Police sources say.
The special investigation team of Kerala police on Saturday gave a clean chit to B B Mahanti in the impersonation and forgery cases against his rape convict son Bitti Mohanty.
"We could not get any evidence against B B Mahanti. He has no role to play in impersonation and forgery cases against his son Bitti," said Kerala police team leader Josi Joseph after questioning the retired IPS officer for about four hours.
21:25 Woman gang-raped near rail tracks in Mumbai:
A 30-year-old married woman was allegedly gang-raped by five persons in her shanty next to railway tracks at Matunga in Central Mumbai, police said today.
Two of the seven persons involved in the rape and attack on her husband last night were known to the couple, they said, adding an FIR was registered at the Dadar Government Railway Police station and later transferred to Matunga police station.
The victim grows vegetables on a small patch of land adjoining the railway tracks at Matunga, police said.
20:21 700 huts gutted in slum fire in South 24 Parganas:
Around 700 huts in a slum were reduced to ashes in an early morning blaze at Mahestala in West Bengal's South 24 Parganas district with local people alleging that the fire was deliberately started.
There was no casualty, fire brigade and police sources said. Fire engines which arrived at the scene at 4:00 am were hindered by railway lines beyond which the slum lay. Train services on Majerhat'"Budge Budge section was suspended from 04:50 am to 08:55 am after which the fire brigade laid hosepipes over the railway lines to the slum, the sources said.
A total of fifteen fire engines brought the blaze under control, fire brigade sources said. The sources said that around 700 huts were destroyed in the blaze rendering 3500 people homeless. Local people caught four persons and handed them over to the police alleging that the fire was their handiwork.
The police filed an FIR against eleven persons, including the Trinamool Congress councillor of Mahestala Municipality Dipika Dutta and TMC leader Rafiq Mollah. Of the 11, five were arrested, police sources said.
20:18 Pope Francis wants 'poor Church for the poor':
Pope Francis has said he wants "a poor Church, for the poor" following his election as head of the world's 1.2bn Catholics on Wednesday. He said he chose the name Francis after 12-13th Century St Francis of Assisi, who represented "poverty and peace".
He urged journalists to get to know the Church with its "virtues and sins" and to share its focus on "truth, goodness and beauty".
Read the full story on BBC
19:36 Delhi gang rape case: Safdarjung surgeon testifies:
A surgeon, who had operated upon the December 16 gang rape victim, today recorded his statement in a fast-track court trying the case behind closed doors. Doctor Raj Kumar Chejara, a surgeon from the Safdarjung hospital, recorded his statement as a prosecution witness in the court of Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna.
Kumar had done surgery on the 23-year-old girl who was assaulted and gang raped by the six accused, including a juvenile, in a moving bus and was later thrown out on the road to die. Today, doctor Kumar was asked about the injuries suffered by the victim and whether they were sufficient to cause her death in ordinary course of nature. The surgeon will be cross examined by the counsel for the four accused next week.
19:07 'Settlement' between Raj, Khadse: Congress:
PTI: Congress today took potshots over the 'detente' following the war of words between MNS chief Raj Thackeray and senior Maharashtra BJP leader Eknath Khadse. Khadse had retaliated after Raj questioned his integrity, accusing the BJP leader of "raising an issue in the morning and ending it in the evening through "settlement".
"Now, before the MNS can give 'a blue print' (details) of the allegations, it seems that Raj and Khadse have reached a settlement," MPCC spokesperson Sachin Sawant said in Mumbai.
"These two leaders have tried to reach an out of court settlement as far as the people's court is concerned," Sawant quipped. "The question now remains -- what prompted BJP to bring down the curtains on the episode, instead of clearing the blot on the image of the Leader of Opposition in Assembly (Khadse)," Sawant said.
19:05 34 Indian fishermen on way back from Lanka:
The 34 Indian fishermen, released by Sri Lanka, today left for India after spending a night in Jaffna. "Five boats with 34 Indian fishermen have started sailing off towards International Maritime Border Line (IMBL)," an Indian official in Colombo said.
They said that the fishermen were under the care of the Indian consulate in a private accommodation in Jaffna after their release by Kayts Magistrate yesterday. The officials said that on reaching Jaffna from Kayts, which is an hour drive away, two sick fishermen were immediately taken to a private hospital in Jaffna by officials of the Consulate and given medical care.
"When the two left in the morning for Delft to sail off, they were in a better condition," an official said. All of the 34 fishermen were given food, clothes, towels, toiletries and required medicines, he added.
19:04 Media's conduct should be above board: President:
The conduct of the media should be above board and the highest standards of ethics should be professed always, President Pranab Mukherjee said in Kottayam today.
Invoking a verse from Rabindranath Tagore's Gitanjali -- "where the knowledge is free...where words come out from the depth of truth", the President said there should be conducive atmosphere for ensuring freedom of speech.
He stressed that the media had an important responsibility in ensuring freedom of expression for the citizens and it owed accountability to the nation. "In our country, freedom of expression is guaranteed by the Constitution and the influence, credibility and quality of our media is well recognised. But freedom of expression can never be guaranteed only through legal rights and enactments.
"It must be ensured under conducive atmosphere," Mukherjee said in his speech during the 125th anniversary celebrations of the Malayala Manorama group. The President said media has an important role to play in cleansing public life. "However, to undertake this role the conduct of the media should be above board'.
18:12 Money laundering allegation: Banks start probes:
Days after a sting operation purportedly show bank officials helping launder money, HDFC Bank today said it has hired independent audit firm for conducting forensic inquiry while Axis Bank initiated a probe into the matter.
"The bank has appointed accounting and audit firm Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu India to carry out an independent forensic enquiry into the allegations and reported statements, as made by Cobrapost representatives, when secretly taping bank officials," HDFC Bank said in a statement.
Besides, the bank has also appointed Amarchand & Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff & Co to examine the breaches, if any, of the bank's Code of Conduct & Ethical Standards, by any bank officials, it said.
The bank has also suspended 20 officials concerned till investigations are completed, sources said. Meanwhile, another bank named in the sting operation Axis Bank said a thorough internal enquiry is already underway to look in to all aspects of the matter and the findings are expected shortly.
18:01 Bitti Mohanty's father innocent, say Kerala Police:
Rape convict Bitti Mohanty's father BB Mohanty, a former top cop in Odisha, is innocent and has no role in helping his son evade the law, Kerala Police has said, according to TV reports.
B B Mohanty was on Saturday quizzed by a special investigative team of Kerala police probing impersonation and forgery charges against his German rape case convict son Bitihotra Mohanty alias Bitti.
Before questioning the retired Indian Police Service officer, the four- member Kerala police SIT met the present Director General of Police Prakash Mishra at the state police headquarters in Cuttack and apprised him of the case following the arrest of a man Raghav Rajan at Kannur who police claimed was Bitti, Odisha police said.
17:26 Italy asks its citizens in India to remain cautious:
Apprehending backlash after it refused to send back two marines, facing trial here for killing two Indian fishermen in Kerala, Italy has advised its citizens to be "vigilant and cautious", especially in that state.
In an advisory, issued two days after it formally told India about its decision not to send back the two marines facing homicide charges, Italy also asked its nationals to stay away from any crowd.
"In connection with any protests, especially in the state of Kerala, related to each of the two sailors, it is recommended to compatriots in maintaining an attitude always vigilant and cautious and stay away from any crowds," the Italian embassy advisory said.
Clearly not happy with Italians reneging on their commitment to send back its two marines, who were allowed by the Supreme Court on February 22 to go to Italy for four weeks for voting in election, the apex court has restrained Italian Ambassador Daniele Mancini from leaving Indian without its permission. Mancini had given an assurance to send them back before the end of their four week deadline.
16:44 Bhojpuri star Manoj Tiwari keen to fight LS polls :
Bhojpuri actor-singer Manoj Tiwari has said he was ready to contest the next parliamentary elections from any constituency of Bihar, if Chief Minister Nitish Kumar wished.
"If Nitishji wishes I am ready to fight the 2014 elections," Tiwari said claiming he had provided a positive image to the state.
15:45 Angry Pak threatens to pull out Junior Hockey World Cup:
A miffed Pakistan has threatened to pull out of the FIH Junior World Cup to be held in India later this year, a day after the Indian government has cancelled the proposed bilateral series between the two nations.
"We may pull out of the Junior WC to be held in India in December. Enough is enough and we can't take this anymore," Pakistan Hockey Federation general secretary Asif Bajwa said. "This is happening again and again. First they send our players back without event giving them a chance to play in a single match in the Hockey India League and now this," he told PTI Bhasha from Lahore.
The FIH Junior World Cup will be held here at the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium from December 6-15 this year.
15:31 We need to fight communal forces: Sonia Gandhi:
Congress President Sonia Gandhi on Saturday said that India needed to fight communal forces effectively for its economic and social development.
"Economic and social development of the nation should go hand in hand for which we need to fight communal forces strongly," Gandhi said in Narayanpur, West Bengal at a programme in Malda district where Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was also present.
"We are a secular nation and this is our main strength and capital. The Congress party is fully prepared to protect the secular fabric of the country," Gandhi said.
15:22 Jama Masjid shahi iman snaps ties with SP :
Severing ties with the ruling Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh, Shahi Imam of Jama Masjid Maulana Syed Ahmed Bukhari has sent resignations of his supporters, including his member of Legislative Assembly son-in-law, from all positions in the state government.
"On my directive my son-in-law MLC Umar Ali Khan and chairman of Civil Defence Council Waseem Ahmad have resigned and I have sent their resignations to SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav," Bukhari told PTI.
When asked about the sudden move, Bukhari alleged that in its one year in power in Uttar Pradesh, the SP government did nothing for Muslims.
15:11 Woman gang-raped on Indore bus, 3 arrested :
A woman was allegedly gang-raped inside a public transport bus by its staff and their associate in Indore yesterday afternoon, reports NDTV
Police said the woman took the private bus from Dewas, around 40 km from Indore. On entering the city, all passengers except her got off at Vijay Nagar.The driver then took the bus to near a flyover, where another man boarded. The two and the bus conductor allegedly gang-raped the woman.
The woman's medical report has confirmed rape. The three suspects have been arrested and the bus impounded.
14:47 Anti-rape bill appears stuck:
The government merely gives semblance of unanimity in Cabinet but Opposition also divided over the bill, reports Business Standard
The government's promised anti-rape bill has finally cleared the Cabinet hurdle but its smooth passage in Parliament looks highly improbable. Parties across the spectrum are already objecting to various "contentious' clauses.
Seniors in the Bharatiya Janata Party have gone public with their objection to lowering the age of consensual sex from 18 to 16 years. The Samajwadi Party has said it would be opposing the bill at both the all-party meeting on Monday and in Parliament. The SP provides outside support to the ruling coalition.
13:10 Kerala police girll Bitti Mohanty's father:
The Kerala police today began the questioning of rape convict Bitti Mohanty's father Bidya Bhushan Mohanty, a former Odisha director general of police at the DCP office in Cuttack.
Bitti was sentenced to seven years' imprisonment for raping a German tourist at Alwar, India. He was since absconding after he was released on parole on 20 November 2006 to meet his ailing mother at Cuttack. He has been arrested from Kannur in Kerala, on Saturday, March 9th 2013.
12:48 Srinagar attack: Govt employee from Baramulla held:
A third accused has been arrested for his role in the fidayeen attack on a CRPF camp in Srinagar on Wednesday. He has been identified as Pradeep Singh, a government employee from Baramulla, reports Times NOW
Five CRPF jawans and two terrorists were killed in the attack.
The Pakistani terrorist arrested in the case (second arrest) has confessed to the police that he was a LeT recruit and has revealed how he picked up the two suicide bombers and dropped them at Benima camp.
12:01 Hyd blasts: NIA gets 4-day custody of 2 IM men:
A Delhi court today granted the National Investigation Agency four-day custody of two alleged Indian Mujahideen operatives to further interrogate them in connection with the Hyderabad twin blasts that left 16 dead.
During an in-chamber hearing, District Judge I S Mehta allowed the NIA plea seeking custody of Syed Maqbool and Imran Khan to confront them with another alleged IM operative Obaid-Ur-Rehman, who has been brought from Bangalore Central Jail and is in NIA's custody till March 20 in connection with the case, sources said.
11:58 Egypt president to vist Pak ahead of India trip:
Egyptian President Mohamed Mursi will visit Pakistan with a high-powered delegation on March 18 before travelling to India for a three-day official visit. This will be the first bilateral visit by an Egyptian leader to Pakistan since the 1960s, when the late Gamal Abdel Nasser travelled to the country. Mursi is visiting Pakistan at the invitation of his counterpart Asif Ali Zardari.
"President Mursi's decision to choose Pakistan as the first South Asian country for a bilateral visit manifests Egypt's desire to add a new chapter to its bilateral ties with Pakistan," said a statement from the foreign office.
The legal complexity surrounding the case of the Italian marines can be used by India to secure its national interest, writes Arghya Sengupta
in The Hindu.
Read the full report here
11:45 Adelaide dog breaks world record for loudest bark:
An dog from Adelaide has broken the Guinness World Record for the loudest bark. Six-year-old golden retriever Charlie registered his record-breaking bark of 113.1 decibels at a national competition late last year, reports ABC News.
Charlie has beaten the previous record of 108 decibels, held by a German shepherd in London since 2009.Read the full story here
11:15 24 army personnel killed in bus accident in Pakistan:
Twenty-four army personnel were killed and five others were injured today when a bus plungedinto a ravine in northern Pakistan, officials said.
The bus, which was going from the garrison city of Rawalpindi to Gilgit, fell into a ravine along the Karakoram Highway in Kohistan district. There were 29 people on board and 24 army personnel were killed instantly, officials said.
"All the 24 killed are Pakistan army personnel and we have started a rescue operation. We have called in the army to airlift the injured and bodies to Rawalpindi," Aqal Badshah ,the deputy commissioner of Kohistan, told the media.
Some reports said the driver was speeding and lost control of the bus.
11:02 TN colleges shut down to prevent ant-Lanka protests:
The government has asked 438 arts and science colleges in Tamil Nadu to
be closed immediately till further orders as student organisations
across the state gear up to organise massive protests from Monday, reports NDTV
students are demanding that India vote against Sri Lanka on a
resolution expected to be moved at a meeting of the United Nation's
Human Rights Council in Geneva this month.
The US is expected to
move the motion against Sri Lanka on war crimes and rights violations
against Tamil civilians during the final phase of the war against the
Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam.
10:27 India has not downgraded diplomatic ties with Italy:
External Affairs Minister Salman Khurshid has said that India has not downgraded its diplomatic mission in Italy after the latter's refusal to send two of its marines to face trial for shooting two fishermen last year.
"There's no decision that we've taken that we have reached to the stage of announcing. You don't take decisions in a vacuum," he told NDTV
Read the full report here
09:45 Vatican denies claims that Pope Francis failed to protect priests:
The Vatican refuted against claims that Pope Francis failed to protect two fellow Jesuit priests who were kidnapped during Argentina's military dictatorship, reports CNN.
A book by investigative reporter Horacio Verbitsky accuses Francis, who was then Jorge Mario Bergoglio and was head of the country's Jesuit order, of deliberately failing to protect the two priests, Orlando Yorio and Francisco Jalics, when they were seized by the navy. They were found alive five months later.
Rev Federico Lombardi, a Vatican spokesman, dismissed the claims -- which date back to Argentina's so-called Dirty War from 1976 to 1983 -- as false and defamatory.Read the full report on CNN
09:37 Indian journalist Bobby Ghosh named TIME International editor:
Eminent Indian journalist Bobby Ghosh has been named the new editor of Time International
The announcement of Ghosh's appointment was made by Martha Nelson, editor-in-chief, and Rick Stengel, Managing Editor, of the magazine in a joint email to the company staff.
"It gives me great pleasure to announce that Bobby Ghosh is our new international editor. Bobby, quite simply, is a magnificent journalist who has done the highest level of work that one can aspire to in our profession," they said.
"Bobby, whose recent India stories for TIME
have included profiles of cricket god Sachin Tendulkar; Bollywood star Aamir Khan and world chess champ Vishwanathan Anand, replaces Jim Frederick, who now becomes a contributing editor," they said.
Bobby joined TIME
in 1998 after ten years as a journalist in India and two on the staff of the Far Eastern Economic Review
in Hong Kong.
09:34 US to boost nuclear missile defence to counter N Korea :
The United States plans to bolster its missile defences on the west coast to counter the threat from North Korea, Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel has announced.
He said the US would add 14 interceptors, which can shoot down missiles in flight, to 30 already in place in California and Alaska by 2017, reports BBC
.Read the full report here
09:27 MP: Swiss woman gangraped by 7 unidentified men:
A Swiss woman was allegedly gangraped by seven men in Datia, Madya Pradesh. The woman was cycling along with her husband from Orchha in MP to Agra in Uttar Pradesh when they were attacked, reports CNN-IBN
A case has been registered against seven unidentified people in Datia Civil Lines police station in Madhya Pradesh. The woman has been taken to the Gwalior hospital.
04:01 BSNL most used network in Asia for ID theft: Study:
Just 20 ISPs are responsible for half of the world's entire haul of Internet scam and spam emails, says a study.
The thesis (you can read it here in a PDF file
), titled Internet Bad Neighbourhoods
is the work of a pair of researchers, Moreira Moura and Giovane Cesare, from the University of Twente, who researched over 42,000 Internet Service Providers worldwide and found the following trends:
* Most phishing comes from Asia -- of that, Indian network BSNL came top of the list.
* The most crime-ridden network is Nigeria's Spectranet.
* The majority of bad ISPs are to be found in India, Brazil, and Vietnam.
03:46 The photos Saudi Arabia doesn't want seen:
The authorities in Saudi Arabia have begun dismantling some of the oldest sections of Islam's most important mosque as part of a highly controversial multi-billion expansion.
Photographs obtained by The Independent reveal how workers with drills and mechanical diggers have started demolishing some Ottoman and Abbasid sections on the eastern side of the Masjid al-Haram in Mecca.
The building, which is also known as the Grand Mosque, is the holiest site in Islam because it contains the Kaaba the point to which all Muslims face when praying. The columns are the last remaining sections of the mosque which date back more than a few hundred years and form the inner perimeter on the outskirts of the white marble floor surrounding the Kaaba.
The new photos, taken over the last few weeks, have caused alarm among archaeologists
03:44 336 million abortions under China's one-child policy:
More than half a billion birth control procedures, including at least 336 million abortions, have been performed in the name of the one-child policy, China's Health ministry has revealed.
The figure illustrates the enormous impact that the one-child policy has had on China in the four decades since it began.
Official statistics showed that in addition to the terminations, Chinese doctors have sterilised 196 million men and women since 1971.
Perhaps unexpectedly, most people in China support the one-child policy, believing that the country would have suffered an impossible drain on food and resources without it, according to a 2008 survey by the Pew Research Centre, which found more than three in four Chinese were in favour.
Fewer than ten per cent of sexually active couples regularly use condoms, according to the state-run Science and Technology Research Institute.
02:15 Barack Obama invites Miss Israel to dinner:
It will be one of the hottest tickets in town. When the US president, Barack Obama, arrives in Israel on an official visit next week, one of the highlights for the country's dignatries will be a dinner hosted at Israeli president Shimon Peres's home. And among those set to dine with the two presidents is the first black Miss Israel, Yityish Aynaw.
When the president's staff called to invite her to the dinnerAynaw, who was crowned just a few weeks ago, was understandably taken aback. "I didn't believe this was happening," she told the Jerusalem Post.
Aynaw arrived in Israel from Ethiopia when she was 12 years old. The beauty queen, who has worked as a sales assistant since leaving the army, has admitted that it was initially difficult for her to assimilate into Israeli society.
Despite being 100,000 strong, the Ethiopian Jewish community is marginalised in Israel, where some rabbis have questioned the authenticity of their Jewish faith.
02:11 Time for US drone war in Pak to end: UN probe:
After days of meeting with Pakistani officials, the United Nations official investigating Washington's global campaign of drone strikes attacked the legal and strategic basis for the robotic war in its biggest battlefield. And he raised doubts over whether Americans operating the drones can actually distinguish terrorists from average Pakistanis.
Ben Emmerson spent much of the week in Pakistan soliciting the views of senior government and elected officials about the drone strikes, part of his ongoing effort to investigate the relatively new method of targeted killing.
He said in a statement on Friday that he also met with representatives of the tribal areas of western Pakistan that have borne the overwhelming brunt of the drone campaign. The officials underscored to Emmerson that Pakistan doesn't consent to the US drone effort, and denied extending the tacit consent that its military -- with whom Emmerson did not consult -- has previously provided.
"As a matter of international law the US drone campaign in Pakistan is therefore being conducted without the consent of the elected representatives of the people, or the legitimate Government of the State," Emmerson, the UN special rapporteur on human rights and counterterrorism, said in the statement.
"It involves the use of force on the territory of another State without its consent and is therefore a violation of Pakistan's sovereignty."
02:08 North Korea fires short range missiles in the Sea of Japan:
North Korea has tested short-range missiles in the Sea of Japan, in an apparent attempt to counter-act joint US-South Korean military exercises, South Korean news agency Yonhap reported.
"North Korea test-launched a short-range missile in the East Sea [Sea of Japan] this afternoon, amid the ongoing security crisis on the Korean peninsula following Pyongyang's third nuclear test last month," Yonhap news said.
The source, Yonhap said, was a military source within the South Korean government.
The North Korean military launched two KN-02 short-range missiles into international waters, the report said
02:05 More HIV 'cured': first a baby, now 14 adults:
New Scientist reports: Two weeks after the revelation that a baby has been "cured" of HIV, reports suggest that a similar treatment can cure some adults too. Early treatment seems crucial, but does not guarantee success.
Asier Saez-Cirion of the Pasteur Institute's unit for regulation of retroviral infections in Paris analysed 70 people with HIV who had been treated with antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) between 35 days and 10 weeks after infection -- much sooner than people are normally treated.
All of the participants' drug regimes had been interrupted for one reason or another. For example, some people had made a personal choice to stop taking the drugs, others had been part of a trial of different drug protocols.
Most of the 70 people relapsed when their treatment was interrupted, with the virus rebounding rapidly to pre-treatment levels. But 14 of them -- four women and 10 men -- were able to stay off of ARVs without relapsing, having taken the drugs for an average of three years.
The 14 adults still have traces of HIV in their blood, but at such low levels that their body can naturally keep it in check without drugs.Read more HERE
01:47 Tatra deal: ED probing Rs 170 crore cash inflow:
The Enforcement Directorate is probing alleged cash inflow of about Rs 170 crore into Indian companies in connection with supply of Tatra trucks to the Army.
The agency has recently sent judicial requests to the UK and Hong Kong in connection with a money laundering probe.
The suspect funds were received by five Indian companies through three banks, according to sources in the agency probing the case.
The agency has dispatched the requests, called Letters Rogatory (LRs) in judicial terminology, after a special court in New Delhi recently allowed its plea in this regard.
ED registered a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in April last year against Vectra Chairman Ravi Rishi and few other firms after former Army chief Gen V K Singh had alleged that he was offered a Rs 14 crore bribe in September 2010 to clear the purchase of a tranche of 1,676 Tatra trucks for the Army.
01:46 US to beef up missile defence against North Korea:
The Obama administration will add 14 interceptors to a West Coast-based missile defence system, reflecting concern about North Korea's focus on developing nuclear weapons and its advances in long-range missile technology, US officials said today.
Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel planned to announce the decision later today. It was first reported by Fox News.
In advance of Hagel's announcement, defence officials confirmed the decision on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss it publicly.
The Pentagon intends to add the 14 interceptors to 30 already in place in California and Alaska. That will expand the system's ability to shoot down long-range missiles in flight before they could reach US territory.
James Miller, defence undersecretary for policy, said in a speech Tuesday that the Pentagon has the ability to deploy up to 14 additional missile interceptors, "if needed." He did not say in the speech that a decision had been made to do so.