While You Were Sleeping: 5 stories you might have missed, Sept 23

 Brett Kavanaugh after his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Sept. 6, 2018.
Brett Kavanaugh after his confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Sept. 6, 2018.PHOTO: NYTIMES

Brett Kavanaugh accuser willing to testify about sexual assault claim

The woman who claims Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh sexual assaulted her decades ago has agreed to testify before a Senate panel, her lawyers said in an email to staff of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

But details of the presentation still need to be worked out.

The move potentially sets up a final showdown in the bitter political fight over President Donald Trump’s second high court pick.

Christine Blasey Ford Kavanaugh sexually assaulted her at a party during the early 1980s, when both were high school students in suburban Washington DC, a claim Kavanaugh strongly denies.


Iran’s supreme leader blames Gulf Arab states for military parade attack

Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei accused US-backed Gulf Arab states of carrying out a shooting attack on a military parade that killed 25 people, almost half of them members of the country’s elite Revolutionary Guards.

Khamenei ordered security forces to bring to justice those responsible for one of the worst assaults ever against the Revolutionary Guards, the most powerful military force in the country, which answers to him.

The allegation will likely ratchet up tensions with Iran’s rival Saudi Arabia and its Gulf allies, who along with the United States have been working to isolate the Islamic Republic.


Britain fumes at 'insulting' Tusk post about Theresa May's Brexit plan

British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Saturday (Sept 22) accused EU Council President Donald Tusk of "insulting the British people" by needling Prime Minister Theresa May in a viral social media post.

Tusk created a mini-sensation during a difficult EU summit on Brexit in Salzburg by posting a photo on Instagram of himself offering May a tray of cakes.

"A piece of cake, perhaps?" Tusk wrote alongside the picture. "Sorry, no cherries." The comment was a biting reference to accusations by Brussels that May was "cherry-picking" the best parts of EU membership while leaving the bloc.


Annual Oktoberfest kicks off in Munich with beer, lederhosen, sausages

Thousands of visitors, many of them dressed in traditional lederhosen or dirndl corseted dresses, descended on Munich on Saturday (Sept 22) for the start of the annual Oktoberfest, the world's largest beer festival.

Munich's mayor, Dieter Reiter, kicked off the festivities by tapping open the first beer keg with a traditional shout of "O zapft is!" ("It's tapped" in English).

Revellers arrived early to secure spaces at the coveted long communal tables in tents, where visitors swig beer, munch on sausages, pretzel or pork knuckle, and listen to oompah bands.


Football: Salah helps Liverpool thrash Southampton to go top

Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah netted his first league goal since Aug 25 as the Reds thrashed Southampton 3-0 on Saturday (Sept 22) to leap-frog Chelsea at the top of the Premier League table and confirm their best start to a season.

Juergen Klopp’s side have won all six league games and are three points ahead of Chelsea, who have five wins from five games and play West Ham United on Sunday.

An own goal by Wesley Hoedt started the visitors’ misery in the 10th minute as Xherdan Shaqiri’s shot hit Shane Long before bouncing into the net off the Dutch defender and Joel Matip made it two with a header from a corner 11 minutes later.