Developing

  • Sudan seeks probe into killing of nationals in S.Sudan

    AFP - 18 hours ago

    Sudan called on Thursday for an investigation into the "assassination" of its nationals in a South Sudan oil town, where the UN has accused rebels of killing hundreds of civilians. More »Sudan seeks probe into killing of nationals in S.Sudan

  • Japan PM Abe and U.S. President Obama - what's in a name?

    Reuters - 18 hours ago

    Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe may have hoped to demonstrate his personal ties with President Barack Obama during the U.S. leader's state visit to Tokyo - but if how they addressed each other in public was any gauge, the effort fell a little short. Ronald Reagan and Japanese Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone set the gold-standard for chummy relations between leaders of the two allies back in the 1980's, when they famously called each other by the nicknames "Ron" and "Yasu". George W. Bush and Junichiro Koizumi also bonded during Koizumi's 2001-2006 term as Japanese premier, playing ball, eating BBQ at Bush's Texas ranch, and visiting Elvis Presley's Graceland mansion, where Koizumi crooned Elvis tunes. We spoke for an hour and a half about the issues between Japan and US and about global issues," Abe said at a joint news conference after their summit on Thursday. More »Japan PM Abe and U.S. President Obama - what's in a name?

  • Factbox - Key pending reforms facing India's next government

    Reuters - 18 hours ago

    The biggest challenge for India's next government, due to take charge after election results in May, will be to pull the economy out of its deepest slump in decades. Thursday was the sixth round of voting, which runs to May 12, with one recent opinion poll showing that the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and its allies may win an outright majority, ousting the Congress-led government. Here are 10 economic reform challenges that will require urgent attention from the new government: 1) GOODS AND SERVICES TAX (GST): India's most ambitious indirect tax reform would replace existing state and federal levies with a uniform tax, boosting revenue collection while cutting business transaction costs. GST, which could boost India's economy by up to two percentage points, has so far faced resistance from various states, including those governed by the Hindu nationalist BJP who fear loss of their fiscal powers. More »Factbox - Key pending reforms facing India's next government

  • Asian stocks drop on no trade deal in Obama visit

    Associated Press - 18 hours ago

    Asian shares were mixed as stocks in Tokyo slipped Thursday after talks between Japan's prime minister and visiting President Barack Obama produced little on a trade agreement. Progress on the trans-Pacific ... More »Asian stocks drop on no trade deal in Obama visit

  • China rejects Obama's statement on islets disputed with Japan

    Reuters - 18 hours ago

    A chain of islets disputed by China and Japan belong to China regardless of what anyone says, China said on Thursday, in response to a remark by U.S. President Barack Obama that a security treaty between the U.S. and Japan covers the islands. Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang made the remarks at a daily press briefing on Thursday. Obama said he had not drawn any new "red line" over the islands, adding that maritime disputes must be resolved peacefully. The group of tiny East China Sea islets, known in Japan as the Senkaku and in China as the Diaoyu, have long strained ties between Beijing and Tokyo. More »China rejects Obama's statement on islets disputed with Japan

  • Obama Accuses Russia of Thwarting Geneva Accord and Threatens More Sanctions

    IB Times - 18 hours ago

    US President Barack Obama has hit out at Russia for flouting the Geneva accord as international tensions over Ukraine continue and a cohort of US troops land in Poland for military drills. Obama, who is in Japan as part of a multi-nation Asian tour, condemned the continued Moscow-backed takeover of government buildings in cities in eastern Ukraine. He also hinted at the possibility of further sanctions on Russia. "We have seen them not abide by the spirit or the letter of the agreement in Geneva," Obama said at a news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. More »Obama Accuses Russia of Thwarting Geneva Accord and Threatens More Sanctions

  • Scottish Independence Will Cost Taxpayers £450 Extra Annually for Pensions, says DWP

    IB Times - 18 hours ago

    The UK government claims that Scottish independence will cost the taxpayer hundreds of pounds more each year as the state pension bill will rise for each working-age adult. According to the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), which based its analysis on the Scottish National Party's (SNP) pledges, an independent Scotland will cost an extra £450 (€547, $756) per working age adult until around 2030. "This country has a long history of a strong welfare state, which we can rightly be proud of," said Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith. "As part of the UK, Scottish people benefit from this resilient and unified system, which delivers the same support everywhere irrespective of peaks and troughs in economies of the nations or demographic differences. More »Scottish Independence Will Cost Taxpayers £450 Extra Annually for Pensions, says DWP

  • Spain's Caixa, Sabadell signal turnaround with bad debt falls

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Spain's Caixabank and Sabadell on Thursday said bad debts had fallen slightly in the first quarter, signalling the start of a more marked turnaround for the country's banks. Spain's banks are trying to recover from a real estate market crash that hit earnings when they took hefty charges on soured loans two years ago. Spain's prolonged economic downturn had also taken its toll on bank revenues. Sabadell and Caixabank, both from the northern region Catalonia, said bad loans as a percentage of total credit had dropped at the end of March compared to the end of 2013. More »Spain's Caixa, Sabadell signal turnaround with bad debt falls

  • Three foreigners killed in attack in Afghan hospital - security sources

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Three foreigners were killed on Thursday when a security guard opened fire at an international hospital in the Afghan capital, Kabul, security sources said, in the latest of a series of attacks against foreign civilians. Attacks on security forces, Afghan civilians and Westerners have been on the rise since the beginning of the year as Afghans have voted for a successor to President Hamid Karzai, barred by the constitution from running again. More »Three foreigners killed in attack in Afghan hospital - security sources

  • Wage talks resume as South Africa platinum strike marks 13th week

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    By Ed Stoddard JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Marathon talks aimed at ending a crippling three-month strike in South Africa's platinum sector were to resume on Thursday after the world's top producers and union AMCU spent two days haggling over an offer tabled last week by the companies. The strike is already the longest and most costly in living memory for South Africa's mines, though there has been a renewed drive to break the deadlock in recent days after several weeks with no formal direct talks between the two sides. The talks involve the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union (AMCU) leadership and chief executives from Anglo American Platinum, Impala Platinum and Lonmin. There is "potential for further downside revisions from the ongoing industrial action," the unit of global mining house Anglo American said in a trading update. More »Wage talks resume as South Africa platinum strike marks 13th week

  • Oregon gay marriage ban gets day in court

    Associated Press - 19 hours ago

    EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Lawyers for four gay and lesbian couples and the state of Oregon urged a federal judge Wednesday to strike down Oregon's voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage. More »Oregon gay marriage ban gets day in court

  • Independent Scotland Could Suffer Iceland-Style Financial Collapse - S&P

    IB Times - 19 hours ago

    Ratings agency Standard & Poor's has warned the markets that an independent Scotland could suffer a financial meltdown similar to that which decimated Iceland in 2007. According to a note by S&P, if Scotland decided to end its 307-year union with England on 18 September this year, the country's banking system would immediately come under strain from the hefty assets on its balance sheet, and possibly forfeit the support of the rest of Britain. "We note a possible parallel here with Iceland, where in 2008 the national deposit insurance scheme could not honour claims when the country's outsized banking system failed," said S&P. In 2007, Iceland's banking system's assets stood at 880% of the country's GDP. More »Independent Scotland Could Suffer Iceland-Style Financial Collapse - S&P

  • London's FTSE rises at open

    AFP - 19 hours ago

    London shares rose at the start of trading on Thursday with investors taking their lead from other European, markets boosted by reports of a possible US takeover of French industrial giant Alstom. More »London's FTSE rises at open

  • The 9 at 9: Thursday

    TheJournal.ie - 19 hours ago

    Good morning! Start your day here by catching up with all of today’s big stories. More »The 9 at 9: Thursday

  • Ukrainian troops dig in near Slaviansk - Reuters correspondent

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Ukrainian troops were digging in to a new position a few miles from the separatist-held city of Slaviansk early on Thursday, a Reuters correspondent said. Dozens of soldiers in camouflage uniform, some wearing airborne patches, were setting up sandbag defences around at least six BMD light armoured vehicles and putting up a tent near a settlement called Malynivka, some 12 km (8 miles) south of Slaviansk on the main road to the regional capital Donetsk. The Ukrainian government has said it is launching a renewed "anti-terrorist operation" to retake towns and public buildings held by pro-Russian separatists if they do not disarm and leave under the terms of an accord with Russia made in Geneva a week ago that was also signed by the United States and the European Union. Ukraine's Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said troops repelled an overnight attack on a base at Artemivsk, 40 km (25 miles) southeast of Slaviansk by what he said was a force of about 70 led by Russian soldiers. More »Ukrainian troops dig in near Slaviansk - Reuters correspondent

  • Upturn in UK building activity boosts Travis Perkins sales

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Travis Perkins , Britain's No. 1 supplier of building materials, posted a strong rise in first quarter sales, benefiting from the upturn in building activity and the strength of housing transactions. They closed at 1,832 pence on Wednesday, valuing the business at 4.53 billion pounds. More »Upturn in UK building activity boosts Travis Perkins sales

  • Affirmative action is doomed. Here's what progressives should do about it.

    The Week - 19 hours ago

    This week's Supreme Court ruling in the Michigan affirmative action case tried to strike a Solomonic middle-ground, neither demanding nor forbidding states from using racial preferences in university admissions, while endorsing the right of each state's voters to decide such matters themselves. In practice, however, the decision marks the beginning of the end of the era of affirmative action as we know it. Justice Anthony Kennedy, who authored the 6-2 plurality ruling (Elena Kagan was recused), wrote that the court cannot overturn Prop 2 — Michigan's 2006 ban on racial preferences, which was backed by 58 percent of voters — anymore than it could ban Texas' use of preferences in Fisher vs. University of Texas last year. "The Constitution," Kennedy's liberal colleague Justice Breyer noted in his concurring opinion, "foresees the ballot box, not the courts, as the normal instrument for resolving the merits of these (affirmative action) programs." More »Affirmative action is doomed. Here's what progressives should do about it.

  • Russia expects Ukraine deal to be implemented soon - reports

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Russia expects that an international agreement to defuse the Ukraine crisis will be implemented in practical steps, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov was quoted as saying on Thursday. Russia, Ukraine, the United States and the European Union signed the deal in Geneva last week in a bid to resolve the worst crisis between Russia and the West since the end of the Cold War but each side has since accused the other of failing to carry it out. "Russia expects that the Geneva accords will be implemented in practical actions in the near future," Russian news agencies quoted Lavrov as saying. More »Russia expects Ukraine deal to be implemented soon - reports

  • Japan, US focusing on trade statement, final deal elusive - official

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    Japanese and U.S. cabinet members are trying to hammer out a joint statement on trade but are not likely to reach a bilateral deal in the course of talks on Thursday, a Japanese official said. "There are too many issues remaining to wrap them up even if we worked through the night," the official said, just hours after President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe ordered their trade negotiators to seek a deal, considered key for reaching an Asia-Pacific trade pact. Economy Minister Akira Amari and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman are focusing their efforts on crafting a joint statement, the official said on condition of anonymity. More »Japan, US focusing on trade statement, final deal elusive - official

  • Ukraine says army base attacked, town hall recovered

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    KIEV (Reuters) - The Ukrainian government said troops repelled an overnight raid on a base at Artemivsk, between Donetsk and Slaviansk, in eastern Ukraine on Thursday. A soldier was wounded in the attack by about 70 people who Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said on Facebook were led by Russian soldiers. Casualty details for the attackers were not clear, he said. Avakov also said pro-Russian protesters had left the town hall in Mariupol, an industrial city on the Black Sea coast, and the mayor was back in his office - meeting the agreements made with Russia at a Geneva meeting a week ago. ... More »Ukraine says army base attacked, town hall recovered

  • India's BJP eyes gains in south, east to cut clout of regional queens

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    India's opposition Bharatiya Janata Party was set to make gains in two big states in the south and east that began voting on Thursday in the sixth phase of a mammoth general election that could help it build a stable majority in parliament. A final set of opinion polls predicted a strong showing by the BJP and its allies in Tamil Nadu in the south and West Bengal in the east that could make it less dependent on the two women who rule those states and who have in the past proved to be fickle coalition partners. The Hindu nationalist-led opposition, led by prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, is riding a wave of public anger across India against the ruling Congress party over a slew of corruption scandals and a slowing economy. A little over 180 million people were registered to vote on Thursday in the sixth phase of the world's biggest election that will end on May 16 when votes are counted from across India. More »India's BJP eyes gains in south, east to cut clout of regional queens

  • Kashmiris stage protests during Indian elections

    Associated Press - 19 hours ago

    SRINAGAR, India (AP) — Indian forces used tear gas and wooden batons Thursday to disperse scores of Kashmiri demonstrators who shouted anti-India slogans and threw rocks to protest against voting in national elections in the disputed region. More »Kashmiris stage protests during Indian elections

  • Royals 'saddened' at Shand death

    Press Association - 19 hours ago

    William and Kate have sympathised with the Duchess of Cornwall after the sudden death of her brother, following a fall in New York. More »Royals 'saddened' at Shand death

  • Thai opposition leader seeks compromise to avert bloodshed

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    By Amy Sawitta Lefevre BANGKOK (Reuters) - Alarmed by the prospect of bloodshed in Thailand as a six-month political crisis nears a critical juncture, former Prime Minister Abhisit Vejjajiva has called for talks between the government and its foes, urging compromise to restore stability. The 49-year-old leader of Thailand's main opposition Democrat Party has joined street demonstrations in Bangkok aiming to force out Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, and his party boycotted a February 2 election, which was nullified by a court in March after widespread disruption. My intention, this week, is to say that: isn't it time we all accept the reality that neither side can get its way, and even if it did, it couldn't bring long-lasting stability." The protests, which attracted more than 200,000 people at their height, have dwindled but hard-core demonstrators say they will continue to harass the government and disrupt any new election until Yingluck's government is toppled. Abhisit's comments were met with scepticism by the government. More »Thai opposition leader seeks compromise to avert bloodshed

  • Historic canonisation of two popes brings joy and controversy

    Reuters - 19 hours ago

    By Philip Pullella VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Two giants of Roman Catholicism in the 20th century will become saints on Sunday at an unprecedented twin canonisation that has aroused both joy and controversy in the 1.2 billion member Church. Pope John XXIII, who reigned from 1958 to 1963 and called the modernising Second Vatican Council, and Pope John Paul II, who reigned for nearly 27 years before his death in 2005 and whose trips around the world made him the most visible pope in history, will be declared saints by Pope Francis. While John died half a century ago, critics say the canonisation of John Paul - which sets a record for modern times of only nine years after his death - is too hasty. They also believe he was slow to grasp the seriousness of the sexual abuse crisis that emerged towards the end of his pontificate. More »Historic canonisation of two popes brings joy and controversy

Pagination

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