World

19th February

Nigerian candidate says delayed presidential vote could be compromised

ABUJA (Reuters) – While most Nigerians took the delay in a presidential election in their stride on Sunday, after similar postponements in 2011 and 2015, one presidential candidate and civil society groups expressed concern that...

Haiti vows to trim expenses and investigate PetroCaribe amid protests

SANTO DOMINGO (Reuters) – The Haitian government vowed to deepen the investigation into alleged corruption in the PetroCaribe oil program and to reduce its expenses, seeking to meet some of protestors’ demands as demonstrations roil the country. During a televised address on Saturday night, Prime Minister Jean-Henry Ceant announced nine measures aimed at alleviating the...

Bulgaria’s largest opposition party votes to quit parliament

SOFIA (Reuters) – Lawmakers from Bulgaria’s opposition Socialist Party (BSP) are leaving parliament for an unspecified period, saying fair elections could not be guaranteed following recent Election Code amendments. As the Socialists control 79 of the 240 seats in parliament, the move, approved by BSP’s national council on Saturday, could lead to numbers in parliament more...

Split with Bajin not over money: Osaka

(Reuters) – World number one Naomi Osaka was adamant that her shock split with coach Sascha Bajin had nothing to do with money but it was because she was determined that her career would not be about putting “success over happiness”. The German had guided the Japanese player to back-to-back Grand Slam titles as well...

Facebook needs independent ethical oversight: UK lawmakers

LONDON (Reuters) – Facebook and other big tech companies should be subject to a compulsory code of ethics to tackle the spread of fake news, the abuse of users’ data and the bullying of smaller firms, British lawmakers said on Monday. In a damning report that singled out Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg for what...

Australia says foreign government behind cyber attack on lawmakers

SYDNEY (Reuters) – A cyber attack on Australian lawmakers that breached the networks of major political parties was probably carried out by a foreign country, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday, without naming any suspects. As Australia heads for an election due by May, lawmakers were told this month told to urgently change their...

Germany warns it will stop extradition of its citizens to UK after Brexit: FT

(Reuters) – Berlin will stop extraditing Germans to Britain immediately after Brexit even if it leaves the European Union with a deal, the Financial Times reported on.ft.com/2DPMBED on Sunday, citing a formal notification submitted by Germany to the European Commission last week. The notification cites concerns faced by Britain and the EU in maintaining their security cooperation...

Saudi crown prince begins Asia tour with $20 billion Pakistan investment pledge

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Sunday said Saudi Arabia has signed investment agreements worth $20 billion during his high-profile visit to Pakistan, where tensions were flaring up with nuclear-armed rival India. Kicking off his tour of South Asia and China with a far higher Pakistan investment than expected, the crown prince...

Venezuela denies EU lawmakers entry given ‘conspiratorial motives’

CARACAS (Reuters) – Venezuela denied a group of European Parliament deputies entry into the country on Sunday, arguing they had “conspiratorial motives” for flying to Caracas in the throes of a political crisis. The European Parliament last month joined a slew of Western nations in recognizing Venezuelan opposition chief Juan Guaido as interim head of...

Exclusive: U.S. blocks North Korean air traffic revival ahead of Trump-Kim summit – sources

MONTREAL/SEOUL (Reuters) – The United States has blocked efforts by a U.N. agency to improve civil aviation in North Korea at a time when Pyongyang is trying to reopen part of its airspace to foreign flights, three sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The U.S. move is part of a negotiating tactic to maintain...

18th February

Paramount Group in talks to develop Africa’s defense industry

ABU DHABI (Reuters) – South African defense company Paramount Group expects to sign agreements with four African governments this year to set up production facilities in their countries, its chairman said on Sunday. Paramount, Africa’s largest privately owned defense firm, has established manufacturing capabilities to meet demand from specific domestic markets before, including in India,...

Timeline: The rise and fall of Islamic State in Iraq and Syria

(Reuters) – Islamic State faces the total defeat of its self-proclaimed caliphate. This timeline chronicles its lightning rise, cruel reign and stubborn fall. ** 2004-11 – In the chaos following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, an al-Qaeda offshoot sets up there, changing its name in 2006 to Islamic State in Iraq. ** 2011 –...

IS ‘caliphate’ on brink of defeat in Syria as Trump urges Europe to do more

NEAR BAGHOUZ, Syria (Reuters) – U.S.-backed fighters in Syria are poised to capture Islamic State’s last, tiny enclave on the Euphrates, the battle commander said on Saturday, bringing its self-declared caliphate to the brink of total defeat as U.S. President Donald Trump spoke of “100 percent victory”. Jiya Furat said the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)...

Polish PM cancels trip to Israel in wake of comments on Poles in Holocaust

WARSAW (Reuters) – Poland’s prime minister has canceled a trip to Israel in the wake of reported remarks made by his Israeli counterpart suggesting Polish complicity during the Holocaust, an aide in his office told Polish media on Sunday. A government spokeswoman confirmed to Reuters that Prime Minister Mateusz Morawiecki would not attend the summit...

Iran’s Zarif accuses Israel, U.S. of seeking war

MUNICH (Reuters) – Iran’s foreign minister on Sunday accused Israel of looking for war and warned that its actions and those of the United States were increasing the chances of a clash in the region. Addressing the Munich Security Conference, Mohammad Javad Zarif, also criticized the U.S. administration after Vice President Mike Pence this week...

Trump policies unite allies against him at European security forum

MUNICH (Reuters) – In 2009, then U.S. Vice President Joe Biden came to Munich to “press the reset button” with Russia. A decade later he came again to offer the world better relations, this time with his own country. Promising that “America will be back” once Donald Trump leaves office, Biden won a standing ovation...

May to speak to every EU head in bid for Brexit deal changes

LONDON (Reuters) – Theresa May plans to speak to every European Union leader and the European Commission chief to seek changes to her EU withdrawal agreement, days after another defeat from her own lawmakers and as businesses brace for a no-deal Brexit on March 29. In her talks with EU leaders and European Commission President...

Indonesian presidential hopefuls vow energy self-sufficiency through palm

JAKARTA (Reuters) – Indonesia’s two presidential candidates pledged on Sunday to achieve energy self-sufficiency by boosting the use of bioenergy, particularly fueled by palm oil, to cut costly oil imports by Southeast Asia’s biggest economy. Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer, has been pushing for all diesel fuel used in the country to contain...

Nigerian candidate says delayed presidential vote could be compromised

ABUJA (Reuters) – While most Nigerians took the delay in a presidential election in their stride on Sunday, after similar postponements in 2011 and 2015, one presidential candidate and civil society groups expressed concern that the vote could now be compromised. Authorities postponed Saturday’s election by a week just hours before polls had been due...

Kashmiris complain of evictions after deadly attack on Indian forces, authorities promise safety

SRINAGAR (Reuters) – India has warned against rising communal tensions across the country as some Kashmiris living outside their state said they faced property evictions while others were attacked on social media after a suicide bomber killed 44 policemen in the region. The car bomb attack on a security convoy on Thursday, claimed by Pakistan-based...

Catholic Church credibility on the line at abuse meeting

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – The Vatican will gather senior bishops from around the world later this week for a conference on sex abuse designed to guide them on how best to tackle a problem that has decimated the Church’s credibility, but critics say it is too little, too late. The unprecedented four-day meeting, starting on...

U.S. cannot back Syrian forces who align with Assad: U.S. commander

BAGHDAD (Reuters) – The United States will have to sever its military assistance to the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) battling Islamic State if the fighters partner with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad or Russia, a senior U.S. general said on Sunday. The remarks by Army Lieutenant General Paul LaCamera, who is the commander of the...

Nicaraguan government meets with business leaders in bid to end crisis

MANAGUA (Reuters) – The Nicaraguan government said it has initiated talks with the country’s private sector in what observers see as a bid to repair the relationship between embattled President Daniel Ortega and business leaders and ease a political crisis that has engulfed the country since last spring. The dialogue between the government and businessmen...

Saudi crown prince begins Asia tour with $20 billion Pakistan investment pledge

ISLAMABAD (Reuters) – Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman on Sunday said Saudi Arabia has signed investment agreements worth $20 billion during his high-profile visit to Pakistan, where tensions were flaring up with nuclear-armed rival India. Kicking off his tour of South Asia and China with a far higher Pakistan investment than expected, the crown prince...

Illinois factory gunman obtained firearm permit despite felony conviction

AURORA, Ill. (Reuters) – The gunman who killed five co-workers and wounded five policemen at an Illinois factory was a violent felon who nevertheless obtained a state permit to buy a firearm despite being legally barred from owning one, authorities said on Saturday. Gary Martin, 45, who carried his pistol to work on Friday apparently...

U.S. backs India’s right to defend itself after Kashmir attack

NEW DELHI/SRINAGAR (Reuters) – The United States has told India it supports its right to defend itself against cross-border attacks, the government in New Delhi said on Saturday as it considers retaliation against a car bombing in disputed Kashmir claimed by Pakistan-based militants. Tensions between nuclear-armed India and Pakistan have risen again after India, incensed...

‘Roma’ actress says she is proud of her roots after fellow actor uses racial slur

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) – Oscar-nominated Mexican actress Yalitza Aparicio, who stars in the critically acclaimed film “Roma,” said on Saturday that she was proud of her indigenous roots after a soap opera star used a racial slur to describe her. “I am proud to be an Oaxacan indigenous woman, and it saddens me that there...

Nigerian presidential poll postponed, opposition slams decision

DAURA/YOLA, Nigeria (Reuters) – Nigerian authorities postponed Saturday’s national election by a week, just hours before polls had been due to open, prompting the opposition candidate to accuse President Muhammadu Buhari of seeking to “disenfranchise” voters. The electoral commission said the postponement was due solely to logistical factors and denied political pressure had played any...

U.S. military not decided yet on necessity of border wall

ABOARD A U.S. MILITARY AIRCRAFT (Reuters) – Acting U.S. Defence Secretary Patrick Shanahan said on Saturday he had not yet determined whether a border wall with Mexico was a military necessity or how much Pentagon money would be used. President Donald Trump on Friday declared a national emergency in a bid to fund his promised...

Legal challenges to Trump emergency declaration face uphill battle

(Reuters) – Democratic lawmakers, states and others mulling legal challenges to President Donald Trump’s national emergency declaration to obtain funds to build a U.S.-Mexico border wall face an uphill and probably losing battle in a showdown likely to be decided by the conservative-majority Supreme Court, legal experts said. After being rebuffed by the U.S. Congress...

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