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Tuesday 30 December 2014

UN Security Council action on Palestinian statehood blocked

UN, 30 December 2014 – Falling short of the required number of positive votes and faced with a veto from one of its permanent members, the United Nations Security Council today failed to adopt a draft resolution that would have affirmed the “urgent need” to reach within 12 months a peaceful solution to the situation in the Middle East and would have paved the way to a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Palestinians demand UN vote on Israeli withdrawal, defeat likely

UN Security Council is expected to vote as early as Tuesday afternoon on a Palestinian draft resolution that calls for a peace deal with Israel within a year and an end of the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories by late 2017.

Sunday 28 December 2014

Winds hamper burning ferry rescue off Greece (About 160 rescued)

At least one person has been killed and hundreds more remain trapped after an Italian ferry with almost 500 people on board caught fire off the Greek island of Corfu, the Italian Navy has confirmed.
About 160 people have been rescued so far, while Italian and Greek helicopter crews prepared to work through the night to airlift passengers in pairs off a burning ferry adrift in the Adriatic Sea.

Friday 26 December 2014

Asia Marks 10th Anniversary of Tsunami (UN says world better prepared for natural disasters)

Beach side memorials, moments of silence, and religious services are planned across Asia on Friday to mark the 10th anniversary of the Indian Ocean tsunami that killed at least 220,000 people in 2004.
The gigantic wave stuck a dozen countries around the Indian Ocean rim. It destroyed entire coastal communities, wiped out families and crashed over tourist-filled beaches the morning after Christmas.

Tuesday 23 December 2014

France deploys extra army patrols in wake of attacks

French Prime Minister Manuel Valls on Tuesday said France had deployed 300 extra troops to patrol public areas over the Christmas period following a spate of attacks on police officers and shoppers.

In an announcement broadcast on live TV, Valls said he appreciated that the “deeply shocking” events had “understandably created great concerns”, but insisted that “each event must be treated separately”.

Sunday 21 December 2014

Economic slump in Russia to wield telling impact on Germany companies

Economic slump in Russia poses an increasingly serious threat to the German companies operating in that country, the President of the Association of German Chambers of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), Dr. Volker Treier said in an interview published by Bild am Sonntag newspaper.

The crisis in the Russian economy is putting an increasingly bigger brake on the business operations of German companies in Russia, Dr. Treier said, adding their activities were suffering in the first place from the falling exchange rate of the ruble.

Friday 19 December 2014

Obama: 'We will respond' to N. Korea hack

US President Barack Obama warned Friday that Washington "will respond" to North Korea's cyber attack on Sony Pictures over "The Interview," a satirical film about a CIA plot to kill Kim Jong-Un.

Wednesday 17 December 2014

Obama says US restoring ties with Cuba (five decades after diplomatic relations were severed)

The United States will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba more than 50 years after they were severed, US President Barack Obama has said, just hours after Havana announced it had released a US aid worker who had been jailed for five years in Cuba.

Monday 15 December 2014

Erdogan tells EU to 'mind own business' in Turkey arrests. EU's Mogherini 'very surprised' at Erdogan comments on arrests

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Monday (Dec 15) lashed out at the European Union for criticising the mass arrests targeting opposition media outlets, telling Brussels to "mind its own business."

Saturday 13 December 2014

Climate talks run into overtime as nations clash

LIMA, Peru: Negotiations on forging a UN pact to fight climate change headed into an unscheduled 13th day on Saturday (Dec 13) in a frantic quest to bridge a rift between rich and poor countries.

Ministers and senior officials from 195 states were to examine a compromise for calming a bust-up over who bears responsibility for fighting climate change.

Thursday 11 December 2014

Fidel Castro awarded China's Confucius Peace Prize

Cuban leader Fidel Castro has been awarded with the Confucius Peace prize, China’s own version of the Nobel Peace Prize which organizers of the alternative distinction consider biased against the Asian giant.

The ceremony was held at the Beijing University with Cuban students representing Castro, receiving a statuette, a diploma and money on behalf of the historic leader of Cuba’s revolution.

Tuesday 9 December 2014

US Senate report finds CIA interrogations 'far more brutal' than agency admitted

"Enhanced interrogation" techniques used by the CIA on militants detained in secret prisons were ineffective and never produced information which led to the disruption of imminent terrorist plots, the declassified report by the Senate Intelligence Committee has found.
The report said the CIA misled the public and government policymakers about the effectiveness of the programme, which ran from 2002 to 2006 and involved questioning Al-Qaeda and other captives around the world.

Sunday 7 December 2014

Syria: Israeli jets bomb army facilities near Damascus airport. (no reports of casualties)

Syrian media reported on Sunday evening that Israeli jets had bombed targets near Damascus international airport and in the town of Dimas, north of Damascus and near the border with Lebanon.
There were no reports of casualties in the reports, but the general command of the Syrian army said in a statement that several facilities had been hit, both at the Damascus International Airport and in the area of Dimas.

Friday 5 December 2014

France, US strike deal to pay $60 mln for Holocaust victims deported by SNCF

France said today it had agreed to put $60 million into a fund managed by the United States to compensate Holocaust victims deported by French state rail firm SNCF to Nazi death camps, a deal that protects it from future US litigation.
About 76,000 Jews were arrested in France during World War Two and transported in appalling conditions in railway boxcars to concentration camps such as Auschwitz, where most died.

Wednesday 3 December 2014

China rejects Britain's "moral duty" to Hong Kong

BEIJING, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- China on Wednesday rejected Britain's "moral duty" to Hong Kong, adding some British lawmakers' attempts to meddle in China's internal affairs is "not acceptable" and "doomed to fail."

Monday 1 December 2014

China slams British MPs’ attempt to visit Hong Kong

China on Monday explained its refusal to allow British lawmakers to visit Hong Kong and urged them not to interfere in Hong Kong's affairs.

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