Friday, July 29, 2005

Debate Over US-India Nuclear Policy Shift Continues

An agreement by Washington to resume civilian nuclear cooperation with India, an emerging key ally, continues to make waves, while in India itself the response has been mixed. Read

Caution, Skepticism Greet IRA Statement Ending 'Armed Campaign'

A statement by the Irish Republican Army saying it has formally ended a decades-long "armed campaign" against British rule in Northern Ireland has drawn widespread reaction, much of it cautious and some of it skeptical. Read

Promote Circumcision in the Fight Against AIDS, Expert Urges

United Nations agencies have cautiously welcomed research showing that circumcising men can produce significantly lower infections of the deadly AIDS virus, but they aren't yet recommending that the procedure be promoted. Read

Thursday, July 28, 2005

North Korea Wants US to Remove Nuclear Umbrella Protecting South

North Korea has formally rejected a 13-month-old U.S. proposal to resolve a standoff over its nuclear weapons programs. It also has raised a new demand at talks in Beijing - for the U.S. to remove its nuclear umbrella protecting South Korea. Read

US, Partners Unveil New Climate Change Plan

The United States and five Pacific Rim nations have unveiled a new joint venture aimed at tackling climate change outside the framework of the Kyoto Protocol. Read

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

'Beyond Kyoto' Plan to Be Unveiled Soon

The United States and its anti-Kyoto Protocol ally Australia are on the verge of announcing a new "beyond Kyoto" plan aimed at tackling climate change without jeopardizing economic development. Read

Central Asian Republics Say US Forces Can Stay

Two Central Asian republics have assured the United States on the continued use of airbases and fueling and overflight rights, just three weeks after a regional grouping dominated by China and Russia called for an end to the U.S. presence. Read

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Embattled Zimbabwe Leader Looks to China for Help

Under growing pressure from the international community over rights abuses and political and financial mismanagement, Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe has turned to China for help. Read

North Korea Nuclear Talks Underway After 13-Month Boycott

The first multilateral talks on North Korea nuclear weapons programs in more than a year began in Beijing on Tuesday, with U.S. officials saying that Washington is prepared for open-ended negotiations. But the U.S. also said it expects a formal response from Pyongyang to a U.S. proposal, made 13 months ago, for ending the crisis. Read

Monday, July 25, 2005

Washington Wants Allies Included in New Asian Regional Grouping

With the support of Washington, the Australian government is preparing to sign a non-aggression treaty to clear the way for it to attend an inaugural meeting later this year of a new Asian regional grouping. Read

UN Moves Towards Defining Terrorism

The United Nations is edging towards agreement on defining terrorism as part of a comprehensive convention against terrorism. Member states will be asked at a September summit to sign onto that agreement in the following 12 months. Read

British Police Defend Lethal Force in Hunt for Terrorists

British police investigating the terrorist bombings in London will not amend their rules of engagement despite having shot dead an innocent man on a subway train during a hunt for fugitive terrorists. Read

Friday, July 22, 2005

US Welcomes China's Modest Currency Shift

In a move seen as aimed at deflecting foreign and especially American criticism, China has revalued its currency for the first time in a decade - although the shift is a minor one. Read

Failed Attacks May Provide Police With Breakthrough

Thursday's largely abortive terror attacks in London may provide invaluable clues to police investigating the deadly July 7 bombings because of evidence left at the scene by the terrorists. Read

Defector Details Chinese Spying, Strategies Against Falun Gong

China maintains a network of more than a thousand "secret agents and informants" in Australia, and an even higher number were likely deployed in the United States, a former Chinese diplomat told U.S. lawmakers Thursday. Read

Chavez Promises Airwave Warfare Over US Broadcast Plans

Days before Venezuela's leftist President Hugo Chavez launches his flagship television network, the fierce critic of Washington has lashed out at a U.S. plan to transmit radio and television programs into the country. He has vowed to jam the signal. Read

Thursday, July 21, 2005

London Mayor Attacks Israeli, Western Policies

Less than two weeks after Muslim terrorists killed more than 50 people in London, the city's left-wing mayor has caused a storm by blaming terrorism on decades of Western Mideast policies, and he appeared to express an understanding for Palestinian suicide bombers. Read

Defector to Testify on Chinese Rights Abuses

Two weeks after being granted a protection visa to stay in Australia, a former Chinese diplomat who has made startling claims about Chinese spying networks will testify on Capitol Hill Thursday. Read

Australians Debate Tougher Steps Against Extremists

Britain's plans to crack down on radical Muslim clerics following the London terrorist attacks have prompted a debate about similar actions in Australia, another U.S. ally which critics say has tolerated extremists for too long. Read

Muslim Leaders, It's Time to Get Serious

It’s way past time Muslim organizations in the West moved beyond condemning terrorist attacks and started rooting out the cancer in their midst. Read commentary

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

FDA Issues Health Warning After Reports of Abortion Pill Deaths

The maker of an abortion pill has reported the deaths of five American women after taking the drug. This is the same pill that the U.N.'s key health agency recently added to its list of "essential medicines." Read

Report on China Buildup Explains US Stance on EU Arms Embargo

A new Pentagon report on China's military buildup shows why the United States has been pressing the European Union to maintain its ban on selling weapons to the Asian giant, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld said Tuesday. Read

Indian PM Makes Nuclear Appeal to Congress

Having achieved a major goal by securing a U.S. administration promise to help his country's civilian nuclear power sector, Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh urged Congress Tuesday to end sanctions imposed because of India's nuclear weapons programs. Read

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Coalition Partners Reject Iraq Link to London Bombing

Top American, British and Australian officials have rejected a leading think tank's suggestions that participation in the war on Iraq made coalition countries more vulnerable to terrorism like the July 7 London bombings. Read

British Gov't Moves to Strengthen Anti-Terror Laws

The British government hopes to pass new anti-terrorism legislation by year's end that will outlaw incitement to violence and make it a crime to undergo training in terrorist techniques. Read

India, US Affirm Growing Ties, But No Move on UN Seat

Hailing what they described as a "new global partnership," President Bush and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh agreed Monday to step up cooperation in civil nuclear energy, an area of growing importance for both economies. Read

Monday, July 18, 2005

China Plays Down General's Nuclear Remarks

Beijing has played down remarks by a senior Chinese general who warned of a nuclear response in the event of a conflict with the United States over Taiwan. The Chinese government reiterated that the military officer was expressing personal views. Read

Indian PM's Visit Marks Growing Partnership Between Key Democracies

The relationship between the world's superpower and its most populous democracy will be in the spotlight Monday when President Bush hosts Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for a state visit. Read

Friday, July 15, 2005

Chinese General Warns of Nuclear Conflict Over Taiwan

China is prepared to use nuclear weapons against the United States in the event of a conflict over Taiwan, Western newspapers quoted a senior Chinese military officer as saying Thursday. Read

Poll Shows Muslim Support for Violence

A new poll tracking Muslim opinions on suicide bombing, Osama bin Laden and attitudes towards Christians and Jews is being interpreted as good news, although it shows that substantial minorities in some Muslim countries still have highly controversial views. Read

Britain Wants to Expel Preachers of Hate

The British government is seeking new powers to prevent foreign extremist clerics from visiting the country and to expel individuals who incite terrorism. Read

Thursday, July 14, 2005

‘Promote Circumcision’ Call Greets Finding About Reduced AIDS Infections

A major conference on HIV-AIDS will soon hear about new research linking male circumcision with dramatically reduced HIV infection rates, but the finding is unlikely to end a long running debate over the procedure. Read

Philippines Leader 'Determined Not to Resign'

Philippines President Gloria Arroyo has shrugged off resignation calls by tens of thousands of protestors who took to the streets of Manila Wednesday, as commentators assess what the size of the demonstration means for her chances of surviving her most severe political crisis. Read

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

UN Members Split Over Security Council Expansion Plan

Four countries hoping to obtain permanent seats on the U.N. Security Council have formally introduced a resolution that would radically reshape the key body, but it ran into immediate opposition in the General Assembly. Read

BBC Removes References to Terrorists

Britain's national broadcaster re-edited some of its online coverage of last Thursday's London bombings to remove references to "terrorists" and related words, after earlier appearing to have set aside its policy of not using the terms. Read

British Muslims Shocked That Terrorists Came From Among Them

Britain's main Muslim umbrella organization has reacted with shock to the news that police believe last Thursday's terrorist bombings in London were carried out by members of the British Muslim community rather than foreigners. Read

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Australian Forces May Return to Afghanistan

A national security committee of Australia's cabinet on Tuesday mulled a new deployment of troops to Afghanistan, where an apparent regrouping of Taliban and other terrorist elements has been threatening stability. Read

Religious Hate Law Aimed At Protecting Muslims Passes UK Vote

In a victory for British Muslim campaigners, the House of Commons Monday passed a bill aimed at curbing religious hatred, despite critics' warnings that it could worsen relations between religious communities. Read

Monday, July 11, 2005

UN Health Agency Adds Abortion Drugs to 'Essential Medicines' List

The United Nation's World Health Organization has added mifepristone and misoprostol, the drug combination that produces a chemical abortion, to its list of "essential medicines," thereby making them more readily available around the world. Read

Six-Party Talks On Again, But Rice Cautions Against Celebrating

Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice has welcomed the fact that another round of talks over North Korea's nuclear programs is due to be held soon after a 13-month hiatus, but warned against spending "too much time celebrating." Read

London Bomb Probe Continues, Suspect's Name Emerges

British police are continuing to work their way through more than 1,700 phoned-in tips as well as surveillance camera footage in an effort to track down the terrorists behind last Thursday's bomb blasts in London. Read

Friday, July 08, 2005

BBC Calls Terrorism Terrorism

The British Broadcasting Corporation Thursday dropped its customary stance on using the words "terrorist" and "terror" in its coverage of the deadly bombings in London. Read

Muslim Groups Seek to Distance Islam from London Bombings

Muslim groups in Britain have condemned Thursday's terrorist bombings in London, saying they had nothing to do with Islam and voicing concern that members of their community could face retaliatory attacks. Similar warnings came from Muslim organizations in the U.S. Read

London a Longtime Haven for Radical Muslim Figures

Terrorism experts have long warned that Islamists espousing violence enjoy a haven in London, an assertion that has come into sharp focus again with Thursday's bombings in the British capital. Read

US Allies Steadfast Following London Terror Attacks

Two governments threatened by name by Islamists claiming responsibility for Thursday's bombings in London have responded firmly to the warnings, while two of Washington's closest allies in Asia also declared the attacks would not affect their commitment to keeping troops in Iraq. Read

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Christian Pastor on Trial in China for Printing Bibles

The pastor of an underground Protestant church in China appeared before a Beijing court Thursday, accused of illegally printing more than 200,000 Bibles and other Christian books. Read

Report at G8 Summit Promotes Abortion in Africa

A major report that forms the basis of G8 leaders' discussions on Africa at their summit in Scotland calls for wider access to "safe abortion." Read

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

China, Russia Challenge US Military Presence in Central Asia

All eyes are on the G8 summit starting in Scotland Wednesday, but another gathering of political leaders this week may have significant implications for American interests and influence in an important and oil-rich part of the world. China, Russia and four former Soviet republics are calling for the United States to set a date for withdrawing from military bases in Central Asia Read

London, Paris Down to the Wire in Olympics Bid

Months of increasingly frenzied lobbying will end Wednesday morning when the International Olympic Committee votes on and announces the host city for the 2012 summer Olympic Games. Read

Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Africa Wants Two Permanent Security Council Seats

Formalizing their claim to participation in a new, expanded U.N. Security Council, African leaders meeting in Libya are expected Tuesday to call for two permanent seats for African nations in addition to five non-permanent seats. Read

Pressure Grows on G8 Participants

Protests and a series of huge weekend rock concerts organized around this week's G8 summit in Scotland have boosted expectations of what the meeting may achieve and increased the pressure on those participating, host Prime Minister Tony Blair's personal representative at preparatory meetings acknowledged Monday. Read

Friday, July 01, 2005

Campaigners for Same-Sex 'Marriage' Celebrate Double Win

In the space of two days, the number of countries where homosexuals are legally entitled to "marry" has doubled, prompting celebrations from activists who believe each victory for them adds momentum to their cause. Read

US Lawmakers Aim to Block Chinese Takeover of US Energy Firm

The House of Representatives voted Thursday to block a Chinese company's attempt to buy America's ninth-largest oil and gas firm. The vote came hours after China's energy-hungry communist government decried "political interference" in what it called a purely commercial matter. Read