Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Satellite Base Damaged in Anti-US Protest

In an embarrassing security breach, anti-war activists in New Zealand early Wednesday broke into a communications facility they say is part of a global surveillance system that benefits the U.S. anti-terrorist campaign. Read

Iran Moves Closer to Energy Deals With India, Pakistan

Iran edged closer Tuesday to realizing its plans for a pipeline to carry Iranian natural gas to Pakistan and India, a project that would help Tehran's effort to break free from isolation. The plan is strongly opposed by the United States. Read

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Persian Gulf or Arabian Gulf? Iranians Prickly Over the Name

Typing the search term "Arabian Gulf" into the Internet search engine Google brings up a list of results topped by a link to what looks like a standard "page unavailable" error message. It isn't one. Read

Groups Hope to Avoid 'Moral Leadership Vacuum' at UN Racism Meeting

Expressing regret for the way a 2001 U.N anti-racism conference became a platform for racist and anti-Semitic attacks, non-governmental organizations in growing numbers are pledging to ensure that a follow-up planned for next year does not repeat the problem. Read

Monday, April 28, 2008

Chinese 'Protectors' of Olympic Torch Draw Complaints

After weeks of official protests by the Chinese government about demonstrators disrupting the route of the global Olympic torch relay, on Monday Beijing was on the receiving end of complaints -- this time for the conduct of pro-Chinese activists. Read

North Korea Mum on Syrian Nuclear Cooperation

South Korea's new chief nuclear negotiator is scheduled to meet his American counterpart in Washington on Monday, amid continuing fallout over claims of nuclear collaboration between North Korea and Syria. Read

Friday, April 25, 2008

Libya's Conduct in UN Security Council Makes Waves

Four months after Libya assumed a seat on the U.N. Security Council, its conduct in the global organization's top decision-making body continues to stoke controversy. Read

Thursday, April 24, 2008

North Korea's Nuclear Aid to Syria in the Spotlight

U.S. lawmakers on Thursday will hear intelligence reports indicating that North Korea provided Syria with nuclear know-how, a development that could break, or further complicate, deadlocked efforts to shut down Pyongyang's nuclear weapons programs. Read

Indian Leftists Fume Over US Iran Comments

Left-wing lawmakers in India who oppose a planned nuclear energy cooperation agreement with the United States are up in arms over Washington's advice on how New Delhi should deal with Iran. Read

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Chinese Supply of Weapons to Zimbabwe Blocked

A small arms-laden cargo ship making its way around the southern tip of Africa after several countries refused it permission to dock has become a symbol of China's willingness to arm some of Africa's most questionable regimes. Read

China's Treatment of North Korean Refugees Draws Attention

Already in the spotlight over Tibet, the Chinese government is about to face a barrage of fresh attention and flak over its treatment of North Koreans who have escaped their impoverished Stalinist homeland. Read

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Group on US Terror List Heading for Power in Nepal

When the State Department releases its latest annual report on global terrorism in the coming days, the designated "foreign terrorist organizations" list is expected to include -- as it has in recent years -- the Communist Party of Nepal (Maoist). Read

South Korea Stresses Importance of Verification in Nuclear Deal

Verifying that North Korea has been honest in declaring all of its nuclear programs and activities must be carried out carefully and thoroughly, a process that will take a long time, the South Korean government says. Read

Monday, April 21, 2008

Beijing Mouthpiece Accuses US Gov't of Collusion in Olympic Torch Protests

As the Bush administration's envoy on Tibet prepares to meet with the visiting Dalai Lama on Monday, a state-run Chinese newspaper has accused the State Department of colluding with others to orchestrate protests surrounding the Olympic torch relay. Read

Groundwork to Be Laid for Controversial 'Durban II' Conference

Under the chairmanship of Libya, diplomats begin a meeting in Geneva on Monday to prepare for a major United Nations conference on racism that looks set to split the international community. Read

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Berlusconi's Comeback Welcomed by Like-Minded French Leader

Silvio Berlusconi's return to power in Italy has been warmly welcomed by French President Nicolas Sarkozy, a fellow conservative who shares the Italian politician's reputation for straight-talking and a pro-American, pro-Israel stance. Read

Friday, April 11, 2008

Google in Legal Row Over Abortion Ad

Any Internet surfer entering the search term "abortion" on Google's U.K. Web site this week would bring up a list of main results, flanked by three advertisements -- two for Britain's largest abortion providers and one for quick bank loans. Read

Curiosity About Koran Film Appears Highest in Indonesia

More people in Indonesia than in any other country have used the Internet's Google search engine to look for a provocative film linking the Koran to terrorism. Read

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Conservatives Cement Control in South Korea

More bad news for North Korea's Kim Jong-il: South Korean voters have handed control of parliament to the conservative Grand National Party, six weeks after the party's flag bearer assumed office as the nation's president. Read

Indonesian ISPs Block Sites Over Koran Film

Indonesian Internet companies, acting under government orders, are blocking access to YouTube and other popular Web sites where a controversial film linking the Koran to terrorism can be found. Read

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Security Council Reform Back on UN Agenda

Countries vying to join an expanded U.N. Security Council are renewing efforts to win support for their bids, despite years of fruitless negotiation and lobbying. Read

No Plan to Cancel Torch Relay, Says Olympics Chief

At a meeting in Beijing later this week, the governing body of the Olympic Games will discuss the protests that have dogged the Olympic torch relay in recent days, but the International Olympic Committee has dismissed speculation that the event may be scrapped. Read

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Historic Free Trade Deal Signed with China Amid Ongoing Tibet Row

New Zealand has become the first developed nation to sign a free-trade agreement with China, although the timing of the deal has proven to be an embarrassment for the small Pacific nation's government. Read

UN Council Kicks Off Long-Awaited Rights Review Process

The United Nation's Human Rights Council has begun a process of evaluating member-states' rights records, a procedure intended to show the new body's rigor in such matters. But the first country to take the floor in this week's rollout of the "universal periodic review" got what some observers consider an easy ride. Read

Monday, April 07, 2008

Protests, Calls for Boycott As Muslims React to Critical Film

An online documentary film critical of Islam continued to shake the Muslim world over the weekend, sparking street protests, attempted censorship, and calls for retaliatory boycotts. Read

Friday, April 04, 2008

US Under Increasing Pressure to Boycott UN Racism Conference

The Bush administration sees "no reason at this point" to participate in a U.N. conference on racism being planned for next year and will encourage other governments to stay away too, the State Department said Thursday. Read

'Olympic Smiles and Harmony Built on Abuses and Tears'

"Perhaps you will come to Beijing for the Olympics," two prominent Chinese human rights activists wrote last year. "If you do, you'll see tall skyscrapers, broad boulevards, modern sports facilities, and a passionate people. What you'll see is real, but it's not the whole picture ... some of these fresh flowers and smiles, this harmony and prosperity are built on abuses, tears, imprisonment, torture, and spilled blood." Read

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Iran Applies to Join Security Bloc Dominated by Russia and China

Stepping up a campaign to join a Eurasian security and economic bloc dominated by Russia and China, Iran is looking for allies within the organization to back its bid, but political analysts doubt it will succeed. Read

Ukraine, Georgia Must Wait for NATO Membership Offer

NATO leaders meeting in Bucharest Wednesday night held a "vigorous discussion" about whether to allow two former Soviet republics to take the next step towards eventual membership, but they differed on the timing, a senior U.S. administration official said. Read

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Those Who Boycott Olympics Will Only Damage Themselves, China Says

Amid escalating calls for world leaders not to attend the opening ceremony of the summer Olympic Games in Beijing, China's government says anyone boycotting will not harm China but themselves. Read

YouTube Warned to Remove Koran Film

The government of the world's most populous Islamic state says YouTube has two days to take down a Dutch lawmaker's provocative film on the Koran or it will block access to the popular video-sharing Web site. Read

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

US, Europe Press for Election Results as Zimbabwe Waits

Zimbabweans continue to wait anxiously for the results of weekend elections, with no sign as of early Tuesday that the official electoral body is ready to say whether President Robert Mugabe's 28-year rule is over, as his opponents believe. Read

NATO Divided Over Ukraine, Georgia

President Bush has started his European trip in Ukraine, where he aims to shore up the former Soviet republic's bid to move towards NATO membership, despite strong opposition by Russia and unease among some European allies. Read