Thursday, October 22, 2009

China Pledges Climate Cooperation with Obama, But Also Agrees With India to Resist Legally Binding Targets

In another blow to those hoping a major conference in Copenhagen in December will deliver a global deal, China and India agreed Wednesday to work in unison, hardening their stance against accepting legally binding targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Read

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Iran Wants Interpol Help After Bombing, But Won’t Cooperate With Interpol on Jewish Center Attack

Iran has asked Interpol to facilitate the arrest of the leader of an extremist Sunni group linked to a bomb blast Sunday in southeastern Iran. But Iran has refused to cooperate with the international policing agency in the case of five senior Iranians wanted in connection with a deadly bombing in Argentina 15 years ago. Read

Nine Months Into Obama's Presidency, Hillary Clinton Still Citing ‘Inherited’ Problems

From the time he entered the White House, President Obama frequently has spoken about having “inherited” an economic mess, and he has been criticized for it. But the expression arguably has been used even more often by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Nine months later, it is a theme she returns to regularly at home and abroad. Read

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

U.S. Needs Int’l Partners for Its New Sudan Policy, But Many Countries Are Uncooperative

The Obama administration’s newly unveiled Sudan policy envisages working with a broad “multilateral coalition,” but many Islamic, African and other countries do not see eye-to-eye with the U.S. and Western allies on the situation there. Read

New U.S. Policy Acknowledges Possibility That Sudan Will Split in Two

Following months of debate and mixed messages, the Obama administration on Monday unveiled a new policy on Sudan, which appears to recognize the likelihood that Africa’s biggest country will break apart in the years ahead. Read

Monday, October 19, 2009

Iran, Blaming U.S., Britain and Pakistan, Threatens Revenge After Security Officials Killed in Bombing

Amid threats of revenge, the United States on Sunday denied Iranian accusations of links to a deadly bombing in Iran’s southeastern corner which killed dozens of people, including senior Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) commanders. Read

Attempt to Ban Minarets Sparks Censorship Controversy in Switzerland

Supporters of a bid to outlaw minarets in Switzerland have been accused of undermining free expression, but they now accuse their critics of doing the same thing by banning a poster promoting the campaign ahead of a referendum next month. Read

Friday, October 16, 2009

Israelis Took Unprecedented Steps to Safeguard Civilians, Says British Officer

In its offensive against Hamas in Gaza last winter, the Israeli army “did more to safeguard the rights of civilians in a combat zone than any other army in the history of warfare,” the former commander of British forces in Afghanistan told the U.N. Human Rights Council on Friday. Read

Lawyers Call for Changes in International Law to Help ‘Climate Exiles’

International law dealing with refugees should be amended to cover people affected by disasters attributed to climate change, environmental lawyers are arguing. Read

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Japan Wants to Change Agreement on Relocating U.S. Marine Base Ahead of Obama’s Upcoming Visit

Eight months after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton signed an agreement in Tokyo mapping out the realignment of U.S. troops in Japan, plans by the country’s new left-leaning government to change it up are causing friction ahead of President Obama’s visit next month. Read

Despite U.N. Resolution Violations, Lebanon to Get Security Council Seat

Lebanon is expected Thursday to be chosen to serve on the U.N. Security Council for the 2010-2011 period, despite signs in the country of ongoing violations of Security Council resolutions calling for Hezbollah to be disarmed. Read

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Backed by UN Chief, Palestinians Secure Special Session on ‘Israel War Crimes’ Report

The U.N.’s Human Rights Council will hold a special session on Thursday to discuss a controversial report accusing Israel of war crimes, after the Palestinian Authority secured sufficient support for the meeting from Islamic states and mostly leftist allies. Read

Despite Obama Administration’s Hopes, Russia Giving No Ground on Iran Sanctions

Hopes that Russia might be more accommodating following the Obama administration’s missile defense shift appeared premature on Tuesday, when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton found no support at the Kremlin for tightening sanctions against Iran. Read

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Hillary Clinton Says She Will Not Run for President Again

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says she has “never” wished that she could be the one making the decisions facing President Obama, and she insisted she will not run for president again. Read

U.N. Chief Now Supports Move to Reopen Debate on ‘Israeli War Crimes’ Report

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon supports Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ attempt to reopen debate at the U.N. Human Rights Council on a report accusing Israel of war crimes, his spokeswoman said Monday. Read

Monday, October 12, 2009

Nobel Peace Prize Decision Seen As Attempt to Steer U.S. Policies

A Norwegian committee’s decision to award the 2009 Nobel peace prize to President Obama continues to make waves around the world, with some of the focus shifting away from the appropriateness of the choice to the implications for future U.S. policy. Read

Clinton Says U.S. Confident That Pakistan Can Control Its Nuclear Arsenal

Recent terrorist successes in Pakistan, including the weekend attack on national army headquarters, have raised fresh fears about the safety of Pakistan’s nuclear weapons arsenal, although both the U.S. and British governments are playing down the concerns. Read

Friday, October 09, 2009

New Survey on Islam Calls Into Question Population Figure Used by Obama

A comprehensive new survey of the world’s Muslim population finds that nearly one in four people on the planet is an adherent of Islam, but the number of Muslims it gives for the United States is significantly smaller than those routinely cited by Islamic organizations – and used by President Obama in his Cairo speech last June. Read

Pre-Copenhagen Climate Talks Stall Over Whether to Dump or Extend Kyoto

With just under two months to go before a major conference in Copenhagen aimed at delivering a global deal on climate change, a penultimate round of preliminary talks ended in Bangkok on Friday with no sign that a longstanding gap between developed and developing countries will be bridged. Read

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Libya Tries to Force ‘Israeli War Crimes’ Report Onto Security Council Agenda

Less than a week after the U.N. Human Rights Council agreed to defer for six months a report accusing Israel of war crimes in Gaza, Libya sought Wednesday to bypass that decision by bringing the matter before the U.N. Security Council instead. Read

Vietnam Jails Dissidents While Presiding Over UN Security Council

As Vietnam presides over the U.N. Security Council this month, back at the home the communist government will not tolerate calls for multi-party democracy, and has launched a series of trials of citizens accused of propaganda against the state. Read

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

US Urged to Support, Recognize Elections in Honduras

As Organization of American States (OAS) foreign ministers make another attempt Wednesday to resolve the political stalemate in Honduras a second group of Republican lawmakers just back from visiting the country added to calls for the U.S. to reverse its stance on elections due there next month. Read

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Decision Not to Meet With Tibetan Leader Sends Wrong Signal, Say Critics

The State Department insists that President Obama’s decision not to meet with the Dalai Lama this week does not mark a change in U.S. policy on Tibet, but critics say the move sends the wrong signal about U.S. willingness to confront rights-abusing regimes. Read

Monday, October 05, 2009

US Tries to Break ‘Religious Defamation’ vs. Free Speech Deadlock at UN

Seeking to break a longstanding impasse between Western and Islamic nations over freedom of expression, the United States has piloted a finely-balanced resolution through the U.N.’s Human Rights Council which the two sides are choosing to interpret differently. Read

Friday, October 02, 2009

Obama Jets In for Olympic Vote Showdown

Sometime between 12:30 and 1 p.m. EDT on Friday, the world will know which city will host the 2016 summer Olympic Games – and whether President Obama’s risky, and controversial, decision to fly to Copenhagen to lend his weight to Chicago’s bid has paid off. Read

Palestinians Drop Effort to Pressure Israel at U.N., For Now

In an unexpected move late Thursday, the Palestinian Authority withdrew its backing for a resolution at the U.N. Human Rights Council that sought to endorse in full a report accusing Israel of war crimes. Read

Thursday, October 01, 2009

U.S. Senator Pushing to Lift Sanctions Against Burma Did Not Invite Junta Opponents to the Hearing

The U.S. Senate’s leading proponent of lifting sanctions against Burma’s military junta chaired hearings on U.S. policy towards the Southeast Asian country on Wednesday, but the Democrat was criticized for not inviting any members of the Burmese opposition to testify. Read

People’s Republic of China Marks 60th Anniversary, But Most People Advised to Stay Home

Communist China’s elites marked the nation’s 60th birthday Thursday under a huge portrait of Mao Tse-tung, with a display of military might ranging from nuclear missiles to fighter jets. Read