Thursday, September 30, 2010

Iran Announces Delay in Startup of Its Nuclear Reactor Following Cyber Attack, But Denies Any Link

Iran’s Bushehr nuclear reactor will not generate power before early 2011, about two months later than previously reported, the country’s nuclear chief has announced. Read

Vietnam Putting Professor on Trial for Online Dissent

Less than a week after Vietnam’s president met with President Obama to discuss issues including human rights, the communist government in Hanoi has announced it try a dissident math professor on political charges that can carry the death penalty. Read

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Anti-Islamist Dutch Politician, Facing Trial for ‘Inciting Hatred,’ Secures His Party’s Role in New Government

Days before anti-Islamist Dutch politician Geert Wilders’ trial for “inciting hatred and discrimination” begins, his political party has reached an agreement with two others on forming the country’s next government. Read

Even if Bin Laden Had Been on the Gaza-Bound Flotilla, Israel’s Actions Would Have Been Illegal, Says UN-Appointed Judge

Israel’s blockade of a Gaza-bound flotilla last May would have been illegal, even if Osama bin Laden himself had been on the ship full of pro-Palestinian activists, a member of a U.N.-appointed fact-finding mission told the Human Rights Council. Read

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Pakistan, A Nuclear Proliferator, Will Chair U.N. Nuclear Watchdog Agency

The United Nations nuclear watchdog has appointed Pakistan to chair its governing board. Pakistan is responsible for the most serious known case of illicit nuclear proliferation in history, and it is blocking progress on a treaty to ban production of fissile material used to fuel atomic weapons. Read

Monday, September 27, 2010

China Prolongs Dispute With Japan, Bristles at U.S. Support for Asian Allies

China apparently has decided to deepen its most serious rift with Japan in years, issuing a foreign policy white paper reiterating its claim to disputed maritime territory that has been under Japanese control for more than a century. Read

Support for 9/11 Conspiracy Claims Grows in Iran

Shrugging off President Obama’s condemnation of his 9/11 conspiracy allegations, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is drawing support from a majority of Iranian lawmakers and a top military adviser to Iran’s supreme leader. Read

Friday, September 24, 2010

Majority of U.N. Member States Remained Seated As Ahmadinejad Accused U.S. of Orchestrating 9/11

As U.S. and allied delegations walked out during Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s provocative United Nations speech Thursday, the vast majority of countries’ delegates not only kept their seats, but many applauded afterwards. Read

Muslim Nations Call for U.N. to Track ‘Islamophobia'

The Quran-burning controversy in the United States has prompted the Islamic bloc at the United Nations to revive its call for the U.N. to set up an “international monitoring mechanism” to track incidents of “Islamophobia.” Read

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Claims on Resource-Rich Arctic Stoke International Rivalry

The potential future exploitation of the Arctic for oil and gas while protecting its pristine environment is the subject of an international meeting in Moscow this week, but beneath the scientific and diplomatic discussions lies hardnosed competition among countries with claims to Arctic territory. Read

Mideast Gulf Widens Over ‘Jewish State’ Question

wo incidents in New York this week have underlined the gulf between Israel and the Palestinian Authority over an issue Israel maintains is crucial if the Mideast conflict is to end – Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state. Read

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Small Pacific Island Becoming A U.S. Strategic Hub

The signing of a document on Guam Tuesday marked the beginning of a historic build-up of U.S. military assets on the small Pacific island, part of an alignment of forces designed to better handle future security challenges in a key part of the world. Read

Clinton Did Not Raise Lockerbie Case in ‘Brief’ Meeting With Libyan Foreign Minister

Secretary of State Hillary Clinton held a 30-minute meeting with her Libyan counterpart in New York on Tuesday, but she did not bring up the case of Lockerbie bombing convict Abdel Baset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi. Read

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

White House Claims Success in Changing Course at U.N., But Critics Question the Results

As President Obama prepares to address the U.N. General Assembly on Thursday, the administration is emphasizing the fruits of Obama’s “new era of engagement” with the world body, but many of the touted achievements are open to challenge. Read

Monday, September 20, 2010

Tea Parties Gain Ground Abroad

When Britain’s Conservative Party holds its annual conference next month, some of the policies of the coalition government it leads will come under fire from a nascent British “tea party” movement that is drawing inspiration from its U.S. namesake. Read

Friday, September 17, 2010

China-Japan Maritime Dispute Suggests China May Sense a Weakening in U.S.-Japan Ties

China on Friday appeared to be ramping up its most serious diplomatic dispute with Japan in years, by preparing to drill in a long-disputed gas field in the East China Sea. Read

Europeans Push Global Tax to Fund Poverty-Reduction, Climate Change Causes

A group of 60 nations will meet next week at the United Nations to push for a tax on foreign currency transactions as a way to generate revenue to meet global poverty-reduction goals, including “climate change” mitigation. Read

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Quran-Burning Cartoons Sought in Iran

As Iran continues to react angrily over desecration of the Quran, it is turning to cartoons as an outlet for its outrage over perceived “Islamophobia.” Read

Libyan Membership Under Fire As U.N. Human Rights Council Gets Poor Grades

Four months after the world’s governments elected Libya to the U.N.’s top human rights body, victims of Libyan abuses joined human rights advocates Thursday in appealing for Muammar Gaddafi’s regime to be expelled. Read

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Killings in Kashmir Top Summer of Deadly Protests; Will U.S. Get Involved?

This week’s deadly violence in the Indian-ruled part of Kashmir has been blamed on Muslim anger over reports of Quran-burning in the U.S., but it follows a summer of protests stemming from a dispute that dates back more than six decades. Read

Defections Point to Dissent in Iran’s Diplomatic Corps

Five years after a newly-installed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad ordered a purge of dozens of Iranian diplomats considered too “liberal,” a slow trickle of defections suggests growing unhappiness with his hard-line policies within the diplomatic corps. Read

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

As Floodwaters Ebb, Violence Increases in Pakistan

The month of August saw a marked drop in terror-related fatalities in flood-hit Pakistan, but with the receding waters, the first two weeks of September have brought an increase in violent deaths. Read

Monday, September 13, 2010

Obama Urged to Confront Islamic States on Religious Freedom

At a time when religious tolerance is in the spotlight globally, President Obama should challenge Islamic governments to lift restrictions on religious freedom that target non-Muslim minorities, some activists say. Read

Friday, September 10, 2010

Citing Quran-Burning Threat, Islamic Body Wants U.N. to Outlaw ‘Offenses Against Religion’

Following the uproar over the threatened burning of the Quran by a small Florida church, a leading international Islamic body said Thursday that the United Nations should outlaw “all forms of offense against religions.” Read

Thursday, September 09, 2010

Original Quran-Burning Took Place in the Mid-Seventh Century

Muslims have killed, died, protested and boycotted over the real, perceived or rumored mistreatment of the Quran, but the book they revere as the final revelation of Allah to Mohammed was a version compiled by an early caliph almost two decades after Mohammed’s death. According to major Islamic sources, he then ordered all rival versions burned. Read

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Quran-Burning Church Wants to ‘Shock The World Into Focus’

Showing no sign of backing down under growing pressure, the Florida church planning to burn copies of the Quran on the anniversary of 9/11 offered “five more reasons” for doing so on Tuesday. It also took a swipe at critics, including “U.S. generals,” over freedom of speech. Read

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Iran Shrugs Off Atomic Agency Criticism, Looks to Allies for Backing

Iran on Monday dismissed criticism from the U.N. nuclear watchdog and said it expected its allies in the developing world to rally around, again, in support of its nuclear program. Read

U.S. Military Commander Issues Warning Ahead of Florida Church’s Planned Quran-Burning on Sept. 11

A week that culminates in the ninth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks and the end of Ramadan began with angry protests in two Muslim countries over plans by a small church in Florida to burn copies of the Quran on Saturday. Read

Friday, September 03, 2010

Palestinian Leader Rebuffs Netanyahu’s Call for A ‘Jewish State’

Behind the polite talk at Thursday’s re-launch of direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations at the State Department was a deep gulf on what Israel calls a make-or-break issue – Palestinian recognition of Israel as a Jewish state. Read

Thursday, September 02, 2010

Reports of Christian Aid Workers Killed by Taliban in Pakistan Still Unconfirmed

Mystery surrounds reports that three Western Christian relief workers were kidnapped and killed by the Pakistan Taliban last week while helping people affected by the severe floods in the country’s northwest. Read

Westerners Urged to Earmark Aid for Pakistan’s Marginalized Christians

Christians in Pakistan’s flood-hit regions are doubly affected by the disaster as a result of anti-Christian discrimination by government relief workers and Muslim aid agencies, according to representatives of the embattled minority. Read

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Tensions Simmer Between Asian Giants Over China’s Regional Intentions

The Indian government is closely watching China’s activities in its neighborhood, the country’s foreign minister has assured lawmakers, following a first-ever visit by Chinese Navy ships to Burma and reports claiming China-Pakistan collusion in disputed Kashmir. Read