• Tuesday, March 03, 2015

World

Kerry and Lavrov hold Geneva discussions

Ukraine Crisis

Kerry and Lavrov hold Geneva discussions

The US and Russian foreign ministers expressed cautious optimism after holding talks in Geneva yesterday to end fighting in Ukraine, where the UN says more than 6,000 people have died in less than a year. The meeting between John Kerry and Sergei Lavrov in Geneva was just one of several attempts at mediation on...

Arun Singh to replace Jaishankar as US envoy

Arun Singh to replace Jaishankar as US envoy

Arun Singh, India's envoy to Paris, will take over the ambassadorial assignment in Washington DC, replacing S Jaishankar, who was appointed foreign secretary on January 28. Although the appointment, earlier reported by TOI, has not yet been formally announced, it's likely to sail through. An IFS officer of the 1979 batch, Singh has already spent five years in Washington as deputy chief of mission (which is an ambassadorial position in MEA). Prior to that he was India's ambassador to Israel. When in the head office, Singh had managed the tough Iran-Pakistan-Afghanistan desk between August 2001 and April 2005, which was the challenging times in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Like Jaishankar, Singh has...

Attempts being made to remove Kejriwal

Attempts being made to remove Kejriwal

AAP yesterday said that attempts were being made to remove Arvind Kejriwal as national convener and announced that there will be a probe into the leakage of letters that have exposed rift within the party. In the midst of the ongoing crisis in the party, AAP spokesperson Sanjay Singh yesterday said that the party's...

Iraq forces take on Tikrit

Iraq forces take on Tikrit

Some 30,000 Iraqi troops and militia backed by aircraft pounded jihadists in and around Tikrit yesterday in the biggest offensive yet to retake one of the Islamic State group's main strongholds. Government forces have battled their way north for months, notching up key victories against ISIS, but Tikrit has been their toughest target yet...

'ISIS play Jihadi John like a piano - he's being used'

'ISIS play Jihadi John like a piano - he's being used'

A former Isis fighter has described Mohammed Emwazi, the man revealed to be executioner “Jihadi John” as a loner who shunned other jihadists. Abu Ayman, who has since left the so-called Islamic State, said he met the 26-year-old in Syria two years ago, before he started his killing spree in the group's gory propaganda...

ISIS is being defeated: Kerry

ISIS is being defeated: Kerry

Secretary of State John Kerry insisted that the United States' allies in the Middle East remain on course to defeat ISIS -- though he acknowledged the challenge in Syria is a particularly difficult one. "Each time the Iraqis have now gone forward in an offensive effort, together with allies, the coalition, we have routed...

Oldest primary school student is 92

Oldest primary school student is 92

She grew up in Kenya under colonial rule, when women didn't get an education. Now in her 90s, Priscilla Sitienei is changing that, attending elementary school -- and inspiring a generation. She started five years ago as a kindergartner at a boarding school near Eldoret. She's in fourth grade today. "I had grandchildren and great-grandchildren who...

Taiwan Nuke Waste Plan

Opposition demands halt to plan

Taiwan's main opposition party weighed in on the fight over a controversial plan to process the island's nuclear waste overseas yesterday, calling for an immediate halt to the proposal. Environmental activists say that the plan by state-run Taiwan Power Co (Taipower) to ship the waste abroad runs the risk of a nuclear accident and an international backlash from campaign groups. Now the major opposition Democratic Progressive Party has also pledged to shoot down the plan, accusing Taipower of a lack of...

HK lawmakers arrested over democracy protests

Three Hong Kong pro-democracy lawmakers were arrested and then released yesterday over their involvement in mass protests for free elections, the latest targets of a police probe campaigners say is tantamount to intimidation. Police have vowed to investigate the "principal instigators" of the street blockades that ended in December when rally camps were cleared. Albert Ho and Helena Wong, both of the Democratic Party, and lawmaker Charles Mok, voluntarily turned themselves in at Wan Chai police headquarters yesterday morning on the...

Myanmar Edu Reforms

Police seal students inside monastery

Riot police sealed hundreds of Myanmar student protesters inside a monastery yesterday in a tense standoff, activists said, blocking their planned march to Yangon to call for education reforms. Scores of security personnel encircled the monastery in Letpadan town, some 130 kilometres north of Myanmar's main city Yangon, trapping around 300 students inside since early morning. Authorities appear increasingly uneasy over the months-long rallies by different student organisations, which have persisted in some areas despite parliamentary efforts to rethink a controversial...

BJP 'disassociates' itself from Mufti remarks

The Indian Government and the BJP yesterday “totally disassociated” itself from Jammu & Kashmir Chief Minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed's statement crediting “separatists” and “outsiders” for the peaceful conduct of elections in the State. Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh also denied Sayeed's claim that he had discussed this with the Prime Minister. “Our government and party totally disassociates itself from the Chief Minister's statement,'' Singh informed the Lok Sabha when the issue was raised by Congress member K C Venugopal during...

Namibia president gets Mo Ibrahim prize

Namibia president gets Mo Ibrahim prize

The outgoing Namibian President Hifikepunye Pohamba has won the world's most valuable individual award, the Mo Ibrahim prize for African leadership. The $5m award is given each year to an elected leader who governed well, raised living standards and then left office. But the previous award was the fourth in five years to...

Uruguay's cannabis-friendly president hands over power

Uruguay's cannabis-friendly president hands over power

Uruguay's liberal president – who proposed a state-run cannabis marketplace – handed his power over to a new leader yesterday. Jose Mujica, who is known for giving away most of his salary and living humbly on a farm with his family and three-legged dog, presented his presidential sash to Tabare Vazquez on Sunday....

News in Brief

Afghan avalanches death toll hits 196 CNN Online For almost a week, avalanches caused by heavy snowstorms have killed 196 people in the mountainous province of Panjshir, Afghanistan, officials said yesterday. Ten new avalanches were reported early yesterday morning, without any casualties. Over the weekend, a total of 40 avalanches hit the area, said Bab Jan Hakimi, head of disaster response at the Afghan Red Crescent Society. Pak parents refusing polio vaccine arrested Afp, Peshawar Police in northwest Pakistan have arrested more than 450...