Friday, July 17, 2009

Fatal blasts hit Jakarta hotels

At least nine people have been killed, including two suspected suicide bombers, in two blasts at luxury hotels in the Indonesian capital Jakarta. One explosion hit the Ritz-Carlton, ripping off its facade, and the other the JW Marriott. As many as 50 people were hurt, including many foreigners. At least one attacker was a guest at the JW Marriott, police said.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Suu Kyi back on trial again after the delay.

The trial of the Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi has resumed after a six-week break for a defence appeal over allowing more witnesses. Ms Suu Kyi has been charged with breaking the terms of her house arrest after a US man eluded guards to visit her lakeside home in Rangoon

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was refused permission by Burma’s military rulers to meet Ms Suu Kyi last week. A guilty verdict and further detention are widely expected.

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Obama in Moscow for nuclear talks

US President Barack Obama has arrived in Moscow for talks with his Russian counterpart, Dmitry Medvedev, focusing on further reducing nuclear stockpiles. Officials on both sides were quoted as saying a document had been agreed, though Russia said it was not final.

Both men say they want deep cuts to their current levels of 6,000 nuclear warheads each. In addition, Russia has been pressing Mr Obama to scrap a US plan for a missile defence shield in Europe.

Monday, July 06, 2009

G8 leaders to set emissions goals

Leaders of G8 nations are to set a target to cut greenhouse gases by 80% by 2050.

They will also call for any human-induced temperature rise to be held below 2 degrees Celsius, but environmental campaigners believe key commitments will be scaled back. News of the G8 plans came as ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair urged rich nations to hit short-term climate targets by ramping up existing clean technologies.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

EU launches ‘Eastern Partnership’

The European Union has launched a plan to forge close political and economic ties with six former Soviet republics in exchange for democratic reforms.

The Eastern Partnership Initiative agreed in Prague is intended to bolster stability in the region, but without the prospect of eventual EU membership.

The EU will invest 600m euros (£535m; $804m) in the project up to 2013.
Russia has accused the EU of trying to carve out a new sphere of influence in what Moscow sees as its own backyard..

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Greece steps up marbles fight

Greece is stepping up its efforts to have the Parthenon marbles returned by the UK by building a museum to house them.

The ancient sculptures were removed from Greece more than 200 years ago by British ambassador to the Ottoman Empire Lord Elgin.

The Greek Government has long fought to have the artefacts returned to their homeland and is still confident it will get its wish despite Britain’s consistent refusal to hand them over.