Unicef urges Coalition to resettle asylum seeker children from Nauru by end of year

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Nicole Breeze says Australia’s offshore processing system is ‘in crisis’ and Coalition should appoint minister for children.. The UN’s children’s agency has called on the Turnbull government to commit to a timetable that would see all asylum seeker and refugee children off Nauru by the end of the year… Source: Unicef urges Coalition to resettle asylum seeker children from Nauru by end of year | Australia news | The Guardian Read More »

Kenya’s Coast: Devolution Disappointed

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Six new coastal counties created by Kenya’s 2010 constitution have replicated the closely-held patronage politics of the former Coast province, adding to inefficiencies, costs and mutual suspicions. To maximise the potential of devolution – and prevent militants like Al-Shabaab exploiting popular disappointment – Nairobi and the new counties need to become more cooperative, open to dialogue, and inclusive, especially toward marginalised youth… Source: Kenya’s Coast: Devolution Disappointed – International Crisis Group Read More »

Scotland must be part of Brexit talks

The two leading figures in the Scottish Conservatives have called for Scotland to be given a central role in Brexit negotiations to preserve the key aspects of European Union membership.. Ruth Davidson said Scotland “cannot be a bolt-on” in UK government negotiations with Europe, warning that the unity of the UK was being tested by the outcome of the EU referendum… Source: Scotland must be part of Brexit talks – Ruth Davidson – The Scotsman Read More »

Landmark South China Sea Ruling Could Revive Negotiations

An international tribunal has issued a sweeping ruling against China in a landmark case brought by the Philippines over disputed claims in the South China Sea. Beijing rejected the ruling, but the judgment’s legal clarity could ultimately provide the basis of a better, durable, negotiated outcome for the many parties involved… Source: Landmark South China Sea Ruling Could Revive Negotiations | Crisis Group Read More »

SPENCER ZIFCAK. Chilcot: The War and the Law

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As is now well known, the Chilcot Report on the British Government’s planning, execution and aftermath of the Iraq war provided a scathing critique of almost every aspect of the Prime Minister’s and government’s conduct. There is one facet of this deplorable episode that has not yet received any adequate consideration in the Australian media. This concerns the politicisation of the process that led to the UK Government’s conclusion that the war was lawful… Source: SPENCER ZIFCAK. Chilcot: The War ... Read More »

6 things to expect from Theresa May’s premiership

Like David Cameron, Britain’s next prime minister is a liberal Conservative. That’s where the similarities end.. By TOM MCTAGUE   LONDON – David Cameron will leave Buckingham Palace as a backbench MP on Wednesday afternoon, his career cut short in the most humiliating circumstances. Minutes later Theresa May will arrive to take his place as head of Her Majesty’s Government. This is how British politics works… Source: 6 things to expect from Theresa May’s premiership – POLITICO Read More »

South China Sea: China waives the rules

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China has no legal basis for its territorial claims in the South China Sea. The ruling by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague, an arm of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), was widely predicted, but was a metaphorical bombshell, nevertheless. The worry now is that it could presage the deployment of the real things in a part of the world that has become synonymous with unresolved strategic tension. By finding in the ... Read More »

Fighting flares again in South Sudan capital after UN demand for restraint

Heavy fighting erupted again in South Sudan’s capital on July 11 a day after the U.N. Security Council told rivals President Salva Kiir and Vice-President Riek Machar to rein in their forces and end days of violence that have left scores dead.. A Reuters witness saw two helicopters overhead firing apparently in the direction of Machar’s political and military headquarters. Residents reported tanks on the street. A U.N. official said heavy gunfire had erupted around U.N. bases again… Source: Fighting ... Read More »

NATO renews Afghanistan mission

NATO countries agreed on July 9 to extend their military mission in Afghanistan amid continuing threats from the Taliban.. Speaking to reporters at a key summit in Warsaw, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg said alliance members decided to continue their non-combat training and assistance mission into next year… Source: NATO renews Afghanistan mission – INTERNATIONAL Read More »

Britain’s rebuke holds message for America

Since its unfortunate vote to leave the European Union, Britain has experienced a tragicomic round of backstabbing, foot-dragging and second-guessing. Europe, meanwhile has mostly behaved with admirable good sense. The Europeans seem to understand that the Brexit vote is a wake-up call about dissatisfaction with the E.U. that’s nearly as widespread on the continent as it is in Britain. Germany, in particular, recognizes that unless the E.U. can quickly show a readiness to reform and streamline… Source: Britain’s rebuke holds ... Read More »

When Australia goes to war, public trust depends on better oversight

The world is absorbing the implications of the long-awaited release of the Chilcot inquiry into the United Kingdom’s decision to go to war in Iraq. Australia, however, has spent comparatively little time learning lessons from the deployment of thousands of troops to fight overseas in recent years. An official war history has just been commissioned; if past form is any guide, it will be at least a decade before it is completed. In any event, its brief is to recount ... Read More »

With eye on Brexit, NATO tackles Russia

In all these past six years and nine months since October 9, 2009 when President Barack Obama heard he was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, he would not have had a more embarrassing.. President Vladimir Putin was calling him, and as it turned out, the Russian leader wanted to discuss the issues of peace-making in regional conflicts affecting three former Soviet republics (Azerbaijan, Armenia and Ukraine) – and the tortuous path leading to peace in Syria. Putin was following up ... Read More »

The Turkish-Israeli Reconciliation: A Balance Sheet

The Turkish-Israeli reconciliation – while raising legitimate moral questions – yielded terms very much in Israel’s favor, compared to where things stood recently. Legal threats have been averted, Turkish pressure over the siege of Gaza has been lifted, and the prospects for full Israeli participation in NATO activities are significantly brighter. The rapprochement should have no ill effect on Israel’s relationships with other friends and allies in the Eastern Mediterranean… Source: The Turkish-Israeli Reconciliation: A Balance Sheet | Begin-Sadat Center ... Read More »

The Istanbul attack and Turkish policy toward Syria

The terror attack at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul on 28 June was by no means an unpredictable development. Indeed, it was the probably inevitable next stage in the deterioration of relations between the government of Turkey and the Islamic State organisation—from collusion, via tolerant indifference, to antagonism and now to full scale confrontation. Source: The Istanbul attack and Turkish policy toward Syria | The Strategist Read More »

Duterte’s South China Sea dilemma

Fresh into office, the Philippines’ newly-elected President Rodrigo Duterte is set to face arguably his toughest foreign policy challenge. Though much of his political capital is currently directed… Source: Duterte’s South China Sea dilemma – Asia Times Read More »

NATO-Russia talks must tackle Ukraine ‘withdrawal’: Poland

Planned NATO talks with Moscow should be focused solely on Russia’s “withdrawal” from Ukrainian soil, Polish Defense Minister Antoni Macierewicz said July 5. The minister was reacting to NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg’s announcement July 4 that the transatlantic alliance is set to hold formal talks with Russia shortly after a summit in Warsaw this week. Source: NATO-Russia talks must tackle Ukraine ‘withdrawal’: Poland – INTERNATIONAL Read More »