Asia

U.S., Russia clinch Syria deal, aim for truce from Monday

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By David Brunnstrom and Tom Miles | GENEVA The United States and Russia hailed a breakthrough deal on Saturday to put Syria’s peace process back on track, including a nationwide truce effective from sundown on Monday, improved humanitarian aid access and joint military targeting of banned Islamist groups. “Today, Sergei Lavrov and I, on behalf of our presidents and our countries, call on every Syrian stakeholder to support the plan that the… Source: U.S., Russia clinch Syria deal, aim for ... Read More »

Mark Zuckerberg accused of abusing power after Facebook deletes ‘napalm girl’ post

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Norway’s largest newspaper published a front-page letter to the Facebook CEO lambasting the company’s decision to censor a photograph of the Vietnam war Julia Carrie Wong in San Francisco Norway’s largest newspaper has published a front-page open letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, lambasting the company’s decision to censor a… Source: Mark Zuckerberg accused of abusing power after Facebook deletes ‘napalm girl’ post | Technology | The Guardian Read More »

Xi Jinping’s Authoritarianism Does a Disservice to China’s Nuanced Political Tradition

The People’s Republic of China was created by a revolutionary upheaval spearheaded by Chinese Communist Party leader Mao Zedong. The 40th anniversary of his death is Sept. 9 and as it nears, Chinese President Xi Jinping expresses reverence for this radical founding figure, despite the horrendous human misery caused by some of the chairman’s policies — especially the famine-inducingGreat Leap Forward. Curiously though, Xi does this while also, like his… Source: Xi Jinping’s Authoritarianism Does a Disservice to China’s Nuanced Political ... Read More »

Ord Valley seasonal workers return home to East Timor

A group of men from East Timor have returned home after spending 16 weeks working on farms in the Kimberley’s Ord Irrigation Scheme. Employed through the Seasonal Worker Program, the team of 10 have been busy doing a number of jobs including stick-picking, and weeding crops such as chia and… Source: Ord Valley seasonal workers return home to East Timor – ABC Rural (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) Read More »

The Erdoğan-Gülen Rivalry

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: Ankara has sent evidence to Washington allegedly proving that Fethullah Gülen, who resides in Pennsylvania, orchestrated the recent failed coup in Turkey. The US is understandably hesitant to agree to his demand for Gülen’s extradition, given Erdoğan’s post-coup purge to consolidate power and unapologetic silencing of his critics, as well as his tyrannical behavior in… Source: The Erdoğan-Gülen Rivalry | Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic Studies Read More »

Tehran-Riyadh war of words heats up as Iranians miss hajj

A bitter war of words between Iran and Saudi Arabia intensified on Sept. 7 ahead of the annual hajj pilgrimage from which Iranians have been excluded for the first time in decades. Iran’s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei blasted the “incompetence” of the Saudi royal family as he met with the families of victims of a deadly stampede during last year’s hajj. “This incident proves once again that this cursed, evil family does not deserve to be in charge and… Source: Tehran-Riyadh war of words heats up as Iranians miss hajj – MIDEAST Read More »

Why America and China Today Are Like Pre–World War I Europe

The international system is gradually moving toward the prewar era’s instability. Jared McKinney In November 1912, a war between Serbia and Austria-Hungary nearly broke out over a question of small importance: whether Serbia would own an Adriatic port on the… Source: Why America and China Today Are Like Pre–World War I Europe | The National Interest Blog Read More »

A Fight to the Death: Syria’s Kurds Defend Their Land Against Invading Turks

The Syrian Kurdish leadership vows to defend their de facto state in north east Syria to the end, but is fearful of a growing understanding between the Syrian and Turkish governments in opposition to Kurdish separatism at a time when US support for the Kurds is faltering. by PATRICK COCKBURN In an exclusive interview with The Independent, a senior Syrian Kurdish official says that the Kurds will fight to the death to stopTurkey “invading the region” and… Source: A Fight to ... Read More »

What are Russia’s objectives in the Middle East and in the Caspian?

August was a month of active Russian diplomacy in the Middle East and the Caspian region. By Yekaterina Chulkovskaya, Russia Beyond the Headlines A meeting between Russian President Vladimir Putin, Azerbaijani President Ilkham Aliyev and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani took place in Baku on… Source: What are Russia’s objectives in the Middle East and in the Caspian? – UPI.com Read More »

Philippine president ‘regrets’ Obama slur

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte expressed regret yesterday that a tirade against Barack Obama, in which he called the U.S. leader a “son of a whore,” came across as a personal attack. Longtime allies the United States and the Philippines have seen relations plunge under a barrage of insults from Duterte since he came to office on June 30… Source: Philippine president ‘regrets’ Obama slur – ASIA Read More »

China’s High-Stakes Korea Conundrum

A recent academic article hints at a possible shift in China’s approach on the peninsula. Lyle J. Goldstein Even the promising trilateral meeting recently of South Korean, Japanese, and Chinese foreign ministers could not dispel the dark cloud over the… Source: China’s High-Stakes Korea Conundrum | The National Interest Read More »

Indonesia, 1998: A Great Moment in History

The 1998 downfall of Indonesian dictator, Suharto, prompted resolute and emotional displays of support for a transition to democracy. By Michael V. Day This was as keenly felt by ordinary Indonesians as it was by the two rivals for the presidency, Abdurrahman Wahid and Megawati Sukarnoputri. The days of transition were chaotic and violent, but the… Source: Indonesia, 1998: A Great Moment in History – AIIA Read More »

Comment: Chinese money isn’t the issue – the whole political donations system’s screwed up

Recent weeks have seen media attention focus on the role of Chinese nationals in sponsoring or donating to Australian politicians and political parties, amidst public concerns over what these donors might potentially expect in return – from Australia’s foreign policy objectives, to favourable deals in domestic economic projects… Source: Comment: Chinese money isn’t the issue – the whole political donations system’s screwed up | SBS News Read More »

G20 summit: Japan issues stark warning to Britain over Brexit 

May on diplomatic offensive as Japan says firms may leave UK if EU deal not agreed Clifford Coonan in Hangzhou British prime minister Theresa May has sought to soothe fears about Britain’s decision to leave the European Union after the United States and Japan warned of the… Source: G20 summit: Japan issues stark warning to Britain over Brexit Read More »

Paris climate deal: US and China announce ratification

The US and China – together responsible for 40% of the world’s carbon emissions – both ratify the Paris global climate agreement. After arriving with other leaders of G20 nations for a summit in the city of Hangzhou, Mr Obama said: “History will judge today’s effort as pivotal.” CO2 emissions are the… Source: Paris climate deal: US and China announce ratification – BBC News Read More »

Cyprus-Egypt pipe deal opens door for East Med gas

Cyprus has signed a deal to build a pipeline to supply Egypt with natural gas once production starts from the Aphrodite field located offshore the Mediterranean island. The agreement sets the political framework for additional commercial agreements, Cyprus’ Energy Minister Yiorgos Lakkotrypis and Egypt’s Petroleum Minister Tarek el-… Source: Cyprus-Egypt pipe deal opens door for East Med gas Read More »