Asia

Rohingya crisis: a year since it shocked the world, what’s changed?

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This August marks a full year since one of the 21st century’s worst refugee crises gripped the world’s attention. Abdullah Yusuf The Conversation In 2017, an unprecedented number of Rohingya Muslim refugees began fleeing Myanmar’s Rakhine state for neighbouring Bangladesh, after Myanmar’s military launched a crackdown in response to attacks on border posts by Rohingya rebels. This crisis is, as rightly pointed out by UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres, “a humanitarian and human rights nightmare”; the United Nations described the ... Read More »

The US-Turkey Crisis: The NATO Alliance Forged in 1949 Is Today Largely Irrelevant

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There has been some reporting in the United States mass media about the deteriorating relationship between Washington and Ankara and what it might mean. Philip Giraldi American Herald Tribune Such a falling out between NATO members has not been seen since France left the alliance in 1966 and observers note that the hostility emanating from both sides suggests that far worse is to come as neither party appears prepared to moderate its current position while diplomatic… The immediate cause of ... Read More »

Jewish leaders question timing of EU summit

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Scheduling conflict with Yom Kippur holiday raises concern amid rising rhetoric about ‘Christian Europe.’ By DAVID M. HERSZENHORN Politico Austria’s scheduling of an EU leaders’ summit to begin on Yom Kippur — the Jewish Day of Atonement — is raising questions of cultural sensitivity at a time of rising pro-Christian rhetoric among European politicians and… Jewish leaders said the scheduling conflict reflects an unfortunate but unsurprising lack of attention to their religious calendar. The situation is especially awkward for Austria, which ... Read More »

China Uighurs: Beijing denies detaining one million

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China has said reports it is holding a million Muslim Uighurs in detention in Xinjiang are “completely untrue”. BBC Uighurs enjoyed full rights but “those deceived by religious extremism… shall be assisted by resettlement and re-education”, officials said. The rare admission from Beijing – at a UN meeting in Geneva – came in response to concerns that the region “resembles a massive internment camp”. Xinjiang has seen intermittent violence – followed by crackdowns – for years. China accuses Islamist… China ... Read More »

Taliban Kill More Than 200 Afghan Defenders on 4 Fronts: ‘a Catastrophe’

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KABUL, Afghanistan — Afghan government forces lost more than 200 officers and soldiers in fighting over the past three days as Taliban insurgents launched sustained attacks on four different fronts. By Rod Nordland, Fahim Abed and Mujib Mashal The New York Times The hardest-hit area was the southeastern city of Ghazni, where more than 100 police officers and soldiers had been killed by Sunday, a hospital official said, and the insurgents appeared to be in control of most of the… Ninety miles west, in Ghazni Province, ... Read More »

US suspends military training program for Pakistan

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The United States has started cutting scores of Pakistani military officers from the education and training program, Pakistani media reported on Aug. 11. ISLAMABAD – Anadolu Agency Hurriyet The U.S. military institutions are “struggling” to fill the 66 slots,  which they had kept aside for Pakistani officers, for next academic year, the daily Dawn quoted anonymous sources as saying. The move comes a few days after Pakistan and Russia signed an  agreement to allow Pakistani military officers to receive training in Russian military institutions. “The fund for ... Read More »

Refugees are integrating just fine in regional Australia

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As the Australian population surpassed the 25 million mark last week, another immigration debate emerged over the burden newcomers are placing on Melbourne and Sydney in terms of congestion and… Authors: The Conversation With government data showing 87% of skilled migrants settled in either of the two cities in the past year, Citizenship and Multiculturalism Minister Alan Tudge made an urgent appeal to… New research being released publicly on Tuesday suggests Tudge is spot-on in his argument that regional Australia ... Read More »

‘Leave immediately’: US Navy plane warned over South China Sea

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Above the South China Sea (CNN) – High above one of the most hotly contested regions in the world, CNN was given a rare look Friday at the Chinese government’s rapidly expanding militarization of the South China Sea. By Brad Lendon, Ivan Watson and Ben Westcott, CNN Aboard a US Navy P-8A Poseidon reconnaissance plane, CNN got a view from 16,500 feet of low-lying coral reefs turned into garrisons with five-story buildings, large radar installations, power plants and runways sturdy enough ... Read More »

Iran’s Judiciary Threatens Executions for Economic ‘Crimes’

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Implementing the Death Penalty is Wrong Response to Economic Crisis Tara Sepehri Far HRW Iran’s senior officials are attempting to head off a looming economic crisis – triggered by the return of US sanctions – with threats of new rights-abusing policies. Tehran’s prosecutor, Jafari Dolatabadi, on Wednesday warned that importers who abuse government subsidies could be charged with “corruption on earth,” which carries a possible death sentence. Several hardliner newspapers and parliamentarians have echoed Dolatabadi’s call to execute people found ... Read More »

Are Turkey’s Christians as ‘fine’ as they say?

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As tensions simmered between Ankara and Washington over detained American pastor Andrew Brunson, the leaders of Turkey’s non-Muslim minorities issued a joint statement July 31 to deny that they faced any oppression in the country. Fehim Tastekin Al-Monitor The timing of the move was rather remarkable, and for Garo Paylan, an ethnic Armenian lawmaker for the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), the issuance of such a declaration was “in itself a proof that we are not free.” The 18 Christian and Jewish community leaders ... Read More »

Dow drops about 200 points as financial crisis in Turkey spooks global markets

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Stocks fell on Friday as geopolitical concerns pushed the Turkish lira to a record low against the dollar and rattled investors. Fred Imbert | Alexandra Gibbs CNBC The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 196.09 points to 25,313.14 as Intel declined. The Dow also erased its gains for the month of August and posted a three-day losing streak. The S&P 500fell 0.7 percent to close at 2,833.28 as financials and materials lagged. The Nasdaq Composite also pulled back 0.7 percent to 7,839.11 and snapped an eight-day winning ... Read More »

Erdogan: How Turkey Sees the Crisis With the U.S.

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Unilateral actions against Turkey by the United States will undermine American interests and force Turkey to look for other friends and allies. By Recep Tayyip Erdogan Mr. Erdogan is the president of Turkey. The New York Times ANKARA, Turkey — For the past six decades, Turkey and the United States have been strategic partners and NATO allies. Our two countries stood shoulder to shoulder against common challenges during the Cold War and in its aftermath. Over the years, Turkey rushed ... Read More »

Chinese officials remember diplomat who helped shape ‘Law of the Sea’

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Li Shengjiao was regarded as China’s top expert on international maritime law and boundary demarcation issues Foreign affairs officials and observers have remembered a Chinese diplomat who was involved in the creation of an international treaty on the use of the world’s seas and oceans on the first anniversary of his death. South China Morning Post Li Shengjiao, who served as Counsellor of the Chinese Mission to the United Nations Conference on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), died on ... Read More »

How Russia Plans to Get Turkey on Its Side

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Moscow’s efforts appear to be paying off, as a 2017 poll showed that over 70 percent of Turkish citizens were favorable toward a political, economic and security alliance with Russia. Aykan Erdemir, John Lechner The National Interest June has been a tough month for the board of Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant (NPP), the joint Turco-Russian megaproject and Turkey’s first nuclear reactor. On June 19, Russian authorities arrested on charges of espionage Karina Tsurkan, an energy executive at Moscow-based Inter RAO ... Read More »

‘Living in a fantasy’: A close US ally is investigating everyone named John and trying to arrest US military leaders

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The Turkish government claims to have new evidence that the US was involved in the 2016 failed coup attempt, according to a Tuesday report from Ahval, an allegation the US State Department… Daniel Brown Business Insider Turkish investigators claim to have discovered an internal Word document entitled “coup directive,” which was authored by someone named John, and last updated about a week before the… As such, Ankara is investigating everyone named John who was in the country at the time ... Read More »

Prospects of huge gas reserves in deep sea

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Bangladesh could have a minimum of 5 prospective structures in the Bay of Bengal in Block D-12, block operator Daewoo Corporation says Shahed Siddique The Independent Bangladesh has discovered the prospects of a big deep-sea gas reserve after the resolution of its maritime boundary dispute with Myanmar and India. A 2D seismic survey along the Myanmar border has revealed that Bangladesh could have a minimum of five prospective structures in the Bay of Bengal in Block D-12. The operator of ... Read More »