Agreement

Syria’s Idlib Wins Welcome Reprieve with Russia-Turkey Deal

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After weeks of escalatory rhetoric, Russia has partnered with Turkey in a deal to avert an all-out assault on Idlib, the last stronghold of Syria’s armed rebellion. International actors seeking to end the Syrian war should embrace the agreement. ICG Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Russian President Vladimir Putin have unveiled an agreement to forestall a Syrian regime offensive in the country’s north-western Idlib governorate. Per Putin and Erdoğan’s announcement of the deal, signed following bilateral talks in Sochi, on Russia’s Black ... Read More »

British Jacobins on the march in Brexit revolution

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You’re either with or against us, say both sides. By TOM MCTAGUE Politico LONDON — Britain has been radicalized by Brexit. As the clock ticks down to D (as in EU departure) Day on March 29, 2019, both sides are digging in for the coming battle over whatever deal Theresa May is able to bring back from Brussels later this year. For the Brexiteers, the battle cry is “chuck Chequers,” deal or no deal. For the arch Remainers, it’s chuck ... Read More »

It’s Not Too Late to Prevent a Russia-China Axis

Chinese troops parade at the end of the day of the Vostok-2018 (East-2018) military drills at Tsugol training ground not far from the borders with China and Mongolia in Siberia, on September 13, 2018. (Photo by MLADEN ANTONOV / AFP)        (Photo credit should read MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)

Here’s how the U.S. can avoid driving the two countries together. Anja Manuel The Atlantic Chinese tanks splashed through the mud, while a few dozen helicopters flew in formation overhead in eastern Russia, and a young Chinese military recruit explained, “I have never experienced an overseas deployment of this scale.” The scene neatly summed up the much-written-about, enormous Russian military exercises that took place this week. Participants included 300,000 Russian and 3,200 Chinese soldiers. They deeply rattled the… It’s Not ... Read More »

Israel, Greece, Cyprus plan underwater gas pipeline

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Netanyahu meets with Greek, Cypriot foreign ministers as three countries plan gas pipeline to Europe Arutz Sheva Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Thursday, at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem, held a trilateral meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias and Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides. He also met… The three discussed, in continuation of previous meetings, the laying of a joint Israel-Cyprus-Greece East-Med gas pipeline in order to export gas to Europe. They also discussed – inter alia – ... Read More »

New book offers vital background on the Iran nuclear deal

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Wendy Sherman may not have the highest name recognition outside of Washington — but that’s what you might expect from a former top State Department official whose job included delicate negotiations with old adversaries and… Jason Rezaian The Washington Post Now she has just come out with a new memoir that fills a valuable gap in recent history by providing a detailed look at the talks that led to the Iran nuclear deal. Sherman was the lead negotiator for the ... Read More »

Al Gore, missionary man

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For someone warning of dangers of climate apocalypse, former US vice president is surprisingly upbeat. By MATTHEW KARNITSCHNIG Politico BERLIN — Al Gore spent a year in divinity school as a young man, but he was well into middle age by the time he found his calling as a climate preacher. Now 70, and both grayer and portlier than when he was a full-time politician, America’s almost-president travels the world to raise awareness about climate change and what mankind can do ... Read More »

US ‘picking and choosing’ from the Law of the Sea

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A recent article argues that China is ‘selectively choosing the parts of the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) that it likes and is ignoring or reinterpreting the parts that it does not like or… Mark J Valencia EastAsiaForum The argument is made on the basis that China sent a ‘spy ship’ to observe the Rim of the Pacific Exercise, the world’s largest joint naval exercise, held in June and July 2018. But this account ignores that ... Read More »

ITLOS ruling: Ghana, Ivory Coast successfully plots all coordinates; boundary dispute settled

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The boundary dispute between Ghana and Ivory Coast has been amicably settled after both parties reached a consensus on the plotting of the coordinates in Accra today. GhanaWeb The Coordinates provided by the International Tribunal for Law of the Sea (ITLOS) in its judgement of the boundary dispute brought before it by Ivory Coast, was to assist both parties draw the line that separates the countries. Head of Ghana’s delegation at the meeting and Senior Minister, Yaw Osafo Maafo explained ... Read More »

Brexit: champagne, parmesan, prosecco and feta could soon be at the centre of negotiations

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As Brexit day creeps closer, one issue that remains unresolved is the way that food names will be protected in Britain and the EU. Authors: The Conversation From parmesan and feta to cornish pasties and Bavarian beer, the EU is fiercely protective over protected designations of origin (PDOs) or protected geographical indications (PGIs). A number of highly popular products are protected under this legal framework that dictates certain products can only be produced in certain regions. So champagne must be ... Read More »

Labour Members Move To Suspend Brexiteer MP Frank Field For Backing Tories

Embargoed to 0001 Monday January 29 File photo dated 08/12/14 of Labour MP Frank Field, who has issued a fresh warning about "state-sponsored destitution" amid claims of a "gaping hole" in the welfare system.

Some party members want whip withdrawn as a punishment Paul Waugh HuffPost Veteran MP Frank Field is facing a move by his local Labour activists to have him suspended from the party as a punishment for voting with Theresa May on Brexit. The former minister’s Merseyside constituency party will on Friday discuss an emergency motion to demand the “immediate” withdrawal of the Labour whip in protest at him backing the government last week. Members of Birkenhead constituency Labour party (CLP) ... Read More »

EU trade war OVER? Trump and Juncker thrash out deal – Brussels agrees to ZERO tariffs

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STOCK markets across the world have rallied after the United States and European Union agreed to measures to avert a full-scale trade war. By HARVEY GAVIN Express President Trump said both sides had agreed to “work together towards zero tariffs”. And he announced the EU had agreed to increase American exports of liquefied natural gas and soybeans to Europe. Mr Trump’s comments came after he met with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker today. MSCI’s gauge of stocks across the globe gained ... Read More »

Trade war a reality, French finance minister warns

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A trade war is now a reality, French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire has warned as G20 ministers gather for a summit in Argentina. BBC The current US trade policy of imposing unilateral tariffs is based on “the law of the jungle”, he said. But US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin defended the tariffs and urged the EU and China to open their markets to allow free competition. Last week, US President Donald Trump described the EU as a “foe” on trade. ... Read More »

Timor-Leste activists ‘shocked’ by Australia’s prosecution of spy Witness K and lawyer

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Activists compare treatment of Australian spy and lawyer Bernard Collaery to acts of Suharto-led Indonesia Helen Davidson The Guardian Timor-Leste activists have condemned the Australian government over the prosecution of Witness K and lawyer Bernard Collaery for their roles in revealing the bugging of the Timor-Leste cabinet during negotiations on an oil and gas treaty. The activists from the Movement Against the Occupation of the Timor Sea (MKOTT) have joined mounting criticism of the prosecution, comparing the act to the targeting they and ... Read More »

Xi ends state visit to UAE with raft of deals signed

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The United Arab Emirates on Saturday said it agreed to set up a “comprehensive strategic partnership” with China as President Xi Jinping wrapped up a three-day visit to the Gulf country. Al-Monitor AFP “The UAE and China have agreed to enhance cooperation in all fields to higher levels and forge overall strategic partnerships,” the official WAM news agency said. It said this would “contribute to cementing and intensifying cooperation, boost joint development and prosperity, which is consistent with the common ... Read More »

David Mundell: There’s no alternative to the Brexit White Paper

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Today marks 250 days until the United Kingdom leaves the European Union. The day we will deliver on the result of the referendum and the decision of people in the UK to take back control of the UK’s laws, borders and money. David Mundell * The Scotsman Much has been achieved by the UK government as we prepare for exit day on 29 March, 2019. We have published our Future Partnership White Paper – a comprehensive and ambitious vision for ... Read More »

Hamas and Israel agree to Gaza ceasefire, says Hamas

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The Islamist rulers of the Gaza Strip have said they reached an agreement with Israel to restore calm. DW It follows a day of deadly Israeli strikes after a soldier was killed along the border for the first time in years. The ceasefire agreement was reached early Saturday, a spokesman for Hamas said. “With Egyptian and United Nations efforts it has been agreed to return to the era of calm between (Israel) and Palestinian factions,” Fawzi Barhoum told the Reuters ... Read More »