Thursday, December 08, 2016

#CAMBODIA: King Pardons Opposition's Kem Sokha At Request Of PM To Cool Tensions

[world politics news]


Cambodia's King Norodom Sihamoni has granted a royal pardon to a leader of the main opposition party, at the request of Prime Minister Hun Sen, holding out hope for compromise after a period of rising political tension. Kem Sokha, a leader of the Cambodia National Rescue Party, was sentenced to five months in jail in September after failing to appear in court in connection with a case against two of his party colleagues.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

#DENMARK: Center-Right PM Invites Libertarians, Conservatives Into Government

[world politics news]


Prime Minister Lars L√łkke Rasmussen has shored up his minority government by bringing in the libertarian-leaning Liberal Alliance and the Conservative People's Party. Rasmussen presented a 22-member cabinet that includes six posts for LA and three for the Conservatives. In the cabinet shuffle, number of high profile politicians swapped portfolio and a handful of veteran politicians were left without a job.

[FULL STORY HERE]


#EGYPT: Human Rights Groups, Opposition Parties, Say New Law "Shackles" NGOs

[world politics news]


Six liberal and leftist parties and 22 human rights groups have condemned a bill rushed through parliament last month that would severely restrict and regulate Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs.) Activists are critical of the law, which turns NGOs into entities affiliated to the government in a flagrant violation of the constitution and international conventions. Opponents say the law shackles NGOs and impede them from having any meaningful role in society. The bill must be approved by the State Council before becoming law. The Council is a judicial body  that can reject legislation.

[FULL STORY HERE]



Tuesday, December 06, 2016

#ITALY: Five Star Founder Denies #BuzzFeed Accusation Of Backing "Fake News" Sites

[world politics news]


The leader of Italy's populist Five Star Movement party appears rattled by accusations that it is behind a network of fake news sites. A BuzzFeed News investigation which accused the 'anti-establishment' party of being behind a network of blogs and websites spreading propaganda and fake news.  Five Star Party founder Beppe Grillo tweeted that "BuzzFeed's inquiry is fake news," and accused traditional media of publishing fake news and pro-Renzi propaganda.

#SOUTHKOREA: Opposition Parties Say They'll Impeach Pres. Park In Friday Vote

[world politics news]



Opposition parties say they will hold a parliamentary impeachment vote on scandal-tainted Pres. Park Geun-hye this Friday, while her own party remains undecided on whether to force her out of office. Park has offered to resign and has asked parliament to decide how and when she should step down over the influence peddling scandal but the opposition has rejected it as a delaying tactic to avoid impeachment.

[FULL STORY HERE]


Monday, December 05, 2016

#THEPHILIPPINES: VP/Housing Sec. Robredo Told Not To Attend Cabinet Mtgs.; Resigns Housing Post

[world politics news]


Vice President Leni Robredo is stepping down as chair of the Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council, a position she was appointed to, and held in addition to her position as vice president. She cited "irreconcilable differences" with Pres. Rodrigo Duterte, and resigned after receiving a text message saying Duterte wanted her to "desist from attending all Cabinet meetings starting Monday, December 5." She said she fears an effort to "steal" the vice presidency from her. She's opposed extra-judicial killings of suspected drug dealers that Duterte has encouraged, and his approval of the re-burial of former Pres. Ferdinand Marcos in a special cemetery.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#GAMBIA: Authoritarian Pres. Jammeh Will Step Down After Defeat by Upstart Candidate

[world politics news]


Yahya Jammeh, an authoritarian president who ruled for 22 years, has confirmed he will voluntarily step down after being beaten in an election by property developer Adama Barrow. "I will help him work towards the transition," Jammeh said on state TV, after speaking to the president-elect by telephone. Barrow, 51, who has never held political office, won last Thursday's election with 45.5% of the vote.

#NEWZEALAND: PM John Key Announces Resignation, Cites Family And Personal Sacrifices

[world politics news]


John Key is resigning as Prime Minister of New Zealand. Key made the announcement at his weekly press conference this afternoon. Key, his voice shaking with emotion, cited family as the reason. "This is the hardest decision I've ever made and I don't know what I'll do next." He said the job had required great sacrifices, "from those who are dearest to me." The National Party will meet Dec. 12 to choose a new leader, who will become prime minister.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Sunday, December 04, 2016

#ITALY: PM Renzi Resigns After Clear Defeat Of Gov't Reform Referendum

[world politics news]


Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi will resign Monday morning after a clear and decisive defeat of his government reform referendum Sunday. The proposals, which gained about 45% support according to exit polls, were aimed at strengthening the political system, which has endured dozens of changes in governments since World War II. Renzi said the reforms would have cut Italy's bureaucracy and made the country more competitive.

[FULL STORY HERE]


#AUSTRIA: Indie Green Candidate Van der Bellen Defeats Right-Wing Pres. Candidate Hoffer

[world politics news]


In a result sure to be welcomed by supporters of  the European Union, Green Party-backed independent Alexander Van der Bellen, 72, swept 53.6% of the votes in Austria's run-off election Sunday, while his rival Norbert Hoffer of the anti-immigration Freedom Party received 46.4%, projections showed. On Facebook, Hoffer described himself as "infinitely sad" and congratulated Alexander Van der Bellen, former head of the Greens, on his victory. Although the post is ceremonial in Austria, the poll had been seen as a sign of how well populist candidates might do elsewhere in Europe.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#THENETHERLANDS: Lower House Of Parliament Bans Face Veil For Muslim Women

[world politics news]


The Dutch parliament has overwhelmingly voted to ban face veils in some public places, a law the government said was essential for security, but which opponents said pandered to anti-Muslim sentiment. The law, passed by the lower house but still requiring the senate's approval, bans veils and other items that hide the face such as ski masks and helmets in places including government buildings, public transport, schools and hospitals.

[FULL STORY HERE AND HERE]


Saturday, December 03, 2016

#EU: European Parliament Passes "Watered Down" Pollution Law

[world politics news]


The European Parliament has passed a new draft law on air pollution that the European Commission and several members of parliament argue is not enough to cut emissions to World Health Organization standards. The law seeks to cut in half the number of premature deaths caused by air pollution and targets many EU states already violating existing air pollution limits.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#NORWAY: Small Party Breaks Ranks With Gov't Over Budget, Putting Coalition In Danger

[world politics news]


Norway's minority government is facing a crisis as the small Christian Democratic Party broke off budget negotiations, putting the coalition with the Conservative Party in danger of collapse. Prime Minister Erna Solberg's government has until December 5th to find a majority in parliament with its centrist allies, the Christian Democrats and Liberals, to pass its 2017 finance bill.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Pictured: Norwegian PM Erna Solberg.

Friday, December 02, 2016

#GERMANY: EU Parl. Pres. May Seek Chance To Take On Merkel in 2017

[world politics news]


Martin Schulz, currently serving as the president of the European Parliament, is reportedly returning to German politics to seek the leadership of the Social Democratic Party. As party leader, he would take on Chancellor Angela Merkel. The party is currently the junior coalition partner of Merkel's Christian Democrats. Schulz's term as EU parliament president ends in January.

[FULL STORY HERE]


#EU: EuroParliament Freezes EU Membership Talks With Turkey Over Press Crackdown

[world politics news]


The European Union's Parliament has suspended talks with Turkey over its potential membership in the Eurozone over its continued crackdown on its free press and against political dissent. Turkish diplomats reacted angrily to the vote, which may affect a previous deal with the EU to hold back Syrian refugees from flooding into the continent from the war-torn nation. Despite that threat, Members voted 479 in favor on the motion amending EU-Turkey relations, with 37 against and 107 abstentions.

[FULL STORY HERE]


#UK: Parliament Rejects Motion To Investigate Frmr. PM Tony Blair Over Iraq War Claims

[world politics news]



After a heated debate, it was Labour MPs turning out in force that helped defeat a parliamentary motion calling for Former Prime Minister Tony Blair to be held to account for allegedly misleading parliament over the Iraq war. The vote was 439 votes to 70. The vote was initiated by the Scottish National Party foreign affairs spokesman Alex Salmond, and was backed by MPs from six other parties.

[FULL STORY HERE]