Tuesday, July 17, 2018

#JAPAN: Island Dispute Flares Up After China Denounces Japanese Mayor's Plan To Rename Islands Claimed by Both Nations

[world politics news]


The Chinese government has condemned a Japanese mayor's plan to change the name of a small group of islands in the East China Sea. Ishigaki Mayor Yoshitaka Nakayama wants to change the name of the Japanese-controlled islands from "Tonoshiro, Ishigaki City,” to “Senkaku, Ishigaki City." China and Taiwan claim the islands, with China calling them the the Diaoyu Islands, Taiwan, the Tiaoyutai Islands. They are located between Okinawa and Taiwan, and are said to be close to undersea oil fields. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang said, "Whatever tricks Japan plays, it will not change the fact that the Diaoyu Islands belong to China."

[FULL STORY HERE, also HERE]

Monday, July 16, 2018

#HAITI: Prime Minister Resigns Following Rioting Over Gas Price Hikes

[world politics news]


Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant abruptly resigned Saturday, avoiding being forcibly ousted in a no-confidence vote by the country’s Lower Chamber of Deputies. Haiti’s parliament had scheduled a hearing on Saturday to fire Lafontant and his 18 cabinet members after an unpopular fuel price hike led to riots last weekend

[FULL STORY HERE]

Sunday, July 15, 2018

#SAUDIARABIA: New Bankruptcy Law Seeks To Empower Loaners, Preserve Debtor's Rights, Improve Int'l Standings

[world politics news]


A new bankruptcy law will come into effect in August that seeks to empower loaners, while also preserve the rights of debtors. Majed al-Rasheed, secretary general of the bankruptcy committee at the Ministry of Commerce and Investment, says the law will also improve Saudi Arabia's standing in international reports dealing with insolvency. The Kingdom currently ranks at 168 out of 190 countries.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Saturday, July 14, 2018

#TRINIDAD: Member Of Parliament Threatens Defamation Suit Against Facebook Posts Attacking Family Members

[world politics news]


A member of Trinidad and Tobago's parliament, Dr Surujrattan Rambachan, has threatened legal action against those responsible for two posts on social media attacking his family. In a statement, Rambachan said the posts were "malicious rumors" that bear no truth. He said the statements posted on two public Facebook pages were highly libelous and inflammatory. "Those posts are engaging the attention of my attorneys who have been instructed to use all means available to trace the source of the posts,” he said. Rambachan, who represents Tabaquite, a town in central Trinidad, said he would act to protect his family's reputation. He was responding to posts stating one of Rambachan's relatives is being investigated for a sex-related crime. according to local media.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Friday, July 13, 2018

BREAKING: #PAKISTAN: Convicted Frmr. PM Nawaz #Sharif And Daughter Arrested At Lahore Airport Upon Return To Pakistan

[world politics news]


Former Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and his daughter Maryam have been flown to Islamabad after they were arrested upon their arrival at Lahore airport. Security in Lahore was beefed up as thousands of Sharif’s supporters marched to the airport. The father-daughter duo were sentenced to lengthy jail terms by an anti-corruption court in Pakistan last week. Sharif was given a 10-year jail term over the purchase of luxury London apartments, while his daughter Maryam was sentenced to seven years in prison.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#IRELAND: Legislature Moves To Ban Israeli Goods Produced In The Palestinian Territories To Protest Israeli Occupation

[world politics news]


Ireland has moved a step closer towards banning Israeli products which are produced in the occupied West Bank Palestinian territories. Championed by independent Sen. Frances Black. the Control of Economic Activity (Occupied Territories) Bill passed through the Irish parliament’s upper house (the Seanad) by 25 votes to 20, and will now advance to the committee stage. While other countries have issued condemnations or moved to label Israeli items produced in the occupied territories, this bill is believed to be the first which would ban the import of the goods altogether.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Thursday, July 12, 2018

#THEPHILIPPINES: President Challenges Catholics: Will Resign If You Show Me A "Selfie With God"

[world politics news]


The President of the Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, has offered to resign if anyone can take a selfie with God to prove he exists. His comments came just days after he called God "stupid". "If any one can go to heaven, talk to God, and take a selfie – I will resign." The latest outburst shows Duterte, aged 73, increasingly at odds with the Catholic Church, in which he was raised and to which most Filipinos belong.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

#EGYPT: Economic Reforms Bring #IMF Investment, But End Of Subsidies Causes Consumer Prices To Soar

[world politics news]


The International Monetary Fund has approved the fourth installment of a $12 billion, three-year loan for Egypt, which now totals just over $8 billion. It's part of an aid deal signed in 2016 to support Cairo's economic reform program, which the Washington-based lender has repeatedly praised. Since then, the government has imposed harsh austerity measures and started to phase out subsidies on many goods and services, causing fuel prices to rise as much as 50%, and electricity rates by about 25%. The nation's deficit rose to 12.5% of GDP in the 2015-2016 tax year.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

#AUSTRALIA: New Law Imposes Fines For Public #Vaping In New South Wales

[world politics news]


Users of electronic cigarettes in public places can be fined up to $550 if they vape in public, according to a law that came into effect July 1 in New South Wales, Australia. The ban passed through the state's parliament earlier this year, and means anywhere that smoking is banned, vaping is too, including shopping centers, libraries, cinemas, bus stops, train stations, buses and trains, sports grounds, near children’s play equipment and outdoor dining areas. Vapers say they are upset they're being placed in the same category as cigarette smokers.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Monday, July 09, 2018

#HAITI: Rioting Ensues After Gov't Proposes Steep Gas Price Hikes; 120 Americans Trapped At Hotel

[world politics news]


The Haitian government has halted a planned fuel price hike after tension and fighting escalated late last week. As of Sunday night, 120 Americans were trapped inside a Port-au-Prince hotel, targeted by violent protesters. Other missionaries across the nation were unable to get to the city's airport, which was closed. Haitian Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant had previously declared that fuel prices needed to be raised to balance the budget and announced a 38 percent increase for gasoline, diesel and kerosene. A two-day strike had been planned starting on Monday. It's unclear whether Lafontant's concession will halt plans for the strike.

[FULL STORY HERE]

BREAKING: #UK Foreign Sec. Boris Johnson Quits Cabinet; PM Theresa May's Hold On Power In Doubt

[world politics news]


The UK's Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson has resigned, the third minister in Prime Minister Theresa May's cabinet in 24 hours to walk out of the government rather than back Theresa May’s plans for a soft Brexit. The prime minister hammered out a compromise with her deeply divided cabinet in an all-day meeting at Chequers on Friday, but after consulting friends and allies, Johnson decided he could not promote the deal to the public. This puts May's hold on the office in doubt, and a "no confidence" vote that could remove her seems likely.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#UK: Brexit Sec. David Davis, 2 Others Resign Amid Upheaval Over Brexit Plan; Could Lead To No Confidence Vote For PM May

[world politics news]


David Davis, the cabinet minister in charge of negotiating the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union ("Brexit") resigned at 11:30 p.m. last night, London time. His resignation was quickly followed by two other Brexit-related cabinet members. It tame just days after Prime Minister Theresa May unveiled a plan that some Conservatives interpreted as being too "soft" of an exit from the EU. The plan proposes a “UK-EU free trade area" governed by a "common rule book." Press reports say the cabinet is "bitterly divided" over May's strategy to negotiate terms with the EU. It could lead to a no confidence vote being taken on May's leadership.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Sunday, July 08, 2018

USA: Twitter War Erupts Between VP Mike Pence And Progressive NY Gov. Candidate Cynthia Nixon

[world politics news]


A Twitter war over immigration has erupted between the vice president of the United States and the Progressive Democrat challenging NY Gov. Mario Cuomo in the primary, actress Cynthia Nixon. Nixon Nixon referred to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency as a "terrorist" organization, after Pence defended its agents as "brave." Pence responded angrily to the label, and called attention to the more tgan 500 human trafficking victims ICE agents reportedly rescued.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#UGANDA: A Million Cell Phone Users Expected To Protest New "Gossip" Tax Monday

[world politics news]


A million of Uganda's 40 million cell phone users are expected to take to the streets Monday to protest a new tax that means users can no longer use sites and apps like Facebook, Twitter, Skype, WhatsApp, Instagram and Viber without paying a burdensome daily tax. The tax was the idea of Uganda’s president of 32 years, Yoweri Museveni, who had complained about online gossip.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Saturday, July 07, 2018

#CANADA: PM Trudeau On Harassment Allegation: "No Need" To Investigate; Walks Back Apology

[world politics news]


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says there is no need to further investigate allegations that he sexually harassed a reporter in the year 2000. Trudeau reportedly apologized a day after the incident occurred. Now, he has told a reporter that he doesn't recall improper behavior on his part, but apologized anyway. “There’s a lot of uncertainties around this. In terms of my recollection there was no untoward or inappropriate action."

[FULL STORY HERE]

[UPDATE: Accuser Speaks Out. STORY HERE]

Friday, July 06, 2018

UK: London Mayor Khan Approves "Trump Baby" Blimp Flyover During Trump's July 13 Visit

[world politics news]


A giant balloon dubbed, "Trump baby," has been given the green light to fly near the UK's parliament during the president's visit on July 13th. The six-meter long balloon, which portrays the president as an angry, orange baby wearing a diaper, will fly over London for two hours, coinciding with a mass protest below.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Thursday, July 05, 2018

#TUNISIA: Capital City Elects First Female Mayor, Backed By Moderate Muslim Party

[world politics news]


The capital of Tunisia elected its first-ever female mayor this week. Souad Abderrahim, 53, ran as an independent but was backed by the Islamist Ennahda (Rebirth) Party. Abderrahim works for a pharmaceutical firm. Shortly after the country's 2011 Arab Spring movement, Abderrahim was elected to the Constituent Assembly of Tunisia, where she served until 2014. After her victory, she was cautious about the use of the "Islamist" label to describe herself and Ennahda, saying she wanted to work with all parties to improve Tunis.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

#USA: Lawyer For Porn Star Suing Trump Says He'll Run For President In #2020 If Trump Runs; Would Potentially Join #Oprah, #Bloomberg, #AlecBaldwin In #WhiteHouse Race

[world politics news]


Politico reports that Michael Avenatti, the attorney representing adult-film actress Stormy Daniels (who is suing Pres. Trump) said Wednesday he will run against President Donald Trump if he seeks reelection, but only if he thinks there isn’t another candidate that could beat the president.
“IF (big) he seeks re-election, I will run, but only if I think that there is no other candidate in the race that has a REAL chance at beating him. We can't relive 2016. I love this country, our values and our people too much to sit by while they are destroyed. #FightClub #Basta,“ Avenatti tweeted.
The tweet came after Avenatti, who resembles Vladimir Putin, was asked on Twitter when he would announce his 2020 bid.

It is unclear whether he would run as a Republican, Independent or Democrat. Others who have floated a run for president in 2020 are TV talk show host Oprah Winfrey, former NYC Mayor, gun control advocate and large soda banner Michael Bloomberg, and liberal Trump impersonator Alec Baldwin.

[FULL STORY HERE]

#RUSSIA: For The First Time, Whistleblower Snowden Calls Russia's Gov't "Corrupt"

[world politics news]


For the first time, National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden has explicitly described his host, the Russian government, as being “corrupt." Some view his comments as putting his freedom at risk at a US-Russia summit in Helsinki on July 16, where Donald Trump may request Vladimir Putin to hand him over.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Tuesday, July 03, 2018

#CANADA: PM Trudeau Answering Questions About Decades-Old Harassment Accusations

[world politics news]


Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is having to explain allegations of sexual harassment from nearly two decades ago that have resurfaced recently. Trudeau is being accused of groping a female reporter when he was a 28-year-old teacher at a music festival. He is denying the allegations. He says he does not remember the incident.

[FULL STORY HERE]

MEXICO: Leftist Pres. Candidate Lopez Obridor Wins In Landslide, Calls Trump With Deal

[world politics news]


Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has claimed victory in Sunday's presidential election. He will be the country's most left-wing government in decades. Lopez Obrador wasted no time calling Pres. Trump, offering to stem the tide of migration to the north in exchange for more aid, directed towards job creation within Mexico. Trump said he was encouraged by the call, and said he looked forward to good relations with Mexico's new president.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Monday, July 02, 2018

#IRAQ: After Members Stage Mass Absence, Parliament Fails To Extend Its Term; Action On Election Fraud Delayed

[world politics news]


Iraq's parliament failed to meet for its final days this week after a vast majority of deputies stayed away, causing their to be a lack of a quorum. On the agenda was an electoral reform package and the recount of ballots in a disputed election in May, in which up fraud levels were said to be "very high," with election commission board member Riyad al-Badran claiming there were over 800,000 canceled cards in Baghdad representing 8 parliamentary seats. No more than 15 of the 165 deputies appeared for the session. Parliament's Speaker and other influential members were among those absent.

[FULL STORY HERE]

Sunday, July 01, 2018

#ESTONIA: US Ambassador To Estonia Resigns Over Trump Rhetoric On #EU, #NATO

[world politics news]


The U.S. ambassador to Estonia has resigned over Pres. Trump's comments about the European Union and his treatment of European allies. In a private Facebook message posted Friday, James D. Melville wrote: "For the President to say EU was 'set up to take advantage of the United States, to attack our piggy bank,' or that 'NATO is as bad as NAFTA' is not only factually wrong, but proves to me that it's time to go." Melville had served since 2015.

[FULL STORY HERE]