Published scoops - World

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US Willing To Look At China Currency Proposal

The US is willing to explore China’s proposal to give a synthetic global currency a larger role in the international financial system, Tim Geithner, US Treasury secretary, said on Wednesday.

But Mr Geithner said any change would be evolutionary and that the synthetic currency, called the International Monetary Fund Special Drawing Rights (SDRs), would not replace the dollar.

He said there would be no ”global monetary union” and the future of the dollar in the world system would rest on the US government’s ability to overcome the financial crisis and then put its fiscal house in order.

The comments came after calls by Zhou Xiaochuan, China’s central bank governor, for a new global currency as an alternative to the dollar.

China’s idea of a new currency would in effect expand the use of the SDR, a currency devised by the IMF in 1969 that was initially pegged to the dollar but is now based on the value of four different currencies: the dollar, yen, euro and pound.

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6

India Warns Against 'Green Protectionism'

By Shaun Tandon

WASHINGTON (AFP) - India has warned against rich nations using climate change as a pretext for protectionism as the United States and France consider imposing environment taxes.

India's chief climate negotiator, Shyam Saran, was in Washington for talks with the new administration of US President Barack Obama, whom he praised for putting a new emphasis on halting the warming of the planet.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu -- hoping to ease concerns that climate action would worsen the US recession -- has suggested slapping a tariff on imports from nations that do not require emissions cuts to "level the playing field."

French President Nicolas Sarkozy seconded the view on Tuesday, saying he favored a carbon tax on imports from countries with lower environmental standards than his own.

Saran, addressing the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said: "Most developing countries will argue that we are already starting with a very unlevel playing field."

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5

China Calls For New Global Currency.

China calls for new global currency controlled by International Monetary Fund.

By JOE McDONALD (Associate Press Business Writer).

China is calling for a new global currency controlled by the International Monetary Fund, stepping up pressure ahead of a London summit of global leaders for changes to a financial system dominated by the U.S. dollar and Western governments.

he comments, in an essay by the Chinese central bank governor released late Monday, reflects Beijing's growing assertiveness in economic affairs. China is expected to press for developing countries to have a bigger say in finance when leaders of the Group of 20 major economies meet April 2 in London to discuss the global crisis.

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5

Chinese Repression In Tibet

Google said Tuesday that its YouTube video-sharing Web site had been blocked in China.

Google said it did not know why the site had been blocked, but a report by the official Xinhua news agency of China on Tuesday said that supporters of the Dalai Lama had fabricated a video that appeared to show Chinese police officers brutally beating Tibetans after riots last year in Lhasa, the Tibetan capital.

Xinhua did not identify the video, but based on the description it appears to match a video available on YouTube that was recently released by the Tibetan government in exile.

It purports to show police officers storming a monastery after riots in Lhasa last March, kicking and beating protesters. It includes other instances of brutality and graphic images of a protester’s wounds. According to the video, the protester later died.

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4

Deep Divisions Over Tibet Anniversary

On 10 March 1959 Tibetans rose up in rebellion against the Chinese government. That rebellion failed and the Dalai Lama fled.

According to exiled Tibetans, it was a justified uprising aimed at freeing the Himalayan region from the clutches of the oppressive Chinese.

Beijing sees it differently. It says it was a plot by Tibet's upper-classes, who wanted to maintain their feudal hold over their enslaved people.

Seldom has there been two such different versions of the same historical event.

And this difference of opinion continues today. Exiled Tibetans and the Chinese government are far apart on what is happening now in the region.

The 50th anniversary of the uprising comes at a sensitive time for Tibet, a year after riots and protests broke out in Tibetan communities across western China.

China says the region has returned to normal, but people who have visited Tibetan areas say there is heavy security and the situation is tense.

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4

Israel annexing East Jerusalem

A confidential EU report accuses the Israeli government of using settlement expansion, house demolitions, discriminatory housing policies and the West Bank barrier as a way of "actively pursuing the illegal annexation" of East Jerusalem.

The document says Israel has accelerated its plans for East Jerusalem, and is undermining the Palestinian Authority's credibility and weakening support for peace talks. "Israel's actions in and around Jerusalem constitute one of the most acute challenges to Israeli-Palestinian peace-making," says the document, EU Heads of Mission Report on East Jerusalem.

The report, obtained by the Guardian, is dated 15 December 2008. It acknowledges Israel's legitimate security concerns in Jerusalem, but adds: "Many of its current illegal actions in and around the city have limited security justifications."

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Created by Keiros 42 weeks 6 days ago – Made popular 42 weeks 6 days ago
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6

Closed Zone: The 'Waltz With Bashir' Animator Animates Gaza Siege

Yoni Goodman, the Israeli animator who animated the award-winning, Oscar-nominated, animated documentary "Waltz With Bashir" has just released "Closed Zone" a 90-second animated short film about Gaza.

In it, a Palestinian in Gaza goes chasing after a blue bird, only to be turned back by imposing, massive hands as he approaches Gaza's borders.

The Palestinian watches rockets soar out of Gaza and hit an Israeli town. Then he is boxed in by the hands as he tries to escape from Israel's military counter-strike.
Goodman created the film for Gisha, an Israeli human rights group that has long challenged Israel's policies towards Gaza, especially the restrictions imposed on humanitarian aid to the 1.4 million Palestinians living there.

"The war made this film a mission for me," Goodman said in a short companion video on "The Making of Closed Zone."

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Created by Keiros 43 weeks 3 days ago – Made popular 43 weeks 3 days ago
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6

Sudan President Al-Bashir’s Arrest Sought Over Darfur

The International Criminal Court issued an arrest warrant for Sudanese President Umar al-Bashir over his alleged role in crimes against humanity and war crimes in the western region of Darfur.

Al-Bashir, the first sitting head of state to be indicted by the court, faces five counts of crimes against humanity, including responsibility for murder, rape and torture, and two counts of war crimes, court spokeswoman Laurence Blairon told a news conference at The Hague.

“The judges decided today that al-Bashir shall be arrested to stand trial for crimes committed against millions of civilians in Darfur,” ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo told reporters. “His victims are the very civilians that he, as president, was supposed to protect.”

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4

India uses Lahore Attack To Put Pressure On Pakistan

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India bemoaned the efforts of rival Pakistan to quash militancy after gunmen attacked the Sri Lankan cricket team in Lahore on Tuesday, warning of similar assaults in the region unless Islamabad completely cracked down.

The nuclear-armed neighbours have exchanged angry rhetoric since the November attacks in the Indian financial capital, Mumbai, which killed nearly 170 people. India and the United States blamed a Pakistani militant group for those raids.

"They've got to address the problem, take courage in both hands, dismantle the infrastructure facilities available there," Indian Foreign Minister Pranab Mukherjee told reporters.

He said "a repetition of these types of incidents may take place" if Islamabad did not deal with militants.

Six Sri Lankan players and a British coach were wounded in the brazen attack by a dozen gunmen on the team's bus in Lahore. Five Pakistani police and the driver of a second bus were killed.

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5

Congo Forgotten Crisis - IRC Special Report

IRC Study Shows Congo's Neglected Crisis Leaves 5.4 Million Dead; Peace Deal in N. Kivu, Increased Aid Critical to Reducing Death Toll

Conflict and humanitarian crisis in the Democratic Republic of Congo have taken the lives of an estimated 5.4 million people since 1998 and continue to leave as many as 45,000 dead every month, according to a major mortality survey released today by the International Rescue Committee.

“The conflict and its aftermath, in terms of fatalities, surpass any other since World War II,” says the aid group’s president, George Rupp. “Congo’s loss is equivalent to the entire population of Denmark or the state of Colorado perishing within a decade. Although Congo’s war formally ended five years ago, ongoing strife and poverty continue to take a staggering toll. We hope this week’s peace agreement in North Kivu will mean an end to the hostilities and a restart of reconciliation and recovery efforts.”

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Created by Keiros 43 weeks 5 days ago – Made popular 43 weeks 5 days ago
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