At Jordan summit, Mideast leaders appeal for international assistance against terror, say air strikes on IS not working
SOUTHERN SHUNEH, Jordan (AP) — Mideast-weary though it may be, the international community has a duty and an interest in helping the countries of the region both rebuff violent extremists and fix the refugee crisis that in part has resulted from the fight with them — that was the message coming from the regional World Economic Forum Saturday.
“In Iraq and the region as a whole, the biggest challenge we face is extremism and terrorism, but this has repercussions at the international level,” said Iraqi Vice President Ayad Allawi.
“Terrorism is not plaguing Iraq alone but is spilling over,” agreed Saleh Muhammed Al Mutlaq, Iraq’s deputy prime minister. “If it does, it will affect the stability and security of the whole world. We cannot expect that any Arab country can fight terrorism without the help of the international community.” Continue reading
EUROPEAN Union bosses will force Britain to take in tens of thousands of migrants rescued from the Mediterranean under plans “seen as a declaration of war”, it has emerged.
In David Cameron’s first major challenge as newly-elected Prime Minister, top Brussels official Jean-Claude Juncker has said Britain needs to take as many as 65,000 refugees – more than twice as many as the UK took last year. Continue reading
To join elite currency club, Beijing may agree to more transparency of its holdings
China may be ready to tone down its secrecy over state gold holdings — thanks to complicated maneuvering on the renminbi potentially joining the International Monetary Fund’s monetary reserve denominator, the special drawing right, later this year.
As part of diversification of reserve holdings, over the past five years China is widely believed to have amassed official gold reserves well above its officially reported total of 1,054 tons, a figure that Beijing has maintained unchanged since 2009 in data reported to the IMF. Gold mines in China — the world’s biggest bullion producer for the past eight years, with 2014 output of 452 tons — have been quietly selling some of their output to the state, possibly several hundred tons in some recent years.
China’s much anticipated international payment system is set to launch. It could be a big blow to the dollar—and America’s ability to police the world.
This year may go down as a turning point in United States economic history.
Reuters reports that three high-level Chinese officials have confirmed that China will launch its long-awaited international payment system in September or October. The system will allow foreign banks to conduct transactions in yuan instead of dollars and transfer funds across international borders without using America’s swift payment system.
TWO HUNDRED years since a huge volcanic eruption turned Europe’s summer into winter – forcing people to eat cats and dogs in the street to stay alive – experts have warned mankind is NOT prepared for a similar event THIS century.
The deadly eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia sparked what was known as the ‘Year Without Summer’ in 1815 as crops failed and livestock died in much of the Northern Hemisphere – causing the worst famine for hundreds of years.
However, academics have warned that the chances of a similar disaster happening in the next 85 years, which could see the Earth flung back into a “pre-civilisation state”, was estimated to be as high as one in 10.
China could have outsized influence over a new Beijing-backed international development bank under a proposed shareholding structure likely to be discussed at a meeting of member nations in Washington this week, sources say. Continue reading
If you’re not already familiar with one of the more recent invented economic terms of the last few years, “bail-in”, it essentially means your respective government has given the banks the green light to legally take your deposits to cover their obligations should there be another crisis. Instead of the corrupt government bailing ‘out’ the banks, you, the depositor, are bailing them ‘in’. This is also an indication of an anticipated crisis.
– Austria will remove state guarantee of bank deposits
– Austrian deposit plan given go ahead by the EU
– Banks to pay into a deposit insurance fund over 10 years
– Fund will then be valued at a grossly inadequate €1.5 billion
– New bail-in legislation agreed by EU two years ago
– Depositors need to realise increasing risks and act accordingly
– “Bail-ins are now the rule” and ‘Bail-in regime’ coming
Bank deposits in Austria will no longer enjoy state protection and a state guarantee in the event of bank runs and a bank collapse when legislation is enacted in July. The plan to ensure that the state is no longer responsible for insuring deposits has been readied by the Austrian government in conjunction with the EU two years ago according to Die Presse. Continue reading
As a reminder, don’t count Greece out mainly due to the energy factor. They could very likely be a regional oil & gas hub for the European continent that’s too important to let go. Therefore, don’t be surprised if the Troika gives a few concessions towards the increasingly desperate and belligerent Greeks. Where the energy supplies actually come from, be it from Russia or another Mediterranean land such as Cyprus, is yet to be seen — although the latter would break Europe free from Russia.
MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Turkish Stream gas pipeline could help Greece become one of the main power distribution centers in Europe, President of Russia Vladimir Putin said. Continue reading
The popularity of China-proposed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) has signaled that Asia in general and China in particular are leading the world into another and relevant direction, a Dutch expert has said.
Rien T Segers, a Dutch expert on the political economy of East Asia, believes the world is undergoing a transition from “the financial, economic and political dominance of the United States towards the dominance of a number of Asian countries, led by China.”
“The rich and old economies have no other choices but going for a development which is a reflection of cooperative influence of Asian countries in the West and vice versa”, he added.
Modern Germany is a new reich, at least in an economic sense, Der Spiegel concluded in the cover article of its March 21 issue.
With a circulation of over 1 million, Der Spiegel is one of Germany’s most popular and well-respected newsmagazines. An English version of the article is available on its website, and is worth reading in full.
“People have even begun talking about the ‘Fourth Reich,’ a reference to the Third Reich of Adolf Hitler,” states the article’s introduction. “That may sound absurd given that today’s Germany is a successful democracy without a trace of national-socialism—and that no one would actually associate Merkel with Nazism. But further reflection on the word ‘reich,’ or empire, may not be entirely out of place. The term refers to a dominion, with a central power exerting control over many different peoples. According to this definition, would it be wrong to speak of a German Reich in the economic realm?” Continue reading
Over 40 countries applied to become founding members of the China-backed Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) before the March 31 deadline, doubling the size of the bank from Beijing’s initial conception.
The applications showed that the planned bank, which has been seen as posing a challenge to the Asian Development Bank (ADB) and a possible threat to the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, is supported by both developed and emerging economies. Continue reading
Speaking in a London court on Monday, Italian newspaper editor and politician Paolo Guzzanti said he believed Litvinenko was murdered by the Kremlin because he was helping Italian authorities assess a series of Soviet and Russian intelligence operations in the country. Guzzanti was speaking as the former president of the so-called Mitrokhin Commission, a parliamentary board set up in 2002 to investigate past intelligence operations by the Soviet KGB in Italy. Most of the work of the Commission stemmed from the revelations in the Mitrokhin Archive, named after Vassili Mitrokhin, who for three decades was the archivist in the KGB’s First Chief Directorate. Mitrokhin defected to the Britain in 1992, taking with him a treasure trove of documents about Soviet intelligence activities that took place abroad during the Cold War. Continue reading
This was also mentioned a few weeks back by Muammar Gaddafi’s cousin and also makes one wonder why Pope Francis keeps hinting he won’t be around for long. A normal reaction would be to bolster up security yet he doesn’t seem to care.
It also should be remembered that Greece, the gateway for immigration to Europe, had threatened the entire continent with opening the floodgates to illegal immigrants and giving them a pass directly to Berlin, which is essentially one step away from declaring war or being a complicit state-sponsor of terrorism.
The Islamic State terrorist group likely will launch an attack on Italy within weeks, not months, according to a senior Libyan government official.
Aref Ali Nayed, Libya’s ambassador to the United Arab Emirates, said in an interview that one likely method of attack would be to use stolen Libyan airliners now believed to be in the hands of Islamists in Libya.
“The horrific video showing 21 Coptic Christians beheaded in Libya contained a direct threat from ISIS to Rome,” said Mr. Nayed, using an acronym for the terrorist group. “The threat of ISIS to Italy could become a reality in a matter of weeks rather than months.” Continue reading
The mask of absolute disdain and hatred for Israel is coming off.
In a development that has largely been missed by mainstream media, the Pentagon early last month quietly declassified a Department of Defense top-secret document detailing Israel’s nuclear program, a highly covert topic that Israel has never formally announced to avoid a regional nuclear arms race, and which the US until now has respected by remaining silent.
But by publishing the declassified document from 1987, the US reportedly breached the silent agreement to keep quiet on Israel’s nuclear powers for the first time ever, detailing the nuclear program in great depth. Continue reading