Fact & News

Millions to Vote in US Mid-Term Poll

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Americans are preparing to vote in mid-term elections which will decide who controls the Senate and pave the way for the 2016 race for the White House. Polling booths open on Tuesday beginning 06:00 Eastern (11:00 GMT). The Republicans, who already control the House of Representatives, need to gain just six seats to take the Senate. Meanwhile the Democrats are battling to stay ahead as Preside...

Turkish Ministers’ Sons Charged

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The sons of two Turkish government ministers have been charged in connection with a huge corruption investigation. The head of the state-owned bank and at least a dozen other people also face charges. The suspects are accused of abusing their power by taking or facilitating bribes. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has denounced the investigation as a “dirty operation” against his governm...

Mediators Try to Avert Civil War in South Sudan

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African mediators said they held “productive” talks on Friday with South Sudan’s President Salva Kiir, trying to prevent an almost week-long conflict plunging the world’s newest nation into an ethnic civil war. In a sign of the nervousness among South Sudan’s neighbors, Ugandan soldiers flew in to help evacuate their citizens. Kiir, a member of the Dinka ethnic group, has accused...

China Denounces Japanese Military Strategy

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China has denounced Japan’s new national security strategy, accusing it of military expansion. Defence Ministry spokesman Geng Yansheng said in a statement that the move would increase regional tensions, state news agency Xinhua reported. Earlier this week, Japan said it would buy advanced equipment including drones and amphibious vehicles. It comes as Tokyo is embroiled in a bitter row...

Thai Army Chief Warns of ‘Civil War’

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The head of the Thai army has warned the current political crisis in the country could “trigger a civil war”. General Prayuth Chan-ocha has proposed a “people’s assembly”, made up of civilians from all sides, not the leaders, to heal the divisions. Thailand is facing its most serious political turmoil since 2010. Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra has called snap elections for F...

India Transfers Diplomat to UN

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India said on Saturday that it had transferred the diplomat at the center of a row with the United States to its UN delegation, a move that it hopes will give her protection from prosecution for visa fraud and underpaying a maid. Whether the accreditation of Devyani Khobragade as a member of India’s UN mission leads to a way out of the dispute could depend on the US State Department approving h...

Japan Sets Out New Defense Strategy

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Japan’s cabinet has approved a new national security strategy and increased defense spending in a move widely seen as aimed at China. Over the next five years, Japan will buy hardware including drones, aircraft and amphibious vehicles. The military will also build a new marine unit, an amphibious force capable of retaking islands. The move comes with Tokyo embroiled in a bitter row with B...

UN Seeks $6.5 Billion for Syria Crisis in 2014

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The United Nations appealed for a record $6.5 billion for Syria and its neighbors on Monday to help 16 million people, many of them hungry or homeless victims of a conflict that has lasted 33 months with no end in sight. The Syrian appeal accounted for half of an overall funding plan of $12.9 billion for 2014 to help 52 million people in 17 countries, announced by UN emergency relief coordinator ...

Bolivia Threatens to Close US Embassy

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President Evo Morales has warned that he could close the US Embassy in Bolivia as South America’s leftist leaders rallied to support him after his presidential plane was rerouted amid suspicions that NSA leaker Edward Snowden was on board. Morales again on Thursday blamed Washington for pressuring European countries to refuse to allow his plane to fly through their airspace on Tuesday, forcing ...

Muslim Brotherhood Calls for Demonstration

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The Muslim Brotherhood has called for mass protests in response to the military movement that led to the fall of former President Mohamed Morsi. An Islamist coalition, led by the Brotherhood, urged people on Thursday to take part in a “Friday of Rejection” protest following weekly prayers. The call is being seen as a test of whether Morsi still has a support base in the country, and how ...