HNKC News

Mexico President Signs Energy Law

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Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto has signed a law that allows foreign companies to drill for oil for the first time since the sector was nationalised in 1938. The legislation was passed by Congress on 13 December and ratified by a majority of Mexican states. President Pena Nieto says the reform will help Mexico attract the investment needed to boost its falling oil output. The oppositio...

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...

Merkel Confirmed for New Term

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Angela Merkel has been confirmed as German chancellor for a third term, at the head of a grand coalition, by a vote in parliament. Her centre-right CDU/CSU bloc fell short of an overall majority in September’s polls and will share power with the Social Democrats (SDP). Merkel received 462 votes out of 621 in the Bundestag (parliament) on Tuesday. The SPD’s membership voted on Sunday to back...

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 ...

NSA Data Grab ‘Against Constitution’

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A US judge has ruled the National Security Agency’s mass collection of telephone data unconstitutional. Federal District Judge Richard Leon said the electronic spy agency’s practice was an “arbitrary invasion”. The agency’s collection of “metadata” including telephone numbers and times and dates of calls was exposed by ex-NSA contractor Edward Snowden. In his ruling in a Was...

Portugal Passes Bailout Inspection

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Portugal has moved a step closer to exiting its bailout program after the international lenders that saved the country from bankruptcy approved a review of the economy six months early. The European Union and International Monetary Fund have been monitoring the country’s economic reforms, a condition of the 2011 78bn-euro (£66bn) bailout. Portugal hopes to leave the bailout agreement in the...

Scientists Discover Super Greenhouse Gas

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Scientists say they have discovered a man-made greenhouse gas 7,100 times as strong as carbon dioxide. More bad news: It has a lifetime of hundreds of years. Researchers at the University of Toronto in Canada say the chemical – perfluorotributylamine (PFTBA) – is the most radiatively efficient chemical found to date, breaking all other chemical records for its potential to impact climate. Ac...

Scientists Grow Lung Cells from Stem Cells

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Scientists say they have been able to transform human stem cells into functioning lung and airway cells in what they’re calling a first. The results could eventually lead to growing lung material that could be transplanted with a much smaller chance of rejection. “Researchers have had relative success in turning human stem cells into heart cells, pancreatic beta cells, intestinal cells, ...

BSF Man Acquitted in Felani Killing Case

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India Border Security Force (BSF) jawan Amiya Ghosh has been exempted from the charge of killing a Bangladeshi teenage girl Felani Khatun. A special BSF court of India found Amiya Ghosh of 181 battalion “not guilty” of shooting dead 15-year-old Bangladeshi girl. The judgment is subject to approval from the competent authority of the BSF. Felani was shot dead by the BSF man while she w...