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September 24, 2017 2:40 AM Merkel heads for German poll win, hard-right AfD for first seats

BERLIN (AFP) - Chancellor Angela Merkel is expected to cruise to victory in elections Sunday (Sept 24) but also to face the breakthrough into parliament of hard-right populists for the first time in Germany's post-war history. Voting began at 0600 GMT (2pm Sunday Singapore time) in Europe’s biggest economy and exit polls are announced at 1600 GMT, with few expecting 3

September 23, 2017 5:18 AM Myanmar govt to set up working group for 'urgent repatriation' of refugees

YANGON: Myanmar's government will set up a working group to conduct a systematic verification process for "urgent repatriation" of refugees - hundreds of thousands of Rohingya Muslims who have fled Rakhine State to Bangladesh over the past few weeks, according to the office of the country's de facto leader and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi. The repatriation 3

September 23, 2017 5:04 AM Nuclear logic and logistics

If nuclear deterrence is a cardinal principle, why should it be a cardinal principle only for a few? Why should North Korea denuclearise when others are not doing so? When the others are testing and enhancing their nuclear capacity? When the US has militarised the Northern Pacific, with its self-declared Pivot to China? With its nuclear-armed submarines 3

September 22, 2017 8:47 PM The flip side of Trump’s ‘America First’ sentiment

For the first time since the Williams’ sisters took the centre stage, two Black American women this month found themselves in the Finals of the US Open. In fact, for the first time ever, three Black American women were in the Semis. The commentators, most of them Americans since the tournament took place on American soil, gushed about how good it all was for American 1

September 21, 2017 1:05 PM Visualizing the influx of Rohingya refugees

United Nations aid agencies said this week they are ramping up operations in southeast Bangladesh where more than 420,000 Rohingya Muslims have sought refuge from violence in neighboring Myanmar. The refugees have come by land, river and sea, trekking for days in monsoon weather to find sanctuary in Bangladesh, where nearly 200,000 Rohingya were already 3

September 21, 2017 11:10 AM Myanmar army chief urges internally displaced to return to Rakhine

SITTWE, Myanmar (Reuters) - Myanmar’s army chief called on Thursday for people internally displaced by violence in Rakhine State to go home and rebuild communities, but he made no mention of 422,000 Rohingya Muslims who fled to Bangladesh to escape his force’s operations. Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, in a major speech on his plans for Rakhine state 3

September 21, 2017 10:11 AM Despite global criticism, Myanmar’s Rakhine strategy retains strong domestic support

YANGON: While there has been widespread global condemnation of the violence taking place in Myanmar’s Rakhine state, many ordinary people in the country are standing solidly behind the government and State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi. From world leaders to Nobel peace laureates and rights activists to analysts, a chorus of powerful voices has criticised 4

September 21, 2017 3:51 AM Myanmar protesters try to block aid shipment to Muslim Rohingya

SITTWE, Myanmar: Buddhist protesters in Myanmar threw petrol bombs to try to block a shipment of aid to Muslims in Rakhine state, where the United Nations has accused the military of ethnic cleansing, before police fired in the air to disperse them. Hundreds of protesters were involved in the attempt to stop Red Cross workers loading a boat with relief 3

September 20, 2017 1:10 AM Australian PM says first asylum-seekers to be resettled in US under swap deal

SYDNEY: Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull said on Wednesday the first group of about 50 men and woman held in two controversial detention centres for asylum-seekers on remote Pacific islands will be resettled in the United States within weeks. Turnbull's comments mark the first official timetable for when the United States would begin resettling 4

September 19, 2017 11:32 PM Trump's 'sovereignty' pitch at UN could be good news for autocrats

Experts debate whether U.S. president gave 'rhetorical gift' to world's most brutal leaders Threatening to "totally destroy" North Korea. Prophesying that some nations in the room are "going to Hell." Warning diplomats they "haven't heard the last of" his attacks against the Iran nuclear deal. Beyond the dark picture of the world U.S. President Donald 4