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UN chief Ban Ki-moon on Monday implicitly criticised the United States and Russia for failing to advance nuclear disarmament in a setback he said marked a return to Cold War attitudes. In a speech delivered by his deputy Jan Eliasson, Ban told a conference on the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) opening at the United Nations that a nuclear-free world was the "historic imperative of our time." The 190 signatories of the NPT opened a month-long conference to review progress over the past five years in reducing the nuclear threat with much of the focus centered on the fate of US and Russian stockpiles.

A coalition of Arab states vowed to co-ordinate political and military efforts to restore order in Yemen as Saudi-led warplanes Monday launched new air strikes on Shia Huthi rebels. The raids killed at least 12 Huthi insurgents and allied forces as fighting continued across several provinces, military and local sources said. Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed al-Nahayan, the Abu Dhabi crown prince and armed forces chief of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), said the coalition is now working on military and political fronts to re-establish the legitimate authority in Sanaa.
Iran's Revolutionary Guards chief said Monday Saudi Arabia is verging on collapse as Tehran's position strengthens, putting the kingdom in the same camp as arch-foe Israel over its military intervention in Yemen. A Saudi-led coalition of Sunni Arab states launched air strikes in Yemen on March 26 against Huthi Shia rebels, whom Riyadh accuses Tehran of arming.
The Jerusalem District Attorney on Monday charged a Palestinian with deliberately running down two Israeli pedestrians this month, killing a man and seriously injuring a woman, the justice ministry said. It said in a statement that 37-year-old Khaled Kutina, a resident of the West Bank village of Anata just outside Israeli-annexed east Jerusalem, was charged with murdering 26-year-old Shalom Yohai Cherki and the attempted murder of 20-year-old Shira Klein.
A United Nations inquiry on Monday blamed the Israeli military for seven attacks on UN schools in Gaza that were used as shelters during the 2014 war. "I deplore the fact that at least 44 Palestinians were killed as a result of Israeli actions and at least 227 injured at United Nations premises being used as emergency shelters," Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in a letter to the Security Council.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan became embroiled with a war of words with the newly elected leader of northern Cyprus on Monday, bluntly telling him he should be careful what says. Mustafa Akinci, who won a run-off poll in the breakaway Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus on Sunday, drew Ankara's ire when he said Turkey and the TRNC should enjoy a relationship of "brotherly countries" rather than mother and child.
The German chancellor's office has known since 2008 of US economic espionage targeting European companies such as Airbus but did not react, the Bild daily said Monday, citing intelligence agency documents. The US National Security Agency (NSA) sought to spy on businesses in Europe via the German BND foreign intelligence agency's monitoring station at Bad Aibling in southern Bavaria, the mass circulation newspaper said.
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Banking Review 2014


Annual2013/14
Foreign Debt $61.805bn
Per Cap Income $1,386
GDP Growth 4.14%
Average CPI 8.6%
MonthlyMarch
Trade Balance $-1.586 bln
Exports $1.932 bln
Imports $3.518 bln
WeeklyApril 16, 2015
Reserves $16.818 bln